The Late Bloomer
Client: Willard Hammonds
Personal Trainer: Lisa Wright
Location: In home-Corpus Christi, Texas
From contemplation to action. At age 79, Willard had a body of mass of 29, which was overweight-considered borderline obese. He says he was tired of being overweight and struggling with diabetes. He was also experiencing shortness of breath, occasional dizziness, high blood pressure and had a bypass surgery ten years prior. Willard had thought about hiring a trainer for about three-four years to help him with his health and fitness. He finally called Lisa after a friend of his shared his positive experience at Your Personal Best. They began training together in July of 2008.
A budding relationship. When Willard began training with Lisa he was inspired to place greater focus on his health and fitness. Lisa learned the things that Willard enjoyed and tried to incorporate them into the workouts. They eventually moved some of his workouts to his swimming pool. Willard enjoyed this.
Gaining insights. Before making any judgments, Lisa simply listened. “I needed to listen to what Willard’s expectations and goals were and determine if they were realistic for the condition his body was in”. Lisa was concerned with Willard’s current state of health. He had a very difficult time with flexibility and had for most of his life. She wanted to make sure he was able to enjoy success as he progressed, so a very specific, tailor-made program was developed to give Willard the best possible chance for success. “A big concern for me, as a trainer to a senior population, has always been flexibility, balance and coordination. I knew I would need to program these into his various workouts. Both in the pool and out”.
Building trust. Each 30-minute session was presented differently than the previous one to avoid predictability. The two used tools such as resistance bands, free weights, medicine balls, stability balls and Willard’s swimming pool. Lisa also coached Willard with nutritional information. Willard began making healthier choices, incorporating protein smoothies and suggested food combinations to help him begin to shred the excess body fat.
Recognizing weakness. “Every time I go to the doctor”, Willard says, “they ask me how many times I have fallen. I tell them I have never fallen. I guess they expect old people to fall”, he laughs. Willard does suffer with occasional knee pain but says doing the water aerobics take a lot of pressure off his knee and it just feels good. Lisa and Willard continue to strengthen his weaker areas and stretch his tighter areas. This has proven to be very successful.
Seeing success. Willard has been training with Lisa for four years now. He is 83 years old. “I feel so much more flexible since I started training . After our training sessions, I always have a better emotional feeling. It just makes my whole day go better”. Willard encourages seniors to become active and hire a trainer to help them. He says “it’s never to late to start!”.