"I first walked into Be Strong I was 56 years old and knew I needed to do something to shed some weight and get healthier.........Next thing I know I'm in Prague Chez Republic competing on the world stage!!!"

A year of firsts. The light of retirement was beginning to shine at the end of the tunnel (dim yet still shining) and I didn't want to be one of those who did nothing but get old and veg away until I died.  

Joining a gym was first for me. Since joining I have lost 25 pounds and have never been healthier.  My blood pressure is back to normal, my cholesterol is now normal and I feel like I can accomplish anything.  Before class time started coaches and other members were always talking about "this competition, or that competition" and I started asking questions.

 I have never in my life competed in any kind of sporting event.  Coach Drew suggested Power Lifting.  I just looked at him like he was crazy.  Me? Power Lift?  He talked me into signing up for a competition last February ----and I was instantly hooked.  Another First.  Then he talked me into another one, this one was a national tournament in a different Power Lifting Federation.  Huh, I won my age/weight class.  Another first.  Then another national tournament in yet a different federation.  Won that one as well.  Another First.  

Next thing I know I'm in Prague Chez Republic competing on the world stage.  I took second in that competition but it was still a first.  First time in Europe, First time competing with people from 23 different countries.  

None of this would have been possible if it wasn't for Drew and the other coaches AND the other members of Be Strong.  At Be Strong you immediately become a member of not a gym, but a family.  Everything in life gets left at the door.  There is no color, no creed, no political affiliation.  Just everyday people with their own goals and everyone else trying to help each other achieve them.  Some of the time you don't even know what their goals are, you just know that they are working as hard as you are and you want to help them succeed.  We cheer each other on, we pick each other up when down and we celebrate our accomplishments. The Family like bond doesn't stop when you leave the gym either. We do things for the community, we do "fun" activities like 5k runs (oh, another first) and obstacle course races not to mention lunches and dinners together.  Be Strong literally changed my life and my list of "FIRSTS" keep growing. Now at 57 years of age  I can' wait to see what next year brings.  Stay tuned.