If you’ve seen any of our Success Stories, you might have thought “that’s impossible!” or “ I don’t believe it”. With so many gimmicks in the fitness industry, it’s hard to believe that transformations of such calibre are possible, let alone natural!
The truth is, every single ASP transformation is genuine.
More importantly though, they are a personal testament to the hard work, dedication, sweat, lifestyle inconveniences and even tears shed by each ASP client. Each person’s story is different and unique. Some struggle more than others, falling back into old habits along the way. Others lose sight of their goals, and a few have given up altogether.
Then there are those who continue on, picking themselves up after each fall, choosing to move forward. These clients of ours haven’t completed a 12 week transformation, haven’t followed every piece of advice given, may have lost focus, cheated and many a times been on the verge of leaving. Yet their determination, perseverance and constant desire to change serve to remind us every day exactly why we do what we do.
One such client is someone we call the ‘silent warrior’, and this is his inspirational story:
At 175 kilos, I was the heaviest I had ever been. It wasn’t always like that. I was an active and popular kid, but things started to change growing up. Throughout my high school years, I became a victim of social abuse, incessant bullying and was marginalised from my peers. Feeling lonely, unloved and hating the world – myself included, I began indulging in food as my sole comfort.
This, as I was soon to realise, was to become a common trend in the years ahead. By the end of high school, I had gained 75 kilos and weighted in at whooping 115 kilos! With poor grades but the prospect of a shot at real life, I decided to join the workforce instead, looking for a trade apprenticeship. Again, I was overlooked because of my weight, and so with no further option in mind, I turned to labouring. During this time, I had tried to join a gym in an attempt to get fitter, but would always get intimidated by the huge bodybuilder types who were lifting insane amounts of weights. Moreover, I couldn’t help feeling that whenever I was exercising, people would stare and comment about how fat I was.
My labouring job did not last for long, and I quickly moved into the security industry, believing that this time my size and weight would be an advantage. How wrong I was! The bullying did not stop there as I hoped, with colleagues and patrons still calling me fat, and on one occasion, even had someone grab my belly fat in an attempt to insult me. Such ridicule continued year after year.
So here I was, 4 years later, standing at my heaviest – morbidly obese, unhealthy, unfit and extremely unhappy. One thing that became clear throughout this time was that I did not want to live like that anymore. I was huge fan of mixed martial arts (MMA) and the Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC), and decided that I wanted to become a fighter, or at least get fit doing so. Not knowing where to start, I enlisted in an MMA gym and followed a strict bodybuilding style diet introducing 1-2 cheat meals through the week. For 3 whole months, I trained twice a day, but had not lost any weight whatsoever. I could not understand this and felt perhaps I could do with some expert advice. After seeing the amazing transformation of a friend David Crow, with Australian Strength Performance, I was convinced that these guys had the knowledge to help me out. The following day, I called Ben Siong – the Founder of ASP – to tell him my story, and that was the beginning of my new life.
I had never felt more welcomed anywhere than with ASP. On commencing, Ben introduced a personalised diet plan which was completely different from the plan I was on, put me on a training protocol under ASP Coach Priscilla, and implemented some big lifestyle changes.
The effectiveness of the program was immediate. I was getting lighter, fitter, stronger and felt on top of the world. But my journey wasn’t like that all the time. After two months, I gradually began slipping back into my old habits and self-sabotaging mindset, and found myself cheating with food. Each time it happened, I justified my actions and then felt compelled to lie, hoping Ben would not know. However, my weekly BioSignature sessions would inadvertently give it away.
Being the awesome mentor he was, Ben would never blame me, but encourage and coach me through my mis-actions, pushing me further whenever I hit a rough patch in my weight loss journey. Each time, we would refocus on my goals and try again. It’s incredible to experience such a level of support especially when you never had any going through your whole life.
With the help of Team ASP, I competed in my first competition of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in November 2012. I beat one opponent and faired very well against two others. Unfortunately, during this time my best friend suffered a personal loss in his family and this affected me deeply. Over the next few months I once again found myself in the slums, facing an uphill battle to maintain my motivation and training.
Then it happened one day during one of his consult, that Ben suggested I work to become a personal trainer. Not just any trainer, but an ASP coach whom he will take under his wing and develop. I could not believe it! Here was a suggestion that I have never thought possible – a morbidly obese, self hating, depressed person aspiring to become an ASP coach? It took a while to sink in, but I now see what Ben sees – that I have the potential to inspire others, to tell my story and help people who have experienced the same things I have.
Having lost 28 kilos so far (24 kilos in fat!), with ASP, I’m still far from my goal weight. I am also little apprehensive of the thought of being a trainer, but I’m choosing to take the challenge face on. My name is George Menelaou, I am proud of who I am, and I have a story to share, a story about my continuing journey – a story about how determination and self belief can make anything possible!”
As George mentions we will be keeping a close eye on his progress over the coming weeks & months, and we’ll be posting updates for you too! We’ll discuss details of his exercise regimen, how he is managing to lose all his weight healthily, as well as the challenges he faces and overcomes.
Want to send your well wishes to George? We’ll be promoting his story on our Facebook page shortly after this post, so please share, like or leave a comment