One Places Gym member shares her 12-week journey

In her own words Places Gym Chesterfield member, Blanche, describes her journey on the Shape Up for Summer challenge she recently completed.

“When I first entered the competition for the 12-week personal training programme, I was really unhappy with my body.

I’d gained weight, was struggling to get into some clothes and generally felt rubbish about myself. Having zero motivation, the only thing which was making me happy was chocolate – not the best thing to have when you’re already feeling unhappy about your body image.

I entered the competition for a bit of fun – although I was secretly hoping I’d win. However, when I got the phone call to say I’d won, I was petrified. I started trying to convince myself I didn’t need to go to the gym and all the body hang-ups I’d been feeling, weren’t real!

My personal trainer was Gavin, and our first session together was a bit of a blur – through all my huffing, puffing, heaving and not being able to stand, Gav kept encouraging me and was so patient.

We set a target for me to go to the gym 3 times per week to improve my fitness. I felt nervous about using the gym and Gav noticed I was sticking to classes if I wasn’t training with him, so he put me a workout plan together. I soon developed the confidence to utilise the equipment in the gym and the plan really encouraged me to keep going on my own.

Honestly, I didn’t notice a difference in my physical appearance until Gav showed me the before and after photos – and my measurements. I was so pleased with my results!

  • Weight: 68.1kg to start – 63.5kg to finish
  • Body fat: 38.2% to start – 31.5% to finish
  • Muscle: 25.6% to start – 29.2% to finish
  • Waist: 31.5” to start – 27.5” to finish
  • Hips: 41” to start – 38.5” to finish

  • Mentally, I am so much happier and more confident to go to the gym on my own. My fitness has improved massively, but I’m also willing to try exercises and machines I’ve never really used before – once you’ve been shown and know what you’re doing, it really isn’t that bad!

    Except burpee’s – they’ll always be bad.

    As the 12-weeks progressed, I even began to set myself mini challenges such as completing X number of press-ups (which I can now do on my feet!). I now work out 5 or 6 days a week and will continue with my training.

    I’m so grateful for the experience. Yes, there have been days where I needed a pep-talk from Gav, or I’ve felt as though I wasn’t progressing as well as I should be. But I’ve gained my focus – I now focus more on me and my progress, than other peoples.

    This last 12-weeks has been so much fun – I’ve laughed so much; it’s made it worthwhile! I’ve changed my whole outlook on exercise, I’ve lost weight, sweated loads and really enjoyed myself – it’s definitely been a positive outcome.”

    Earlier this year Places Gym held a ‘Shape up for summer’ competition, for people to be in with the chance of winning 12-weeks personal training. Open to members and non-members alike, one winner at each gym was chosen. Read the progress of our other members here.

    For more information on memberships and personal training at Places Gym Chesterfield, call the site on 01246 203067 or register here for a FREE 5-day pass.