Starting weight – 350lbs.
Starting clothing size – 26-28
Current weight – 319lbs.
Current clothing size – 26-28

I’ve always been the kid who, though I did sports year-round, was bigger than normal. Never had a lot of fast food growing up, good meals at home and was active but could never seem to be slim.

As I got older, started working, living on my own and not being as active, my weight increased. At my highest, I weighed 350 lbs. I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and moderate kidney disease. Anytime I went to the doctor, the answer to all of my ails was “If you only lost weight…”.

I know I should say I signed up because I wanted to get healthy or work to be healthier but to be honest, the reason I signed up for the gym this time (and there have been plenty of start/stops) was because of my brother. He was looking for a local place and I happened to know people who had previously gone to Boom Fitness. I figured he and I could be gym partners, help encourage each other and give us something to do.

It was a bit slow going to start out. I started working with a personal trainer and it was something. Can’t say it was the greatest, but it wasn’t the worst. After a short while, I was able to link up with a great trainer in Josh E., who has helped me tremendously kick start a desire to want to come into the gym after a long day at work.

He’s seen me sweat, the tears, the goofy grimaces, the grunting and the ungainly way I have maneuvered around the gym. He’s been there when I’ve come in excited that I’ve lost that next couple of pounds and has seen the inches come off, even if my clothing size hasn’t changed yet. He’s also been there when I’ve come in discouraged that I gained pounds while out sick or having an off week.

Through it all though, he’s stuck by me, being my cheerleader, giving me encouragement, being my pseudo therapist and making it fun/enjoyable to come in for a workout.

It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to touch my toes, walk up and down my stairs without getting winded, walk around the neighborhood and not be gassed after 5 minutes. Yes, I still have some aches and pains, but I just attribute that to being old, ahaha!

One of the first pieces of equipment that I tried to use in the gym was the rowing machine. I never thought I would be able to comfortably use it. I couldn’t get around my stomach to reach the handlebar and wasn’t able to strap my feet in, let alone keep up any kind of consistency for a set amount of time. I still have my belly, but I now have the strength and a bit of endurance to

put in some good effort and sweat equity. I might curse it to start but by the end of my time, I’m feeling good and thinking, “Shoot, this wasn’t that bad. I could do that again”.

My reason for signing up and sticking with my workouts has changed. I still do the gym buddy thing with my brother, but now I go because I want to. I feel better about myself, I sleep better, and moving through life is getting just that much easier..

Though there are days that are rough, where I don’t see the weight loss like I think I should, or I’m just tired and don’t want to go to the gym, I remember my ultimate goal. To be a healthier, still sassy and sarcastic me to share with all of you!

For me, I’m still in my infancy of getting to that healthier me and will continue to be a work in progress. With the support and help of Josh and everyone at Boom Fitness (other trainers, clients & gym goers), I know that my journey will be exhausting but some of the best times I’ll have while getting fit and being active!

Katherine J. Khan

What’s your occupation? Vegetation Management Coordinator – A fancy title for tree and landscape coordinator for PGE. 

Favorite superhero? Hermione Granger – Yes, I know she’s not a superhero per se, but she’s a badass w/a wand who helps save the day (on multiple occasions). 

Favorite food? Pork ribs & carrot cake w/raisin and cream cheese frosting 

What are your goals? To be half of my current self and medication free.

What’s kept you motivated? Seeing that I can go up and down my stairs without being out of breath. Being able to go out and work in the field for my job, knowing that I’m not having to stop or slow anyone else down because I can’t keep up by being out of shape.

What do you like to do outside the gym? I love to read, spend time with family, go to the movies. Play a lot of Wii with my nephew & niece.

What’s the greatest fitness challenge you have faced? Trying to stay healthy and pain-free so that I can make it into the gym and get that work out it. Over the course of the year and couple of months that I’ve been regularly coming to the gym, there’s been a huge improvement. Yes, there are times when it will be painful but my trainer, Josh, keeps reminding me to keep the WHY of what I’m doing at the forefront of my thoughts.

What’s the biggest accomplishment since you started training? I can now touch my toes while stretching. I can get in and out of the rowing machine mostly on my own (though I still can’t reach the handle to unhook it, lol)

Favorite movement or exercise? Ugh, that’s a difficult one. I think I’ve got to go with body squats. I’ve finally got the correct form down. I think the easier question is which movement/exercise I don’t like but do anyway because I know it’s what’s good for me.

What music do you like to train? Anything with a good, heavy beat/bass. Something that I can semi-dance to when I’m in the zone. 

What advice would you give new gym-goers? Have a support system in place or build one up as you come to work out. Make friends and get to know people at the gym. I’ve met some great people, who though we might not know each other’s full story, we have a common interest of wanting to be a better version of ourselves and can lend those words of encouragement.

What advice would you give yourself if you started from the beginning? Don’t lose sight of your goal. If you need to, make those smaller goals and celebrate your success.

What do you think of your WONDERFUL personal trainer at Boom? Josh has been an AMAZING trainer for me!! Our personalities meshed well right from the get-go. He listened to what I wanted to accomplish and made sure the programs that he’s designed for me were FOR ME and not generic, rote workouts. He’s seen me at my lowest moments, and he’s been there for me on my triumphs when I’ve hit a goal or accomplished something that I never would have dreamed of doing. I wouldn’t be where I am today in my fitness life without the guidance of Josh.