Working smarter, instead of just harder

Dec 04, 2014


Lesley Lang spends her days doling out financial advice to small business owners as a commercial banker.

But it took a chance meeting at a business-networking event, and an enthusiastic endorsement from a friend, to bring her through the door of Free Form Fitness for the advice she needed to get her health on track.

The 26-year-old never cared for working out at the gym because she didn’t know what she was doing. She did, however, enjoy playing competitive sports, and suffered the consequences of high impact activities without proper conditioning.

“I was always something of a sports nut,” Lesley said. “I would play all sorts of sports and I would just push through all my injuries.”

She ended up with a condition of the knee called Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome. It can have a substantial impact on quality of life and mobility. She tried to address it with physio and forge on with generic fitness classes at one of the big chains.

“I was stubborn, I would just push through it, but it wasn’t working, I couldn’t keep up,” she said.

Then she met Ashley Lawrie, President of FFF, and decided to give a personalized approach to fitness and nutrition a try.

“I signed up for a year,” she said. “If I was going to commit, I was going to do it all the way.”

Eight months later, she has lost 40 pounds and gone from a size 16 to a 10. Her ultimate weight loss target is 80 pounds.

But it’s about much more than just the weight. The combination of weight loss, as well as a “fantastic” fitness program tailored to her unique needs, as yielded a dramatic improvement in her knee problem.

In fact, it was only after she began training with the team at FFF’s Byward Market location that she discovered part of her problem was an inactive glute muscle, which put additional strain on the other muscles in her leg.

“When I first started working out, I could barely feel or target that muscle,” Lesley said. “Now I’ve learned to do that and engage the different muscles around my knee.”

Able to give 100 per cent again

“At the end of the day, I don’t have aching pain anymore,” she said. “When I started, I could do squats, but it was painful. Now, it’s no problem, and I am even progressing into lunges. I am definitely walking straighter, and my posture is a lot better.”

Lesley plays competitive volleyball. “I can really give it 100 per cent at the net now, instead of holding back,” she said.

Her nutrition has greatly improved, as well. She has diversified her diet and acquired the discipline to prepare fresh, nutritious meals. In fact, she’s come to enjoy cooking.

The key to it all has been the consistency of her scheduled training sessions, and the support of her trainers.

“Just having the consistency in my life of three times a week, it’s always there, that’s the catalyst to push me in the other facets of my life I need to do better on,” Lesley said. “For me, it’s so important to have those scheduled sessions.”

Being leaner and healthier has also made Lesley more confident and more of a morning person. She gets up at 5:30 in the morning three times a week to hit the gym before heading to the office.

“I have such better energy throughout the day,” she said. “I find I don’t even need as much sleep. I used to be so cranky without my eight hours.”

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