Updated: Nov 14, 2018
1) What was the defining moment that made you decide to join the gym?
I was overseas for a while and although I was walking over an hour every day, I was still putting on a lot of weight which I was very unhappy about. I knew I needed to do something different, and after speaking with my grandson; I knew that this meant joining a gym.
2) Why did you choose Fitness Forum Health Club?
My grandchildren recommended it to me as it was close by and they said it was a good gym. Trusting that recommendation, I decided to walk down from my house to the gym and see if I liked it. It wasn’t too overwhelming, there were lots of helpful staff at reception to help answer all my questions.
3) Did you have any doubts about joining the gym as a 70+ year old man?
Now I can see that it doesn’t matter what age you are, exercise is not just for the youthful. It is a lifetime thing that you need to maintain good health, good strength, good posture and reduce the effects of age that are hugely preventable. I did not think that the gym would work for me because even walking so much every single day over a few months, my weight didn’t shift. One of the gyms trainers, David, asked me how my eating was. I told him I ate large amounts but only at lunch and dinner time. He gave me the advice that I was eating too much but not often enough and instead to try smaller meals more frequently. Since taking on this advice, I started feeling much better and the kilos started to come off. They genuinely cared about me from day one, that was important to me.
4) Where do you get your motivation to attend the gym as often as 6 days a week?
My Grand children pushed me the most, they challenged me to get down to 100 kilos from 113 or so kilos. Just walking up the steps to the gym was a huge challenge for me because my joints were so stiff and caused me a great deal of pain. I had this pain for over 30 years and it was truly affecting my health. Every day I started feeling better and better, so I started to exercise for longer periods of time and I didn’t even think twice about the time. I truly enjoy exercise. I used to have a terrible back problem, the 3rd and 4th disc were bulging. Daniel and David always recommend different machines to help strengthen my muscles so that there is a reduction of pressure on my back. They always check on me to make sure I am using the correct form or techniques and that I am not lifting anything too heavy that will cause further damage. Now I am not scared to try different machines and equipment in fear that I will hurt my back. I used to look for excuses and now, I am motivated by the scale. Every time I see the weight drop, I come back in and exercise a little harder and a little longer.
5) What are your biggest achievements since joining the gym?
I have lost a lot of weight and have achieved the goals my grandchildren and I have set. For over 20 years I have not been under 100 kilos. I weighed myself last week and for the first time, it read 99 kilos. I couldn’t believe it because I was so happy, and so I weighed myself at home to check.
It was correct! I said to my grand son that he was right, I was able to achieve my goals. Fitness Forum staff were extremely helpful and aided towards this result significantly as they supported me the whole way through.
6) Did anyone doubt you when you told them you were joining a gym?
My daughters are not really fussed by the gym, I think they may have worried about me training but I have not only lost weight, I am now able to do daily activities without as much difficulty. I can mow the lawns, easy. I can bend down and fix things. I carry all the bags around when my wife and I do the groceries.
7) What advice would you give to other people of a similar age group who are thinking about exercising?
Just come and try it for yourself for 3 months. That’s all. I started slowly, only a few days here and there for a few minutes. As I saw the weight go down, I started exercising 6 days a week and sometimes I exercise for over 2 hours if I am feeling really motivated. It has changed my life completely. I brought my wife here, she loved it but started feeling lower back pain one day. She went for a scan and the Dr said that she had stage 1 cancer developing. If I hadn’t taken her to the gym to exercise, it would probably not be detected until it was too late. It was a blessing in disguise to join up at Fitness Forum. After my wife recovers from surgery, we will come in to the gym together because we want to stay fit and healthy for as long as possible, you can’t take your health for granted.
Vlado Jankanj has been awarded our member of the month, for the month of October. He is, not only a really nice person, but a true inspiration to all.