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My 3 month journey to a better body

Let me start by saying that this isn’t going to be one of those annoying “Pilates-changed-my-life” pieces, even though it could be! This is just my personal story about how Pilates has given me back my life through strength, mobility & confidence.

My health, historic & poor excuses to not exercise

Like everyone, I’ve had some struggles… One morning, 2 years ago this week in fact, my world was turned upside down. An acute sickness left me crippled and bed ridden.  My diagnosis was Ankylosing Spondylitis, arthritis in the spine! The fight over the next 4 months was the toughest I’d been through in my life.

Fast forward almost 2 years. Life has changed… I have a great relationship with my chiropractor! No surprises there, haha. I’m now 40 something and the world is still throwing challenges. Dealing with arthritis, general aging (and by aging, I mean – sagging in areas I don’t want to sag in), the dad bod, covid kilos, old knee injuries from my sporting glory days, a new fiancé and child, running 2 businesses, overworked, time poor, fad diets, gyms full of posers, borders closed, no holidays, looking after everyone else except myself bla bla bla. Let’s just say, the body was on a downhill slide faster that I could stop it. HELP!

I needed a challenge, something new, not intimidating, something within 15 minutes’ drive, something I could stick to, something low impact, something that eliminates all my “excuses”!

Reformer Pilates – Am I “the type”?

Reformer Pilates! I was initially worried that I might not be the Pilates type. As a 40 year old male, I’m used to lifting chunks of steel my whole life, not lying down on a bed with springs! They claim “In 10 sessions you will feel the difference, in 20 you will see the difference, and in 30 you’ll have a whole new body.” Really?

How do I feel 3 months into reformer pilates? Amazing!

Well, today is my 35th Reformer Pilates session over the past 3 months with the crew at Vibe Pilates and the claim is 100% right for me! Today is also the day that I realised my interest in reformer Pilates has now formed a lifelong habit. I’m sold! Last night I actually sat there and scheduled my week by slotting in my Pilates classes first and then putting my work schedule around it. My excuses are now gone!

It’s not the only thing that’s gone either. My former tuck-shop lady arms are now toned and firm, my abs are a work in progress, but they are starting to shape (i have a bit to lose there), I’ve never had such toned legs, even as a professional athlete in my teens/20s, I’m more relaxed, my brain fog is gone and, despite what my daughter says, my dad jokes are even funnier.

My Reformer Pilates schedule

So what have I been doing? I’ve been doing around 3 sessions a week, and one week I challenged myself to do 5 sessions!

To begin with, this is not your average workout program. Professional instructors lead your small class through a self-paced 45-minute routine. Yes, that’s right, you’re in full control. I’ve loved watching and feeling my progression over the past few months. A smaller break here, an extra rep there. Slowly but surely, you change.

There are classes to cater for cardio, toning and strengthening as well as the popular abs, butt & thighs!

Your instructors are positive, professional, caring, always watching your form & technique no matter if you’re a newbie or a pro!

And the music! I love the music! Always suitable to the time of day and style of workout you’re doing. You could be rocking out to 80s big hair rock one minute, pumping to the latest dance beats or stretching with relaxing tunes to calm you down! Always something fresh!

Don’t say it…. Oh I have to…

In summary, I know I said I wasn’t going to say it but… Pilates has changed my life. I now go to my chiropractor every 2 weeks instead of every week, my arthritis is so much better, I’m strong, I feel fit, I’m looking toned, I’m more flexible and I’m super excited to see what changes the next 3 months will bring. I’m a work in progress. Lookout beer gut, I’m coming for you! Haha! Stay tuned…

PS I’m not promising you anything but if you put in the effort I’m positive you’ll get great results too. (and have a lot of fun along the way)

By Will Connors
This is not a paid advertisement. This is an actual personal story shared by a patron of Vibe Pilates.