Michael: I’m Healthier Than I Have Ever Been in My Life

Michael, who is turning 40 later this year, is a family man who has seen life-changing results thanks to his new lifestyle and exercise regime. Michael was one of the first participants to take up our  Adult Activity Subsidy, with incredible results. He spoke to us recently about the benefits of exercise and how the subsidy can help you.

We know physical fitness is important to you. How did you first get motivated to exercise?

Back in 2017, I had two episodes of haemoptysis (coughing up blood). It was very scary and a big wake up call.

Straight out of hospital, I decided to focus solely on my health. I started a new exercise regime and quit my full-time job.

I was already going to Jetts gym in Ellenbrook when I decided I needed some more guidance in reaching my fitness goals, so I approached Danny from Sustain Health and Performance to provide me with personal coaching and support. I started having personal training sessions with him four times a week and continued to do so for over a year.

What changes have you noticed in your health since increasing your exercise habits?

My health stabilised. My lung function plateaued (no more declines), and I had no more lung infections. I was feeling really good. Almost a year later, I went on to a drug trial. The triple combination therapy, combined with my new exercise routine, saw my health improve dramatically.

My lung function increased by 20%, my energy levels skyrocketed, my strength increased – so much I can now carry my 10-year-old daughter up to bed. I haven’t had a hospital admission since 2017 and my check-ups have gone from once a month to three-monthly.

I’m now back at work part-time, which is great as it means I’m able to be more involved in my daughter’s life; doing school pickups and taking her to extracurricular activities.

I am committed to my new lifestyle. It’s a routine and I make exercise and nutrition a priority.

What other changes have you made?

I have dropped down to one personal training session a week and then the other three sessions I work out on my own with the program Danny has written me.

My diet has also changed a lot. Danny has taught me a great deal about nutrition and fuelling my body. I’m currently eating over 3,200 calories a day in order to build muscle mass but still maintain a low body fat percentage. I haven’t had a can of Coke or junk food in months and instead, aim for healthy fats and high-protein foods.

My wife, Natalie, has joined the gym, too, and our eating habits at home have changed a lot. We generally follow the 80/20 rule, so allow ourselves to enjoy ice cream for dessert. It’s all about balance.

Has the subsidy helped you?

It has been a huge financial help. It just helped take the edge off the costs as having a personal coach isn’t cheap, particularly when I wasn’t working.

I used the subsidy to take part in a 12-week challenge with Danny at Sustain Health and Performance. We had to track calories and be within 90% of our target, as well as submit a photo update every 4 weeks (you can see my results in the image). I ended up winning the challenge and a $1,500 cash prize!

I have developed such a passion for fitness; I have decided to put that money towards getting my Certificate III in Fitness.

How did you find the process for claiming the subsidy?

It was really easy. I read about the subsidy in CFWA e-news and sent off an e-mail to check they still had subsidies available; from there, it was all online. I paid the gym and provided proof to CFWA and they reimbursed me.

What would you say to someone thinking of applying for a CFWA Activity Subsidy?

GO FOR IT! Definitely. Do something you enjoy that is sustainable. I have made so many friends at the gym. I think going to a group fitness class or having a personal trainer are great options because they can offer support and advice.

I want to say thank you to CFWA as the support has allowed me to take my fitness to the next level with a whole new life-changing experience. I will continue training hard as I have never been this healthy in my nearly 40 years of life.


Article from RED Magazine, Edition 3 2019.

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