For Cory, working out and taking care of his body was always the last thing on his list. The single father of two has many responsibilities to juggle throughout the day and just couldn’t find the motivation to get to the gym. But when Cory’s doctor told him he had developed type 2 diabetes, he knew something had to change. With the help of his support system at the South Spokane YMCA, Cory has lost over 100 pounds and has dramatically slowed the progression of his diabetes.
“I looked at my kids and thought to myself ‘I need to show them what positive change can look like, I need to model a healthy lifestyle for them.’ So I swallowed my pride and I started putting in the work,” Cory says.
He admits that coming to the gym was intimidating at first. Seeing everyone in their own routine, looking like they knew what they were doing was initially scary, but he soon found the Y and its community to be comforting.
“Asking for help can be hard, really hard. But everyone at the Y makes you feel comfortable asking for help. You feel safe asking questions and seeking guidance. Both the staff and members want you to succeed,” says Cory.
One influential aspect of his weight loss journey was working with Jennings, one of the Wellness Coachs at the South Y. “Jennings has been supportive from day one and always positive. We were able to bond over both being single fathers, having that unique perspective helped him understand my situation more,” he says.
After over a year of making positive changes in his life, Cory was able to return to his doctor with encouraging results. Due to his weight loss, Cory would no longer have to take his diabetes medication, a major milestone in his journey. “The doctor was so surprised. You know I’m sure he has people in there every day saying ‘I am going to change’ but few actually do.” Cory continues “I was really happy to be one of the few.”
He confesses that he didn’t think this kind of transformation was possible. He wants to assure others that no act is too small, no change too insignificant to make a difference, “do what you can, when you can. It’s all about the little things you do that add up to big changes. I’m proof of that.”
Now when he walks into the YMCA he feels like one of those people he saw over a year ago, comfortable and in a routine. “It feels good to be where I am, I still have more progress I want to make, but I know it’s possible. I feel supported and valued at the Y, and that feels great.”