Transformation Tuesday: Meet Herbert – Grandfather of 9 and HVT Champion

Posted On Oct 16, 2018 By Bowflex Insider Team

Transformation Tuesday: Herbert

In our #TransformationTuesday series, we chat with real Bowflex owners who have not only experienced major successes in their fitness journey, but have overcome major hurdles. This week we interviewed Herbert, a 60-year-old superhero who has lost 101 pounds, 12 inch around his waist, and has all health problems under control without medications.

“Two weeks ago, I had another doctor appointment and had the doctors questioning their scales. The doctor said, ‘You are pretty fit for a 60-year old male.’”

Tell us about the Herbert in December 2017?

Herbert: In Fall 2017, I was the heaviest I had been in my entire life, and also the unhealthiest I had ever been. I was still fairly mobile doing the things that my wife and I love, but I could tell that I was sluggish and tired. Physical exercise was not part of my routine. After work, it was a large meal, sit on the couch, snack, and watch TV until bedtime. Many medical problems were setting in that doctors began treating with medication, such as high blood pressure and cholesterol.

In the fall, my wife and I went on a vacation to Boston. After several months of planning to ensure that we saw all the sites on our list, the execution of the trip proved to be a challenge. I was experiencing plantar fasciitis (excess weight being a contributor) in both feet and the walking was an irritant. Almost every night, I laid awake in pain during the trip. The trip was a success, but afterwards I spent 8 weeks in a walking cast after painful injections. By December 2017, I knew that I needed to make some lifestyle changes. I was about to turn 60 and my father died at age 65. I have 9 beautiful grandchildren and want to see many more of their milestones during my lifetime!

Think back all the way from childhood until now. What has your background with fitness and exercise been?

Herbert: I was always active in sports growing up: Baseball, football and wrestling were activities that kept me fit and trim throughout my young life. After high school, I entered the United States Air Force and spent 30 years maintaining my weight and fitness as part of my job. I think back and my fitness goal was just to pass the test every year, so after retiring from the Air Force, my goal and incentive to remain healthy seemed gone. As the waistline grew, the activities ceased and my health declined.

Was there a particular moment or event in your life that inspired you to make this change?

Herbert: Yes, there was a specific event that had a motivating and lasting effect on my health. I went to the doctor for a chronic cough and was referred to a breathing specialist as one more medical issue. The doctor was writing on my chart while reviewing the test results, and I watched him write this statement: “A 59 and a ½-year old obese male”. Wow, I thought. How dare him! Thinking about this encounter on my way home, I realized the doctor was right! I am an obese person! You never notice yourself, or at least I didn’t. I looked at myself every day, but didn’t see the weight gain in the mirror. After losing 101 pounds, I can see it now!

What struck you about the Bowflex HVT? Why did you choose this machine?

Herbert: I was motivated to make the change, so we started looking at some options and plans. Living in the country, there are not many gym membership options and we already have a home gym with other Bowflex equipment such as the Max Trainer, dumbbells, and an older Bowflex home gym. Nothing motivates me quite like a new exercise machine. I watched the video on the HVT and remembering all of those exercises that I would accomplish in a full-service gym, I started to visualize completing those routines on this one machine. We ordered the equipment and waited! This was our Christmas present to each other.

What did you like most about the Bowflex HVT? Was it easy to learn?

Herbert: As soon as I put the machine together we started to experiment. We used the Bowflex HVT App that came loaded on the tablet to look and preview all of the possible exercises and within minutes were ready for some workouts. We also joined a Facebook page and were able to talk to other HVT users for additional exercise routines and maintenance requirements for the machine. Within days we were HVT masters and on our way to better heath. On December 31st, 2017 a friend of mine challenged me to a 6-month weight loss challenge. At the time, my weight was 310 lbs., with a new machine and a desire to begin.

I loved the ease at how many different routines can be performed on the machine. You can change exercises, add time, change resistance levels, and vary routines with a turn of a dial. I would sit at work during the day and plan my next routine on the HVT. Connecting with other users allowed some of us to share routines that we had created and this kept the training fun and fresh. None of my workouts have been easy; I was challenged each time stepping on to the platform of the HVT and stepped off with a puddle of sweat on the platform.

Tell us about your nutrition. How has this changed?

Herbert: My whole diet changed at first to a low carb, high lean-protein diet. I lost 60 lbs. by my 60th birthday - 5-months later. My nutrition has played a huge part in my transformation, to the point where I no longer eat! Yes, that is correct, I have given up eating. I would eat to feel good. I would eat to enjoy because it tastes good, or because of a million other reasons that would make me eat. Now, I fuel! I know what I will be doing in my workouts and how much fuel will be needed, so just like my custom Camaro, I keep my body fueled with premium fuel for the task at hand. This mindset makes it easy to pass up cheaper or less desirable sources of fuel. I learned that a diet only works for a short time and I needed a long-term solution.

Tell us about the new Herbert as of September 2018?

Herbert: Wow! My life is so different these days! I have so much energy that I need to release, so I plan more activities. I love the physical activities and the memories with my grandchildren. I have lost weight before and have been successful losing weight, but this time it is different. This time, I have toned up and built muscle where the fat was located. Someone asked me a few weeks ago if I had any sagging skin. I was showing them some that I found under my arm. As I was raising my arm, my bicep contracted and he said, “Damn that looks pretty good.” Not only do I feel good, many have told me how good I look, too. Two weeks ago, I had another doctor appointment and had the doctors questioning their scales. Also had the doctor say, “You are pretty fit for a 60-year old male.” Wow what a change! As of September 19, 2018, I am 101 pounds lighter, 12-inch reduction around the waist, and all health problems are under control without medications.

What’s next for you in your fitness journey?

Herbert: I am not done and will never be done. I see so many people who stop moving, and their aging increases. This morning, I was part of an MIA/POW run at an Air Force base. I was the oldest participant and among the first finishers of the 5K. Many of the participants were young, active duty warriors. To be able to still run with these great Americans is an honor that I hope to have for many more years. With the help of the Bowflex HVT and other lifestyle changes, I am trying to turn this 60-year old body into a 30-year old body and I am convinced that I can accomplish just that. I am also looking at adding the Bowflex TreadClimber to our arsenal.

What advice would you give to others who are thinking about starting their own journey into fitness?

Herbert: As my Garmin watch tells me sometimes (less often these days), “Move!”. I think everyone has to find that motivation or inspiration to be more active and become healthier. There are no easy solutions to becoming healthier, and this journey has been a battle every day to move more, eat right, and set new challenges for tomorrow. I welcome becoming an inspiration for others, but motivation comes from within.

Thanks for the opportunity to share my success with others, and I am available to help others in their fitness journey!

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Check out J.J.'s Transformation:

Before and after pics of J.J.