“Not only did the coaches helped me to focus and push myself to feel better and get my life back to normal, the environment is just the right place that I knew I wanted to be in – Genesis Gym was and IS my second home.”
(JJ Wong, 25, Genesis Gym Eunos Asst Centre Manager)
Most of you would know me as Coach JJ at Genesis Gym Eunos. I’ve been a personal trainer with Genesis for 2 years now. What you may not know, is that I too, was a client whose transformation began in early 2014. Back then, I was not only what they call, “skinny fat” but I was also legally blind.
I was eating a lot of processed food and although I had a skinny frame, my fat percentage was on the higher end of the scale.
The main issue was that I was legally blind. This happened in late 2013, just suddenly one morning, when I woke up and completely lost my vision. I had just gotten into university, and for reasons unknown till today, I lived the next nine months of my life in complete darkness.
It was both traumatic and confusing for not just myself but for the loved ones around me. It was an extremely chaotic time in and out of hospitals for checkups, trying our various psychiatric and alternative treatments, rehab with the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped.
All this while, I was slowly breaking down, slowly subsiding further into my own world of darkness. I was ready to give up. I was tired of everyone around me asking me what my next steps were and even thinking it was because I couldn’t manage the stress of going to uni. I was angry at everyone because of how they saw my situation.
I felt resigned to being blind the rest of my life.
I just wanted to keep to myself and drown out the noises and advice coming from everyone. But in the process, I was also
getting fat and feeling sick.
That’s when I felt the need to find a safe haven to do my own things, rediscover my identity again.
I wasn’t immediately thinking of my fitness goals, in all honesty. I was just thinking of getting off my butt and finding an avenue to release all my negative emotions and provide my body with a positive stimulus from exercising.
My overall goal then was just to overcome my physical limitations and to improve my mental resilience.
Given the disability, I wanted to be sure that I wasn’t going to be a burden to the personal trainers at Genesis Gym. I wanted to be pushed but I didn’t want to do any of this to seek any attention.
The Genesis coaches really made me feel like I would fit right in, right from the very first consultation. They were thorough and detailed, personal but not to the point where they felt sorry for me. They made sure that I would be able to train independently to the best of MY abilities. And I needed that. I needed an environment where I could pursue my own goals among like-minded individuals that motivated me, not pitied me.
Till today, I know I have made the right choice to step into Genesis Gym. Not only did the coaches helped me to focus and push myself to feel better and get my life back to normal, the environment is just the right place that I knew I wanted to be in – Genesis Gym was and IS my second home.
Then in mid-2014, I regained my sight. It was incredible and I was filled with mixed emotions that I just simply cannot describe. I just know that I’m very grateful for every experience I’ve had with Genesis Gym as a client.
So much so, that I’ve decided to take the leap of faith and become a personal trainer myself. I approached Jen, whom I regard as my mentor, and brought it up to him. Jonathan and the team welcomed me into the Genesis family immediately.
My inspiration to become a personal trainer came from the desire to want to help others regain their health and confidence by translating all the technical knowledge I learned into practical terms for them.
I’ve now been a personal trainer at Genesis Gym for 2 years now and what makes me get out of bed every morning to go to work, is knowing the impact that I am making in the lives of my clients. Being part of their fitness journey, improving their physical and mental well-being, while helping them to reach their own fitness goals.
My love for fitness and passion to help others through what I do is what fuels me every day now. I have never been so willing to learn more about anything else in life. Seeing others reach their fitness goals at Genesis Gym is a truly amazing feeling.
I’ve made a pact with myself 2 years ago – give myself 2 years into this job and see if I should resume with my studies, which was put off abruptly due to the vision loss.
And I can say without a doubt, that it’s an easy decision. I’m very comfortable where I am today as a personal trainer. I’m growing as a person and sharpening my skills with every client that I encounter. So yes, you’ll be seeing a lot of me at Genesis Gym in the foreseeable future.
To find out more about the transformation journeys of Coach JJ and others, visit: bit.ly/transformations2017.