Wednesday, April 22, 2009

An Inspiration


Pictured above is Greg McMeekin, and one of his Personal Training Coaches Darren Pardy, and Yoga Therapist Jessica Beck. Greg has given me permission to tell his story behind why he was awarded our "Iron Person" award, or client inspiration award. He tells it best, as do his practitioners...

“What has the Innovative Personal Health and Fitness experience meant to me?”

By Greg McMeekin

Joining the Innovative Personal Health and Fitness team as a client really has been a positive life changing experience for me. My workouts have become fun again! Since my first day as a client I have been treated with dignity and respect from all staff and clients that I have had the pleasure of meeting. I consider myself extremely fortunate to be part of a team with such passionate, caring, and dedicated individuals.

Having had Cerebral Palsy since birth, on various occasions, I have been asked "What keeps you motivated or going?" My general response to that question is that people keep me motivated, as well as my desire to live a normal, healthy, life. The energy that surrounds Innovative Personal Health and Fitness is infectious and amazing! I truly enjoy coming to do exercise. My workouts in the past have focused on rehabilitation. Now that I am a client with Innovative Personal Health and Fitness, I wake up in the morning on workout days, looking forward to the fact that I can actually sweat and push myself to become healthier and stronger. My trainers Darren and Mike have done a phenomenal job in helping me to do that.

I have been told by many individuals that you won't grow as a person until you try something new. I am a strong believer in that statement now more than ever. For the past month or so, I have been doing Yoga with Jessica Beck. Until now, about the only experience I had with Yoga was watching my grandmother and sister do it during summer vacations. Boy was I missing something! With Jessica’s assistance I have become more relaxed, and more flexible than I ever thought was possible. I can hardly wait for my next session. I would encourage everybody to try it.

Greg McMeekin


“What Greg’s trainer Darren Pardy and Yoga Therapist Jessica Beck have to say about his Iron Person Award”

When Greg first came in to the yoga room it was a hit right from the first minute because he came into something so new and unfamiliar with the most open and gracious mind, a dedicated and focused body and this is for Greg, a heart like a lotus flower....

Yoga is for everyone and Greg defies any misconceptions of what one is capable. Recently I spoke to a group of yoga teachers about the practice of yoga therapy. I gave an example of working with someone with Cerebral Palsy with limited mobility. I asked a group of 20 plus teachers, "What would you do?" I received basic answers like; meditation, breathing, visualization etc. These are great, however no one said I'd move him. I'd find his limit and explore the boundaries of mobility and work to expand those boundaries.

Greg has expanded his boundaries. He stretches, he twists, he reaches, he relaxes, he moves. With his openness and willingness Greg is teaching us what is possible and by doing this he is changing people's lives because each and every person I now encounter I see a part of Greg and what IS possible.

Thank you Greg. The teacher in me sees the teacher in you.

Jessica Beck


When Greg first came in he was pretty shy and nervous about being around the new crowd. He quickly became familiarized with innovative and became good friends with all the trainers and other clients.

We started out lifting weights and using range of motion exercises for his lower extremities. Surprising me the whole way along Greg was super excited about progressing to heavier weights and has done so with ease. He'll never turn down a challenge and is eager to test new limits.

With the physical challenges Greg endures he always manages to be early for his appointments and makes them on a regular basis twice a week. Greg is extremely busy with certain organizations and groups which require a lot of time and effort. Aside from these commitments, he was able to reach a tremendous achievement by making it into Law School at the University of Calgary.

Perseverance is one word that I could describe Greg and hopefully he'll be around Innovative for quite a while as he has become a valued clients and a great friend.

Darren Pardy

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