Last Updated on April 16, 2013.
“I was a morbidly obese, diabetic, single mom who smoked 1 to 2 packs a day”
Mixed Martial Arts? Not me. SO not me. I don’t have that in me. That was my thinking four years ago when my son’s Sensei mentioned that I should consider joining Ramsey Tiger Schulmann’s Mixed Martial Arts along with my son. I thought to myself, I don’t have the time, I can’t do that, and any other excuse I could think of.
I was a morbidly obese, diabetic, single mom who smoked 1 to 2 packs a day. After numerous attempts, Sensei Shawn Rapoport got me to join one of the 90 day challenges. During the 2nd week, he convinced me to quit smoking for 90 days and give him my pack of cigarettes for safe keeping. “I will give you back your cigarettes at the end of the challenge…if you want me to.” After smoking half the pack that night and a few more the following morning, I gave him the nearly empty pack. I am proud to say I have not had another cigarette since.
“I won my life back”
That first 90 day challenge I lost 20 lbs and felt great. I was a high white belt in no time, doing 6 Beginner Kickboxing classes a week. After the challenge, unfortunately, I slipped on ice and pulled something in my hip and leg. I could barely walk, let alone attend classes. I was going to physical therapy, miserable again and put the weight back on plus more.
“I lost 16 1/2 lbs, dropped 4 sizes…”
After the injury Sensei convinced me to sign up for another 90 day challenge and get back into training. I was not convinced I could do it again and frustrated that I was back up in weight, but he was persistent. It reminded me of the “Non Quitting spirit” lesson Sensei has instilled in us during classes. I lost 16 1/2 lbs, dropped 4 sizes and was one of the winners of the challenge. I won 3 months of free training. But actually I won more than that. I won my life back. My Sensei helped me to believe in myself, find my inner strength, develop self discipline and realize even if we take a couple of steps backward, it doesn’t mean we stop moving forward. I am a stronger person both physically and mentally.
“I am no longer a diabetic as of 8 months ago. I am no longer a smoker as of 4 years ago. I no longer view it as the chore of diet and exercise but more of a lifestyle…”
I just earned my Low Blue belt – whoohoo! My Sensei also told me I was ready to start taking Intermediate Kickboxing classes along with Beginner Kickboxing classes. I am no longer a diabetic as of 8 months ago. I am no longer a smoker as of 4 years ago. I no longer view it as the chore of diet and exercise but more of a lifestyle change that requires effort everyday. Luckily I met a group of very strong women who also train at Ramsey Tiger Schulmann’s Mixed Martial Arts. They inspire me and support me. I am far from a size 6 but what once was “NEVER, NOT ME” is now “HECK YEAH, I CAN DO THAT”.
Thank you Sensei Rapoport for not giving up on me and helping me take my life back.