"It was the Fall of 2015 when I first walked up the steps to Koko FitClub in Cascade, MI. I had an appointment with Ben. I was apprehensive. I had never 'officially' joined a fitness center. Do I belong here? I wondered. After an accident in Spring 2011, I had become serious about improving my physical and emotional health. Having retired as a school social worker and registered nurse, I had plans to open a small part-time counseling practice. But first, I needed to visit my son & 2 1/2-year-old grandson in Anchorage, Alaska.
It was a beautiful crisp Alaska morning-mid April-with snow on the Chugach mountain tops, blue skies, and calm ocean waters. The three of us were out sight seeing and hiking Beluga Point: a rocky outpost six miles south of Anchorage, along the Seward Highway. Whales are known to like this spot of the Cook Inlet. Camera ready, I stood on a large rock ready to capture the best picture ever. Suddenly, that rock gave way underneath me and I fell thirty feet head over heels down a lava rock embankment. I came to rest against a large boulder. Thankfully, it prevented me from going further. However, my left side was badly injured. I was bleeding profusely from facial lacerations. A totally crushed left shoulder and fractured ribs along with a severely strained left knee completed the picture. My son warned my grandson, "stay here and do not move" at the top of the drop off. I pictured my grandson following his dad to help Grandma and falling himself.
Somehow-with God's grace-I pulled myself up that incline, my son offered his freshly clean t-shirt to help stop the bleeding. He drove me to Providence Hospital, as the area has spotty cell coverage and an ambulance might involve a lengthy wait. I spent 12 hours in the ER and several days at Providence Hospital under expert care. My husband flew from MI and received permission as a physician to take me home, as I required extensive reconstructive surgery on my left shoulder. I spent nine months in physical therapy and regained my strength. Next up was a left total knee replacement, which required more physical therapy. By the grace of God, I was healing and getting better. I started walking the neighborhood park and swimming gentle laps in the backyard pool. I lost weight and gained a positive outlook. I felt healed, but not whole. It was with this backdrop that I said 'hello' to Ben, one of my soon-to-be trainers at Koko FitClub.
I received lots on information, asked a few questions, took the strength test and joined. This decision to join Koko FitClub is the best health and wellness decision I have ever made-period. The Japanese principle of focusing on the individual is what I needed then and what I value today. Koko is available to me 24/7. I prioritize my time, about an hour each day, to include Koko because I see and feel the results in everything I do. My competition is my self and my own personal goals and gains. I can track my Smartraining progress on the website anytime I choose. I have learned more about nutrition, breathing with and through exercise, sustaining balance and pacing myself. With the guidance and encouragement of knowledgeable coaches like Ben, Lexie & Sean, I have come to believe in my own potential. I continue to meet gracious people, other members, who are friendly and supportive. To think that I can do this and can on occasion TOP the leaderboard, is nothing short of a miracle.
I am strong, I am confident. I am whole. Thank you Koko."