Humans Of Goodlife Kirsty StevensName: Kirsty Stevens
Club: Goodlife Cleveland
"I first joined Goodlife Cleveland about 10 years ago. I have been a member on and off since then, and the only reason I ever left was because I moved overseas. My family joined Goodlife together - my mum, dad, brother and sister-in-law. It turned out to be one of the best decisions we ever made as we are all still members.
I have always been impressed with the equipment, but mostly I keep coming back because of the friendliness of the staff. It's always like a big family reunion. The faces might occasionally change, but the staff are always friendly and up for a chat. I have met some of my closest friends while training at Goodlife over the years.
I have been working as a bicycle mechanic for 12 years. I'm an avid road cyclist and when I was younger I used to hang around bike shops all the time, so after a while they decided they may as well start paying me! I have had other jobs on and off but I have always come back to fixing bikes.
In 2008 I moved to Brighton in England to work as a bike mechanic and travel as much as possible. One of the highlights was being is Paris for the final stage of the greatest cycling event in the world - the Tour De France (in the VIP section, no less!).
A couple of years later I moved to Washington DC in the US where I studied health at the university there (and worked at a local bike shop, of course!). To say I was there when President Obama was re-elected and attended his inauguration is a pretty cool conversation starter!
I returned home from America with lifelong friends, incredible memories AND 15 additional kilos on the scales. Over the last year I've been training with my mum to lose the weight I gained overseas. We usually run between 25-30 kilometres and lift 4-5 times a week. I can say without a doubt that my success in dropping the weight came down to the support of my Goodlife extended family - staff, gym friends and trainers - and, of course, my mum.
Obviously I'm passionate about bikes, so my motivation for joining the gym initially was for strength and conditioning for road and track cycling. Since then I've developed a penchant for personal training - more specifically, anything to do with power lifting. I love being pushed and I can honestly say I've worked with some pretty amazing trainers during my time with the club.
Exercise keeps me grounded and just generally happy. I'm a much better person when I'm training. Without training I would be moody and lack energy. I would not be a fun person to be around - trust me!
I'm currently doing my first ever 12 Week Challenge. I'm competing in the Fitter Faster Stronger category and I'm not going to lie, it's HARD! After the first three weeks I've learnt a lot about my body and noticed a bunch of changes, which is really exciting. We might only be a few weeks in, but I already know I'll be signing up again - that's how much I'm loving it."