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Connor and Cheryl: Challenge conquered

After six weeks of training nearly every day, Cheryl Lawson and Connor Ashworth have emerged triumphant from Body Torque’s Community Health Club program; each shedding 5kg and gaining the motivation they need to continue their journey to a better life.

“This experience has given me that kick start and we’re all really proud to have seen it through to the end” – Cheryl Lawson

Just six weeks ago Cheryl was a dress size bigger and Connor was feeling depressed and unmotivated. “I just went and bought a pair of flannelette pyjamas for the winter and they’re swimming on me — I had to take them back and get a smaller pair,” Cheryl says, who has lost a total of 20kg since the start of the year, pledging to do something for herself after surviving breast cancer and enduring the end of her 40-year marriage.


“There’s no doubt this experience has really pushed me out of my comfort zone and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it,” says Cheryl, moving her training up a notch by incorporating a 30-minute walk before each nightly boot camp session. She plans to continue these walks by taking them up the hill and to Riverway, plus will join a gym. “I’ve definitely got the motivation and the grounding I need now… this experience has given me that kick start and we’re all really proud to have seen it through to the end.”

Connor, who has a rare autoimmune blood disorder that he’s striving to relinquish through diet and exercise, has also noticed a big difference. The 18-year-old started off dreading the 30-minute nightly boot camps, but has grown to love them, never missing a session. Even through sickness. He and girlfriend Mikaela, who did Community Health Club with him and kept him motivated along the way with a bit of friendly competition, have now signed-up to a 12-week challenge, which they’re both excited about embracing.


“Now I think ‘bring it on!’,” says Connor. “I’m willing to try anything to avoid going back to being slack.”

Body Torque co-owner Peta Carmody says seeing Cheryl, Connor and the rest of the 30 Community Health Club participants graduate is a buzz for the trainers, who donate their time so they can provide the program free to Townsville residents with an overweight or obese BMI. “Seeing someone make a positive change in their life, not only for them but for their friends and family, is the most satisfying part of our jobs,” Peta says. “The gratitude of participants is very humbling.”

With hundreds of people now going through Body Torque’s free program, Peta has some tips for those wanting to turn six weeks into a happy and healthy life. “Continue on with the tools we have taught you, get out and move every day, lead a more active lifestyle doing activities you enjoy doing, continue making smart choices with nutrition and really embrace the positive outcome from the past six weeks,” she says. “Remember: We are always here for advice and support.”

The next Body Torque Community Health Club starts today (Monday, July 14). Sign-up now for the following boot camp, which starts September 1, 2014. Email Peta at [email protected] with your height, weight and age and why you’d like to be part of the program.

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Carly Lubicz

Carly Lubicz

Carly Lubicz is combining two of her great loves — writing and getting active. Previously working as a journalist, sub-editor, and editor in newspapers and magazines; she is editor and co-founder of TheGo Townsville. She stays active with the staples of road cycling and yoga, but has recently discovered triathlon. And become addicted (apart from the swimming part). She also has a Cert III in Fitness and is passionate about improving mental health through physical activity.

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