If you met Carl Wesley you would never guess that he suffers from chronic pain and scoliosis. According to Spine-Health.Com scoliosis is a condition involving an abnormal sideways curvature of the spine. This big and strong guy with a smile on his face would make it hard to believe that he deals with constant pain daily. I had the pleasure of meeting Carl Wesley at Chiselers Gym and listening to his inspiring story. I thought that it was important for me to share his story with you. There are two things that I would love for you to get out of Carl Wesley’s interview. The first thing I would love for my readers to understand is that you NEVER know what someone is going through. Don’t assume a person is overweight because they are lazy and greedy. Don’t assume a person has no worries because you don’t know their pain (mentally and/or physically). Chill out and be kind. The second thing I would love for you to receive from Carl’s story is that you can do it. Fight whatever has a hold on you. Fight hard! You can do it.
Tonnisha Deonn Fitness| How did it all begin?
Carl Wesley| November 2011 is when I started experiencing bad tension headaches daily. It made me debilitated. I could not do anything. It was a lot of pressure and I felt trapped in pain. I was going through a lot and had to literally quit my job because of the pain. I went to multiple doctors and they all tried different medications. At that time I became extremely depressed and started taking anxiety and pain medication. One of my doctors suggested that I should start exercising. I heard him but I was not feeling the idea. Then one day I looked at myself and decided that I needed to do something.
TDF| Did exercising take away your pain?
CW| Working out helped but did not alleviate the pain. Exercising does not take the pain away but it helps to keep me distracted from it. During my workout and after my workout is when I feel my best. While I am working out my body releases endorphins (the “feel good” hormones) and that’s my drug. The feeling that I get while working out is my drug.
TDF| Why did you become a personal trainer?
CW| As I began to workout my body started changing and people began to notice. Soon I began to get inquiries about if I was a personal trainer. My business mind kicked in and I seized the opportunity. I started off training in my garage and my clientele increased. One year later my business partner and I opened Chiselers Gym.
TDF| I know someone with rheumatoid arthritis and she’s struggling with being motivated to exercise because of the huge amount of pain that she’s in constantly. People with arthritis and lupus experience joint pain a lot. What advice would you give to people that want to workout but are suffering from painful diseases?
CW| Get to moving! Learn your body. Once you start to workout your overall mood will change. I would incorporate that you should eat healthier. I got rid of a lot of stuff that wasn’t good for my body. You HAVE to start moving your body. I like to say that moving is medicine. Once you move and get the blood flowing in your body you will actually start to feel better. I also think that you should incorporate daily affirmations to stay positive.
TDF| Do you think that we should limit our workouts because of our diseases?
CW| You should know your body and limits. Every person is different. If you were my client I would monitor you while we train and push you a little past your comfort zone. Two-A-Days (exercising twice in one day) is ridiculous if you haven’t been working out for at least a year. Generally speaking for the average person three days of exercise out of the week is recommended. Once your body gets accustomed to your workouts then you can increase your work load.
TDF| Do you have any advice for fitness beginners?
CW| Begin. Don’t let doubt prevent you from getting started. If you can’t afford a gym membership then walk around your neighborhood. Once you have mastered walking then start jogging. No excuses. Begin.