Bee Nguyen

I developed a friendship with John. He wasn’t just my personal trainer; he was the supportive positive energy that I needed. He didn’t let me give up or walk away. He was the friend that was there when I felt like nobody else understood the mess of it all.

   Before:                                           After:

  Height:  5’-1”                                 Height: 5′-1″
Weight:  174 lbs                            Weight: 129 lbs
Body Fat:  37.6%                          Body Fat: 20%

Bee Nguyen

Bee Nguyen

Far from your typical girl…

Most testimonials sound like your average midnight infomercial for the latest diet pill. “I lost 30 pounds in 30 days!!” or “in two weeks, I dropped 2 dress sizes” – you know those things that we all are addicted to when we can’t sleep at night, sitting on the couch with our bon bons. Well let me warn you now, mine is far from typical, average, or whatever else you had in mind. (1) John is not a pill (although there were plenty of times I’m sure we all wish he were so we could just toss him aside and shut him up =) and (2) there is nothing typical about me – you’ll see…
It all started training in 2006 back when I walked into a big corporate gym looking to cut a deal. I said I wouldn’t sign a contract unless I had a good trainer – that’s how I met John. When we first talked, I told him what I wanted to “fix” and we had the routine conversation that everyone has on the first day. He was confident that we would hit goals with a quickness and I’d be another happy client that would pledge his name to the world – and he soon realized how “special” I was.
I have polycystic ovaries that cause my hormones to go whacky. I can build muscle without issue, but losing the weight was a big struggle – and on top of that, everything I put into my body stayed. So not only was it difficult for me to lose weight, I was also continuously gaining. I went to all sorts of specialists. From my primary, to the endocrinologists, herbalists that stuck seeds in my ears, acupuncturists that made me look like I was shooting up every other day (I bruise extremely easy – even LJ sitting on my lap bruises me), crazy naturalists, and a myriad of other doctors who either told me “you are globally beautiful – live with it” or diagnosed me with a new sickness every month – I’ve seen them all. (What the hell is globally beautiful?!?!)
So here I am, 25-26 years old at the time, trying to figure it out. Doctors were doing nothing but feeding me crap – from one pill to another. Those that should have given me unconditional support questioned everything I did and were not encouraging at all. And then there was the weight of society. At that age, you should be at your peak, living life full of fun and happiness, feeling great about yourself. That wasn’t me.
I developed a friendship with John. He wasn’t just my personal trainer; he was the supportive positive energy that I needed. He didn’t let me give up or walk away. He was the friend that was there when I felt like nobody else understood the mess of it all. So when he ventured off from the corporate world, I was one of the many that followed.
Fast forwarding to March 2007, I was 5’1”, 174lbs, at 37.6% body fat. –EWWWWWW! 2007 was the year of all the herbal and naturalists. I quit taking pill after pill, and started to try all these natural options. There was the detox diet, seeds, needles, pins, etc. 2007 was also the year of the yo-yo weight. By November 2007, I was 168lbs, at 36.5% body fat. (By now, John is really seeing how special I am =)
True to John form he didn’t give up even though it seemed as if I was beyond help. He wasn’t just the guy who barked orders and told me what to do and that was it. I wasn’t just another name in the folder that came in pushed some weights and did some steps. He did research and talked to other people about the situation determined to come up with a solution. Between the two of us, we knew there was something that could be done; we just had to find it.
And then 2008 came. By this time, we are 2.5 years into trying to “fix” me. Yeah I was a lot stronger. Back in 2006, I could not do a plank or push up to save my life; 2mins on a bike – you must be crazy; and Up-Down’s – to me that was not an exercise, that was my weight. So ok, in 2008, I could do all that, but I was worn out mentally and emotionally wondering if I was ever going to be where I wanted to be. During one of our workouts at BLAST, I was doing a plank in front of the Dasani machine. I told John that was I was at ready to fall off the edge and I needed him to talk me down from it. I told him to not be surprised if I didn’t walk in anymore because I had finally lost all hope of it all. Once again, he didn’t give up. He told me that he would not give up until he knew that we tried every possible option that we could think of.
July 2008 was when it all happened. My body decided it really hated me and would not hold anything for 7 days straight. John also proposed a challenge to me. Being Asian, I have ego and pride to match up to any guy’s – so there was no way I was going to back off the challenge or lose and John knew it. “Shut Up and Do It” was born. It was a side contract that John and I came up with that required me to be in the gym a specific number of days and report every single thing that I ate or drank to him. There were rewards (COOKIES!!) and consequences if I didn’t follow through. I racked up my cookies and went around bragging about how my personal trainer was feeding me cookies =)
So between my body’s “natural detox” (that is what we decided to call it because the doctors just wanted to diagnose me with something else) and “Shut Up and Do It” – I started to drop all extraness that my body was holding.
Here we are, July 2009; I am 28, 5’1”, 129lbs, 20% body fat and still dropping. I can do 15 “manly” push-ups without stopping, planks while starring at my manicure, my Up-Downs actually look pretty and are done in a flowing motion, 2mins on a stair machine without complaint, an hour of cardio without thinking about it (esp. when I get to watch BET), etc…oh yeah, and I still have polycystic ovaries.
Like I said in the beginning, I am not typical at all. I am an Asian girl that is fair in skin, got curves that I didn’t have to pay for, and have to hear BET during a workout. I am not the midnight infomercial; I did not lose the weight over night, in a week, in a month, not even in a year. But this isn’t about that. It’s about the fact that it can be done. More importantly, its about the fact that when everyone else told me it couldn’t be done, John never gave up and we did it! So to all those who told me it couldn’t be done – TAKE THAT! And it’s all because…