"Having the right mindset was my new best friend."
Nicole Apelian has been personal training with Fitness Director Andy Sharry five days each week over the last eighteen months. Nicole came to Worcester Fitness when she was at her physically weakest point, barely finished with her cancer treatments and sapped of her usual strength and energy. But, with a very strong spirit. Nicole enjoyed her training sessions with Andy and within just a few short weeks, she was achieving monumental accomplishments.
"Nicole lifts weights, runs and jumps unlike anyone else I train." says Andy, "Despite her petite statute, I don't train anyone who can bench press, squat or overhead press more than this 110 pound beast-combination of determination and grit." Andy and others at Worcester Fitness are inspired by Nicole, and the manner in which she has handled her adversity.
"She just comes in with a smile, works her tail off, and does this days after day." says Andy, "She respects her illness but also isn't defined by it, or limited in any way by it. I really look forward to my time with Nicole."
Nicole’s story should emphasize to all of us the importance of being fully aware of your family medical history and mindful of the changes in your own body. Breast cancer has afflicted many people in Nicole’s family. She has been diligent about getting routine checkups every six-months since she turned twenty-five years old.
It was in the time between one of those biannual visits that she felt a lump in her breast and immediately scheduled to see her doctors.
"That day in July of 2015 my whole entire world was forever changed." Nicole adds emphatically, "I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. I was in the best shape of my life. Training five days a week, eating right, and my daughter was starting kindergarten. how could this happen to me? I was feeling a million different emotions but fear wasn't one of them. Having the right mindset was my new best friend. It got me through surgery, chemo, and it got me out of bed even on my sickest days. Today I feel the best I've ever felt and with the right mindset I won't have it any other way!"
Nicole now enjoys her time with her husband Dan and daughter Samara, who is enrolled in swim lessons at Worcester Fitness and occasionally accompanies her Mom in personal training sessions with Andy. "A healthy lifestyle is something I want to instill in Samara so she has a love for swimming, running, playing and being active and Worcester Fitness is a place she really enjoys being."