Coach Tony’s Weight Loss Journey
“My own journey is helping others start their journey and that’s the best part.”
Tony Fernandez, coach at Power Train Palmyra, lost 107 pounds in 10.5 months.
What inspired you to start your weight loss journey?
I got out of a long break up and was pretty low about it. My sister said if you don’t like your situation, just change. One day we were watching the Titan games and we saw Joe Thomas, former NFL lineman who had lost about 100 pounds. I commented on how crazy his whole transformation was and said I wanted something like that. She asked who I’d want to look like and I said “Aaron Donald”. She laughed and said you’ll never look like that. The next day I went to the gym and signed up.
Talk about how consistency with diet and exercise have helped you succeed.
At first it was pretty rough being consistent. I would go to the gym and if I didn’t prep right I’d end up going to McDonald’s or a pizza shop. It was about 2 months into it when I really started getting consistent with prepping.
What was the biggest challenge you faced?
I had a major shoulder surgery in December 2020, which meant I couldn’t train for about 2 months. I thought all my progress was going to be ruined. It was tough but I was still on my bike at home for an hour each day, training my left arm, and doing legs. Mentally I had to keep saying “you still got this”.
Go-to healthy meals or snacks?
Walmart-brand beef jerky and Pure Protein bars. My go-to meal is tuna and rice.
What kept you motivated?
When I would wake up to work out, I would imagine my sister saying “oh you can’t do this” and that was always in the back of my mind pushing me.
Favorite day at the gym and why?
Back and biceps day for that nice pump!
What goals are you focusing on going forward?
Stay consistent and not going back to old habits.
Best piece of advice you have for someone starting a weight loss or fitness journey.
Take progress pictures, which was advice I got from my previous director Brian at Power Train Manheim. I was going to quit 3 months in because I felt like I wasn’t seeing any change and he told me to just take pictures. Going back and looking at all of them really helped me to stay consistent. You’re not going to see it right away but trust the process.
How has Power Train helped you achieve your goals?
Power Train helped me a lot because I couldn’t lift as heavy so I would do a lot of the tempos. This helped build muscle even though I couldn’t lift heavy. Also just the whole environment at Power Train! The client’s helped me a lot and pushed me through it.
How do you think people need to change their views about weight loss?
People won’t eat enough or lift, and they’ll just do cardio. They see weightlifting as getting “bulky”, which is wrong because it burns even more calories!
How does your journey help you connect and motivate clients with a similar goal?
If clients saw that I could do it through the struggles and challenges, then it could motivate them to do the same.
What’s the most rewarding part of reaching your goals and setting new ones?
I went to my niece’s Sweet 16 a couple of weeks ago and I hadn’t seen my family since last summer. Seeing them was insane! Some of them were crying and didn’t even recognize me. Also, throwing away old clothes was super rewarding.
What is the importance of having a support team?
This is the biggest thing because I almost quit so many times. Your support team reassures you and reminds you of how far you’ve come. It’s great having a hype team!
Favorite part about going to the gym/taking care of yourself throughout this process?
I didn’t realize that there were a lot of people watching me at the gym. They would comment on how far I’d come and ask if I could help them and give them tips. My own journey is helping others start their journey and that’s the best part.