Member Focus - Natasha Black

I started working out with Nick in September 2013. Six months later, I was in the best

shape since leaving college. My earlier attempts to get fit on my own had not been particularly successful. Working out with Nick provided variety, motivation, challenge, energy, instruction, music, camaraderie, clarity, purpose, and flexibility - a surprising number of qualities to fit into an hour-long workout.  

Also at that same six-month mark, I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer. I felt like I had just achieved some major milestones in my fitness, only to watch them all now wither away over the course of treatment. I was so Wrong.  

My physician at my cancer treatment center showed me that it was possible, and in fact highly desirable for my health and wellness, to maintain my physical conditioning. It would be a real struggle and a real challenge. 

Because Sweat Equity was a key part of my treatment support team, I have been able to remain healthy through a grueling year of medical treatment. I have come to the gym when I have felt physically strong and healthy, but also when I have felt close to death due to debilitating fatigue. Whatever state I found myself in at the beginning of class, it was improved by the end.  Nick, Liz, and my fellow members also gave me invaluable emotional and motivational support to maintain my positive outlook throughout treatment. I got such a mental boost from accomplishing a workout. Had I not joined and set up the relationships prior to treatment, I believe I would now be broken in so many ways by cancer and its consequences.  

Working out at Sweat Equity throughout my treatment really kept my spirit high and my determination strong.