Do I Have a Story to Tell – JOURNEY from CATS Group to Full Member. My name is June Clowes and do I have a story to tell! In late 2013 I had a fall and could not get myself up. At first I thought it was the rheumatoid arthritis and tried to stand up to get the pain medication, but my legs felt like that of a rag doll. I was taken to three hospitals because no one knew what was wrong. Finally after a week and several MRI’s I was diagnosed with Transverse Myelitis. Apparently only a small percentage of patients get up and walk and so my children were asked to think about making arrangements for me when I was discharged. At first, I could not believe that this had happened to me as I had led a busy life. And then, determination held sway. I told my Neurologist that I would do whatever it took if there was a glimmer of hope. He consulted with his colleagues at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney and he proposed some radical treatment.
Just by Chance
Last year I was a volunteer with the Queensland Brain Institute’s study as they were wanting to check what is the Best Exercise to maintain optimum Brain health as we are ageing. I spend 6 months, attending three times per week at the Exercise Physiology gym at UQ. The study also involved lots of blood tests, 4 MRI’s and 4 body scans plus cognitive testing. I thoughly enjoyed this experience and felt that I benefited both physically and cognitively, from my exercise routine and would suffer from withdrawal symptoms when I finished the course.
Following the study, I was determined to find a gym close to home where I might continue my exercise routine. In July 2017, I was onboard the “Sun Princess” on a cruise from Perth over the top back to Brisbane. It was my habit to frequent the onboard gym, and while there one early morning, I met a lovely lady, whose name I cannot recall. She was a recently retired nurse from the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital. I got chatting and explained about my involvement in the Brain Institute’s study, and explained that I was looking for a gym that was accommodating to the older person. I only chanced upon her on that one day.
I joined the Green Apple Wellness Centre in March 2014, this occasion afforded me the opportunity to reflect on my experiences during the past year. I want to congratulate you on the passion you share as you go about making a difference to members’ lives. It is evident each one of your team has been selected carefully to provide high-quality service, covering a large range of aspects required in the provision of a wellness centre. That is very much an indication of your leadership.
I am particularly grateful for what I term a “Wrap-around Approach” which reflects the attitude and commitment of each team member to support the Green Apple’s members and happily share the joy of their individual successes. In particular, I must give credit and thanks to my Exercise Physiologist, Bridie who prepares my programs and encourages me.
I am a great advocate of the benefit of exercise for mental health. I naturally have a nervous disposition and this year, in particular, has been plagued by anxiety and panic attacks despite my medication. This leads to symptoms such as chest pain, dizziness, headaches and nausea. I believe there is an underlying heart condition affecting me as well and the medical tests and uncertainty only increases the symptoms. The attacks are random and debilitating, but I can say that when I am exercising I feel no symptoms apart from breathlessness (perfectly normal), and am on top of the world! I think endorphins (feel- good chemicals) are responsible for this and I have proof that my blood pressure, lately slightly elevated, is reduced during exercise.
I have been a member of the Green Apple for nearly 15 years and can honestly say that regular attendance has enabled me to remain active and flexible as I age.
The secret of the success of the Green Apple is due entirely to Victoria and her dedicated and professional staff. Their skillset and knowledge allow everyone regardless of ability or disability to achieve success with their exercise programme and gain freer movement and strength in their everyday life. I have made many friends over the years and greatly enjoy their company whether it be in the Gym or enjoying a coffee after a class or workout.
I would also like to thank Wanda for her wonderful and enjoyable Clinical Pilates class and Bridie, a great Exercise physiologist, for her help in compiling my exercise programme.
Long live the Green Apple.
Member since 2006
A Journey in Time (and some “timely” advice)
I’ve just achieved my latest Fitbit medal, the “Monarch Migration” which means I’ve walked 4000kms (as far as the Monarch butterfly migration). It has taken me two years!
Hello fellow members. My name is Jean Edridge. I am a long-time member, started in April 1992. I’d love to share my journey with you.
My reason for joining was weight loss. I was responding to a letterbox drop advertising Victoria’s healthy eating and exercise course. I also hoped that exercise would help if I was to develop osteoarthritis which my Father had or even prevent it from happening. About the same time my Mother broker her hip and I realised it must have been because she had osteoporosis, so yet another reason to exercise both aerobically and use weights.
I continued to attend the gym because of the above plus I enjoyed the social aspect of it. The staff have always been the best, so kind and helpful, Victoria “chooses wisely”.
Thanks to some great doctors and the Green Apple I turn 92 this month. I never expected to reach this age. I have had ill health for most of my life. When I was 27 and pregnant with our third baby I had the misfortune to contract Guillain Barre Syndrome. This usually occurs after an infection. It is a fairly rare acute disorder affecting the nervous system causing paralysis of legs, arms and respiratory muscles. It also affected my eyesight. There was very little known about this in 1958. The doctors expected me to be in hospital for 6 months but I was determined to get back to my little boys and made it out in 6 weeks. There was no physiotherapy or help of any sort back then. I just got out of bed holding on to other beds in the ward and made my legs move.
“I would like to thank the staff at Green Apple Wellness Centre for their ongoing support and encouragement since my doctor referred me to the Exercise Physiologists to help with my ongoing knee problem and difficulty in losing weight. I have since joined the gym and the Exercise Physiologists have worked out an exercise program for me.
My doctor also referred me to the Type 2 Diabetes course which I have recently completed and enjoyed immensely. Combined with the exercise program, the Diabetes course has been an invaluable source of information regarding diet, exercise and lifestyle modification. Thank you especially to Bridie, who not only conducts a very informative and enjoyable Diabetes course but has helped me get back on track again after a recent pleurisy attack.