I needed to do something. I was turning 60, was 60 lbs overweight, and had hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol. I should have known what to do, after all, I am an M.D., board certified in internal medicine and gastroenterology. Actually, I sort of knew what I needed to do. I had told numerous patients what they needed to do, but most of them, like myself, didn’t do it, only did it for a little while, or else just did it wrong. I needed HELP! I had resisted going to a trainer because my one previous experience with a trainer 10 years earlier, was just short of a disaster. I received a gift of 10 sessions with a personal trainer. I went to the nearby gym where one of the owners (he should have been good, right?) talked with me for a while, then put me through a circuit on about 10 different machines. For the next nine weeks we went through the exact same routine. Not only was it incredibly boring, but it was hurting my shoulder and the trainer didn’t seem to know what to do, except to decrease the weight on the exercises that made my shoulder hurt. I didn’t realize what a good trainer could do for me.

Enter Nicole Dudas. Nicole put me through a thorough evaluation, including a squat evaluation. As I struggled through it she would say “interesting” and jot some notes. I quickly learned that “interesting” was her way of saying “we have a lot of work to do,” and Nicole knew exactly what was needed and how to do it. But what I really liked about our sessions, was that every time my workout was different. I have been training with Nicolefor over a year and ½ and we still do at least a few new exercises every time. The workouts can be challenging, but they are never boring, and sometimes are actually fun. When I do have a problem with a particular exercise she can quickly identify what I am doing wrong, show me how I can correct it, or modify the exercise so that I can do it properly and without hurting myself. She never ceases to amaze me with her wealth of knowledge.

Perhaps my main objective in starting a training program was to lose weight. Nicole recommended I get a BodyBugg to track the calories I was burning and the food I was eating. My initial reaction was that I didn’t need that, and I didn’t think I would be disciplined enough to record everything I ate. She convinced me it would help, and she was right. We calculated how many calories I would burn if I excercised (2800 a day) and how many calories I could eat if I wanted to lose 2 lbs per week. I religiously recorded everything that went into my mouth. I averaged 1800 calories a day of healthy food, never felt hungry, and lost 2 lbs per week for the first 30 weeks I worked with Nicole. I was amazed how easy it seemed. Nicole advised, encouraged, challenged, and motivated me every step of the way. I now realize it was Nicole’s experience, expertise, encouragement, and support that made it so easy.

Nicole has an amazing hunger for knowledge. Her command of anatomy, physiology, exercise and nutrition exceeds most medical doctors, yet she is always looking to learn more. She is an information junkie, and it makes her an interesting person and a great trainer. She works well with people of all ages, from young children to senior citizens. My two daughters, who are in their 20’s, always ask me before they come back to St. Louis to visit, if they can workout with Nicole because they think she is that good. They both belong to gyms where they live, and have worked with personal trainers, but realize Nicole is special. Even if it means getting up early on a Saturday morning after a late night, they want to work out with Nicole.

Nicole helped me lose 60 lbs and keep it off. Patients of mine who haven’t seen me for a couple years tell me I am getting younger, and I just say “Yes, I am”. I recently came back from a mountain biking tour of Costa Rica with my daughter. This trip would not have been possible 2 years ago. My blood pressure, blood sugars, and cholesterol are much improved with less medicine, and I am now thinking I might actually see my grandchildren (don’t have any yet) graduate college. I am very appreciative of what Nicole has helped me accomplish. While my friends, family, and patients are amazed at my transformation, I suspect my story is just one of hundreds of similar success stories, from the book of one extraordinary trainer.