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Tim Schumacher - A Little Sweat Never Hurt Anybody

July 2017 UPDATE:

Between 2005 and 2015 my blood work came back with fairly consistent numbers. My numbers were OK (not alarming enough to be told to do anything but consider some exercise and diet changes), but they weren't great either. I didn't go through another screening until June 2017 and was shocked at the changes that have occurred:
Total cholesterol dropped from 215 to 177
LDL (bad cholesterol) dropped from 139 to 100
TC/HDL (good cholesterol) ratio improved from 3.7 to 2.9
Resting blood pressure improved from 124/83 to 107/77
I went through the Whole 30 eating plan in January 2016, but by far the biggest lifestyle change I made between the two readings is that I have been regularly attending Manic Training for the past 15 months. I'm still considered obese by the people who developed the BMI model, but somehow I don't see my frame allowing me to to get down to 190 pounds to put me within the top end of the normal range for their model.

In short, in 10 years my blood work hardly changed, yet in the last two years they have become far healthier, mostly due to my undertaking a lifestyle change by working out at Manic Training Highlands Ranch.

It's easy for people to see physical transformation through how their clothes fit. It's also pretty easy to know you're becoming stronger based on how much weight you can push around the gym and how your cardiovascular fitness is improving through the decreased need for recovery time between sets. What's harder to keep sight of are the internal changes your body goes through that most people don't stop to consider or have a convenient way to measure. I wanted to pass along my story to help illustrate just how completely transformational Manic Training has been in my life.


End of update, see below for initial testimonial:

Tim Schumacher, a Manic member from March 2016 through the present (May 2017), has had an incredible experience over the last year, and his results speak for themselves. In his own words, Tim has the following to say about his 130+ workouts at Manic Training...

When you started Manic Training, what was your motivation to do so?

A current Manic member kept telling me how I should give Manic a try because he thought I'd like it based on my background in athletics. I was struggling to fit working out in the evenings into my routine with work and family commitments and pretty much resigned myself to having to wait to get in shape until after my kids left for college. Looking back on it now, I had pretty much given up on the concept of being in shape because I felt that being in shape meant I valued my own needs over the needs of my family.

Tell me about your health (mind / body) before Manic Training...

I was in probably the worst shape of my life physically when I started Manic and worried about being able to make it through the warm-up. From a mental standpoint I knew I had the potential to take on pretty much any athletic challenge that was placed in front of me, but my motivation was lacking. Since I was firmly on the fence from a mental and physical standpoint all I needed was the nudge from a friend to get me in the gym to start the transition from being physically unhealthy to becoming physically able to do anything I wanted to do.

How do you look / feel now that you've been doing Manic Training for just over 1 year?

I wish I had a good before and after picture to show the difference Manic has had on my physical appearance after one year. The tale of the scale doesn't do the transformation justice. While I've lost 12 pounds on the scale I've dropped 2 belt notches and had to buy new pants and slim-fit shirts for work. I feel awesome - there isn't a single activity that I want to do that I even have to think twice about. A year ago I'd worry about getting hurt or embarrassed when trying a new physical activity - that's not the case today (unless I'm dancing in public - Manic doesn't help with dance moves).

There is a family component to this workout experience...tell me how it helps your family life (marriage) by being in here at Manic, working out next to your wife (Sara)...

Working out with my wife is amazing. We can go at our own pace, lift different weights, and still be equally exhausted as we talk about what we accomplished on the drive home. We know that we're a team in all phases of life - being a teammate as we work to enhance our fitness level through Manic is a terrific experience. You can't guarantee tomorrow, but we're doing all we can to make sure that we're physically able to keep up with each other as we continue on this journey of life.

What is the biggest difference in your life now that you are 1 year into Manic Training?

I have so much more confidence after working out at Manic. If I want to hike up a mountain, hop on a paddle board, or trek up-river to find a new fly fishing location I know I have the strength, balance, and endurance to do whatever I want to do.

What keeps you coming back? What is your biggest draw to Manic?

When the alarm goes off in the morning I'm still nervous about the workout, but it's the same nervousness that I used to feel before playing in a big game in college. I know that what I'm about to walk into is going to be difficult and test me mentally and physically, but I also know that I am 100% capable of rising to the challenge. Some days I walk out of the gym feeling like I just got my butt kicked and other days I walk out feeling like I totally rocked the workout. I like that you can't actually prepare for what's about to happen - you just have to jump into each workout with both feet and do the best you can do for 60 minutes.

What is your next goal? (fitness goal, or life goal as a result of Manic)

I've never hiked a 14'er during the 17 years that I've lived in Colorado, so that will be a bucket list item that I definitely want to check off the list this year.

What would you tell anybody that is interested in Manic Training?

Try it for at least a week to get a feel for the different types of workouts you'll experience since you'll probably prefer some formats over others. Don't be afraid or intimidated if you're signing up by yourself - everyone is helpful and Pete and Emma are super attentive and able to provide modifications if you have a particular injury or limitation. The gym is a no judgement zone - do the best you can and don't compare yourself to people who may have different abilities or who have been training longer than you. It doesn't matter where you're starting from, the important thing is that you just start.

What makes Manic Training's workout programming (i.e. exercises, pace, variety, coaches) so unique from other "HIIT" gyms?

I tried a different HIIT gym a while back and felt like I needed to keep up with everyone else in the room that were already hooked up to heart monitors. I cramped up, got light-headed, and never went back. At Manic you will be pushed but you're being pushed to do your best, not keep pace with what other people are doing. Pete and Emma will help you feel settled with the workout regardless of the physical condition you're starting from and you can increase the intensity once you're ready.

What is is like working out in the midst of a motivated crowd of people of varying ages and ability levels? How does it affect your workout experience?

I love feeling like part of a team instead of feeling like I'm working out by myself. It's not unusual as you transition between exercises for people to high five each other as they cross paths or hear words of encouragement being exchanged by people working out next to each other.

Scale of 1 through 10, how challenging are these workouts? Pick the number and explain why as compared to previous workout programs...

The workouts are never easy, but how difficult you make them is really up to you. I'd say I'm consistently working out at about an 8 or 9 on a scale of 1-10. We can ramp it to a 10 at times but I think I'd probably end up puking. (I think I recently found a 10). The beauty of the workouts is that you can adjust the difficulty in various ways. You can choose heavier weights, you can opt for increased distance/calorie targets, you can squeeze in more reps within an allotted time period, or you can do all of the above.

Tim, please add any other thoughts, comments, musings, etc that we should know about.

Random thoughts:
After being pushed during workouts by coaches all the way through college I finally came to the conclusion that I'm not willing or able to push myself the way that a coach can, and thats why we got to Manic Training. If you can push yourself just as hard as a coach can then you're a better person than me.

I hate early mornings and had convinced myself that I couldn't work out at 5 or 6 AM. I was 100% wrong. It's actually easier to work out early because you haven't accumulated a day's worth of excuses that prevent you from going to the gym in the afternoon. At 5 AM your only reasons for not going to the gym are illness, injury, or laziness (weather is not an excuse since Pete will tell you that his truck does Manic too).

In the summer my kids participated in Manic workouts with us. If a 4th grader and 6th grader can successfully complete a Manic workout, why can't you?

One of the best compliments I've received is that Pete thought I had dropped ~30 pounds when the scale only has me down 12 pounds. ---- #muscleweighsmorethanfat ----

There's a sense of community at Manic that I don't hear members of other gyms talk about. People actually notice if you've missed a few workouts and ask if everything is OK. Pete does a great job of coordinating social events to bring people together outside of the gym whether it's putting together a team for athletic events, meeting up for an adult beverage at local breweries, sponsoring the Veterans Expedition fundraiser, or collecting food for local causes. It feels really good to support a small business that is working hard to give back to the community.

Tim Schumacher
Rugged Dad & Husband, Ex-College Football Player


Phone 401.487.6575
Address 2000 E County Line Road
Littleton, Colorado 80126