When my boyfriend Marcus proposed to me, I was absolutely delighted. I couldn’t wait to start planning the wedding. Then I looked in the mirror and realized I needed to lose quite a bit of weight before the ceremony. I wanted to walk down the aisle feeling good about myself. I decided to start exercising and dieting. I somehow managed to gain five pounds and hurt my back. I then joined the local fitness center, but I had no idea what I was doing. Although one of the workers gave me a tour of the place and explained all the machines, I couldn’t keep up with him. I was intimidated by the other people working out and totally self-conscious. I finally signed up for some of the classes offered at the gym. I took a spin class that I absolutely hated. I took a pole dancing class and I was terrible at it. I tried yoga, pilates, bootcamp and kickboxing. Nothing was right for me, and I was getting discouraged. I then spotted a flyer on the bulletin board of the gym. There was the name and number of a personal trainer. Making that phone call totally changed my life. The personal trainer started with a consultation where we sat down and chatted. We got to know each other, and he asked about my concerns, goals and past fitness history. I wasn’t really thrilled about getting weighed and having my body fat measured, but it was necessary to set up a plan. My personal trainer organized small but steady goals for me to reach. He outlined a healthy meal plan that included lots of lean protein, vegetables and whole grains. While the workouts were difficult, I stuck with it and quickly saw some progress. The personal trainer helped by continually changing up the exercises. We targeted all different muscle groups and included high intensity workouts and strength training. I began to have more energy and started running and bicycling on my own. By the day of my wedding, I’d lost fifty pounds.