Congratulations to Jason Farr, our member of the Month for December!
Jason has been a member at Momentum Fitness for just over one year. His hard work and dedication have been unprecedented since the day he walked through our doors.
In the fall of 2016, Jason decided to make a renewed commitment to living a healthy and active lifestyle. This was following a medical issue that sent him from the first floor to the third floor, to the sixth floor at St. Joseph’s Hospital. He said that this particular health issue was born out of a bad lifestyle with a poor diet and very little exercise. Of course, this was a big change from the football and basketball captain that he once was back at Delta High, and he knew he needed to make a change.
The Wake-Up Call
After many appointments, tests, doctors, specialists, and thorough conversations, he met with a young doctor from Toronto. She said to him, “I’ll give you a prescription that’ll take care of you and your issue for the long term. However, you have to take this medication for the rest of your life. Ultimately, what will happen is that this medication will lead to another medication because there will probably be some side-effects. You’ll have to come back, and we’ll look at those side effects as they come up, but in a lot of cases, this is what happens.” The young doctors told Jason that the situation he found himself in is typically what she deals with in people who are 65+ years. Of course, this was surprising to Jason, as he’s only in his 40s. The doctor continued, “You can go and fill this prescription… Or, you can just go to the gym.”
Jason paused as he recalled this part of the story, with an astonished look on his face, which then transitioned to an ear-to-ear smile and a laugh, “I’ll never forget it.” It was clear that that was his impact moment. That was the moment that changed his life forever.
Over the years, people approached Jason to address their concerns from all different angles. From laughs on the golf course to genuine words of concern from his longtime friends and colleagues, Terry Cooke and Ron Foxcroft, none of it quite stuck. Ultimately, it took that doctor’s comment, and that prescription in her hand, to really put things into perspective for him.
On November 14th, 2016 he left that doctor’s office, and on November the 15th he became a dedicated member at Momentum Fitness, and he’s been exercising almost every day since!
Dedicated to the Core
If you’re a member of our Ottawa Street or George Street location, you’ve probably seen Jason more than once or twice. This means that you can attest when we say that this hard working man sweats it out when he’s at the gym because he works so hard! He is so dedicated to achieving his goals, which is absolutely clear as he focuses like a laser on his workout routine and his task at hand.
In the hopes that others feel inspired by his story, Jason shared with us that he began his journey at 355 lbs. He said, “To put that into perspective, that’s bigger than all CFL linemen, most NFL linemen, and clearly from my experience with that medical issue, I was on the cusp of becoming a burden to the healthcare system.” When given an option between taking the easy route or going head-first into combat, we all know that this Cllr. is ready to take on the giants. It just so happened that this time, he was fighting for his own health and life.
Just after his one-year member anniversary, Jason is now 75 lbs lighter, with an end goal of weighing 250 lbs. For him, though, it isn’t just about the weight and the number on the scale. His dedication to a healthy and active lifestyle means that he’s now able to play basketball and ball hockey with his son, and actually keep up! At first, he started exercising to overcome a medical issue. Now, he’s reaping the benefits of countless moments and memories being active with his family, which are really worth cherishing.
Jason reminisced over his very first workout at Momentum, and you could see a wave of nostalgia come over him. “Immediately after the first workout, I not only felt good about my workout, but I also felt good about the place. This is definitely the gym for me. I’ve tried many times in different ways to get fit, and for a number of reasons, I was just never really successful. When I came to Momentum I knew that the people here – the staff and the members – just made the perfect fit.”
The City Councillor’s Perspective
“From my role as a Councillor, it’s really impressive to see the impact of Momentum Fitness, 6 years after it first opened. It really speaks to where we’re at as a city. It’s exactly what we embrace in the core from an economic development perspective, but also from a sustainable city standpoint. What we have here is progressive growth. Momentum is a small business that adds up to big things through their huge community involvement, charitable work, and even the member social beer crawl. Those are the kind of things that help a good, local, small business succeed. You succeed when you embrace the community around you, and Momentum is the definition of that. It’s important because it inspires other small startups to do what Momentum does. And of course, I like being a part of that.”
Following his one-year anniversary and Member of the Month achievement, Jason is now ready to take his fitness to a new level. We asked about his greatest barriers to fitness, and like many of us have experienced, he’s hit a plateau with his workouts and feels that it’s time to shake things up a little. “If I can combine a better diet than I already have, and incorporate workouts provided by the Coaches who know what my goals are, then there’s no doubt in my mind that I’ll reach my goal within my two-year plan.” Jason is highly motivated, and with each benefit that he experiences from increased fitness, he continually becomes more driven.
Cllr. Jason Farr works in the busiest ward, with a lot happening in the downtown core that he’s responsible for. His typical workday is 11-12 hours, so naturally, you would assume that there couldn’t possibly be enough time in the day for him to workout. Time would clearly be his best excuse if he ever wanted to skip the gym. However, by incorporating an hour and a half at the gym every day, he’s become substantially more effective at work and with managing his time. He says that this is because he is significantly more rested, he has a tremendous amount of energy, and all of this has made him way more efficient. “It wasn’t a benefit that I was expecting when I started this journey. Originally, I thought that I’d have to find a way to make up that time – I thought I’d just have to work 13 hours a day. But actually, I can get more done in a shorter amount of time because of my increased energy levels.”
It’s not only his energy levels that have improved, but his sleep has as well. “Originally, it was an issue with sleep that brought me to the hospital. Since working out regularly, I now sleep like a baby.” And as far as we’re concerned, that’s definitely a win in our books.
When we asked Jason about his advice for new members or for someone who has never joined a gym before, he said, “Take the impression that you have about gyms and get it out of your mind, especially if that’s been something that’s held you back. This is way more than just a place that you go sweat it out. This is also a place where you can find a community. All of those stereotypes that come to mind when you think about a gym can make you feel intimidated. But at Momentum, the members and the staff have a tremendous amount of respect. You’re going to be respected, and your time is going to be respected. The staff are here if you need them, but they’re also very respectful.”
“The obvious words that come to my mind when describing Momentum are convenient, boutique, atmosphere, comfortable. It’s the opposite of what your stereotypical gym is. I hope that those words will inspire people reading this to at least be curious and come check it out. You won’t regret it – trust me.”
Thank you so much, Jason, for sharing your story and for inspiring others. And again, congratulations on being named our Member of the Month for December!