Noor has come to appreciate that being fit takes more than just cardio

Apr 06, 2017
Ashley Ann Lawrie


When you’re engaging with a personal trainer, it only makes sense to expect them to take, well, a personal interest in your fitness goals and needs.

But Noor Alé found that just wasn’t the case when she signed up for personal training sessions at one of the big box gyms.

“I realized they really had no interest in understanding my health profile or learning what I wanted to get out of personal training,” she said.

The National Gallery of Canada’s Exhibitions Program Officer then tried out Free Form Fitness. She found a distinct difference in service.

“It’s so tailored, so personalized – and the trainers are among the best I have encountered,” she said.

Over the past year, the 26-year-old has been working out three times a week at FFF’s ByWard Market location. Her goal is to “achieve my best personal health state,” with the help of trainers Luzia Jaeger Hintze and Jonathan MacDonald.

Why? Noor has Type 1 Diabetes, a chronic condition in which her body doesn’t produce enough insulin to process sugars. Unlike Type II, the onset of Type 1 does not have an apparent link to poor lifestyle habits. It can develop in childhood from a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Common symptoms include weight loss, increased hunger and thirst, blurred vision, fatigue and poor healing.

Noor discovered early last year that she also had hyperthyroidism. This condition carries its own roster of negative effects, including muscle weakness and sleeping problems.

After getting her thyroid problem addressed with medication, Noor realized the best way to prevent her conditions from further impacting her quality of life was to get into the best shape she could. In fact, regular exercise is a great way for diabetics to stabilize their blood sugar.

What improvements has she seen after almost a year of truly personalized training at FFF?

“I’ve got great stamina and my blood sugars are stable,” she said. “I eat healthy, I work out, I keep things balanced. Now that I have muscle mass, I don’t get burned out physically.”

She’s come to appreciate that being fit takes more than just cardio: “Building muscle mass is an integral component of being healthy.”

Noor has also become more diligent about her nutrition habits. She has gained an appreciation for how important protein, from both animal and plant sources, is to her diet.

“I’ve come to terms with how important lean protein is to build muscle, and through Luzia, I’ve learned about the importance of eating organic foods,” she said.

So, what’s next?

“This is something that is going to be a part of my life for the rest of my life because it’s improved my well-being overall,” Noor said. “These habits have taken a while to cultivate, but it’s something I value. I hope to inspire others and spread the good word.”

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