- Name: Craig C.
- Age: 52
- Weight Lost: 48 lbs
- Hobbies: Running, spending time outdoors, and spending time with his family
- Coach: Billy Phipps
- Fun fact: I just qualified for the Boston Marathon and set a PR for it at age 52!
Craig’s story isn’t just about shedding 48 pounds or qualifying for the Boston Marathon at 52; it’s about reclaiming his vitality and rediscovering his passion for life. It’s about proving to yourself what you can do instead of settling into excuses of why you can’t or shouldn’t be able to.
Craig’s marathon journey was a defining aspect of his life. “I had run the Boston Marathon three times (but not as a qualifier) in consecutive years and then decided to skip a year. That year ended up being the year of the bombing,” Craig shared. Despite not participating in the race affected by the tragedy, it deeply impacted him and added to his determination to qualify. He trained rigorously, finally achieving the qualifying time the following year. However, the sheer number of applicants meant he still didn’t secure a spot. The emotional weight of his efforts not materializing into participation in the Boston Marathon left him feeling like his best wasn’t enough.
Life continued to throw challenges his way – struggling to fit into old clothes post-COVID and feeling left behind during family activities like paintball matches with his sons. Craig began rationalizing his situation as “just getting older.” However, Craig still really wanted to run the Boston Marathon as a qualifier, and he wasn’t quite ready to give up his dream. That realization, coupled with the challenges of feeling the physical effects of aging and a sense of stagnation, became the catalyst for Craig’s transformation journey. He committed himself to Stronger U and Coach Billy, juggling work, family, and his new nutrition goals.
Craig went into his new “diet,” thinking he would be stuck eating salads, chicken, and rice. However, with Coach Billy’s guidance, Craig found that his relationship with food shifted positively. With Stronger U, Craig realized food didn’t have to be boring and minimal. The right amount of the right foods would fuel his body. “I really like the balanced approach to eating. It is sustainable,” he says, “I made some delicious burgers, got into pork loin sandwiches, and don’t feel restricted.”
Craig found invaluable support in his Stronger U journey, primarily through Coach Billy. Reflecting on his experience, Craig emphasized the pivotal role Coach Billy played in his transformation, “My coach, Billy, is awesome and so quick to respond to any questions or talk through concerns,” Craig remarked. Billy’s guidance and responsiveness were instrumental in navigating the challenges and uncertainties, encouraging Craig to stay on track. In addition to his coach, the Stronger U Community became a cornerstone of Craig’s journey. The collective support and motivation from fellow members were inspiring. “Seeing all the posts from people was really great and motivating,” Craig acknowledged. He delved into the community’s resources, exploring recipes from the cookbook and engaging with shared experiences- Craig never felt like he was doing this alone, he had support everywhere he turned.
What kept Craig motivated through the highs and lows? “I felt like I was turning the clock back,” he shared. His newfound confidence allowed him to fully engage in activities, feel at ease with his family, and embrace moments without food being the sole focus. “Results were showing, and that kept me going. I felt better and had so much more energy,” he remarked. And the victories weren’t just on the scale! Craig found relief from reflux issues and noticed improved joint health. Runs became easier, too. “One killer hill I used to run up felt like only a small speed bump,” he now boasts. One of the most surprising things for Craig was the compliments that kept pouring in— from family, neighbors, and strangers! — as he not only fit into old clothes again but also began inspiring others.
Craig’s perspective on health and fitness underwent a significant transformation. He no longer bought into using “getting old” as an excuse for weight gain, pain, giving up his dreams of running the Boston Marathon, or slowing down in family activities. He says, “You can still be active and healthy over 50. I am now setting PRs in my 50s! I not only qualified for the Boston Marathon this year but set a PR for the marathon at age 52! I can’t wait for what’s next!” Craig’s journey signifies resilience, proving that with determination, the right support, and a balanced approach, remarkable transformations are achievable. For those considering their own journey with Stronger U, Craig says. “Make the commitment and play the long game. It’s not instant gratification, but consistent work will change your life.”
Commit to starting your own journey today.
A note from Coach Billy:
What an absolute pleasure it’s been working with Craig! He never questioned what we were doing and attacked every weight loss and exercise goal along the way! Craig even set a qualifier time for his age group for the Boston Marathon! Thank you, Craig, for letting me be a part of your journey! I can’t wait to see you continue to crush your goals and continue proving that age is just a number, not a limiter! 💪