Tell us about your life before you started the program. How did you feel about yourself and your body?
My name is Dan Hernandez and I’m 57 years old. Regardless how challenging life might seem, my story is about not giving up. I have struggled with low self-esteem my entire life and allowed fear and insecurity to rule my life. Through professional help, I eventually discovered that my father had a profound influence on my life. Unfortunately, my father was an alcoholic and physically abusive to my mother and marginalized virtually every accomplishment I achieved. Just once, I wanted my father to tell me “great job” or “I’m proud of you.” Through my spiritual journey, I discovered that I was born with the shackles and generational sins of my father and both grandfathers. All three men struggled with alcohol and were physically abusive to their spouses. Despite my challenges with low self-esteem, God blessed me with the ability to think creatively. My creative thinking has allowed me to have a successful professional career. Even with my professional success and having three beautiful children, I consistently doubted myself, which at times, prevented me from enjoying the beauty of life. I can’t change the past but I feel blessed that I finally had the courage to begin a journey that has transformed my life.
What inspired you to change your life and begin your transformation journey?
After being married for 27 years, I became divorced in 2014. When my ex-wife told me that she wanted a divorce, it was the darkest moment in my life because I felt like a complete failure. A failure as a husband, father, and as a man. The darkness that lived within I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. I was extremely angry at my ex-wife and the entire world. I started self-medicating by drinking alcohol and eating mindlessly. Fortunately, I finally had the courage to acknowledge that I had a serious problem and needed help. I started working with a therapist and enrolled in a spiritual program run by the Catholic Church. Although I started seeing a therapist and was attending my spiritual classes, I was still self-medicating with alcohol. While channel surfing early in the morning, I came across Sagi’s Body Beast infomercial. Something happened that’s hard for me to describe but the program caught my attention. I started wondering how great it must feel to “unleash the Beast.” within you or to have a physique like Sagi. The commercial motivated to purchase the Body Beast program.
What is the greatest challenge you faced before beginning the program? How did the program and Beachbody® help you overcome that challenge?
At the time, my greatest challenge was very simple. Stop drinking alcohol and begin feeling better about myself. Engage and embrace the beauty of life. I desperately needed a positive daily goal and focus. My mental strength was weak. Ironically, I was already a member of Anytime Fitness but I wasn’t going to the gym on a consistent basis. So, I started Sagi’s Body Beast program. I didn’t have any equipment at home, so, I simply brought my laptop to the gym. I would view the DVD’s in an area within the gym that wouldn’t draw attention to me. I slowly started losing weight and just feeling better about myself. What I never envisioned was the positive impact the program would have on my mental health and strength. After about two months on the program, I came up with a crazy idea. I registered for a men’s bodybuilding competition within the Master’s category. The competition wasn’t taking place for another six months. Realistically, I didn’t expect to actually compete in the event. By feeling better about me, confidence slowly started developing within me. With this new born confidence, I was looking for something that would simply take my commitment to a different level. I slowly started seeing even better results. The Body Beast program in combination with my professional and spiritual help, a transformation was slowly evolving within me. I slowly started believing that maybe I could actually compete in my first bodybuilding competition.
Describe the results you achieved with your Beachbody program. Which achievements are you proud of?
My life has been transformed. I have lost 56 pounds. Being in shape and eating right has transformed my life. I completely under estimated the impact on my overall mental health and confidence. Regardless of what challenge life throws at me, I’m confident about my ability to comfort the problem and not resort to self-medicating with alcohol. For the first time in my life, I just feel good about myself. I feel very fortunate and humbled.
How has your life changed since completing your Beachbody program?
Part of my transformation has been completely acknowledging that I’m 100% responsible and accountable for all the events that have shaped my life. I don’t blame anyone for not having the courage to start my journey sooner. My physical and mental transformation also helped me remove the anger I had towards my father. By forgiving my father, it removed a heavy emotional burden that lived within me. It may not seem relevant to my story, but I feel compelled to express an important detail. Perhaps because I also sustained a fair amount of physical abuse from my father, I never once physically abused my ex-wife. Hopefully, this terrible multi-generational sin has disappeared with my son. Thank you again Sagi and Beachbody for helping me transform my life. I sincerely believe that my best days are ahead of me. I don’t feel old. In fact, my attitude is that I’m 57 years young. I’m in the best shape of my entire life and look better than most of the 20-year-olds who work out at my gym. The following quote from Saint Augustine had a profound impact on me: “Perfection comes to those who discover their imperfections.”
How did participating in a Challenge Group help you reach your goals? How did your group support you and keep you accountable?
Looking back, it was a mistake in not reaching out and taking advantage of the Beachbody support groups. I was too embarrassed to seek help.
How did your Team Beachbody® Coach support you on your journey?
My Coach, Maureen Hines has helped understand that supplements can help.
You can change your life, too. Take the Beachbody Challenge for the tools you need to Decide, Commit, and Succeed! Complete any Beachbody program, and enter your results for a free gift and a chance to win cash and prizes.
Results vary depending on starting point, goals, and effort.