Amanda’s Inspiring “Making Lives Better” Story

Step into the inspiring journey of Amanda Hanson, a proud LVAC member, as she shares her remarkable “Making Lives Better” story. Explore her incredible physical accomplishments, including shedding 186 lbs and gaining immense strength, both physically and mentally at LVAC!

How long have you’ve been an LVAC member?    

Since 2020. I joined during the peak of Covid season.

LVAC member in Las Vegas

What was your life like before you started your fitness journey? 

My life prior to my weight loss journey was a dark place. I was trapped underneath 366 pounds of life hindering, life destroying fat that suffocated me physically and emotionally. Imprisoned by a body that didn’t allow me to live the life I was dreaming of. I was crippled by the weight and was an outside viewer of my own life. I couldn’t walk to my car without stopping for a breathe. Everywhere I went I looked for the closest place to sit down and hoped the chair would support my large frame. I felt out of place in a world not meant for me. I took up too much space whether it was on a plane, in a crowd or even in a booth. Soon I never even left the house and food was the only thing that I could do because it didn’t require anything of me. 

Fitness goals in las vegas

What prompted you to start your fitness journey as a LVAC member? 

In 2018 I adopted my son and a month later found out I was pregnant. I always would say I’m going to start tomorrow. Next week I’ll go to the gym. I’ll start on Monday. Then I was faced with the reality that I had to start now. I couldn’t get on the floor to play with my babies and I knew they needed me to be here for a long time.

women with her kids in las vegas

Describe your transformation – including how you started and the progress you have made – not just physically, but mentally as well.    

In April of 2021 I really began to go to the gym. I was terrified, I once again found myself walking into a place I didn’t feel was meant for. I started by taking water aerobics with Mrs. Anika. Working out hurt and my weight was too much to bear. Water aerobics was the perfect start. After a few months, I began to see the weight coming off.

December of 2021, I had put in a great effort but at 366 pounds it calls for drastic solutions. I had the gastric sleeve to help with the nutrition portion because you can’t outrun a fork. After surgery I was back in the pool. Around the 75-pound weight loss mark I found Body Pump. This was a life saver. Someone who almost walked out of the gym because of the amount of stairs to climb to get to the equipment. By December 31st I hit ONEderland. I had lost a total of 180 pounds by eating right and working out, I went from 366 pounds to 180.

What are your current fitness goals as a LVAC Member? 

My current goals are to lose another 20 pounds. They are to be more consistent in the gym but mostly to just keep going with a healthy lifestyle. I want to break the generational curses of unhealthy living in my boys so I want them to see how important fitness is and I know they are watching everything I do.

How has your fitness journey changed your perspective in life?  

Fitness transformation in las vegas

I am no longer sentenced to the sidelines or an early grave, I can be that mom that rides bikes with her kids, flies down rollercoasters and chases lizards in the desert with her boys. I am active mom. For years I watched my husband get to be hands on and I would cry just wanting to be a part of that but couldn’t. Now I’m the one hiking and kayaking and taking our boys on rollercoasters and go karts. Life is good and what I dreamed it could be.

How has being a LVAC member been a part of this transformation? 

LVAC is my mom hack. I tell all of my friends that they have to get a membership. Being a mom is exhausting and we make all of the excuses as to why we can’t work out but LVAC eliminates those. For Mother’s Day every year my husband buys me a VIP locker. This is part of my mom hack. I get two hours everyday away from kids. They get to play in the play room. I get to work out and take care of me. Shower in PEACE, no finger under the door or screaming for mom. I can lounge in the massage chair. Do my hair. Drink a smoothie or lounge in the hot tub. Like who doesn’t want that!! AND I get to work out my body and mind. It’t the best thing a mom can do for herself at least a few days a week.

Las Vegas weight goals

Who has supported you during your transformation?

Random strangers at the gym have been a huge support. When I first started my journey, I would run on the track, I would be heavy breathing and stumbling but ya girl still did. I remember a day where I didn’t want to be there but I was. It took everything in me to walk up those stairs. As I ran then walked and then attempted to run again, this random lady stopped next to me. She spoke life into me and kindness. She mentioned she had seen me running for a weeks and she wanted me to know she was proud of me. I cried. My husband and my kids are my biggest support and motivation he has lost over 130 pounds as well. 

What would you advise someone who is struggling to get healthy? 

You are worth it, you are worth being the best version of you. You are worth those dreams, you are worth living the fullest life you can. This world needs you and they need the best version of you. Do not give up on yourself. Everyday is a new day to try again. I have failed so many times and I have never failed to stop trying. Do not be afraid to try again. Do it afraid, do it scared, do it when you don’t even know what to do. Set goals reward yourself and find an exercise you like. Some days my gym is LVAC and some days its the playground with my children. Some days its the pool at LVAC and some days its the track.

Happy LVAC member

Amanda’s never-give-up attitude toward fitness really shines in our “Making Lives Better” series. As an LVAC member, she’s proof that dedication pays off, inspiring others to take care of themselves too. Her story shows how being physically fit can boost your mental health, and we’re stoked to have shared it along with other awesome “Making Lives Better” stories!

Your mental health matters. If you need support, don’t hesitate to reach out. In the United States, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or check out their website HERE!

LVAC Henderson

Making Lives Better Success Stories
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