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Andrea's Inspiring Story

Posted by The Edge Fitness Clubs on August 18, 2022

Dear Edge –

I joined Edge Fitness at Devon Square about a year ago when my family moved here from Connecticut. It was the first time all three of my kids (now 10, 7, and 3) would all be in school – and I had realized that if I didn’t improve my fitness I wouldn’t be able to keep up with them. Having three kids and finishing their uneaten toddler snacks for nine years had taken its toll. I was finally able to admit that I need an instructor to tell me what to do, and other people around me to encourage me to keep going. Working out at home alone or going for a run on my own is simply not in my vocabulary.

I have loved (almost) every minute of Barre, Body Pump, Yoga, Zumba, and Total Body Conditioning that Brigit, Brittany, Kristin, Mary, Nancy, Jay, Susan, and others have put me through over the last year. I have gladly parted with gallons of sweat, traded many pounds of fat for muscle, and stretched out things I didn’t even know needed stretching. I went from barely being able to lift a leaf blower to maintaining my own yard with the whole Ryobi suite: lawn mower, leaf blower, hedge trimmer, edger… and the ability to pick up a 40-pound little girl and run up the hill! I had to buy smaller workout pants (not that that was the goal), and was feeling like I was really making progress.

On June 9, I went in for my annual eye exam, and the optometrist said, “You have a small amount of swelling on your optic nerve – it’s probably nothing, but you need to go down to Wills Eye Center in Philadelphia tomorrow just to make sure.” That statement led to the discovery of a golf-ball size tumor in the lining of my brain. The doctors couldn’t believe I had no symptoms – no seizures, no memory loss, nothing. I was prescribed strong medicine to drain pressure away from my eyes and to prevent seizures, and surgery was scheduled for July 12 to remove the tumor.

Due to increasing left side weakness and loss of balance, I ended up checking in to the hospital four days early. Every four hours, the nurses checked me with certain tests – could I wiggle my toes, could I see their fingers, etc – and always “Pull me toward you – good. Ok, now push me away from you as hard as you can.” That was my favorite – one of the larger male nurses said “Whoa! You’re really strong!” and I couldn’t help replying, “EDGE STRONG!” and we laughed. The rest of the week was a blur of IV aversion, medication that was too strong for lightweight me, feeling so alone and yet so thankful that God was with me every second even when my loved ones were not allowed to be, pain, blind spots, insomnia, and fatigue. But now, a month out, I am off all the meds, sleeping well, and back at the gym.

I want to thank you for providing a place where I could get strong, and now, where I can get strong again. My current weight limit is 13 lbs, and I can’t bend more than 30 degrees forward so it will be a while on push-ups and Yoga, but it is so good to be back, and seeing a little progress each day! I really believe the fitness I built up over the last year at the Edge was a major contributing factor to the fact that I am still standing here today; and that I am recovering as well as I am from a 26-staple head incision. Thanks guys!

Signing off for Barre class,

Andrea Brown