Melinda Wiebe is a Sylvan Lake, AB resident who has been physically active and involved in the martial arts for over 20 years. Melinda's health and fitness has held high priority in her life, but that all came crashing down in the beginning of 2014 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
On February 14th, 2014, Melinda had a
radical mastectomy. From there, she was in and out of the hospital with 6 rounds of chemotherapy, plus 20+ treatments of radiation therapy.
She described radiation therapy as “having a really bad burn”. All the medication that went along with the treatments, made her feel tired and lethargic.
The treatments left her feeling weak and unstable, but
Melinda was determined to regain her physical fitness and return to training in the martial arts. She never let the thought of losing this battle enter her mind.
It was her daughter Jennifer, a trainer at Absolute Fitness at the time, that recommended her to start training with us. Shortly after, she began her training with coach Vladimir in November 2014.
When she first came into the gym, she was a little nervous because of all the treatments and medications that she had recently had to endure, and also because of the fact that she hadn’t trained in so long.
Melinda started out with very little energy and very little strength. She was barely able to make it through her first class, but she stuck with it. Coach Vlad made sure to approach her first session starting with only mobility and light stretching exercises. It took Melinda a while to move on to strength training, and eventually, Coach Vlad incorporated some conditioning to Melinda's workouts.
A major milestone for Melinda was 3 short months after she first started training: she was feeling good enough that she was able to go out skiing in January 2015. She was only able to ski for half the day, but she was thrilled that she was able to do it at all!
Within a year of training at Absolute Fitness, Melinda felt confident enough to try her hand at the martial arts again. She had to take a lot of breaks during her first class, but was delighted that she was participating in the classes again.
Melinda has told us that she has seen
improvements in the quality of her life since training with Coach Vlad at Absolute Fitness. The most important thing for her, is the ability to train in the martial arts again because a large portion of her friends and family are from fitness and martial arts backgrounds. Having the ability to train with friends and family is a huge boost to her morale and self esteem.
Melinda was featured in an independently produced
documentary that featured her, and her daughter Jennifer,
their love for the martial arts and her battle with breast
cancer. Check it out below.
Melinda's says that life in general is easier for her now. Little things that she didn’t have to think about before, like getting in and out of her car, a Miata which is really low to the ground, or walking on an icy sidewalk, which had become difficult and a bit intimidating for her during her treatments but now she is able to do them again without fearing she might fall or not be able to perform the task.
Losing so much of her physical fitness and then gaining it all back has inspired many people around Melinda. The biggest inspiration that she has had the pleasure of witnessing is her husband, who has also started training at Absolute Fitness, along with her, something she has being trying to do for many years.
Melinda says the best part of working out at Absolute Fitness is the attention to her needs. Melinda was on medications, that had drastic effects on her physically, and she wasn’t always able to do the workouts that her trainer had planned, but her trainer, instead of sticking to a set program, was able to quickly change it to something that she was able to do.
Melinda described her experience at Absolute Fitness as “one of a kind” and recommends anyone who’s fighting a major illness or major injury to seek out and hire a personal trainer at Absolute Fitness.
She also would recommend that people of her generation, who are turning 50+ years old, to start mobility training as well to keep themselves mobile and feeling young.
If you want to reclaim your life, follow Melinda's lead, and give us a call at 403 347-9669 or email us at
firstname.lastname@example.org it’s your first step in getting started.