STAR, Idaho - Dec. 29, 2014 // PRNewswire // - When he weighed 442 pounds and experienced chest pains three years ago, Mark Bryant never imagined that someday he'd be featured in People magazine or invited to show off his body on Good Morning America. But that's exactly what happened last week after the 40-year-old Anytime Fitness member from Star, ID was profiled in People's annual "Half Their Size" issue.
"When I started going to the gym, I feared going into a huge gym with tons of people because I felt like people would be watching and I would be embarrassed," said Bryant, who lost 264 pounds in three years and now weighs a healthy 178 pounds. "Anytime Fitness provided a safe, smaller venue where I felt comfortable from the first day I went there. Not only that, but I didn't feel like I was sacrificing anything from an equipment standpoint. Anytime Fitness has all the machines and weights that one would find at a bigger gym. I also travel often for work and typical hotel fitness centers are fairly inadequate. I was always able to locate an Anytime Fitness close to where I was staying and get my normal workout in while I was away."
Read Mark Bryant's Story In People Magazine:
At his heaviest, Bryant says everything was a reminder that he was dangerously overweight. Even the simplest tasks were difficult.
"Even breathing was taxing," Bryant said. "Walking up stairs, putting on a seatbelt, tying my shoes, sleeping, being in public and seeing kids stare at you – it's all tough. There was not an aspect of my life that brought me joy when I was overweight."
All of that changed shortly after Bryant made the decision to get himself to a healthier place by making smarter food choices and joining Anytime Fitness (www.anytimefitness.com) near his home in Star, ID.
"Anytime Fitness staff and members were always so warm and inviting," Bryant said. "They made me feel very comfortable."
See Mark's Appearance On Entertainment Tonight:
Bryant says that his physical transformation has impacted him emotionally, as well. Simply put, he's happier and enjoying life to the fullest.
"I love the little things, helping a friend move a piece of furniture and not feeling completely drained," Bryant said. "Coaching my daughter's soccer team and being able run the drills with them, putting the Christmas lights on the house with ease, going into a public place and not being stared at, trying on clothes from a normal department store, going through a turnstile at the airport and not having to be a contortionist, fitting into a booth at a restaurant, seeing a friend who I haven't seen in a long time and having them not recognize me, being able to perform athletically – the confidence I have gained is worth all the hard work. I couldn't have done it all by myself, but I feel like I can accomplish anything that I put my mind to. It's a wonderful feeling."
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Ranked #1 on Entrepreneur's prestigious Franchise 500® list, Anytime Fitness is the fastest-growing gym franchise in the world, with nearly 3,000 gyms serving more than 2,000,000 members on five continents. Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, Anytime Fitness prides itself on providing its members with convenient fitness options and friendly, personal service in well-maintained facilities which feature top-quality exercise equipment. Gyms are now open in all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, England, Scotland, Ireland, Grand Cayman, Poland, the Netherlands, Spain, Qatar, India, Chile, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and the Philippines. All franchised gyms are individually owned and operated. Join one gym and use them all. Members also enjoy free access to AnytimeHealth.com, the most comprehensive wellness website available.
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