About six years ago, while living in Chaska, Minnesota, Michael McGuire and his wife Jennifer, decided they were in serious need of a lifestyle change.
The couple had become overweight and wanted to live healthier lives, so they began working out to drop their excess pounds.
Michael admitted he was extremely overweight and eating bad foods, then he came across a promotion from Life Time Fitness — a Minnesota-based exercise facility that was offering a 90-day nationwide challenge with a chance to win prize money.
The couple began losing weight really fast and became finalists for the grand prize. They didn’t win, but they gained a new lifestyle in the process and an opportunity presented to them from Life Time and Toyota.
They were offered a spot in a triathlon in Oceanside, California.
Michael admitted to the sponsors they were in the process of moving to Smithville. Life Time was OK with the move, since it has two facilities in the Kansas City area.
“After we started, we thought we had a good chance of winning, but we didn’t win,” Michael said. “Even though we didn’t win, we got in shape. Then Life Time and Toyota offered us a spot in a triathlon event they sponsored. After the move they let us train in their Kansas City-based facilities.”
A triathlon is composed of swimming, bicycling and running. Michael said when he got back in the water to swim for the event, it was like learning to swim for the first time.
Life Time had the McGuires tell their story to their vendors, and a few of them began giving them free products to help them along.
After a few years, Michael decided to compete in a 100-mile bicycling competition in Leadville, Colorado, where he came in contact with Blueprint for Athletes, a Quest Diagnostics company.
Blueprint sponsors several professional teams — WNBA’s New York Liberty, MLS’s Seattle Sounders and the NFL’s New York Giants — and Ironman races including the race in Leadville.
Once Mike came into contact with Blueprint, the company sent a representative to his house in Smithville to do some blood work before the race.
“In order to get in the race, I had to become a part of Blueprint and do another 60-day trial at Life Time to get back in shape,” Mike McGuire said. “I got in great shape. Then Blueprint came to my house and did some blood work on me. After a short time, they sent me a book with my results, and I was blown away with my results and everything I was lacking healthwise.”
After his blood work, his representative called him to go over the results in the pages of the book, he had yet to look at. Once McGuire received the phone call he found out a list of things he was deficient in.
After the testing McGuire knew what he needed to work on to improve his physical fitness.
He recommends that anybody interested in improving their physical fitness make working out part of daily life.
“You have to put weight loss up there with work, food and water. If you put weight loss up in that category, you are fine,” Michael said. “If you don’t, it’s not going to happen. You have to work out early in the morning and for a half-hour in the evening.”
He raises beef and chickens at his home to meet his dietary needs. He lives just outside of Smithville, where he and his wife and their four children — Quintin 18, Brieanna 14, Sopheea 11 and Harley 3 — eat healthy and exercise in their home and outdoors.
Brieanna has even competed in a triathlon, and Quintin was a member of the Smithville High School football team.
Mike and Jennifer both workout together and he said that is the best thing about his journey, instead of feeling like he is leaving his family behind to achieve his own personal goals.
Jennifer will be participating in her first triathlon since having knee surgery.
After their move from Chaska, the McGuires immediately fell in love with the small-town feel of Smithville. He enjoys training around Smithville Lake, where he bikes and swims.
“We picked Smithville because of the schools and to raise our family after we moved from Minnesota,” Mike said. “It’s kind of weird to have a small-town close to a major city and keep the small-town feel.”
Staff Writer Kaleb Huffman can be reached at 532-4444 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smithville resident offers his blueprint for weight loss