Karl & Colina's Story - Knee & Back Pain Journey

Karl and Colina on a hike

Before Align

Karl: “I was having difficulty walking. I sat whenever I could because standing was painful and tiring. I would sit in the car while Colina would go shopping or walking at places we were visiting. My knees hurt, and I was seriously considering having knee replacement surgery.  I also have several vertebrae in my lower back that have fused together. This lead to scoliosis throughout my lower back.”

“I am a fairly tall man, 6’7”.  After graduating from college, I got married and got a desk job. As I got older, I put on weight. I got up to about 320 lbs at my heaviest. After retiring in 2017, I was told by one of my doctors that being a big person and having a desk job was not a good combination. Sitting at a desk for 40 years and not being active did a number on my back. Beginning in March 2020, I began losing weight and am now about 270 lbs.” 

Colina: “I’d gained 70 lbs since I’d gotten married and I had never made exercise a part of my life. I enjoy yard work and I had gotten to the place where that was getting hard to do. We also had two new grand babies. I wanted to be more sure on my feet, secure in my balance, and strong enough to carry my grand babies up and down stairs confidently. I saw my mother fall, which resulted in a brain injury and her death just a couple months before I started with Align.”

Making the Change

Colina: “My sister helped me decide! She has been an Align client and gifted me the initial evaluation fee and the first month. I decided if she felt that strongly about it, I needed to take a serious look at it. After my consultation, I recognized the difference it would make for both of us.”

Karl: “My wife had been encouraging me to be more active and build strength. It was getting so difficult for me to get around. During her initial consultation with Matthew, he emphasized pain management over just doing the exercises. That was what helped me decide to try Align as well.”

The Align Difference 

We tried weight loss programs like Curves and walking. None of them lasted very long. Align’s online personalized program takes into consideration where you are physically and what pain you have. We are remote clients, but still receive a lot of personal attention. We each have our own workout, but we can do it together. We also really appreciate the accountability, attitude, and care of the coaches. Our workouts change and grow as we progress. We have taken a LOT of road trips in the time we have been with Align and have been able to continue with our workouts even on the road. We can benefit from Align anywhere!”

Colina: “I was surprised to experience progress without pain.  I fully expected to hurt the first month or two, but the way my coach moved me through activating unused muscles was impressive.  Yes, I had to work at it and sometimes it was hard work, but I was never overwhelmed.  My coach kept me encouraged and paid attention to how I was feeling and made any necessary adjustments.  My first realization that Align was making a real difference in my life, was when we were at our son’s place and I’d carried the grandbabies up and down stairs several times without holding onto the stair rail and I hadn’t even thought about it.  And I wasn’t winded after several trips up and down!”

Life Now

Karl: “The results have been amazing. It’s been a lot of baby steps over the past year and I still have a ways to go, but I am flexible and pain free enough to be able to get down on the floor to play with my grandkids! We have been traveling around the country a lot over the past couple of years and now I am able to get out and enjoy the places we are visiting instead of sitting in the car all the time!”

“I am walking better and standing straighter than I used to. The knot I had in the right side of my lower back is pretty much gone. I am stronger and not in as much pain. My back is still a bit stiff first thing in the morning, but once I start moving around, things are good. My knees don’t hurt as much as they used to and I am more active than I was. Things like going into the store are more enjoyable now!”

Colina: “I am stronger.  I have been able to carry my grandbabies with confidence, even on the stairs.  We’ve had another grandbaby added to our family in the last year and I’m grateful to have been able to carry him in a swaddle and go on a mile or so hike.  I’ve also noticed an overall general feeling of well being. I feel better about myself. My clothes fit differently.  My body is more firm, not sagging in various places lol.”

“I enjoy the daily commitment to exercise. I like that fitness is a regular part of my life.  I have chosen to workout 5 days a week, so that it is a consistent routine.  And I believe it has been really good for my mental health, just an overall uplifting, happier outlook in general.  I’ve not been very good at self-discipline, but Align is helping me grow in that through my daily exercise routine. My advice is to be honest with your coach about how you are doing.  Be committed, stay committed, do the work! The reward is worth the effort!”