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Member Stories: Pam Fagin

Andrea Savard
February 9, 2023
5 min read

"Pam-cakes" as she is warmly referred to by me (Coach Annie), is a loving mother of three children, grandmother to six, wife, and just recently, puppy owner as well. Pam and her husband both held full time jobs as they raised their children. As their brood grew up and left the house, Pam’s life slowed slightly, her fibromyalgia pain increased and she had to stop working.  She took more and more days easy to avoid a flare up which would increase her daily pain. More and more days spent on the couch did not lessen the pain.

Becoming very unfit only added to it.  Her blood sugar was at unhealthy levels and she became borderline diabetic. Pam became less and less mobile as a result of less movement and increased weight. Doing a load of laundry was a big day, grocery shopping had become too much.

A personal loss for Pam resulted in change, and a challenging new start. Pam’s mother died and she evaluated her situation. Couch living was no longer enough, she felt like she had no life. She pulled herself up by the bootstraps and took herself into Physiomed. How she made this decision to change is beyond me. Change is difficult and scary for all of us, but change she did.

Pam worked with Matt and his team at Physiomed to assess her many injuries and begin a program for rehabilitation. Matt and his team got her out of the house twice a week; they did both passive and active treatments. Physiomed provided her the opportunity and the confidence to move her body. Before long Matt suggested she take her training over to FirePower. As my good luck would have it, we were introduced, and her training began.

At age 55, having spent years of her life on her couch, Pam joined a CrossFit gym!

We started meeting once a week. Initially, Pam missed several sessions due to pain, poor energy levels and sickness. When she did make it in, there were many limitations that we needed to acknowledge and many accommodations to be made to allow her to move without pain.

In the beginning, she wore slip on shoes because tying her shoes was beyond her abilities. Getting on and off the rowing machine came with challenges, and assistance was needed to get her feet strapped and reach the handle, as those movements too, were beyond her current range of motion.

Pam started working with Ryan on her nutrition. Her nutrition work resulted in normal blood sugar levels within two weeks!! Improved sleep and energy levels as well as fewer colds and flus followed and allowed Pam more consistent attendance. With improvements abounding, she, (reluctantly), Ryan and I set a goal of a 2km walk for the last week in April.

Pam was extremely nervous about this goal, so, she bought a pass to the Sport Centre walking track and began walking with her husband….the healthy habits were spreading to her family. April 25th, Ryan, Pam and I walked 2.8km! No.Big. Deal.

Pam and I now meet twice a week, consistently, she never misses. She wears lace up shoes, she reaches the rowing handle, she deadlifts, she squats, she benches, and she generally is a badass. Shopping, laundry, no longer an issue. She’s down over 30lbs, she has gone traveling with her family, she bought a puppy to chase after, she is able to participate in family outings with the grandkids, she has even allowed herself to recognize that her decisions are influencing her family. Her son and daughter in law have lost another 30lbs between the two of them!

Pam is never without pain and discomfort due to fibromyalgia, but she is entirely without excuses, or self imposed limitations. She is a badass grandma and she is on the move!


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