“I was hit from behind and severely damaged my left knee and ankle,” Daniel said. “I partially damaged every ligament in my knee and had a Grade 3 sprain of my Achilles tendon. There I was being told that I have to wear this air cast for months and do months on months of physical therapy. At such a young age, I felt like my dream was gone. All I had wanted until that point was to play hockey.”Read More
“The kid began to bend my arm back as far as it could possibly go until he heard a popping noise,” Zac said. “I began to yell, and the boys took off running.”
A family friend was passing by and saw the event happen, but it was too late to intervene. He took Zac home and told his parents what happened.Read More
“We’ve all done things in our past that we aren’t proud of,” he said. “I certainly have a past like that. From 19-years-old to about 21, I was plummeting down the wrong path. I dove into drugs, alcohol and everything in between. I fought depression due to my grandfather passing years earlier, and battled addictions to cough syrup medication as well as marijuana.”Read More
“My friend yelled at me,” he said. “When I turned around, a car hit me going over 45 mph.”
The next thing Chance remembers is laying on the ground. Everything was moving in slow motion. When he started to come to, pain flooded his entire body.
“I underwent emergency surgery,” he said. “The last memory I have before going under was my wrestling coach telling me I’d be a future state champion. Almost storybook, right?”Read More
“I needed to run,” he said. “I needed to escape, and I knew my body was ready for me to make that move. My plan was to make a run for the neighbor’s house who was a police officer. I knew he could have helped. Done something to control the situation. But I just sat there with this feeling of absolute fear in my mind, stomach and arms. It paralyzed me.”Read More
“I wasn’t some working guy with a pill habit,” DJ said. “I was the epitome of what you’d think of if you heard the word ‘junkie.’ All the way out there; a daily miserable existence. One day I decided that I was tired of getting my ass handed to me and made a decision to get clean. I didn’t have the luxury of going to a treatment center. I did it myself. No detox meds. No rehab. Just guts and grit.”Read More
“I lived with my foster family for about a year, then my dad regained custody of me and I lived with him for a little bit until my dad and stepmom got a divorce,” Talon said. “My dad wasn’t able to care for me again, so dropped me off at my grandmother’s house, who formally adopted me at age 7. That’s when my dad went to prison on drug charges.”Read More
“She was struck from behind by an SUV that had crossed the double yellow line and was traveling at over 60 miles per hour,” he said. “The impact flung her body over 50 yards into a local farmer’s field where she was left to die for over an hour. Thankfully, a passing cyclist saw Denise and called for help.”Read More
“I rolled as soon as I felt the heat,” Scott said. “I stood up thinking I had eliminated anything burning, and as fate would have it, my pants and shirt were ablaze. The gas was soaked into my pants. I rapidly removed my clothes which was my only alternative. I managed to control my breathing to prevent shock from setting in. My father activated 911 as my grandfather used an extinguisher to put the fire out.”Read More
“At the hospital, the doctors explained it to us as if her brain was a jar of glass marbles and someone shook it very hard causing fractures inside all of the marbles,” Danielle said. “They also told us not to Google the injury and stay positive.”
The reason? With this type of injury, there is a less than 10% chance of recovery.Read More
“His diabetes was always a battle, often struggling during games because of either highs or lows, but never giving up,” Philip said. “All of Brock's hard work payed off and he was recruited by a number of Division III colleges.”
The challenges were not over for Brock, though. Later in his senior season, he developed back pain but always fought through it. Everyone thought it was due to lack of flexibility from the weight loss he experienced during his trial with diabetes.Read More
“My left arm bent inwards, hearing a sickening popping noise as I quickly grabbed my elbow, now back in place as my father and other coaches ran over to me.” Jacob said. “We didn’t know what it was, but I wanted to keep wrestling. The trainer stopped me, telling me to wait and see how it felt. Thank God he did, because in a few hours my arm swelled to twice its size, a large bruise forming at the inside of my elbow as it became stiff.”Read More
“In October of 2017, his mom was diagnosed with breast cancer,” Mary said. “His dad works incredibly hard in the oil industry, but that also means he’s gone often. When my daughter was going to start her 12 weeks of chemotherapy, I had planned on taking a leave of absence from work to be with her, but I broke my ankle and had to be bedridden.”Read More
Helene developed a severe case of depression and anxiety. Eventually, it led to the use of prescription medication.
“It wasn’t until I was about 21 that I fully realized the damage I’d done,” she said. “I was just shy of 300 pounds at 5-4, in a miserable relationship, and was angry and depressed.” I developed a pretty severe case of depression and anxiety which led to the use of prescription medication.”Read More
When someone else’s happiness is your happiness; that’s love.
And if you need an unconditional example of it, take Julio Vasquez and his wife, Yesenia.
“I’m writing this for my wife, because I think she is APEMAN STRONG,” Julio said. “She is profoundly deaf and legally blind.”Read More
Tony doesn’t remember much from the accident, but what he does recall is horrifying.
“I was going in and out of consciousness but remember my 13-year-old son crying,” Tony said. “My wife was kneeling beside me. They quickly life-flighted me to the hospital, underwent emergency surgery and I was subsequently put on life support.”Read More
“I saw how large I looked in pictures with my son,” Bryan said. “This was the tipping point. I was at 319 pounds. I was on blood pressure medication and felt tired all the time – literally all of the time.”
Bryan knew he needed to change. And that’s exactly what he did.Read More
“As soon as I put an APEMAN shirt or belt on, I felt like I wasn’t that skinny kid anymore,” Mark said. “I felt like I could grind through anything. I realized it wasn’t about if I was skinny or not, but about improving my self-worth and how I looked at myself every day. I still strive to be stronger but at the end of the day, I’ve found something that helps make me fully happy.”
Not coincidentally, when Mark started gaining confidence through powerlifting, other areas of his life started to drastically improve. He is now happily a music teacher and continuing along his APEMAN journey.Read More
“It started a few years ago,” Albie said. “My wife and I had our last child. I was 41 at the time. I remember sitting on the floor and I couldn’t put my own socks on; I was 400-pounds and my diabetes was out of control. I thought, ‘I’m going to be 60 when my son graduates high school.’ I don’t know many 400-pound 60-year-olds out there.”
Albie began hitting the gym hard and estimates he lost at least 100 pounds of fat while gaining a ridiculous amount of strength.Read More
“My life has seemed like a continual struggle,” Kyle said. “In 2008, I was 22-years-old, weighed nearly 400 pounds and worked a job I had no real interest in. I basically had no idea what I wanted to do in life, but I knew I wasn’t doing it.”Read More