My story has been a testament to how much fitness has done to improve my quality of life.
I was about nineteen when I realized that transitioning was my path, but because of some hurdles with not having health insurance or many resources at all, it took me a very long time to get on hormones. Anyone who has experienced a wait like that knows how exhausting every passing day can be. It was tough to keep in good spirits, and unfortunately at that time, most of the time I was pretty angry and moody.
Something that I got into during that time was boxing and weightlifting. The explosive movements required for both of these things proved to be very cathartic for me and drain me of any negativity I was feeling prior to exercise. After some time I noticed some physical changes that were, for me, more validating of my gender identity. Namely, some increased muscle tone and strength overall. I don’t feel like every transman has any responsibility to be masculine of center or desire a muscular build, but for those that do, weight training can be so, so important.
Now that I’ve been on hormones for a little over three years, I’ve had top surgery, I have a completely positive outlook on life, and I have kept with training for so long; I’ve even found a calling for my career. I am currently enrolled in an exercise science program that I’ll have finished within the next few months or so, and after that time I’ll be hustling for my own personal training brand, ReFORM. I get so much absolute joy from working out that I knew I wanted to help people along with the same process. With any luck in my outreach, a majority of my clients will also be FTMs, so that I can help them to a level of security that I now feel. Which, truth be told, is an unparalleled feeling.
- Noah Ray Sundell