Body Transformation Rooted in Love

Four years ago today I won a 10-week gym challenge and concluded the first leg of a transformational journey. Today was my 600th visit to Farrell’s in Chicago, which offers first rate kickboxing, strength training and most importantly community.

This crew helped bring in my 600th session.

You can read about the first three years of my wellness journey here.

Now I’d like to tell you the most recent energetic leg of my journey. “Transformation” isn’t a word I throw around much, not even as a coach who does deeper work that most.

I felt it wouldn’t be authentic until I had experienced a depth of energy shift that was tangible, even if not easily explained.

I’ve actually tried to explain it several times over the past few weeks and always come up short.

People notice that I’ve lost weight, which is flattering given the values system of our culture that I’ve absorbed. They ask how I did it, diet and exercise?

Well yes those habits I’ve worked on far past the 10,000-hour mark have become staples in my life. But there’s something much deeper and more sustainable.

Frida got me these amazing balloons and taught class #600. Ouch/Thanks 🙂

The shorter yet deeper version is that I faced my core truth. I lovingly revealed and healed one of my core wounds from childhood, along with the beliefs and behaviors that stemmed from that root. The techniques I’ve learned to enable this kind of transformation are truly stunning and lasting.

So now instead of “trying to diet,” I enjoy simply no longer having the urge to numb myself with a stuffed gut or alcohol. It’s not to say I don’t indulge here and there, but I make a conscious choice when I truly love the food and company. Soft addictions need to be addressed at the root. Otherwise I was just picking at symptoms and going in circles.

I also believe that the body shapes itself according to wounding energy as much, if not more, than physiological patterns explained by western science. My body feels like it’s resetting to some kind of factory default condition, which happens to be the best condition of my life.

I believe it’s important to track progress insofar as it doesn’t become an obsession. While weight isn’t the ideal metric to track, it still demonstrates the dominant health trends of my life. Here is my weight chart for the past year:

Weight tracked from 2018-2019

Notably you’ll see the spike up around the holidays and then my steady climb down through the winter.

I’m currently at nearly the lowest weight I’ve been since beginning this journey. And if you consider the added muscle mass I have now, I’m actually in better shape, which is better indicated by increased energy and stamina. Here is an updated weight chart for all four years:

Weight tracked from 2015-2019

Progress is clearly not a straight line!

Many, many people support, challenge and mentor me along this journey. All along the way, the Farrell’s community is one place I know I can always go to be accepted as I am and get a powerful workout.

Owner Vic’s heart matches his fitness knowledge. Epic!

My journey will continue. Growth exists for its own sake and it won’t be so obvious as a butterfly emerging from a chrysalis.

I’m enlivened to share what I’ve learned about healing pain from the root rather than continuing to circle around and around patching up symptoms with avoidant addictions and habits.

Now I know what it takes to transform from the inside-out. Now I have held my deepest parts in loving support. Now I truly understand what it is to lead from love.

P.S. If you’re wondering how I know I’ve been here 600 times, I check in on Foursquare Swarm:


  1. Robin on April 14, 2019 at 8:05 am

    Way to go Andy! Thanks so much for sharing your journey and work at creating a new lifestyle. Inspiring!!!

    • Andy Swindler on April 18, 2019 at 10:41 am

      Thanks, Robin! It’s motivating to know that you are inspired by my work. 🙂

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