Success Stories

See what some of our clients have achieved in their time with us.

Meet: Peter

In the first 2 months alone I lost 24lbs & 5 inches off my belly while putting on some muscle.

I enjoy rather than dread going to the gym. I’ve learned how to cook and eat great food that takes fat off rather than putting it on.

Meet: Josh

I started at a size 38 waist and am now at a size 32 waist. I get better quality sleep now and I have a new relationship with food. I was very strict with my diet plan the first 4 months of working out. While some of my newest friends are cheese, eggs, butter, cream, rotisserie chicken, and bacon, I also eat a lot of vegetables and salads, like Cobb and Chef and salads. When I’m tempted to indulge in something that’s rich in carbs, I just tell myself that I’ve had it many, many times before and I’m not missing anything by not having it. 

Which usually works, unless its a special event or something that I haven’t had before. I know that indulging will slow down my progress for the week, and having seen the progress I’ve already made fortifies me.having it. Which usually works, unless its a special event or something that I haven’t had before. I know that indulging will slow down my progress for the week, and having seen the progress I’ve already made fortifies me.

Meet: Amy

I originally joined True 180 Fitness (formerly The Body You Want) in July 2011 as a compliment to my distance running training. Having never had a structured weights program, I thought it might help with injury prevention, improving my run form and ultimately my race times. The resistance training was easy to work into my run schedule and with just a few months of consistent time at the gym, I was noticing results. Since that summer, I've PR'd every racedistance, some multiple times over and by double digit numbers, including qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

I look stronger, taller and more fit when I run (and in general). I feel better - injuries have been at a minimum and I recover significantly faster from hard workouts and races. The bonus in all of this is the camaraderie at the gym. I've seen the same people 2x a week for the past 18 months. Everyone is so supportive and works together, even though we each have our own individual workouts.

Meet: Grant

Working with the trainers at True 180 Fitness (formerly The Body You Want) has literally changed my life! That sounds extreme, but I was an overweight, under-exercised guy in his seventh decade who had always said, “I hate exercise.”

After working for nearly three years with Josef Brandenburg I can deadlift nearly 300 pounds and have overall strength and endurance. Best of all, I feel great about myself and my body for the first time in my life. I have just signed up for my next year with these folks.”

Meet: Jessica

I have always struggled with my weight, despite being relatively active as an adult. I’ve cycled between 240 lbs. and 165 lbs. a few times during my life. Additionally, I have herniated the same disc in my lower back multiple times and had surgery to repair it.

When I came to True 180 Fitness (formerly The Body You Want), I was towards the heavy end of my spectrum, yet again. My back and foot problems made me afraid of most resistance training; I was worried I would re-injure myself and end up more limited than I already was. Working with the T180 team quickly gave me confidence that my program was a safe way to regain my strength and make progress towards my fitness goals. 

In the 15 months I’ve been with T180, I’ve gone from a size 16W to a size 8/10 (and on her way to a size 6!). While I’m not at the lowest weight I’ve ever been, I’m wearing the smallest clothes I ever have as an adult. I’m currently 30lbs. lighter than I was when I graduated from high school.

It is definitely harder to be consistent some times than others – and my progress has happened in spurts, with frustrating plateaus in between. Ultimately, I feel much healthier, stronger and have greater confidence that I can manage my weight and fitness than I have previously. 

Meet: Lori

When Lori first came to us she was out growing her 8’s. It was either get back into her clothes or buy a new wardrobe of 10’s. What she was doing – group aerobics classes weren’t working and the pants were getting tighter. Good news: Lori got into her 8’s, then her 6’s and eventually bought a size 4 for the first time in over a decade.

Her problem now is that her clothes are too big and they’ve been taken in as much as they possibly can. Most importantly Lori has maintained this success for over 3 years now! Way to keep it up and keep it off Lori!

“Every morning I look in the mirror and say, ‘Thank you!’”

Meet: Daryl

In May 2013, after my doctor told me I was ‘technically overweight’ for my height (5’11), I began to focus on getting in better shape and going to the gym consistently. Previously I wasn’t big on going to the gym, but going to True 180 Fitness (formerly The Body You Want) has actually made it fun. They have created a unique, family atmosphere where you feel the support of the coaches and of others who are working on their fitness goals.

T180 will help you to produce results. Over the past year, strength training helped me reduced my 5K time by 11 minutes I have been able to go from 202 to 184lbs, from a 36 inch waste to a 33. They’ve helped me to turn fitness from something I had to do to something that I look forward to doing.

Coaches who know the importance of proper nutrition and are knowledgeable and up to date on the best fitness techniques makes T180 but a joy to go to and a tremendous value for money.

Meet: Catherine

One year after beginning the 2014 Spring Challenge, I am 27 pounds lighter, injury free and far more energetic than I have been in years.

Joining the True180 (formerly TBYW) gym has changed my life in important ways. I had been struggling for years to get back into shape, and was continually frustrated and demoralized because I was always taking two steps forward followed by 10 steps backwards. Sometimes I would work out fairly consistently but eat total crap; other times I would be super into clean eating, but would not spend any time at the gym. And whenever I hit a stressful patch at work, both things would go to hell.

The 2014 Challenge was what really got me focused and helped me to move forward consistently. I love to cook, so I went to work modifying my old recipes and trying new ones and the results have been incredible. No hunger, no cravings, no feelings of exhaustion in the afternoons, no stomach or intestinal discomfort. When I started last year's Spring Challenge I was size 8 pushing 10 in some cases. Now I comfortably fit into a size 4 and have lots of energy.

Consistency is what has helped me lose a total of 27 pounds over the last year. While I can sometime add a few pounds when I get off track, it's much, much easier to just revert back to what I learned in the Challenge and shed the weight.

I would be completely remiss if I did not mention the gym's wonderful clientele. T180 is small enough that it is easy to get to know people and everyone is very upbeat and supportive… People go out of their way to notice positive changes in you, and that is incredibly up-lifting.

“In terms of the training that the T180 provides, I think the key to its success is that each of the trainers has been taught by Josef, so you always get 100% consistent messaging and instructions from them.”

Meet: Dana S

For the last 15 years I had struggled and been disappointed with my weight and size. I would try crazy diets, dedicate obscene amounts of time to the treadmill every day, or put myself through tedious calorie tracking activities and all for minor and fleeting results. When I started at True 180, I was at my worst. Even though I'm not very tall, I was over 140lbs and a size 6, with size 8 as my not uncommon "back up" size. I also came in with a lot of misconceptions about what was good for me and what results I would get out of the type of nutrition and fitness program True 180 advocated.

And now, a little over a year later, I feel like I got the education and accountability I didn't even know I needed, and it got me down to a comfy size 2 with a 0 as my back-up size. I am thinner and fitter today than I was at my high school senior prom. And best of all, I know why and I know how to maintain it while still enjoying the occasional treat or drink.

I definitely started out a skeptic about "getting the body you want in the time that you have", but the experience and results have been amazing for me. The fitness and nutrition regiment I have now is something I can not only do, but also maintain. I don't go to the gym more than 4 times a week and each work out is challenging, but doable and interesting--not the horrible, monotonous cardio grind I had previously associated with "going to the gym". Also, my relationship with food is phenomenally better. I eat differently, but I'm cooking and eating meals I love, eat whenever I want, and always eat until I'm full and never track calories.

I had honestly resigned myself to always being cutely chubby in a best case scenario and never pictured myself achieving any fitness goal beyond losing a few pounds. I'm happy with the progress I've made in terms of weight loss and excited that I've started to tackle other fitness goals like strength and balance.



Meet: Coach Chris

Four years ago I weighed 330 pounds and recovering from my 4th knee surgery in 7 years.  I was given orders of strict bed rest for 3 weeks so my knee could recover from surgery to help patch cartilage that was missing in my knee. I had been a great athlete in high school, using my 6’4 280 pound frame to propel me to success in varsity football. I identified myself as an athlete and built my mental framework around it. So when I looked at myself in 2011, bedridden, soft and weak I decided that that wasn’t who I was and it was time to do something about it.

I began with walking. The Mt. Vernon parkway in Virginia was my spot; in March of 2011 it was where you could find me from 9am-11am, like clockwork. I would walk for a brisk pace, always switching my interval time each day. Some days I would walk as fast as I could for 40 seconds and rest for 2 minutes; others I would go for a minute on a minute off.

Eventually I built on my success by adding strength training to my work outs. I got a gym member ship to a Gold’s gym by my house and I went their religiously. My training sessions were intense! Not really knowing what I was doing I looked at what the other guys were doing and would mimic their work outs. By the fall of 2012 I was on my way to Longwood University’s Exercise program weighing 100 pounds less than I did the year prior and fueled by a new passion to help other do the same!

In 2013 I started an internship at True 180 Fitness (formerly The Body You Want) to get school credit for my degree in Exercise science from Longwood University. Two years later I am True 180’s Director of training, where I actively coach our members to achieve their best and healthiest lives just the way I have. I am now weighing 210 pounds (120 lbs total loss) and I’ve gone from a size 44 pant size to a 34!  

If you are ready to begin your own personal fitness journey, click here to meet me and try True 180’s 14-day trial to see if we’re the right fit for you!

Meet: Elise K

I thought that I just had bad genes, until I took control over my mind and body by stepping into True 180 Fitness (then TBYW).” It started years ago, the desire to be skinny and fit. My sisters and Mom were thin, fit and athletic.  You could even see my Mom’s ab muscles.  I have always wanted abs and thought, “If you can see my abs, I will be happy.”  I was so wrong. 

I had been a runner, running marathons, half-marathons, and everything in between, until I got injured. I did not know what to do with myself, so I just did the elliptical machine at the gym.  That didn’t really do much, except give me an excuse to move my legs and watch tv.

Eating has always been an issue for me. If it were in my house, I would eat it.  If it were not in my house, I would go out, buy it and then eat it. I would work out (do cardio) then eat chocolate; French fries, anything…and nothing about my body would change.  I kept on buying bigger clothes.  Eventually I got up to 160 lbs. a size 10, which on a 5’1” frame looks absolutely horrid. I was eating sugar, carbohydrates, drinking sugary drinks, drinking alcohol, and eating whatever I wanted and felt horrible!

I tried weight watchers, cleanses, dieter’s tea (thanks, Mom). Nothing worked. At TBYW, I was given a program and a fitness and nutrition coach.  I began eating meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, coffee, eggs, cheese, and even some chocolate (as a treat)! The pounds came off slowly at first, but I soon saw my body changing. I was participating in resistance training (weights) and interval cardio classes.

I took pictures weekly, hoping one day to finally get that photograph of me with “abs.” I started buying size 8’s, then 6’s, then 4’s.  Friends started giving me their size 2 pants and skirts!
I could feel my core muscles working.  My posture improved and I could feel my muscles relaxing into place. My brain was happy.  I was eating whole, real foods, and felt amazing - people could see it. I felt as if I radiated wellness.

I got abs, but I didn’t really care about them anymore.  I wanted to get stronger and be a more well-rounded woman. Mission accomplished! See Elise's video testimonial here!

Meet: Emily M

Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined I could have the body – and the energy – I have now. True180 changed, and to be honest, saved my life.

My  “aha moment” was about a year ago, when a stranger approached me and asked if I was pregnant. I was absolutely mortified! At the time I was a hard working grad student, pulling in late nights studying, fueled mostly by high carb treats and caffeine. I was literally sacrificing my body for work. I had no idea how badly I had neglected my body. Eager to get back into shape, I tried magazine diets, weight watchers, etc. I wanted the fastest, cheapest, and easiest solution. Nothing was working and I was miserable. The worst part was my body was beginning to feel “old.” My back felt horrible after sitting in chairs for long hours, and I felt winded just walking for five minutes. Although I thought it was strange to feel this way so young, in my twenties, I accepted it as natural aging.

After hearing about True180’s two-week trial, I signed up for one last-ditch fitness effort. Thank goodness I did!  Within three months of joining I lost 17 pounds. Now, I have lost more than 25 (and counting!). I have gone from a size 14/12 to a size 6/4 (and am getting smaller – the top in the photo is a size 2!). I have abs and muscle definition. More importantly, I have found strength that I never knew I had. Even though I can now do awesome things like lunges and push ups, I still get shy about my strength. But that’s okay, because the coaches here believe in your strength more than you do! I have worked with all of the coaches, and they are each inspirational mentors. I guarantee if you listen to what they recommend (especially when it comes to eating!), your success will astound you.

Meet: Michelle M

Almost a year ago, I sat in a hospital bed on Christmas Eve (I celebrate Hannukah, but still, no fun), and had just had it with my health problems. Frustrated, I started googling for a personal trainer in D.C., with a goal that this year’s New Year’s resolution in 2015 would be different. To this day, I don’t know what forces aligned to bring me to your Yelp page, but that Google search was one of the most formative actions of this past year.

This is a long way of saying you have changed my life. A year later, exercise is a regular part of my routine, a key party of my health plan and something I – get this! – look forward to every other day. I take joy in seeing what I can achieve, watching myself soar, and realizing my illness does not limit or define me.

The care and expertise you all bring every day is a special thing to behold. I could spend pages listing accomplishments that are because of you; ease carrying grocery bags, wearing high heels without tripping, going on hikes, revamping my entire eating plan. Oh, and I suppose you are also to blame for the fact that there are TWENTY-FIVE ENTIRE POUNDS less of me then there was a year ago. That’s revolutionary when you are on steroids, and all you hear is “It’s okay, the medication makes you gain weight.”

If gym had been anything like this back in school, maybe things would have been different. If I had known it was about self-improvement, and seeing what you could do, not your failures compared to others, it might have been different. Maybe your methods just speak to my personality and drive. Trying really hard, challenging myself, seeing results, which just motivates me to try harder – it’s so fun!

I was just so intimidated to step foot in a gym, and didn’t know what to do. My illness makes my life terribly unstable. Thank you for being the first group I tried that did not give up on me when the hospitalizations came, when the side effects flared. In a world where there is so much I can’t control, getting on a schedule, and knowing one of you is there has been a rock that has been a key part in surviving and thriving during some of my hardest days.

As a nerd, I love that everything you do is backed up by knowledge and science that you don’t hesitate to share. I sadly subscribed to the stereotype that athletes and physical fitness was solidly divorced from intellectual rigor. I am glad to have met a group that is as knowledgeable about fitness as my role models in my own field. With that knowledge, you all engender an unconditional amount of trust, which just makes me feel completely safe as I push myself far, far, far to the limit. 

Meet: Yumiko

It was pure luck that I encountered True 180 Fitness in Georgetown five months ago. I feel extremely fortunate as this gym has become a part of who I am now.

One thing about joining a new gym, just like the first day of school, is that the experience was half exciting and half filled with nervousness. It requires courage to step into something totally unknown, especially for me as a foreign national who was relatively new to the area. One of the strong characteristics of True 180 Fitness that I appreciate the most is a sense of community. Although the sessions and classes can be challenging, the True 180 coaches and members are very friendly and welcoming. This environment has helped me to feel that I can trust and be happy as a part of this community.

Reflecting back on my first day I stepped into the gym, I had two goals in mind:

The first goal was, possibly similar to that of many others, to lose weight and see the ideal number on the scale which had been on my mind for more than a decade. Since I moved to DC from Asia a few years ago, every year I was getting the same recommendation on my annual health check-up report, which was to lose some weight. It was always the same lecture by the doctor which I had to sit through for 10 minutes annually. It was not that I did not care, but that I was constantly busy with my work, travel, socializing activities, family and friends. Also, in the US, if the clothes feel tight, there is always the next size up that can “fit” comfortably. Therefore the gap between my ideal and actual weight became wider instead of getting smaller. I also started avoiding taking photographs so that I did not have to see myself.

The second goal was to be ready for the Marine Corp Marathon 10K which was scheduled in two months’ time. I ran the same race in the previous year for the first time. At that time, I practiced more “running activities” well ahead of the race. 

For the second time around, however, having some experience with the race prevented me from getting serious with a running routine. I felt that including this in my manifesto when I joined the new gym was a good opportunity to get me motivated to practice running to avoid injury due to the lack of preparation for the race.   

Looking back at my journey in last five months, there have been many surprises.

For the first two months, I was able to manage my “busy” schedule and made it a habit to go to the gym three times a week. As each session and class was not more than an hour, I was able to focus better on the work out when I was in the gym. The trade-off, however, was that I could not fit my “running” into the schedule anymore except on the weekend. Without much actual running practice prior to the race and spending time working out in the True 180 classes and sessions, I remembered on the day of the race feeling less prepared and thinking I would be more than happy to just complete the 10K. The result was very interesting because I ended up running much faster and completing the race in significantly less time than the previous year.

Now, five months since I started, my clothes have gone 2 - 3 sizes back down and “fit” well and I have lost 20 pounds. People around me started noticing the change and giving me nice comments. Though I am still on the way to see the ideal number on the scale, I definitely feel better and more confident. This is due to all of the coaches who are amazingly knowledgeable, and are very good at helping me sustain my motivation, and making me want to challenge myself even more. Last year, if anyone had asked me to share my story in a video or on the True 180 Fitness website, I would definitely not have accepted. I have to say that sharing about myself in this format is such a big transformation of who I am now! 

Meet: Jenny M

I joined True 180 in early 2013 because I wanted to get back in shape after having my son.   My son was a little over two old when I joined and, while I had lost most of the baby weight a while before that, the last 10 pounds or so were hanging on and I still felt out of shape. Before joining the gym, my main activities were running, biking and yoga. I have always been fairly active and have been able to stay in shape fairly easily. I was in good shape before I got pregnant but I stopped running when I was about 3 months pregnant and did not really get back into after my son was born. And, while yoga was very therapeutic and a good way to stretch and relax, I did not feel like I was getting an intense workout. Even though I had not lifted weights recently, I had done so in the past (about 10 years prior), and remembered how strong I felt when I had lifted regularly. I knew that I needed some good coaching to make sure I was lifting correctly, along with some motivation to do it regularly. 

I searched for good personal trainers and found True 180.  I really liked their holistic approach to fitness. They emphasized getting strong, having your clothes fit better and feeling good about your self and de-emphasized obsessing about losing weight and a number on the scale. I like that the coaches continually challenge me with new workout programs every 4- 6 weeks and this, along with coach’s workouts and the metabolic classes, keep me from getting bored at the gym. While being consistent with my workouts has really helped, I saw the best results when I combined the workouts with the trainer’s other advice about what to eat, the importance of sleep and drinking enough water. 

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