Sep 21, 2014 7:14 PM

Turning fat to fitness, Epsom family motivates after personal challenges

CONCORD -- Dean Carlson may be a fitness trainer now - but he knows what it's like to be overweight.

"I remember coming home from work and all I wanted to do was sit on the couch, and not do anything," Carlson said.

Carlson used to be almost 300lbs.

Like so many dad's, he got caught up with work and family. He didn't have time for fitness.That was until one day - his life changed forever.

His 11-month-old son, Derek, died of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

"That was really the wake up call--I decided life was too short to be doing nothing," Carlson said.

So Dean changed his life. He progressively lost almost 100lbs.

Naturally--people started asking, "How'd you do it?".

That's when he and his wife Nancy knew they had an opportunity to create their own fitness training program.

It started with classes on grass.

"We just used yard as much as we could. As best as we could," Nancy said.

The gym is moved inside now thanks to a rehabbed barn--all next to their Epsom home.

And today, they have a second facility in Concord. Together both hold over a dozen classes each day.

The Carlson's say that their success is all about making it personal.

"He's like me. I have five children. I have five daughters. And I bring everything I learn here home," said Linda Bucknam, who takes classes at the Concord gym.

What you learn isn't always easy. But Nancy says it's all about challenging yourself--to be someone better.

"I wanna be that crazy grandma at 89--who's like jumping out of airplanes and the grandkids are going 'Come on grandma' and I'm going 'I'm hear with ya'...That's me."

Inspiring others to "make it happen".

Follow Tyler Dumont on Twitter @NH1_Tyler.


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