When 14-year breast cancer survivor Patti McGee was looking for a way to rebuild her upper body strength after a partial mastectomy, plus lose the weight she gained after chemotherapy and radiation treatments, she sought out the help of personal trainer Lisa Coleman in 2013. Coleman encouraged McGee to combine mind, body and spirit along with healthy nutritional practices to reach her goals. McGee, a longtime supporter of others going through their own cancer procedures, wants to now share that experience with others in need.
Coleman herself has had her own health challenges. She was diagnosed with Graves’ disease and Hoshimoto’s thyroiditis causing hyperthyroidism in November 2015, going quickly from “an avid athlete to a very sick individual,” she recalled. Coleman developed her own approach to reversing that autoimmune disease by using food for her medicine, along with supplementation and the power of the word of God. Now, she says she enjoys perfect health naturally. Coleman’s own better health success has driven her to encourage others through her training to restore their own health and strength.
Their mutual commitment to reach out to other people has inspired Coleman and McGee to join together to give their clients an extensive range of alternative medical offerings. Currently, they are working together on motivational speaking seminars. Their first wellness seminars were held at SUNY Brockport in 2015, and McGee said they were a big success.
They hosted their first-ever “How to Eat,Treat and Beat Illness” seminar on Oct. 19 at Coleman’s Revision Wellness studio, located in the lower level of the A Touch Above Wellness Spa, 2605 Brewerton Road, Mattydale. They also began a “Life After Breast Cancer” seminar series on Oct. 26; the first topic focused on rebuilding upper body strength and scar tissue release.
McGee, a licensed massage therapist, is the owner of Time for Reflection Massage Therapy for 10 years and author of the book Hope: An Inspiring A-Z Guide for Cancer Patients, Survivors and Caregivers, written to help others along on their own journeys with the disease. Although she took the standard medicinal path when first diagnosed with cancer, McGee said she wishes at the time she had the information she does now — including better knowledge of alternative remedies like essential oils, a proper diet with plenty of greens, and massage for stress relief.
“I did the traditional medicine first because that’s all I was told about,” she recalled. “It wasn’t until later that I sought out the natural remedies to stay healthy. Now my main goal is trying to get to other people before they get sick. ”She says one of the most rewarding parts of her massage therapy and trainings is inspiring others to gain new peace of mind by helping relieve them from the pain from surgery.
Coleman is a certified fitness trainer with more than 25 years’ experience in fitness and nutrition coaching. She was a unit physical trainer to the United States military for eight years, and strength and conditioning coach for the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams at Hamilton College in Clinton for six years. She is the principal owner and trainer of Revision Wellness, where for the past three years she has encouraged better total wellness for the spirit, soul and body with personal training, group fitness classes for all levels, nutrition seminars and life mentoring.
McGee said her own strengths are in encouraging clients to develop better flexibility and be able to relieve the pain of sore muscles. She teaches about proper diet and nutrition, and how to relax by facing sources of stress and finding ways to lessen their effect. Coleman is an “incredible motivator,” McGee said, in making her commit to a healthier lifestyle. McGee herself is “an expert in her field,” Coleman said.
Coleman cited her rigidity with her clients as one of her main strengths, likely coming from training military personnel in the past. She says she runs a “tight ship,” and has even been referred to as an Iron Maiden, and not for a love of heavy metal music. She maintains a dedicated faith in God’s plan for her, prompting her to extend her own healthy life practices to others. It’s a three-part concentration of spirit, mind and body that Coleman seeks to make better in her clients, she said.
“We need to work on all three,” she said. “Someone can be disconnected from one but healthy in all others, but that isn’t wellness.”
McGee said no one should shy away from any of their trainings and seminars because of any perceived age restrictions. “It’s never too late to start living a healthier life,” she said. “I didn’t start until I was 50. Coleman and her husband, Bobby Coleman, have four children and four grandsons, and travel nationwide sharing their insights into better health. Her Revision Wellness studio is open Mondays through Fridays, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to noon. For more on Coleman, including information on scheduling a free wellness assessment, call (315) 271-4454, or visit the Facebook page “Revision Wellness.”
McGee lives in Liverpool with her son Dylan. She has massage therapy offices in Oneida, Whitesboro, and Liverpool by appointment only. For more information, call (315) 939-9525, find her on Facebook as “Time for Reflection Massage Therapy,” or visit timeforreflectionmassagetherapy.com.