By Hamed Hamad
Privilege can come in different forms such as wealth, work opportunity or even health. But for some people, all three can serve as setbacks in life.
Abigail Delgado was born in a very dysfunctional household, where her biological father was abusive and controlling. Despite having a reliable job, he denied his five children of basic needs, especially for Abigail who was born with numerous health issues including asthma, fragile bones, scoliosis and a heart condition. Although her health put limits to physical activity, Abigail says, “My childhood was chaotic to say the least, and due to my family’s religious beliefs, I wasn’t even allowed to play sports.”
Despite the barriers, Abigail dreamed about being a doctor, or in a field that would help people who were sick or less fortunate. Years later, in 1988, she graduated from a medical institute as a Health Unit Coordinator. Abigail did her externship in a hospital she first worked at in Tucson Arizona, where she currently resides. The hospital offered to pay for some of her education under the condition that she pursue a career as a medical doctor. But due to personal circumstances beyond her control, Abigail had to quit her job and never looked back.
Abigail knew that one day she’d find a job she would love, but it never crossed her mind to become a personal trainer until she had a tumor. Out of nowhere, Abigail found herself bedridden for months thinking about what she can do to improve her life and overall health. Already underweight, Abigail had a long road ahead of her to not only fight the tumor, but also enter the world of fitness.
Abigail fought back with the help of holistic medication in early 2016. However, in June, she fell ill and was rushed to the hospital only to find out that the tumor was cancerous. Abigail says, “I had to change my diet because I had been eating poorly and pushed myself to exercise. Now I’m cancer free — and it was my mother who had overcome so many difficult things her life that motivated me to fight and get back up.” And getting back up, she did. A few months later, Abigail introduced herself to NCCPT, studied hard and in September 2017 became a certified persona trainer.
While going through NCCPT, Abigail says, “Whenever I had a question, or any problems understanding something, I’ve been able to email, chat online, or call the NCCPT. They were, and still are really good about answering my questions and getting back to me in a timely manner.”
Now, Abigail is busy with her own clients as she helps them overcome conditions such as diabetes and obesity. Her very first client was her mother, who suffered from Type 2 diabetes and obesity for years. Three to five times a week, Abigail would pace walk with her mom for 30 minutes and then have her do light weight exercises and resistance bands, which she grew to love. Thus, Abigail’s mother served as the motivating force behind the start of her career. Now, Abigail is continuing to take clients of all stages and walks of life to help them reach lifelong health goals.
As she looks back at her life, Abigail is amazed at how much she endured and overcame, especially in the last few years. When asked how she did it, she says, “If you don’t have enough faith in yourself, to believe you can accomplish anything you set your mind to do, you’ll never succeed in anything. In other words, anything’s possible if you believe in yourself.”
To connect with Abigail Delgado and learn more about her inspirational story, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 520-971-1085.