Timmins man with autism uses exercise to challenge himself and help others
TIMMINS -- For the past couple of years, Michael Thoerner of Timmins has been on a path to learn new ways of improving his health and general well-being.
He said he started off by doing Diamond Dallas Page (DDP) yoga.
"That then helped me get into doing spin classes and my first spin class I did it at Discover Fitness," Thoerner said.
He gives thanks to his coaches at Discover Fitness/Discover Performance for helping him lose about 140 pounds in two and a half years.
"Michael is a gem to train; always very receptive. He always works hard. I love seeing his stats at the end of a class. He’s always sharing his progress. He’s been very transparent when it comes to his weight loss journey," coach Lisa Tremblay said.
Thoerner is now on to new goals. He'll be participating in the Great Cycle Challenge and he's not letting a recent diagnosis of Autism Disorder and ADHD stand in his way.
"All of that has led to my anxiety, hypervigilance, things like that so it’s very hard for me to get out on my bike and just get out in general. So that’s why this is another good challenge for me to kind of push myself to get out," Thoerner said.
Throughout the month of August, he plans to rack up 100 kilometres on his bike and collect money for the Sick Kids Foundation.
"My mum died of cancer in 1998 so I thought a good way to actually honour her was something that would help the kids that are fighting cancer," he said.
Those who know him, said they're not surprised by Thoerner's new mission and know he'll accomplish it.
“What’s inspiring about Michael is he’s living proof of no matter happens, anything is possible," Tremblay said.
Thoerner is one of more than 10,000 riders in the national challenge who've already collectively raised more than a million dollars to fight kids' cancer.