August 01 2012

Jonny Simpson

“The only way is up.”

I grew up in Northern England, where we had extremely cold winters and rainy summers, and because of this weather, I was always prone to chest infections. Unfortunately, I had a hard head when I was younger. My family life at home was not ideal and I allowed that to negatively impact the way I dealt with cystic fibrosis. I was always the smaller, weaker child and never felt like I had any control over my future. I rebelled against my disease to feel control, hurting myself in the process.

When I was eighteen years old, I finally realized that if I did not change my life dramatically, I would not live much longer. I forced myself to deal with my issues, to eat healthy, exercise, and becoming medically compliant. I found my passion in the sport of bodybuilding – an activity that not only helps my lungs and weight gain but has also built my confidence and belief in myself.

Cystic fibrosis has given me a unique kind of passion for life, a special appreciation for every achievement I reach, whether big or small. I have been able to channel my insecurities into a sport that benefits both my mental and physical health. I am determined to be the best person I can be and to never rebel against CF again, but to appreciate it as the force behind my current and future successes.

My favorite…
Color is black.
Food is Goldbears.
Movie is Braveheart.
Song is Human Nature by Michael Jackson.
Sport is bodybuilding.
If I could travel anywhere, I would… safari in Africa.
My friends and family would describe me as… driven.
My role model is… Jerry Cahill. He has changed my life in so many ways.
If I could give someone recently diagnosed with cystic fibrosis any advice, it would be… Never give up on your goals or dreams – there are so many CF patients out there living full lives. All you need is confidence in that belief that you can do anything you put your mind to.