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NEWS STORIES

From Cheetos and TV to a SpeedoSubmitted: 12/05/2012
Story By Matt Doyle

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EAGLE RIVER - Multiple Sclerosis attacks a person at their core.

It affects your nerves and makes life's most simple things difficult.

But there's hope. All it takes is a little determination to get past the cheetos....and into a speedo.

"I looked at him and didn't say anything, but thought, this guy's crazy," That was what Bruce Platta said when he first met YMCA Personal Trainer Kevin Schweer.

Platta figured he'd work on his upper body and core when he started at the YMCA in Eagle River back in January.

"There's no way that I could physically do this."

But now Platta can. All it took was a New Year's Resolution. He didn't want Multiple Sclerosis to tie him down any longer.

"I basically watched TV a lot, and read, and basically thought that at the age of 51 at that time, that that was going to be my life for years to come," Platta said.

Cheetos and TV.

His life hasn't been the same since he met Schweer.

"Just complete confidence," Platta said.

"I do things, I didn't think possible before. As a disabled person you have a mindset that you're disabled, and therefore you can't do certain things."

Things like walking normally...going to the grocery store....going to a friends house.

"He didn't have much confidence in himself," Schweer said.

"You could see it by the way he walked, he couldn't talk when he walked. He dragged his foot instead of lifting it."

The pair work together every week - making progress one step at a time.

Now he's punching, kicking, and laughing.

"Bruce is an inspiration for anyone with a disability," Schweer said.

"When he started this program, he put it in his mind that he was going to change his life for the best again."

So instead of TV and books….

"My goal would be to run at least a 5k in my lifetime again," Platta said.

"That's truly what I'd like to do."

Schweer knows it'll happen.

"I get choked up every time I think about when Bruce came in here and how he lives now. His life is just totally different."

Oozing the confidence only Bruce can when talking about his 2013 New Year's resolution.

"Get into a Speedo by June," Platta said laughing.

That a sight Schweer isn't sure he needs to see.

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