Augie and Lynn's Open Road
Corona del Mar, CA
Public Television: Season 6
AUGIE AND LYNN NIETO
action, anger, antidepressants, body, brain, denial, depression, disability, exercise, fitness, heart, illness, insecurity, life, living, lou gehrig's disease, medication, muscular dystrophy, parents, vulnerable
- Saw his father sacrifice his entrepreneurial dreams in order to provide for his large family.
- At age twenty, he went all in on his dream; opened Life Fitness, now a $550 million company.
- Had found exercise as his “religion”; wanted to share its power with the world.
- When he was diagnosed with ALS, he didn’t understand how God could be so cruel—he’d built his life on his muscles, was going to watch them fade away.
- A fiercely independent man, he couldn’t imagine having to rely on others to help him with his disease.
- Tried to commit suicide so he wouldn’t be a “burden”; reached a turning point after waking from a coma, accepted his condition.
- No longer “reacted,” started to act—founded Augie’s Quest, which has raised $19 million for ALS research.
- Says he used to “keep score” of how much money he made; now his score is set by how much he gives back.