I developed a problem with weight and food only after I started counting calories and exercising. I became a personal trainer and thought I should practice what I preach so I began counting calories and exercising every day at a high intensity. Shortly after I began to become obsessed with food. I had sugar cravings when I never did in the past. I started obsessing about how many calories I ate and burnt. I worked out twice a day and would go for runs after binge eating episodes. The obsession only began when I gave it attention. Pretty soon I was gaining weight and no matter what I tried I couldn’t lose it.

HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE?  I felt ashamed that I was a personal trainer that was struggling. I felt horrible checking client’s food logs and exercise routines when it wasn’t working for me. It felt like a fraud and like I didn’t look like a personal trainer even though I carried the weight well and most people had no idea I was even gaining it. When you work out as much as I did the weight looks different. I kept getting bigger but I was strong.

WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY?  One morning I woke up and said enough was enough. I clearly couldn’t work any harder so I guess I was just going to be this big now. I thought I should probably go buy some clothes that actually fit and I got rid of all my old clothes. But on my way to the mall, I was hit by 5 cars.

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?  I was lying on the couch unable to move and the first thought I had was, “now how much weight am I going to gain?!” Then I realized that I had bigger things to worry about. For example, being able to lift my own head might be a good place to start. So I surrendered completely. There was nothing left for me to do but rest. I couldn’t prep my food, I couldn’t exercise, I couldn’t even get off the couch. I just stopped fighting my body and myself and allowed myself to relax completely without worrying about what I couldn’t control.

HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS?  30 days after my car accident I lost 10 pounds. I got educated in food psychology, changed my relationship with food and my body, and lost the remainder of the weight in a few months.

WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART?  My biggest challenge was the toxic beliefs from the health and wellness industry that filled my mind with inaccurate information. I had to ignore the external information and turn into my internal messages. I had to listen to my body.

DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING?  There’s nothing for me to give up on. It’s a constant open communication line between my body and myself. I don’t always want to obey because maybe it’s inconvenient but I do anyway since it is best for me.

DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM?  I didn’t. I just listened to my body and did whatever it asked of me. When it needs rest, I rest. When it needs more active yoga, I do that. A more restorative yoga, I do that. When it needs food, I feed it. I just obey whatever it asks of me. The weight loss was completely effortless.

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT?  Around 90 days.

DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES?  I never used the scale. My body was my guide. I haven’t binged since that first week after my car accident. I never eat more food then my body wants and it’s effortless. I have no fear of weight gain and my body and I are best friends.

WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?  When I was heavier I thought about food all day long. I binge ate, overate, emotionally ate, you name it.

HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?  When I was heavier I worked out 2-4 hours per day. And it was at a very high intensity. Now I do yoga a few times per week. It’s nothing vigorous or crazy. It balances my body so that I can stay out of stress mode and allows my body to function optimally. I also sit at a desk since I transitioned from personal training to weight loss coaching. I meet with people over zoom and on the phone so my activity level is probably 10% of what it was when I was heavy.

MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS

  1. Give up control and surrender to your body. Weight loss is not our job. Our only job is to be present.
  2. Obey your body no matter what. Listen and be kind. Call off the war with the body and become best friends.
  3. Ignore all the external noise and turn up the internal communication. Instead of asking what do I need to do to lose weight ask what does my body need.