The Best Medical Weight Loss Programs Can Help You Overcome Your Struggle With Weight for Good
For many, eating less to weigh less is a go-to weight loss foundation. We know caloric intake directly influences fat storage—but, every year, thousands struggle to shed pounds with these time-tested-and-true methods. For some, “calories in, and calories out,” doesn’t seem to work.
But why is this?
We’d like to introduce you to Carly: one such person who’s tried, for many years, to lose weight by not eating much. She hardly ate breakfast, had a small snack for lunch and would balance a reasonable-sized dinner with restrictive snacks throughout the day. Still, she was gaining weight, year after year.
Carly’s story is one of many which Med-Fit Weight Loss has given a good ending to. Unlike many franchise weight loss programs, a custom-tailored weight loss system empowers clients by acknowledging their body’s needs—and meeting them. As one of the best medical weight loss programs in Denver, Med-Fit Weight Loss helps clients overcome both the body and mind’s unwillingness to change.
The Campfire Body Myth:
To lose weight one must restrict calories to lose fat.
Client: Carly, Age 40+ Results: 70 lbs in 10 months. Metabolism Type: Campfire Body
Carly has the classic “Campfire Body,” which is a body type requiring constant caloric intake for fat-burning fuel. Similar to how a campfire needs wood to stay ignited throughout the day, her metabolism required a steady supply of healthy snacks to avoid shutting down.
Until the Med-Fit Weight Loss program, her body wasn’t getting this fuel. Her campfire often sizzled out, and it was difficult to re-ignite. Her body was trained to store fat—conditioned to hold onto calories as opposed to releasing them. Alongside Med-Fit Weight Loss Program professionals, however, she learned to adopt the practice of “eating more to lose more.”
Carly found herself at a crossroads when she hit her highest-ever weight: 289 lbs. Desperate to find a program finally capable of reducing her weight, she reflected on the past 33 years—a three-decade period of constant struggle.
Carly frequently heard cracking in her knees, and her child couldn’t wrap his arms around her when the two hugged. Unable to walk up stairs without being winded, often worrying that day-to-day life might even end before her son grew up.
After finding a Denver medical weight loss program promising relief from a life of heavy weight, however, she decided which would change her life. She said goodbye to 33 years of dieting, unflattering clothes, painful knees and an emotional dependence on food—taking the road less traveled. She’d soon regain control over her life, and her future.
In the first week of her journey through the Med-Fit Weight Loss Program, Carly lost 12 lbs. The week, itself, of course came with ups and downs. She needed to learn to plan out one meal per night, often facing major exhaustion throughout the day. By visualizing her end goal, however, she pushed onward through her newly adopted Denver medical weight loss journey.
Her goals primarily revolved around generating more energy to spawn good habits, a proactive fitness schedule and a smaller reliance on food. The program influenced her to create a list of personal goals, too, which—for her—consisted of standing without needing to roll to her knees, eliminating panic over physical activity and relieving anxiety overweight-restricted outdoor activities, like paddle boarding and zip lining.
The First Month: Readjusted Caloric Intake
By Week Three, Carly’s frequent, healthy caloric intake schedule inspired a recovering drive to lose weight, be healthy, become more active and exist as a positive role model for her son. She’d soon travel to Florida for Thanksgiving, taking a keen approach to identify her anxiety triggers.
By acknowledging these anxieties, she became able to further understand the factors which led to comfort eating: a vital part of the Med-Fit Weight Loss Program. Because her custom-tailored program focused on consistent, healthy snacking, her fewer meals of less-than-healthy foods needed to be abandoned.
Carly threw out all junk food in her home, later adopting an outlook which wasn’t defined by the discouraging opinions of others. Her family and close friends, now, became her inspiring support group. She reduced her meal portion sizes, controlled her alcohol consumption, learned to make better decisions at restaurants and plan ahead for healthy meals when visiting loved ones.
The Holiday Season: Adopting New Mental Habits
Throughout the end of November and all of December, Carly adopted practices of gratitude—further reducing her lack of dietary control. To manage holiday dieting, she empowered every day with journaling, meditation, frequent walks and calling good friends. The best medical weight loss programs require a lot of work, however—both for body and mind wellness.
Stress management is a constant work in progress, but Carly’s understanding of her stress made it easier to manage. At the start of the new year, her inner self started manifesting her outer self. Reduced anxieties allowed her to accept external help, which—for her—was imperative for creating new, unfamiliar habits. She no longer perceived food as an emotional crutch, replacing it with an understanding of caloric fuel. For the first time, she hadn’t faced the New Year with an extra 10 to 15 lbs.
Springtime: Harnessing the Power of Consistency
After five months, Carly had lost 50 lbs. She was wearing pants four sizes lower, now adopting a positive outlook on the summer months. When she started the program, 20 weeks ago, she was unaware of the power of accountability coaching. By springtime, she looked back on her first 10 weeks with a deeper understanding of her overwhelmed state.
She never thought about food as a coping tool, these days, which allowed her to further refine her program with the power of consistency. She analyzed her daily schedule, re-crafting it to prioritize her needs—and maximize her energy. Her Denver medical weight loss coach, Emily, said something which remained with Carly for the remainder of her journey:
“You can’t pour from an empty cup.”
At the sixth month mark, Carly achieved the halfway point of her weight loss goal—becoming more energetic every day. Another habit she learned to abandoned was one of over-reliance. In the past, she was too concerned with her weight depicted on a scale. These days, however, she became knowledgeable about a scale’s inherent inconsistencies.
The Med-Fit Weight Loss Program helps clients understand the intricacies of weight loss. Water weight, stored from excess sodium intake, or even dehydration, can make a scale’s numbers higher. Between sunrise and sundown, a digital readout can even differ by a few pounds.
The habit of glancing at a scale, repeatedly, was tough to break. To overcome this hurdle, Carly created additional fitness goals for herself—like climbing a 224-stair stretch at Seven Falls. She hiked Hanging Lake, created a wellness Pinterest board and began restructuring her annual finance budgets.
Summertime: Appreciation for the Journey
Parts of July were a blur for Carly, but her general outlook on life had greatly improved. She’d lost an astounding 70 lbs. by engaging one of the best medical weight loss programs around, learning to work harder, eat smarter and never give up.
She still struggled with hunger pains, on most days, but her Med-Fit Weight Loss Program coach was always there to support her. Summertime, for Carly, was defined by a deepening brain-and-body connection. There was still plenty of work to do—but she now had the tools, and the discipline, to complete it.
Weight loss is difficult—but, with powerful strategies and an undying will for wellness, it’s always achievable.
Hi – I’m Carly, and I’ll be writing a weekly blog here at MedFit!
I really found myself at a crossroads recently when I hit my highest weight ever… 298 lbs! I was desperate to find a program that would finally help me shed this weight and gain my life back. Luckily I found MedFit, and I couldn’t be happier about sharing my weight loss journey with you!
My weight has been a running theme throughout my life… starting in 4th grade when my Mom put me on my very first diet. Which means I’ve been struggling with my weight for 33 years. 33 years!!! I know I’ve been heavy all my life, but putting a number to it really hit me in the face.
I wanted to get clear on how 33 years of struggling with my weight have impacted my life – so I decided to make a list (I’m a list maker). It turned out to be a very long list, and (spoiler alert) not a positive one. Here’s a sample of what’s on my list:
– My knees make cracking noises and hurt all the time
– My kid can’t wrap his arms around me when he hugs me
– I can’t walk upstairs without getting winded (embarrassing!)
– I shy away from cameras… refuse to have my picture taken
– I can’t shop in any store I want/wear the style of clothing I like
– I have anxiety every time I get on an airplane – is this the time the seat belt won’t buckle?
– I worry about dying and not seeing my son grow up
That last bullet point is the one that nearly brings me to tears every time I think about it, but I’m not giving up! What better way to start over than to start another list (seriously – it’s a problem). I’m calling this my “goodbye” list.
– painful knees
– Ugly clothes
– Fear of stairs, seatbelts, cameras
– Emotional dependence on food
– 33 years of dieting
– Old habits…
I’m feeling in control of my life and my narrative. When I think about my future now – I don’t see more failed diets. I see me dancing with my son, wearing cute clothes, sitting comfortably on a plane, living my best life. It’s like I’ve opened Pandora’s box, and despite the struggles that lie ahead – I’m still left with hope.
I know I can do this… I have the tools, support, and determination. This is my comeback tour – and I really hope you’ll join me! Let’s make a comeback together!
I lost 12 pounds my first week on the Med-Fit program… which is amazing! What is even more amazing is realizing that I have it in me to actually do this!
My first week on the program came with some ups and downs… I loved that I only had to plan out one meal a night, but I also struggled early in the week with some major exhaustion. But after the first week was over, and the exhaustion subsided – I was surprised to find that I was feeling very positive about this journey… and I even caught myself visualizing myself at my end goal. I’ve never really done that before, so I’m wading into new territory here!
My end goal is to be healthy and energetic. I talked about this a little bit in an Instagram post on Monday (which you can check out at @medfitdrtran). My goal isn’t a number on a scale or size of clothing, but I’ll know it when I get there. Here are some of the ways I’ll know I’ve met my goal (yes… a list is imminent) ?:
I will be able to get up off of the floor without first rolling to my knees
I will be able to paint my toenails and still be able to breathe
I won’t panic and make up excuses when a friend suggests we go on a hike
I won’t fear being too heavy to participate in activities where there is a weight limit (like paddle boarding, zip lining, dog sledding, etc…)
A set of stairs, no matter how big, doesn’t intimidate me
I’m a long way from these things, but somehow after just one week on the Med-Fit program, I can actually see these things happening! That’s pretty powerful. It reminds me of something my favorite self-help guru, Bill Cortright, always says:
What you see you create
What you feel you attract
What you imagine you become
So I guess the takeaway here is this: knowing what your end goal is and having a clear idea of what it looks like – is paramount to this journey.
Wishing you all a very happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
Every weight loss journey has a motivating factor behind it. You need to have a clear reason why you’re doing this – because when things get hard (and they will) you will need to remember why you started. This is your WHY.
In my IG post on Monday, I wrote about my BIG WHY – the all-encompassing reason why I started on this path to finally lose the weight and get healthy. My BIG WHY is my son Beck… he is my ultimate motivation. I want to be a healthy, active, happy presence in his life. I want to be a positive role model for him and I want him to have a healthy relationship with food. I try to meditate on this every night – so that I don’t lose sight of why I’m doing this.
Beck is my BIG WHY… but there are other things that motivate me too:
Being Healthy & Active
Right now if someone asked me to go on an easy hike I would get so apprehensive at the thought of it – that I would immediately make excuses as to why I couldn’t go. I know it would be a struggle for me… and I could almost feel myself gasping for air, falling behind, holding people back, feeling embarrassed. So being healthy and active would not only feel good physically, but it would also bring me peace of mind – knowing that my body can handle any activity I want to do.
I want to be able to shop for clothes in any store… and I want to wear stylish clothes that I feel and look good in. Right now there are less than a handful of stores I can physically go to and shop at – so I tend to shop for clothes online. I actually prefer to shop online, but that takes planning if I need something for a specific event (like a dress for a party or a bathing suit for a vacation). I also don’t get to try the clothes on ahead of time – so it’s a crap shoot if they’ll fit/look good. I always feel like I’m settling when it comes to clothes… I don’t want to settle anymore.
Fear of Embarrassment
Embarrassing things happen – they’re a part of life! But when you’re obese it just feels like life is a minefield of embarrassing moments waiting to happen. I went to Florida for Thanksgiving – which means there were plenty of embarrassing opportunities lying in wait… starting with the airplane seatbelt (which thankfully fit) – and continued on to the theme parks where I worried about fitting in the seats on every ride. It’s these simple, everyday sort of things – that anyone should be able to do without fear – that cause me so much anxiety. Losing weight wouldn’t stop embarrassing things from happening to me (my friends will testify to that), but it might cut the embarrassing opportunities in half… and I’ll take what I can get!
These are just a few examples of what motivates me to lose weight. When I’m thinking about eating something that won’t get me to my goal – I think about these things and it helps keep me on track. It’s a vital tool in my weight loss arsenal… and could be a great tool for your weight loss journey as well!
When you take on any difficult task it’s nice to have a strong support system behind you. For someone trying to lose weight – it’s imperative. You need the people closest to you to be on board because they will likely have to make some sacrifices… like throwing out all the junk food in the house. They also need to be prepared to see you go through some changes… physically and emotionally… and it can be hard to see someone you love change (even if it’s good change). Having family and friends who want the best for you no matter what – is a true blessing.
But sadly there are people who don’t necessarily want to see you succeed. These can be family members, friends, co-workers… no one’s exempt. Whether they realize it or not – they see your efforts at improving yourself as a direct challenge to their self-esteem.
Have you ever seen a bunch of crabs in a bucket? Some will try to climb out… and it seems that right as they’re about to succeed – another crab will pull them back down to the bottom. If they can’t escape then no one can! This is called Crab Mentality – and it’s a very human behavior as well. The people who exhibit this behavior will undermine your weight loss efforts in order to feel good about themselves. As if your success diminishes their worth.
I’ve definitely had a few crabs in my life… I call them diet saboteurs. One particularly bold saboteur was actually a really good friend of mine from when I lived in San Francisco. We were having lunch and I was trying to lose my pregnancy weight. She ordered all the things I wasn’t having… drinks, fries, dessert… and she would constantly offer me bites or wave the food in front of me & say “don’t you wish you could have some of this?” She thought it was the funniest thing, but it wasn’t funny to me. It was a hard truth to realize my good friend didn’t want me to succeed.
Thankfully this go-around I have an amazing support group. My family and close friends are my biggest cheerleaders. They want me to be happy and healthy – and they constantly encourage me to keep going. They are also rock stars at noticing little changes in me and making sure that I notice them in myself. It’s pretty cool.
On your weight loss journey – I think it’s important to keep a sharp eye out for anyone who might try to undermine your efforts (and don’t be surprised if it’s someone very close to you who should want you to succeed). But also balance that out by recognizing & appreciating the amazing support team you have rooting you on to bigger and better things!
I want to talk a little more about personal responsibility. When we make excuses for things around food and exercise – we’re taking the ownership off of ourselves and putting it somewhere else. I honestly think excuses are just a way to self-sabotage… but if we’re really being honest with ourselves we would see that there is always something we can control about every situation.
For example – I went to Florida to visit extended family for Thanksgiving. While my family lives in Florida – they are actually from Virginia… and they are very proud of their southern food. And while their southern food is delicious – it is not even close to being healthy. I joked that there wasn’t a vegetable insight that wasn’t creamed. Faced with this – I could have said: “well – there’s nothing healthy here – so I guess I’m not dieting today!”… but I didn’t. I talked to my coach, Emily, about my anxiety around the meal, and she asked me “what can you control?” I thought about it and I realized I could control my portion sizes, I could control my alcohol consumption, and I could control how I ate the rest of the day (Thanksgiving is technically only one meal after all). I wasn’t totally powerless here… I could absolutely take personal responsibility for what was in my control.
What can you control? This is now my new mantra when doing anything outside my routine.
Going to dinner with friends? What can you control?
I can try to choose the restaurant if at all possible
I can look at the menu ahead of time and make my decision about what I’ll order before stepping foot in the restaurant.
I can also decide that I’m not going to drink alcohol or eat dessert.
Going to a holiday party at someone’s house? What can you control?
I can inquire with the host/hostess what food items will be served and plan around that
Or I can eat a healthful meal before going to the party so that I’m full before I get there.
And I can always remind myself that I’m there for the company – not for the food.
Making decisions ahead of time takes the pressure off and will hopefully allow you to enjoy your time without stressing or obsessing over food. And if you find yourself in a situation you weren’t planning on – you can still ask yourself “what can you control?” and make decisions from there.
The key to all of this is that you don’t beat yourself up, and you get back on track right away. I didn’t eat well at Thanksgiving dinner, but I accepted that I did what I could and got right back on track with breakfast the next morning. Every decision we make can either lead us closer to our goal or further away. Taking personal responsibility in your relationship to food will lead you closer to your goal… even if it doesn’t look perfect.
Gratitude is the theme of the week… and it seems an appropriate topic with Christmas just around the corner! Recognizing and acknowledging the gifts in your life (big and small) can lead you to a happier, more positive life.
Sometimes I have a hard time taking the time to stop and smell the roses. I’m busy!!! But when I don’t take the time to appreciate all the good things I have – then it’s an easy switch for me to flip to the dark side. For me, that often takes the form of self-deprecating comments, self-sabotage, and never being satisfied with who I am or what I have. When this happens – I tend to do a lot of eating and shopping… but the food and the things only drag me deeper.
I used to practice conscious gratitude pretty regularly but fell out of the habit after my Mom passed away. When I practiced gratitude I felt content with what I had and found joy in so many things. I put good energy out into the Universe and I felt I received it back in spades. This is the magic of gratitude.
It’s all a process though! Change doesn’t happen overnight, but I’m committed to practicing gratitude every day. I also think this is a great opportunity to teach my son about gratitude, and I’ve asked him if he’d like to help me fill the jar with all the things he’s grateful for. He’s all in… and so am I!
Because Christmas is next week – I want to gift you with this gratitude truth bomb by one of my favorite motivational speakers, Zig Ziglar:
The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.
I really want to talk about stress this week because I have been off-the-charts stressed in the days leading up to Christmas. With all the gift shopping, parties, food prep, etc., it’s been a little much for me this year.
I remember learning about the effects of stress on your body – in my college psychology class. Before this class I thought stress was pretty benign. But it’s not benign… it’s deadly. Chronic stress can do a major number on your body – causing diseases or exacerbating health problems you might already have. I’m talking about things like sleep issues, depression, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. This is some serious stuff!
I tend to handle stress by eating (preferably chocolate)… but sadly it has proven to not be a very effective stress management tool. Being healthy is part of my weight loss commitment – and I can’t be healthy if I don’t have positive ways to deal with stress. The past two weeks have really put my stress management to the test, but here are some of the ways that I dealt with the stress of the holidays:
Go for a walk
Meditate (I do a quick 7 minutes to get centered)
Write in my journal
Call or text a friend
Listen to music
I don’t have this stress management thing on lock. I have to be very aware of things that trigger me, and then double down on the awareness and take positive action. My stress management is a work in progress, but with enough practice I know I’ll get there.
Every time I go on a diet I think “this is it – this will be the last diet I ever do.” This time is no different in that respect, but my approach this time is a big departure. I’m working on not just cleaning up my diet, but also working on the underlying issues that make food more than just food. I’m going in deep!
I’ve honestly never spent this much time and effort working on my inner self.., but that’s also why I think this time is so different from the rest. I’m not just making lasting eating habits, but also making lasting emotional habits. These changes have really given me such a powerful mental shift – that I don’t think I’ve ever really felt this ready to tackle my weight loss. I’ve been doing Med-Fit for two months now, and I’m only getting more excited about it as I go along.
Another big shift is that I’m allowing people to help me – with my weight loss, with my hectic schedule, with my son. I like to be self-reliant, and always thought to ask for help showed weakness (spoiler: it’s actually the complete opposite). Asking for help (and receiving it!) has allowed me to make this process truly about ME. This is my time to take care of myself, and I have an amazing support group backing me up!
I have a lot of hard work ahead of me… but at the end of this road, I see a bright future where food is fuel and not an emotional crutch. Where I can feel all the feelings and not hide from them behind a layer of fat. Where strength and vulnerability are valued equally. It’s a pretty great future!
Holidays are always a hard time to follow a diet… there are lots of parties and events and they’re all centered around food and drinks. But now that the holidays are over and regular life has resumed – I took some time to assess how things went (with the help of my coach, Emily, of course).
What I found the most interesting was how the food we prepared for Christmas really stirred up a lot of emotions in me. My Mom passed away a few years ago from cancer… but she really created a strong tradition around the food we eat at Christmas. Every Christmas morning we would wake up, open our presents, and then eat Cinnabons and meatball and sausage sandwiches. I know – it sounds really weird, but my Mom would make meatballs and sausage in her homemade spaghetti sauce for our Christmas lunch/dinner of stuffed shells… but we could never wait that long to dig in!
This year – as I prepared my Mom’s sauce – I was deep in my feelings. I really, really missed her – and how special she always made Christmas. The food seemed like it had extra meaning… it was tradition, and also a really wonderful memory of my Mom. But I was worried that this one meal would derail my diet completely because it had all this extra emotion attached to it. Cut to Christmas day…
Before heading to my brother’s house to celebrate – I told myself that it was my family that made Christmas special – not the food. I still ate a sausage roll for breakfast, but I had one instead of five. Dinner and drinks were enjoyed but kept to a minimum. I enjoyed the food, but my focus was on my family and having a great day. I didn’t eat on plan, but I felt successful nonetheless!
I had parties and events to attend from Christmas to New Years – and before every outing, I said to myself “it’s about the people, not the food”. And that helped me not throw my diet to the wind and eat all the food and drink all the drinks! Yes – I ate off plan, but I made pretty good decisions for the most part.
Normally I would easily gain 10-15 pounds over the holidays. This year – I maintained my weight… and that’s a big win! And after all the celebrating was over – I got right back to my diet!
I’m really proud of how I dealt with all my feelings around food this holiday season. Ever since I started Med-Fit it’s sort of been trial by fire, but I’m learning that I have control over my emotions and over food. This has really been an enlightening journey so far… and I’m excited to see how I grow – while I shrink.
I’ve joked with my friends that I need to become a hermit if I’m going to reach my weight loss goals… but there is actually a nugget of truth in that for me. I don’t need to hole up in a shack out in the woods, but I do need to find balance when it comes to socializing and going out with friends. This is hard for me for a few reasons… 1) Saying no is hard for me to do, and if I get pushback I tend to cave. 2) I suffer from major FOMO… I don’t want to miss out on any of the fun! 3) Socializing usually happens around eating and drinking – and I love to do both of those things. So what’s a fun-loving girl to do?
I have one particular friend group that goes out often… brunches, pub crawls, girls nights out… all the fun things! But I found myself getting really anxious anytime I saw an email or text from that group. After some reflection – I realized that while this group of ladies is fun – all these outings don’t support my weight loss goals. So I wrote an email that basically said that – and said I would be stepping away from the group for a bit to focus on my weight loss. I also asked them to remove me from future emails so I don’t have to worry about any FOMO. I almost didn’t send the email though… it’s scary to put yourself out there like that. But I did send the email – and I was pleasantly surprised when they respected my request.
It was such a great feeling! To state what I needed without over-explaining out of guilt… I never do that! When my coach, Emily, asked me why – I said it was because it felt selfish. Which is interesting – because I wouldn’t think it was selfish if someone else did it. Why do I give more grace to others than I do myself? And why do I confuse self-care with selfishness? I actually don’t have the answers for either of those questions… but what I do know is that these things can be major roadblocks in reaching your goals. I think this explains a lot about all of my other failed attempts at weight loss (and probably other life goals too).
So where do I go from here? Well… I’m going to continue to practice speaking up for myself and my needs – it’s worked out pretty well for me so far. I’m also going to focus on this amazing journey I’m on instead of all the things I’m missing. No more FOMO! And I want to afford myself the kindness I do for my friends. Nothing too major ?
I had a pretty good week last week… but it was wholly unremarkable. Yep – I had a remarkably unremarkable week – and it was awesome!
Since I’ve been on this weight loss journey (11 weeks now), I’ve had to work through a lot of emotions, and I’ve dealt with a lot of stuff that I kept way deep down inside. If you’ve read any of my past blog posts you know what I’m talking about! But this week I went into my coaching session with Emily and didn’t have much to report. My week was fine. No real challenges to report, no hurdles to overcome. I went about my week with relative ease… and hardly gave any thought to my diet (even though I ate on plan). It might seem boring, but that’s where the magic is! This diet has stopped being a “diet” and has now become my new normal. I’ve heard about this mythical place – where behavior becomes a habit – but I don’t think I’ve ever been there before (or at least recognized when I was there). It’s a pretty cool place to be!
What I find particularly wonderful about this new normal – is that I can clearly see how my relationship to food is changing… not only in how I think about food, but how I use it (or not use it) to smother my feelings. I’m not fully there yet, but being able to acknowledge the shift is pretty great.
None of this is tangible – it’s not a number on a scale, it’s not a smaller pant size… it’s nothing, yet it’s everything. It’s this in-between space where I’m no longer who I was but can start to see who I will be.
All of this from a week that was pretty unremarkable.
Last week I talked to Dr. Tran a bit about what it took to be skinny – and she asked me to journal about what I originally thought it took to get skinny vs what I think it takes now. I thought it was an interesting exercise & wanted to share some of my thoughts on it with you!
Being Skinny My younger dieting self was always aiming to be “skinny”. I didn’t care how I got there and I didn’t care about anything but the number on the scale and the number on the tag in my pants. My entire focus was to look good – and that meant skinny. Now that I’m 42, and I’ve lost weight and gained it back more times than I can count, my main concern is being healthy and fit. For me, that’s less about trying to fit into a bikini and more about feeling good and strong, showing up consistently for my son, and having a healthy relationship with food. Yes – I still want to look good, but I see that as an added bonus rather than my main reason.
Eat Less, Move More Ok – so I don’t disagree with this exactly, but I feel like it’s missing something. What I’ve learned is that there is so much more to weight loss than eat less, move more. Through my work with my coach, Emily, I found that a lot of my eating is emotional (stress, boredom, anger, happiness, etc…). Eating has been a way for me to cope with my feelings instead of feeling them. This is a much more complicated thing to tackle and I think it’s the backbone of weight loss. If you don’t work on your relationship to food then you’re going to fall into your old eating habits as soon as there’s a bump in the road… and there will always be bumps in the road. So yes – eat less, move more – but also work on the real (hidden) reasons you struggle with your weight.
It’s Genetics So this is sort of a double sided thing for me. In the past I have blamed my genetics on being overweight. It might have something to do with it, but it’s not the end all be all – and I think ultimately it’s just another way I’ve excused my behavior. I’ve also discounted thin people – writing their bodies off as genetics. Yes – they might come from “good stock”, but it doesn’t mean they don’t work for the body they have. I caught myself thinking that about a friend, but when I really paid attention – I realized she was really careful about what she ate 80% of the time, and she worked out daily. Genetics plays a small role, but ultimately I believe I have the power to create the body I want.
So those are just of few of the ways my mindset on weight loss has changed. I definitely think I’m on a healthier path this go-around, and I feel like focusing on my relationship to food has been a game changer!
I’ve lost weight and gained it back more times than I can count. It wasn’t until I started the Med-Fit program that I realized I was missing a big piece of the weight loss puzzle… the mental and emotional connection to food. I knew, of course, that I had an unhealthy relationship with food, but I never considered working on those issues until now. My weekly sessions with Emily have shown me how important this aspect of weight loss is… and I’m even going to go out on a limb and say that I think it’s even more important than what you eat or how much you exercise.
For me – working on my relationship to food has been a game changer. I’ve only been doing the Med-Fit program for 13 weeks, but I can see my connection with food evolving. When I’m bored I no longer think about the chips in the cupboard, when I’m stressed my first instinct isn’t to hit up the vending machine, when I go out to eat with friends I can say no to drinks, when I go to a birthday party I can pass on the birthday cake without feeling regret. This is BIG!!! In the past, I always felt deprived on a diet – like I had to punish myself for getting so out of control… but I rarely feel that way anymore. This change is all because of the work I’ve put in on the emotional side of weight loss.
Let me tell you honestly – working on the emotional reasons behind my food issues isn’t pretty. I have to face some hard truths… like the fact that I use food to not feel my feelings – and I don’t like to feel because I see feelings as a weakness (in myself – not others). I still see myself as weak when I cry or get overly emotional (I’m a work in progress)… but I have seen firsthand how being vulnerable has been a powerful tool in my weight loss journey! And so I continue to dig deeper because I know that’s where healing is.
I’ve been sleeping so well lately! This is exciting for me because the past several years I’ve been a bit of an insomniac. People have told me it’s because I’m getting older (I am) or that it’s because the past few years have been stressful (they have). These can definitely be contributing factors, but if I’m going to be honest with myself (and I am) – they’re just excuses that have allowed me to ignore the primary cause for my lack of sleep… my weight.
This is really an interesting thing… this grabbing on to an excuse to justify or ignore your circumstances. I actually never realized I did this until a friend of mine told me – in all seriousness – that she couldn’t lose weight because everyone in her family was fat. I was shocked that she just gave up all her power to that one excuse! It made me look at myself and all the ways I liked to fool myself so I didn’t have to take responsibility.
You know what? When it comes to my weight I tend to find A LOT of excuses. The pain in my knees is because they hyperextend, my constant back pain is because of an old injury lifting a T.V., my thinning hair is because I never recovered from those years I was a vegetarian… it goes on and on. These are half-truths – – they play a role, but the 100+ pounds of extra weight contributes significantly to the fact that these are chronic issues. My excuses have become obstacles to my health… and that’s a pretty humbling realization.
This hasn’t been a fun exercise, but it has been necessary. The truth can be painful, and ugly, and embarrassing… but it needs to be faced if any lasting changes are going to be made. So I’m done giving my power away to lame excuses. I’m taking responsibility for my body and doing what I can to make it strong and healthy.
Losing a significant amount of weight has definitely stirred up a lot of feelings in me. In some ways, I’m even slightly uncomfortable at the idea of getting under 200 lbs – because it hasn’t been part of my reality in a very long time. I’m in my weight comfort zone right now (mid 200’s)… and it’s the scariest place to be in because it is so comfortable.
I was journaling & I realized that I actually do a lot of things to keep myself in my comfort zone (in regards to my weight and my life)… and I wanted to share a few of them with you.
Perfectionism When I want to do something I have to get all my ducks in a row… everything has to be set up just so – so that when I actually start whatever it is – it will be perfect. Problem with this is that nothing will ever be perfectly set up, and I’ve just bought myself time to get bored with whatever it is and to come up with excuses as to why it won’t work.
All In The opposite side of perfectionism is going ALL IN right away! I’ve done this many times with weight loss… I want to lose weight – so I buy a bunch of workout clothes, a cute water bottle, and a new pair of sneakers. I get rid of any food in my house that is remotely unhealthy… it’s lean protein and veggies for me all day every day! And I join a gym and wake up at 4:30 every morning and workout for an hour or more every day. After a month I’m burned out and all diet and exercise have gone out the window. I’ve learned that baby steps are much more effective than big steps. Tackling one thing at a time with a plan to do more allows me to stick with things for the long-haul.
Excuses I talked about this in my blog last week… excuses are just lies you tell yourself to keep you in your comfort zone. They have never done me any favors, and I try to recognize when I’m making excuses so that I can flip the script. Easier said than done, but I’m working on it!
Fear of Failure This is a big one for me! I’ve had some major failures in my life and they have been embarrassing. So embarrassing that I actually have a severe fear of failure and rejection – to the point that it’s often easier not to try. If I don’t try, I don’t fail. This, more than anything, keeps me in my comfort zone. With my weight, my job, my life…
I’m not a complete lost cause though! I have done some really scary, awesome things that are WAY outside my comfort zone. For example – I quit my job and traveled around Europe with a friend for 5 months… and I moved to San Francisco without having a job, a place to live or knowing a single soul. They were completely terrifying, but they were also the best things I’ve ever done. When I get too stuck in my comfort zone – I like to remind myself that I have it in me live boldly and that when I do life rewards me in wonderful ways.
Here’s to living boldly and pushing outside of our comfort zones!
Have you ever made a bucket list or created a vision board? It’s pretty fun to imagine all the amazing places you’ll visit, what your dream home would look like, what you would wear if you were skinny and rich. Heck – Pinterest has created a whole business around people dreaming about what people want, where they want to go, and what they want to be!
I really love to imagine how amazing my life will be when I finally hit my goal weight. Everything will be perfect, and I’ll all of a sudden have my act together. I’ll wear beautiful clothes, I’ll travel to exotic places, and I’ll do work that not only pays the bills but also brings me joy. Oh – you didn’t know losing weight can do all that? In my dreams, it can.
Dreaming can be good, but in the past, I think that I focused on the end game so much that I’d get frustrated that I’m not already there… and then I end up giving up half-way to my goal. This meeting point of dream vs reality is kind of a tough place to live when you’re really trying to accomplish something.
This go-around I’m doing things a little different. Instead of dreaming of this imaginary perfect life post-weight loss – I’m focusing on finding the joy in the journey and appreciating the small successes along the way. I’ve come a long way in the past 4 months, and I’m really proud of the work I put in to get here! Every step I take towards my goal is worthy of being recognized and celebrated!
I’ll always be a dreamer, but living in the moment actually feels more rewarding to me. And it gives me an opportunity to recognize how bad-ass I can be – and that’s definitely worthy of celebrating!
A year and a half ago I was inspired by Marie Kondo’s books “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and “Spark Joy” to finally get my closet clean and organized. While my closet did benefit from the organization part of her message (I now fold my clothes into tiny little squares) – I was a total failure at only keeping things that “spark joy”. It’s hard to find stylish clothes when you’re a bigger person, and they’re often more pricey… so getting rid of something because it didn’t “spark joy” seemed frivolous to me. I cared less about joy and more about having something to wear.
This past weekend I decided to take another crack at the Konmari method because my bedroom and closet were in dire need of decluttering. As I started folding my bathing suits into origami cranes I realized that they sparked a much stronger feeling than joy… they sparked loathing. And that’s when I decided that I wasn’t going to wear any of them ever again and threw them in the donate pile!
I’m going, to be honest – it was a little scary to get rid of something that still fits, and I almost pulled them out of the donate bag. But my time on the Med-Fit program has changed my thinking about weight loss… I know I can lose this weight and I’m developing the tools that will help me keep it off. That’s a pretty great mental shift!
I’m confident that I’m heading in a direction where I won’t have need for those swimsuits by summer, and that realization helped me see my closet with new eyes! I got rid of jeans, shorts, jackets and shirts – anything that didn’t spark joy. I finally got it! Those clothes I refused to give up before were like chains holding me to my identity as a fat person – and gave me little room to see myself as anything else. I’m more than my weight/size and I deserve to be surrounded by things that spark joy… and so do you!
Two weeks ago I moved from working part-time to working full-time. It wasn’t a smooth transition – and it’s been extremely stressful… and exhausting! After two weeks I’m no longer feeling the same level of stress, but I’m still feeling exhausted. The point of me sharing all this is that change is hard – and stress and exhaustion and all the other difficult feelings that come along with change can be triggered if you have issues with food.
In the past, I would have eaten candy bars and junk food to ease the negative feelings, but I found that this go around things were very different. In my coaching session with Emily – she asked me how all this change and stress affected my response to food. I actually had to take a moment and think about it, and the answer was “it didn’t”. I ate the way I’ve eaten for the past 4 months without one thought given to eating off plan. And that, my friends, is a miracle!!!
You can lose weight by cutting calories, eating all the right foods, and working out… but if you’re not putting any work into the emotional side of eating then you’re missing half the equation. I’ve done all the diets and I’ve lost tons of weight. But I’ve always gained it back – usually after a huge emotional setback. After working the Med-Fit program I now know it’s because I was missing that very important piece of the puzzle.
I’ve done some hard emotional work with Emily, and this is the payoff! I’ve built habits that can get me through the difficult emotions in life without using food as a pacifier… and the best part is that I didn’t even notice until Emily pointed it out! Hitting the 50-pound weight loss was pretty cool, but this is an even bigger win!
When Emily asked me what my goal was for the week – I told her “to just keep swimming”. I’ve got this, I just need to keep on keeping on!
I’ve been doing the Med-Fit plan for nearly 5 months, and I’m happy to report that I’ve lost weight every week since starting back in November! Some weeks I lose 5 lbs and some weeks I only lose a pound or two… but I’ve been fortunate enough to always have a loss on the scales. Staying motivated isn’t always easy – especially when the scale doesn’t reflect the work you put in… so I wanted to tell you about a few things that keep me motivated – because we’re all in this together!
CONNECTING WITH MY WHY I try to connect with all the reasons why I started this… being around for my son, being able to do activities without fear that my weight will hold me back, shopping in any store I want for clothes… they’re all still valid! So keep revisiting your WHYs because they’ll keep you fired up!
CONSISTENCY At the beginning of this journey – Emily asked me to write down a word that reinforces my goals… and my word was CONSISTENCY. I have this word written on a sticky note on my bathroom mirror and I look at it every day. It reminds me that slow and steady wins the race. I’m in this for the long haul, and the only way I’m going to see results every week is if I stay consistent.
GIVE 100% I’m going to share a secret with you… I’m a bit of a half-asser. It’s not because I don’t care, but because of my perfectionist tendencies! If I can’t do it perfectly then I don’t want to do it at all. But I decided that if I was going to do this I was going to give 100% – even if it was messy and imperfect. My blogs are fully transparent and real because I’m sure people out there can relate to what I’m going through. When I meet with Emily I go all-in… I lay everything out and I don’t hold back because I know that healing won’t come from secrets and half-truths. When I work out with Julia – I honestly complain the whole time (because she’s tough and I’m kind of a baby), but I give my all and get it done! Give 100% of yourself to the process – because this journey is too important to half-ass!
IMAGINE THE FUTURE I’m down more than 50 lbs and 4 pant sizes… and I’m starting to get really excited by the changes I’m seeing in my body! At this rate, I’ll be looking really good by summer… and I’ve been daydreaming about wearing tank tops and shorts (which I haven’t worn in years because I hated my thighs) … and hiking and paddle boarding with friends. I’m feeling so good about where I’m at in my journey that I’m allowing myself to imagine my future at a healthier weight and smaller size. I find that at this point in my weight loss – a little visualization goes a long way to keep me motivated!
So those are a few of the ways I keep myself on track and motivated! If you have anything to add – drop me a line on the Transformers FB page!
If you’ve been following my journey you know that I’m a BIG fan of the accountability coaching at Med-Fit. When I started the program 20 weeks ago I didn’t even know what accountability coaching was, and now I can’t stop singing its praises because it’s been that impactful on my weight loss… and my life.
I was talking with my coach, Emily, about how the first 10 weeks or so were pretty intense. I literally cried every time I met with her because I couldn’t talk about my feelings without feeling completely overwhelmed. The work she gave me was supremely uncomfortable – but I knew it was paying off when Emily asked me what role food played in a stressful situation, and I told her it didn’t play any role… I hadn’t even thought about food. Hello, breakthrough!!!
The past several weeks I’ve been in this really amazing place – where I’ve had a good relationship with food, and have felt completely at peace. Now – I’m not fooling myself into thinking it’s all rainbows and unicorns from here on out… I still have a lot of weight to lose, and there are some big, glaring issues in my life that need to be dealt with. But all the work that I’ve done up to this point has given me the confidence to know that I can handle anything that comes my way. And that is the magic of accountability coaching!
I’m a stress case! Well – at least I have been for the past month and a half. It’s been difficult to feel like I don’t have control of my life, and that I’m failing at everything. On top of those awesome feelings – I no longer have food to soothe my frayed nerves. So what’s a recovering stress eater to do?!
First off – I want to say that I have not even thought about food as a way to cope. I’m actually surprised that I haven’t reverted back to my old habits… after all – I’ve only been on the Med-Fit program for five months, but I’ve been a stress eater all my life. I thought there’d be at least a little slip, but no! Although it has felt a bit like trial-by-fire, it’s good to know I’ve actually made real, lasting changes with my relationship to food.
What I’m really struggling with right now, and what is likely compounding my stress, is finding the time and energy to prioritize my needs. I used to have a blissful hour each day between when I got off work and when I picked up my son from school that I would use exclusively for me. I would walk, read a book, listen to a podcast… whatever I felt like doing to take my mind off of the day’s worries and decompress. I didn’t realize how essential that hour was to my wellbeing and stress management until I didn’t have it anymore.
I feel overwhelmed right now, and I’m having a hard time trying to figure out how to create balance in a busy life that leaves little time for me. When you give so much of yourself to other people it can feel selfish to focus on your own needs. But Emily just reminded me this weekend that “you can’t pour from an empty cup”. So – while my cup is bone dry at the moment – I’m working on finding ways that I can make myself a priority on a daily basis – so that I can cope with the stressors of life in a healthy, positive way.
I’ve been on the Med-Fit program for about six months now, and I’m half-way to my weight loss goal. If I’m going to reach my goal I need to stay motivated – and that’s not always easy to do. But I wanted to share some of the things I do that help keep me on the straight and narrow…
Revisit my WHY My big why is always my son, Beck. I want to be an active and energetic presence in his life – and I want to live a long time to see him grow! I remind myself of this constantly, and it helps me keep going when I might not feel like it.
Imagine my life if I give up It might seem like a bit of a downer, but it helps me to imagine how my life would be if I gave up dieting and went back to the way things were. If I went back to my old ways what would that look like in a year or five years? How would I feel about myself? How would it affect my family? It scares me straight!
Set non-scale goals A scale is an important tool in any weight loss journey, but there’s more to weight loss than the number on the scale. I have a Pinterest board dedicated to activity goals… like climbing the 224 stairs at Seven Falls or hiking to Hanging Lake. These are just other ways to mark my journey and see how far I’ve come.
Develop strategies to deal with emotions This one is definitely a work in progress. It’s very much two steps forward, one step back kind of thing for me. Just when I think I’ve figured it out – I learn that I haven’t. Finding ways to cope with difficult emotions and the stressors of life has to be one of the most important things to do in any weight loss journey… you know – because life likes to hand out lemons!
Shift my focus to self-appreciation It’s so easy to fall into the negative self-talk trap. I’ve found myself saying things like “I’ve lost over 60 pounds but my stomach is still huge”. That sort of thing doesn’t do any good, and thanks to my favorite podcast Living Right with Bill Cortright I’ve learned to stop the negative self-talk in its tracks and shift the focus to something positive. So now if I say “I’ve lost over 60 pounds but my stomach is still huge” I switch the thought to “ok, but my legs are getting strong and lean and the rest of my body will catch up”. Positive self-talk is powerful and it’s a great motivator.
So those are just a few things I do to keep me going on this journey. It’s a marathon, not a sprint – so it’s important to find ways to keep yourself focused and on track!
I feel like this blog post is a bit of a mind-dump without a ton of direction, and maybe even a bit of an over-share. That doesn’t stop me from wanting to share it with you though because I think it’s important to see that we all struggle, and it can be difficult to make your weight loss goals a priority when life is dumping on you. This path isn’t a straight line – we’re going to encounter obstacles. That is a fact. We need to be able to adapt and stay positive if we’re going to reach our goals!
I’m right in the middle of one of those patches when it feels like life is having a hay day throwing curveballs at me to try to swing and hit. Honestly speaking, I’m struggling to cope. I have a few things going on…first I need to have my gallbladder removed, which in and of itself isn’t that big of a deal, but I had the hardest time trying to find a surgeon that accepted my health insurance. After two weeks of jumping through hoops – I finally have my surgery scheduled!
My other major stressor is that I’m hemorrhaging money. Between my health, my car (which has been in the shop twice this month), and summer care for my son ($2200 to date with one more week to cover) – I’m drowning. I have some other things that I’m dealing with too that are adding to the overall struggle, but money and health are the two biggies.
I think it’s important to recognize that in the past I would have easily gained 10 pounds or more in the month that I’ve been dealing with all this stuff. Food has always been my coping mechanism. But I have some great tools to get me through times like this without reverting back to my old ways. So that’s a definite silver lining. It’s not all rainbows and silver linings, though I wish I could report it was. I haven’t lost as much weight as I could have/should have/wanted to, and I also found some gaping holes in my arsenal of coping mechanisms. So there’s more work that needs to be done!
In order to get through this I’m focusing on the things I can control… like figuring out how much I’ll have to pay for my surgery out-of-pocket so I’m not completely surprised when I get the bills. I’m also trying to start my days off in a really positive way. I’ve been waking up early every morning the past week and either doing a short meditation or some journaling. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the results… I don’t feel so scattered and manic, and I’ve been able to focus and get more things accomplished. I think an early morning ritual has been a very good thing for me.
In times like these, though there are many things outside of our control, the best thing we can do is find what is in our control and take comfort knowing we always have one thing that is up to us – how we respond.
The past six weeks have been a bit of a blur – I’ve been solely focused on my gallbladder issues. But 3 weeks post surgery and I not only feel better but somehow my general outlook has also improved. I still have the same worries and frustrations as before, but I have this feeling that everything will work itself out and I’m far less worried about it all. It’s kind of an amazing place to be in!
This switch in perspective really made me realize that I wasn’t giving myself a lot of self-care lately, and my mood and energy shifted to reflect that. I’ve been putting a lot of thought into what I can do to take better care of myself, and I wanted to share those with you…
Start my day with some “me” time. My surgery forced me to slow down a bit, and I was really grateful for the time it gave me to re-energize. One thing I’ve been doing the past couple of weeks is waking up early and just spending time with myself. Sometimes I sit on my back porch with a cup of coffee and just think, or I might sit in my bedroom and journal or read, or I might take my dog for a really long walk… It doesn’t matter what it is that I do – what matters is that I’m giving myself time to just be – and it starts my day off right. I think this has a lot to do with my positive energy shift.
Spend time with people who bring me joy This seems like a “duh!” sort of thing, but I’ve just realized that I’ve been giving time and attention to people who bring me down rather than lift me up. It always seemed harmless until I recognized that it actually affected my psyche pretty deeply. So I’m going to create some boundaries with the negative people in my life, and give my time and attention to those that bring me joy.
Be creative I love to create… drawing, painting, sewing, crafting… it all brings me immense satisfaction and it’s pretty vital to my happiness. Lately, I’ve been so focused on all the things I have to do – that I haven’t given any time to things that I want to do. But I’m starting to make time for these things… I just made a cool little diorama for my niece for her birthday, and painted a giant pair of angel wings for my bedroom… and these small projects have really given me a new life! So I need to remember that I’m a creative being and prioritize it – because it feeds my soul.
Rest I’m one of those people who go to bed late and wakes up early – there was always something more important to do than sleep. But I’m tired, and maybe I just need to allow myself time to rest. Things can wait, people can wait. I can’t give what I don’t have… so I’m going to refuel and hopefully, the world will get a better me!
So this is where I’m at right now. I hope that you can find a nugget of something useful in it. Take care of yourselves, my friends!
I’m at an interesting stage in my weight loss journey. I was rolling along pretty well, handling the things life was throwing at me, and totally feelin’ myself! But then life kicked it into overdrive… and I’m handling things less well, and I’m definitely not feelin’ myself right now. I don’t like this place.
I have been DYING of hunger every-single-day. I normally don’t have an issue with my meal replacements, but I’d eat them and my stomach was still grumbling loudly and I felt like I hadn’t eaten at all. I managed to get through the day (uncomfortably hungry) but then had zero self-control at night. I would just eat everything in front of me!
I was telling my coach, Emily, about it and how I felt like a bottomless pit… nothing seemed to fill me up. And she asked me what’s been going on – and I said: “not much really”… and then we dove into my homework from the past week. I was telling her how difficult it was for me to work through this stuff, how confused and uncomfortable it was, and how it all made me miss my Mom more than usual. And then Emily connected the dots…
I love and hate when Emily does this. It’s like: duh – I should have seen that… but also being ignorant was easier.
It’s hard to process feelings, and work through things – and I think my brain & my body is so used to being fed when things get uncomfortable that they have resorted to creating an actual physiological hunger. It’s a conspiracy! But seriously… old habits are sneaky, and just when you think you’ve beat them – they rear their ugly head.
I’m still processing things, and I’m still ravenous… but I’m trying to work through it with the tools I’ve been given. It’s just really hard right now. Weight loss is hard!!! But I know all this hard emotional work will pay off big… and I’m still in it to win it!