2015 Fall Weight Loss Challenge Runner-Up
*Results not typical
HOW TO DO IT IN YOUR LIFETIME
MENTAL FOCUS You need to be ready in your head. I joined Life Time at a point where mentally I was strong but physically I was weak. The challenge in front of me, to lose 150 pounds; It seemed like an impossibility most days until I found Life Time.
INVESTMENT My trainer, Sally Sawyer, told me to invest in equipment. That meant sports bras, new shoes, a heart rate monitor, metabolic testing and coaching and TEAM Weight Loss classes. These were key to my journey, showing me a path to begin exercising even in my poor condition. It made me feel safe.
EXERCISE The best advice my trainer gave me was MOVE. I spent 5 to 7 hours a day at Life Time. This was my job during the 90-Day Challenge. I did a minimum of 4 hours cardio, of which about 80% was Zone 1–2 heart rate training. I mixed up treadmill with elliptical, bike and rowing machines. I did strength training 3x a week through Barbell, C9, Strictly Strength and Core classes. I also spent 1 hour a day in yoga, sauna, hot tub, swim, steam or massage. I was able to work out so long each day because I did daily recovery.
MODIFICATION I came to Life Time after I rehabbed 5 herniated disks and a bad knee injury. I was told I have 25% of the cartridge left in my knees. The key for me was to modify everything.
NUTRITION At a “Try-It Tuesday” I discovered that Life Time’s philosophy paralleled my doctor’s advice to embrace “low carb, no sugar and low starch.” Nutrition coaching helped me tweak my diet and build an individualized plan. I didn’t starve myself, I fueled myself. I ate 1200–1500 calories, an average of 20 carbs, and 100g of protein a day. I ate whole foods: chicken, fish, beef and pork, and 2 cups of leafy greens a day. I didn’t eat starches and limited dairy to ½ & ½ and low carb yogurts. For a treat I ate at the LifeCafe, with favorites of Pesto Chicken, the Cobb Salad and Almond Delight Smoothies.
I started out doing the Life Time 2 week detox. I dropped a lot of weight the first few weeks as I cleansed my system. Then I worked my low carb plan.
Supplements: Life Time Performance AM/PM vitamins, 2000mg Fish Oil, B Complex, Life Time Amino Complex, a Fiber/Probiotic, Potassium, Life Time Joint Maintenance and Turmeric. I also got weekly B12 shots at the LifeSpa.
I also did the Life Time Food Sensitivity Testing and cut out foods causing inflammation.
DISTRACTIONS Managing distractions is your constant test to your commitment to change. I navigated jury duty, job interviews, being on a non-profit board, family events, travel, volunteer requests, friends and emergencies.
DETERMINATION By the end of the challenge I was wearing a shirt Mary in my TEAM Weight Loss class gave me that said “DON’T QUIT.” It was not always easy and when it got tough I wrote, took yoga classes and talked with my trainer, my coach (my husband), as well as Life Time friends.
SUPPORT My support system was my husband, my 3 girls, my workout buddy Krista, my trainer Sally, Nancy, Chelly, Mary and at the end, my new friend and fellow national contender, John. When I met John we became fast friends. It’s funny how certain people come into your life at just the right time. John really helped me when I was going through what felt like a dark tunnel at the end of the challenge. Together we worked out, motivated each other and raced to the finish line with smiles on our faces knowing, no matter what, we are champions.
INTEGRITY There is no “cheating” because you are only cheating yourself. At the end of this challenge I felt pressure to do short term weight loss tactics. I knew I was a winner when I followed my heart and just kept working hard despite this pressure. Where others may have decided to take this path, I finished my journey the way I began, healthy and steady. Because of this, I know despite how this competition ends, I am a champion; a champion of health to my kids, my husband and to myself. This wasn’t a competition to beat someone else; this was a competition to forge a new healthy way of living.
RESULTS I have lost 134.6 pounds since joining Life Time in February 2015. In the challenge I lost 104.5 pounds. My body fat decreased from 51% to 25%, my health score improved from 84% to 100%, my blood sugar decreased from pre-diabetic to 78, and my VO2 score increased from very poor (19.6) to good (29.2).
I’m going to live longer because of the weight I’ve lost and the lifestyle changes I’ve made. I have 3 amazing girls and the most important thing about what I have done is I have shown them that you can do anything when you put your heart and your mind to it. You CAN overcome obstacles in your life. In front of me I have plans to hit my Life Time goal weight to lose 20 more pounds by the end of the year and then find a new career path. Then it’s on to maintenance; I am not done.
Thank you Life Time for giving me an environment of tools, competent professionals and support, and thank you 2 my “peeps.” I am forever grateful.