Helloooo, and happy hump day!
Today’s post is a bit out of my comfort zone, but since I share 90% of my life within this blank space with all of my internet friends, I figure I better just dive right into sharing about my newest venture!
Anyone that even semi knows me knows that I am usually up for a challenge and trying new things spontaneously. I thrive on a healthy combination of a “quiet life” sprinkled with a little bit of excitement here and there.
And right now, my newest food overhaul is what is sprinkling my life with a bit of yummy flavor.
I’ll get right to it. I mentioned in a recent post about Orangetheory that I have zero interest in dieting because I just had no headspace for that and had a million other things to focus my energy on. Diets typically send me into a tailspin, and the number on the scale will usually dictate my mood for the day. I’m just not about all of that right now. Life feels too good to be rage-y over a number on the scale, ya knoooow?
The problem is, my clothes have been fitting a bit snug. Boo. I could blame it on “new muscle” all the live long day (which is partially true), but it’s also linked to some poor eating habits I’ve picked up very, very, very slowly over the last year or two that have turned into daily habits. Eek. No bueno. It’s been a slow fade away from the good eating habits I used to have, so it was time to turn that bus around in the name of fitting back into the closet full of clothes I own.
So a friend posted in a Facebook group one day at the end of August about signing up with an international online health coach, and she invited others to join her. I have no idea what (in the world!) possessed me to look more into it, but by the end of the night I had paid my moolah and was ready to rock and roll with Coach Mark on September 3rd!
(Insert Jamie: “This is costing how much? Where did you hear about this? You really want to start immediately? If you pay that money, you gotta stick to it!”) Talk about motivation not to flush money down the toilet. 😉
Working with an Online Health Coach: Weeks 1 & 2
I paid to work with him for 28 days, and part of the deal is that I have to take progress pictures once a week on the morning that I choose to enjoy an “indulgence meal”. This has worked out to roughly once every 7ish days, depending on what we have on tap.
The scale says I’ve only lost five pounds, but I have about a dozen dresses and pants in my closet that are now slipping on juuuust fine. Hallelujah.
And truly, it wasn’t even the number on the scale that made me want to do this. Honest to goodness, it was my clothing. Working out the last nine months or so has left me feeling better mentally and physically than I have in years, which is worth way more to me than what the scale says.
Only having a portion of my closet to choose from though due to gaining a little weight (for whatever reason) is just no fun though. Agreed?
Could I have decided to eat healthy on my own and lose the weight? No, no I couldn’t. I need accountability. I need someone coaching me. I need people to walk through this with every day, especially when cravings hit or a special event pops up on the calendar that I don’t know how to handle food and drink-wise.
I don’t even know how much weight I want to lose; it’s odd that I don’t have a goal. I don’t think I have a goal though because it’s about more than the number on the scale. I just want to know that I’m making healthy choices, capable of turning down junk, fitting into my clothes well, and finding sustainable energy to help me be my best for Jamie, Hadley, and Sadie. That’s it.
So Jamie took these pictures first thing on each day before I ate or drank anything. The sun wasn’t even up in any of them, hence the shadows from the overhead lighting! It goes without saying that I’m not “sucking it” or “flexing” or anything like that. These pictures were originally for me to see visible progress (no matter what the scale says), so trying to make my progress look better than it was would have been a disservice to myself and the changes my body is going through.
About working with Mark
First of all, what a nice dude. I like him a lot!
I knew there were surely things about routinely eating healthy that I didn’t know, so Mark has been teaching me. I needed a reason to stick to it. My reason this time is that I was paying the money, so I literally have no choice but to do the program. I would be wasting mine and Jamie’s hard-earned money if I didn’t do the program as close to 100% as I could.
It’s been easy and the food has been fantastic. The first week required a lot of planning, but the 2nd and 3rd weeks have been so easy! I’m in my groove now and loving it! I’ve made so many delicious meals that I never would have made before, and Jamie is loving it as much as I am. You don’t realize how often you eat the same foods over and over again until you’re pushed out of your comfort zone and forced to pour over healthy cookbooks and nutrition labels to find new options.
Besides my indulgence meal, I haven’t been drinking alcohol, eating sweets, consuming dairy, drinking soda or sugary creamer, or eating bread… talk about all of my favorite things! But somehow I don’t miss it. I DON’T GET IT! I am shocked. I think my body is truly satisfied and is fighting my cravings for me. It’s weird, but I’m not complaining!
I have two other girls that I keep in contact with: the one who originally shared the program with me and another friend who has wanted to lose a little weight but needed accountability from a friend. Having other women to talk to about meals and text with for support has been absolutely fabulous.
I’ve had a couple times where I felt discouraged, and I voiced that to Mark. What did he do? He sat in his backyard on a Saturday and filmed a video just for me where he walked through his theories. He isn’t judgmental. He is helpful. He doesn’t pry.
Overall, I didn’t want a crash diet or a plan that wouldn’t be sustainable in the weeks, months, and years to come. I wanted some help, motivation, and accountability with getting back on board with eating well again. And Mark has helped me do that! He and I communicate via Facebook all day long. He sees all of my meals, gives me feedback and encouragement, and helps me know that I’m on the right track. He has taught me so much already!
You know what’s crazy? The meals I was previously eating weren’t terrible; It was the snacks. Oh my goodness, the snacks. I quickly realized that I am the QUEEN of BLTs (bites, licks, and tastes). If I’m serving my kids a snack, I’ll steal a piece. Every time. And that junk adds up! (Duh, Erica!)
I was also eating a ton of cheese and sauces. Whew buddy, that adds up mighty fast too!
One gratifying moment happened yesterday morning. I’ve gotten really into making homemade hashbrowns with EVOO, salt, and pepper. I asked Jamie if I could make him breakfast and then made him eggs with sautéed veggies, ham, and hashbrowns. He absolutely loved it because I’d never made homemade hashbrowns for him before. To see him gobble up his breakfast was gratifying because I never would have made that prior to getting on board with Mark.
Two more bonuses: I’m eating 10x+ the amount of veggies I used to. I eat a cup every meal, which blows my mind. I can’t believe it took me so long to get on board with this. Also, I’m very rarely hungry. Hallelujah, because I hate being hungry!
Those who sign up with Mark work with him for one month, and then have the option to add a second month, and then a third, etc. It may seem a little pricey (I had sticker shock at first), but it’s so dang worth it. And paying the money makes you stick to it! That has been key for me!
If you want to develop some new habits and/or drop some weight before the holidays, get on board with him now! I cannot recommend him enough. Sure, the first few days might incorporate some growing pains as you figure out how to make it work with your every day life, but I promise you that you won’t be sorry you got on board with him. I’ve never done anything like this before, and I am so grateful.
Excited to share more when this first month is over in a couple weeks! Just wanted to go ahead and share a bit now since his enrollment just opened up for October (which is limited).
If you’d like to get in touch with Mark and chat with him one-on-one to see if this is a good fit for you, fill out this form!
Shoot me questions! I’d love to answer. 🙂
What has been the most successful “diet” you’ve ever done?
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother in today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to two little girls (ages 5 and 2) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo