We are proud to introduce our five weight loss competition finalists. Win or lose, all five of these competitors took home better health, more energy, and better fitness. Please read about their journeys, and come vote for a winner at the 2022 Weight Loss Challenge Finale. 9AM, Sunday November 20, 2022. Food and InBody’s will be served!
My Weight Loss Journey I came into the challenge with some strongly held preconceptions about weight loss and nutrition. But with the help of the Nutrition Lab and Coach Paul’s guidance, I came to understand where I was wrong or skewed in my thinking. More importantly, I realized that no matter how educated you are on nutrition and fitness, without a disciplined regiment and structured plan (and maybe some competitive motivation), bad habits and social/environmental temptations quickly derail your progress and make you think you “hit a wall.”
Strictly discussing weight loss, I started at 175.8lbs on 1 September (photo 1) and was able to drop 10lbs to 165.8 by 21 October (7 weeks) (photo 2). After that, I was derailed by some planned and unplanned factors, namely an injury and a 2-week visit by family from abroad that included trips to NYC, Philly and Miami, and some indulging in things like alcohol, extra calories, carbs, refined sugars, and processed foods & very little sleep. Despite all those NO-NOs, the foundational knowledge and discipline the WLC had instilled in me kept from going too far off the rails (gained 3-4lbs) and getting right back into the groove when I got back home and my injury healed up. I have 2 weeks left to hit my 90 days, and even with the above set backs, I believe I can still hit my goal weight of 160lbs by the end!
My Weight Loss Journey: I hit my minimum goal of reaching 160 lbs on day 48. But I almost immediately bounced back up to the low-mid 160s and stayed there for a few weeks. I suspect my scale may have been malfunctioning on that dip. But if you take a look at my graph, you can see that, despite severe ups-and-downs along the way, I’m continuing on a pretty consistent downward trajectory. This week I’ve consistently dipped back into the 150’s, with top weights in the very low 160’s. I am confident that, by the end of the 90 days, I will be squarely and entirely in the 150’s (note that my 90 days ends on December 3rd, and the official finale is on my Day 77).
More importantly, I’m feeling pretty good. My pants are less uncomfortable (though they are falling down now, doh!), I have more energy, my back pain has lessened some, and my endurance is up. Also I now find rope climbing way easier than I did in the spring!
5 Tips that Worked for Me:
- Avoid Addictive Foods: I removed alcohol, chocolate, cookies, ice cream, and any other sweets I might use to replace these items (such as donuts, cupcakes, etc)
- Calories: Stay below 1,800 calories per day
- Steps: Take 15,000 steps per day – OR – 12,000 steps per day if also doing 30 minutes of exercise that doesn’t count steps (weightlifting, yoga, biking, etc).
- Run at least once every 2 days
- Rewards Based TV. If I hit every single other goal for the day, I can watch more TV than 1 hour of TV at the end of the day.
- Consistency. Through Nutrition Lab, I built my own rules, and was very diligent in following. Here’s a link to my spreadsheet. I did some informal color-coding to help visualize my progress. Green means I hit my goal. Yellow means “borderline, questionable, or close.” Red means failure. Teal means above-and-beyond awesomeness. Note that there is very little red on this chart!
My Results: I lost 17 Inches, and I did it despite numerous setbacks. You can too!
My Weight Loss Journey: My journey has challenges and that’s OK. Life has challenges. In the past 77 days I dealt with:
- 5 days of planned vacation
- 7 days on the couch injured
- 7 days on crutches
- A big Italian wedding
- A cortisone shot
- 1 Midwestern funeral with lots of casseroles (main ingredient: Campbell’s cream soup)
My Advice: Life happens, shit happens, people get married, and people get buried. Classes get canceled, classes continue and things seldom go according to plan. This is life and you need adaptable to everything life throws at you. There is no perfect time to lose weight … the time is now.
At Sand & Steel: I have tried new things, learned new things, and relearned old things. I have eaten spinach salads and wedding cakes, grilled chicken and vegetables and funeral casseroles. I am exploring the boundaries of a realistic and sustainable healthy lifestyle. I’m learning what works for me, where I fit in, what I can do, and what else I can do to stay young and move young.
It’s amazing, scary, and humbling. I’m not trying to do anything perfectly; I’m looking for a way to live a healthier life so I can continue to play.
Crossfit and nutrition are vehicles in this curious adventure. The nutrition challenge is all of that and a part of that. It is not the end, just as it was not the beginning.
I started my weight loss journey on August 6 of this year, and since I started not only have, I felt better about my performance and CrossFit and running have improved so much. I am running faster (8:30 per mile while running on pavement) and I am that much closer to completing my first pull-up! By the first day of the weight loss challenge at Sand and Steel I already lost 10 pounds. I overcame my challenges with eating in moderation, especially sweets. If I have a stressful day at work how do I keep myself from binge eating ice cream? Well, some days I would replace it with plain yogurt (topped with a teaspoon of honey), or I would eat a cookie but only one! Once I figured this out my weight loss plan started to work and I am feeling the best ever!
My Weight Loss Journey: I started my weight loss journey in early September, learning and relearning many of the lessons I have learned from Sand and Steel’s nutrition program. My goal was to march towards 15 % body fat, while growing muscle mass. I am down a net total of 16 pounds while gaining over a pound in muscle. Sand and Steel gave me the tools needed to enjoy 2 small family vacations to their fullest and bounce right back, all without getting discouraged. I am no stranger to working on weight loss, but through solid education and a great community, finally I feel I am able to accomplish this while feeling confident in the results and making food that tastes great!