About a month ago, my circle of fellow Beachbody coaches started to talk about this new thing called "Diet bets". It a website that challengers log into, post their starting weight with pictures that must be verified by website "referees", and pay a small entry fee. The bet lasts 30 days, and in that time, each player must lose 4% of their body weight (anything over 12% is considered unsafe and will be disqualified). Initially I didn't like the idea. I'm not a competitive person AT ALL. Like literally, I have never cared about "winning" in my entire life. I did gymnastics as a sport in high school, where I was at one point told by my coach "You have to compete in something or you won't get a varsity letter!" I just didn't care! I was at practice every day, working on my form and trying to get better, but competing with someone else? I didn't see the point. Anyways, back to the diet bet. I wasn't into it for that reason, but also, I knew that there was a chance I was going to lose my $10 (and I've never been one to throw money down the drain, especially around the holidays). My weight loss has ALWAYS been slow and steady. For me it's been more about creating a true lifestyle change, where I can enjoy myself food-wise around date nights, vacations, and holidays, but live the rest of my life trying to be healthy and maintain a balance. I KNEW that going into a season where I would finally have my husband around for more than a few hours a week, I was not going to want to stress myself out about keeping "on track". For me, the holidays are about maintaining. If you can get from Thanksgiving to New Year's without gaining any weight, that is a win in my book. But, I was up 6 pounds after Thanksgiving weekend, and 4% of my body weight would put me right back to where I wanted to be, which is currently 150. I agreed to do it with the team, because I wanted to be a good sport, but also to get back to "normal" anyway. So, I hopped back on my meal plan and stuck to my mostly clean eating with a few splurges along the way. I was right on track, within about 1.5 pounds of my goal going into Christmas. If you have read my blog previously, you know that there's not a chance that I was going to "diet" over the holiday. Like I said, I want to ENJOY my life, and not let keeping track of my food consume me when I'm supposed to be having fun. Well, obviously Christmas and it's glorious treats set me off track. By my calculation I had three days to get off two pounds. Unfortunately, the funeral for someone we had known that had passed would be on one of those days and would take some driving. I had some healthy snacks planned out, as it would be about a 6 hour round trip. We were rushed leaving the house and I forgot to grab my snacks. After the service, we were hungry and desperate. The closest, healthiest option was Arby's, where I got a market fresh sandwich. Not too bad, right?
"Do you want fries with that?"
****eyes go all swirly like in the cartoons****
"Yes, Yes I do want fries with that. And a Dr. Pepper."
Cut to an hour later I'm asking myself what happened and why do I have ketchup on my dress? Well, that was gonna set me back now, wasn't it? So, on the final day before my weigh in I ate as cleanly as I could. Lots of protein, veggies, and fruits and upon my husband's advice, very little water and low sodium foods, because I'd want to flush out some water weight. But I'm NOT going to lie to you guys, I did google my options. Drinking epsom salt. Taking laxatives. Eating Haribo Sugar-free gummy bears (I'm not kidding. Read the reviews here to get a great laugh). All options for someone who needs to drop a pound or two fast. And had I been more invested than $10 worth, I would have let my mind linger on them just a bit longer.
I woke up the final morning super nervous. I stepped on the scale feeling as light as I could, and there it was...151.3. No budge. I was still the same weight I had been two days earlier. The most annoying part? I lifted up my shirt and my belly was flat as a board. To be honest, I looked great! But alas, the scale said what it said, and I plopped down in the bed, defeated. I told my husband, who popped up and said:
"One pound? That's EASY!"
"What? No, I told you that I didn't make it. I have to weigh in today."
"What time today?"
"Anytime before Midnight, but I'm not waiting till then to eat."
He proceeded to tell me to get up and pull some long sleeve shirts and sweatshirts out of the dirty laundry. Something I wouldn't mind getting wet, be cause I was had more than 1 pound's worth of sweat in my body....
You see, my husband was a wrestler in High School, and he was very familiar with "cutting weight". I put on a long sleeved shirt, a sweatshirt, high socks, sweatpants, and a winter hat. For a girl who hates being hot and often runs in just a sports bra and shorts, this sounded like torture. We put in our new program (which I am LOVING), Insanity Max:30, and started to work. I was DONE after about 6 minutes. I had to follow the modifier for the rest of the time, and even then, had to take breaks, as I was hot, hungry, and dehydrated. It was literally the worst 30 minutes I had endured in a long time. When we finished, I was completely drenched and ready to pass out, but my "coach" asked me to stay in my sweaty clothes just a little bit longer. When I finally couldn't stand it anymore, I stripped down and got on the scale...
150.2!!! I had done it!!!
I took my pictures, logged in, and won back my $10 (+$20 because about 2/3 of the people in the bet either didn't weigh in or didn't make weight), but I didn't feel good about it. What if I had been 5 pounds over? What would I have done to get it off? I'd like to think that I would have just chalked up the $10 as lost and moved on. But then I had an even worse thought. What if I endorsed something like this to the people I coached, and they followed what I preach, which is TRUE moderation, not being so hard on yourself around holidays, and doing your best and not worrying about the scale, and THEY ended up overweight? What if they were more than just a sweaty workout over their target number? Would they starve themselves for days? Would they sit in a sauna for hours? Would they take laxatives? I shuddered at the thought. My goal in life is to help women to feel GOOD about themselves, and putting pressure on them that essentially resorts to "YOU HAVE TO HIT THIS EXACT NUMBER OR ELSE" is NOT the way that I want my challengers to lose weight. It may work for some people. One of my coaches lost TEN POUNDS in the month of December! Staying on track for the bet really motivated her! But who I'm looking to help is the OLD me. And the old me would have cracked under the pressure and either binged because I felt so bad about myself, or resorted to unhealthy means to get my money back. That's not something I can get behind. If you want my help, I'm here with some great recommendations on how to lose weight safely and effectively. But I won't be forcing "weigh ins" or even encouraging you to look at the scale. If that's the kind of motivation you want, I'd much rather you find someone else to coach you.
Here's a before and after picture of this whole debacle. As you can see from my before picture, I CLEARLY needed to lose that one pound. ;)
Hi! I'm Andrea Cummings. I am passionate about living a healthy lifestyle that I can MAINTAIN and that still lets me feel like I'm not being deprived. I like to exercise, but I also love to eat (nachos!). My main focus is to be healthy, not skinny, and to help others do the same! I love Jesus, but I also say fuck a lot, so if you're offended, I may not be the gal for you.