“My whole family is now eating better.”

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We are excited to introduce our guest blogger for the day, Melissa. Melissa recently completed the Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less class and she shares her experience with the program. Congratulations Melissa!

Melissa’s Journey

I have LOVED the Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less class that I recently took.  I wanted to share a bit of my story in case it would help someone else.

I remember very clearly the conversation I had with my husband the night before my first class as I was cataloging all of the reasons it was a bad time for me to actually take this class.  I was 3 weeks postpartum with my third child and worried that I would feel like a failure if I tried a weight loss program that didnt work. I took great pains to explain to my husband how little time I had to spend on myself with the care of the children.  I promised him that I would sign up for the class at a later date—when things were less hectic.  Much to my dismay, he didnt back down. Only because he encouraged me to “just try it out,”  I begrudgingly took his advice.

I started classes the next day.  I was prepared to feel terrible about myself for how much weight I actually needed to lose.  I prepared all of my excuses (I have had three kids in 3.5 years, I work a very busy job with very long hours, I dont have time to work out, I dont have the energy to cook).  Surprisingly, I didnt actually need any of those excuses.  No one even asked, or talked about diets.  I just spent an hour learning about how to be mindful and think positively. sb10062327ah-001

The first assignment was to track calories.  I decided I would do that—and THAT ONLY for the whole week.  (Is my stubbornness showing?).  Without realizing it, my behavior already started to change.  I stopped putting things in my mouth simply because I didnt want to go to the trouble of writing it down.  Even though, at first, I was pretty consistently 500 calories over my goal, I was already eating less.  My eyes were opened to how many calories I was previously eating.

The next few weeks continued with “Aha” moments.  Over the course of the class, we started meal planning, eating more meals at home, taking walks after dinner as a family, and packing lunches daily (my survival kit, as my instructor called it).  I have reached my goal for the class (lose 10 pounds) by the half way point, and lost 15 more before the end of the class.

I was right about not having enough time for something new.  I still don’t think there are enough hours in the day for everything that I have to do (know the feeling?).  However, through this program, I have really shifted how I spend my time.  Instead of spending 15 minutes lamenting in the morning about what to wear because nothing fits, I can easily wear most of the clothes in my closet.  I spend 5 of those minutes packing a lunch.  Instead of waiting for elevators, I take the stairs (and after some practice, I am not winded when I walk in the office).  I save time at lunchtime because I dont have to stand in line to buy lunch.

The biggest life changer for our whole family is that I am now saving HOURS of time each week that I used to spend on the “what are we going to have for dinner” debate. That used to be such a stressful, low-part in my day.  Many times, I would end the debate by ordering out.  Now, because of Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less, I learned to plan meals—nothing fancy, but I have a system now.  I spend 5 minutes or less weekly planning the next week’s menu.  Everyone knows exactly what we are having and we can buy groceries accordingly. It has cut down on food waste too, because I can plan to have meals with similar ingredients in the same week.  My whole family is now eating better.

I could go on and on with additional examples, but instead I will bore my friends and co-workers with those stories.

Thank you to Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less.  Thank you to my instructor, Greg.  You have changed my life.