10-Week Challenge Results (Hazim Ghanim)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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Meet Hazim Ghanim 10-week challenge alumni (read about his first challenge), who has been with CKO/2.0 for just over 1.5 years. Over the course of this fitness journey Hazim has had many great successes! He has lost over 35-lbs, completed a CINCO, completed 40-in-40 (4o workouts in 40 days), completed the Spartan Race, and improved his diet…

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

By day I am a stress engineer.

Do you have any hobbies?

I am mostly a home body, I enjoy small projects around the home (right now I am looking at home automation).  I roast my own coffee.

Spartan Strong!

Spartan Strong!

How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

This is my second 10-week challenge, I originally found out about the challenge through my wife, Viridiana. 

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?  

Having a movie night with Q&A afterwards was great! It was nice to discuss and hear everything challengers had to say.

Hazim and his wife Vir

Hazim and his wife Viridiana

What was the hardest part about the challenge?

This time around I tried pushing myself well beyond 5 workouts a week, and I do not think I achieved this to the best of my ability.

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself?

Knowing what I came from, and the changes I have already made, getting the compliments from people and my wife, these things keep me coming back.

Bootcamp at 2.0 Next Level Fitness

Bootcamp at 2.0 Next Level Fitness

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with? 

I still struggle with having the mindset to push myself. Sometimes I find myself rushing through a workout, and not giving it my all, or not taking my body to failure.

What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

Believe in yourself, when you do the 10 week challenge you are gambling on yourself, it should be the easiest decision for you to make.  When I first heard about the 10 week, I thought to myself “I could just do that myself” but it is so much easier having a group of challengers going through the same struggles as you, helping you change your mindset.

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Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

I have done the 40 in 40 and ‘Cinco’.  Those challenges were great, the difference is having people to rely on.  A community online you can talk to, and relate to.  You’re not on your own.

Working hard at CKO

Working hard at CKO

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential? 

Funny enough, having the camera in class, someone taking pictures, makes me try harder, if even for that moment, but at the end I usually think to myself that was more that I thought I could do.

Share any relevant information you’d like about yourself that other team members might not know about you (also a good place to talk about any success you have had since joining the challenge)! 

Since starting CKO I have done the 40 in 40, Cinco, and 2 – 10 week challenges, in all I have lost 35lb (16% weight) and changed my diet for good.  It is the most amazing feeling to eat well, and deliciously.

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10-Week Challenge Results (Julie Kurpewski)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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Meet Julie Kurpewski, a long time CKO and 2.0 member, a 10-week challenge alumni, and a graduate of the most recent 10-week challenge…

During this last 10-week challenge Julie lost a total of 10.5-inches and 7lbs! In addition to the inches and weight lost, Julie also improved all aspects of the fitness test improving her max pushups (in 2-mins) by 12, her max goblet squat (in 2-mins) by 22, and her max sit-ups (in 2-mins) by 6.

Check out Julie’s first 10-week challenge here.

To see Julie’s 70-day transformation watch the video below:

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

I am an Information Systems project manager at Costco corporate.

Do you have any hobbies?

I like to hang out with friends, see movies, play with my dogs & lately my biggest hobby is working out at 2.0 & CKO.

How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

I learned about the 10 week challenge initially Fall 2014. It was an easy decision for me to sign up because I had experienced success in the past. This fall’s session marks my third time doing the challenge and each time I participate I find that I learn more & gain more strength.

Working the battle ropes

Working the battle ropes

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?  

This challenge was probably the best one that I’ve participated in. I really appreciated the menus & shopping list that were provided on a weekly basis. This offered a lot of new ideas that I can add into my regular meal plans. I liked the accountability that it provided to me. The daily food logs in My Fitness Pal, checking in for each workout on social media & finally the daily selfies. This helped me stay focused. Finally, the best part was how everyone participating bonded and encouraged each other. This is the closest I’ve gotten to many of the other participants. To the point that many of them have become friends.

What was the hardest part about the challenge?

The hardest part for me is still making sure that I have my food prep complete. To combat this, I try to dedicate Sunday’s as my prep day & make enough food for the week.

Working the bag at CKO Seattle

Working the bag at CKO Seattle

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself?

Working out has now become a lifestyle for me. I enjoy the classes & the challenges each provide to me. Finally, the people that are part of the gym are great. It’s not uncommon that someone is encouraging you to push harder. It helps you get more energized & feel more confident in your abilities.

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with? 

As mentioned above, food prep is my challenge. I admit, cooking is not my most favorite thing to do. If I dedicate a specific day to get everything set up I find that I’m much more successful.

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What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

My advise to someone would be to do the challenge. Yes, it’s a challenge, but seeing it through gives you such a sense of accomplishment. If you follow the plan, successes will follow.

Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

This was my third 10 week challenge with CKO/2.0. This one was different because it offered a higher level of accountability to us. We were supposed to log our meals & take selfies daily & post our workouts on social media. One the things I enjoyed the most was the opportunity to do community service. I hope CKO/2.0 offers to do this more often even outside of the 10 week challenge.

Julie (front) at the 10-week challenge community event

Julie (front) at the 10-week challenge community event

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential? 

Now that I’m a member of both CKO & 2.0 I believe that participating in the workout offerings can assist me in not only getting stronger and faster but will get me to my true potential.

Julie (front, 3rd from left) at bootcamp

Julie (front, 3rd from left) at bootcamp

Share any relevant information you’d like about yourself that other team members might not know about you (also a good place to talk about any success you have had since joining the challenge)! Outside of getting stronger, there were noticeable changes in how I fit into my clothes. To me, this shows that I’ve made progress & I find this very exciting.

I would like to thank all the CKO/2.0 staff for their support and encouragement. You all have continued to make this journey a positive experience.

Congratulations Julie on your most recent 10-week journey! Your consistency and dedication is an inspiration to not only the CKO/2.0 staff members but also the members!

10-Week Challenge Results (Mary Grace McKernan)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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Have you ever had one of  those moments when all the stars seem to “align” and you find yourself at the right place at exactly the right time? It is those “perfect” opportunities that make you wonder if there is something bigger “operating in the background”…

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Well Mary McKernan, had one of those moments when she discovered CKO/2.0. Mary went out for a random bike ride. This bike ride was “random” because Mary’s dog had just died, and well, as you can imagine, Mary was depressed. So to help with the grieving process Mary decided to go for a bike ride.  As Mary put it, I didn’t know what to do with myself, so I just decided to ride my bike around the shopping center near my house… It was in this shopping center where Mary discovered CKO/2.0 and well the rest is history…

So in just 10-weeks Mary lost 13-inches and 16-lbs! In addition she improved her max push-ups (in 2-mins) by 19, her max goblet squat (in 2-mins) by 12, her max sit-ups (in 2-mins) by 30, and her flex arm hang by 16-secs.

To learn more about Mary’s 10-week journey, read the interview below.

September 2015 (left) - November 2015 (right)

September 2015 (left) – November 2015 (right)

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

I am a photographer/writer and photo editor.

Do you have any hobbies?

I love bicycles…and when I travel it usually involves a bike tour.

How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

I had just moved into my apartment and I decided to take a ride on my bicycle to check out the neighborhood. Instead of going south on Greenwood, I went north and I was riding through the parking lot and I stopped at CKO Seattle. The guy at the desk told me about 2.0, so I rode over and noticed the chalkboard with the 10 week challenge information. It wasn’t a hard decision to sign up because I was told that I could get my money back if all the terms of the challenge were met. I liked that idea. Also, unfortunately, my dog had passed away 2 days before and I was grieving and I missed her terribly and I was depressed. I knew that I had to get out and exercise. I needed something structured and I think it was almost serendipitous that this challenge began in less than a week. I hope this doesn’t sound too ridiculous but going to the boxing classes and working out with others helped me through the grieving process. I still miss my dog but I’m not depressed anymore and this challenge helped me through it.

Mary competed another 2.0 Bootcamp

Mary (back row, 4th from right) competed another 2.0 Bootcamp

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?

I enjoyed the camaraderie. I liked that we were treated as a team and that I was able to see other challengers’ progress. I liked that all the instructors were so friendly and inviting. I also liked the music that was played at 2.0 Fitness and CKO Seattle. I think watching the documentary Fed Up was a big help to understanding food. I can’t think of one favorite thing because there were so many.

What was the hardest part about the challenge?

Taking a photo of myself in the mirror was the hardest part. For the first 10 days I wouldn’t even look at the photo. I would just send it to Jessica. At about day 26 I finally started to see a change and then I actually looked forward to taking my photo.

Doing deadlifts (2.0 semi-private training)

Doing deadlifts (2.0 semi-private training)

 

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself? 

I look at the 70 photos I took of myself over the course of this challenge. I see the changes in just 10 weeks.

Check out Mary’s 70 day (10-week) “selfie transformation:

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with?

I wish that I would do yoga and stretch more.

What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

Sign up immediately! Keep track of your workouts and your food. Remember, you are going to change habits and the weight will come off and you will get into shape.

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Mary (far left) celebrating another completed workout with fellow 10-week challengers

Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

I belonged to another gym when I lived in Fremont/Wallingford and it wasn’t a challenge but a group “meet-up”. I could never get into it and I wasted a lot of money. I belonged to a lot of gyms in the past but I could never get the momentum that I seem to have now. I know that has a lot to do with how structured and planned the workouts are and all of the instructors, of course.

Working the bag at CKO Seattle

Working the bag at CKO Seattle

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential?

I think you are already doing it but I’ll say it anyway. Change up the workouts. Maybe post more articles about fitness and health on social media. More mini-challenges. I think I saw at another gym that everyone can put money into a pool and if you miss a workout you get less and less of your money back and the people who go to all the classes get more than they put in. (Is that even legal? I find money very motivating…ha! It really is fun to talk about when you’re at work).

Share any relevant information you’d like about yourself that other team members might not know about you (also a good place to talk about any success you have had since joining the challenge)!

I hadn’t seen my family since before I started the challenge and when I went home every single one of my family members saw that I had lost weight and told me how good and healthy I looked.

It is amazing the amount of change possible in just 10 short weeks!

It is amazing the amount of change possible in just 10 short weeks!

Congratulations Mary, your 10-week transformation is impressive. We (CKO/2.0) are so glad you decided to ride your bike around our parking lot!

10-Week Challenge Results (Cassie Pate)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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Are you ready for another amazing 10-week transformation?

Meet Cassie Pate who, in just 10 short weeks, lost 32 inches off her body, nearly 7 of those inches were off her waist! In addition to the inches Cassie also lost 22-lbs! But Cassie, did more than just lose, she also gained. She gained strength improving her pushups (in 2-mins) by 28, her squats (in 2-mins) by 29, sit-ups (in 2-mins) by 21, and increased her max dead hang by 17-secs. Not only did Cassie gain strength, she has also gained confidence!

To learn more about Cassie’s 10-week journey read the interview below:

September 2015 (Left) - November 2015 (right)

September 2015 (Left) – November 2015 (right)

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

I work at a Cafe, which can be really challenging when you are trying to eat healthy, because I am surrounded by pastries and sugary drinks all day long!

Do you have any hobbies?

Um, is Netflix a hobby? Just Kidding, while I do like to occasionally binge-watch tv shows, I also LOVE to read, and spend time with my family and dog.

Putting in work at CKO Seattle

Putting in work at CKO Seattle

How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

I had been an uncommitted member to both 2.0 and CKO in the past, and although I enjoyed the workouts, I lacked the motivation to get myself to the gym more than once a week. I was actually on the verge of trying some more radical weight loss options, when my Dad told me about the Ten Week Challenge and I decided to give it a shot, and oh my goodness I am so glad I did!

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?  

My favorite aspects of the challenge was the encouragement I got from all of my fellow challengers, the general feeling of camaraderie between everyone was outstanding! I also loved the support and and advice I received from Carla about my diet.

Bootcamp at 2.0. Cassies (far left)

Bootcamp at 2.0. Cassie (far left)

What was the hardest part about the challenge?

For me the hardest part of the challenge was sharing what I was doing with other people. Whenever I had tried to lose weight in the past, I had always kept it a secret just in case I failed. I found that when I shared my efforts at weight loss with others, not only was I SO encouraged, but my story encouraged others as well!

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself?

My biggest motivation is having the best, and most fulfilled life I possibly can. I have been held back by my weight in so many ways. I have let it be my excuse for not grasping so many opportunities, and I don’t want it to be my crutch anymore. Garett and Jessica like to say “choose your hard”; yes, exercising and eating right, can be hard, but being overweight and unhealthy, is so much harder.

Cassie with her Family members at CKO

Cassie with her Family members at CKO

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with? 

Learning how to eat healthy is going to be a long journey for me, because I have eaten so unhealthy my whole life. I am slowly training my body to crave the right things, and save the wrong things for the occasional treat.

What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

Do it! I have tried numerous different fitness, and weight-loss options, but the accountability and encouragement you receive during the Ten Week Challenge can’t be beat!

Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

I haven’t tried other challenges, but I have tried other weight-loss programs, and one thing that is different with the Ten Week Challenge is the level of accountability. In this challenge fellow challengers are always asking about how your challenge is going and it is just really encouraging.

Bootcamp

2.0 Bootcamp – – Cassie (bottom right)

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential? 

NOTHING! Y’all are great!

Share any relevant information you’d like about yourself that other team members might not know about you (also a good place to talk about any success you have had since joining the challenge)! 

Cassie at 2.0

Cassie at 2.0

Before the Ten Week Challenge I was stuck in a MAJOR fitness rut.  I liked working out, but lacked consistency, and I had just about completely given up trying to eat healthy because I was so frustrated. The Ten week challenge changed my life in SO. MANY. WAYS. Not only did I lose an incredible amount of weight and inches, but I also gained a lot of good habits, and for me that is the most valuable thing I received. I have made working out a habit, and have adjusted to eating real food with actual nutritional value, (cheddar bagels and pizza are rare treats nowadays). I have gained so much confidence in myself not only because of what I have achieved, but also because of the incredibly encouraging words of my fellow challengers and the CKO/2.0 staff. While the Ten Week Challenge was indeed challenging, I would do it again in a heartbeat.

Congratulations Cassie, your 10-week transformation is amazing and inspiring! You have the work ethic and all the tools to continue this fitness journey and I look forward to watching your progress!

10-Week Challenge Results (Tanya Faley)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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In a previous blog I mentioned that it is it impossible to have a favorite client because every client is uniquely different. However, as mention in the same blog there is a huge difference between good clients and great clients…

Now if a list of great clients existed Tanya Faley’s name would definitely be on this list. Tanya has been a member of CKO since day one (July 2012). During this time as a CKO Member all Tanya has done is make progress. She has lost weight, built muscle, improved her nutrition and more importantly she has consistently improved her athletic performance. In fact, since joining CKO she has had several PR (personal record) in 5K races, 1/2 Marathons, and Triathlons.

Tanya has done numerous other CKO 10-week challenges and you can read about her previous results below:

 

Left (September 2015) - Right (November 2015)

Left (September 2015) – Right (November 2015)

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

Mother of two teenagers and scheduling coordinator at a dentist office.

Do you have any hobbies?

Singing, running and tennis.

How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

I was notified in am email from CKO. It was an easy decision to sign up!

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?  

I liked all the accountability-posting, pictures and the challenge takeovers

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What was the hardest part about the challenge?

Logging my food-I really don’t like to do that!

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself?

As I start to see results, I want to maintain those and continue to get to my goals. I also like challenging myself to be the best I can be.

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with? 

I will also have a struggle with food. I love all food and especially things made with bread and sugar. I have seen all the documentaries and read all the research and know it is bad for me, but it still tastes so good. Being in these challenges shows me that I can make it without those foods. I just have to find a way to make it work outside of the challenge. I have no problem working out 7 days a week, but I will not lose any weight or see any visible progress if I don’t eat right, It is how my body must be wired.

What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

To absolutely do it if you are serious about making a change. You have to be committed and follow all the instructions to see big gains, but it is totally worth it!

Doing pull-ups at 2.0

Tanya – Doing pull-ups at 2.0

Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

This is my 4th challenge with CKO and this one was the best because we got to connect with other challengers thru postings and challenge take overs. We didn’t feel all alone and had a great support system with Garett, Jessica and Josh checking in on us and Carla checking our food logs. I also loved all the accountability and the friendly competitions for # of workouts. 🙂  The daily photos and workout postings was tedious at times, but kept me focused and on track. The potluck at the end was super cool too!

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential? 

I don’t know what else you guys can do-you do it all so well. Thank you for believing in us, for giving us so many great workout options (any 4:30 AM classes being formed? LOL!) and always encouraging us!!!

Tanya working hard at the community takeover event!

Tanya working hard at the community takeover event!

Share any relevant information you’d like about yourself that other team members might not know about you (also a good place to talk about any success you have had since joining the challenge)! 

I have consistently run any races after the challenges faster than the time before, so we will see how I do this weekend and in a few months. It is amazing to me that I never used to run, then I was running slow and with lots of fuel (GU and Gatorade) and now I run fairly fast (getting faster each time) and I don’t have to eat anything for a half marathon to make it through. The endurance, stamina, and nutrition training I receive in the challenges has been so vital to my growth as a runner and as a person in every day life. I have more energy to do more things and find other things to do that make me move rather than sitting and watching TV all the time. I am so glad for this gift of improved life I have received. These challenges and kickboxing at CKO have been the best present I could have given to myself. It is an investment for a better me, a better mom, a better wife, a better friend, etc.

Update: Tanya PR'd this 5K race, just 4 days after the challenge ended!

Update: Tanya PR’d this 5K race, just 4 days after the challenge ended!

Congratulations Tanya, you have been (still are) one of the most consistent members we have ever had and your results speak for themselves. I look forward to watching your progress in the future!

10-Week Challenge results (Michaela Won)

If you are looking for the best program to make a complete healthy lifestyle transformation, look no further than the 10-week challenge.

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Meet Michaela Won, a recent graduate of the CKO/2.0 10-week challenge. In just 10-weeks Michaela lost 18 lbs and 16.5 inches off her body! In addition, Michaela “aced” the fitness test, adding 19 more pushups, 26 more goblet squats, 2 more sit-ups, and 9 more pull-ups using the purple band!

Congratulations Michaela, you results are outstanding!!!

To learn more about Michaela’s 10-week transformation read below:

September 2015 (left) November 2015 (right)

September 2015 (left) November 2015 (right)

The Michaela Won Interview

 

Besides being an absolute warrior in the gym, what is your day job?

I am working as an Airline Specialist for a European Tour Operator.

Do you have any hobbies?

Kickboxing of course! I am also a baseball mom in the spring/summer with lots of tournaments and BBQs. I like hiking year- around and snow-shoeing in the winter. Scrapbooking during rainy season is always fun.

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How did you learn about the challenge and was it a hard decision to sign up?

I learned about the 10-week challenge through friends at CKO. It was actually perfect timing for me because my oldest son just left home for college and I needed the distraction (call it empty nest syndrome). Besides that, I needed to step up my work out routine to reach my 100 lbs weight loss goal.

Jan 2015 – Just starting her CKO journey.

 

What was your favorite aspect of the challenge?

My favorite part was meeting so many inspiring people that kept me going. Some of them became real role models for me. The feeling that somebody cares about you made all the difference. I also liked the organized check lists and weekly food plans that kept me on track. The trainers were so supportive and encouraging that they made me want to give it my best.

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What was the hardest part about the challenge?

Posting all my work outs on Facebook was not in my comfort zone. I’d rather do my own thing in silence than sharing everything on such a public site. However I was overwhelmed with the positive feedback I received. There were so many people telling me how inspired they were and to keep going. Most of the time, I didn’t know how to react to these compliments because I was so used to dealing with negativity and road blocks. I guess I just didn’t want people to take my post the wrong way – such as “here she goes again bragging about her work outs”. Being the center of attention is really not my thing.

What motivates you to walk through that door day after day and continue to push yourself?

The fear of gaining the weight back. Three years ago I suffered a stroke because of my obesity. It took three month of physical therapy and acupuncture to get my left arm back to normal function. Even today my left side is still weak. I fought hard to get my weight down and I now enjoy doing so many things that I couldn’t even think about before. There is no way I can go back to being overweight and taking the risk of more health issues and not being there for my kids.

2012

2012 – The year of the Stroke

What’s one thing you still find yourself struggling with?

Self-confidence has always been an issue for me. My head was filled with a lot of “CAN’Ts” for so many years that even now with all the lost weight I doubt my ability sometimes. That’s why I am so thankful for the people in my life that keep challenging me to try new things, like the Spartan race, 5K’s, difficult hikes, working with weights or rock-climbing. Accomplishing these tasks keeps me motivated and eager to get stronger and do more.

Getting stronger everyday!

Getting stronger everyday!

What would your advice be to some considering doing a 10 week challenge?

Connect with the other challengers! It made all the difference for me because we encouraged and gave advice to each other and it helped just to talk to somebody that is going through the same thing as you. Also, not to get overwhelmed- I took it one day at a time and gave it the best I could that day. Attitude is everything – pick a good one and stay positive!

Working out can be fun. asfdasf Halloween class)

Working out can be fun. (Halloween class)

Have you tried any other challenges (with our gym or another)- if so what made this one different?

This was my very first challenge!

What can we do better to help you actualize your true potential?

That’s a tough question – I would say you are already helping us to break free of our “self-imposed” limitations by challenging us to push further. I had several of these “aha” moments during training where I realized that I was way stronger than I thought. I think encouragement is the key.

Spartan finisher! Oct 2015

Spartan finisher! Oct 2015

10-week challenge results:

Starting weight: 183.2 lbs

Finishing weight: 165.2 lbs = 18 lbs lost/ 16.5 inches lost

Push up test: 30 to 49

Goblet squat test: 43 to 69

Sit up test: 54 to 56

Pull up test (purple band): 5 to 14 (aha moment!)

Mindful Eating

This is a guest post by Carla Wyatt: 

Mindfulness: A mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly and non-judgmentally acknowledging one’s feelings, thoughts and bodily sensations.

 The present moment is the only time anyone has to perceive, learn, grow, or change. – Jon Kabat-Zinn

I am a big fan of mindfulness. I am also a big fan of eating. Put the two together? I. Am. Sold.

Mindfulness can dramatically change our lives. It can bring a deep sense of appreciation and fullness to each moment. Experiences, like eating, can be richer and more satisfying.

Mindfulness, even in its simplicity, can be one of the most challenging practices. Now that I think about it, I guess the same can be said for healthy eating.

We are used to having packed schedules, eating on the run, in our cars and eating food for convenience instead of health. We are constantly being bombarded by clever food marketing strategies and misinformation. It is no wonder that we don’t know what is what anymore! Who has time to focus on the NOW?!?

Slowing down and focusing on the present can be hard! Just try to be mindful for, let’s say, 5 minutes. Completely mindful, fully present in the moment…starting NOW, I’ll wait…

Oh, lost it already?? Yeah, me too. Did you get distracted by bacon? Just me?

sipress-im-meditating

 

The good news is that mindfulness is a PRACTICE and a great way to start the practice of mindfulness is with an eating meditation. It is traditionally done with a raisin. (In case you really dislike raisins, it can be done with anything. Might I suggest a small piece of dark chocolate?)

The eating meditation goes a little something like this…

Start by taking 3 rounds of breath, as deep into your belly as you can get it. See if you can move your awareness with your breath, following it in and out.

Put the raisin in your hand. Really look at it, like you have never seen a raisin before.

Now close your eyes.

Put the raisin in your mouth.

Slowly, S-l-o-w-l-y chew the raisin, don’t swallow. Just move it naturally in your

mouth noticing the taste and the texture. Do the flavors change? Does the texture

or shape change? What do you notice?

When you are ready, swallow the raisin and open your eyes.

No magic in that, right? That is mindful eating at its simplest.

Slow

Of course, there can be so much more to mindful eating. We can be mindful as we make our food choices at the market. We can be fully present in the experience of preparing our food. We can pay attention to how our body reacts to the foods that we are eating. The practice of mindfulness will also lead us to look into our motivation for eating. Are we truly hungry? Or are we motivated by emotions, boredom, reward, or social pressures?

Mindful eating can help us become more aware of our hunger and satiety cues. How do you feel when you start your meal? Ravenous? A little hungry? Hangry? How do you feel when you finish your meal? Do you need to unbutton your pants? Do you feel about 80% full? Eating mindfully allows time for our brain to register that we are full, which can take about 20 minutes.

Sit down, do nothing else but eat. Eat with all of your senses. Put your fork down between bites. See if you can extend your meal time and really savor your food. Make your first bite a mindful bite. Similar to the raisin exercise above. Close your eyes, and really experience the food. Do this exercise mid-way through your meal and with your last bite as well. You will be amazed at how much more satisfying the eating experience is, and likely you will feel full sooner, because you are fully present and mindful.

So what do you say? Let’s eat!

Which one are you?

Which one are you?

 

Who is Carla Wyatt?

  • Nutrition Coach at 2.0 Next Level Fitness
  • Registered Nurse– with honors from UW School of Nursing in 2000.
  • Clinic Nurse/Nutrition Educator/Biofeedback Therapist at Pacific Rehabilitation Centers since 2006; working with chronic pain patients.
  • Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies
  • Eat To Perform Nutrition Coach Certification