“This is an uncomfortable position to be in”, he said, “but Tammy has decided to move in a different direction for coaching”.
I knew this conversation with John, Tammy’s husband, was about her lack of weight loss results and the verbal confirmation that things just weren’t working out between us.
My stomach churned and my heart pounded as he spoke…
Quickly I stopped him to save him from what must have felt terribly unconformable, “Look man, I get it … I understand her frustration and have been very open and honest about the process, and clear about my expected results. But the reality is there’s no magic formula for this. The body does what it wants, when it wants, for a multitude of reasons, far beyond just calories in and calories out. It takes time. You know that.”
Maybe I didn’t have the right tools for her. Maybe she wasn’t willing to admit that she hadn’t given the program enough time. Maybe I just wasn’t the right coach for her. Too many maybe’s to matter at this point.
Regardless, that was a tough day for me.
It was tough to not question my abilities as a coach.
It was tough to offer a refund despite knowing we were on the right track, just needing more time.
It was tough to not turn around and question if and when every other client was going to somehow find fault in my services and to not feel like a fraud.
But that’s what the brain does – It uses fear as fuel, as protection, to keep us safe. It says, “If you don’t try, you won’t fail, and if you don’t fail, you won’t feel pain.”
And that’s when I have to both acknowledge the fear and decide to turn my back on it…
Instead, I choose to embrace the positive things, that reinforce and affirm my belief and confidence that I’m making a difference, for many:
People like Greg (39), who has lost 25 pounds over the past 6 months, transformed his lifestyle, training, and eating habits, and walked away from his day job to go all-in on a new business venture. Prior to working together, he was stuck in Ketogenic limbo with stagnant weight loss, unhealthy binge eating habits, and unproductive workouts that were further exacerbating some old injuries. The best part is that he’s now loving eating carbs (which he once vilified), and plenty of calories to fuel his high daily physical activity, which has given him the confidence that he will drop another 20 lbs by Jan. 1st of next year.
People like Emily (33) – down 50 pounds in the past 4 months. A Phoenix-based lawyer, Emily set a goal to lose 100 pounds and is well on her way. Being a very analytical person, I knew Emily would do well learning how to track her food (and alcohol) intake. Simply by doing that, she’s been able to manage her calories, while still enjoying her craft brews and bar food occasionally … and with consistent workouts, she’s feeling excited that she’s stronger than ever and even more motivated now that she’s seeing the muscle definition in her legs and arms.
People like Jim (49) – A very busy business owner with a young family has gained 18 pounds of muscle and lost inches in the last 8 months while eating over 3000 calories per day. He was already working out, but as a naturally “skinny guy”, he wasn’t eating enough throughout the day and wasn’t implementing a structured and progressive strength training program that would help him build muscle.
And countless other “proof” of client wins (from the past 15 years) to provide overwhelming and undeniable evidence that our systems really do work.
… And then there are people like Tammy, who put in the effort and compliance and do ALL the things they’re supposed to do, and unfortunately, the scale … JUST. WON’T. BUDGE.
Because this is what real weight loss looks like. Not every story is a success story…
But the reality is it’s impossible to know unless you try. And I believe every story can be a success story if given enough time, patience, love, honesty, and support.
This may not always translate into pounds on the scale, flawless sleep, unlimited energy, or 6-pack abs, but it will force you to step outside of your comfort zone and embrace fear head-on.
I think what Greg, Emily, Jim, and even Tammy would tell you is that this process is not what they thought it would be. In every single case, it’s been a lot harder than they expected. They’ve had to fight for every pound, often questioning why they’re doing this, and why sometimes it feels so. damn. tough.
They, too, get lost in the fear. The fear of failure, the fear of unknowing, the fear of change, the fear of the discomfort that they’ll have to continually embrace for however long it takes to reach their goals… and even then, to continue living that lifestyle with the confidence that there’s no turning back.
But they have belief. They have my belief in them and their belief in themselves. The belief, confidence, and growing certainty that they’re doing the right things and reinforcing the vision of what their own personal success looks like and feels like.
Because that’s what I ask them before we start working together… “If you could fast-forward 6 months or a year, knowing that you’ve achieved your goals, what would that look like for you? What would it feel like? How is your life different? Now that you’ve accomplished your weight loss goals, what else is possible for you?!…”
You tell me, what does weight loss success look like for you? And do you believe enough to start showing up in your life, every day, as the person you want to become?