Updated: Apr 14
I hope everyone is having a great day. My name is Michael, I’m 55 years old. I’ve been married for 27 years to my beautiful wife Ginette and we have two sons, 22 and 19.
When I was first contacted to see if I would do this, my first reaction was to say thank you but I’m not interested. The next thought was...no you need to do this for yourself and maybe you’ll help someone else out during their journey!! So I’ve been overweight for 20+ years. I worked in the city and commuted an hour each way. As with most young families, our boys were into the sports they loved. This meant traveling for tournaments and games, rushing home from work to pick up one while the wife was going another way with the other. This meant eating out for convenience. I tried several times to go to the gym, eat “right” and would see some results. Then like Gina says...life smacks you right in the face!! We would get busy again as a family and then the motivation to lose would go away again. Constant cycle of losing and gaining.
In the summer of 2019 I stepped on the scale and was shocked that my weight had hit 290lbs. I’m 5’10”!! I became very down on myself but knew I had to pick it back up and get going again. I was motivated and hit the gym again in mid August. By the start of November I was down 20 lbs and in a big time plateau. I needed something or someone to keep me motivated. So I hired a couple that are certified fitness coaches online that lived in my city to keep me on track. They offered me a workout program and a meal plan. Yes it was a healthy meal plan but I had to weigh, measure and all the things we don’t do here. I hired them from December to the end of February 2020. I saw results in that 3 month span and lost another 29lbs. However, even though my meals were nutritious and on a plan, I wasn’t happy. I was eating the same things everyday..as per the plan. I sent them my stats every Wednesday, meaning I weighed myself once a week. And based on those stats, is whether I would get a reward of a “cheat meal”!!
Eating the same things daily for a month was starting to get to me. But I was still motivated!! Then we all know what happened in March 2020!! At this point I was down to 230lbs. With the world closing down, this meant the one place I loved to go to, besides home, was closed!! The gym!! The gym gave me the opportunity to get away from life for an hour and sweat a little. Helped to clear my mind and focus better. But I was able to continue exercising at home but not like I wanted to. In May 2020 I was in the garage and had a heavy box, containing the new pergola my wife had delivered, fell on my right foot. Turns out it broke my big toe in 3 places. Now I couldn’t walk like I wanted to. I felt deflated and quickly fell back into old habits. The weight was coming back on.
In March of 2022 my wife said a colleague at work was on this program called the Livy Method. She said she lost weight but her husband was following along with it and had lost 30lbs. At this point the gyms were open again without restrictions and I was going 4-5 times a week but the results were not showing up at all. My weight was back up to 270lbs. She was going to join the program and asked if I wanted to as well. I figured why not... for $75 what do I have to lose.
So my wife and I started the program in April 2022 with the spring/summer group. The first couple weeks were not the best. I felt like garbage... headache, run down, etc.... This was my body detoxing out all the chemicals in my body from all the processed foods we were eating. Once I got through the initial couple weeks, I started to feel way better. I had more energy and I noticed my sleep was getting a little better. As I continued on with the program, the weight started to come off. Especially during the “messy” middle. By the end of the group in July, I had lost 38lbs!! What!!! My mind was blown away. I could eat what I wanted, as long as it was nutrient rich and on the plan. The plan along with going to the gym showed the results. And people started to notice. Yes a couple of them asked if I was sick, but I explained that I was losing the weight in a natural healthy way. Started to love the comments about how “skinny” I was getting and the comments about how amazing I was looking!! And these comments were not just from women. Male co-workers were making these comments as well.
"I had more energy and I noticed my sleep was getting a little better. As I continued with the program, the weight started to come off... I was losing the weight in a natural healthy way"
We signed up for the fall group because we both knew that we had not reached our finally and forever. My goal was to hit 200lbs but knew that wasn’t realistic when I started. But to lose 38lbs!! I felt energized, focused and the fact I was getting deeper, more meaningful sleep...it was what I needed. In between groups we stayed on plan for the most part. We even went to the scenic caves and trails in the Blue Mountains!! This is something I could never have done before. My body was more broken down than I thought. In between I still lost another 13 lbs. When the fall group started, I didn’t have the same effects as I had at the start of the spring group. We had both jumped right back into it and followed the plan. Cue the wake up call!! In between groups we let ourselves enjoy life again. And started enjoying bits and bites a little more. Cutting myself off that stuff was a shock to my system. I had cravings like before I joined the spring group. Wanted to eat sweets and had cravings for junk foods. My mind was racing around. Why was I feeling this way?? Took a couple days and a lot of will power but I realized I had let the bits and bites back into my life a little more than I should have. I got “back on track”! Now it has become a mental game. This is where we will all struggle. We all need to realize that we are doing this for ourselves!! This is where most people struggle... doing it for “you”!! Make yourself the priority and yes, be selfish.
As both my wife and myself had not yet reached our goals we signed up for the Winter 2023 program. We decided to give this plan a full year, every season to show the results of what a year can do. We were heading into the Christmas season but we were both confident we could get through it. About a week after the fall 2022 program is when I hit my lowest low…199lbs!!! Shut the front door!!!! I was in tears…I was finally below 200 lbs for the first time in over 25 years. Welcome to “one”derland! I had also in November started working with my doctor to reduce my blood pressure medication. I was checking my blood pressure daily and giving her the readings. She also did blood work and in her words…”wow.. wasn’t expecting such great numbers.” They blew her away. So the Winter 2023 program starts up…I weigh in at 203.5 lbs. I knew I was up because we know our weight fluctuates. In week 8, I was given one of the biggest NSV’s since I started this program. My doctor removed me from my blood pressure medication completely!! This was one of my “why’s” doing this entire program!! However great the NSV’s were is not how the winter program was going for me. I had lost 71 lbs in 8 months!! My body said..ok time for a break. As I write this, it’s week 12 day 86 and I’ve lost a grand total of 1 pound. Like what!?!? It’s ok though…that’s 71lbs of weight gone. My body needs to adjust to its new set point. It’s definitely been a mental challenge. I racked my brain trying to figure out why my weight wasn’t moving..but I know what it was. My body needed this time to adjust. I’ll get there!!
I have signed up for the spring 2023 group but will be doing this one on my own. My wife has hit her goal and is now going into maintenance. She will be following along with me though. She has been my biggest cheerleader!!!
My tips for success:
Make yourself the priority!! Maximize your efforts daily.
Follow the plan!! Get the water in!! Follow the food plan and make your choices as nutrient rich as possible.
Ask yourself the 4 questions at every meal.
Ask questions for anything you don’t understand. Gina’s team is here for us.
Show up everyday. Weigh yourself, embrace the plateaus, and share your NSV’s with others. You don’t even have to exercise. Just go for a walk, move your body. Trust me..you’ll thank me in the end. You will get out of this program what you put into it. A bonus is that you get to buy new clothes. And make sure you donate the old ones. You won’t be needing them anymore, so why hang onto them.
One last thing: Keep doing your best everyday and if no one is proud of you, be proud of yourself!!