Carey’s mind and body transformation
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Carey joined the Lean Eating coaching program for one reason only – to win the $10,000.00 prize.
Now, having lost 82 lbs and 19% body fat, she’s got a whole new perspective.
And she wants to share it with you today…
Trying to look like a magazine cover model? That was nonsense to Carey. She was busy with other things. So, even though she was 80lbs overweight, she didn’t obsess about getting skinny.
That’s why she’ll tell you that the only reason she signed up for Lean Eating was to win the $10,000 prize.
“I looked at the transformation pictures and thought ‘I have a lot of weight to lose. If I sign up, they’re going to tell me what to do, I’m going to do it, and I’m going to win the money,” she tells me.
“If it wasn’t for the big cash prize, I would have never even considered it.”
Misguided? Who knows? We’re often told that intrinsic motivation (motivation from the inside) is better than extrinsic motivation (motivation from the outside).
But, in the Lean Eating coaching program, we consistently see that hefty external motivators – like big cash prizes – are exactly what people need to kick-start the change process.
Still, I tell her, there are easier ways to get $10,000. (A part time job, perhaps?) So isn’t it realistic to assume there may be another reason to actually pay money and dedicate your life to a yearlong workout and nutrition program?
“Well, a few months before the program, my son decided he wanted to be a healthy person,” she says. “Every night we’d sit down to eat and I’d have a Taco Bell bean burrito and he’d have a salad and chicken.”
“After a few weeks of that, I started to look at those two foods – side by side – and wonder: ‘Why am I eating the Taco Bell when I could be eating something healthier?’”
And the more she thought about it, the more she realized that choosing healthy food isn’t about trying to look like a cover model. Rather, it’s about living the life you deserve.
“When eating those unhealthy foods, I felt like I was abandoning myself. I felt like I wasn’t fully engaged or saying ‘yes’ to life. “
So, she decided to join the Lean Eating program. Sure, the big cash prize was the initial motivator. But saying “yes” to life became the impetus for change.
It’s Month 1 of Lean Eating and Carey can’t do a simple bodyweight squat. She’s physically incapable.
“It was so humiliating,” she says. “I cried. I felt like the biggest idiot on the planet trying to bridge these two worlds.”
But with help from her son, she learned to modify the exercises.
“We held on to a clothesline at first and then moved from there. We came up with basic exercises that were within my range of motion that I could try to do. And we stuck with those.”
Initially, Carey had a “no way possible” mentality. But, like everyone who comes into Lean Eating physically deconditioned, she got over it. And, after a few weeks of training at home, she signed up at the YMCA.
She had learned to adapt. And, now, she was ready to start lifting weights.
That turned into a whole new battle.
“Every time we’d go to the gym my two sons would go play racquetball. Sometimes I’d walk onto the court, sit down in the corner and say, ‘I can’t do this any more. This isn’t for me.’ Then after 10 minutes or so I’d go ‘OK, I’m going to go workout now.’”
Then came a Lean Eating lesson that really shifted her perspective. In it, Dr Berardi presented some unique ideas on motivation.
“I always appreciated that lesson,” says Carey. “I realized that no one feels inspired at all times and that it’s OK to feel that way. I also realized that even when you’re not motivated, you do it anyway because it’s life-supporting.”
And that’s when her identity began to change.
“There was a maturity in the questions she started asking,” says Erin Weiss-Trainor, Carey’s Lean Eating Coach. “It’s as if she was embracing a new identity and, from there, making sure that her actions were consistent with this new person she was becoming.”
“My attitude became: I’m the type of person who goes to the gym every day and eats these healthy foods,” she says. “So it became non-negotiable. Whatever else was happening that day, I was going to exercise and was going to eat well.”
However, she did still have doubts.
“Sometimes I’d get that voice that says, ‘This is not who I am, I don’t belong in a gym, I can’t do this! But then I realized that, yes, I am strong, this is what I do. One hour per day, I support my body in this focused way.”
And, as she continued to support her body with exercise and proper nutrition, as she continued to practice this new identity, motivated or not, the pounds flew off. In fact, at the end of the first six months, Carey had lost about 45lbs and 11% body fat. But she wasn’t done yet.
Following directions is pretty easy. Truly transforming one’s lifestyle in the long term…that feels like the real challenge.”
Like most people who go through the program, Carey wanted to keep going for two reasons. First, she wanted to lose more weight (although she was a little scared about the process). Next, she wanted to “deepen the lifestyle transformation” she saw during the first 6 months.
“I wanted to teach myself to make this a part of who I am. I knew how to follow a program but I wasn’t sure how to be a person who lived a healthy lifestyle.”
The exercise selection got harder as the programming progressed, but Carey was now capable of dominating the exercises. But she didn’t stop there.
“Toward the end of the year I was doing all sorts of stuff. I was scouring high-level bodybuilder magazines to come up with the most insane protocol to maximize everything for ‘Peak Week.’”
“Peak Week” is the week of final preparations leading up to the photo shoot at the end of the program. The Lean Eaters experiment with a host of unique strategies to help them look their best for their shoot. It’s an intense week that’s worthwhile, though not necessarily fun.
Except for Carey, it seems.
“I loved doing all that hardcore stuff,” she says.
And suddenly, this woman who couldn’t do a bodyweight squat and “didn’t care” about being overweight became a Lean Eating finalist, winning some great prize money along the way.
But, for Carey, while the money was nice, it wasn’t just about the money any longer. It was about gratitude for inspired moments, about saying ‘yes’ to life, and about embracing a new, healthier identity.
It’s 2AM and Carey, now 80 pounds lighter, is going through a circuit workout in the corner of her brother’s hospital room.
She’s doing push-ups. She’s doing squats. She’s breathing hard, using her lungs to fuel her body with oxygen as she moves, crouches, and bends.
She rests, lets her heartbeat slow down to a normal pace. Then she starts again.
“A full year after following this healthy lifestyle and working to change all those patterns and become a fit person, here I was in the total dark pit of unhealthiness,” she tells me. “I wanted to hold onto life while death and sickness were all around me.”
While nothing can prepare you for the death of a loved one, Carey found salvation in exercise. It’s not something anyone—especially Carey—could have predicted over a year ago.
During the grieving months after her brother’s death, she put on 10 pounds. It was tough, but manageable—she’s confident she can quickly take it off.
“If I didn’t have the habits to fall back on, I could have easily gained 50 pounds,” she says. “To me that means I am a fit person after all. It’s a testimony to the fact that my body has changed and the way it’s going to be in this world is different now.”
“No one goes into Lean Eating thinking that this is going to be a life transformation,” says Erin. “They think they’re going to lose some weight, become a little healthier, and maybe win some money.”
But as Carey found out that night in the hospital, sometimes the reason you start something isn’t the same reason you finish it. Cary started her Lean Eating journey to win some money. Today, she’s a stronger, leaner, fitter woman who uses exercise and nutrition as a way to celebrate life.
If you want to get in the best shape of your life and take a shot at the $100,000 in prize money, we strongly recommend you put your name on the Lean Eating presale list below.
We accept a very small number of new clients every 6 months, and the spots in the program typically sell out in hours. However, those motivated enough to put themselves on the presale list get to register 24 hours before everyone else. Plus, you’ll receive a big discount at registration.
So put your name on the list below — because, as always, spots are first come, first served, and when they’re gone, they’re gone.