Fat Loss Success Story: Meet Natalie
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image by byetman

Some of you may know, but many may not, that I share space with a martial arts studio, Dunham’s Martial Arts.  Chris Dunham, the owner, and I have a pretty cool relationship. We both want people to be well and happy. Our goal is to help them get the most out of life. We do it in different ways, but we help people get fit and healthy. Sometimes clients choose to work with both of us.

Natalie, one of his students, didn’t consciously choose to work with me. But Chris was intuitive enough to know that Natalie needed a little help to reach her goals and wanted to give her a nudge to do so.  Natalie had been training at the school for 2 years when he decided to give her a gift certificate for my services.  It was a nice gift to congratulate her on passing a test but he also knew that it was one of her goals to lose weight and she was struggling a bit on her own.

I asked Natalie what went through her head when Chris gave her that gift certificate:

I was speechless and caught somewhere between being thankful for a gift and being “somewhat” placed into a situation that I needed but never would have done on my own.  Classic Mr. Dunham – always knowing that I can do more than what I think I can. 

That was about a year ago. I remember at that first meeting I could tell she wasn’t quite sure what to expect. While I share space, workouts are private, so she had never had an opportunity to see what I do. With the images people see on TV there is often this fear of being yelled at and made to workout until you drop. Not my style. We eased Natalie into a workout that matched her fitness level and her goals of furthering her kenpo training. And of course we talked food. Natalie loves to ask me food questions and I love to talk about nutrition. Natalie embraced meal planning unlike any other client that I’ve worked with.

Natalie not only does an awesome job of planning, but she also follows up. She plans her meals and then notates how her plan goes. Does she get hungry during the day? Does she run out of steam during kenpo practice? Does she eat of out emotion and not hunger? It’s helped her battle what she describes as her biggest challenge, emotional eating. Her mantra:

The answer isn’t in the pantry!

Meal planning and scheduling her workouts have been the biggest keys, in my opinion, to her success. What does success look like for Natalie? Let me run down her accomplishments:

  • Ran her first 5K.
  • Passed her Brown Belt test.
  • Lost 33.8 lbs (and still going).

When I asked Natalie what she is most proud of she said, “‘My biggest success is now calling myself a runner.  I love going for a run”. In fact she’s set some pretty challenging running goals for herself, starting with a 10K in the spring.  I’ve seen Natalie hit a lot of goals over this past year and I am very confident she’ll hit the ones she sets in for herself in the future.

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