Updated: Jan 16, 2020
Kevin Weinstein's story is remarkable yet we think it's relatable, and he was kind enough to share it with us in the form of a self assessment about his experience and progress over a 6-Month Nutrition Coaching journey with SoMoved. Kevin lost an incredible 50 pounds, shed nearly 33 inches and more than 14% body fat, and did this while gaining a remarkable 40% muscle quality. His journey gave him only forward progress because of his commitment to learning what really worked for him. We're thrilled that Kevin found tools that helped him achieve these results but that truly change his behavior, habits, and lifestyle for the better. Dig into this excerpt from his self assessment below, and be inspired like we are!
"In January 2018, I was struggling with workaholism. I was putting in crazy hours for months on end to help win work for the company while largely ignoring my health. My job was even encouraging me to do a better job balancing; this stress was self-imposed.
Once work slowed down a bit I finally got treatment for sleep apnea. After 3 sleep studies I got a diagnosis and treatment plan. Sleeping better was great for me. Doctor kept talking weight loss and I was moderately successful losing weight between visits. Plateaued around 10 pound weight loss but felt horrible that the machine to help me sleep was keeping my wife awake. It would wake me up occasionally but overall sleeping better than without it.
After that, more work took over my life. I was not doing an ideal job balancing my responsibilities. I knew I needed help because my strategies weren't working. I used a few sessions through employee assistance to talk through my work life balance (among other things), and during these discussions I realized that I needed to improve: my sleep (no kidding!), exercise (keep meaning to, but who has the time?), and nutrition (hadn't really thought about that too much).
Nutrition had been a blind spot for me. I had done paleo before (successfully) but lost my gallbladder a little over a year ago and sort of let myself eat anything since I needed to reduce my food sensitivity (let that sink in. I was literally this stupid). The foods that made me successful on paleo gave me horrible indigestion now. So many new challenges. Started nutrition coaching with Sarah at SoMoved and learned about a whole bunch of mistakes I was making (not eating a balanced diet, not getting enough exercise, using food as a form of stress relief). My relationship with food was toxic (no pun intended). Working with Sarah helped me establish goals and frameworks to improve my wellness and change my focus. Balance in all things, and in all things balance.
The first major epiphany I had was that date nights did not need to revolve around restaurants (generally pricey ones at that). Tried to make gym dates a weekly thing (real hard with kids!) but found that karaoke, playing guitar, and finding activities to do was way more fun than going to a restaurant. Grab some healthy food at Wegmans or Whole Foods and go play. I also found myself playing my guitar more often, reading more, and watching less TV.
Setting goals in other areas of my life besides work was a liberating experience and I found I was much more effective at work by taking care of myself outside of work. I've gained clarity and focus through sleep, exercise, and nutrition.
My fitness journey has not been without setbacks and I'd be lying if I said it was easy. First goal was for my wedding ring to fit again (hadn't in a couple of years). Got there in about a month. Second goal (the big one) was to lose enough weight that I didn't need to be attached to a machine to sleep. After some machine malfunctions that were keeping me awake I went to visit the sleep doctor. Impressed with my weight loss, she made some tweaks to the machine setup and scheduled a sleep study to see if I could get rid of the machine. After 20 pounds of weight loss and months of work I learned that my sleep apnea wasn't weight related. That was my reason for embarking on this journey in the first place! The challenge I had to overcome at that point was the urge to drown my sorrows in a bottle of scotch or eat half of the menu at Sweetwater.
Instead, I decided to go shopping for clothes that actually fit me since my clothes were all too big. Helped me to appreciate that I had accomplished something important even if I missed my goal.
I started this process incredibly motivated but once I learned that the apnea was not weight related, I had to rely on discipline. I'd come this far and I could not derail my progress with all of the other improvements I was seeing. My stress was being managed better, I was feeling better, and when the machine didn't malfunction, even sleeping better. Work was even improving. Was getting to a point where I enjoyed cooking! Most of the gifts I'd hoped to receive for my birthday and over the holiday season were related to cooking. Nice to have a hobby where people close to you have a vested interest in your progress!
So now. Down nearly 60 pounds. My goal weight was sort of a moon shot from years ago; got there and kept going. While not my primary goal I'm in shock; haven't been within 30 pounds of that number in forever. Every fitness marker is improved dramatically. People often don't recognize me because of the weight loss. I'm now chalking up the wins and thinking through how much I have learned through this process.
Most programs say "in 6 months you'll wish you started 6 months ago." Here I am 6 months in and I can confirm that I'm glad I started 6 months ago. That was the day I ran out of excuses (as a side note: got my wife onto the fitness and nutrition bandwagon too. She's a lawyer; she makes excuses for a living and I just do it for fun). If we can make the time and make the changes I'm convinced anyone can. Was it a lot of hard work. Yes. Hell yes. So much yes. Decided that I needed to make health and nutrition a priority and Sarah educated me on nutrition and fitness so I could direct that energy productively. I can't thank her enough for the changes I'm seeing and my forever changed relationship with food. Food is fuel and anything else that you use food for can be better addressed by something else. Find that something.
I have some fitness goals for next year. Stay the course on nutrition. Build muscle. Lose fat. It's weird not having a goal weight but here I am. I'm competing against a slower, heavier version of myself (pre-SoMoved Kevin) and I'm determined to continue kicking his ass and keep getting PRs. This is achievable. There's plenty of progress left to make and who knows, maybe I'll be able to get rid of that damn sleep machine after all."
- Kevin Weinstein