There is a Biggest Loser challenge going on at work. Last time I tried one of those things I gained twenty pounds. I guess I was the biggest winner.
The colleague running the Biggest Loser challenge is the school’s wrestling coach. Our wrestling coach is a gorgeous former professional judo champion goddess from Canada. She makes you believe that anything is possible. She makes you believe that you want to work hard to achieve your goals and that you can work harder than you ever thought possible. In other words, she is just the sort of effective coach I celebrate in How to Be Manly. A good coach can change your life and that is the truth.
I entered the Biggest Loser challenge last month because the timing coincided perfectly with positive changes I was ready to make in my health and fitness. Also, I was curious about the true effectiveness of the diet plan my How to Be Manly main character follows. During one highly active summer, he follows a low carb, no sugar plan outlined in a self-help book he finds at a garage sale. He ends up losing four clothing sizes in about two months. I’ve known young people who have changed that dramatically in the course of a summer. I know it’s possible. But I wondered if the clean eating plan Tad Manly suggests would work for the woman in her forties who wrote him into being. It was an experiment in clean eating, daily exercise and thoughtful self-care.
With the encouragement of the wrestling coach and my own characters, I stopped eating sugar and processed foods. For seven weeks now I have followed the football great Tad Manly’s sage advice. I drink lots of water, work out every day and eat clean. No wheat products. No Donettes from the 7-Eleven.
I may not win the contest. I’ll find out tomorrow who is the Biggest Loser. But I have proven to myself that eight weeks is enough time to make substantial positive changes in health. It is enough time to go down three sizes. It is enough time to see myself from the eyes of a good coach–as strong and capable of more than I thought.
(With thanks to Stefanie Howorun.)