Carrie Devorah was a vibrant woman with an enviable freelance career through the White House News Photographers Association. She was fit and led an active lifestyle. That was before an unfortunate accident took away her mobility, self-confidence and was ultimately the catalyst for a 50+ pound weight gain. After several surgeries, learning “how” to eat and what exercises she could do safely with a limited range of movement, Carrie has now gone from a size 18 to a size 10.
Her life-changing accident
Although Carrie admits she never had the perfect diet, she was always able to counter poor eating choices with hard work in the gym. Unfortunately, Carrie’s downward spiral occurred during a fluke accident when slipped in a rental apartment and hyperextended her knee. The knee never healed correctly and eventually, she had to undergo surgery to repair a torn meniscus followed by a hip replacement, all in the same leg. During this time her mobility was greatly decreased and a deep depression settled over her. “I was a vibrant person dying inside an increasingly obese person,” she admitted. “I was struggling in pain while losing a career and my social identity.”
Due to the extent of her injuries, Carrie’s recovery lasted years and it was a painful process. First she became a recluse and then made “getting to the coffee shop” her daily mission. While that was good for exercise, it was a hindrance to her diet. “Coffee meant a pastry which meant I could delay struggling to walk back to my apartment,” she said. Early on she met a physical therapist who “got her.” She credits the PT with giving her the information she needed about counting calories but admitted it was tough to stick to noting, the worse the pain got, the less she moved and the more she ate. (more…)
By Gary Ditsch, lead exercise physiologist for Retrofit
There are many reasons we say we “can’t” fit exercise and activity into our lives. But for all the excuses we use there are just as many strategies and daily hacks that can help us become healthier and more fit. When you commit to add activity to your routine, one of the best strategies for making the habit stick is to also start tracking your daily movement.
Over the last couple of years, the popularity of activity trackers has continued to grow. It is now common to see someone wearing an activity tracker in almost any setting. With an activity tracker you get immediate feedback and create more opportunity for success. We have found at Retrofit that every step matters when it comes to weight loss. In fact, clients who achieve 10,000 steps or more per day are 2.7 times more likely to reach their weight loss goal!
If you are not currently tracking activity, where should you start? Here are several steps (literally) to get started.
First, take an assessment of your current activity. The best way to do this is to wear your tracker for two weeks to get an honest assessment. Take the average step count for the two weeks and use this as your established baseline.
Next, set up your individualized activity goal. While 10,000 steps might be the ultimate goal, your first threshold should be something relative to your baseline measurement. A suggestion is to take your baseline metric and add 2,000 steps per day to create your target.
Now that you have an established baseline and a personalized target, it’s time to find the small ways to add more activity and boost your step count. A few effective strategies might include:
As you can see from the examples, it’s easy to add more activity around the moments that already exist in your routine. Start with just one step-boosting strategy. As taking those additional steps becomes more natural, add another strategy, and another. Soon you’ll be much more active than before and well on your way to better health!
This post sponsored by Retrofit.
We all need to put a little more pep in our step. New information from the National Walkers’ Health Study, a database of information about middle-aged men and women who regularly walk for exercise, indicates that walking with greater speed is linked to longevity.
As the most popular physical activity in America, walking is assumed to be an equally beneficial exercise no matter the pace. In the new study, the benefits of moderate- and light- intensity walking were compared, as well as their impact on length of life.
You never know when Mario Menounos is going to strip down to her bikini, but if you’ve got it, flaunt it. The Extra correspondent, part-time WWE wrestler, and bestselling author of The EveryGirls Guide to Life is five foot eight inches of toned beauty, and isn’t afraid to show off her stunning physique. Maria recently sat down with E! News to discuss how she keeps up with her fitness while wearing so many hats, and the answers were shocking.
The gorgeous Greek revealed that she never works out, but walks constantly and tries to limit her diet to foods “from the ground.” If that sounds like a typical celebrity half-truth, think again. Maria’s “everything in moderation” lifestyle is the most reliable way to sustain a healthy weight and keep her body running like a well-oiled machine.
Marielle Doughty is one of the most positive women I’ve ever interviewed for our True Weight Loss segment. Time and time again she mentioned that although losing 113 pounds hasn’t been easy, she never considered it a struggle. Through the process she’s met new friends, learned how to cook in a different way, and found physical activities she truly enjoys participating in. Through her weight loss journey, she discovered it’s easier to embrace healthy lifestyle changes than consider them a burden.
We asked Marielle to share her story with us:
Tell us when your weight struggles began. It all began when I got married and learned how to cook. I found out that love to cook and I love food!
What habits specifically led you to gain weight? My love of cooking and my addiction to sugar. I also became a stay at home mom and didn’t stay active at all.
What caused you to realize you needed to change? Every year I would usher at my kids’ dance recital and come home every night with sore feet. One year two thoughts came to me almost simultaneously: 1- It feels like we were just here last week, not a whole year ago. 2- If I had made small lifestyle changes a year ago, my feet wouldn’t hurt as much. It was a light bulb moment for me. I started my journey the day after the last dance show and a year later I ushered again, 97 pounds lighter, and I didn’t get sore feet.
How did you lose weight? I used the Zumba diet to start. I chose it because it doesn’t cut out food groups, it teaches portion control and healthy habits instead of being a diet that has a finish line. I wanted to learn how to eat healthy, not get to a specific goal weight. The recipes were yummy too. I still love to cook – I just know how to make better choices.