I lost 90lbs as a result of a New Year's Resolution, and against all odds, I’ve kept this weight off for over 14 years! Prior to this, I had tried every diet under the sun (twice). But this time, I was determined to approach my wellness journey with a different tone as the extreme attempts hadn’t served me in the past.
I once heard that 98% of people who lose extreme weight eventually gain it back. I couldn’t help but wonder: Why isn’t this sticking for most? After some investigation, it became very clear - people attempting to embark on a weight loss journey weren’t going into it with a lifestyle mentality and many of us don’t approach weight loss with a long term vision. We look for quick wins, set surface goals, and don’t give ourselves the time to really understand what it will take to make it sustainable. Because I refused to be a part of this statistic, I felt it necessary to look within and set goals that were less tangible (i.e. a specific weight, or a dress size), but instead focus more broadly on what I wanted out of life and I how wanted to feel in my day to day.
This approach has been a game-changer in my life and the many clients I serve.
I’d love to share an exercise with you that can get you started! Especially as you look at your year ahead and what you want for your journey. From this reflective exercise, you can set some realistic and attainable wellness goals for 2020!
1. What was the most important lesson I learned this year with my health?
2. When did I feel healthiest this year? What happened?
3. When did I feel unhealthiest this year? What happened?
4. How did I do on the last set of health goals I set? What went wrong, and how can I change this narrative?
5. What is TRULY holding me back from being my healthiest self? What are some things that are limiting me from accomplishing what I want to accomplish?
6. Am I spending my time wisely?
7. Where am I wasting time? And how can I spend my time prioritizing health?
8. What are three things that make me feel the most relaxed and happy? How can I do more of that!?
9. What will happen if I don't take this step towards optimal health?
10. What does success in health look like for me? Not anyone else, but me.
My hope is that these probing questions will really force you to reflect, get you to the bottom of what it is that has held you back in the past, and set yourself up for success in 2020!
The introspective work I’ve done on my personal journey is undoubtedly the #1 reason I’ve been able to keep the weight off for 14 years and avoid that God awful statistic. Let’s start the year off by digging a little deeper and keeping a long term focus.
Since losing 90 pounds, 14 years ago, Tameika Gentles has devoted her time to helping others activate the inner strength and fulfillment she has found on her health journey. The Canadian-born certified personal trainer turned international wellness entrepreneur is the Co-Founder of The Whole Experience – a platform dedicated to helping women create a sustainable healthy lifestyle while building community. Through Whole Experience, she has reached and served over 1,300 women with her transformational coaching program, Project: YOU and has brought together almost 100 women in six countries, across four continents through her global retreats.
As an advocate for inner and outer fitness, Tameika has been featured in Essence Magazine, HuffPost, Health Magazine, Eat Well, Muscle & Fitness and Yahoo! News. Follow Tameika on Instagram @TameikaG