BiggestLoser.com had the opportunity to get an exclusive interview with Lisa from Season 14. Read about her advice for weight loss and fitness success!
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BiggestLoser.com: How has the weight loss affected your personal life?
Lisa: The weight loss has totally, radically, completely changed my life. This has affected how I grocery shop, how I do my job and even how I look in the mirror. I’m excited to think about all the possibilities the future holds. I feel like everything looks different. It is incredible; the world has opened up. My transformation has made me believe that dreams do come true, and all things are possible. I’m starting to recognize the person I see. In achieving these goals that I thought were never possible, I have started asking what other goals I have not reached for because I didn’t think I could.
BiggestLoser.com: What's your typical daily schedule? On average, how many calories do you eat each day?
Lisa: While I was still competing, I spent over four hours a day working out. Each morning I was out the door to the gym by 5 a.m. Some days I would take in a spin class, other days I would meet with a trainer. I made sure to get a 90-minute workout in before getting to school by 7 a.m. At 3 p.m., immediately after work I was back to the gym for another 90 minutes up to two hours, meeting with my trainer, then getting in to a kickboxing class or a small group workout session, or a good run. I would then head home for a quick meal with my family, and back for one more class (on most nights). This schedule worked five days a week. Most Saturdays I would get in two to three hours. I took time to be with my family on Sundays. While in competition I ate five 200 to 250 calories meals a day.
By reaching my goal weight I am feeling stronger than ever. Now I am navigating through a new normal. I am still eating healthy, counting calories, and getting my time in the gym. Three days a week I get into a good spin class before heading to work. I walk during lunch and spend time after school having fun with my kids. At least two days a week I get in some weight training and into a cardio kickboxing class. I exercise 60 to 90 minutes, 5 to 6 days a week. We also are striving to make more active choices for our family. I have a few 5K runs planned. In June, we are competing in The Tough Mudder. Now that I am in a maintenance mode, I eat 1,300 to 1,600 calories a day. BodyMedia has been a great help in keeping track of both my calorie burn and consumption. I plan to do weekly weigh-ins for life.
BiggestLoser.com: What major obstacles did you overcome to lose the weight?
Lisa: For me, the biggest obstacle came from inside. I had to get over my self-doubt. Once I believed I could actually do it, I began to do it.
BiggestLoser.com: What was your biggest realization while being on The Biggest Loser?
Lisa: My biggest realization was that I could be enough. As I said, I had struggled so much with my self-doubt that I never felt like what I had was enough. I was the most confident insecure woman around, I finally became tired of wearing a facade of strength and became ready to truly be strong! Dolvett helped me realize what I have been sharing with others since, I tell them, “Do the best you have with what you have, and what you have will only get better.”
BiggestLoser.com: What advice would you give The Biggest Loser At Home members?
Lisa: For people at home I say, “Don’t wait, don’t settle, and don’t quit!” I’m not sure what I was always waiting for, tomorrow never really came. I always was one Monday away from the next best diet, again. I often settled, never really expecting to reach a goal. With The Biggest Loser, I remember reaching a 50-pound loss and thinking, “I could be comfortable here forever. Then I hit a 75-pound loss and thought, “I feel great, this is where I want to be.” Then I lost over 100 pounds and reached my goal weight! Now I realize how often I settled for less than what was possible. By stopping each time before I missed out on how amazing I actually feel now. So don’t quit. Reach your goal and then maintain. Keep your win. Don’t go back!
It is possible to do this at home. When it comes down to it, I did 80 percent of my weight loss journey at home, while working full time and managing the needs of a family. There is no magic pill, it takes some hard work and dedication but it is worth every bit of it.
BiggestLoser.com: What was the biggest cause of your weight gain?
Lisa: The biggest cause of my weight gain was not realizing how big I actually had become. I lived on the corner of Lost and Delusional. I spent a life time convincing myself that my weight didn’t hold me back. I avoided cameras and mirrors and denied that I was getting worse.
BiggestLoser.com: How are you staying motivated since the finale?
Lisa: I’m staying motivated by telling my story so others can be free from their own Lost and Delusional corner. I remember where I was and where I want to be. I keep motivated by setting new goals and helping others reach their goals. In this process I realize all that I have gained. I have lost over 100 pounds, but I have gained true strength, great courage, confidence and unspeakable joy. I am loving the journey and trusting the process. I have won! Since the finale I have been determined to hold on to that win. I am still learning what a new normal will look like for me and my family, but what a ride it is.
BiggestLoser.com: What food-related triggers cause you to overeat? How are you dealing with those now?
Lisa: Actually, all food can cause us to overeat. The way I stay on top of it is to keep a calculation and allow myself to have what I have worked for. I was Nacho Girl. I loved nachos! I have found new ways to get the same flavors. I curb the old desires with new healthy choices. I will enjoy good foods with moderation and accountability. I will approach the food triggers in a new way by being prepared. It's not that I won’t have ice cream, I just won’t have it in my house. It's not that I won’t go out for nachos, I just don’t have to finish the whole plate, or perhaps go as frequently. If I don’t know what I’m eating I don’t eat it. Knowledge is power!
BiggestLoser.com: What's the biggest change you found about going back home after losing the weight?
Lisa: Going home Week 5, I had lost 37 pounds on the Ranch. The first thing I did was clean out our kitchen and turn our home into a safe place. I then continued to work in the new lifestyle. Losing weight with my home team has set me up for success. The changes became the new normal for the whole family. Our kitchen looks much like it did a week after coming home while I was still in the heat of competition. Treats have become true treats again.
BiggestLoser.com: What are your plans for being a trainer for special needs people?
Lisa: I am currently looking into becoming a certified personal trainer. There are lots of options ahead of me and I am looking into the one that best suites me and the goals before me. I am excited to see where this may lead.
BiggestLoser.com: Have your students impacted you in your weight loss journey?
Lisa: I work with the most encouraging and supportive students. You have no idea how many cards, letters, high fives and fist bumps. My class even wrote a song with my very own music video. I also look at the joy and strength they model, with all the challenges they face each day. I am encouraged each and every day by their sheer determination and joy for life.
BiggestLoser.com: What activities are you doing with your kids that you were not able to do before you lost the weight?
Lisa: We are just starting to explore the possibilities that are before us as a family. I am looking beyond the endless Wisconsin winter toward more time outside. Who knows, I might even learn how to play baseball! We are looking into weekend canoeing trips, long bike rides and hikes at the state park. I am looking forward to a whole lot of things.
Lisa found success on The Biggest Loser, but you don’t have to be on the show to lose weight and start your own transformation! The Biggest Loser At Home Program gives you online access to The Biggest Loser diet and fitness program designed by our health and wellness experts - personalized to fit your goals and lifestyle. The Biggest Loser At Home Program gives you all the tools, expert help and community support you need to succeed. Click here to sign up. Start your own weight loss journey today!