My Big Fat Take on the Whole Life Challenge

By October 4, 2014Success Stories
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Excerpt from Jessica’s Take

I didn’t write down the date I started my first Whole Life Challenge, but I’m pretty sure it was in a January. I had lost some weight on Weight Watchers a few years earlier and had gained a lot of it back. This completely freaked me out, because largely, I was eating a Weight Watchers-condoned diet. I talked to my internist and my gynecologist about it and they both just nodded their heads. “Women your age…”

I know it’s harder to lose weight now than it was when I was thirty, but I know plenty of Women My Age who are slim and fit, so that wasn’t totally making sense for me.

Of course, many of those women are hungry all the time. That’s not an option for me, as I’m too cranky when I’m hungry. So I talked to this woman in town who does a one-on-one nutrition/exercise/lifestyle thing with you and texts you all the time to make sure you’re toeing the line.

What she said to me made a lot of sense — we talked about hormones and how our bodies don’t have what they need to run efficiently — and I was all ready to sign up with her, plunk down a big chunk of change I really didn’t have, because I considered it my only hope.

Then I Heard About the Whole Life Challenge

Then, my friend Sharon posted something on Facebook about the Whole Life Challenge. I knew she’d lost some weight on it in the past and I was slightly intrigued — but only slightly, because really anything with the word “challenge” in it is a complete turn off to me. I find it “challenging” to make dinner every day, and to get a shower in. Those are enough challenges for me.

I hemmed and hawed for a few days and then the start date came and went. I wanted to kick myself. It cost $49 to join this challenge and I blew it off because…I don’t even know why I blew it off. I guess because I thought I would fail.

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Then, a day or two after it started, I had an uncharacteristic moment of clarity and decided I’d try this for the length of the Challenge. I’d quit if I hated it, and if it didn’t work, I’d suck it up and plunk down the money to do the one-on-one program here in town. I joined the challenge, joined my friend Sharon’s team and then completely — and I mean completely — changed the way I eat.

If I did my exercise, I got points for it that day. If I did not eat any foods I shouldn’t be eating, I got points for that. Every day I amassed points for my team, based on how I did with all my habits on that day. Most people did not get a perfect score every day and many people did not get a perfect score most days.

Meaning: people have vacations, or parties, or are too busy to get to the gym — they all just do the best they can.

My Big Fat Take on the Whole Life Challenge

I’ve told a lot of people about this experience — what it was like to give up sugar (hard and ugly), how I lost inches long before I lost pounds, how drinking the water required was one of the biggest challenges and ultimately changed my life. I can share with you my perspective on:

I found the way of eating in the Whole Life Challenge so energizing that I simply kept going after that first stint. I went from 150 to 135 pounds and a size 10 to a size 6. My skin is clear and my mood is usually pretty upbeat (which I think is because this way of eating might regulate your hormone spikes a bit).

I’m never hungry. I don’t feel deprived. I don’t find it difficult. But that’s just me. You have to find a thing that suits you — and this totally suits me.

Jessica Wolf
Jessica Wolf is a freelance writer and editor living in Montclair, New Jersey. Her first Whole Life Challenge began in January 2014, during which she gave up sugar and gluten (kicking and screaming) and has not (knowingly) had either of them since. At 53 years old, she began that Challenge hoping to lose five pounds. Four months later, she was down almost twenty pounds and felt better than she had in her forties. Since then, she has completed seven Challenges, five as a team leader. You can learn more about Jessica on her website.

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