A Real Life Mind Body Spirit Makeover
This past October I had the privilege of teaching folks how to eat right at the Chattanooga Healthy Living Expo. While there, I was fortunate enough to meet a BI-LO shopper with an INCREDIBLE weight loss story. After chatting with Scott Adams for a few minutes, I realized that he had created his own personal Mind Body Spirit makeover! Check out my interview with Scott to find out how he lost over 180 pounds, and is still keeping it off five years later.
Monica: I’m so excited to hear your story! But before you tell me about your recent success, tell me about your background. Did you have any weight problems as a kid?
Scott: Not at all. Actually, I was an extremely active kid. I played football, baseball and basketball. I started doing Martial Arts when I was seven years old. My parents were very active as well, and they often took us camping and hiking.
Monica: So how did your life change as an adult?
Scott: I started out working in loss prevention for department stores, which required me to walk around the store all day long in order to try to stop and deter theft. But over the course of 10 years I started having multiple physical issues. After complex surgeries on my left ankle, lower back, neck and both shoulders, my doctors told me the only activity I was allowed to do was walk. I wasn’t allowed to play sports or run, so a lot of the physical activities I had previously enjoyed were out of the question.
There were also some other events that happened during this 10 year period that contributed to my situation. I went through a divorce, my little brother died, and my mother was diagnosed with cancer. It was a horrible point in my life. I was very depressed, and almost completely immobile. I went from weighing 175 pounds with a 34-inch waist to weighing 354 pounds with a 52-inch waist. And I was not eating right either. I was on the “see-food” diet — I saw food and I ate it. Period. I was just so depressed that I wanted to drown my worries with food.
Monica: Wow, that’s a lot to go through. Did you suffer from any other health problems once you gained the weight?
Scott: Oh yeah. I went to my doctor for a check up and I discovered that my blood sugar level was over 500, and I had to be hospitalized immediately. I was then diagnosed with type II diabetes. When I left the hospital, my doctor told me that if I didn’t lose weight I was going to die. I have kids, so I decided right then that it was time to do something about the weight.
Monica: So what did you do? It must have been a challenge to exercise due to all of your physical limitations.
Scott: My doctor said I could walk, and that was it. At first I could only walk to the mailbox and back. But I pushed myself farther every day. Six months into my walking I had lost weight, but not a ton. I then started eating six small meals a day, focusing on lean proteins and lots of vegetables and fruits. I also started drinking at least 10 glasses of water daily. After I got into my new eating plan, the weight started melting off so much faster! I learned then that nutrition and exercise had to go hand in hand if I was going to beat my enemy, the weight. I now walk five days a week, and sometimes as much as 20 miles at once.
Monica: So what are some of your favorite foods now?
Scott: I eat Cascadian Farms Cinnamon Raisin Granola every morning, I have one Muscle Milk protein shake every day, and I always eat at least one Fuji apple and one banana daily. I love to add Maranatha Chunky Almond Butter to my apple for a snack. And what is so great about these foods is that they are all available at my BI-LO — I don’t have to go to any other grocery stores or specialty stores for any of my favorite foods.
Monica: That’s great!! Is your diabetes under control now?
Scott: Yes! Because of my diet and exercise, I don’t have to take insulin injections anymore. And beyond that, getting healthier has made me more confident and secure in my personal relationships. The support of my family and friends really helped. I lost a total of 186 pounds over the course of three years, and they were there for me the whole time. I’ve now kept the weight off for five years and counting!
Monica: So what are you up to these days? Do you have the same job now?
Scott: Currently I am a Martial Arts instructor and a personal trainer. I love teaching others how to defend themselves and how to get that extra weight off. Nothing makes me happier than to see someone come into a room and smile, be confident, and know that he or she changed his or her life for the better.
Monica: What are the top three things you think others should do to be healthier?
Scott: 1. Walk a mile a day; 2. Eat five to six small meals daily and drink lots of water throughout the day; 3. Eat healthier — go for the fruits and veggies instead of the donuts and candy bars!