In all honesty, I started this article a year ago.
Back then it was just a rant, semi-inspired from several clients who decided four weeks of the 12-week Dare to Eat program was all they needed.
I wondered, if they only wanted to lose 5 pounds, why all the fuss?
About six months ago, I added to my rant because I felt like everyone I knew wanted to lose five pounds.
It was like 5 pounds was this magical number…
Today, instead of ranting to you, I’ve found a way to clarify my thoughts and I think they might help you.
For starters, when I say I’m a “fat loss coach” it’s kind of a misnomer. In fact, I hesitate to call myself a “fat loss coach” when talking to non-fitness people because it scares some of my target audience members away.
You see, I rarely work with people who you’d call “fat.”
Side note: I really hate that word.
Seventy-five percent of the people I work with have no problem getting into the gym, meal-prepping is already part of their routine and chances are they spend more hours a week exercising than I do.
I work with people who come to me saying “I feel like a badass on the treadmill, when I lift, etc. but I don’t feel that way when I look the mirror.”
These are the people who’ve hit a plateau with exercise alone, who’ve started to realize that their success is 100% dependent upon their nutrition, so they call me.
From there, my clientele breaks down into three groups. I’m going to walk through each type of client for you, because having some insight into how I see my clients as fat loss clients (Client A), maintenance clients (Client B) and “mental fat loss” clients (Client C) will perhaps help you better understand what you mean when you say “I want to lose five pounds.”
For other fat loss coaches out there, this may give you some insight into what approach I take with various types of people, after their initial evaluation.
So, what’s the five pound fuss all about?
Client A might’ve dieted in the past, but as of recent they haven’t been doing so well with their nutrition. They have excess weight to lose and they’re willing to do whatever it takes, (probably more than it takes) to accomplish their goal.
Client A may or may not exercise. However, in my experience, it’s more likely that Client A has tried multiple forms of exercise, and tends to use exercise as an excuse to justify their cocktail Friday night, or that extra cookie before bedtime.
Client A needs:
- hands on fat loss strategy, guidance and education
- reminders that fat loss takes time, and a motivator/coach to stay with them throughout the seemingly long period of time
Client A will:
- commit to tracking their food
- commit to making lifestyle changes– many of which they’ve never tried before
- put in the time to learn the information
- get impatient, but stay the course.
Client A’s end result:
- 6-14 pounds lost (on average, for a 12-week program)
- knowledge gained to sustain weight lost
- overall increased confidence
Simply put, Client A is the most standard client, the type of person who has fat to lose, shows up, learns and achieves their goal.
But not everyone is like this.
Thanks to societal pressures from the media and Instagram, many of us have adapted a mindset that we *must* always be making some type of progress, enter Client B.
Client B is looking for balance. They have days when they’re “good,” meaning they eat kale and chicken breast, avoid carbs like the plague and think sugar might be the devil… until Friday. And Saturday. And Sunday.
Come Monday morning they are at Crossfit or their bootcamp class, sweating out their sins and promising to themselves that they’ll be “good” this week, until Friday. And Saturday. And Sunday.
Client B typically feels like a rockstar by Thursday if they are “good” all week because with few carbs they might have lost some water weight, and scale weight, after exercising like a fiend and eating just enough to stay sane.
When I start to work with Client B, I approach them like I would Client A, initially.
Client B needs:
- a fat loss strategy focused around finding energy balance throughout the week
- a realistic training plan that incorporates rest days, or at least active rest days
- eat less, do less is typically a theme during the work week, to help break the cycle of out-exercising a bad diet.
- Prioritizing slightly more calories throughout the week will make them less likely to be “bad” on the weekends.
Client B will:
- be scared of eating this much at first, during the work day.
- be afraid to stop exercising BEAST MODE every day
- make a perfect meal plan, and then undershoot their calories by 100 every day, in the first week
- Stay accountable for 3 to 4 weeks and see progress
- And then quit at the 4 week marker
Client B’s end result:
- at the very least, they’ll have been exposed to a plan that helps end the “being good/bad” cycle
- understand that eating a little more during the work week can actually help them avoid wanting to binge on the weekends
- will lose about 3-5 pounds in a month and be very happy and content, with increased confidence
Most Client Bs see a 3 to 5 pound weight loss– an amount that makes them feel better– hence why they don’t stick around for more than 4 to 5 weeks.
At the end of the day, they learn how to better manage their lifestyle so that they maintain that 3 to 5 pound loss and still enjoy their work weeks and weekends. Client B learns that they don’t have to murder themselves in the gym and starve to see good results. And hopefully, they begin to live with less guilt.
Ahhh yes, the guilt. EnterClient C, the Guilty bee.
My Client Cs are people who say that they need to lose weight.
In fact, the publicly talk about it all the time. They are constantly hoping that their dress fits by Friday, that they don’t “look fat” in photos and they discuss how they wish they had “better legs, better glutes, bigger boobs, etc.”
Client C either doesn’t really have much weight to lose, or they really don’t want to lose weight at all.
They just want to talk about it. They want to exercise, but they also want to eat PopTarts.
Half-cultivated by a society that breeds insecurity and perfectionism, and half-perpetuated by routine negative self-talk, this person is just used to being down about themselves.
Client C needs a mental fat loss program.
Client C needs:
- to try committing to something before they decide whether or not they “can’t even.”
- I will sometimes put this person through a Dare to Eat cycle so that they can go through the body-image questionnaires and reflective aspects of the program
- I put them on Dare to Eat so that they can see what type of dedication fat loss really takes– strategy, planning, positive mental attitude
- to be pushed to try a strength training program more than an actual diet. (So I encourage the to start the Dare to Move program)
Client C will:
- Think that Dare to Eat is going to change their life
- make an immaculate meal plan, get things in on time and be super excited to change their life
- get frustrated when the scale hasn’t moved in four days
- give up after the second week because they really would just rather have fun
Client C’s end result:
- In a perfect world, they will learn how to talk about themselves more positively
- Stay with the Dare to Move strength training program that empowers them to love their body for its talents and strength
- stop complaining as much, now knowing that they haven’t a right to complain if they aren’t willing to do what it takes to make the change
- will continue to work on positive mental strategies to love their now.
I’m not saying there are only three types of people. I’m saying that after three years of working with people, I’m starting to figure out that most people generally feel MUCH better about themselves after they lose about 5 pounds.
But, losing five pounds means different things to different people.
For those who have a lot to lose, five pounds is the first sign that tells the client they CAN do this.
For others, it’s the quick fix that makes all their clothes fit a little better, and the habits created during the 4 to 5 weeks it took to lose the weight help them maintain the five pound loss, without guilt or stress or worry.
And for those clients who like to think they need to lose weight but they really need to lose the negative outlook on themselves, the Dare to Move program can help them become empowered by way of their own strength and capabilities.
At the end of the day I want to inspire people believe in themselves.
I strive to provide tools and information to help people feel their best. I’ve wondered what this Five Pound Fuss is all about, and now I’m beginning to better understand….
The saying “I could lose five pounds” really means different things to different people.
Getting to the real root of what you mean by “I need to lose five pounds” can help you better understand what actions to take, so you can stop dwelling on it and start to make the right moves!
No more Five Pound Fuss!