Hi everyone, it’s Michelle here. I met Marc Miller back in June when I was visiting Chicago at Flywheel Sports. He was killing it in the front row of Alicia’s class and I found out after he had lost 50 pounds! Full disclosure – Marc is married to Alicia which just helps prove my theory that the couple that sweats together also looks great together! Here is his story…
What was your turning point?
My high cholesterol numbers made me feel, for the first time in my life, that I had the potential to be sick and overweight. I was only 27 years old and my total cholesterol was 243. It was a scary reality that at such a young age, I was already on a path that could lead to more serious health-related consequences.
Who inspired you to lose weight and get healthy?
After wanting to improve my health, I signed up for a 5k with my wife who was already fit at the time. I was out for a training run with her and I was complaining the entire time about my feet hurting, my back hurting, the hot weather, and finally in her frustration she stopped and said “YOU’RE UN-COACHABLE!” My wife’s tough love at that moment gave me a goal to work towards. I knew it wouldn’t be a cake walk (haha)!
What did you change in your diet?
Since high cholesterol was a concern for me, my main focus was cutting out animal fats from my diet. I loved cheeseburgers and ham and cheese sandwiches as part of my regular diet so it was quite an adjustment at first. Due to long hours at the office, I would often eat dinner at work so it took a lot of will power to not choose the more unhealthy menu options presented to me. I substituted hearty, vegetable-rich soups and salads with lots of raw veggies. Every Friday, I allow myself more freedom to enjoy something more indulgent, normally cheeseburgers!
What is your current nutrition plan?
My breakfasts consist of Greek yogurt with organic berries and an apple as I walk to work. I eat turkey sandwiches with no cheese from Subway for lunch. After work I eat a pre-workout snack of almonds. Post-workout I have a whey protein shake and/or fresh juice from my juicer (a pear, an apple, two carrots, kale, lemon), and dinner is usually pasta with fish.
What is your favorite workout?
I love running with no watch or predetermined distance or destination. I love to see the city of Chicago and see areas that I wouldn’t otherwise visit.
How do you maintain your current weight?
I make sure to do endurance cardio workouts four days a week, whether they be cycling or running. I also incorporate three days a week of weight training. I focus every day on crunches, push ups, tricep dips, and chin ups/pull ups because of the efficiency of those exercises. I typically weigh myself once a month to make sure I am on track, and maintain my level of nutrition just as much as I do my daily exercises. Even though I work full time and have months at a time in which I work 65+ hours a week, I am making the conscious choice to prioritize my health.
What were you most excited about when you lost/started losing weight?
It was great to look in the mirror and actually see the changes every couple of weeks in addition to feeling more energetic and happy. It was a great motivator to keep pushing.
How do you avoid temptations to keep you from falling back into old unhealthy habits?
I don’t really consider food a temptation. My issue was my lack of free time and so I ate the foods that were fast and easy. Then I would not want to use my free time to work out or cook healthy meals. I now find it hard to relax until I have exercised or prepared something healthy. Having a routine is key to maintaining success.
What do you do in social situations (restaurants, parties) to make healthy decisions?
I don’t get enjoyment out of eating greasy foods anymore so I tend to gravitate towards the healthier options on the menu. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes a person just needs to eat and eat a LOT, but most of the time I don’t have a hard time in restaurants.
What advice do you have for someone first starting out so they don’t get discouraged?
I would set small, attainable goals for myself. Run a 5k, try to reach a number on the scale (that was attainable), go 10 minutes longer on the treadmill. I would give someone the advice that it’s motivating to set those goals and also to remember that they can’t succeed if they keep quitting.
What is your final goal?
My final goal is to maintain my agility and fitness into old age so that when I am finally able to enjoy the fruits of my labor, I won’t feel too old and too tired to do so!
What are the most helpful things your family and friends have done to keep you on track towards your goals?
Their words of encouragement have helped me so much along the way. Many people have said to me that I look like I have lost a considerable amount of weight and that I look very happy. Thanks, everyone!