Meet Jacqueline! She’s a peloton mom, engineer, ARFID warrior, and Stronger U superstar! Jacqueline has rocked the program and learned how to navigate her complex relationship with food while achieving on and off-scale victories. Read her full story below!
I joined SU last June … I’ve dealt with ARFID my whole life (that’s a fancy way of saying I’m a picky eater, but not by choice), and I was tired of knowing I could eat better but not really knowing how. Joining SU for me wasn’t necessarily about losing weight (though I knew that would come as a side effect), it was about learning how to eat within the confines of my own “safe” foods.
In the past, I had lost 80 pounds on another program (another two-initial program, ifyoucatchmywwdrift), but on that program I was constantly hungry because it turns out that a banana and a pack of Oreo thins had the same … AHEM … value … and I would pick the Oreos 100% of the time and then SHOCKER – I’d be hungry. I started to gain weight pretty soon after (because I was tired of being hungry even in maintenance), and grad school, a move, two kids, and a failed surrogacy later and I was fat, stressed, and depressed, but most nutrition programs don’t work well for me because I will literally gag and/or throw up anything my body decides it doesn’t like to eat. Being me is a pleasure (sigh).
A bunch of fellow Pelo-riders recommended SU and I resisted because I was spinning 4x/week … riding will automatically cause weight loss, right? Nope. So many people said “weight loss happens in the kitchen” and I didn’t wanna hear it. I still am not sure WHAT caused me to decide to join in the middle of a pandemic when I had 50lb of stockpiled flour in the basement just begging to be made into cinnamon buns, but I did.
And Eva Astor entered my world.
Like I said, this was about learning to eat more than losing weight – I just wanted to FEEL good and know that I was putting the right things in my body but in such a way that I could still work with what I knew I could eat. Eva has been great, helping me work around my picky eating, offering me suggestions of things to try here and there, but also supporting me when I say, “nope … can’t eat that or I’ll throw up.”
To be honest, I’ve been looking in the mirror every day and being disappointed that I don’t see a difference. Other people see it, the scale certainly shows it (53lb and counting), my clothes definitely showed it, but I didn’t see it. Last week, I threw on a dress that solidly did not fit me when I started SU. It not only fit me, but it was also the first time I really SAW the difference. It took almost 55lb for me to see it … but now I’m seeing it in little ways … baby biceps showing up where flab used to be (and to be honest, still is) … less thigh flattened out when I sit down in the car … my legs looking different as they pump those Peloton pedals … the list goes on.
More importantly, though, I’m starting to see the changes in my own eating habits – making sure I get more protein, making sure I drink lots of fluids, making an attempt to get in fruits and veggies when I can choke them down. My job is a constant sh*t-show, and this week has been a little more of an exception – even on the days where I can’t track just due to not having 3 seconds to breathe, I’m finding that I’m opting for protein, I’m not eating to full, and I’m still trying to stay within the confines of my macros.
I’m not hungry, I DO feel better, and my kids are eating better by default too. We’re having great conversations about making healthy food choices (and not about weight loss), and they’re really watching as I make exercise a priority in my life.
I still have a VERY long way to go, I’m what you might call a long-hauler. My weight loss graph looks more like an EKG, but I’m good with it. Those fluctuations show that I’m learning, and the fact that the trend is a downward one means that those habits are sticking. I’m so grateful to SU for everything I’ve learned so far, and I’m looking forward to wherever my journey takes me 😃