When Jocelyn Crist lost a close friend to diabetes, it was a sobering reminder of life’s fragility. “He was 24 and I was at the funeral, thinking about the life that had been before him and I promised myself I would take care of myself for him,” said Crist, a 39-year-old from Minnesota, who was more than 300 pounds at the time.
It was during lunch at a Mexican restaurant with a friend when Crist noticed her friend was not eating the chips on the table. As it turns out, her friend had recently started her health journey on Profile. Shortly thereafter, Crist visited her doctor soon after and asked about joining. “I remember sitting in her office and telling her I wasn’t fat,” Crist said. “I knew how I felt inside. I was kind of secretly hoping she would give me a weight loss pill, but nope.”
The Difference A Year Can Make
Her doctor gave her the go ahead to sign up and Crist promised herself she would try it for a year – and what a year it has been! So far, the results have been remarkable. Jocelyn has lost 135 pounds, 70 inches and almost 44 percent of her body weight. Perhaps even more incredible, is that she has stayed on track even while managing hypothyroidism, started a new job and taking care of her mother who had broken her neck.
“I’ve been learning new ways to live, cook and to think,” she said. “I’ve inspired people and I feel good each day.” Simple things, like a walk around the block, are now pain free and enjoyable. Crist recently sat down at her computer and scrolled through old photos.
“I look at pictures on Facebook and think, ‘who is that woman?’ she said. Formerly a size 26, Crist now wears a size 12. When she takes the stairs, she’s not breathing heavy. “It was awful before,” she said. “My feet hurt all the time. I was embarrassed to be in a photo. I stopped living.”
Getting Excited About Activity
Spurred on by the death of another friend, Crist said she fully embraced the Profile program and an exercise plan that challenged her to get outside her comfort zone and go beyond what she thought was possible. At one point, she even found herself working out alongside hundreds of other athletes and famed exercise trainer Shaun T. “I couldn’t believe it,” she said. “This is from a person who had a hard time walking. Sometimes I’m just so proud of myself for the things I can do now.”
Finding your passion for your favorite ways to move and your favorite healthy foods is all part of the journey, she added. “One size doesn’t fit all,” she said. “This is just a blueprint. I might slice my apples in quarters and you in to eighths. Cross fit, it’s not for me. You have to make it your own.” Crist credits Profile with pushing her to try new things. She started a workout program that includes a variety of different exercises and goals, and she made a habit of trying a new vegetable every week.
Learning, Losing, Advocating
There is a learning curve when starting the program, Crist said, but it’s worth the victories. “There was a metal taste in my mouth, which was weird, but I think it was being in ketosis,” she said. “I don’t remember it being all that hard though.” Leaning on her coach was just as important as eating healthy. “I remember telling my coach I was hungry and she basically said, ‘Sorry, eat more vegetables,’” Crist recalled, laughing. She did what her coach suggested, and started seeing results immediately.
“I’m pretty stubborn when I have a goal,” she said. She’s also stubborn when it comes to advocating for her health now, which is her advice for others starting out. “Don’t hide your Profile journey from other people,” she said. “Be honest with people. Eat the way you need to and don’t bend to peoples’ will.” If she goes out, for example, she lets people know that she won’t be drinking. “Don’t be afraid that everybody will be offended,” she said. “Don’t be apologetic for being healthy.”
She also said that it’s OK to not be perfect. “Some people will eat something bad and then continue making bad decisions the rest of the day, or week, or month,” she said. “Just say, ‘Ok, I ate a piece of cake, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to McDonalds.’ It’s not just about your weight, it’s about your health.”
Sometimes all you need is a little tough love, she said. “At Christmas, I gained ten pounds, but I owned it and got back on track,” she said. “You pick yourself up by your boot straps and you keep going. You didn’t get overweight overnight. Don’t let yourself make excuses. You can do this!”