By Cindy Aldrige, F.N.P., Provider for Lee’s Summit Physicians Group.
The Biggest Loser is a TV program aimed at helping those struggling with weight loss to make healthy choices and learn how to lose weight. Kyle Yeo had watched the show growing up, and had struggled to lose weight. Kyle is a patient here at Lee’s Summit Physicians Group and has encouraged us to tell his story. His hope is to help others with similar struggles. (The new season airs on January 28th!)
The day he was telling me about his success, he couldn’t wait to weigh in before his appointment! He was smiling from ear to ear and looked so healthy when I saw him for the first time after his transformation. We’d discussed weight and healthy eating like I do with all patients, even those of normal weight. I was so proud of how much his weight loss meant to him and how proud of himself he was. We discussed how this will forever change his future health and discussed things to keep him on track.
Here are some questions I asked Kyle:
What motivated you or made you decide to get involved in this show to help you with weight loss?
“I’ve been overweight my entire life, and I’ve tried to lose weight multiple times, but always seem to fail. I knew that if I wanted to lose the weight for good and change my life for the better, I needed to find help. Luckily I saw Biggest Loser was having an open casting call here in town, so I figured I would give it a shot! I knew this would be my first big step in losing the weight. I thought that if I didn’t make it, I still have the determination to finish what I started!
I grew up watching the show, so I knew this was going to be really hard work, but I figured this is exactly the kind of motivation I needed. Plus they were promoting a new approach to weight loss, and turning the focus on helping everyone mentally and not just physically. This was a huge motivator for me! I knew if I was going to do something, I wanted to find a way to change my mindset away from what got me to this point in my life. It definitely made me realize who I am and the decisions that got me to the 302 pounds I started at!”
What are your future goals?
“My work is definitely not done! I learned so much about myself through this journey. I found a whole new meaning to life. I found a passion for working out that I didn’t know was possible. I still have goals physically that I want to achieve, but my main goal is to pay it forward. I want to help people who are struggling and find ways to motivate them to achieve their goals. I would love to eventually get into personal training and doing whatever I can to help others!”
What was the hardest part so far?
“The hardest part is dealing with all of the temptations in life. It’s so easy to stop at a fast food restaurant or just snack on food throughout the day. Everything is so easy and accessible and it can become overwhelming! So it’s important to plan out your food for the day. Meal prepping has been key. Making sure I know exactly what I’m eating and having it with me are so important. If I do get hungry and need a snack, it’s already in the car. There’s no need to stop somewhere or grab something unhealthy if you already have everything you need prepared. I’m a terrible cook, so it took time to get used to cooking every meal. But it gets easier over time!”
What would you tell others that want to lose weight?
“I would tell others to start by asking for help. Doing this on your own isn’t easy.
I learned on my journey that it’s okay to ask for help. I was always stubborn and thought I could do everything on my own, but I’m not an expert at losing weight. I had no idea where to start. So I’d recommend reaching out to a friend or family member who can help keep you accountable first. It’s much easier to do this with someone by your side.
Then start slowly. This isn’t something that’s going to happen overnight. If you trust the process, you’ll see results.
Start by cutting some calories and introducing more exercise. This doesn’t mean you have to get a gym membership, but start walking around the block, taking the stairs as much as possible and just be more active. You’ll start to see the weight come off just by moving and counting calories. There are a lot of great, free apps that can help keep track of your daily calorie intake and track your fitness. It will seem like a lot of work at first, but it will become a routine and you will want to do it every day!”
What follow-up after the show are you planning to do to prevent gaining the weight back? What lifestyle changes need to happen to prevent you from going back to your former weight?
“The great thing about the 2020 season of Biggest Loser is that they’re providing us with a great after-care program. We get a one-year membership to Planet Fitness, one year with a nutritionist and a year of support group. I’ve basically changed my entire life after getting home. I’m cooking every meal. I’m going to the gym five days a week and still counting everything I put in my body.
I developed new habits and learned a lot of valuable lessons. I feel like the most rewarding one is the support group. I feel it’s important to have people to talk to that know what you have been through and can help you when you’re struggling. There are days when I want that slice of pizza or eat fast food. But I can text or call my support group and they can help me through it. I realize it’s okay to have a cheat meal from time to time. But it’s great to have people there to support you and be there for you no matter what! We all want to achieve the same goals and keep the weight off, so they can help balance me when I feel I’m getting off track.”
Anything else that is unique to you and that you want our local area to know?
I was born and raised in Lee’s Summit. My entire family is from the Kansas City area and this is what I’ve known my entire life. Growing up, I was always an overweight child. This problem continued into my adult life and I developed an addiction to food. I was eating out for almost every meal and constantly snacking. I think most of the issues developed because I was afraid to accept who I was and turned to food for help. It wasn’t until I was 28 that I finally found the courage to come out as gay. I wasted so much of my life fearing who I was and letting food and my weight control my life. I definitely have a new outlook on life and I have so much to look forward to in the future!”
We’re so glad to have Kyle as a patient, and we hope you will tune in on January 28th to see his journey on the 2020 Biggest Loser!