Fittest Loser final week leads to reflection

  • Fittest Loser contestants and trainers get together at Seasons 52 restaurant for a healthy meal. Columnist Kat Polomsky says The challenge has taught her about nutritious alternatives to help satisfy her sweet tooth.

    Fittest Loser contestants and trainers get together at Seasons 52 restaurant for a healthy meal. Columnist Kat Polomsky says The challenge has taught her about nutritious alternatives to help satisfy her sweet tooth. Courtesy of Kat Polomsky

 
By Kat Polomsky
kpolomsky@dailyherald.com
Posted5/12/2019 7:00 AM

I am in my final week of training with Josh at Push Fitness in Schaumburg.

Throughout the Fittest Loser challenge I have struggled with food addiction, willpower, pain, and overall lifestyle changes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

My food addiction has mostly subsided. I have faced this beast, and have come to terms that I will always have lingering thoughts of sweets dancing in my mind.

To help curb this addiction, I have found great alternatives that provide vital nutrients instead of saturated fat and high sugar contents. I also have been able to mostly control food desires so I can avoid bad temptations or control the quantity by having a small taste instead of a feast.

Overcoming desire has been a huge challenge, if not the biggest throughout the past 12 weeks.

It was more difficult overcoming these desires early on, but my body has changed and now I become excited for "blander" meals, craving nutrients over flavor. I genuinely look forward to eating a plate full of vegetables and honestly don't miss the mass amounts of carbs and starches that filled my belly.

But eating a lot of vegetables requires a lot of food preparation. Luckily, I've picked up a few weekly staple -- one favorite being sautéed zucchini with a couple of eggs, as it is quick and easy to prepare and helps me feel great.

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Another struggle that has required plenty of willpower was pain tolerance.

Despite the general strength I've gained during the challenge, I've been dealing with ongoing pain in my back that travels through my entire body.

To help accommodate these aches, I practice preventive habits including the use of foam rollers, stretching, deep breathing, and monitoring my sitting posture.

Keeping up with maintenance can be difficult with so many of life's other demands and it feels overwhelming at times, but what is 5-10 minutes out of 24 hours?

Since I will not have our weekly boot camps or training sessions, I have to set aside a few minutes each day to maintain these habits.

Luckily, my fiancé Mark has also agreed to continue training with me and to help encourage healthy eating so I don't fall back into old habits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The Fittest Loser challenge was the perfect wake-up call and I feel revitalized, ready to accomplish more with my life.

Thank you to the Daily Herald for allowing me to participate in the challenge, to Push Fitness for the encouragement and training, and to all of the Fittest Loser participants who have inspired me throughout the challenge.

Everyone has something that they are trying to overcome, but I've learned that support and accountability play a vital role for progress. At the end of the day, it is up to each of us to take a step in the right direction and to do our best.

• Kat Polomsky is a Daily Herald events specialist and also helps manage the Fittest Loser At Work Challenge.

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