We recently connected with Matt, who joined the #NoomNation 8 months ago. Like with any weight loss journey, he experienced trials and tribulations, but with his hard work, determination, and perseverance (and a little help from the #NoomNerds), he changed his life in more ways than one. Here is Matt’s story!
What brought you to Noom?
I first saw Noom mentioned in an advertisement on Facebook. I probably saw it pop up in my feed 3 or 4 times before I finally clicked on it, but I’m glad I did!
Have you ever tried to lose weight before joining Noom? What was your experience?
I tried SO many times to lose weight over the years. When I first started really gaining weight, in my early 20s, it was pretty easy to make small changes and have big results. As years moved on, those little victories in weight loss would soon turn into weight gain when I stopped working at it. So, for the last 15 years or so I would have periods where I would lose 5-10 pounds, and a few months later gain about 15. This cycle repeated so many times that I found myself last year, at 38 years old, weighing a little over 250 pounds. Not only did I find myself with a lot of weight to lose, but the metabolism of my 20s was long gone.
I have tried just about every fad diet imaginable… low-carb, no sugar, vegetarian, even a juice fast – that lasted exactly 8 hours before I demanded that my husband take me to Taco Bell (he uses the word “threatened”) after seeing a commercial on TV.
I went into Noom fully expecting the same result as everything else I had tried before, and was so surprised when I found out how different an experience it was for me. Noom isn’t about any one thing. It’s not just calorie counting. It’s certainly not about restricting any particular type of food. And, most importantly for me, it doesn’t demonize food, either. Noom taught me how to continue to enjoy eating, but in a different way than I had before.
It would have been impossible for me to understand a year ago how I could lose the weight that I have without being deprived of the things I enjoy.
How did you enjoy working with your Goal Specialist Peppiina?
Having Peppiina as my health coach was, without a doubt, the most valuable part of Noom for me.
Knowing that I had access to her when I had any questions about my weight loss journey, or just expecting that she would be checking in on me regularly was such a powerful motivator.
She was my cheerleader and source for so much useful guidance about not just nutrition and exercise, but also about practicing self-care. She was there throughout the process to share my victories, and at times when I fell short of my goal, she never once made me feel like I had failed at anything.
At times, it felt almost like she was right here with me, because the questions she would ask at those trying times would really help me get to the heart of whatever difficulty I was facing. Peppiina showed a perfect balance of support and challenge in working with me.
I have felt that she has been in my corner since day one, and I can’t thank her enough for that!
How did you enjoy the daily articles and challenges you received? Were there any valuable concepts you learned?
The articles, in particular were so useful!
I have a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a master’s in Counseling and Student Affairs, so the “psych tricks” infused within the educational material in Noom made so much sense to me.
The most impactful concept for me to learn through Noom was the idea of mindfulness. So much of my relationship with food in the past had to do with alleviating stress or boredom.
The articles I read with Noom really helped me to re-examine not only how I eat, but why I eat.
I still eat things I used to enjoy (albeit in moderation, now) and have discovered healthier alternatives that I truly enjoy as well.
And what about your group?
Admittedly, I didn’t use the group feature of Noom to its full potential […] but that has more to do with my own personality than the program as a whole. I can absolutely see how this can be a valuable tool for a lot of people, but it just wasn’t the thing for me. The best part of Noom in this regard is I never felt any pressure to participate in the group if I wasn’t feeling it.
Can you tell us a little more about your journey?
In December 2017, I weighed a little over 250 pounds. When I came to this realization I started taking some steps to lose weight and lost about 10 pounds before starting Noom in late February 2018.
To date, I have lost a bit more than 75 pounds altogether. I have gone from having difficulty buttoning a size extra-large shirt to wearing mediums that are just the slightest bit roomy for me now.
The biggest non-physical transformation has been my energy level in general. I used to have to take a 20-minute nap in my office over my lunch break to get through the afternoon at work.
Today, I feel much more consistent energy throughout my day, and as a result I feel much more confident in how I perform at work. Instead of that nap over lunch, I am much more likely to take a walk outside instead! I also have plenty of energy to do whatever I want to do in the evenings, instead of falling asleep shortly after getting home.
I also really enjoy physical activities more than I ever have! Often, the highlight of my day is going to the gym on my way home from work in the evening. The hour or so I spend in the gym is my time to focus only on myself, and gives me an outlet to get out the frustrations of a tough day at the office so I can be a better husband and dog & cat dad when I get home.
Any other changes since beginning your journey with Noom?
I am a much happier, more energetic, and more positive person than I was this time last year. Because I had been gaining weight for so long, I had reached a point where I felt like my destiny was to be overweight and constantly tired for the rest of my life. When I started Noom, I already felt defeated because I had pictured what failure would look like after I would inevitably drop out after the free trial period.
I don’t know exactly what changed or when, but at some point in that first two weeks a spark ignited in me that told me I could change my life, and Noom would be the way to do it.
While I can’t say the entire journey has been easy, once I felt that spark I knew that I had the potential to be a better version of myself.
What would you say was the most valuable part of your experience?
Noom taught me that we gain weight for complex reasons, but once you have an understanding of why you, personally, have gained weight, it is much easier to make the changes to lose it. I see Noom as a wellness program that happens to result in weight loss if you apply what you learn correctly.
Through Noom I have learned strategies for stress management, how to exercise consistently & effectively, how to listen to my body when it is telling me what it needs, and have been given tools to plan for and sustain a balanced diet. I now believe that without addressing all of these issues, sustained weight loss isn’t a realistic goal.
Now that I have done the work to get a better understanding about how all of these things are connected, I feel much more confident that I will keep off the weight that I have lost, and continue from this point forward making progress with additional fitness goals I have set for myself.
Anything else you’d share with someone looking to join Noom?
Don’t get me wrong. Weight loss is hard! If you are reading this and looking for a quick fix that’s going to take you from obese to a rock-hard beach body in 30 days, this isn’t it. (Also, that doesn’t exist.. anywhere!)
But, if you have the right toolbox and a support system in place to help you believe that you can do it, you will surprise yourself with how easily you can find yourself living a much healthier lifestyle in less time than you imagine.
Congratulations on your incredible success, Matt! Thank you for inspiring us. We look forward to continuing to cheer you on!