We came across 44 year-old mother of 3, actor, and Navy wife Cindy Lopez on Instagram. We were so moved by her story that we reached out to ask her if she’d be willing to share it on our blog. She was so excited to be able to share her story with others, and to continue to be inspired by others’ stories.
From developing a healthier relationship with food, to recognizing her own strength and power, Cindy’s journey has been nothing short of inspiring.
What brought you to Noom?
I was already in the mindset all year of changing my life — taking risks outside of my comfort zone, getting back into acting (which means headshots, auditions, and performing – it helps if you’re in shape), and I just wanted to keep going on that path (and still do). I saw an ad on Facebook and decided to look into it. I made a leap of faith that day.
Have you ever tried to lose weight before joining Noom? What was your experience?
Yes — my weight has yo-yo’ed many times. In the 80s & 90s, it was Slim Fast, the rise of Jenny Craig, and the new Weight Watchers programs being advertised on tv. I couldn’t afford those programs and I could never stick to restrictive fad diets. To be honest, I had to become willing to change my ideas, thoughts, and feelings around food & eating rituals. I had to let go.
What makes Noom different, in my view, is that it is as much a program of recovery from self-destructive eating, as it is a way of life, not a diet. I take it one day, one meal at a time. I like the daily accountability of entering all of my food, and having it automatically calculated and categorized — it really helps me stay on track with my goals. It’s also changing the way I look at food, and the relationship between my internal and external environments and my choices.
How did you enjoy the daily articles and challenges you received? Were there any valuable concepts you learned?
The daily articles and challenges had their own “voice,” that had a relatable humor and refreshing frankness. It was this “voice” of Noom that really spoke to me. All of the info was in easily digestible “bites,” and there were always links to resources backing up the science. One of the most valuable concepts I learned was the color chart system — which food went in which category and why — it literally changed the way I eat. At first, because of all the “old-programming” it was “red foods are the bad foods,” but over time I came to embrace the red category for its intended purpose: glorious, necessary fats like nuts, oils, and occasional dark chocolate! The red category went from being the “oopsie bucket” for slips and cheats (with the “goal” being keeping it empty), to being a beautiful part of my daily food budget.
And what about your group?
The group coach and peer interaction has been EVERYTHING. Sharing with all of them, and hearing their stories of struggle and triumph, inspired me to share to the broader audience of Instagram, and I have found a large community of Noomers all around the world! I’ve had the honor of being told by several peers that something I’ve shared has inspired them on their health journeys. That’s an incredible feeling and definitely a highlight of my non-scale victories!
What would you say was the most valuable part of your experience?
Step counting, although available elsewhere on my phone, has been an extremely valuable tool to increasing my movement. I even rejoined the Y so I can add exercise into my daily budget, too! I actually jogged today, for really the first time in my life, on purpose!
Can you tell us a little more about your journey?
As of December 2019, I am on Week 23 and I have lost 44lbs!!! The biggest non-physical transformation has definitely been developing a healthier relationship with food. Whereas before, I might have defined that as simply seeing food differently, but food is food. The real obstacle has always been in my mind. And so it becomes a holistic endeavor, that includes caring for my mental health, as well as spiritual & emotional health, coupled with stronger physical health. I’ve been able to dive deep into some old beliefs, or as Noom calls them, “thought distortions,” and evict other people’s voices out of my head, including my own inner, wounded child’s voice.
Any other changes since beginning your journey with Noom?
One of my mantras, lifted from Noom, is: “I am in charge of what I put in my body.” And when my mind is right about that, I can eat anything. Imagine a “diet” that is only successful when you eat anything you TRULY want. One of my favorite hashtags I use is “eat without shame.” When you are not tied by shame and fear, you are FREE — to eat what you want, to pursue what you want. What I want today is to fuel my body, to live long in a strong body, to pursue my dreams, and support my family in all the ways I can. Since beginning the program, I have found a new freedom.
This is the mantra I came up with, it’s on my refrigerator:
YOU ARE ALREADY DOING IT. YOU ARE ALREADY SUCCEEDING.
Thank you, Noom, for telling me what I needed to hear, when I was ready to hear it.