Venus Factor Week 1 Day 1 – Let’s DO THIS!

Meet Malissa again, she placed in our VT11 contest.

 

The Venus Transformation Contest VT19 is quickly approaching.  Many of us are getting a head start with the Venus Workouts in a 12 week workout challenge starting this week.  We will just roll into the new year getting done what needs to get done.

Feel free to join if you want some workout support. It’s the Venus Factor Workout Accountability group on FaceBook.

You can view the Day 1 Venus Factor work-along video to help you get started.

 

Ever wonder why the guys can do this so much easier?

One of the Venus ladies in the Workout Challenge group had a question about her son the other day.  Her son Mikey needs to lose weight and is doing the Venus workouts with her (which is actually great for the guys too!).  Anyway, she wanted to know her son’s maintenance calories so I ran them on the Adonis calculator.

Holy freakin maintenance calories! Maintenance Calories: 3145 cals.  Can any of us even imagine!!! Notice that he can eat 1200 and it won’t hurt his hormones so much. Not fair!! At the same time, guys can binge too so if he does that bumping it up to anything under maintenance consistently is the WIN just like us females.

NOW, does anyone notice the room of margin for error for calories? THIS IS WHY I came up with the “Calorie tightrope” we walk. A serving of something here are there can make or break a deficit for us. A freakin DAY OF OUR MAINTENANCE can make or break the deficit for this 25 year young 6 foot 5 male. NOT FAIR!!! We can scream it to the mountain tops how unfair it is, but it will not take away the excess fat on your body. Knuckle down and roll up your sleeves if you want it!! DANG, Let’s do this anyway!

 

Venus Next Year (2017) Contest schedule:

  • VT19: January 16 to April 10
  • VT20: May 15 to August 7
  • VT21: August 28 to November 20

And this is where you signup once you get a Venus login (but only during the dates above) JOIN the CONTEST.

I also have the Venus Factor Contest Prep group on Facebook which you are welcome to join.

And then there is the bigger support group with only women doing any workout, any diet, all empowering each other with love and support in Nibbles Fitness as we all nibble away at our goals.

Alright ladies, Let’s DO THIS!

-Coach Roberta

 

And the VT18 Venus Transformation Contest results are …

There is nothing easy about this process.  It’s a lifestyle. It takes TIME for people to learn a new lifestyle.  Be patient with yourself. Give yourself permission to be human. Never give up. The only difference between those who succeed and those who have not yet is persistence and learning to dust yourself off and keep going after you fall.

And our first place winner is Jackie. Her prize is getting her life back but she happens to get her choice of either $500 or the Immersion package.

1st Place Jackie

"For VT18, I felt like the various pieces all came together – consistency in exercise and nutrition. It was only during this contest that I feel like the target measurements might be real. What if I could achieve that? What would that feel like? I am looking forward to finding out."

“For VT18, I felt like the various pieces all came together – consistency in exercise and nutrition. It was only during this contest that I feel like the target measurements might be real. What if I could achieve that? What would that feel like? I am looking forward to finding out.”

 

The second place winner is Barbara and besides a beautiful shape for her body she gets the choice of $350 or the Immersion package.

 

2nd Place Barbara

"I feel that this is the beginning of Venus Index for life! My husband says whatever you are doing, it's really working and now he is starting to ask me to help him! I am starting Final Phase tomorrow, thanks to the encouragement of my girlfriends on the Thanksgiving Challenge. Roberta, you are one amazing human being. I hope I know you forever."

“I feel that this is the beginning of Venus Index for life! My husband says whatever you are doing, it’s really working and now he is starting to ask me to help him! I am starting Final Phase tomorrow, thanks to the encouragement of my girlfriends on the Thanksgiving Challenge. Roberta, you are one amazing human being. I hope I know you forever.”

 

Our 3rd place winner is Lynn who not only looks amazing in her dress, but she gets a prize of $250 or the choice of the Immersion package.

 

3rd Place Lynn

"Daily planning of food to go with you, so you are not tempted by unhealthy choices becomes easy and routine. Choosing to change my mind set to” Slow and Steady, while incorporating the Venous System has made the difference. Life is not a race. Venus Index bring it on, you rock!!"

“Daily planning of food to go with you, so you are not tempted by unhealthy choices becomes easy and routine. Choosing to change my mind set to” Slow and Steady, while incorporating the Venous System has made the difference. Life is not a race. Venus Index bring it on, you rock!!”

 

And not the least of all is our amazing 4th place Candy who looks absolutely stunning in her dress.  She wins the choice of $250 or the Immersion package.

 

4th Place Candy

" I actually have only begun. I look at my after pictures with great pride, realizing the hard work and determination it took to get to where I am today. I will continue to eat clean and exercise, and to commit to the Venus lifestyle. Thank you for this incredible program."

” I actually have only begun. I look at my after pictures with great pride, realizing the hard work and determination it took to get to where I am today. I will continue to eat clean and exercise, and to commit to the Venus lifestyle. Thank you for this incredible program.”

 

Congratulations to these beautiful ladies who put in a lot of hard work to make a transformation. Each of them lost 10-15 pounds which is above average for most women in the 3 month period of a contest.  They enter the holiday season with a winning strategy and ahead of the game compared to the rest of society.

Why are there only four winners this time?  Well first of all we don’t just fill up the ten slots, we pick those who showed a true transformation.  If the pictures don’t show a change or transformation, then they can’t be used.

But mainly there is nothing easy about this process. The is no magic pill or short cut. It’s going to take some true grit and determination. It’s somewhat simple yes, but it’s hard to implement the nutrition habits.  It’s easy to give up when you think you can’t do it anymore.  Sometimes you make all the human mistakes we all make with food intake, you think you are a failure, thus you give up.  But the fact of the matter all of us make a “controlled stumble forward” as John’s has said in his email.  You have to give yourself permission to be human and keep going anyway.

I’ve emailed everyone who entered this contest and had extended the deadline for them, but the overwhelming response was “I just couldn’t stick with the nutrition plan”.

So here’s a list of the most common mistakes and some solutions:

 

Problem: Eating a deficit that is too low for you. The Venus calculator gives you a range, not an absolute number.

Solution:  When you eat too low on your deficit days you will end up eating more uncontrolled on other days. The solution is to bump up your calories to something still under your maintenance number per the Venus calculator.  Consistency is more important that eating low. The turtle wins this race. Everyone that tries to do this too fast end up rebounding.  Aren’t you tired of the diet yo-yo?  If so, stop eating so low.  But at the same time don’t eat over maintenance. That’s how you win.  That is how you walk the calorie tightrope.

 

Problem: Not eating up to maintenance at least one day a week.

Solution:  You don’t have to follow an exact schedule on this, you can pick a day of the week that works best for you. Some weeks you need more than one maintenance day. Remember that eating up to your normal needs (maintenance) is ALWAYS A WIN.  It is not back sliding, it eating what you actually need.  Eating at a deficit is “corrective action” and is not meant to be long term. It is like taking medicine and some days the “medicine” causes too much stress on your body.  If it’s hard to add in a little extra food on those days start eating a little earlier in the day, continue to eat small portions but add in a little more healthy more calorie dense foods like fats and carbs (yum!!) – enjoy it!

 

Problem: Not getting enough protein.

Solution:  For your meal planning, focus on protein and veggies FIRST, then add a serving or two of both healthy fat and carbs, sometimes these are combined in other food choices already. The highest protein foods in the least amount of calories are in this order:  Egg whites, white fish, protein powder, bone broth, Chicken/turkey/ham, fat free Greek yogurt, fat free cottage cheese. The calorie to protein ratio drops off dramatically after that with all foods including other food labeled “high protein”.  Many foods have protein that are very high in calories.

 

Problem: Getting stuck in a rut with meal timing and thinking you must fast or delay your first meal of the day until afternoon.

Solution:  Intermittent fasting and fasting has it’s place for sure, but it’s not always the best answer for the day or season of life.  If you find yourself eating too much in the evening and not able to stay on plan, it’s not working.  If it’s not working it needs to be fixed.  By continuing the vicious cycle of fasting and binging you set yourself up for continued failure.  Remember it’s okay to change up the meal timing according to how you feel for the day.  You can always “Save the Day“.  What matters is the calories at the end of the day in the 24 hour period, extend that out 7 days, 30, 60, and 90 days for results.

 

Problem: Not giving yourself permission to be human.

Solution:  Accept the fact that you are human and will make mistakes with nutrition.  Stress is a huge factor. You can’t rely on willpower alone, you need to setup your environment for success.  When the nutrition didn’t go according to plan, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, take a deep breath, and decide to continue on.  We all have to do this. I still have to do this.

 

Problem: Not realizing that you are not really accurate with food intake, the “But I’m eating less and it’s not working” syndrome.

Solution:  This happens especially when you eat too low, because you will over compensate on other days by eating too high and not realizing it.  This is called “Mental Accounting“.  It’s very easy to make honest mistakes when tracking your food intake.  In addition there are many times things you missed on the food labels or with measurements of food, or with supplements that have calories.

 

Sometimes you have to be your own motivator and other times you need a little help and support from friends. If you want help and support I have a Venus Contest Prep Facebook group.  If you want to get started with a little New Years Challenge I have New Years Challenge support group where there is a prize drawing for participation.  Before long you will know how to create your own prizefighter victories every single day for the rest of your life.

 

Next Year (2017) Contest schedule:

VT19: January 16 to April 10

VT20: May 15 to August 7

VT21: August 28 to November 20

 

 

 

The Deadline for VT17 is in ONE WEEK. Are you ready?

The deadline to get your before and after pictures in is August 1st at midnight Eastern Time.

 

FAQ Video on the Venus Contest:

 

 

Contest Rules and Regulations

How to enter a Venus Contest

Check Out the Previous Contests

Most of the winners had no idea how far they came and some almost didn’t finish. So don’t let your own mind stop you from finishing.  If you need some help deciding what to do please feel free to email me roberta.saum@gmail.com.  You are not alone, although the process feels lonely sometimes.

Remember this is a lifestyle you want to keep.  The contest is merely a stop along the tracks.

If it’s something you want to do, go for it!

We are here for you.

-Coach Roberta

The 2016 Venus Transformation Contest Schedule:

  • VT16:   Start January 11 – End April 11

  • VT17:   Start May 2 – End August 1

  • VT18:   Start August 22 – End November 21

The Deadline for VT17 is in TWO WEEKS. Are you ready?

The deadline to get your before and after pictures in is August 1st at midnight Eastern Time.

Contest Rules and Regulations

How to enter a Venus Contest

Check Out the Previous Contests

 

Most of the winners had no idea how far they came and some almost didn’t finish. So don’t let your own mind stop you from finishing.  If you need some help deciding what to do please feel free to email me roberta.saum@gmail.com.  You are not alone, although the process feels lonely sometimes.

 

Remember this is a lifestyle you want to keep.  The contest is merely a stop along the tracks.

 

Here’s a video of of many Venus Veterans having fun (except the handsome young man G’Angelo  in the first clip), some are previous winners and all the rest are Venus ladies who never entered the contest. Not everyone needs or wants to enter a contest. It’s not a requirement to have a Golden Venus Life!

 

If it’s something you want to do, go for it!

We are here for you.

-Coach Roberta

 

The 2016 Venus Transformation Contest Schedule:

  • VT16:   Start January 11 – End April 11

  • VT17:   Start May 2 – End August 1

  • VT18:   Start August 22 – End November 21

Venus Veteran Kimberly Shares Her Secrets to Maintenance Success

Kimberly has been using Venus systems for over 5 years and placed in Venus’ very first open contest.

Kimberly placed in the VT1 Open Category back in 2011

Since 2010, she has continually improved her physique despite health challenges and global relocations. Kimberly knows what it takes to maintain and improve your physique!

Kimberly, Liss, Jenny, and Lou Ann in Vegas

Kimberly, Liss, Jenny, and Lou Ann in Vegas

So when I thought about interviewing veterans about maintenance, this sweet friend came straight to mind. I have seen her in person and even worked out together; we got to meet in 2014 in Vegas at a Venus meet up. Kimberly looks every part Venus.

IMG_20140808_124200

Liss, Jenny, Roly, Carla, and Kimberly after workout at the Cosmopolitan

Here is what Kimberly has to say-

During the VT1 competition back in Jan to April 2011, I set a goal for myself.  An “Every Day Venus”.  I wanted a body shape and appearance that I could have everyday.  A body that was not dependent on heavy dieting, posing or lighting tricks.  I wanted to learn a way to maintain a look that is athletic and lean….all the time.  There is no doubt Venus has taught me that.

Kimberly August 2011 After Venus Contest

Kimberly in August 2011 After Venus Contest

I have maintained at Venus for over 5 years now.  Every Day.  At first it took some work and focus as I built new habits and ‘normals’ for myself.  I was also a little scared about losing this new body that looked good and was strong and healthy.  It took a while to realize that I didn’t have to be perfect and worry about things, I just needed to be consistent and gently correct the process when I got feedback from my waistband or body that I was slipping a little.

Kimberly 2012 Maintenance Venus Index

Kimberly in 2012 at Maintenance

My key learnings have been:

  • Aim for consistency not perfection. Don’t stress the small things; a big day of eating or a missed workout doesn’t matter.  Intervening early when the pendulum swings out makes it easier to stay on track
  • Find a pattern to keep calories within your target zone as a lifestyle. For me it is easy to skip breakfast and eat normally the rest of the day.  Look for low calorie substitutions you can use for every day eating
  • Lift heavy. You won’t look like a man and even if something does get a little more than you would like, it is easily reversed by changing exercises
  • Even if you have health issues, don’t give up. A strong and healthy body makes such a difference in managing symptoms and may even enable you to fix some of the root causes

 

Over the past few years I have continued to improve my metrics (refer to table).  I am actually a little ‘extreme’ in my unders and overs.  Each one of us is unique but we all have the potential to create our best body with this program.  It is important to recognize that we all have our own look, and that you cannot ‘shop’ about for the best body parts from others.  Celebrate what you have.

Kimberly 2014 Maintenance Venus Index

Kimberly in 2014 at Maintenance

In my original VT1 essays, I wrote “This is a competition and someone will win.  Whatever happens, I have already won – I know my dream body, I know how to get it and I know how to maintain it.”

 

Five years on…..and I am still winning!!!!

Kimberly in 2015 at Maintenance using Venus Index

Kimberly in 2015 at Maintenance using Venus Index

Kimberly’s Metrics Using Venus

Height 5’3.5″ Venus  May 2011 (VT1)         Current
Weight 122 lb 105 lb 110 lb
Shoulder 39.1 39.1 42
Waist 24.3 23.5 23
Hips 34.4 33.0 36.5
Bicep   9.4 10.5
Chest   33.3 34.5
Upper thigh   17.6 17.6


Kimberly’s transformation story
Kimberly’s VT1 interview with John Barban – An Everyday Venus

Kimberly in the Venus Community

Watch Kimberly’s interview with Liss below:

Listen to Kimberly’s interview with Liss below:

 

 

 

Mom of four sheds the Frumpy with Venus!

Scotti is a mom of four.  She gained 100 pounds after her first born set of twins!  She lost and gained it back before finally embarking on the Venus journey.  She’s lost 35 pounds since starting Venus. As she says in her podcast, this all makes sense now.  It’s simple.  Not easy but simple.

Scotti is a mom of four, and is a NO EXCUSES woman. Amazing!

Scotti is a mom of four, and is a NO EXCUSES woman. Amazing!

 

She turned it around and it feels like for good!  Here’s what Scotti said in her own words:

 

Since finding the Venus Index Program late August, 2015, I have lost 35 lbs. I found Venus at a time when I was about to give up on the idea of losing weight and accept that I was a frumpy mom.

I stumbled upon Venus through a Facebook recipe link. I watched the video and thought, “Why Not!” Little did I know, I was about to change my outlook on food consumption, losing weight, cardio, and weight training.

I found Venus to be easy to follow and very flexible. I started with eating at a deficit first. I had never counted calories before.

Previously, I had success losing weight using Weight Watchers and Herbal Magic, but neither program taught me about calories and I gained the weight back.

I started delaying my first meal of the day, which made eating at deficit sustainable. I loved the inclusion of maintenance days. I knew that once or twice a week, I could have my favorite ice cream, pasta dish, or date night at a restaurant.

Once my food consumption was on track, I added in weight training.

I had been taking a kickboxing class three mornings a week for the past 2 years, I decreased my kickboxing classes to twice a week and incorporated the Venus 12 Week weight program twice a week.

It took me almost 5 months to complete the first 12 week weight program. Then, I moved on to Final Phase. I really, really like Final Phase. The first 12 weeks on the Venus Program, I lost 20 lbs.

I decided to join the contest for some extra motivation.

I told a friend about the contest and asked if she would take my pictures.

The contest, combined with being accountable to my friend, really helped me stay focused. I had some difficult weeks during the contest where I just wanted to eat. I listened to many Immersion podcasts to help keep me focused.

I shopped for photo shoes, a bikini, and booked my tan at various low points to help with motivation. I also took progress photos at the end of each month so that I could see my progress.

During the contest, I lost a further 15 lbs and 4.5 inches off my waist.

I can now see my beautiful muscles and I love it. I am not finished yet. I have some more fat to shed and some muscles to build.

I now have the tools to make this a reality. I am NOT a frumpy mom.

-Scotti

 

Scotti is active in the Nibbles Fitness Facebook group and in her last post there she said “I have increased my strength so much with the Venus Program that the ladies in my kickboxing class will no longer partner with me. I have mixed emotions about this – proud of the strength gains I have achieved and sad that I no longer fit in with the general population.

Listen to Scotti’s podcast now or save it for later:

Contest winner Tracey Brings Out Her Inner Warrior!

Tracey lost 11 pounds and 3 inches in 12 weeks.  That’s about the average for most women in 12 weeks and it is always very hard earned.

 

I learned from this competition is eating that third cookie is not the end of the world, but it is important to not give in to that little voice saying, “Well, since you blew your calorie count, you might as well give up now and just eat the rest of the box”. I remind myself that occasional treats are ok. I just need to maintain self-control so that I can enjoy treats from time to time.

I learned from this competition is eating that third cookie is not the end of the world, but it is important to not give in to that little voice saying, “Well, since you blew your calorie count, you might as well give up now and just eat the rest of the box”. I remind myself that occasional treats are OK. I just need to maintain self-control so that I can enjoy treats from time to time.

 

Here’s what Tracey said in her own words:

This competition was a very interesting experience for me. As you can see from my numbers I didn’t lose a lot of weight. And I certainly didn’t hit my goal, not even close. But I did have a positive change in my way of thinking.

That is where this competition benefited me the most and for that reason, I decided to submit my photos and essay. Growing up I was always very athletic, playing sports all year round and never worrying about my weight.

Then in High School I developed knee problems caused by years of running and jumping on the basketball court. That was the beginning of bad choices, self-pity and rapid weight gain.

Over the years I tried different diets and programs but my heart just wasn’t in it. I kept making excuses and continued to feel sorry for myself. When I heard about Venus Factor last year, I stopped and listened.

Then I spent time thinking about it and decided I would commit to this program. Although the decision to enter the competition was easy, taking and submitting those photos was not. I looked long and hard at those photos of myself realizing how unhealthy I had allowed myself to become. I was embarrassed to say the least. And quite unhappy (as you can tell by the look on my face). But I was determined to give this a try.

It hasn’t been an easy 12 weeks but I chose to sign up as a way to challenge myself and to give myself a much needed kick in the butt. Surprisingly, I was able to incorporate the exercise part of the program into my daily life with no problem. I even reached a point where I began enjoying the routines. I’m not very coordinated but over time I was able to successfully complete all but one of the exercises, that Stability Ball Curl Up is simply beyond my abilities at this time, but I’ll keep trying to get the hang of it. However, the rest of the exercises I was able to do, and as a result, I feel physically stronger.

I can actually feel the muscles in my arms and legs and hope that soon I can see them more clearly defined as the fat drops away.

The tricky part of this adventure for me was eating healthy. This meant making the right food choices, eating the proper portion size, and watching my calorie intake. I struggled with this for the first 10 weeks of the competition. I kept promising myself that tomorrow I would start eating better but tomorrow didn’t get here until the majority of the competition was behind me.

I also struggled with self-pity, about denying myself all the tasty treats I was used to eating and telling myself there was no way I could function on only 1000 calories a day. I fussed, whined and fought the idea until finally, in week 11, I went back and reread one of John’s emails (Stop Identifying as Your Struggle and Bring out Your Warrior). He reminded me to take care of myself because being healthy is a good thing and should be treated in a positive way.

Then I reread other emails I’ve received over the past few months. The words of encouragement and the stories of inspiration reminded me why I was doing this. I want to be happy and part of that comes from being healthy. I let these words sink in and really take root in my mind and heart.

As I did, I was able to push aside the excuses, self-pity and doubt. I knew I had to build a new habit of being health conscious, but as with any habit, it takes time, consistency and effort.

So with my new found focus, I began working to build this new habit and soon I began to see and feel the changes. My clothing started to loosen up a bit, my body started to feel stronger, my energy level increased, and I felt happier.

With all these positive strides, it became easier to make good decisions and to remain vigilant about good choices. I started by concentrating on making it through a few hours, then through a whole day, and before I knew it I had made it through two days and then 5 days.

In time, I know it will become easier to make good choices on a regular basis because I will be able to feel and see the difference.

Another thing I learned from this competition is eating that third cookie is not the end of the world, but it is important to not give in to that little voice saying, “Well, since you blew your calorie count, you might as well give up now and just eat the rest of the box”.

I remind myself that occasional treats are OK. I just need to maintain self-control so that I can enjoy treats from time to time. And the key to enjoying the occasional treat, is to not over-indulge.

This competition has been a difficult journey for me but a beneficial one, too. It helped me become more conscientious about how important it is to treat my body with the respect it deserves by making healthy choices.

I know I still have a long way to go before I reach my final goal but at least now, I know I can do it because I believe in myself.

I also want to take this opportunity to thank you all, especially John, for creating such a wonderful program. I will definitely be recommending the Venus Factor to family, friends and anyone else who wants get healthy.

-Tracey

Listen to Tracey’s podcast now or download it for later:

Venus Veteran Naomi Maintaining Awesome into her 50’s

Naomi Before Venus and After 2014

Naomi is a veteran Venus who has been with Venus since the beginning in 2010. She successfully transformed her body and has maintained, and even improved her physique over the past 5 years as she progressed into her 50’s!

Here is what Naomi had to say in her own words:

“Hi! I’m Naomi Sandoval. I live in the USA but I’m not fat. I really do look like this photo. It’s crazy. Sometimes I pinch myself to make sure it’s true! I grew up during the 1970s when being fat was rare. It wasn’t rare in my family though. We all accepted that once we became adults, we’d get fat.

I skirted this “inevitability” thanks to the 1980s gym bug. I used exercise to stay ahead of weight gain. Until my mid-30s, I worked out 5 nights a week for 1-2 hours and was a weekend warrior doing whitewater C1 slalom paddling on rivers all up and down the east coast. It was a fun time for sure! I was also happy to preach to anyone about my way of life. Funny how my coworkers, all parents, didn’t really look too interested!

Unfortunately, this plan requires that you stick with it; eating more than you burn is going to lead to weight gain. There isn’t any magic ticket. I definitely fell prey to the work it off mentality.

When I became a mom, gym time came screeching to a halt and weekend warrior exploits became a fond memory.

Like most people, I found becoming a parent so time-consuming that I was not able to stay consistent with my workouts and I fell into the trap of believing that the weight gain was a result of pregnancy. I was told to love and accept my new body and be grateful for what it had given me.

Yet every morning, before I got out of bed, I felt my bloated flabby middle and wondered how I’d gotten like this. I’d remember what leanness felt like and do some magical thinking that today would be the day I’d wake up and find out this had all been a bad dream and I was still lean and trim as I’d ever been.

I’ll grant you that having small children is all consuming and is no time for personal growth. But that doesn’t do anything to temper the niggling feelings of dissatisfaction when you see this in the mirror.

If you look at many of my before photos, I’m slumping because I was constantly exhausted and in pain and didn’t even have the strength to sit properly, my smile is not exactly dazzling.

I wish I’d known then that eating less doesn’t take up any time! Heck, not eating at all once or twice a week is a huge time saver! And who doesn’t enjoy the added bonus of saving money on the cost of food not purchased! Letting go of the mythical 2000 calories a day I thought I got to eat (which did require some mourning, I’ll grant you) and finding out how much I actually needed to maintain and how much I needed to eat to reduce fat was like discovering the Secret to Life, the Universe and Everything! I’d become immobilized because I assumed if it took years to put the weight on, it followed that it took years to take it off. In actual fact, the bulk of my weight came off at about a pound per week. Towards the very end, that rate slowed to about ½ pound per week or less, which is excellent progress to avoid fat loss rebounds upon hitting the goal. After all, fat loss does require focus and effort. There’s no need to risk needing to do it all again or worse, rebounding and concluding that diets don’t work or your metabolism is broken!

The other piece of my journey was becoming aware of brilliant Venus Index ratio research as outlined in the Venus Index Workout program. Simply learning what was still not quite ideal about my shape and how to continue to make improvements has made all the difference. Achieving the ideal metrics has allowed me to finally present my body with full confidence.

A most wonderful thing happened to my family after my transformation. My husband jumped on board too! I won’t lie to you. It’s not possible to change your partner nor force them to do something they are not ready and willing to do. I’ll share a little secret with you should you find yourself in the same situation.

There are free podcasts! All the research, all the experiences of the winners, it’s all in there. So all you have to do is pop one in while you’re in the car together or doing dishes and let John’s soothing voice wash over your unsuspecting partner. I’m telling you, this stuff is pure gold! And when you’re ready to get out of The Matrix, get the Uncensored Podcasts.

Happy Bonus Results of Getting Lean and Strong

Pain management. Gone are the expensive supplements for joint pain. So long as I don’t get sedentary, I rarely suffer any neck or back pain and now these are caused by occasional lapses in correct movement form. My posture is easier to maintain when my muscles are strong and developed in a balanced fashion as per the Venus Index Program

Energy. It’s a funny thing about working out. Expended energy begets bonus energy for every day living.

Strength. Before it was a job to do the most basic of things like get on and off the toilet or squat down and get something from the floor.

Success spillover. Due to the Attitude of Accomplishment from following simple programs and seeing consistent results, other areas of my life fall into place.

Family success spillover. We are now all exercising consistently and have improved our body fat levels. Through leading by example, the family lifestyle of health just is. There is no nagging nor persuading the kids to move and they understand about enjoying treats, just not every day.

Sleep. There is nothing like being healthy, movement and the feeling of accomplishment to facilitate healthy sleep.

Mental focus. Gone are the binge induced foggy afternoons. The losing the thread of the conversation.

I come from a time when it was not the norm to be fat. I see us winding up in wheelchairs like in the movie Wall-E and far sooner than we all think. I would like to be the touchstone you can believe in as you find your way on your own journey to your best self. I want us to reverse this trend and return to being lean. As with all growth, you must take responsibility for your journey. I am here to offer experience, wisdom and motivation. You do the rest.

-Naomi

Get in touch with me:

My WebSite where I blog regularly

My FaceBook Page – Naomi Rules

My Instagram Page

Here is my Venus Index community profile.

My first interview with John after winning the Open Level I Contest

My second interview with John after placing in the Open Level II Contest”

Naomi and John Barban

Naomi and John Barban at an exercise video shoot

 

Naomi Before Venus and After 2012

Naomi Before Venus and After in 2012

 

Naomi before and after Venus through the years

Naomi before and after Venus through the years

Some pro tips from Naomi

  • Put your health first
  • Realize that you can improve your health at any point
  • Find a sustainable look for your lifestyle
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Naomi Maintenance Feb 2016

Naomi Maintenance Feb 2016

 

Naomi Maintenance April 2016

Naomi Maintenance April 2016

 

Listen to Naomi’s interview with Liss below, or download it for later:

Ali lost 64 pounds and 42 inches with the Venus program and is not about to quit!

Ali-Venus-BnA

Ali lost 64 pounds and 42 inches with the Venus program and is not about to quit!

Ali has tried many programs and has yo-yo’d with her weight like so many of us. But she says this is the best so far, she has lost 64 pounds and refuses to quit.

She looks amazing already, but why stop now?

She knows she can get even better, and more than that, she knows she can keep it off for life.

Keeping it off for life is the best part.

You can find Ali active in our online community where she posted her progress picture recently.

She posted a really neat video where she surprised her dad by showing up as a new smaller person!

Ali’s best advice is just do it and get involved in the online community for the best support ever!

Login to the community now and introduce yourself and just get started.

 

 

Here’s what Ali said in her own words:

I’m on the last week before I hit my one year anniversary of doing Venus. As some of you may know, I am planning to surprise my dad this weekend for his birthday. I have not seen him since May of last year, two months after I started. The picture on the right is the jumpsuit I bought to wear for the big “reveal” to my dad. The pic on the left is from 2009, when I was at my heaviest. I’ve come a long way baby, and can’t wait for my dad to see the changes!!
I think the big reveal to my dad was very successful. I stood there for about 30 seconds before he turned around. My step mom and sister both had their phones going to record, but my step mom mouthed the words “you look great” while dad was piddling with his phone!

I have been stuck for the last month, bouncing between 171 and 172. Finally this weekend, I broke through to the 160s!!! 169.6, to be exact, but it’s another milestone on this journey!!!

What is truly amazing to me is to think back, to 2010 actually, when I started another weight loss program. At the time I started, I weighed 263#. I did that program for about a year, but because of the monthly expense, I quit. I had hit the 50# mark with that program, but gained back about 20 pounds before starting Venus. To think that since that time I have lost almost 100# is simply AMAZING! That’s like a whole other person!!!

So here are my current stats since beginning:

Weight: -64.2# (started 233.8, currently 169.6)
Arms: -3.5″ (started 14″, currently 10.5″)
Calves: -1.75″(started 16″, currently 14.25″)
Chest: -6.25″(started 43.25″, currently 37″)
Thighs: -6″ (started 30″, currently 24″)
Shoulders: -5″ (started 45″, currently 40″)
Waist: -7.5″ (started 37.5″, currently 30″)
Hips: -12.5″ (started 54.5″, currently 42″)
Total inches lost to date is 42.5!!!

 

Here’s a fun video of Ali surprising her parents with her 64 pound weight loss:

 

 

Listen to Ali’s story now or download the podcast for later:

How Keturah Overcame Fibromyalgia and Hypothyroidism to Lose over 100 Pounds

Keturah Before and After Side

Keturah has been using Venus systems for over 5 years!  Her transformation stretches out further than a 12 week period though, she has lost over ONE HUNDRED pounds!

 

Keturah Through Weight Loss to Maintenance

 

Keturah through the weight loss over the years

(Left) Keturah at her heaviest before finding Venus in 2011

(Middle) Keturah in the middle of her transformation at about 190 lbs in November of 2011

(Right) in the middle of her transformation at about 180 lbs in February of 2012

Here is what Keturah had to say in her own words:

 

Maintenance: Choosing life.
 
Maintenance is something you don’t hear much about. The fitness world is full of shiny before and after photos with big shiny smiles to match. What no one seems to talk about is the daily practice of life. 
 
There are some things that set apart maintenance from deficit. Let’s focus on what comprises this brave new world. 

Mindset.
I recently reread some of my old blog posts. It was such a wise voice, and it was speaking to me now. (The value of listening to ourselves is great!) First, let me level with you: I am no different than anyone else. Fear creeps in. Old thought patterns start repeating. Fear of rebound weight gain. Fear of not being able to do it. Fear of looking too thin. Fear of people being negative. Fear of not maintaining it for life. Fear of disordered eating. Fear of putting my value in my looks, and not in who I AM INSIDE.

I think the last argument “Fear of putting my value in my looks, and not in who I AM INSIDE” is especially real. It’s a fear that many women deal with in our current culture. I’ve come to realize that while weight, size, shape, and body shape are not my source of identity, being overweight and unhappy with my body can be a road block to feeling good about myself. My insecurity about my body, the shame and guilt I have felt in being overweight: it was real. Learning that I could change that was empowering. But also learning that my body doesn’t define me is a mindset that has taken longer to sink in and takes daily practice.
Value where you are at NOW. Comparison is the thief of joy. We all know that popular quote. Sometimes the comparison isn’t with other people, it’s with ourselves. We can lose a lot of joy comparing ourselves to the past or even to perhaps unrealistic goals and standards. Maybe right now it tough and you don’t particularly feel joy. That’s okay. I am learning to ask myself questions. Why am I feeling this way? I keep asking why. Doing this helps me get to the root of lingering insecurities or issues. I also find out that what scares me is usually not as huge as I’ve made it in my head.

 
We think this journey of self introspection disappears when we enter maintenance mode. It doesn’t. If anything, it began a new season of asking questions, dealing with some old triggers, and learning to trust ourselves in new ways during new seasons and situations. Which is why we also need to work on habits. 
Habits.

Fear can hold us hostage and make us freak out! But the truth is, it’s about choices, not fears. I choose to be healthy. I choose to eat supportive foods that will help my Hashimoto’s autoimmune disease and fibromyalgia. I choose to lift weights so I’m strong, lean, slender, and pain-free. I choose to walk to have head space, time to think, reflect, and enjoy the outdoors. I choose to stretch to be flexible, limber, and feel good. I choose to be at peace with my body and take steps that will enable me to continue being Venus for life.

Maintenance is not automatic. It is about daily choices, habits and goals. This isn’t glamorous. Habits are choices we make and continue making everyday. I can choose to say “no” to fear and listen to the truth. I can choose not to let my circumstances and past, worries about the future, and other things define me, but to take a step forward and embrace the present, choose joy, and keep stepping forward up the mountain.


I liken maintenance to keeping the house neat, or perhaps tending the garden after the plants have started growing. If you let the little things go–laundry and dishes pile up, floors need swept, garbage overflowing, weeds growing wild–pretty soon the place is a disaster needing a complete cleaning and overhaul. Some daily tidying and daily weeding would have kept those things from happening. Some days we let things go. It’s about attending to the dishes before the pile gets too big. Or put it this way: it’s paying of the credit card bill at the end of the month instead of letting it stack up for a couple of years until it becomes a mountain of debt!
 
The habits you begin and consistently choose and practice will be habits that keep you going, even if they change in form. My daily habits are movement (for me that’s resistance training, flexibility, and walking); including protein and either fruit or vegetables at most meals; good rest; hobbies I love (makeup, knitting, and reading are just a few!) and relaxing with my husband on the weekends. I am learning to balance my meals and intake. If we go out on a brewery tour I will enjoy a burger and beer. The next meal or day, I have my coffee  but enjoy water, fruit, salad, and some light protein for the rest of the meals. There is no punishment, no reproach. No starvation, no forcing of food. I just listen to myself. 
 
Seasons.
Maintenance is the season I have really learned to enjoy living life and how to be flexible. Shortly after reaching my Venus metrics a couple years ago, I was still in “get competition lean” mode. It took a couple months for me to realize I wasn’t really getting anywhere with all my hard work and was frustrated. Mostly, it was mental. I decided to do something crazy. I stopped trying so dang hard to reach smaller metrics, body goals, and all the other stuff I deemed necessary to joy. Instead, I let go. I began listening to my body, doing what felt both right and good, and relaxing about the rest. It was, and still is, the very best thing for me. I learned another lesson in trusting myself. There is absolutely nothing wrong with getting competition lean. But it’s a season, and for many it isn’t a season that can be stretched out for indefinite periods of time. Sometimes we have to count the cost. The cost at the time wasn’t best for me. 
 
There is also adaptive components to maintenance. I am learning to change up my routine or my workout when I feel unmotivated about workouts. There are also life changes that require workouts changes. My husband and I recently relocated 2300 miles, from mountain life to ocean life. While I had spent the last couple years lifting heavy weights at the gym, I was suddenly faced with a new challenge. There was no gym and our new home didn’t have space for heavy weights. At first, I was frustrated. What was I going to do now? I quickly realized my new life change meant a change in my training. This wasn’t an easy change at first. The first few weeks of no gym I had a lot of anxiety! Heavy weightlifting had become a security blanket and it was time to put it away for a while. Without access to the barbell rack, I’ve had a chance to work on some old gymnastic training, flexibility, and explore other workouts–areas I neglected for years, and that I really missed doing. 
 
Final thoughts. 
Honestly, maintenance is about learning to live from out truest, healthiest selves. The main focus of fat loss phase is so you can make changes in your body and, most importantly and what gets left out by a lot of people, live life with new lifelong habits, and keeping Venus tools for when you do let the house go and need to whip it back into shape. You learn to listen to yourself, learn what works best for you, what is sustainable, what is joyful. You learn balance. 
 
Maintenance is choosing to be Venus for LIFE.

 

Keturah Before and After Front

Ketty’s Metrics Using Venus

(Note Keturah had lost about 100 lbs before even finding Venus in 2011 on her own! WOW!)

Weight Height Waist Shoulders Hips
June 2011 217 lb 71 in ~35.5 in ~46 in ~50 in
April 2016 175 lb 71 in 27.5 in 43 in 42 in
Deltas -42 lb 0 in -8 in -3 in -8 in

 

 

 

Keturah Happily Ever After Maintaining

Keturah Happily Ever After Maintaining at her Wedding in Summer 2015

 

Watch Keturah’s interview with Liss below:

Listen to Keturah’s interview with Liss below, or download it for later:

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