Ep #104: Mindset Shifts and Losing 105 lbs. with Dr. Emily Kroening

Today I have a very special guest on the podcast to share her inspiring success story. Dr. Emily Kroening is a family physician who specializes in high-risk obstetrics, and she also happens to be one of my clients who recently lost over 100 lbs. She’s here to talk about how her job and a lack of control got her to a difficult place in life and what finally made her decide it was time to make a change.

Listen in to hear Emily open up about what helped her get to the root of the issue and the important realization that led to her mental and physical transformation. She shares the roadblocks she ran into along the way, the mindset shifts that helped her stay committed to achieving her goals, and how to make the most of weight loss coaching—even amidst challenges and discouragement.


Listen To The Episode Here:


In Today’s Episode, You’ll Learn:

  • Emily’s background in family medicine.
  • Her lifelong weight struggle and what got her to her heaviest.
  • When and why she decided to make changes in her life.
  • How stress and depression played a huge role in her weight gain.
  • The importance of realizing that weight loss isn’t a one-time thing.
  • Why she didn’t try a ton of weight loss tactics.
  • How she got the most out of the coaching program.
  • Where she struggled the most and how she got through it.
  • Her plan for keeping the weight off.

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Get The Full Episode Transcript


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Read the Transcript Below:

 

Katrina Ubell:      You are listening to the Weight Loss for Busy Physicians podcast with Katrina Ubell, MD, episode number 104.

Welcome to Weight Loss for Busy Physicians, the podcast for busy doctors like you get the practical solutions and support you need to permanently lose the weight so you can feel better and have the life you want. If you’re looking to overcome your stress-eating and exhaustion and move into freedom around food, you’re in the right place.

Hey friends, welcome to the podcast. If I’m doing my math correctly, this is two years of podcasts, right? 52 times two. Here’s the deal, this isn’t actually two years, and the reason why is because when I first started, I actually published three podcasts right from the get go, so in my calculation, it’s really episode 107. That’s two years, so you’re going to have to wait just a little bit longer to be able to really be able to celebrate with me that it’s been two years.

Today’s episode is something that is super special. I love sharing my client’s successes, and this one is no exception. I want to introduce you to Emily Kroening, MD. She’s a family physician who specializes in high risk obstetrics and mostly focuses her practice on delivering babies, prenatal and postnatal care and pediatrics, taking care of babies, which is so awesome.

Interestingly, she also lives in the town that I was born in and lived in until I was 10. I mean small world. Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. She is a fantastic woman who agreed to come on to my podcast after she went through my whole program and she lost over 100 pounds. She lost 105 pounds. She has such an inspiring story. I know it’s going to help so many of you, so can’t wait for you to listen.

I do just want to let you know that I’m currently enrolling my next coaching group. If you’re an MD or DO woman physician in clinical practice and you’re interested in getting similar results to what Emily will describe for you on this podcast, then I want you to do is go to my website to the free resources page. My website is katrinaubellmd.com and click on the free resources tab. You’re going to be able to find all the information that you need there in order to enroll now. Without any further ado, here is my interview with Emily.

Hey Emily, thanks for coming on the podcast.

Emily Kroening:   Hi Katrina. Thanks for having me.

Katrina Ubell:      I’m seriously so excited to have you on. As you know, I’ve been pestering you. We tried this yesterday, two days ago. 20 minutes so far, she’s like, “I’ve got to go deliver a baby.” I’m like, “Doctors.” You can’t rely on them having their emergencies and things that come up, but I’m so glad that we are able to get together to share your amazing news, and that is how you’ve lost over 100 pounds. 105 pounds. We’re just talking about that.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah.

Katrina Ubell:      Congratulations. It’s amazing.

Emily Kroening:   Thank you.

Katrina Ubell:      What I always start off with my guests is just having you tell us a little bit about yourself and share with us a little bit about your weight loss journey up until this point.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. I am a family medicine physician in Southern California, but most of my practice is obstetrics and pediatrics, so delivering babies, taking care of the children I deliver. Yeah, I’m busy. It’s a little bit unpredictable.

I have struggled with my weight maybe since a little bit in high school, but I was pretty active in athletics, so I was able to keep it most under control, but then in college, in medical school, it was pretty sedentary. Just was studying all the time. I maybe gained 20 pounds during that time and then maybe another 20 during residency and fellowship. Again, just more sedentary and eating late at night and not really eating super healthy.

Then maybe the last three or four years, after I became an attending, I struggled with infertility and doing IVF and just dealing with all of that. Gained another 60 pounds and then just decided almost a year ago, January of 2018, that enough was enough, and I just felt like I wasn’t showing up as the mom I wanted to be and just really wanted to be healthier role model for my son and to be just have more energy. Yeah, a better role model for my patients, and so I decided this was the year that I was going to focus on myself after many …

Like I said, the last three or four years were really focused on trying to grow our family and it was really, really stressful. A lot of loss with the infertility and then we decided to adopt. There was two difficult failed adoptions that just … I was a mess for a couple years. Just after all that had settled, we finalized our adoption with our son and I was still not feeling I was the person I want it to be. I was like, “This is the year I’m going to focus on myself and really make some changes.”

Katrina Ubell:      And you did. You did it. That’s so awesome. Let’s just back up to when you gained the 60 pounds, because unfortunately, the infertility struggle and the adoption struggle is not unique to you. It’s many, many, many women physicians are going through that. I’m just curious whether you feel like the weight gain was sort of stress eating, like eating to cope or whether you think a lot of it was related to medications you were taking with the IVF, or what do you think was going on there?

Emily Kroening:   I think it was a combination of the two. I think I was on autopilot with deciding like, “Okay. We can’t get pregnant.” I was given a 1% chance of getting pregnant on my own and moving right into IVF and then I had surgery for endometriosis and then spent a year doing fertility stuff that ended up not working.

Then we moved right into adoption. Looking back, didn’t really spent time grieving the infertility. I was just like, “I need to have a baby. This is what’s going to make my life better.” Then moved right into that.

Yeah, I think there was some component with the medications, but I think a lot of it was just dealing with the stress and probably some depression and just feeling a lot of shame relating to the infertility. It was the first time in my life that I had a goal and something that I wanted that I couldn’t make happen. No matter how hard I tried, it was not under my control, like med school, residency.

Katrina Ubell:      You can always just work harder usually, right? Figure out a way to do extra credit or something if you have to and that doesn’t work.

Emily Kroening:   It just didn’t work in that situation, so it was the first time where I couldn’t make what I wanted to happen, happen, and so it was really, really difficult. Yeah, I just don’t think I coped well with that I think. It was my first years as an attending out of fellowship going into a job where I was doing high risk obstetrics.

Katrina Ubell:      I was going to say, then on top of it, you’re delivering all these people’s babies.

Emily Kroening:   Right.

Katrina Ubell:      There’s that, and then taking care of their newborns.

Emily Kroening:   Right.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Emily Kroening:   Today, I couldn’t get away from newborns and I’m just thinking about this when I was driving home today preparing my mind for this conversation and thinking a place I was in at that time just dreading going to work every day in a job that I was suppose to love. I had prepared for 12 years for this job. This is why I went through medical and everything, said this is what I wanted to do and dreading going to work. Not being the doctor that I wanted to be because of everything I was going through. Yet, nobody knew. Nobody at my work knew I was going through infertility.

Katrina Ubell:      That’s so interesting, because I did the same thing. I didn’t want to tell anybody. I wanted to keep it super private, but now in hindsight, that created so much more additional stress. Not going through all of it, but then having to keep up all the lies and the … Like white lies, but the covering and this and that. Like, “What am I supposed to say?” It was very isolating.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah, very isolating. On top of that, all of my friends had babies during those three years. Like literally every single … Because everyone was in their early 30s.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah, make sense.

Emily Kroening:   It was just like getting married and having kids. Literally, every person I knew had a kid or is having a kid during that time. Yeah, it was a very isolating time. I think it was just a combination of all those things and also just being a new attending and the stress of that.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. We can understand why you gained 60 pounds. I was like, “Okay. Yup, I get it.”

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. After everything, we adopted my son in 2016 and his adoption ended up being fairly complex and took about 10 months to finalize, which normally it’s like five or six months, so it was a lot of back and forth with lawyers and everything. That was really stressful.

Then after all that settled, I was just kind of like, “Okay, once we finalize the adoption, everything will be better.” Another six months gone by and I still felt just not where I wanted to be in my life. Like I said, not showing up the way I wanted to as a mom, as a wife, as a doctor and still not really happy with my work.

Katrina Ubell:      Because we’re like, “Oh, I just need to have a baby, then certainly I’ll be happy.” Then you get the baby and you are happy, but you also have a whole slew of new things that you have to do with and stress about. What we don’t realize is our brain is still going to be the same. I think that for you having gone through so many years of this huge struggle, your brain is like, “We’re struggling.” There’s no off switch to that. It’s like there’s a struggle, unless you do the work, which is exactly what you’ve done.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. January of last year … I started on January ’15, if I remember the date, there was a local group of moms. Not physicians, but just local moms who were doing a whole month of Whole30. I was like, “Yeah, I’ll try it.” There were some local moms I knew that had done it and really were feeling good, so I did a month of Whole30 and really detoxed my body. I guess stopped drinking Diet Coke and got off of sugar and flour.

After that, I felt good. I think I lost maybe 12 pounds, and then I found your podcast around that same time, so I added back like beans and lintels and dairy. I kept no flour, no sugar and started intermittent fasting in March. Then after listening to your podcast, it really resonated with me and talked to my husband.

I was like, “I really think I need to do this group. I know it’s a lot of money, but something was telling me I just needed to do it.” Then I knew, like once I signed up, I was like, “This is it. I have to do this because I’m not going to waste my time, your time and all this money to not have it be successful.”

Katrina Ubell:      What do you think it was that really resonated with you? What was it that made you think like, “Okay. This is different.” Because you could just keep doing Whole30 for the rest of your life.

Emily Kroening:   No. I mean I really want to do Whole30 just because it is … It’s very restrictive and you have to make all your own sauces and everything and I was not into that. It was good for me to reset myself and to really cut out sugars. It was good to be focused for that first month, but then I knew that wasn’t going to be how it’s going to eat the rest of my life.

I think what really resonated was I felt like you were just speaking to me as another female doctor with kids and a busy life. That was the main thing. I felt like, “Yeah, she’s speaking my language.” Also, just as you got more into that is not just about the food, like the thought work and the reasons behind the overeating. If you stop buffering with food, what other things you’re going to buffer with, that really resonated and just getting the root reasons of why I had gained all that weight.

Katrina Ubell:      I think that really make sense, because it is so easy. Lots of people will lose 100 pounds and then they gain it right back again over the course of time because they don’t actually get to that route. I think that was actually very wise of you to recognize, “Okay. Yeah, I can do some things, I can lose weight, but there’s going to be some other component to it and I want to figure that out.”

Just to back track for a minute, before we started, I had sent you like, “Oh, I want you to talk about all the other things you tried.” You’re like, “I didn’t try really anything.” Talk about that a little bit.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah, I never really had tried. For the last several years, I felt like I really should lose some weight, but I guess I never got the motivation to. I think especially the last four years, I was so focused on other things. I always thought, “Yeah. I need to lose weight. I’m overweight. This is not healthy.” I was just so focused on other things.

I lost maybe 10 or 15 pounds a couple months before my wedding. Just eating healthier and doing some meal replacement shakes and stuff. Other than that, I never really tried, so I was … I’m the type of person like probably a lot of your listeners was once you decide something, you’re determined and not really make it happen.

Katrina Ubell:      “I’m just going to do this.”

Emily Kroening:   Once I finally just decided like enough is enough, that was it.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. You’re not the first person to tell me that. It was just sort of like this line drawn in the sand. It’s like, “Okay. I am done. There needs to be a solution and I’m going to figure it out.”

Emily Kroening:   I do want to say thought that I wasn’t … On January 15th, when I started this process, I wasn’t like, “By next year, I’m going to have lost 100 pounds.” I didn’t think that at all. I was kind of like, “Something needs to change.” I feel tired all the time. I’m fatigued. Even after I wake up in the morning, I still feel tired. I don’t have energy to take my son to the park. I have a general discontent even though when you look at my life, everything seems so great.

Katrina Ubell:      Hey, finally have the baby. Everything should be amazing, right?

Emily Kroening:   I have a job. We bought a house. I didn’t set out like, “My goal is in a year, I’m going to lose 100 pounds,” because I never actually … I don’t think I ever said that at the moment, thought that, that was possible. I was like, “I just need to start doing something.”

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. I don’t think that’s always the worst thing. It’s just sort of a commitment to doing better every day. Just picking one thing and doing better at it. I think when you have 100 pounds to lose or more. I think when you look at it like, “Okay, I’ve got this timeframe and I’ve got to get it lost in that certain amount of time.”

Some people, the way they think about it, they get real pressured and then they’re really rushed. Then we start doing crazy things like giving ourselves hCG injections and all these crazy things. Wanting to take pills or other injections to lose weight all in the name of getting it over with quickly because we think we’re going to feel better when we lose that weight.

We’re like, “No. That’s going to be the solution to my discontent. I will no longer be discontented. I will finally be content.” I think that when you have a lot of way to lose, it really makes so much more sense to look at it like, “What am I willing to do long term?”

For you, you tried the Whole30 and you’re like, “Oh, there’s actually some unexpected benefits here. I feel better in this way. I feel better in this way. I’ve lost some weight. That’s cool. Maybe I’ll continue these parts that I’m willing to continue and these parts like making your own sauces.” You’re not like, “Oh my God, the rest of my life, I’ve got to hire a chef to get my sauces made.”

You’re just like, “Yeah. I’m just not going to do that part, but I’m going to keep up the parts that I’m willing to do long term going forward.” Then you keep adding on the next and the next thing doing a little bit better and doing a little bit better.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah, it was like I layered things on. It started out as really focused on changing my diet and started out with the food. Then as the group progressed and each month we have different things we are working on. I was able to add in organizational stuff and decluttering and working on finances. Prioritizing my relationship with my husband. Every month, making new goals.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. That aren’t weight-related, right? There are other things that you can focus your energy on because you can only … Here’s the thing on the group, we get you losing weight and then that part gets very boring. We don’t really want to talk about that anymore, because it’s just very boring. If you’re doing it right, there’s nothing to talk about anymore.

Emily Kroening:   If I followed my plan, I followed my plan and I had to adjust little bits here and there, but for the most part, if I followed my plan, I consistently lost weight and definitely there were times when it was harder. The main thing I still struggle with is social events and vacations, traveling. When I don’t have as much control when I’m going to be eating and it’s more unknown, I can’t plan as much.

Katrina Ubell:      The thing with that is that we’ll get better with time as you practice more. It’s just every day, when you’re at home, you have way more practicing eating and plan at home than you do out at social events or on vacation. That’s the good news. That’s very normal for that to be the final frontier. You’re like, “I’m totally dialed at home. I’m still working on keeping it together.”

The great thing is when you can go on vacation and still mess it up and mess it up and make mistakes. They come home and then get right back on your plan again. I remember thinking like, “Now, that is brilliant, because that never happened before.” That was always just the ticket to … You’re off again until you’re back to that sort of number. Those biggest pants you have are really too tight. Then it’s like, “Now, we really have to do something.”

Even just knowing like … It’s okay that I made these mistakes because I know as soon as I get home, I’m going to get back on track. That’s not going to be anything that I’m concerned about or not going to be doing. Yeah, that’s super fabulous. It’s terrific.

I want to talk a little bit though about how you showed up in the group. You were like, “Yeah, it’s kind of a lot of money and I’m going to do this.” What was your mindset going into it? What were you thinking?

Emily Kroening:   I was just going to do everything. No matter how much time it took, I was just going to be 100% committed from the beginning. I didn’t want to get till October and regret anything. I was like, “The 6th month, I’m going to take this opportunity and just do all the worksheets, go to all the calls and …” Yeah.

Katrina Ubell:      Just really show up. Do all the things basically.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. All the things.

Emily Kroening:   I did. I’m kind of a private person, so I was a little … The calls are initially was a little bit nervous to ask for coaching, but after I did a few times, it was better and …

Katrina Ubell:      I always joke. It’s like I’m scared, because I’m so scary, right?

Emily Kroening:   Yeah, I did all the worksheets and ask a lot of questions.

Katrina Ubell:      You got a lot of coaching. You ask for help when you needed it. What I notice too is that you’re like, “Okay. Well, what’s the next thing I can work on?” Like while I’ve got you here for six months, like you were saying like, “Now, I want to work on this relationship, this relationship, this thing that’s going on. I want to ring out every last ounce that I can get in terms of learning from this that I’m really set up.”

What did you do when it got hard though? Because there’s no way that you can do this for six months and have it be just like a joy fast, right? It does gets hard. You have those moments, you’re like, “I’m not sure I really feel like doing this anymore.” How did you work through those?

Emily Kroening:   I don’t know. I think I just pushed through it. When I started doing the thought downloads and all of that, I started feeling so much better. If I wouldn’t for a while, if I was super busy, I’ll be like, “Oh, do it tomorrow. Do it tomorrow.” Then a few days would go by, I would realize how I felt my thoughts were more negative. I would be shorter with the stuff at work, shorter with my husband. I kept coming back to like, “This stuff works. It worked doing it.”

Katrina Ubell:      You had times where you took your foot off the gas a little and then recognize like, “This does not serve me. This is actually not good. I need to recommit and get going.” Luckily, you didn’t get to the point where you had to completely put your foot on the brake and spin out to get to that point. You were just like, “Oh, a couple of days. This isn’t so good. I’m going to get back into it again.”

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. I think I would just like at the beginning of every month, would look at the new month’s worksheets and videos and go through … Do like a quick overview of them and go through them and then with my bullet journal, I would map out when I could get all the work done and I tried to do it earlier in the month so that … Yeah, like if there were questions and stuff.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah, you took advantage of that the whole time.

Emily Kroening:   Then I even started going through and doing some of the worksheets again to compare like month to month through three to compare what my right route now versus then and just see the difference.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. Because a lot of times, we’re like, “What? I’m the same.” Then you realize, “Oh my gosh, no I’m practically different person right now, this is amazing. It’s so great.” Now, you’ve been out of the group now for a couple months and you’ve honestly continued to lose weight. When you’re thinking about keeping this weight off forever, what are your thoughts about that? What are your plans to make sure that happens?

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. I have about five or six more pounds to lose to my goal weight. It’s interesting, because in some ways, it’s so easy, because it’s just easy because I have my plan, I feel good when I eat those foods. I don’t really feel deprived. The only times I get feelings of deprivation are more … I’ve been talking about this vacations and social situations, but again, I’m working through that and doing thought downloads. It feels really easy.

I have my 10 or 12 meals that I make and I plan every Sunday night and what our meals are going to be for the next week or dinners. Then Monday I do grocery shopping and just get that stuff and then we have left overs for lunches.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah, you just got your system. One reason why it feels so easy is because you created your plan. That’s where so many people are always asking for people … I want to know. Can you give me some tips on what I should eat and why shouldn’t eat? As you know, in the group, I do give you some guidance as to how to do that, but I can’t possibly know what food is going to work for you.

Only you are going to be able to know that. I think that is one of the ways that you really … Want of the best ways to keep this permanent is to create a plan that you really … It’s not like you’re just willing to follow with the rest of your life. You’re like, “No, I’m happy to do so. I like it. It tastes good. It’s easy. I’m dialed. This is sustainable for the long haul. You created it. It’s not like, “That program Katrina gave me, God, it’s hard. I don’t know if I can keep that up.” Which is how we approach most diet plans, right?

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. We have meals that are really simple, really healthy that me and my husband both like. Yeah, I don’t know. It feels easy. Yeah, I plan on continuing to eat like that, and I know something else that I still have to work on is the hunger scale. If I’m having more stress or if I’m more rushed, I will sometimes tend to eat beyond a plus four.

I’m so much more aware of it now. Even six months ago, for sure a year ago, but even six months ago, I was not even tune in to that at all. Now, I’m just like, “No.” The amount of what I can eat now until totally full is completely different than it was before.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. I think that that’s totally normal. I mean the awareness of it, right? Then just being like, “Okay, well, if that’s happening a couple times in a row, that’s something I need to focus some attention on and figure out what that’s all about. Do I need to plan a little bit better? What’s the deal? Am I just over-serving myself? What’s happening?”

Again, you’re not beating yourself up. You’re not like, “I’m a failure because I ate past 8:00 to four and a half.” Or something. You’re just like, “Oh, interesting. Okay. That happened. I wonder what that was about.” You already know what it’s about, right? You’re rushed, you’re stressed or whatever. It’s like, “Okay. When I’m feeling that way, that’s something I’m going to be having to be on the look out for.” Which is so good.

Emily Kroening:   Then we are planning to do some more fertility treatments this coming year, so anticipating a hopeful pregnancy knowing that I am going to gain some weight back, but I also feel like really confident going into it knowing that I’m really healthy at my current weight and that I have a bunch of meals that I can make easily that will be super healthy to eat during pregnancy as well.

Katrina Ubell:      Absolutely. The way you’re eating is the best possible way to support your body, and you have thought work, because think about when people are pregnant, that’s who you take care of. There’s a lot of drama. There’s a lot of negativity. There’s a lot of poor me and self-pity.

When you can manage your minds for all of that and just be like, “That doesn’t mean I get to eat extra food or a whole bunch of M&Ms,” which I have been known to do while pregnant. It’s just business as usual. You probably eat a little bit more because you’re a growing human, but you’re not like all access pass to eat whatever you want, which is how so many people look at that. Yeah, that is totally amazing. Your next goal is maybe …

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. Hopefully a pregnancy in 2019, but also some other things. The thing that was so meaningful to me in the group was one of the month was like a goal setting month. I don’t remember which one, but the goal I set was to move forward with this fertility stuff because so much of my journey was getting through or starting to process through guilt, shame, sadness, loss of fertility and the adoption losses that we had.

I really worked a lot of that during the time of the group. Also, we were wanting to try to have a pregnancy, but I was just feeling paralyzed to move forward because I was so afraid to have failure. My goal that I set during the group was to contact the clinic, get in for a consult, go through all the steps to get to the point where I’m right now, which is to do an embryo transfer in January, which we have scheduled.

I even had to have surgery—which I had right after the group ended for my endometriosis—I had surgery. It wasn’t just like an easy process to get to the point where we’re at now, where I’m going to be starting meds actually tomorrow for the embryo transfer, but that was just huge, because I think so much of my personal journey was related to that.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. What the group did was it gave you sort of like a structured framework within which to work through all of that stuff. Rather than just stuffing that down, stuffing that down, really recognizing like, “Okay. These are my emotions. I can process this.”

What I was saying about groups, it’s like the one negative emotion that we all agree, you can’t rush it. It’s okay to grieve and it’s important to let yourself be there, but then even moving forward, this is one of those things where it’s like … I think at first if I were a first timer hearing this, I would be like, “What?”

Now, it’s such a comforting thing to me and that’s literally the worst that can happen as an emotion. If you’re willing to feel all of the emotions, the positive ones and the negative ones, then why not move forward on your dream to carry pregnancy yourself? The worst that can happen is a negative emotion.

It might be very, very uncomfortable, but you can feel that. Once you’re willing to do that, then the sky is the limit in terms of what you’re willing and able to accomplish in your life. You’re not placing these limits on yourself thinking, “Well, but if I don’t succeed, then I’m going to feel so uncomfortable.” You’re going to feel discomfort in your life no matter what you do, so you might as well have big goals, right?

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. I think for me, it was like deciding between the discomfort of possibly failing versus a discomfort of not trying. I was like, “I’d rather try.” Just getting through like it’s before. It was like the fear of failure. I still have that somewhat, but I’ve worked through a lot of it.

That’s a big goal. Other goals that we’re working on are getting my finances in order so we have a new financial planner and doing meetings with him. Then household organization, decluttering is an ongoing process that I started during the group and I just have a couple rooms left. Prioritizing time with my husband.

Katrina Ubell:      Once you handle all that stuff, then it’s like the relationships you have to focus on. Yeah, that’s really it. Right. Really thinking about like, “How do I want to be the wife that I want to be? What does she look like? Am I acting like her?” Same for being a mother, a friend, family member, whatever. It’s so great to focus on that stuff. Yeah, I think that’s amazing.

I think that once you’ve reached that goal, like you figured out how to handle a weight loss, it’s like that’s so challenging that anything else is like, “Oh, all I have to do is clean my house up? Get rid of a bunch of stuff I don’t even want?” Maybe. Not a problem. I can do whatever it is like, “Oh, I just have to not impulse shop and instead do something else that actually serves me. Oh, that’s just not stress eating. Okay, I get it. I understand now.” Yeah, that is really it.

As we finish up. Thank you so much for your time. As we finish up, I wanted to see if you had any advice for people who are in a similar position who have 100 or more pounds to lose. Maybe they’ve tried a lot of things. Maybe they haven’t tried a lot of things, but they’re just ort of like, “I don’t even know. This seems a lot. I don’t even know what to do.” What do you think? What would you tell them?

Emily Kroening:   I think most importantly, it’s just starting, because when you have that big of a goal or that big of amount to lose, I think it can be really overwhelming, so you spend a lot of time just being like, “I don’t even want to try because it’s just so overwhelming to think about how … It wouldn’t be possible, but just starting like, “Hey. I’m going to do something.” Just start and see where it goes and then add other steps as you go.

Katrina Ubell:      This is so funny. Another coach that I know, she’s like, “The first step can be eating the ice cream out of a bowl instead of the carton.” It literally can be. That small of a step, right? At least you’re going in the right direction.

Emily Kroening:   That’s in the right direction and not in smaller goals. I had goals throughout the group. During the group, we had a trip to Maui and I was like, “Okay. I want to get to this way before I go to Maui.” Then before another trip, I was like, “My goal is to be at this weight or different dates. By the end of six months, I want to be at this weight.” I had smaller incremental goals throughout which was helpful. 100 pounds, you don’t know how fast you’re going to lose 100 pounds and things are going to happen.

Katrina Ubell:      I agree. I think it totally make sense to have those smaller goals. I think it also make sense to chunk it up that way, but then to have some non-scale related goals. This month, I want to do that work every single day, no exceptions or whatever. This month, I want to make sure that I get through all the materials within the first two weeks that month so that I can ask all the questions related to that, whatever.

Just something smaller that you know you can achieve that is 100% in your control that you know this is what’s going to happen and I’m going to see … You can’t help but see the results from doing that. If you commit to doing your thought work every day for a month straight, it will make a huge difference. Huge, huge difference.

Emily Kroening:   Yeah. I had goals like that too. I think at some point, you had us writing those type of goals. One of mine was meditating every day for a month. Doing the thought downloads every day. Like getting outside and walking four days a week, things like that.

Katrina Ubell:      Which you can do in California, not in Wisconsin.

Emily Kroening:   I know.

Katrina Ubell:      Lucky duck.

Emily Kroening:   A big goal for 2019 for me is to just initiate exercise, because I didn’t … Other than just family walk and bike rides and stuff like that, nothing formal exercises during the last year, but now I’m actually … I never liked exercising ever in my life except when I was doing sports as a teenager. Now, I actually feel like a desired exercise, which is really crazy.

Katrina Ubell:      That is cool. Yes.

Yeah. That’s really that next step, because obviously, exercise is super healthy for you and going to be really good for you as well. That’s again, something that you’re going to want to do for the rest of your life in some way, shape or form. Now, you get to try things out to see what you like. You’re not like, “Oh my gosh, I’m going to be the person who’s 100 pounds overweight going into that class.” You’re like, “Yeah, I’m just me going into that class seeing if I like it and that’s it. It doesn’t have to be a big deal.” That’s super cool. I think that’s awesome for you.

All right, Emily, thank you so much. It’s been wonderful. I know you’re going to help so many people and you’re such an inspiration to everybody, so thanks so much for coming on and sharing all your personal stuff. We really appreciate it.

Emily Kroening:   Thanks, Katrina.

Did you know that you can find a lot more help from me on my website? Go to katrinaubellmd.com and click on free resources.

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