There are certain themes that seem to come up again and again… and again. Whenever this is the case, I know it’s something I need to talk to you about, so in today’s episode, I’ll be covering one of those themes that has come up quite a lot: how to know when it is time for coaching in your weight loss efforts, or when it’s time to go it alone.

Listen in as I share the six indications that it’s probably time for you to explore adding coaching to your weight loss journey. For anyone struggling with weight loss, this episode will be a great reminder that it’s not just about the numbers on the scale—it’s about doing the other work that ultimately creates the experience you want.


Listen To The Episode Here:

In Today’s Episode, You’ll Learn:

  • How to know it’s time for coaching
  • What it means if you don’t feel peace and freedom around food after losing weight
  • How to handle it if you keep self-sabotaging
  • Why it’s not just about the weight loss
  • What it takes to create the experience you want to have

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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 292.

Welcome to The Weight Loss for Busy Physicians podcast. I’m your host, master certified, life and weight loss coach, Katrina Ubell, MD.

This is the podcast where busy doctors like you come to learn how to lose weight for the last time by harnessing the power of your mind. If you’re looking to overcome your stress-eating and exhaustion, and move into freedom around food, you’re in the right place.

Well, hello there, my friend, how are you today? So glad that you’re here. I’m freezing right now even though it’s August as I’m recording this. It’s that state where it’s so hot outside that it’s hard to regulate the air conditioning inside. I have long pants on, I have a jacket on, I have a blanket, like a fuzzy blanket wrapped around my legs and I just feel so cold. I think it might be time for socks here in a minute.

And you know what else? I know you’re going to know what I’m talking about. Have you ever had that experience where you wore a new pair of jeans, but you didn’t wash them first or maybe even you did wash them, but just like those first few wears, the dye from the jeans, especially if they’re like a darker wash is rubbing off everywhere, like on your furniture? I know I’ve seen it like on my car seat, like on the leather, the bolster in the car seat.

I am wearing a new jacket that I got from the Nordstrom anniversary sale this year that I’m actually really digging. And I like it a lot, but it’s kind of like a dark … what color is this? Kind of like a dark wine color or burgundy or something like that. It’s not a color that I wear too often.

And so, I’ve been wearing it all day. I have a white blouse on underneath it. And when I looked at the blouse, it’s like totally getting marked up from this jacket. My chair, like the armrest of my chair and the back of my chair, totally getting rubbed up. I’m like, “Well, what are you going to do at this point?”

When they say in for penny, in for a pound, I’m like, “Well, I guess I’ll wait till I’m done wearing it and then I’ll do the damage control and see what I can wipe off and wash the white top and see if that will come out.” You know what I’m talking about? I just didn’t expect that. I’m like, “Well, now, I know.” This is just the day-to-day life that we experience people.

So, listen, did you miss the big announcement that I sent out to my email list last week? It was a special video that I sent out and I have a couple big announcements, they’re both book-related and they are available to anybody, not just doctors.

So, I want to make sure that you get that information, particularly if you’ve already pre-ordered the book. My book is called How to Lose Weight for the Last Time: Brain-Based Solutions for Permanent Weight Loss and you’re going to want to know about this.

So, if you did not get that email, then I want you to head over to You’ll be able to watch the video there, and you’ll also be able to take apart and take advantage of the things that I tell you about there. So, definitely go and check that out.

The other thing that I want to talk to you about is that coming up next week, Thursday, August 25th, at 8:30 PM Eastern, 5:30 PM Pacific, I’m going to be hosting a free training that I don’t do very often, but it’s called How Losing Weight is Different for Doctors (And What to Do About it). To register for that. Just go to So, let’s just talk about what’s different about this free training and why you want to come.

So, what we know, if you really think about it is that most of the weight loss programs that people come up with are not really geared toward doctors. Like not a lot of people have a lifestyle where there’s just these emergencies that come up or a case that was supposed to take two hours, ends up turning into six, or just things that truly just come up and you’re not even able to pee, let alone eat something or follow that plan.

And then what ends up happening is you feel sorry for yourself, you feel like you’re not getting your needs met, you realize this plan doesn’t work for me, then it all devolves and any weight you’ve lost, you end up getting it back again. Ask me how I know, because I’ve done those before so many times, that’s been my experience.

So, what we really have to understand, as doctors, is that being in clinical practice affords some things that are just different. It just is different for us and I think it’s important for us to understand how we got to where we are today, and how we need to change things so that we can create a different result i.e., permanent weight loss in the future.

That’s exactly what I’m going to talk to you about. On this free training, I’m also going to tell you more about the Weight Loss for Doctors Only Program, because we are opening up enrollment for that on Thursday, August 25th. We’re going to be open for a week and I want to tell you all about the program.

So, that’s a great reason to come as well, so you can learn more about the program. So, if you’ve been thinking about it or are curious about it, or even if you’re not, if you just want to know how things are different for doctors and what needs to change, like what to do about that, so you actually can get the results that you want, then you’re going to want to join us.

So, like I said to register, go to It’s next week, Thursday, August 25th, 8:30 PM Eastern time.

So, what I want to talk about today is something that has been coming up kind of … certain themes will show up. I’ll hear it again and hear it one time, hear it again, hear it again. And I start going, “Hmm, I think I need to do a podcast episode about this.”

So, what I want to talk about is when it is time for coaching, instead of just doing it yourself. Now, of course, in 291 episodes prior to this one that I’ve offered to you, I offer you some great free help. There are lots of people who’ve had great results from listening to this podcast. But I will tell you that what I’m seeing more and more of is people who have made good progress or maybe even great progress with losing weight on their own.

And then now, they are joining my program, they’re joining Weight Loss for Doctors Only, even though they maybe don’t even have weight to lose anymore or very little to lose, but because they realize that they haven’t actually solved the problem.

And so, I want to talk to you today about that kind of separation, understanding that it’s not just about the weight loss. Like you have got to do this other work so that you can create that experience that you want to have.

And so, I’m going to give you six reasons or kind of examples, kind of indications that it’s time for you to explore coaching, incorporating coaching into your efforts of what you’re doing.

So, the first reason, the first way you know it’s time for coaching is you have lost weight, but you don’t feel peace and freedom around food.

So, if you have lost the weight, if you’ve listened to this podcast, you’ve applied what I’ve taught you, and you still feel like certain foods have control over you, or you feel over desire for certain foods, or you are just feeling like brain chatter around food is still just a super prevalent part of my life – it’s something that I thought would quiet down and just hasn’t, then it’s time for coaching because the losing the weight does not solve for the other problem.

Here’s what I want you to know; like you eating in a certain way and working with your physiology so that your body releases the extra energy that’s stored on your body in the form of fat, has nothing to do with the way that you think about food, the way that you are approaching certain foods, we might call like trigger foods or foods that you struggle with that you have a hard time controlling yourself around, or that you tend to overeat, or maybe even binge on.

Those are totally separate skills; those are totally two separate things. And so, that’s great if you’ve lost that weight, but also, there’s all this other work that we need to do, and that is what makes that weight loss permanent.

My concern always for anybody who’s lost weight, but still doesn’t feel that peace and freedom around food and doesn’t know how to maintain that experience of peace and freedom around food — I mean, I don’t want to sound negative, but the chances of you regaining that weight are high. I mean, they just are. All we have to do is just look around us to know that this is the truth.

So, it’s time for coaching if your body is where you want it to be, but your brain is not. That’s the first reason.

The next reason is you’ve been listening to this podcast, you’re taking it all in, it’s all resonating. You’re like, yes, yes, yes, and you keep meaning to get started and apply what you’ve learned here, but you aren’t doing it or you aren’t doing it in any kind of meaningful way.

So, you’re kind of like, “Yeah, I’m going to start doing that soon,” or “Yeah, I mean like sometimes on occasion I do check in and see how hungry I am before I eat something.” But you’re just not really taking the steps to move forward with taking action. That is when coaching can be so, so helpful. In our Weight Loss for Doctors Only Program, we can help you with all of that.

Also, there are some people who just need to get some coaching to work through some other things first before they’re even really ready to get started losing weight. I know I’ve talked about that on here before, but I just want to make it clear that you’re not going to have success really moving forward and making meaningful changes in how you’re approaching this if your brain isn’t in a position to be able to support you continuously in doing that.

And there’s no shame in being in that position, there’s nothing wrong with being in that position, but there is a solution and there is help available. And coaching is so great at just … it’s like a laser just like slicing through what the problem is and figuring out what the next steps are moving forward. And I’ve seen this where it’s like one coaching session and it’s like, boom, everything changes and here we go, we’re ready to go.

So, sometimes I think we think like, “Oh, I’m going to need like so much help before I can do it.” Maybe not, also, probably not. I mean, if we’re being honest, like what we have to do is understand that the story that we’re telling ourselves is actually not true at all. Just a lie that we keep telling ourselves and believing it, and we just get going and move forward.

Or maybe there is something else going on. And then we can coach on that and work on improving that as well. So, that when you have worked through that, you are ready to start moving forward and to apply what you’ve learned in a meaningful way.

Number three; you’re working on losing weight, you’re trying to apply what I’ve taught you, but you just keep finding yourself running shenanigans, self-sabotaging. You have a little string of good days maybe, and then it’s like struggle bus again.

And you’re just not sure what to do, you’re kind of all over the place. It feels very dramatic in your brain. There’s certainly no peace and freedom around food, but you’re also not getting weight loss results. And it just starts to feel really reminiscent of other ways that you’ve tried to lose weight in the past.

That is when it’s time for coaching. It’s not like … I mean, sometimes we do need to change our plan. If we really feel like it’s very restrictive or things like that, then of course, we change the plan, but this is a mindset issue, this is a brain issue to stop running shenanigans, to stop self-sabotaging.

And this is something that when it’s not resolved, if you don’t work through why that’s happening and figure out how to fix it, it will just keep coming back. It’s like one of those lessons you just have to keep learning.

People talk about like if they think of any kind of like higher power or whatever, it’s just like the universe or God or whoever like just keeps bringing this problem back to me until I figure it out and solve for it and move forward from it.

And that’s basically what’s happening here. If we don’t solve for the self-sabotage for … and what I mean by running shenanigans is eating off plan, doing silly stuff that we don’t even know why we’re doing it. Like things that aren’t supportive.

And we have to fix that in order for you to have success of any kind really, moving forward. Like if you want to solve this problem, that has to be sorted through and solved for, or you will just keep repeating the same experience with food and your weight.

Number four reason to know that’s time for coaching; is you recognize that you can really only stay on your plan and get results as long as there’s no real challenges that come up in your life. So, you can’t have anything particularly stressful come up. Also, you can’t go on vacation, you can’t travel, going to a special event is enough to kind of throw you off.

So, it’s kind of like as long as you can like manufacture sort of this like perfect life, then you can do it. But the minute life acts lifey and does what life does, it’s so wobbly that you’re not able to keep it up. And then it’s kind of repeating, like you fall off of tracking your plan and going ahead with it. And then you’ve got to do all this work to get yourself back on track again.

And then maybe you keep up with it for a while, and then you’re off again. That gets really exhausting. Also, I’ve had this experience I’m like, how do I know? Because I have done this so many times. It gets so exhausting and you start thinking like, “What is wrong with me? Why am I not figuring this out?”

Well, there’s nothing wrong with you, but the reason you’re not figuring it out is because you need to get some coaching so that you can work through this. So, that the way that you’re eating and supporting your body is just the way that you do life, and the hard part of life and the easy parts of life too.

It’s just how you go through your experience of your day-to-day no matter what the day-to-day is. And it takes for many people some practice, and there’s nothing better than having coaching to help you as you’re practicing, as you’re experimenting with different things, finding out lots of things that don’t work, working to figure out what the things are that do work.

It can be really easy when you’re trying to do this on your own to feel like you just don’t know what to do next, to feel very confused, to feel like it’s not possible for you, and to start searching and thinking that all sorts of crazy things need to happen, you just can’t have fun on vacation, that your options are to have fun on vacation or to be in control of your weight, you can’t have both. Like things that just don’t even make any sense.

And that’s where coaching can help you. Coaching goes in there and goes “Yeah, that doesn’t actually make sense. And when you think that way, this is always the result that you’ll create, which is the result you don’t want. So, let’s figure out a different way to approach this that still feels true and believable, but also gives you the result that you want.”

So, when you feel like you being able to do what you believe is helping you is just very precarious, it’s not settled and stable, coaching is what you need. Coaching is going to go in there and help you to get things on track the way they need to be so that you really can get to where you want to be, and then keep it there. So important.

Number five reason, how do you know when it’s time for coaching, instead of just doing yourself? You have lost weight, but you’re struggling to maintain it. So maybe you got yourself, you’re like, “Yep, I did all these things.” And then maintenance is a whole different ball of wax.

We get into this position where we start to try to maybe loosen the rains a little, and then we’re finding that we gain weight so easily. So, it’s easy for people in this position to start feeling like, “Well, either I can maintain my weight loss and I have to live this life of strict deprivation, or it’s not possible for me to keep this weight off.”

And when you’re faced with that kind of choice, that is of course, purely concocted from just our brains and not the truth. Then we start thinking, “Well, I’m just not going to be able to maintain this. Like I think I’m just like really in … what do they say? Between a rock and a hard place? Like neither option sounds acceptable to me, so therefore, I’m going to have to just, I guess, gain some weight back because this just isn’t something that’s going to be tolerable for me ongoing.”

So, what we want to get to a position with coaching in this scenario is where you recognize that you’re in charge of whatever you weigh. You get to choose. Always, you get to choose a lower weight, you get to choose a higher weight, you get to choose a weight in the middle, but it’s always something that you’re choosing and you have way more control over it than you think.

So, if you’re struggling to maintain your weight loss, that is because again, we have not done the brain work that’s required. We haven’t gotten to that place where, how we support ourselves, how we eat and support our bodies so that we are able to keep that weight off is just our life.

And it’s the way that we do things, it doesn’t feel like a hardship. It’s just normal, it’s just a normal existence. And if it doesn’t feel like that for you, then we need some coaching, and maybe we need to change up some things with the plan — and or there’s probably a lot of coaching work that can be done about our thoughts around everything, how we’re interpreting being in maintenance, how we’re interpreting what our current plan is — all of that is so important to be focusing on and spending time really solidifying strongly.

When you have coaching help that gets you to that place, you are able to keep that weight off and just have smooth sailing, not in the sense that you never have challenges in your life, but smooth sailing in the sense that you know that you’ve got your back when it comes to your weight and if something changes, something’s different, you know exactly how to support yourself.

And the number six, the last way that you know that it’s time for coaching instead of just doing it yourself, is you’ve lost weight and maybe you’re maintaining it okay but now, you’re struggling in other areas of your life.

And what I mean by that is maybe you find yourself just so much more reactive than you used to be. Maybe you’re yelling or raising your voice so much more than you used to, maybe with the people that you love, maybe with the people that you like and work with or respect or are expected to get along with.

Maybe you’re finding that being you in these experiences, even if you’re not having any actual outbursts, just the way that you’re experiencing things, the way you’re thinking about people around you and experiences around you, that feels really crummy.

Maybe you’re overdoing something else. Before you were maybe overdoing it with the food, maybe you’re overdoing it now with the alcohol. This comes up time and time again, where we have clients say, “Hey, you know what? I actually thought it was the food, but kind of getting my food in check has not been the hard part, that’s all fine. The issue here is the alcohol. And now, I need to work on that.”

So, it can be that or it could be even something else; “I’m spending too much, I am just completely checked out. Like I’m physically present with the people that I love, but I’m not actually mentally present. I’m still constantly looking for a way to regulate my insides with my outsides” and that’s not going to be a good solution. Then we know we need some coaching.

Maybe you still feel burned out or resentful, maybe you just have a general dissatisfaction feeling about your life. So, okay, you’ve gotten the weight off and you can maintain it okay, but things are still not the way you want them to be. They’re still not as good as you’d like them to be. Then it’s time for coaching, because we don’t want to go back to using food as a way to solve for these problems. The food is just the band-aid.

So, in this scenario, we’ve identified what the actual problem is, what this sort of wound underneath the band0aid is so to speak. So, okay, so now, we know what that is, but what do we do about it? Well, coaching is what we do about it. Coaching is brilliant at helping with these things, at making it so that you can change your brain so that you’re able to experience life in the way that you want to.

And that doesn’t mean that you’re gaslighting yourself, it doesn’t mean toxic positivity, it doesn’t mean anything like that. It means actually, taking ownership for your part in creating the experience that you have, and understanding that you have agency to change things, and sometimes, it’s changing the way you think, sometimes it’s changing the environment too.

Sometimes we realize, “You know what, I’ve done all this work and I can work here, but I really prefer not to, because it requires so much effort on my part to remove myself from burnout and stay away from burnout. So, I would actually just prefer to work in a place or in a setting where it’s easier for me to not feel burnt out.” Great, amazing, then we can support you in that as well.

But more often than not, it’s the opposite where we realize, you know what, yes, there is a broken system and there are a lot of things that could use some serious fixing in the system. But when I take responsibility for my part in creating my interpretation of this or my experience of this — when I take ownership and change it, wow, things are a lot more tolerable. I feel so much better. I actually can enjoy my life so much more without so much effort in trying to create it.

So, maybe it’s possible that one of these things resonated with you. I mean, I also just want to say that some people are like, look, like I understand that this all makes sense. And I also just know I’m not going to do this on my own.

I mean that’s how I was. I was like I hear all of this and I’m going to need some coaching help, I know that for sure. I just know that. I know that about myself. If I really want to get results, then I need to hire in somebody, something to be able to actually get some meaningful results.

And that’s why I continue to work with coaches to this day. I mean, I don’t think I’ll ever be without a coach because having coaching helps me to create what I want in my life so much. It’s just incredible.

So, I just want to put it out there that if you’re kind of like, “I mean, if I’m being honest with myself, I’m going to do so much better if I am working with coaching and within a coaching group,” then why are we waiting then? Let’s just do it, let’s just get that help that we need.

We don’t need to prove or almost like earn or deserve the right or permission to be in a coaching program by having tried to do it ourselves beforehand. It’s not like you have to try it on your own, do the DIY approach and fail before you deserve to be in a program or being in a coaching program is only for the people who are not able to do it on their own.

No, why would you do it on your own when you can get this amazing help? I mean, it’s so much easier and faster when you get that help. Trust me, trust me. I know this to be the facts.

So, just a reminder, we are opening up the September Weight Loss for Doctors Only Coaching Group, it’s for women physicians in clinical practice only; such a great program, we love it so much.

You need to check it out for sure because we even have some extras, some special bonuses that we’re offering just this one time only for people who are in the September Weight Loss for Doctors Only Program. We have never offered these before and we don’t plan on offering them again. You’re definitely going to want to check these things out.

And so, to join me on the training about How Losing Weight is Different for Doctors (And What to Do About it), go to so you can register there.

But if you just like some information about the Weight Loss for Doctors Only Program, you just want to check it out and see what it’s all about, then you can go to and you’ll get that information. We will be opening up enrollment on August 25th, which is the date of the free training, and then we will be closing it on September 1st.

So, you’re definitely going to want to check this out very soon. Can’t wait to welcome you in, it’s the perfect time to come and join us. I’m so excited for everybody in that group. So, happy for you.

And just a reminder, if you miss the big announcement, want to know more, go to

Have a wonderful rest of your week. Thank you so much for your time, your attention, I appreciate you being here, and I don’t take it for granted, that’s for sure.

Have a great one and I’ll talk to you next time bye bye.

Ready to start making progress on your weight loss goals? For lots of free help, go to and click on free resources.