In today’s “I Did It” Series episode, I have Casey Wright on the podcast. She shares so many words of wisdom about patience, showing up for yourself and self-integrity, and what the process really takes. I’m really excited about today’s episode, so let’s jump right in!
One of my favorite takeaways is how Casey shares about creating rules around how it’s ok to not be perfect. What’s yours?
Find show notes at bicepsafterbabies.com/221
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- Consistency does really pay off (9:46)
- Don't make it a rule that perfection is not required (16:28)
- Patience (18:55)
- Develop self-integrity (22:17, 23:08, 23:57)
- Being at maintenance (25:00, 25:53)
You're listening to Biceps After Babies Radio episode number 221.
Hello and welcome to Biceps After Babies Radio. A podcast for ladies who know that fitness is about so much more than pounds lost or PRs. It's about feeling confident in your skin and empowered in your life. I'm your host, Amber Brueseke, a registered nurse, personal trainer, wife, and mom of four. Each week, my guests and I will excite and motivate you to take action in your own personal fitness as we talk about nutrition, exercise mindset, personal development, and executing life with conscious intention. If your goal is to look, feel, and be strong and experience transformation from the inside out, you, my friend are in the right place. Thank you for tuning in, now let’s jump into today’s episode.
Amber B 0:48
Hey, hey, hey, welcome back to another episode of Biceps After Babies Radio. I'm your host Amber Brueseke. And this is another Friday episode of the “I Did It” Series, where we interview women who are going through their journey, who have accomplished and had some success, and are here to share their story and their wisdom with you. And today on the podcast I have Casey Wright. And this was one of my favorite episodes. I just really feel like Casey has so much wisdom to share. She's been on this journey for a really long time. And you'll hear her whole story but you know, in some ways her story started back when she was eight years old. And she's been on it for a really long time. And I feel like the wisdom that she's able to share from the lessons she's learned, and the experiences that she had, are incredible. And so I'm really excited for you to listen to this episode.
Amber B 1:41
One of the things that we talked about in this episode towards the end is maintenance. And this idea of practicing maintenance, and sitting in maintenance, even if you're uncomfortable. And this is a topic that, you know I get asked a lot about and coach clients through because a lot of times people are very hesitant to maintain a weight at which they are not happy. They don't want to be that way, they want to get out of that way. That's not the way they want to be. And so this idea of maintaining their feels very foreign. And you know, Casey talks about this experience of you know, that's what she's going through, she's been going through, she is current or you know, has been she just started to cut but she has been maintaining a weight that she doesn't want to maintain. And so we have a really good conversation about that in Casey makes some really important points.
Amber B 2:29
But I want to link to another reference for those of you who are struggling with having a lot of weight to lose or having these periods of like maintaining a weight that maybe you're not completely comfortable at. I also want to link you to Episode 72, where I interviewed Heather Robertson and she lost half of her body weight. I think it was like 170 pounds and has been able to maintain it for eight years. And she too hammers home this point of this idea of like, Why do you think that you can maintain something that you have to practice you've never practiced maintenance. If you think that you're just going to get to your goal weight and magically be able to maintain it. You don't know much about like what it takes to maintain something. And so if that, you know, if you have a lot of weight to lose, I really and even if you don't, but you know you're maintaining that may be a weight you're not like your goal weight, then I really highly recommend listening to Episode 72 of Biceps After Babies Radio.
Amber B 3:26
All right, let's jump into the interview with Casey Wright.
Amber B 3:31
I am so excited to welcome Casey to the podcast. How are you doing Casey?
I'm great Amber, thank you.
Amber B 3:38
This is gonna be really fun. I'm really excited, will you first start with just introducing yourself to the audience and kind of just give us a little quick synopsis of your journey and what that looks like for you.
Okay, again, I'm Casey, I'm 46 years old. I work in the medical field as an MRI technologist. Between my fiance and I, we have six children and a new grandbaby.
Amber B 4:01
I grew up in West Virginia born and raised, but have now lived in Las Vegas for about 25 years.
Amber B 4:09
Awesome. And give us a little overview of your journey. Wherever you think it's relevant to start.
I have looked back at pictures of when I was a kid and about age eight is when I started to gain weight and steadily every year gained weight. As a teenager I was up to like, you know over 200 pounds. My supportive mother would try to keep me active and she would pay for gym memberships and Weight Watchers and anything I wanted to try. I never remember my weight being a focus in the family but I knew I was bigger than my sisters and very aware that I was bigger than my classmates and so always wanted to have that more under control. In the late 90s, I was in my early 20s, the first time I was successful with weight loss with the diet, the protein diet was new for me, and a big thing at that time. And I lost 70 pounds. And I thought, Okay, this is the thing, I found the thing after all these years, nothing works. I've done everything I thought I should do right and was never successful with sustained weight loss. When I was in college, I met my now ex-husband, moved to Las Vegas, got married, got pregnant right away, and ate all the things while I was pregnant, I gained all that weight back, assuming that I could go straight back on that protein diet and the weight back off, tried several times over the next few years to do the protein diet, it never worked for me again. And now I realize it's because I wasn't in a calorie deficit but very frustrating.
So fast forward about seven years, after two babies, I'm up to 289 pounds, desperate not to get any heavier, so uncomfortable and miserable at that weight. And so I decided that I'm going to have weight loss surgery and decided to get the lap band. Chose because it wasn't cutting my anatomy at all. It was simply saying that was gonna be placed, I could have it removed, and it's not going to alter my anatomy so I felt good about that. Ended up losing about 100 pounds with that weight loss surgery does not change your mindset at all. It forces you to restrict calories, so inevitably, you're going to lose weight. I got pregnant with my third baby. So I got down to about 190 pounds with that surgery. After the baby I was up back around 220 struggling with that 30 pounds, which was better than struggling with 150 pounds, right? So I felt like this is doable, I can do this. Started calorie counting and trying to be more active again, which I was never good at my whole life, right. And here in there, I would lose a little bit or maintain a little bit but never could get back to that post-surgery weight. And about 10 years after having the band, I would have periods of time over the years where it would get really tight. And I could not get any food or water to go through and it would use last about three to four days and then it will relax and I'd be okay. The last time it happened it was eight days straight with no food or water. So I got the lap band removed. But I was kind of panicked because it's like tomorrow I'm going to be able to eat normally how I used to eat. I know my habits, I know my mindset, I know that I could never figure this out on my own before, and I refuse to go back to almost 300 pounds. I just was so uncomfortable there.
But from starvation in that period of time and leading up to having the band removed, I was down to about 160 pounds. And in the year after I had it removed I was back up to 220s. Still, calorie counting, and I started kickboxing and I was doing all the right things. Still have no idea though how important protein was yet or weightlifting it was all the cardio right and as a kid and teenager, it was all about exercise and what's the new exercise tape and what's the new thing that's going to stick for me and all that so I was still searching for the next thing, right? What is the thing that's going to work for me so I came across an ad and it was macro percentages based on body type? So I bought this program and turned out not to like the program the way it was set up. But what it did for me is it planted the seed of the idea of macros, it got me tracking using the app, pre-planning, weighing, and measuring. But I was only doing five out of seven days taking the weekends off so I was gaining and losing the same five pounds for like three months. So very frustrating like I'm putting in all this effort. This is a lot of work, especially in the beginning when it's new to do all the tracking and weighing and all that and I know that I'm not going to keep this up if I don't see results. So I was still looking for why is this not working for me.
I came across another coaching group on Instagram. I love them, I still love these ladies so much. It was weekly check-ins accountability, progress pictures, and macro adjustments every week. And I learned that five out of seven days is not enough to really see consistent progress. And so right, then I decided I'm gonna get seven out of seven green days, meaning staying within your macro range. As much as I can, it's got to be really, really worth it for me to take a day off, or take a meal off. And this is, if I know this works, I'm willing to do it the right way. And I trusted them so I trusted the process. And I just, a good thing about them taking care of the things that I felt was confusing, then, like the number adjustments were that I could layer habits, I got really great at patience and consistency, and tracking and logging and all of that without worrying about the stuff that I thought was really hard. And a bit of accountability was great in the beginning. So that was good. And having somebody be proud of you and your efforts and cheering you on is important. It can be important. And I started keeping track of those green days, right. So at one point, I had logged out of 147 days, I had 134 green days. And I realized after about 18 months on and off with that group, I had lost almost 30 pounds. So I realized that consistency really does pay off. And at that point, I don't only trust them in the process. But I trusted myself, I was like I can do this. And I'm good at this part. I've done it, I can keep doing it. I've got this.
And then I started to wonder, well, I don't want to be dependent on someone to give me number adjustments for the rest of my life. Like I've got to actually figure this out. And I had found Lillie Eats and Tells on Instagram, love her. She mentioned you a lot. And so I know that's how I found your account. But when I first started following you, it didn't jump out at me because I was in my other group, I was just doing my thing. I knew we were on the same page like you were saying all the stuff that I had already learned that I knew works. So very loved your content. But once I started to think, “Okay, I really have to figure out this number thing.” Your stuff started to really jump out at me with the science macro scientist and figuring out this stuff on your own. And so I was chomping at the bit to get into MACROS 101 I felt like a stalker a little bit. Last minute when you kind of get in and so patiently waiting for the doors to open I was in the summer MACROS 101 of 2021. And you had offered Confidence In Your Numbers count to get into Macros. So I bought Confidence In Your Numbers and went through all that content ahead of time about your 12-week program workout program, which is the first time I ever went to the dumbbell section in the gym.
Amber B 13:16
No way. Oh my gosh, that like makes my heart so happy.
Oh, such a hard thing to do the first time. Want that for the other and go take your spot and own it, that's my advice. And now look around this is you know, a year later, and so many girls all around me do in their workouts and like we belong thereto.
Amber B 13:40
Ah yes, one foot in front of the other and own it. I love that.
And I never knew about progressive overload until I started listening to you, and how important lifting weights and building muscle can be for metabolism and fat loss and everything else. So right when the doors open for MACROS 101 I also bought your Build Your Workouts. And I've been through many cycles of building my own programs. And I feel really confident about that. I did decide about a month ago that I'm going to maintain the muscle that I've built. And I really want to focus on that last that's my main focus. And I learned from you that you can't do both things well at the same time. And so I want to maintain what I've built and focused on fat loss for the rest of the year.
Amber B 14:38
That's so cool. Good for you. I mean, Casey you're just like the star student. It's like checking all the boxes, doing all the things. Fellow upholder, have you read Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin? She characterizes people into like the four tendencies and one of them is the upholder. Who is like the rule follower and I aligned with that a lot as well, which can be great in a lot of areas but I do find that as a rule follower like I have to speak differently and kind of help people break out of that mentality when it comes to macros, because a lot of times people will like turn macros into, like, here's the rule, and you have to follow it? And if you don't follow it, then well,
I do know that you have to be able to estimate, if you force yourself into perfection and make sure you can weigh and measure everything exactly or you just give up because you weren't able to do that one day, you're gonna get burned out. You have to be able to go to that family barbecue, put a scoop of potato salad on your plate, call it half a cup, and move on. It doesn't mean you have a ruined day.
Amber B 15:50
Yeah, exactly. And that is like the place that it's really important to be able to move to is and I think, you know, hearing you share your story, you found such like a great place of that of being willing to not have to be perfect. While still, as you said, the acknowledgment about consistency is like, I had to be honest with myself, I wasn't I was doing five out of seven days. And that wasn't working for me. And so I had this realization that I had to be a little bit more, you know, on track with it. But that's a very different conversation to have with yourself than beating yourself up because you weren't perfect. And like felt off the weekend and thinking you're the worst because –
Right. Don't make it a rule that perfection is not required.
Amber B 16:33
Oh my gosh. Spoken like a true upholder. It's like, let's just make a rule that like, you aren't supposed to be perfect. Now you're following the rule.
Exactly, do it right.
Amber B 16:49
That's my favorite thing that you just said, I love that I latch on to that a lot. So I'm curious. You know, it sounds like you've had you've hit a lot of milestones and have had a lot of transformation occur over this time. But I'm curious. I know you had mentioned some of the beliefs that you had shifted during the process. And is there one thing that stands out to you as maybe an aha moment that you had or a belief shifting that you had during the MACROS 101 process?
Well, I think that I really trusted the process already prior to coming to MACROS 101. I just really needed the science. And you gave me that and I appreciate so much what you provide for people like me. And the fact that it doesn't have to be confusing. You just simply need to learn the things that go into it. And you can do it on your own. You don't have to be dependent. And that's always great. Because you know, there's a community of people who are right there to help you and answer questions, if you ever do get confused. And the fact that I have all the tools, I never have to search again, for the next thing that's going to help me, I never had to panic again. Like, I'm safe right here, but just don't give up and that is incredible. That's an incredible feeling.
Amber B 18:22
Yeah, that's huge. How have you because, you know, going back to the story that you shared, you shared that you had lost 30 pounds over 18 months? And some people are gonna hear that and be like, Oh, my gosh, that's like, way too slow. Like, I couldn't eat for like 18 months to lose 30 pounds. Like, that's terrible. I don't want it to take that long. So what do you know, what does patience mean to you? And how have you learned to lean into that patience? Because there are some people listening, they're like that's not fast enough. I'm not patient enough for that. It needs to happen faster. What would you say?
Yes, it is so slow. It really is so slow. If you decide that it's going to take time, and you're going to be all in no matter what and let it take the time. And you're going to be happy in the long run with that. Patience means to me a few things. Stepping on the scale, when it hasn't moved or hasn't gone down like I think it should. And I know I've done everything right. I just remind myself, that I have not overeaten enough for this to be fat gain. I am doing everything right. Keep doing what you're doing, write down the data and move on. You cannot let the scale dictate your behavior on a daily basis. Over time, when you see trends you can adjust accordingly. But that daily number you have to just take it and move on. Patience also means to me when I walk in after a long day at work, and somebody has ordered pizza that I didn't plan. I'm going to insert scarfing down the pizza. I'm going to stop, open my app and rework my evening. See how much pizza I can have If I can't work it in that night, I'm going to save size and work it in tomorrow. Maybe it's going to be breakfast as soon as I wake up. And I might have a bite or two, right then and adjust my evening treat for those bites. But also patience is being in maintenance and feeling chunky with a chunk and not rushing into your cut because you're uncomfortable. And then when you get to that cut, you have earned it. You are excited about it because you're uncomfortable, you're more likely to do the work to make that cut successful. That's where I am today. This week, I just started the cut, and I am super uncomfortable and was sitting with the class chunky.
Amber B 20:52
Yeah, yes. Good. Yeah. So what have you learned about yourself while being in maintenance?
Oh, that I can do it. I don't have to gain weight every year. This is the first time in my life that I have lost weight, or maintain weight for periods of time. And it's just constant reiteration that this works. It's all I'm ever gonna need. And now knowing the science, I can navigate whatever phase I want, with whatever goals I have and I'm just excited. And I have a long way to go. Like I heard one of your podcasts the other day that said, we should call this “I'm Doing It” Series. And there are some aspects that I feel like I have done it already, like consistency and patience, and showing up for myself. You know, I decided, listening to you that you have to have integrity with yourself, and refuse to give up. You can't let excuses get in your way. It's so easy to not go to the gym because you're too tired or whatever. And just holding yourself accountable. I have really shown up for myself, constantly.
Amber B 22:09
That's so awesome. Yeah, what is showing up for yourself look like for you specifically?
Like today after this podcast, I am going to the gym, I had a busy day at work and I could easily go home and relax and take a bath. When I'm gonna get my workout in first, I make sure I get my two weightlifting days and two kickboxing days a week. And if I don't do it today, I'm doing it on the weekend. And I don't want to do it on the weekend. So I'm going.
Amber B 22:40
That's so good. How did you develop that self-integrity? Because I know that there's somebody who's listening to this right now who wants that? Right? They maybe have identified, that I don't have self-integrity, I keep promises to everybody else. But I don't keep promises to myself. And they haven't figured out how to develop that. As someone who it sounds like you have over time learned and practiced and developed that self-integrity, what advice do you have for someone like that?
I can distinctly remember it's been in the sense of sort of macros is when just a switch flipped for me, that part of doing this, and getting the results that I know are right at my fingertips if I just do it, right. And so I have to be consistent, and not just with food, but with working out. And that bleeds into a lot of other aspects of life. When you tell your kids, you're gonna do something, you need to mean it. And, you know, even if it's I'll take you to the park tomorrow, but not today. And then tomorrow comes and you're like, tired. I said I was gonna go oh, so let's go.
Amber B 23:54
Yeah. Yeah, that's really good. One thing I want to-
You just have to decide, make a decision, decide to do it. And then don't let yourself out of it.
Amber B 24:04
Yeah, that's good.
Easy to say but hard to do.
Amber B 24:09
Yeah. And I would even say like, even when you make that you like draw that line in the sand and you make that decision. If in the future, you fall back, it's like, you can make the decision again, like you can draw another line in the sand. It's like it's, it's not like, Oh, well now you messed up and now like, as well, like, ruin everything. It's like you make a new decision. It's like, the next decision is a new decision and you can refer.
And back to the rule thing, you can make a rule that you're allowed to take a break and come back to it and it's fine. You're not a complete failure. Taking a break, not failing anyway, you know, we all take a break, and then you get back on track. That's also part of the process. We're allowed to go on vacations. And then you tell yourself okay when I get back, and if you want a few extra days after vacation, then take it but that day that you said you're gonna get back on track. You need to do it.
Amber B 25:00
Yeah, that's good. I also want to point out because I think it was so important that you said when talking about maintenance, that so often people, it is uncomfortable for people to sit at maintenance when they're not at their goal. So like, I don't like here, this is not where I want to be, I don't want to maintain here. But you know, like you said, for somebody who, in the past had was really good at losing, and then also regaining that weight, that sitting at that weight and maintaining it was a huge win. That was a huge win during that period of time. And so, so often, we only identify and classify weight loss as a success, where for a lot of people, and I would argue more people than even probably thinks that this is them not gaining weight, being able to maintain that weight is a huge, huge, important win. And it's an important part of being able to have lasting long-term success.
Right. I never thought about the concept of that. And even with the group before you, they were taking me through phases. But I had no idea of that concept. And so going through MACROS 101 is the first time I was learning about cuts and reverses and maintenance periods and bulks and all this stuff. And I've never had any other goal except weight loss. So knowing that taking those breaks, and maintaining your weight, first of all, you're teaching yourself how to maintain your weight, before you ever need to do it at your end goal, which is amazing, because I'm so ready to maintain when I'm and how happy I'm going to be to maintain when I am at a place where I feel good about where I am.
Amber B 26:49
Yeah. And you feel confident that you can do it. It's like I've done it before, when I get there I know I can maintain it because I've practiced it. I've done it before.
Like I've been doing all these other times, right.
Amber B 27:01
I'm really good at that. I know how to do that. And I think that that's such an important part of the process that gets forgotten. So I'm really glad that you brought that up.
Amber B 27:10
Well, Casey, this has just been awesome. So, so, so, so many nuggets in this episode, I hope that those of you who are listening have pulled away some important nuggets because man, Casey, I just feel like, I don't know like you're just, I mean, you're not. I'm gonna say why is beyond yours. That sounds really weird. But I do I feel like this is like maturity in you about the process and being able to see it from a wider perspective. Maybe I think sometimes so many of us are so myopic when we look at weight loss, and it's just like what like today and like next week and as the next month. And what I like really get from you is this, like the broader, wider perspective of it's gonna take time, and I'm here for it. And I'm willing to go through the process and be patient and-
To know that my body is changing from the inside out is huge. It's great to know that the time that I'm taking to make this really stick is doing a lot of things more than just closing the gap.
Amber B 28:13
Yes, such a good point. It's awesome. Well, thanks for coming on the podcast. Really, really glad to have you on. Thanks for sharing your story.
Thank you so much.
Amber B 28:23
I just love that interview with Casey. And I think she had so many good words of wisdom about patience, maintenance, the process and what it takes, and about showing up for yourself. And having that self-integrity and drawing that line in the sand. I think one of my favorite things that she talked about was creating rules that align with like not being perfect, like creating a rule that you can't be perfect. And then you can follow that rule that speaks to me as an upholder of like, how can we create a rule that I can then follow that will keep me away from being perfect because I know that perfectionism isn't a reality.
Amber B 28:59
So anyway, I really enjoyed that part of it. But so many good things in that episode. And that's why I really love these Friday episodes. I know you guys do too, you tell me. But hopefully, you enjoy them as well as learning from your peers, you know, learning. There are a lot of things I can teach you and there are a lot of things I can't teach you. And that's why we need everybody's voices to be able to share different perspectives, different life experiences, and different things that worked for them in hopes that you will feel connected that will learn things from a wide swath of people and be able to find the things that are going to work for you. That wraps up this episode of Biceps After Babies Radio. I'm Amber, now go out and be strong because remember my friend, you can do anything.
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