How to use accountability to make amazing health changes
Sometimes all you need is a little nudge of accountability.
One of our recent clients, Steven, achieved staggering health change in a short 12-week scan-only program. He didn’t have an exercise or diet program, just the knowledge of an upcoming scan was enough. It’s a lesson that some people can be motivated to take control of their health with the right accountability, measurement, and confidence.
We wanted to tell Steven’s story to help other people who might need a little nudge.
ABOUT STEVEN’S JOURNEY
Tell us about your health history:
“So in 2013, I think, I was 170 kilos at six foot one, so I was a big boy. I tried diets and gyms and all sorts of things and then I found bikes. I started riding to uni and work and those sorts of things and then fast forward to 2016, I think it was I was down to around 90 kilos just from riding bikes.
That was a real highlight of my fitness and then full-time masters and full-time work happened simultaneously. I started to fall back into older habits, not as bad as it was, but went back up to 107 kilos. I made a post on Instagram basically to keep myself accountable.”
I reached out to Steven after seeing his Instagram post because I knew we could help him. I saw a history of motivation and discipline that had been lost because of lifestyle changes. Like so many people, he needed some external accountability to motivate. What stood out was these words:
“’I’m trying to lose weight again and have some goals in mind, but it doesn’t seem to be going well and I’m finding incredibly hard to manage that and also enjoying life. Hopefully I can find the balance that gets me back to weight and fitness that I want but who knows really.”
I put an idea to Steven; a 4-scan program over the next 12 weeks with the end point at mid-January and the Tour Down Under. It’s an event that many cyclists use as a health and fitness motivator, so it was a perfect target. I knew Steven was capable of exercising and being disciplined in his consumption so I made him a deal; we’ll do the scanning and analysis and all we need from you is hard work. I didn’t suggest any exercise or nutrition programming because I didn’t think it was necessary.
Normally we space our scans out longer than 4 weeks but I wanted to push Steven to achieve his results. The 12 week period also included the health-hostile-holiday season. Could Steven make meaningful change in such a short and difficult time? You bet! I was getting messages within days of the first scan about how motivated he was feeling and how many changes he’d already made.
RESULTS AT A GLANCE
Here’s a snapshot of Steven’s remarkable results:
- Total weight lost: -9.4 kg
- Abdominal waist change: -9.3 cm
- Total body circumference lost: -48.5 cm
- Fat mass lost: -6.7 kg
- Risk factors: all dropped to lowest
- Torso volume change: -12.3 litres
Our Styku reports have a wealth of information but those stats above cover the most meaningful changes. They’re the most significant numbers we’ve seen in so little time. How was it possible?
ACCOUNTABILITY AND VISUALISATION
Our program for Steven was scanning only. We have tailored health and wellness plans with nutrition and exercise programs but we didn’t think Steven needed that because he was already so active. Instead, scanning gave him other things that were missing;
“I think two things. The first is accountability. Knowing I had every four weeks or six weeks coming in and getting a scan certainly helped with motivation and knowing I’ve got something to work towards, rather than just having this arbitrary ‘I want to lose weight and look better’. Probably the second part was that it helps quantify in a much more visual way, actually, the progress that I’d made. So to see, you know, the overlays in October to now, and just to see the difference in waist measurements and my abdominal measurements is actually incredible. That’s, I think, more motivating than just seeing the scales going down by a kilo every week or so.”
WHAT WAS THE CHANGE?
With newfound motivation and knowing the scanner was there to add accountability, Steven had to make some lifestyle adjustments to achieve the amazing changes. What were they?
“I don’t drink as much beer or wine. That was the biggest change to my diet, going actually sinking a bottle of red wine every night, whilst delicious, isn’t great for your health. I just made small changes. Rather than eating a big bowl of pasta I’d have half a bowl of pasta and half a plate of salad. That’s just normal now. I don’t even think about it when I’m making dinner. Everything’s got a huge salad next to it.”
Those are the changes we like to see the most; small daily improvements that add up to a big change for sustainable long-term better health. Once good habits are normalised they are easier to maintain than they were to build.
“I can’t see anything changing to be honest. I think in this period, because of that ongoing motivation of seeing the changes rather than just a number change, has kick-started the motivation each time. To the point now where actually it’s just the way my life is now. I’m not doing anything differently. I’m just living my life and my routine is much better. I’m back to feeling how I was when I was really fit, in a mental state. There’s still a bit of weight to go, but the change in my physical health and my mental health is huge.”
HOW WE CAN HELP YOU
One of our most important tasks is understanding our clients and what they need to get results. We’ve consulted enough people to understand how individual and personal everyone’s health and wellness needs are. We won’t suggest that scanning only will give everyone similar results. Steven had some advantages; pre-existing knowledge of nutrition, a regular exercise regime, and the confidence of having changed himself before. He’s also an internally motivated person, so adding accountability from us was enough for him to start making changes.
Those who want to make changes and need a little extra motivation can book a scan at our Adelaide office. Anyone who would like a more structured approach with personalised exercise and nutrition plans can have us build a Health and wellness plan for them. We’re here to help so feel free to Contact Us if you have any questions or would like to know more.
We’ll finish by congratulating Steven on the progress he made and for changing the direction his consumption habits were taking him. It was truly a pleasure to be able to help!