“I felt like I wasn’t even showing up for my own life. I said, ‘This ends today.’”
We are all given just one life. What if you felt like you weren’t living the life you were meant to live? What would you do if every fiber of your being was screaming at you to be something different than what you were? Would you change? Could you change? Rebecca Berger experienced exactly that, made the change, and her transformation will inspire you.
Throughout her childhood, Rebecca had always been bigger and taller than everyone else in her class. She was athletic and loved playing basketball and softball, but late in junior high she started having trouble with her knees. Heredity and the strain of sports combined to put her in such a state that her right knee required surgery. Suddenly sedentary while recovering, she started putting on weight. Along with the weight came body image problems. Through high school, even though she had become active in sports again, she continued to feel overweight.
Rebecca’s weight problems and body image issues followed her into adulthood. “This will be the year I lose weight,” became her annual New Year’s resolution. Still, she never seemed to be able to take off the weight. She would work at it for a while, but she would slip and eat something she shouldn’t here or there and then next thing she knew – feeling defeated – she would be right back at the weight where she started or heavier.
In her mid-twenties, Rebecca was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, also known as PCOS, a health condition that can affect fertility. Now married and wanting children, her doctor advised her to lose weight, as it can sometimes help women with PCOS to conceive. In addition to being overweight, partly due to the PCOS, her doctor also informed her she was also pre-diabetic. Determined not only to have a child, but to have a healthy pregnancy, she redoubled her efforts to lose weight. This time, for the first time, she had real success. She lost 20lbs before she conceived in 2004.
After giving birth to a beautiful baby girl, Rebecca aimed to continue the weight loss journey she had started before becoming pregnant. She was disappointed to find that she could only make it back to her pre-pregnancy weight before plateauing.
In the spring of 2007, Rebecca had a second child – this time a darling boy. Her dreams of family fulfilled, she had little time to focus on herself. Like so many of us, her life was dedicated to working and caring for her family. She was happy, but something still wasn’t right. At night, when the house was quiet, her weight and body image issues would put her into a funk.
On Thanksgiving Day, 2008, her neighbor introduced Rebecca to Herbalife, a health and nutrition company. At that time she was the heaviest she had ever been and thought perhaps this would be the answer she’d been looking for. It worked – sort of. She was able to take off 40lbs, but slipped back into old patterns and 20lbs of that came back.
There came a point when Rebecca started to feel like she wasn’t the person she was meant to be. “I used to sit on the couch and have my kids go and get stuff for me,” she said. I thought, ‘this is not why I had kids – I did not have kids to make them my gofers.’ I felt like I wasn’t even showing up for my own life.”
She says that December 26, 2013 is the day it all changed. That was the day when the mental shift happened. “I got on the scale and it wasn’t good. I said, ‘This ends today.’”
It was like at that moment a new Rebecca emerged. It was as if the person that she had always wanted to be took control of the reins. Between that day and June 1, 2014, Rebecca lost 50lbs. And she has kept it off. She says, “I feel like I’m back in my own life again.”
What changed? Nothing… and everything. Familiar with Herbalife and having had success with it before, Rebecca continued to use it to help her along her path. But the real change was on the inside. Rebecca transformed the way she thought about herself, about weight, and about exercise. She says, “What’s different this time is a mindset. It wasn’t a diet anymore; it was a lifestyle change. It is a journey this time… I’m still on that journey.”
Later this month we will delve deeper into the mental process that has brought about Rebecca’s physical transformation, but for now we’ll leave you with this thought from her: “I always say that losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight is 80% nutrition, 20% exercise, and 100% mental.”