For the members of Team Noom Coach, including vets overcoming PTSD, just being in a military atmosphere during training was enough to trigger flashbacks.
"They get lost in another place," said Dr. Vanessa Lewis, who worked with all three South Pole Challenge teams in advance of the trek.
She tells us that it’s common to forget about the mental side of achieving a physical goal.
"We tend to focus on the physical injury because it’s tangible," she told us. "It’s quite difficult to understand the psychological side of things."
This seems pretty relevant for weight loss, too — how many times have you tried to start going to the gym or to lose weight by simply eating differently, without addressing the reason you have bad habits in the first place?
For the girls of Team Noom Coach, they would cope with their feeling by dissociation, meaning they avoided the things that made them uncomfortable. And while it’s normal to have some things you don’t care for, it becomes something else when those things are part of a normal, happy life.
If you feel yourself avoiding activities that ought to be enjoyable (like going out to eat, taking a walk with a friend), here are a few tips from Dr. L.:
- Face your triggers. If you know that going on a long walk used to make you feel bad about your body or your abilities, go with a friend and take a hike. Your negative perceptions will only get worse the longer you avoid a person or activity, Dr. L tells us.
- It’s ok to feel uncomfortable. Sometimes you have an emotional connection to a place or person, and that’s ok. If you start to feel that way, remember that you’re in control, and that this feeling won’t last forever.
- Stay in the moment. Sometimes we will pull ourselves mentally out of a situation to avoid our feelings. Stay in the moment by truly feeling your senses — smell the air, squeeze a ball, feel your body’s ability.
- Find your calm. Whether it’s listening to music, doing breathing exercises, or some other technique completely unique, find what makes YOU calm.
PTSD is a serious condition, and walking with the wounded is making strides to raise awareness. Join Noom in supporting the cause!
Noom Weight version 2.0 for iPhone is out! We’re really excited about the new features — so with no more ado, here’s what 2.0 has to offer:
A beautiful redesign. Noom has some new clothes! The interface is clean and looks gorgeous on iOS 7, and Noom is rockin’ some purple. Check out the awesome new dashboards on the main screen by swiping left or right.
Introducing Noom Pro. You asked, we answered. Use all of our food, exercise, and weight tracking features for free, or upgrade to Pro for intelligent feedback and reliable motivation. If you bought Pro on your Android, you should be Pro automatically on your iPhone — just create an account using the gmail address you use on your Android phone. If you’re having trouble with accessing your Pro membership, feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join a Noom Group. Committing to a weight loss program is hard enough on day 1, and that donut can seem irresistible by day 5. That’s why we created Noom Groups: go Pro to join a group of other Noomers who’ll help motivate you.
The brand new Mealtime dashboard lets you see who’s already logged their food, allowing you to high-five rockstar loggers and help the slackers (we say it with love!) with a reminder to log. Use the chat to discuss weight loss strategies, share recipes, or just tell your story. You’ll also get a weekly article from Noom to inspire you with new ideas.
Better feedback. When Noom team members tracked our own food, we were frustrated by the criticism we received from Noom Weight. After all, you don’t need Noom to remind you that eating that slice of cake wasn’t a great idea. Noom’s new meal feedback emphasizes positivity, relying on scientific research demonstrating that people who log everything they eat lose weight, even if they’re not trying to change their diet.
To support this concept, we’ve added a new meal logging streak; this is the number of meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) you’ve logged in a row. Research shows that as this number goes up, your weight should go down!
The Noom Weight team is really proud of our work, but nobody’s perfect. We’ve received some really great feedback from you guys about the iPhone app, so thanks! I’ll address a few of the concerns we’ve heard:
Why is Noom Weight so different from the Android app?
Noom Weight Loss Coach for Android is a great app with a lot of awesome features. The iPhone is a new ballgame, however, and we wanted to start with Noom basics: quick, easy food logging and intelligent coaching. Noom Weight may have started small, but we’ve got big plans for it — we want it to be the best weight loss app you’ve ever used.
For those of you who love the Android version, sit tight. We work very closely with the Android team, so you can expect the greatest hits of Noom to appear on your iPhone soon.
In the short term, iPhone 5S owners will love the integrated pedometer that works with the M7 motion sensing technology in your phone. See how your daily activity affects your calorie budget and get exercise credit for walking the dog, shopping, and cleaning the house — all automatically! We’ll also be working out some kinks in the Noom experience to make everything as seamless and beautiful as possible for the new year.
In the long term, we’ll be working closely with the Android team to improve the motivational aspects of the app. We’ve got some great stuff in the works, but would love to hear your ideas too — check out our feedback page to leave us suggestions. You can also use this form to sign up to be a beta tester for the brand new features.
Hopefully this helps you get an idea of what we’ve been working on. We’d love to hear what you think, so feel free to reach out any time through social media or our noom.com/support.
Finally, thanks a lot for using Noom! We get our inspiration and motivation from our users, whether hearing a fabulous weight loss story or reading your honest and insightful feedback. You guys are great!
Until next time,
Noom Weight for iPhone Product Manager
Here’s a healthier version of what the members of Team Noom Coach are eating as they trek to the South Pole.
Having someone to talk to about your health goals and progress could be the missing part of your weight loss routine.
Numerous studies have shown that people exercise more when they have an exercise partner, especially one in better shape. But just telling someone you intend to work out or eat better is enough to help most people make healthier decisions. In fact, people have 73% higher weight loss success when they check in with someone once a week.
Why? Because you don’t want to let other people down. Humans inherently want to look good in front of each other, so when you know you’ll be reporting your decisions, you make better ones.
Last week we talked about how Margaux from Team Noom Coach helped motivate teammate Therese to get moving and get over her tent fever. Undoubtedly this type of teamwork will amplify throughout the race, which started yesterday. Already we’ve seen cross-team sportsmanship, with teams cooking meals for each other, and Prince Harry leading the US team in practice exercises.
"Teamwork is vital," says team member Ivan Castro. "In my case, being blind … I can’t make it to the South Pole without the help, assistance, guidance, and motivation of my entire team."
The person holding you accountable doesn’t have to be your exercise companion (after all, not everyone is down to sweat in front of someone they see in other aspects of life). Look for someone whose opinion you care about — a spouse, sibling, coworker, or friend — and tell them about your goals. Ask them to hold you accountable checking in every so often.
Not sure who to ask? Noom Pro users are put into a Group that they can lean on for accountability and support. Active groups share recipes, cheer for each other’s accomplishments, and nudge group mates to keep going when they’ve dropped off. We’ve seen Groups run virtual marathons, share family stories, and become true friends.
It’s been a week of bad weather in Antarctica as Team Noom Coach waits to start the race to the South Pole against teams from the UK and Australia and Canada.
On the plus side, the team has had plenty of time in Antarctica to acclimate. Early this week team guide Inge Solheim led members Mark Wise and Alexander Skarsgard on a 24km skiing outing. The guys ended up at an Indian research center where they were treated to a big traditional Indian meal. (Sounds a lot like Thursday’s festivities here in the U.S., huh?)
We also received the first of the team’s meal logs this week, which topped out at over 4,000 calories in a day. Because of the cold weather and extreme activity levels, the team needs to eat huge amounts to stay energized.
In order to hit high calorie goals, Mark relies heavily on red foods, like macadamia nuts, which provide 450 calories in just 1/2 cup. These make up many of his snacks, along with beef jerky, full-fat cheese, and chocolate.
Breakfast is also a hugely important part of the team’s calorie intake. Their 1400-calorie meals include cheese, deli meats, oatmeal, butter, toast (whole-grain!), and jam.
And how are the celebs keeping up? Mark says, "Alex Skarsgard eats twice as much as everyone else. He’s a monster!"
Teams will start the race tomorrow, Decmber 1. You can track the team’s progress here.
Team Noom Coach was delayed several days due to unseasonably strong storms. Once arriving in Antarctica from Capetown for acclimatization, the team got a special bonus of getting the “most rustic” living arrangement of all the teams.
"For me, I’m very used to this situation. I take news as facts and just deal with them," Team Noom Coach mentor Inge Solheim told us.
Admittedly it’s a little easier to just deal when your life career is exploring. However, it’s not bad life advice for any goal. The situation is what it is, so don’t stress about things you can’t change — like the past, what other people are doing, or the weather conditions.
He tells us that when there are delays, people get too comfortable — and that’s exactly what happened to Therese. She got tent fever and ended up sleeping too much and losing motivation.
It’s hard to fault her: the weather is terrible (windy and -40 degrees), and in the 50 yard walk to get food, her goggles would fog up if not put on 100% correctly. So when some of her teammates went out for a day ski trip, she passed.
Luckily her teammate Margaux jumped in, offering to do a smaller, less intense trip. Therese agreed, and that’s all she needed to get out of the funk.
"Even though it was scary, I was glad I got out. The next day wasn’t so harsh," she told us.
Starting a personal journey, whether it’s skiing to the South Pole or trying to lose weight, means you have some form of motivation. But the fact is that many people will lose steam somewhere along the way. For Therese, having a partner is an essential part of keeping motivation.
Here 5 more things you can do to help maintain motivation as you work toward your own goal:
- Have a clear destination, and write it down. Writing down a goal means that you’ve given it real thought — and have probably thought about how you can realistically get there. Without it written, you’re more likely to change your goal (from maybe 15 pounds to 10) on a rough day. Keep yourself accountable.
- Tell a friend. The power of (positive) peer pressure: if you tell a friend about your goals, you’ll want to maintain them more than if you keep them to yourself — even if that person never says a word to you. Why? Because we’re social creatures, and we want to show ourselves in the best light. Even better, that person can help you:
- Celebrate little victories. You may be doing an awesome job of achieving your weight loss goal of 150 pounds, but even when things are going well, progress can seem slow. Set smaller goals along the way to give yourself a steady drum of achievement and inspiration.
- Don’t be scared to change your goals. Or build on them. Or ditch them for something totally and utterly better. Many Noomers start with a goal of looking a certain way but find that health, family, and self-confidence is what they really seek.
- Forgive yourself. One of the #1 ways to derail your plan is to beat yourself up if you get off track. Did you gorge and eat way more than you know you should? Gain weight? Not go to the gym and give it your all? It’s ok. You’re human and that’s a beautiful thing. Smile, start fresh, and get back into good habits today.
Be sure to download the latest version of Burn the Turkey to watch your waistline through the holidays.