It seems simple: to lose weight, you eat less and exercise more. But for those who are dangerously obese, that “simple” formula can be impossible to follow on their own. And that’s where “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition” expert Chris Powell comes in. His focus: help his clients exorcise their mental blocks such as low self-esteem and food addiction while exercising their bodies. “There is a tie to some kind of emotional trauma, in the past, of people I’ve worked with, and that trauma is typically unaddressed,” Chris revealed to ABC News in a recent interview.
As an example, consider the weight loss journey that Chris helped 435-pound Nyla travel recently. That show revealed how the mind and spirit play a key role in determining whether an obese person will succeed – or fail – with weight loss goals. Initially, Nyla battled with Chris, resisting the fact that she had to release her control of her diet, fitness, and schedule to a man who had the power to transform her life…if she let him. Nyla even failed to achieve her Phase One goal despite a bribe that she craved: professional dance lessons from “Dancing with the Stars” experts. The reason, which Chris finally managed to persuade her to reveal: Nyla’s confident personality had been hiding her insecurity because she felt rejected by her biological father.
What was particularly fascinating about this show: Nyla actually did not achieve the full weight loss goal that Chris had set for her. Although she did succeed in shedding weight, losing 157 pounds total, she still weighed 278 pounds. Now it’s up to Nyla to continue. On her side, however, she has re-set her expectations of what it takes to lose weight. “She had unrealistic expectations coming into the process,” Chris commented recently on “Good Morning, America.” He explained that prior to meeting him, participants on the show think that he comes into their homes “and I sprinkle some magic pixie-dust and you lose 200 pounds but the magic is really what’s in all of us. That’s what I wanted her [Gibson] to know, that I can’t lose a pound for her. She is the miracle in this process,” he added. Thus far, Nyla has succeeded in keeping off the wight that she lost by finding an activity she loves: Zumba.
“I liked it so much that I became an instructor,” Nyla declared. “It’s just a new way to challenge myself.” And that ability to challenge yourself mentally to lose weight physically is, says Chris, essential for anyone who wants to achieve a healthy weight and life. ““You find something that you absolutely love and you run with it and you embrace it and that’s what makes it a lifestyle,” he said.