Do you keep trying to lose the same ten pounds over and over again? It’s said that the last ten pounds are the hardest to lose, but maybe you’re starting to wonder if it’s even possible for you.
From my personal experience and the experience of today’s guest, I know that it is 100% possible for you. But not when it comes from a place of hurry, anxiety, and self-hatred.
Brenda Lomeli is an incredible master certified life coach, holistic nutrition specialist, and creator of The Last 10™ Method. Her simple, smart, and comprehensive method helps empower women to put an end to their struggle with food and dieting and achieve their desired weight loss unapologetically.
A woman after my own heart, Brenda is a self-proclaimed rule-breaker who helps her clients break society’s rules for women’s bodies so they too can live a life of pleasure and ease.
In this episode, Brenda and I break down why it’s so hard to lose those last 10 pounds when you come from a place of hate, and what happens when you come from a place of love instead. We talk about how Brenda’s program is unique and why she focuses on deconditioning her client’s diet mentality in addition to learning how to listen to their bodies. You are the authority on your body, and Brenda’s work teaches you how to act like it.
Check out the video of our conversation below!
What you will discover
- Brenda’s experience with weight loss and what actually worked for her.
- How Brenda helps her clients who are in conflict about losing weight.
- Why deconditioning your diet mentality from diet culture is crucial to losing weight for good.
- How rule breakers can shift their perception of rules into decisions.
- What The Last 10™ Method is about and what it’s not about.
- Why Brenda’s program is six months long and not six weeks.
Featured on the show
Welcome to The Life Coach School Podcast, where it’s all about real clients, real problems and real coaching. And now your host, Master Coach Instructor, Brooke Castillo.
Brooke: Alright, today’s the day. We’re going to talk about losing the last 10 pounds because we know the last 10 pounds is the hardest 10 pounds. And actually, so many of you keep losing that same 10 pounds over and over and over again.
So I asked my colleague, Brenda Lomeli to come on. She specializes in the last 10 pounds, how to get it off, keep it off for good. And she does it in a way that you may not expect. So welcome to the podcast, Brenda.
Brenda: Oh my gosh, Brooke, I am so excited to be here and I’m so excited to talk to your audience. I’ve been almost kind of daydreaming about what are the things that I want to share because really, you’re so right. Women spend - and I’m going to say women because that is my specialty.
I work with women and I am a woman, but women will spend a lifetime either trying to lose those last 10 pounds and feeling like they just can’t get there, or losing it over and over and over and regaining it. And that was me. So I get it, not just personally because I’ve been there, but I also understand it professionally because I’ve studied it. Now I’ve coached so many women and been able to just try to do that over and over and over and spending what feels like a lifetime on it.
Brooke: Yes. I think that one of my main missions as it applies to talking about weight loss, I mean, there’s so many reasons why I love the topic and I think it’s very important. I think a lot of people like to dismiss it because they think oh, it’s like vanity.
But there’s so much work that goes into understanding this in terms of your relationship with yourself. And for me, the amount of time and energy I spent on thinking about how many calories were in a bagel, and how many carbohydrates were in pasta, and just for me now, when I think about the amount of time and energy that I spent - and it wasn’t like I just did it once and then it was over.
It’s the constant energy that I put into that really prevented me from doing my work in the world. So the work that you do, and especially I think the last 10 pounds is so much bigger than what it sounds like. It’s not just looking good in a bikini, although that’s a fun little side benefit. The work is so important.
Brenda: Absolutely. One thing that I thought would be really fun to share is I actually have a tattoo. I know this might sound unrelated but let me tell you. I have a tattoo because actually a little bit of background on me, so your listeners can know who’s this person, Brenda talking, and like, what does she know.
Because by the way, you’ll see me now and you would never guess that I ever struggled with my weight or with food. And I did. At one point I weighed almost 200 pounds and I struggled with my weight for two decades. And I mean, I’m talking like, I would lose 30 to 50 pounds, regain it, there are memories that I have of swearing off a certain thing, throwing it in the trash can and then literally - I know it sounds…
Brooke: Me too. I’m having flashbacks.
Brenda: Yeah, been there. You could see me and be like, she’s never struggled. Trust me, I’ve struggled in this area of my life as it related to my weight and my food, I felt like a hamster on a hamster wheel kind of thing. But anyway, so I’ve lost 80 pounds. For me it was 80 pounds. And now I feel like I just maintain with ease, with joy, with love.
But somewhere along that journey Brooke, I actually went with my sister and we went to go get tattoos and she got something on her arm, but I got the word love on my right foot, the arch of my foot. And the reason for that, because even in the midst of that really figuring it out, I did decide everything that I do, everything that I go and learn, everything that I go and study or try, it’s going to be because I want to love myself more and it’s going to be out of love.
And I even am just like that. I’m very deliberate with all the things I do that way. I even put it - the location of that tattoo on my foot because it’s like every step, the direction where I move towards. And because at that point, I had experienced being almost 200 pounds but I also - I think this is an important part of the journey and this is speaking to what you’re saying that is like, the work that is involved in not struggling with this.
This really is about the relationship with you. Even the surface level, it can appear that it’s about whether I’m going to eat a bagel or not. So at that point, I had actually - there was a point of my journey where I had lost all the weight I wanted to lose.
And kind of briefly though and I think that’s because I hadn’t done this work, and I had lost all the weight and I feel as insecure, as inadequate as ever. And so for me, now in hindsight, I’m so thankful also for that experience because it was just this moment where I had to recognize oh, okay, so losing the weight alone without whatever else piece was missing I wasn’t sure at the time won’t create me feeling good in my body, won’t create me feeling comfortable in my body, confident, that unapologetic body confidence that I always wanted to have.
We look at women like Beyoncé or Shakira and I wanted to feel that way and now I do. And I love that, it makes me smile just thinking about it, but I created that and it wasn’t only by changing what I ate and my body losing some fat and being smaller was I had to change my relationship with myself. So all of that to say yes, you have to be willing to have to go on a whole journey with yourself.
Brooke: Well, and here’s what I think has happened. So there’s so much tyranny around what our bodies should look like and what’s attractive and what we should eat and what we shouldn’t eat that I think a lot of us have kind of thrown the baby out with the bath water.
We’re like, screw that, I’m not going to let someone tell me how I should look, I’m not going to let someone tell me what I should eat. I’m just going to relax and enjoy and appreciate the body that I have. And I say amen, and there is this balance between avoiding our bodies and ignoring them and not paying attention to how we feel in them and what we’re eating, and the other extreme, which is suffering in a way that we try to hate ourselves to lose weight.
And when we only give ourselves those two choices, I think we’re limiting the potential of what’s available to us. And that’s what I love about your work because I think if we sat down with most women and said to them, “Listen, we want to help you get into the body size that you want to be in in a way that feels like love and doesn’t feel like suffering,” I think we’d all raise our hand and say yes.
Now, that requires us to do the emotional and spiritual work on our own selves, but the benefits of that long-term, long after we’ve lost the weight is the freedom that I’m trying to share with all women who have - because believe me, I was in that pain too. I understand that. And if that’s the only way to lose weight, I’m out.
Brenda: Yeah exactly. Me too. I had tapped out on that too. I literally went and got a tattoo and was like, it’s only going to be through loving myself more, et cetera. But I do love also the way that I do it and the way that I’ve created my program. I think exactly what you’re saying.
I’ve created a space where it’s like, okay yes, come lose whatever weight you want to lose, and okay, here’s how I want to actually teach it because I do love how I bring this together. I can geek out on the nutrition.
Brooke: Let’s go.
Brenda: I’ve studied that and I love learning about nutrition. As much as I love learning about - you teach so much on the brain science and the brain psychology and I geek out on that too. I love to learn. But then there’s also body science. What’s happening in the body, like we can talk about inflammation and I’m formally trained in principles of holistic nutrition, et cetera.
So the way I help to bring it all together for my clients, which was the way I helped bring it together for myself is okay, here’s the information about what happens in the body when you eat this or you eat that. And by the way, everyone is different, so there’s definitely some willingness to try things and see what works for you, just like how you teach on business.
And I like to teach that, what I like to call the authority mindset. When it comes to the weight stuff, as women, and I experience this too, we’re wanting other people to tell us what to do and wanting other people to be the authority for us. So the way I teach it to my clients it’s like yeah, I have formal training in holistic nutrition, I am a master coach, so yes, I am an expert.
I am the expert on being done struggling with this, losing the weight you want to lose, creating results you love, but you are the authority. And so you’re going to take information, there can be information out in the world and there’s so much information. There’s even conflicting information. Oh my gosh, when it comes to food.
Brooke: It’s insane.
Brenda: You see one article about yes, drink coffee, and then there’s another one that’s like, no, don’t drink it, and all the opposites and all the things. But when you can take that through the lens of that’s information, that’s an expert, but I’m the authority, same with any coach you work with.
I’m learning stuff from Brenda, she’s my coach, or I’m learning stuff from Brooke, or x, y, z coach, but I’m the authority. Then it just creates freedom. You’re empowered and you create results on your own terms. And that’s such a beautiful space of also not throwing out the baby with the baby water because you can still keep your goal but do it in a different way, and whatever level of results you want.
Brooke: Yes. And I think for people who have tried to lose weight without understanding - there’s all the components. You must understand what’s happening in your body when you put certain foods in. Because they’re either going to help you lose weight or gain weight.
A lot of people I think teach that and you can find a diet that works for you and align with that. And I think that that’s what most of us have struggled to do. Because what happens when you start really eating in a way that’s in tune with what your body wants, all your emotions come up.
And most of us don’t know how to deal with that. So one of the gifts of weight loss for me, and most people would say it’s your body, that’s the best gift you have. No. That is not. I would trade all of my weight loss for what I have learned about how to manage my emotional life and to deal with anxiety, to deal with frustration, to deal with emotions without eating.
And you take a woman like me and you put me in a situation where I already have a bunch of emotion and now I’m trying to lose weight, so we’ve added now some physical sensations to it too, it’s no wonder that we struggle with this.
So what are the unique ways you have used with your clients to help solve for that, to help deal with that? Because I think so many people right now are listening to this and they’re immediately hungry and deprived and afraid. And they don’t even know what you’re asking them to do, right?
Brenda: Yeah. So the deprivation I just touched on this a little bit, but it’s so, so important. When my clients are going through my program, I can’t tell you how much of my job and the coaching is the redirecting to basically okay, you decided you wanted to lose this weight, basically anchoring back into their choice and showing them where all the choice is.
Reinserting choice into every single part of it because when we’re feeling deprived, the conversation in our head is I can’t have that, I’m not supposed to have that, I’m not allowed to have that. And the way we want to approach it again, like I said, is more like here’s the information, yes, I will teach you information and then you get to make the decision.
And so if they’re feeling deprived and I totally get that because when I really struggled with this, I would feel the same way. I would feel deprived and one thing that I’ve come to learn about myself is I’m not a rule follower. I’m actually a rule breaker. I’m the trailblazer, I’m the rule breaker, and I think so many of your listeners will probably…
Brooke: Yes, will relate to that.
Brenda: Resonate to that. You’re like, a woman or a person that wants to create things in the world and innovate and trail blaze.
Brooke: And we don’t want to be told no, especially when it comes to deliciousness.
Brenda: Or to even tell yourself no. And so we have to get back to that point when you’re thinking in that way, you’re telling yourself there is no choice there and you just can’t or you shouldn’t or you’re not allowed. And so really recognizing the neutrality and the choice there and to be in ownership of that. Like no actually, you can have anything, as much as you want, but why are you choosing not to?
Brooke: Yes, so good.
Brenda: So that’s the authority mindset. And I also love to explain it as - so this is addressing the deprivation piece of it. Instead of thinking about it as rule following, decision making. Just like we do in any other area of our lives. As adults, we’re making decisions in all kinds of areas and we’re not telling ourselves we’re deprived. We’re just like, oh, that’s adulting.
For example, you might make decisions to invest your money or spend your money on some things but not others, and we’re not like, I’m restricted or deprived. And so, that same kind of almost neutral approach can be done with food as well. It doesn’t have to be deprivation, but you have to stop thinking about it as rule following and wanting to follow someone else’s rules and instead decision making. Based on what I know and based on what I want, what is the decision that makes the most sense for me here? And then you just get to make that decision.
Brooke: Yeah. You know, this reminds me of when I was really struggling to drink less. And I felt like when I couldn’t have a glass of wine and someone else could, notice even just my language there, that it wasn’t fair, and that my life wasn’t as good as that person, and that I was somehow missing out on that experience.
And I always would come up with all these reasons why I wasn’t drinking. Oh, I’m driving, or I’m on medication, ridiculousness. And when I got to the point where I would just simply say I just choose not to, why aren’t you drinking tonight? I’m choosing not to, I prefer not to, something happened in my neurology, in my nervous system that like, instead of telling myself I can’t have it, I was saying I choose not to have that. My life is better without that, that made that change permanent for me.
Because listen, if we want something and we tell ourselves we can’t have it, that thought creates a feeling of deprivation. We think deprivation is coming physically. It’s because of the way we’re thinking. So when you own - exactly the way you’re saying it. When you make a decision and say I choose not to have that, instead of feeling deprived, you feel empowered.
Brooke: And when you feel empowered, that’s when you can make the next decision and the next. I can have as much cake as I want. I can shoot up as much heroin as I want. I can drink as much as I want all day. I can smoke weed all day, I can sleep all day, I can do whatever I want. I choose not to.
Brenda: Exactly. And we do that in all areas of our lives every day always. And then I also think we have to back it up even a few more steps to even the choice to lose weight.
Brooke: Yes, let’s talk about that.
Brenda: If you haven’t explored that, then even if you’re telling yourself, well, I’m choosing not to have these cookies because I have to lose weight, there’s still that piece there where it’s more like I have to or need to. And this totally makes sense because the messaging in the world is all the women need to lose all the weight forever basically.
And again, I am creating the space for my clients where it’s definitely you decide what results you want, no judgment, let’s get in here and make that happen. But there’s a really important piece to making that decision on purpose. Like okay, no one has to lose weight. But you can choose to lose weight if you want to. And that I think is - if anything, I think maybe that’s like the first foundational choice that needs to happen on purpose.
Brooke: I 100% agree. And I think even further, one of the questions that I always love to ask is when someone comes to me and they’re like, I want to lose weight, I say why. Because they think me looking at them, it’s obvious. No, it’s not obvious at all to me why you’re choosing to lose weight, why you want this. Do you like your reason?
Because a lot of people come with some ridiculous reasons. And if your reason is I’m unacceptable otherwise, or I won’t be healthy otherwise, or I’m ugly, those are reasons that are going to make you feel terrible through this process. And if you have a reason that empowers you and excites you, that’s something that you’re going to be able to sustain.
But if you’re feeling like I’m unacceptable because of all these messages that people have been telling me, or even something as subtle as I have a weight problem, I mean, that’s easy to solve. You just change the sentence. And then weight problem gone. You create that in your head and so many of us don’t even realize the conditioning.
Brenda: Oh my gosh, there’s so much conditioning. It’s everywhere. In fact, I think for sure part of my own process was literally prying those messages out of my brain, which is what I really help my clients do too. We really decondition diet thinking, diet mentality, which I simply describe as I can’t have this, I can’t have this or that, I’m not supposed to, I’m not allowed to, all of those kinds of thoughts. But again, even the idea of needing to lose weight, all of that…
Brooke: Or you’re going to get in trouble somehow. I think that’s where like, you should lose weight because it’s healthier, all of a sudden then it’s like I have to lose weight or I’m going to get in trouble or I’m going to die or I’m going to be unhealthy.
Listen, that is going to cause so much unnecessary suffering. It’s so unneeded. But I think people think if you put the word health in there, that’s a positive.
Brenda: There’s so much judgment. You and I Brooke actually were talking yesterday and I shared this example with you about how on my website I have a picture of me with a michelada, which is a Mexican drink, it has Mexican beer in there, Clamato, lime, but there’s a bunch of other things that I love to enjoy eating.
And that’s just one example, but here’s the purpose of that example. From the nutrition perspective, I can intellectually say yeah, of course my body doesn’t “need” that. My body just needs water. But also, from that authority mindset piece, it’s just like, Brenda just gets to decide if she wants to enjoy a drink every once in a while and I do.
And I do notice that sometimes when people - even actually coaches, by the way Brooke, I don’t know if you know this but so many of my clients are a lot of your coaches. I would say probably about a fourth or a third of my clients usually are other coaches.
Brooke: Because you know why? My coaches are smart.
Brenda: There we go.
Brooke: I am looking at your site right now by the way. So hot.
Brenda: Thank you.
Brooke: Oh, and your before picture is on there too. Okay you guys got to go. Brendalomeli.com. check it out. Okay, go ahead.
Brenda: Yeah. So many coaches do this too and just so many - what I have found too, women that consider themselves or are very educated and know a lot about nutrition, et cetera, because of what’s happening is you know information and then you’re still shoulding yourself, like maybe low grade, maybe more than low grade or low key, but you’re shoulding yourself so you’re judging yourself for not making the “healthiest” choice.
But who says every choice has to be chicken and broccoli or whatever? Even if that did create again, from the nutrition, body function standpoint, we could argue but that’s body function. But hey, you’re still the authority. You still get to decide.
For example, if there was a spectrum of strategy or body function and there was this entire spectrum and on one end is strategy or body function and on the other side of the spectrum was pleasure, I think we each get to decide where we want to be on that.
So that all just feels so empowering. I mean for me, my relationship with food and with my weight, with eating, all of it used to be my biggest pain point. I honestly love this part of my life. I love my relationship with my body. Love my relationship with food. Sometimes it is fun, sometimes I am having a drink.
I love ice cream. I enjoy those things. I would argue that I enjoy them much more now than I did before because before, it was all tangled up with emotional eating because I didn’t have tools for my emotions.
Brooke: I really want to make this point because I think people miss this point. We get locked into this idea that food is pleasure and that we get pleasure from our food. And yes, of course, we’ve taken that to extremes, most of us, and we’re getting a lot of false pleasure because we don’t know how to manage our emotions so we’re going to that “pleasure” to try to solve for emotions.
But what we’re missing is the pleasure of inhabiting our own bodies too and experiencing what it means to embody our female bodies. Because we have rejected them so hard, we don’t even know how food feels in it, or we go to, like you said, the other extreme where we can’t ever have any ice cream or a drink or anything like that.
The reason behind that is because we’re hating on ourselves so much. It’s the opposite of enjoying life and being in pleasure. And so I love your website by the way, I’m dying over it right now.
Brenda: I’ve been working on that for like, the past six months so I’m very proud.
Brooke: The thing that I love about it is obviously you’re gorgeous and you have a gorgeous body but you’re showing us what it means to be inside of your body in all of the photographs there. And I think that is the most important thing. And you can decide how thin you want to be.
Brenda: Exactly. Oh my gosh, I have to tell you a story Brooke. I’m really excited to share this story because what you’re describing that you’re seeing in my pictures, I really do feel that way in my body.
Brooke: No, you can tell. You can’t fake this. You can’t fake it.
Brenda: I feel so good in my body. So good. And this coming from someone who - sometimes I get choked up when I think about this because I still remember it. So I partially grew up here in Phoenix, Arizona, where it’s very hot. In the summer it gets like 120s or whatever. I remember having so much body shame and feeling literally disgusted, like disgusted sounds like a powerful word. Honestly, it’s an understatement.
Brooke: Agreed. I was there too. I was there too, I get it.
Brenda: Even in the hot summer here I would put on this big huge jacket because I literally didn’t want to be seen. So I want to be an example in the world that you can go from feeling that way in your body to the way I feel now. And I do see it with my clients and they tell me all the time like, oh my gosh, the weight that I lost is just the cherry on top because I always make my message very clear though that that unapologetic body confidence, which is what I call it, is not created by any other external part of our body, it’s created in our brain. Because I know that for a fact.
Brooke: People are going to look at these pictures and be like, well yeah, you’re so hot that of course you feel good in your body.
Brenda: So here’s the story I wanted to tell you. Once upon a time, I don’t even know how long ago this was. Maybe 10-ish years ago because I was in my 20s. So I was probably in my mid-20s. But it was after I had already been at that point where I had lost all of the weight I wanted to lose, but of course regained it because there was still so much emotional eating going on.
But I also had that realization that the weight isn’t what creates the feeling I want to have. So even though I had no idea about life coaching, I’m pretty smart Brooke. I consider myself to be really smart. So I was on to something and I knew that I needed to build that.
And so anyway, I’m telling you I was much younger but I was at a Halloween party at a club. This is how far back we’re going. I was at a Halloween party, I was dressed up as Catwoman. I mean, I’ve always loved dressing and all that so I was dressed as Catwoman but I was about 25ish pounds over the weight that I just maintain now. Maybe 25, maybe a little more, something like that.
And they were going to be a contest where they had a stage and so all the girls were going to walk on the stage. By the way, I was sober, completely sober. They were going to have a contest, all the girls walk on the stage and then someone’s going to win the contest, costume contest.
I was like, you know what, I’m going to do this, and I told my friend I’m going to crawl on the stage and I’m going to win this thing. And because I was so determined - here’s why. I was so determined to build that confidence, to prove to myself that at any weight, no matter what it was, I’m the one that gets to choose to feel that way.
And sure enough, and I actually went last. I remember this so clearly because I love this story. I was in my Catwoman costume, I had my whip, I crawled on the stage and by the way, I totally won. It was round trip tickets to Vegas, something like that.
Brooke: Oh wow, alright.
Brenda: But that really is such a big part of my teaching. You can see it in my curriculum because now I’ve created my own proprietary method and framework and part of it is your unapologetic body. And when you can really get settled into your body that way, then you can have the patience for however long it’s going to take to lose whatever amount of weight that you want to lose, rather than feel desperate and graspy.
Brooke: Yes. That is such an amazing point. The last time I lost weight, and for those of you who have lost weight 100 times, there will be a last time where you won’t ever have to lose it again.
Brenda: Especially if you come and do my program.
Brooke: Yeah. Because what happened to me was very similar. I stopped being in a hurry because I knew it was as good as done. The way I described it is like it was a FedEx package in the mail. Something snapped where I knew I’d never hate my body again, no matter what weight I was in, and I saw - when I made that decision, I saw my desire to overeat go down ridiculously.
And I went into my pantry and there had been like, a package of Oreos in there and they were unopened. And I mean, there was not a row missing. You know what a miracle that is that there’s not a row missing. And that’s when I knew. And I’m like, there’s no rush, there’s no hurry.
And of course when there’s no rush and no hurry, it happens so much more quickly than it ever could before, and then it’s permanent because there’s a calmness. Now listen, if you’re losing weight and you feel anxious and frustrated and in a hurry, that’s not sustainable. But when you feel calm and peaceful, the way you’re describing, so good.
Brenda: Especially if you would describe yourself as an emotional eater, which I would say most of my clients are. I was, it sounds like you were. I think for my typical client, what breeds that ongoing weight struggle where you’re losing and gaining and losing and gaining is so much of that emotional eating and you have that habit, that cycle of eating because you’re not wanting to experience emotion, et cetera.
Or you haven’t - actually I wanted to talk about this too, you haven’t diversified ways of generating comfort, pleasure, celebration because that’s another piece too. It’s not just about “negative” emotion and eating about that. We also - so many of us have made food our only go-to for things when there’s so many different ways to celebrate and experience pleasure.
Brooke: It’s so true. Even just talking about - and I know you talk about this in your program, absolutely you guys need to go to her website, brendalomeli.com/method because she has a list of all 24 of her modules. But one of them, which I love is social eating 101. Because so many people have so many questions about that.
I remember talking to someone one time and she was talking about I don’t ever want to go out to dinner anymore because I can’t enjoy the food. And I remember asking her, well, what else do you enjoy about going out to dinner besides the food?
And it blew her mind. She was like, I love the atmosphere and the people, I like talking to the waiter, I like being with my friends, I like having a beautiful glass of sparkling water and all of a sudden it wasn’t even changing anything. It was appreciating everything else besides what am I going to eat or not eat, which consumes your mind, and then you don’t get to appreciate, wait, I’m here with my friend, having an amazing conversation. Love that.
Brenda: People think that losing the last 10 pounds, which by the way, that could be 15 pounds, or eight pounds, but it’s creating the results that you are wanting to create and really allowing yourself to do that. People think it’s about being more critical, more deprived, and one of the things that I found, which is what you’re describing, it is the total opposite. It’s a lot about diversifying, how do I allow myself to experience pleasure if it’s not only food? How else?
And you were talking a little bit ago Brooke about women really allowing ourselves to experience pleasure in our bodies. You’re going to love this. Once a month - actually, we’re doing it today. Every month, once a month I have what I call a block party with my clients. And I literally hire a DJ, we have a DJ, he lives in LA so he’s a really great DJ and he comes on Zoom and we actually just dance.
Brooke: Stop it. I love this.
Brenda: I request the most ratchet hip-hop. Because that’s what I love. But I encourage my clients like, what do you love? Make the request. It’s time that we have designated because I think it’s so important. A huge important part of me in really being able to transform this area of my life permanently was it was not about limiting more, it was not about being more critical. It was about expanding.
What else do I do? What else do I love? And if for anyone listening, if you’re like, right now it feels like the only thing I love is food, that’s okay. I get it. I’ve been there too. And then you can just start adding things like maybe I figured out I love to go traveling, I love to go to a museum. I don’t know, just knitting, it could be anything.
But that addresses diversifying how do we celebrate because what’s another interesting thing that people do with food and I used to do this too, it’s like you start to see results and you’re like, oh, I’m losing weight, let me celebrate…
Brooke: Let’s go eat.
Brenda: Exactly. And that doesn’t work for obvious reasons but I think the not so obvious reasons is there’s a couple things underlying there. Part of the mindset behind that is that we sometimes only reward ourselves if we have lost weight. So what I mean by that is we are limiting treating ourselves only if you lose weight. So kind of the message is if I don’t weigh less, then I don’t deserve treats.
Brooke: Exactly. There’s another thing I want to talk about briefly. I can’t emphasize how important this is. And it’s something that I’ve really started to understand in a deeper way in the past couple years is we are conditioned as women in this culture to believe that our bodies are for the pleasure of other people. To look at, and to experience. Namely men, if you’re a woman growing up in this culture.
So we don’t identify our bodies as pleasure centers. We identify them as if it looks good to someone else and someone else finds pleasure in it, then that’s pleasurable to us. But one of the things that I’ve really started to do is how does my body experience pleasure in ways that are other than food and exercise?
Because those are so wrapped up in weight loss diet mentality. Don’t even think about that. Think how does my body experience pleasure when it’s not associated with those things? And that is a harder question to answer than you think.
Brenda: So what’s on your list Brooke?
Brooke: So one of the things that I have learned recently is how much my body loves to dance.
Brenda: Yeah, I actually heard you talking about that on one of your episodes.
Brooke: Yeah. And one of the changes that happened for me is I have always loved to dance and I love hip-hop music so I’ve always loved to dance to the music. But I always kind of danced from the outside in. Like I had all these moves and I had all these things and it was all about dancing with somebody and what they were doing.
And what happened was I shifted that to what if you dance from the inside out? What does my body want to do when this music is on? And all of a sudden I’m dancing in ways, I was like, alright, here we go. And not giving an F what anyone thinks about how I’m dancing. This is my body’s expression.
And it’s changed so much for me in how much pleasure I experience just being alive in my body and just experiencing all of my sense in a new way. And so I think that’s a practice that we are not trained to do.
Brenda: Totally. I’m the same. I didn’t even know we had this in common but I love to dance, love to move my body, so that’s something that definitely is on my list. And also things like - I mean, I always love getting massages and things like that but that just feels good.
The other thing that I thought about too is for me, another way that movement comes in too is I remember I used to eat about - everything. If I was stressed, I would eat, if I was sad, I would eat, if I was restless, I would eat.
Brooke: Yeah, me too.
Brenda: A lot of popcorn was involved. And now because I don’t want to send the message that my life is perfect and I’m never stressed anymore and I’m never anxious and I’m never restless, I actually still experience all those things. And sometimes even more because I actually allow myself to set way bigger goals.
Brooke: Yes girl.
Brenda: So the emotions are all there, maybe if not even more. Because I’m living bigger actually. But you know what, I very often dance about it. I actually did a podcast recently called Walk It Out because there’s this song called Walk It Out. It’s hip-hop, I don’t know if you know it.
But that’s just one example and I actually just love the lyrics too because the song is about hey, walk it out because those emotions, that emotion in your body, you can move through it. And I’m seeing that connection here about getting in our bodies and I do think that’s a big important part of it for me that I then teach my clients because it’s not been a part of the curriculum or the message that we’ve gotten.
Brooke: Yeah. And I think what happened to me - it got ignited. And I talked about this on the podcast that - Tah and Kole Whitty on the podcast. And Tah, when I first met him, this man, he asked me, he’s like, have you thought - this was after I’d been divorced about a year. He said, “Have you thought about how you want to be kissed?”
And I was like, what? No. Never even occurred to me to think about how I wanted to be kissed. And since then, I’ve taken a bunch of classes and one of the other questions that was asked is how do you like to touch yourself? And I know it sounds very sexual and of course, that’s where everybody goes because we think if you’re touching yourself, you must be masturbating.
But that’s not what the question was. It was like, just do you touch yourself? Do you touch your own arm and your own face, or your legs? Or when you get dressed, how do you like to experience yourself with yourself when it isn’t sexual? Hadn’t even occurred to me to know how to answer that question.
So I think all of that work is about us tuning into our relationship with ourselves. And when you’re that tuned in, then you notice that overeating is not pleasurable.
Brenda: Yeah, it just doesn’t feel good. And that’s the space that I’ve been able to create. There’s so many foods that I love that my nutritionist brain knows the science, I get it, but I’m the authority. But I also can choose where on the pleasure spectrum that things are going to fall because I am in tune and I am connected with my body now.
If I’m just listening to my body, every week we get together with my family and my mom makes the best Mexican food. Last week we had tortas, which is basically a Mexican sandwich. So good. And I enjoyed that, and also there’s trust, there’s peace.
Back in the day, I would have been super anxious and afraid and then because of that, that would have fueled so much of the overeating. But because now there’s trust and also because it’s like, yes, there’s trust and also I am listening to my body, so now I can just enjoy that if I choose to, getting back to the choice part.
Based on what I know, based on what I want, based on the results that I like to maintain, and then I’m done when I’m done. And back in the day, I would have still been in my head about it, had so much food shame about it, then would have been worried about the weight so I wouldn’t even actually enjoy the damn torta.
Brooke: This reminds me of something. This is actually super key. So we were just in Mexico for two weeks and I love Mexican food and I’m determined to see if you can actually survive on just guacamole. Is that possible?
Brenda: Nutritionally, I think probably yeah. It’s one of those foods that’s got a really great balance of everything.
Brooke: So but here’s the difference. For some reason, the guacamole in Mexico is not just better, it’s 10 times better than the guacamole I can get here in Austin. And so when I’m there, I want guacamole all of the time for every meal. I must have it.
But here’s the thing; instead of me saying I’m going to dismiss myself or forget about myself or forget about taking care of myself and F it, I’m going to have this chips and guacamole, it’s never like that. It’s always aligned with my own decision-making for myself. And I see people make this big mistake. They’re like, I’m on vacation, screw it. And I’m going to enjoy this, F you, to themselves.
Brenda: Right. And it feels like shit.
Brooke: And it feels terrible. And then they’re like, why did I do that to myself? And then we overdo it and we disconnect and then instead of having one bowl of guacamole, we’ve had five. Because we F it. And that doesn’t need to be how it is. It’s like, I’m having a special family dinner or I’m in Mexico, I’m going to have this for myself and with myself and I’m going to stay connected in a way that serves you and is from, like you said, love.
Brenda: I think staying connected is the key thing. So recently back in January, we all got COVID here in my house. My husband got it, I got it, my daughter got it. So he lost his taste and smell first, and I’m relating this back to what you were talking about because I was like, oh my gosh, this is brilliant.
And we were eating dinner and then my husband says - I’m trying to remember exactly how he said. He said, “You know what, the amount of food I’ve been eating has changed since I’m listening to my body and not my taste buds.” I was like, oh my gosh, this is so brilliant, podcast material.
Brooke: Yeah, that’s so fascinating, right?
Brenda: Of course, don’t love the COVID, none of that. But it was just this thing that was really insightful. This insightful moment that he was having. And he shared it with me, and the way I like to teach on it and I think that we can bring it together in a way that makes sense, without throwing out the baby with the baby water is yes, we can listen to our taste buds and enjoy.
And I mean, I think you can do that with a roasted piece of salmon, you can do that with a drink, you can do that with a cookie, whatever. But you listen to your taste buds, it’s part of our anatomy. We’re not saying don’t do that. Don’t have that natural pleasure that our human bodies were meant to have, and also listening to your body.
Brooke: Yes. Listening to the rest of your body too.
Brenda: The rest of your body, exactly. He was having that experience of oh, I don’t have the taste buds right now for that specific reason and I didn’t realize I wasn’t listening to my body. And so I think it’s such a sweet spot when you can trust yourself and you’re connected to do both.
And then you pair that with yes, I think as a modern woman, I love having access to all kinds of information and knowledge and science. Why wouldn’t I? Even for me Brooke, growing up, I’ve shared this before and I’ve shared this with you before but my background is I’m the daughter of immigrants, my parents don’t even have elementary education.
But I did the work to grant myself access to knowledge, to information, to education. Why wouldn’t I use that too? So it’s like, using all of it for me to make decisions for me. And again, people think the last 10 is about restriction, deprivation, being critical.
And the way that I want to present it is like, using all of it, being connected to all of it, and creating results with you being the authority from that place. It’s so powerful actually.
Brooke: It’s so beautiful. And neither one of us would ever agree that deprivation, suffering, and hating yourself is a solution to anything. Especially to having a smaller body. What the heck for?
We’ve all been - most of us have been thin and miserable. That’s not what we’re going for. We’re trying to align how can we have the lives and the result that we want from that place of abundance, of love. And think about that.
If you could be at the weight you want to be at and be in love with yourself, not because of your weight but the love is what created that solution, that’s when - for me, what you’re saying in one of your modules here, that’s better than happy. That’s the ultimate. That’s the most empowered. So tell the people how they can work with you.
Brenda: Well, you definitely want to join my program. My program is The Last 10 program and you can go to brendalomeli.com and you’ll get all the information there. You can also go to thelast10program.com. So both lead to the same place and you’ll see all the information there and sign up. It’s a six-month program and I made it six months on purpose Brooke because people want to be in a hurry.
Brooke: They’re like can’t we do it in six hours?
Brenda: Seriously. I haven’t gotten that one yet but I have gotten like, do you have a two-month version? Do you have a six-week version? And my answer is always no because it takes time to create this kind of change. And my clients, as soon as they get started, week one, out the gates, they see how their thoughts are a little crazy, like why haven’t I lost all the weight yet? And we’re laughing but I get it. I’ve been there, where you’re like, oh my gosh, I’ve been eating “healthy” for one day.
Brooke: Why am I not skinny yet?
Brenda: Why haven’t I lost all the weight? So when you make that commitment, you really get in the space of get settled in, okay, I’m really going to not be in a rush, I’m going to do this different, I’m going to do this for myself.
But the way that I’ve set everything up is based off of all of the work I’ve done with hundreds of women now. I’ve personally invested hundreds of thousands to learn all of this stuff and a lifetime really of so much experience too. And my clients get all of it. They get all of it.
The way simply that I would put it, you are going to learn everything you need to know. You’re going to have all the support you need because of the way we’ve set everything up or the way I’ve set everything up is there’s so much access to coaching support, live coaching calls, unlimited coaching support online.
And then just a lot of other unexpected bonuses too, like even just our block parties. On the surface, our monthly parties, that can sound like, well, what’s the point of that? I just want to lose weight. But there’s so much you’re going to learn.
My clients, I hear this time and time again, it goes beyond the weight that you want to lose and it’s really like building this empowered, unapologetic relationship with yourself because there’s so much in our relationship with food that is all tangled up with people’s opinions and us wanting approval and making our ability to feel adequate conditional on so many things.
And so it’s just an overall just life up-level. But yes, you’re going to lose whatever weight you want to lose and yeah, it’s super supported. You’re going to know everything that you need to know to make it happen.
Brooke: I love it. I love you so much Brenda. And I’m so proud of the work that you’ve done with weight loss has stayed the same and it’s evolved in terms of your growth and your sophistication. But it’s tried and true, it’s always worked, it always will work.
It’s difficult only in the sense that you have to explore the relationship with yourself in a new way, but not difficult in the sense of it’s not another diet that you’re going to torture yourself with. And so if you are one of those people like we used to be where you spend way too much time thinking about food or your weight, go talk to Brenda.
Set yourself free from that. You have much more important work to be doing in the world. Thank you, Brenda, for coming on the podcast. That was so fun talking about weight loss. I haven’t talked about it for a long time on the podcast so I’m excited for everyone who’s going to find you and do this work with you. Any parting words you want to say?
Brenda: Well, I love what you just said Brooke about the listeners about you have so much more important work to do. Oh my gosh, I cannot agree with that more. I think one of the most priceless things for me about being done thinking about the same things over and over every day for 20 years is when I look around and I see what I’ve done, when I stop thinking about food and weight over and over again, I’ve built a business, grown it, scaled it, wrote a book, I’ve created my own proprietary method, I have intellectual property.
Brooke: You have a baby.
Brenda: Yes. I mean, so much stuff that I’ve been able to do. Now I’m into other things. I’m looking around the world and I’m starting a community with other Latino coaches and it really is like my world is expanding every single year because I’m not constantly in my head thinking about food and weight and food and weight and food and weight. It’s literally made me rich.
And the list could go on. So I totally agree that there’s so much more. Let’s expand our lives. Why not? I think we all deserve it and that we all deserve to feel that unapologetic confidence in our bodies. So for anyone listening who wants to do that and wants to feel that way, I would love to be a part of that process for you.
Brooke: Okay. At the very least, go to Brenda’s website. If you need to get the link to it, you can go to the show notes. Thelifecoachschool.com/366. Thank you, Brenda. I love you.
Brenda: Thank you Brooke. I love you so much. Bye everyone.
Brooke: Talk to you all next week. Bye.
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