Childhood is very difficult for anyone going through elementary, middle school and jr. high. Mine was especially difficult because I was 50+ pounds overweight. The physical and emotional strain which was placed upon me from 3rd until 8th grade was extremely difficult for any child to understand and process. The way classmates teased you, the taunts during sporting activities, the stares from other parents, the inability to play certain sports because the weight exceeded the standards, the way a stomach hangs over a belt–but the toughest part was seeing myself in the mirror because all I saw was a failure and a coward looking back at me. I frequently asked God “why did You make me like this? When is the taunting, teasing, stares and emotional pain going to stop?”
During my 8th grade year I was at my heaviest weight. I was 5’7, 198 pound 12 year old. Something needed to change with my lifestyle or my health would start to deteriorate. That Christmas, my parents decided to hire a personal trainer. I began to workout 3x per week with my personal trainer and after 3 months I had lost 20lbs. I surely was not the same weight as my classmates, but I was off to great start and I quickly learned that my training, weight loss, self-esteem, and emotional ability to deal with the ups and downs depended heavily on having another person take this journey with me, lead me, and always be the one to hold me accountable.
During the time I worked with a personal trainer, I started what I called “10 year goal” for myself. The “10 year goal” is very straight forward and simple:
“In the next 10 years I am going to:”
- create a healthy lifestyle
- a healthy lifestyle creates more energy
- more energy creates better programs
- better programs leads to enhanced physical and emotional health
- physical and emotional health creates greatness in yourself and inspires others
Throughout high school I stayed at a steady weight of 210 lbs, which was great for the sports I played, Baseball and Football. I then went to Chico State to play baseball, but unfortunately my career was cut short due to injury. The injury consisted of three surgeries and not enough activity. Once again I was overweight about 20 lbs. I was back in the gym, training and training. I was able to get back to a “normal” weight, but for me personally it wasn’t good enough. Body image was a huge problem for me during my time at Chico State.
Three surgeries later, I naturally became passionate about the study of human movement. I studied Exercise Physiology at Chico State and I have been fortunate to work with amazing organizations since graduation. I have collaborated with top-notch nutritionists, dietitians and doctors, all of which have helped to educate me during my life-long journey. But the most success I have had with nutrition is from my fiance Jenny Anderson. She has enabled me to understand what I am eating, how it effects different systems in my body, to truly listen to how my body feels after eating certain foods, and most importantly, to control the variety of emotional reactions that come from something as simple as eating. With Jenny, I now weigh 190 lbs, I have lost 8.3% body fat, and gained 12.8 lbs of lean mass in the past 2 years under her guidance. I have never slept so well, and had more energy to sustain me throughout the day. I owe a lot of the way I look and feel to her.
The “10 year goal” has been a building block for me since the age of 12. I have had the ability to overcome weight problems, emotional pain and self esteem issues from the age of 12 till today. Being able to create a system, or “10 year goal”, has enabled me to keep myself accountable for the goals I set forth, but more importantly help others through what I have gone through in the past. This is one of the many reason I am in the Health and Wellness profession. I WANT to help people reach their goals, but more importantly educate everyone to feel good about themselves for who they are.
Marc Digesti USAW | Founder of PerformancEDU
Marc Digesti Founder of PerformancEDU