COLORADO SPRINGS — In this Your Healthy Family after Ken LeVears had let his weight slowly creep up over several years - exacerbated by the pandemic - he decided it was time for a change.
Now in his early 50s Ken hit the gym as he had in the past, but didn't find the same results he used to in his younger days.
Ken recalls, “Before I started all of this I would look at people in their 60s or even 70s and I felt a kinship. I like, ‘OK, that's my age group.’ Now I look at people in their 30s and 40s and feel like that's my age group. I don't feel like an old man anymore.”
While Ken's weight loss journey began with a focus on exercise, it was another weight loss journey happening in his house that began at the same time that had a surprising influence on him.
Ken says, “My wife, who also gained weight over the same period that I had found Doctor Kells, she was researching different programs and so she joined Dr. Kells program, and then I started eating the same food she was making and then all of a sudden I started feeling better and losing weight. So, I joined Dr. Kells and my weight started plummeting.”
As the weight dropped Ken continued working out at the gym. Ken recalls, “I started feeling great at the gym. I found I could start doing stuff that I hadn't been able to do in years, like doing 8 to 10 pull-ups. I was like, ‘Oh my god, I'm a 51-year-old guy that can do 10 pull-ups!”
Ken tells me he lost 55 pounds, and he also lost his indigestion, acid reflux, and more. “I can't even begin to describe how good I feel. My stomach no longer bothers me. Going to the doctor, everything is exponentially better. My cholesterol is down to 140 from 190. I can tie my shoes without having to hold my breath. My sleep went from about 5 1/2 to 6 1/2 hours every night up to 7 1/2 to 8 1/2 hours every night. I feel like I've aged backward 10 to 20 years.”
Losing weight by focusing on nutrition, with movement or exercise as a smaller part of the overall equation is a common theme in nearly every Dr. Kells patient. Dr. Kells says, “Our program is not based on heavy exercise. When you come from a model of thinking I just have to exercise more, I'm going to work it off pushing - that doesn't work. Once you hit 40 your hormones change, it really becomes about nutrition. It becomes about how we're feeding our body, how we're sleeping, how we're thinking, and what's unique to our chemistry and exercise becomes sort of a side thing, and the research supports that. Only 10 to 15% of weight loss is due to physical activity and we help guide people with physical limitations and with varying levels of fitness through weight loss. Because it's not realistic for me to say to somebody that has 70 pounds to lose, ‘Just go to the gym for an hour a day’ which is what we've all been taught. Calories in, calories out, absolutely not true. You cannot exercise hormonal fat off - cannot.”
So what specifically was it about Dr. Kell's program that Ken says worked for him? “The thing I love most about Doctor Kells' program is that it's not about being thin, thin happens. It's about being healthy and cleaning up everything inside your body and just making your body feel like it's supposed to feel. Exercise is important but the exercise when you're eating whatever you want to eat becomes really hard, and you have aches and pains and just going to the gym is a miserable experience.”
Ken says his journey has taken him from relating to 60 and 70-year-olds to a new outlook on his future. “To say that I'm hopeful is an understatement. I'm excited and enthused and I couldn't be happier.”
While Ken's 55-pound loss is something he celebrates, it's not what he is most proud of. “Just to look in the mirror or do those 10 pull-ups and be super happy with where I'm at and not get used to that and take it for granted. As I move on another key factor of Dr. Kells' program is that they stick with you for life. The idea is to make a life change, not a this month change, or this year change and that's what excites me.”