Patty and Patrick Go Shopping

If you’ve taken an early morning class, you’ve probably met Patty. What you might not know about Patty is that she lost about 150 pounds after having gastric sleeve surgery about four years ago.

“I’m deathly afraid of gaining it back,” admitted Patty. “But I also hate cooking. I’ve actually given myself food poisoning.”

In addition to working out, Patty is also taking part in CrossFit Unbroken’s nutrition program, where she meets once a week with Patrick and a group of athletes.

“Patty never has a bad day, at least not one she can’t turn around,” said Patrick. “Most of the time she is the one motivating others. It really is amazing that this spunky little lady is like our informal leader of the pack!”

From a nutritional standpoint, Patty’s diet and food preferences were a bit of a challenge. As a member of the nutrition group, she takes a picture of everything she eats and posts it in the group’s private group chat. Patrick looks at the photos throughout the day and provides nutritional feedback.

“I would eat things like cottage cheese mixed with sugar-free gelatin and pretzels,” she said. “And then I would bring fruits and vegetables to work and snack on them all day.”

Patty’s biggest problem? She wasn’t getting enough protein, and thus she was hungry all day.

“Patrick pointed out that I was basically malnourishing myself,” she says. “And he was right.”

Two hours of time = meals for the week

Two hours of time = meals for the week

Her other problem? She’s a self-professed picky eater.

“I hate anything in water, except for shrimp,” she said. “Unless it’s a good sirloin, I don’t like beef. I can choke down pork; chicken’s okay. My husband’s a big wild game eater; not me.”

After reviewing Patty’s food intake for a few weeks, Patrick offered to stage a culinary intervention by not only taking Patty shopping, but bringing her back to his own kitchen and cooking with her.

“We went to Costco, Sendik’s and Piggly Wiggly, and we bought things I had never tried or heard of,” said Patty.

On the shopping list: Liquid aminos to replace soy sauce, Bragg’s apple cider vinaigrette dressing, lean meats, lots of veggies and easy to make and easy to eat meals.

In about two hours, Patrick and Patty shopped, cooked, and had an impromptu nutrition class.

“Patrick even made me pork tenderloin, and it was fantastic tasting,” said Patty.

After cooking, Patrick and Patty portioned the food into small containers for Patty to eat throughout the week.

Though Patty is only a few days into her new menu, she’s noticed a few things.

“First of all, for the first time ever, I’m full,” she said. “Adding the protein into my meals has stopped me from wanting to snack all the time – at the times where I would normally snack, I don’t even think about it.”

Based on her past weight experience, Patty said that she doubts she will ever give up counting calories. She’s learned from Patrick that while that is part of weight maintenance, it’s not the most important part.

“But I did count,” she said. “And you know what? The actual calorie count of the new, good meals that Patrick made for me aren’t that much more than what I was eating when I was hungry and snacking all the time. While the calorie count is not that much higher, it’s just that now I’m eating the right foods.”