Jillian Perih endured more tragedy in her first 21 years than most people experience in a lifetime. As such, she turned to food as a comfort, and fell away from physical activity she once loved, resulting in massive weight gain and a loss of self-love. After trying (and failing) multiple times to lose weight with things like CrossFit and running, Jillian applied to be on Revenge Body, and the experience transformed her in more ways than one. Her experience with Body By Simone dance cardio gave her the opportunities and perspective needed to turn her life around (including scoring an incredible job as Simone De La Rue’s assistant!) . . . and get to a healthy weight on top of it all. What we noticed most from her after photos? Her smile and confidence. As Jillian says, “I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.” Here’s how she got there.
POPSUGAR: What made you decide to start your weight-loss journey?
Jillian Perih: The moment that motivated me was the day I found out about Revenge Body. However, my whole life has been a weight-loss journey. I have gained and lost weight many times. This particular time wasn’t a weight-loss journey at all. This past year was a journey of self-love and body positivity.
PS: Can you talk about the cause of your weight gain?
JP: My weight gain(s) stem from emotional eating. I can trace it as far back as fourth grade when I started weighing myself and sneaking food. The following two were the biggest causes of my 50-plus pound weight gain in my teen years and early 20s.
In high school, both of my parents passed away. I kind of gave up on sports because I no longer had that drive pushing me. I associated the sports I played with my mom and dad – and it just made me sad. Also, living on your own at 16 with your 21-year-old sister means eating kid foods – cookie dough, pizza, pasta, take out. All of this adds up!
At my most fit – 20 years old and 175 pounds – I was the happiest I had been, and a collegiate athlete at UCLA. On Halloween of my junior year, I was sexually assaulted. In the year following the attack, I got up to 240 pounds. The more weight I gained, the less motivation I had to lose it.
PS: What made you choose to go on Revenge Body?
JP: I had an epiphany moment when I saw they were casting for the show – two of my guiltiest pleasures: weight loss shows and the Kardashians. It was a no-brainer. I actually called everyone I knew telling them that they were casting a weight-loss show for Khloé and we knew I needed to be on it!
PS: Had you tried other approaches before Revenge Body?
JP:I had tried other things. And they worked for a while – but inevitably I gained the weight back. I tried heavy lifting, CrossFit, running, you name it. I didn’t know that the reason I gained it back wasn’t the type of workout – but my motives. My usual goal was to lose weight. On the show, my goal was to gain confidence and self-love; the weight fell off when I achieved that.
“My goal was to gain confidence and self-love; the weight fell off when I achieved that.”
PS: What’s your favorite way to work out?
JP: I love working out in any way! I have grown to love MANY types of working out – which is what made my weight loss enjoyable. I don’t dread it. If I am dreading a workout, I know it is the wrong one for me. Working out should be FUN. Working out should not be a chore. Find ways to mix it up instead of the classic monotonous gym routine!
Jillian: Before and After
PS: What do you love most about working out at BBS and dance cardio?
JP: I legit smile every time I go to a BBS class, usually when mess up a dance. I get so caught up in the dancing that I think I know every move – then I mess up – then I laugh at myself. That is exactly why I love BBS. I am not a professional dancer and I don’t pretend to be. I go into class just ready to hear loud music and sweat my a$$ off!
PS: What’s your weekly exercise schedule?
JP: I work out when I can, sometimes it’s three days a week, sometimes it’s six days. In general, I do two days of one-hour long cardio (walk, run, intervals, StairMaster). I go to BBS two to three times a week and switch between Full Body and Dance Cardio. And usually try to lift one to two times a week.
PS: How much weight have you lost?
JP: My heaviest ever was 240 pounds and I started the show at 220 pounds. Currently I am 190 pounds which is 50 pounds overall.
PS: What was the first big difference, other than the number on the scale, that really made you feel proud and excited?
JP: Fitting into my old jeans was amazing. Trying on bathing suits!!
PS: How do you track your weight loss?
JP: How I feel and fit in my clothes. I do not really weigh myself anymore – because I know how much is behind that number. If I do weigh myself, it’s more to track changes, not my physical weight, because the number on the scale doesn’t matter anymore!
PS: What’s a typical day of meals and snacks?
JP: Breakfast: 1 egg, 1/2 cup egg whites, 1 cup spinach, 1 or 2 pieces of sugar-free bacon, and 1/2 cup sweet potato ribbons in an omelet. Sometimes crumbled goat cheese. Snack 1: No-sugar-added all-natural beef jerky. Lunch: Model Meal Delivery (Whole30, Paleo, grain-free, and sugar-free). Snack 2: Greek Yogurt with fruit or hummus and celery. Dinner: 35 grams organic grass-fed whey protein shake or salad with chicken or turkey breast.
PS: Do you count calories? What’s the range of calories you eat per day?
JP: Not really . . . I eat when I am hungry and stop when I am full. I try not to cave into cravings and if I do, just hit it extra hard at the gym. I try to trust my body now that I know what it is asking for.
PS: What are the healthy staples that are always in your fridge?
JP: Eggs, spinach, coconut milk, organic almond butter, Whole Foods organic hummus, and celery.
PS: How do you strategize for meals out?
JP: I don’t – I honestly eat what my body is craving – and stop when I am full!
“It is vital to know you don’t need a gym. You don’t need a trainer. You need your body – and that’s it.”
PS: Do you use a fitness tracker? Which one, and how do you think it helped you?
JP: FitBit Charge 2 – I love that it gives me reminders to walk during the day since I have a desk job. Also, I like how it tracks my workouts and syncs in one place.
PS: What role did Revenge Body and BBS each play in your journey?
JP: Revenge Body gave me all the tools I needed to change my emotional eating habits that stemmed from all the loss in my life. It gave me three months of unapologetic selfishness to heal. I also met amazing castmates who I adore.
Body By Simone gave me perspective. I always thought I knew how to work out, until I tried BBS. They taught me how to work out on my own, with no equipment. It is VITAL to know you don’t NEED a gym. You don’t NEED a trainer. You need your body – and that’s it. I can take what I learned anywhere I go.
And of course both, of these things gave me Simone. She was so much more than a trainer. She is my friend, my boss, and a lead female mentor in my life. I love her dearly!
Jillian and Simone
PS: What advice do you have for anyone starting out on a weight-loss journey?
JP: I forget who told me this saying first but ENJOY THE JOURNEY. It takes a long time to see changes and make lifelong decisions about your health. Imagine if you only wait to be happy until you see your “goal weight” on that scale. It will be a DAMN long time and a miserable one at that. Enjoy all of the little moments. Enjoy every lost inch, every healthy meal, and every workout. It’s all the little things that make you love your body, not just your weight.
#ad Morning 🙂 My flat tummy secret is my @lyfe_tea teatox! We need all the help we can get to keep off the holiday pounds. So keeping my @lyfe_tea with me keeps my waistline slim! Get yours here at http://bit.ly/kylielyfe #lyfetea #thanksgiving
A photo posted by Kylie (@kyliejenner) on Nov 24, 2015 at 8:57am PST
I had recently graduated college, and my body was feeling my beer-drinking, late-night taco-eating habits. When a friend offered me the extra Lyfe Tea he had ordered online, I couldn’t help but think of it as a way to jump-start my diet. I’d seen the tea all over Instagram, promoted by the Kardashian-Jenner girls, Ciara, Nicky Hilton, and many more celebrities, but there are a lot of things I wish I had known before starting its basic cleanse for 14 days.
What It Is
According to the website, Lyfe Tea is a loose-leaf detox and weight-loss tea made with all-natural ingredients to “cleanse and detoxify, increase metabolism, assist in the digestion of food, suppress appetite, and much more.” It’s available in either 14-day ($35) or 28-day ($60) packages, which are composed of a morning tea and evening tea.
Lyfe Tea is not a meal-replacement diet but is supposed to help you detox and “reach your weight loss goals naturally and effectively.” The Morning Lyfe Tea is a combination of moringa, yerba mate, green tea, guarana, ginger, and lemon peel, while the evening Detox Lyfe Tea is made from senna leaves, dandelion leaves, chamomile, and nettle leaves. (A full list of the ingredients can be seen here.) The tea is the only component of the detox, however, the company also offers a meal plan and workout guide for an additional $16.
After starting the first day of my detox with the morning tea and a granola bar, I was ready to take on the day. It had me energized, though I can’t say my appetite was completely suppressed for the whole day – but I’m also not the type of person who can skip meals and be able to function normally – though I did feel fuller earlier than usual. I’m sure the fact that I was so mentally hyped up to try the tea helped with my energy levels, but when drinking the tea, I found that I also didn’t need coffee the way I usually do. As for the evening tea, it definitely had me running, not so much on the treadmill, but to the bathroom. The website suggests starting the tea over the weekend or when you’re not in a crowded office, but I didn’t listen; luckily I was able to work from home the next day. I did not drink enough water, and after “detoxing” so much upon first starting the cleanse, I found myself getting dizzy during the day.
After 14 days of the teatox, I did see results. I was less bloated and felt like my grotesque college days were behind me, but it didn’t last very long. After the two weeks ended, my long-lost stomach returned.
A photo posted by Khloé (@khloekardashian) on Sep 2, 2015 at 10:02am PDT
What I Wish I’d Known
I wish I’d known that at the end of my tea-filled weeks, I wouldn’t have the body transformation that Khloé Kardashian did nor would I turn into a fitness guru. It’s absolutely necessary to drink a sh*t ton of water throughout the day, because I often felt dehydrated. Now that I am two years out of college and have rid myself of all those terrible habits, I would try the tea again with a realistic mindset. Although I did sometimes get full earlier than usual during a meal, I should’ve had snacks throughout the day to make up for the smaller portions I was eating to prevent dizziness.
What I Wish I’d Done Differently
If I’d known that I would see results from the tea, I would have eaten healthier and worked harder in the gym so I could take advantage of the tea’s benefits, but I didn’t really change my normal habits while drinking the tea. Also, I occasionally consumed alcohol during my two weeks, which is not against the rules but not the best decision while trying to “rid my body and life of toxins.” I recommend the tea to someone preparing for a big event, whether it’s a wedding or a birthday, but definitely consult a doctor or nutritionist before starting the teatox.
Do you find it tough to look slim even in black jeans or a talented designer’s slimming dress? Do you want to get rid of the extra flab because you care about your health? Then the best way to lose weight without the hassle of counting calories or lifting weights is to include fiber-rich foods […]
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