By Jill Whitley – jill@newnan.com

As Coweta residents embrace a new normal after Governor Kemp declared a Shelter-in-Place order on April 1st, many of them share a similar concern: with gyms closed, how do they keep from packing on the pounds? 

“So, when this is over, are the producers of ‘My 600lb Life” going to find me, or do I need to reach out to them?” A Newnan woman joked on Facebook, as several Cowetans admitted that they, too, were coping with their anxiety and cabin fever by snacking more than usual. 

Fortunately, for those of us worried about gaining weight during the quarantine, one Newnan wellness center has adapted to social distancing procedures and is going above and beyond to keep its clients healthy while they are home-bound. 

Professional weight-loss coach Michele Feckoury, owner of Lifetime Wellness Center of Newnan and authorized Ideal Protein Clinician, admits that the “virus is terrible, but hopefully it will teach us how important our health truly is”.

Feckoury continued, “Good health absolutely begins with how we eat. It’s how we fuel our bodies.”

The Ideal Protein program is a scientifically-backed, 3-phase weight loss system designed to use one-on-one nutrition coaching to help people lose weight and keep it off by rebalancing their daily diet to eliminate their over-reliance on carbohydrates for energy. 

“The first phase resets the body to burn fat and resolve metabolic syndrome, and the second phase is about stabilization-building healthy habits and resetting a client’s entire mindset about food.  When clients reach their goal weight, we move on to Phase 3, which enables them to maintain that weight loss and balance their lifestyle choices. The goal during maintenance is to teach clients to enjoy their lives and to enjoy food, while practicing balance and portion control.”

“We don’t want anyone to feel deprived, to feel like any food is off-limits, because that’s discouraging and they won’t want to try, but we want them to learn how to optimize their individual diet for their individual needs and metabolism.”

Feckoury emphasized that the key to her weight loss program is the weekly individual coaching she and her assistant coach, Carrie Tucker, provide- especially in this uncertain time: “Today, I’ve done 7 consultations by phone or Facetime, and most of what we’ve talked about is healthy ways to cope with the virus and quarantine issues. People need somewhere to express fear and other feelings that make them turn to food for comfort.”

The coaching, counseling, and comfort Feckoury and Tucker provide have proven successful with clients who have tried and failed at other weight loss programs: “My initial consultation with a potential client is never meant to be a sales pitch. It’s really more an evaluation. Unless someone is ready to give 100% to this program, unless they’re all-in, unless they have a specific reason why they’re ready to lose weight, we’re setting them up to fail, and I’m here to see people succeed.” 

“That’s why it’s so important for clients to know that Carrie and I both have been there”, Feckoury explained. 

“We’ve both been overweight. There are so many people at home, eating the wrong food, feeling bad, and I want them to know there’s no shame- I’ve been there myself. I struggled for 15 years trying to lose the 25lbs I gained after moving to the United States from my home country of France. I was finally motivated not just by poor self-esteem, but by pre-diabetes and high cholesterol. Carrie became a coach after losing 50lbs on the program. We know what it’s like”. 

“Carrie and I want people to know that we’re on their team. I don’t want them to be scared to tell me they are struggling. They need to trust me, and I need to trust them. “

When a client succeeds, Feckoury said, “they’re not the same person. They talk louder, they stand straighter, they just love themselves more, and it’s so fulfilling.”

If you’re anxious about gaining weight while sheltering in place, Feckoury invites you to call for a free phone consultation. She is also offering curbside consultations: “A client will pull up and roll down their passenger window. I have a mask, and a chair and I sit outside the car and we just talk- six feet apart, for however long they need to.”

Lifetime Wellness Center of Newnan is located at 26 Perry Street. For more information or to schedule your free initial consultation, call (770) 712-9475, or visit their website at http://lifetimewellnesscenternewnan.com.