Catching up with Colby Knight: 2008 Body-for-LIFE® Champion
When we last heard from Colby Knight, he had just been crowned a 2008 Body-for-LIFE Champion. While juggling the demands of family and a job as a high school PE teacher, he had lost more than 30 pounds and decreased his body fat by 16 percent while inspiring his students to become healthier as well. Since becoming a Champion, life has changed and Colby has experienced some new challenges. Although he truly enjoyed the experience of teaching, the budget cuts, larger classroom sizes and low teacher morale convinced him it was time to make a career change. “My experience as a Champion gave me the confidence that I could successfully make the change,” he explains. It took one solid year of investigating, job shadowing, interviewing and networking, but he was finally able to land a job in medical sales.
Although he was excited to land a job he had worked so hard for, it did come with a price. “It was very demanding emotionally,” he says. “I was forced to be away from home for a time, and I was stressed about being in a new environment. I was completely out of my comfort zone. I didn’t have the luxury of working in a weight room where I could exercise all day. My job was demanding of my time, and eating the BFL way seemed to be much more difficult.” Colby noticed that he didn’t have as much energy as he once did and that the weight was slowly beginning to creep back on, but at the time, it almost seemed like a sacrifice that he had to make. But soon he knew it was time to make his health and weight a priority. “After becoming a Champion, people have always asked me for advice and wanted to know how to make a transformation,” he explains. “Once I got over 200 pounds, I thought doing another Challenge with the restrictions I was facing would be a great way to show people that you can make a huge change without the luxuries of a gym membership or a work schedule that made it easy to eat five to six small meals a day.”
A New Challenge
As he had inspired his students back in 2008, Colby did the same with a group of co-workers and encouraged them to join him in his new Challenge. What was different this time around is that instead of a full weight room, his workout equipment consisted of a step-up, a jump rope and a pair of 5-pound dumbbells. Previously he had hundreds of students to keep him accountable, plus the allure of a $25,000 prize. “This time around there was no motivation in the form of money or competition besides just wanting to follow through with being an example for those who I was doing the Challenge with,” he adds. “I just didn’t want to see all of the hard work I had put in the previous four years to go to waste by letting my health slide and by putting the weight back on.”
Colby and his co-workers stayed accountable with a group text so that they could all report on how progress, ask questions and motivate each other. Colby committed to working out at night in his garage after he put his children to bed since he didn’t have time to go to the gym during the day. “As far as the diet, I had to stop making excuses that I couldn’t follow the plan because of my schedule,” he admits. He followed Body-for-LIFE’s failsafe plan of eating six times a day, relying on EAS shakes and bars as snacks. “There is no doubt it does take a lot of discipline to eat right, but I just keep my eye on the prize and realize that 12 weeks is only 12 weeks,” he adds. “I would rather be happy that I did what I said I was going to do than regret not following through.”
At the end of 12 weeks, he was back to looking very similar to his 2008 “after” picture, although it was definitely a different experience four years later. “Though it is obviously never too late to make a transformation, there was a difference between doing it at 37 compared to doing it at 33,” he admits. “The weight didn’t seem to want to come off at times, and there were times I didn’t lose a pound of scale weight compared to the first time when I was consistently losing weight every week.”
After this Challenge, Colby was able to prove that Body-for-LIFE is always a program worth coming back to. Even though he didn’t have access to a weight room, diet and nutrition proved to be extremely important to his second transformation. His advice to anyone who has gotten away from Body-for-LIFE is to remember what it feels like to eat right. “I think the biggest thing about Body-for-LIFE is that it is really not just about looking better in a picture but feeling better about yourself as a person,” he says. “Life is just more enjoyable when we are taking care of ourselves physically. It is well worth the small sacrifice.”