Friday, January 7, 2011

‘Love Food & Live Well: Lose Weight, Get Fit & Taste Life at Its Very Best’ by Chantel Hobbs – Book Review

Buzz this
With the coming of another New Year, thoughts drift toward resolutions – ways to improve ourselves and our lives. Therefore, the time is right for the latest book by Chantel Hobbs, ‘Love Food & Live Well: Lose Weight, Get Fit & Taste Life at Its Very Best.’

Here is the synopsis of this book:

Eat what you love. Love what you eat. And love yourself at the same time. Don’t fall for the lie that to lose weight you have to starve yourself while eating bland, uninspiring meals. Starting today you can enjoy life more than ever while you get fit, lose weight, and look forward to eating simple yet delicious food.
For most dieters, food is the daunting factor that trips up our best intentions to lose weight and get fit. Let Chantel Hobbs teach you that food is not the enemy! It’s our attitude toward it that defeats us. Losing weight does not require being deprived of the foods you love and being forced to eat boring, tasteless meals, and left feeling hungry most of the time.
Let life coach and fitness expert Chantel Hobbs show you how to lose pounds and reach the weight that is right for you while enjoying healthy, delicious food. Built into this amazing 80/20 plan is the freedom of knowing in advance that you can count on the occasional splurge with absolutely no guilt.
Turn food into your ally by following Chantel’s 80/20 rule: A full 20 percent of the time, splurge on the foods you love and incorporate them into celebrations and social occasions. The remaining 80 percent of the time, choose foods on the basis of delivering maximum fuel for your body and ultimate health. Simply by having freedom in what you eat, you can train yourself in self-discipline and achieve sustainable weight loss, being free from food anxiety.
Using personal inventories, original recipes, food plans, and new, detailed exercises for strength training and aerobic fitness, Chantel will inspire you to live well in every area of life. What are you waiting for? Start the pursuit of a life well lived and healthy: body, mind, and spirit.
You will enjoy getting fit and trim, which multiplies your chances for long-term success. Love Food & Live Well guarantees that you can love food while you lose weight.  

Here is the biography of this author:

Chantel Hobbs is a life coach, personal trainer, marathon runner, wife, and mother of four. Her amazing story of losing two hundred pounds and keeping the weight off has been featured on Oprah, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Fox & Friends, Life Today with James Robison, The 700 Club, Focus on the Family Radio – and in People and First Magazines. Chantel is a featured fitness expert on nationally syndicated radio programs. She is a frequent speaker to women’s groups and makes personal appearances at fitness conventions.
The developer of The One-Day Learning System and the author of four books, including Never Say Diet and The One-Day Way, Chantel lives with her family in South Florida. Visit her at for advice, fitness updates, coaching tips, and answers to your healthy-living questions.

Here is a story about Chantel from ‘The 700 Club’ discussing one of her previous books, ‘Never Say Diet.’ This provides a good overview of her life and her philosophy of having a healthy body, mind, and spirit:

I loved this book’s Dedication:

For the lost
Some of us know what it feels like to be alone in a crowded room. This book is for you. May you find the love you long for and the acceptance you’ve needed your entire life. Believe me: neither a scale nor a pair of jeans nor a human being can provide it. I pray that after reading this book, you will find the answer. It is the ultimate deal of a lifetime, and it can be yours today!

Chantel explains what her objective is with this book:

Now, in Love Food and Live Well, we are going to take the steps that will free you from the most damaging food traps. I will expose the lies that trap dieters in self-defeating habits, and I’ll show you how to break free from destructive attitudes toward food. Best of all, I’ll show you that fitness and weight loss don’t require you to hate food. Nor do they limit you to eating only boring, bland, unsatisfying meals for the rest of your life.
This book will open your eyes to a new way of maintaining your weight, health, and fitness. We will explore healthy eating and new exercises, to be sure. And we’ll arrive at the place where you will achieve all your goals and know how to maintain them for a lifetime. But what good is it to work and sweat to lose weight and get healthy if it means drudgery for the rest of your life? If it means you might extend your life span but hate every minute of it? Or if it means you live in a state of constant fear that you’ll slide back into your previous self-defeating habits? Who wants that? (p. 3)

Chantel wants us to make an important realization:

In this book, I want you to recognize the power of being vulnerable. When you learn to say, “I’m falling apart,” or admit you haven’t figured it all out, you can finally discover the path to peaceful living. Let’s face it: you’re not in control. It’s healthy to admit that to yourself and others.
Even after admitting it, it’s easy to slip back into the fantasy that we can control our lives, our circumstances, and the people and the world around us. I fell back into that trap for a few minutes when my flight was cancelled and I was stranded in New York. But then I remembered what I had learned the hard way, after losing two hundred pounds but still trying to control my personal world. Admitting that you’re not in control and living like you really believe it are huge! If you learn this well, it will change your life.
And all of this is captured in one word – surrender – which is what makes the difference. Surrender to the fact that you are not in control. Admit it. Say it out loud. Believe it. In the chapters that follow, we will talk more about the power of surrender, and together we will practice living it. (p. 8)

And she is thankful to God:

I am proud of the woman I have worked to become. However, I am most thankful that God rescued me from a place where I had lost all hope. God’s care for me and His work in my life give me the strength to stay on course. Now, after writing four books and producing a learning system for weight loss and fitness, I can see that God continues to use me as a voice of real-life experience. A big part of my message is this: let me help you stop sabotaging yourself and your life. I know, from hard experience, how to overcome self-defeat. Every day I get to hear the stories of people who were losing hope, as I was, and now are finding the life they had dreamed of. I received e-mails from women who have heard me speak, read one of my books, or heard me on the radio and now are surrendering their failed attempts to God. They are learning the truth and power of surrender and then doing the hard work of changing their lives. (p. 19-20)

I know all about self-sabotage, and appreciate how Chantel focuses on how God can help us despite ourselves.

It is important that our love is directed appropriately:

God wants us to serve only one Master: Him. Serving anything or anyone else to the point of compulsion always causes misery and pain. The love itself isn’t the problem; it’s the mistake of loving obsessively and directing that we fail to limit and control causes pain and agony. I love my husband, but if he were to ask me to rob a bank with him, sorry, I’m staying home. The love is still there, but I can’t risk dishonoring God in order to follow my husband. The same is true with food issues. The love is appropriate, because God gave us food and the ability to enjoy it, and we need it for survival. However, if our love for food causes us to be fat, we must check the motives of our heart. If carrying too much weight is your deal or if you’re letting food consume your thought life, it’s time to do some pruning. (p. 35)

God’s deal is indeed unbelievable – and free to us!:

I’ve caught a glimpse of God has in store for every one of us, and it is jaw dropping! God’s deal for you and me is pure, perfect, and full of passion. It cannot be duplicated by any other offer, no matter what someone might promise. God’s deal is nothing less than the one thing we all need and search for but fear we’ll never find. God offers us love that is limitless. It’s a love that is uninhibited and completely undeserved. And God gives it to use freely, knowing we can do nothing to earn it. (p. 48)     

Part Two of the book provides information on body types, the different types of foods (carbohydrates, protein, fat, etc…), calories, etc…

Chantel provides a formula to help us eat healthily:

To keep food meaningful but not in control of our life, shift your thinking about the food you eat. By committing yourself to this discipline 80 percent of the time, you free yourself to celebrate the remaining 20 percent of the time. So prepare your mind in advance, which will set your expectations. A full 80 percent of the time, all of the food you consume should accomplish the following:
·         supply vital nutrients
·         satisfy your hunger
·         deliver long-lasting energy (p. 127)

I loved this tip – was not aware of this:

Be sure to begin your day with protein. There are no exceptions to this. Protein satisfies you for a longer period of time compared to carbohydrates alone, which keeps you from feeling starved by midmorning. Protein also promotes the building of lean muscle. Don’t forget that a Harvard study reported that people who skip breakfast are four times more likely to be overweight than those who regularly eat breakfast. (p. 133)

In addition to nutritional information (including some tasty sounding recipes), Chantel also provides information on exercises. She is a strong advocate of the exercise ball. I have to dig mine back out and start using some of the fun exercises in this book!

One thing that Chantel and I have in common is that we both participate in marathons. Fred & I have completed over a dozen marathons and half marathons since our first in Cleveland in May 2008. We started out walking them, and now are incorporating running into the races. Chantel is running them. She is an inspiration to me to continue on that journey.

In the Epilogue, Mrs. Hobbs ends her book this way:

The answer to every dilemma will always be your acceptance of the deal of a lifetime. Go ahead, right now. Grab hold of the hand of God. No matter how many times you have let go in the past, tightly hold onto it today. Feel His grip. He wants you to know you don’t ever need to let go again. With Him, the liberty to love food is yours. With Him, the liberty to live well will be the by-product of your choice to be free. So enter God’s harbor and find refuge in the freedom He gives you. Forget for a moment what you are leaving behind and look at what is waiting.
As I gazed out my hotel window at the country’s most famous statue and noticed all the activity on the street below, all I could think about was you. I knew the people who would read this book would come with questions and struggles and needs. I knew that, like me, you would come with hurts and past failures and a deep need for hope.
Won’t you come along with me now? It’s time for you to begin your great adventure. And believe me, the view is worth it. (p. 217)

This book is full of practical information and help. I appreciate how Chantel points people to the Lord to allow Him to help in overcoming these hard life problems of overweight and lack of exercise. Chantel writes in an engaging style – she writes a ‘Diet/Health’ book that’s entertaining, fun, and valuable. I would highly recommend ‘Love Food & Live Well’ if you’d like to go in God’s direction – and this is a great time to get started! I will be referencing back to it often!

You can order this book here.

This book was published by Waterbrook Press and provided by the B&B Media Group for review purposes.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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