#325 – From Overweight Teenager To Body Transformation Coach Featuring Elliot Hasoon

Thomas Green here with ethical marketing service on the episode. Today, we have Elliot Hassoun Elliott. Welcome, Thomas. Thank you so much for having me. It’s great to be here very much. My pleasure. Would you like to take a moment and tell the audience a bit about yourself and what you do? Yeah, of course. And my name is Hassoun. I am primarily an online health and fitness coach. I’m also a podcaster with a health and fitness and wellness podcast as well, but we go into all different types of territory on that podcast as well, you know, cover everything because for me, everything falls in the bracket of health. So you can kind of link it back in a way. So I love to have different conversations about different topics, but that’s primarily what I do. I’m a health fitness coach. I am podcaster. Thank you for the introduction. Um, would you mind starting with, uh, your story and why you got into that? Yeah, absolutely. Well, the fitness thing came from a personal journey when I was much, much younger. I was not in shape whatsoever. I was not a genetically gifted child unfortunately. And what I found was that I didn’t have similar bodies to the other guys in the pe changing rooms.

And for that I got made fun of a little bit. It wasn’t any intense bullying by any means. I always liked to make that point. Very, very clear. However, it was enough name calling for me to notice that I wasn’t really super comfortable with my skin. I was a pretty young boy. I was an active child as well. So that was the confusing part for me. It was like, ok, well, you know, I, I play football, I do just as much activity as these kids. So why do I not look the same as them? And why am I uncomfortable in my skin and they look fairly comfortable in them? So I always give credit to this very, very young version of Elliot who decided, well, you need to do something about this. Like what, what, what’s the answer here? So I, you know, I go on Google. Uh it’s, it’s early days of searching fitness online, that’s for sure. But I have these little idols in the sense of Zac Efron who was big on high school musical at the time. And David Beckham, you know, it wasn’t anything like Arnold Schwarzenegger or anyone particularly impressed from a physique standpoint that was good enough for me just to have like a flat stomach and maybe a little bit of, you know, tone to my muscles.

So I start searching, you know, Zac Efron diet and training regime. David Beckham’s diet and training regime. And I find everything I find links towards a high protein and low carb diet. So I was like, perfect. How can I mimic that the best way that I can as you know, a 14 year old child. So I go to my freezer. I start looking on nutritional and I’m like, ok, perfect. This has protein in. So I make this little selection and concoction of whatever my parents have in their freezer. And that becomes my new staple dinner. And then I start looking into the gym side of things and I don’t have a gym membership at the time because I’m, I’m a, I’m a kid and, you know, I’m just going to school playing sports and doing stuff like that. But then I see it’s a bodyweight workout. It. Ok. Well, I’m gonna do some press ups. I tell the story about how I do, uh, triceps ups on the side of my, but, and I’m doing bicep curls with shampoo bottles as well. And I’m starting to see, you know, very, very minimal changes, but some changes as well. And that evolves into me getting my first weight set going to the gym, people starting to notice in my school as well. And for me, most importantly, I started to notice as well and it kind of gave me this new wave of confidence and something that I could say, well, you know, this is something I’m actually quite good at.

I took an interest into it. I got very, very passionate about it. And then I eventually, it led me into it being a career, you know, that’s, uh, quite a fast forward into the end of the story. But it evolved year on, year on year. And I notice the impact the health and fitness had on my life personally. And I know how many people struggle to get that side of their life in check. So, for me, I was like, ok, I’ve worked this out for myself. There can’t be anything better than helping other people work out that, that formula for themselves as well. And that was the path I pretty much traveled down. Well, thank you for that. Um, I don’t know why this comes to me but it is, uh, it’s something that I will try and communicate, which is, there are many kids who have been in your position, meaning they’ve experienced the same thing. But you decided to do something about it quite significantly. The question is around. Why did you, what, what’s in you? That’s different from the people? Perhaps that didn’t do anything about it. Hm. Yeah, it’s an interesting question. And I would love to say that I was this super wise and, you know, sophisticated way, I think.

Yeah, it was a sophisticated way of thinking but it really wasn’t, it was just a sense of ok, I have a situation here that I’m not very happy with. And fortunately my mind led me to, I need to find a solution for the rest. And maybe it was something along the lines of growing up and recognizing that if I wanted to achieve something in my life, it was kind of my responsibility. Maybe it was the things that people said in schools like, well, if you want to have good results in your classes, then you need to do the work. And maybe something like that. I haven’t quite put the dots together completely. But I would say maybe that’s something along those lines looking towards. Ok. Well, this is a situation that is to do with me. No one else is gonna change this and there must be a potential solution out there. So I was fortunate enough to have access to the internet, be able to go and search for that. And then once and I felt that this is tends to be the theme of my life thereafter as well is that when I have a clear path of doing something I’m able to actually execute and maybe not the person who puts together the most articulate plan in the world.

But once I see a clear formula, I love to take action. I love like actionable things that I can do and take advantage of, you know, when I see a blueprint, I’m like, perfect. I am going to follow that blueprint with A T and get the results, hopefully that I want. And I think I was lucky enough to find that blueprint and I was able to follow it to the best of my ability. And I say this to my clients all the time is that once you start seeing results, it starts to become very, very exciting and very incentivizing. And maybe I was also young enough to not experience kind of the backlash of failure. You know, I didn’t really have much responsibility at that stage in my life. So, you know, I wasn’t and I also wasn’t hanging too much on this. I think maybe when you get to the point where you’re in your twenties, in your thirties, you know what weight loss is and you know what type of results other people have had. I had no idea of what results I could get. So every single 1% in the right direction was a massive win for me. Maybe if I started my very journey at the age of 30 or 20 or whatever that might have been, it might not be so exciting, but because it was a small amount of progress and steps in the right direction, I became hungrier and hungrier for it.

So, you know, the difference between me and any other kid, I wouldn’t be able to tell you, I would just say that if anyone is feeling like that search towards the solution, recognize that’s within you and you’re gonna be the only one to make that change and then do whatever you can to take action. Do you have any thoughts on the topic of willpower? Willpower? I would say I’ve got plenty of different thoughts. Maybe not in relation to my story as a child, but I think that when it comes to willpower, I don’t necessarily think it’s one of these things that’s finite. I know that that’s a debate that goes on of whether we have willpower towards the end of the day. I definitely think decisions are maybe harder to make towards the back end of the day. But at the same time, I think that it’s less about do you need willpower and more about how do I not even need to bring willpower into the situation here? And I find that maybe if it’s something that you are trying to deal with in your life, that’s not super, super simple, such as health and fitness, which tends to be a challenge for many people. It will be like, well, how can I make this as frictionless as possible to the point that I don’t even need to bring willpower into the equation?

So, you know, if you’re realistically got everything prepared, so let’s say it’s an evening meal, for example, if that’s prepared and that’s in place, it’s, it’s in your fridge, it’s relatively delicious. It takes a few minutes to prepare or a few minutes to heat up, then there’s almost more reasons as to why eating out or, you know, getting something for delivery or whatever it might be is actually more friction for than eating the food that you’re actually eating. So for me, it’s less about, you know, contemplating willpower, but also almost about making the things that you want to do so easy and the things that you don’t want to do harder so that the obvious choice becomes the one that you do want to end up doing. So I think that it’s less about, yeah, is, you know, will power infinite or finite or whatever it might be more about how can I make this as frictionless as possible. So that the thing that I want to do is always going to be the thing that ends up being easiest, quote unquote or at least less friction than the other thing that I genuinely don’t want to do or that doesn’t take me down the path that I genuinely want to go.

I think that’s a good answer. And, um, I think it applies to the reason why I asked it, which was if there is someone who wants to change but finds it finds it difficult. I, I think mainly with food. I think people struggle with food more than they do the topic of exercise. And actually, II, I have found that people who exercise still because of nutrition still are overweight and it’s just, uh, it’s just much more difficult for them to get rid of it due to the diet. So, um, in terms of what you would do, uh, if you had someone asking for advice in, in relation to diet or habits, what would you say? Say to them? I think the, yeah, you’re absolutely right in saying that people do have a tougher time with nutrition due to probably the emotional link, I would say more so than anything. I think that the exercise side of things, there can be some resistance there. And maybe there are some specific insecurities around doing exercise because they maybe weren’t that good at sport as a child or the intimidation of going into the gym, et cetera.

But I think nutrition, as you mentioned tends to be the big one. And I think it’s really about maybe giving it the respect it deserves in the sense of saying, ok, when it comes to my nutrition, it isn’t ever. And this is something I tell people all the time. It’s not because you’re a foodie. It’s not because you just love food and everyone loves food. And I think that, you know, more you go through life, the more you realize that as well. I love food. I’m sure you love food. Thomas yet we probably can navigate our nutrition in a way that aligns to our goals when we need to. So I think that the real thing is as well. Let’s not just put, I’m a foodie on top of this. But truly find the reason why we’re struggling. Ok, if it is a nutritional challenge that we’re going through, but it’s only every Friday or Saturday night. Why is it happening every Friday or Saturday night? Maybe we can start to think about. Ok. Well, is it off the back of the super stressful week? And you know, the only way in which you can kind of self. So in a sense and relieve that stress is free food because that’s what you’ve always already always done. I should say, then that might lead to some insights and sometimes maybe we don’t want to go that deep.

I think a lot of people start to have a business journey because it’s gonna be a case of getting an exercise regime in place, getting a nutrition plan in place and everything’s gonna be fine off the back of that later to realize that actually there’s a lot of things way deeper than that. There’s a lot of ok emotional trauma that might have led you to eating in that fashion. There might be a lot of feelings that are associated with that certain food that you go for. So many people will know that um comfort eating, but we put it as such a kind of normal thing. But then we have to ask ourselves, well, why aren’t we comfort eating? Where did that even begin? And then, you know, if we dig deeper, most people’s celebrations, they came with food as well. So, you know, when delicious food came into the houses because either they were celebrating or maybe that they were mourning or something along those lines because it came in the house when there was a funeral or if something bad happens, you, you’d be cheered up with food. We have so many different emotional links to food. I think maybe we brush over those too much and we just put it down to, I’m a foodie or, you know, I don’t have little power or something along those lines where sometimes it’s much deeper and I think just stopping to reflect and asking yourself.

Ok. Well, what is the genuine issue here? Like, am I good at going to get a normal breakfast in the morning? Like AAA breakfast? That’s while bar has a little bit of protein isn’t crazy high in calories. Yes, that’s perfect. Ok. Well, when do I start to slip up? Ok. So that mid afternoon dip, maybe that’s something to boredom and maybe I’ve soothed boredom with eating all of my life. And I think that I’m going down a lot of different routes of why people might be having these challenges, but quite often they’re linked to something deeper. So if you stop and reflect and ask yourself a question and you really go back as well to trying to establish where that first came from, it gives you a lot of answers and I feel like that self-awareness piece. And that knowing where it comes from is the first step to actually doing something about it. Because for you, it might be like, oh, I just need more power, but maybe you told yourself a story of the life or your life that you can’t have willpower when it comes to food and then you kind of defeat yourself. You know, already from the start, it might not have anything to do with willpower. It might just be that like, like we mentioned earlier, the only way that you can so your emotions right now is through food.

So maybe you need a more productive way of navigating your emotions or the stresses in your life, the things that you’re ignoring, then all of a sudden that becomes a lot easier to deal with than it did in the first place. I um I’ve seen some stuff on uh the obesity epidemic. I think it’s something, at least in the UK anyway, I think it’s something along the lines of two out of three. I don’t know how accurate that is. But um are you optimistic about the future in relation to this topic? It’s funny, I actually asked this question to a lot of my guests when I have people in specifically in the weight loss and fitness field as well. Because when you’re in this bubble, all you have are people coming to you to improve their lives and to get in shape like I’m a coach and I have people telling me they want to commit to this. They tell me the stories about how they influence their partner and now their family is eating well. I have a podcast when I have, when I speak to healthy people and all the time who are encouraging more people to be healthy as well. But then you look at the stats and they don’t seem to be going in a direction whatsoever. And what I’m doing and what many other coaches are doing are really just a drop in the water.

So a drop in the ocean, I should say. And realistically, am I optimistic? I’m optimistic about the information that’s available and the accessibility that people have to help in fitness because of if anything as with everything that we live, it’s like it’s harder and easier than ever to do anything that you want to. So maybe we’re like, ok, well, we have all the information in the world that we could possibly need to get someone in shape yet. Now we have maybe too much information that people are getting overwhelmed by the sheer things that they can and can’t do and then they end up making those decisions whatsoever. So I am optimistic because we are becoming more aware of things. We have more information, we have more technology, we have many, many different forms of even online coaching, right? Like the thing that I do on a day to day basis. 10 years ago, I mean, I tried to set up an online coaching business maybe eight years ago, I simply failed because of the lack of awareness around it. Right. The only people who are doing that at that stage were maybe bodybuilder or people who were really, really invested into a fitness world.

Now, every, you know, second person might know about online coaching, it’s kind of a helpless whole term compared to what it used to be. And I still have say it has a way to go. So to bring a short answer to yeah, to the, the long one I was giving you, I would say I’m optimistic about the accessibility and the availability of the information. But I’m not so optimistic about the changes that are being made because the data is showing us that we are heading in a direction that doesn’t seem to be getting better and it’s kind of different compared to mental health. We find that mental health seems to be on the rise in terms of the statistics of people saying that they are experiencing mental health challenges who are going through depression and anxiety and all these other things. But at the same time, that’s just mainly, you know, we’ll see what direction it goes in. But it’s mainly because people have a voice and they’re able to speak about it now. So naturally, the more people to speak about it, the higher the that’s going to be are the people who have it whereas nothing’s really changed from a physical health and fitness perspective. Yet the data seems to be suggesting that it’s not actually getting any better and we are getting more and more obese because of just as the accessibility is increasing.

So is the ease of life in the sense that of, you know, things being delivered to our door, uh, unhealthy quote unquote foods being super, super accessible compared to what they were 1015 years ago. So long story short, not super optimistic, but I do think that there is an opportunity for change. It’s just where we lean towards as a society over the course of the next, you know, coming decades, I guess. Well, I think you’re doing good work anyway. So, um, you know, as long as you can hold your head up high, right. That’s the main thing. Are you optimistic about the health and fitness of the society moving forward? I think it is an educational problem. So, um I think when people walk into the supermarket, the majority of it, of the products available to them, uh have the ability to make them fat and they don’t know. And I think if they did know, I think they’d make different decisions. How much do you think that they would make different decisions though? Because I think if I go up to someone in the street and ask them what give me three healthy foods and three unhealthy foods.

People are more than aware, maybe they don’t know exactly how to formulate the well balanced nutrition plan that they need. But I feel like most people know what a healthy food is, quote unquote and what an unhealthy food is, quote unquote. The analogy I’d give you is, uh, smoking. So, um, they, uh, put a load of warnings on cigarettes. Pictures made it completely transparent about what happens to you when you smoke. And uh the data on that is, um I don’t, I’m not like a scientist or something, so I don’t know for sure. But I think that’s quite clear in the sense that as soon as they started doing those things made it clear about what the implications of those actions are and it, it significantly dropped. So, um I think it’s just uh hidden a lot so you don’t know your implications of your actions, you’re gonna do it and wonder why something’s happening, you know? Yeah. And I guess it’s not quite as black and white when it comes to nutrition either because of, you know, if you go to somewhere like Mexico, for example, and some of the other South American countries, they do have those labels and they’re not quite as graphic as the photos that you see on cigarette packets, but they say excess sugar, excess fat on anything that goes above their recommended daily allowance within 100 g or whatever the serving might be.

And you go and look at your dark chocolate, 70 or 80% of dark chocolate is excess sugars and excess fat. But the context there is that, well, actually dark chocolate can be very well implemented in someone’s nutrition. It’s more about the portion size. So that’s where it gets a little bit into the gray area. Right. Because of that requires more education. Whereas smoking, there isn’t really any benefits to smoking, like from a health standpoint, at least, maybe if you know where you were born 40 years ago, it might look cool when your friends did it. But I’ll think of that, you know, it didn’t actually have any benefits to you whereas dark chocolate can. But obviously if you eat an entire 102 100 g bar of that, then you’re gonna be having problems pretty soon. So maybe that’s the challenge as well. Like I said, extra information and education needs to be there because it’s not so black and white as smoking is slash. Yeah. Was, hm I, uh, I also think I’ve, I’ve discounted one side of things which is, um, the exercise uh element that actually uh improves mental health. So, um, you mentioned the fact that mental health is a, is an issue at the moment.

I think a lot of people associate mental health with, you know, I just want a beach bod type thing when in actual fact, it can be something which maintains, you know, you can go from being a depressed or anxious person to implementing exercise in your life and you’re essentially well again. And I, I think people don’t have that association. No, that’s very true. And I think that hopefully the pandemic kind of brought that to people’s awareness a little bit more because they were maybe indoors for such a long period of time. And they noticed that maybe their anxiety and depression ended up getting a little bit more prominent and then they went outdoors again and then they recognized the difference, right? And I think that that probably woke people up and also they started going out on walks more because they were only allowed to leave the households of the day. And a lot of people, especially my clients recognized that, you know, being out on the green taking 30 minutes to themselves, not having to do the commute on the tube. So actually having an hour in the morning to go do that work was super beneficial for them. But like I said, I think there’s a long way to go to recognizing how, how important a that is and how it can be so minimal as well because I don’t think it’s, you know, the gym session or, you know, the really, really proactive exercise class that helps people.

It’s literally usually, but of course, those things help people, but the bare minimum of just going for a 30 minute walk out in late is probably the biggest key to success when it comes to people’s mental well being. So you’re absolutely spot on there. And I think that, you know, just as we’re made aware about many other things that are kind of irrelevant to us. And you know, you see things like bananas are toxic or you just need to throw all of your bread away like the links between mental health and um yeah, exercise would be really powerful as a message to just kind of scream off the rooftops. Well, before we um move on from your story, uh the question is if you could tell that 14 year old boy, something who’s concerned and worried about his body, what would you say to him? I would tell him to do exactly what he was doing. He definitely had the insights that I’m not sure how he was able to gather them, but I gave her credit for gathering them and he was doing the right thing in terms of heading in direction of saying like this is my responsibility and didn’t do it in like an unhealthy way either, which is the kind of impressive part again, like I, I see no reflection between who I am today and that boy funnily enough.

But like, yeah, I really acknowledge him for not doing it in an unhealthy way. It could have been easy to just say, ok, you need to run for three hours every single day or you need to go down the route of like not eating anything at all, but in some way, shape or form, I was able to say, ok, well, let’s look for the way in which seems quite productive and healthy and able to do it. So I definitely tell him to continue doing that, but then I’d probably tell him that there’s no rush, like be patient with it because of, I think that there is obviously this temptation to do things as quick as possible and to try and get to the place that I want to be as fast as I possibly can. But I think that there is a very, very beautiful message in patience. You know, if you’re doing the right thing, you don’t need to worry about. If you’re going to get there, realistically, you just need to keep doing that, be patient. Recognize what you’re doing is paying off and just yeah, continue to do things that get you the results and not stress or worry about whether you’re going to get there, just allow it to be. And yeah, I would definitely say that and then obviously later down the line, which would be a case of continue to do more of that.

Recognize that that’s going to be the case in most areas of your life. If you have a challenge that you’re going through, recognize that the solution lies within you and get some information, take action and hopefully you don’t use course correct but if you need to course correct along the way, I like that message. And um the uh the patience element is I think particularly poignant when you see things like uh celebrity six month body transformation or something. And um how I think you reference this in your profile, I believe about the fact that it takes a long time to go from. Uh it’s like the before and after picture, it does take a while. So, have you got any thoughts around the topic of um those celebrity body transformations that are not very, not very likely if you’re doing it in a natural way. Yeah, I think that it’s easy to get tempted by the celebrity transformations and these really impressive and sensationalized timelines of like, yeah, and that’s the thing that is what I was reading at the time, you know, on the front it was mainly like men’s fitness magazines when I was first discovering this information, a few websites here and there.

Social media really wasn’t a thing that much. I know when it was, it was a solid 15 years ago. So social media really didn’t have the same level of information that it has today. So it was all six weeks to abs and all this type of stuff. And trust me, I felt like things, you know, a lot of my first workouts were probably things that I grabbed from there and I was definitely engaged and invested in the same way that anyone would be today. But I think that sometimes you don’t want to defeat yourself, but almost, if it’s too good to be true, it’s probably too good to be true. And I think that it’s mainly not about leaning towards the celebrity or even in my case, maybe like the professional athlete, because their lifestyle is going to look very, very different to yours. And the accessibility to plastic surgery, uh, chefs in their houses, you know, a personal trainer who spends the majority of their day with them is very different to your lifestyle when, you know, maybe, you know, I was a kid, I was only in school. So it wasn’t too much a big deal. I could invest as much time as I wanted to. But if you’re 2030 4050 years old, you’ve got a job, you’ve got kids, you’ve got responsibilities.

So, you know, not probably going to be able to achieve the same result. So I think again, you know, that patience piece is not the sexiest work in the world. It really isn’t. But it’s really worth recognizing that these things, especially when things that you want to stick over a long period of time, they do take time. And I like to think of the health and fitness transition as not just getting to your result, but kind of keeping your result. And for me that requires like a shift in lifestyle to be completely honest thing with your health and fitness is, it’s not really owned, it’s only kind of rented and you have to pay that rent in the form of eating good foods training on a regular basis or exercising on a regular basis, you know, looking after your sleep and your hydration because if you don’t kind of pay the bills from that perspective, it starts to catch up with you again. And obviously, if you put in a lot of investment in the early stages, kind of like I did, I got obsessed with it, which was great for my career and great for the time of my life and a little bit more well balanced. Now, comparatively, that helps me out. Now, you know, I can be a little bit more relaxed because I had all those years where I was very, very obsessed, there was five or six sessions per week and most people wouldn’t have gone through that.

So it’s a case of just recognizing that, ok, you’re making a big transition to your lifestyle here and you might get your result in a short period of time. But if you want to maintain those results for a long period of time, which I think all of us truly do want to, then it’s gonna take some time. And you know, the, you know, the headline story is probably not going to be the thing that ultimately allows you to maintain that result. It might help you get to that result. But again, they’re trying to sell you something here, they’re trying to sell you a story. They’re trying to sell you a product or something along those lines. And usually the best intentions aren’t hidden within. So I would try and gather as much information as you can. And, you know, also speak to someone who doesn’t have any benefit from your journey going any faster than it actually needs to go. And then usually you’re going to find a more realistic time frame and approach that works for you, especially if you’ve gone through many times before where you’ve tried and failed these things, like there’s nothing to do with you. It’s probably everything to do with the approach, of course, take a little bit of responsibility. But if you find that you’re going for these really short term quick fixes all the time and nothing seems to be sticking or you end up back at square one, you know, one year later, there’s probably an indication that that’s not the right thing for you to be doing on a long term basis.

Well, the try and fail that feedback where you’ve actually tried something, you’ve tried to make a change and just haven’t been able to continue it, I think is very common. What advice would you give to that person who let’s say, I, like, I’ve tried to do exercise, I’ve tried to start running. I’ve tried to start eating healthy, but I haven’t been able to continue with it. What would you say to that person? Yeah, I’m going to contradict myself here. And I just said that obviously, if you go and see that the approach isn’t working time and time again, it could be the approaches that you are choosing, but also the lowest common denominator is always going to be you. And it might have been the approach, but you’re still the one picking that approach every single time. So there has to be a little bit of self-awareness there to be like, ok, well, I tried these six week plans and they don’t seem to be sticking for me and maybe that’s not the approach that works for you. And something that I find with a lot of people as well is that they maybe want audacious results, but they’re not willing to give anything in the way of audacious efforts. And then you’ve got to kind of have that self reflection as well and say, ok, well, am I truly giving enough in order to get the results that I want because of many times?

And I get this a lot with the clients that I work with. Usually someone will come to me off the back of seeing their friend or a family member go through the process, getting amazing results and like I want results just like that, but they’re not able to be, they’re not able to see on the surface, they see the result and they’re like, well, you know, if James or Julia did it then I can do it. And the reality is, is that they didn’t actually see all the sessions that James and Julia did, they didn’t see all the sacrifices that they made the relationship, the shift in their relationship with food, the sleep, the hydration and all these things that just sort of result and was like, yeah, I want a bit of that. So I think that a lot of honesty has to come in place. And you gotta ask yourself, well, if something hasn’t been sticking, why hasn’t it been sticking? And then there’s always clues, you know, there’s always insights that you can gain. And I think as long as you stay kind of optimistic and maybe don’t rely too much on any given approach. Not like, ok, I just need to find the right plan and then it will work because in most plans, even if they’re super an optimal will work. If you’ve got the right level of mindset and commitment to the process, right?

I tell people like, if you just eat a little bit healthier and you decide to do Zumba twice a week, you’re probably going to be a little bit healthier if you do that for long enough, right? So you can get quite far with an optimal approach, but you’ve just got to be willing to stick at it and just be able to find what is working for you and if you find you get tripped up by certain things have that self awareness to step back and be like, ok, well, why isn’t this working and always try and shine a light on you as well? Like shining a light on the approach and putting, you know, the control out of your hands. It’s probably not going to serve you as 14 year old or 13 year old Elliot did like, put it back into your hands and be like, what can I do about this? Because the approach isn’t gonna change. You know, it’s, it’s, it’s always gonna exist in the sky. The, the thing that exists. So what can you do with the abilities that you have? You know, if you’re not sticking to the nutritional plan, what can you do about that? If you’re not sticking to your training plan, what can you do about that? There’s a certain element of saying, ok, well, maybe something is super unrealistic to my lifestyle, but then you can’t just be like, well, that’s unrealistic to my lifestyle. I’m just going to leave it there.

You have to ask, well, what is, what is realistic to my lifestyle? And the unfortunate thing is is that you might only be able to do two sessions per week and you might have to get slightly slower results than James and Julia did. And you might have to accept that you might have to work a little bit harder. I get this a lot when people were like, well, you know, I’ve got, you know, a thyroid issue or something along those lines or, you know, all of my family have been overweight and as much as that is very, very real, it’s kind of the question of, well, now what? And it’s like, well, maybe you will have to work a little harder than a person down the road and that kind of sucks for you. But do you still want your result? Yes. Well, then you’re gonna have to put a little bit more effort in. It was kind of like 14 year old earlier. Like you didn’t wanna start slightly chubby and overweight, but at the same time, you can use your university to your advantage by saying, well, actually, if I wasn’t that chubby little child, maybe I wouldn’t have been that motivated to get off my butt and do something about it. We wouldn’t be having this conversation today. So it’s kind of like shining a light and saying, well, you know what, it, it, it might be harder for me in this sense, but I’m gonna use that to my advantage.

I’m gonna get even more clued up about what I need to do with my nutrition to have the most success on this journey. Then we’re gonna give that a little bit more to the training side of things because of, I want the best possible results I can get. And in a way you start to thank the fact that you do have that adversity because it requires you to step up. And then when you put extra effort in, you’ve kind of got that, you know, I guess it’s gonna be the opposite of the s cost policy when you’ve invested a lot, but you actually see the results from it. So you just stay invested. And that was kind of the same with me. It’s like, well, I put in a lot of effort to get in shape here. So I’m not gonna let this go. Whereas if results come easy, they kind of go easy. Whereas if the results come off the back of a lot of hard work, there’s more in 10, there’s more um incentive I should say for people to hold on to those as well. So I think it’s all about seeing your adversity and maybe an advantage. It’s not gonna be easy initially. But eventually when you do get the result, you’ll thank yourself for that adversity. I like that about seeing your adversity as your advantage. That’s good. I haven’t heard a phrase like that.

It does make me wonder about uh perhaps your favorite stories of people you helped. So has anything come to mind for you there? Yeah. And I’m trying to give you a unique because of I get this question quite a lot on podcasts. And I think the main one that always comes to mind is the ones where people go through these, you know, phenomenal big weight losses where they lose 30 40 kg or something along those lines. And they are incredible feats because of, I know what it’s like to maybe lose 15 kg. I can’t imagine what losing double of that looks like. It’s almost not possible to comprehend for myself because it’s, it’s very, very impressive the way that people can turn their lives around from that perspective as well. But one story that comes to my mind is a mom of four and she has just had her fourth child and she decides that ok, I know that I’m pretty much done with having Children here. You know, 1/6 1 is on away for us more than enough. And what she does is she decides to take action on her health and fitness immediately. And in particular part that I find impressive, we’ve got a few mothers on my roster as well.

Another one comes to mind. She’s had a, we’ve, we’ve worked together at all different stages. We worked with her when she had no kids, when she had one kid. And now, well, now she has two Children as well. So she’s another impressive one that comes to my mind. But this specific story I want to tell here is about the mothers who get themselves back on track with their health and fitness just after having their last child essentially. And the impressive part about this to me is I meet mothers all the time who have waited five years, 10 years, 15 years, 20 maybe even 30 years before they start to prioritize themselves again. And this mother in particular, you know, it would have been easy for her to say, you know, I’ve had four Children, which is gonna allow my body to have a little bit of a break and I’m going to pick this up. Maybe when they grow up a little bit. I’m not looking after a six month year old and I haven’t got an eight year old, four year old and a two year old running around the house where she decides to invest in her health and fitness. And one year on, she is a completely different person in the way of her health and well being and she’s dropped. I can’t remember the exact amount somewhere between 15 and 20 kg, which is super damn impressive. But the most impressive part of the story is that she didn’t wait until she kind of gave herself permission to do it.

She recognized that, ok, this is a priority and I know that my lifestyle in a sense is leaning against me right now. I’m gonna be kind of sleep deprived. I only just coming off the back of pregnancy. My doctor has given me the, the all clear slot exercising as well, but no one would say anything if I decided to just park my health and fitness for a little while, especially after having four kids in such a quick succession. But she did it anyway and she went at it with 100% of herself, everything that she could give. You know, she went through those normal situations that people go through in terms of family is eating and they’re enjoying the different meals that they’re having. Dad’s not really on point at this point. Dad has gone through a journey before, but right now, he’s not super focused on his journey. So him and my nine year old son are eating hot dogs and it’s cold and I’m tempted by it and she’s going all through that and she’s, you know, she’s just had her fourth child yet. She is committed to her training. She’s committed to her nutrition and one year down the line again, not a fast story whatsoever. She didn’t drop an incredible amount, but she gets to the result that she wants to be and we go through a period of maintenance and to the day and this, this was a while ago, this was back in 2021 or 2020 or something along those lines.

And to this day she’s still maintaining somewhere close to that result. And I just think about it all the time because if she could be someone who comes up to me tomorrow, who waited three or four years, but she’s been living with those results for three years because she made that decision, not to wait and to start prioritizing herself. And I find I find that particularly impressive about mothers because they are very selfless. They’re probably the most selfless people in the world in a sense. And I know that she probably would have been tempted to just be like, ok, I just need to give my all to my Children. But she recognized that she didn’t have to choose, she could be selfless and selfish at the same time. And I don’t think selfish is a bad thing in this sense. It was just a sense of saying I do need to prioritize myself. And if anything, I’m going to be a better mom off the back of this as well, because I’m gonna prioritize me and a healthier version of me is the better mom and it’s gonna be a better mom right now. And also in 1020 3040 years when my Children are much older as well. So that’s a particularly impressive one to me. Any month, you can make the decision to start prioritizing themselves again, especially so soon after having Children, even if they have the intentions of having more or not for me are always impressive stories.

And that’s one that really always comes to my mind. I don’t think that’s the story I’ve told on a podcast before. So that’s the first time I Yeah, I’m sharing that one. Well, thank you for sharing it. You bring up a good point to ask about though, which is the, um, you’re on the path of health and fitness and then all of a sudden a scenario comes up where you’re about, uh, you potentially cheat or, uh, there’s another way of asking about. Do you do junk food? Personally, I was much less in that world before I got myself to a stage where I enjoyed my normal day to day foods just as much as I enjoyed quote unquote junk foods. And I also find that whatever you like our internal, our external environment has the opportunity to influence us. But so does our internal one, right? So if you’re not consuming a lot of junk food, it’s not really the thing that your body is going to be asking for on a regular basis. So I was locked into the health and fitness world for a very, very long time, which really helped me with not really needing that anymore. And any time I did have that and a lot of people have this experience when they start cleaning up their nutrition, all of a sudden they’ll have a pizza and they were like, wow, I’m super bloated.

I, I really like, I enjoyed the taste for the first couple of slices, but I feel the effects of this for the next two or three days and my digestion doesn’t sort itself out for almost a week and then it gets to a point of like weighing up the pros and cons And for me, I, I didn’t really invest in it that much whatsoever. I might have had a, like a pastry once a week that might have been as far as it went. Um, and I enjoyed that because I genuinely enjoyed the foods that I was creating and my quote unquote junk food meant whatever I kind of wanted. I would make it homemade and I would make high, like, heavier quantities of it. And that was enough to kind of tick those boxes for me. So that’s what I ended up doing. But that actually when I met my fiance, she was slightly different, she was still kind of in this world where she would be very, very on point throughout the week and then she would eat whatever she wanted over the weekend. So right now we’re finding a balance between those two things and if anything, it has surprised me because I’ve consumed maybe a lot more than I would have definitely did in the past, that’s for sure. And I’ve come into this space where I’m seeing the realistically, if you’re able to balance it out with you being on 0.90% of the time.

And also when you do eat, you don’t go crazy as well. It’s not, I don’t love the word cheat day or cheat meal or anything like that. I think there’s a bit of a negative connotation to it. But if you are able to be on point, like 90 85% of the time. You would be amazed at how much your body can be resilient to those things. And then it’s just a case of just making sure that you’re not kind of itching for that Saturday night treat that you’re applying for. I think that again, he is, there is the kind of temptation to go into a uh bit of an unhealthy pattern and relationship with food. But it is possible like I don’t see anything wrong with it. I think that the of the past was a little bit more focused on everything, health and fitness. Let me just keep this on point as much as possible. And I was very happy with going through that phase of my life. And now I’m going to this different or I have been in this different phase where I’m kind of embracing having dates with my, my, well, my fiance, now my girlfriend at the time and we, and she loves to eat her heart’s content. So it’s kind of about finding the balance between those two.

And also I think there will be a phase where maybe as I progress and I get a little bit older, I might want to reduce those type of things a little bit more. But yeah, once again, I’m giving you a short answer to a, to a long preface. I think that you can have those in your world. The only challenge and the thing you’ve got to recognize about someone like myself is that the pendulum was swung in the other direction for a very, very long time. So when I swung it back, it kind of came back to a, a bit of a baseline because I’d been on this side for so long. A lot of us were on the junk food side for 2030 40 years. And you actually do need to probably spend a little bit of time on the other side while being a little bit more on point and a little bit healthier so that you can find your baseline because if you go from junk food all the time to a little, it’s like, yeah, you might get away with it, but you’re not really in that balanced zone. I’m always encouraging people to say, ok, well, you’ve been here for a lot of time, have some time on the other side of things and then come back to whichever baseline suits you best because of also, that’s the big thing of when someone gets started on a journey.

I usually try to have them be alcohol free for the early stages as well. Not because of alcohol is, you know, that mean anything poisonous will tell or whatever it might be. It’s more a sense of like, ok, now we can get an understanding of what our relationship is like with alcohol. And not only that, we can also say, ok, well, how do we feel without it because we might have not been without it since you were like, 17 years old. And there’s the same with food as well. It’s like, well, what, how does it feel on the other side of that pendulum? And then when you come back, you can have a little bit more of an intentional relationship with alcohol with food, which I think everyone could benefit from because of your internal environment is gonna send you all these cues of what it’s used to. So if it’s used to um you know, junk food and alcohol since you were 16 years old, it’s only gonna keep asking for that. But if you give it the opportunity to kind of not detox but not have it for a little while and you start consuming some healthier foods, you find a little bit more of a balanced approach that tends to work on a long term basis with having health and fitness goals and then also enjoying the things that you want to in life as well. I think it’s particularly um true what you said about the fact that you after a while you actually go to not wanting those foods anymore.

Um I found that to be true. Uh Definitely and uh yeah, just worth highlighting regarding the alcohol stuff. Uh Andrew Huberman does a really good uh episode on the science around what alcohol does to your body. So that’s recommendation from me. Um Is there anything I should have asked you about today, Elliot. There isn’t anything that you should have asked because it’s your podcast. And I always want you to have the freedom to ask whatever you want what’s over on your own mind if we are on the health and fitness topic, the only thing that maybe we haven’t discussed is people maintain their results on a long term basis. And also the approach that I think I want people coming into any journey with and it kind of comes back to avoiding those quick fixes. But also recognizing that those people who end up maintaining their results on a long term basis because I felt a bit of a switch after the pandemic, you know, before the pandemic was all, everyone was very much in the sense of like get me results, get me, you know, the beach body or whatever that might be post pandemic. I think it made everyone a little bit more intentional about their health.

So like I no longer want that. Well, I want the results, but I don’t need the quick fix anymore. I will leans towards something that’s gonna keep my health in place because of maybe I lost someone during the pandemic. Maybe it just gave me an indication of how important my health was. And I do find that that switch and that, you know, that phase towards more long term results is happening. But the thing that comes to my mind is that you know, those people who do end up having those long term results, they don’t fall into the trap of being super all or nothing. They find themselves, you know, somewhere in between they find that, you know, if they do have a few days where they fall off track with their nutrition, they don’t give themselves too much of a hard time. They kind of brush themselves off and get off, get back on it again. If they have a couple of weeks where they’re not able to complete their training, they’re able to once again, not give themselves a hard time or feel guilty. They just say, ok, well, I’m gonna put more effort into the coming weeks as well. So I think the big thing I want to is like, always opting for something that’s more of a lifestyle and a long term approach and not being so volatile with if you stay on track or if you don’t stay on track tends to be a really, really healthy way of keeping yourself in a good position and making sure that these results stick and they don’t end up just being these short lived things because of, I think someone said it recently about money and I think of it in the same sense of health.

He said that when you, it’s worse to have had money and then to have lost it and remember what the feeling of being rich and having money was versus like, never having money at all. And it’s the same with your health and fitness as well. Like, I don’t want people to remember what it was like, to feel amazing and to have abs and everything along those lines and then to have lost it and then just be craving that life again of where they were. I would prefer people to be at the very, very beginning thinking, ok, well, I want these tabs or I want this money, whatever, but I don’t want to go back. I wanna think about what’s going to allow me not only to get this in the short term, but what allows me to live this lifestyle for the remaining decades of my life. Maybe it’s not going to be the sharp abs that you had when you were in your late twenties, but it’s going to be having a good quality of health, you know, being quote unquote in shape, whatever that looks like for your different phase of life and generally just holding a good amount of health and well being reminds me of the term sustained change because, uh, if you’re only doing it for six months or whatever, for a particular reason, then it’s only gonna last for a certain period of time.

Whereas if you make sustained change, then it’s gonna last forever. Right. Absolutely. Yeah. And I think that’s a great mindset to go into this type of journey specifically with because, you know, with the health and fitness journey, short term results are, are literally that they’re just short term. You’ve gotta go in with a long term mindset because if you’re not only doing this for a particular phase of your life, ultimately, you want to be healthy for the entirety of your life. And if you’re gonna live up to, I can’t remember what the average age expectancy is. But I think like 78 or 83 or something along those lines, it’s like got a lot of life to live, which means you’ve got a lot of life to keep your help on point. So, short term practices are not gonna hold you all the way for those next decades of your life. And if people want to hire you or connect with you, where do they go? The best place to find me would be my Instagram page first and foremost. It’s at Elliot Hasso. Uh they can listen to the podcast as well, which is the Simply Fits podcast and you can pretty much find everything about working for me off the back of that as well. But yeah, I really appreciate you having me today. Someone I truly do and it’s been a pleasure to speak with you. Well, thank you.

I think you’ve been a great guest. Uh Do you have any closing thoughts for us today? No, I just want to encourage everyone to not allow this to go in one ear and go out the other and it just be a bit of a short term motivation, but, uh, you know, really try and hang on to the things that resonate with them and try to implement them and take action off the back of them. That would be the best thing I can get out of this podcast today. Elliot. Thank you for being a great guest. Thank you for having me.