How One Note Helped Paula Start A New Lifestyle!

Paula needed to break the binge eating habit and take back her life. Read on to see the changes she made to her everyday routine in order to get rid of her excess baggage!

Vital Stats

Name: Paula Hannah
Bodyspace: renew1

Paula Hannah Paula Hannah


227 lbs
Body Fat:


142 competition, 150 off season
Body Fat:
8.9% competition, 11% off season

Why I Got Started

After a season of unavoidable life challenges that left me both physically and mentally paralyzed, I found myself alive but not living. Shattered and worn, I watched hopelessly as others around me were taking steps to make healthy living a lifestyle. I never allowed myself to believe that the same was possible for me.

Then, one Sunday afternoon feasting endlessly on a spread suited for an Army, something deep me within cried out "STOP!" It was at this point I made a public declaration to those present that I would no longer simply exist but rather take action to live.

I was taking my life back by turning away from unhealthy behavior moving towards a life renewed.

I made a public declaration to those present that I would no longer simply exist but rather take action to live.

How I Did It

Like most with grand New Year's Resolutions, I reestablished my gym membership at the beginning of 2009. I also took advantage of the complementary training session offered and as fate would have it, the trainer, a distributor for Beverly International, was preparing for his first bodybuilding show.

He conducted an excellent workout but what intrigued me the most was the information he shared about clean eating. He sent me home with a note and at the top it read the following "This is not a diet but a lifestyle change." I took a couple of months to get this principle embedded in me to ensure that it would have a lasting effect versus my normal 90-day trial, fail, quit approach.

This is not a diet but a lifestyle change.

Ultimately, with instructions in hand I gave my kitchen a major overhaul.

  1. Upon inspection, I pulled everything from my shelves/fridge/freezer and divided them into two groups: A for Clean and B for Not Clean. A = frozen chicken breast/salmon/fresh and frozen vegetables/oatmeal/canned tuna; B = white flour/granulated sugar/white bread/white rice/white potato/soda/sugary snacks i.e. (fruit snacks/ 100 calories packages/cereals) to name a few.

  2. All group B items were quickly removed from my house, either given to my neighbor or simply disposed of.

  3. I made a grocery list complete w/ complex starchy carbs (sweet potato/beans/rice cakes/brown rice) and fibrous veggies (broccoli/cabbage/cucumbers/green beans) and fats (natural peanut butter/almond butter/flax oil/olive oil/walnuts or almond.

  4. I stuck to what was on my list and fought off every urge to pick up a little treat. I also didn't allow myself time to peruse the store like a visitor for the first time.

  5. I designated Sunday afternoon for meal prep which required a bit of schedule adjustment.

  6. I prepared enough food to have lunch and dinner for 7-to-10 days (chicken breast is cooked in crock pot or oven and when weather permits I grill in the yard) and fresh veggies are cooked, separated, and bagged. This also guaranteed that my daughter had a sensible meal after school or soccer practice versus snacking until dinner was made.

  7. I established a few rules like if a product has more than a 2-week shelf life I don't buy it, and I carefully plan out meals so on shopping day I only buy what is needed.

  8. I adjusted my view of my kitchen from a place of refuge where I crept to at night to drown my sorrow by binge eating, to my sanctuary where I go to get refueled to continue on with living.

I carefully planned out meals so on shopping day I only bought what was needed
I carefully planned out meals so on shopping day I only bought what was needed
I carefully planned out meals so on shopping day I only bought what was needed.


The following regimen I follow in preparation of competition:

6:30AM, 12:30PM & 6:30PM:

9:30AM, 3:30PM & 9:30PM:

9:30AM & 3:30PM:

Off Season, I maintain Beverly International Lean Out with each meal only.


Competition Diet:

Meal 1:

Meal 2:

Meal 3:

Meal 5:

Off Season Diet:

I'm a 100% clean eater so meals vary but will always be clean.

Meal 3:

Meal 5:


Cardio: Mon-Fri

Day 1: Legs

Day 2: Chest/Arms

Day 3: Cardio Only

Day 4: Back/Shoulders

Day 5: Cardio Only

Day 6: Cardio Only

Day 7: Rest

Suggestions for Others

Make a plan, set a goal. How do you know where you're headed without a plan or a goal to reach after? Know what you're working toward and what it's going to take to get you there.

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