EarthWater Weight Loss Challenge: Garett Thomas

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Garett Thomas is EarthWater’s very own Global E-Commerce/Logistics Manager, aka “Mr. Amazon”.  He has been with the company 2 years and has been drinking FulHum ever since.  Garett embarked on his weight loss journey in March of 2018 continuing with a consistent exercise regime and eventually moving to a full ketogenic diet. 

For those of you who are not familiar with this diet, the ketogenic diet (keto) is a low-carb, high-fat diet that can offer many health benefits. Studies have shown that the keto diet can help improve your health and assist in weight loss. Ketogenic diets may even have benefits against diabetes, cancer, epilepsy and Alzheimer's disease (Mawer 2018).

We took some time this week to sit down with Mr. Amazon and ask him a few questions about his current wellness progress and how EarthWater has helped him to stay healthy and hydrated with his diet and fitness routines.

What do you do to stay healthy and fit?

Dieting properly and hitting the gym regularly. Weightlifting and incorporating "super" or "giant" sets is mainly what I stick with in the gym. That kind of weightlifting really keeps your heart-rate elevated while building muscle, endurance and burning fat. I don't find myself in the gym on the weekends normally. Instead I usually I try and go for a hike or maybe kayak on a lake at least once over the weekend. Then I follow a very strict ketogenic diet while implementing intermittent fasting 5 to 6 days a week.

What health benefits have you experienced from the Keto diet?

I definitely have more clarity and better energy levels: no "2:30 Crash" any longer. I don't have food cravings nearly as much, and when bad food gets put in front of me, I know that I am in control and not the food. But probably the most mind-blowing thing I have witnessed with this diet is that my fiancé’s migraines have completely vanished since she has been keto. She was someone who had migraines so bad medication, even prescribed "pill cocktails," would NOT help ease the pain. I mean she couldn't function for days when she got them. One of her migraines even lasted for 2 months. With the keto diet, she rarely gets migraines. She started it around March with me, and I would say she has had 2 very mild migraines that were both treated with over-the-counter migraine medicine. Metaphorically speaking, its night and day for her.

What is the difference between the Keto Diet and Atkins?

Great question that a lot of people ask me. In short, the Atkins diet focuses on phases. Phase 1 is when you eat very little carbs, similar to the keto diet. However, later in the program, they introduce carbs back into your diet. When you start eating a lot of refined carbs and refined sugars (which get turned into carbs) with large amounts of fats, that's when you will harm your body research shows. With the Keto diet, its high amounts of fats, moderate amount of protein, and very little carbohydrates. That stays the same no matter if you are just starting or have been doing the diet for 10 years. In addition, being in ketosis as a result of the keto diet brings a range of benefits to people. Most people seem to have an increase in energy, some have mental clarity and feel much more alert. Then you are also able to control your blood sugar and insulin levels a lot better because you avoid insulin spikes and crashes. 

What is the hardest part of the Keto diet? 
Personally, I think it would have to be the learning curve of the diet. There are so many factors and hurdles that go into reaching a healthy level of "ketosis." Its difficult to switch your body to using fats as a primary energy and fuel source instead of carbohydrates, which is what "ketosis" essentially is. In addition, a lot of people who are new to this diet put too much emphasis on JUST eating low amounts of carbohydrates. While that is equally important, you must eat enough fats throughout your day to achieve the true benefits of this diet. 

Is there a food that you miss the most? 
Honestly, this diet really does well with stopping your cravings. There are also a lot of foods that can be used instead of traditional ingredients that are friendly to my diet. But I would say the biggest thing that I miss though would have to be French Fries, Pizza, and Taco Casa Tacos. But honestly, there is so much good food you get to eat on the keto diet.

What does your current fitness plan look like? 
My weekdays start every day at 4:20 AM. I start with running for 5 minutes - even though I hate running - just to get my heart-rate elevated for the duration of my workout. After cardio, I structure my workouts around "super" and "giant" sets, which means 2 to 3 exercises going into 1 set. Furthermore, all my exercises have a minimum of 3 sets. I usually do 2 upper body days and 2 lower body days. I would say my minimum goal is to be in the gym 4 hours a week and at least 1 hour doing a low impact exercise like hiking, kayaking or even yoga with my fiancé.

How has EarthWater helped you in your wellness journey?

When it comes to the keto diet, there aren't many fruits and veggies you can eat early into the diet. In my previous eating habits, there were a lot of micro nutrients that I would normally get by eating fruit and veggies. With the keto diet, I mainly stick with dark green veggies, cauliflower here and there, and berries. That still is not enough to get all the micro nutrients your body needs. However, with EarthWater I was easily able to consume those micro nutrients, simply by drinking bottled water. There are so many trace minerals in every bottle of EarthWater. In addition, the keto diet requires heavy water intake and EarthWater is excellent at quick and lasting hydration.

What progress have you made up to this point?

My worst weight I recorded was 222 lbs. I started this diet in March and have done it all the way up to this point, but I am down to 187 - which is lower than my college playing weight AND I am so much stronger now. I feel like my goal is 178 lbs., but once I get there it may change. Once I do get to that goal weight, I will probably focus my diet toward gaining muscle mass. As far as progress in the gym, currently I am burning around 650 calories per workout. I would like to get that to 750 calories per workout. 

Who has the best BBQ in Texas?
City Market BBQ in Luling, TX is hands down my favorite. Their all-beef sausage is the best with their mustard based sauce.

I want to thank Garett for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer our questions and for sharing his story with us.  He has been a huge inspiration to all of us here at EarthWater HQ and we hope that he has encouraged you as well!

Do you have a weight-loss story?  Has EarthWater helped you in your path to wellness?  Shoot us an e-mail at support@earthwater.com and share your story with us!  We would love to hear from you.

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Source: Mawer, Rudy. “The Ketogenic Diet: A Detailed Beginner's Guide to Keto.”Healthline, Healthline Media, 30 July 2018, www.healthline.com/nutrition/ketogenic-diet-101.