Husband, Business Owner, Coach, Diet Coke Lover, First In Family: Tom SanGiacomo
For me First In simply means Re-Birth, Reincarnation, turning back the hands of time so quickly to reverse decades of doing damage. It means a 2nd Chance!”
Tell us a little bit about yourself...
What brought you to the First In Family initially?
Dr. Jay explained the FIN way, and even tho I truly didn’t understand the process completely I saw his excitement in telling me this process and how great it was for him. That weekend I traded some emails with Jonathan, which still didn’t really help with my understanding of the entire process, but like I have done in the past I was ready to try yet another system to get healthier, so I signed up blindly basically just going by Dr. Jay’s recommendation.
Tell us a little bit about your background and history with food.
Growing up Italian to me is possibly the best cuisine, secret family recipes, etc… food is an integral part of the culture. Also, living in NJ/NY area I feel there are some of the greatest restaurants/dining experiences anywhere. When we travel no matter were we go I always say to my wife that we are so spoiled on food I am rarely impressed.
The other side of that is the mass eating with the boys, to go out after playing a sport, watching football at the bar on a sunday, 10 cent all u can eat wings, chinese buffet for lunch with the work crew, etc….. In high school I played football/wrestled at 235lbs, in college played baseball at 215lbs, my best shape/lowest weight was 190lbs when I was coaching and playing beach volleyball at a high level in 1990. From there as life became busy, injuries happen, weight starting climbing, the cycle of losing weight and gaining more back began. When I got married in 2006 I weighed 215 and the cycle continued to my high of 275.
What was the turning point in your life when you realized you needed to make a change?
The second reason was more ego on the volleyball courts. As I gained weight my skill level and knowledge of the game still allowed me to compete at a high level, but then as I started losing to players I knew I was much better than, the ego was starting to be affected and I was not ready for retirement.
What was the journey like and what changes did you make?
I knew I would easily figure all that out in time but some changes I knew I had to make on my journey was 1.) I could no longer be lazy with food, I needed to take control of prepping, planning, waking up a little earlier to make breakfast instead of getting it on the run, bringing lunch instead of just winging it with the guys, going out with the guys and not eating/drinking like I used to. 2.) This was my journey, and my wife is very supportive, but this is not her journey and she has enough stresses in life and it is not her job to prep, plan, my meals /foods/or snacks. So, I do help in the kitchen much more and we eat the same dinner (i just ask that I know what we are having and I do the numbers), it is important that we have open communication about food/dinners/eating out when 1 of us is doing this plan and the other is not.
As far as working out as I started losing weight I started to get more energy, I walk everyday 4-5miles, play whatever sport I am into at the time, and use a trainer 3 times a week. When Covid shut down New Jersey in March, it actually helped me really focus on me, eating, and working out since there were really no travel, social engagements, or just hanging out so I feel I took full advantage of the negative situation and turned it into a huge positive for my own health.
How do you feel after making those changes?
What did your friends/family think of your transformation?
Were you active or did you workout during your journey?
What does being First In mean to you?
What was the biggest challenge or change when you started with First In and how did you overcome it?
I made a decision early in this process that I was not going to beat myself up over the numbers if there was a bad day or I missed by a couple of grams or cals, that is not my personality, but I was pretty good for the most part 9/10 times. As time goes on the habit begins to take shape and it becomes easier and easier. In the beginning as mentioned the tuffest was starting at holiday time when there are those special foods around you don’t get all year.
You do have the learning curve of weighing, planning, understanding where foods fit into what macros and expanding your pallet of food choices.
What’s next for you and where do you see this journey taking you in the future?
What are your top 5 "secrets" for success?
2. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, it’s your journey
3. Be patient, slow and steady, it is a marathon a new way of living, results will happen
4. Become active with food prep, bulk cooking, planning, don’t depend on others, it is your tastes and likes, the more you have foods and flavors you enjoy the easier it will be
5. (Maybe the most important) Use the group (the Family)!! Can you do this process without it? Probably, but it helps alot, from food tips you never thought of, motivation, friendly competition, to everyone cheering your success.
any advice for someone thinking about getting started?
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Testimonials were given freely and service members did not receive any preferential treatment, discount, or other benefit due to the nature of their service, rank, or position and in no way are the views or beliefs of any branch of the armed forces or uniformed services.