Why Kids Make You Fat… and How to Get Your Body Back

Our children are bundles of joy who enhance our lives in innumerable ways. We love them beyond question. But let’s be honest . . . they take a lot of time. For most of us, that means less regular workouts and not enough time to prepare healthy meals at home. It’s a struggle just to get to the gym once a month and put nutritious food on the table. Even worse for your waistline are those tempting snacks in the fridge and the little extras kids leave on the plate.

Mark Macdonald knows this firsthand. A New York Times bestselling author, nutritionist, and fitness guru, he gained thirty-five pounds in the two years after the birth of his son. For women, like his wife, Abbi, it is even harder… they have to gain weight with each pregnancy, and then attempt to shed those pounds in the midst of stressful demands from the newborn— and often a severe lack of sleep. But we all face a choice: when we notice those pounds packing on, will we evolve, make changes, and reclaim our health? Or will we allow our health to enter that awful downward spiral?

Mark and Abbi know it is possible to reclaim your body, even in the throes of parenting. With this eight-week program, Mark has helped thousands of parents lose up to thirty pounds and rediscover the energy they thought was gone for good. The step-by-step program has three phases: Phase One, Detox, cleanses
your body and helps you lose your bloat. Phase Two, Ignite, burns fat and melts your belly. Phase Three, Thrive, reprograms your metabolism and allows you to incorporate this new way of eating into a sustainable and enjoyable lifestyle.

With a comprehensive diet plan, specific workout regimen, everyday strategies to help parents lose the weight, and incredible success stories with before and after photos, Why Kids Make You Fat . . . and How to Get Your Body Back is a book that will help parents look and feel better than they did even before the kids came along.

The proven weight-loss program for busy parents. If it worked for these parents, it will work for you.

Ivette Montilla - After


Ivette was struggling with excess weight and unrealistic goals. When she adjusted her timeline and changed her eating and exercise habits, she dropped
twenty-seven pounds and seventeen inches and got her “pre-baby” body back in eight weeks.

Mark Timmerman Before and After


When Mark and his wife decided to make health a priority, they lost a combined seventy-seven pounds and forty-one inches. Mark’s new habits also improved his mood, blood work, stress, and sleep.

Kelly Timmerman Before and After


Kelly is an incredible force, a cancer survivor, mom, nutritionist and wife to Mark.

She lost seventeen lbs, six percent bodyfat, and fourteen inches! 8 weeks after that, in her thrive phase, Kelly lost another five pounds and two inches!

Mark and Kelly Timmerman - Thriving

Michelle Totten - After
Michelle Totten - Before


Michelle, mother of three, was struggling to lose baby weight. During the eight-week program, she lost twenty-eight pounds and twenty-three inches and has since dropped another ten pounds!

Scott-Totten-After-ThriveScott Totten - AfterScott Totten - Before


In addition, Michelle’s actions inspired her husband, Scott, to join in on the fun. When Scott made his 8 Week Run, he dropped thirty- one pounds and seventeen inches, and he has lost another ten pounds as he’s living his Thrive phase with Michelle.

JJ and Kiki Gregoire Soccer
JJ Gregoire - AfterJJ-Gregoire-Before-Front


Hunter’s elite soccer coach, JJ Gregoire, is a perfect example of this. JJ came to me and shared how he wanted to get back in shape. He used to be a big- time soccer player, and to the eye of the beholder, he still looked fit, but he knew that once the clothes came off or he did some sprints, he was far from it.

JJ took action, made his 8 Week Run, and got back into top shape, dropping twenty-one pounds and eighteen inches. And most importantly, he’s got his
energy back, is playing competitive soccer again, and has become a role model for Kiki and every player on Hunter’s team and their parents on how to make your health happen!

Kelli Bonomo - After Thrive
Kelli Bonomo - After
Kelli Bonomo - Before


My friend Kelli Bonomo told me for years that she wanted to get back in shape and lose weight. She knew what to do, but for some reason, she just wasn’t doing it.

I coached Kelli through her 8 Week Run, and she lost thirty pounds, eleven inches, and four sizes and finally found the body, health, and confidence that had left her for so many years.

Kaytlyn Harsha - After ThriveKaytlyn Harsha - After FrontKaytlyn Harsha - Before Front


But what makes Kelli’s story even more powerful is that her success inspired her teenage daughter, Kaytlyn Harsha, to know
that she didn’t have to starve herself in order to have the body she wanted. Kelli’s leading by example showed Kaytlyn what was possible and motivated her to take action, dropping thirty- five pounds and four dress sizes in eight weeks.

Jose Vazquez - After - Beyond
Jose Vazquez - After
Jose Vazquez - Before


Jose did what many parents do— he worked the hours he needed to pay the bills and then sacrificed caring for his own health to spend quality time with his family… Then he started Mark’s plan.

In just eight weeks, Jose lost twenty-nine pounds, twenty-four inches, and two pants sizes. And the fun didn’t stop there. Jose kept losing pounds and inches. With this program, Jose was finally able to balance his health, work, and family life while efficiently managing his stress.

Sherry Huva - After Thrive
Sherry Huva - After Front
Sherry Huva - Before Front


Sherry and her family have always been health conscious and active, but as life continued to get busier, Sherry started noticing that her clothes became tighter and the mirror not as friendly.

Sherry dove full throttle into her 8 Week Run and in the process has become an incredible amateur chef. Her clean and balanced meals were so tasty that her family couldn’t wait for dinner. Her new excitement about exercise motivated the rest of the family to get more active.



As a busy mom, Gina was always looking for the perfect diet to help her shed weight quickly. Gina had lost forty pounds ten times, and she loved the fast results from dieting but hated the yo-yo effect it caused.

Eight months later (her 8 Week Run plus six months of Thriving), Gina had dropped forty-five pounds and thirty inches and had truly evolved her plan into a way of life for herself and her family.

Javier Solis - After 6 monthsJavier Solis - AfterJavier Solis - Before


Javier was struggling to make everything work with the pressures of life. He hated that his health wasn’t great and that he was exhausted
aft er work. He was working a lot of hours, and the unhealthier he became, the more he felt a lack of control with his food, exercise, and quality time with his family.

Javier and his wife Pavela made their 8 Week Run together and rocked their plan. Javier lost twenty-three pounds, eighteen inches, and two pants sizes in eight weeks and has lost an additional eight pounds, four inches, and one pants size in his Thrive phase.

Pavela Solis - ThrivePavela Solis - AfterPavela Solis - Before


Pavela was struggling with stress and needed to find ways to manage it better. Alongside Javier, Pavela lost twenty-four pounds, twenty-three inches, and two sizes in eight weeks and an additional twelve pounds, eight inches, and one pants size during her Thrive phase.

Heather Hartman - Before 2012


As a working mom, Heather’s stress was always high, and every time she would lose some weight, the pressures of life would push back, shatter her idea of perfection, and trigger a bout of emotional eating to counter her stress.

Heather decided it was time for a mind-set shift. She went from chasing perfection and stress eating to focusing on daily progress. This new mind-set immediately relieved the pressure she had felt with every diet, and if she had a bad day with her food, she would simply let it go and get right back on track.

Now, this wasn’t an easy transition for Heather, but each day she chipped away and started making progress, and over a two-year period,
Heather dropped fifty-five pounds. This is when I met Heather, and with her new mind-set, she was ready to ramp up her effort and make her 8 Week Run. And boy, did she. In eight weeks, Heather lost thirty pounds, twenty inches, and four sizes.

Leyla Nava - After Thrive
Leyla Nava - After Front
Leyla Nava - Before Front


For a chronic dieter with high blood pressure, losing weight wasn’t Leyla’s difficultly — keeping the weight off and her blood pressure in check was.

Leyla passionately made her 8 Week Run and lost twenty- eight pounds, twenty-two inches, and three pants sizes.

With that in mind, Leyla knew there was no going back. She shifted to progression mode and owned her Thrive phase. Seven months later (her 8 Week Run plus 5 months of Thriving), Leyla had dropped a total of fifty-three pounds, forty-four inches, and five pants sizes. What’s even more exciting is she’s now blood-pressure-medication-free!

Shannon Webber - After Thrive
Shannon Webber - After
Shannon Webber - Before


The Webber family started their 8 Week Run as one powerful unit, a family of seven — Shannon, Scott, and their five kids. Shannon had grown up a chronic dieter, struggling to manage her weight and being raised by her grandparents with food as comfort and a reward. She then passed that philosophy on to her children— it was all she knew. When her children started having weight issues and struggles with their body confidence, she knew it was time to make a stand for herself and for them.

Shannon led the charge and her action of leading by example became the inspiration and motivation for her family on their 8 Week Run. Eight weeks later, Shannon had lost thirty pounds and thirty inches and her family had dropped a combined 146 pounds and 135 inches.

Fast-forward through eight months of Thriving, and Shannon has now lost a total of sixty-two pounds and forty-six inches, and the Webber family is down by a total of 227 pounds and 182 inches!

Webber Family - Thrive

See More Transformations >

Why Kids Make You Fat …and How to Get your Body Back

The Proven Weight Loss Program Designed for Busy Parents

Why Kids Make You Fat - Front Cover

Why Kids Make You Fat - Back Cover

Available Everywhere Books are Sold

Order your copy today

Looking for new recipes, meal options, exercise ideas and additional support? It’s all right at your finger tips, simply join the 8 Week Run & Thrive facebook group and live your plan with fellow parents and 8 weekers like you!

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See Mark in the Media

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