Natascha Müller’s story is inspiring as she has battled something many of us are challenged with: living a healthy life.
Since childhood, Natascha has been overweight and was classified as obese as an adult. Two short years ago, she weighed 274lbs and was realizing that her quality of life was beginning to diminish as she wasn’t able to participate in the many things she wanted to. Feeling fed up about this, she decided to make a change and that change was drastic!
Fast forward to the fall of 2017 when we first met Natascha at a trim 165lbs on her way to making a skydive! Without a doubt, Natascha is taking advantage of her new body by living the life she had been dreaming about.
Natascha lives in Switzerland, so we began an e-mail exchange to learn more about her story.
Natascha, congratulations on your weight loss! What was the moment that you decided you had to make a major lifestyle change?
I always knew that I’m an ‘outdoor person’ who loves adventures. And of course I did the things I was able to do, like hiking, camping and traveling, but I was just too heavy for ‘the real stuff’. So I was always dreaming about my life instead of living my dreams. The older I got (I’m 36 now) the more sad, angry and fed up I was feeling about my inability to just do whatever I wanted to do. So I decided that it was time to find my way to lose weight.
Many of us all wish to lose weight but being disciplined to change our habits and lifestyle eventually falls short. Is there any advice you can offer to help many of us to stay on track and reach our goals?
I’ve known the struggles of losing weight all my life. I’ve always lost a few pounds with trying to change my eating habits but the weight loss never lasted and my weight increased over the years. When I felt really desperate and like I will never be able to change anything and was about to give up…I decided to find a way.
My advice for anybody who wants to reach a goal is to be sure that there IS a way! Never give up in believing that you just have to find your own personal way.
If we may ask, what did you do to lose the weight?
I have to admit that my personal way to reach my goal finally was a gastric surgery. After years and years of nutrition counseling, visits to my doctor, trying to eat healthily, struggling and desperation I decided to take a drastic step to a healthier life. I did not want to die of my obesity one day, I wanted to start a new life as the adventurous and curious person I was behind all this weight. I received my gastric bypass in November 2016. Yes, it’s a radical way, but it was the final kick I needed to change my life for good. With this surgery and the weight loss which became possible I was also able to change my eating habits into a healthy nutrition. And to find different strategies than eating to battle the challenges of life.
Many Americans would love to visit Switzerland for a holiday, but you love to visit Tennessee and the Carolinas. What about this area do you enjoy and love and how did you discover the South as a favorite place to visit?
My mom loved the US since I was very little and I’ve grown up with the country music she was always listening to. When I was 16 years old I did an exchange year in Georgia and visited a high school to improve my Swiss school English. That’s when I fell in love with the South and my mom and I came back many times. I’m a bass player in Bluegrass and Oldtime bands here in Switzerland so I feel very enamored to the region my beloved music comes from. I love the beauty of the Appalachian Mountains and the kindness of the Southerners. And so much more.
Have you discovered a favorite southern food and how’s your southern accent? 😉
Oh yes! I’m in love with Hash Brown Casserole, Buttermilk Biscuits, Fried Green Tomatoes, Squash Casserole, Cornbread, Chicken Salad, Southern Sweet Tea…
Whenever I’ve got the travel bug I go into my kitchen and cook something southern style.
My southern accent? Well. I guess all y’all would hear that I’m Swiss. 😉
Being from Switzerland, how did you discover Skydive Carolina?
We were staying in Clyde, NC when I decided to go skydiving. So I just Googled to find a reachable place, found Skydive Carolina and felt like it was a very likable and cool place. And I was right. 😉
You’ve shared that since losing the weight, you’ve been participating in all the things you’ve been dreaming about – you’ve been river rafting and horseback riding and zip lining and shopping, but it wasn’t enough until you found skydiving. What about skydiving did you love so much?
Flying…it’s the incredible fact that I’m able to fly as a human being. To see the world from high up above, dive through this huge sky, to not think about anything ‘down there’, to be completely ridded from the everyday life. No thoughts. And the rush of adrenaline while jumping and free falling of course. And to float under the parachute is the most peaceful thing to imagine.
Deciding to make a skydive takes a little bit of courage! What made you decide that you were ready to jump from a plane?
I had skydiving in my head from time to time. But it always felt just too crazy to really jump out of a plane – and as you know I was too heavy for even thinking about it. When we were on vacation in the South last year and after I was so enthusiastic about my new body and the things my weight now allowed me to experience (the coolest holidays ever!) I thought it was time to challenge myself and totally step out of my comfort zone. I would say I wanted to celebrate my new me in the most amazing way I could imagine.
For those who are apprehensive about making a jump, what helpful advice would you give to them if they’re wishing to go, but fear is standing in the way of them participating?
Just do it. If you’re already dreaming of your first jump then you’re ready for it. Yes, it’s damn scary to sit in that plane, knowing that your instructor is about to throw you out there in a few minutes. Your heart will be pounding like hell. Your adrenaline will rise to unknown highs. And maybe you’ll be asking yourself if you’re completely insane. But then you jump. And suddenly there’s nothing but you, your instructor and this undescribable free fall. You’re flying. The folks at Skydive Carolina will make you feel safe and comfortable, I promise! ☺
You’ve changed your life and have accomplished so many personal goals in such a short time, what other adventures are you dreaming about now?
My next big adventure will start in May. I will take a timeout from my job and go on a hiking trip from my home in Switzerland all the way up through Germany until I reach the Baltic Sea. 1200 miles, just my dog and I.
Your story is inspiring, what advice would you like to leave for anyone wishing to make a big change in their lives?
Please just never give up! Somewhere there’s a way that makes you able to turn things around and make the change you’re longing for. It’s not about the way other people think would be the right way to reach your goals…it’s about finding YOUR way. It’s all about starting a new journey. YOUR journey.
I’ll be back in 2019. 🙂
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