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Harajuku Moment

In The 4-Hour Body Ferriss described the Harajuku moment as "an epiphany that turns a nice-to-have into a must-have."

What was your harajuku moment? If you haven't had one, how do you motivate yourself to stay with the diet? I think hearing everyone's different stories would be motivating :)


The Best Answer

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After several years of partying too much and not taking care of myself I found myself very deep in debt, weighing 280 lbs (5'11"), and losing friends who were starting to get their shit together.

Soon after new years this year, after one too many days of being out of breath from walking the 4 blocks from work to home I realized enough is enough. I knew that I had to quit smoking first, and i took 2 days off work so that i could just sit at home and go cold turkey from 1.5 packs a day. Find this to be a lot easier than I expected I started researching how to lose weight, can't remember exactly what lead to me to 4 Hour Body but since i got the book in my hands (mid February) the changes has been remarkable.

To date:

Lost 56lbs (weight 222.5 this morning)

Got a really good promotion at work (should be debt free within 18 months)

Reconnected with old friends who are also living a healthy lifestyle.

People that I looked up to are now looking up to me and constantly asking me to advice now

Thanks for starting this thread, I was feeling a little discouraged this week because I only lost 2lbs, but this made me look back on how much I've done in just a few months. :D

  • bodenton commented Oct 12th 2011:

    Inspirational! Don't get discouraged - look how far you've come and how great your life is.....you have the power to make your life whatever you want it to be....so well done for choosing to take care of yourself.

  • fitorbust commented Mar 7th 2012:


  • Minnesota commented May 24th 2011:
    What a story!

All Answers


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Mine was a little different in the order of things. I knew the situation I had gotten myself in was bad - in the three weeks before I started 4HB I was gaining weight every day. This was even with my lame attempts to stop - I won't have that biscuit now, I'll have it later instead, then had three. A friend was on 4HB and she posted on facebook that she could finally get into her favorite pair of shorts. So I decided to look into it and ordered the ebook from amazon. Two days later I started. In that first week I had my "moment" where I began to realise just how bad my eating habits were. I also started to see changes in my body - not just losing weight but I had loads more energy, I felt happier and my brain began to wake up. I find it really, really shocking that the old food could do such negative things to my body and that I was so entrenched that I didn't even notice. For me it's no longer just about getting back into my old clothes, it's a life long experiment to get me back to healthy, to physically be the person I should be and stay there.

  • amanda commented Jun 20th 2011:

    I really know what you mean about food having a bad effect and not even noticing it! Life is so much better since I started this diet. No aching joints, not sore tummy in the morning. The (small amount of) weight loss is just a bonus!


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My Harajuku moment came Sunday, June 19th. Let me explain my circumstances up to that point...

I am the sole graphic/web designer at my job. We started a new partnership company with another business and I have been doing nearly everything for it. I created the logos and the websites, etc and it's all been a load of stress (you can only multitask so much when you're one person doing the job of a small team). However, because it wasn't irritability I was having, I didn't consider myself stressed out. What had added to the weight on my shoulders was the fact we had a chopper built for the company by Orange County Choppers which was to be filmed (and indeed it was) for American Chopper on June 16th.

So for the months and weeks and days leading up to that big day, my eating kept increasing the closer we got. I'm talking I'd go to a Wawa (an east coast convenience store) and get, FOR DINNER, 2 pints of Ben & Jerry's, 2 hot flatbread sandwiches, 2 hot toasted wraps and a frozen cappuccino and consume them within an hour. That's not the worst of it, but obviously it's bad enough.

When the event came and passed, I suddenly lost that insatiable hunger and felt content. Not to say my days of overeating was finished, but I felt like I didn't have to eat as much. I did, however, eat a lot up through the 19th, which was when I realized that I was eating out of -- what had become -- habit.

That moment, right there, was my Harajuku moment.

The importance of that particular revelation to me is that now, when I begin to get bouts of insatiable hunger (and I'm sure I will while following the slow-carb lifestyle change), I can stop and simply think back and realize that it's being caused by stress and I can ask myself what is it that is stressing me out.

The Harajuku moment wasn't just something that made me want to change my food habits, it was something that gave me a new awareness about my past behaviors in order to prevent myself from repeating those behaviors in the future (again*).

*I lost 100+ pounds 7 years ago and kept it off for 5 years, and then let it go during the last 2 years. My Harajuku moment is to keep me from doing that again: letting myself and my body go.

  • bodenton commented Oct 12th 2011:

    Loved your story - thank you. And you sound like an awesome graphic/web designer. best wishes.

  • CynthiaK commented Nov 19th 2011:

    I let myself go during the past couple of years as well. Not wanting to slip up again definitely factors into my motivation! Thanks for the post :)


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My fat jeans were too tight.

There were bits of me spilling over - no matter how much I sucked in. There were clothes in my wardrobe I had NEVER worn. (Bought in those crazy moments when you tell yourself you're going to lose weight and then they'll look fab).

But I have to tell you - I Love my Grandchildren - I love them more than I ever thought was possible and more than anything I want to be someone special in their lives. I want to be an inspiration to them, I want to be there for them and have the energy to enjoy everything with them - and for that I need to take care of myself.

When I'm fat I feel bad, disappointed with myself and I lack confidence because I don't think I 'look nice'. When I'm feeling fit and lean I can take the World and shake it!

  • LikkleNitty commented Dec 2nd 2011:

    I know that feeling! - "I'll buy that, it looks nice.. it'll be a motivator to lose weight" and then it sits there, pathetic, pointing and laughing at you, and you end up feeling even more guilty.

    You look fantastic btw :)


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I can't specifically remember a time when I've had one, but I can talk about what keeps me motivated to stay on this diet. I keep with this diet for two main reasons. One, I refuse to revert to my former squishy self. And two, I want to make a difference in the lives of those who believe change isn't possible. I gain a sense of satisfaction and pride when I see others succeed, and it makes an even greater impact on me when I know I've contributed something, even something minimal, toward their success. This site provides the perfect environment for people like me, who desire an outlet in which to help others, and if that counts as a Harajuku moment, then discovering this site is mine. It's a nice community that I can't imagine now living without.


  • Ruby commented Jun 19th 2011:

    The other thing about this site is you have to post a good question to get in BUT you have to put in the effort with your lifestyle changes to merit your place here.

  • bodenton commented Mar 7th 2012:

    Dear Minnesota. Thanks for the inspirational share. Helping others is the best way of helping ourselves.



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For me, it happened about 2 years ago. I got very drunk and tried to kiss one of my best friends. She forgave me, and I realised I wasn't in control of myself, or my life. Since then, everything has changed. I'm more confident, I've lost over 25kg (55lbs, but not on slow carb), have a beautiful girlfriend, am doing well at learning a second language, I enjoy my job more and so on. Literally my life has changed.

  • bodenton commented Oct 12th 2011:

    Brilliant! And we've all been there (or at least I have)....I used to warn people "When I drink too much I act like an idiot and snog (London word for wet kissing) inappropriate people .....at least then they couldn't say they hadn't been warned!! Now I feel virtuous when I save the extra glassful of wine for cheat days and the only person I'm snogging is my husband!


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Mine was when my doc informed me that my blood sugar was getting crazy. I knew I was out of shape but lived in denial. The thought of getting type 2 Diabetes in my early 30s was sickening and was a big wake up call. Since then (one month ago) I have been repeatedly punching Diabetes in the face and not looking back. I'm down 20lbs of fat and already in way better shape! I'm on the last notch in my belt and last weekend I threw on a shirt that I always loved but never fit well for a wedding. The shirt ended up being baggy, looks like I'm heading to the tailor :)

Thank you Tim and all the fine peeps on this forum!!!

Fat blog here -> www.somebodypunch.me


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Long story short: I've done treatment for breast cancer and put on 10kg in the process and felt really c-rap. I agreed to see a naturopath and he did the whole BMI thing. The report came back and it said I was in the 'moderate risk' group for cardio-vascular disease. I am 53. WELL!! I did NOT enjoy seeing that in print. So here I am..on a mission.


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For 14 years I have worked in the Health and Fitness Industry and have always been extrememly competitve in high level sports. 4 years ago I was promoted into a Director role, one of the highs of my career. Shortly after that (3 months), my father was diagnosed with lung cancer, and subsequently passed away 4 months later.

I didn't notice it until I was visting my family 1 month ago and noticed that I was labouring a little when playing soccer with my nieces. I have always been the healthy and active one in my family and this started to hit home as I had to stop playing with them to catch my breath.

It seems that I was making excuses for not being as healthy as I should be or representing an industry that I am successful in and inspire others. I realized that I not only needed to be a role model for my family again, but I needed to be one for myself. I realized the impact of losing my dad took a greater toll on me than I thought.

After picking up Tim's book it reminded me of how I used to be. Seeking knowledge, challenging the status quo and moving the industry or unconventional knowledge forward. I am committed to achieving my goal and this journey is something that I know my Dad would be proud of.

I am looking forward to success and inspiring others. I have a phrase I use with all of my managers and I finally am putting it to use for myself. "Let's Make it Happen!"



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A few weeks ago I ran a huge relay race (19.8 miles for my portion) and it was so much harder than it should have been. I don't want to sound like I am tooting my own horn, but I run a lot. I was in tons of pain and completely exhausted at the end of the race, and knew the fix the problem, I needed to start with my weight. I was carrying around too much weight up and down these hills.

My most recent weight in, 1.5 weeks into the diet, lost 7 pounds, and I'm trying to lose 7 more by the time of my next event, the Virginia Tough Mudder.

  • 4hbnprog commented Oct 13th 2011:

    Awesome! I'm looking forward to the VA Tough Mudder mysef...as a spectator, this year.


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When I was 16, I weighed in at 231lbs. I'd had enough of being the fat girl in school and wanted to be the slightly less fat girl in high school.

So I went to the gym and lost 42lbs. This was a massive achievement for me. I originally went to the gym so I could escape family issues and smoke my lungs out in my car. Losing weight was a bonus. I didn't have to make much of an effort at that age.

I weighed myself at the end of 2010 - I was 217lbs. I felt absolute dread.. I was fat again :'(

All through 2011 I tried to lose the weight, gyming, exercise vids, Weight Watchers, but it was not shifting at all. I still ate ridiculous amounts of crap.

My bf recommended the book in October and we decided to do it together.. I stuck to it, he unfortunately didn't.

I have lost 14lbs in just over 2 months and starting to feel better about myself again. I feel better inside too and notice the difference in how I feel after my carb days - bloated and lumpy.

I think I can stick to this because its a change in lifestyle instead of just a change in the "diet" mindset!

Thanks Tim x


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Honestly, for me, it was pastry school. When I started that school I started trying a lot of different things from around the world that I had never imagined existed. Crème brûlée, crepes.... the world seemed to grow for me after realizing that I hadn't really experienced much when it came to desserts. I also started wondering how in the hell the French could eat this stuff and most of them stay so skinny.

Then it occurred to me, they don't eat it most of the time. They enjoy their simple small meals, glasses of wine, and have desserts once or twice a week. French bread, even though it bears the name of the people themselves, is eaten rarely. They changed the world with their foods, but were smart enough not the eat the bad ones nonstop. Unlike us Americans.

I went to college because I loved food, and now I not only love it, but understand it. And I understood that if I wanted to live long enough to visit France and see these things made by the masters themselves, I needed to be able to live that long. Spending every day surrounded by pastries and watching my classmates simply eat them and watch them gain a few pounds during the course of the school year was my Harajuku Moment.

  • LikkleNitty commented Dec 2nd 2011:

    mmmm pastry school.. that must be heaven and hell in one!

  • Charley commented Mar 7th 2012:

    Oh yes. If you have ever been to a french huge supermarket. The women that push their trolleys heaped with finest foods you can imagine are so petite.

    I - a tall "massive" german woman feel like an elephant among them.


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Several moments in a short period of time:

When I tried to fit into a chique outfit from my wardrobe to go out to a party before christmas. Desaster.

Then I found out that I had been wearing only all the loose fit/boyfriend cut jeans für a good while, and slighthly expansed into that shape O_o so I didnt fit in any of the normal jeans.

My favourite belt became too short. I got muffin tops above the trousers.

I couldnt close my skinny coat from the last winter.

This was a very loud "Stop, turn around" - moment for me.

Now I am back in "ok" measurements, but I'd adore myself with another at least 9kg, better 15kg minus.

181cm / was 91.6kg / now 84kg / 1st goal 80kg / 2nd goal 75kg / 3rd goal 69 kg = size 40 or below

5"11 / was 200 / now 187 / 1st goal 176 / 2nd 165 / 3rd 152 = size 10 or below

What are your plans to reward yourselves when on final goal? I'll have to go for a maaaajor shopping trip to some european capital.

  • bodenton commented Mar 7th 2012:

    Its knowing I'll look and feel more confident at a special party where I know people who haven't seen me for years will be in attendance. As I told my daughter - I couldn't bear the thought of people thinking how much weight I've put on or how much I've aged...I want to be happy not only with my size, but myself.....


South-Korea flag

It was during this past winter. I realized a. I was pushing a size 18 (I'm 5'2 btw) and b. I was hiding behind over sized scarves, even refusing to take them off indoors. Like people don't notice a huge scarf on a big gal? I knew it wouldn't be winter forever unless I moved to Alaska, so I decided to finally really go after a big change. I'm happy to say I'm now pushing a size 10 and lost about 24 total inches (width, not height!). This upcoming winter's scarves will be for warmth and style only, no camouflage!

  • Danielle Waldo commented Oct 7th 2012:

    Congrats! How long has this taken you? Your story is very encouraging. I am sort of at a stall right now.


Kenya flag

I think since I turned 30 (8 years ago!) I have just had one moment after another...

1. I got out of a loooonnnnggg and useless relationship....

2. Left my job and home and moved back home to Kenya where I had said that I always wanted to go back to.

3. Found and fell back in love with my childhood sweetheart and got engaged...

Then the moment came when I found the wedding dress that I wanted but they only went up to size 18.... and I was size 22? So I worked my butt off and just barely (and i mean barely) made it into the dress.... Wedding was 9 months ago... and a friend very politely told me to try it on again as she didn't want to mention that I had gained back all the weight??

So last Sat. I did... and of course.. it doesn't fit... now my goal is to get back into that dress... and get it modified.. Down and Shorter for new years eve...

  • Danielle Waldo commented Oct 7th 2012:

    Thanks for sharing your story. Congrats on your wedding and best of luck in your new journey.

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