A Positively Inspiring Chat with Ruby

A Positively Inspiring Chat with Ruby



If you don’t recognize the name Ruby Gettinger you may not be alone, but after watching just one episode of Ruby on the Style Network (Sundays, 8 p.m. ET) you’ll feel like you’ve known her for years. Unlike other weight-centric reality shows that feature competition, round-the-clock workouts and elimination ceremonies, Ruby follows its namesake star on her quest to shed hundreds of pounds on her own. NeverSayDiet chatted with Ruby, who talked about her journey so far, how she manages to keep a positive outlook and why she feels so connected to the people who watch her show.

NeverSayDiet: Season 1 of Ruby is now out on DVD. What made you decide to document your weight-loss journey on national television when there is so much scrutiny about people’s weight in day-to-day life?

Ruby: On my show I wanted to be the guinea pig. I want to know why there are so many people out there suffering from obesity. There is such a big market out there, and people are making millions of dollars from diet products, but people are still getting bigger. There’s a big disconnect somewhere. I say that I’m on a journey and people are following along with my show.  

NSD: You’ve lost over 100 pounds since your journey began. How were you able to drop the weight and how are you continuing to lose the pounds?

Ruby: The thing that worked for me was the Ourlife Health program. I had to go cold turkey and eat nothing but healthy food. I was mad and I was pouting. It took me six months; it was like a rehab program for eating. But the hard way is the only way to achieve your goals.

Food journaling really helped me, too. We have the Internet now and can find the calories for everything. Turn the package over and find out the serving size because it will shock you. If you keep up with it you’re not going to fail. Even people that aren’t dieting will start [looking at serving size] because you’re cautious about what you’re eating.  

I’m restricted to 1,700 calories a day and some restaurant meals are a week’s worth of calories!   Even [restaurant] salads are bad. People think, “Oh, salads are good for me,” but some are 1,500 calories by the time you add everything in it. If I’m going to eat that many calories just give me some chocolate!

NSD: In Season 2 of Ruby we’ll get to see you leave your hometown of Savannah, GA, and meet people from all over the country. What has it been like connecting with your fans?

Ruby: I love connecting with the fans face to face. I get to hug their necks and kiss their faces.   It’s unbelievable how sweet everyone is. I never knew how lonely some people are. They don’t have anyone to walk with. A lot of people made themselves shut-ins because people didn’t accept them. They are now finding other people to be accountable to and it’s changing their lives.

People are so sweet and it’s just amazing.  Even thin people who used to think, “Why doesn’t she just go on a diet?” are saying they understand my journey and are learning that it’s not that easy.  

NSD: Why do you think fans feel so connected with you?

Ruby: I think people share their stories with me because I share with them. I am so open with my journey. People walk in my shoes. They hear me and they can relate to me and I can relate to them. We share our stories together.  

When I started this thing it was about trying to find out the truth. People are now actually making changes with me. People email me or send me videos and tell me the addictions they’re dealing with. People tell me they’re losing 50 pounds, 80 pounds and sharing it with me.

NSD: Any stories in particular that have impacted you?

Ruby: In Philadelphia a young girl told me she wanted to commit suicide. She said she saw the show and decided not to do it, because she wanted to be happy like me. I told her, “Whatever you have to do [to lose weight], you have to do it.” This is what happens to kids, because they’re getting so verbally abused at school they can’t handle it.

Somewhere down the road of life someone always tells us something negative. We might not remember when, but someone tells you can’t do something and you think they’re right, but it’s bull. You can cross over it.

NSD: You’re such a positive person despite your struggle. How do you manage to keep a smile on your face even on the hardest days?

Ruby: I’ve always been a happy person. Even at 716 pounds I was happy. I love life and I love to laugh. When I start feeling down or feel like I can’t make it, I tell myself, “No. You’re not going to do this.” Sometimes I scream at myself, “Shut up!” because if I go [to a negative place] I’m never going to get to my destination.

Whatever your passion is and whatever burns inside your soul that is your purpose and your destiny. You have to do it or you’ll never be happy. Do whatever it takes to get it. It’s not worth living your life if you’re not doing what you’re passionate about.

Ruby airs on the Style Network Sunday nights at 8 p.m.

—Pat Sandora


LifeStyle Change and 2 Cinnamon Melts, Please

At least several times a day something reminds me that I have about 50 or more unwanted pounds hanging on my rather short frame. I am glad I have a shape but it still could stand to lose about 50 pounds. At course, right about now, I would accept a just a swift 20 pound drop as long as I didn’t have to be sick or anxious to make it happen. It isn’t that I don’t have a clue about what to do. I have some great ideas and then I get even better ideas… Like today; when I decided to go to McDonalds for a “healthy” cheap dinner, not because I don’t have food available at home; but just because I didn’t feel like cooking. On my last trip to the grocery store I bought some steamed, seasoned vegetables, some new Bertolli’s dinners that look very tasty and some nice boneless, tender chicken cutlets. But who wants that when you can have chicken nuggets. Yeah, that’s it and I got the kids meal because that will be less fries. Then when I got to the drive thru this strange voice also told the cashier to add 2 cinnamon melts to that order. So, who is the other one for; me of course. I was supposed to wait until tomorrow to eat it. Fat Chance, I ate it just before I started typing this. Now my only consolation is that I have only had one soda today and quite a few glasses of water. Maybe that will help to weigh out the sugar rush I feel right now. Well, it is almost time for bed so now I get a chance to go to sleep on my full stomach of sugar and starch and start over again with my lifestyle change when I get up in the morning. I keep telling myself that changing my eating habits is not a diet but a lifestyle change. I just haven’t started to believe what I say, yet. I will be triumphant. This does not have to be so hard to do. I want to be 2 sizes smaller by February and down 40-50  pounds by July 2008. Anyone on the this weight loss journey with me let me know. My goal is to be Living Life like I see it in my head by August of 2008 and to do that I need to drop at least 40 pounds. I can do this and I am starting again, tomorrow. BTW don’t foget to turn back your clocks one hour.

I know I shouldn’t but…

In some ways I feel like I have had a really rough week. Already, you might ask. Yes, already. Plus, it is one of my coworkers’ birthday. So there is no way that I could not pitch in on the gourmet pizza and fresh Italian Cream Cake that we were having delivered for her birthday. I saved gas by not having to get something for lunch and since I conveniently woke up late and forgot to pack my own lunch; this just solved everything. At the moment that I placed that super moist cream cake to my lips; the fifty or so extra pounds I have gained over the last 6 or 7 years ceased to exist, at least for a little while. Then the cake was gone and reality was back. I still need to call the “weight loss place” and have them put my file back into active status; but not just yet…