Category Archives: Health

My Fitness Journey: Month Two

1st July 2014

Last month I wrote a post about the beginning of my fitness journey, and now I’ve just passed the two month milestone I wanted to share my progress.

In short, it’s going pretty darn well! At the end of the two month mark my total losses are:
23 inches
I can’t quite believe I can make such a difference to my body in just eight weeks. I’ve lost four inches from my waist, four and a half from my hips, four from my chest – I’m really pleased to see it’s all coming off in proportion, so hopefully I’ll keep an hourglass figure as I lose size.
I’m still weight training three times a week (except for last week, which was, um, a bit slack…) but I’m not doing any cardio that goes beyond walking my dog. As I’m getting fitter and stronger I want to look at introducing more cardio, I’m just settling on what form at the moment – so if anyone has any suggestions about great cardio for beginners who are still finding their feet with fitness, please let me know!
In terms of diet, I’m definitely winning the war on portion control and making healthy choices. I had a ‘naughty’ meal last night because my boyfriend was away, which consisted of chicken, rice and blue cheese. If we rewound six months and I’d been in the same situation I probably would have ordered in a £25 Chinese feast, so it’s really exciting to see how far I’ve come without even really realising it.
Living healthily has been wonderful for my mental well-being as well, which I think we often overlook. Eating home-cooked meals, drinking enough water and moving my body more has had the best effect on my mood (which I’m sure my boyfriend would agree with – no more meltdowns in the gym because I can’t squat deep enough!) and I’m completely full of energy. I blitz through my to-do list every day and am getting so much done I’m always knackered by bed time, which means I’m sleeping like an absolute log for eight hours a night. Sleep is key!
So that’s it from me on the fitness front for now, I do want to start doing more fitness posts but I’m still learning so much about health and nutrition I want to educate myself a little more before I start blogging about it – soon, though!
For now, I want to leave you with a few motivations that have been really helping me stay on track:

My Fitness Journey (Part One)

28th May 2014

Two weeks ago today I was just getting ready to go out for a cream tea with my boyfriend when I sat on the sofa, burst into tears and told him I wanted to change the way I looked. I said I wasn’t happy being unfit, unhealthy and feeling like I was looking at the wrong body every time I looked in the mirror. He gave me a hug, listened to me vent and then we formed a plan.

It’s two weeks since I decided to change the way I live my life and I wanted to weigh in (ha, punny) with my progress, and how I’ve found my first fortnight.

In short, it’s already changed my life. I have double the energy I had before, I never find myself needing to take a nap because I’m so tired by 3.30pm, my skin is crystal clear, my hair is shiny, my nails are strong and I can already feel my body changing inside and out.

Before I started I always used to eat until I was stuffed; I think over the years I’d taught myself that stuffed meant satisfied and I never felt content unless I’d eaten so much I could barely move from the sofa for an hour. Now I’m learning to stop when I’m satisfied and get control of my portions – which has probably been the toughest thing to get my head around! I’ve been eating giant portions for years now, so when I see a normal portion on a plate my brain is all ‘wtf? Srsly bro?’ But I’m sticking to it and I’m already finding myself in shock when I think back to what I used to be able to eat.

Me and my boyfriend have fajita night every Friday. I have always, always eaten four fajitas without a second thought. Yeah I felt lethargic and sick afterwards but the fajita kit gives you eight fajitas and there are two of us so…I guess it made sense for me to eat half. Now I’m only eating three and even that felt too much yesterday so next week it’ll be two. In three weeks I’ll have halved the portion I need. I’m pretty impressed with myself.

I’ve worked my butt off and I’ve stuck to eating healthily religiously. I haven’t cheated once, I haven’t over-eaten at a single meal as I decided to be completely strict for the first two weeks, to give myself a bit of a detox. Now I’m learning to listen to my body and figure out what it needs, rather than what my brain wants, I know I’m on the right track.

And exercise has been a huge part of it! Since I stopped going to the gym when I first started university I’ve shied away from all forms of exercise, aside from the odd foray into yoga. I joined a gym a couple of years ago, went half-heartedly for a few months and then quit. Now, though? Things are very different.

My boyfriend converted our garage into a gym a few months ago and it’s packed full with gym-grade equipment. A dumbbell rack, a power cage and every snazzy attachment you can think of. I was too intimidated to use it before but my boyfriend spent a week running through everything with me and writing me programmes for different days and now I can’t get enough of it. I’m supposed to do three strength training sessions a week but I did four this week and I’m already thinking about squeezing another one in this weekend.

I weighed myself today, two weeks after I started, and I’m down 4lbs. Yeah part of me obviously wants to step on the scales and see myself down four stone instead (ha!) but crash dieting is not what I’m trying to do and I’m so pleased with my progress. I measured myself as well and I’ve lost four inches in the last two weeks. FOUR INCHES. I’m so proud of myself and already seeing results in such a huge motivation for me.

This is just the beginning of my fitness journey and I wanted to share every step of it with you – my crappy days, my milestone achievements, tips I learn along the way. So, I’ll be back with another update in two weeks, which will mark one month since I started!

Until then, happy lifting everyone!

My Own Body Inspiration

11th April 2014

When it comes to healthy eating and getting fit I think we all get a bit carried away when we picture our ‘ideal bodies’. I know once I get on Pinterest and start checking out Victoria’s Secret Angels I’m left a bit deflated because, in all honesty, I’m never going to have Candice Swanepoel’s legs. Feeling disappointed about my body before I’ve even started a fitness regime is definitely not a healthy mindset to have, so instead of looking at celebrity bodies that I’d love to have, I’ve started focusing on what I know my body can look like.

I’ve always been quite curvy, whether I was a size 12 at seventeen or the size 18 I am now, so aiming for a boyish, lithe figure is unrealistic and only sets myself up for disappointment. However, aiming for a toned, hourglass body is definitely something I can achieve, as it’s the body type I had a few years ago when I was fit and healthy. My legs have always been my least favourite feature – they’re short and have always been big, even when I was at my fittest and worked out five times a week they were big. But they were toned and strong and that’s something I’ve grown to love – though now there’s some fat to work off before any muscle tone makes an appearance!

What I’m trying to say is that we should be realistic when we’re imagining our ideal bodies. If you have an hourglass figure you’re probably never going to look like Cameron Diaz, likewise if you have a banana body type (straight up and down) it’s unlikely you’ll end up with Kardashian curves – it doesn’t make you any less beautiful but I think embracing your natural body shape is important, and it keeps your goals realistic and stops you setting yourself up to feel like a failure. 

I do have a folder on my computer of ‘body inspiration’ pictures but I’m also trying to look at my own body as inspiration. I’ve dug out some photos of myself from a time when I was very fit and healthy and I was surprised by how much I love the figure I had back then – all I remember about my body from that age was worrying that I was ‘fat’, which makes me so sad now, because looking back I think my body looked great and, man, I’d love to have the stomach I had in the bikini picture at the end of this post!

My body looked like that a few years ago, so I know obtaining that body shape is a realistic measure of what I can look like again; I just need to put a whole lot of elbow grease in and work hard, which I’m excited to do.

Plus, we need to keep in mind that photos of our own bodies haven’t been airbrushed to death!

Do any of you look at old pictures of yourself for inspiration? What do you think of using yourself as inspiration, rather than celebrities?

My new body inspiration? Myself, at age 20!