This post originally appeared as a #transformationtuesday on my Instagram, and was spurred on by a couple of things. Firstly, this photo on the left flashing up on Facebook memories last weekend, and secondly having conversations with a couple of clients over the past week who have been feeling frustrated they’re not seeing weight loss results as quickly as they would like.
There is 6 years difference between these two photos. I may have transformed my body (and my health) but it most certainly didn’t happen in a matter of weeks. Nor was it a journey of constant and consistent progress – I’ve lost weight, gained weight, felt great, felt awful, felt in control and felt utterly lost – all in the space of these 6 years.
I had to get to grips with what worked for me and tried so many things along the way – extreme diets, extreme exercise routines, cutting out carbs, low fat, high fat, no cardio, only cardio… I really have been through so many phases in this weight loss journey to where I am now. I felt like giving up a lot, and sometimes I did (my ED would just creep up on me again from time to time and encourage me to binge or starve, or both) but something always kept me coming back to trying to treat my body right. I don’t force myself to work out or eat healthily, I do it because I love it and I feel great as a result. I love training. I love challenging my body. I love teaching and training others to do the same. If there are days I don’t feel like it, I don’t. Sometimes I rage on some hill sprints and sometimes I do reformer pilates. Just like sometimes I’ll eat white fish and greens for dinner and sometimes I’ll go to a restaurant and have three courses. Food isn’t “good” or “bad” to me – it’s fuel for my body and what it can do.
I also wanted to post this as a reminder to anyone who knows me that getting to the point (and indeed body) I am at now was by no means a given. People often assume that as a Personal Trainer or Fitness Instructor I must have been born an athlete, or be able to eat what I want, or not have to train too hard. So many times I’ve heard from clients, class members or even online followers that this “must be easy for you”, or presume that I have the metabolism of a racehorse, or the motivation of an ironman triathlete. People are often shocked when they see or hear my weight loss story. I think honesty is so important, and wanted to make sure that anyone currently struggling with their journey or their willpower knows that it’s okay to find things difficult sometimes. It’s normal to actually not want to workout some days, and it is most definitely okay to just admit sometimes that you want pizza or a doughnut. Me too! Progress is very seldom a straight or easy road, but as long as your direction is forward, no matter how slowly, then you will continue on the path to reach your goals. It didn’t happen overnight for me and I’m sorry to say it won’t for you either. There will be times when you feel like giving up. There will be times when you stray so far from the path you’ll wonder if you might ever make it back. But as someone who has quite literally been there and done that then please trust me. You will.
So thank you Facebook memories for reminding me how far I’ve come on this journey to my own personal fitness and weight loss, and I hope this serves as a little motivation to anyone currently on their own journey. You may not be exactly where you want to be and change may not be happening as fast as you’d like, but if you’re eating to nourish your body, moving it as often as possible and focussing on what you can do rather than how much you weigh then trust me – you’re getting closer to your goals every single day.