For as long as I can remember, I’ve battled with my weight. In my 20s I finally decided that I would make peace with my weight and accept myself the way I was. I used to go to the gym regularly but I knew food was my problem. My whole family are foodies…and not just my immediate family but my extended family as well. 4 years ago however, right after I had S, I started putting on a lot of weight. I was comfort eating and truth be told, I was comfort drinking too. A glass (or three!) of wine at the end of almost every day, once S was asleep, numbed all feelings and emotions I was going through. By the time I moved back to London in June 2013, I was at my heaviest.
Let’s just say life took its toll and it took me over 2 years to bounce back and start doing something about it. I don’t know what shifted but something in December of last year did and from the 1st of January 2016 I felt like a new person. And thats when the change began. Many people have asked me recently how I managed to lose weight or what skin care I’m using. It’s really no secret and I’m happy to share….
1. The desire to change needs to come from within. No one can make you lose weight or be happy unless you want to. We all have different motivators. Dig deep and figure out what your motivator is. It could be seeing someone you love fall ill or your own health declining. It could be to get the attention of someone you like (listen, no judgement here!) Whatever it is, use it. Use it to inspire yourself and drive yourself to be the best version of you.
2. Download “My fitness pal” – I honestly believe this app changed my life. It made me so conscious of everything I put in my mouth. It’s a free app where you enter all your daily calories. It’s really easy to use and in the UK, most supermarket/restaurant items are on the apps database. Most actions take only 21 days to become a habit…this one probably only takes 2 weeks. Before you know it, entering your meals becomes a habit. And the best thing about the app (and weight loss) is NO deprivation. As I mentioned before, I’m a foodie and partial to a glass of wine. I wanted to be able to lose the weight without a) starving myself b) depriving myself of some Galaxy Smooth Milk Chocolate (YUM!) c) giving up alcohol – with this app it’s totally doable. I can’t recommend it enough.
3. Go easy on yourself…but be honest! If you lie, you’re only lying to yourself. We all have bad days, days we scoff chocolate or chips…nights we go out and have one too many. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking “Well I’ve buggered that up so I may as well eat what I want…” NO!! Take each day as a new day. Just because you fell off the wagon for one day, that doesn’t mean you can’t get right back on it! And celebrate your losses…and the weeks you don’t lose any weight, celebrate that week as well. And even when self doubt creeps in, speak to yourself as you would a friend…be kind to yourself…be kind to your body…remember, tomorrow is another day.
4. Find some inspiration. Unlike your motivator which is your reason for wanting to be a better you, your inspiration is something that keeps you going. When I first started going to the gym, I used to listen to Brooke Castillo’s podcast. They were and still are, amazing! Every episode provided me with a huge amount of inspiration. Till date, if I’m having a bad day/week, I’ll listen to a few episodes and I feel uplifted. Funnily enough Brooke talks a lot about weight loss but I don’t actually feel like her methods would work for me. Everything else she says though just blows me away!
5. Be conscious and present, especially when exercising. To me this means my phone and the gym don’t meet. When I’m at the gym, I’m fully at the gym, my phone stays in the locker. I do watch TV, it makes the time go by quicker but I’m not really distracted by it if that makes sense.
6. Invest in a little me time and make a change. This could be getting your hair cut differently, changing the colour, adding a fringe, etc. A new change (you like) only adds to your confidence.
7. Visualise! Think about where you want to be and talk about it. Find a friend, a parent, a sibling…Someone you can freely talk to about your goals. Make sure this person is encouraging and inspires you to keep going.
8. Last but not least, remember, it’s not about the weight. I’m not about to say it’s what’s on the inside that counts because while that’s true, the outside does play a role in how we feel on the inside. Unfortunately we, especially women, judge ourselves quite harshly AND often equate how amazing we are with how we look. A big part of this year has been to gain back my confidence and while working on the outside has most definitely helped with that, working on the inside has been equally important as well.
I turn 33 tomorrow and I have to say, I’ve never felt better!! Working on yourself…physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally is not easy…but it’s totally worth it!!