What a year it has been!
I started out wanting change, I wanted to cure my problem periods, which were causing extreme pain and vomiting. A homeopath visit was the catalyst and here I am a year later, over approx a stone and a half lighter, (I have stopped weighing myself, all I know is I am ten stone something and a healthy BMI) healthier and somewhat fitter, a size 8/10, more toned and more muscular.
In the past year, I have drastically limited my sugar and gluten intake, cut out a lot of soya and dairy and become more conscious about how food affects my health.
I am no fitness or health guru, there are times I just have to have a slice of cake or bite into some soft doughy warm bread. The difference is that these items are no longer part of my daily life.
The thinking behind sugar is that sugar can cause inflammation in some people, and conditions which affect the womb like Adenomyosis (which is what I have) are exacerbated by sugar. Gluten as well is thought to exacerbate the condition and soya and dairy can put the hormones out of sync, which is not what you need when you have hormone problems.
I have also found my way back to the gym after a long hiatus of road running.
The gym has been a beautiful revelation, forgot how much I loved it. I regularly take boxing, spinning, Armageddon, body pump and kettle bell class and even a bit of yoga for a laugh. I'm not laughing but I am sure the rest of the class are laughing at my pathetic efforts!
Sugar was a b*tch to give up, comparable to when I gave up smoking many years ago. I am pleased to say a year later, the cravings have stopped, I no longer see a large Victoria sponge swimming in front of my eyes when I wake up, nor do the children I teach morph into strawberry jam donuts, nor do my fingers resemble chocolate fingers. I am no longer caught within the evil grips of sugar. I do not have it in my tea, my coffee, cereal or smoothies. In fact not only do I not have sugar I have no sugar substitutes either, no honey, stevia, artificial sugar, the reason behind this was to wean myself off the sweetness, rather than replacing it with something else sweet. It was important I became used to food without loading it with sugar.
Eliminating a lot of sugar has made a massive difference to my taste buds. I now like stronger savoury flavours, I have become used to lack of sweetness. I no longer need sugar to make my life sweet x
No regrets, no regrets, no regrets, gaining control of my weight and health has been revolutionary for me and I feel better physically but best of all emotionally, more energy, more confidence, better self esteem.
I love fitting into all my clothes, no longer crying because nothing fits, no longer worrying about my belly fighting to get out of my trousers. No longer harbouring a wardrobe full of ill fitting outfits or despising shopping because I hated the way everything looked on me. No more worrying about what I am going to wear to an event. I can literally walk up to my wardrobe twenty minutes before I go out, pick out anything and know I will look decent.
This picture below was a few years ago, it was a stinking hot day. I was running a 5k and although embarrassed to take my top off, in the end the heat won and I ran most of the race in my bra top! I lost my inhibitions but I was not happy with the way I looked.
The picture below I took when I stopped off for a toilet break during a 5 mile run a couple of months back. I had dreamt of the day for many a year, when I would be confident enough to whip off a top mid run and run shamelessly down the street and let it all hang out, with no embarrassment.
My belly has been a revelation, cutting back sugar has had a big impact on my stomach fat and I have lost a good few inches from there. In fact cutting out sugar cut down my body fat everywhere, another place the fat has stripped from has been my arms. Yes exercise has also played a major part, but I am no stranger to exercise and it was not until I mixed exercise with cutting down on sugar did I see massive changes.
I cannot lie I do come from a family who are naturally muscular, but even I have been taken aback at the muscle that has been hiding under the fat. I did not think I had much of the muscular gene, but low and beyond it looks like I do, now to work on my tummy!
There are some disadvantages to being slimmer:
*Having to get rid of clothes you like.
*Noticing your bed springs, where as before the little cushion of fat
you had softened them, time for a new mattress!
*Having your other half playfully pick you up, that has never
happened in our relationship before. (Put me down, I am not a
*Having to replace you lingerie collection, boo, (although I have a
nice new collection now)
*People trying to push you around on the tube cause you're smaller,
but little do they know your may be smaller but you're stronger
* Feeling your bum bones when you sit on a hard surface!
*No longer being bigger than the young people you teach, so they
think they can try it on even more than usual!
I have a way to go, to continue to work towards sorting out my health issues and gaining the body I have always wanted. I feel close, sticking to something for a year is no joke, but I am cool with it, because it was never meant to be for a year, it was meant to be forever. I have seen the benefits and I am not going back. I am continuing to move forward, continuing to add even more changes to my life that will help to keep me fit and healthy.
My periods are not perfect, but they are better than they were, and I dread to think what they would be like now, if I had not made these changes. When I started this journey, weight-loss was not on my mind, I just wanted to become fit and healthy and eliminate some of my health issues. The journey is not over, the journey is not easy, but I am so glad I started. Though I am pleased to report the excruciating cramps and pain I suffered a year ago are 80/90 percent better. Now to just get rid of the vomiting. Fingers crossed improvements will continue to be made.
Next phase, sculpting, I want my body to be tight and firm, no wobbles, maybe not a six pack but at least a 2. I want to be strong and fit, knocking out sit ups, press ups and the plank and dreaded burpees which I have yet to master, I look like an f**ked up frog when I attempt them.
I look back at my old pictures and I am proud of the person I was, the girl who kept going, kept running, kept exercising kept trying, even when she did not get the results she wanted.
That girl could run the legs off the girl I am now. The monthly vomiting has put paid to any serious running training.
Here are some pictures of my progress. and my past.
This first picture I swear I must be a size 16, this picture must be at least ten years old. This was really the start of my up and down struggles with weight!
My arms have completely changed!
Picture from a 10k run, I was running well back then, running may not have got me the body I wanted but it was therapeutic, fun and made me fit as hell.
The picture below is of a 5k Race For Life, which was the day of my fastest 5k, I was the first black girl to cross the line, yes, yes. I must say though a girl dressed as a nun crossed the line first.
The picture below really shows how my body has changed and how much fat I have trimmed off!
Thanks to the other half, for taking pictures such as the one below and encouraging me to be confident in my body regardless of size. We always have a lot of fun doing photo shoots, even when I was not happy about the way I looked, he encouraged me to embrace my body and be proud.
The picture below you can see how I carry excess weight around my middle, I thought we were destined to be friends for ever, little did I know....
I love hosting and performing and never let anything get in the way of that, but I can't lie it's nice to pop into the wardrobe and have a great choice of clothes, all of which I know are going to fit. My confidence as a performer has also risen. I was a bit of a beast before, now well, what can I say, the stage is not safe when I am on it.
I may have been bigger but I could run, the picture below is of me just before I ran my fastest half marathon time.
Here is what I look like now...
In celebration of my achievement other half treated me to some new clothes and a photoshoot to celebrate my new body.
I have dropped a few more pounds, tightened and toned up even more since the pictures above. Below are pictures from my last photo shoot.
|The picture below is of carnival this year, finally confident about my stomach, cannot remember the last time I wore a crop top in public, times have changed.|
I am just about to host a poetry night, and am pleased with my outfit, feeling confident and ready for a good show.
Below just a random picture to chart my progress. Thanks to the other half for all the lovely gym gear he has bought for me. I am no longer hiding behind dark colours.
I ran it in aid of a very special little boy feel free to sponsor me, it's not too late https://www.justgiving.com/hendrixswishtoexceedlimitations/?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=fundraisingpage&utm_content=HendrixsWishToExceedLimitations&utm_
The before pictures contain some which were a good number of years ago and I do believe in some of them I am a size 16.
I am glad all my hard work is paying off, health and fitness wise. The weight loss started off as a positive unexpected but wanted side effect and I ran with it. Finally my weight was going in the right direction, if only I had known years before that all I had to do was completely change the way I was eating, maybe I never would've run the London marathon twice lol x
To anyone out there who is struggling, I promise if you make the changes, impressive things will start to happen, you will see changes in your self emotionally and physically that you probably did not think were possible. No matter what life throws in your way, get your head down, keep trying, keep fighting, keep kicking back and you will achieve xx
If you need a little motivation or group support to help you on your journey, then come over to the Facebook group FiT FabulouS AnD Fierce, where there are a whole heap of us trying hard to better our lives, through exercise and healthy eating.