My son was born in Jan 2012 and rather than lose “the baby weight” I just obliviously, continued to put weight on
On my 21st birthday, (April 2013) I weighed just over 14stone which for my 5ft 2” frame puts my BMI at 36.6 and firmly classed me as clinically obese. At the time I definitely did not feel that way and I didn’t notice how big I had gotten, I wasn’t very active (obviously) and I had no reason to start doing anything so I was living a sedentary lifestyle and eating rubbish all day long! Although I didn’t notice my own size, when I look back I remember how out of breath I got just walking to the fridge or up a flight of stairs but that was just my normal! Here I am on my 21st, weighing in at just under 14 stone (196 lbs).
I went on holiday and took pictures as normal – not appreciating that I was still slowly putting on weight, I was enjoying life without realising how limited I actually was!
But then Christmas 2013 rolled around and I did what I usually did and stuffed my face, ate, drank and was merry! Two days later I saw these pictures can been taken when I was stuffing my face with chocolate and cake and that’s when I was literally disgusted with myself – not just with the way I looked but the attitude towards food was so unhealthy. This was my rock bottom…it still hurts to look back on the way I viewed myself, food and my lifestyle and that it took me two years to realise this was NOT OKAY.
Just to put this into perspective, these pictures were taken less than 5 minutes apart and from 1-3 I ate everything I was holding which is about 15 servings of chocolate. The third photo is me eating a giant chocolate Hershey’s kiss in one go, if that isn’t scary I don’t know what is!
I Started Netball January 2014 – Start Weight = 14 stone 6lbs
This was the point I knew I had to make a change and as someone who played netball in high school I figured I would try and give this a go again because I knew I needed to be held accountable. So I got in contact in the new year. This was my start point at a weight of 14 stone and 6 lbs (202 lbs).
I found it really hard and the first training session almost killed me, I could barely walk the mile home and I couldn’t get out of bed the next day. I kept going back once a week but my competitive nature kicked in and I didn’t want to let them down on the court so I knew I needed more fitness so I decidede to take up running to compliment the netball. By this point I lost 6lbs but it took me 4 months because I didn’t want to change my diet much and I was only training once per week.
I Started running in April 2014 – Weight 14 Stone
I found I really enjoyed running and this definitely kick started my weight loss and meant that I lost around 16 lbs in almost two months. I would run 4-5 times per week, only 1-2 miles at a time and sometimes walking but I carried on going and this is where I encountered my next challenge! Did I mention I was also a smoker? Yup, add that to the mix and I had a real trouble with breathing and running (obviously) so I had a decision to make.
May 2014 – 12 Stone 12 lbs – Quit Smoking
Feeling very encouraged through netball, running and my weight loss I was feeling a little more comfortable in myself although I knew I had a long way to go. I decided that the only way I was going to be able to push on and progress was to quit smoking. So I did.
Taking the plunge and quitting smoking cold turkey meant that my running really got going because I substituted smoking for running and that meant doing it A LOT! I saw in some amazing sunrises, sunsets, stormy weather and brilliant sunshine!
June 2014 – 12 Stone 4lbs
With my fitness improving and my new found love of running, I managed to get to play the last few games of the summer league and rekindled my love of matches too!
Since there was no stopping me and my weight loss was going well, I was continuing without cigarettes and I was running regularly, I set myself the target of doing two half marathons in two weeks – which I did not realise at the time was going to hurt (A LOT!).
After a lot of research, I realised that I would need to do more than running to deal with the stress of running those distances on my body, especially when I was still 3 stone (42 lbs) overweight. I then started incorporating strength and bodyweight exercises and I invested in some dumbbells as well which helped me to avoid injury while I increased my running distances.
July 2014 – 12 stone
September 2014 – My 1st Half Marathon – 11 stone 8lbs (162lbs)
The time came for my 1st Half marathon on the 20th September 2014 and I struggled, a LOT! I slowly wobbled my way around the course to finish in a time of 2:36:05 which I was proud of because I almost quit a million times in my head! I couldn’t walk properly for 3 days after this and I was really dreading the next one! On the plus side my weight was slowly and steadily coming off!
October 2014 – 2nd Half Marathon – 11 Stone 7 lbs (161lbs)
Two weeks later it was time for the River Thames Half Marathon in Walton-on-Thames and I was still sore from the last one! I was a bit disappointed when I came in at a time of 2:40:20 but I had definitely enjoyed myself much more on this one and it made me want to do more events! (plus it wasn’t as hilly, so it was a bonus!) – Look at my smiley face at the finish line!
After this the winter really started rolling in towards the end of October and it made running a lot more difficult! Because I didn’t want to miss out on fitness in the winter months I invested in a home elliptical machine so I could work out without freezing to death (and subsequently watching TV! – some things never change!)
Towards the end of October I also started to focus on my eating and aimed to deal with my unhealthy attitude towards food! Something that has been the hardest part of my journey to date! I tried to focus on portion sizes first because I was eating several times the normal serving size and I was definitely rewarded though because I lost some more weight and I started to notice my body toning up and I lost some inches around the waist and in my arms!
November 2014 – 11 Stone 3 Lbs (157 lbs)
Here I am getting ready for a night out and it was one of the first times I felt comfortable buying a dress “off the rack” which ladies will know is an achievement!
December 2014 – 1 year on! – 10 Stone 9 lbs (149 Lbs)
I was really apprehensive about another Christmas but knew I had come a long way since the last one and the horrendous photos! I think I overcompensated a bit because on Christmas Day 2014 I went for a run! I was a little tipsy on Bellini’s (haha look at my tipsy face) but I still did a 5k in remembrance of the previous year and how horrible I had felt seeing myself and how far I had come now! I felt great and although I was a bit more mindful of what I ate, I didn’t feel too restricted and I enjoyed myself which is what I was worried about!
January 2015 – 10 Stone 6lbs – New Year, New Me
I decided in the new year that I would focus even more on my running and so I signed up to a series of 10k events and tried to run as much as possible. The weight was coming off nicely and I started adding more fruit and vegetables to my diet and focusing on the types of food I was eating. I also started the tradition of running on New Years Day, which is so much fun and I try to see the first sunrise of the year now!
February 2015 – 10 Stone 2lbs
I continued playing netball throughout the winter season (here we are complete with our new fancy kit dresses too!) and it definitely motivated me to keep going and help me accountable. I wanted to be the best I could be and not let my teamies down!
March 2015 – 10 Stone
I wanted another chance at the River Thames Half Marathon so I re-entered for the spring event and smashed it! I managed a P.B (that I have still yet to beat a year later) of 1:57:20 for this distance and exceeded all expectations in spite of the rainy weather too!
This was a month of achievements because I finally managed to break the 10 stone barrier that I had been struggling with for ages! I had plateaued and couldn’t get below 10 stone but the end of March saw me pull out my favorite dress as a newly 9 stone 13!!!
Of course I carried on with netball too and participated in matches and a tournament this month too!
May 2015 – 9 Stone 9lbs
With the netball season over for a month or so, running came to the forefront and I completed a range of 10k and 5k events and loved every second of them!!
June 2015 – 9 Stone 5lbs (131 lbs) – 5 Stone (70lbs) Lost!!
My dad and I decided to do a lot of runs together and we were well underway here! 17th June 2015 saw me reach my target of losing 5 stone and even though it was a year and a half in the making I was so surprised I had even gotten there!
17th June 2015 – 9 Stone 5lbs!!
July 2015 – 9 Stone 3lbs
Even though I hit the 5 stone milestoneI knew that I still had a little left to lose to reach my ideal BMR and my ultimate goal was 9 Stone. Although if I am totally honest I was much happier, healthier and fitter from about 10 stone so I didn’t feel as much pressure or push myself too hard in the coming months. I carried on with running from event to event and enjoying every minute!
August 2015 – 9 Stone – Target Reached!!
I was ecstatic to reach my goal and I honestly didn’t think that I would! I feel more confident in myself and I enjoyed having fun and playing on the beach. I stopped aiming to lose weight and just enjoyed my new lease on life while we were on holiday and I work to maintain my optimum weight and enjoy my fitness lifestyle! I had come a long way from Christmas 2013!!
It’s important to note that I still love my food and honestly I fall off the food wagon a LOT, but I always get back on because now I know what it is like to be healthy! I definitely have a healthier mentality to food and working out but I still have to deal with some of the struggles! Like when I had my injury in 2016.
I have other fitness goals now and they are how I keep myself motivated, but in all honesty, I lost over 5 stone, regained my life, confidence and have become a better parent because of it so I think I will be ok and I can handle anything! Weight loss really taught me a lot and I am proud that I went through the journey!
Update: I wanted to check in and let you know that my maintenance is still going strong and I am keeping it up.
October 2016 – 9 Stone – Keeping it off!
Check out some of my weight loss food hacks that I live by and helped me shift all this weight, hopefully they can help you too! Also, here’s some help to Kickstart your weight loss.
Check out healthy recipes in the Clean Eating Index
For a more in-depth look at my routine and how I felt about the whole weight loss process check out my Interview with Everyday Health