Sometimes I think to lose weight you have to really hate yourself. Especially if you are a foodie like me. You have to look in the mirror and cringe and think – oh crap, I better do something about this. I better get my balance back again. Losing the balance is SO easy and losing weight is so hard. It takes so much discipline. It takes consistent hard work. You have to want it. Not just a little bit, you have to want it a lot.
For those of you who have followed my blog for a while, you will remember that back in January I did want it a lot. I worked hard and I got results. I had incredible support from the crew at David Lloyd and I loved the journey.
Whilst my physical weight has dipped and my muscle content has increased, I have changed in other ways mentally.
Some weeks I have been so focused and I have got results quickly. Then other weeks life has got in the way. Hormones, sickness, work commitments, taking time to slow down and cherish my little babes. Rather than beating myself up, I have cut myself some slack and given myself a pat on the back. Some weeks I have indulged. Because sometimes I love a bottle (s) of champagne or a cheeseburger more than my weight goals. Sometimes I love carbs, cheese and chocolate more than I hate myself. And that is ok.
The thing is, I feel strong. I’ve stripped down to my underwear on social media several times this year, be it on Insta stories or on vlog and blog posts. I am now more body confident than I have ever been, even if I am not ‘BMI perfect’.
Why should I ever beat myself up? I have been working really hard to get stronger. I can lift heavy weights in the gym. I’ve ran a marathon and several half marathons. I recently ran a 10K trail run and got a fantastic time. I was flying round and I didn’t stop. I felt really proud of myself.
My hubs actually got a bit of a shock when he saw me pressing over 100K in leg weights and 25K each side on my shoulders. I am exactly what the trending # for 2017 says. Strong not skinny. But that’s my opinion. Some people will look at me and think I’m not strong. Body builders will think 100K legs is no big deal. Some might look at me and think I am slim, some will think I am fat, some won’t really care or even think about it. But guess what? I no longer care what other’s think. And neither should you.
Right now, I want to continue to get stronger and leaner. I want to keep my new found body confidence and I want to have fun. I want to help encourage others who are lacking in confidence. I want to change the mentality that fitness has to be a chore.
But what about what the government think? Personally, I think I work way too hard to deserve being branded by the NHS as ‘fat and unhealthy’. I may have a bit of extra weight to shift according to BMI but in terms of health, I have genuinely, hand on heart never felt better. Plus, a pair of tight jeans and heels can do wonders for sucking in all the damage those kiddie winkles did to those abs. I would even do it all again, if we have an accident 3rd baby.
I would do it all again because these little humans are worth every single stretch mark and every single pound of weight gained.
According to BMI, I would be a healthy weight at 7 and a half stone. To give you an idea of how this would look, my talented bestie designed an image of me on a size 0 catwalk frame (for my hen in 2011).
Personally, I don’t think the skinny catwalk look suits me. Yes, I always had a super slim frame growing up (pre puberty), and the physical signs of this remain there in my rather boney pianist fingers, arms and the frame of my shoulders.
But I have gained hips and curves and a bust that wants to go nowhere. Note – if your bust is here to stay then it could mean that it is mainly glandular over fat. I learnt this from the Brooks running bra team who are highly trained in breast tissue. Whilst sometimes I get frustrated with being top heavy (mainly because most of the bra’s and bikinis I love are off limits), part of me has accepted that it’s just the way I am made.
For me to become skinny again and get into some of the stunning size 0 designer outfits I genuinely love, it would mean a drastic dip in calories which would make me miserable. I understand that some girls are not naturally this way and work very hard to get the stereotypical catwalk look. But they want it enough. That is their choice. Whilst many say that nothing tastes as good as skinny feels, my opinion is that they are eating in the wrong restaurants.
My message to you is PLEASE do not be intimated by the BMI figures. BMI does not distinguish between muscle and fat. Nor can it tell a person how healthy they are and when I say healthy I mean the body and mind. Both are so connected and both equally important.
Follow your gut feeling on that one (literally and spiritually). Are you keeping active and getting a good sleep at night? Are you fuelling your body with good food that gives you a boost? Are you allowing time to treat yourself with food and drink you love? Or are you depriving yourself to the point you feel miserable?
A good diet, a balance of food and regular physical activity that you enjoy are all so important. Equally important for our wellness levels is time to let the hair down and enjoy life, whichever way you desire. Good food and fizz make me smile.
Whilst I am wary of the scales, I like to do a body scan on the boditrax machine every few weeks. It tells me important things such as my hydration levels, my visceral fat levels and muscle content.
I prefer not to weight myself weekly as it can get a little obsessive. I know when I have had a good week, because I can feel it in my clothes. I remind myself with fat loss and muscle gain that slow and steady is always the best way.
Back off BMI, be comfortable in your own skin. Comfortable for me means strong. Physically and mentally.