I wish I could say that my story is fraught with devastation and numerous tragic situations which lead me to where I started my journey. This said my story is pretty simple and remarkably mundane – which is why I believe it will capture so many of you.
I had a very happy childhood, I was a sporty, active child who excelled at anything I put my hand to. As a teenager I competed nationally in many events and was part of the South African Water Ski-ing team. In my early twenties I continued my outdoorsy lifestyle and thus could maintain my weight along – side my unhealthy choices (meaning lots of drinking and partying).
It was only in my early thirties that my social behaviours caught up with my suddenly sedentary life. My career took over and with it, many business luncheons / dinners and far too much over indulgence.
The weight crept up little by little, a kilo here and a kilo there and before I knew it I was looking at the reflection of a woman I didn’t know (plus 20 odd kilo’s heavier). I was in an unhealthy space (both literally and figuratively). I hated having to put on the confident exterior others had come to know, when inside I was clawing at my own skin – desperate to climb out!
How I came to make the decision to start – I still don’t know – but the behavioural change was instant, once it was made! I browsed the web and came across Hilton Preen (my personal trainer and in my opinion life changer in Johannesburg), I booked in – showed up and never allowed myself a moments pity for what I had actively chosen to do to myself. I think that’s key in getting to your goals – knowing that you made all the bad choices to get you were you are, means you are also accountable and able to make all the good choices to get you out!!!!
I followed a strict regime of weight training three days a week and did spinning (my preferred choice of cardio due to the pumping music) 5 to 6 days a week. Food wise, I became a creature of habit – eating the same thing every day for five days a week. I initially started by consuming 1200 calories a day, but even with all the exercise mentioned above – nothing would budge!! It was then I decided to drop my caloric intake to 900 calories a day and boom – everything started shifting. (I need to be clear on a few things here – firstly dropping calories to this extent is not for everyone – I was heavily ridiculed for ‘starving ’myself, putting my body into negative metabolic range etc etc – this said, I believe it is very important to listen to your own body and not the stereotypical views of everyone else’s body – if it feels wrong – don’t do it !!!!) I was never hungry, never energy depleted and gave myself a cheat weekend – every weekend. Yip you heard right…….. CHEAT WEEKEND !!!!
I guess my greatest (and humblest) advise to anyone is – find balance. I know I like to be social and enjoy more than one glass of wine, thus I chose to find the balance from day one (be honest with yourself and the others who are trying to help you) I could not convince myself that I could go for weeks and months on end to ‘reward myself ‘– this I could never keep up and thus all my goals would become null and void. I think its crucial to make your weight loss journey constantly rewarding – not a constant punishment with a good star every now and again for great behaviour. I think it should become your lifestyle and that way you won’t ever go back to not recognising that woman / man in the mirror.
Use the brilliant platforms around you – Sleek Geek is a great one (especially if you have no support around you from your significant others). All us Sleeks have either been there before, are going through it now, and are constantly motivated from and by each other. This community is built on dedication and perseverance and that is exactly what you need within to get you to your goals !!!
Good luck to all you Sleek Geeks – Your and my journeys will continue to be great ones – if we simply decide to keep going!
SUBMIT YOURSTORY AND WIN R500 Wellness Warehouse Voucher
Candice wins a R500 voucher courtesy of our sponsor for the “YOU CAN live life well” series Wellness Warehouse to be spent on their online store with free delivery nationally.
I believe very strongly that ordinary every day people like you and I derive great inspiration from the achievements of people who seem similar to us. If they can do it.. damn.. so can I! Right?
So through this program we will continue to tell people’s personal stories.
I want to great an archive of hundreds of stories of people who have changed their lives while others believe they cannot.
Submit your story to firstname.lastname@example.org with the Subject line “You can live life well”
- Your story in your own words covering at least (How you got to a point of change, how you made the change, tips and advise for others)
- A selection of before and after photos
- As many words as you need to tell your story
In advance, we regret that not all stories may be published. Your story is as important as anyone’s story but we can only publish one a week and the editor will make decision on this.
If your story is published you will receive a R500 voucher to the Wellness Warehouse online store with free national delivery.