Tarien Fourie is a Sleekgeek who lives in Germiston Johannesburg. She has lost 45 kgs dropping from 116 to 71kgs! 44% to 17% body fat and size 44 pants to size 36! She achieved that between September 2014 and May 2016.
When not lifting she is works in Admin and Accounts for a mobile marketing company. She is inspired by seeing people succeed in their journeys.
Her favourite snack is protein “ice cream” made with whey and peanut butter and sugar-free jelly with that. Her fave exercise is Leg press because she feels she can really test my strength with that. Her least favourite? Cardio!
This is her story in her own personal words
Being overweight my whole life and suffering from a hormone imbalance called “Leptin Deficiency” I struggled since being a baby to keep my weight intact. Congenital leptin deficiency is a condition that causes severe obesity beginning in the first few months of life. Affected individuals are of normal weight at birth, but they are constantly hungry and quickly gain weight. My weight problem became a reality when I hit a record weight of 116kgs in 2014.
Although I “dieted” most of my life – losing weight, picking up then losing again – I was that person that tried everything on the market – from injection diets, Simply Slim, Duromine, every diet fad, pill or meal replacement shake out there, name it. I did it and I lost weight just to gain back double the weight after I stopped and ate “normally” again. Thousands of Rands were wasted on always looking for another easy way out – the magic pill. And because of my hormonal imbalance I was just never full and satisfied, I would go dish up for seconds and even thirds in one sitting.
In May 2014 I stumbled (literally fell off my chair) when I scrolled through Sleekgeek and saw a progress pic of Sleekgeek Challenge Judge Gen Brand, I could immediately relate to her! That was me! We became friends and she took me under her wing with advice. We were meant to cross each other’s paths. In September 2014 she introduced me to Craig Brown from CSB Body Fusion who is a well-respected online coach in the industry. Gen lost 47kgs post pregnancy with the help of a coach. I saw myself in her, I could relate and she quickly made me realise that no pill or injection is going to be more effective than just having the right nutrition at the right time with the sufficient amount of exercise daily. This was what everyone said all along, but as we do, the easiest way was always the better option. Nevertheless, I got my mind into gear after a lot of consideration, signed up with Craig, got my diet and training and just went at it. Daily and consistently.
I needed to create my own journey and story to inspire others. It was a personal preference not to use any supplements to prove to myself and others that it can be done with real food. I would have whey now and again as an emergency meal when being out, but stuck to eating real foods only, although I have nothing against anyone who chooses to make use of supplements while dieting down.
With Craig’s plan that he worked out for me I felt lost, how could I even eat 5 meals a day? It seemed so much, I cried when I got my diet that Sunday 14 September – I had no idea how I was going to do this. I was so amped and then everything got so overwhelming. Gen assured me to just trust the process, just try. The diet style is called Carb Cycling and is work out in conjunction with my training which at that stage was only 5 days a week, now 6 to 7.
My training consists of isolated weight training where I isolate a different muscle group every day be it chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps or legs. Combined with low intensity steady state (Liss) cardio. Because I was so heavy, I couldn’t run and to be honest I hate running (haha). I have been doing this kind of cardio throughout my whole journey.
My diet is then worked out according to the muscle groups I train and split into low, moderate, high and low off days. Each meal consists of protein with carbs and healthy fats split to eat meal. Craig changed my diet and training as I went along to avoid me stalling my weight. When I prepped for comp my diet only consisted of carbs and protein, no fats and I find that’s what works for my body. Each person is different, but your learn what your body likes and doesn’t like as you go along.
I did turn to Sleekgeek as well as our online coaching group CSB a lot for support, motivation and my family also supported me throughout. I could really not complain about support, I wanted to inspire and by inspiring others it helped me to always keep pushing.
Off course, you learn so much about the fitness industry – about your body, your health, what works what does not. When I look back I think to myself… gosh… I was so uneducated about this lifestyle, so gullible. And the knowledge I have gained has been incredible. You learn to stay humble, no matter the fame, to inspire. This industry is so tough and competing isn’t for sissies that’s for sure. Many “prep” for stage but little get there. If you get there, you should be damn proud even if you don’t place, getting on that stage is a victory in itself.
I think my journey has only taken ground now and I am far from finished. My story got featured in You and Huisgenoot and to Inspire so many people has been such a blessing. I think the biggest milestone was my first competition this year April 2016 when I did the transformation division at Rossi Grand Prix 2016. The prep was one huge emotional rollercoaster, the hardest thing to do, and to just get onto stage that day, in a bikini, something I never thought I would do in my life, was such an honour. I placed 6th out of 20 contestants in my division which I am proud of.
Last year me and my husband decided to get divorced and I took a few months “off” from my journey to just deal with life. When you fall off that wagon the hardest thing is to get back on it. After the divorce was finalised I picked up 8kgs from eating junk only, and to get back was the hardest mental challenge for me. In January this year I decided enough is enough and set myself a goal to compete at Rossi. I had 15 weeks to get into shape and that’s what I did. After the competition everyone warned me not to go into rebound, but I didn’t listen and it happened. I also went for an operation 4 days after my comp and that set me back somehow in the sense that I cannot follow my diet properly because I cannot train properly for 6 weeks, but I’m starting to take control again. I have set a goal for October and I am working towards that now.
Divorcing was the best decision I could make for myself and my journey as my husband did not support me in the way I needed him to. My life has definitely improved! I’m much happier, healthier – I haven’t been sick since I signed up with Craig where I was sick with bronchitis or laryngitis every other week before I started. My health is definitely a positive change. I’m in a good place in my life, I do what I love and I want to inspire people to make the change, to start their own journey’s so inspire others. It meant so much to me that I got a tattoo to say “Aspire to Inspire”.
My top tips
- Getting an online coach to guide me through my journey was the best money I have ever invested
- Stay consistent! This is very important if you want to keep seeing results.
- Keep water intake high, 3 to 4L especially If training, don’t worry, your kidneys won’t drown
- Lift heavy!!! Lifting weights won’t make you bulky and is the best form of fat burning when it comes to exercise
- Your diet must go hand in hand with your training to keep yourself in a calorie deficit to keep burning fat and losing weight. This is where a coach comes in handy!
Trust the process and stick to the plan. Do not lend your ears to others’ opinions and stay consistent. Stay focussed, stay committed. No. Matter. What. Just don’t give up. Work your ass off, but always stay humble and Don’t. Give. Up. Fall 7 times, get up 8.