I’ve always been chubby. I can remember doing school swimming lessons when I was around 10 and my mum bought me this blue bikini, I cried when she gave it to me. She thought it was because I didn’t like the colour/pattern. It was because I didn’t want my class mates to see my belly, or my jiggly thighs.
I would walk out of the bathrooms with my arms crossed over my stomach and keep my head down. From there it just continued as I grew older and was exposed to all the pressure to be perfect in the media.
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE? I would always pretend I was sick or injured at school so I didn’t have to run or swim in any events.
All through my teens I wore a cardigan over everything even in the hottest summer days because I was self conscious of my arms.
Even when I left school and my friends and I would go out to night clubs, I would always wear stockings or tights under my dress so no one could see my legs. It was horrible. I felt trapped in my own skin.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY? I’ve never had a specific turning point. I’ve always been quite motivated to make a change, but struggled to find the right method for me.
I had gone to the doctors and was prescribed weight loss pills. I lost 7kg (15lbs) but put over 12kg (26lbs) back on shortly after I had stopped taking the pills. My journey has definitely been a rollercoaster. I’ve succeeded and failed many times. I’ve taken 2 steps forward and 5 steps back.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? I was always lifting some form of weights. I’m quite competitive and loved pushing myself in the gym. My diet and inconsistency is where I was letting myself down.
I friend of mine introduced me to powerlifting and tracking my macros. I was stronger than ever and tracking my macros meant I wasn’t restricted anymore. I could literally have my cake and eat it too. I highly recommend people that are struggling with their weight, but also their mental strength to stick to a meal plan – look into IIFYM (If it fits your macros) IT IS A GAME CHANGER!!
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS? I started seeing results in a matter of weeks.
Not only was the number on the scales going down, my strength was increasing rapidly. My whole body composition changed. The months where I didnt lose and weight on the scales, I’d still lost inches and inches off my whole body. This was because I was gaining muscle (which weighs more than fat) – massive reason why I think it’s vital we aren’t fixated on that haunted number on the scales.
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART? The main challenge with tracking your macros is simply learning. It takes time to know what you need to consume and at what amounts to achieve your goals. There are plenty of apps and FB groups that can help you. It’s a matter of understanding your body and tweaking as you go.
In terms on my training, powerlifting can be time consuming. The average powerlifter trains 4-6 days per week for around 2-2.5hours at a time.
In saying that, to see results.. just start. Pick up a weight. A proper weigh. Something that genuinely feels heavy. Challenge yourself. As long as you practice proper form (there are plenty of videos online to ensure you are executing a move safely and effectively) – then you’ve started! Your body will thank you! Whether or not you want to become a competitive powerlifter, or just want a nice toned figure. You need to start by challenging yourself and understand that your body is an incredible machine that is capable of so much more than you think.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING? I wanted to give up every day.
Every day that I failed a rep in the gym. Every day that I ate the whole block of chocolate instead of the 2 rows that was planned. Every time it was “that time of month” and I was an emotional wreck.. I wanted nothing more than to curl into a ball with a tub of icecream, cuddle up next to my dog on the lounge and cry about my body. When I went through bad times in relationships and didn’t feel appreciated anymore… my answer was that chocolate cake will appreciate you, Alice. Eat the whole damn thing girl!! But sometimes, you need to prove to no one but yourself, just how strong you are. Mentally.
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM? There were times where the weight loss slowed down, but you just have to keep going. I always use Dory’s famous quote “just keep swimming”. It’s what has gotten my through some hard times.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT? From when I started lifting heavy and tracking my weight, it took me a total of around 8-9 months.
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES? All the time!!
Lifting weights I never thought I’d be able to. Fitting into clothes that I’d only dreamed of wearing. I think the biggest non-scale victory… was walking into a store, trying on the first dress I saw and it fit so beautifully that I actually burst into tears.
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? It hasn’t changed at all. The foods are the same, I just have controlled amounts of proteins, fats and carbs.
Today for example; Egg/Cheese/Mayo sandwich – Massive serving of steamed veggies and 2 tins of tuna – Satay beef mince/cheese sandwich – kitkat chocolate bar – Large Banana – Massive chicken omelette for dinner with a side of vegies and maybe a little serving of chocolate mousse. We’ll see how many macros I have left at the end of the day! I’m never hungry and I can eat what ever I like.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? The only change is I am now doing minimal cardio (compared to before) and my training is now focussed around weight training.
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- JUST KEEP SWIMMING!!!
- Remember why you started. Remember that time at the pool when you were 10 years old and you were holding your belly, on the verge of tears. Remember how that little girl felt. Do it for her.
- Be kind to yourself. I believe it’s important to surround yourself with things that motivate you. Rather than punishing yourself for not reaching a goal in time, re-evaluate and push on.