Over the past couple of months I’ve been on a complete lifestyle overhaul. I’ve started to make changes to my eating habits and have gotten my arse into gear a bit more when it comes to heading to the gym or doing some kind of exercise. A lot of people at work have asked me why I’m on a diet, the simple truth is that I’m not on a diet. I’ve made a conscious decision to make changes to my overall lifestyle and not limit myself completely. Instead of banning myself from chocolate and bad fatty foods such as crisps I’m just deciding that I don’t want to eat them, they’re allowed in moderation if I do want them, but I’m not full on banning them from my diet. I think that a lot of people have the misconception that because I’m trying to be good and not eat the bad things that people offer me in the office, that I have a misconstrued image of myself. This really isn’t the case. I’ve often been told that I don’t need to be on a diet and that I’m fine as I am, but for me this lifestyle change isn’t about thinking I’m too fat or that I need to lose weight, this is about me wanting to become healthier overall and tone up. Yes, I’m a girl in her early twenties and I do see myself as having ‘problem’ areas like most people my age, but I also think that I’m already a healthy weight. My end goal is not to lose weight, but gain muscle and tone. As my niece likes to put it, I want to be ‘fit not skinny’.
|My new Gym kit! I feel better working out in these beauties!|
I first decided that I wanted to change my lifestyle just before Christmas; I had just met my current boyfriend in October and he was trying to introduce me to so many new foods. Being the fussy little madam that I am, I turned my nose up and didn’t want to try anything new and healthy. I was content munching on sweets and chocolate as snacks and eating almost nothing but spaghetti bolognese and other pasta dishes as my evening meals. My lunches consisted of Tesco Meal Deals or ready meals and I rarely got much nutrients at all. My massive ‘eureka’ moment to get into shape and become healthier was a couple of weeks after my Twentieth birthday; I’d gotten out of the shower and looked in the mirror and just started crying. In the first month of being comfortable in my new relationship with Jordan, I’d put on a bit of weight. Not a lot in terms of numbers, but when I looked at myself, I really was not happy. Although I’ve been good with the gym and with going to bi-weekly winter bootcamp sessions, it clearly was not enough. I began to realise that to tone my body up and get it back to looking how I wanted it to be, I would have to change my diet.
The first thing to change was skipping breakfast. For as long as I can remember I haven’t eaten the most important meal of the day. Blaming it on not having enough time in the morning I’ve always just waited until lunch time rolled around. I now have granola and Full fat natural yoghurt as soon as I get into work at 8am, not too much (only two tablespoons of each) but enough to kick start my metabolism and get my day started. I also have a smoothie everyday, I’ve found some great recipe’s in both Fleur De Force’s ‘Glam Guide’ and Lucy Mecklenburgh’s ‘Be Body Beautiful’ and these have really helped me divert away from my sugar based fruit only smoothies that I was making before. I’ve found that ready these books have helped me understand why other people have made this life decision too. ‘Be Body Beautiful’ is full of great exercises and meal plans for you to follow with all the nutritional information behind it!
|The two new books motivating me!|
For lunch I now have Peri-Peri chicken along with a chopped pepper and some iceberg lettuce, to some this may not seem a lot at all, but it’s enough for me for a light lunch. I usually eat in the evening and as I absolutely love to cook, I have a hearty meal then instead of at lunch. Jordan and I like to plan our meals in advance for the week. This is mostly to ensure that we only buy what we need when we go food shopping, but also so that we know that we won’t be just chucking any old unhealthy thing into the oven if we can’t be bothered. Some of our typical evening meals (including some completely new dishes to me) are: Beef Stir Fry, Enchiladas, Homemade Chicken Kievs with Sweet Potato Fries, Burgers without buns, with salad and Sweet Potato fries, and a small amount of Pasta with a Homemade Sauce. I’m absolutely loving having different meals of an evening and not sticking to the same thing every night. I feel so much healthier due to the different ingredients and don’t feel so sluggish anymore either.
|New gym shoes (to make me want to go) haha|
As for my exercise, I’ve decided to pick it up a bit with my training. I now not only do boot camp once a week (twice if there is space on a Saturday morning class), I also follow that with at least a 500m swim and sauna and then also try to get out for another 1000m swim and a run once a week also. I can sometimes massively lack motivation for getting out on my own and so I also have Personal Training sessions once a fortnight – I find that these really help me pick up the pace and feel more energized with a new wave of determination after it – even though she pretty much kills me every session! I’m loving my new routine and lifestyle change and I’m so ready to embrace the rest that it brings at me. I feel so much more energetic, so much less lethargic and overall I feel healthier in myself.
What changes have you made this new year to make you feel healthier?
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