Tag Archives: losing weight

Weight Loss & Loneliness…

So I’ve been on this journey now for around 2 years, though I guess in reality it has been most of my life, years of back and forth between being somewhat healthy and absolutely not at all. Losing weight, getting fit and healthy is an exciting change but also a lonely time, infact I’ve never really truly felt loneliness quite like it. To really want to change yourself requires dedication, it requires compromise and time; not just to exercise but to plan and prep your food, to educate yourself and to rally motivation by yourself, for yourself. I’m not going to lie to you, it’s not easy, there is no magic fix, you have to want it and then do it.

Now what I wasn’t prepared for is the consequences of weight loss; ok that sounds silly, like yes I knew my bank account would take a hit with gym fees, workout wear and new clothes to fit my shrinking self, I expected people to notice and give me compliments (I’m getting better at receiving them, though I still cringe a little inside), what I mean is… skin. Lordy there is so much spare skin. Gross. Stretching your body over time, has an effect, the elasticity your skin has wears over time, it doesn’t just snap back as you’d like or maybe think it would. I dreamed of wearing a bikini on holiday or a dress with no sleeves to a friend’s wedding, embracing summer finally and showing off my ‘new’ figure. But when I look at myself, I know that won’t happen just yet. It’s a cruel world when you work so hard for something and it finds another way to spite you. I want to be happy with how I look, I want to feel proud that I’ve turned it all around, I want to feel normal and not like the ‘fat friend’ but it’s a struggle… one I know I’ll overcome eventually (once I’ve saved for the surgery haha).

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Before…

So ok, this blog is meant to be about weight loss only but I feel maybe this will resonate with a few people so here goes. It’s a weird time in my life in general, most of my friends, I guess what you’d traditionally call your ‘support system’ have their own lives, they have partners (or husbands), their own homes, careers and perhaps even children, they don’t live in the city but the suburbs, a night out requires weeks of advance planning not just a shall we go for one drink job. We speak most days (ok ok we send a lot of memes via whatsapp), we catch-up when we can, but naturally this is all very high level conversation, in that we discuss what’s current, who’s doing what and life in sweeping motions.

Moving from London back to Birmingham was a culture shock, gone were the after work drinks, the weekly pub quizzes and the 4am nightbus home, in fact most weeknight’s without the luxury of the last tube were pretty boring. It’s a different way of life here, one where people want to get back to their homes, their families and children, and mid-week drinking isn’t the done thing. This has without a doubt aided my fat to fit progression, but it’s been tough to really come to terms with. Not one to sit around I have made sure I am intensely busy; I run a social action project helping the homeless, I volunteer my marketing expertise outside of the office, I play netball, I run, I work out, I have a full diary of activities, when it’s the football season I go to every game but being busy I’ve figured out doesn’t actually make you feel any less lonely.

getting there

Present

Like how do you even make new friends at 26. I had these visions in my head, like I’ll join a gym in town, and go to zumba, one day they’ll be a girl similar age and I’ll go ‘hey, nice leggings’ or something equally harmless and suddenly we’d be grabbing a coffee after our class and ‘alright, yeah you’re normal, let’s be friends’. In reality a stranger talking to strangers is viewed as a bit creepy, we’re all guilty of it, we want to be left alone, someone speaks to us on the train or the bus and we’re wondering when to put our headphones in.

What I’m learning from my 20s is that I can have all the confidence in the world with my passion, career, myself, and it can still be immensely lonely. I think it is an internal conflict of sorts as I’m pretty sure most people who know me would think I’m very happy, I always smile, I tell a lot of jokes, I’ve always been confident – first one on the dancefloor, last one off it kinda gal. By my late 20s I imagined I’d be happy with myself, have a career I’m proud of (this bit is fine fyi it’s not all doom and gloom), be settled not just in geographical terms but in love and in life. Being as I’m now in my mid 20s I’ve a lot of groundwork to do to catch up and sometimes it can feel like you’re making all the progress in the world but getting nowhere at the same time.

Now that was all very melancholy stuff, but I think it’s quite important to have a grasp of reality, that you know maybe these haven’t been the best years of my life, but instead a transition period. It’s ok to admit you’re lonely and to talk about it, openly; in a world where we are all constantly interconnected it can be quite overwhelming to have an honest face to face conversation with someone about something you’re struggling with, I’ve not managed that yet. But like I said right at the start, it’s a journey, I might not know where I’m going but I’m sure I’ll get there, because one thing I have learnt these past couple of years is believing in yourself is the foundation for happiness.

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Starting over…

Ok hands up… I lost my way a little. In a summer of weddings, celebrations, travel, new babies and new friends, my food choices got richer while I got poorer. I drank Raspberitas (and ate my entire body weight twice) by the pool in LA, piled my plate high with cheese and meat in Tuscany and ate far too many baguettes in Lyon… and it was fantastic.

However I didn’t feel fantastic come the 1st September, I felt tired and bloated. So I’ve signed myself up for a 6 Week Body Transformation… the nutritional plan is strict (there’s no room for Gin), and the workouts leave you wobbling all the way home, but 1 week & 9lbs down and I’m almost back to my pre-summer weight. I feel more energetic, my jeans are looser and most of all I’m enjoying it…

To Be Continued.

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Great Birmingham Run 2016

Wow sorry guys, sometimes life just gets on top.

Let me bring you up to speed. Since losing weight I’ve been naturally feeling a bit healthier, but looks can be deceiving, some of my friends are slim and slender and can’t walk up the stairs without breaking a sweat. I want to be fit. Not in ‘damn girl’ kind of way (though compliments are always appreciated) but in a ‘damn  I feel good’ sense.

I’ve been therefore working on building my fitness, cutting my body fat percentage and generally getting stronger and leaner. I’ve been spending a lot less time on cardio and more time in the weights section. It might look scary, it might be full of pumped up guys, maybe the mirrors freak you out a little but my gosh is it worth it. I’ve decided not to look at the scales for a while… so I can’t really tell give you an update on that. I’ve been concentrating on how I feel and how I look, rather than those little numbers followed by the kg/llb sign. If you want some ideas for workouts try these guys…

Emily Skye – https://www.emilyskye.com/ (her workouts can be found on her facebook/twitter/insta streams)

Clean Eating Alice – https://www.instagram.com/clean_eating_alice (super easy to follow workouts)

Rob & Ben @ TEG – https://traineatgain.com/ (look at the free stuff and then put together your own workout)

I signed up to the Great Birmingham Run back in January – as I needed a challenge. It came round really quickly… before the race (10k in total) – the furthest I’d ran was 6k. I’d been using an app on my phone from Zen Labs – Couch to 10k (http://www.zenlabsfitness.com/) but being the busy person I am, I’d been forgetting to track everything. Still it was a good marker.

Mostly I spent my time doing interval training – 1 min run 1 min walk, 90 seconds run, 1 min walk, 90 seconds run, 30 seconds walk etc. Some days I’d get carried away – I mostly blame Kano for that (I mean you can’t slow down when New Banger drops), and run further and harder, but never really beyond 5/6k.

Sunday just gone was race day, I was nervous, I felt a bit sick, could I do it? Could I run that far? What if I needed to stop? The first 5 minutes were the hardest by far, there’s a lot of people running at the same time, it’s tricky to pace yourself into your own race. However soon I was at 3k and it was going just fine. I managed 5k in 43 mins – fairly happy with that. 6k came and went, then oh my life, the hills, 2k of uphill running. The biggest incline I’d previously run at was 2.5% on the treadmill… I was unprepared, but I couldn’t stop now. Luckily I had a solid playlist, also huge thanks to the nice runners who patted me on the back and told me to keep going. The thing is with races/runs/events like this, part of your effort is adrenaline, the combined effort of the entire participant pack as a whole really does drive you further. Oh and when people have signs like ‘Pain now, Prosecco later’, yeah that helps.

I finished the race in 1hr 43 mins officially (I stopped at 4k for a toilet break – though I kept jogging on the spot in the queue out of fear my legs would seize up haha) so my iPod reckons I did it in 1hr 34mins. Is that good? It’s flipping fantastic for me. I’ve never run that far before in my life. I didn’t stop. I won my own race. So yes my personal best is pretty high in comparison to others, but I’m already looking forward to the next one, and shaving some time off.

Unfortunately my gym is shut for refurbishment today… guess I’ll have a little break till tomorrow, when the journey to fitness continues. Until next time…

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Kerry – x

 

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5lbs.

It’s Christmas… there’s a party to go to every night, a glass of wine to share with friends every lunchtime and there’s boards and boards of cheese just waiting to be devoured. Trying to shift these last 5lbs towards my 70lbs by Christmas goal is pretty damn  hard. I’ve mostly resisted the temptations so far; I’ve let my Niece open my advent calendar, I’ve offered to drive to avoid the booze, and I’m definitely counting battling through the bullring in the pursuit of those elusive final gifts as extra exercise.

The good news is even though the scales don’t seem to be budging at the moment, I’m noticing some changes in my body itself. It’s shapelier (is that a word?) than before, my waist is more defined, and my legs are less tree trunky than before. I’m still going to the gym, making the most of my PT sessions, and it seems to be paying off. Almost time for another new pair of jeans I think.

Most pleasing is the fact I can finally do my jacket up, rather than having it open.

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Enjoy yourself this Christmas… a life where you’re 100% good all of the time, would be awfully boring after all. See you all in January xox

 

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60 Pounds Down.

I have a jaw people…. this is not a false alarm, who knew under those cushioned layers of flab I had an actual jaw. Ok so when I laugh… like proper belly laugh (which I do a lot because I’m hilarious) my jaw goes into hiding once more, but I know it’s there now at least…

60 pounds down - Slim & Tonic Blog

I’m feeling good, like real good. People say nice things to me and I feel warm inside, I think it’s known as pride? 60 pounds off… that’s like over 4st. Crazy.

So tonight I have a PT session and we’re going to do this thing whereby I pick up an extra 27kg of weight, and remind myself just how draining it was carrying that around daily. That’s when it really hits home for me. I always think when you lose weight that you don’t notice it in yourself as much, well not until you start putting old photos together and see the difference, so it’s nice in a way to be able to feel the difference.

The only way is down….

Kerry — x

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Recipe: Courgette Pizza

So while I was doing the Clean 9 I thought I’d try out some new recipes. I used to love cooking from scratch, but guess I got lazy and convenience took over, I’d find myself eating similar things every week, and tricking myself into thinking they were ‘healthy’ – I mean if you have brown pasta then it doesn’t matter how much cheese you stick on it right? Erm. Wrong. I’ve always loved courgettes, so when I came across a ‘Zucchini Pizza’ recipe on Pinterest, I had to give it a try. Tastes really yum and it’s incredibly easy and quick too – bonus! Here’s the recipe:

1x large courgette
60g of Reduced fat cheddar (I’ve since discovered if you use Parmesan the pizza base is actually even better)
1x egg

Grate the courgette. Leave it in a sieve in 10 mins to drain. Then you need to remove all the excess water. I kinda half mashed it bare hands, realised I was getting nowhere, scooped it into a clean tea towel and squeezed and squeezed till the towel went green…

Pop your dry courgette into a bowl.

Add the egg and cheese. Mix it up.

Spread onto a baking paper lined baking tray (I omitted the paper first time, it got a bit stuck…)

KL Slim & Tonic Blog

Bake for 8 mins at 200.

I then mashed some salad tomatoes and simmered them into a sauce to use as the topping.

The base and sauce is 280 cals.

Then add your toppings.

I went for peppers, onions and 4x slimming world meatballs – cut up. Oh and a sprinkle of cheese (did I mention I love cheese?)

KL - Slim & Tonic Blog - Courgette Pizza

570cals in total for the whole thing. That’s 30 cals for left for a squirt of ketchup and there you go 600 calories of deliciousness.

Hope you enjoy.

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Sober October – Half Way.

I like to drink. I mean I’m not an alcoholic or anything, but I love cocktails on a Thursday Evening, a G&T on a Sunday Afternoon and a JagerBomb or two at the match most Saturdays. So when I told everyone I was going to do Sober October, they laughed in my face, literally. But I wanted to challenge myself, and I was intrigued to whether it would aid my weight loss, give me clearer skin and help me sleep better…

Well it’s been 2 weeks and I haven’t even been tempted to have a drink… not even whilst watching England crash out of the Rugby World Cup, or seeing Villa get trampled on by Stoke at home – which not only makes me a saint but pretty damn strong willed too.

Do I feel better? Well sort of.

My skin is definitely not better – in fact it’s worse. A few people have suggested I had so many toxins in me, the outbreak is just those coming out – cheeky. So maybe over the next two weeks once that’s done it might clear up?

I’ve only had one hangover in the last 5 years or so (I often think Leeds LawSoc made me immune) and that was following a 5am Tequila binge on a beanbag in a mansion in West London – not as seedy as it sounds. Honest. So yes waking up after a night out is still pleasant, if not more so when I look in my purse and I’ve spent about a fiver on Lime & Soda.

However this is the big one, I’m sleeping so much better. I’ve never been a fan of snooze, I used to go for days on just a few hours. Not healthy and I’m not proud, but I just found lying down and closing my eyes so… boring. But I’m currently getting a solid 6 hours a night, which is just wonderful.

So let’s raise a glass (of green tea) to the next two weeks.

TBC….

Kerry —x

P.S I don’t have a fundraising account for Sober October – it’s a personal objection – I have an issue with asking people to donate for me not drinking.

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50 Pounds Down

Another small but exciting victory. 50 Pounds down now.

I use www.ilostwhat.com as a fun way to track my weight loss. Apparently 50 pounds is the same as small bail of hay – who knew?

I’m keeping to a steady rate of around 2.5lbs a week at the moment. I’m still using the Forever Lite Ultra shake – I mix it up and have 2 shakes and 1 600 cal meal on my rest days, and 1 shake, 1 600 cal meal and 1 450 cal meal on my activity days. I take the Aloe Gel every morning, when I don’t I feel sluggish so it definitely packs a boost.

A colleague said to me the other day ‘You just look better…’ I was like oh thanks, erm what does that mean? She said my face looked a lot slimmer. So I went back to look at some past photos and she has a very good point.

So erm here’s my face for the last 6 months or so…

KL Slim & Tonic Blog

The last one is a bit dark – I apologise. I guess she’s right though.

Kerry — x

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40 Pounds Down

Just a quick post today…. I am now 40 pounds down. Huge thanks to the Clean 9 for a massive boost in getting me back on track. I can tick this one of my list. Next stop 70 pounds down for Christmas. Bring it on.

The left picture is from April and the right picture is from today. Feeling much healthier. A long way to go, but well on the way.

KL Slim and Tonic Blog

Kerry —x

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Clean 9

I have a confession. I’ve been very bad. I’ve indulged in the most luxurious of treats; Prosecco, Cider, Burgers, Hot Dogs, Cheese – glorious Cheese and lumps and lumps of Milka chocolate. Ooops.

Me & 3 of my best friends, set off on a little road trip last week. We drove to Dover, then to France, then to Belgium – watched a bit of Formula 1, then we packed up and drove through Germany and into Luxembourg, and back again. It was a wonderful trip. We laughed hard, danced lots, and erm drank and ate ourselves silly. I’m sure many of you can relate, you have a little taste of something nice, and suddenly you’ve ate it all. I felt angry with myself at first, annoyed that I’d let myself get lost in the excitement of the road trip. I’ve gained 6 pounds over the last 10 days, so not horrendous but I’m not happy.

Now a while back I noticed a post on Facebook from an old school friend, she’d recently joined Forever as a Business Owner and was talking about one of the products – the Clean 9. The programme is a 9 day cleanse, which flushes out all the toxins within and boosts your energy counts. I began researching the programme a little more – I am a research geek by the way, I had drawn up a list of tips, tricks, pros and cons by that evening. I decided I wanted to give it a go. The wedding was now only 2 weeks away, and I didn’t want to feel sluggish, spotty and bloated for the big day.

My box arrived (well I collected it) the following Sunday, I was all set to start the Monday but last minute tickets to The Libertines meant I opted for Tuesday instead. So here’s how it went…

Day 1 – I got up early and noted down all my measurements, and then packed my handbag with the Clean 9 components. The Aloe Gel I was expecting to absolutely disgusting – but it wasn’t too bad. I downed it in one and brushed my teeth immediately afterwards and yeah it was ok… feeling positive so far, I got this. I felt absolutely fine until mid afternoon – the office spent so good with everyone’s lunch lingering… so I went for a quick walk. I had a PT session booked for 8pm and was a little worried I wouldn’t have the energy to really push myself, but I was wrong, I felt fine. The hunger pangs I felt mid afternoon had disappeared and with the help of the shake I was ready to go. Thought I might have slept better after completing Day One and a heavy PT session, but nope, my mind has a habit of running in the most ludicrous circles come bedtime and today was no different.

Day 2 – Pretty much the same as yesterday except no PT session so I went for an extra long walk. Feeling kinda bouncy which must be good right? I heated my shake up today after I’d made it, and enjoyed it as hot chocolate style drink. Yummy. Also I had a plum mid afternoon – was nice to have something a little sweet.

Day 3 – Practically sprang out of bed this morning. Did my measurements – 7 & 1/2 inches off! Over the moon. The best thing about today? Actual food. I spent the whole day thinking about what I was going to eat haha! Somethings never change aye? I weighed myself at the gym – 6 pounds off. After my work out I went to M&S and grabbed some bits and pieces. I made Courgette Pizza and it tasted amazing. I mean I love courgettes – which you might think odd, I actually love a lot of vegetables, I never had an issue eating my 5 a day no matter what size I’ve been. But anyway I’ll put the recipe up for you all to try.

Day 4 – Not much to tell. Feeling well, content and less bloated. I had an omelette for dinner, tasty and nutritious.

Day 5 – Really getting into the swing of this now. The gel no longer bothers me. I feel good. Looking forward to the results tomorrow. For dinner I had stir fry – just a vegetable one – was scrummy – one of the best parts of this week so far has been seeing all the different meals you can make for 600 calories. I will continue with some of them after the cleanse for sure.

Day 6 – Drum roll please…. results so far – 13lbs off and 15 inches!! Absolutely gobsmacked, I had to do the measurements at least 5 times. Such a boost as it’s a tough one today – Villa v. Leicester Away. A challenge at the best of times. I switched up my meals today and had my 600 calorie grub for Breakfast. A wise choice. I got to the pub and proceeded to drink pint after pint…. of water. Less said about the football the better, but mission complete. I didn’t stray from the plan one bit.

Day 7 – I sent Amiee (the girl who sold me the C9) a message today saying ‘I can actually see my waist, like it’s really there’. Stuffed peppers for dinner. Plan feels like a breeze now, I’m so in the zone.

Day 8 – Final dress fitting today, and thank goodness the Bride has opted for straps – the top is falling down. Which is great news, but I don’t want to steal the show by flashing so best hoist it up. My stomach is flat, my skin is glowing, and I feel great. I’ve decided I’m going to continue with the shakes and the Garcinia tablets after the Clean 9 is finished, I’m in a routine now and the results are so pleasing.

Day 9 – Results Day: 15lbs & 18 Inches Down!!! I am over the moon. Any skepticism I once had, has dissolved, I feel lighter, energised and happy. Roll on the wedding tomorrow.

Wow. I am so impressed by the programme and it’s results I’ve signed up to as a Forever Business Owner. If you’re interested in trying the Clean 9 – drop me an email on kerry.lenihan1@gmail.com or visit my FB page here >

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