Be Healthy. Not Skinny.

Today this picture came up on my time-hop thing on Facebook….

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Initially I thought WOW I did so well on my weightloss journey then. Then over the day, my mind changed, my thoughts of these pictures changed.

  • Firstly, by December 2007 I was 3 stone lighter. The picture on the right in 2011, was after re-joining slimming world in 2010. This wasn’t a true reflection, it didn’t take me 4 years to go from left to right.
  • Secondly, in 2007, I didn’t think there was anything problem with my weight or how I looked. I was happy, until I saw a photo 10 times worse that that and realised I needed to do something.
  • Thirdly, in 2011 despite looking pretty healthy (back then I would have said thin), I still thought and felt that I looked like I did on the left.
  • Fourth, I am the same person in both of these photos. Same unhappiness about my weight, focused on a number on the scales not on the benefit to my health.

Right now, I think I am probably a stone lighter than the picture on the left, I would love to get back to the dress size on the right, although I keep thinking to myself if that was sustainable I wouldn’t be back on my slimming world journey.

Tonight, I put on 3lb and I am pissed. BUT it’s no-one else’s fault apart from my own. I have chosen not to go to the gym for 3 weeks, I have chosen not to be “on plan” for weeks. It is my choice. I can choose to let my weight continue to creep up, or I can do something about it.

I want to do something about it & if I write it down, it has to happen.

Tonight, I came back from group, I sat down and wrote down what I am going to eat for the next 7 days. I am going to stick to that and I should see a loss on those scales next week. I have researched classes at the gym and Tuesday is going to be my day, I am going to LBT AND Yoga and then I am also going to go to the gym every other week day morning. My weekends will be my break. My body needs good fuel and exercise to work properly, I know this and I know that I am stopping my body from working correctly.

So. As of tomorrow back on plan, back on an aim and just a kick start to get healthy!

Love

Emma x

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Fear

So you will need to be patient with me over the next few weeks/months as after every liberty shoot I realise something new about myself and learn things that inspire how I look at the world and how I can improve and grow myself. The best way for me to say this and for it to register is to write it down. So you may see a few blogs over the next few weeks, or you might not, this might be the only thing I took away!

During our circle of trust, the amazing Jen said something that at the time didn’t really mean anything to me, but over the past few days it’s started to…….

Those who fear something the most are the ones who should do it the most.

Initially, I thought I didn’t fear anything and I am quite happy to give anything a go. Well that is a big fat lie. As I write this, I can think of at least 3 things that I fear doing…..

1. Going to a group  class at the gym

2. Travelling to Asia (backpacking)

3. Skydiving

So you might be reading those and thinking really? Is that all you fear? No, it’s not all I fear – there is so much more I fear, but those things are all personal to me and my journey of improving my confidence and feeling secure in myself and who I am as a person. Those are things that I want to work on and continue to work on privately, because we don’t have to share everything you know!

So thinking about those wise words in the circle of trust and the fact that this is the last year of my 20’s, I feel like I need to own it and not let fear win. If I continue to let fear win, then how to expect to be able to grow and improve myself in other areas? I won’t, because this will always be in the back of my mind and I will always think that I can’t do it, when in fact as one of my Aunties has always told me….

There is no such word as can’t.

So, I sat Matt down and told him that I want to conquer some of these fears that I have and I want to experience something new and do things outside of my comfort zone.

Matt has always wanted to go to Asia, predominately Thailand or Vietnam but I have always been so reluctant because I dont want to back pack. If I am on holiday I want 1 place as our base and then explore from there. I am fearful that I will get lost or there wont be anywhere to stay if we have nothing booked. But where is the adventure in playing safe? So this weekend we are doing some researching! I’m not sure what we are going to do, but I am thinking potentially for us to stay in hostels to make it cheap and affordable. It is totally out of my comfort zone BUT that is when life starts isn’t it? The more I have been looking at both countries the more the thought of an adventure starts to get appealing – I had never thought of going to some of the places we have been but they have ended up being some the BEST places I have been too!

Next, is Skydiving – why would anyone want to chuck themselves out of a plane? Because of the adrenaline and the views and just the fact that you can say you DID IT! I brought Matt a skydive a few years ago and he loved it and has always joked that he would buy me one and I have always said I would never do it. Then when i told him about this he told me he brought me one for Christmas!! What am I so afraid of? I am not scared of heights, I enjoy flying, I like nice views and I have conquered a zip wire in Mexico which was 45 metres above ground and so so so scary, but I did it. So with that in mind, I am going to book it and do it BUT with a twist (although Matt thinks I should just do it for me!). I am going to do it for charity, so other people benefit from my experience too. I have thought long and hard about what charity I want to raise funds for and I have decided to do it for Cancer Research.  There are a lot of reasons why this charity was my front runner that I won’t go into, but the fact that more people are surviving cancer than dying because of it now just proves how important that research is. I will share the link in another post!

Lastly, one I need to conquer on my own. Group classes at the gym. I enjoy the gym when I go, I have a little routine but in reality its not doing anything for me and I know people rave about group classes so I want to do it. Why aren’t I? Because I worry about how unfit I am, I dont want to be the one at the back that is sweating like a loon and cant keep up. I want to go into a class and do it with ease. In reality that will never happen, I need to suck it up and do it – stop making excuses and just own it. I know once I have done it I will enjoy it and want to go back. Its just plucking up that courage. This is what i fear the most. So going by Jen’s advice, this I what I need to do more than the other 2. I have been looking at the gym classes and I have decided I am going to give Zumba a go on a Sunday. I might not like it and I might never go again…..on the flip side I might LOVE it and then go every week and this may just be the kick start to an incredible weight loss journey!

So…..there you have it. I am branching out of my comfort zone all thanks to a little bit of confidence from a photo shoot. How insane is that! 

Love

Emma xx

My Biggest Enemy

I have one enemy in this world and its something I have hated for 10 years now, its called

Hirsutism

I have touched upon this on blogs that I have written before about my PCOS, but as it is my biggest enemy and my biggest personal issue I felt it deserved its own special time on my blog! I am unsure if my excess hair is as a result of my PCOS or if it is hereditary as there are females in my family that also suffer from this.

For those of you that dont know what Hirsutism is, it basically means excess hair in an area that women may not necessarily grow hair, which isnt exactly the most attractive thing you can have, especially as a young woman!

I have been doing some research recently to see what the causes of Hirsutism are and its actually really quite interesting and has really opened my eyes to my current diet. Basically recent studies have proven that high levels of insulin increase the development of Hirsutism, looking on good old wikipedia it does state that the above theory about insulin goes hand in hand with observations that obese women are at high risk of becoming hirsute (so basically lose some weight!!).

Now I know that Insulin has something to do with diabetes, but I am not 100% sure how the body creates insulin or how I can lower my levels of insulin to help reduce my Hirsutism. So I am going to have quick google and share what I find!

Guess what – Insulin is another bloody hormone, because I dont have too many already floating around my body! Its produced by the Pancreas to help turn sugar into engery. Another effect of insulin is to act on the ovaries to cause them to produce the male hormone testosterone.

Interestingly enough some websites claim that Insulin is the cause of PCOS, stating that women with PCOS have Insulin Resistance, meaning our bodies are resistant to the normal effect of Insulin and as a result more Insulin is produced to keep blood sugar levels normal. As a result of our bodies producing more Insulin, causes our bodies to produce more testosterone causing fewer eggs to release from our ovaries, excess hair growth and can even be the cause of weight gain!

At this point in writing this, I have changed my mind. Insulin is my enemy……Hirsutism has taken a back step, I have realised I can get rid of him when I get rid of her (Insulin)!

Its Just A Big Merry Go Round!

Its Just A Big Merry Go Round!

So to knock Insulin and Hirsutism on the head I need to figure out how to lower my Insulin levels, all websites are pointing me to 2 things, exercise and dieting. I have to admit since breaking my foot last year, the gym hasnt exactly been my top priority, but I want to reduce my Hirsutism so I need to go back, in fact I might even go tomorrow before work! Dieting…..no one likes to do it, I have been doing Slimming World on and off for a long time now, so I know what I should and shouldnt be eating, I just need to put it into practice.

Here we go again……

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Bridesmaid Duties Part 3

I cant believe how long it has been since I have written a blog about my bridesmaid duties! To be honest, there is a lot I could tell you about my duties as being Hayley’s bridesmaid and helping to organise her Hen Party in November, but she reads this and I don’t want to spoil the surprise!

However, I haven’t written this as a meaningless blog (well, some people might think it its!) as I wanted to share with you all that my bridesmaid duties have INCREASED. My cousin Trina is due to get married in July this year & originally decided that she didn’t want to have bridesmaids, so when I got a text from her on Tuesday asking if I wanted to be her bridesmaid, I couldn’t say no! I have to say, its going to be a mad few months as we need to get dresses and a hen party sorted but her laid back attitude I am sure will keep the bridal team calm!

At the moment, I am part of  2 wedding pin boards on Pinterest, trying to remember what secret I cant tell what bride and I’m not even organising the whole day!

I have to say though, although my holiday to Vegas is motivation, the fact I need to get into a bridesmaid dress in 6 months time has spurred me on and I went back to the gym tonight for the first time in over a month! I also need to get rid of my Christmas chocolates!!!

So over the coming months, I am sure there will be lots to fill you in on so keep your eyes peeled, oh and just to keep you entertained here is a gorgeous picture of me and Trina!

trina & I

Love

Emma xx

Confusing Diets & PCOS!

OK, as you know for as long as I can remember I have been on a diet of some decription – mainly Slimming World! However, I have a new issue – I have been doing SW for so long that I CHEAT and only to myself! I dont count syns, I eat more A or B options than I should and get annoyed when I dont see any results on the scales!

Recently I have been researching what diets are best for people who suffer with PCOS, as for anyone who has followed this blog from the beginning will know after reading will know that I was diagnosed with this condition when I was 16/17, so almost 10 years ago!

I have read up of the typical symptoms of PCOS and can see myself in them so much & I want to do something to reduce these for me today, tomorrow and 10 years time! Here are the common symptoms of PCOS as per the NHS Website:

irregular periods or no periods at all
difficulty getting pregnant (because of irregular ovulation or failure to ovulate)
excessive hair growth (hirsutism) – usually on the face, chest, back or buttocks
weight gain
thinning hair and hair loss from the head
oily skin or acne

What i didnt realise is the risks that having PCOS can impact, women who suffer from PCOS are more at risk of the below as well:

type 2 diabetes – a condition that causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high
depression and mood swings, as the symptoms of PCOS can affect your confidence and self-esteem
high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease and stroke
women who are overweight may also develop sleep apnoea – a condition that causes interrupted breathing during sleep

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Out of that list of 10 things, hand on heart I can say that at least 4 of those effect me and I want to do something about it, I want to be healthy for me. The big one that scares me on there is the difficulty of getting pregnant, I would love to one day (not in the near future) have a child and become a family with my significant other, but just like learning to save properly, I need to take this into my own hands and get something into action NOW!! Sitting around for the next 2 years carrying on as I am wont get me to a healthy weight range, it wont stop the excess hair growth, it wont stop my hair being thin, it wont stop my moodiness (especially about my weight) and it wont take the risk of diabetes or high blood pressure away either!

I have been looking at diets online and its really confusing, what is the best one out there and what should I be doing for me. Some of you will be reading this and saying ‘it depends on the person, different things work for different people’ and yes you are right, but unfortunately I am not the sort of person that can read a diet and go ‘Ok I know what I can/cant eat now’ I am not a good cook, so I need something written down so I know what I can and can’t do – which is why a slimming club worked for me, but I just dont think Slimming World is the right place for me at the moment.

As I write this, I have made the decision that I am going to book an appointment with my GP and get this all under control, request to see a dietician/nutrionist to help me things moving and get this show on the road! In the mean time, whilst I await an appointment (because it takes FOREVER!) I am going to cut carbs, diary & junk food out of my diet and keep exercising and just try to stay focused on the end goal. I know I can do this, I have lost the weight before I just need something or someone to help me this time…..maybe going back to Slimming World will help?!

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Plot Twist!!!

When I first started writing this post, I thought my whole life was changing and it is but not as badly as I first thought! Initially just over a week ago told me he is going to be working away almost 5hrs away up north and that he would probably be home once a month, but wanted me to come up there or us meet in the middle.

When i found out, I was devastated, I felt like our relationship was on its way to the end and that I was going to lose the most important person in my life!

However, as always things do change and his boss has managed to find them work close to London, so now instead of not seeing him at all, I will get my weekends back with him & he will become a “weekend warrior”! This will only be potentially until Christmas, then he will be working in the west country, but still able to come home at weekends. So things aren’t as bad as they first imagined!

I am a massively independent person and enjoy my own company, so this time during the week I will have I am going to try and spend more time with my girlfriends. I am also going to use the times that I am seeing Matt as goals to hit a milestone in weight loss/dropping a dress size. I want to use the time constructively in the gym and focus 100% on dieting properly and focusing, Matt &I will tend to eat out quite a bit, but this will mean I get to save money as well.

I am fully aware that we aren’t the first couple to work like this and I am pretty sure we wont be the last, so I am gonna suck it up and deal with our change in circumstances the best I can! However, those of you that get to spend every night with your significant other or get to see them more than 2 days a week – don’t take it for granted, because you never know, once day it might all get taken out from under you!

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Get It All Off My Chest!

Hello All!

I seem to have been neglecting you all for a while and I am sorry for that! My brain has been going into over drive recently with lots of things whizzing around that I am trying to make sense of! I won’t bore you with the details, actually I think I will!

As you have probably guessed I LOVE to do my nails and whilst I was hunting round various Sephora stores in Rome, I thought to myself “oooh I want to get a home gel kit” which then turned into “oooh maybe I go back to college and learn how to do nails and maybe do it as a side business”. I have researched various different course and companies and looked at all the start-up costs, but realistically I would be spending out approx £1000 until I have either fully trained myself up and got all my equipment and then is it really worth it? Would I get the business? Would I still love doing nails if I did it up to 10 times a week? At the moment, it’s a no; I have managed to talk myself out of it. It’s still very much in the back of mind and maybe something that I do look at in the new year – I think I need to stop being so negative about it and just actually do something for me once in a while!

I have closed a door in my life that I was keeping ajar as a “just in case”, that clearly wasn’t worth leaving open. The only thing about that is that I am going to have to amend my bucket list – what with I’m not sure – but I will keep you updated!

I have also been looking into my finances and trying to make sure that I can actually start saving for a mortgage, I started doing really well, then I brought Little Dot and went on holiday, but I have started again and I have been looking into fixed savings accounts where I can’t touch the money for 2 years. I am pretty jam packed for the next couple of weekends so on my next free Saturday I am going to go into all the banks and see what they can offer me so I can start properly getting my finances in order!

I have been thinking about my bucket list and some of the things I have left, mainly learning Yoga or Pilates/reach size 12/run the race for life. As I broke my foot I haven’t been to the gym for some time and I was planning to go back this week but I recently got an email from my gym to say they were closing the gym for 10 days due to an upgrade! So I am going back 1st September and I am going to GO FOR IT. We have 8 months till Vegas, so 8 months to lost about 1/1.5 stone and tone up. I can do it!

Phew that felt good to get things off my chest!