When I first ever attempted to lose weight, I subscribed to the 'eat less, move more' philosophy - The law of thermodynamics. Unfortunately this never worked long-term for me. Like most I quickly realised that the less I ate, the less I could eat in order to maintain my fat loss. And by the time I was down to only eating 600 kcals and exercising 3 hours a day I knew I couldn't work, much less live like that and gave up - like most!
After trying and failing so many times - in my opinion calorie restrictive diets, aimed at or promising rapid weight loss, are just not sustainable long-term! My body goes into starvation mode because I'm eating less than normal. So if I eat 1200 kcals a day, I'll have to eat that forever to maintain whatever weight loss I achieve. This is because, if I go up to eating 2000 kcals, my body will store back the fat lost, plus a bit extra, to make sure I have reserves if I ever end up starving again. I wasted years on this merry-go-round, fighting my own body's natural defenses, and as well perhaps even damaging my immune system in the process.
Luckily for me the second time I tried to drop the excess fat I got some great advice from a Personal Trainer and Health and Fitness Manager. It was simple ... 'Eat lots of clean/lean food, (eating as much as up to 2500 kcal) and build muscle mass!'.... I thought, yea right - if it was that simple everyone would be doing it... But then I did it, and 1.5 years later I had lost over 12 stone. And because I was eating enough to build muscle I was not only smaller but stronger too!
However two months ago I got busy, very busy, and as we all do sometimes, I stopped exercising as much, and fell back into bad eating habits. I ended up gaining back a stone of fat in 6 weeks...
But instead of falling into depression I felt empowered. I finally understood what I was doing wrong for my body type and my Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome condition. So I decided to make a 30-day video diary - where I'd record the progress of me getting my healthy lifestyle back on track. I'd put into action everything I've learnt - and bare all to the world. It was an opportunity, for me, to show people just how easy sustainable healthy fat loss can be! Although to be honest I wasn't sure what the outcome would be...
Day 1 and I'm full of beans. I dragged my friend along to the gym for mutual motivation and to show how I make workouts with a friend fun and interesting.
By Day 7 I remembered it could be a rocky start keeping consistent in the beginning. But I understand that a 15min walk is better than spending 15mins thinking about it! Simply doing something is better than nothing!
I felt that I was back in the swing of things on Day 10. I was focusing on regaining lost strength, and trying to build new muscle mass. Lean muscle mass not only tones you up but even when you're resting requires your body to burn calories just to keep them alive. 'Muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue, so increasing your muscle mass will help you lose weight.' It can take up to 6 weeks to gain muscle and only 3 weeks to lose it.
My Day 14 Weigh in had a few surprises... even for me! I started to remember just how easy it was to get amazing results without calorie restriction.
Day 18 was an emotionally bad day for me, I was surprised that day that I even went to the gym, but I'm glad I did as I got to take it all out of the gym's punch bag - and not myself. I learnt you can't control how people treat you but you can control how you treat yourself!
By Day 27 I was pushing my boundaries with new fitness goals like the 'One Leg Burpee' - I think this was the moment I realised again how much fitness had been the motivator for me to strive on... knowing small goals could lead to big changes.
As I reveal my final results in the last video diary installment this week, I couldn't be happier with the outcomes. I've achieved an amazing consistent fat loss, new muscle definition, and new fitness accomplishments! Even getting a new sportswear wardrobe in celebration!
All in all, for me, it was like reliving the last 2 years in just 30 days - the highs, the lows and the triumphs - except this time you can watch it all in My 30-Day Reboot!