Begin at the end.
This sentence seems to keep popping back on my brain sparker
(fyi it's an app that gives you provocative quotes and questions).
This specific one has come up at random many times in the past eight weeks, but i guess only now with hindsight i understand what it means to me.
17TH APRIL 2017 is a date i won't forget and i will be glad my timehop will have this popping up every year. It's the day i started this leg of my fitness journey aka Operation Body Transformation lol & something else.
I had been eyeing up this particular online course for a while for many reasons- i trusted it would give me results and i wanted to re-focus my training and nutrition.
Being ACCOUNTABLE in fitness, weight loss, body building and LIFE is fundamental for growth and development. I had spent far too long hiding behind my own excuses and self pity.
It was simply time for action.
What better way to make myself accountable than to sign up to a journey i would need to check in for, is very public as it is shared within a group of fellow trainees (what goes on in the group stays in the group thou), and, last but not least, telling literally EVERYBODY i know that i was going to do it.
That way i had enough motivation to keep going and seeing it through till the end.
This was intended as a physical transformation by all means but has taught me more about myself than any other process so far. No kidding. My mind just went places i cannot even begin to explain, although of course i will try to with this reflective piece *sits hand on chin, pensively lol*.
THESE ARE THE AFTER THOUGHTS, THE REFLECTIONS I HAVE MADE OVER A WEEK AGO DURING AN EMOTIONAL POWER WALK AT THE PARK.
"I had to break myself down to build myself up again 💔💝".
This is me but when i set my mind to something, i kind of develop tunnel vision.
Blinkers up and plow through kinda attitude. Which combined with my tendency to stress and isolate, meant i almost outright refused to socialise outside of the gym, especially the past four weeks. Eye on the prise! But you need the RIGHT social interactions to make sure you don't loose your marbles. People that SUPPORT YOU no matter what are precious as diamonds. I am lucky enough to have found a squad that does just that. Without their patience, encouragement and support, i would have been toast.
Not everyone, even your nearest and dearest will get your why (and they don't have to), but keeping it social & having support is key to success.
Not only because this challenge meant a hell of a lot to me personally, but also because i was met with some resistance from nearest and dearest about losing any more weight.
And i let it bother me.....big time, like slapping da bass level, some people haven't been around at all and others just did not get it (TRIGGERED TO F*$).
I hit many walls along the way.....which almost broke me
A friend passed away first week of the challenge. My sadness cannot compare to his loss, i found in this horrible tragedy a chance to understand you have to LIVE TO THE FULLEST. Cliche? Maybe. Nevertheless a kick up this arse for me.
I had the flu straight after that, which meant i didn't feel like eating and shouldn't have trained either. LEARN TO REST.
I had the opportunity to attend one of the biggest fitness events in London, which of course i did and in those four walls on my hotel bedroom i experience the loneliest, saddest and damn right excruciating days of of my life. I grieved. A lot. I felt so lost and a despair i cannot put into words.
LEARN TO SHARE. Sometimes being in your head, can be a scary place. Share with your closest friends; let them help you. I'll say no more about this, but there is someone out there who cares about you very much, who cannot do anything to help you if you don't let them in. Thankfully for me, i have a squad of incredible women, you know who you are, that saw me through it. LEGENDS.
I turned 38 which meant CHEESECAKE (and i had a wicked time that week :D)
Work skyrocketed and it was hard to keep up with all demands that this kind of process required.
GET PREPPED AND PLAN AHEAD.
PREPPING MEALS helps keep you on track, reduces temptation to binge and helps when you are busy as hell to always have something ready, nutritious and on macros to sustain your workouts.
PLANNING SESSIONS, especially when you are busy busy busy, helped me by having something to look forward to after work & organise my time.
I'll admit, i had to learn pretty fast to adjust the plan (you know them late nights working, random curveballs), but a plan gives you clarity and ironically a lot of flexibility.
I am not ashamed to admit, i wanted to quit so many times i cannot even begin to tell you.
But quitting was all i had done in my life. So what if, for once, i would truly COMMIT and SEE IT THROUGH?
Can't say i quite simply picked myself up, dusted myself off and kept going.
Once again, the team came to the rescue and got me back on track.
But i can honestly say the past two weeks in particular have been a daily challenge to just get to the gym and getting it done.
NO WALK IN THE PARK....WELL SOMETIMES
When all is said and done, besides the amazing team, a weird competitive spirit, stubbornness & recklessness lol, POWER WALKS have helped immensely in sorting my funks out.
I took great pleasure and solace in exploring. I am lucky enough to have woods & parks for miles.
You can wonder off in your own little world & reflect, can be fairly low intensity (depending on pace), but is extra cardio and a very pleasant one at that.
This post is the product of a power walk a week ago, at a particular low point.
There is so much power to be gained in self knowledge & reflection.
Walking just helped re-organise thoughts and was good for the souls.
To date my favourite three and most powerful, game changing walks have been:
a canal walk, the staff day out in the woods and last sundays' park exploration.
I would advise everyone to take power walks to clear the head, get more exercise in and just be at peace with yourself in your busy schedules. It works.
You need to be CONSISTENT with your TRAINING.
Cardio and weights both played a huge part in the transformation up to this point.
Easy enough on the cardio, with the squad support HIIT on the menu a minimum of 4 times a week.
HIIT & WEIGHTS ❤️❤️❤️ are what built this body & will keep on building it.
They are both important and have numerous benefits.
- Burns a gazillion calorie! During and after- in fact, it helps burn calories up to two hours after training;
- improves overall cardio fitness;
- boosts your endurance;
- it's challenging as hell;
- it can be a very sociable experience, especially at my club, where being a team is the fundamental principle of the classes
I have had positive feedback about the shape i am in and get asked a lot how i do it.
The answer remains the same every time, HIIT and WEIGHTS, to which i had women come out with the below statement, more times than i can count:
'WEIGHT TRAINING MAKES YOU BULKY & MASCULINE'
And to this day i do not get how, with all the free information we have at our disposal, still have folk say that weight training is bad for women. Can't really get my head round it. The proof is in the Kiki pudding. I lift. I have lost and will be losing weight & gain muscle. But just in case you are on the fence....
Weights tone you up, make you strong, help develop lean muscle which in turn speeds up your metabolism which helps you lose weight & most importantly body fat. ❤️❤️
Do you see where i am going with this
>>>>WEIGHT TRAINING IS GOOD FOR YOU<<<<
Ladies, get over your fears and join us in the weights areas of your gym!
Trust me, you will be Queens: STRONG, HEALTHY & EMPOWERED.
During the course of the weight training, i have upped my dumb bell weight to between 16kg-20kg depending on exercise, i am now back to barbell shoulder pressing 30kg (no smith machine in sight), my squat is at 90kg PB of two reps and most of all i have discovered kickbacks for glutes and calf raisers killing sets! I simply ❤️❤️❤️weights!
DISCLAIMER** You don't have to love either of the above. Training should be a pleasure and something you enjoy, not a massive chore. You love team sports, go and do those. Crossfitter? Go for it. Marathon runner. Hell i couldn't do it!
DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY AND YOU LOVE,
because you are more likely to stick to plan and see some serious progress.
There's no point in lifting if you hate it and put no effort in to it.
Same goes for any other form of physical activity you are not too keen on.
But if you COMMIT, you gotta GET IT DONE!
AT TIMES, you will have to rely on just GETTING IT DONE, even if you don't want to.
It takes guts to turn up at every session, in whatever state you are in and getting it done.
Every time i felt like i had no will left in me, i was lucky enough to have a team that pulled me through it (SQUAD GOALS EVERY TIME!!!!), made me snap out of it and kept me sane.
A REFLECTION ON TIME
8 WEEKS are enough time to see considerable results, depending on your goals, intensity of training, nutrition, events out of your control.
BUT. It can take and will take more TIME than you anticipated. I have made so much progress and learnt so much about nutrition, training smarter and have acquired so much knowledge i can honestly say, only time will be required to keep progressing in building my body & clearly, improving my mindset.
AND THAT'S OK.
At first i saw the 8 weeks as be all end all type of scenario. Now, i have learnt it will take more time, determination and hard work but that is fine by me because i found something i genuinely truly LOVE TO DO!
So you are not on point 100% of the time.
You have missed a workout. Shit happens.
Take the time that it will take to get you where you want to be.
AND THE HIGHS WILL COME TOO!
Nobody ever said this was going to be easy- it will be what YOU MAKE OF IT.
This is you VS you. No harsher critic than yourself.
BUT three weeks down the line you see the first lines on your stomach, you drop a dress size, you get another PB. YOU will feel awesome! Exactly as i did.
I was on the fence about my results, as my weight loss pretty much halted after week4.
But comparing measurements and seeing the before and after pictures, i did not do a half bad job so far lol!
The program is impeccable. The BEST DECISION i have ever made! The support, knowledge & encouragement you get from the team is off the charts!
You get what you put in. It's up to you to make it the best yet.
And for me it really was the best decision i have ever made!
START WEIGHT 76.7KG END WEIGHT 71.5KG
A nifty 5. summat kg apparently a microwave lol
(SAD STEP IS STILL THE SAD STEP AND I FIRMLY DISCOURAGE YOU TO WEIGHING YOURSELF ALL THE TIME. FULL. STOP.)
But here it gets interesting...
HIPS (they don't lie..Shakira Shakira lol)101.5cm>>>>96cm
So did it work? You can bet your sweet abs it did!
And am proud to death for seeing it through!
H A P P Y D A Y S!
Once again i learnt that it's not all about the body, but about the mind too!
Why am i sharing this with you? Because i want to inspire YOU to find your vibe in fitness & start your own personal journey.
Cause i have been through it, am going through it and will be here to support anyone wanting to begin but doesn't know quite how to. ASK. Here to help x
SO WHAT'S NEXT FOR YOURS TRULY?
Well, two weeks from now i have the Trib3 games with the squad, so all training will be focused on those pesky intervals lol
After that, a well deserved mini holiday where i'll be able to train outside and take part in a fun run on the 8th July with my Brother Luca & His better half Lucia, Run at Dawn sea front all along Jesolo's coast line.
When back, it will be business as usual here at HQ. Squad training with the Trib3 gang, more weights and yup more running, as a team we will be entering the 10k Run Mental Sheffield Charity run. So running will be on the menu massively from now on! I might actually get better at it.
Am considering another 8 weeks challenge and it will happen.
I do not yet know in which part of the journey ahead yet!
Building this new body will never be easy. It will take more time. More hard work & adjustments along the way.
I'll say this: Be relentless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire!
For me it's training, fitness and cooking up a macro storm in the kitchen.
Whatever your passions, follow them- start now, start with fear, but start.
You will never look back and you will gain so much perspective and happiness in the process.
Til' next time. This has been your KikiC beginning once again at the end xoxo