A year in reflection

When I stepped on the scale in January 2017, I nearly had a heart attack when I saw the numbers settling down. You know what I mean… The numbers seem to go a bit crazy before you realise you should stop moving – and then they stop. But you get off, tap the scale with your toe to reset it, and then step on again. Because of course the first reading was wrong… right? Well, mine stopped at 107.4kg. And it stopped there again. And again. And boy, was it a wake-up call. Someone asked me if that’s the heaviest I’ve been, and honestly, I don’t know. But I do know that it’s the heaviest I have a record of being. That number felt like a scarlet letter. A sign of shame. It reminded me of going bungee jumping and having my weight written on the back of my hand. I was even heaviest of the lot…

It was on that day in January 2017 that I – with the support of my hubby and my friend – started the Sleekgeek 30-day reboot programme. For the next 30 days there would be no alcohol. No processed food. No sugar. No legumes. No grains and no dairy. And while I anticipated it would be tough… and possibly life-changing … I never thought I’d be where I am 11 months later: 33kg lighter, passionate about health and fitness, starting a blog about it – and having so much fun.

While that 30-day reboot will have a whole post dedicated to it, what I will reveal here, is that the first 10 days were HARD. So hard, in fact, that I vividly recall days 1, 5 and 10 as being the hardest. The sugar withdrawal was so tough that I scolded myself for each time I had rolled my eyes when someone referred to sugar as being addictive. During reboot I also learned to read labels and let me leave you with this warning: there is sugar in the most unlikely of places!

Being January, there were parties, family gatherings, warm weather and the last lingerings of the summer holiday – and we rebooted through all of that. What were we thinking?! But, it was after about two weeks on the programme that I realised I could stick with a Paleo eating plan, on which reboot is based, and that’s when I decided to stop thinking of it as a short-term diet, but as a sustainable lifestyle plan.

Don’t think of it as a diet. It’s a lifestyle…

After 30 days I had lost 7kg and first said something which I have since repeated many times over: “There is nothing that motivates you more to lose weight, than actually losing weight.” So I kept at it. I ate clean and trained occasionally. I drank lots of water and started consciously focusing on portion sizes and how I felt as I made my way through the food on my plate. When you’re trying to lose weight, you’ll hear lots of people advising to “eat until you’re 80% full”, but the problem is, when you’re used to overeating, you don’t know what 80% feels like… And so, that’s one of the things I had to learn very early on in my journey – to listen to my body. Listen for when it tells you it’s had enough to eat. Listen when it tells you that it’s in pain. Or that it’s tired.

And try to understand when your body doesn’t co-operate with your weightloss goals.

You’re not going to lose weight all the time.

The sooner you learn to accept and deal with that, the happier you will be.

Also. Keep showing up. Even when it’s tough. Even when you’re feeling demotivated. Even when you’re angry with the numbers on the scale.

And don’t wait until tomorrow.

Just start.

Take the first step. Because that’s where it starts.

And because: Everything. Is possible.