It’s been two months since I began my weight loss journey. I’m not following any diets, any shake meal replacements, slimming world, weight watchers. None of those things. I’m just a normal person going at this and learning more and more with each step I take. I wanted a place to document all of my highs and lows, the struggles I’ve had and the achievements I’ve made and I must say, I’m really freaking proud of myself. This is the very first post and introduction for my Mirror Gets Fitter series so sit back, get comfy and let me take you through the first two months of my weight loss because we could be here a while!
This entire thing came with a little bit of an epiphany I think. Now believe me when I say that nothing in this post is me reaching out for compliments or me self pitying I want these posts to be a raw documentation of my experience so be warned, I won’t be sugarcoating my wording in these posts. It all started when I was home alone on a Friday night and I was just sat there wondering what people my age were out doing and why wasn’t I doing it. I flipped it off at first and didn’t give it much thought but my mind kept drifting back to ‘why am I not out there dating’ ‘why am I not out there partying and making new friends’. Eventually, the tears started rolling (I don’t cry, I’m really not a crier) and I just couldn’t hold back the lump in my throat as my mind admitted to myself why that is. I hadn’t realised just how low I had reached in my self esteem. I hadn’t even realised that I’d covered my full length mirror and it was collecting dust. It just hadn’t even registered with me. I thought long and hard about why I wasn’t out there doing what others are doing and meeting new people and when I finally admitted it to myself it was because I didn’t think I deserved it. I wasn’t worthy of being loved, how could anyone love me the way that I look? Why would anyone want to be my friend? I’m not anyone’s type and so on and so on. I was so shocked that I even thought that about myself as easily as I did and from that day on I decided my weight wasn’t going to be the be all and end all of my life I was going to make the best of my body, stop caring whilst in the meantime make changes I wanted to make healthily. I was going to grab life by the bollocks (I’m sure there is a better saying for that!), take every opportunity I could and I’m going to work on myself, for myself and by myself. I was going to build myself up into the person I wanted to be, the person that I know I am and there is nothing that’s going to stop me from being happy. I needed this wake up call, I really did. Since that day two months ago I haven’t gone back on my word. I will create a better version of myself and I will be proud of myself for doing so.
S T A T S
I am going to be sharing my numbers with you and my body fat percentage, muscle mass, BMI, the full Monty will be shared in these posts and I’m more than happy to do so! I will be sharing my then and now numbers and as time goes on I’ll be calculating the total losses too.
THEN (19th June 2017)
Weight: 203.3 lbs
Body Fat Percentage: 43.6%
Muscle Mass: 27%
NOW (19th August 2017)
Weight: 190.5 lbs
Body Fat Percentage: 40.5%
Muscle Mass: 28.4%
This is something that will be featured in my posts every single time I write one of these updates. I, personally want to be able to look back on this and remember these moments I worked my ass off to better myself.
G O A L
- Drink at least a litre of water every day
- Increase my fitness levels
- Fit into a size 12-14
- I started this weighing 14.5 stone so I want to lose the 4.5 stone
I can’t tell you how much having a goal has motivated me. To have a rough (emphasis on the rough) idea of where you see yourself and what you would like to achieve. It’s important to be realistic in your goals and in the past I have set myself such unrealistic goals! Thing is, i’m short and broad with an 34E chest. I’m never going to be a size four because I need to take the fact that I have a big butt and big boobs to take into account when buying clothes! According to the crappy NHS thing I would be in the ‘VERY OBESE’ range and a person of my height should weigh 8 stone. It quite honestly makes me roll my eyes because if I followed that then it’d mean I’d have to lose a total of 6.5 stone. NO THANKYOU! I’m not going off that at all! I’ll stop when I can do a sassy dance in the mirror because I feel great, when I’ve toned my body, when I’m more in shape and when I feel comfortable in my skin. Not when the NHS deems me not so morbidly obese haha!
My Biggest Motivation
I spoke about this the other week when I was asked on Twitter what my biggest motivation is that’s getting me through the bad times. It’s something I openly spoke about on Instagram just the other week, for every two lbs i lose I put away £10-20 depending on what I can afford at the time. That money will go towards a deposit for a surgical procedure I have only dreamed and wished for since I was about 14. As mentioned above my boobs are already pretty big and I don’t wish for implants but what I do want is for my boobs not to scrape the floor every time I take my bra off. Okay, maybe a slight exaggeration Caitlin but still. My boobs have been my biggest confidence down fall and I don’t see why they should hold me back from loving my body. It doesn’t matter how many times I’m told they are fine, it’s me that has to live with two melons attached to my chest forever and it’s me who has to see them braless so I damn well want to be able to look at them and not be so disgusted. I’ve always been a big supporter of ‘if you dont like something, change it’ and since I was about 14 they just totally lost their elasticity which yes, is natural but not at my age. Those of you who replied to my Instagram stories the other week, thank you! What I’m trying to say is it’s good to have something to strive towards! Putting money away when you’ve lost pounds and things like that to help save for something you really want at the end is a big encouragement. Perhaps a deposit for a new car? Money towards decorating a room in your house? To buy yourself a new wardrobe of clothes? It could be anything that YOU want. I just knew from the moment I began this that I would be allowing myself a breast uplift when I got the 4.5 stones off. Because I didn’t want the fear of a large weight loss impacting my boobs any more than the lack of elasticity of my skin already has to hold me back in this. So knowing that even if they drop lower, sag a little more it’s okay, and don’t stop there because as soon as I hit my goal I will be rewarding myself with something that’s going to be life changing to ME.
Before & Afters | I’m a very visual person and I’ve learnt this is the same when it comes to weight loss. It’s one of my motivators, to be able to see a difference in the way that I look. Who doesn’t want that? At first I was going to take weekly photos but quickly changed my mind and decided to go for monthly. I had no idea what an impact 12.8lb loss would have on my body, I am really shocked at just how much of a difference it’s made. I chose to take them in my underwear for the simple fact I wanted to be able to see exactly what difference it’s made. I promise I will be sharing my before and afters but not until I hit my goal weight. It’s a little daunting to show myself in that light to the whole world just yet so when I reach my goal I can assure you I will be doing a post dedicated to my monthly before and after photos!
Changes I Can See In My Body
- My back fat has dramatically decreased
- My butt got more shape (thankyou squats!)
- My bingo wings are slowly getting smaller and smaller
- My waist is smaller
- My belly has started getting smaller
So how have I changed the way I have been eating I hear you ask! Well, it’s pretty simple actually. I have made better choices. I give myself the this or that option when it comes to treats. I was quite bad for the whole ‘one more wont hurt’ so I say to myself you can have this as a treat or you can have that. I just pick which I want the most! I’ve added more greens into my diet but I will never be a girl who eats salad for her lunch because I just don’t like salads! Before this I probably ate two to three vegetables every now and again, my family are not big on veg at all so I never really got into it myself shamefully. I have been adding mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, sweetcorn and such into sauces whenever I can. Sauces! So I’m a big sauce girl but the issue I had was I was using pre made sauces which are actually really high in sugar, yikes! So I make sauces fresh as much as I can and I usually go for a nice and easy tomato and basil style sauce, chuck some veg in and add some tuna or mince and cook up some pasta and I have my tea and dinner for the day after! That being said, I have tried to make better choices when it comes to carbs too, I never realised how many of my meals were really high in carbs so a better choice is switching up standard pasta for wholegrain pasta and white rice for brown rice. There isn’t a massive difference in it at all in terms of taste but makes a big difference.
Breakfast | I’m really bad at eating breakfast! I get up late nearly every single day and I just don’t have time! I’ve taken to preparing overnight oats the night before with some oats, fat free yogurt and strawberries or my new favourite thing in the whole entire world are the Special K Dark Chocolate & Coconut bars which are so filling and always on offer for £1! That’s pretty much as exciting as my breakfasts get to be honest!
- I’ve actually enjoyed working out! I’d be lying if I was this enthusiastic little human that couldn’t wait to get home and work out but I must say in the second month I know that I come home, get changed, get my tea on and then off I go for 30 minutes on the treadmill and it’s become a routine I’m used to now and I quite enjoy!
- I’m willing to try new stuff! I know I’ll never be a girl who’s ready at 6am in the morning with blueberry vegan pancakes on the kitchen table, it’ll never happen! But the lack of foods I’ve tried in my lifetime is a little shocking! I’ve now tried chia seeds, various veg I’ve never tried before and I’ve been making meals I never thought I’d eat.
- Obviously the pretty big weight loss I’ve had has been an incredible achievement!
- I feel more energised! Usually in the evening after work I’ll come home, get my pjs on, hop into bed and sit watching YouTube videos and usually fall asleep. Now, I come home from work, exercise, have a shower, make my tea and then the time after that I can spend on YouTube! So I don’t lose out on anything, it just gets pushed a little later!
- I struggle most when I’m on my period. I just want to eat everything in sight that is bad for you. Give me all the sugar and all the fat and all the calories and bread when It’s that time of the month! I have quite short periods (usually about two days) so I allowed myself to have a few treats in that time knowing that if I didn’t my body would just be sluggish and i’d be a really grumpy cow. So if I wanted it so bad, I’d have it. I listened to my body and shark week is not a time to be messing with my body haha!
- When I get home from work the last thing on my mind is wanting to cook. It’s probably one of the worst struggles I’ve had. Finding that motivation to cook my tea. So on nights like this I’d made something simple like eggs, something I could put in the oven or if I knew I was busy at work the following day I would put something in the slow cooker so it was ready for when I got home.
- Constipation. Need I say more? All this change in my diet, new foods is bound to cause some kind of constipation at some point! Well, I did say this post was going to be transparent didn’t I ha! This has been much better in the second month but the first month and all the various meals I was trying did cause some constipation.
- I have the contraceptive implant which I’ve been using since I was 16 and very rarely get a period, yet I’ll always know when I would be on my period. So I get a period…without the red stuff if that makes sense! However, over the last month I have had 5 DIFFERENT occasions where I have come on full period style. I’m not sure if this is to do with my diet or not and the changes in my body but something’s going on down there and if that could stop please, that’d be wonderful! It’s only since I’ve started making these changes it’s happened so I’m putting it down to body changes!
- Money! My shopping bills have increased dramatically! My mum buys her own food and I buy mine, it’s only fair because we eat totally different things but when I wasn’t bothering with what I ate I could get away with a shop costing me £25-30 a week. Now? I’m lucky if I can get my shop less than £50-60. £20 doesn’t seem like it’d make much of a difference but I shop weekly so that means its £80 a month extra that comes out of my bank for food and it’s bloody expensive sometimes!
*This is neither a negative or a positive to me so I’ll just pop it here. Before starting this I had stretch marks which again, it’s fine and they are what they are. I had them on my hips (white ones) tummy (purple) and then some on my thighs. Since working out and losing the weight my stretch marks have dramatically increased and in the weirdest of places. I have them on the small of my back, behind my knees, my armpits, bingo wing area and my ass. I’m not surprised about them on my butt because I’ve been going to town on the squats but they are cropping up in the weirdest of places. It doesn’t make me want to stop because stretch marks are just stretch marks but they are a slight inconvenience to me haha!*
Motivation Board | Don’t mistake this for a ‘thinspiration’ board please! I had an old cork board lying about and I was sick of looking at pinterest exercises on my phone so I decided to print off a selection of before and afters of people who started at a similar body type to myself and then their after results, FIT-spiration, photos of running, glasses of water, curvy beautiful bodies that are realistic to me, a photo of some perky boobs (yep, I have a photo of boobs on my wall!) and motivational quotes too! I was bored of staring at a blank wall whilst on my treadmill but now it gives me a little colour to look at and a huge boost of motivation!
- I was aware of my capabilities and was realistic in my fitness expectations. I was willing to push myself but I knew I wouldn’t be able to run a marathon. I was honest with myself about my fitness levels.
- Cardio | I started by just doing what I could which admittedly, wasn’t very much. Walking mostly and then a little jog. As time has progressed over the two months I use a Pinterest exercise I found which is a 20 minutes HIIT treadmill work out which pushes me, but doesn’t kill me.
- Weights | I’ve been sort of doing what I’ve seen others doing. I add weights to squats to add an extra challenge and I’ll use them to work out my arms and my dreaded bingo wings!
- Squats | Squats are something that I do every day. I’ll have you know I’m rather fond of my peach and I wanted to work and make it that little rounder y’know? So I’ll do squats of different variations every day between 20-50 and more if I can but I don’t push myself too hard on it if I can’t! They’re really easy to do pretty much anywhere and give good results too!
- Resistance bands | I’ve never been drawn to them before because they remind me of old fashioned fitness work out DVDs but I saw a few exercises for them on Pinterest and my gosh let me tell you, those things are under rated! They give you a full body work out and there are so many ways to use them! Mostly I use them when I do glute bridges and squats (ha! Look at me knowing exercise lingo!)
- I try and excercise 4-5 times a week and nearly always have the weekend off because I want my weekends for getting out and about. Sometimes I do less if I’m exhausted! It’s important to listen to your own body but to push yourself too! Don’t just quit but if your body is telling you no, then listen to it!
I’m a little snack monster and a terrible boredom eater so whenever I got bored at work I would find myself reaching into my bag for a packet of crisps, and sometimes even two! If you love your crisps and you eat a lot of them let me suggest carrot sticks to you! Raw carrot batons give me the crunch I want and they are filling too and healthy! I know it’s not a packet of crisps but I try and have carrot sticks to fix the craving or I’ll treat myself to a packet of crisps and work a little harder when I get home and work out, it’s not a major deal but the carrot sticks have helped me a ton! If you do want a packet of crisps though, I would suggest quavers! They’re the lowest of the ‘real’ crisps. I can’t get on with the healthy ones and the sunbites and hoops and crosses they just aren’t the same to me and are no lower in calories than a packet of quavers which I love!
Cellulite! | I have a big butt and it’s a little on the dimply side of life and my thighs too. I’ve never really noticed it until recently and it doesn’t overly bother me but if I can take steps to get rid of it or reduce the appearance of it then I’m going to! I have been using the Cloud 9 Body Makeover Cellulite Treatment* which is a gel treatment and it has a scientifically proven thermogenic effect which increases skin temperature and boosts blood and lymph flow to the treated areas. Results can be seen after two weeks but for a significant improvement use consistently for 12 weeks. I haven’t been using this for the encouraged full 12 weeks yet but I have been using it day and night for a little over two weeks and my skin feels firmer and smoother and it’s making a great difference to my butt! It does heat up so it does give the skin a blushed look for a few moments after woods and then it fades as the gel sinks in! It’s a really cool product!
I know this was a long post but it was bound to be! I wanted to be able to cover as much as I could for those who are interested! If you have made it this far then you deserve a medal! I hope you have enjoyed the transparency and you’ve picked up some tips to maybe help yourself! If you have any tips for me then let me know in the comments below! See you again in two months with the second post!