From Fat Girl to Curvy Goddess

Embrace film in aid of the Body Image Movement Ipswich June 2017

I have been overweight for most of my adult life. As a child one of my friends Mum’s compared me to her daughter saying I was fat and her daughter was slim. For years I assumed I was fat, even though I was probably one of the smallest in my class. When I was 18 I was about 8 stone and a size eight but I still thought I was fat. More

Advertisements

Please Sir, can I have my #thyroid medicine back?

Liothyronine (T3)

EARLY 2017

I was called in to see my Dr a few weeks ago and told they could no longer supply my T3 medication as the CCG had stopped funding it due to it being so expensive. I was diagnosed with an underactive thyroid was I was 17 and I have had problems with fatigue since I was a teenager. I have never been quite right since then but I have been much better for the last couple of years and I believe that is mainly due to two things: 1) being prescribed T3 and 2) improved diet. So when I was told they were stopping my T3 I was pretty unimpressed as you can imagine.

Click here to sign my petition

More

Five Feel Good Factors for 2015

We all have times when we need a pick me up or a boost. Here are five feel good tips that I use when I need a pick me up or just generally to keep me in tip top condition, physically, emotionally and mentally.

  1. Sing

I love to sing and it puts me in a great frame of mind. I have a few songs that I sing regularly first thing in the morning to boost my spirits. My favourites include ‘Happy’ by Pharrell Williams, ‘Best Day of My Life’ by American Authors and ‘I’ve Got a Feeling’ by The Black Eyed Peas. Watch out for my ‘Music for Manifesting’ post, coming soon.

  1. Hot and Cold Shower Blast

When I finish my shower, I blast on the water as hot as I can stand, alternated with as cold as I can stand, a few times and fully immerse myself in the water. When it comes to the cold, it is a shock and if I can just stay under for a few seconds and move past the shock, the feeling is exhilarating. It’s actually quite addictive.

  1. Exercise

Yeah, yeah, I know. None of us want to exercise, least of all me and what I’ve found is that the key is to find exercise I enjoy doing.  Find an exercise that makes your heart sing. I can’t get motivated to mindlessly walk or run on a treadmill, I feel as though I might lose the will to live, so I have found exercises I love to do. My favourites are going for a run in nature or by the sea, dancing and boxing. I discovered Ceroc dancing about eight years ago. It is so much fun, a great way to get fit and I’ve also met a lot of fabulous people there. Another thing I love is boxing. I never thought I would box as I’m anti-violence and when I joined Suffolk Punch Boxing Club earlier this year I discovered that it’s not about violence at all. It’s a skillful, tactical discipline.

  1. Meditation

As with exercise, there are many different types of meditation and it’s important to find a type of meditation that works for you. I’ve tried many different kinds and there a few that I find really beneficial. One of my favourites is the Unfolding Enlightenment mediation facilitated by Robina Hearle and Sue Stoddard, which I do with Robina at Rose Cottage, as well as listening to the CD at home.

  1. Sea Salt Bathing

I love to swim in the sea. It is such an amazing feeling and I do it whenever I can. When it’s too cold to swim in the sea, I have a bath at home with sea salt or Epsom salts and lavender oil. I fully immerse myself, including my head and hair, in the water. Salt water is healing and cleans negative energy.

So my new year’s resolution is to love myself more and do things that make me feel good. What are your feel good factors for 2015?

Learning to Love Myself Chocolate Truffles (dairy free, gluten free, sugar free)

This recipe is delicious and quick and easy to make.

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup cacao or cocoa
  • 4 Tbsp rice malt syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

Melt the coconut oil and add the rice malt syrup and vanilla extract. Whisk and add the cacao cocoa powder. Whisk occasionally while pouring into mini muffin or cup cake cases. Cool for 30 minutes in the freezer.

Keep in the fridge, otherwise they will melt.

Learning to Love Myself Pancakes (dairy free, wheat free, sugar free)

photo (24)

Makes approximately nine pancakes

Ingredients

¾ cup of wheat free flour

1/3 cup of rice milk

4 tbsp rice malt syrup

3 eggs

Pinch of sea salt (optional)

Blueberries and strawberries to serve

Method

Beat the eggs. Add the flour, salt and milk and mix well. Add the rice malt syrup and mix again. Heat a little coconut oil in a small omelette pan. Once the coconut oil has melted, pour in a small amount of the mixture, enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Cook until golden brown (not long) on the bottom and then flip, using a fish slice or spatula, to cook the other side. Leftover mixture can be stored in the fridge and used the next day. Make sure to give it a good stir again after taking it out of the fridge. Serve with blueberries and strawberries.

It’s not a diet. It’s a decision.

Before

After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My experience with Clean 9.

Earlier this year I was diagnosed with M.E. / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. After having problems with fatigue for over 20 years, since I was a teenager, I knew that I needed to change my lifestyle and start taking better care of myself. As it turns out the fatigue was caused by not being on the right medication for my hypothyroidism and not chronic fatigue at all. Although I am feeling better since being on different thyroid medication, I am still not quite right and I know that taking better care of myself will help.

I know from experience that dieting doesn’t work. I have only been able to stick to a diet once. I lost nearly three stone on weight watchers, but I put it all back on again and more. I used to binge eat and I turned to Overeaters Anonymous (OA) for support. I found OA helpful for a while, but ultimately, continually focusing on overeating and my problems (i.e. focusing on what I didn’t want) was counterproductive.

Over the last two or three years I have started to change the way I eat. My motivation was to improve my health and if I also lost weight it was a bonus. I cut right down on sugar, dairy and white flour and increased my intake of fruit and vegetables. I found some great recipes for sugar free, wheat free and dairy free chocolate and cakes.

One thing I did discover during my time in OA was that I associated food with love. For me they are the same. My parents weren’t very loving when I was a child and they showed love through food. My Mum, Grandma and step-Mum were all good cooks and were often baking cakes. My Mum wouldn’t let us have sweets, sugar or sugary drinks, but we were allowed chocolate. When we used to visit Dad on alternate weekends he would give us 50p each to buy sweets and we would buy two chocolate bars and a selection of penny chews with what was left over.

I thought that one way of ‘learning to love myself’ was to treat myself as I would want a lover to treat me and so I ‘wined and dined’ myself. I would have a kind of date night at home, which usually involved TV, pizza, a tub of ice cream and a bottle of wine. I thought I was loving myself, but actually I was just filling the void. When I realised that I associated food with love, I started to have more awareness around this behaviour. Now I have a date night where I cook myself and my inner child something healthy and delicious and really nurture the two of us.

Despite all of this, I still find it hard to stick to eating healthily. I am definitely getting better all the time, it’s just taking a bit longer than I expected. Earlier this year I asked the universe for a way to help me to get motivated to improve my lifestyle and shortly afterwards I started training for a boxing match, which was just the incentive I needed. I loved the training. It was great fun and with the help of my awesome coach, I achieved things I never thought possible. Unfortunately, I had to pull out after about 8 weeks or so, as I fractured my ankle. As soon as my ankle is better I will be back at the gym.

One of the other things that has helped me tremendously is starting my new health and wellness business and discovering the power of Aloe Vera. I drink Aloe Vera everyday and take supplements that help with my energy levels. I recently tried the ‘Clean 9’ programme to clean out my digestive system and improve my health even more, hopefully with the added bonus of weight and inch loss.

I couldn’t do the Clean 9 exactly as per the instructions as I am intolerant to soya and was unable to drink the shakes, so I bought all the other products separately. For the first two days all I ate was fruit and vegetables, along with a whole lot of aloe vera and supplements. The natural supplements are designed to help you recognise when you’re full and boost your metabolism. I was surprised to find that I didn’t feel hungry and when I did, I filled up on grapes. In the first two days I lost three pounds. Unfortunately I didn’t stick to the programme properly and I put that three pounds back on by the end of the nine days. The mistakes I made was that I ate too many carbs, went over my calories and didn’t do enough exercise. I also didn’t prepare well enough for it. As I’ve been eating healthily for sometime I thought I could get away without doing the pre-cleanse and I was wrong. Having said all that, by the end of the nine days I felt amazing. I have learnt from my mistakes and I will be doing the Clean 9 again soon and this time I will be doing it properly, because I deserve it.

Since I changed my eating habits two years ago I have lost one and a half stone, one stone of which has been since July 2014, when I started my boxing training. I am passionate about continuing to improve my health and getting slimmer. I would also like to help others do the same.

Please click here to join our group on Facebook to share ideas, support and ask questions.

The Health Experiment – Part Two

2013 was a tough year for me. I was physically and emotionally exhausted and endured a steep learning curve. In 2014, I have completely turned my life around. I attribute this to the help I have received from my Nicherin Buddism practice, 12 step programmes, TFT with Val Chater, White Light healing from Robina Hearle, life coaching with Katrina Love, business coaching with Suzanne MacDonald Carr, drinking Forever Freedom aloe gel and most importantly, through my own determinations.

After having problems with fatigue since I was a teenager, I was finally able to see a specialist earlier this year, who diagnosed me with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, also known as ME. Ironically, due to all the personal development work and spiritual practices I’d been doing, coupled with healthy eating and exercise, I felt better than I had for a long time. I was convinced I was on the wrong thyroid medication and when I was diagnosed with ME, I was scared the doctors would use the diagnosis to fob me off and I would never get my thyroid sorted out. As it turned out though, this caused the doctors to investigate my thyroid further – I’d been asking them to do this for many years. As a result of these investigations, I was put on T3 as well as T4, which was something else I’d been asking the doctors to do for some time.  The ME doctor later decided I had Chronic Stress Syndrome rather than Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I had a tendency to get tired due to excessive stress and worry, trauma from an unhappy childhood, and being estranged from my family as an adult.

Although I was beginning to feel a lot better, I was still prone to bouts of fatigue and I knew my eating and exercise habits still left a lot to be desired. I found it difficult to get motivated to eat healthily and exercise and so I used my Nicherin Buddism practice and chanted for inspiration. Within a short space of time, I began life coaching with Katrina Love, who worked with me on improving my self-esteem. She also asked me to complete a food diary. At about this same time, I saw a Facebook advert for complete beginners to train to take part in a charity boxing match, placed by fitness coach and owner of Suffolk Punch Boxing Club, Matt Brennan, whom I’d met previously through my business coach, Suzanne MacDonald Carr.

I have always been against boxing due to my passion for peace and non-violence, but when I saw the ad, excitement stirred inside me. I knew this was something I had to pursue and was the incentive I needed. As I said to Matt, “If I can do it, anyone can do it!”

I had to attend a trial and I half-expected to be unsuccessful due to being overweight and extremely unfit. To my delight, the first exercise we had to do was skipping. I loved skipping as a child and I thought it would be easy. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as easy as I remembered and I couldn’t do it at first, but I was determined and soon got the hang of it. The trial was hard, although not as hard as I expected. Later in the week, Matt told me I had been accepted for the training and my fitness would be monitored to ensure I was fit enough to fight.

The first class was demanding and after a few minutes of skipping, we had to do what trainer Rob Hodgkins called ‘The Magic 600.’ To my horror, this consisted of 300 jumping jacks, 200 thigh burners and 100 push-ups! This was tough and I nearly walked out. I didn’t manage to do the magic 600, but I have completed them every time we’ve done them since.

I expected to be a long way behind everyone else and to my surprise, although I am at the bottom of the class, I am not far behind. The only explanation I can think of is I’ve been drinking Forever Freedom aloe gel for a few months now, which helps improve stamina and has other health benefits.

I absolutely love the training. Although it is hard work, it is incredibly fun. Rob is a good laugh and keeps us entertained, while at the same time pushes us to our limits. The other members are friendly and supportive. The classes usually involve lots of well-intentioned banter. I still have a long way to go, but I am the fittest I have ever been after only a few weeks of training. I am even fitter now than when I completed a 10K run seven years ago.

The toughest class so far was last week when Rob pushed me to my limits. Although I’m glad he pushed me hard, I got overwhelmed by a mixture of adrenaline and exhaustion and ended the class in a heap on the floor, sobbing my heart out.

Overall, I am having the time of my life and people keep telling me I am glowing. I am determined to be fit enough to take part in the match. I don’t care about winning. For me, just taking part is a huge victory.

Tickets will be on sale soon.

To sponsor me please click here.

%d bloggers like this: