I was very active at school and was always running around engaging in different sports. I was even Games Captain three of those years. But when I got my first job as a cashier in supermarket while doing my A levels, I started to spend my money on sweets and chocolate. The weight crept up on me and even though I’m a tall woman – 5ft 8in to be exact – the weight showed and I became FOUR stones heavier.
My university years that followed were to become a misery as I didn’t want to go out and party because I was fat. It was only until my final year when I was totally fed up and sick of crying myself to sleep, I decided to lose weight. So through eating as healthy as I could and walking, I finally shed the weight over the course of a year.
But I was still not happy. I began doing chronic cardio and obsessed over counting calories. I also didn’t have a toned physique like I wanted but had no idea how to get one. It was when I watched Jodie Marsh’s body building transformation documentary, I decided to let go of all my excuses and go for it.
As a health, fitness, lifestyle and travel writer, I knew I had my work cut out and so I would need a good trainer that could understand the constraints of my work. Luckily I found Personal Trainer Ryan Phillips through a mutual friend who said he was happy to help me. We had to train remotely because Ryan lives in Hungary and with my travelling it didn’t matter where either of us lived. At the end of the day you can be given the tools but the effort has to be put in by you.
I wanted the body of a lean athlete I saw in fitness magazines so Ryan devised an eating plan and workout programme accordingly. For the first time I was eating clean – no processed foods – and not having to calorie count. My diet was high in protein and healthy fats. At the weekends I relaxed a little and increased my carb intake with sweet potato, quinoa and bulgar wheat. Closer to the competition date, we included a fast day on Mondays to boost my fat loss. My training involved lifting heavy weights with very little cardio. Initially I really thought I was going to struggle with the eating plan because I have an extremely sweet tooth. My trainer said that it would help if I included a protein shake straight after my sessions. With so many on the market it took me ages to choose the right one that was low in carbs and high and protein and above all didn’t taste foul. It wasn’t until I went to BodyPower that I discovered the Smart-tec range of protein supplements that I knew I would keep on track. They were delicious, filling and so thick even when mixed with water. I even make protein cakes with them!
We tracked my progress through calliper tests and took pictures and you could see the fat levels gradually reduce. Within just four months, I saw amazing results and I decided to step on stage for my first UKBFF bikini competition. I didn’t place but considering it was my first competition, I didn’t look out of place either!
I’m continuing with my body sculpting goal as transforming the body takes time. But with the support of my trainer Ryan, I know I will eventually get there. If it wasn’t for him, I never would have the courage to stand on stage in front of hundreds of people in my bikini! For Ryan’s training advice visit his website.