I’m always leaving things until the last minute. I’ve spent the last five years since I met my future husband getting very comfortable. A little too comfortable.
I’ve been promising myself since the pounds started piling on that I would start a diet on Monday.(We always want to start it on Monday :))) )
Over the years I have signed up at various gyms with wavering levels of commitment but have never stuck to one plan.
Just over twelve weeks before wedding, I gave up giving up and decided that from that point on until my wedding day, I would be working on my diet and exercise regimes to get back to the body that I desired.
This journey was not about weight loss, it was about happiness and wellness. I wanted to feel confident walking down the aisle and posting an inevitable bikini snap shot on Instagram on my honeymoon.
Also, I wanted this to be a lifestyle change. I know fad-diets don’t stick because I’ve tried them. However, I’m no fitness guru, I knew I needed help, so I turned to a fitness studio and a nutritionist in Swansea.
The studio I started attending is Sweat22 Fitness Studio, which can be found on Marinaside Crescent in Yaletown, Vancouver. They are no ordinary gym. They use (EMS) electrical muscle stimulation. Basically, you wear a suit during a workout that sends electrical pulses to your muscles making them work harder. According to Sweat22 Fitness Studio you only need to do 22 minutes for EMS training twice a week. A claim I now can vouch for.
On the nutritional side of things , also, they introduced me to their Nutritionist who had my body composition assessed housed within Sweat22 Fitness Studio (Sweat22 Fitness Studio uses one of the most new technology for body assessment as well) , who helped me a lot during this journey . I became part of their Life TRANSFORMATION program, which involved being part of an Email support group and having access to nutrition plans and recipes.
So, I gave myself a challenge, to get as fit as possible before the wedding, but in order to show the difference and changes, there had to be some pictures. My journey started, but standing in the middle of Vancouver, in a glass fronted studio in shorts and sports bra. It was really scary but seeing the photos and hearing my vital statistics shocked me into motivation.
I am 29 years old and this was the biggest I had been in my life. I used to be under 70 kg, but I’d managed to feed my way to 74kg .
At Sweat22 Fitness Studio , they get more than just measuring you with a tape measure and looking at your physical weight – they give you a full body analysis which includes telling you how much of your weight is just fat that can be lost.
Mine made for some shocking reading. Of course, everyone needs some fat in their body, but I had 3.75 st of it. But the worst statistic of all was my metabolic age. In summary, this is how old your body is when digesting and processing food – I was 39 – a whole ten years older than where I should be. What had I been doing to myself?
It just goes to show, you do not need to be morbidly obese to be putting your body through a time of it. I wanted to make sure that I was back in my 20s in time for the wedding.
On top of going to Sweat22 Fitness Studio twice per week, I tried to do come cardio training whenever I could. The professional EMS at Sweat22 Fitness Studio encourage me to go for a run over my lunch break. I set myself another challenge – to be able to run 5 km by the end of the 12 weeks. I have never been a runner, so this would be quite a big deal for me.
To say I was daunted at the start is an understatement, so much to try and achieve and I was piling the pressure on myself. On top of this, I was working lots, commuting lots, and trying to organize a wedding.
Out of everything, Sweat22 Fitness Studio was probably the easiest part of my lifestyle change. Although the workouts were hard, they were over before you knew it in 22 minutes, and I did not even have to take my gym kit. The beauty of Sweat22 Fitness Studio is that you can just show up in whatever you are wearing or even walk in having worn the start kit. You can leave your desk at lunch, and be back half an hour later having completed your week’s workout.
In terms of food, the first week was detox; no dairy, no red meat, no sugar, no carbs, nothing processed, just lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and obviously no booze. This was a shock to the system that I desperately needed.
After the first week I saw initial bloating reduce and foods were slowly introduced back into my diet, starting with dairy and carbs. Following the nutrition and meal plan recommendations from the EMS trainers at Sweat22 Fitness Studio, preparation over the 12 weeks was key. I would prepare lunches and breakfasts a few days in advance and leave dinner to each night. My rule was to only have carbs if I had worked out that day, and it seemed to work.
During the three-month period I probably lost most of the weight in the first 6 weeks and felt as though I was making little progress. However, the scales may not have been changing at all, but the body measurements were getting better each week.
12 hard weeks later and the results are in. I have lost weight, but my main question was whether I had managed to turn back time with my metabolic age. I was now weighing in with a metabolic age of 29.
My wedding dress when I bought it, it was a size 14, but in the last week it had to be taken in 2.5 inches each side. I feel as though I have so much more energy and I’m fitting in dresses that haven’t seen the light of day for three years.
This is just the beginning, I still want to tone my arms and stomach more, but I want to carry on feeling this way. My next aim is to continue my sessions at Sweat22 Fitness Studio twice a week and to run farther. I managed to get to the 5 km mark by week 9, so now I’m starting to push myself towards 10 km thanks to Sweat22 Fitness Studio for helping me build stamina and endurance.