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“Girl you get real fat”!

It’s a phrase that is now as commonplace as “hello” and “good morning” – and to tell the truth, the person on the receiving end of that ‘greeting’ would perhaps rather hear hello or good morning.

It boggles the mind why we feel the need to greet someone with an unflattering comment about how they look, and more often than not, it is the women who do it – and not women who are fitness buffs either.

I said that to say that gaining weight is easy; losing it, probably the hardest thing you will attempt once you’ve passed the ripe “young” age of 30 – and more often than not, that’s when you start to notice the weight gain.

Being in the Body by Kirk and Lifestyle Body Solutions’ Want It… Live It Ultimate 8-Week Fitness Challenge, and coming at this time when Crop-Over is in full swing and my work schedule is hectic, has been a much needed stress buster and mirror of sorts for me.

Whereas I’d usually be snacking at tents and other events, I don’t anymore. If I drink, it’s very minimal and very, very seldom if I’m driving. I try to leave for late assignments having already eaten.

As Sophia, one of the gym principals explained, “The most important aspect of an exercise program is nutrition. When you think about it, you spend 30 minutes to one hour in the gym training. However, the rest of the day, it is all about what you eat, or not eat, the type of meals/snacks you consume and the quantities of such meals.”

Nutrition therefore is vital and it was the first thing they reviewed at the studio when I joined, in an effort to create the correct individual meal plan.

It meant, as I said before in previous articles, making a diary of everything I ate over the course of a week, discussing likes and dislikes with Kirk and Sophia, and also about any health issues I might have. In my case, my asthma – which really isn’t bad and which I find the more I exercise and keep to a fitness programme, the less of an issue it becomes.

Kirk and Sophia calculated the micro-nutrients required for each individual to lose weight as well as the carb, protein and fat intake also required. Plans are presented, tested and then reviewed and tweaked if necessary.

“Each person in the challenge was weighed and measured, macro nutrients calculated, etc. since most of the challengers were already in the gym, it was a matter of tweaking some that were already prepared and so far we can safely say that everyone that has stuck to it, has lost weight and/or inches,” said Sophia.

So, despite the fact that I cheat on my diet sometimes, another aspect that if you’ve been following the weekly journey you also know, I’ve been able to pull myself right back on track each time. Every now and then I need chocolate as a matter of urgency, or a glass of wine with my favourite series at night, but I try not to make it every day because it defeats the purpose of your plan and your goals for yourself.

In my original assessment for the programme, when I stepped on the scale I almost screamed… [actually maybe Donna can remind me if I did]. I could not believe I was 148 pounds. I felt like 148 because I could see it in my back and stomach, and definitely in my clothes.

So imagine my delight this morning when the digital scale declared I have lost almost 10 pounds in seven weeks, weighing now 139.4 pounds. I now have extra room in my jeans and can fit back into a few I’d almost thrown out. My goal for the challenge was to lose between 10 lbs and 15 lbs before I started concentrating on maintaining, and I’m almost there.

My gym buddy Kathy says she hasn’t lost weight, but she’s lost inches and for the first time wore a dress, instead of the customary roomy skirt suit to work yesterday. Kudos to you Kath, we’re almost there!

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