So here it is, my first Flex Food and Fitness blog. :-) I thought I should introduce myself properly, so here goes...
I'm a single mum of two beautiful, bright, smart, and funny kids... and boy (and girl!) do they keep me on my toes! So I know how difficult it can be to juggle priorities. Recently single and initially panic stricken at the thought of being the main responsible parent (gulp!) I was determined to do anything within my power to make sure I was in a position to nurture my kids right through to adulthood. My mortality suddenly hitting me right between the eyes. Coming up to 40?! wta.... ?! Isn't that middle age? Is it all down hill from here? Bits falling off and stopping working and stuff?! OMG!!! Okay, panic over. Get your shit together Doyle.
Acknowledgement: I'm not as fit and healthy as I could be
Plan: Get healthier, get fitter, be a healthier and fitter role model for the kids.
Let's do this!
Now don't get me wrong, I've always liked fitness, I've been a religious gym goer for years, it's my therapy. I need the hour to think, chill out, wind down, de-stress... whatever you want to call it... working out, raising my heart rate and working out some issues in the gym has always been what works for me. However I've struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember with one fad diet after another, losing a bit but gaining back some more, and working it off at the gym, but I never really knew what I was doing. I never really took the time to understand how it worked or how to be smart with my body before. Until it was catapulted much higher up my priority list!
So here I was, just about to turn 40, divorcing (amicably I may add), with two gorgeous kids, a mortgage, a full time job and not really feeling I was as fit and healthy as I could be. I drank too much at weekends, which made me feel pretty rubbish for a couple of days after usually. I comfort ate on occasion and although 60% of my diet was okay, I could have made much better choices.
I was already on my journey to drop the baby weight from pregnancy number two when I met my partner Dan, who's the smartest Personal Trainer I know. We had loads in common, but health and fitness was clearly something that we both enjoyed and were incredibly passionate about. Training together and talking about our passion ignited a fire within me ... and realfitnessclaire (IG) was born.
Over the next year I learned more about health and fitness, from Dan and others online, I read lots, I worked harder, my nutrition improved considerably... my diet is much cleaner now and my training got a whole lot smarter. The result over the last 12 months was over 30 lbs in weight dropped and a considerable change in my appearance, attitude, motivation levels, health, fitness and self esteem. Yeah, yeah... that old chestnut... self esteem issues yada yada yada. Let me tell you...having never lifted a weight of any substance in my life I was astonished to find how empowering training smarter with weight training is. The confidence that body fitness and strength gives you is incredible. My varied training routine includes quite a bit of strength training and so although I have way more definition now than I've ever had, and am gaining strength by the day, I also feel so much stronger and more confident in other areas of my life, at work, in general, feeling like I'm doing a good job with the kids... it really does cut across every area of your life.
People began to ask how I did it, and to help them do it too. I was encouraged to share my journey, share my tips and so this is me, realfitnessclaire, taking a step in to philanthropy.
My kids and the results that I get both physically and mentally are the main things that motivate me to live a sustainable healthy lifestyle. I DON'T do fad diets (yuk!), I DON'T live in the gym, I DON'T have to force myself to exercise because I do the things I enjoy and I understand how my body reacts to the food I put in it and how much I really need to sustain my lifestyle and the activities I want to engage in. I eat really well, I have the treats I want to have when I want to have them, I understand the impact all of that has on my body and I train hard with a varied range of activities because I enjoy it.
Being fit and healthy need not equate to misery and a life of restrictions. I employ flexible food and fitness principles and these are the principles and experiences I'm going to share with you.
I'm excited to say I'm embarking on some practical and academic training to provide me with the knowledge to support my experience in the health and fitness industry! So watch this space!