Sweat Fridays… or is that everyday?

So this is a pretty personal one for me so be nice…. Anyone who follows me on twitter or instagram will see that I often post updates about food and fitness.

I exercise a lot. A typical week sees me workout with a trainer three times week. Sessions are broken down into one leg training day using gym machines and resistance training, one upper body day doing a mix of weights circuits and tabatha training and one high intensity circuit training day that trains all body and almost kills me. My trainer usually keep this for a Friday and we joke about #sweatfridays!

On top of that I run three times a week for cardio. Usually one long run, one mixed tempo run and one interval run. I usually do a quick ten minute ab routine myself at home 3/4 times a week.

Let me tell you that exercise does not come easily to me. I’m not coordinated and I have a whole back catalog of horrible childhood memories of not being good enough on the sports  field and being last to be picked for any teams. I always tried to get out of doing PE because of it. Teenagers are mean. I wasn’t fast, was a little over weight and got no encouragement from teachers. Irish schools can be a pretty isolating experience.

In college I gained a lot of weight. Nights out, bad food choices and sugary alcoholic drinks meant that by the time I was graduating I tipped the scales at over 16 stone. I lost 2 stone of that through diet and when I started my job in 2010 I was weighing over 14 stone and a size 16. I was driving a lot and decided that once and for all I was going to change and lose it all. I wanted to be the best version of myself. Juliet Murphy was the woman who literally changed everything for me. She was based in Ballincollig, Co. Cork and took me on as a personal training client. Along with a high protein diet the weight shifted. She trained me three times a week and the sessions were so tough. But the lbs came off. On average I lost 5-7 lbs a month and then I started to tone and build muscle. When I got married in 2012 I was a size 12 and 12 stone. I had lost 4 and a half stone and I felt great. I was strong, lifting heavy weights, had a lot more energy and I felt good in my clothes. Confident in a bikini. I still felt that I had a bit of my journey to go but now I knew how to get there.

This was me at my heaviest in college and then in 2013 just before I got pregnant.

 

In 2014 Michael was born. I was very sick during the pregnancy and was recommended to give up exercise. I was on crutches with severe SPD for the last three months of the pregnancy. My mother was dying and I was comfort eating. I gained 4 stone by the end of the pregnancy.

When he was 12 weeks old I was ready to begin exercising again and started working out at home and making better food choices. But the weight never fell off. I lost probably a stone of that weight in the first year after he was born and then it just stopped. After we moved to Puerto Rico I joined the gym, got a trainer and then started back running. Sure I got fitter. Sure I’m more toned and stronger. But the weight isn’t coming off. I’m not getting back into pre pregnancy clothes and now I’m at a loss at what to do.

I physically can’t work out anymore than I do. My food choices are really good. In Ireland last summer I went to a GP and asked for bloods to check my thyroid levels. Everything came back normal. I went to the gynaecologist here in Puerto Rico and asked her to check my hormones seeing as how I have PCOS and endometriosis. She did an insane amount of blood tests and said everything was fine but that I would possibly benefit from a testosterone implant. I went for it. $400 later and it didn’t make a difference.

I went to a nutritionist and they suggested a keto diet where I would eat more healthy fat than protein and I stuck to it 100%. After initial results it was stagnant after a couple of weeks and didn’t work for me. I continued to workout, eat well, cut out alcohol, sugar, carbs.. everything! I’ve tried everything. Nothing was working

I’m currently doing the F4L programme. I can’t recommend this enough. This is an online programme based in Ireland. I have to say it is fantastic. The support is next to none. It involves four workouts per week and a food plan and recipes which is high protein but allows for carbs if earned through working out and has some excellent advice on muscle recovery after working out etc. I’m not doing the workouts (I have done them in the past), as training here is now part of my daily routine but I know that the nutrition part of this programme is excellent and that’s what I’m following. It also includes a private Facebook group for support where you will find the nicest, most inspirational supportive ladies around. I’ve seen the results that they’ve achieved I can see that this programme works. That’s why I’m sticking around even though my results aren’t what they should be. I know that it isn’t the programme. I know how hard I work at it. I also know enough about nutrition and food to know that this programme should be working for me.

So that’s why I’m now going a step further. I’m going to do the alternative route. I’m meeting with a homeopathic doctor this coming Tuesday and I’m going to have some food allergy testing done. I’m going to compliment whatever they suggest to cut out with acupuncture. I am not giving up. I will get back to my goal. I will get my confidence back. And I will get back into my pre pregnancy jeans. I’m going to stick with my plans and not give up on this as hard as it is to keep trucking on with only minor success. I will get there. 8lbs loss over two years has resulted in the difference between these two pics below. A lot of sweat and hard work has gone on in between.

I’m going to stop feeling like my body has let me down because it’s not responding right now. I’ve had a child. I’ve given birth and it has been through a traumatic experience. Its done amazing things.

I’m also going to stop being judgemental of other people and their journeys. Smug me thought that if you move more and eat less then you’ll lose weight. I’ve felt so bad about myself because now that hasnt worked for me. I need to look at plan E and see what will work for me.

I really hope that in couple of months time I will back here to tell you all that between the advice and support from F4L and the elimination of food allergies that I’m seeing results. I don’t care how small they are. I don’t care if it’s not the scales that moves but inches. I won’t stop until I’m there.

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