For the first time in my life I am happy with myself, I am finally comfortable in my own skin and I love life. This is a statement that I am proud to be able to say, and if you’d asked me nine years ago how I felt about myself, my answer would have been very different indeed. To tell the truth, my story starts the same as a million others, but the choices I made and the small changes I adopted changed my entire world… I’m no different to any other person, I’m not special or lucky, I just had a dream that I didn’t let go of.
Transforming yourself and your life…dreams CAN come true!
No matter how long it’s been since you’ve dreamed it…
No matter how “unrealistic” it seems…
Your impossible dream may just be POSSIBLE after all!
Fear of failure…
For as long as I can remember I have had an issue with my weight. It began in high school, when my focus shifted from sport to study. I became the girl at school who was literally the “butt” of everyone’s jokes! I was told regularly that my rear end had its own “postcode”. I used to laugh it off at the time, ever careful to hide my feelings. To others it was just a bit of “harmless” fun, but it bit deep into my self worth and as I grew older I found myself making fun of my rear, just so I got in before anyone else did.
Up until April of 2003, I was relatively lazy and a comfortable size 14. I was not motivated at all to keep fit. I now know this was mainly due to a combination of studying late at night, little activity and lots of bad food choices. It wasn’t long before these habits began to have a detrimental effect on my body and before I had even realised what was happening to me I had ballooned out to 89kg (196.2 pounds).
Feeling insecure about myself and my body had become a way of life. I just accepted it and for a long time used every excuse I could think of to convince myself it wasn’t my fault. I think I tried just about every weight-loss pill and diet miracle I could get my hands on – but kept getting bigger and bigger. I needed to find help…fast. I made the decision to get some professional help, found a personal trainer, saved my money and started training two weeks later.
It wasn’t long before I started thinking it was all too hard and I didn’t have the time, energy or money to continue. Failure was staring me in the face once again, and I remember sitting on the edge of my bed, tears welling in my eyes. I started thinking about all the things that I hated about myself and why I always seemed to get nowhere fast. There were so many reasons I could think of why it just wouldn’t work, and my lack of results seemed to be at the top. Later, it would become very clear that I always stopped before I really got started. I was extremely impatient and never did anything long enough to see any significant changes.
Many of the people I meet and have connected with over the past 10 years have similar stories. Many of them often question themselves as to why they find it so hard when everyone around them seems to be doing it all so easily. Guess what, they’re NOT! Most successful “transformation” stories are from people who have made exercise part of their lifestyle on a daily basis and these same people live and breathe the benefits. Many others start out with the greatest intentions but somehow, somewhere along the way, lose momentum. There is always an unavoidable crisis or an excuse that suits.
The truth is that until you can identify the real issues that are holding you back, you may be fighting an uphill battle. Acknowledging your weaknesses can be very confronting but if you stick at it, the good news is that you can start to make some real progress.
Six must-dos before making any changes in your life…
ASK – Ask yourself what you really need in order to succeed. Ask yourself what could stand in the way of your progress so that you have a plan to combat it. Our best advice often comes from our most powerful connection to ourselves, our intuition. Listen to your body.
PREPARE – Be prepared for change. Know how you will tackle the hurdles or obstacles that arise. Know what you want and what results you expect to achieve. Know what you are prepared to do for yourself, before giving your time, energy, and commitment. Be focused on your goal and make a promise to yourself that you will allow yourself the time you need to succeed.
BE READY – Being emotionally and mentally ready are vastly different things from being prepared. If you are not ready to accept a few small changes, your plan may take on a direction of its own. Both your mind and body need to be prepared for the changes you are about to make.
TIME – If you really want to make any changes in life you cannot sit and wait for it to be handed to you on a silver platter (although that would be nice). You have to take control of your future success and create your own destiny. Make yourself the biggest promise you’ve ever made: a promise to BELIEVE in yourself, TO NEVER GIVE UP on your dreams, your goals or your desires! Plan a way to get there and give yourself a realistic timeframe and reach for the stars! Nothing is impossible with a little patience and time if you only try!
FOCUS – No matter what happens in your life, never lose sight of your goal. If you really want to feel better, you must believe you can, if you need help… ASK! Find people who inspire and motivate you to help you keep going… especially when the going gets tough.
SUPPORT – Find someone who really understands you and what you want to achieve. It’s not ideal at all jumping from coach to coach, or to not stick to a training / fitness plan long enough to decide if it works for you! There is NEVER a one-size-fits-all plan, so don’t expect a pre-designed, cookie-cutter style program to get you the results you really deserve! If your coach is unable or unwilling to answer ALL your questions… GET A NEW COACH!
Above all, GET STARTED NOW!
So… how do you take the next step?
So you’re ready to go, you know where you’re going and how you’re going to get there. So why can’t you follow it through? Unless you actually become “conscious” of your goal, you may still find the whole thing very daunting. The day I started becoming conscious of the habits that seemed to be hindering my progress was the day I took control of the wheel. Long before I could actually see things starting to change, I felt more energetic and my clothes were becoming more comfortable. Above all, I actually started feeling good about myself and my life. I have to confess, if I had any idea that wanting to lose a little bit of weight would eventually lead me to compete in front of 400 people wearing a g-string, win several bodyshaping titles and feel this fantastic, I probably would have told you that you were dreaming!
What a lot of people don’t understand is that absolutely anyone can compete or stay in great shape all year round! However, only a few ever continue past their first year or maintain a physique that they are truly happy with year-round. Competing requires incredible drive, determination and above all total commitment. The end result you see on stage usually takes months of preparation and even years of weight training to achieve and is far from everyday reality. Competitors rarely maintain their “stage” figures and some only compete once or twice a year. There is always a constant pursuit for perfection and unless you realise that life is rarely perfect, you may end up feeling somewhat disappointed. It is not perfection that we should be seeking but merely peace within ourselves.
Living and loving life…
How life has changed in only nine short years – I no longer hate the physique on the person I see staring back at me in the mirror, I am not in competition shape all year round, however I really try to encourage others to love who they are and live and love life the way they deserve!
Yes, I still love my cheese cake and chocolate just as much as anyone else, but I am living proof that if you make a few small adjustments here and there, you can literally have your cake and eat it too!
So many people of all shapes and sizes just need a helping hand to realise they can achieve anything they desire, if they only try. People who overcome adversity and hardship continue to inspire me with their heartfelt stories of personal success. I am both blessed and privileged to share some small part in their journey.
Make yourself one promise… Don’t wait for that perfect time to start… or for the next perfect day. Kick off your next challenge now and take that “long-lost” dream off hold… take the first step, make a start, as that’s all it takes to change your life.
Creating a life you love…
The road not travelled is full of regret, but the road you know can only take you where you’ve already been. Making an improvement in your life is as simple as making a choice. This choice is making a conscious decision to reach your goal by working towards it. For those of you who are willing to make a small contribution to yourself, each and every day, you will succeed.
The hardest thing you will have to endure is not the challenges of your life, nor the colour of your skin. It’s not your age or even that person close to you who’s convinced that your dreams and aspirations are a waste of time. Without doubt, these challenges will need your attention, but by far the biggest challenge you could ever face is your own self-doubt, lack of commitment, and fear. Getting started is the single most positive step you will ever take.
So here is my message… Believe in Yourself, Get moving and Get Gorgeous from the inside out!