Hello, my little quiet blog.
(skip down the page to just read about the ’90 Day SSS Plan’ and skip my x-factor-esque sob story!)
To say I have been letting things slide over the last few years would be somewhat an understatement.
For the last 3-5 years, I have been becoming a bit of a lump! Slowly but surely, without noticing much of a change day to day, I have been eating myself into oblivion, while doing everything I can to avoid activity.
This behaviour has not only had an impact on my health and appearance, but also my mental health and even my personality. I can feel myself becoming embittered by the world, often looking for anyone and anything to blame for my current situation.
Check out these whopping excuses I tell myself almost daily:
- My work is so stressful I only want to eat and sleep in my time off.
- My birth control has made me balloon in uncomfortable areas, which makes it too painful to exercise.
- My boyfriend really enjoys *insert any junk food here* and It would be unfair for me to impose a diet on him.
- The current state of affairs with worldwide politics brings out my nihilistic tendencies, and what is the point if choking down a salad when we might all die in a fiery nuclear holocaust tomorrow?
While none of the above are particularly untrue statements, (try motivating yourself to go for a run when you can only fit half your boobs into a sports bra labelled ‘XL’) they are still very much excuses.
Then came the breaking point.
Last summer, I was asked to be Maid of Honour at my best friend’s wedding! Honoured indeed, I was so happy, overwhelmed and excited to be part of her special day. We have been friends since we were babies and one day I hope to return the gesture.
Originally, the plan was to have the bridesmaids in a lovely rich dark purple, but we were each to buy our own dress so it would be in our style and taste. However, this was changed closer to the wedding to have the bridesmaids in dark purple and myself and the flower girl to match. and, as the flower girl had already been bought a pale lilac dress, this was my colour too.
At this point, I was wearing a size UK16 top and UK14 bottoms in my regular clothing. And as retailers love to make women feel terrible, this means that I was looking at size UK18 plus for a formal dress.
It’s just a label…. you can cut it out…. nope this still doesn’t help.
The dress we found, in the end, was fine but didn’t allow for flattering underwear. Every time I looked in the mirror saw a tubby, matronly figure looking back at me.
I was at a low point for sure, but I pushed this all to the back of my mind and enjoyed the festivities. Who cares what the bridesmaids look like in the end anyway?
The wedding was spectacular! The bride looked stunningly beautiful, many good times were had by all.
It was when the photos started appearing, that I realised how much of a state I had got myself in. I feel like I ruin every photo I am in and this makes me want to ugly cry for hours on end.
SO… here we are.
The Body Coach 90 Day SSS Pan
Not too long ago I finally took the plunge and parted with just over £120 to join the Body Coach 90 Day SSS plan.
In summary, it is an online fitness and nutrition plan from ‘Body Coach’ Joe Wicks. This is a personalised lifestyle plan which includes recipes tailored to your individual body and also includes a fitness regimen all aimed at getting lean, fit, and most importantly, healthy.
After seeing all the enticing ‘before and after’ pictures on the facebook page I decided that this is what I wanted to do. Make a positive change in my life and work as hard as I possibly could for 90 days. I literally had nothing to lose (except maybe 20kg!).
Signing up to the plan
I found signing up very easy (of course they are going to make it easy for you to give them your money, duh!) and I was receiving my welcome email immediately.
In this welcome email, you are instructed to fill out a questionnaire. Now… this questionnaire is very detailed. Though not every field is mandatory, I felt like I wanted to fully utilise the expertise of the plan producers, so tried to fill in every field.
The questions range from the usual Name, Weight, Height etc etc. but also included some more challenging areas, such as resting heart rate, medical history and current illnesses/medication.
In this questionnaire, you also specify any of your dietary needs. Not like ‘Ew I really don’t like the taste of tomatoes’ but a couple of check boxes for vegetarian options and also to let them know if you have a nut or fish allergy.
You also fill in a week-long food diary. There is no time restriction for returning this questionnaire, so I guess you could spend a week documenting every ‘salad’ (ahem) and cheeky office biccy. However, I was quite keen to get going, so I wrote down all I could remember throwing into my mouth the week before.
Once this is complete, you hit send and wait. My personalised plan arrived 4 days later. I diligently made my meal plans for the next week and went shopping, ready to start my journey the next Monday.
Things you should know that might not be obvious
There are a few points I feel everyone should be aware of before signing up to this plan. Though an easy sign-up process there are a few thing I wish I had been prepared for!
You don’t actually receive any physical ‘pack’ when joining the programme.
I’m not sure why, but for some reason, I presumed I would be sent my personalised meal and exercise plan through the post. Although it is stated quite clearly this is all done online and via email! This is no problem, of course. However, if you prefer physical pages to read recipes from or refer to, be prepared to print an 80-page booklet.
You have to take photos of your half-naked body.
Well, in underwear or swimwear. As part of the sign-up questionnaire, you have to submit a front and side ‘before’ photograph which you will update with each cycle. This will be great to look back on at the end of the 90 days I am sure, however, at the moment, the less time spent looking at my manatee-esque body the better.
There are a few ‘hidden costs’ that come along with this.
Nothing majorly sneaky but you should be aware that this will cost you a little more than your sign up fee and food bills. you will need an accurate digital kitchen scale, many shapes and forms of food containers and freezer bags and, most surprisingly for me at least, you will need to spend another £20ish on protein powder (possibly more if you want different flavours). A surprising amount of the recipes require a large quantity of this powder. I got a honey flavoured one on offer from the supermarket, which makes the green smoothie taste oddly chocolatey, but this does not work for every recipe! (there is a discount code for this at the back of the plan you receive, but I found I could get it cheaper elsewhere)
Your food bill will skyrocket (at first).
In preparation for cycle one of this plan, I have spent an actual butt-load of money. You need a whole range of store cupboard items that may be slightly unusual, and therefore, crazy expensive. Spices, almond butter, sauces, almond milk, coconut water, a constant supply of fresh veggies and avocados, and of course the aforementioned protein powder. One recipe called for a drizzle of manuka honey, however when I saw the price of this I cheerfully declined and decided plain old honey would be fine!
There is a very dangerous week between sign-up and commencement.
The week between submitting my questionnaire and starting my plan was awful. I had so much junk food, sweets and take-out. Purely because it was ‘maybe the last time for a long time’. I can’t tell you how many ‘last bars of chocolate’ or ‘final biscuit binges’ I had. I kinda wish they could have provided an interim universal meal plan just to get you started and keep the panic eating to a minimum.
Can’t stomach breakfast? Tough!
Since school, I have never eaten breakfast. the thought of it turns my stomach (residual school anxiety turned workplace anxiety!) But on this plan you have to eat 3 hefty meals a day and two ‘snacks’ (some of these are huge too). So you are gonna need to get over the morning queasiness pretty quickly. Nothing that a morning HIIT session won’t sort! Speaking of…
The exercise is evil.
Cycle one exercise is purely made up of 4 or 5 weekly HIIT cardio sessions. The good news – They are by no means difficult to understand. There is no extra equipment needed (though if you have hard floors you will need an exercise mat) and they only take overall 30ish minutes to complete. The bad news – They are HARD. You will sweat, you will feel sick and you will want to give up. but it WILL be worth it.
Because I am dreadful at this ‘blogging’ lark, I must confess at the time of finishing this entry I am nearly done with Cycle one!
Stay tuned for my Cycle one summary of thoughts, feelings, pangs of hunger and most importantly MY STATS! will I have lost weight? Gained muscle? Lost inches? who knows! Well… we will. Soon.
If you have read this though I commend you!
Thank you so much for sticking with me.