Just over 2 years ago at the age of 45 I decided I was fed up of the yo-yo dieting I had done all my life. I always started out great and lost a couple of stones then when I went back to normal eating I would gain everything lost and more. I wanted to get fit and healthy as well as lose weight. I wanted to be able to walk up hills (Munroe’s to be precise) with my husband. I was very unfit and struggled just to tie my shoe laces. Recently diagnosed with asthma I also decided to do this I needed the help of a personal trainer.
I still remember how nervous I felt at the first meeting. Every session at the beginning was really uncomfortable both mentally and physically. As a very overweight lady I always thought everyone is looking and judging me. Reality is everyone is too busy with there own goals to be watching me. He was very encouraging and always came up with so many different workouts that challenged me as well as making me feel better about myself. Nearly always left the gym feeling more energised than when I went in.
With his guidance I slowly started to change my diet removing processed foods, bread and refined carbs. Increasing good fats, eating more protein, oily fish, real butter, milk and lots and lots veg. I stopped weighing myself as it just upset me if I had been working hard and did not see any change on the scales. This is a hard reality to overcome when your brain has been conditioned over the years to measure your success on the scales. My clothes felt looser and I had lost several inches all over my body. I felt much better and fitter and I had a found a new passion of lifting weights.
ANNA MARSH CAME INTO MY LIFE
My interest in nutrition led me to read many of Anna’s blogs on nutrition. I was very interested in what she had to say. I was suffering on and off with problems with my knees and shoulder that were holding my training back and stopping me doing my walks. I felt as though I had hit a bit of a plateau. I joined her nutrition reset for 6 weeks in September 2015 and followed that up by signing up for the trial Ladies that Lift.
Although I had been eating pretty clean I did not measure this. Anna introduced me to counting macros and My Fitness Pal as a way to measure how I fuelled my body (I have a love/ hate relationship with this app).
I thought I did pretty well with my food so when she told me to up my protein to 170g a day I was amazed and really struggled to eat this amount of food at first. I also discovered that I was way over eating on fat. As someone who followed a low fat diet for most of my life I think I had gone a bit OTT introducing the fats back. Carbs, well on some days I didn’t’ eat any.
At first it is a bit challenging to hit the macros set but you soon learn the importance of balance and consistency. The great thing is I never feel hungry and because my body is getting what it needs I
Rarely felt the urge to binge on anything. But I did indulge on some of the things I like.
Nothing is off limits just should be accounted for. At first I wasn’t hitting the macro targets exactly but almost immediately I noticed I was training and recovering better, I had more energy and my knee problems disappeared. Eventually when I achieved consistency with the macros the lbs started to drop. I started to weigh myself again so I could measure what was working. My PT already took pictures and tracked my measurements.
I had more energy and my knee problems disappeared
Anna also advised me to start eating more fermented foods, bone broth and take a probiotic supplement for my leaky gut which can affect your metabolism. I suffered with IBS for a long time which has not been a problem recently. I discovered through monitoring my blood sugar that the best time for me to eat any carbs is before and after training and certain foods like white rice raise my blood sugar level very high. As the key to burning fat is to have a steady blood sugar level this was a very important lesson for me.
Gosh I told Anna I would babble on a bit but she has so much to offer here. She is more than a nutritionist to me she is a life coach and can advise on hormones, stress, mindset, training….etc. The member’s website has all the tools you need and can be taken in bite size pieces. There are training programmes, recipes as well as the learning modules on mindset, gut issues, supplements…..etc
There is no one size fits all here. We are all individuals leading different live’s with different goals.
The group page is such a good platform for us all to share our recipes, ideas, and success stories and sometimes just to get a bit of moral support. The group calls give us an opportunity to listen to each other and to ask Anna any questions. Anna is always there if you need her for advice or sometimes just to listen. We celebrate eating amazing food which is such a refreshing change. No one is judging anyone on here.
Ladies that lift for me has more than its literal meaning, it is fantastic ladies helping each other and giving each other a lift when needed. I have never met any of the ladies including Anna (I am sure I will rectify that soon) but I consider them my virtual friends.
I feel I am just at the beginning of my journey and still have a lot to learn from Anna so I have signed up to work with her for a year. 20 years of not looking after your body does not change over night. Since starting my journey 2 years ago and meeting Anna I have lost 2 stone, reduced my size by 20 inches all over my body. I had a goal this year to deadlift 100kg. I smashed that in January at 102.5kg. I am getting stronger and fitter in the gym. I will climb my first Munroe in over 20 years soon. I am a much happier, fitter person and now look forward to seeing what I can achieve in the future. Although I still have an overall goal to be a healthy weight I have so many small goals along the way.
I hold Anna Marsh in high regard and feel very privileged to be working with her.