have been training one on one with John now for 4 and ½ years. I wanted to find a trainer that could figure me out and push me, both in exercise and advise me on food and lifestyle choices. I liked to eat and drink and socialise with friends. I travelled a lot with work. I ate a lot of room service and went to a lot of work functions. Exercise and training was just a means to maintain my shape in my fun busy life. My first questions to John in my first few sessions were “which has more calories, champagne or wine”, and “why can’t I ever tone my arms”….. My first timed sprint test, I ran it in 2min 29sec. I would have a pub lunch with work colleagues on Friday. I would exercise frequently to complement training, but only to maintain my weight. My weight never really changed in years, no matter how hard I trained, and I had little tone.
Fast track to 2014. In the words of John, I had that “light bulb” moment a few years ago. I stopped trying to convince John champagne had fewer calories and that skinny margaritas were the way of the future. I now drink in moderation, and not during the week. I travel more than ever with work, and instead of cancelling my personal training sessions, John and I worked out a system that works for us so I can still train to suit my work, as well as giving me training ideas I could do in the hotel gym that were easy to remember. I still go to the pub, but now make better choices. I still attend work functions, but I snack before I go so I don’t eat all that is on offer. My abs and stomach are my best feature. My PB on my sprint test is 1min 17secs. My arms are toned, my legs are strong, I am healthier and at the best weight I have ever been. I have had a major attitude adjustment because John made me realise, you only get out what you put in. I finally realised what I wanted out of my fitness and health. I am now 6 and ½ months pregnant and still training strong. I may be slower… but my fitness is still maintained, and I have never had a better state of mind around exercise and health (and in case you were wondering…. the answer from John to the wine and champagne question…..”One has bubbles, the other doesn’t”……)
My trainer, Cath McMahon, has turned my health, wellbeing and fitness around. It is a cliche but I couldn't have done this without her. She listened to what I wanted then gave me what I needed!!! The workouts and eating plan have challenged and pushed me way beyond my comfort zone, and to be accountable every week has worked brilliantly. I have lost 8.5 kgs in 3.5 months, a dress size or 2 and my blood pressure has returned to a healthy level, whilst working with Cath. I feel amazing, a completely different person. Thank you for EVERYTHING Cath!!!
Like most people I was unhappy with my body, to many wobbly bits to mention! Yet I felt intimidated by the gym, I had a rough I idea of how the machines worked but no clue how to use the free weights or build a programme! Cath found me playing around in the gym attempting to work out and the rest is history. Cath and John asked what I wanted to get out of the gym, I simply said I don't want to wobble anymore, neither laughed or told me that wasn't correct! It made me feel like we were on the same page, we set a very simple goal to get down to 70kg! I say simple now I thought it was going to be really difficult and take forever at the beginning! You see I work shifts, so eating regularly is difficult, I eat when I can go on break and then it's usually quick and easy food! I thought it would be tough planning healthy meals to take to work but in fact it's easy, I'm not saying I plan well or it works all the time but in general the extra effort which is minimal is worth it! I thought I would be to tired to go to the gym after work and sometimes I am but once I'm there and I get going I feel so much better, exercise endorphins are amazing! Well that and the fact that both Cath and John make it fun even when you think you are going to die in the middle of the dreaded 500 it's somehow fun! I even don't mine doing box jumps now, despite landing flat on my face when I first started!
I have now reached, surpassed and maintained my weight goal in just 8 short months! If I were to give anyone starting there gym journey some advice it would be, 1. Always make it fun - there is to much stress in the world already 2. Weight is just a number - the scales should not rule your life 3. Magnesium - helps to take the edge of the muscle aches
Back in Feb 2014, I decided that I had had enough of going to the gym and going through the motions. I wasn't seeing any results, and so I decided to follow up a recommendation from a friend to train with Field Goals personal training. For the next 6 months, I trained twice a week with a PT and little else - I made no changes to my life style yet still expected to see change. After a winter break (see before photo), and a conversation where I found myself saying that I 100% wanted change, but was applying myself, at best, 70%, something twigged.First up was to look at my diet. I ate 'healthy', so why was I not losing weight. Out went the cereals, processed foods, starchy snacks and sweet treats. Breakfast became a proper meal - eggs with avo and salmon or meat, or san chow boy, or even last nights dinner - all fuel for the day. Lunch was protein and veg or salad. If I trained, then sweet potato as well. Dinner was a light meat or fish and 2 veg. My caffeine intake was greatly reduced, and my water intake went up.To explain it to people, it would fit what most people know to be 'Paleo', but this is most certainly not a diet. The other big factor was exercise. I wanted the help and expertise of a trainer, and then a goal to aim for. Setting a target does not work for everyone, but I find it is the single best way for me to train - to have a target and chip away at it.
My weekly training now sees me run 2 or 3 times, attend one Spin class, go to a swimming lesson as well as a separate outdoor session, train with my PT, and also get to the gym 3 to 4 times in the week. It does involve some double sessions, and it does take some planning and time, but once I realised this is what I wanted, it was easy to get in to the swing of things. With a goal to aim for, I work with my PT to schedule what the week should look like, making sure not to burnout at any point, and then I just get on with it. Every 6 or 7 weeks, we shake things up so the body does not plateau, and monotony does not creep in. Lastly, and this is one of the trickiest things, is alcohol. Everyone knows it affects your ability to recover, your body's ability to perform, but for many, like myself, a couple of drinks during the week with a week end splurge was typical. This is largely not the case. Now the order is a glass of red wine and not a beer, and at dinner, we go by the glass, not the bottle. The rule of thumb is a max of 3 drinks a week, but special occasions crop up and we let this slide. So in summary - wholesale changes to diet and alcohol intake along with a structured training program set specifically to personal goals is what has worked for me. When I look back, I hand on heart believed at that moment in time, that I should have been losing weight training with a PT and eating 'healthily'. Fast forward to now, and I can see that I was merely talking a good game without the commitment.