If you know me, all my life I’ve been trying to lose weight.
and I HATE moving. I am the girl in school who will always go to the principal’s office for “forgetting to bring my PE clothes”, just so I can escape any form of exercise. In fact, my failed attempts to lose weight/exercise have been a constant joke during high school / high school reunions. Over the years, I have earned nicknames like “Zhuwen (Pig Wen)”, “PigShu”, “Fats”. They say that my diet plan has been starting “tomorrow” since the day I was born hahaha.
Not that I really mind. I like to think that I am not insecure enough to care about what other people think about my appearance. Even if I’m fat, I know I’m sassy; I'm sassy fat. So this blogpost is not about body shaming. If you’re a bigger sized woman, I’m not saying its a bad thing and you should hate yourself. The most important thing in everything you do is to love your body.
However, I do like to fit into pretty clothes, and I personally felt that feeling lighter/fitter actually lifted my mood a lot. In June, I told myself I wanted to lose weight, to stay FITTER and be HEALTHIER. I did manage to lose 10kgs (from 65kg *cue horror music*), although I’ve bounced back a little since then.
Me at my roundest:
Damn son, look at the girth of that arm or the almost perfectly round face.
Me in 2016:
Ok to be fair although I used to eat a lot (I still do), I was using asthma steroids that severely plumped up my face. I have since then changed my medication and it really made a world of a difference.
I follow heaps of fitness profiles on Instagram, but I never could relate to someone who lost 50kgs from 100kgs, so I decided to write this post with some relatable tips and tricks to stay motivated and work towards your goals. I am not some fitness guru and I am still a work in progress. Heck, in fact I still struggle sometimes, but these are tips that I personally helped me get started with a changed lifestyle. If you are someone who has been unmotivated to exercise all your life (like me), then these tips and tricks may work for you!
- Buy good looking workout gear.
This had to be the top of my list because I think its important to feel confident with your original body (hello all you girls out there). It’s human nature. You will enjoy doing something if you think you look good doing it. If you are body shaming yourself at the gym, and constantly conscious about what the stranger next to you might think of your body, you will eventually not enjoy the workout. My journey started with investing on a RM450 Nike training shoes and some chic looking sports bras. I’m not saying you should spend heaps of money on workout gear, but when you walk into the gym, feel attractive in whatever you are wearing.
- Don’t be ashamed to check yourself out in the mirror
I used to dislike people who look at themselves in the mirror and admire how they look cos I think they just look super vain. However, I've come to learn that, looking at myself not only boosts my confidence, but motivates me to push harder. It also helps to check my form and posture, to ensure I'm doing the right thing. Sometimes I look at myself in the mirror and picture myself in the latest Seafolly bikini hahahaha. To me, it is important to love yourself, but also envision a better version of yourself. Or the version you want yourself to be in the future.
- Set an attainable goal
Either it is losing 10kgs, or fitting into a bikini. Have a goal. I found my goal when I attended my friend’s graduation and I saw her mum's amazing figure at the age of almost 50. I made a decision in my heart that I would be the hot mum at my child’s graduation. I started breaking my goal down into tiny bits : Fitting into a nice dress for my sister’s wedding, buying my first bikini in summer, losing 5 kgs. Break your goal into bite sized chunks that are more attainable and short term. This will ensure you stay motivated, plus you feel damn good when you get to tick off goals.
- Find a routine, discover your favourite workout and enjoy it!
I used to go to the gym only because I paid for it. Few years ago I signed up for a high end gym that costed me a bomb every month. I would drag myself there simply because I wanted to make the most out of what I was paying. I was motivated by money and that didn’t turn out well. Instead, I found my niche or my kind of training style, and I went to a smaller gym offering what I needed at a lower price.
I am a HIIT girl, so I immersed myself in Body Attack classes, Cross training and went for Nike Training Club events but on the side, I ventured out of my comfort zone to discover other workouts I may like. Right after my first boxing class, I absolutely hated it and I knew it isn’t for me and that's OK ! It’s ok that not everything is for everyone.
I also used to hate running, but a casual 7km run from Sydney Harbour Bridge to the Sydney Fish Market a few months ago kicked off my interest in running.. to my food. The thought of my delicious seafood pushed me to run faster, run longer. Similarly with my smashed avo and poached eggs at the end of my runs in Melbourne. Oh yum. I've also started choosing to run on routes that I know I will enjoy, like the scenic yarra river, or the majestic properties in Toorak. Proud to say, I'm almost looking forward to running!
So I can't emphasise enough to find workouts you love/make your workouts fun, and stick with it! Start of every week I plan out the classes that I want to go and the workouts I want to achieve on my calendar app. Having a routine laid out every week also helps keep me motivated.
- Tell someone about it
Someone once sent me a TED TALK video about how people are more likely to fail if they tell someone their goals before working on it.
To some extent, I agree with that. I used to tell people I will lose weight, before even working on it. Instead now, telling someone about my workout keeps me accountable (This is why you guys see my gym snaps on Snapchat). Note, I talk to someone AFTER my workout. Having a workout buddy or someone to talk to about your workout goals really helps. For me, telling people I’m working out has proven to be motivating in several ways:
On snapchat: Every night I look through my own snaps (please I’m not the only one who does that ok). I like seeing a recap of what I’ve done or achieved today, sort of like my diary, but in a more entertaining form. It reminds me of the extra effort that I put in - that extra squat, that late night gym session, or that healthy meal I made. It helps me go to bed feeling motivated, and WANTING to achieve more the next day.
From people: When people notice you’re going to the gym, they can’t help but to talk about it when they see you “Hey how’s gym going?” “When do you usually go?”. And when they finally see the results, it feels damn good. “Oh you have lost weight!” Trust me, I haven’t heard this since puberty.
More gym buddies: I have also been able to connect with people with similar interests through snapchat. People in my social circle that do similar workouts have approached me, some I've since then worked out with, expanding my gym buddies circle, whilst motivating me to hit the gym more often.
Although I still don't have a body like Khloe Kardashian or Cassey Ho from Blogilates, I personally felt that I have come a long way in terms of fitness and health. I no longer pant as much as I climb the stairs, and I can pump through longer in a high intensity session without having to take breaks every 5 minutes. My asthma feels better, and I feel less lethargic too. Yes I started off wanting to be a hot mum, but I ended up loving this lifestyle. So come on, stop telling yourself you hate gym/exercise and try something out ! I hope this post motivates you and helps anyone who is struggling to start!