Her daughter’s blunt and honest answer to this question really forced mother-of-the-bride Sarah to confront her weight issues head-on.
It proved to be a pivotal moment where she knew she had to take action and change her lifestyle.
She looked around for a solution and remembered her friend’s amazing transformation at Ultimate Performance London City.
Even though 51-year-old Sarah characterised herself as someone who hated gyms, she bit the bullet for the sake of her health and signed up with U.P.
What followed was a whirlwind journey that has transformed her body, her health and fundamentally changed her relationship with exercise and nutrition.
“I lost 30kg! And have since dropped a further 2kg! So 32kg – my husband made me lift a 32kg kettlebell the other day, and I couldn’t even walk with it! That is the weight I was carrying around on me!
“I can honestly say I have never felt this good; I have gone from a size 18/20 to a size 12 – when I look at the trousers I used to wear I cannot believe I was that size before. I definitely have more confidence, and that shows in my work and my personal life.”
Over the years, Sarah’s main obstacle to getting fit was her health. Three years ago she had undergone major back and neck operations, and a couple of bad training experiences had convinced her that exercise wasn’t possible any more.
When she walked through the doors at U.P. London City, she weighed 103kg, her body fat was at dangerously unhealthy levels, and it was having a negative impact on all areas of her life.
“Before U.P., I felt pretty horrendous. I had gotten to a stage where I wouldn’t look into mirrors. I wouldn’t have my photos taken with my grandchildren. I felt really sluggish and really sedentary in terms of not wanting to go out and do anything.
“It was my daughter’s wedding, and I went to quite a posh dress shop in the city looking for an outfit. And they had nothing that fitted me. They were asking me to go into a size 20, and there was no way I was going to buy a size 20 outfit! I remember going home that day and asking my daughter ‘am I really that big?’ And for the first time, she turned around and said ‘yes’. It was quite a pivotal moment for me.”
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The problem wasn’t just her underlying back problem; work stress and a busy lifestyle meant Sarah increasingly relied on lots of convenient but unhealthy takeaway foods, which were often accompanied by alcohol.
Compounded with a lack of exercise, and it was a recipe for poor health and weight gain.
What Sarah needed was a structured plan and the support and guidance to execute it to take her step by step towards her goal. That’s exactly what she got from her personal trainer, Amy, at U.P. London City.
With her chronic back problems, Sarah’s trainer crafted a bespoke training plan that would enable her to train safely, build confidence and begin losing weight.
But the impact of the plan gave her results she never expected.
“My trainer was very conscious of my operation and adapted exercises when we felt it wasn’t going to be the right thing for my back, and that has proven really successful. Not only have I avoided injuring myself, the usual pain I lived with is completely gone!”
A big part of Sarah’s success was getting to grips with nutrition and really understanding the portion sizes and macronutrients her body really needed to get fit and lose weight effectively.
“Portion control was the first thing we tackled in terms of diet. I used the EatUP meal service to start with, because I wanted to really be able to control what I was eating.
“I was so surprised when I had one of the yoghurts and saw what a ‘normal’ portion size was! It was about five times less than what I would normally have! It really did put my food habits into perspective for me.
“I also had no real understanding of the protein-carb balance – my trainer really helped me to understand this.”
Once upon a time Sarah avoided the gym like the plague, but now she’s hooked on fitness. She is even using kettlebells on holiday.
Losing the weight and regaining her confidence changed her perspective on fitness and, backed by her husband, she has now completely integrated U.P.’s fitness and diet mantras into her daily life.
“It’s just given me so much confidence – not only in myself but in being in a gym.
“Being able to use the equipment knowing what to do and feel confident that I have an exercise programme that I can follow and understand – I think that is a key thing for me. I actually understand what each of the exercises do for me now, whereas before I had no concept.
“I am now motivated to get more definition. I now look at adverts or people and look at their bodies and think of I would quite like shoulders like that, or a back like that. So my goal now is to work on getting more definition, keep the fitness level and the health up. I want to lift heavier and heavier. I enjoy doing that now!”
“The biggest benefit has been enjoying life with my husband, children and grandchildren. Everyone has noticed the difference in me being more positive and happy in myself and wanting to do things with the family – I even allow my daughter to now post photos of me on her social media!”
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DISCLAIMER | Results may vary | Results are based on individual circumstances | Timeframes for results are not guaranteed | Willpower is always required!