The start of 2016 wasn’t exactly the best for me, I wasn’t working and finding trouble trying to get a job. Mortgage payments and general life got in the way, and then to add onto my miserable life, I got injured and that really was the end for me. I went into my own little shell and hid from the world, allowing my health and fitness to waiver and with that the kilograms just stacked on.
I am not sure if it’s real or not, but I am sure it could be that the fact that not exercising did impact me not just physically but emotionally too. I felt like I had some sort of fitness depression. As I wasn’t doing my usual routine, I wasn’t getting the usual exercise endorphins that I used to get.
I started to eat badly to compensate and generally becoming extremely sad. I couldn’t look in the mirror without seeing fat, I wasn’t proud of the person I was becoming, but I was stuck and if I didn't get myself out of it, I could quite easily keep stacking on the kilograms. My sadness didn’t just affect me, but literally everyone around me and everything that I did. I was not surprised I was not getting the jobs I was applying for, I was not the usually get up and go person I once was. I had no energy, no enthusiasm, I wasn’t really living but motoring through the motions.
I had been a member of Fernwood, and because of moving house I changed to a more specialised gym based in Caulfield. As I wasn’t working, I could no longer afford the membership fee that came with the gym, so I cancelled my membership. I now had no routine or schedule to keep me going or motivated, I had every good thought about doing stuff myself but with my injury I quickly became accustomed to making some type of excuse.
It really was a struggle, searching for a full time, permanent role. I was doing some consultancy but nothing that guaranteed a regular income.
F45 Highett announced its opening in June, something new that was definitely creating a lot of hype and having one just around the corner is exactly what I needed. Unfortunately it came down to cost again, how do I justify something when I had no permanent income.
Out of curiosity I signed up for a two week trial and found that I absolutely loved it. It was almost like love at first class. I loved being able to move, the routine, the schedule and variety of classes.
At this point the cost didn’t matter, my health was more important and I needed something to keep me motivated. I joined in July, which writing this now, is one of the best decisions I made during 2016. I found I slowly started to regain my fitness to the level I was used to. In the 6 months of being a member I have found my fitness is at a level I can sustain at endurance events.
My strength improved to a level I never would have thought achievable. I feel so much stronger that I have done for years (since before the injuries). The trainers are pushing me to continually better myself, correct technique and make me a better athlete.
Since being there I can confidently do push ups on my toes either engaging my back or triceps (attempted and succeed at doing a push up clap, which was slightly nerving). I have conquered both a pull up (never have been able to do before) and chin up. My rowing I am averaging 1:50 when before I used to struggle to get it under 2:00.
I can honestly say after all the gyms I have been a member of including the specialised gym, the events I have participated in, including representing Australia at the OCR world champs. What F45 Highett has done for me, has been amazing. I don’t think I would have been able to complete a 43km obstacle with 5000m elevation without the training I had done at F45. The recovery was fast and at no point did I feel like I couldn’t complete the course.
My fitness confidence is slowly returning, with each session trying to push myself to a new level.
I would recommend F45 to anyone that wants to develop their overall fitness, get toned up, lose weight, be in a group environment with similar mindsets. If you want to go and train and not think about what you need to do to get the most effective workout, or if your like me, is to have a routine that I cannot break. Then you must give it a go, you will find yourself stronger, healthier and happier for it.
Of course, there are still elements that I still struggle with, mainly being food. I need to be more accountable for what I eat and when I eat I understand and know the differences between good and bad foods, but I can still eat too much and to much of the bad foods. My biggest weakness is Nutella and ice cream (not together). I can binge on fruit. Any cheat meal is more like a binge day where I seem to consume everything that I can. I have gotten myself into some really bad eating habits and tried to compensate this with exercise. Exercise and diet really go hand in hand, and limiting your treats may make you binge (like me), as with life their needs to be balance and I am hoping the F45 challenge will help me do this. Giving me the focus I need to eat properly, being prepared and organised, stop trying to find quick fix solutions. Designating some time to this, the same way I designate my time to exercise, the moment I start feeling hungry is the moment I start binging, from fruit, to toast to almonds (it doesn’t always have to be chocolate).
Its funny to think how insecure I really am, I hate my body, my weight, I’m too fat, too short, I see all the negatives when I look in the mirror. I continue to try to love myself and my body, and I am slowly learning to do this, it has been a very long battle, when you continue to have your own self doubt, compare yourself to others or you never quite feel good enough. Which is surprising when you are selected for the Australian Team in Obstacle Racing, but even then you don’t feel like you deserve it or are capable, you will let the team down. I know I will never be an elite / elite but I know that I will give it everything I have. My own mind is something I will continue to work on and develop, the guilt from the binge eating doesn’t help but once I know that I can do something I can set my mind to, I can achieve what I want to achieve and I know I couldn’t do anything more, is something I am really looking forward to achieving at the end of this challenge