Ever see a photographer who starts out with a 365 day project, or even a 52 week project and never finishes? Yeah, me too. Well, I recently joined a group of a few other busy photographers who decided to commit to a 12 month project! If we fail this, we’ll be taking donations for a time management seminar. The best part is that it will be totally candid, lifestyle shots of each of our own families/lives. We don’t even have to dredge up random people or make our kids pose for us. We’re calling the series “The Story of ________” and we’ll each be filling in our own blanks. At the end of this post is a link to another photographer who participated and she’ll be linking to someone else. It’s a whole big circle of stories in pictures. So just click through – its fun!
This month is the story of…my transformation it’s an intensely personal post so I’m a bit nervous, but also proud of myself as this has been a big part of my life for the past 12 months. This was me -
I’d put on weight with my daughter Aurora - 25kgs to be exact but after her birth i also stacked on another 10. I was like that for 4 years but i was also sad not active, not participating in life. I had some pretty low moments, not accepting invitations because i felt so rotten about myself, brushing off friends and family. Not accepting invitations for my daughter. Not being friendly to other Mums i met through things for my daughter. I all around hated myself. My partner and i used to fight – he is so social and i turned into a recluse hiding out in the house so no one would see me. Of course that all didn’t compute in my head. I didn’t realize i was engaging in behaviours like this due to my weight it was always someone else’s fault or i was too busy or to this or to that but looking back i do now know it was cause i felt so horrible. I was in the extreme obese category on the BMI charts.
The photo above is the only photo i have of that time. In 4 years i don’t have a photo of myself. I have none with my daughter bar one at her birth and i went on many holidays where it doesn’t even look like i was there. I either avoided the camera or deleted the evidence. Somehow the above photo snuck through but it’s a bit sad i have hardly any photos of me in the first four years of my daughter’s life.
I knew things were bad but i deluded myself. People tried to be nice and say hey look maybe we should exercise together or tell me about some diet they had tried no one ever came out and told me i was endangering my health until i had a doctors check up with a new doctor and the proof was in the tests. My cholesterol and blood pressure was through the roof and i was a diabetes risk. My waist far exceeded the risk rate and i tipped the scales at almost 100kgs and i am only 157cms tall. It was bad.
So i started Tony Ferguson then Weigh Watches then Jenny Craig then Lite N Easy which i finally had some success with and lost 9kgs but i stopped and put it almost all back on again. Then i stumbled upon the 12wbt (www.12wbt.com). Its run by Michelle Bridges who is a trainer on the Australian Biggest Loser.
I signed up not knowing what it was about but desperate to be skinny and not knowing this was about to change my life. It’s basically a program where she gives you meal plans, exercise plans but the most amazing thing about it is she has ‘mind set’ lessons which deal with the mental side of why you are overweight. For me i have binge eating issues and through these lessons i have now overcome them. No one is perfect especially me so my issues still raise their ugly head from time to time but i have control now and i can reign them back in.
Another amazing aspect of this program is the support you get and the groups you form. I am lucky enough to have the ‘Mishfits’ a group of women from all over Australia who have a facebook page where we can discuss the ins and outs of this program and life in general. The program is done in rounds of 12 weeks with a 4 week preseason to kick it off and at the end of the round they have a large group work out and then a party to celebrate the success. It’s amazing and a heap of us ‘Misfits’ got together for the first time and had an amazing weekend. Each and every one of them is amazing and i had a ball. Also Lucky for me my sister Leigh who features heavily on this blog is also a 12wbter so she was there with me too and looks amazing.
This is us (with a few ring ins in the white hats we don’t know cause you had to have groups of 10 or more and a ring in mascot who completed every exercise by our sides and she is only 4!)
At the work out -
The top photo is just horrible we had been working out in the worlds biggest workout and then got a picture with Mish. This is how awesome they all are, they are letting me post this to my blog – double chins, sweat and all! They are all just awesome and having wonderful people like this around you (and those who didn’t make it to the workout!!) are the reason why this program works so well for me.
Then we partied! So much fun!! Thats the Mishfits and then my sister and i on the red carpet (thats a shadow on my arm by the way everyone asks me if its a tattoo. No just a werid looking green shadow!)
Michelle Bridges (or Mish! ) is just awesome and being in this program you kind of form a girlie crush on her (or is that just me ) she is genuine and she is changing the women of Australia. For her and her program i will be forever grateful. I’m a mega groupie!! I even lined up for ages in a shopping center to meet her thats how much i love her!! (Worst photo ever but its all i got!)
So what’s happened to me with the 12wbt? I was a couch potato who ate and drank too much and was a health risk. I am now a gym member who exercises 6 times a week, eats clean and have just had a 4 month hiatus from drinking. I can run (ignoring the pelvic floor) and I am fit. I can lift weights and I no longer want to be skinny i want to be strong. I also have normal blood pressure, am no longer a diabetes risk and my cholesterol is all good. I’ll be around to watch my daughter grow and be a good role model for her. I also no longer fight with Marty, i have made amazing friends, strengthened the bonds with existing friends and family and i now participate in life. Its not only my body that has changed but also my mind and my attitude. As of next week i should be able to say i have lost 40kgs and i now look like this -
(thats me on the way to the finale party!!) I’ve done three rounds of the 12wbt (so no the changes didnt happen in 12 weeks it takes longer then that to undo years of body neglect) and i have just signed up for my forth where i am going to complete the lean and strong program to do some body shaping and toning. If anyone is thinking about doing her program – JFDI!