The year 2020 is one that will be never forgotten. A year that the world stopped and people struggled with lockdowns and restrictions. However, for me, 2020 is the year I began to live. 2020 was my best year yet.
Life was so busy with college, work, music, various commitments to community groups and sport that I never had the time to tackle my biggest issue, my weight. I was constantly busy. Then on March 13th 2020, I began to isolate myself, suffering from chronic asthma and taking my inhaler up to 6 times a day. I stayed indoors and this made me anxious and I began to turn to what I always turned to for comfort, food. As the cases increased I was too anxious to even go out the door for a walk and became very sick, depressed and would not get out of bed some days. My doctor prescribed anti-depressants and these left me emotionless and binging on food for comfort. In April I became sicker and after some tests, I was diagnosed with diabetes and weighed in at a shocking 31.5 stone on the scales. Seeing the number still made me feel no emotion. I went to bed that night and told my husband that I was quite comfortable with the thought of not waking up the next morning and I did not want to live anymore. I was in the darkest place I was in and could not see a way out.
A month previous my family could see my struggle and my brother and mam had got me a voucher for Bluezone Fitness, a gym with a nutritionist facility. I was angry because I felt insulted but looking back now I know this was out of love and they were desperately trying to help me but I just kept ignoring their pleas to get help. My husband was also offering to join with me and trying to get me to help myself but I didn’t like myself, let alone love myself enough to do it. So when I was at my darkest time in April I told myself why not try because it cannot get any worse than this. So at the end of April 2020, I contacted Cormac and let’s just say that was the day I started to live.
“I had no distractions so I had to face my problems head-on”
I started to walk and educate myself on nutrition from Cormac, for the first time in my life I had the time to slow down and look after myself and tackle my issues straight on. I had no distractions so I had to face my problems head-on. On my first day out walking, I listened to a podcast from Brian Keane and he had a guest on Trisha Lewis who had been obese and lost 100lb but was still on her journey. Her story and her struggles were like mine and she was real about the journey and its ups and downs, I began to follow her on Instagram and reached out to her. We formed a relationship and she has been a big inspiration to me.
“I learned that there were no good or bad foods and that everything in moderation is okay.“
From that week on I saw the numbers on the scales go down and this gave the motivation to keep going. These were the times I found easy. Seeing the numbers not move were the times I was tested. However, because I was being educated by Cormac I knew these static numbers were normal and eventually I would get my losses. I think what was important that I was learning to have a better relationship with food. Before when I was trying to lose weight I gave up all the foods I loved and I became sick and tired of it and just gave up. It was all or nothing for me. With Cormac and Sinead, in Bluezone Nutrition I learned that there were no good or bad foods and that everything in moderation is okay. Then everything clicked into place for me. I also saw a counsellor for a while after seeking help from a great helpline BodyWhys and generally just began to look after my mental health as well as my physical health.
A year on my life has changed immensely. I have controlled my diabetes to a point where it is nearly reversed. I have lost 9 stone on the scales and I have used my inhaler once since I started.
“I don’t wake up every day full of motivation”
My journey is so much more than what I can put in here and it is still ongoing. I don’t wake up every day full of motivation so I need to rely on discipline and consistency. The other factors that play a major part are having support from family or friends. Clean out social media and only follow those that give content that helps you, I deleted my Facebook because of this. Do not set yourself unrealistic goals, make them small and attainable. Goals don’t need to be all about the pounds you lose, it may be doing your walk a minute longer, getting into a new dress size, for me it was being able to finally buy something in Pennnys so when someone asked me the glorious question “Where did you get that hun” I could answer so contently “Pennys hun!”. And lastly go easy on yourself. You won’t get it right all the time and that’s okay too. When you have had a bad day, week or month or you just need to have that treat then just RESET RESET, RESET. I know I will be doing this for the rest of my life
I also document my journey on my own Instagram in the hope that sharing my story will help others and I have spoken on different podcasts, in my local newspaper and even TV on RTE’s Nationwide. I am an advocate for educating yourself on Nutrition and staying away from fad diets and pyramid schemes.
It has been a year of ups and downs but i would not change it for the world. I have learned so much about myself mentally and physically all I needed was a worldwide pandemic to make me slow down and focus on myself for a change.
In 2020 the world stopped but for me my life began.
How did your 2020 go? Is there anything you would like to achieve in 2021? I would love to hear more on the comments below
Great read Aoife keep up the amazing work