"I DON'T RECOGNIZE MYSELF FROM THE ME 6 MONTHS AGO"
In 2019 Jennifer saw a picture of herself and did not like what she saw so she decided that “enough was enough”
With some knowledge of nutrition, Jennifer managed to lose some of the unwanted weight by following a calorie controlled diet, but she hit a plateau and the weight started to creep back on again.
Jennifer said: “My problem was keeping the weight off. It’s easy to count calories and watch the pounds drop, but as soon as I’d hit a target I would just revert to my old eating habits. What I was doing was never sustainable. I would fix a short-term problem (the excess weight) but never deal with the underlying issue – my poor relationship with food.”
This all changed when Jennifer started working with M10 coach, Dan Smith
The goal was to lose body fat and see a change in body shape, rather than just dropping numbers on the scale…
“In summer 2019 I was at my heaviest, my BMI had just hit ‘obese’ and I was so angry at myself for letting myself get into that position. I remember there being one photo in particular that I saw of myself which disgusted me and I decided enough was enough. Over the following 10 months I lost a lot of weight by myself, but after I hit my 4 stone target I started to plateau and my weight slowly started creeping up again. I hadn’t lost my drive but I just didn’t know how to take it to the next level. I knew I could have easily lost the few pounds that I’d put back on myself, but I wanted to make sure this time that I was losing body fat and actually changing my body shape, rather than just dropping numbers on the scale. I needed help from someone that actually knew what they were doing.”
Before, the underlying issue, a poor relationship with food, was not dealt with...
“I’ve never believed in fad diets and always thought I was pretty clued up on weight loss however would say I’ve yoyo’d a little in the past. The two occasions I’ve set out to lose weight previously, I did so purely by maintaining a calorie deficit, and on both occasions was successful and actually found it relatively simple. But my problem is keeping the weight off. It’s easy to count calories and watch the pounds drop, but as soon as I’d hit a target I would just revert to my old eating habits. Basically, what I was doing was never sustainable. I would fix a short-term problem (the excess weight) but never deal with the underlying issue – my poor relationship with food.”
The “all or nothing” mentality with a diet did not work...
“I’ve always had a very all or nothing mentality around dieting. When I wasn’t dieting, I gave zero consideration to what I was eating. Every day I’d just eat whatever I wanted until I was stuffed to the point of feeling sick. When dieting, I’d become consumed with ‘good’ vs ‘bad’ foods and would restrict myself to only what I deemed to be good foods. I was obsessed with the Calories In vs Out bar chart on FitBit and if the bar ever went red (signifying I’d exceeded my calorie limit for the day) I’d instantly write the day off and go on a binge, which would usually result in me then writing off the whole week”
Strength training does not have to be “hard core” all the time..
"In terms of training, I had very little experience before M10. When I lost the 4 stone I’d done it primarily through diet, only bringing in exercise during the latter few months, spurred on by lockdown. I started doing a home workout program using a workout app, which involved minimal equipment circuit type training. I didn’t particularly enjoy it but stuck at it through the 3 months of lockdown, eventually doing 6 sessions a week, giving no consideration to recovery.
I really enjoy the strength training aspect of my programme, in large part because Dan has made it so accessible to me and kept it at a level that challenges me yet is within my ability. Dan is brilliant and makes every session enjoyable. It’s not all about hardcore training and getting beasted each week (which was my preconception about personal training before M10!) and there’s decent banter which makes the sessions fly by."
Results and new goals…
"Initially when I started with M10 my main goal was just to lose body fat and gain muscle mass. Until now I have lost 11% body fat and 9kg in weight.
Now that my body fat is fairly low, my focus is shifting to building muscle with the aim of doing a photoshoot at the end of this year (something I thought would be far beyond my grasp when I first started back in August!)
Another big goal for me, and one that is still a work in progress, is around my mindset with food. Obviously a difficult one to measure, but I want to get to a place where I am comfortable around food and have mechanisms in place to deal with temptation. "
Physical changes are motivating but a changed mindset is also part of a transformation…
“The physical changes are great and are a massive confidence boost, but the changes I’ve seen in myself mentally are even bigger and something I genuinely hadn’t expected when I first signed up. I’m much happier in myself, I have a new found drive to push myself and generally just feel more positive, which in turn makes life more enjoyable. Mentally I feel much stronger and better able to cope with challenges and setbacks. I know this is all down to the fact I’m now putting the right fuel into my body, moving my body more and pushing it at the right time, all of which have been part of training with M10.
It has become more than physical changes...
My confidence, in a physical, professional and mental sense, is constantly increasing and people notice it, which makes me feel great.
One of the nicest compliments I’ve received was from a friend who I hadn’t seen for almost a year and she commented on how well I looked but also said she thought I seemed so much happier and brighter… that has stuck with me more than all the comments on my physical appearance.
My friends always joke that they don’t recognise me anymore (in a good way) and honestly I don’t even recognise myself from the me 6 months ago!
Habits and lifestyle changes…
“Another huge change has been the improvement in my sleep. I’d always been a night owl, I’d stay up late, often struggle to get to sleep and really hated getting up in the morning. Since training with M10, my sleep has completely transformed. I fall asleep quickly and I practically bounce out of bed in the morning (no more setting 6 alarms and hitting snooze 10 times!) I now love getting up early and getting a workout or a walk in before anyone else is up. By early evening I’m usually knackered and happy to go to bed, I hardly watch any TV anymore and Netflix binges are a thing of the past (which I think has also been so good for my mental health!) I can’t imagine ever wanting to revert”
The nutrition is the challenging part but Coach Dan plays a big role in changing the “all or nothing” mindset around food…
“The nutrition side has been a tough battle. Dan has certainly helped me make progress in fighting my all or nothing mentality around food/dieting and my mindset is slowly changing, but there’s lots more work to do there which is why improving it remains one of my main goals.
Sounds silly as everyone knows that no one is perfect, but my mindset before M10 was that I had to hit every calorie goal and stick to a rigid workout plan else I was failing. But Dan has shown me that’s not necessarily true, and whilst discipline and consistency is definitely required, at this stage in my training I can have little slip ups and not have to write myself off.
Dan is so knowledgeable and knows just the right level of detail to share so that I’m not completely mind blown”
Why you should consider working with a coach to achieve YOUR OWN best results…
“From my experience, anyone that’s lost weight will give you their advice on what worked for them, but you’ll find so much of the advice is conflicting. You really just need an expert who can take the complexity away. I’ve lost count of how many people have asked me what the secret is to how I lost all my weight or wants to know exactly what I’m eating every day, but I always say the best thing they can do is speak to someone who really knows what they’re doing. I think a calorie deficit will get you so far, but after that you really need to understand what’s going on in your body and how it all works together, which most of us don’t. I certainly wouldn’t have made the changes that I have to my nutrition had I not had Dan taking control of it for me. It’s much easier to just do as you’re told and know that it’s going to work, rather than trialling stuff yourself and risk not seeing results, or worse. So get a coach (and trust them)! Not to mention the huge benefit that having the accountability to a coach has on your progress, and of course the added advantage of actually performing exercises correctly under their guidance (PT Google just doesn’t compare!)”
The passionate M10 community around you makes all the difference...
“Fitness has become such a huge part of my life, it’s my main priority and has an impact on so much that I do, but it’s a new world to me and its not a passion that my friends or family share, so having that time each week at M10 around people who are so passionate about it, makes all the difference.
I always look forward to my sessions at M10 each week, I think just because it’s time for me and time that I can really focus on my goals. Dan is brilliant and makes every session enjoyable.
I always leave M10 in a great mood, feeling super motivated and armed with the knowledge to get the most out of my week and the sessions I do by myself."
A few words from Coach Dan…
When Jen first started with me she had lost a decent amount of weight but was very unfamiliar with the gym environment. So, the first port of call was to get her comfortable and acquainted with training in the gym over the first few months.
Going into the transformation process, rather than just looking at fat loss, we were looking at physique development and understanding that there was a physique to be revealed. Through training and nutritional interventions, based around her structure, we made sure we presented a physique at the end of the 16 week transformation period, and not just a typical weight loss before and after picture.
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