Author: freedomtobefit

I am a 20 year old student studying in Oxford. 3 years ago now i regrettably gave up a 6 year long career in athletics starting with the Pentathlon when I was 13 and progressing into the heptathlon. This was the biggest mistake of my life and now I want to inspire and help others to reach there health and fitness goals without giving up.

If this doesn’t inspire you, I don’t know what will..

Even the greatest were told they would fail; if someone can’t do something they’ll tell you, you can’t do it.

I challenge YOU…

I challenge you to be better than you were yesterday,

I challenge you to be stronger than those who are willing you to fail,

I challenge you to forget about the past and focus on the present,

I challenge you to stop focusing on the stars and focus on the moon,

I challenge you to stop hating yourself and start loving the gift of life that you live,

I challenge you to enter on to this journey with me to be what every moment we wish it would be. 

I am sure there are many of you out there who are feeling like i am right now, down in the dumps, bummed out my your own reflection. Well i can tell you now you are blessed; there a thousand people out there who are worse off than you and that are grateful for every single day. I put on this persona as if i am this remarkably strong being who doesn’t “care” when actually i  care more than anyone i know. I have resent for those who don’t even try and win almost every time; who wake up and don’t avoid their reflection at every possible opportunity; but most of all i resent myself for letting me get like this.

I am internally grateful for the life i am blessed with, both socially and mentally. However i am not grateful for expanding my waistline and defining my stretch marks to a point where i hate myself beyond belief. It is not fair that such a simple activity such as the means to eat can have this effect on so many people.  We are also the people that try the hardest, think daily about the food we consume and the activity we must part take in to feel as if we tried. The people who go about their daily lives looking flawless without the slightest second thought on calories of gym schedules. We all have that one friend who can eat whatever they want and still slide into a size 6. I don’t want to be that person, i just want to you and the rest of us who are the triers and the thinkers to be successful as we deserve to be. 

It has taken me a long time to finally sit down and write this with the full and whole hearted determination of completing my goal, not only for me but for all the ones who want to see me fail. For every person that has nicked name me by the way I look or my eating habits, for the ones who think i can’t maintain a healthy lifestyle; just because they know they can’t. 

I challenge you to enter on this journey with me, starting form this very moment. Where ever you are, put down that cookie, draw up a plan, throw out that junk and be healthy but most of all happy. Smile at those who want to see you cry. By challenging you I am challenging myself to maintain this for myself. 

Heres a quote for your dreams – 

“Some failure in life is inevitable, it is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well have not lived at all, in which case, you failed by default” 

 

R ‘Thunder’ xo

Of course I’m single – my trainers have more personality!

So it’s day one of this quick VD detox before I go and spend a lovely day with my best friend (single of course – my boyfriend is the gym.) I planned on grttingr up early to run but this quickly went down hill as I slept in and almost missed my lecture. Determined I went into UNI in my gym kit as a bid to force me to go later on. Something I find hard as I am a keen morning trainer. I only stopped to have my first meal at 12; a simple, plain and very boring Greek yoghurt before heading home at 2:30 to fill myself up on a protein shake. Much to my disappointment my friend bailed on me and decided not to join me in the gym which in turn gave me the perfect excuse not to go. After an appalling weekend I knew I had to get out so I went for my usually 3.5mile jog round the city, I’m so glad I did, I zoomed round in my fastest time ever. I was starving after practically not eating all day but settled for tuna, eggs and veg with a Greek yoghurt for pud. Clean and lean 🙂

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Early night for me..6:30am training session with my PT before a busy day.
Night all!

R ‘Thunder’ xo

The Dream Of Life – Alan Watts

Truly Inspiring. Wow!

The Better Man Project ™

There’s aren’t enough words to describe how powerful this video is for me. It’s in my iPod and every single morning before I lift I listen to this speech. It’s absolutely stunning. Inspirational. Motivating. It’s everything to me. I would like for you to watch it and tell me what you think.

We all should dream big.

Without going after our dream, we cannot possibly live our best life. It is there for a reason. It’s necessary that we follow it…not just an option.

“If you awaken from this illusion, and you understand that black implies white, self implies other, life implies death — or shall I say, death implies life — you can feel yourself. Not as a stranger in the world, not as something here on probation, not as something that has arrived here by fluke, but you can begin to feel your own existence as absolutely fundamental.

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The unthinkable..

So we are all on this journey, constantly battling with ourselves against what to eat and what not to eat, how much exercise to take part in and punishing ourselves when we rest. We will usually get into a routine but as a student myself i find it very hard to keep on the straight and narrow when I am surrounded by people with metabolisms directly reflecting a racehorse and who like to drink frequently. Don’t get me wrong i love a good night out but once a week at most i’m a lot more conscious of eating healthy and being up early to workout which is a shame i guess when you look at it in the big scheme of things; some may say I’m “sacrificing my uni experience” but really its because i enjoy it. I’m know as the strong one and i want to keep it that way. 

Unfortuantely i am a secret eater, and i’m sure I’m not the only one. Day to day i keep in a routine, take note of my meals and wear a heart monitor when i work out however when i drink i eat and i eat A LOT. I take the opportunity to blame it on my drunk alter-ego and go for it. Luckily i don’t head to McDonalds like the majority of fellow pissheads but instead i raid my home cupboards for any for of carb. Bread, pasta, pitta, nutella, peanut butter all layered with a tonne of sauce and butter. Now there are 2 problems here, firstly i hate sauce and butter and would never eat them in any normal circumstance, secondly I’m a celiac and suffer from it very badly. This then leads on to the next day where my next excuse is..”oh I’m hungover” therefore i need lots of greasy food. Normally a normal human would stop at a full english or a bacon nutty, but for some reason i take the opportunity to eat all of these foods repeatedly throughout the day until i feel sick or i have to go to bed. 

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I don’t know if this is because i don’t allow my these on a regular basis so i want them more or if i really just have no will power but I’ve done it for as long as I can remember. This week has been particularly bad, although i have worked out everyday there is no way it could cancel out the amount of crap i have eaten/drunk in the past 48 hours. Infact its been Wednesday till Sunday. Poor effort. This has led to my decision to go on a 2 week detox starting from this very moment until February the 14th. No alcohol, no sugar, no carbs..sounds delicious doesn’t it. The unlucky thing is your mind has a power greater than anything else, i’ll look at myself daily and think “I hate myself but i’m not huge” and happily tuck into something revolting. This happens daily andy hat is why i make no proress. In summer i don’t crave food, i drink tanks of water and sweat pretty much 24/7 leading to a figure i am comfortable with my mid August. I said to myself after Summer 2013 i’m not going back to the old, fat me who couldn’t even get her belt onto the last hole. It took a lot of dedication to lose that weight and I can relate with anyone who feels like they are fighting a losing battle. This is why i am going to do this. Just 2 weeks to prove to myself i can do it!! Rumour has it if you can break a habit for 22 days then you no longer crave it. I have given up chocolate for over a month now and i’m still going strong. 

Come on a join me..do it for the: 

You got skinny or You look great or Wow she’s hot

but most importantly do it for yourself and to fit your clothes. I was sorting out my wardrobe today and my friend pointed out that i don’t wear half the stuff. Thats because i like to wear the stuff that fits me, baggy jumpers and comfy jeans. None of these tight leggings or crop jumpers. 

 

R ‘Thunder’ xo

Because I enjoy it!!

To anyone that knows me they must think I am the most enthusiastic gym monkey and healthiest freak around when actually to myself I am quite the opposite. It’s so easy to beat yourself up about what you eat and how you look especially with so much pressure on both men and women these days. From a young age I’ve been involved with sport, i guess thats the one thing i feel confident doing. Im not the thickest kid on the block but i’m no academic, i never was gifted in music although i tried 8 instruments, i wasn’t into the arts the stage just isn’t for me but i am luckily quite practically talented when it comes to sport. 

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I have played Hockey, Tennis, Football, Rugby, Netball, Swimming, Athletics, Horse Riding, Dance, Rounders, Cross-country all at a very high level but unfortunately this has led me to have terrible joints at my young age of 20. I’m now a self confessed gym bunny. Many people would say, what are you complaining about I would love to be sporty; and its true i am very lucky to have been part of some amazing sports teams and now own a hefty collection of medals and trophies; and its this which adds the pressure.

Everyone knows me as the “sporty” one who loves rabbit food and is just health crazy. IF ONLY THEY KNEW. I am probably one of the largest out of my friends, which doesn’t seem fair as i cane the gym 5-7 times a week; push my body to the absolute extremes, wake up at 6:30am on holiday to do hill sprints in 20 degree heat all to get a “good” body. There they are eating sandwiches and pasta whilst lay in bed and they are the size of a match stick. You could blame it on genes or they are simply blessed with a metabolism of a race horse. The truth is is i’m guilty of the secret eat. When i come in late from a friends and everyone is in bed i’ll sit in the kitchen and demolish everything I can until i feel sick (as long as its before midnight) and keep telling myself: i’ll start tomorrow. 

Honestly, it’s not rocket science, i’m sure there are hundreds of people out there like me; love exercise, eat healthy 90% of the time, still hate themselves, eat secretly, feel guilty and repeat. You can read magazines and all the stories in the media but there really is no realistic quick fix. 3 meals a day, lots of water, exercise blah blah blahhhh. Which i do, OF COURSE.

Next week i’m going to try an experiment. One week eating healthy-ish, working out, my normal routine. Then the week after i’m going to take a week off from the gym, and eat a very strict diet and see which one i lose more weight. I know its not all about the scales but it is hard to see when you are trying so hard and putting on weight but not really seeing a difference when really your naughty little muscle fibres are actually getting bigger and stronger. I am blessed to have gained a lot of knowledge about diet and nutrition through all my sports and i am very educated in it; which makes me think why am I not the person i want to be. If you ever feel like this just keep telling yourself:

No matter how many mistakes you make or how slow you progress, you are still way ahead of everyone who isn’t trying. 

 

R “Thunder” x

 

Me, Myself & I “Thunder”

There I am, the one in the Orange Jacket, enjoying a coffee in the sunshine in my first week back at University after the Summer. I am a 20yr old student, now in 2nd Year at university in Oxford. Looking back I was probably quite content here. After losing nearly 2 stone over the 4 month break i was probably in the best shape i’ve ever been but it’s not always been like that.  
ImageFor as long as I can remember my fiends have always called me “thunder thighs”, which is true. I do have very large thighs which have a story of their own. When i was 11 i took up athletics competitively full time. Not through school but through a full time trainer; an ex common wealth athlete, who took on a small group us to pass on his knowledge and talent. I quickly realised i had a talent and was consistently winning my competitions both for multi and single events. I continued to train for a further 5years; moving through 3 different clubs and 2 trainers. I finally reached my peak when i was 16, acing my personal bests. Training was 6 times a week, which involved a regular McDonalds every Tuesday and Thursday at the nearby drive-through, much to my mothers dismay. On 22nd June 2009 all my dreams came crashing down. I was representing England in the Long Jump and had to jump 5.07 to qualify, i had done it in practice many times before and was confident this would be the day i would be going to the European Championships abroad. 

Two no-jumps and 1 poor jump later, i missed out on the 7 potential places by 1cm; any athlete can understand how devastating it feels, especially in a discipline such as long-jump where board placement is so crucial. From that moment on, I have never stepped on a track since. 

This was and still is the biggest mistake of my life to date.

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This is one of my favourite pictures from all the years. As you can imagine after training 6 times a week as well as being in school full time and school sports i was tiny but as soon as i stopped the weight piled on. My eating habits remained and my fitness was reduced significantly. As the change didn’t happen over night it wasn’t until my clothes didn’t start to fit me that i noticed. Along with this i was still growing and moved to boarding school where they were “generous” with food. Easter 2011 I went on a 4 week family holiday and came back 1 ½ stone lighter. I practically starved myself and ran on the beach everyday, i was sick and it was not maintainable. Within 6 months the weight had come back, plus some more. I lost a bit in my 1st semester of Uni but in the 2nd Semester i reached the heaviest i’d ever been; i was miserable and self conscious. My clothes didn’t fit, i didn’t want to go out, i would eat in private and i did nothing about it. In the summer of 2013 I went on 2 family holidays and travelled around Europe for 1 month. I lost all the weight and probably became the fitest I have ever been in my life; but it wasn’t easy.

I said to myself I would never go back there; why did i put myself through all that pain and handwork for nothing. Its now coming to the end of January 2014 and although i have probably put on 6lbs I am now at a flatline. I train 5-7 times a week and eat healthy for 80% of my day.

I am now at a weight plato that i can’t seem to move away from. Im going to try new nutrition techniques and increase my cardio to see if i can drop the pounds back to where i feel happy and confident.

Although many will think ‘oh, i’d love to look like you’ everyone has their own insecurities and goals which we must respect. I am happy and healthy and most of all grateful for both of these qualities but every day it is the first and last thing i think about. 

My aim is to improve every day, inspire and help others, share my passion for exercise but most of all premote health and well-being.

If you don’t have health – You don’t have anything.

R “Thunder” x