Fit, firm and fabulous
When the Muddy muffin top started to take on a life of its own, there was only one thing for it – 28-day bootcamp. Here's how it went...
I don’t really do diets. Not because I don’t need to, but because I don’t really believe in them. I’m just not good with the whole denial thing when it come to food and (let’s be honest) drink.
But since leaving my job at The Independent two years ago to edit Muddy, the waistline has been gradually expanding, the butt swelling (and not in that bootylicious good way) and the hips have become, well, hippier. It didn’t seem to be a problem – seems I’m okay with this type of denial – until I could no longer get my jeans on.
All those food reviews (I know, poor me) and the absence of a fairly long walking commute either side of my Surrey-London-Surrey train journey had sent me up a size or two which meant I had to either a) go shopping for a whole new wardrobe, or b) shift some pounds.
I chose B.
I was already doing a weekly HIIT class with Muddy Awards finalist Total Body Fitness in Warlingham so I signed myself up for their 28-day bootcamp programme.
TBF founder and trainer Lindsay Gillam has teamed up with Rachel Holmes, founder of the Kick Start Fat Loss programme, and in addition to her bootcamps she also offers the 60-day KSFL programme. I went for the bootcamp because 28 days seemed a more do-able, and because many of the same principles from KSFL are incorporated into the bootcamp programme.
This is not about diet and denial, it’s about eating the right foods for your body, increasing your physical activity, addressing stress and creating a healthy lifestyle. But it does start with a total detox.
Was I ready for this? Hell yes.
For the the first two weeks I cut out booze, carbs, sugar, wheat and dairy, and adopted a clean-eating lifestyle. Strangely, it wasn’t the wine I missed but coffee.
My portion sizes didn’t get smaller. My plate was piled high with vegetable, eggs, fish. I drank plenty of water, and tried to get plenty of sleep. I made time to go to three of Lindsay’s fitness classes a week – a mix of HIIT and circuit training – and, after I got over the initial detox headache, my energy levels rocketed and my mind became clearer. I was also a more chilled out.
Lindsay isn’t one of the sergeant major types. She’s super-supportive in her classes, encouraging you to push yourself, but not overdo it. She sends daily emails to keep you motivated and to give you ideas for meals. She also suggests quick at-home workouts so you can top up your training if you want to.
I didn’t find the detox too difficult, and in the third week we re-introduced dairy followed by carbs. And yes, the carbs do seem to cause bloating. But I can’t live without them entirely, so they’re back in my life in smaller amounts.
Did I cheat at all? Well yes, I did have a glass of Prosecco in the third week at a family engagement party, and in the fourth week I had a glass of wine at a dinner party.
But did I get back into my jeans? Absolutely. I lost 15cm from my waistline, and 16cm from my hips – so there was no need for an expensive shopping trip. But best of all I’ve created new habits which make me feel healthier. And now I’m only a lush two days out of the seven!