Update: Since publishing this article Lena has now lost 34kg! Wow!
Lena has been a Fresh Start customer since the beginning, and has had tremendous success! Read her interview with us below for her advice, tips and tricks. You can keep up with her journey on Instagram, here and on her blog here.
Tell us a little bit about your Fresh Start journey so far and why you decided to make a change to your health?
It started by accident really. I first ordered My Food Bag just to change up what I was cooking, and found myself really loving it. The first 5kg or so dropped off without any effort so I swapped to Fresh Start to really accelerate the weight loss. I had been unhappy with my weight for a long time and was starting to experience some negative effects on my health, but found dieting really hard so didn’t stick at it for long. I’ve now been doing Fresh Start for around 2 years and I’ve lost 25kg to date, which takes me from a size 24 to an 18. This year my weight has been pretty stable but I’ve dropped centimetres as I’ve become more fit.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve come across while losing weight and keeping it off?
Socialising has been the hardest challenge for me — my friends and I all love to go out for good meals and drinks, and when you have a busy social life that can really add up. Some of my friends have joined me in Fresh Start or having a healthier lifestyle so we meet up for walks or gym classes instead of coffee & cake which is fun. I just try to find balance in my life, with the weekdays being home cooked Fresh Start meals and let myself relax a bit more in the weekend.
What’s been your favourite Fresh Start meal?
It’s so hard to choose a favourite! But a recent one that springs to mind was the Beef & Venison Bolognese with Spelt Spaghetti & Silverbeet. It was so tasty and hearty yet still so healthy.
What has your exercise regime been like? What’s worked for you and what hasn’t?
For the first year or so I didn’t really do any exercise. Then I started exercising after encouragement from Fresh Start nutritionist Emma. I began with casual walks around my neighbourhood, then my workmates and I signed up for a half marathon walk fundraising for the Cancer Society. I completed all 21km which was a big achievement for me. This year I’ve got back into the gym with group fitness classes like barre, spin, and boxing. I really love the group atmosphere and encouragement from the instructors. Finding a type of exercise I enjoy is key, because I just won’t go if it feels like a chore. There have been some classes I haven’t enjoyed but I’ve got a good routine going now. I recently went travelling in Cambodia and was so glad I’d been exercising because it meant I could explore to the full extent of it. I kept thinking of the Lena 2 years ago who wouldn’t have even got on a bike, let alone cycled around an island in Cambodia, and it made me really happy that I wasn’t being held back in life by my lack of fitness.
Any tips for someone just starting out on their weight loss journey?
Slow and steady wins the race! It can be frustrating losing 500g here and there while you see other people dropping 10kg overnight, but it’s all about changing your habits and your mindset. It’s a cliche but for me it’s a lifestyle change, not a diet. I have long term goals, like being fit and healthy into old age, not fitting into a skirt or looking good in a bikini. Don’t feel like you need to change everything overnight, take it one step at a time. The Fresh Start group is great for support and advice, it’s really useful to connect with people who have the same goals as you.