Have you ever heard of the term body dysmorphic disorder? People suffering from this disorder are preoccupied with ‘an imagined defect in physical appearance’. I have exactly the opposite. Every December I think I will make it to the annual Victoria’s Secret fashion show…as a model that is. Even though I’m not even near the VS (determined by a middle aged man) beauty standard. And to be honest, I don’t even want to. What I do want is to be comfortable in my own skin. And like every normal woman, I too have my (weight) ups and downs. The way I measure the current health status is through my uniform. As long as I don’t have to go up one size, I’m good. But my uniform did start to get a little tighter around the abdominal area. And that was a sign for me to step up my game. It wasn’t because I didn’t exercise enough. Everyone who follows me on Instagram could regularly see my gym antics in the shared stories. In came Etienne, a personal trainer whom I’ve known ever I started working out at my current gym. We used to work out together off and on, whenever he was not traveling. I told him about my ‘struggles’ and E offered to help me. ‘But’, he firmly said, ‘It will only work if you work on it. And don’t expect any overnight miracles’. Sir, yes sir. We started a journey of ten weeks and to my and especially E’s surprise) I already lost 5 cm of my waist in the first 5 weeks. How did I manage to do that? I will tell you all about it in le blog.
Moment of truth
Next to regularly exercising (which I already did) E told me I had to track eating habits. I already had the app FOOD but I never used it. You can link the app to your gym and thus set goals together with your trainer. Your current weight, your target weight, the calories you are allowed per day and calories burned, it’s all there in one app. Super nifty but also super confronting. It’s how I found out a bar of Tony Chocolonely chocolate contains a whopping 1000 calories. 😳Never get groceries after working out or when you’re hungry. Oh and those ‘healthy’ chocolate covered corn wavers are about 600 calories (when you eat the complete pack at once like me). Because I was tracking my eating habits I became more conscious and immediately made better decisions.
After I came back from my first ever solo trip to Bali I thought I had seen the light. During my stay on Bali I mostly ate vegetarian and vegan dishes. I loved it and didn’t miss having meat at all. After watching a Netflix documentary I knew for sure: I.am.going.vegan! After returning back home I kept the vegan thing going for about two weeks. And honestly, those were the two most unhappy weeks of my life. Not just because I missed Bali but my body felt horrible. My skin was dull, I had zero energy and I could keep up at the gym. And most importantly: weight wise, nothing was happening. Because I began tracking my food I discovered I was not getting enough protein in my diet. So I changed that. I immediately had more energy and recovered faster after a workout. It’s not like I am eating tons of meat but I mix it up with plant based protein. My diet is more varied and when I do eat meat, it is always organic. With all do respect for all the vegans out there. It’s just not for me.
R and R
If there is one word you won’t hear me using often it is ‘REST’. As a flight attendant you are always on the go, you are constantly in a different time zone and you are skipping many nights. ‘En route’ I am always busy looking for blog content. And at home I hardly take a breather too. But you need to have enough rest to let your body and cells heal. And also, if you don’t get enough sleep your body will produce the stress hormone cortisol and that is how you get that little gut. So I needed to slow down and grant myself some rest and relaxation. Not only my body but also in mind. I try to meditate first thing in the morning (instead of grabbing that stupid phone). Even if it is only for ten minutes. And then, off to the gym.
And the award to the worst water consumer goes to, me! I’m lucky if I can get about 500ml in per day. Also after a heavy workout, I hardly drink any water. And that is not ok if you want to lose a few pounds. You need water for a healthy digestion and to get rid of toxins. I try to walk around with a bottle of water whenever I’m on the go and just put random glasses of water around the house. To see is to drink.
Don’t drink your calories
Be honest: do you ever have a complete box of blue berries, one banana, two oranges, half a pineapple and six strawberries at once? You don’t, right? But you do drink it. What I also stopped doing is to have too many smoothies. Without even knowing I was consuming too much (fruit) sugars but those make you gain weight as well. It doesn’t hurt to have one every now and then but just don’t overdo it. It is better to just eat your fruit, it’s a better way to get your fibers.
Go the extra mile
Never been a fan of taking long walks. I always use to mock my friend Huul because she’s always telling me about the many long walks she takes. But like many things which I mock first (Isabel Marant sneaker wedges) I end up doing as well. Next to that extra day at the gym I also jumped on the long walk bandwagon. The other day I took a 13 km stroll through Amsterdam and also discovered many nice boutiques and galeries along the way.
But of course the real work starts after the whole journey. It’s now time to adapt and maintain a new, healthy lifestyle. Although I stopped tracking my food intake (I didn’t want it to become an obsession) it’s still going well. My uniform still fits well and I feel good and that’s the most important.
ps: if you would like to get a personalized training and food schedule by Etienne, go ahead and follow him on Instagram . You do need to wait until he gets back from his year of studying in Spain.