Fitness // Getting started & losing 1 stone (14lbs) in 6 weeks.

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Left: 11st 1lbs/155lbs Right: 9st 10lbs/136lbs
Click here for my weightloss Instagram.

I just want to start this post off by saying that I'm in no way a nutritionist or a fitness expert at all!! I am basically a newbie, haha. I can literally only tell you what worked for me. Like I said, not an expert! This whole fitness and health topic is a minefield so I will tell you what I did and how, just for reference I am 5ft 2in (157cms i think) and I'm 23 years old. So I'm quite small. My calorie numbers and so forth may not work for your body.

I did this in a healthy and maintainable way, This is not a quick fix post or a crash diet, I'm still going to the gym etc to try and lose more but when I get to a comfortable weight, i do intend to stick with the fitness and healthy lifestyle I have found for myself. You can't do this and then go back to eating a surplus of cals/food as before everyday, you will just gain the weight back.

Ok with that out of the way I will get started on how I got into this sort of lifestyle and how I'm improving my health!

December 9th 2015 I saw an image posted on Instagram, this would be the image that started the change in my lifestyle. The image was posted by Protein World and it said "Real Life Transformations." They were basically looking for people who wanted to change their lifestyles, to a healthier lifestyle, to get in touch and that's what I did. Fast forward to a few days later to December 11th 2015 and I was on my way to London for a "before" photo shoot, pamper day, nutritionally informative day and so on it  was really fun and I learnt a lot from that day.

Ok so after that we were given 2 weeks to get Christmas out of the way and then our 12 week transformation would begin on January 4th. Protein World sent me and the others on the team the products I needed, such as shakes and supplements, for free over the 12 weeks (this post is not sponsored in any way, shape or form by Protein World and they didnt ask me or expect me to write it at all. I am writing this to help others. Everything I am saying/writing are MY OWN views, Protein World was just a big part of my story.) I am so grateful to them for running this transformation programme and I consider myself lucky to have been able to take part in one of the last transformation teams!

So this is what kick started my lifestyle and also gave me the courage to join a gym, which I had never done before so it was scary! But I knew to see real results, and be able to maintain them, I would have to get in shape properly so joining a gym for me was a must, as I am not someone who can workout from home, but that's just me!

So basically I went into this with a weightloss goal, set by Protein World and agreed upon by myself, which was lose 1.4stone or 18lbs in 12 weeks, going from 10st 10lb (150lbs) to 9st 6lbs (132lbs.) Which was totally and utterly doable. I did however gain an extra 5lbs from Christmas, taking me to 11st 1lbs before I even started, whoops!   

As time went on and I started seeing changes in my body, even though I still wanted to see the weightloss or fatloss on the scale I  wanted to see physical changes even more and it became exciting when another item of clothing suddenly didn't fit me, when maybe I used to have to practically shoehorn myself into it! 

I always pride myself on not having a mindset in which my goal was to look like someone else (I have my bad days where I get sad and compare to Rosie Huntington-Whiteley haha!) or that I wanted to lose weight to look good in a bikini. My goal was always to get fitter, stronger and lead a healthier lifestyle and obviously feeling confident in a bikini is a massive bonus. But all that aside my love of the health and fitness side of the lifestyle I think is why I have found a passion for it. I am definitely no where near I want to be but I think admitting that gives me the drive to push myself to get there.

The 12 weeks with Protein World finished at the end of April (ish) so I am not currently receiving anything for free from the company but I am grateful for the opportunity they gave!
Old (size 14) vs new (size 10) work trousers.

How I achieved the results.
Whilst I was on the programme I became  organised with my time working out when I could fit in going to the gym and when I could fit in pre-cooking some of my meals as I had a lot going on in my life as I'm sure everyone does, the key is balance and organisation.

At the beginning of the year I was balancing driving lessons, working up to my driving test, going to the gym, prepping meals/food, family/social life and then work (I work in retail so I work flexi shifts which means one day I could be working at 10am until 2pm the next I could be working until 3 until 7, hence why planning gym time and meals in was essential.) so planning is key in my opinion. I'm not massively organised as a person but when it came to fitness I knew that it wouldn't work if I didn't plan ahead, it would just give me another excuse to give up. I would have to get the bus to the gym, so I'd have to bring my gym clothes to work with me, otherwise it would mean a bus ride home and then back again and we all know that once your home, you ain't moving...Well I'm not anyway!

I also ate pretty much clean, for the 12 weeks. I would have two meal replacement shakes, two snacks (nuts, hummus and carrots, fruit etc) and one healthy meal, which for example would be Bolognese with Courgetti or Cajun Chicken and lots of different veggies, on rest days and on gym days i would have Protein Porridge or Protein Pancakes for breakfast, a shake for lunch, and then for tea I would have Chilli and brown rice with green beans. 

The shakes were very much like milkshakes in texture when mixed with almond milk. I often get asked if they left me hungry and the answer, simply put, is no. I worked out 4 days a week so there were only 3 days where I would replace two of my meals with shakes and on those days If I was peckish between shakes, I had my snacks ready to go.

I was very mindful of my carbohydrate intake on rest days and then on gym days I would eat carbs, but not in abundance, unless i had done a very taxing workout then i would maybe have something a extra. I completely cut out all forms of bread and all white carbs and swapped them for their healthier, more complex, alternative Eg. Sweet potato, brown rice, courgetti or butternut squash spaghetti. 

As for fruit, if I needed, or wanted, carbs I would eat bananas - mainly because they are my favourites! I would eat 1,200-1,400 cals on rest days and 1,600-1,800 cals on gym days. I would also have a protein shake or bar right after my workout and either a carby meal 1hr - 30 mins before or a banana right before just for some extra fuel depending on how hungry I was feeling.

In the first 6 weeks of my healthier lifestyle I achieved a 14lb/1st loss and dropped from 11st 1lb (155lbs) to 10st 1lb (141lbs) and in the last 6 weeks of the programme I got to 9st 8lbs (134lbs) at my lightest, 2lbs from my Protein World goal which I am super proud of! But April was a tough month for me with my birthday and a few friends birthday so I did stumble a bit and I am currently weighing between 9st 11lbs - 9st 13lbs. Which is fine because like I said this is a lifestyle/journey/whatever you want to call it. 

I achieved the weightloss by eating healthy, working out between 3-5 times a week and drinking a ton of water, 2-2.5L a day at least. I would do 2 gym classes a week with my friend which would be classes like Body Pump, Spinning, Fitball or Kettlebells and then I would go to the gym on my own 2/3 times a week for 2 sessions of HIIT/weights focusing on certain muscle groups for example, legs and glutes, chest and back etc. and one session of just HIIT and LISS, so start with 5 minute warm up on a low resistance then bump the resistance up for 20 minutes of Low Intensity Steady State Cardio on the Elliptical/Cross-trainer and then I would jump straight onto the treadmill and do 30 seconds sprinting 1 minute jogging for 30 minutes and a 5 minute cool down walk at the end. Obviously you can do these sorts of workouts on any cardio machine, my gym just happens to have these two and the bikes. 

My sessions usually last between 1hr and 1.5hrs and I aim to burn in the region of 500-600+ calories per session but I tend to focus more on if I'm feeling good, sweating a lot and putting maximum effort in. Sometimes I would go to the gym straight after one of the more strength based classes to do my cardio just so I could have 2 rest days during the week, because I like to sleep. 

I feel for fat loss - cardio is obviously really important, hence why I incorporate a session solely cardio based, as you can burn fat more easily that way but weights are a really good way to tone your body up and really change your body composition along the way. The more muscle you have the more calories you can burn or so I've heard. Plus they are more fun IMO!

Motivation is the fire inside that gets you started but when that dwindles into a small flame how do you keep going and stick to it? Good question.

Around the time of my driving test I took a few days off going to the gym tracking my macros/calories etc and just loosely ate well. Little did I know a few days would turn into 3 weeks. After I stopped I just couldn't start again. That's when I realised motivation is a fickle friend, it will come and go at the drop of a hat so you need something to push you on days when motivation ups and leaves you!

I am a visual person I motivate myself by seeing things rather than reading or doing things. So the way to motivate myself was watching Fitness YouTubers and seeing how goal orientated they were even on days where all they wanted to do was eat doughnuts and lie in bed, my idea of heaven. Seeing other people struggle made me realise that we will ALL struggle. I can guarantee that no athlete wakes up 24/7, 365 days a year thinking "Yes, let's eat healthy and workout! woohoo!" What keeps them going is they have goals in mind and they know what they have to do to achieve them, which is why it's important to set goals, plan them, and work out how to reach them. 

Results won't come over night, you have to stick to it and have faith that as long as you're doing something different change will come.

Find something bigger than motivation something that you have a desire or passion for and that will take you through those days were your bed is basically your soulmate.

Future plans/goals.
My plan for the future is to just keep on going. I would like to ideally lose around another stone but I don't particularly have a time frame for that, it will happen when it happens I suppose. I would like to experiment with Powerlifting and different ways of working out but for now I'm doing what I know works and just sticking to that!

Basically, that's how I've lost some weight and fell in love with the fitness and health aspects of the lifestyle. It wasn't easy but it wasn't the hardest thing I've ever done, it just takes time, patience and a lot of mental capacity!

Hope you enjoyed reading! Don't forget to comment below with any questions or any tips you may have for me! 

Love Alicia x

Why not also keep up with me and my blog on social media? Alicia Jade is also active on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Bloglovin'
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