Hi, my name is Ange, and I want to share my origin story with you.
There was a time in my life that took me by surprise. I looked at a photo taken with my daughter when we went on a Ferris wheel of all places, and I realised, “gee. what happened to me!” I used to be lean, muscular and healthy — now I felt frumpy and my belly stood out so much! I don’t think I’ve ever been this shape before in my life. When I spoke to some friends, most of them said to me “well, this is what happens when you get older!” and for a while, I gave in to those assumptions as well. I mean, if it was happening to others and myself, then there was some truth in it. Five years ago, I was hitting the gym, eating well and preparing for physique comps. I knew what dedication was and how much our body can transform if we put in the hard work. But for some reason, my body wasn’t responding to anything anymore…
All I wanted to do was feel good about the way I looked, to have a proper nutrition and exercise plan that would allow me to be the shape I wanted, without going back and forth from fat to super skinny. I was so sick of doing endless hours of cardio like running (and I hate running!) and pushing myself to my limits every single day. And you know what? This didn’t even work! There were times I’d end up putting on weight, or worst still, looking bloated and ‘soft.’ I lost my muscle in the process of doing this excessive cardio. That muscle is what I worked hard for, during my years of training. Now I was becoming “skinny fat!” This brought ton even more resentment and shame within me.
Here I am, looking the same every single day, wondering when this is all going to change — yet, I didn’t even know what to change! Eat even less — I was already doing that, and exercising more. Well, that would mean dedicating most of the day — which I didn’t have because we all have to work for a living!
Throughout this cycle, I couldn’t think straight, and I felt awful I was struggling with how I felt about myself. I accepted and used poor excuses for the way my body became as I got older. It seemed like the weight came on, and my whole inner fighting spirit lost its drive to get that dream body I wanted back again. I just wished there was some way to get my confidence back also. No matter what I wore, I didn’t feel like myself, no matter what angle in a photo I was in, I looked bigger. Being this way made me feel ashamed of myself, not being genuine to my core values of health and accepting the false idea that I could not do anything more because of my age. I knew deep down, I could be better — and not striving this way now was hurting me a lot. I knew I could do it, but I felt stuck because I didn’t know what to do!
I had hit a particularly hard time with my health, where I began to have all sorts of food intolerances and gut issues come up. I would eat something and would feel bloated and uncomfortable for days — even weeks. I tried eating the small six meals a day, but that didn’t make a difference — it only increased water retention and bloating on my body. My usual competition diet was not working. One day, I had an incredibly hard conversation with a close friend, telling her my body and health frustrations. She listened with patience, and said to me “why don’t you try fasting?” She had been doing it for a month now and was checking in with me about her results. I was taken back how fast she lost weight, and how much more confident she had within herself. I thought for a minute that maybe I could try, and then remembered I did have an unpleasant experience with fasting five years ago ( I used to binge-eat during feasting time). It was one of the causes of my weight gain! I didn’t want to be in that position again. I was already sick of doing things that didn’t work. So, my friend said to me “what have you got to lose?” and I said back “nothing really, just the weight I had put on which is going nowhere” And with that, I began my intermittent fasting journey — but adding a new technique to it. I felt like this was my last hope to get the body I wanted — not to mention get my health back!
Then I changed what I was eating, and when I was eating everything shifted for me. It was that one thing that I did differently, from my previous fasting experience, that set the wheels in motion. The bloating and discomfort I felt — the “puffy” look I had been carrying around with me for years, started disappearing. My concentration levels shot up through the roof! It felt like I had taken a pre-workout, even though I hadn’t eaten for hours. It’s like my batteries did some supercharge and I just kept my focus on and on what I was doing. I couldn’t stop!
Let me warn you; this didn’t happen instantly for me. Unfortunately, Intermittent Fasting didn’t provide the instant results that some people talk about. For my friend, she experienced changes in her body pretty much straight away. In my case, one month went past, then two and then three — then I began to think “well, why isn’t this working for me?” Perhaps I was doing something wrong, or maybe I was eating too much or too little. Then when I added in high and low carb days consistently, which I scheduled with my training and rest days. THEN my results finally kicked in — Hooray! FINALLY!!
After all those months I just kept pushing on. I finally lost that excess body fat which had never disappeared before in my life. My legs transformed into my super lean legs, instead of my little stumps & my six-pack was back again. My bloating and digestive discomforts settled and, eased my allergic responses to food. I also put on more muscle & gained more strength than I ever did on a low-calorie diet!.
I couldn’t believe that I could FINALLY eat the things I wanted, become leaner, healthier and even put on muscle mass! How can one little strategy like this result in so much change! But the most significant change that took place is my confidence! I was finally able to buy the clothes I wanted, to be the size I wanted, and to wear my shorts and singlets without any shame. I looked like a person who was fit, healthy and living life following my values. Now, when I say I’m a health professional — I feel it, I look it, and I know anyone can achieve it. Age is not a contributing factor to putting on weight — it’s our inner belief in ourselves and our lack of confidence that eats away at us and stops any good from happening in our lives. It’s all about believing in yourself, and giving Fasting a try to see what it can do for you too!