Carissa Parr / Transformation

Carissa Parr's amazing Maxine's Challenge transformation

  • Before
    90.5kg
  • After
    71.1kg

When I started the program I thought, it would be awesome to lose 10 kg’s. And here I am at the end of the challenge and I’ve almost lost double what I was aiming for. I really couldn’t be happier.

Details

Height

180 cm

Program

Tone & Shape

Reason to start The Challenge

I have played sports my whole life and I love working out but despite being quite fit, I've never really looked it. I've always carried extra weight and just can't shift it.
I am getting married next May and I think this challenge is exactly what I need to finally look the part!

What did you like most about The Challenge?

I absolutely loved doing the Maxine’s Shape Up Challenge. Gosh where do I start….. Well first and foremost I love the fact that it works! ☺ Never in my wildest dreams could I ever imagine losing 19.4kgs in 12 weeks. Not only that, I lost 6.3% body fat and got my body fat percentage down to 15.3%. How on earth?? Fit people are 15% and now I am! ☺ I’m still in shock. When I started the program I thought, it would be awesome to lose 10 kg’s. And here I am at the end of the challenge and I’ve almost lost double what I was aiming for. I really couldn’t be happier.

I have been trying to lose weight on and off for YEARS but especially since getting engaged in December 2014. We set our wedding date for May 2016 and I thought, right, it’s time to get serious about this. So I upped my sessions at the gym. I tried following different weights programs I found on the internet. I tracked all my food, counted calories, adjusted my macros, and with all of this effort, I could feel myself getting fitter but I still looked like my registration photo…. fat. My registration photo was actually the fittest I have been in years. It was quite disheartening because nothing was working. So when a friend of mine mentioned that she had done the Maxine’s Challenge and I saw it advertised at Nutrition Warehouse, I started looking into it. I had tried the Maxine’s products before and I knew I loved them. And the program was free. What more could you ask for?! I went and bought all the products I needed and signed up.

I loved how the program was so easy to follow. There was not one thing that hadn’t been explained. If there was anything I wanted to find out more about I just had to have a read on the forum and although I didn’t need to ask any questions because they had already been answered, it was great knowing that the option was there and the replies from the coaches, ambassadors and other challengers was virtually instant. I have tried other plans in the past (actually I was basically an expert in yoyo dieting, you name it, I’ve tried it) and the Maxine’s Shape Up Challenge has been so much easier to stick to. The shopping list is so simple, there’s not a million different ingredients that you’ve never heard of or complex recipes that you have to follow. And I found myself thinking of little ways to add a bit more flavour by experimenting with herbs and spices. I made my own healthy taco seasoning and started sprouting seeds to add to my salads. This is coming from a girl with the sweetest tooth around, who used to be so fussy. I think the fact that I could have a Burn Bar (Choc Mint Fudge is seriously amazing) made me feel like I was getting a little treat so I didn’t feel like I was missing out. It was like when I was a kid and I would get a fun size dairy milk chocolate after dinner, haha! It gave me something to look forward to that I loved.

The plan was actually quite cheap to do my weekly shop. In fact I’m pretty sure I saved money because I wasn’t eating out, I tried to do all my shopping just once per week and do a big food prep session on a Sunday. And I never got sick of the food. I really thought I would but I ended up loving it. The ladies I work with would actually be excited to see what I had packed for lunch.

I was so scared about doing a photo shoot, and was stiff as a board for the first half of it, but in the end I had so much fun and it was such a good way to celebrate and reward myself for 12 weeks of hard work.

What was the hardest thing about your Challenge?

Right from the get go, the hardest thing for me was having the guts to make my profile public. The bikini I was wearing in my photo had barely been worn before, and most certainly not without a singlet and board shorts over the top. I wouldn’t be seen dead in a bikini at the beach so uploading it onto the internet for everyone to see took all my courage. But I knew if I was going to have any chance of sticking with it, I had to make it public to keep myself accountable.

If I thought uploading a picture of me was the hardest part, I was in for a rude shock. I guess the hardest thing about any challenge is sticking to it. I knew it was going to take a lot of will power. I’ve done so many diets before and I’ve always lacked the will power to just keep going. But this time it was different. The support from the website was amazing. I had a totally different mindset. As corny as it sounds, it really was a change of lifestyle. Preparation is the key. As the saying goes, fail to prepare and you prepare to fail. I made sure that my food was prepared in advance so there were no excuses to not stick to the plan.

As the weeks went by, the people around me had mixed reactions. My friends were so supportive, always checking in to see how I was going and complimenting me on how well I was sticking to it. But my clients at work (who are predominately elderly) started going into protective mode:

“Have you been sick?” they would ask with a concerned look on their face.
“You look really pale and tired.”
“Why have you lost all this weight? You were never fat to start with.”
“You don’t want to go losing any more or you’ll look all gaunt.”
“Carissa, is that you? I can hear you but I can’t see you”….. just for the record that was my favourite one!

It was hard convincing them all that I wasn’t actually dying and I was in fact in the best shape of my life! It’s so important to take everyone’s comments with a grain of salt and be confident that you know what is best for your body and to not let their comments stop you from achieving your goals.

What impact has The Challenge had on your life?

This challenge has changed my life. It really has. I will try to not bore you all with my sob story but my entire life I’ve been “BIG”.

“Awwww look at those chubby cheeks”.
“You’re not fat love, you’re just big boned”.

No mum, there is no other way to describe the photo of me in the tangerine leotard….I was a chubby checker.
In primary school the kids would tell me “You’re too big to play on the fort”.
In my adult years, I’ve broken one of those mini exercise trampoline’s – that wasn’t my finest hour. I’ve been asked when the baby was due but have never been pregnant. I’ve had to shop at plus sized clothes stores. I’ve never been able to walk into a normal clothes store and say, “I love that and I’m going to buy it.” It was always a case of, that looks nice, I wonder if there is one big enough for me. Reach right to the back of the rack and see that it only goes up to a large or a size 14 and so keep moving to the next shop. Or, decide to try it on and realise it was either too tight on my “problem region”, my cupcakes were hanging over the top of the jeans or they were pressing into my stomach so much that it was giving me a belly ache.

What is worse is that my whole life I’ve always been very active. Athletics, cross country, rowing, basketball, volleyball, touch football, gym. I’ve loved it all. And I was still fat! I used to go to group fitness classes at the gym and think about how much I would love to be a personal trainer but knew that no one would want a fat personal trainer, they want someone who looks fit, someone who practices what they preach, so I never pursued it any further.

When it comes to being healthy, I guess food has always been my weakness. I have the biggest sweet tooth of anyone I know. And I have no full switch. I would just eat and eat until I felt sick. I would never leave anything on my plate no matter what. I’ve got to blame my Mum for that one, thanks for constantly reminding me about the hunger crisis in Africa. To any parents reading this, don’t use this tactic :-P

How has this challenge impacted me? I feel amazing! I have so much energy! I love my body! I am strong. I can do push ups on my toes, chin ups, bicep curls with heavier weights than the boys. I can go to clothes stores and try on anything I want (my poor credit card). The funny thing is that all I want to buy is workout clothes, haha!! My fiancé also loves going to the gym and working out so we have this common interest about being healthy and now we look like a fit couple too. People laugh at us because whenever we go away on holidays, we always find a gym to go and workout at. We love checking out the different equipment they have. Our friends always ask, “did you actually do anything else on your holiday besides working out?” It is so great to find a life partner who loves fitness as much as I do. And now that the challenge has finished, we are setting new goals. Now that I actually look fit, I’ve started studying my Certificate 3 and 4 in Personal Training. I can’t wait to help others succeed at something I’m so passionate about. And the fact that I’ve struggled with my weight for so long, I think I will be well equipped with the knowledge to help them achieve their goals. My fiancé is making plans to compete in a body building competition next year and he may just convince me to give it a go also. I can’t wait to support him 110% like he has for me over the last 12 weeks. And one other thing, I can not wait to go and try on wedding dresses ☺

What would you say to people who are thinking of doing The Challenge?

STOP THINKING ABOUT IT AND JUST DO IT!!!! I cannot recommend it highly enough. In fact I already have been. Anyone who asks me what I’ve been doing gets a full explanation about the Maxine’s Shape Up Challenge. If you want to change the way you look and feel, just try it, trust the process, stick with it and there is no way you won’t see results. It really does work. I know that 12 weeks sounds like a really long time but trust me, it flies by and in 12 weeks time you will be sitting here like I am with a huge smile on your face answering these same questions and telling everyone about how much Maxine’s has changed your life too.

You are never going to find 12 weeks where you have nothing on in your social calendar, it is virtually impossible, during the 12 weeks that I did the challenge, I had 2 weddings, 4 birthday parties and a 10 day holiday to Melbourne and Adelaide, yep that’s right, the food and wine capitals of Australia. Believe it or not, I can honestly say I stuck to the plan. As you can imagine it was difficult at times (eating my own food at a wedding is a good example – thank god they were canapé style) but I did it and you can too!

I know it is so hard to say no to family and friends without feeling really guilty. How do you tell your Mum that you can’t eat the food she has made especially for you? Or how do you say no to eating someone’s birthday cake? Or being “that person” at a restaurant who asks a million questions about the menu and asks for the meal to be altered to suit your needs? Well, you can and I did. And as much as I was worried about it, everyone understood.

Anything else you would like to tell us about your Challenge?

Last but certainly not least I have a few people to thank. To Maxine’s, you guys rock!! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! Thanks for coming up with this awesome challenge that is changing people’s lives. I will be forever grateful! Thank you to Sue – the random stranger now friend who I started chatting to in Nutrition Warehouse and who helped me to decide to do the challenge. To all of my friends and family who have given me constant support. Thanks to the fellow challengers who follow me on my Instagram account and are so sweet and friendly to someone they have never met, you girls are gems. You have all done so well and your daily motivation is truly inspiring. And to my biggest fan Brett, thanks for being my rock. You are there for me no matter what, even when I’m tired and hangry. I am so lucky to have you in my life.
Good luck in the future to everyone who has taken part in this challenge, no doubt you have a new lease on life and I hope this gives you every success in where ever life takes you. Congratulations on finishing this journey! X

Journal

  • Carissa Parr
    8 Nov 2015
    12:05 AM

    I would be lying if I said I've had a good week. This final week of the challenge has been terrible with the passing of my fiancé's mother unexpectedly yesterday morning. We jumped on a plane from Brisbane to Newcastle on Wednesday. We basically threw some things in the direction of our bag and ran out the door to make the flight. As hard as I have worked over the last 12 weeks, I was ready to forget about the challenge as there is nothing more important in life than family and being there for the ones who mean the most to us. But my fiancé wouldn't have it. He said that supporting me to finish the challenge would help him to cope, and it gave him something to take his mind off of things. And so I have, kept going. I've continued to stick to the plan. Trained at a local gym in Salamander Bay. Organised a wax and a fake tan at a salon in Nelson Bay. And today I did my final cardio session, a walk to the top of Tomaree Mountain. A beautiful day and a lovely view from the top! What a way to finish my challenge. We flew home to Brisbane tonight and as I boarded the plane and buckled up my seatbelt, the reality of my transformation hit me again, there was so much room in my seat and so much seat belt left over after I tightened it. This has never happened to me, I've always been so big. I had to take a photo (which got some weird looks!)Tomorrow I have organised to have a photo shoot to celebrate the end of the challenge. I am both excited and nervous as I have no idea what to do in a photo shoot! But no matter how it goes, I am just so proud of myself for finally deciding to change my life and giving it everything I've got!

  • Carissa Parr
    3 Nov 2015
    11:45 PM

    I was chatting to one of my friends and was excited to tell her that I've started studying my certificate 3 and 4 in personal training and she said "Yeah I know". Puzzled I said "Did I tell you?" And she replied with "No i read it on your blog, I read all of them" and then I remembered that everyone can read them, haha! So shout out to my friend Tegan :-) And anyone else reading for that matter :-P Well today was yet again another big day. I trained shoulders, back, biceps and abs at the gym thismorning. The high rep sets and short rests really get me! I was a bit of a zombie by the time I finished my supersets of cable crunches and death by medicine ball (Russian twists). I had a massive day at work today in Ipswich and it was a stinking 35 degrees. I usually get so dehydrated when I'm so busy at work but I made sure I drank water between every patient (which resulted in me needing to use the bathroom a lot more also, hehe!) When I got home exhausted tonight my fiancé had weighed and baked my piece of chicken for me, he really is a keeper! And I am so lucky to have him supporting me on my journey to change my lifestyle. I have tried so many "diets" before and have been such an expert yoyo dieter but I know for sure that this time it will stick, I am a changed woman and I love my new lifestyle! I'm not going back to my old ways, no wayyyy!!! I jumper on my bike for a quick 30 minute cardio sesh before dinner, so sweaty, but we've just had a storm pass through so it's cooled off and I'm now falling asleep to rain on the roof. Today I locked in a photographer for a photo shoot on Sunday, I don't even know where to begin with a photo shoot so it should be interesting! Haha! I just have to confirm my make up and book a tan (I'm in desperate need on one of these as you can see in my photos) and I'm ready to roll! Oh gosh I'm nervous at the thought of it!

  • Carissa Parr
    1 Nov 2015
    11:20 PM

    "It's the final countdown, da da da daaaaa....da da da da daaaa" I now have this song stuck in my head! I can't believe we're up to the final week of this amazing journey! I am so excited I could squeal! I can not wait to see my final pics to see how far I have actually come. Good luck to everyone in their final week!

  • Carissa Parr
    31 Oct 2015
    8:59 PM

    So today was the first day of my Certificate 3 and 4 in Personal Training!!! I can't believe I am actually doing it! :-) I really never thought I'd see the day that I would be confident enough in myself to feel like I was able to train other people to do what I am so passionate about. Exciting times ahead. Today has actually been a huge day, I was up at 430am to train back, shoulders, biceps and abs. My fiancé and I arrived to an empty gym, best feeling! So we had to take some selfies! I had a good session and felt strong. Then I raced home, had breakfast, packed all my food for the day, got ready and hit the road as the course I decided to do is on the Gold Coast and I live in Brisbane so it's an hour drive each way. Then tonight I was back at the gym to do cardio. I did a 5 minute warm up and some foam rolling then did 30 minutes on the rowing machine non stop! I was so proud of my effort tonight. even though I have a rowing background, I cant recall ever being able to row non stop for 30 minutes on the rowing machine and to add to that, I was able to maintain a decent pace for the entire time. :-) So so happy! I'm off to bed and it's not even 8pm. I can not believe it is 1 week tomorrow and this amazing journey will come to an end, but I'm so excited to say, it's only the beginning of my new lifestyle. thank you for all you have given me Maxines!

  • Carissa Parr
    30 Oct 2015
    12:21 AM

    Leg day today, gee how leg day rolls around quickly! I was feeling strong today in the gym, I had much better control with my step ups and Bulgarian split squats and I increased my weights for my leg extensions. Overall I was pretty happy with it! You can tell by my photos which ones were taken before and after training, haha! We are getting new work uniforms (perfect timing) at one of my jobs so I tried on the samples and to my surprise I'm a size small, whatttt?!?! And yesterday I asked my other boss about getting a new uniform and she said that she had some spare, when she checked the size they were size 10 and I thought "what the hell I'll give them a go!" And they fit too!!! Tonight I went to the shops to try on some new clothes for my photo shoot. I'm so out of my comfort zone and the thought of people seeing me in revealing clothes makes me feel anxious but I need to remember how far I've come and how hard I've worked to get here. There were a few outfits that looked ok so I took a few change room photos and will check out other stores then decide. And the most exciting thing I did today was register to do my certificate 3 and 4 in personal training. The course starts this weekend. And it sounds like it covers so many more topics than other PT courses. I can't wait to start learning in a field that I'm so interested in, I'm actually doing what I've dreamed of for years. Thanks Maxines for giving me the confidence I needed to follow my dreams!

  • Carissa Parr
    29 Oct 2015
    12:32 AM

    Today was a great day! This morning I trained chest and triceps. My technique for the push-ups/dips superset at the end has improved compared to my last 2 attempts. I also put up my weight for a few of the exercises. I then mixed it up and did some mat Pilates when I got home and I really enjoyed it!! I find myself sitting very hunched over at work or standing with a very poor posture so I find Pilates helps to strengthen my core and improve my posture. I finished work early so I did some research on which personal training course I would like to do and I think I have decided. I will call them tomorrow. I'm so excited to start the course. I can't wait to help other people to improve their life like I have. I feel amazing! Tonight when I got home I did some more pilates and then cooked dinner and a massive stir fry vegetables as I was running low. I packed my lunch for tomorrow so I'm all organised for the morning. As they say "fail to prepare and you prepare to fail". Not me this time! Goodnight!

  • Carissa Parr
    27 Oct 2015
    11:39 PM

    I just watched the Week 11 Master Coach Message and it reminded me about the effects of elevated cortisol levels. Today was the most stressful day I've had at work in a long time so I can imagine I may have had an elevated level of cortisol. I work as a podiatrist and on Tuesdays I do home visits mainly for the elderly who can not get to a clinic. There was a lot of clients on my list today and just not enough hours in the day. And the worst thing about doing home visits is that you don't have a toilet readily available. This is proving quite challenging (more than usual) with all the water I'm drinking. I know where every public toilet and McDonalds is along the way. I do feel bad not buying anything from McDonalds but I figure after years of eating McDonalds I've probably accrued some free toilet visits. I also have to be extremely organised and pack my lunch in a thermos when I'm doing home visits. My aim until the end of the challenge is to try and focus on being organised and getting enough rest so I can be as calm as possible throughout the day when at work. I was quite exhausted after weights this morning! These workouts are not getting any easier. I jumped on the bike for 30 mins when I finally got home from work, really had to push myself to do it as I was wrecked but so glad I did. Falling asleep now with rain on the roof, how relaxing, go down cortisol, haha! Goodnight all!

  • Carissa Parr
    27 Oct 2015
    12:35 AM

    Leg day today and I really noticed my technique has improved today. My step ups and bulgarian split squats were much stronger. My legs were shattered by the end. Some girls at the gym approached me and asked me for some advise which was nice. I told them they should definitely sign up to do the next Maxines Challenge in February. Everyone is noticing the changes and I still can't believe them myself! Tonight I did 45 minutes on the treadmill with an incline ranging from 10-15% at 6.5km/hour. My glutes and legs were burning! I finished up with some foam rolling. I'm trying to focus on injury prevention in these last few weeks. Got to give these last 2 weeks my all! Goodnight all! X

  • Carissa Parr
    26 Oct 2015
    12:10 AM

    I have just been having a read through the info on the Maxine's website about what to do in the final week of the challenge. I can not believe we are almost there. I am getting so excited to see my final photos and see just how far I have come in the 12 weeks. I saw a quote on Facebook by Jim Wendler and it said "Losers diet, winners build habbits". I love this quote. For so long I have been a yo yo dieter, you name it, I've probably tried it. and For the first time in my life I feel like I have completely changed my lifestyle and I'm planning on keeping it this way. I love my new habbits, this is my new life. :-) Oh and this is a pic of my dinner, I tried using beef sizzle steaks tonight and I sprinkled them with Himilayan salt, oregano, garlic and onion powder. I dressed my salad with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon and it was delicious! Today's cardio consisted of mowing the lawn and doing some gardening,. I also did 30 mins on the bike tonight. I did a lot of food prep and just have to finish up doing some veggies in the morning before work. I tried reducing my meat and rice portions by a smidge as recommended on the website. ive been quite satisfied with the size of the meals lately so I don't think I'll get hungry. I went to visit a friend tonight and she knows I'm doing the challenge so she prepared some carrot sticks for me to have as nibblies, my friends have been awesome thoughout the challenge. I couldn't ask for better mates.

  • Carissa Parr
    25 Oct 2015
    1:24 AM

    I mentioned in a blog a while back that I'd started thinking about doing my Certificate 3 and 4 in Personal Traning. It has been something in the back of my mind for years but I never thought I'd ever be able to get myself in good shape and so therefore wouldn't feel confident pursuing a career in personal training as no one wants a fat trainer. So it's really been nothing more than a dream that has never become a reality. I think it would be such a rewarding job to help people transform their lives and feel better about themselves and it would allow me to stay fit at the same time. So when I heard that the Health and Fitness expo was on in Brisbane today I knew I just had to go to find out more about courses available in my area. I spoke to quite a few different colleges and am now in the process of deciding which course I like the best :-) I can't wait to get started! I had already studied all the exhibitors and knew I couldn't wait to try on some Freddy jeans. I'd been following them for quite a while on Instagram but have always been too big to get a pair. I said to myself at the start of the challenge that if I stuck to the program I would treat myself to a pair of these jeans so I tried some on and they fit!! Eeeeee! :-) The Lorna Jane stand had a sale on so I also stocked up on some new gym gear as most of mine doesn't fit me anymore. I have never bought many clothes at Lorna Jane before because once again, they never fit me properly, but today I bought size small....SMALL!?!....Me....SMALL!!!! What on earth!!! ! It's crazy! I'm still in shock! And I bought a new Pilates mat and ring, abs an ab wheel, so many new toys to try out, love it! I went to the gym thismorning and trained shoulders, back, biceps and abs. To be honest I felt pretty rotten, I just felt a bit sick in the tummy and my whole workout was a struggle but I got through it. And tonight I had a go at the clean and press with burpie cardio circuit plus some treadmill and rower. My fiancé had a cheat meal of garlic, spinach and cheese Turkish pides tonight and driving home with them in the car is just torture but I am so motivated and in the zone that I'm not tempted to cheat. He really wanted something sweet and forgot to pick up some icecream on the way home so I made him a batch of chocolate Brownies and a yummy pineapple slice I've been wanting to cook for a while, and I didn't even lick my fingers which was covered in batter. Nothing is going to make me cheat on this challenge, I'm loving it!

  • Carissa Parr
    22 Oct 2015
    9:29 PM

    These weights sessions are killers aren't they!?! I can't decide which one is the hardest but today's legs session was tough. I managed to add a bit more weight for my deadlifts and worked hard on improving my technique for my step ups. My fiancé helped me to do the standing calf raise drop sets and with him taking the weights off the bar much faster than I am able to usually, my calves were on fire by the end. I felt pretty shattered at work today so I've come home, had dinner and jumped into bed, gonna get a big night's sleep tonight. I'm still loving the food. I sat and ate my chicken and brown rice salad in the lunch room while my friend ate a Tim Tam but I wasn't tempted, you couldn't pay me enough to eat anything that's not on the plan. I had my half my Maxine's bar tonight and I just love them so much! I found a lump close to my hip tonight, who knows how long it has been there for, maybe I've always had it but there has always been so much fat over the top of it that I never noticed, either way I'll get it checked by my GP. Better to be safe than sorry! i hope everyone is having a great week. I can't wait until the weekend as I'm going to the health and fitness expo for the first time. Looking forward to checking out all the different personal training colleges to decide which one I would like to do. I'm planning on keeping this healthy lifestyle...for life!

  • Carissa Parr
    22 Oct 2015
    12:02 AM

    Today has once again been pretty full on. I had a great chest and tricep session thismorning. My last superset of push-ups and bench dips were a bit messy but I have to just keep remembering how far I've come. Before I started the challenge I wouldn't have gone close to being able to do 4 sets of 12 push-ups on my toes followed by 12 dips. I have to be proud of that. Today at work one of my clients asked me if I've been sick because they noticed I've lost wright. I know she was only asking out of concern and she wasn't trying to put me down but to be honest I'm in the best shape of my life and I feel fantastic. Everyone has a different opinion of what is the ideal body shape and that's what makes us all different. I am focussed on what I want to achieve. I have held off buying new work tops so my current ones are getting quite baggy which is not a good look. Not long to go now and I'll buy some more. Tonights cardio was 10 minutes on the rower followed by 20 minutes on the treadmill doing one minute intervals of 13.5km/h and 7km/h. I finished up with another 10 minutes on the rower. This was one of the strongest cardio sessions I have had. My split times on the rower have improved and also my treasmill sprints were faster and even my recovery minute was faster. It's so much easier to run when you are carrying less weight, no more jiggling around :-P I've been a bit snappy to my poor fiancé today, I'm just getting tired and irritable, I need to keep getting more sleep. I'm so grateful of all the support he has given me throughout this challenge and I know that some people are not so lucky. So if you are ever reading this Brett, thank you for being there for me.

  • Carissa Parr
    20 Oct 2015
    10:56 PM

    Today was a pretty busy day and to be honest I am feeling pretty shattered. I didn't get to bed until late last night and then was up early to train so I have brought it on myself, I definitely need to get to bed earlier to make sure I'm resting my body for these last few weeks. I trained hard thismorning as you can tell from my photo which was taken after my session. I worked doing home visits today and when I pulled up at one house I could smell fresh baking and sure enough my client was baking a cake. Yes it smelt awesome but it didn't make me want it. At another house my client has just turned 90 and he offered me some left over birthday cake. He completely understood when I politely declined the offer. Tonight I did 30 minutes of pilates rather than intense cardio because I felt its what my body needed. I made a chicken salad for dinner using the first of my home grown alfalfa sprouts, slow cooked shredded chicken breast with my home made healthy taco seasoning and sugar free salsa, lettuce leaf, tomato, cucumber, beetroot and some Mediterranean herb infused olive oil. It tasted damn good! I'm still loving all my meals. Ok bed time for me!

  • Carissa Parr
    20 Oct 2015
    12:37 AM

    There was a few occasions today when I realised how much my mindset has changed from how it used to be. I got annoyed because my fiancé ate all the lettuce in the fridge - I would never have got angry before about running out of lettuce, previously it would have been ice cream or chocolate. My work colleagues asked me if there was anything I am looking forward to eating when I finish the challenge and rather than craving the biggest, fattiest cheat meal, I actually am looking forward to eating a cookie dough Quest protein bar. I went to Coles (to buy more lettuce!) and when I got to the checkout, the Cadbury chocolate bars were 85 cents, can you believe it?! What a bargain! Chocolate at the checkout is a big weakness of mine, add to that the fact that they were so cheap, I normally would have bought 2, but today I just took a photo of them (to put on my blog) and walked off! One of my colleagues made a panna cotta for everyone to enjoy at lunch time, it looked delicious, my boss was cutting it up and a small piece broke off and she said "do you want that little taste?" and I said "no thanks!" Everyone was talking about how amazing it tasted and I just ate my turkey mince and brown rice salad with sugar free tomato salsa (and I really enjoyed it!).

  • Carissa Parr
    19 Oct 2015
    12:07 AM

    Today I had the day at home to do a bit of poddering around. One thing that I've had on my list of things to do is sort through my clothes as they are all getting too big, wooohooo!!!!! :-) I have filled so many bags with clothes to pass onto my family and take to Vinnies. There is some really good stuff in there too, my Aunty who I pass a lot of my clothes onto will think it's Christmas! I don't think I've every done such a big throw out of my wardrobe. For so many years I've hung onto clothes thinking, "I might fit into that again" or "I'll keep that for when I put on weight" so I have had a variety of sizes ranging from size 14-18. There was some jeans that were way too tight for me that I've hung onto for years with the hope of being able to fit back into them and now I DO!!! And they are almost getting too big too! My drawers are so empty, I'm going to try and hold off for 3 more weeks until I go shopping for some new outfits. This afternoon my fiance and I went for a big walk by the river for today's cardio session. It was so lovely. It's great that he loves working out too because it's a good chance for us to spend time together. We took some photos and I was actually so shocked when I saw them, I am looking so different, it shocks me, I keep expecting to see the old me, ha, keeps flipping me out, I am so happy with how far I've come and god I'm happy I decided to do this challenge, thanks Maxine's!

  • Carissa Parr
    18 Oct 2015
    1:22 AM

    The weekend is here and I've been out for dinner tonight with some friends. These occasions are what makes most people (and previously me) fall off the wagon but I'm getting used to making the best choice when I go out for dinner. We went to a Vietnamese restaurant and I ordered the chilli and basil chicken and vegetable stir fry. I checked the ingredients in the sauce and they said it contained oyster sauce so I asked if I could use soy sauce instead. They checked with the chef and he said it was fine to do that. My friend ordered the same dish as me but with the original recipe, and when it came out, they waiter didnt differentiate between the two and then when I check they said that both of them had no oyster sauce. I'm not convinced and would guess that they stuffed up but what can you do, its not as though I could go into the kitchen and watch what they did. I dug out all the chicken in the dish and then portioned off what I thought would be my usual serve of protein for dinner and left the rest of the chicken on the plate. We had just water at the table for everyone. Originally we were meant to be going out for drinks (and I wasnt going to drink) but the plan changed to dinner instead which was much better! Training this afternoon was hard as I had to do both weights and cardio in one session. I trained back, shoulders, biceps and abs. I actually dropped my weights a little for biceps as I felt I was compromising my technique when using a heavier weight on Tuesday. I then finished up with 40 mins on the treadmill, 10 mins on incline, 10 mins doing 1 minute on and 1 minute off, and 20 minutes of very brisk walking. We went for a drive to see the progress on our new house and we took a drive past a new gym that we will be joining once we move to our new house and it looks awesome, I can't wait to try it out. I'm off to have half a protein bar (I just love these so much) and my night time shake and head to bed.

  • Carissa Parr
    17 Oct 2015
    12:34 AM

    Tonight I did the 8 week fitness test. I managed to improve on all of the exercises so I'm stoked about that! I then did 30 mins on the treadmill, starting off with some incline walking and then 1 minute on and 1 minute off intervals for 20 mins. I tried focussing on my posture as I do tend to slump and also on having good arm swing through. I did feel a lot stronger for the 1 minute sprints. I finished up with some foam rolling through my legs and glutes - absolute torture but it's good for me and I need to stay injury free for these last few weeks. I stayed on track with all my food for today, in fact I have for the whole challenge. As plain as my dinner was, I really enjoyed it. My taste buds have completely changed its crazy! Off to bed as I am working tomorrow so will be up early again. Hopefully I will fit in all my training after work before I catch up with my best friends for a few drinks (iced water for me!)

  • Carissa Parr
    16 Oct 2015
    12:47 AM

    Today's blog is going to be short and sweet. I hit the ground running today as my fiancé and I slept in and were running late to get him to the airport for a 6am flight, he made it just in time. Afterwards I raced to the gym to smash out the leg program. It is such a good program, im loving the intensity of the workouts in this last 4 week block. I then rushed home, showered and raced back out the door to get to work on time, biggest rush ever and all I have to say is "thank god I prepared everything the night before". It was so much faster than packing everything in the morning. Work ran smoothly today. I saw lots of regular clients who all noticed my weight loss and were asking so many questions about what I have been doing to achieve my results. When I got home I did some food prepping - I cooked up a kilo of beef strips and put them into portions for lunches and dinners. And I prepared my food for tomorrow just in case I sleep in again. Ok well it's definitely bed time as I keep falling asleep writing this. Goodnight!!

  • Carissa Parr
    15 Oct 2015
    12:07 AM

    I trained chest and triceps this morning, all of the new workouts have been so challenging this week but feel great afterwards. The last superset of pushups and dips was a bit messy but I have to remind myself of how far I've come, I never used to be able to do push-ups on my toes and now I'm doing 4 sets of 12 pushups on my toes. I just need to work on getting a bit deeper but hey, I'm sure that will come over the next 4 weeks! I had a shorter day at work today which was nice as I felt a bit tired and my boss and a few clients were telling me I looked tired. Almost everyone can notice that I've lost weight so that's good! :-) Some of my clients have told me that I shouldn't lose any more weight as I'll look too skinny. But I know what's right for my body and I'll keep listening to it and not worry about what everyone else thinks. I'm so happy with how far I've come on this challenge and I'm not going to stop until I've achieved my goals. This is my lifestyle now and I love it! I did a big cook up of stir fry and steamed veggies this morning and packed them into the freezer so I've got plenty on hand. After work I went and grabbed some more Maxines night time protein powder in chocolate flavour - these must be in hot demand at the moment as I had trouble finding a store that had any in stock and I was starting to get worried as I was running low. I got 2 boxes as I didnt want to run low again! Then I headed home for a nap! I woke up and did 40 mins on my exercise bike, cooked dinner, prepped all my food for tomorrow and am heading to bed. Good night!

  • Carissa Parr
    13 Oct 2015
    10:19 PM

    I just realized I haven't loaded up my 8 week progress shots so here they are all side by side. I honestly couldn't be happier with how far I've come so far. I can not remember the last time I felt this fit and healthy. I don't think I would have been this weight since I was back in high school. I saw my family for the long weekend and they all couldn't believe it also. Dad was proud as punch when we showed him a video of me doing 2 chin-ups in a row. I was so shocked when I did it too, chin-ups are for fit people and I can now do them!! :-) Also i've uploaded a photo of when we climbed Mt Cooroora on the Labour Day public holiday - that was hard - and a leg session at the gym, all in the one day! Today has been quite productive, I'm sitting here very content with my efforts. Thismorning I trained back, shoulders, biceps and abs, and like yesterday, today's new workout was tough! But felt so good afterwards. I had a bit of a niggle in my left shoulder when doing the rows so I booked in for a massage after work, felt so good and released some tension in my shoulder. Then I did 40 minutes on the treadmill at the gym, mainly brisk walking but some sprint intervals also. The air con is broken at the gym so it was HOT! Finally I finished off with some stretches, I am going to try and focus on doing more stretching and foam rolling over these last 4 weeks to reduce my risk on any injuries. My voice is slightly better today so I'm hoping by tomorrow it will be even better. I worked doing home visits today so I heated my lunch up in my thermos before work and stopped in a park to eat it with a chocolate flavored X50, hopefully they are challenge approved! Bed time now, bring on tomorrow!

  • Carissa Parr
    12 Oct 2015
    11:36 PM

    Well I'm trying my hardest to write on my blog every day until the end of the challenge because I think it will keep me accountable and push me right to the end. I went to a health seminar on the weekend and the speaker said that those who keep a journal during their weight loss journey were much more likely to succeed, he did give a statistic which I can't remember off the top of my head (great story huh) but it was an impressive number, haha! Today has been a tricky day as I am losing my voice and I had a busy day at work which requires lots of talking so my throat is struggling but otherwise I'm feeling ok. I went to the gym tonight and trained legs, the first workout of the final 4 weeks and oh my gosh it was full on! I wasn't sure if I'd be able to walk to the car afterwards my legs were like jelly! The food I've made today has been delicious and better still I'm about to finish off the night with half a Maxines bar! I couldn't be happier!

  • Carissa Parr
    11 Oct 2015
    11:39 PM

    I can't believe we are at the end of week 8. I am so excited for the last 4 weeks. I am so happy with my results so far. At the start of the challenge I said to myself it would be great if I could lose 10 kgs by the end of the challenge and here we are at the end of 8 weeks and I've already lost 13.9 kgs. I'm still in shock! Some wierd things that have happened so far. I had to go and buy some new black pants for work as all of mine no longer fit. I asked for help to find the long length pants (this struggle is real, haha) and the woman that was helping me said "We only have these ones but they are all big sizes" - and when I looked, they were the sizes I used to be. It felt so weird to think that this woman didn't see me as being big, when I have been big my whole life, it was definitely a wow moment for me. When shopping, I am so used to reaching right to the back of the stand to check how big the item goes up to and I no longer have to do this, it's so strange! I was looking back through some old photos and I found this photo of me taken in December last year. At the time I was on a health kick and had lost quite a few kilos, I can not believe how big I was! And here is a pic of me tonight squeezing in my last cardio session for the week. I have a sore throat and have lost my voice at the moment so I'm hoping it goes away ASAP!

  • Carissa Parr
    23 Sep 2015
    9:43 PM

    Day 38: Well I've been back from our holiday in Melbourne and Adelaide for a week and I am back to the daily grind. Work, work and more work!! Picking up extra work where I could to make up for while I was away. I took some more photos on the weekend to use for my 4 week progress picture so that I was wearing the same swim suit and with the same lighting as my registration photo – much easier to compare my progress. I am just shocked with how much change I am noticing already. I can see changes in the photos, my clothes are fitting better, actually its getting to the point where only one pair of my 5 work pants fit so I definitely need to buy some more on the weekend!! I feel so much better on the inside, I feel healthy, happy, energised and oh so motivated, I have never had such strong determination to succeed. I'm just gobsmacked. I weighted myself when we got back and I lost almost 2 kilograms while we were on holidays, unbelievable! I usually put on so much weight when I'm away. I was so lucky because my fiancé and friends were so supportive. They knew how motivated I was and would try and accommodate me. I trained hard and stuck to the plan. I did my weights training at gyms in Melbourne, Warnambool and Adelaide and did cardio on the other days, it was such a great way to explore new places. When we got back to reality it was straight back to work so there was no time to do any food prep in advance and I was playing catch up with the workouts after not being able to train on Tuesday. I was so relieved to reach the end of the week. I managed to complete every single workout. The weekdays really do run so much smoother when you can food prep on the weekends! On Sunday I drove to visit my sister who lives on the Sunshine Coast. She is also doing the challenge but has only just struck up the courage to join a gym so we went together so I could show her through the workouts. She made me a delicious challenge approved chicken salad (topped with sugar free salsa) and we then did all of our weekly food prep together. Between the two of us we came up with some great meal ideas, still sticking to the program but experimenting with herb and spices, slow cooking, shredding, barbecuing, stir fries, zuchinni spaghetti, and home made taco chicken mince. They have all been delicious. I loved showing her through the workouts at the gym. I've always wanted to become a personal trainer but have never done it because I figured that no one would want to be trained by an overweight PT. Why would you pay someone to train you when they don't practice what they preach? I would love to do a PT course once the challenge finishes. What a rewarding job to be able to motivate people to be the best version of themselves.

  • Carissa Parr
    13 Sep 2015
    11:46 PM

    Today is Day 28. 56 days to go. 4 weeks done! 8 to go! One third gone! Now I've just got to repeat it twice again. It's like the meme where Homer Simpson keeps breaking a workout up into smaller time frames but it totally works! The time has ticked over pretty quickly. I can't believe how well I have stuck to the plan since we have been away on holidays. In the past, I have justified eating as much crap as possible because "I'm on holidays". But not this time. Where has all this willpower come from? I keep shocking myself. I have prepped so much for this holiday before we left and it really is paying off. There has only been a few occasions where I have been a little bit caught out but I have tried to always have extra snacks on me just in case. For example today we went to a BBQ and there was only sausages and salad so I ate some of the basic salads and had a protein shake instead of a sausage. We are heading back home to Brisbane tomorrow night after 10 amazing days traveling from Melbourne to Adelaide. For the last 3 days there has been a group of 8 of us who have been tripping around Adelaide and the surrounding areas. We have visited the Adelaide Central Markets (Rows and rows of amazingness), 5 wineries, 1 chocolate factory, 3 lolly shops, 1 cheese factory and a country market with mouth watering savory tarts and cakes. At the Adelaide Markets I ordered a long black coffee with a dash of milk. Everyone was getting cool pics on top of their coffee but because I couldn't have any chocolate dusting, the barista drew a smiley face on the top using just the coffee. It was so nice! Felt like such a treat! To top it off, we went to our friends wedding yesterday where they served up endless supplies of cheese, quince paste, crackers, unlimited pizzas, meat balls with feta in the middle, chocolate brownie, cheese cake and strudel. And I can proudly say, I didn't stuff up. I can't really believe it myself! I was worried how I was going to be able to pull it off at a wedding. Luckily the wedding was canapé style so I simply packed a cooler bag full of all my food and just discreetly ducked out to the car over the course of the evening to eat it. I didn't drink alcohol either. I would never go to a wedding and not drink. I was very lucky that one of my friends is pregnant at the moment so it was nice to be sober together. I was chatting to my friends today and they said "do you regret doing a challenge when you were on holidays?" My answer was "There is always going to be a reason to not do a challenge. 12 weeks is a long time. When am I ever going to get a 12 week window where I have no birthdays parties, weddings, holidays etc? It's never going to happen." Yesterday was definitely the hardest day so far on the challenge. I just really wanted to be able to be social, let my hair down, have some drinks and celebrate with my friends. But I weighed it up and realized what was more important to me. I was so proud of myself when I got home from the wedding. I did it! I knew I wouldn't be able to fit in many weights sessions over the last few days because we've been staying in small towns so to make up for it I did more weights sessions earlier in the week when we had access to a gym and more cardio for the last few days - Barossa Valley style, did lots of hill sprints, and walks amongst the vineyards, such beautiful scenery around here. I got a chance to try out the weights program for weeks 5-8 and it looks awesome! I didn't do any exercise today. It seems like it could be my last rest day on the entire challenge so I thought I'd make the most of it. We went out for dinner on 2 occasions and there was surprisingly a few things on the menu that I could modify to be challenge approved so I ordered some Salmon and a side of veggies (I didn't eat the corn in the pic). My fiancé ordered a triple stacked burger called "The Sasquatch." It was gigantic! The restaurant has a challenge where you have 30 mins to eat it all and he did it. I was actually jealous because it looked delicious but my willpower is keeping me strong. My friends keep laughing at my self control, they can't believe the places we've been and how strong I've been resisting so many temptations. I keep laughing at myself too, I still go into all the same places they do but I just look and don't buy. There is a photo at the chocolate factory and while everyone else is enjoying their chocolate, I'm eating a Maxine's bar, they are just so delicious I didn't even feel like I was missing out.

  • Carissa Parr
    10 Sep 2015
    12:25 AM

    MY 4 WEEK CHECK IN: I was going to wait until I got back to Brisbane next Tuesday to do my weigh in and progress pics so I didn't worry about bringing my swimmers on holiday to use in my 4 week photo, after all it's not exactly beach weather here at the moment. But I ended up taking some photos tonight because I was dying to find out what'a coming up for weeks 4-8!!! I can not believe the changes I can see already! It's hard because I'm not in the same outfit but I can see and feel that I am getting leaner. I have just entered the weight I was on Saturday before I left for my holidays. So that's 8.5 kilos lost in the first 3 weeks. I'm so happy and we are not even a third of the way through the challenge. The best feeling so far is that so many people are noticing the changes. My friends are all asking me what I'm doing to get such good results, even friends who I've always considered were fitter than me are asking for advice. I feel like the person jumping for joy on the Toyota commercial. :->

  • Carissa Parr
    10 Sep 2015
    12:08 AM

    We set off from Melbourne on our trip along the Great Ocean Road on Monday. First stop was Apollo Bay. What a cute little town. By this stage I had run out of my own meals so it added a bit of a challenge. We went out for dinner at a local pub. I asked for roast beef and to swap out the pumpkin and potato for more steamed veggies which wasn't a problem. I did ask for the gravy on the side but apparently that couldn't be done so I just had to scrape it all off. it wws actually undercooked for my liking and I gave a fair bit of it to Brett because it was a large serving of meat. It's great that he is a big eater and can eat all my leftovers so I don't feel like I'm wasting the food. We've been trying to stay at places that have a fridge and a microwave. That way I can at least cook breakfast and heat up lunch and put it in my thermos for later. And it's saving us money too! Holidaying on a budget 101, haha! I'm so lucky to have such a supportive partner who is patient with me taking a little extra time to get everything ready in the morning. He loves working out too so squeezing in some cardio or gym sessions hasn't been a problem, it's actually fun checking out new gyms. We did some early morning cardio in Apollo Bay, it was freezing! A few hill sprints soon warmed me up. We then hit the road, stopping at a few tourist spots to do some small hikes, got our steps up climbing the lighthouse at Cape Otway, then on to the 12 Apostles, WHAT AN EXPERIENCE!!! Unforgettable! We then arrived in Warrnambool last night, I really liked it there, the grass is so green, the people are friendly, the houses are cute and everything is so clean. We squeezed in 2 gym sessions at the local Snap Fitness, met some friendly locals and tried out some new machines. I'm feeling so much stronger with my program, my weights are increasing and what was my limit is beconming my warm up. It's such an awesome feeling! For dinner we whipped up a chicken stir fry in the microwave which cost us $23 for the ingredients and fed us both for dinner last night and lunch on the road today. Quick, easy, cheap and healthy! Dinner tonight was a beef casserole from the IGA that had just veggies, herbs and spices in it. I made sure I weighed out the beef content so I didn't go over my meal plan and then added some lettuce to go with it....Delicious!!!

  • Carissa Parr
    9 Sep 2015
    11:35 PM

    HOLIDAYS AND A 12 WEEK CHALLENGE should never be said in the same sentence! I am currently on holidays for 10 days. Going into the challenge I was obviously worried about how I was going to pull this off while sticking to the challenge. I prepackaged all the oats, almonds, protein powder and Mazine's bars that I would need for the trip. I packed a little esky with 2 frozen lunches and 2 frozen dinners. Also my food thermos, cutlery, Franks hot sauce (if you haven't tried it you should have), Himalayan salt, kitchen scales, protein shakers, amino acids, vitamins, kitchen sink.... just kidding! When we arrived in Melbourne I bought some eggs, rye toast, Chobani and frozen berries. I WAS READY! We spent 2 nights in Melbourne, I can see why it's called the food capital of Australia. We're talking cake and chocolate shops everywhere!!! Nutella burgers. Nutella filled donuts. Churros with Nutella. Are you sensing a theme here? Basically Nutella flavored everything! No wonder there is a shortage of the stuff down here. Then there was the hot chips. Hot chips with every combination of toppings you could ever imagine! Poutine is a personal favourite of mine, and I said no to it all! If you are doing the challenge and you live in Melbourne I think it would be much harder for you, keep up the awesome willpower because these temptations were not easy to resist, I take my hat off to you! At flinders street station I said to my partner "hold on I'm going to buy an apple." There was so many other options like chocolate coated churros and fresh baked goods which I would normally have jumped at. He joked and said "you've changed". I keep surprising him with my willpower because on other programs I've tried I would have given up a long time ago. We went to the block arcade and there was the cutest little cafe serving high tea but instead of going there I went to a herbs and spices shop across the arcade. We're talking vindaloo, chilli con carne, beef rub, chai masala, you name it! We spent $60 on herbs and spices and it was totally worth it. I swapped eating out with other exciting things to do in Melbourne. We went to the famous Doherty's gym, what an awesome experience! Took an early morning walk along the Yarra, walked the painted alley ways, caught up with a great friend in St Kilda and watched her son take his first steps, what a moment I'll never forget! I went shopping for new workout gear at my favourite store Lulu Lemon. I also bought a few new dresses because I didn't have any room in my bag for clothes (thats what I told my fiancé anyway). To my disbelief, they were a size 12! I am so used to trying on the biggest size there is. I still feel like there must be something wrong with the sizing! I got the full Melbourne experience and loved every minute of it!

  • Carissa Parr
    9 Sep 2015
    11:16 PM

    Day 24: I'm well overdue for a blog update that's for sure! So much has happened since my last one. I celebrated my best friend's 30th birthday last Friday. This was a tough one because normally I would have drank and partied with her. I phoned the restaurant ahead of time and they assured me they would be able to make something "challenge approved". When I arrived I spoke to the manager and he was not helpful so I then spoke to the waiter who was new and didn't know a great deal about the menu. It then turned me into "that annoying person who is being picky". I started to panic. I was so annoyed that I was trying so hard to eat well and they couldn't just give me meat and veggies or salad, how hard could it be??? I ordered a charcoal chicken dish. It came out and was just some chicken, a spoon full of diced tomato and red onion and a hand full of spinach leaves. The chicken portion was too large (although i could have eaten it all in a heart beat) so I gave the rest to my fiancé who told me later he didn't think it was cooked through (something I get very paranoid about). On the upside I didn't get salmonella! I went home pretty hungry but I didn't die of starvation. It wasn't the end of the world. I ordered 2 lime and soda waters instead of alcohol. I politely declined a piece of cake. I thought I'd be such a stick in the mud because I wasn't drinking but I caught up with some friends and had a great time. My best friend was so supportive of the challenge and wasn't disappointed that I didn't drink - something I was worried about. It all turned out just fine!

  • Carissa Parr
    25 Aug 2015
    10:28 PM

    Here we are, one week already done and dusted, it went so quickly I haven't even had a chance to update my blog. The first week has been fantastic. I have actually surprised myself. Although it was a mammoth effort to meal prep for the entire week, (I'm sure this will only get easier) I'm so glad I did it because it kept me on track all week. It was so easy to grab my lunch out of the freezer in the morning and I knew that dinner was only 5 minutes away when I arrived home exhausted after a long day at work. My biggest challenge this week was eating out at a restaurant for a friend's birthday on Friday night. Earlier in the week I was chatting to a client of mine with a great knowledge of hypnotherapy and neurolinguistic programming and she gave me a technique on how to approach the evening. It went something like this.... Break it down into a 5 step process: 1. Get ready. 2. Drive to the restaurant. 3. Order from the menu. 4. Eat your meal. 5. Arrive home and feel happy and proud knowing that you showed self control, chose healthy food from the menu and and have taken a step in the right direction towards your goals. I don't know how this actually worked for me but it did. I was so determined to not slip up. I phoned the restaurant ahead of time so I was not that painful person at the table on the night. I asked if they could make a chicken salad for me as there was only pizzas on the menu. The restaurant was so obliging and nothing was a bother, in fact the chef checked what I could and couldn't eat and served up a delicious salad with the dressing on the side. I stayed away from the bread and dip platters and later watched as everyone ate home baked shortbread (a weakness of mine). And when I arrived home, step 5 was the most amazing feeling! I felt on top of the world!

  • Carissa Parr
    17 Aug 2015
    11:03 PM

    Well here I am, in all my glory! Oh dear.....a photo of me in a bikini....this has never been seen before, eeekkk! I don't even wear this at the beach let alone put it on the internet. It took me a long time to decide to make my profile public but it's now out there for all to see, it had to be done to keep myself accountable. On the upside, it can only get better from here! I've also posted a pic of me taken in April this year and a photo from 2 weeks ago caught red handed having a binge on some Krispy Kreme donuts, these nasty habits are not going to continue anymore! After finishing all my food prep last night I hopped into bed and couldn't sleep....I never have problems sleeping, quite the opposite actually, I usually can't wake up! I was just so excited to start the challenge today. I felt organised (somewhat OCD as you can see) and I couldn't be more ready if I tried! I can't wait to see what happens over the next 12 weeks. I started following the challenge program last week in order to ease me into it and so I knew exactly what had to be done when I got to the gym this morning. First things first I did the fitness test and then the weights session. I managed to up my weights for the bench press (with my fiancé spotting) so I was happy! I thought my food for today was going to be a bit bland as I haven't experimented much with seasonings etc but it turned out pretty damn good (even if I do say so!). I didn't realise I could get so excited about oats, who would have thought? I haven't been hungry, although I was last week so I think I'm now getting used to the new meal plan. I dodged the delicious looking cake in the lunch room at work with my co workers saying "you can have a little bit can't you?" I politely declined which is something that is so hard for me because firstly IT'S CAKE - I have a massive sweet tooth and minimal self control when it comes to cake, and secondly, I feel like I'm offending people if I say no, but so far my willpower is strong, let's hope this keeps up for another 83 days :-)

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