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Carolyn’s Workout Diary: Start line

After piling on 3kgs over the summer break MiNDFOOD associate editor Carolyn Enting signs up for a six-week fitness and clean eating Refinery programme with GetRunning.

Carolyn’s Workout Diary: Start line

Sometimes the hardest thing is starting. Especially when it’s weight and fitness related.

After having a month off over the Christmas/summer period, I was horrified to see a lot of my hard work of the past year undone. The annoying thing is that I wasn’t surprised, though I was gutted. Gut being the operative word as that’s pretty much where most of my weight gain has gone!

It pretty much happens every year. Each year I swear the next year will be different but to do that one needs to change their behaviour. That means eating and drinking less (wine and beer) – which when you are on holiday is hard to do because that’s part of the fun of being on holiday and relaxing.

Looking back over those four weeks I have to say, hand on heart, that I don’t regret a single morsel passing my lips. Especially the Fry Jacks in Belize. They are absolutely delicious! I gained such enjoyment from everything I ate. I just wish it didn’t equal a gain on my stomach, thighs and hips.

So when my trainer Gaz Brown of GetRunning announced he was launching a six-week Refinery programme for people wanting to shift post-silly season weight gain through clean eating and exercise I signed up on the spot.

And, I thought I’d share what I learn along the way because I know I’m not alone in this dilemma. It’s a struggle a lot of us have. And while I am still in the healthy weight category for my age and height, I know that it’s important to shift off the extra kilograms as soon as possible because when they start to mount up everything becomes more difficult – both physically and mentally.

A big part of the GetRunning Refinery programme is nutrition and I’ll be working with a certified Sports & Exercise Nutritionist Sarah Sinclair who specialises in running nutrition, weight-loss, living gluten-free (she’s Coeliac) with a strong focus on clean eating.

My stats currently stand at 72.7kgs (I’m 5’5”) and my body fat measurement is 32 per cent (which is in healthy normal range, though on the lower end of the scale so room for improvement).

“What that means is you’re carrying 23kgs of body fat which sounds like a lot but your body (brain, organs and eyes) does need fat to function,” says Sinclair. “It would not be a good idea to try and lose 23kgs. It would be detrimental to your health. But if you take a couple of kilos of that off, it would move you more into the middle of the healthy range and that will make a difference to your running, energy levels and how you’re feeling.”

To put this into perspective, if I did suck 23kgs of fat off my frame – all that would be left would be muscles, fluid, bones and organs, and I’d weigh 49.7kgs.

“You should never want to weigh that much and you shouldn’t,” Sinclair says. “This gives you an idea and helps you to be more realistic.”

We agree 3kgs is a great idea, and 10kgs (my ultimate wish/weight loss goal) achievable (though not in six weeks).

The three-key areas we’ll be focusing on over the next three weeks are: nutrition, exercise and lifestyle, and striving to achieve balance in these areas.

To commit to this I’ve signed a contract with GetRunning which makes me accountable, and that I’m going to give this 100 per cent.

And I’ve set four goals. I won’t drink alcohol on weekdays. I’ll limit drinking wine (my biggest vice) to four units on weekends only. I’ll drink 2 litres of water a day (also hard for me as I’m not good at remembering to drink water – even with a water bottle on my desk). And, lose 3kgs.

I’ve started!

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