If you don’t know me, you’ll soon come to learn how much I love food.
I vividly remember being told by a friend in secondary school that although I was lucky because I could eat whatever I liked, one day things will change. I felt like she was threatening me by predicting I’d get fat if I continued loving and eating food the way I did – I rolled my eyes and kept on eating 😉 Well… a year later, after a summer holiday in England, I went back to school chubby *shock horror*! Luckily for me, I was almost back to my usual size after a term in boarding school.
I wish I could say that was my only experience with being overweight but if you love food as much as I do and you’ve been overweight once, it’s bound to happen again especially if you fall back into bad eating habits. Or worse. That is exactly what happened when I moved to London in 1998. I ate, ate and ate a little more. I worked in McDonald’s for 6 months and had a burger, chips and a milkshake almost every day. Sometimes I treated myself to a chocolate fudge or caramel sundae, it was all free so why not? Was I surprised when I realised how big I’d become? Yes! Did I do anything about it? Yes because once in a while I remembered how slim I was in Nigeria and I was sad I’d gotten that big and No because I quickly got over my self-pity and carried on eating… of course.
I finally did something about it when I saw a picture of myself at a friend’s barbeque – I honestly couldn’t believe it was me! Yes I saw that same person in the mirror everyday, I’d seen pictures of myself from other occasions but they never had the same impact that this picture did on me (Note: This isn’t the picture but is from the same year).
To me, that was a life changing moment. Sorry if I sound dramatic but it was. I instantly made the decision to join Weight Watchers and I successfully lost 40 pounds in less than 4 months from eating healthily. Wouldn’t it be the perfect ending if I said I looked and felt good for ever and ever?… Yes but that’s not true.
Through my experiences, some even as recently as last year, I have come to learn, and still am learning; the right balance between healthy eating and exercise. Exercise is very important but healthy eating is even more important.
It doesn’t happen in one day. It has been 8 years since I initially lost weight and I am now coming to the point where I am much more confident with the decisions I make with my health and my fitness. Finally confident enough to provide help and advice to people who are in similar situations to where I was.
If you are where I was, I’m here to help as much as I possibly can.
Adura Odesanya is a Fitness Instructor and Trainer who works with Fitter London. Having been overweight in the past, she recognises the challenges that many people face in trying to overcome weight loss and fitness challenges. She will be sharing some of her experiences that have helped her achieve and maintain a significantly healthier lifestyle with us on Femme Lounge.