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National Obesity Awareness Week - Krishna's Inspiring Story

National Obesity Awareness Week - Krishna's Inspiring Story

National Obesity Awareness Week runs from 14th to 20th January 2019 and is designed to encourage the nation to resolve to tackle this serious problem by cooking more healthily, avoiding snacks and getting more physically active.

With our sedentary modern lifestyles, the abundance of high calorie fast food that is available to us, too much time spent in front of screens, and reliance on the car to travel even short distances, obesity has become an epidemic in the UK, affecting a quarter of adults and children. This is set to rise to 48% of the population by 2045 if current trends continue.

Obesity results from consuming more calories, particularly those in fatty and sugary foods, than you burn off through physical activity. The body stores the excess energy as fat and this can lead to a number of serious health conditions, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, breast and bowel cancer and strokes.

Being overweight is not just a matter of aesthetics or looking good. Many of us are aware that we’re at least moderately fatter than we should be and as a result, experience issues such as lack of energy, breathlessness, joint and back pain, low self-esteem, lack of confidence and depression.

But going on a punishing crash diet is not the answer. This can make us feel deprived and miserable and is inevitably doomed to fail. Instead, we need to take a holistic approach and make sustainable lifestyle changes, combining healthy eating and portion management with regular exercise, to slowly and surely get our weight under control and make us fitter, happier and more confident long term. One of our members at Fitness4Less Watford, Krishna Patel, has done just that and this is her story: -

Krishna had never experienced weight issues until she left University and moved back in with her parents. She began to suffer from the stress of a punishing schedule of working full time, while studying for a Masters degree, as well as feeling personal pressures, which all led to emotional overeating. She starting using food as a crutch, but binge eating led to feelings of worthlessness and failure.

As she piled on the pounds, people started labelling her as the fat one in her family and constantly made unkind remarks. She started avoiding shopping with friends and fashionable clothes shops that she knew wouldn’t stock her size. And she dreaded having to attend weddings and parties, where she knew she would have to dress up – something which, as a young, attractive woman, she had previously loved doing.

Eventually, feeling that she was on the receiving end of nothing but criticism, ridicule and bullying, Krishna’s confidence hit an all-time low. She was by then in a downward spiral of self-loathing and depression and also began to experience physical symptoms like joint pain, puffy ankles, breathlessness and acid reflux.

But she then made a momentous decision to face her demons head-on. Together with her then-partner, who was also experiencing similar issues, she signed up for membership at Fitness4Less Watford and enlisted the services of personal trainer, Alex McCartney. Over the past two and a half years, Alex has helped Krishna re-evaluate her relationship with food and gradually encouraged her to build exercise into her life and make the complete, consistent lifestyle change she needed to ensure success in losing weight and getting fit.

Progress was slow but steady and Krishna had to work extremely hard, but she has now lost an impressive 8 stone and gone down eight dress sizes. Shopping for pretty clothes is now a pleasure; Krishna feels fit and healthy and she can be justly proud of her amazing achievement.

As she says, “For anyone thinking that they need to lose weight, it is a journey that is an investment in your body. It is probably the most important investment you will ever make in your life. Feeling good comes from what is inside you and it is the baby steps that will lead to the greater success.

If anyone had told me at the start of my journey that it would take me 2.5 years of my life to get down to my dream dress size, I would have said exactly the same as what the majority of women are thinking - “I don’t want it to take that long. I want to get to my goal as soon as possible.”

The truth is we all look for the ‘quick fix’ but there is no quick fix. It is all down to mind over matter and a lot of hard work. Even now some mornings when my alarm goes off I ask myself whether I really need to go to the gym. I get up, get ready and once I have walked to the gym I know that I will feel much better after the workout. If I was able to do it, so can you.

Never let anyone dull your sparkle: never let anyone make you feel like a failure. Believe in yourself; believe you can do it; be you; be real, be authentic.”

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