Eatleaner Stories – Alexandra Guy
”Being happy is the most important thing. Find things that YOU enjoy doing. Don’t focus on anyone else’s journey. You’re in your own race. And you’re going to win it.”
Where did your journey all begin?
I’ve very much always been as active as I could have all my life, however I had a hip injury at Uni which required an operation and there was a long waitlist and it took a while to diagnose me. So that definitely put a bit of a halt on things. I had absolutely no idea about nutrition and put a lot of unwanted weight on, and I just felt really uncomfortable in clothing and over all just having a pretty awful time mentally with it all. I also hardly ever got a photo of myself during this time as I just wasn’t confident or comfortable in my own body.
During my recovery I knew I wanted to get back to being active, healthy and improve my mental health. But I didn’t know where to begin. I experienced 4 & 1/2 years of FAD & unsustainable diets and a lot of restriction including my favourite foods carbs & cheese!
I thought I had to workout to be able to eat carbs within a certain time frame. I was weighing all my food out. I couldn’t mix carbs with fats. I tried cutting out sugar. I tried everything. But any lost weight was immediately put back on.
Going through these motions and completely having no idea what a macro or calorie was, wasn’t helpful either.
Food guilt and FOMO from meals out to not eating the same as my family was very much real. And only looking back now do I realise how sad I truly was.
Getting back into being active was another struggle. I was really quite sedentary for a few years, and really wary of my hip. It was tough knowing that you used to be able to do things, I almost had to reteach myself how to do things again and build up not only my fitness but confidence too! As it turned out quick fixes or anything that made me hate exercise, or anything that was completely unrealistic to suddenly magic into my lifestyle was unsustainable, didn’t work and was awful for my mental health. All things that I desperately wanted to change.
How have you become a healthier happier you?
In late 2019 I took the leap to work with a fabulous PT, I really got to learn about nutrition, how my body reacts to certain foods and how to work hard while keeping a fab balance and more importantly lift weights and get strong!
Something I never thought I’d do, never mind pop into a gym by myself and go to the squat rack. (FYI ladies, lifting weights doesn’t make you bulky)
Over this time I really feel like I’ve learnt an awful lot about my body and a lot of knowledge surrounding food/fitness/lifestyle and why fad diets never worked and I couldn’t be more grateful for that support. I was fully equipped to go it alone!
Just before lockdown hit in 2020, I had an operation to diagnose Endometriosis – another op that set me back, I was quite literally unable to move, walk about and even sit down comfortably for a month. I was housebound and it was really affecting my mental health. And I knew I needed to be activities to help this. It was a slow recovery but it was easier to get back into the swing of things again. And I had the right support. Unfortunately about 2 weeks into being at the gym again, we went into lockdown.
Over the lockdown period I also started walking a lot more, which is where the real changes for me happened. From walking round the block to increasing the distance to half marathons most Sundays! I started creating my own recipes, & Fakeaways but also took the time to focus on working out, and getting stronger, and just trying to be the best version of myself.
Eatlean has absolutely changed the game for me. I was quite into other low fat cheeses but still had to limit really how much I had. However the discovery of Eatlean has enabled me to cut down on the amount of other protein sources and increase other fat sources into my diet. This means I am getting a lot more volume on my plate!
How do you feel different today from the positive changes you have made?
I can 100% feel I’m the fittest and healthiest I have ever been. that’s really not another exaggeration either! Mentally I’m feeling so much better too. Of course everyone has bad days but I accept them and go through those motions. And the simplest thing like getting some fresh air really helps me.
I generally feel much more happier. I’m also a lot more organised from the discipline, whether that be meal prep, getting to the gym or just doing chores around the house. I also have a lot more free time because of this and can make the most of spending time with family and friends (although a lot of that is on Calls at the moment!)
I’m no longer wary of certain foods. Nothing is off limits to me now! And that is really important to me. I absolutely love food, trying new places and recipes. So being able to enjoy this, while making gains in the gym is such an amazing feeling compared to what it was like.
My mindset has also shifted. I knew I wanted to lose fat, but currently I’m not even focused on aesthetic goals. I’m all about getting stronger and seeing how much I can push myself. I am absolutely loving the challenge. And I’ve learnt to learn that the scales really don’t show you anything. Apart from your gravitational pull to the earth. Progress to me is about, what weight I’m lifting, how I’m sleeping, how my energy levels are and how I’m just feeling in general!
My main drive is just being that 0.01% better than I was the day before.
What’s one piece of advice that you would give to the Eatleaners?
Being happy is the most important thing. Find things that YOU enjoy doing. Don’t focus on anyone else’s journey. You’re in your own race. And you’re going to win it.
If you have certain goals they’ll unfortunately not happen overnight and the going does get tough. But you need to remember how much you want to reach that goal to keep digging and get there. And it’s perfectly fine to have bad days. You need to also remember to take time out for yourself.
Creating small changes and mini goals to get to the big one always seem more sustainable and this is so much more beneficial for long terms goals.
Never be afraid to ask for help, or direction either. Someone is always going to be willing to support you!
Click Here to read more inspirational Eatleaner Stories from the Eatlean community, to help you on your journey to a happier, healthier you!