A Year Of Fitness…

On January 1st last year I set myself a challenge.  To lose weight, get healthier and improve my fitness levels.  I was stuck in a rut- eating unhealthily, not doing any exercise at all, and generally not feeling particularly nice about myself.  I have never been overweight, but I had a spare tyre round my waist and I just didn’t feel nice in clothes at all.  I had got to the point where I wasn’t making any effort with my appearance, I don’t remember the last time I bought any clothes and even when I did I still felt unconfident.  We had got into a habit of eating a lot of rubbish, we would eat chocolate, ice cream or desserts every evening, I would eat paninis and chips when I was out with friends at soft play and I would pile my plate high with food in the evening, my appetite even surpassing my husbands.

Until this year I have never ever stuck at a fitness plan or done any regular exercise.  Even at school, I was never really sporty and preferred to hide in our common room and paint my nails than go and do netball and hockey.  At university and in my early 20’s I lost count of the amount of times I joined a gym only to go twice and then never return.  I just didn’t have the motivation to do it.  But on the 1st January 2014 something inside me made me decide to start a fitness mission.  And this time for whatever reason it was different.

I took a photo of myself on January 1st 2014 as motivation to see if I could see any results and that photo still makes me feel really sad.  It’s not like I am particularly overweight but I just look unhealthy- it can definitely only be described as a spare tyre round my middle.  I started off in January joining a gym with my sister.  We went a few times, but I don’t know what it is but I just don’t feel 100% comfortable at the gym.  So instead we went for a run one evening.  And bizzarely I absolutely loved it. I downloaded the Nike Running app and loved getting an instant result as to how far and fast I was running.  I started off running just half a mile, then a mile then setting myself a goal to work up to three. Then five.  Then a little bit more.  And even though it was winter and freezing, I still did it.  Eventually I cancelled the gym membership and just carried on with my running.  I started off going three to four times a week, just short distances and I loved beating my times and the way it motivated me.


(Photos from March)

The next thing was my stomach area.  I had two large 9lb babies, both by c-section and my core was just incredibly weak.  My tummy stuck out like I was about 12 weeks pregnant.  After some research online I found out I had a diastasis recti, which basically is separation of the ab muscles after pregnancy.  I did a simple exercise which I found online and found that my separation was about 4-5 cm, not the worst ever but certainly something that needed improving.  So I set about doing exercises to try and strenghten my core.  The worst thing you can do for ab separation is things like sit up’s as they can make it worse, so I researched online and did simple exercises twice or three times a week at first to strengthen them.  It took quite a while but after about six months I started to notice a difference.  Now, it’s not perfect, its about 1-2 cm so I still have a bit of a bulge and gap but it is a lot better than it was.

In terms of food, to begin with I really watched what I ate.  I cut down on all chocolate and sweet things and ate a lot healthier in the evening.  But the main thing I did was eat smaller portions.  Instead of a greasy panini and chips for lunch I would have a jacket potato or beans on toast (baked beans- best thing ever in terms of being tasty and low in fat!)  I measured myself at the end of each month and was excited to actually see some results for the first time ever, with my greatest loss in weight in the first month.  It was definitely addictive.  I began signing up to running races in the future as a motivator, with a 10k race in the June, a half marathon in the August and another half marathon in the October.  I also used my husband’s kettlebells for a few minutes once or twice a week too.

After losing the initial weight I started to relax a little.  I had sweet treats, still ate chocolate a few times a week, and ate the things I enjoyed, I just ate them in moderation and if I knew I was going out for dinner and wanted to eat lots, then I would make sure I had a healthy meal the night before.  We went on holiday to Rhodes in June and I ate so much for the week, but I also got up early three times and went to our hotel gym.  I completed my first half marathon in August, something which I was incredibly proud of and then I did another one in October too.  I got a little bit lazy in writing my fitness mission posts each month, but I still made sure I stuck to it, although I wasn’t as strict as I was before.  Nowadays I run about once or twice a week, mainly because it is so cold at the moment and I am really busy with my freelance work.

great eastern run2

I definitely go through stages where I am really motivated and then weeks when I am not so much.  However in the whole year the longest I haven’t run has only been about a period of two and a half weeks which has been recently over Christmas.  I also have been eating out a lot and of course eating all the festive food, so I have put on a few pounds and lost some definition in my stomach muscles- it is so easy to get out of the habit, but the weight I am at now is actually the most comfortable for me.  It is a struggle to get out the door sometimes but towards the end of the year, I stopped trying to get faster and began running with a good friend of mine, it’s great as in the Winter even though I am not going as fast as I normally would, I am chatting and enjoying each run.  The start of the year was all about me beating my personal bests whereas the end of the year I have just been running to keep fit.

I am still eating fairly healthily but I do still eat even a small sweet treat most days, even if that is just a chocolate biscuit, a couple of pieces of chocolate or a scoop of ice cream.  I find if I cut it out completely then I end up wanting it so much more so I think it’s best to eat in moderation.  I started the year drinking a lot of water, but over the last few months I have got terrible, I barely even drink a glass a day and I have started drinking even more diet coke than I used to- I really need to try and cut down, while I won’t be able to stop drinking it completely, if I can drink more water then I won’t feel so guilty about drinking it.  I am useless at drinking water so this is something I really need to try and improve on.

My results of my fitness mission after a whole year are…

Weight Loss- 2 stone exactly (although I have added about 4 pounds over Christmas)

Inches Lost- 7 inches from around my waist.

Running achivements- 2 half marathons, 1 10k race.  My fastest half marathon time is 1.51.  


a year of fitness

Here is a before and after photo to compare.

So what do I want for 2015?  Well I have got a little lazy the last few months and so I want to try and get more motivated again.  I want to run at least twice a week, back in the summer I managed to get quite good tummy muscles, so I want to work hard on doing exercises at home to work on that as it is still the part of me that I feel most self conscious about.  I have a wobbly bit of excess skin at the bottom from where I had my two c-sections and I know I won’t be able to get rid of that, but I would like to tone up a little more.  Also where I have lost weight I now literally have no bottom, so I would like to try and tone and firm that a little more- the only problem is I literally cannot stand squats which I believe is the best way to do that.  I don’t need to lose anymore weight but I want to maintain the weight I am now.

Running wise, I have signed up to two more half marathons- one in March and one in October, but I want to look and try and do a couple more as well.  I did something crazy and signed up to the full Brighton Marathon which is in April, but I am now wondering whether to defer it until 2016.  I just feel like I am not in the right place to try and run a 26 mile race- I am busier than ever with work and I want to enjoy these last few months before Mads goes to school.  Also we have a fair few exciting things booked because we are trying to get them in before she goes to school in September, so I just worry I won’t be able to commit to training for it.  I almost feel like I am cheating myself by not doing it, but I will still make sure I do lots of other races instead, and hopefully I can do that one in 2016.  It’s just such a commitment and I don’t feel ready for it to be honest.

I am going to drink more water as well and try and cut down on diet coke, and try and perhaps get back into the frame of mind of not eating too much rubbish as I have definitely got worse and into bad habits again over the last few months.  That said, fitness and this way of thinking is a way of life for me now so I don’t worry that I will completely fall of the wagon.  Above all I am incredibly, incredibly proud of myself for sticking at my fitness mission for this year, it has changed my life and I hope that I will continue in 2015!

NB: This is just my own personal fitness journey- I have no idea if it’s the way you should do things, but it’s how I managed to lose weight and get fitter.  I am not an expert and don’t really have a clue what I am doing but I wanted to share my year of fitness in case it helps or inspires anyone else.  





  • nicolakezia86 says:

    I think you have done amazingly well hun. All year I’ve followed your progress and felt totally in awe of how you have totally changed your life around. I’m hoping 2015 is the year I lose my spare tyre too (or expand it by growing another little person haha) but seeing those pictures of you has really made me want to do something about my own eating and fitness. Huge well done, you should be very proud. You look fantastic! xx

  • Amy Treasure says:

    Hi katie, I’ve loved reading this and following your fitness journey last year. I have 8 weeks before my first half marathon and not really sure if I’m going to get there with the training. I can only really do 3 miles outside and probably 6 or 7 on the treadmill before I’m dying!i am using you as inspiration!! hopefully I can stick to my schedule which if I follow it I should be able to do 10 miles by week 8. I’ve heard if you can do 10 before your first half then the adrenaline will take you all the way. I hope so! Xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Ah good luck with your half marathon Amy I am sure you will do amazingly- I left it quite late to train for my first one too and I agree if you can do ten the adrenaline will take you to the end. It’s the best feeling when you finish. x

  • Keri-Anne says:

    Well done darling. You are a very big inspiration. I have started a 12 week daily workout guide that i am enjoying as well as regular gym sessions 🙂 Excited to see how this year pans out x

  • Emma Irvine says:

    Well done you look fantastic! I’ve joined a new gym and I’m joining slimming world tomorrow. I’m at my heaviest since I was pregnant and I need to lose about 2 stone. I’m 40 in March so I’m determined to be fitter & healthier by then. I’m going to read your older posts and hopefully you’ll be an inspiration xx

  • Karen says:

    I’ve said it before but I will definitely say it again, you are a real inspiration Katie, what an amazing transformation in just 1 year! Well done, you should be so, so proud of yourself!

  • Kerry says:

    You’ve done amazing and achieved so much! Such an inspiration! I hope I can take a leaf out of your book and get back into shape soon! xx

  • HELEN says:

    well done Katie, you’ve done brilliantly! I have passed my first challenge of running a mile without stopping & am now working my way up to 5k…it may be a while!

  • My word. You look amazing!! This post is awesome and what a massive pat on the back for you too – you look so good hunni. Its funny as you looked good to me last year too! You always look good.

    This is totally inspirational as I am your Jan 2014 currently! x

  • Wow! You look amazing and this post on its own is very motivational for me. I lost 1.5stonne last year just changing my diet and I feel so better for it and am now at my smallest I’ve every been. I would now like to start some excercise but find the gym so boring. Do you use a Fitbit? I am considering getting one and slowly starting a jogging plan for this year as my sister is getting married in Rhodes in August and I want to feel good. I have no clue where to start with a jogging plan so if you have time to share any tips that would be fantastic. Well Done on all your hard work and keeping it up. 🙂

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Hi Kirsty of course I will do a little post when I have time on my jogging and exercise plan as I think that would help people- it’s getting round to doing it though. Well done on losing 1.5 stone- that’s amazing. Good luck with it all.

  • Alice says:

    This is amazing, Katie. You are such an inspiration and a well-needed kick up the bum for me – I totally lost my fitness mojo in the later part of 2014! x

  • Donna says:

    I want to be writing a very similar post at the start of next year but I am yet to take my before photo. I can tell in that first photo you don’t want to be taking it – your fist is almost clenched and your pose is quite self conscious. That is definitely me right now x

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      I really didn’t and I was really self conscious but I am so glad I have it now to look back on. Good luck with yours too Donna.

  • Absolutely amazing. You should feel incredibly proud of yourself- you look in great shape and the transformation in a year is amazing! I wish I had your will power- I’d so love to go for a run (as I sit here lazily eating a Crunchie- oh the shame!) how did you make yourself just got for it the first run? Xx

  • Susan Mann says:

    You look amazing. I managed to lose 2 stone too, but need to get the fitness levels up. You are an inspiration x

  • LauraCYMFT says:

    Well done you! That’s amazing. It can be hard sticking to a fitness routine but if you find something you enjoy, it is so much easier. x

  • You are AWESOME! It was you and a couple of other people that got me to shift off my big, fat backside last summer and start running. Man, has it made a massive difference. I’m half way through writing an update too. My before and after pictures make me feel sick – when I first took the ‘before’ ones, I didn’t think they were that bad but when I compare them to the ‘after’ ones, god I was huge. Good luck this year! xx

  • Such a fantastic effort and well done you. Amazing and if you feel happier and healthier then that is the real success. You can clearly see that it is post pregnancy body and nothing more. Your legs were still thin despite where you were in 2014. I am glad you are happier. I started to watch what I eat towards the end of 2014 and I saw a huge change in my weight so I added fitness on Monday and am going to my 2nd caveman class tomorrow and then I want to add a run in too. Hopefully I will enjoy running as much as you did x

  • Life at the Little Wood says:

    You look amazing Katie! I so wish I could get motivated for exercise too. I’m happy enough with my weight and eat healthily most of the time, but have so many wobbly bits that I’d love to tone up! You are very inspiring indeed! Xx

  • Fola Lewis says:

    Wow Katie ! I love this post and have even read it a couple if times as it’s so interesting. I list all my baby weight with the first 4 months of having my daughter but not sure what happened because I can’t get into any of my old or new clothes anymore. I’d love to commit to getting and staying healthy for 2915 but just nervous that the while New Years resolution ambitions also taper off for me. What was the one key thing that encouraged you to push on in the early days and weeks?

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Ah thanks Fola for a lovely comment- good luck with yours. The one definite thing that encouraged me to push on in the early days was that I took the before photos and also took all my measurements, I found that I was losing weight and losing inches and it definitely motivated me more than if I hadn’t known. x

  • Jenny says:

    Katie I am so very proud of you in your fitness goals and mostly your amazing achievements. You truly are so inspiring and this year is the year of healthy! I need to get myself to eat better and exercise more. I was too sick for too long last year. You have motivated me to do something about it. Your beautiful post too! Thank you. Keep it up girl you are doing so amazing.

  • Kerry says:

    You look amazing! Well done you, I have loved reading your posts 🙂 Xx

  • Shauna Clark says:

    Hi, I’m a new follower and I love your blog! I too started running last year, and am planning on running my first half marathon this year. I also have a diastasis recti of about 5 finger widths which I’m looking to work on this year. I’d love to hear about the exercises you did that helped. The more weight I lose the more pregnant I look with it!

    Look forward to reading more about your fitness journey!

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Hi Shauna thanks for your lovely comment. Good luck with your first half marathon. I will definitely do a post on diastasis recti as I think it may help a few people! x

  • Katie, you really have been my fitness inspo this past year. I am not happy with my figure right now- I’m not overweight as such and have quite slim legs, but being an apple shape I tend to carry weight around my middle (I look now like your ‘before’ pic) and I really, really want to get healthier and fitter this year. I also have a wedding dress to fit into in June so that is my motivation! Well done to you, you deserve it for all your hard work xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Thanks Becky for this lovely comment- I really appreciate it. Good luck with yours and I bet you will look amazing in your wedding dress in June. x

  • Wow Katie! Talk about inspiring. I had Diastasis Recti too and had to work really hard and have physio in order to sort my muscles out… and now I’m pregnant again so will be back to square one in June! But hey… the things we do for these babies? Feeling somewhat confused at the moment about how I keep fit during pregnancy, but I’m definitely motivated to kick the baby fat much quicker this time round post baby! Keep going girl…. you look fabulous!

  • You should be so bloody proud of yourself Katie! I wish I’d had your determination last year as I’ve put on weight instead of losing it!! So mad with myself. Reading this has only boosted my resolve to stick with it this year, I hope I can achieve at least a fraction of what you have! xxx

  • Lori says:

    Well done you look amazing!! I just tried my first run tonight and it was awful but will persevere! You’ll have to let’s know which ab exercises you did as I still have a gap. Also love the water idea, so so good for you. You should defo get he Fitbit charge it’s an amazing health and fitness tracker you’d love it! Definitely stay off the cola though it does awful things to your insides and can make some people really poorly xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Good luck with your running Lori- I know I should really stop with the coke, it’s not good for me I know. And I will try and do a post on the tummy exercises too. x

  • Katie says:

    You’ve done amazingly well Katie and you look amazing too. Such an inspiration for the average person out there wanting to start out xx

  • Wow! Well done. I should take some pics for motivation x

  • Honest Mum says:

    Oh Kate you look absolutely amazing, you did before chick and well done you for sticking to an exercise plan. Drinking more water helps me lots too. I actually got my brother’s girlfriend off diet coke recently. The aspartame really does change your brain, it’s lethal stuff, sure you know all that but bet you will feel amazing if you bin it! This might motivate you: http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20739512,00.html

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Thanks Vicki- I really wish I could bin it, I hate myself for drinking it- but it is just one vice I am not good with. x

  • Notmyyearoff says:

    You did look. Big at all in Jan 2014 but wow what a huge difference and lifestyle change for the better. Huge well done. You should be really proud of the huge achievment! I started exercising in 2014 mainly for my belly and it’s madee feel so much better!

  • Notmyyearoff says:

    Arrrgh I meant you “didn’t” look big at all in January 2014!!

  • Wow! Well done. It’s amazing what you have achieved and it’s so inspiring to read about someone who is so focused and dedicated. You look wonderful, not jealous at all (not!) Yay, you signed up to the Brighton Marathon!!!! We watched it last year, just down the road from us. I’ll cheer you on this year – maybe we could say hello 🙂 xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Ah thank you! And if I do it then yes I would love to say hello- although I am thinking I may defer until next year now. x

  • This is all very inspiring! Your before and after pics are amazing – I don’t know if I’d be brave enough to do that, but I bet it’s a good way to get motivated. And it sounds as though you’re doing the right thing in deferring the marathon. You won’t get these next few months back – enjoy them, you deserve every minute.

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Ah thanks Nell I was so nervous about posting the before and after, but I am really glad I did. And i agree about the marathon, I can do one next year, but I just want to enjoy my big girl for these last few months before school. x

  • Carie says:

    Wow! What a difference a year can make! I think you’ve done amazingly well and you’re definitely inspiring me to find some way to get some exercise into my daily life – I spend far too much time going at toddler speed!

  • You’ve done so well!!!! Although I am not able to run, you have given me a figurative kick up at the backside to get going and finally lose the baby weight.

  • Emma says:

    This is fantastic – really well done. You looked absolutely beautiful before and still do now. It must feel amazing to have achieved so much though! I put on 5 stone when I was pregnant (a mixture of eating a lot, feeling down and not being able to exercise) – I’m slowly losing it but its really, really tough. Can I ask where you found the exercises for your tummy? I had the same (2 9lb babies by section) and whilst there is definitely still fat on my tummy I wonder if I have this separation of the muscles too. xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      I found a lot of the exercises on You Tube, I will try and get a post together as a few people have asked me- would that help? There’s a whole section on ab separation, let me see if I can find it and I will email you, I have your email as it’s come through on your comment. x

  • Watching your fitness mission unfold was what initially kicked my bum into gear and finally start the Couch to 5k. And I too loved getting out & running.

    Unfortunately once I went back to work I totally slacked and haven’t been for a run in months now.

    I was hoping to start up again in the New Year and once again, you blogging about your Fitness Mission is just the kick in the bum I need!

    You really are looking fab, Katie. Keep up the good work! xo

  • You always looked beautiful but you look radiant now. You are a complete inspiration xx

  • What an amazing post! Your determination just shines through and you should be incredibly proud of yourself! I let my running go and it is a real inspiration to read how you have maintained your fitness through the year! xxx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Thanks lovely, although since writing this post I have been a little rubbish as Christmas and holiday’s got in the way. x

  • You have done so well and you look amazing. Well done sweetie x

  • What an achievement. Why don’t you join me as @fitness4mamas and share your tips with my readers too?

  • This is so inspiring! I’m currently at the beginning of my own fitness journey, and although I don’t have any children in the mix.. I share a similar story. You should be really proud of yourself for all you have achieved, it’s amazing. And most importantly you should be happy 🙂 well done you! xx

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