Next in our Inspiring People interviews we have the Lovely Eszter who is a self described reformed lazy fat person. Eszter speaks to us about her journey from being over 100kg to discovering a love for fitness and creating a life where she is happier than she has ever been.
Hi, I’m Eszter, a 28 year old reformed lazy fat person. I have struggled with my weight and body image all of my life. I made some drastic lifestyle changes 16 months ago, fell in love with fitness and I’ve not looked back!
Tell me about your lifestyle prior to taking on a healthy lifestyle…
Since the age of 14 I have yo-yo dieted, tried many different weight loss & diet plans, none of which were sustainable. I was a takeaways/sugary foods/fizzy drinks addict.
I have always been an emotional eater and having gone through a lot of stress in my late teens and early twenties, the weight piled on in the last 10 years. My heaviest measured weight was 106.5kgs..but I think I was more than that at one point.
I hated exercising, and the heavier I got, the less I wanted to do anything. I would get puffed walking for short periods or just going up a flight of stairs. I was depressed, had very low self-esteem, no confidence and hated what I saw in the mirror.
What was it that made you make a change?
In May 2013 I found out I had insulin resistance (huge diabetes risk) and a bunch of other health problems to due to being obese.
Someone suggested to me I start logging my food every day, and use Myfitnesspal (tracking calorie intake), as part of this, I sat down one night and looked up all of my favourite foods to work out how many calories I was consuming with all of the Mcdonalds/Pizzas/Lollies etc.. all I can say is that it was a rude shock.
I felt sick to my stomach to realise that sometimes I would eat a whole days worth of calories in one meal. At that point my eyes were officially “opened” and I decided to make some much overdue changes to my lifestyle.
What is your lifestyle like now…
I switched to a healthier type of eating and cut out my “weaknesses” of takeaways, sugary drinks, pastries, lollies etc, and started religiously logging my food on Myfitnesspal. Once I knew how many calories I was supposed to be eating…and how much was in my old favourites, it actually wasn’t that hard because in my eyes, they weren’t worth it any more!
At first my exercise was just walking everyday. By being accountable for my calories in vs. calories out, I actually felt guilty for not doing something, so if for no other reason, that’s what made me get off the couch and get out there every single day.
As I got lighter, walking wasn’t enough any more so I joined a boot camp, and this is where my love for fitness and working out started! My personal trainer there changed my way of thinking around exercise and it was no longer a chore, it was something to challenge me so I could prove to myself that Yes, I could do it, and I could get through.
That snowballed again, and I joined a gym in February, and I now workout 5-6 days a week and absolutely love it!
What’s your approach to balance & moderation in life and food?
To be able to get where I am today, I had to make my health and fitness a priority (something I obviously I never used to do!). I generally spend around 1hr at the gym/running or some other form of exercise per day.
Thankfully it’s something I enjoy and I am also lucky to have a normal 40 hour work week, and no major commitments like children, so it has been pretty easy to make time for all of my activities. My husband has been very supportive and he actually does shift work for a living so it’s quite handy to work my exercise schedule around that.
In terms of food, because diets that cut out food groups never worked for me, I basically eat everything still but in smaller and controlled portions (I weigh everything). This means I still eat chocolate and ice cream (yay!), I just make it fit into my daily allowance.
I do try to stick to non processed foods and eat as healthy as possible, but I if I feel like ice cream..I will have it, and not feel guilty! If I exercise more, I can also eat more… so it’s win-win. One of the reasons why I feel like I have been successful is because I’ve never felt deprived or hungry. I found something that works for me!
What is your favourite form of exercise to do?
There are too many options…but if I had to choose one would be Body Attack, which is a high intensity cardio class with sports-inspired moves, combined with strength and stabilization exercises (Les Mills).
This is a class where I have gone from only being able to do the lowest intensity/difficulty options, to being able to do most of the high intensity ones in 6 months! It’s challenging and fun, and it has been great for improving my fitness!
I also love running. It’s a great stress relief and relaxing form of exercise because I get to listen to some great music and enjoy some cool scenery.
What is your most memorable moment on this journey?
There are a couple of stand-out moments, one was finishing my first ever run at Round the Bays Wellington in February. I ran the whole 6.5km course in just over 45 minutes (no stopping). This was a huge achievement for me as I had only started running in November 2013, and at that point I could only manage 30 seconds before I felt like I was going to pass out!!
Another memorable part has been being able to buy smaller sized clothing, not from the maternity or plus sized sections! Buying and fitting into my first ever pair of skinny jeans was a pretty great moment
The whole journey to date has been filled with amazing moments though, and I am happier than I have ever been.
What is your favourite healthy food/recipe?
I like everything haha. One of my favourite foods is perfectly poached eggs on toast with spinach and ham…as boring as that sounds.
I’ve found some awesome healthy recipes along the way but the ones I gravitate towards are sweet treats. Some of my faves would be protein mug cakes, or bliss balls..particularly the snickers bliss balls. (The lovely Emma shared her recipe in a past Inspiring People interview here!)
There is also a “skinny chicken korma‘ which is only 250 cals per portion (excl rice)…it tastes like the real thing, nothing artificial in it or anything, but doesn’t use a lot of the traditional ingredients like cream/coconut cream etc. It is delicious and super easy to make
You have found it harder to lose the weight as you get closer to your goal, tell us what you have done to keep yourself going?
I’ve hit several plateaus throughout my journey, and the weight loss has definitely slowed down the further along I get. My first 10kg basically fell off me, but since then I’ve had to work hard for every single kilo. I am at the point now that I am lucky to lose max 1kg per month!
What have I done to keep myself going in hard times?…The simple answer is that I’ve literally just kept going and by staying as positive as possible and keeping my goals in mind. I surround myself with positivity and inspiring people who help keep me going.
I have so many goals to achieve and I will not stop until I achieve them. As frustrated as I have been at times, I will not give up, because the alternative is much worse. I never want to go back to being the miserable unhealthy person I used to be.
What is one piece of workout equipment or tool that you swear by?
My body. Our bodies are incredible and capable of so much. My body frequently amazes me at the things it can achieve, doing things I’ve never been able to do. You don’t need any fancy equipment to workout…just your body and a good attitude
Other than that..I do love my Polar FT7 heart rate monitor, which helps keep me on track during my workouts.
What are your favourite healthy living blogs/websites or tools?
Yours (Aww thanks ;))
The myfitnesspal community and it’s blogs are also great
Thank you so much for sharing your journey Eszter! It’s been an amazing journey and transformation and I love that you are a much happier and healthier person these days!