Hiya, I’m Nikki & I am a 40-something Londoner who is trying to lose weight & get fit for the 2015 London Marathon!
My lightbulb moment happened back in December 2011, when I was diagnosed with chronic depression. My life seemed to be crumbling around me, problems everywhere, none that were actually mine but all of which that I was being left to sort out.
A few days before Christmas, my Doctor gave me an ultimatum, either be signed off from work sick for 6 weeks to give me time to rest & recuperate or be hospitalized with the depression.
I begged that neither be forced upon me — I had the days between Christmas and New Year booked off from work already and had a few days away with my husband planned. I promised my Doctor that I would do my best to implement some changes and he gave me a reprieve until January 2, 2012.
Well December 19, 2011 will be a day that will be engraved in my memory forever. It’s the day I decided to change my life. Like I said, none of the problems that were causing me stress were actually mine, but all the other people were depending on me to resolve them. Well now I was planning to take a step back, stop putting others first, make some time for me and be a bit selfish.
I sat my husband down for a long chat, there were tears, he was one of the people who had inadvertently landed me with stress, he promised that 2012 would all be about me and he would support me in whatever I needed to do to get better.
Although my weight wasn’t really an issue — I weighed 148lb, it was approx 10lbs away from where I am more comfortable — it was the one thing I could control 100% so it was the problem I decided to tackle first, so I rejoined Weight Watchers (crazy right? who joins Weight Watchers 6 days before Christmas?). I didn’t expect to lose loads but I hoped to limit what I would usually gain to around 2lbs, & part of me controlling my weight was to start doing some activity. I made a pact with myself to restart the Couch to 5k program and walk or run every day and it worked! When I went back to Weight Watchers on the 2nd January I had lost .5lb
The Doctor also noticed some changes. He said although he thought I was far from cured, he could see a sparkle in my eye that he hadn’t seen for a year. So he booked me in for weekly appointments for 6 weeks so he could monitor my progress.
I made myself a challenge that every month in 2012 I had to do a different physical challenge that ranged from swimming lessons, to running my first 5k, 10k & walking a half marathon. I went on fitness weekends and attended a residential bootcamp and in September 2012 I was finally allowed to come off my medication.
This also coincided nicely with me taking a huge leap of faith, after working full time for over 23yrs and having a very successful career, I decided to take a few months off for me, I completed a Nutrition course and qualified as a Level 2 Fitness Instructor, not to shabby for the girl who used to fake notes to skip gym class at school.
At first having a few months off seemed like a good idea but I easily got bored and needed a reason to get up in the morning, it was at that time I was approached by Weight Watchers to become a Leader & I can honestly say it’s a job I love.
2013 almost passed drama free, but in early December I found a lump in my left breast, at first my Doctor told me not to worry, it could be hormonal, I was told to wait 2 weeks, and then come back, it was still there. I was told I would be seen within 2 weeks under the fast track referral scheme, but with Christmas that 2 weeks became 4, to be honest I never really thought I had cancer, but I hated that 10% of doubt that clouded me every day.
And I know this is the most stupid thing ever but my main concern was that my dream to run the 2014 London Marathon was slipping away from me. Even if the lump was nothing, it may still have to be removed and with hospital waiting lists & recovery time it ruled me out. I think it was my way of coping and dealing with the delay in waiting for the tests, I became fixated in whether or not I could run the marathon.
Eventually I had the tests and fortunately the lump was benign, it would need removing but not for several months but it was recommended I deferred my marathon place for a year.
To be honest I am not really sure what happened next, work got crazy, I started working 100hr weeks, I wasn’t planning my meals, there was no time for running, but hey I’d deferred my place so there was no reason to run & I think for the first time since Christmas 2011 I had lost my drive & focus. So here I am September 2014, 28lbs heavier than I was 12 months ago when I ran my first Half Marathon.
And so here I am starting my journey again and asking you to support and maybe join me as I believe whatever goals we set ourselves we can achieve if we work hard enough.