The Last Minute Bali Body PlanAugust 10, 2016 / bynatalie / Categories : Personal
With 25 days to go until I was supposed to board a plane to Bali, I realised that instead of feeling excited about the holiday, I was feeling anxious. Anxious because I haven’t been working out. Because I’ve been consuming hundreds of thousands of calories a week. Because I’ve been drinking beer and wine every day for about 6 months. Because I knew I wasn’t going to feel comfortable in a bikini and I knew I didn’t want to spend my holiday feeling uncomfortable in my own skin.
So what’s a girl to do? Swear off bikinis and only wear one pieces? Feign stress blindness in order to avoid the whole trip? Turn back time to 2013, when I was thin and fit and motivated to lead a healthy lifestyle? Or adapt a good old fashioned “healthy diet and exercise” plan and hope for the best?
With these limited options, I decided to take my destiny into my own hands and work as hard as I could for the 25 days leading up to the trip. I’m not a scientist or a dietician, but even I knew that 25 days is not a very long time to try lose weight, tone and firm. But I wasn’t going to let that stop me.
I’m on day 10 of what I’m calling my “25 Day Bali Body Panic Plan” and so far, pretty good. I have been exercising as much as possible, combining running and hot yoga in order to lose weight and tone. For the most part, I’ve eliminated alcohol, sugar, carbs wheat and gluten and built my diet around fish, veggies, juices and vegan protein smoothies (vegan because I prefer natural where possible, and I’m a bit scared of the Frankenfood protein powders they sell at “health shops”).
I’ve had the occasional half a glass of wine here and there, and I’m finding it very hard (impossible) to stay away from chips. I’ve had a couple of pieces of chocolate which I do not regret. What I’m saying is, I’m not super-human and I don’t see myself becoming super-human any time soon.
Lots of people have been asking me on Twitter what my plan is, how I’m staying motivated and what I’m eating. So without any scientific backup, or professional know-how, allow me to give you an overview of my 25 Day Bali Body Panic Plan.
Natalie’s (non-science based) 25 Day Bali Body Panic Plan
1. Not every meal is a feast
I have accepted the fact that not every meal can be the most delicious thing I’ve ever eaten. This was the hardest part for me, because food is my one hobby and true love. But once I accepted that some meals are just boiled eggs, or steamed broccoli and grilled fish, it became easier to make healthy choices.
2. Working out is imperative
I have accepted the fact that I have to work out. I don’t love working out. I like swimming and I like yoga, but I hate pain. And I’m lazy. But I’ve come to accept that running is an effective way to lose weight. And regular yoga is an effective way to tone my arms and my stomach. And now that I’ve started seeing results, I’m even more motivated.
3. Don’t listen to everyone
I’m not taking advice from everyone who wants to give it. Some people tell me that a high fat diet is the only way to lose weight. Others tell me that eating vegan is the way to go. But I’m trusting my own body. Eating high fat makes me feel incredibly ill. And eating vegan makes me feel incredibly hungry. By process of elimination, I’ve identified that high protein high veg is ideal for me.
4. Don’t starve yourself
I’m staying full. Starving myself doesn’t work because by 3pm I will gladly inhale two cinnamon buns and burn my bikinis. I am staying full by eating lean (if boring) meals, to keep my blood sugar levels normal so I don’t crash or crave sugar too much.
5. Don’t throw away candy
I’m allowing myself to have treats when I want them. Like, if someone gives me a piece of nougat, I’m not going to throw it in the bin.
6. Food is not a reward
I’m not rewarding myself with food. For instance, after a run, I would normally tell myself that I deserve an ice cream. Or if I’ve had a tough day, I would comfort myself with something carby. I’m not doing that right now, and I’m feeling good about it.
7. Cut down on eating out
I’m limiting going out. Normally we eat out a lot. But I’ve had to turn down invitations and limit going out in order to avoid menus where the only options involve cheese. This has also help me to cut down on alcohol. It’s a bit of a bummer, but not drinking means I wake up feeling fresh and keen to exercise more often.
8. Keep your goal in mind
I know that there is a light at the end of this tunnel, which is keeping me going. If I had to do every one of these things forever, I would have to change my life to an off the grid lifestyle. But because I know I just need to work super super hard until the end of the month, I’m finding it easier to stick to my plan. Of course I know that I’ll need to keep up with a healthier lifestyle once I’m back, but I’m never going to be someone who includes fruit in their “never” list of foods.
9. Progress keeps you motivated
I’m already seeing progress, which is a great motivator! In the last 1o days, I have been running 4 times and been to 4 yoga classes. So that’s 8 days out of 10 that I’ve worked out and I can see a difference in my thighs and abs. I can also feel that my legs are “tighter”, like, the muscles are tighter and the skin is firmer and it feels good. I’m trying to work out twice a day if I can, which is tiring, but feels amazing!
10. Don’t weigh yourself
Not that I’ve ever been a lover of the old scale, but I’m not weighing myself or measuring myself. This is not about how many kilograms and centimetres I can lose, it’s about feeling comfortable. Feeling like I am happy in my skin, like I’m fit, and like I’m putting good stuff into my body. I honestly don’t care how much I weigh, as long as I can look at myself and feel good.
What I’m eating
I’ve got a diet plan pinned to my kitchen pinboard, but I haven’t actually been following it. I’m mostly just eating the following:
Eggs (boiled, scrambled)
Fish (grilled, with lemon, butter, olive oil or herbs)
Green veggies (broccoli and baby marrow mostly, steamed or fried in a bit of sesame oil)
Vegan protein smoothies (Wazoogles contains natural proteins and is a great option. It’s expensive, but it lasts me ages)
Protein (like biltong, grilled chicken wings, chicken breasts, bacon)
Fat (not in the Banting way, so not added in cupfuls to everything I eat, but I’m still eating olive oil, avos, butter and natural fats like the fat that’s on meat)
What I’m doing
Running 4km’s on the promenade as often as possible (most likely about 4 times a week)
Hot yoga as often as possible (probably 4 times a week too)
So, if you’ve got a beach holiday coming up and you’re keen to keep in touch about your last minute panic plan, please do! Tweet me @NatalieRoos, comment below or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember that I’m not here to hand out advice, or saying that there are no swimsuit options other than bikinis. This is just the journey I’m on to feel the best I can feel about myself.