Building a better me for him and us

I was trawling through my old posts yesterday when I read one written many moons ago, when my grey hairs were less prominent and my little dude was still, well, little.


It’s me waxing lyrical about how much more love my heart could hold than I had ever imagined, and I’m still regularly reminded of this phenomenon. I’m not saying that I would sit around and think ‘I love my little boy more than I did yesterday’ – but occasionally there are just those moments that make your heart swell, from landmarks like new teeth or first steps to the smallest of gestures or glances. Yesterday was the first time my other half had gone to work and left us at home in the 10 and a bit months of his life, and when I showed him a video of mummy on my phone, he grabbed it and kissed the screen. It was quite lovely and is exactly the kind of moment in talking about.

That, however, wasn’t the main point of the post then, and it isn’t now.

At the time, with a very young baby to look after, I’d let my waistline grow and grow, and was determined to do something about it. It was getting a little out of hand (or, more accurately, it was the pizzas, crisps and everything else that my hand was transporting to my face that was the problem).

I did manage to lose some weight, but as it has a habit of doing, it has snuck its way back on, and I’ve regained about half.

Well, no more. I shall be a chubmonster no longer. My little man is now amazingly active, and though he’s not quite built up the confidence to walk unaided yet, he crawls (at speed), cruises along any surface he can find and generally causes havoc.

I can’t allow myself to be unhealthy from now. I can’t stand the thought of not being able to keep up with him and play with him as he gets more and more active because my belly scrapes on the floor when I crawl with him. So I’m doing something about it.

For the past three weeks I’ve been attending boot camp over here in Belfast. It’s high-intensity workouts three times a week, and although it’s painful and very hard work, it’s invigorating and borderline addictive.

How I feel post-boot camp

How I feel post-boot camp

When I tell people that I get up at 5am three times a week in the darkness to exercise in a field or car park with other like-minded people (my fellow idiots) in all weather conditions, they look at me, understandably, like I’m mental. I would, however, suggest, that I’ve never found a better way to feel awake and alive in a morning.

I’ve been going for about three weeks now, and am starting to see results. After my first session, I couldn’t walk properly for three days. Honestly, I looked like I’d had an unfortunate toilet accident while I was walking down the street and seriously considered sleeping in my front room to avoid having to go upstairs to bed. Now on the day of a workout I feel good enough to go running that same night. Rather than dreading another session, I’m actually excited and looking forward to the next one as soon as it is done.

I’ve always had a problem in the past with giving up too easily. Everything I’ve ever done I’ve given up on if it got frustrating, difficult or boring. I’ve started hundreds of projects and finished very, very few, but now I’m the project, and I’m determined to see this one through.

I may not have shifted much weight so far, but I’m certainly a lot fitter than I was this time last month, and my jeans are becoming comfortingly slack around the waist.

If I was just challenging myself to go to the gym three times a week, I’d have almost certainly given up by now, especially due to the torrential rain at 5am – but thanks to the guidance of Mark, the boot camp leader, and the people I go to the sessions with, I’m still there, doing sit-ups in puddles in a car park. Sounds crazy, but I’m so motivated to get myself in shape for my little boy’s sake that I actively enjoy it.


So while you’re laying in bed at 6am, listening to the rain lashing against your window and smiling about the fact that you don’t have to be up for work for another couple of hours, think of me, running around a field, lifting weights, doing sit-ups in the rain or press-ups in the mud. I’ll wager that bed seems even more appealing now, eh?

The original post I mentioned earlier was called Ever Expanding, maybe I should have called this one ‘Serious Slimming’.