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Friday, 24 February 2017

Operation Transformation Finale 2017 (Weeks 6&7)

Hi everyone!

Last night, Operation Transformation 2017 officially came to an end in two amazing double bill Grand Finale episodes! If you missed them then you can catch up on the RTE Player, trust me it's well worth a watch all of the leaders look incredible and it was great to meet up as a group again now that we all feel so much better.

I was lucky enough to be invited back for the recording of the finale along with the other finalists who were at the assessment day. It was an emotional but fantastic night looking back on the past 7 weeks and we all had an absolute ball. I can't believe that Operation Transformation is over for another year, I've met the most inspirational group of people, I'm lighter, fitter and happier. The show is over now but sometimes what seems like the end is only the beginning, so I'm going to keep working towards better health and fitness. 

Although before we got all glammed up it was time to put our hard work to the test! On Saturday the 18th of February, I was one of 5,000 people who took to the Phoenix Park in Dublin for the OT 5km. We were super lucky with weather and it was a great day all round, I would seriously recommend anyone who is thinking about applying for Operation Transformation, joining one of their groups or taking part in the run next year, to not think about it too hard and just go for it! I promise you won't regret it, it was such a wonderful experience there was people there of every ability and the support was unbelievable. The 5 leaders and the experts were there motivating everyone and along the track there were little positive message signs to spur us on. I beat my personal best but timing didn't really mean anything to us in the Phoenix Park, it was about how far we've all come in just 7 weeks when before OT none of us would have managed to finish like we did.

After the run we all got a little goodie bag of water, and apple, some porridge and an Operation Transformation sweatband, there was teas/coffees available. They had giant letters OT made from balloons and 2fm broadcast live from the Park building up the excitement and played music they thought would help us push ourselves around the route. However, my favourite was the giant white wall titled "I'm here today because..." that soon filled with messages from all the runners about their journey. I just thought it was so nice to have a little piece of everyone's story together.

I've absolutely loved being a part of OT and it's given me the tools I needed to change my lifestyle and take steps towards becoming a healthier person. I'll still continue to take care of my body and post here regularly about my progress. I want to thank everyone involved with Operation Transformation and all my friends, family and neighbours for their support and help. If you follow me on social media then you probably would have already seen the photo below, on the right is back at the OT assessment day where I weighed 18st 13lbs and on the left is at the OT grand finale where I now weigh 17st 11lbs. I've lost 17lbs in 7 weeks and counting! If you've been following the plan I'd love to hear how you've got on, as always thank you for reading.

A xx

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Weeks 4 & 5 of Operation Transformation

Hey everyone!

Happy Valentines Day! Today is Day 40 of Operation Transformation, which means there's only 9 days left of the plan but all of the recipes and exercises will still be available online. Apologies, I didn't manage to get a separate post for week four up so I decided to double it up with week five. I had a bit of a bad week/ 10 days, catching a cold, semester two of college started and I began my teaching practice so I was super busy but unorganised which is not a good combination.

Admittedly I didn't follow the fitness plan properly during weeks four and five, I used the rain and a flu as a bit of an excuse plus I had some damage to my feet that made walking difficult. However, it's a new week now, I'm feeling much better and more organised so my focus for this week will be making sure I find time in my day to exercise. 

I did stick to the food plan though which I find easier in general because I can do some meal prep at the weekend some other tricks to ensure that the easier choice is the healthy choice. For example batch cooking some foods like the soup in the top picture, making a big pot of soup and storing it in a container in the fridge means I don't need to worry about cooking lunch for a few days. Also everywhere I've been going I've taken an apple and some almonds in my bag which me so if i'm delayed or tempted I have some healthy snacks with me. I love these cute little jars because I can throw them in my handbag or lunchbox and they're great for portion control of things like nuts, nut butters, salad dressing,etc.

As you can see above I didn't lose any weight after week four but I didn't gain any either so at least that's something! I think that time of month had a role to play in week four's slump as I was so bloated. To beat the bloat I made sure to avoid salt wherever I could using black pepper instead to add flavour my meals, I upped my water intake again and started drinking peppermint tea after my meals which aids digestion. When I went to Parkrun that Saturday I really hit a wall after having a bad weigh in and it poured rain for the whole 5km, I felt like giving up halfway through but kept going. I was as slow as my first week but I still finished!

During week five I kept concentrating on drinking loads of water and avoiding salt. It worked too and I was delighted to lose 3.5lbs last week. By last Saturday's Parkrun I was back to myself, I actually really enjoyed it and felt great for the rest of the day after it. Next Saturday I will be travelling to Dublin for the final Operation Transformation 5km 2017 in the Phoenix Park. I'm really looking forward to it but remember that your local Parkruns will continue even after OT has finished so keep it up if you've been taking part or if you haven't then why not try it out next Saturday? 

Thanks for reading, I'll be back to tell you all how week 6 is going soon!
A xx