Caroline Williams, 37 is a self-confessed ‘serial dieter’–until now. Healthista’s latest Reboot candidate, she’s ready to take off the weight that’s creeped up over her busy years as a graphic designer, wife, and mother of two young daughters. We’ll keep you posted weekly on Caroline’s plans and progress as she embarks on a 12-week journey to get back the body that keeps her healthy and happy.
‘My name is Caroline Williams and I am a serial dieter. I have done calorie counting, meal replacement shakes, lemon detox, low carb diets, Weight Watchers, you name it. I always manage to lose weight but without fail put weight on again as soon as I relax my regime. I would love to find a way to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle, lose weight and keep it off. I am very hopeful this Reboot mission will help me do that.
‘I put on a lot of weight in both my pregnancies (around 30kgs) and after my youngest daughter, Mia, 3, was born lost all of the pregnancy weight with Weightwatchers in about a year.
‘I felt quite happy and healthy and was exercising frequently. Then I am not quite sure what happened but slowly and steadily the weight started creeping up again. In the last 12 months I have put on around 14 kilos, that’s a lot! I realised I have to do something to change this cycle which is why I jumped at the chance of taking part in the Healthista Reboot.
I am 37 years old, live in Ealing, West London with my husband, Steve, who works in television and two young daughters, Ebba, 6 and Mia, 3 and I work from home as a graphic designer.
Life is pretty hectic as both Steve and I work a lot so often the first thing that goes when I am on a deadline or the children need more time, is exercise. I love running and I do a little bit of Pilates but I probably don’t prioritise it as much I should.
What I am hoping to get out of these 12 weeks is to lose weight and feel healthier and more energized, and to find a way to keep that weight off. I’m aiming to lose a fairly ambitious 10 kilos.
But I’d also love to get my fitness levels up and to feel strong and toned again. I ran a half marathon 1.5 years ago and would love to get to that level again. Obviously it feels good to be fit and healthy but it was also great to fit into clothes I hadn’t been able to wear before. I bought a lovely dress (below) for my brother’s wedding two summers ago that I felt great in and I would love to fit into that dress again for my friend’s 40th this summer. I think I will sign up for the Royal Park half marathon in September as an incentive and a goal to train for. Running suits me because it takes less time than going to the gym, I can go straight from home and be back in 40 minutes but I also like the meditative state you get into when running. My best ideas come to me when running!
To help me with all of this I have expert help. I will take part in a course for weightloss through a balanced diet run by nutritional therapist Alli Godbold. We will meet once a week to get advice, meal plans and to track our weight and measurements. I will also train with personal trainer John Orum twice a week.
This week is preparation week and I started off by meeting Alli for a consultation. She was friendly and easy to talk to and thankfully, didn’t judge my lifestyle at all, explaining everything in detail. She is actually very pretty and slim, so she obviously practices what she preaches!
Ali explained a bit about the Nourish diet, whichI will follow, and weighed me on state-of-the-art scales that could tell her pretty much everything about my body. Everything from fat mass (too much) body water percentage (not enough) to active muscle (could be better) and metabolic rate (SHOCK! My body thinks it is 50 years old!). This was all a little bit depressing but also made me even more determined to take charge of my health once and for all. I also had to fill out a detailed questionnaire and Alli recommended some supplements that will benefit me. Nutri Ulta Clear plus PH (protein powder for cleansing the liver) and Biocare Mega EPA (fish oil capsules).
In preparation for the diet to start she told me to cut down on caffeine. I love my coffees and drink at least three cups a day so that will be a challenge. She also told me to ditch the Diet Cokes forever (‘toxic waste’ I think were her exact words). I also have to limit alcohol, sugar and refined carbs as well as cut out dairy. Cheese is my big weakness and I will probably struggle more with not eating that than the sugar.
Apart from the supplements Alli gave me clear notes on the diet and a list of food to buy for the first week which was helpful. Most things on the first week’s menu I would normally eat anyway, a lot of fish and vegetables. There were also quite a few things that I have in the cupboard and intend to eat but never seem to get around to… Red lentils, quinoa, and seeds for example. The one thing I didn’t really fancy the sound of was soya yoghurt, but it is in the fridge now so I will report back on what it tasted like next week. I did all of my shopping online from Waitrose which was convenient.
I also met up with John Orum, my trainer to plan for the exercise part of the plan. I had been pre-warned that John is very handsome so I was slightly nervous having to work out with him. I needn’t have worried though, it felt like I had already known John for years after five minutes (and yes, he is handsome). He definitely knows his stuff so I am sure I will get all sorts of useful tips from him.
He will come to my house twice a week and we will train in the local parks and at home. Because I have two young children and my husband works irregular hours I always have to be around for drop off in the morning so not having to travel makes a big difference to my training. Training time eats in too much to my working day if I spend time getting to and from the gym. For the other five days he will give me a plan to follow which will include two sessions each day to ‘give my body two metabolic hits per day’ morning and afternoon/evening, he explained. This all sounds pretty full on and I just hope I can cope. It also sounds pretty time consuming too but John has reassured me that it doesn’t all have to be long work outs and we will fit it in around my work and family so hopefully I’ll manage.
The fridge is now full of healthy food and the trainers have been dusted off. I am really excited and can’t wait to get started.
Caroline’s starting stats
Upper arm: 33cm
Upper thigh: 70cm
Healthista Reboot Experts
Diet A total nutritional overhaul (no less) at the hands of Alli Godbold, nutritional therapist who has worked alongside chefs Charles Amos and Alan Wichart at Divertimenti Cookery Schools in Knightsbridge and Marylebone and author of Feed Your Health (HotHive Books, £13.99)
Fitness John Orum is a sports scientist with 20 years experience training ordinary people and celebrities and was head trainer at In:Spa retreats for four years. John’s focus is on the whole person and he incorporates fitness, psychological motivation and other body work technique to bring out their best and make the changes last. Contact John at email@example.com
If you’re wondering if this stuff works, check out the grand finale of Healthista Reboot 1 – incredible work, Charm!