“Food and I have always have a love/hate relationship. I signed up to this challenge with the goal of losing 10 kg, however I also wanted to learn about food, and discover a nutrition programme (not a diet) for me to understand and maintain. Within the first weeks of the 10 Week Challenge, I realised I was going to gain so much more. It really was a lifestyle change I needed, and it is a lifestyle change that I achieved.

I have battled away with depression since my teenage years, and although I don’t want to admit it, I know I use food as emotional support. I would blame the food for my appearance, and beat myself up at the gym daily, and not see the desired results. When I was feeling low, I would not eat properly, would exercise too much, and not get enough sleep. Sara and Elora, via their weekly updates and regular Facebook posts, not only provided us with the meal planner and recipes, but raised the importance of sleep quality, and quantity. I had not realised that these factors were all interrelated. It is as simple as follow the programme, and follow their advice. They know what they are talking about!

Week 10 arrived, and I had not lost 10 kg’s, I had in fact lost 1 kg. However, I had lost 27 centimetres, which is evident in my before and after photos. Although I went in with a specific focus of losing weight, I gained so much more than this. I improved my quality of sleep – now getting at least seven hours per night with no cellphone/TV/computer right before bed. I now exercise sensibly, six days a week for no more than one hour. I eat food, real food! I have three main meals per day and two snacks – and it is delicious! No need for ridiculous cabbage soup diets (yes I tried this), or boiled chicken and broccoli only! I have learnt that this lifestyle is maintainable, manageable and simple to follow. I am an organised person who needs routine, and this helped in my food preparation. My relationship with food has changed. I no longer see it as the enemy.

It sounds dramatic, but Sara and Elora really have changed my life. Last week I caught up with my counsellor who noticed my self confidence had improved and I seemed happy and content. I haven’t felt this way in a long time… and I am talking years! I always ask myself what can I control? I have no power over what people say or think about me, but know that comments made have impacted my self esteem and confidence. I did this challenge for me. It wasn’t easy, but no one said it would be! I feel better, I look better, and I am happier. Life throw curveballs at you every day, it is how you react and deal with these curveballs that matters, and that is in your control. I have made so much progress mentally, emotionally and physically and never thought a challenge like this could have such an impact on all aspects of my life. Sara and Elora – I thank you for your knowledge and your support. To enter a challenge with one goal, and end it with gaining so much more than this, is something you cant put a price on. You can’t put a price on self acceptance, and that is what I have truly achieved.”

IT HAS CHANGED MY LIFE!