By Rebecca Drew
THIS BRITISH woman who confessed she has always been overweight has overhauled her diet to lose almost three-and-a-half-stone in just six months to become a stunner with the help of her personal trainer boyfriend.
Senior project engineer, Rachel Parkes (28) from Barrow-In-Furness, United Kingdom, had always been overweight and often indulged in large portions of spaghetti bolognaise or chilli for dinner after work and treated herself to sugary snacks. Rachel never exercised and would sit in front of the television until bedtime, this sedentary lifestyle saw her reach 12st 7lb and a UK size 14.
Rachel had been paying for a gym membership for almost a year, only having gone a handful of times when one day she decided to make a routine out of going. Here she met her personal trainer boyfriend, Chris Stevenson, who helped her with a diet plan to compliment her exercise and she soon saw the weight drop off.
Now a super fit UK size 8 and 9st 2lb, Rachel no longer worries about going shopping or eating out with friends and family as she earns it in the gym.
“Being overweight was through poor food choices, portion sizes and enjoying the sweet stuff. Not thinking about what I was eating and also, not exercising,” said Rachel.
“Typically, I used to get up, always late for work so I’d either have a cereal bar or nothing for breakfast. I’d go to the local supermarket for dinner and get a meal deal of sandwich, crisps and a drink. Then tea I’d make spag bol or chilli but had no control over my portion size.
“I wouldn’t exercise, so I got in from work and sat in front of the telly before going to bed to repeat my day again.
“Literally one day I just got up and went to the gym, I’d been paying for it for nearly a year. I went the odd days but they were few and far between. But that day I just went and never looked back.
“Firstly, I started going to the gym and cut down on food. Then I met my boyfriend who is a Personal Trainer. He did me a diet plan to work alongside my exercise which was just cardio at the time. Once I had the two, my results came so fast.
“My diet has changed where I’m eating all clean foods. I cook and prepare my food a few days in advance, weighing my food as described in my diet plan.
“It means I know where I am and because it’s there ready, I have no reason to go hungry or go and buy something quick from a shop.
“I feel great about myself. I now don’t worry about going shopping and thinking which size will fit me when I get the clothes in the changing rooms.
“I know that I still have things to work on but overall I love how healthy I am. Also, because I’m so active I don’t feel guilty if I want to go for a meal with friends, family or boyfriend because I’ll have earned it. I honestly wish I’d got into this sooner.”
Now Rachel’s regime consists of fasted cardio before breakfast, she then follows her tailored diet plan throughout the day which consists of six meals and she goes to the gym five times a week where she weight trains.
Finally, she discussed what she found the most difficult about her weight loss journey and shared her advice to others.
“I wouldn’t say I had problems during my weight loss. It was more me having to change my ‘lifestyle’, at first, I’m not going to lie you feel like it’s a burden,” she said.
“But now, it’s not because this is my life now and going to the gym is part of my daily/weekly routine.
“I get a lot of compliments on my Instagram and if I see people in person, they say how I’ve done really well and look amazing which is so lovely to hear.
“My advice is invest in seeking advice from someone who knows about nutrition and is able to tailor a diet plan just for you which will include portion sizes but also be able to meet your daily nutrition requirements.
“Also increase exercise, be active.”