The Body Confidence Programme Review & Results

The day I gave birth to Isla was the best day of my life & she continues to bring so much joy every day but as a new Mum I think it’s very easy to lose your sense of self. My life has changed in every way possible; new house, new life, new town, new baby… all wonderful things but all together, a lot to deal with. When you add to that a new body that you can’t recognise as your own anymore, it’s easy to forget that you can be anything other than a sick & dribble covered mess that probably hasn’t showered for a few days…

I have slowly learnt to embrace the stretch marks that cover my stomach and my ‘mum-tum’ but the complete lack of confidence is not me and I’m just not willing to stay like that for a second longer. It was time to make a change or two… or three!

I was very kindly invited to join The Body Confidence Programme by the brilliant Ru-Tee who has meticulously put it all together with the promise of reducing by 16 inches over 8 weeks, which is two jean sizes!!

When you start the programme you get a food list, menus, daily emails and weekly conference call with Ru-Tee and all the other brilliant people on the programme to discuss your triumphs & challenges of the week. In the first call I was asked about my energy levels and my confidence that I said were both around a 2/10. Not good enough. Certainly not to walk down the aisle & feel great about myself. I was asked to take some ‘Before’ photos which actually made me feel sick at just the thought of doing it let alone sharing them at the end of 8 weeks… but I took a deep breath and just did it!! I will share my results and those photos (AHH!) at the end of this post!

The food list has no sugar, dairy, gluten, chemicals or anything you can’t pronounce so you have to cook everything from scratch and use all organic produce. I’m not the world’s greatest cook and since having the baby I’ve barely had time to feed myself a good meal even once a week, so the biggest challenge for me was always going to be time-management. After the first week of juggling, it got much easier & fit easily into our daily routine! Part of me doing this programme was allowing myself to put ‘me’ first for once & not allow any ‘mum-guilt’ to seep in!!

The first week was incredibly hard, I’m not going to lie. I am a self-confessed sugar addict so going cold-turkey was always going to be difficult. The cravings were like a little devil sat on my shoulder saying ‘Go on, just a little won’t hurt!’… I pushed through, stayed strong and emerged through the fog to find more energy, and much more balanced emotions!

As the weeks went on I consistently lost the inches and started to feel better about myself bit by bit! You get one cheat day a week, that I basically binged on everything I wasn’t allowed so that I would stick to it 100% the rest of the week! Speaking of percentages – there are lots of lifestyle aspects to the programme and along with your measurements every week you assess how well you’ve stuck to these too! For example – ‘Went to bed by 10.30 every night – 80%…’ ‘Chewed your food 35 times – 20%…’ Err… must eat slower… must eat slo… Oh wait it’s gone. Still got to work on that one…

Me&Isla2

The most important thing for me was the support that you get, as I found I doubted myself by Wednesday every week… Am I doing enough? Am I sure that’s on the food list? What if I’ve put on inches this week…? It’s so easy to do but those conference calls were a saving grace. To hear that 10(ish) other people were going through exactly the same thing, makes it so much easier to stay focused. You feel like you are part of an incredible team and that spirit is encouraged and fostered by Ru-Tee’s enthusiasm and genuine love for what she does!

Week 5 was one of the hardest for me but once the end was in sight and I started to fit into my old clothes again, the confidence I had once taken for granted was starting to emerge. I found myself running after Isla with ease & not needing to nap during the day at all. These changes happened slowly over the 8 weeks but by the end my energy was up to a 9/10, my skin was looking so much better and I hadn’t been sick once!! I’ve spent most of my life ill – constant colds, flus and being stuck in bed for weeks at a time. To not be ill for a whole 8 weeks in a row is a huge deal for me, and regardless of the weight loss that in itself is invaluable!!

The promise of the programme is to reduce by 16 inches which is 2 jean sizes…

I reduced by… Drum roll please…

40 INCHES!!!!

Yes… seriously! I have taken the crown for best ever results on the programme… I would like to thank Isla for her words of encouragement, Barney for his constant support & not offering me Baileys… No, I’m just kidding.

I promised you those before & after pictures… So here they are… *Gulp*

Back Before&AfterFront Before&AfterSide Before&After

I’ve never committed to anything like this before but the programme encourages lifestyle changes that you can implement after your 8 weeks is up! I’ve continued to follow 75% of the programme since I finished (I’ve gone back to drinking caffeine and alcohol!) and while my weight loss has slowed, I’ve continued on my journey in a way that is sustainable for me in the long term! I loved the food on the diet & there’s nothing faddy about it. All good food that never leaves you hungry as so many other diets I’ve tried in the past have!

I’m incredibly proud of the hard earned success but I honestly couldn’t have done it without Ru-Tee’s support. Dieting can be incredibly lonely & the temptations have always been too much for me – but that support just lifts you up and carries you through to the end of the 8 weeks! If you are feeling like you’ve lost yourself since having a baby and feel like finding your energy & confidence again I can’t recommend this enough! Commit to it and to yourself because you deserve to feel wonderful again!

If you want to join the next programme it costs £450 & starts on Saturday 13th August – you need to sign up by Monday the 8th at 2pm to secure your place and you can even use my special discount code to get £50 off: Poppy50off

To use the code just select the £450 payment option – add it to your basket and enter the code into the coupon code box.

More information can be found on the website here – if you have any questions, leave me a comment, drop me a message or get in touch with Ru-Tee!

I can’t wait to hear all about your journey & see your results so please send me your before & after photos so I can share in your success too!

 

Top 10 (ok, 11!) Tips for planning your Wedding & staying on budget!

Well it’s taken us long enough but we have achieved what felt like the impossible… We have booked our Wedding venue!! Not really hard to guess, if you follow me on Instagram  as it’s our favourite place in the world!

Thefarmhouse1

We have just over a year to organise everything and somehow that doesn’t seem like enough while juggling a business, a blog & being Mum! So I thought I’d share my top tips for starting your Wedding planning with minimum stress… (I just laughed out loud even saying that…ok… with maybe a bit less stress…!)

  1. Set a budget!!
    Sit down with your partner & write down what you are happy to spend. This is a list of what the average person in the UK spends and I think it’s a pretty good starting point… Start contacting venues and suppliers that you like to get an idea of costs! Total unashamed plug… If you are looking for a good photographer 😉

    Wedding venue and ceremony fees: £1,500
    Reception venue £2,500
    Catering: £2,500
    Drinks: £750
    Entertainment and venue decorations: £1,000
    Photography: £1,500
    Cake: £500
    Flowers: £550
    Transport: £250
    Stationery: £300
    Favours and gifts: £400
    Wedding rings: £600
    Dress: £2,000
    Bride’s shoes: £150
    Jewellery and veil: £250
    Hair and makeup: £150
    Bridesmaids’ outfits: £250
    Groom’s outfit: £320
    Attendants’ outfits: £250
    W-day insurance: £100
    Honeymoon: £4,000
    Total: £19,820

    Wedding Flowers 1

  2. STICK TO IT! (No, seriously!!)
    It’s so easy to start spending a little more here & there, but before you know it you’ve added another £5k to your budget and there goes your honeymoon…
  3. Decide what matters most to you…
    Discuss with your partner which parts of the Wedding are most important to you – obviously it’s the photography for me & neither of us were fussed about having a big white cake so we’re going to have a banoffee pie instead and save the £500 or put it towards something else more important to us!

    Wedding Cake 2

  4. Make a spreadsheet with everything on it.
    Keep everything in one place… budget, guests contact information, dietary requirements, RSVPs, a list of tasks with a deadline & all your suppliers information. Closer to the time you can make an itinerary that your venue will probably help with & your photographer etc. will need!
  5. Ask friends & family for help.
    Don’t get weighed down by the pressure of creating the perfect day. All the people closest to you are going to be so incredibly excited and more than likely would love to help you plan! Don’t be afraid to dish out some tasks to your maid of honour – that’s what she’s there for! 😉

    Wedding2

  6. Don’t act on impulse. Take your time.
    When you go & visit a venue or supplier it’s very easy to get swept up in the excitement & before you know it you just put a deposit down on their triple gold package with dancing fountains and fireworks… but oh wait… THE BUDGET. Take a moment to chat with your partner to discuss what you actually went there for& reign it in!
  7. Do just one task every day towards the Wedding…
    A great way to not feel overwhelmed is to write a list of tasks & just tick one off each day. Whether thats searching for cake makers or choosing your colours, those are big decisions so don’t try & do it all at once!

    candles

  8. Be realistic…
    We wanted rows of trees with flowers covering every inch of the venue initially, but then came back down to earth with a thump when we realised that would make our flower budget as much as our WHOLE wedding! Haha! Set your sights on something achievable & make it the best it can possibly be!
  9. Do it yourself & get the kids involved!
    A great way to save money is to do things yourself, whether thats the invites or the flowers in jars – it seems to be all the rage right now! And don’t forget to include the kids in any way you can – even if it’s just licking the envelopes it might keep them quiet for a whole 5 minutes… 😉

    hanging jars

  10. Cut costs where you can & spend where it matters.
    Look through your budget & spot where money can be saved – maybe swapping the champagne toast for Prosecco or having smaller bouquets for the bridesmaids? That way you can spend where it really matters – get your dress properly fitted, the rings are going to be on your finger forever (hopefully!) so make sure they are going to last & the photographs are the most important that you will ever have taken in your life – so make sure you find someone that will treasure your day & capture it perfectly for you to remember forever!
  11. Try to have fun & enjoy it!
    Now get yourself on Pinterest and start dreaming of your perfect day! Get a glass of wine (or two!) and share pins with your bridesmaids to your hearts content! You’ll have planned 10 completely different Weddings by the end of the night!! 😉

colours 2