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Sunday, May 25, 2014

How I lost 55kg (120lbs) and became the best traveler I could be!

I've always loved to travel, and have been lucky enough to travel through the UK & Europe, USA, South America, South East Asia, the South Pacific, New Zealand and Australia. I however, like many have fought an ongoing battle with my weight over the years. Here's my story and how losing weight has helped me gain so much more from every opportunity and experience I am given whilst travelling and also every single day. 

I've always loved to travel. My love of overseas travel began when my parents first took us to New Zealand when I was 11 years old. My love of travel began much earlier than that on our annual family holidays to the coast. I was born on the coast and my love of the ocean, beach and water began before I could even walk or talk. Moving inland for my dad's job meant our family holidays to the beach were some of the best memories of my childhood. 

I was always a happy, active child however during my college years my unhealthy lifestyle took it's toll on my body, and the weight piled on. For me it was a constant vicious cycle of binge eating, emotional eating, late nights whether studying or partying, excessive alcohol and general unhappiness with myself and a growing hatred of my body. 

I was at my biggest when I set off on a six week backpacking holiday with three of my best friends to South East Asia in 2011. A mixture of my accident prone nature, unluckiness and my weight led me to breaking my ankle at a Full Moon Party in Thailand on New Years Eve. It took a lot of rehab for my ankle to recover but it is now stronger than ever. My weight slowly started to go down from here but it was still a good 12 months before I began to take control of my health and lifestyle. 

Over the years I have tried every quick fix under the sun - weight loss shakes, diet pills, fasting, over exercising, weight loss teas. Everything. Some work, mostly for a short period of time but once you stop you gain back all the weight, plus more normally. 

It was in 2012 that I found clean eating. I found it through Ashy Bines Clean Eating program. I am not an advocate for her but that is how I first found out about clean eating. From here I did my own research, found numerous other healthy websites, Facebook groups & books. I educated myself, increased my knowledge of clean eating and worked on focusing on my diet. I now realise that diet truly is the main thing, you really cannot out exercise a bad diet. For me however, the word "diet" is a bad, negative & emotionally-laden word. I am not on a diet - I have completely revolutionised and changed my entire lifestyle. 

Exercise was hard at first, but having friends who were willing to come walking and be gym buddies helped. I'm now confident enough to hit the gym on my own! I love going to the gym, going for a walk or a swim and seeing people of all ages, sizes and abilities making a positive change to their lives. I now love exercise! Who would have thought?! 

I hid behind my weight and unhappy lifestyle for so long and through so many overseas travels. I am the person I am now because of that but I do know I could have embraced those experiences so much more. This drives me to continue on my weightloss journey to the healthiest me possible so that I can make the most of every opportunity to come my way in the future, including a ridiculous amount of travelling! 

A huge difference: Thailand, 2011 - Peru, 2013

Last year I took off overseas with my best friend for six months. We worked in US Summer Camps, travelled America and backpacked though South America. For me, this was one of the best experiences of my life and a true testament to how far I have come. My best friend has been with me the whole time and not ever loved me any less for my size, and has been a true rock for me (along with many others) and it was incredible to experience this with her as a confident, normal happy twenty-something. As crazy as it is too at that stage I had lost more weight than the combined total of our two huge backpacks we were lugging around! 


Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu has always been at the top of my bucket list and I knew it was something I needed to be at optimal health to do. For someone who used to get puffed walking a few hundred metres this seemed impossible. With the help of my best friend and incredible guide I was able to tick this off my bucket list, something that a few years ago never would have happened!

My confidence also meant I was able be myself and meet so many incredible people and friends all over the world, including my wonderful English boyfriend. 

To date I have lost 55kg, had thousands of slip ups along the way, still have about 15kg to lose but am happier than ever. It hasn't been easy, in fact it's been bloody hard, but I know because I have done it the healthy way I will NEVER go back to how I was. It's only up (in a plane haha) or down (on the scales) from here! I'm a completely different person to who I used to be and loving every minute of this journey!

Happy & Loving life.

I'd love to hear any fellow weightloss journey stories particularly from my fellow travelers and wanderlusters out there!

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  1. Congrats on such an amazing accomplishment!! All your hard work and dedication has definitely paid off! Kudos to you!!

    1. Thank you foreignsanctuary for such a lovely message! It wasn't easy, but worth every second of hard work!