What started you on your Newcastle Can journey?
I wanted to start Thai boxing with my boyfriend but didn't feel comfortable doing it straight away so when Craig at Northern Kings Gym said that he was doing a weight loss programme as part of Newcastle Can I got involved as a way to get me fitter and healthier in the first instance.
How has it been?
Hard! I really like the exercise once I get into it but changing my diet has been really hard! I've also had a foot injury and been on holiday which set me back, but I'm now more motivated to get back on track.
What changes have you made?
I'm now exercising about three times a week with Craig at the Northern Kings Gym and I've totally changed my diet. I've given up coffee and caffeine and replaced it with green tea, I've massively cut back on the amount of carbs - pasta, bread etc. I only really eat a lot of carbs now when I've been exercising and the rest of the time I'm eating way more vegetables. I used to want to punch broccoli because I thought I hated it but now I have at least half a broccoli at pretty much every meal!
I'm also drinking loads of water now. Before, I honestly would go about 3 or 4 weeks without drinking any water. I'd only drink it in a coffee or in a squash, otherwise I was just totally living off sugary drinks. I've massively cut back on those now and mainly just drink water, sometimes I put a vitamin C tablet in to make it taste better ;-).
I don't really eat fast food now either, if I'm going out with my mates to KFC or something I actually don't take any money with me so that I can't be tempted into buying anything.
What's been the hardest thing?
I cried when Craig told me that I could only have Nando's once in a while. But seriously, changing diet has been the hardest for me as I actually really enjoy exercise once I get into it, apart from bear crawls which I hate! I am eating way more veg though and my dad has an allotment which he's growing extra veggies in now for me which makes it easier.
How has it made a difference to you?
So far I've lost 2stone 4lbs. In the first eight weeks along I lost just under 2 stone.
What are you most proud of?
Improving my health, and definitely improving my commitment - I even came in to do a class on my birthday!
What would be your advice to others?
Push past that "I can't be bothered" voice in your head, it will become a second nature, get easier and you will begin to love it!
I'm going to keep on going! I'm also going to conquer my fear of avocados... I'm almost there and have eaten a quarter of one in the last couple months! Will work on that...!
- Ellen Wilson
Read more about the Northern Kings Gym Can team in Hugh's heroes.