What is your post birth plan?

You’ve written your birth plan but what happens next?

You’ve come back from hospital (if you were at hospital) and now left to your own devices. That to me is the scary bit.

So before it happens, did you take a moment to go through those first few days, weeks, months with your partner or whoever is helping you. Did you stop to think about what is important to you, what would you like to safe-guard, what’s in your ‘selfcare package’, what are you concerned about, and share it with your partner so you’re on the same page?

I knew this was so important when my husband said the words…’so it’s an open-door policy right’ when talking about visitors after the birth. He is Greek after all. Absolutely not I said!! Of course I want friends and family to visit, but when you have no idea how the birth is going to go, I wanted to safe guard some quiet time or rather alone time first. I certainly wasn’t going to plan for loads of visitors.

I’m the sort of person who needs space, that’s just me. I know I’m going to need help, I know I’m going to need my Mum as I feel clueless, but if I’m feeling like a bus has just driven over me physically and mentally I think I will need a bit of time.

I know from others they were overwhelmed when the wider family turned up at the hospital. But then I know others who insisted. So we’re all different. (I’ve made it clear to Nick too that he is to share no photos unless i’ve seen them!)

These sorts of chats can evolve too. You can change and adapt but it’s worth having the chat in the first place! You may have had a birth plan that had plan A B C D and more options on, so why not again ensure you and those around you know what you think you will need when the time comes.

The immediate hours post birth…

Some people I know have included the immediate hours post birth in their plan, this might already be part of your ‘birth plan’. Things to consider are the delayed cord clamping, Vitamin K, skin on skin time with the baby. I was even told by friends that they felt it was important that the partner told me whether we had a boy or girl and not to let the doctor/midwife do the honours, so there’s lots of little things that between you and your friends/partner you might be discussing, some will be relevant to you, some not so. BUT for the purpose of this POST BIRTH PLAN I’m focusing on what happens when you get home…

Potential Key Areas:

I’ve included 3 key areas… but you may have other ideas too.

  • How you will protect your time/space.

How will you manage your visitors, when are you allowing visitors, are you giving yourself a couple of weeks first before the wider circle arrive? Is this of any importance to you? You may want to spend more time alone as just your immediate family. You’re mainly want to be in your PJs potentially and there are lots of midwives coming round, so do you need anything else? We’re all different.

I have no idea how I’m going to feel, so I want to be in control of the space. Are you and your partner on the same page to visitors? Remember, nothing is set in stone, it’s just a discussion.  Within protecting your space, have you discussed the idea of support group vs visitors?

Remember, there’s a difference between visitors and a support group. So who can you turn to, rely upon? Who will come and make you a cup of tea or hold the baby whilst you shower or do the washing. Has your partner taken time off work? In our case, the answer is no. There is no classic 2-week paternity leave for Nick so if he’s not around, who is helping me! Mum you’re on standby!

  • Food

I’m always thinking about food. You might be more excited about the arrival of the baby. I was more excited about prepping the fridge and freezer.

  • What will I eat, how and when?
  • What do I like, what’s easy to eat, snack on?
  • What’s nourishing for me right now?
  • Who will be around to feed me, cook?

This is NOT about following a meal plan or thinking about losing weight, but the practicalities of eating, you will need to keep energy up, and presumably you want to feel as good as possible albeit potentially battered and bruised, emotional and tired.

I love biscuits and cakes and I can eat them all the time. But all cake baking ingredients are out of the house. There are no biscuits in the house. And I don’t want to fall into the trap of just eating crap. I repeat I love CAKE though and by no means am I abstaining if someone brings it round!! And I will happily eat it for breakfast. Haha. I removed the cake making ingredients too because despite everyone telling me you won’t have time to cook, I know I can whip up brownies in 10 min with eyes shut, so it’s safer that there are no ingredients in the house!

I know that being tired and overwhelmed will lead all us of to sugar. Further depleting our energy, fluctuating our mood and making everything just a little bit more difficult. So I want to know I have more nourishing options around me so that the nearest thing to me could be more fulfilling snack and potentially I could make a better choice.

Just to be clear, I’m not putting any pressure on myself to be perfect, I’m not forcing myself to eat in a different way, there are no rules (other than no cake baking in the house) and there is no pressure or guilt when I put my head in a bag of donuts. However, I’m also not trying to win the award of ‘haven’t eaten all day’ or ‘I just survived on biscuits’ which I have heard a lot. This will be my first child. So who knows how I will feel. But I do know what if I have a packet of biscuits in the house, I eat the whole lot. Just saying.

So I’ve batch cooked some healthy no sugar muffins and oat loaf, (won’t last long) and I’ve got the first two weeks of dinners in the freezer ready. Nick will be at work a lot, there’s no classic paternity leave for him, so if I can organise some easy things for lunch too then if I’m peckish I can grab an option. Maybe. Or maybe the whole plan goes out of the window and I just make my way through a box of dairy milk. But I might as well start with a plan…Who knows…ask me in few weeks how this side of things went!  

  • Movement  plan.

I’ve called this section movement but I’m including breath work, and let’s be clear, this is not about losing weight or rushing to post onto Facebook about squeezing back into your old jeans. If anything, this is about understanding the needs of a post-natal mind & body. That rest and recuperation are paramount and will now be your priority (along with looking after a baby). That you might barely leave the house for first couple of weeks, or that potentially you’re in PJs all day means you might have to re-evaluate your expectation on what you thought you were going to achieve in those early weeks. This is thinking up front about how you will feel, what you might be able to do, but without the pressure to be ‘back to your pre pregnancy’ size. That’s the least important thing in the early weeks.  

Many people ask when they can start exercising again and a whole post needs to be saved for that. However, it’s also about knowing that there are things we can do in the early weeks if we have the capacity, inclination, and once you’ve processed the birth. Many start with walking. Walking should be slow, controlled, and built up in the right way, remember your body has been through a lot. Alignment and strength may be up the creak. You might be in pain a lot too! So although walking is great, take it easy and again think about it as getting some fresh air at first and stay close to home. However, there are lots of fundamental work that can be done on the mat on the floor at home. Learning to use glutes, breath work, and in time working on that core restorative work. I’ll be sharing as much as possible of what I feel ready to do when the time is right. So whilst I’ve got the time, I’m making sure I have my own programme ready and my expectations worked on.

Across the 3 key areas I mentioned above we could interweave the idea of ‘Expectations vs Reality’

Some of the biggest challenges us humans experience are when our expectations and reality is out of whack. Everything from growing up thinking a man will being us our entire happiness, that the next pay cheque will just really sort us out, that the holiday will bring us such triumphant joy. We constantly think we need more and when things don’t go to plan, everything comes crashing down.

A bit like with birthing plans. Many feel guilt, heart break, failure when the ‘plan’ didn’t go to plan. I’ve heard of people distraught months later by having a C section, not because of the physical pain or longer recovery process but because they saw it as a failure, it wasn’t what they wanted. This constant juxtaposition between expectation and reality is something us humans need to be more confident and competent in exploring and understanding.

Talking about how the practicalities of the first few months will go is key. Talking about how you think you will fee; even more important. Knowing if one of you has concerns, worries, is crucial. Have you asked your partner what they’re concerned about?

I’m an odd ball. I’ve not felt excited the entire 9 months.  I know I’m odd. But sometimes I’m far too pragmatic for my own good.  When Nick has got excited, I remind him that the beginning stage of being a parent is hard work. I remind him that I’ll be tired and emotional. That he needs to get up at 4,30am and go to work, “so you’ll be tired too”. I repeat to him that the baby won’t want the dad for a bit, that you’ll feel useless and the whole thing is going to be rubbish. Haha. No really that’s how I’ve been talking. The opposite though is thinking everything is going to be jolly and rosy, nothing will be difficult and nothing changes. The reality is that it’s probably more in the middle. So whereas I need to be less ‘we’re doomed’ others may need to address that It is going to be tough. How you roll with the punches is down to the dynamic of you and your partner or whoever is involved in the day to day handling of the child. But understanding expectations vs reality will always be key in life. Start the conversation early!

Likewise, we can apply the ‘expectation vs reality’ concept to our relationship, our social life, our life, our day to day. Whatever is relevant to us.

Use the pre baby time to discuss with partner all these aspects.  It’s not so much about a plan of action, but more talking with an aim to explore and realise that things do and will change. Rather than assuming everything stays the same, is it not better to talk about how it will evolve?


It’s a positive plan! Stay positive.

This is a discussion with your partner in a positive light.

And as with the birth, stay open to change and be flexible as we know a life with babies rarely goes to plan.

Why keep a food journal?

Do you journal?

Have you ever kept a food diary?

Everyone on my wellbeing coaching programme will be asked to complete a journal for a short period of time. It won’t be the first thing people do, but it won’t be the last. It very much depends on the individual, where they’re at, what we’re trying to achieve, their history around food and the emotions attached to it. Everyone can benefit from doing one, they’re particularly insightful, but there must be a true purpose and it’s not always suitable to thrust a diary in front of a new client and demand they keep it.

What we’re aiming to achieve is a toolkit at everyone’s disposal where they have plenty of tangible tools up their sleeve to use as and when they need for their journey. Keeping a food journal is just one of many tools. It’s not the only tool. It certainly isn’t going to be the holy grail for everyone.

One of the aims of Wellbeing Coaching for the clients who have needs in this area, is finding their food freedom. Writing a food diary therefore to some might seem counterintuitive – isn’t that yet again more rules and regulations? Yes potentially. Hence why not everyone is required straight away to do it. There’s no judgement surrounding it though, it’s not a test, it’s a tool to help, and at the right time can be incredibly powerful.

Part of the food freedom process is knowing that YOU are in control. The food journal is your tool. It’s something you can choose to do. You can choose to use it. YOU are NOT the journal. You own the tool. Not the other way around.

With the Wellbeing Coaching approach to food journaling, this isn’t weight loss, counting calories, or tracking macros; this isn’t about creating perfection, creating new rules, or following a plan. This is just one tool in the observation and awareness phase of the coaching process

Common stumbling blocks.

Many people are reluctant to write down what they have eaten during the day. A common problem is they’re simply too embarrassed to write down what they’ve eaten. Before they’ve started the process they think they’ll be judged, more to the point, they’re already judging themselves. They feel like a failure before they’ve started. Easier to ignore it and start again tomorrow right?

Make mistakes!

But we’re here to learn from ‘mistakes’. To learn from a mistake means we need to make the mistake in the first place and be aware of it. Lying in the food journal, to the coach, to yourself only exacerbates the problem. At this we are looking at keeping a food diary, as mentioned above whilst in the stage of OBSERVATION & AWARENESS. There’s no judgment, we’re not looking for perfect answers, we’re observing and we’re becoming aware of our behaviours. And that’s it. Clinically speaking, you’re collecting your own data, for yourself. It’s just data!  I often challenge clients to make that so-called mistake, remembering it’s just data! What’s the worse that could happen?  Write it down. What happened?  We learn by taking these risks, by asking ourselves questions, and actively seeking improvement.

Ok, I’ve made a mistake. What do I do now?

Ok so you in your eyes you made a mistake. Let’s take a look at all the things you do great today? What worked for you? Ask yourself some of these questions…what am I doing well?, What did go right today? Could I do more of it, what could I improve on? What could I learn from this?

Remember this is a process and nothing is overnight changes. It’s also ok for some people stay in the Observation & Awareness phase a little longer than others, and for some to keep coming back to this phase, before we can move on to giving ourselves permission, acting with kindness, and finding strategies to move forward.

Ok but I feel so frustrated.

Maybe you will, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll feel empowered? The removal of judgement and concentrating on the data you’ve collected is to enable you to take away the pain the guilt, the sadness and the frustration. Again, I can’t reiterate it enough, this is a process, one tool in a rather large toolkit to play with! We’re not looking for quick fixes and overnight successes. I’ve had tremendous success with clients using the food journal and other’s fight it. That’s not a problem! We work a little deeper that’s all!  If you can get comfortable with writing everything you’ve eaten down, you’re one step closer. Many won’t share with their partners what they’ve eaten, but they soon learn to trust me and start sharing their diaries, their pictures, and admitting to me, (but more importantly themselves) what the day on a plate looked life. And that’s liberating. It’s so much more empowering then saying ‘ok on Monday I’m only going to have a protein shake for breakfast everyday’ or ‘Next week I’m going vegan’. Both statements I’ve heard, they came out of the blue from clients before we’d even started the process. These arbitrary statements are made with the greatest of intentions, but sadly there’s no understanding of how to do it, why they’re doing it, how it’s going to feel. It was simply said to potentially ‘satisfy the coach’, they think that’s what I want to hear, that it makes them look like ‘good clients’, compliant and willing. But I don’t need that. They don’t need that. I need (and they need) them to be honest, open and ready to start the process…

DATA – is it really that important?

So, you’re still not convinced? Knowing the facts helps us all make better decisions. The food journal helps you collect that data about yourself and your eating habits. It tracks your consistency. It’s non- judgmental. Once we know what our habit is, we can dig a little deeper around it. Once established in journaling you can collect more data than simply a list of foods. What time, how did you feel, what was happening before, during after, how long did that meal last, did it satisfy you? For now, you’re not analysing it. You’re not changing anything. That will all come later!

In time we’ll add new ‘habits’ and you’ll be able to track for yourself your consistency! With consistency comes progress!

You’ll be able to see what is working for you, when things don’t work for you, and in time, why they were working for you!  When we gather data and evidence about ourselves, we become more aware of our behaviours and how our behaviours can take us steps closer to our goals.

How to food journal

The methods develop as we progress and are not for everyone. Once again remember, this is a short-term tool, not a life-long commitment.

However, you want the journal to be helpful, for YOU. In a nut shell…

– Start by simply recording your meals and drinks. EVERYTHING

– You’ll soon be able to record the time of day.

– In time (if necessary) you’ll be able to add more specifics, the quantities of the food for example.

– You’ll soon be able to write this down quickly and easily soon after eating. I encourage getting people to take the diary around with them.

– In time you’ll be able to add more details, what’s working, what’s not, you’ll be able to spot for yourself times of days things go awry. You’ll notice so many things for yourself. You’ll be able to celebrate the small wins. You’ll notice how you eat, where you eat.

Remember – there’s nothing good or bad, there’s no right or wrong, and we definitely are not looking for text book answers to please the coach.  

Fancy working through your food journey with a coach? Even better you get a FREE journal!  Then email today to start your coaching journey. Online applications are being accepted! katie@katiespong.com

Exercise, Emotional Eaters and Pregnancy.

You’ve a history of disordered eating, or low self-esteem. And now you find yourself pregnant. There’s a running commentary from friends, family, colleagues, those you meet in the supermarket about your appearance, your growing size, the bump, the glow, or lack of glow…and so you start to recoil into yourself and stick to your comforter of choice. Food.

When you’re already struggling with body image, and engaging in disordered eating prior to pregnancy, getting through pregnancy and then the navigating through being the ‘new mum’ is another layer of pressure. It’s scary.

One of the one hand you ‘know better’ and have read all the books and know you shouldn’t be damaging yourself in this way, you know you want to find food freedom; but you’re still at odds with yourself, still rely on old favourite tactics and habits and now the prospect of your body changing drastically and quickly, as well as the hanging out with other mums and the constant comparison is terrifying you. Yet you’re supposed to be telling everyone how excited you are, whilst walking around cupping your bump? But you don’t recognise yourself. You’ve tried being invisible and now as the bump grows, that’s impossible.

Recovering from disordered eating and journeying into new motherhood is possible, but like everything in health, it takes time, self-compassion & kindness, and a support network.

The pressure:

When it comes to pre & post-natal ladies the pressure is on.

  • Pressure from within, a history of difficulties with self image resurrects itself
  • Pressure from doctors and midwives checking weight.
  • Pressure from peers comparing size when they were pregnant
  • Pressure from social media, seeing other pregnant ladies at same week as you & the list continues.

As mentioned at the beginning, there’s a running commentary on the size and development and even though it’s coming from a place of love and kindness, if you’re struggling with your self esteem and body image, you won’t be able to see that it comes from kindness. On top of that, there’s a constant comparison to other mums, with the language around how mums are doing focused on size, figures, and food. Fear of getting bigger, not being able to stay in control, fear of everything changing is scary, and is more likely to further than negative relationship with food.

NOTE: the severity of behaviours around food can be a vast spectrum, and it’s crucial you speak with your health practitioner if you’re noticing an eating disorder developing or reoccurring.

Excessive Exercise

A common trait alongside the disordered eating is a disordered relationship with exercise. (Although one can exist without the other)

At a time when your body is changing and everything feels so much out of your control, the two areas you can control are eating and exercise.  Prior to pregnancy you knew how to manage your weight with exercise, hiding food, being secret. Being pregnant now makes you feel very exposed and vulnerable.

Working with a professional over time you can work through the healing process. In time finding pleasure in movement and food again. Learning how they can support you. Learning strategies to combat this difficult period.

Why do you exercise?

The women that I work with whether pregnant or not, very often exercise because they think they SHOULD.

  • They’ve lost sight of exercising for enjoyment.
  • They don’t understand what would be good or feel good for them. Everything is a chore
  • Or they exercise to burn calories, undo the ‘damage’ of what they’ve eaten.

But I thought exercise was good for me?

Whether you chose to exercise or not, we all know it’s good for us. If you love it you’ll know it feels good, makes you feel alive, happy, strong?  If you don’t exercise, you probably know deep down you should, but something is holding you back.

What makes exercise a concern in this context, is our ‘attitude’ around it.

Even without a history of eating disorders or disordered eating, women tend to fall into a few categories….

  • Those who were exercising before getting pregnant and like to think of themselves as healthy and fit and so will seek to continue.
  • Those are using the pregnancy as an ‘excuse’ / opportunity to get fit
  • Those who are using the pregnancy to excuse their lifestyle choices and continue to not eat and live healthily

During pregnancy and after, all 3 will require understanding how to adapt exercise to suit their needs, level to be safe and healthy.

But when we’re talking about the excessive exercise & emotional eaters, then negative approaches like these are often present:

  • Obsessively completing same exercise regime almost like a ritual.
  • Exercising becomes the sole priority over all other activities whether it’s friends, families etc
  • Exercising out of guilt or punishment over the food choices made that day.
  • Exercise and identity being the key component

We all need to exercise but when exercise gets in the way of normal life engagement, we can see that a problem has been identified.

And unlike with binge eating that is often done in secrecy; obsessive exercise, if spotted, is still so often praised. Others look on with admiration of your abundance in energy, admire that you always seem to have time to exercise. But comments like these can still trigger shame for the individual as they know why’re they’re truly exercising, whether it’s to run away from something, ‘burn it off’, or fill a void. Whilst this cycle continues, you’ll never truly be able to explore more about who you are, and the recovery process will of course be slower.

Exercise during pregnancy as well as after is essential, just as it is when not pregnant, but adopting the right positive mindset and approach, that exercise is for long term health, for you and the baby is paramount.

Of course, this is hard to foster and not something that happens overnight. But it can be done. It’s crucial to work with a professional and learn to move safely for you.

So what can you do?

If you find yourself in this situation then well done for acknowledging it in the first place. The process takes time. There is no overnight ‘cure’, or 5 step solution, but there’s plenty that can be done.

  1. Please speak to your midwife and GP first.
  2. Ensure you have spoken to your partner or close friend/family member, find a way to share how you feel as early as you can in the process.
  3. Putting a support network together as soon as you can is vital. Don’t suffer alone.

The healing process will start by accepting that you’re ready to put your health first.  With help you’ll take a period of time to observe and acknowledge what is going on. You’ll learn to document your thoughts and feelings & observations You’ll work through one behaviour at a time, so it’s not overwhelming, moving you from a place of hurt to a place of living for health.  You’ll learn how to find and understand acceptance. You’ll learn in time to find JOY. 

Read on to find out more about joy and acceptance. But contact me for advice and coaching. 

What do you mean FIND JOY?!!

I work over a period of time with clients to help them FIND JOY!!!!  Joy In movement, joy in food, joy in knowing you’re looking after your health. Find JOY in YOU.

When you find joy in moving your body. It ends there. The cycle doesn’t finish with a period of guilt, and it wasn’t movement created through trying to punish yourself. You’re finally working with your body and not against it.

I work with clients to help them differentiate the difference of moving your body for happiness and moving to change their bodies. Exercise is great. Great for anxiety and stress. Perfect in the right forms, during pregnancy and during your post-natal recovery. But maybe your exercise needs to just be tweaked?

Ask yourself this:

  • What movement do you enjoy?
  • What movement fits into my current schedule? And what will be sustainable?
  • Am I willing to fuel my body to be able to exercise?

It’s important to understand your current relationship with food and exercise & your history in these areas in order to be able to sustain recovery.

The sooner we can address this relationship before pregnancy the better. But of course, we can start the process at any point.


During pregnancy there’s going to be a lot of acceptance to be learnt.

Acceptance about the lack of control over the body changing shape. Accepting there will be different emotions throwing you off kilter. Accepting that others around you may say something, do something, that normally would trigger you.

When it comes to exercise there’s an acceptance that our exercise regime will change. There’s so much we can do still! So for active people do not panic! Being active is an amazing gift and we can still move our bodies daily. But again, comes down to that approach and mindset.

  • For those with a history of excessive exercise, a period of not exercising potentially be beneficial
  • Or simply reinventing the exercise from that constant running to a long walk through nature.
  • Others might switch or include more breath controlled relaxing states like yoga and meditation.
  • And living by the sea I’ve recommended sea swimming to all of my clients.

Breaking FREE!

Breaking free from a cycle of over exercising and disordered eating is possible, but help must be sought. *Although I talk about joy and acceptance, the process can be a long one and the individual strategies are not listed. It would potentially over-simplify the process, a process that is personal to the individual, and it’s key that professional help is always sought. Everything starts though with understanding what the problem is though. Taking a period of time to observe and reflect, write it down, without judgement. Getting to grips with the current problem in hand. To get from self-sabotage, to eating and moving for health, is not going to be an over-night success. This article is by no means a replacement for you speaking with your midwife, GP and support network. Everyone is different and at different stages and it’s important to work with a professional to give you the help you need, that’s right for you.*

To sweat or not to sweat

woman stands on mountain over field under cloudy sky at sunrise

Photo by Victor Freitas on Pexels.com

Monday January 7th, a week into January. Most people who started ‘New Year’s Resolutions’ would have ‘failed’ them already. Why is that? Lack of will power? Why do some people seem to be motivated and others don’t? Can you learn the tools?

YES you can learn the tools, and NO it’s not Will Power.

Where are we going wrong with the mixed messages in the media, the pressure to be doing something that you don’t enjoy, the ‘ALL OR NOTHING’ approach that January exudes.

When I am working with Wellbeing Coaching clients, we explore their fitness history, beliefs, we learn the tools to break the vicious cycle of ‘perceived failure’. We learn to understand our why, our motivation & build some resilience. We learn to prioritise our self-care, integrating one behaviour at a time, turning ‘it’s a chore to it’s a gift’, rewiring our minds, so we can build consistency. Ultimately, we learn to start enjoying life.


It all starts with how the majority think, and what they believe. So many people think of food and physical movement NOT as life essentials, that can give pleasure, but as ‘DIET’ and ‘EXERCISE’. These are felt as ‘SHOULD DO’ things, that eat into normal leisure time, they’re ‘CHORES’ and there is PAIN associated with it. We’ve separated our daily world away from movement. As a society in the modern world we’ve separated movement from our daily life so much so, that it’s a struggle to not see it as a chore. Modern living means people aren’t walking to work or the shops, they’re not walking back with bags of food it’s being delivered, they’re not even walking to school. Maybe they are going to the gym twice a week, but the rest of the week is sat down, weekends with box sets, weekdays of sitting.  Which sadly means those 2 times a week must work really hard, to get you the results you’re after. But our bodies were meant to move. If we’re lucky enough to have limbs, then let’s learn to use them.


When a client comes to me that is tired and exhausted of trying everything, thinking nothing works, going to the gym, trying all the plans and has had enough, I say stop. Stop TRYING. START LIVING LIFE. We live on this amazing planet, and so the first thing to do is to enjoy it. You’ll probably screaming thinking WTF! Stop going to the gym? My answer? Is it working? Are you enjoying it? No? You’re frazzled, you’re drained; we need to stop, re-calibrate, and reset.

What does EXERCISE mean to you?

Something I ask my clients right at the beginning is this very question, what are your beliefs on exercise? ‘For it to count, how many minutes do you have to exercise for?’ and ‘Do you have to sweat to make it count?’. When you explore these questions, you start to build up and understand the journey with exercise to this point, the emotions behind it, the pain, the story they’ve/ we’ve told ourselves, again about ‘what it should be’.


Doing what you enjoy is key to success. When it comes to exercise and movement, slogging it out in the gym or even attending a class you don’t like won’t cut it. Ask yourself, Am I exercising/moving in a way that I like? Is it relevant to my life?

To reap the extensive list of benefits from physical exercise, it’s not about the amount of sweat. Radical statement I know, but I work with clients where we are working to find joy. They may come to me with an initial goal of ‘weight loss’ or ‘fat loss’ but ultimately we are trying to find joy, joy in the daily activities, joy in getting out of bed and walking to the shops, joy in what we eat, joy in preparing food, joy in how we interact with people, how we use our body from moment we wake up until we go to bed. Once we’ve found joy, the commitment will come.


But where to start? The best question to ask is why? Why am I starting to move? To lose weight? To be slim? To prevent disease. All our answers, but are they enough? Is that enough to sustain lifetime commitment. Is that enough to stop seeing movement as an ‘add on’ in your life, and to see it instead as integral, an integrate part of your day, week, month, life? We’re all different and are all motivated by different things with different lives. The key is to find YOUR RIGHT WHY.

Once you’ve found your way, it’s key to then ensure your goals match with the level of commitment you can currently give? Without an action plan, the new year resolution, (or the pre-holiday promise, or whenever you make this sweeping statemen about health and fitness) is not different to the promise the previous year and will get stuck once again.

It’s a gift

Learning to turn the feeling that movement is a ‘CHORE’ into a ‘GIFT’ is key to your success. Learning to reset the mind and to understand and feel the benefits, the gift of more energy, less stress, productivity, mood, self-worth will allow you to sustain this commitment for life. Once you’ve replaced the chore with a gift, once you’ve replaced the wrong way with the right way, you’ll want to start immediately with another dose of ‘self care’. Once you’ve transformed physical exercise from that chore to a gift, your relationship with movement is changed forever.


I don’t have time? I have a family? I work!

Yes that is true. So do others. We all have 24 hours in the day.

Sound harsh?

It’s not supposed to be. When you make movement a gift, when you understand your why, when you’re moving that is relevant to you, fits in your daily life, and you have joy, you’ll be prioritising it too.

Ask yourself…Am I prioritising my own self care? Has caring for others taken over from caring for ourselves. Are we putting everyone else first? Are we using everyone else as an excuse to not look after ourselves? How do some people seem to have more time?

Learning Mindset

Remember when you were a child, and there’s that sense of curiosity, wonder, and learning.

Could you now as an adult approach life with a sense of that wonder, curiosity, and learning. With learning a mindset, you’ll have the strength and the tools to persevere, be resilient when faced with adversity and challenges. If you focus on learning how to sustain the behaviours that create our desired outcomes, long term success will be achieved.

Don’t think of change as a quick fix, it’s an ongoing pursuit, it’s a lifetime of movement and self- care. It’s a lifetime of living and a lifetime of joy.

Change your beliefs, Change your behaviours, Change your life.