If I wanted to lose just weight, I would just not eat. My body instantly reacts to my eating habits and physical activity, or lack thereof, in both positive and negative ways. For most of my adult life, my weight has fluctuated. I’ve never been ‘skinny’. I’ve always been ‘thick’, ‘curvy’, ‘shapely’ if you want to use that word. My weight has irritated me at times, but it was never to the point that I felt stressed or depressed. But then, my mid-30s crept up on with the quickness, and everything changed.
Gyal Ya Pop Down!
I treat my body like how I treat my car – and that isn’t a good thing. My 2008 black Toyota Yaris needs a new belt, an alignment, a new tint job, and I should probably replace my brakes. And when I recently sat in a workshop that teaches women the basic upkeep of their car, I realised that I should have blown up in my car a long time ago. So yeah, why don’t I get that fixed? Well, my car gets me from point A to B without too much fuss. I just ignore the screeching of my belt and the sometimes off balanced drive to get to my destinations. My body gets the same treatment. I’ve treated it like shit for the past couple of years, specifically the past two years, I’ve been so occupied with work and balancing a hectic schedule that I just get up and pray that it takes me throughout the day without any issue. I never eat on time, often times going without eating for a whole day, maybe two. There are so many things that stress me, and my body is who I take it out on. I attended a youth award ceremony recently and everyone kept remarking about how I had lost weight and was looking good. I felt so bad about it because I knew I wasn’t practicing any healthy weight loss programme. I was cheating the system and harming my body at the same time. The last time I felt healthy was in early to mid 2014 when I was attending a zumba dance class four times a week; shout outs to Navida and Meserete of Hotness Fitness Zumba. I would leave work every day and get to the hour-long class where I would enjoy myself doing the dance routines. I started taking the class because I wanted to lose weight to fit into my Carnival costume, but I ended up enjoying the class so much that I honestly didn’t notice how much weight I was losing. What I did notice was that my breathing was better and I no longer felt exhausted. My face was glowing, and my hair was growing. I felt great, and it wasn’t until the day after a fete that a friend tagged me in a pic he took of me from the night before, that I realised that well damn, me a ‘appen.
Last Sunday I completed my first 5k walk in yearsssssss as I began my five-week journey to wellness and fitness. I legit nearly died! The walk was even more difficult because I struggled to keep up the pace with my three companions, all who lived active lifestyles. Anyway, back to what I was trying to get at. My awesome friend Amina and her trainer O’Jay have created a truly holistic space for specifically curvy women to get the support and information they need to jump-start their healthy lifestyle. Curvy Fit Club Antigua is Antigua’s premier Health & Wellness Programme for plus and curvy women. Developed by Amina and O’Jay, Curvy Fit Club Antigua aims to challenge stereotypes around curvy and plus-size women’s health and fitness. It is a 5-week program that offers a new approach to health and wellness, and a supportive community of body-positive members that will inspire and motivate you to reach your goals. Amina and O’Jay’s mission is to apply their extensive knowledge and experience toward helping people achieve a higher level of fitness and improved quality of life. They provide members, like myself, with the knowledge and education to develop the skills we need on our journey to commit to a healthy lifestyle.
I long to be ‘well’, and initially while I was supposed to just be a sponsor, supporting my good friend’s newest initiative, something kept pulling at me. I needed to do better. So I decided to sign-up and become a member of Curvy Fit Club Antigua. Like I said before, losing weight is not my top priority. My main goal is to take back ownership of my body and adapt a healthy lifestyle that allows me to not only feel better physically, but also mentally. Losing weight is not my focal point, but rather an added benefit of tackling this programme. A healthy mind would be an added trait for my business. As it is now, I struggle to sleep for more than four hours, although my body regularly cries out that it is tired and weary.
Curvy Fit Club Antigua offers weekly lifestyle and wellness workshops, customised meal plans, discounts from a diverse range of amazing partners, alongside fitness classes designed for every level and every body. Each cycle of Curvy Fit Club Antigua is capped at 15 people so everyone can get the individual attention and support they need.
Wha me a get?
I hate the gym! Like HATE HATE HATE it. Me and gym ana friend. Curvy Fit Club Antigua has these amazing customised work-out plans that take into consideration my work schedule. Members are also afforded personalised meal plans and weekly workshops that look at wellness from a holistic stand point. Last Saturday we spoke to a nutritionist, while this Saturday’s session will consist of water aerobics, a talk with a beauty specialist about how to care for our skin, and a talk with a natural hair expert about caring for natural hair. Over the five weeks we will have a dance class (twerk queens stand up!), hikes and a workshop about personal styling, just to name a few. Every Sunday we will be doing a 5k walk; anyone is welcome to join this activity, it is free. This week was a vegetarian challenge – NO MEAT. Me nearly did dead, no lie, but I loved the personalized recipes from yoga practitioner and vegan, Stephanie from over at Wadadlivity. Amina and O’Jay have worked so hard at providing a great and complete package that focuses not only on your body, but your mind and spirit too. I’m stepping out of my comfort zone to share with you all my struggles and triumphs of this 5-week journey to get my shit together. I suck at posting my food, but Amina done warn me not to form ass, and now I have a mandate to post at least one prepared meal per day. Given how I am forever laughing at people with their struggle plates, I am trying my best to make sure I’m not caught out here slipping.
I Nearly Died
No, for real, I nearly died. I am writing this blog on Day 5, and I swear everywhere on my body is in pain. The workouts are manageable, but because my lazy ass usually does not walk further than to the fridge and to the bathroom and to my car, I’ve been feeling the burn EVERY-GOD-DAMN-WHERE. Like on Sunday, I was honestly contemplating on our walk back during the 5k that I would just lay still in some grass in one of the empty lots that we passed. This is why I dread working out! All kinda body parts make themselves known with excruciating pain occupying your personal space for at least two weeks till ya ketch yourself. All in all, I am here for it. I’ve already lost 4 pounds. Like, wha carn go so?
Support and Sisterhood
I pride myself on having supportive women around me, and Curvy Fit Club Antigua does just that. The 5k I’ve been complaining about? When the other ladies saw I was struggling they slowed down and walked with me and reassured me that I could go at a pace that was comfortable to me. The ‘No Woman Left Behind’ rule is what Amina calls it. We get daily check-ins, share food pics with each other, talk about how we are feeling (whether good or bad) and we seek advice from one another. I always feel a sense of sorrow for women who proudly announce *inserts roll eyes* that they don’t ‘keep’ female friends. Poor them, the many sisterhoods I’ve fostered over the years have done a great job at keeping me focused and uplifted. Get you a good crew ladies, get you a good crew.
So here I am, excited, energized, hyped and looking forward to seeing what other fun and beneficial ideas Curvy Fit Club Antigua has for someone like me who thrives on creativity and being challenged. I promise to start posting more on my social media pages daily, so remember to check me out on Facebook and Instagram. Oh and before I forget, you don’t have to be in Antigua to sign-up to become a member of Curvy Fit Club Antigua. Amina and O’Jay designed a plan for overseas members that is amazing. In our group, we have two women, one from Ghana and another from New York, who are a part of this first Curvy Fit Club cycle. Anyway, Amina has already sent the meal plan for next week, and I just got my journal today and will be playing catch up with my daily entries, and tomorrow I will have a one-on-one check-in with Amina about how it has been going for me thus far.
Until I check back in with another blog post remember to check out the Curvy Fit Club Antigua website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram to stay updated on what myself and the other awesome women have been up to since starting the programme. We outchea!