‘How I lost the 8kg I gained in COVID lockdown’

‘How I lost the 8kg I gained in COVID lockdown’

After gaining weight and suffering from depression during coronavirus lockdown, Alanna decided to turn her life around. Here’s how she lost 8kg in weeks, and has mentally and physically become stronger than ever before.

Alanna Rumble let 2020 get the better of her.

A combination of the stress brought forth by the global pandemic and the death of her grandma caused the mother-of-two to spiral into a “dark path” and put on 10kg in the space of six months.

“I got to the point where I wasn’t trying anymore, staying in bed all day when I could and only got out of bed because I knew I had to for my two daughters,” the 31-year-old told Body+Soul.

“I was eating badly and as a type one diabetic my insulin needs increased, which attributed to the fast weight gain.”

Weighing in at 76.8kg, Alanna was ashamed of her body to the point where she admits she “loathed what [she] saw in the mirror and didn’t even want to look in the mirror”.

“I was depressed and even struggled to shower daily. None of my clothes fit, and I found myself living in the same couple of leggings and jumpers that I had ordered two sizes bigger then all my clothes. I was unhappy, and had no energy. I had no patience with my kids or husband and I think my mood rubbed off on everyone.”

It wasn’t until she came across an ad for the 28 by Sam Wood 8-week Challenge on Facebook that she decided she had “nothing to lose and everything to gain” if she signed up – especially because there was prize money involved.

Fast forward 70 days later and Alanna has lost an impressive 8kg – all still during lockdown – and is sitting at 68.9kg.

Here she shares all her diet and exercise secrets behind her weight loss transformation.

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Alanna’s diet

Here’s what Alanna’s day on a plate looked like during the 28 by Sam Wood 8-week Challenge:

Breakfast: Chocolate protein smoothie

Lunch: Toast with avocado and cherry tomatoes OR a salad

Afternoon snack: Two pieces of 95 per cent dark chocolate and 1-2 tablespoons of crunchy peanut butter

Dinner: Bun-less burger OR a Mexican bowl or Spaghetti with zoodles OR a homemade pizza.

Dessert: Liquorice tea

She would also have three coffees a day but only with a dash of unsweetened almond milk.

Following this meal plan helped Alanna make better food choices even after finishing the 8-week challenge.

“My day on a plate is still the same as it was during the challenge as this is my new lifestyle and I love it. The food is delicious, I have energy and I still have my daily snacks of dark chocolate and peanut butter,” Alanna explains.

Now, her approach to food is just all about balance and moderation. “The only difference would be I let myself have a weekly treat, a dessert or a treat with afternoon tea once a week. And on the weekend, I will have one indulgent meal – it’s not always something unhealthy, it’s just a meal I am craving and I eat it without worrying about the carbohydrate content or the calories. It’s all about balance and it has to be sustainable or it wouldn’t work. Progress not perfection.”

Alanna’s exercise routine

Alanna hasn’t missed one day of working out over the past 70 days since she embarked on her health journey.

“At the start of the challenge I did the 28 by Sam Wood workouts plus 10 extra minutes of cardio for five days and two active recovery days of 28 minutes of Fartlek training on the treadmill. Then, I slowly built up from there,” she explains.

“At about the three-week mark I was doing the 28 workout and 30-minutes on the treadmill, and 60-minutes on the treadmill for active recovery days. The last three weeks of the challenge I was doing the same plus adding one long run a week. The week the challenge finished I ran 18km and I am currently aiming for a half marathon in November.”

Alanna on the biggest challenges

While Alanna does admit she had “a couple of [food] binges during the challenge”, she didn’t let it ruin her progress.

“The amazing thing about this was I acknowledged it, I didn’t beat myself up about it and I got straight back on the wagon with the very next meal instead of the next day or the next Monday, which is what would of happened in the past.”

By pushing through all the challenges, Alanna was able to come out the other side stronger – mentally and physically.

“I have honestly never felt this good in my life,” she says. “I feel so strong and confident. Mentally, I have never felt stronger. I have less negative self-talk and I am looking at food with a better attitude – healthy food and indulgent food, rather than good and bad.

“I have also managed to break my toxic relationship with the scales and am focusing less on my weight and more on how good I am feeling. The amazing feeling after a workout or the satisfied proud feeling after a day of amazing healthy food.

“I have so much energy and know I can face whatever life throws at me at work.”

And most importantly, Alanna is proud of the person she now sees in the mirror.

“Sometimes when I see my reflection, I still can’t believe it is me. I am happy and proud, and I can see it in my body, my skin and my smile. I am never going to go back to what I was. This life feels too good now and I know it’s just going to get better.”