I am on a journey to live healthy, get fit and be a better me. For years I have struggled with my weight, staying committed to dieting and putting myself and my health first.

As a mother of two very active and now graduated children, and a wife of a wonderful and dedicated fire captain, I consistently put myself last, convinced that I was needed by my kids and husband more than I needed to focus on my own health. What I didn’t realise was how my negative self-image affected my mood, my life and my family.

I tried diet pills, eating plans, bootcamps. I even lost weight and got down to my goal size for a while after joining a gym and changing my diet. I had a group of friends that worked out with me, all at different fitness levels. I learned that I was much stronger than I gave myself credit for. And then, life happened.

I stopped going to the gym. I started eating chips out of the bag and buying donuts and ice cream again. Eventually, I gained back all the weight I fought so hard to lose. I was mad, disappointed and disgusted with myself. I felt like a failure and because of that I was unmotivated to try to be better. I thought I deserved to be fat and out of shape.

A few months ago I said no more to feeling bad about myself. I decided that I would make progress, no matter how long it took. I decided that small progress is still progress and I deserve to love my body and myself. I started listening to positive podcasts. I continued to go to church. I started walking with my friends and replaced one meal a day with Shakeology. I learned how to make delicious shakes and searched for healthy and delicious recipes. I began to believe in myself.

I hope that my journey will help you believe in yourself too. For anyone who feels bad about themselves, or who doesn’t give themselves the time of day, you don’t have to make extreme and drastic changes right away. It starts with one step at a time. The more progress you see the more you want to invest in yourself. And you deserve to invest in you!