Over the last few years I have had comments such as “you make it look so easy” and “do you ever struggle to get out of bed in the morning?” Just because you dont see a struggle doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.
In any journey, there will always be struggles, but the most amazing thing about that is that I can look back now and clearly see that I overcame every single struggle or obstacle that I faced over the 4 years and continue to face!
I remember moments where my mum would try and encourage me to go for a walk with her (to do something active) and I would have the biggest arguments with her because I saw it as an attack on me personally, but she was only trying to help me! I have always said it and continue to say it to people who say their partner or friend needed help losing weight – “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink”. You can arm someone with all the information they need, but without the motivation and commitment – nothing will change.
Along the journey I constantly looked for excuses, like not having enough time, not wanting to miss out on going out with my friends, being too tired to train, having too much work to do, not being able to fit exercise into my day. Along the way I have turned those excuses around and made it a priority, I rarely make plans on Sunday afternoon as that is my time to plan and prep for the week. My weeks’ worth of food & work outfits so I can remove those decisions from my week, freeing up my time for other things. I plan everything around my work & training as they are my priorities. I am so lucky that I have people around me such as my family & my boyfriend who understand how important it is for me to stay active & healthy. It’s not about having time; it’s about making time. My advice would be to not say “I don’t have time” instead replace it with “it’s not my priority” and see how it makes you feel.
Sometimes at work when I turn down a cupcake, glass of wine after work or an offering of a block of chocolate I always get the “oh go on, treat yourself” which frustrates me because I don’t and never have deprived myself of anything I just have things in moderation. Absolutely when you’re on a weight loss journey you must be strict to a certain extent but I am a massive advocate of a balanced lifestyle and living proof that if you make small consistent changes to your lifestyle you will see changes that will be lifelong & long term versus that of short-term quick fixes.
I struggled a lot with social media and what started as motivation for me to lose weight started to spiral into something that was unhealthy and I lost focus of my journey and started trying to mould my journey into someone else’s. It was important for me to understand and continue to acknowledge and understand that a lot of people who are posting on Instagram & who are models on front covers of magazines live and breathe health and fitness and a lot of them are in the fitness industry. One of my goals is to try and be a positive role model that also lives a relatively normal lifestyle which is outside of the fitness industry. I want to be the person that shows other normal people, like me, that any healthy body regardless of size or shape is beautiful and a health & fitness transformation (both physical & mental) can be achieved with a full-time job, with a family, with a social life, with children, with travel and with any other excuse you have used previously to avoid starting your own journey.
One of my favourite quotes is “Confidence is not ‘they will like me’. Confidence is ‘I’ll be okay if they don’t’.” I’ve always heard people say you need to be happy with you. I never thought that day would come, where I can look in the mirror and be happy with me, lumps, bumps, stretch marks and all! I always use the below analogy when trying to explain this state of happiness –
Imagine you are in a dark room, there are no lights, no mobile phone, no loved ones or friends, no cars, no money, no job, no materialistic items. Can you sit there and be happy with who you are? With nothing other than you in that room – are you happy?
I love that my journey will never end, it may not be a weight loss journey anymore but it is constantly evolving and changing. Knowing that my journey will never end I started HayleyWestoby.com to inspire, motivate & share my story with every single person. As I don’t rely on this website as a source of income (like many other websites & fitness influencers) I am able to share what I like and what I use, not what I think people will buy. I’m setting new goals and challenges for myself every few months and what I love about my lifestyle now is that it is balanced I can be a normal person, with a normal job & a normal relationship but I can also be that person who is constantly pushing to be fitter, faster, healthier and happier & the best thing about that is that none of those things (being fit, fast, healthy or happy) rely or are dictated on what I look like or my physical appearance.
My aim isn’t ever to quit my full-time job/career in Advertising, Events & Marketing, but it is to be the person I needed 4 years ago to help and inspire others and to tell them that there is no secret – there is no magical number of reps and sets, but what there is, is confidence, belief, consistent hard work and a desire to succeed. I want to be the proof that you don’t need to be in the fitness industry full time to change your life or start your own fitness journey.