As her diet chal­lenge comes to an end, Katie Hendry cel­e­brates her new shape with a shop­ping trip and looks back over her life-chang­ing 12-week trans­for­ma­tion

Sunday Herald Sun - Body and Soul - - NEWS -

SSlim­line Katie

o here I am – a few weeks from my 34th birth­day and in the best shape of my adult life. In the past three months, I’ve lost 13.4 ki­los, dropped two dress sizes and shed 13 years’ worth of bad health habits. In week one, I was up­set to learn that my bi­o­log­i­cal age was five years too old, but my body has done a Ben­jamin But­ton-like re­ver­sal and I now have the fit­ness of a 25-year-old.

When I took on this chal­lenge, I was des­per­ate to over­haul my life, but I didn’t know where to be­gin. With a job, a part­ner and a so­cial life, I was al­ways “too busy” for ex­er­cise, but I wanted to change my ways and learn how to lead a health­ier life. I never imag­ined this ex­pe­ri­ence would trans­form how I look, feel and think. It took a while, but I’ve fi­nally re­dis­cov­ered “slim­line Katie”. I don’t recog­nise this Katie 2.0 yet, but nor do I recog­nise the old one. I look at my slumped shoul­ders in the “be­fore” photo and feel an­gry at that girl for not giv­ing her body the re­spect it de­served. Now I know how good it feels, I’m kick­ing my­self for not mak­ing this change years ago.

The fi­nal ver­dict

On my walk to the gym for my fi­nal weigh-in and bio-age test with my Fit­ness First trainer Dave, I feel ex­cited about what this fi­nal week will show, but also sad that such a defin­ing ex­pe­ri­ence is com­ing to a close.

As I step on the scales, I hold my breath. My fi­nal weight goal was to go be­low 70 ki­los and I’m over­joyed when the scales make a de­ci­sive beep at 69.7. As Dave takes my new mea­sure­ments, we sit in shock as we re­alise my hips are now nar­rower than my waist was in week one.

Dave ob­serves my sets of squats, push-ups and plank with an un­read­able ex­pres­sion and I pray my re­sults don’t dis­ap­point us both. But when he gives me a grin, I know it’s good news.

My health pro­file tells me I’m now less stressed (thank you, ex­er­cise), more or­gan­ised (a by-prod­uct of be­ing busy), more open about my feel­ings (hello bl­o­go­sphere), bet­ter at tak­ing more “me time” (again, thank you, ex­er­cise) and get­ting more sleep (to keep up with my­self). My car­dio­vas­cu­lar fit­ness is “above av­er­age”, my blood pres­sure is “ideal” and my core en­durance is in the top cat­e­gory, as is my nu­tri­tion. Not a bad re­sult for three months’ work!

Un­able to wipe the grin from my face as I get ready for work, I re­alise I’ve for­got­ten some­thing. I track down Dave and mum­ble a “thank you” as I launch into a clumsy hug. When he tells me how proud he is, I get a lump in my throat and laugh off my teary eyes as I dash up the stairs.

A fig­ure for fash­ion

In the past few weeks, I’ve watched in fas­ci­na­tion as my new fig­ure has taken shape. Ar­eas that I used to hide are now de­mand­ing to be no­ticed. Still, none of my bed­room fash­ion shows can pre­pare me for my fi­nal makeover.

At my first ses­sion with Dave, he in­tro­duced me to one of his clients, hair­styl­ist Lucky Ken­nis. Lucky shook my hand, told me he was on his own three-month ex­er­cise ad­ven­ture with Dave and said he’d love to be a part of mine by styling my hair at the end.

When I fi­nally take him up on his amaz­ing of­fer, I sit in his chair at the An­drea Con­nolly hair sa­lon as we com­pare ex­er­cise and diet plans and he works his magic. When he shows me the fin­ished re­sult, I stare at the girl with the bright eyes, clear skin and now fab­u­lous hair, and tell him that he and Dave are both in the busi­ness of trans­form­ing

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