CHANTEL ERFORT MANUEL

39 | NEWS­PA­PER ED­I­TOR

Good Housekeeping (South Africa) - - YOUR BODY -

STEADY GAINS

Like so many peo­ple, I steadily put on weight over the years. As a jour­nal­ist, I am al­ways on dead­line, un­der pres­sure and rush­ing, so I made bad food choices. And, as I moved up the lad­der at work, my po­si­tion be­came more desk-bound and my life in­creas­ingly seden­tary.

Also, as I was do­ing my master’s and work­ing late at night snack­ing and drink­ing wine, I be­came caught in a spi­ral. At the end of 2016, I handed in my the­sis and fi­nally felt I had a chance to take back my life.

TAK­ING STOCK

In Jan­uary 2017, I stepped on the scale – 107,4kg! I de­cided then and there that I had to make dras­tic changes.

A cou­ple of friends had ex­pe­ri­enced dra­matic weight loss through the Sleekgeek com­mu­nity ( www.sleekgeek.co.za), so I signed up for its 30-day Re­boot. I cut out re­fined sug­ars, legumes, dairy and grains, and after two weeks I could start see­ing and feel­ing the changes. My hus­band did it with me and it felt like a sus­tain­able way to eat.

BOX­ING SMARTS

I had some good weight loss, but I re­alised I needed to fo­cus on ex­er­cise as well, so I started go­ing to gym. One day, one of the train­ers ap­proached me and asked what my goals were. I had done some box­ing in the past, but I started work­ing with him on box­ing tech­niques. That’s when I started see­ing real change in my fit­ness and physique.

Also, box­ing be­came a metaphor for over­com­ing many of the in­se­cu­ri­ties I had de­vel­oped over the years. From there, we started mak­ing Box Any­where videos, which I post on my blog Edited Eat­ing ( edit­edeat­ing.co.za). Its aim is to not only pro­mote box­ing as a sport that any­one can do but also to use it as a metaphor for step­ping out­side your bound­aries and claim­ing back con­tested spa­ces. We started the se­ries at a place near my home that had be­come crime-rid­den and then we boxed on Ron­de­bosch Com­mon and Camps Bay Beach, in ar­eas that were de­clared for ‘whites only’ un­der apartheid law.

MO­TI­VAT­ING OTH­ERS

I want to help oth­ers re­claim their bod­ies, so I started writ­ing a col­umn in the Satur­day edi­tion of the Week­end Argus called Edited Eat­ing. I also try to en­cour­age work­place well­ness.

In 2017 I lost 33kg and have now lost a to­tal of 40kg. As my jour­ney con­tin­ues, I am gain­ing a tremen­dous amount of knowl­edge and in­sight. I can hon­estly tell you that it has changed ev­ery­thing in my life.

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