Hannah Hindmarsh has struggled with her weight for most of her life, battling depression, eating disorders and the effects of yo-yo dieting.
Tipping the scales at over 220 pounds, she had previously lost 50 pounds, but had put it all back on again and knew she would have to change something drastic to get the body she wanted and make it permanent!
On her Instagram, Hannah reminisced about what times were like when she was at her heaviest.
Be Sure To Follow Hannah On Her Instagram Here: @hannah_tracks
“My mind is cast back to all those years ago and suddenly I remember the weekends where I’d wear nothing but PJs and my ex boyfriends joggers because quite honestly, that was ALL that fitted me (mean girls reference was 100% my life!). I remember times i’d need to go out, meant getting dressed and that being a horrifically painful experience, both mentally & physically.”
“My legs used to rub together so bad I had excruciatingly sore chafing and even holes on the inner parts of my trousers. Going into New Look and not being able to fit into the Size 18s, convincing myself that clothes were getting smaller and not wanting to acknowledge that I was ofc getting bigger!”
Hannah started getting into fitness in 2008, when she used the Weight Watchers plan to lose almost 50 pounds. While she saw great success from this program, after she went on holiday, she stopped following the plan and quickly put all the weight back on again.
“I then did a whole host of unsustainable, unfulfilling & unhealthy diets: 5.2, Atkins, Juice+, 10 day fast, ALL SORTS! None kept the weight off bc I was so unhappy whilst doing them!”
“I’d lost control over my life & all I could control was my body & I became very unwell”
After a messy break up, the problems added up for Hannah and she developed an eating disorder were she would restrict then binge.
“I developed an eating disorder; Atypical Bulimia – I would restrict my food intake all day & then when I ate I threw it up.”
As well as a problematic relationship with her diet, Hannah also started to take 10 laxative tablets a day in a bid to lose more weight, but she realised the damage she was doing to her body and decided to seek help.
Hannah underwent weekly cognitive behavioural therapy sessions for the next 18 months and during her treatment, she found a love for healthy eating, training and getting a healthy body the right way!
Since those days, Hannah has lost an incredible 80 pounds and most importantly, has became much healthier with a much more positive outlook on her body and life, but she is quick to point out to her followers that she still suffers from insecurities like everybody else.
“I have loose skin around my stomach, but it’s not hanging. I’m still rather young and this process has been slow and gradual… 10 years to be exact! I weight train and have done for around five years now, so the skin has tightened.”
“I have a baby belly & boobs with absolutely no children to show for them. I’m 30 this year & OK, I don’t look in the mirror and go, “oh, I look fantastic!” of course I don’t.”
“Nobody is perfect! I definitely have body issues, but everybody does & when you come to the realisation that seriously.. EVERYONE DOES.. even the people you consider flawless, then you can start to live with the way you are.”
“I don’t count calories, I don’t count macros, I don’t use MyFitnessPal. Truth? I eat well… really well… I eat everything, fruit, veg, carbs (hella lotta carbs!) nuts, grains, sugar, salt, high-calorie meals, low-calorie meals.”
“I eat whatever I want to eat & I train hard… I bloody love the gym, I love feeling strong, I love my body & everything its been through.. the stretch marks, the cellulite, the skin that I’m in has been with me through everything & that gives me all the feels.”
“I just make sensible choices the majority of the time, I don’t cut anything out, I eat ALL food groups. Calories do matter but the types of foods we eat are equally as important because different foods take different metabolic pathways through the body. Carbs don’t make you fat, fat doesn’t make you fat (healthy ones!!)! I personally stay away from processed food as much as possible, preservatives/additives.”
“I know there are so many conflicting opinions out there about what’s “good” & what’s “bad” but I follow a few basic mantras that keep me in line.”
1. I cook all my meals from scratch + I prep in advance ~ this gives me control which makes me feel good!
2. Instead of counting calories, look at your plate in terms of colour, variety & freshness, read the labels of your food, don’t get caught out by hidden sugars/salt!
3. Think about how you feel after eating ~ eating rubbish almost always results in guilt, eating well will make you feel great!
4. Water! Water! Water! The majority of people go through life dehydrated which causes all sorts of problems, thirst can also be mistaken for hunger so keep glugging!
5. I live by allowing “everything in moderation” eat as much food as your body needs ~ lessen your portion sizes & take your time ~ listen to yourself!!
“I could go on, and on, and on!”
“I get so many msgs asking me how I got started at the gym, what I did when I first started working out, how I developed the confidence to lift weights. I’ll be honest with you, i’m an anxious person BUT the gym (any gym!) is the one place on this earth where I am the most confident MF around. I understand though that these places can be scary, especially if you’re walking into the unknown. So what can we do to help?”
1. Pick a gym that’s right for you, no time for boys? Plenty of female gyms around! Flexible work hours? 24/7 gym are plentiful!
2. Dress the part! If we look good, we feel good ~ no matter what the situation is!
3. Walk in prepared! Do your research! I am always trying workouts posted by my fav Insta’s or YouTubers! Use google. Use Pinterest!
4. Remember that everyone started from square one, even the big ole unit.
5. Know your timings! You’re walking into a zoo between 5pm & 7pm so don’t expect peace & quiet without the occasional helmet walking around behaving like an animal!
6. Headphones! My wireless headphones are life. £25 from Amazon (Brand: August) pop on your tunes, (Marbella collection 2017) & you’ll be the only one in your zone!
7. Take a class, I used to do nothing but classes.. Les Mills are my personal favs and would still happily do them now if my work hours allowed! You can’t go wrong with them!
8. Stop comparing yourself to other people ~ I don’t even look at people in the gym now. I got my cap on, my headphones on & as far as I’m concerned ~ people don’t exist for the time I’m there!
9. Get in, get it done, get out ~ try not to panic of faff!
10. Most importantly, don’t put pressure on yourself and enjoy it!! Just because you’ve arrived and left whilst others have been there longer. Who cares! No ones looking at you babe so don’t look at them.
“I get asked everyday about motivation.. My motivation is me, end of. I quite literally woke up one day & decided No. No more. And that really was that and I never looked back. Not once. Yeah, it’s been bloody hard at times. Going through the frustration of trial & error to find what works for me, but the goal has always been the same, “To be the best I can be” and that’s what I work for every day. Yes the dreams change, first I wanted to be thin, then I wanted to be fit, then I wanted to be strong and now I just want to be happy & healthy.”
“I don’t wake up every day feeling motivated, I don’t wake up excited for my alarm going off @ 4/5/6am! I don’t think “get me in the gym, I can’t wait to kill myself before a full days work!” and if I miss my morning session, I don’t get home buzzing to drag my sorry ass to the gym to lift weights alongside groups of 5 hanging about in the squat rack doing dumbbell curls in the mirror.”
“I know that’s what you may want to hear but it’s not true. If I could obtain healthy well being through no exercise at all, whilst eating all the PB & pasta (not together…) actually that IS an idea..”
“The truth is, motivation isn’t fixed, it’s a process.. If you do something enough, it becomes routine, it’s no longer new, it’s a way of life. I changed my entire world, every single, little thing, in order to be where I am today! I trained my mind to eat things I’d never tried and to be quite honest, didn’t want to try; kale, chickpeas, lentils.”
Full Body Home Circuit:
“So this morning I got up a little too late to walk to the gym and back before work, so I did an upper and lower body circuit along with a couple of HIIT bursts thrown in for good measure! I asked you guys if you wanted me to share it so here it is!”
Equipment: 1 x kettlebell (10kg) & a set of dumbbells (5kg)
Circuit 1 using kettlebell: 5 sets x 10 reps
KB front squats
KB narrow squats
KB sumo squats
KB overhead squats
KB static lunge (10 each leg)
KB upright row
KB bent over row (10 each arm)
HIIT burst using stairs: 2 step incline going up followed by running down – 10 sets!
Circuit 2 using dumbbells: 5 sets x 10 reps
DB front raises
DB bent over flies
DB lat raises
DB elbow raise
DB single arm snatch
DB skull crushers
DB kneeling rows
DB standing press
DB kneeling kickbacks
HIIT burst: walkouts into mountain climbers (x10 each side) – 10 sets!
“This workout took me just over an hour and I burned 700 calories! I was sweating to hell but loved it.. when it ended! I don’t love home workouts purely because I’m more motivated in the gym and because.. air con! But I’m super on top of my game right now & determined to maintain my happy place & that is when I’m active.”