Kirsty Set a Goal and Won VT13

Kirsty WON our recent VT13 Venus Transformation Contest!

She did a phenomenal job and her results display the hard work she put in. Kirsty brilliantly navigated through a full time career, social events, and going to graduate school during her stunning transformation.

 

 

Kirsty before and after using Venus Index for only 12 weeks!

 

Here is what Kirsty had to say in her own words

This was me on 19th January 2015 – And this was on 14th April 2015. 85 days later.

I had been unhappy with my weight for a very long time. I always wanted to be thinner, but I could never get there.
My dieting habit started in high school. I would decide one day that I was sick of being chubby. I would start dieting immediately, and would plan to keep going for as long as it took to become thin.
I would cut out fatty food and do heaps of extra exercise. It would work for a few weeks and I’d be happy for a while. When the weight loss started to slow down, I would start doing EVEN MORE exercise and eating EVEN LESS food with the expectation of getting even better results.
Anyone who has tried to lose weight this way knows that eventually, you hit the dreaded weight loss plateau where everything comes to a screaming halt. As you try and force through it, you become as strict as you can be and have constant negative thoughts, trying to figure out what you did wrong to stall your progress. Your mood gets progressively worse, and eventually your willpower gives out.
My goal was to be thinner, and every time I stopped losing weight, I had failed. I was tired, grumpy and felt like a failure so I would give up on the diet. Then I put on the weight again, and sometimes more than I started with. A few months later I would decide to “do something about it” and the cycle would start all over again.
Did you see the mistakes I made?

My goal was not SMART. Being “thinner” is not Specific, and it’s never Achievable either. No matter how thin you are, you can always be “thinner”. It is a moving goal post that you can never actually reach.
My determination to stick to it for as long as it took could be seen as admirable, but when you set a goal that will require tremendous will power, it should be Timed so that you have an end in sight. This can force you to work hard and not procrastinate, so that you achieve your goal by the deadline; but it’s also important so that you have permission to relax once you reach the end without feeling like you gave up.

This time around, I was SMART about it.
I started by clarifying in my mind the reason for wanting to lose weight. It was to have more energy and avoid health problems. The focus of my goal was switched from being “thinner” to being “a healthy weight” which directly supports my dream of living a long and active life.

– I signed up with Venus and got advice about what my ideal weight and measurements should be. From their calculations I set my goals to reach 55 kgs, and a waist measurement of 65 cms. These goals were both Specific, and Measurable.
– Now, I actually wasn’t completely convinced that it was Achievable. Through all my prior dieting, I had never, even at 16 years old, gotten below 60 kg. I thought it was impossible for me to reach 55. I had convinced myself over time that I was genetically programmed to be bigger than my friends. But I listened to the stories and advice of others in the group and decided that it was time for me to really challenge and push myself. This would be my Big Hairy Audacious Goal for 2015.
– Reaching my target of 55 kilos would place me right in the middle of the healthy BMI range and this was a relevant step toward my long term goal of taking care of my health. This is in sharp contrast to my previous goal of “losing as much weight as possible”.
– Venus holds regular body transformation competitions. I signed up to the next one they ran and that gave me the Timeframe to work with. I had three months to transform my body.
I used the trick I mentioned earlier, and set my computer password to 55Kilograms so I was reminded of the goal every day when I logged on. When the contest ended after three months, I weighed in at exactly 55.1kg. which was almost 8kg lower than the lightest I have been in my adult life.
Since the deadline had come, I was happy to round off and say that I had made it. I rewarded myself by shopping for clothes that I would never have been confident enough to wear before.
By achieving this difficult goal, I now have the confidence to know that if the weight does creep back on a bit, it won’t really matter for long because it is completely within my power to do it again.

Kirsty side 2 before and after Venus Index smaller

Kirsty’s Metrics Results

Weight Height Waist Shoulders Hips
Before 148 lb 63 in 32 in 43.5 in 38 in
After 137 lb 63 in 29 in 41.3 in 37 in
Change -11 lb 0 in -3 in -2.2 in -1 in
Kirsty is a stunning Venus

Kirsty is a stunning Venus

Kirsty’s Written Interview (scroll down for podcast)

How did you find the Venus Factor? – Life changing! My results surpassed all my expectations and while I wouldn’t say it was easy, it was definitely a comfortable level of effort. The idea of having “eat up” days so frequently (and not calling them cheating) was strange to me at first as I’d always been a bit “all or nothing” about dieting. Having permission to eat up, with well researched justification, was very liberating.

What things had you tried in the past? – I’ve been unhappy with my weight for as long as I can remember and at least once a year I would go on a diet. When I was younger it was an all or nothing approach – eat as little as I could and focus on vegetables, and do as much exercise as I had time for. Anyone who has tried to lose weight that way knows that sooner or later your willpower gives out, and you can never stick to that plan for long enough. In more recent years I’ve tried various types of diets – low fat, low carb, zero sugar, paleo, juice fasting… I had the most success (loss of 10 kilos) with completely eliminating sugar from my diet about 2 years ago but found it a very antisocial way to eat so even though I wanted to keep going I stopped that after 4 months and gradually put back all the weight I’d lost.

 

What aspect of the program was most beneficial to you? – The virtual nutritionist was great by taking all the guess work out of how much to eat. I’m an accountant and have a mind for numbers so calorie counting is a good method for me but each time I’ve tried before I never really knew what numbers I should be aiming for.

 

Which workout(s) did you use during the contest?  What did you enjoy about those workouts? – I did the basic 12 week Venus workout through the contest period. I really liked that I could just do them at home with dumbbells and didn’t need any fancy equipment. I also played netball once a week and made sure I clocked up at least 10,000 steps a day on my fitbit.

Did you use a particular style of eating?  What was your nutrition strategy? – I learned pretty quickly that the best way to make sure I wasn’t hungry on 1000 calories a day was to eat low-carb and high protein with a good amount of fibre. I swapped my cereal for eggs at breakfast and sandwiches made way for salads at lunch. I’ve worked out a good little chicken & veggie salad for lunch that is about 220 calories, with 20g protein and 10g fibre. I make up a big batch at the start of the week and take a portion to work with me every day. I’m lucky that I’m happy eating the same thing every day because I find having standard meals takes some of the stress out of monitoring your calories. A few weeks into the contest I started skipping breakfast and worked my way up to a 15 hour daily fast. That was probably the change that made the most difference for me and I am still comfortable doing it now. In the mornings I have a coffee with almond milk when I get to work, and quite often a second one about an hour later. Then I start listening to my body and I have a snack when I start to actually feel hungry, which is normally around 14-16 hours after the previous night’s dinner.

Did you use any supplements? – Not really. In the first few weeks I had some protein powder and fibre powder but once I started getting used to myfitnesspal.com I learned what foods to eat to get all my nutrients from diet alone so I didn’t need them anymore. Before I started Venus I would take iron and vitamin C supplements every day because I had been diagnosed as anemic at one point and for years I had trouble maintaining a healthy iron level. After a few weeks of better eating in Venus I also found that I could stop taking those supplements without any negative effects. My last blood test was pretty good so it seems like I’ve finally found the correct way to eat.

Did you use the online community and if so, how was your experience with it? – Yes, after reading the Venus ebook I was really excited about the program and went into the community reading almost every post to try and learn more. In the first few weeks I spent most evenings after dinner reading blog posts and making a few posts of my own on the forum. I found getting involved with the community was a really good way to stay on track when I got the munchies at 9pm. It gave me something to do so I didn’t eat out of boredom.

What was the hardest obstacle to conquer? – I found the biggest challenge to be the social side of eating, and having to say no over and over to people that want to feed me. Most social events with my family and friends revolve around a meal, and invariably it’s something like pizza and ribs with lots of alcohol and cake for dessert. I started turning up to parties with a precooked plate of chicken breast and veggies, and if we were going out to a restaurant I’d ask lots of questions and look up all the options in myfitnesspal.com before deciding what to order. I was ridiculed a bit for it. It got easier after I explained to everyone that I was in a contest and was determined to stick to my diet so I could win some money. Now that the contest is over and I’ve moved into maintenance mode, I give myself one day a week where I don’t bother tracking calories, and I try to listen to my body and just stop eating when I’m satisfied. I still try to make the healthy choices but don’t obsess about portion sizes or get upset if they forgot to leave the dressing off my salad. I’ve found that since starting Venus and really focusing on my food choices, my taste buds have changed to prefer the healthy options anyway. I never used to like seafood much but now I far prefer fish and crab instead of pasta and burgers. I’m also appreciating a much wider variety of vegetables

 

What kept you motivated? – Entering the contest made me accountable for sticking to the weight loss program. In all my previous diets, it was easy to give up because no one else was really affected. By signing up to the contest and telling people about it, I had made a commitment. If I gave up, I would have had to explain to a lot of people that I’d failed, and I really hate having to admit failure at anything. When we were about 3 weeks into the contest, my local newspaper actually announced that they were going to run a weight loss contest as well. I thought that was perfect since I was already putting the work in for Venus so my brother and I signed up to that one together. It was pretty popular, I think they had 500 spaces and they filled them within 2 days. My brother and I started going to the gym together once a week. We’re both pretty competitive people, so neither of us wanted to be the first one to admit that we were tired; that made sure that we both stayed there and kept working for longer than we would if we were on our own. He ended up winning the men’s division of the local comp, and I came 3rd in the ladies.

How did you feel about your final pictures? – I had a lot of fun taking them. I was still losing weight and hadn’t bought many new clothes yet since I wasn’t sure what size I would end up with so I started the day by raiding my friend’s wardrobe to find something flattering.

Is this a lifestyle you will continue? – Yes. I haven’t achieved my ideal Venus waist measurement yet but I’m at the low end of the healthy weight scale and people are telling me I look too skinny so I’m giving up on the last 4 cms and moving into maintenance now. I’m currently giving myself two eat up days per week (one midweek to the maintenance level determined by the calculator, and one on a weekend where I don’t bother logging food and just try to listen to my body). I’m a bit scared to stop logging all my food in case the weight piles back on so I’m just gradually increasing my deficit days every few weeks and waiting to see what level I can eat at without the scale changing.

What advice do you have for other women going through the contest or considering the contest? – Do it. You don’t lose anything by signing up and it makes you accountable for sticking to your weight loss plan. By having a deadline it’s far easier to keep working hard for the three months to achieve your goals, because you know it’s not going to be hard work forever. Three months is long enough to develop some really good habits and make big changes to your body, but not so long that it seems impossible.

 

Kirsty Venus Index Collage

 

Listen to and/or download the podcast contest interview with Kirsty, Coach Jenny, and Coach Liss below:

About Liss Graham

Liss is the girl next door who juggles a job, a husband, and two young kids. She had a lifelong struggle with her weight from a young age, constantly yo-yo dieting. Even though she would lose weight, she was never able to get beyond average with any workout or diet she tried. The Venus Index is the only thing that took her beyond average, and she now maintains Venus. From her success, she is now piloting Venus Index gym classes and coaching other women to attain the bodies of their dreams.
You can check her out at: Liss Graham’s Venus Index Transformation

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