Its a new day and time to set new goals and achieve them. One lady who knows a bit about acheiving set goals is Bukky Lawal. She started out at 104 kg and today she is 58kg! Read on as she shares her story:
I grew up being the chubbiest of four children and I was the one who loved food the most ( still do). Growing up, ours was the “average family” of Nigeria of those days, we were comfortable and so food was not a problem. Life was good at least as far as food was concerned and food seemed to be a guage for “good life” back then so we lived well. Outside our three square meals , snacks and special delicacies were the norm. My parents especially my dad, ‘taught’ me how to eat ‘ijekuje’* and “mindinmidin”** and we would take trips to Ibadan from Ile-Ife to the big departmental shops such as UTC and Leventis for treat, It was a way of showing love and I enjoyed it.
I therefore grew up loving and appreciating good food. To be honest I still do and the only difference is that now I choose my food and I eat with ‘sense’ now. I scrutinize my food properly now and want to know the ingredients and the quantity. To be honest inspite of being the one who ‘helped’ to finish the left overs so that food will not waste (lol) I was not an emotional eater and being overweight did not hamper me in anyway. I loved my size 22 body so much (I miss it sometimes) and I carried myself with confidence. I dressed well to suit my body size and I was indifferent to all suggestions even from my parents to loose weight. My father was particularly worried and would cut out articles on obesity and its consequences from newspaper and give me to read. However his efforts had no impact on me.
The turning point and start of my weight journey was when I lost my favourite cousin in August 2014 he suffered a stroke suddenly and died in less than 12 hours. It was less than a week to his 50th birthday and we were all devastated. I was badly shaken and felt so bad for his wife and children. The whole family was in mourning and it was during this mourning process that I started to reflect on my obesity. After deep reflection on September 1 2014, I took a picture of my self, took a tape rule, measured my waist circumference and also got on the scale to measure my weight and just decided there and then to lose 20kg. I did my research and found out that to burn fat fast, I had to love cardio; i.e. walking, jogging running etc. That was how I started walking for 30 minutes five days a week. I also realised I had to cut down on my king size food portions and stop eating carbohydrates like ‘eba‘, rice, pastas and taking refined sugars, fizzy drinks and so on. With time I found that my love for them dwindled till I could do without them or eat them with ‘sense’. (In small controlled portions).
I went from walking to jogging and eventually became a runner when in early Dec. 2014 at that point I found I had lost 8kg! I was happy and this encouraged me to start jogging and running. Six months later in June 2015 I had lost the 20kg I initially set out to lose. I thought it would be a good idea to loose 10kg more and by September 2015 , exactly one year after I started my journey I was 30kg lighter and weighing 74kg! I had become so dedicated to my weightloss that I even ran a solo marathan that same month. At the end of the year I decided to calculate my BMI and the ideal weight of 59kg it gave me became my new goal. The fact that I was seeing results was a big motivation and and even though at a point people felt I was getting too small I was happy with the new me.
I lost 46kg in 20 months and I am now in the maintenance mode. I still exercise regularly and eat healthy to avoid gaining weight. There are bad days when I just eat and eat but I learnt not to stay down and pick myself up the next day and keep moving. If I was to summarise how I lost weight I would say firstly I took total control of what goes into my mouth and what quantity, secondly cardio; walking, jogging, running, thirdly strength training, lastly consistency and dedication. I set targets for myself and met up with them.
My journey has taught me self discipline not only in food but in all aspects of my life. A judge who I appeared before after my weight loss said I was to be feared as loosing such weight means I am capable of doing whatever and I believe him! I love my size 22 body but I love my size 8 body as it is now easier to get beautiful clothes in my new size (as I love beautiful clothes) and I am healthier. I am at my best me physically, emotionally and in every way and love the new me especially the fact that I also inspire people to achieve all sorts of goals.
Well done Bukky!