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Today's Podcast Episode

Hello and welcome to today's podcast episode.

The faffing around is done and it was just time for me to hit record.

I couldn't faff around any longer.

Put it off every single time I shoot a podcast episode.

My perfectionist mindset comes in the, I'm not good enough.

I need to have all my ducks in a row to record the podcast episode.

And I'm always find myself like just around the desk for ages.

So I just, I just a press record and it's lovely to be here and thank you for being here.

I'm still injured and it's absolutely wrecking my head So all I can do this week, all I did last week was walk.

All I can do is walk and it is absolutely killing me.

But if the one good thing has come from me being injured, it's that I'm more committed than ever to share the message with you.

And I know, you know, this, I'm not trying to be condescending, but like that working out helps you feel amazing.

It helps you feel calm, productive and in control.

And it's from that springboard that you can then go on to make better food choices.

Bedtime routine choices, morning routine, choices and it's only having had it whipped away from me.

Do I understand even more the importance of exercise for the mental health for our mental health?

I have been fit to kill at different points last week.

I have felt frustrated, agitated, irritated, angry, uncomfortable in myself.

Um, I've, I've had a feeling where I just have so much energy in my body and I'm just sitting there just feeling irritated and it's from a lack of movement.

And I only would have known this feeling because I'm actually not able to work out because my physio has said absolutely no workouts this week and last week because I've hurt my back, I hurt my back and my sleep and, um, you know, work out, work out if you're feeling bad.

If you're, if you're going through a tough time, get those endorphins flowing, move your body.

If you're listening to this and you're struggling to get started, you're feeling unfit, unhealthy, scrap everything else and just focus on getting some movement in, in your week and you'll feel better and when you feel better, you'll be better equipped, better able to, then start looking at the other areas of your life and you'll have those lovely, feel good feelings.

Um, that you get when you, when you exercise, I had a nice easy weekend.

This weekend we didn't do much at all.

Um, I went for a couple of dips, not swimming, just dips in Renville, which I love, love, love.

I sometimes bring up hot chocolate in my flask and just sit there and relax.

Um, and I went on a few walks.

Well, actually I went on a lot of walks because that's all I can do.

Um So I got to see a lot of lovely things out in nature like the leaves falling, um, and the, just the trees and the smells and the colors I just love.

It's just beautiful, a beautiful time of year.

I love wrapping up in my jacket and just feeling really cozy and that's all I did.

I'm watching, um, a series that I'm nearly finished doing myself and Joe called Billions.

You can get it on Sky Atlantic or on Paramount and it's really good.

It's kept us, um, having had something to watch in the evening time.

So we watch an hour of that at night time and look forward to it.

So, it was a lovely weekend, very relaxing.

Um, not really feeling the late, late show.

I really didn't want to be giving out about a new hosts or anything like that.

I wish them all the best of luck but can't really get into it for some reason at the minute.

But, um, that might be me.

I, I'll, I'm sure I'll enjoy it as the weeks go by.

Maybe I've just gotten out of the habit of not watching it anymore, but they are the heights, the extent of my Friday nights now at the minute.

Um, so what I wanted to chat to you about today in today's podcast episode is something that I was having a long hard think of at the weekend.

Some things that I, I love to do is I love to constantly learn and explore about how we can get fit and healthy and fit it into our lives and, and where the help is needed, where you guys need my help.

Where are you kind of struggling with?

Where are the setbacks?

So, I was having a really hard think about this at the weekend and I realized that I often talk about, you know, diet plans and calorie counting that we don't need to be handed another thing and told this is what we have to do that we have to figure out why we're doing certain things and it got me thinking that, you know, it's not just the what, it's not just what to do.

I know a lot of you listening, some of you listening might know what to do.

Like the, the right type of exercise for your body as a woman over 40 or you may genuinely not know the right foods to eat as a woman over 40 for optimal nutrition.

However, we think, and we spend a lot of our years and time thinking that we would be fit and healthy once we know the right type of exercise to do and the right type of food to eat.

And that is just simply not true that not only is the what we do really, really important, but also the why the why we struggle to be consistent, the why we struggle to stay fit and healthy once we may have got there, why we, why we struggle to lose weight once we've lost it, why, why we, why we struggle to keep it off?

Why we struggle to stay healthy?

Why we struggle to feel good in our clothes consistently over time, the longevity of it, the consistency of it.

And it's exactly what I want to chat to you about today.

I want to give you some tips based on my experience on how to stay consistent, how to, how to stay healthy for the rest of your life.

And the only way I know how to do that is to share with you.

First off my story um about how I became to become fit and healthy.

So years ago, I was at rock bottom, I was overweight about three stone overweight.

I was really unhealthy.

I drank a lot of alcohol.

I, I drank mostly at the weekends.

Um Thanks to my job, my career and fitness, I couldn't possibly drink during the week.

I have a feeling it might have been a different story.

If I worked in an office, I would probably struggle with not having a glass of wine at night.

Um But I drank a lot at the weekends.

Like, binge drank, like had an awful lot of wine on Fridays and Saturday nights and I was a big eater, big portions always eating after dinner, eating really unhealthy foods and eating healthy foods.

Um And I felt really bad.

I felt really bad on my clothes.

I felt really bad on my skin.

I felt really sweaty and unhealthy and uncomfortable.

I felt really sluggish and tired all the time.

I felt really irritable and cranky.

I felt like I had a lot of electricity in my body.

That's the only feeling that I can.

The description I can give like a lot of excess energy, a lot of uncomfortable feelings, like just irritated, constantly irritated, irritated with everything and everybody around me and really bad self esteem.

I didn't have very many friends because my self esteem was so low that when I did talk to people.

I was just in people pleasing mode.

I wasn't being really myself.

So I wasn't really getting anything out of the few connections that I had.

I felt lonely, bored, tired and I felt really at rock bottom.

Most of my days were consumed by thinking about how bad I felt, how overweight I was, how uncomfortable I felt, but that I didn't know what to do.

It just all hit rock bottom for me.

I started having panic attacks.

Anxiety was there all the time.

And I just felt like I was going on a loop on an, just a constant never ending groundhog day loop, just a loop.

And I wanted to get off.

So I had dieted, I tried restricting my food.

I tried the Keto diet, the Paleo diet.

I tried to cut carbs out of my diet.

I did an awful lot of walking.

I joined a gym.

I did a lot of the, uh, cross trainer treadmill and nothing was working and nothing was working.

I joined swimming clubs.

I became a slave to the scales.

I thought that, ok, well, look, if I monitor my weight, then I will lose weight if I were held.

If it was, if I was held accountable by somebody in a club that I would go and join and be weighed once a week, that that would work.

Nothing worked.

I just continued to waste my money and go around and around and around.

In circles for years and nothing changed for me.

So one day I decided to go and figure out what was the truth, what was actually the best exercise to do as a woman?

And what actually was the best food to eat for a woman?

I thought, ok, well, look, if none of these things are working, then I'll go out and find what works and I'll become fit and healthy.

So I decided the best way to do it was to just rather than try and go to classes and personal trainers, which I had tried and I hadn't worked because I kept missing them and not showing up that I would actually do a course.

And I would train to be a fitness coach, a fitness trainer.

So I did and I discovered the exact best method to work out specifically if you're a woman, what's the best way to get a high metabolism to burn fat to feel really good, all the good stuff.

And I also went and did a nutrition course and I decided to train to coach people on nutrition.

I thought that would be the best way that I would know once and for all how to eat healthy.

And I did, I learned all of that.

I learned all about low G I and protein vegetables, all the nutritional stuff I learned.

And I thought this is it, this is absolutely mighty.

I finally know the best workouts to do as a woman.

Now as a woman over 40 I know how to eat and nourish myself as a woman.

And now as a woman over 40 so I started to implement what I had learned.

I started to work out a few times a week and eat healthy.

And it hit me one night that I was still really struggling and the reason I couldn't figure out, but I found it really tough to show up to my workouts.

I was really inconsistent with my workouts.

So I wasn't getting any of the longer term benefits from exercise, like weight loss and feeling really good in your clothes and actually becoming fit and healthy.

Yeah, I was getting short term bursts of endorphins every time I did a workout, but I really still struggled and I had thought that once I knew how to work out on the exact exercise to do that, that would be me sorted for life.

I was really disappointed after spending all that money to figure out that I actually was still in the same position.

I'm the same with the food.

Nothing changed for me.


I, I learned how to eat healthy.

I learned what to eat.

So my breakfast, lunch and dinner is now I knew what to eat but everything else was there.

I was still drinking at the weekends way too much after dinner every night.

For the life of me.

I just couldn't seem to break the habit.

Of eating sugary stuff, eating sweet stuff.

And I couldn't seem to reduce my portion sizes at dinner.

Even though I knew the massive bowls of pasta and garlic bread and spaghetti bolognaise and lasagna in front of me was enough to feed three people.

So I was still at where I was at, except this time I was in debt and I'd spent loads of money doing this.

So I went around like this for weeks.

Stop start, start again on a Monday.

Get really motivated.

Do one workout, not work out the rest of the week, eat healthy food.

But then all my unhealthy layered was layered on top of that.

I was still stressed out.

I was still anxious and there was loads of other things not fixed whatsoever.

And if I remember correctly, I was chatting to somebody.

It was probably my husband Joe out in the garden over wine and I was thinking I can't continue on like this.

I don't know what to do.

I felt so bad in myself.

I had a dream of being fit and healthy.

It sounds strange.

But like I just knew in my heart of hearts that I was destined to be fit and healthy.

That that was my true me to be fit and healthy.

It just felt like I could identify with that.

Even though I was really unhealthy and really struggling, I knew deep inside of me, there was somebody bursting to get out to become fit and healthy to unlock my inner peace and calm and to feel really good.

He mentioned to me out in the back garden.

Have you ever wondered why you do all those unhealthy habits?

And it hit me like a ton of bricks.

It hit me like I had been thrown against the wall.

I had never in my life considered the idea of why I was doing something and I still look back on that night and I wonder how on earth it must have been that I was just on a hamster wheel, a very busy hamster wheel.

And that I, I never for a second considered why I was so unhealthy.

And that night everything changed for me because I entered into the next week and I started observing myself.

Why was I not showing up to my workouts?

Why was I eating unhealthy?

Why was I really stressed out?

And I wrote it down here?

That's all the reasons why iii I realized I was unhealthy and I'm going to share them with you.

Now, number one, I had no boundaries whatsoever.

If you wanted to call me, if you wanted to contact me, I would drop whatever it was and that was it.

I was there.

I had no boundaries with work.

I had no boundaries with my family, with whatsapp groups with my phone.

No boundaries whatsoever.

No time in the day was mine.

I took whatever was left at the end of the day as mine.

So the end of the day it's going to be watching something on Netflix, but I had no time whatsoever scheduled in the day or in the week.

Forget every day for me.

Number three, I spoke really unkindly to myself.

I was like a really negative, horrible, nasty bitchy person standing beside a person telling them how fat and ugly and wrong they were and how stupid they were and how they were never going to amount to anything and um how ugly and horrible and I'm never going to fit in.

I'm never going to make friends.

I'm never going to have connections.

I'm destined to be this like people pleasing unhappy person for the rest of my life that has no true friends.

I was telling myself that on a daily basis I would look in the mirror, I would catch myself a reflection in the shop window.

And every single time I caught myself, I would tell myself how disgusting, fat and ugly I was.

Every time any reflection, even if I was checking my phone and I caught a glimpse of my face on the phone reflection while I was texting probably Joe, I would see my face and go, whoa God, you're so ugly.

You're so fat, you're so horrible.

Um I didn't like feeling out of my comfort zone and I didn't like feeling like a beginner.

So every time I attempted to do a work out, I didn't like feeling, not brilliant at it.

And it was that feeling of not being very good and being a beginner and being out of my comfort zone that made me procrastinate a lot with my workouts and mostly not get them done.

Um I was too focused on the goal of weight loss when I actually sat down and reflected on it.

I realized that weight gain is just a byproduct.

It's just a result of the action steps you're doing and weight loss is just a byproduct as a result of the action steps you're doing.

So I realized I needed to reverse engineer it.

So rather than focus on the outcome, I needed to actually focus on what was producing that outcome, which is something I had never really focused on.

I was very much a weighing scales person, like look at the numbers and kind of just half a do everything during the week and not really have any plan.

That was another reason why I was inconsistent and unfit and unhealthy.

I didn't have a plan.

I never reviewed my week so I could actually know where I was going wrong.

I had no reflection time.

I never planned my week.

I didn't know what my action steps were.

I just wanted to eat healthy and work out.

I had no road map.

So that question that Joe asked me, like if I ever asked myself why I'm unhealthy.

I, I just kept going on my notepad, just journaling all the reasons why I was unhealthy and it was a big wake up call to me that you can know what to do but why you're not doing it or why your unhealthy habits are staying with you is where success lies.

It's where the true key to success lies.

You can go onto youtube now or to Google and get a billion workouts under the sun.

You can research and do courses and get all this stuff out there for free.

But if you don't actually know why you are struggling to implement it and then go ahead and implement it based on the knowledge that you have and learn and grow as you go and learn about yourself and reflect and plan.

If you're like me, you're always going to stay stuck in this loop.

Just looking for the what, what's the next latest trend?

What's the workout that I'm going to do?

Somebody tell me what to eat?

Somebody tell me what to, to uh what exercise to do and then I'll be fine and we never are.

So I want to share with you some of my solutions that might help you listening to this today.

Um So when it came to the workouts, I realized that I wasn't making any time, I wasn't prioritizing it.

I wasn't planning them.

And whatever time at the end of the day was left was mine.

That was never going to work.

That's not a plan.

So I picked my times and days that I exercised, I made them a priority.

I put boundaries up around them.

So it didn't matter how busy I got or how not busy I was, the workouts were going in my diary as non negotiables and I had boundaries on them.

Nobody could touch them.

I also took the pressure of the time of the workouts off.

So it helped me show up like, ok, I'll do a 10 minute workout, ok, I'll do a 15 minute workout as opposed to being super rigid and saying like, ok, well, I have to work out for 30 minutes at this point and I can't because I've got a dentist appointment.

So that's today gone.

No, I made sure that from the future, I was going to allow myself to ebb and flow.

So that was the foundations, the workouts for me, putting them in my diary, understanding that I had no boundaries, putting boundaries up working on my boundaries every week and making sure my workouts were like, nobody could touch them.

They were non negotiables and they were on my calendar.

Another thing that helped me become consistent with exercise was allowing myself to show up, not in the mood.

And that was a game changer for me because previously I had thought that if you weren't in the mood to work out or you weren't really feeling it that day, that that meant that you shouldn't really work out.

I didn't realize that what consistent people do is that they show up regardless if they haven't had good night's sleep the night before.

They still show up.

If things haven't gone their way in work, they still work out if they're cranky.

If they're not in the mood, if they're tired, they drag themselves kicking and screaming.

And I came to realize when I started to do that, that it actually gets easier to show up then because you kind of at the time of your workouts automatically just go and put your workout gear on and grab your water and you're kind of in the workout before you know it because you've been so rigid and so strict with yourself about when and where would this work for me anyway, for some of you, it might be the flexibility that you're much more inclined to show up to your workouts.

So allowing myself to show up to my workouts, cranky and sometimes blasting music and sometimes, um allowing myself to go super slow was all good home workouts.

A complete game changer.

I took away so many barriers for myself with the foods.

I came to realize that I was focused too much on the detail of the healthy food rather than focusing on my unhealthy habits and what I needed to get rid of and work on.

And the biggest game changer for me was understanding that I was a comfort eater that I seeked comfort from food that I was looking for comfort.

At the end of a pasta dish, having sitting down and having a big portion helped me feel comforted, turning to biscuits to sweets.

At the end of the night, it used to provide me with a comfort, a false comfort.

But I came to realize that's what I was using food for back when I owned a gym.

We're all online.

Now on the road in Galway, I passed by Apple Green after a really horrific day in work.

Lots of team meetings, lots of kind of managerial stuff to do.

Owning the gym, very pressurized lots of consultations.

The whole time I used to drive into Apple Green pick up like that, unhealthy fried chicken stuff or a chocolate bar and a packet of crisps and eat it on the way home before I had my dinner.

And that was like a kind of a, a secret for me.

Like I didn't want anybody to know.

Like I just used to eat them in the car and he used to provide me with a little bit of comfort and then I'd go home and have my dinner.

And when I realized that this was my problem still, even after learning what to eat, I decided that I was going to implement a couple of action steps that helped me get rid of my unhealthy habits.

Help me sit with my emotions and learn how to comfort myself with things that didn't involve food or anything outside of myself.

But more turning inward when I started to understand the concept of turning inward and not turning to external forces for comfort, like wine and food and shopping and actually to turn in and unlock your own peace and calm.

Did I start to heal my relationship with food?

Did I start to heal my relationship with myself?

Understanding that if you don't learn to love yourself, I was never going to change.

I wasn't going to be able to implement my healthy eating, the nourishing myself, my good bedtime routine and working out.

If I didn't love myself, you can only motivate yourself with hate for a very short period of time.

You can't stay consistent with hatred.

And yet that's what many of us try to do.

We try to exercise and eat healthy through a loathing of ourselves and it mightn't be very obvious to you that you don't love yourself.

But if you don't have boundaries and if you're a big people pleaser and you're not really putting yourself on the list, then you don't really love yourself.

And I know that might feel like a bit of a shock for some of you.

I know others.

You may be thinking, oh my God.

I totally know I don't love myself, but often we can think we love ourselves if we buy ourselves nice clothes or if we treat ourselves to weekend trips and things like that.

But really when you dig deep about how you treat yourself on a daily basis and how you talk to yourself.

Do you realize?

Oh, actually, I don't really love myself that there's something going on there.

And when you start to work on these things and in my thrive coaching program, our thrive times is the anchor.

It's the, it's the anchor that we learn how to love ourselves and how to show up to our workouts and how to eat healthy.

When, when you, when you spend that 10 minutes, a few times a week on reflecting and changing how you think about yourself.

The most remarkable thing is you start to show up for yourself and when you start to show up for yourself, you start to change because you get results and you start to feel amazing and that's what happened to me.

And I can't tell you the difference in myself.

It's remarkable.

The outside.

Yes, I've lost weight and that's great.

But the transformation, the change because II I worked on all this.

I never expected to become calm and peaceful.

I never expected that a lovely knock on effect would be that I'd start to make friends and have start anyway to have connections with people who really are getting to know me and that I'm getting a lot out of the connection and not just feeling like I'm not getting anything out of the connection because I'm just people pleasing.

It's wonderful.

I'm peaceful and calm.

I, I get joy in little things.

Now I see things that I never would have seen like the leaves, the color of the leaves I'm describing on my walks.

And I have a deep understanding now of all the lovely things there are in front of me that makes life life.

And before I was very thinking, work, life was just about kind of taking care of people and working and then unwinding with alcohol.

Whereas now, II, I feel joy every day.

And this is all coming from just learning about why I wasn't showing up to my workouts.

If you're listening to this now, and you, you think of the road ahead of you and you just want to be consistent with your workouts and your food and I promise you if you don't give up, all these wonderful things will happen, that you never even thought would happen and you'll, you'll change as a person in the process and you'll get out the other side and you'll, you'll just think, wow, I've, I've truly changed.

I'm not dieting.

I'm not trying to get fit.

I, I'm healthy.

I'm, I'm just a healthy person.

I've truly changed on the journey.

Well, I hope you found that podcast episode helpful.

Um, two things.

You can go to download my five step guide to unleashing your fitness and cam by going to Jessica Cook dot IE forward slash unleash as a free guide there to help get you started or if you would like to join the waitlist to my coaching program, it's fully booked up at the minute.

You can go to Jessica Cook dot IE forward slash coaching.

That's Jessica Cook dot ie forward slash coaching.

Like with every episode, let me know if you got anything from this and if you enjoyed it all my love.

I hope you enjoyed this podcast episode and you must let me know by getting in touch.

Don't forget you can head on over to Jessica Cook dot IE where you'll find lots of free stuff to get you started on your journey.

  • Love this Podcast Jessica! Just when I think you can’t pull any better material out of the bag for us…you top it AGAIN with a BRILLIANT podcast! Well done nighty night. Xx

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    About the author 

    Jessica Cooke

    I love drinking coffee, and my favourite thing in life (apart from my family) is to help women to get fit and break free from unhealthy habits holding them back. (oh, and also I love playing with my two Miniature Schnauzers, Buster and Ozzy)

    I’ve now supported over 6,779 women over 14 years in my Thrive Coaching Program get fit and break free from unhealthy habits!