When Sarah started University, she lost control of her diet and workout routine. “In September, I found myself doing very little exercise, drinking more than usual, and struggling with maintaining a balanced diet,” she remembered. “This, combined with a change in contraception, meant that I was rapidly gaining weight until I reached a point where I was constantly lethargic, and no longer happy with my appearance.” Growing up, Sarah struggled with disordered eating. This made her wary about joining her university gym, fearing that her relationship with food and exercise would spiral out of control and escalate into an obsession.
Despite this, Sarah realized that she was in a more mentally positive position to make a lifestyle change. “I’ve been using PumpUp for around four months now,” she shared. “I embarked on a sort of health and fitness journey in January and when I discovered the app, I thought it would be the perfect tool for documenting my progress.” Sarah took steps to nourish her body and her mind. “I didn’t want to waste any more time loathing the body that I had been given — life is too short,” she admitted. “[It’s] truly one of the best decisions I have ever made. I now have a much more positive relationship with my body and no longer focus on counting calories or the number on the scale, but on how strong I feel and the happiness that exercise brings me."
As far as fitness goes, Sarah focuses mainly on weight training, with 10 minutes of cardio at the start and end of every workout. She exercises 4-5 times per week, for one and a half hours per session. “When I go to the gym, but don’t put in 100% effort, I leave feeling unaccomplished and unsatisfied, so I always try to give it my all when I work out,” she mentioned. “I’ve also come to the realization that nobody cares what you’re doing in the gym because they are focused on their own workouts. This really helped me to overcome the obstacle of feeling self-conscious when I first started exercising.”
Moving forward, Sarah hopes to build her strength. “A few years ago, I never would have guessed that I’d be working out with a healthy mindset, with strength being my motivation as opposed to skinniness,” she confessed. “I’m extremely proud of myself for overcoming my struggles and finally reaching a place where I feel good when I look in the mirror.”
What Sarah Eats in a Day
"On an average da,y I'll have natural yoghurt with granola and fruit for breakfast, followed by a Greek salad for lunch. I try not to snack too much, since my self control is abysmal. However, if I'm feeling peckish around mid-afternoon, I'll have a banana or Nakd bar. Dinner is by far my favourite meal of the day and I love cooking from scratch. Some of my favourite meals to make are lentil and potato daal or a hearty vegetarian chilli."
How Sarah Stays Motivated
"My biggest source of motivation comes from the changes I've witnessed with my body. Seeing more muscle definition and improvements in my strength really pushes me on."
More about Sarah
I'm a 19 year old English Literature student at King's College London. I absolutely adore London; however I originally hail from Manchester so I'll always consider myself a northern girl through and through.
Keep Sarah pumped! Find her on PumpUp and Instagram @sarahcolee