My Hel’s Angels Journey
Exercise and I have never really seen eye-to-eye. I wasn’t good at sport at school, so eventually stopped taking part. Years later I joined a gym, because that is what you are “supposed” to do. I went now and then, but didn’t notice any difference. When it came to food, I ate what I wanted. As you can imagine, by the time my second child turned two, I was overweight and felt like the most unfit person in the world. I hated the way I looked and felt.
A friend of mine took part in Hel’s Angels a while back. We never really spoke about it, but I remember watching her body transform into something amazing. When I saw the posts on Facebook advertising the next challenge, I found myself saying, “I really should do this”. I knew I had to do something. For days I put it off.
Three days before the challenge was due to start, I plucked up the courage to sign up. At my initial weigh-in, I was faced with the hard truth. There was no sugar-coating the fact that my visceral fat was so high that I was a ticking time-bomb with serious health risks. As awful as that day was, that was my turning point. I was 100% in – for me, my kids and my husband.
The next day, I stepped into my first Hel’s Angels class. I was nervous and had no idea what to expect, but, within minutes, I had an angel beside me helping me to find a spot and set up my station. To be honest, I do not know how I made it through that class. Helen’s routine is tough and my face was as red as a tomato when I was done. But, somehow, I had made it through the class! I was exhausted and every muscle in my body ached. But, do you know what? I wasn’t alone. There were many other red faces and girls whose muscles were aching too.
The next morning, I was back in class. And so it was for the next 12 weeks.
It was never easy, but then again, no one had said it would be. Waking up before 5 AM was a challenge in itself; and then there was Helen, who does not accept anything less than 100%. Despite this, I never regretted making the effort to show up for class. The motivation and encouragement within the group was phenomenal. From someone to laugh with, a shoulder to cry on, or words of encouragement in our WhatsApp group, to eye contact and a friendly smile across the aerobics hall. These were the things that kept me going.
Before long, I started to feel my body getting stronger and my clothes getting looser. I was able to increase the height of my step and was lifting heavier weights. I was making friends and the classes were turning out to be rather fun – something I never imagined I’d say. My energy levels were increasing; I was gaining self-confidence; and, for the first time in years, I was beginning to feel truly alive.
90 days later, I completed by first Hel’s Angels challenge, having lost 9 kg, 7% body fat and my visceral fat dropped from 18 to 13. I am so thankful to Helen for her commitment, hard work and for how she puts every angel’s needs above her own. Helen, you are amazing! I am also thankful to every angel for the motivation and for inspiring me to keep going. I would have never done this on my own. Hel’s Angels has been a truly life-changing experience. Only 3 months ago, a 5K was taking me close to an hour. This past weekend, I completed my first Parkrun in 42 minutes. I would recommend this challenge to anyone who wants to lose weight or get fit, or both. C11 may be over, but my journey does not end here. I cannot wait to be back for C12.