An intervention

I am often asked how I got started with my healthy living project.

It was some months after it happened before I actually told anyone quite how. I guess I was a little embarrassed.

It was 16 March, the day before St Patrick’s day, when I went over to Melinda’s house, answering the call to help her with some St Patrick’s Day cooking (lamb stew, yum!).

We were in the kitchen, chatting away, when she stopped what she was doing and went and pulled something from her purse.

“So this is an intervention.”

She handed me a business card.

“This is Chris. He’s a personal trainer and wellness coach. He’s the real deal. Not a trainer who did a six week course once and is five minutes out of school, but a proper athlete, a triathlete who knows his stuff.”

“He wants to win, and he wants you to win. He’s the one. He’s the one for people like us. He’s good with the bonkers women stuff as well. Pat and I have been seeing him and he’s been great.”

“I’ve told him that if you don’t call within five days, he’s to call you.”

Mumbled protestations from me.

“I have a problem with my feet!’ (plantar fasciitis)

“I don’t think I’m ready for all that at the moment.”

“Mmmmm…. Maybe.”

I didn’t even have the energy to argue with her. Looking back, I was so very unwell.

“Just call him,” she said.

“We both know how this works. You can start now, or not. And another six months, or a year goes by. Now is the time. You’re back in Brisbane. You have a job, the time and the money. There’s no reason not to. I’m worried about you. The problem with your heels, the RSI in your arms. Your body isn’t well. The time is now.”

I didn’t call him. I hoped it would all go away.

She texted after a few days asking if I’d called yet.

I hadn’t, but I said I would.

I didn’t.

Five days went by and he did, as she had said, text, phone and leave a message.

“Hey Emma this is Chris, Mel and Pat’s trainer. I got your number from Mel she said would be interested in putting a plan together. When would be a good time to call you in the next couple of days, mornings or nights?”

And even though I didn’t feel as though I was ready to start anything and I didn’t really want to engage with any of it, I phoned back. Not because I had any kind of epiphany or sudden rush of motivation. But because it felt a bit rude not to.

Good manners are the reason my healthy living project got off the ground!

I met with Chris on 26 March (I cried a lot, but that’s a story for another time). We agreed on 2 April to start with the healthy eating and 7 April for first training session.

The rest, as they say, is history.

When I tell people that story, they often ask if I was cross or upset about being ambushed by my friend. And I tell them of course not; we’ve been friends for 20 years, since boarding school. She acted with the very best of intentions.

I’m endlessly grateful for her fortitude in having that challenging conversation and staging an intervention. I’m not sure where I’d be today otherwise.

Definitely not here.

Don’t wait for motivation, inspiration or an epiphany.

They may never come.

Sometimes, you just need to show up, start and see where you land.

And look after your friends.

  • Ann-marie marino

    Such a lovely website, am looking forward to reading about your journey. I am also on my own weighloss journey and have suffered from plantar fasciitus for several years now so will be interested to read how you overcome it or still suffer as nothing i have done to date has really helped! ( looking forward to seeing more dresses

    • Thanks for your comment Ann-marie, I’m so pleased you like the site! Yes I am absolutely still suffering with the awfulness that is plantar fasciitis, it has been one of the most painful and frustrating things of all to manage; so much patience has been required to try and make improvements. I have had it for about 20 months now. When I started out on my healthy living gig, I could barely stand I was in so much pain.

      I definitely plan to talk more about this on the blog and I do have lots of suggestions you can try out – I’ll bump this topic up and blog about it sooner. I (literally) feel your pain. I would say I’m about 80% better with it now, but it’s something I’m always working around and trying to improve. I hope your weight loss journey is going well – it can be really challenging with an injury. More dresses (so, so many dresses…) are on their way here soon!

  • Kirstin Parsons

    This reminds me when I was last home for Christmas. I wish my family had more tack about an ‘intervention’ like your friend had. Instead of motivating me it just made me dig me heels in and here I am..10 months later exactly the same. Really enjoying reading your journey 🙂

    • Oh dear it’s a tricky one isn’t it Kirstin! Funnily enough – I think as I said in the post – one of the first things people always ask was if I got angry. And I didn’t of course, my friend Melinda was very kind about the whole thing. And I think what helped (as I’ve had those ‘well meaning’ conversations also – the one where family etc. let you know you’re overweight. Um yes – I am aware) – anyway, what helped was that Melinda had a plan for me! She wasn’t ‘just saying’. Hopefully your family are supporting you now with it all.

  • All I can think is what a wonderful friend! I have just found your blog from Calm to Conniption’s blog page. I love your views on your healthy living project and can see I will be spending a lot more time reading about your journey. Congrats on how far you have come! I too, have struggled with my weight but continue to enjoy the healthy living journey which is far from perfect. Who needs perfect anyway, I’m happy to settle for progress! Cheers, Beth.

    • Oh thank you Beth – and I love Karin’s blog over at Calm to Conniption – she’s hilarious! Glad to hear you’re enjoying your own healthy living journey – no such thing as perfect for sure, just progress is terrific – progress and consistency definitely matter most 🙂

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