Jenny South was one of the first participants on the I Love Life programme and really enjoyed the experience.
Jenny South said on 6th October 2014
“BEING part of the I Love Life programme has shown me that there are no excuses not to exercise. Having a newborn baby is no excuse – I’ve done it.
For the first time in my life I have viewed exercise as a treat. I have been going walking with my friend; it’s ‘me’ time, when I’m not changing a nappy or feeding. We have also started going to body pump and Zumba classes and we have downloaded the Couch to 5K app. We’re going to treat ourselves to a spa date once we complete it.
On the eating front, the little changes I have been making have made the big difference. I’m leaving a little bit of food at meal times now, whereas before I would eat big portions. I have managed to lose weight but have not affected George’s health as I’m still breast-feeding.
I think the biggest goal I would like to achieve is to have a family photo shoot. I’m a photographer by trade and therefore don’t have a lot of photos with me and the boys. One, because I’m always taking the photos and two, because I don’t like photos being taken of me. So yes, I’d say that would be my biggest goal.”
Now 3 years on…. (14th June 2017)
Jenny says “It is almost three years since I Love Life and I still remember all the lessons we learnt. I always build activity into my daily routine as it is quite hard to find time to go to the gym as my children are still small – Harry is 5 and George is now 3. My husband is away at sea so I am on my own a fair amount but I get up early and do mindfulness, yoga and 20 minutes on the cross trainer just to get myself in the right frame of mind for the day. I know the right and wrong things to do to help me keep well but I don’t beat myself up if I can’t do it for a while. I have struggled with anxiety over the last couple of years but I am now off any medication as I think being mindful and taking “me” time early in the morning is the most important thing.
I am building up my photography business which I set up in 2010 and I have just opened my first studio in Royal William Yard. I have also set up a local residents association and a group to get nature back into Devonport. I am passionate about the local area and I like to get involved with things that make a difference locally.”
Lindsay Pinhey was part of the Catered “I Love Life” group in January 2016. Catered provide school meals for children in primary schools and Lindsay works at Marlborough Primary School.
Lindsay said in March 2016 – “I’m feeling great and sexy and loving life! I’m feeling so much more positive. I lost six cm off my waist which is amazing. I feel really good. It’s given me a new lease of life. If I can achieve what I have in seven weeks, just think what I can do in the next seven weeks. Bring it on!
“I never thought I would complete the whole seven weeks. I thought I would give up after a couple of sessions. I have managed to go to most of the sessions and enjoyed every one. I definitely want to keep it up. Now I have seen the results it has made me more determined to keep going. There is a great support network with the others girls so we can all encourage each other. I have still been eating some bad stuff but it’s all in moderation.”
Lindsay said in June 2017 “One of the main reasons I did I Love Life was to lose weight so that I could have a hysterectomy and I had the operation in March this year. Doing the programme meant I could get my weight down and keep it off which has made having the operation and getting over it a lot easier. I loved the programme and it really helped us all gel together as a group – we still go walking together around Burrator and they are all an incredible support.”
“My husband is still struggling with his weight and has just been diagnosed with diabetes but everything I learned on the programme about healthy eating and smaller plate sizes helps us all as a family. My daughter has just nominated me for Carer of the Year as I look after my husband and also my next door neighbours who are in their nineties – I make them healthy meals too! I can’t thank you all enough for all the help you have given us – it really came at the right time for us all.”
Mike Davies was part of the Need a Cab group in Autumn 2015 and bravely put himself forward to be part of the BBC documentary about their journey which airs on 19thJune.
Mike said in October 2015
“I was a bit nervous before I came here today to get my results. Now I know my results I don’t know how I feel – I’m speechless. I’m quite shocked. I have worked my tail to the bone this week. In the last week I have been to the gym every day. If anyone told me a year ago I would do this then I wouldn’t have believed them. But it proves that actions speak louder than words. I haven’t smoked now for six months. I have noticed a huge difference in my health but I still have a bit of a wheeze when I’m exercising.
“I have switched my boxing to a circuits class with Gavin because I feel I lose more calories doing that. I love being a dad – it’s amazing that something can be that cute. Things can only get better from now on. I’m lost for words with the results. Georgina Gue, Mike’s partner, 23 years old, said: “I’m so proud of him. I never thought he would go to exercise classes and now he loves it. When we first met I was always trying to get him to go for a walk and take my dog out with me but he never liked doing it.
“Every time I would walk around the corner, he would be sat on a bench. Now he’s going to so many classes.”
Mike says in June 2017 “Life just hasn’t been the same since taking part in I Love Life and the documentary – I do get recognised a lot. Me, Roger and Gavin went to Argyle recently and everyone seemed to recognise there. It is great as it keeps you motivated. I have had an ankle injury lately which has slowed me down a bit but I am still doing training at the gym regularly and I am still not smoking. I use an e-cig at times and this helps but I haven’t gone back to smoking the ciggies.”
“Life for the family has been a bit up and down for us this year and I am working for another cab company now. On the whole life is good and seeing my son, Henry grow up is amazing – he is a real livewire – he just runs everywhere and doesn’t stop – he keeps us on our toes.”
Trevor Richards was part of the Green Taverners group which was the last group to do the programme in Autumn 2016.
In December 2016 Trevor said: I’m feeling brilliant, really happy,” after finishing the programme with a loss of seven centimetres to his waist and a loss of one kilogram in weight.
“The time’s flown by, we’re all like-minded people anyway and when we start something we stick to it. The results have shown the benefits of what we’ve done. We’ve done similar things in the past but we had nothing to measure it by so to see how far we’ve come in eight weeks is unbelievable.Trevor admitted he didn’t know what to expect at the start of the programme two months ago, but is pleased with the results.
“My body fat’s come down which is fantastic – it’s more than I expected,” he said. I don’t know what I expected really, I just wanted to get fitter and now I feel fitter and the stats are showing that I am. I had borderline high blood pressure before and now it’s within the right range. A healthier lifestyle with training and exercise is obviously the way forward.Trevor’s toughest challenge was spinning which he struggled with due to injury.”
“The tough class was spinning, every time I tried to stand up my left knee just didn’t want to know. But that’s the only one that I’ve struggled with.I quite enjoy the circuits we do because they’re different. When the Taverners did fitness classes before we did several circuits which was great – one week you’d focus on core and the next might be upper body.”
6 months later Trevor said “Both me and Kim (who did the programme as well) have kept the weight off and we are building activity into our routine – I go for a long walk in my lunch hour every day and this really helps. I am still sleeping better which was a problem for me when I started the programme but getting exercise and not eating or drinking too much seems to help. Kim has even bought a bike to get more active.”
“Most of the group who did the programme are going up Snowden next week to raise money for Woodlands School – they need a new bus and we all feel this is something that we want to support so are getting our walking boots on and heading up there on Friday. We are all looking forward to it especially now we have done I Love Life and got fitter!”