A post-baby photo changed my life
11th August 2009
Four days after her 23rd Birthday, Serena gave birth to her first child, a little girl called Poppy. It was an amazing experience and, for the first 9 months of Poppy's life, she focussed all her attention on being a Mum and on concentrating on giving Poppy the best that she could.
On 23rd August 2008 however, a photograph of her was taken which would change her life for ever ... for the better!
"I couldn't believe how I looked. The old Serena was gone and an overweight me had taken her place! I knew that there was a slim person in there somewhere, I just had to find her!"
Serena weighed in at home at 11 Stone 3lbs. At her height of 4 feet 11 inches it meant that her BMI was dangerously high and that she was wearing size 12 clothes which, for her height, was not in proportion. "Nearly having to buy a size 14 was a further shock to my system! I had focussed all my attention on Poppy and hadn't given a thought to myself during that time - including my weight."
"I had always been a fan of Joanna. Her books
are well written and her various television appearances were always informative. I looked at a selection of her books and decided on what I needed to do, the main guildeline which I took from Joanna is that nothing is forbidden - but if we want to eat something we should exercise our body (to off-set the item which has been eaten), exercise our mind (to understand if we really need it or not) and exercise portion control (to see that we do not always need the portion we think we need). These guidelines play over and over in my head on a daily basis, not in a diet obsessed way but in a way that makes me think carefully before I put something in my mouth!"
7 months after seeing that photograph and starting to implement the techniques and programmes that I recommend in my books, on 29th March 2009 I met Serena at The Vitality Show. She had committed herself to caring for herself as well as Poppy and at 8 Stone 10lbs, her BMI is back within 'normal limits' and her dress size is very slim 8!
Serena said; "There were times when I wondered why I was putting myself through it but believe me the hard work is worth it. When I look in the mirror I feel proud of what I have achieved and the compliments which I am paid are like nothing I have experienced before, its amazing! I think the lifestyle changes I have made will see me through for the rest of my life. It really isn't a diet, it's a lifestyle change and words alone will never express how grateful I am to Joanna and her books as they genuinely work. Thank you so much, they gave me encouragement when I was down, a kick up the backside when I was lazy and above all made me believe that I, Serena Williams could do it and do it I did! It's now nearly a year since my journey began, i'm still a size 8, i'm still 8 stone 10lbs and above all i'm still so grateful to Joanna. Good Luck with your Joanna Hall journey, remember to stay positive and you can achieve anything :-)"
It makes me so happy to see my programmes working for you all in day to day life because I write them with that in mind and I know how hard it is when you commit to a programme and then can't make it work for you or don't see results. You feel like you have failed. I write my books with this in mind, aiming to give you a template for success. Massive congratulations to you, Serena, you are living proof that my guidelines work and you will be an inspiration to the many people who read this - not least those who, like you, have a young baby and are contemplating working on their body shape. It's no mean feat to get back to the 'old you' but when you do - and it is possible, as Serena's story proves - you will look amazing, feel amazing and be energised for the next phase of your life!