Sunday marked the official end of Alpine Health &
Fitness' 2012 Revive programme. Today, Otago Daily
Times Queenstown bureau chief shares her final Dear Diary
- and the results.
Saturday, December 15
Woke with swarm of butterflies in stomach.
Hauled myself up Tobin's in last-ditch effort to cull fat and
calm nerves before visiting scales. As clock inched closer to
appointment, hands got shaky and heart started racing.
Squeezed eyes shut and held breath. Then did good
impersonation of fish, with eyes bugging out of head, mouth
opening and closing ... scales said missing from my body was
That left me with weight have not seen since (very) early
teenage years! Lovely Maria gave me weight plates (and packs
of butter) to hold to show me how much weight that was. How
was I even upright three months ago?
Included in total weight loss was a whopping 11.6kg of fat
... that is revolting!
Next was measuring tape - was no longer scared, was excited.
After tape was whipped around body, Maria got out calculator
and announced body has shrunk by 82cm. That is a LOT.
Left tiny little room walking on air - in wildest dreams
didn't think that possible.
Celebrated in style with inspirational Blue Team at Amisfield
this afternoon - we drank wine, without guilt, and ate bread
and potato salad and had other delicious treats. Was perfect
end to perfect day!
Sunday, December 16
Woke this morning feeling surprisingly perky, given did not
stop drinking wine at Amisfield ... can also report Hire A
Mum Moira Finlin's chocolate Afghan biscuits, delivered about
four weeks ago, made delicious midnight snack.
Went for lovely long walk - because I wanted to - and found
myself smiling like idiot the whole way.
This afternoon headed to Winnies with other Revivers for the
2012 final function - where we got pizza ... we even ate
Was overwhelming to look around room and see the others. Most
of us felt pretty bad about ourselves in one way or another.
No more, Diary!
Everyone looked incredible - the Revivers were smiling from
ear to ear, their skin was glowing, shoulders were back,
chins were up and they were genuinely proud of themselves. As
they should be.
Am thrilled to tell you the stunning Deb McLeod (fellow Blue
Teamer) won the overall award this year, Diary - a more
deserving winner you wouldn't find. Deb has slowly but surely
embarked on a fitness and weight-loss mission for the past 18
months and, to date, she's lost about 30kg - more than 11 of
those in the past 12 weeks!
Also, I might have won a wee something too ... the Richie
Heap Award for my attitude. Got pretty emotional - feel like
wuss because I cried (strongly suspect because, according to
scales, body is now 53% water. Was only matter of time before
eyes became overflow outlet).
Afterwards, Blue Team celebrated with more wine, when we
discussed ceremonial clothes burning.
Monday, December 17
This morning did not have to get up at 6am and meet Haylee.
While enjoying lovely lie-in started thinking about all the
things she's helped me learn and realised how far I've come.
As hard as I would like to forget September 22, the 15
minutes in tiny room with scales, measuring tape and Maria,
is burned into brain.
What I didn't tell you then, Diary, was how mortifying it was
and how angry I was for, yet again, falling off the wagon.
Afterwards while I sat in car, trying very hard to collect
composure I remembered I was going to try a new thing:
Realised that was last time I was going to feel like that ...
things were going to change. And they did.
So now, Diary, I will tell you about some of the things I've
My body is not weak
OK, maybe it was in the beginning (remember solitary sit-up
on day one?), but I've learned my body can do pretty much
anything I want it to.
The problem was never my muscles ... the weakest part of my
body was my brain. Specifically that persistent annoying
little voice that wanted me to give up on myself.
It took a while to understand the competition wasn't with
anybody else - it was with myself and that voice.
And, Diary, I won.
The moment(s) I thought about quitting ...
I remembered why I started.
It has been my motto for 12 weeks and that one sentence has
kept me going.
No matter how hard it got or how sore or tired I was, every
single time I contemplated quitting I remembered September 22
- I needed no more motivation than that.
Progress is personal
I learned to be proud of my wee achievements.
For example, going from not being able to yog at all, to
eventually yogging almost 5km ... and then the best part of
8km around Lake Hayes (minus hilly bits).
Or from being able to do 20 push-ups on my knees to 31 on my
But one of my biggest victories was unexpected.
Earlier this year I started to get pains in my hands and
arms, which made gripping pens and writing excruciating.
It was the beginning of OOS which, given occupation, was
Was worried about this gym lark because I wasn't certain I
would be able to grip things (like weights and bars and it's
quite important you can hang on to those).
Not only have I had no difficulty in gripping the
aforementioned, have not had a tingle of pain since the start
The secret to success
Is hard work.
Forcing myself to put on grotty gym clothes and do some form
of exercise, even when every muscle in my body hated me and
that little voice screamed to have a ''rest day''.
Making my vocal chords squeak out ''No, thank you'' when they
really wanted to say ''Yes, please!'' when delicious treats
The hardest part was making myself my priority - saying
''No'' to other people and not feeling guilty. At the outset
we were told it was important we had support networks around
us - family and friends who understood what we were doing and
The families, friends, colleagues and employers of the 2012
Revivers deserve a standing ovation - none of us could have
done any of this without all of you.
The challenge ahead
When you have a trainer waiting for you twice a week,
scrutinising everything in your food diary and knowing you're
going to be held accountable, a whole team of people who are
in the same boat and a gym full of instructors and employees
who know what you're up to and support you every step of the
way, it's actually fairly easy.
The hard bit is when that ends.
Learning how to motivate yourself to exercise when you don't
Understanding just because the 12-week programme is over, you
shouldn't shove banned substances in your mouth with gleeful
Knowing the end of Revive is the beginning of the challenge.
So, this time, I'm doing things differently.
Haylee is going to continue to keep me honest, I now have a
whole bunch of other ladies who I know will help motivate me
... and thanks to Alex Musgrave I think you will find one T.
Roxburgh - along with the majority of the Blue Team - will be
on the competitors list of the Rail Trail Duathlon come
February. My mission: run (yep, RUN) almost 20km over two
*I'd like to say a very, very special thank you to the
fabulous Haylee Roberts, of Southern Fitness Queenstown for
your enthusiasm, encouragement, friendship and unwavering
support ... and also to Mr Haylee and the two Master Haylees
for letting us monopolise so much of your wife and mum's
time. Thanks also to Richie Heap, all the Revive trainers and
each and every person at Lakes Leisure and Alpine Health and
Fitness - you are all superstars.