Exercise РGetting My Just Desserts 

I have written in recent blogs about my quest to find clothing to accommodate my new shape and flatter my new curves.

You may have noticed that I have very tactically avoided the very delicate subject of exercise and diet, other than the odd reference to Prosecco and salad.

I have noticed!

For the record, I have been one of those annoying people that has glided through life eating all of the wrong things in excess and never putting on a pound.

I’ve also glided through life as a bit of a fair weather exerciser.

So really you could call say that I am getting my just desserts.

And that is of course where the problem starts.  With the desserts.

But I’ve had my moment and it’s time to give something back.

To shape up or ship out.

The problem I have, quite simply, is that I do not like exercising and I do love eating.  And generally I love eating all of the wrong things.

So in my cosy little corner, I have continued to do all of the naughty things very well.

I’ve always had an interesting relationship with exercise.  Interesting in so far as I’ve never really found an activity that has interested me.  Don’t get me wrong I’ve loved a lot of the classes that I’ve done over the years but probably not enough to continue ad infinitum.

And it’s the keeping going that has been the sticking point.  I am very easily able to find a million things I would rather be doing and a further million as to why I shouldn’t be exercising.

I have never been a person that has enjoyed exercising.  I have waited my whole life to experiencing the ‘high’ that people speak of from running but it seems to have just run straight by me – literally.

I guess I’ve always assumed that everyone else is enjoying their efforts and that is why they do it.  So I suppose I’ve always been a bit embarrassed to admit that I don’t enjoy it.  A bit uncool even.  Because whenever I see people showing up either by running or going to a class, I assume that are enjoying themselves and experiencing the ‘high’ of which people speak.

If I had a flag with me, I’d wave them on.

My current loves are Yoga and Walking.  Exercise of course but not the toning, fat burning, pulse racing kind of thing that perhaps I now need.

It was somewhat timely that I noticed an advert for bloggers to participate in a free private coaching session in return for an honest review with Samantha Hadfield, Fit & Flourish, Body Transformation Expert.

Wonderful, I thought.  This ties in perfectly with my series around body changes for the 40+ woman.

I had no idea what to expect from this Transformation Session but I guess in my little heart, I probably had high hopes that I was going to return home sylph like having dropped two dresses all toned and lovely.  In an hour!

See what I mean about my ideology around exercise.

So off I went to meet the lovely Samantha at her new location in Covent Garden.

Samantha Hadfield

Samantha is a Body Transformation Expert who helps women who are fed up with feeling fed up, tired of feeling tired, have tried everything and nothing has worked and who just want to do something to transform their bodies once and for all.  The key is to provide women with the tools and knowledge to not only reach out to their body, health and fitness goals but to also maintain their new body for life.

We talked about me, my hopes, my pitfalls and we went through the usual tests and checks to establish my body metrics.

I was weighed on proper scales and not the set that I move around the room until I get my desired weight.  How cruel!

We also did a brief fitness assessment to establish where I was at with my fitness levels.

And then the results.

And I needed to hear the results.  Because actually, deep down in my trainers and in my cosy little eating place, I knew that it was time for some action.

And this is where someone like Samantha comes in.  Because it’s all about accountability.  About knowing that someone is going to hold you to your commitment.  Knowing that when you can’t be bothered, there is someone waiting for you to turn up and help you to achieve your goals.

It was also music to my ears to know that actually most people DON’T enjoy exercise.  This was a revelation to me and it made me feel so normal I wanted to hug this wonderful lady.

Samantha went on to talk about the different exercises she introduces to her clients and how they tend to work in groups.  The main focus being on having fun.  Because actually no one wants to be doing exercise but it is necessary and it does take us to the place we want to be.

We also talked about food.  Again, I love it eat but do I spend time considering what I am eating?  No I don’t.  Again, not unusual.

We then went through a mini training session which I have to say I did thoroughly enjoy.  I also found it difficult which is testament to my current level of fitness. And I ached the next day so I really felt that it had done some good.

There was just time left in my session to set some goals which was a great focus for me.  I talked about what I didn’t want to have to do anymore – keep buying larger clothes and what I did want to do – feel comfortable and get back to wearing the things that I wanted to.  To be able to look in the mirror and say ‘yep, I’m happy with that’.

Unfortunately, I am unable to participate in a regular programme with Samantha because the location doesn’t suit my current commitments but if I was working in London I would have been able to accommodate the schedule.

Samantha has recently moved from her premises in South London to Covent Garden so that she can focus her attention on helping people like me.

People that have a goal, that have struggled to commit to a form of exercise and that need to work with someone that can tailor a programme that suits their individual requirements.  Samantha offers a very flexible programme for working women that allows them to exercise at convenient times (ie before and after work and during the lunch period).  Most importantly, she is there to cheer you on and will be depending on you to turn up.

I have seen some of Samantha’s success stories that she has shared on her page and it is heartening to see the people for whom her programme has really made a difference.  Here is a link to Samantha’s page.

I gained a huge amount from the time I spent with Samantha.  She told me what I needed to hear and in turn I heard what I needed to be told.

My action started from the moment I walked out of the studio.  Knowing that I would be unable to get into town regularly, Samantha shared lots of ideas of alternative exercise programmes that may be suitable for me.

I have started to look at what I am eating first of all because I know that I can do this.  I’m a big advocate of making the change you want to see and this is no different.

It’s not going to be easy, nor am I about to embark on a life-changing journey but now I know that I’m not the only one that finds it a drudge, I do feel a bit better.

So please do smile sweetly if I should pass you whilst I’m out for a spot of ‘mum’ running!

Exercise eh!

Do you love it or hate it?


I was gifted the Transformation Session for the purpose of providing a review of the service offered by Fit & Flourish.   All thoughts and opinions are my own and in line with my expectations as if I were a paying client.

I only review products and services that are in keeping with the content and ethos of this blog.




Mind the ‘Age’ Gap



This one reared it’s head for me whilst travelling on the Central Line  to London recently. It got me to wondering how we determine the age of another.

How efficient can one be at making such assumptions.

When is it OK to imply that someone is older and more in need than you are?

I was travelling with Iron Man, The Kid and my cousin.

An elderly gentleman and his wife boarded the train with very heavy suitcases. No one moved, so after having a little mind tussle as to whether my offer of a seat would be offensive, I decided to speak out. When the gentlemen replied jokingly “do I look that old then?” I was able to quickly respond “no not at all, it was the heavy luggage!”  No flies on me.

Iron Man pointed out that I’d surged too early. That he wouldn’t have assumed the couple would want a seat.  He didn’t think they looked particularly ‘elderly’.

Not being a frequent traveller on the underground as part of the daily commute nowadays, would, perhaps deem me out of touch with the etiquette of judging how ‘seat worthy/needy’ one is.

Apparently, there was no look over of expectation for a seat. No eye contact. I’d missed the signs. There is a new Code of Practice operating on the tube to which I am not privy. Left to my own devices it would seem, I could make one feel older than their years.

For the purpose of this blog, I now find myself ticking the age group 45-60. I’m at the very lower end of the range but how, I ask myself did, this happen? It seems only last week I was in the 21-25 category.

I do often wonder if my being a little older makes everyone look younger. I often find it difficult to guess the age of another now. It seems there is no benchmark on which to compare. Iron Man agreed that he feels the same.

Perhaps we are boringly middle aged.

So we did what all sensible parents do after their child has been carted off to the theatre with free time on their hands. We played a guessing game. Iron Man and I played a little game of guessing how old people were as we continued our journey through Oxford Street. Not the wisest idea given the crowds on a Sunday. Never mind trying to shop!

Anyway, we got fed up with that but we would seem to agree in the main. The exercise, however, proved precisely nothing.  We took ourselves off to a bar to commiserate our time wasting.

Central Line

I remember working in Tottenham Court Rd in my early 20’s and without fail an elderly gentleman would get on at exactly the same time and place at Holborn. Every evening without fail I would give my seat to this man. Common sense should have told me to change carriages. In hindsight, given how wrong one can be at judging age, the gentleman was probably only 40 at the time and is probably still doing the same journey. I bet he’s missing me though if he is!

It’s a bit like the pregnant woman thing. You are not sure if she’s pregnant and are worried about causing her embarrassment versus staying put while the poor cow suffers thinking how inconsiderate you are. Both equally embarrassing, I’ve done both. Thank god they brought the badges out.

I’ve also been on the receiving end of getting the seat whilst not pregnant. I have to say I took no offence and dived in to the seat swiftly.

Would I do the same though if I was offered a seat because I was old. Hell no, I’d be bloody mortified. I’d probably start rapping in the carriage just to show I wasn’t.

I guess it’s probably not in order to query why someone is offering you a seat either. Chances are you aren’t going to like the answer.

Could it be that whilst thinking I was being courteous in offering a seat to a perceived ‘elderly’ person, I was in fact making them feel awful. I hope not. I could have had a far more comfortable journey and so could they.

So, where does one stand (or sit) on this potentially sensitive subject.

Are you a seat ‘giver-upper’ or a ‘head in your newspaper’ commuter?

Does it need to be about age or is it about courtesy?

We were brought up to respect our elders but is it possible that respect can be misinterpreted in this case?

Of course, if I were to ask The Kid, old is anyone over 25.

We are older parents in comparison to many people. Ancient in the eyes of The Kid. We are cool with that.

We have a wide range of friends that vary in age from much younger to much older than us.

Of our older friends, I wouldn’t dream of offering them a seat based on how they look but by rights, they are entitled to one. I know that none of them would accept it though.

Is it a battle that everyone faces as they reach their mature years. Is it a realisation that ‘you’ve arrived’, the first time a younger person relinquishes their seat?

Is there room for chivalry if we are trying to be appropriate. Which comes first?


I am asking this question at a time when everyone looks so wonderful and so young.  At a time where 50 is the ‘new 30’ and 80 is the ‘new 60’.

It’s not easy when you think about it, is it?

What qualifies a person as ‘elderly’?

This is a subject that is not limited to public transport.  It reaches much further than that.

I’d love to know what you think.  Do you have similar difficulties in determining age?  Maybe you are of the age that ‘should’ get a seat but don’t want one for the reasons I describe above.

More questions that answers in this Blog so I would love to hear your thoughts.


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