I am so delighted WatchFit has given me this chance to tell you my story and I hope it proves to be an interesting read to you. I know it has certainly been a interesting life to live, in all its shades!

My name is Helena and I am a personal trainer, nutritionist, group fitness instructor and a food intolerance practitioner and have been in the fitness industry for 20 years. People who know me from my work and those who see me now encounter a busy fitness professional who is usually full of life and vigour and looks like she practices what she preaches.

What could I possibly know of a natural inclination to inactivity, a destructive love of sugary food, a seemingly futile life of failing to stem the tide of fat build up and weight gain? Well, as it happens, quite a lot…


My naturally slender frame knows exactly what it is like to try and function under the weight of a 15+ stone version of myself. And when you consider the fit version of myself operates at a little over 8st – you can see how I have been two very different people.

I know extremes. 200lbs on a naturally slender body is one end of the spectrum. At the other I have competed in physique and fitness competition on stage ‘shaking my thinking’ in a tiny bikini and shaking my thing, and closer to 115lbs – which some might point to as being another extreme. However I know which one I prefer!

Spending years tipping into depression and suffering the ‘feel bad factor’ and the discomfort of the tops of my legs rubbing together, being horribly self conscious and uncomfortable wearing anything remotely revealing,  to an athletic petite build, weighing 8st 7lbs and pretty much living in workout kit!

How did I get here?  For years I did what so many people out there do. I fell for all the marketing spin and the glossy advertising and the relentless promotions. I have gone through countless quick fix diets, rapid remedies and instant solutions to quickly loosing weight to having weight triple back on to what I started with before doing the crash diets, the question is here is what did I finally learn? Its simple and quiet straightforward fad diets don’t work for the long run.

When you think of it and ask yourself what are your attitudes to your body and how do you see yourself a few years down the line? The problem is not everyone thinks like this, instead their focus goes onto quick fix solutions unaware of the harsh long term effects.

Then there are all the  glossy magazines staring you in the face, kidding people into thinking that a fad diet that worked being touted by a celebrity (who often has the benefit of a live-in trainer of 24-7 call!) will work for you. I know this because not only is it common sense, but I have been there and am talking from absolute experience!

My approach is entirely based on my own experiences, finding and studies towards finding a fitter and healthier lifestyle for good.

I had always trained from a young age: boxing, kickboxing and running and more. The problem then was that I wasn’t eating what I should have been. Instead I ate rubbish and was getting it all wrong, from skipping breakfast to eating way too much at night and stuffing myself with  biscuits, crisps and sweets in between. And when less active this really began to tell. And in these circumstances I would reach for the quick fix.

Invest in a diary

This only took me from hungry from starving! It took me a few years to get it, and that’s when I invested in a diary and recorded all the foods, times and portions I had consumed each day. By doing this I was able to pinpoint were I was going wrong,

I started eating an average size breakfast, consisting of a bowel of porridge with fresh fruit and refuelled again two/three hours later with a boiled egg, two vegetarian sausages or sometimes just an omelette mixed with chives, mushrooms again. A further two-three hours later I refuelled again with an average portion of something more filling like tofu mixed in with salad and quinoa.

I found that by adopting this style of eating I ate less in the evening when I was less active. On top of that I felt more vibrant and vital. I slept better and was waking up more alert than ever before. And I was exercising more consistently.

Benefits of clean eating and regular exercising

After around six months family, friends and colleagues were increasingly noticing the benefits of my newly adopted clean eating and regular exercising programme.  The only problem was, I wasn’t!

Having banned myself from the weighing scale and not having weight myself for six months without weighing myself I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. Just over one year later, I decided the funky jeans that I bought as an incentive because they did not fit me were due the big test. To my amazement they fell down to my ankles…and not this time because I could not pull them up to start with! I just froze for a second and tears filled my eyes as it was the first time I plucked the courage to look at myself in the mirror properly and to gauge how far I had come.

Through a mixture of Boxing, Cross-Trainer and Weight Training and not forgetting clean eating I had achieved my goal. And I now  felt in control both mentally and physically. There is no way this could have been achieved to such a degree by any fads, fashions and quick fixes.  Nothing measured up to this feeling of accomplishment.

My journey

This is how I started my journey to becoming a fitness professional, something that I could fully apply my heart, mind and body. I had to take my experiences and use them to spread the truth.

Twenty years later I have helped both men and women achieve their goals and am proud and thrilled to have done so.

There are perhaps more brands and companies than ever making eye popping promises and luring the easily persuaded. Many of these are ironically reliant on not even working properly so they can bring you back for the next bout of crash weight loss and so the yo-yo effect begins.

Quick fix diets results

Far from providing the answer quick fix diets can compound the situation and add to obesity figures and the rising tide of type 2 diabetes, yet people still choose to go down this path.  Did I forget to mention that yoyo dieting also ages you? But I guess that’s OK as there is always plastic surgery! But that will never account for your insides that have been abused from lack of correct over a period of years.

I hope you can have a good think about this honest personal experience and realise this comes from my heart to express the facts: quick fix diets seriously do nothing for you in the long run.

Change your lifestyle and feel better inside and outside not for the short term, this can be a lifelong path. If I can do it so can you!


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Pollyanna Hale Health and Lifestyle coaches
Lost 13 Kg in Total
Mel, 32y Location: London, United Kingdom Working with Pollyanna changed everything. I lost 13kg, got toned and have more energy than ever! Get same results!


Chriz Zaremba Fitness Consultant
Lost 45 Kg in Total
Chris, 50y Location: London, United Kingdom Lost 45kg after the age of 50 and now competes and wins physique competitions and runs marathons Check our weight loss plans