Hello! My name’s Katie Lowe, and this is Fat Girl, PhD – a blog about healthy living, wellbeing and happiness.
Fat Girl, PhD started in April 2012, but my journey started a long time before that. You see, I’ve always been the fat girl. Always. It’s just how I roll. But when I had an accident in 2007, I couldn’t walk for a number of years, and the weight piled on. Combined with an unhappy relationship and even unhappier breakup, I found myself at 290lbs in August 2010.
That looked like this:
Over the last two years, I’ve lost over 120lbs through a programme of diet and exercise designed by health and wellbeing badass Matt Peacock. Now, the situation’s a little more like this:
But the thing is – it’s not just about weight loss. If it’d been all about weight loss, I don’t think I’d have seen anywhere near this sort of success.
No – this is about wellbeing, and happiness. Two things that are far, far more important than any number, on any scale.
Now, admittedly, this blog started off as a way to make myself accountable – because if my friends were reading about my weight loss, I could hardly sit in the office and work my way through a round of sausage sandwiches and cake. But since August 2012, it’s been linked to from major American websites including the Huffington Post and MindBodyGreen, and my weight loss story has appeared in the UK press in the MailOnline, The Sun Online, and both the online and print editions of The Daily Star.
Since then, I’ve been completely inspired by the messages I’ve had from people all over the globe, who’ve lost weight and found happiness because they’ve read the blog. Nothing makes me happier – or blows my mind more! As a result, I’m working extensively with Matt to design a meal plan and get the programme ironed out for publication here, so that people can follow it exactly as I did, and (hopefully!) see the same results!
Put simply, it’s a combination of a nutritionally balanced diet and three to four workouts a week which follow a structure of:
- Warmup – 5-10 minutes of full-body activity, such as rowing, or walking whilst swinging your arms
- Resistance Training – following a specific order of weights, pushing the body to stimulate muscle growth, which moderates blood sugar levels and reduces risk of illnesses such as type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis
- Fat Burning – 60-90 minutes of walking, cycling, or another cardiovascular activity, with a measured heart rate of between 115 and 130bpm
Seriously. And soon, we’ll be able to post the whole thing on here.
This programme isn’t a diet, it isn’t a quick fix – and it certainly isn’t just about weight loss. It’s about changing your entire attitude towards yourself, both in mind and body.
That in mind, Matt’s programme isn’t a floaty, vague, “think yourself thin” self-help thing. There’s actual science in there. A lot of science. He’s been researching this for over four years, and he’s seen significant results with people who are older, infirm, or morbidly obese, as well as those just looking to lose a small amount of weight or improve their levels of fitness.
And he’s painstakingly had to explain the science to me. I’m a PhD student in modernist literature. I work in marketing. Science isn’t exactly my forte.
This simple, in fact: it’s a balanced diet and exercise. But in a very specific, controlled way that gets the best results for burning fat, and increasing muscle. Not only that, but it offers a working alternative that means expensive, intrusive surgery doesn’t have to be the only option for people who are severely overweight or disabled. It gives people the chance to make their own decisions, and improve their own quality of life – whilst not only offering a cure for their weight issues, but improving their psychological wellbeing too.
The exercise programme is available for download here – and we’re currently working on a meal plan to provide an all-round kit to help everyone achieve the same success that I’ve had.
This blog has become something far bigger than I ever thought it would be – but I’m convinced that this programme is something that really can make a difference. And that’s why I’m sharing it here, along with my thoughts on happiness, body image, society, and motivation.