Hi, I’m Sophie. I’m 31 and live in central London with my husband, Freddie, though I’m originally from Yorkshire.
My day job (and evening job and night job some of the time – it’s not very 9 to 5!) is working for the Civil Service, in a high-intensity, high-profile role at the centre of government. But my twin passions are fitness (which is what this website is all about) and reading, writing and editing.
In a role like mine, it can be hard to prioritise exercise and eating right, and once upon a time, I didn’t really bother. After a twelve hour day that’s like something out of The Thick of It, it’s tempting to grab some fast food and a huge glass of wine and crash out on the sofa.
I’ve seen a lot of super motivational stories about people who were hugely overweight, out of shape and unfit who’ve turned their lives around with Beachbody. My story is less exciting, but perhaps more relatable for the average professional Londoner.
I never had a super unhealthy lifestyle. I’d go to the gym once in a while and vaguely workout. And I’d keep a token eye on what I was eating. I’ve always maintained a healthy BMI and looked okay. But I was never quite careful enough with my food or dedicated enough to my exercise, and it all felt like a bit of a chore.
All this changed when I got engaged, back in 2012. Frankly, I think it’s a bit ridiculous how there’s such pressure to lose weight for your wedding, almost regardless of your size upon engagement, but in the long-run, it was great for me.
As I’d said, I looked okay. I was about a size twelve (US eight), and I’d never really felt the urge to slim down for special events. But ever since I was a little girl, I’d wanted to wear my mum’s wedding dress on my own special day. It was an elaborate, corseted, beaded, crinoline affair that she’d spent an absolute fortune on in order to look gloriously Victorian back in the early eighties. And aged 26, I was just as enthusiastic about wearing it as I had been aged 6. The one issue was that it was a size eight (US four) with a tiny waist. And it was so elaborate it would have been near impossible to alter.
We arranged our wedding for two years after our engagement, so I had plenty of time to slim into it in a steady, healthy fashion. And I decided to give it my all.
I downloaded the My Fitness Pal app (which I’m in no way affiliated with, but hugely recommend) and used it to keep track of my calorie intake, which worked a treat. And I started visiting the My Fitness Pal forums, where, alongside lots of tips and tricks about healthy eating, I kept seeing people mention Beachbody fitness programmes. I took the plunge and purchased Chalean Extreme.
From the first workout, it was both more intense and more enjoyable than anything I’d ever managed in the gym. I could hardly walk the next day, but I was hooked. For the first few weeks, I was totally focussed on the weight-loss and shaping up elements, motivated by thoughts of fitting into The Dress. But over the weeks, something magical happened. Yes, my body started to change in ways I could hardly believe. But more importantly, I started to actively look forward to the workouts rather than seeing them as just a means to an end. I got a little thrill every time I was able to lift heavier, do more reps, or keep at the cardio for longer. I felt a real buzz before, during and after. And however stressful my working day had been, I always felt calmer and happier once I’d pushed through a workout.
Over that engagement period, I tried out a couple of different programmes, and I loved them all in different ways. By the time the wedding came around, the infamous dress was, if anything, a little loose – though it looked fab anyway, if I do say so myself! And for the evening reception, I brought a new dress – in a UK size 6 (US size 2), which showed off every inch of my new body.
In the three years since my wedding, I’ve never again been as ruthless with myself as I was in the run-up to the wedding. There’s a bit more room for rest days and cheat meals in my life now. But even though I’m no longer working to a specific goal, the love of Beachbody videos has never left me. I constantly have a programme on the go and love to try out new ones and return to old favourites. I’m now a member of Beachbody on Demand, which allows me to pick and choose with ease.
Since we got married, I’ve got my husband interested too, and he’s now a Body Beast fanatic. I’ve kept recommending them to anyone who’ll listen. I truly believe that working out at home is the most efficient way for most people to get fit, and that Beachbody produce the best home fitness products.
Until very recently, it wasn’t possible to be a coach in the UK, so I was recommending these products purely for the love of it. I’m now super excited to finally get to be a coach and provide advice on fitness in general and Beachbody in particular to a wider audience.
I can honestly say that that first DVD was one of the best purchases I ever made.
In the coming year, I’m hoping to put fitness at the absolute centre of my life. This is going to involve three things:
- really stepping up my own fitness and healthy eating again
- making a success of being a coach so I can help as many people as possible get the same benefits I have
- training as a fitness instructor
Most Beachbody coaches are US-based. If you’re British and wanting to get involved with the world of Beachbody, please reach out to me. I can promise emails on the right timezone, recipes with proper measurements (not weird cups!), and articles focussed on bonfire night instead of Thanksgiving. And more generally, after five years of being a Beachbody obsessive, I know all there is to know about the different programmes and what will suit different people best.
Please get in touch if you’re interested in working with me or want more information.