Week 52 - the difference a year makes

Updated: Sep 26, 2019

So here we are, a year after I started the 52 weeks healthier challenge, a challenge where I started with the intention of living a healthier life and having a healthier home all while encouraging a more sustainable lifestyle for the betterment of our environment.

It is true that there are things that I did not accomplish this year but life has a way of chucking obstacles at you and sometimes these things can't be helped. Though I will be looking to complete all the unfinished stuff in future.

Then WEIGHT: 130.0lbs OXY: 97% HEART: 72bpm It wasn't unusual for me to experience tummy aches, headaches, tiredness, lack of concentration and being disorganised. I didn't really put much thought into what I was eating and didn't take the time to cook my own meals often. I ate a lot of takeaways and convenient foods that didn't really leave me feeling full and energised, I was constantly snacking on sugary foods throughout the day between meals as I never felt fulfilled. I drank anywhere around 5-10 cups of coffee a day rather than opting for the more healthy alternative, water. I never made the time to exercise or go for walks, if it felt cold outside even if it was sunny it would be an excuse to stay in and watch Netflix rather than walk anywhere. Yoga to me seemed like something that would be hard to get into and yield a very little result. My home was chaos, cluttered with so much stuff, clothes i have never worn or never will wear, furniture that was just taking up space, toys form when hubby was a child that has been packed away in boxes for years gathering dust. When we went shopping we forgot on many occasions to bring out own bags when we went shopping and so brought home more plastic bags home. We also bought a lot of food based on the fact that it was less expensive, more convenient and not taking into account that it was wrapped in plastic in biodegradable packaging. Now WEIGHT: 123.0lbs OXY: 99% HEART: 68bpm I have had far fewer headaches, tummy aches, I feel more energized and focused throughout the day. I find that I am also a lot more organised then when I began. My home is well on its way to being a relaxing, peaceful yet still a luxurious and thoughtful environment for hubby and myself. We have had a major clearout of unwanted clothes, toys, books, furniture and all sorts in our home towards the start of this adventure. Everything that we wanted to go we donated to charity to be put to better use rather than going to landfill. I now eat a healthy breakfast each day, I cook 90% of all my meals using fresh produce, the foods I have been preparing and eating has left me more fulfilled and energised than that of the takeaways and convenient foods that I used to eat a lot of. I rarely feel like I haven't eaten enough and need to constantly snack throughout the day. I have drastically reduced my meat consumption and having been inspired by the vegan movement I can happily say that I am on my way to becoming a plant-based Vegan myself. We also buy very little, to no takeaways now. When it comes to water and refined sugars, I have been consuming a lot less refined sugars rather opting for sugar-free alternatives. My water consumption has improved a huge deal for me now consuming at least 1-2 litres a day compared to me having a cup and then the rest of the day being all coffee. I have been exercising more, whenever it is sunny out I never turn down a chance to go for a walk. I have been doing 30 - 60 mins of yoga session a day and 30 mins of mindful meditation a day using the Headspace app. I still grow my own herbs at home but after a furry tornado called Zorro got into the garden, I am now looking to upgrade and expand my garden to a more cat-proof shelf system so I can grow more. We have reduced the number of plastics we bring home by buying things that come in paper, cardboard, biodegradable or no packaging, we also use reusable shopping bags to carry our food. When it comes to Hygiene and cosmetics, I now refuse to use anything but natural & organic hygiene. I found some really amazing brands to replace the old products that I disposed of after starting the 52 weeks challenge. I have been really loving Organyc for pads & pantyliners, I believe they are my new go-to brand for intimate hygiene products, not only are they organic but they are incredibly comfortable. I have also been enjoying products from Fair Squared that are vegan and cruelty-free, their products are not only really good for your skin but they smell delicious. This challenge wasn't just about making my home and myself happier but also my family and kitties are a part of the family so we have been searching out brands that provide more organic and natural products for our furry friends, this includes pet food. Our most recent find and our cats current new favourite are from Pure Pet Food. After these last 52 weeks, I can honestly tell you I feel a lot healthier, I feel that I can breath deeper, I feel less stressed and more energised. Our home is a lot cleaner, calmer, less cluttered and more organised... this makes me happy. I discovered a lot of new brands doing this challenge that will be buying a lot more from in future. I thoroughly enjoyed these past 52 weeks and it really has opened up my eyes and I can see things in a whole new light and I am really happy that I stuck it out. I highly recommend trying this challenge for yourself, spend 52 weeks decluttering your mind, your body and your home, going more natural and organic, you will thank yourself for doing it.

What's something that you really want to change this year?

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