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Updated 23 July 2019

'Here's how I transformed my body in just 8 weeks'

'You need to condition yourself mentally just as much as you need to condition yourself physically.'

When Tanya de Lange‘s stressful corporate job was wreaking havoc on her health and body, this former art director decided to switch her power suit for some heavy lifting. In just eight weeks, Tanya managed to transform her body. Here’s how she dropped the excess weight, found her passion and preps for the stage.

Tanya de Lange

City: Johannesburg

Age: 35

Occupation: Online Coach / Personal trainer / Part Owner of Private Gym in Sandton / Creator of ShapeShift / Motivational Speaker

Weight before: 67kg

Weight after: 52kg

Time required to reach goal: 8 weeks

Secret weapon to your fitness journey: Accountability

READ MORE: “I Lost 35 Kilos And Now I’m A Personal Trainer”

A long journey

Tanya says that her journey when she was 26 years old, “I was working a very stressful job as an art director in a corporate world. They rewarded us with alcohol and parties when we won awards. They fed us well, and we lived on any junk to our heart’s desire to make crazy deadlines to go on to the next party. Eventually, I became burnt out and needed sugar to pick me up.” Noticing that her bad eating habits were taking a toll on her body, she joined the gym and hired a personal trainer to help her lose weight and tone up. Four months later Tanya entered her first bikini competition and never looked back.

Trying again

A few years later, Tanya took a leap and opened up her own gym but the stress of starting her own business led to her slipping on taking care of herself. “I realized that I could not take on a big role if I cannot look after myself first. I needed a goal to keep myself accountable, and it left me with 8 weeks,” she explains. In these eight weeks, Tanya gave up her sugar cocktails for wine. And slowly started giving up her favourite desserts by switching to healthy recipes and find healthy alternatives. To avoid temptation and to ensure that she sticks to her goals by meal prepping. “A meal plan is fantastic because it gives you clear insight into what your body responds to. When I am pressed for time, or foresee load shedding, I get my trusted meal prep company to prep my food for the week.”

READ MORE: “I Lost 36 Kilos When I Started Running and Eating Low-Carb High Fat”

How she does it

When it comes to her training, Tanya says she is flexible but she prefers to train in the morning as it sets the tone for her day. “I am working on strengthening glutes and hamstrings and will do this three times a week, upper body twice a week, and on weekends train High-Intensity Interval Training and body weight with my team. I try to sleep in twice a week and will have one or two rest days as I listen to my body. Recovery is everything,” she explains.

Bikini competitions

Tanya now regularly competes in bikini competitions, which demands a different kind of training and prepping leading up to competitions. When it comes to prepping, eating is the key leading up to competition, “before a competition, we do a peak week where we cut all carbs to lose more body fat and deplete our glycogen levels,” she says. Peak week usually drains the body from energy, so Tanya carbo-loads the night before a competition. This allows for glycogen to store up in the body, giving your muscles a fuller appearance.

“This all seems extreme but the idea is to get rid of most of our water weight and experiment with our water levels in this process. It is a tiring process and you have to slowly reintroduce carbs and water and cardio and micronutrients to balance the body’s normal levels out to avoid bloating after competition prep,” Tanya explains. Although the process is gruelling, Tanya says that she enjoys challenging and transforming her body. She goes on to say that in order for you to achieve your goals, you need to believe in yourself. “If you believe you can, you will. If you believe you can’t, you will. So, you need to condition yourself mentally just as much as you need to condition yourself physically.”

READ MORE: “I Transformed My Body By Learning These Good Eating Habits”

Tanya’s tips

  • Know your why.
  • Set a realistic goal that will make you happy. Make this goal crystal clear to your coach.
  • Reach out to a fitness professional who works with likeminded success stories (client testimonials) that you follow.
  • Google your Fitness Professional and find out if the person is invested and will be reliable and can attend to your needs. Do a trial session to see if you connect.
  • Enjoy your fitness journey. If you don’t, then you have not quite found your fitness facilitator.

This article was originally published on www.womenshealthsa.co.za

Image credits: iStock, Women's Health SA

 
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