My weight loss journey(s), part II

I’m lucky. I have never had any serious injuries that could not have been fixed or would not have healed. Physically I have been able to train and give a try to any sports I have wanted and after each pregnancy I have been able to start training as soon as I have felt like it. Not that I have wanted to start very early as with little ones it’s hectic enough as it is.

Anyway after giving birth I have started walking slowly around two months and by six months a bit more exercise. I did run quite a lot when I was younger and have continued to run all my life more or less. I have also gone to the gym ever since they became more popular but neither running or going to the gym was very goal-oriented, but more having fun and getting out of the house. Main thing being I have always been active so lack of exercise has not been the reason for my weight gain I understand that now.

Getting to know my body

I have started this ”self study” back in Australia getting to know different body types as I was always wondering why it’s so hard to loose fat around the waist and bum and why I seem to gain no muscles no matter what I do. I learned that women have different fat tissues stored in different places than men and there is really nothing you can do about it as it is the evolution way of ensuring there is food around ”in case you get pregnant”. Trust me I have tried many time to tell my body there is no need to store it anymore but evolution seems to disagree and it’s been the hardest and last spot to get rid of stored fat for me!

I also learned that some people have naturally more either slow or fast twitching muscles determining what sports you are more inclined to be good at. So no wonder I can keep going for hours and feel nothing and yet anything where you require sudden strength I am completely useless. My body clearly is an endurance body with more slow twitching muscles and again there is nothing I can do about it.

On a cruise from Sweden to Finland 2018 photo credit to hubby

So these body type revelations have enabled me to accept my body the way it is and work with it and not against it. I also have read about my blood type and other similar kind of books about ”body types”, but I will not go into more details about them as for me the two above mentioned were the most meaningful ones. I will though mention that after reading about what kind of foods are recommended to my blood type and after I have started to ”examine” my body more by eating (or not eating) the ”recommended” (or not recommended) foods I must say I do agree with most of them and found that information very useful also. Worth checking if it interest you.

BUT like with everything I consider all these as a sort of ”framework” you can work around with. Knowledge gave me more options and helped me to understand how my body may react to different things easier. This all helped me in finding my balance.

Finding the balance

Anyway back to the actual story about my weight loss journey…

So having read a fair bit and having tried this and that I felt I was all the time getting closer to finding the ”key to my body”. I after all always did loose weight a bit once I set my mind on it, but the critical thing I think I was missing was as simple as the BALANCE of it all.

I trained too hard and ate too little or ate too much and did not train enough. So I ate the wrong amount and wrong macro nutrients in wrong balance.

After summer 2017 I got totally fed up of myself and I felt like I was not getting anywhere although I ran quite a lot and trained all the time so it did not quite make sense to me. Then I decided to put a stop to it and started marking every single thing I put in mouth into one of these food diary, health apps (there are so many around nowadays) just to see where I go wrong.

I set my target weight loss on the app to reasonable 500 g per week thinking the slower I go, the easier it is to maintain. After a few days, weeks and months my revelations were:

  1. My portions were way too big
  2. The calorie intake for loosing weight was much lower than I thought
  3. The ”hidden” and ”unnecessary” calories
  4. The balance of macro-nutrients was completely off
  5. I had not compensated for exercise days enough
  6. You can fit so much energy in just 1400 calories a day!

So let’s dig deeper into each of those:

My portions were way too big

I ate for two although it was just me, well not quite, but definitely smaller portions and smaller plates helped to count the calories easier and I realized that I had been eating more than I need to ”keep the hunger away”. With less ”bad carbs” the hunger did not come so strong, but actually was very tolerable.

The calorie intake for loosing weight was much lower than I thought

The app said that my calorie intake should be around 1400 something if I wanted to loose weight. My total calorie intake I thought was around 2000 but nope, it was actually less (around 1600) so I had probably all the time eaten a bit more than I should have because ”I am tall girl”.

The ”hidden” and ”unnecessary” calories

Counting calories forced me to simplify my menu and what I eat resulting in better quality food. I did not want to fool myself but wanted to be honest, so rather had homemade stuff where I knew what was in it, than bought ready made with dodgy nutrient/calorie figures. I also quickly realized what foods there is no point eating as they have absolutely no nutritional value. Plus it’s all out of my daily total calories if I eat them so again no point.

The balance of macro-nutrients was off

I ate way too little protein and too much fats and carbs. Also my vitamins were not hitting the required targets. So what I started doing is looking at the macros and adding more to what I was still missing for the day. For example if I was missing protein, have one more egg. Missing carbs eat a piece of bread. Missing vitamin c eat an orange and so on. All this helped me to a) learn even more about nutrients of each food b) balance what I put into my mouth better on a daily basis without any apps.

I had not compensated for exercise days enough
Summer 2019. Photo credit to my daughter

I ran at that time around 20-25 kilometers a week with one long run and a gym session on top. I realized I had not eaten more on those days to keep the calorie deficit at around 200-300 calories per day. So if I went for a long run I ate more and had a so called ”eat & recharge day”. Basically I all the time made sure I stayed at the calorie target or 200-300 below if I had been exercising (the app added the calories you had consumed on top or your total target so the more you run, the higher the ”allowed” calorie intake).

You can fit so much energy in just 1400 calories a day!

With the right macro nutrient choices you can fit so much into just 1400 calories. First when I saw the daily amount the app gave me I thought I can never survive on that and that I will be so hungry. The more I logged my daily food into the app the better I got to know what keeps the hunger away best and started to favor those on my diet.

This kind of goes together with learning about the ”empty” and ”hidden” calories. No point putting something into your mouth that does not have the right nutritional value you need. After training I tended to prefer eggs as they have lots of protein. I also ate lots of veggies and salad as those you can eat almost as much as you want without them ”taking it out” from you daily target.

So for me I think the game changer was the realization that it’s not about avoiding bad carbs and fats but adding more protein and finding the right balance between them all that works for my body (with a little help of modern technology in the form of a handy mobile app).

How I made sure where I am at with loosing weight project and how did I know I have made progress? Check My weight loss journey(s) part III in the coming days…

Want to check background why I wanted to make a change? Check My Weight Loss journe(y), part I.

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Training W51 – Year ending and Kili preparations

End of the year is approaching fast and I’ve been able to train fairly well lately. I am trying to go to the gym twice a week to either classes or just generally to train. Running on the treadmill makes it easier to do HIIT training and I have managed to run at max 11.5 km/h speed without getting too exhausted which is again something I never could have dreamed of before.

I have found nice routes around the new neighborhood and a new favorite spot at the top of a cliff at the end of a trail which is even higher than around my previous house. The feature photo is from the other side where the ”new favorite spot” cliff is. It is in the middle of the forest and you can hardly hear the highway there although it is near, but in the city it’s hard to find spots where there is no lights or no sounds no matter how small the city. All in all we are really happy about the move and beginning to settle in nicely finding our way around everything.

With end of the year around the corner I have also had to start thinking about preparations to be ready for Kilimanjaro like the doctors approval letter, vaccinations, things for the kit list and visa. It seems like there was a lot of time and now suddenly there is no time to make huge differences. Surely I could improve my oxygen intake even more but reality is that there is only a little over a month to go. It is starting to get real.

I will try to make the best of the remaining time concentrating on HIIT training, running and doing simply what ever sport I like the most and trying to relax before the big climb.


  • Two basic runs. 9 kilometers and 8.96 kilometers
  • One trail run 4,8 kilometers
  • One Gym training
  • One HIIT run on treadmill 8 minutes
  • ”Stair climber” 11 minutes (50 floors)


Still not too late to sponsor…

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My weight loss journey(s), part I

I thought I would share my story about how I got to where I am now with my body in the hope that it might help someone else and give ideas generally on the topic. As we are all different there is no one rule that applies to all, but I will try to open up why I think my actions have applied to my body. I am not a doctor and my observations are only about my body and how it seems to ”work”.

I have gone through some sort of weight loss project after each pregnancy, but the older I got the harder it became. I have also read a bit on how sports and nutrition affect human body mainly because I wanted to understand more of the consequences of my actions. It has helped me to understand better why my body reacts the way it does. This all has required a really close looks into myself listening to my body very carefully and paying attention to all changes in every level.

It is not only what you put in your mouth that affects the body, but many outside factors and also normal physiological things that you cannot change, but need to work with. But let’s get to the story and start from the beginning.

Before children

Me 22 years ago

I was always skinny. Too skinny. I grew 12 cm in just a few months during my teenage years and gained hardly any weight. In addition to that I have skinny genes. My weight back then in my 20’s was 62 kilos. For my height (179 cm) that is not enough I understand that now.

I ate normal, exercised a bit mainly running and team sports. No weight lifting so no muscles either. It did not matter how much I ate, I still didn’t seem to gain any weight so came to conclusion that this is the way I am and no point worrying about it too much.

If you have checked About me page you know that I have four children. Each pregnancy I have gained about 24 to 26 kilos. I ate fairly healthy and weight gain was welcome during the first few pregnancies and possibly nature’s way to ensure that there is enough meat on my bones to breast feed the baby.

Anyway second pregnancy started around me weighing 67 kilos which is still around the low end for my height. Again gained 24 kilos of which over 10 kilos was left to hospital during child birth. Being younger (31 years) I lost the remaining kilos weight fairly easily without any special effort and was around 70 kilos when I got pregnant the third time.

My 40th after 4th child 6 years ago

Now being already 35 years old there was a clear shift and it was harder to loose the weight and during pregnancy I seemed to gain weight easier too. I was at 75 kilos when I got pregnant fourth time when I was 39 years.

If there was a change at 35 then at 40 there was a clear drop. Pregnancy was harder and again weight just kept accumulating. I did long walks trying to keep active, but still I gained again 24 kilos! When I went to give birth to my youngest in Australia they said the weight restriction to the pool was 100 kilos. My weight was 99 and at this time I left only 10 kilos lighter from the hospital and I did not loose the weight anymore as easily as I did when I was younger.

After children

Being over 80 kilos (closer to 90!!) was a bit of a shock to me as a number and seeing photos of me at my 40th birthday about 6 months after giving birth to my fourth child kind of woke me up. I was determined to ”do something about it” and joined a ”12 week challenge” at a local gym. I thought that doing more exercise and eating a bit healthier would do the trick and it did to some extent and got myself to around 82 kilos.

Me few months ago

Time passed and I didn’t stress too much about it as for my height it was not too bad, a bit at the top range, but still within normal BMI limits. It did though bother me at times and I did not feel quite like myself having been slimmer all my life previously, but didn’t have strength or resilience to do anything about it. I think it just was not the time yet.

Three years ago I managed to squeeze my weight with plenty of running and a bit healthier eating to 77 kilos, but gained all that back in less than a year during a more difficult time in my life (divorce) so was back at 82 kilos. Again did not stress about it too much as there were so many things going on in my life at that time that were more important than weight.

Then 1,5 years ago I decided again to ”do something about it” and this time it would be for good. My weight was still around that 82 kilos and I did run regularly, but also ate completely wrong so the balance was incorrect. I totally got tired of the way I felt, the way I looked and it just was not me anymore. I felt like I have to really do something now.

Children were also older so I was able to concentrate more on my own well-being and more importantly my current husband supported me. This meant a lot to me and allowed me to take time to myself with good conscience.

Now 1,5 years and 15 kilos later I feel like me again. I feel more confident in my body and think that this is the me I lost some time ago.

How did I get here? I will share that story in My weight loss jouney(s) part II blog post in the coming days.

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Training W50 – More Christmas hassle but tying to keep training on

It’s been a while since my last post about something else than weekly training. Moving house caused a total chaos for our household that has lasted for a few months. There is really nothing you can do about, you just need to unpack one box at a time and get used to the new neighborhood. I really love the new house as we have much more space than before.

At the same time the choir end of year concerts have taken quite a significant amount of time during the evenings. We have had multiple performances. One was for the Finnish National Broadcasting channel Yle at the after party of the Finnish Independence day which is a really big thing here with about 2,5 million viewers. All the singing during the week concluded in the biggest concert of the year for us last weekend.

It’s clear the end of the year hassle is full on and it seems like the holidays are coming way too quickly! Prioritizing has been the word of the month and training has been first and simply no time for blogging as much as before.

In spite of all this hassle I have been able to keep up with my training pretty good and I can see progress both in speed and strength.

I have also started to dream about hiking, mountaineering and climbing so my mind seems to be set for the climb already 🙂

Wishing everyone a quiet and nice Christmas break and please keep following my blog I am hoping to have some time to update it during the break. I have so many ideas and posts ”almost ready”!


  • 1 basic run 16 kilometers
  • 1 trail run 10 kilometers
  • 1 gym training


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Training W49 – Getting stronger and wet weather

Pre-Christmas stuff has hit also and it’s been fairly busy both at work and off work. Our choir Gospel Helsinki has had quite a few concerts and happenings during December for example performance on the national television Yle for Finnish Independence day reception after party which is a big thing around here about 2,5 million viewers (remember there is only 5,5 million of us the whole entire country). You should be able to watch it if in Finland, not sure if you can watch it abroad. Here the link anyway.

I have been doing clearly more weight training last week. I suppose there is a bit of novelty in the gym being so close and weather turning more wet and dark. Then again HIIT training has been a regular thing and have been able to increase my average speed to 9,4 km outside and 9,9 on treadmill.

All in all good but busy week and with Christmas approaching assuming it will get only busier until the holidays!



  • Two gym training, 35 min. Both concentrating on core and upper body with lots of chin-up training. Aiming to do two in a row now as one is pretty easy.
  • Two runs. One 6,6 kilometers and one 4,7 kilometers (best average speed 9,4 km/h)
  • Treadmill HIIT training 3 kilometers (average speed 9,9 km/h)
  • Strair climber 25 stories up about 5 min 30 sec
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Training W48 – New activities, winter is here

Finally temperature dropped below zero and we got a bit of frost and snow. You might think we are crazy being happy about snow and weather turning colder but the reality is when it gets colder everything is frozen and water turns to snow so it’s brighter and cleaner outside. Strange as it sounds it is also ”warmer”. Worst is the rainy, ”close to zero”, windy season, but when it gets below zero the air turns dry and crispy.

It usually does not last so expecting it to get warm next week again, but anyway nice to see the change in climate happening as it also changes my training schedule and activities a bit.

So I joined the local gym which also gives me the variety of different classes and a great gym with lots of space and all possible equipment you could think of. Best of all a treadmill and ”stair climber” and cross trainers. These will need to mimic the lack of proper hiking and running sometimes too when it’s just pouring close to zero. I have no desire to get soaking wet and cold so rather train inside on those days.

Anyway, I feel really good, training is good and I have scaled up my speed and gym training a bit this week. Still need to take iron and took the last jabs for Tanzania too. The climb is getting closer by the week and I am starting to think what I still have time for, what are the essential training I need to focus on. That is one of the reasons why I have changed my training plan a bit.

So now my new training plan is as follows:

Week 48 total was impressive in the scale of number of activities because I was really keen on getting back to regular training routine after the house move so trained every chance I got pretty much.

Got some good results with best average speed on treadmill 9,3 km/h on my HIIT run. Also found some new muscles during a core class. Very much looking forward to next week now that I seem to be back on the roll again.


  • 1 gym training. One regular gym training on my own
  • 1 core training class 30 min
  • 1 cardio training class 35 min
  • 1 Basic running outside 3 kilometers
  • 1 trail run 7,3 kilometers
  • 1 treadmill HIIT run 41 minutes about 6,35 kilometers

Do you want to support me to get to the finish line?

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