Rachel’s Flourishing Story – One Year Later

Mar 14, 2016 | Nutrition, Weight Loss



If you are anything like me then I am guessing you LOVE a good story. A good before and after insight into how one earth people actually transform their health, body and lives.


Now I am not necessarily talking about pictures of people in their underwear and looking at how much water weight or body fat they have lost. As amazing as that is I get more exciting about hearing about the WHOLE picture.


So today we have Rachel, a wonderful member of the Flourish community who shared her story with us last year (recap on the last update here) and I thought it would be fun to check in on her one year after she embarked on learning how to Flourish!


And for those of you that have no idea what the Flourish eCourse & Community is then it is a 6-week program and lifetime access to a program that will help your body and mind healoptimise your digestion, coach you through ditching the sugar addiction and help you fall more in love with your body whilst shedding any excess fat (if you want as your hot stuff already!)


>>>>>>Find out more about Flourish now


But know let’s hear from Rachel….


Feeling festive and fit in our santa suits! We both finished the 5k course and got medals.

Feeling festive and fit in our santa suits! We both finished the 5k course and got medals.


So it’s 11 months since I started Flourish – that it’s nearly been a year is just staggering! 


When I started Flourish last April I was looking for direction and support to become a healthier person and mother.  I was fresh from the Green Smoothie Challenge, had a teething 6 month-old and a diary full of weddings and other celebrations ahead of me.  The 6 weeks flew by and in that time I not only learnt a lot about myself, and especially my mental strength, but I also developed some really good habits with great intentions to keep them going. 



My final blog post at the end of the course included this sentence “So, what happens next? In all honesty there isn’t a next, it just keeps going…….. there is no reason, and no excuse, why I can’t carry on with the habits I’ve started while doing Flourish”.   


My immediate instinct reading that back was to mock my naivety.  When the course finished I really was on a high of pride about how I’d developed and what I’d learnt.  It’s only when I really think about the past 11 months, its challenges, and how I’ve reacted to them that I realise it wasn’t naivety at all. 


Since Flourish finished I have finished my maternity leave, resigned from my job and started my own business, Handmade by Holchester, which I do alongside being a full-time mum to a now walking, talking and tantruming toddler.  It’s hard work and my day rarely pans out how I expect it to.   The difference in our lifestyle now compared to a year ago is massive and it has certainly thrown its fair share of challenges my way.  But all it takes is a look in our kitchen cupboards and at the well-used Nutribullet on the bench to realise things stuck. 



Tigger loves a Green Smoothie

Tigger loves a Green Smoothie


Food-wise I am still a BIG green smoothie drinker and have them nearly every morning, with some sneaky toast and peanut butter every so often.  Our veg intake is still a lot higher than it was and my spiralizer is still one of the most-used items in my kitchen.  And, just as I had hoped, this way of eating has greatly influenced how my daughter is eating.  While what she eats is obviously down to me, that I’ve had the confidence to plan a wider variety of meals means that she really does have a broad palette and seems to love most foods, and especially vegetables, fruit and even green smoothies! 


The changing seasons was one of the biggest tests I encountered post-Flourish.  During the course, and the spring/summer, I enjoyed lots of salads but they certainly wasn’t as enticing in the depths of November.   But with a bit of preparation we adapted to bulk-cooking meals suitable for all the family.  With a freezer full of chilli’s, Bolognese, tomato/veg sauces and always having eggs in the house meant that even through the colder months I’ve been able to easily and quickly make up warming and healthy lunches for all of us.   


A (Green) snapshot of some of my meals

A (Green) snapshot of some of my meals


I identified early on that the mental side of living a healthier lifestyle was a massive factor that would require the most amount of work on my part.  I was positive at the end of the course about my perception of healthy but that was never going to be the end of the story and it has been an ongoing thing for me.  With so much going on (doesn’t everyone?!) there have of course been times where my mental strength has been weaker and more challenged than at others.  But one of the best tests of a habit is how naturally it comes to you despite the pressure.  At those more challenging times I have sometimes reached for the pizza and wine, but I was also able to reach for some perspective.  Through the more stress- and pressure-full times, like getting my website ready to launch or sewing like crazy in time for the Christmas rush, I could continue with my green smoothies and drink gallons of chamomile tea knowing that sometimes you can’t have everything as perfectly as you want it.  I could rationalise that some of my worse habits were still crowded out and that one night of pizza and wine does not automatically undo my good work.  There is no way I would have had that level of perspective a year ago.


I suppose I could say the biggest things I took away from Flourish were actually the smallest to put in place.  Lots of small changes, like smoothies and food planning, have now become un-noticed habits and have added up to a much healthier lifestyle.  Getting a grasp on how strong I can be was eye-opening, and having a dedicated 6-week window to see it develop was fundamental to that, as was writing the blog posts which forced me to stop and really think about it.


And finally, understanding what resources are out there, including the Flourish community, when you look beyond your Facebook/YouTube/Instagram feed has meant that I’ve felt supported when I needed it most. 


A Typical Breakfast

A Typical Breakfast


It would be wrong to say that Flourish has been responsible for what I’ve achieved over the past year (Kezia – too right you made this happen Rachel!) , but it wouldn’t be to say that it gave me the tools for me to achieve it. 


I’m not half the size I was, nor am I an athlete, but I am certainly healthier and have a much healthier outlook on dealing with what life flings at us and for me it was always more about the long-term gains.  I wasn’t naïve at all when I wrote my last blog post.  In fact I was perfectly on-point fresh in the knowledge of what I could achieve – it is an on-going process but sometimes to really appreciate what we’ve achieved we need to stop a second.  And that’s something else Flourish has taught me.


 4 Take Away Lessons Flourish has taught

  1. Little successes are still successes, and are key to bigger ones. From phasing out sugar, to adding in more veg to increasing the length of time I can hold a plank! 
  2.  You’ll still have off days so listen to your body and trust your instincts. 
  3. Stop and take your own advice sometimes! We’ll happily support others and offer ideas, but I’m terrible at not hearing it myself. Reflect every so often on how things are, use the support and resources around you, but think about what you’d say if it was someone else too.
  4. Always have tinned tomatoes, cumin and cinnamon in the cupboards, they can liven anything up! 

Handmade by Holchester can be found at www.holchester.com  and I’m around on Social Media too with Facebook , Pinterest ,  and my beloved Instagram (Check it out there is some LOVELY stuff in Rachels shop!)


Thank Rachel – I love this! You know so many programs out there focus on getting change in a few weeks but Flourish is all about you creating one healed, healthy, free and joy filled LIFE.


So make sure you join the waiting list and join us in this awesome community!


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