#WhyWeRun – Changing a life with Erin Howse

In this #WhyWeRun post we catch up with Erin Howse who is signed up to walk the 11km event at 1Above T42. Realising she could and should do it for her children, Erin has transformed her health and her life with dietary changes and workouts wherever she finds them – including youtube and homemade weights! Now *that* is dedication. Read on for an amazing dose of inspiration. . .

Winter a few years ago when my children were little they got sick, as kids do. I took them along to the GP who sorted them out then turned to me.

I have been overweight since I was a teen-ager and often felt picked on by doctors for making everything about my size.

She brought it to my attention (not that I hadn’t noticed, to be honest) that I had continued to gain weight and was now 135kg. I was also acutely unwell with the respiratory infection my children were suffering.

I was given the instruction to start optifast – cutting down to one meal a day and two supplementary shakes. I asked to be seen by a dietician who has worked really hard with me over the last few years. It’s not easy knowing you are starving your body. But it is nice when the scales reflect your hard work.

At the start I was so determined! I was working out for 60-90 minutes every day, (and working as a nurse, and being a mum, and a wife) using old 1.5 litre lemonade bottles full of water for weights.

I followed videos on you tube. Some are better than others, but there’s a great variety.

With the dietician we reintroduced regular meals. A huge challenge as self control in the kitchen is so hard. I now work out 5 days a week for 30-90 minutes depending on what I’m doing. I’ve been trying to go on my bike more, with it being a cheap ‘mountain bike’ it’s great resistance on the road. It’s not always easy. Plateaus are real for me. As are those times when I just don’t want to have to think about it any more.

My biggest achievement has been getting under 100kg. This was my first major goal as I got to go sky diving – something I had wanted to do since I found out I was too heavy in 2006.

I did a 6-week boot camp in town to do something a bit more social. It was so nice to meet other women struggling to make fitness part of their daily life. One of the ladies – Suzanne Cornelissen, suggested we do the generation homes triathlon in Tauranga in February (my first triathlon!). Since then we have been looking for more events to do – the t42 sounded perfect and I’m sure it will be.

I’m now down to 90kg and hoping to keep going in the right direction health wise.

I would like to thank my amazing supportive husband Rory. I couldn’t have done it without him. He knows me very well. He understands the importance of occasionally having a glass of wine, and when I need to not do those things and refocus on my goals.

Interested in tackling the same event? Check out the 1Above T42 event here.

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