3 ways our lives have changed since we transformed our lifestyles – Jen's Journey and Sara Da Silva

  • by IMAGE

Substantial weight loss is never just about the physical transformation. The mental health aspect of a lifestyle change can be even bigger. Jennifer Carroll, aka Jen's Journey, and Sara Da Silva, took part in Week 8 of IMAGE Self-care Sundays, in partnership with Yoplait.


Jennifer Carroll, better known as @jens_journey_ie on Instagram, has been documenting her life on social media ever since she first lost weight in 2018.

Jen is now in her third year of her journey, and has lost more than 12 stone.

She spoke with IMAGE group contributing editor Melanie Morris as part of our self-care series, in which we focused on Transformation.

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WATCH: Week 8 of  Self-care Sundays: Transform here

Here, she outlines three things that she's learned since beginning her transformation.

1. Confidence and self-love

"For someone like me, simple things that are really hard to explain [bring me confidence]. For me to walk down the street with no make-up on or my hair tied up. This morning I was doing laps in my local park, [previously] I never would have had the confidence to do something like that and it's something that I never take for granted now.

"I'm definitely still working on my self-love, but it's something that has come so far."

2. Patience

"Patience and consistency is something that my trainers in the gym have been great at instilling in me. I'm in the third year of my journey now. The first year I lost 10 stone, the second year I lost two stone, and this year I'm maintaining that. I'm dropping a few pounds here and there. And I remember that was really hard to deal with, because when you have these massive losses and you see the transformation and what you're capable of, you just expect to be able to do that all the time. We need to remember that life isn't always smooth sailing."

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3. A love of life

"For 10 or 15 years, I was just living and that's a hard thing to admit and it's sad. I was very privileged, I had a great life, I had a great group of friends, my family are amazing. I was living in London doing what I loved. But when I look back now I really was just getting up and getting through the day. I wasn't enjoying my life, even when I thought I was. Now, I never take a day for granted. I'm enjoying every moment and feeling so much more grateful. I've gained a lot of gratitude on my journey."

WATCH: Week 8 of  Self-care Sundays: Transform here

For Sara, who has overcome her own weight-loss journey and moved from her native Brazil to Ireland and set up her own womens' activewear range, called Sara-Da-Silva, she has learned the importance of being present in the moment.

1. Being present

"I've learned the importance of being aware, to be present. If you come from [a background of] not caring about what you eat, or how you move your body, to then start tracking your food and exercising, you notice how much you need to be present. It's really what makes the difference. Nowadays, I can see when I start [to become unaware], the small patterns make their way back. When I look at myself now, I don't just look at the weight loss, I look at how everything that I do teaches me to be more present as a person."

2. Consistency is key

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"I have learned first that I need to take action, but then I need to keep taking action every day. It needs to be consistent. If you do something often enough you start to see the results."

3. Responsibility

"I've also learned to take responsibility, and not put myself in the 'victim place'. It's my choice. Everything that can happen around me, I am the only person that can actually change. I see things in a different way now. I always try to look at [myself] and ask myself how can I make changes? How can I change this reality around me?"


Week 8: Transform was the final episode in our eight-week wellness series IMAGESelf-care Sundays, in partnership with Yoplait. Melanie Morris hosted eight virtual events - all free to the IMAGE reader - so you could access them from the comfort of your own home. We hope our series inspired you to start your own self-care journey and spread Yoplait's 'You Time' message, that putting yourself first is a key component in life's happiness and success.

Watch back Week 8 of  Self-care Sundays: Transform with Jen's Journey and Sara Da Silva here.

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For the full Self-care Sundays schedule, see here. Follow #IMAGESelfcareSundays on social.

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