Sarah Winn, 46 Fitsista Personal Trainer
Sarah has worked as a Personal Trainer for the last ten years and always enjoyed keeping fit and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Based in Hull as a mobile Personal Trainer known as Fitsista, Sarah is a single mum of two teenagers, working with regular clients advising them on healthy living, fitness coaching, group training and bootcamps.
COVID-19 had a massive impact on Fitsista, Sarah had to quickly learn how to use technology to take her training sessions online. A huge challenge but she has managed to build her community of clients even more, via the internet.
Sarah says she has always followed a healthy diet, enjoying food, cooking and creating healthy dishes but since her teenage years, along with friends and to help her relax at home, she was partial to a good bottle of wine and gin and tonics.
“From quite a young age I was always a big drinker at the weekends – it’s what everyone did. Although I didn’t really drink much during the week, looking back I had no idea how bad binge drinking can be.”
“The volume of alcohol eased off while my children were young – there’s nothing worse than entertaining kids whilst nursing a hangover so I just didn’t go too over the top. However, when my marriage broke down, I once again started to enjoy weekends out with friends and could quite easily polish of two bottles of wine and a few gins – a few times more than the recommended weekly alcohol units!”
“Then the day after a night out, I would regularly waste it, lazing around on the sofa, feeling really horrible while my body and mind recovered from the excesses. Sometimes I would still feel the effects two days later – so when I turned up to meet clients on a Monday morning, I wasn’t on top form.”
“I was advising clients about their health but felt I wasn’t really living by my own advice and quite often, weight-loss goals are set back simply because of calories in alcohol. You can eat healthy food and work hard in the gym then ruin it all with booze.”
“So around four years ago I set myself a challenge to stop drinking for one month and during the first two weeks of my alcohol holiday I noticed I had so much more energy and it felt amazing. I was enjoying my weekends to the fullest and doing so much more with my time.”
“When the month was over I felt so good that I decided to keep going. I had never thought that I would be able to stop drinking. I loved the social side so much, it was how my friends and I enjoyed ourselves and giving up had a big impact on my social life. At first I carried on going out with them – they always said things like: “Oh, you’re still not drinking? Go on you can just have one.”
“People around me just expected it to be a phase or an experiment to prove a point but in four years I haven’t touched a drop – except some brandy sauce out of a packet at Christmas -definitely hit me!”
“The only thing I’ve replaced alcohol with is time and energy, I haven’t taken up other unhealthy habits – maybe just a few more sweets here and there. I have more time to do things with the kids, get an early start for a day out, take dog walks, long runs and more time to shop! I’ve recently started working a few hours on a Saturday morning too – I can be up and out and back from training clients before the kids even notice I’ve been out.”
“I would just say to anyone reading this: I know the fear of missing out socially is something you will be thinking about, but I have found the benefits far out-weigh this. After just two weeks see how different you are – you’ll feel so much better; have more time and patience with your family, your mind will be clearer and able to focus on work better, your gym routines will be more rewarding.”
“Quitting booze gave me a new lease of life and I’m sure it will do the same for you feel this is too much all at once, take part in the ADS screening tool and if your score is higher than 14, you would be wise to at least consider reducing your intake.”