Having a stretch after a core body workout

It’s coming up to the 14th year since I started on the health and fitness journey, which began back in April 2007. 

Now that right there is a long time!

The journey so far has been one heck of a ride mentally and physically. 

I started out as a very overweight (arguably obese) and unfit late teen.  This version of me was a young woman who had always struggled with her weight and had never found fitness fun or interesting.  In fact, she was discouraged too many times to mention.  People would laugh at her for trying.  She’d be the last one picked for teams at school.  And even when she was on a team, she was made to feel like she wasn’t even there.

I don’t have many surviving photos of this past version.  I destroyed most of them in the early days of my fitness journey.


I was ashamed.

Ashamed that I had let myself become so unfit and unhealthy that even walking up the stairs made me out of breath.

Ashamed that I could not fit in with my peers because young people’s fashion did not accommodate to my size.

Ashamed that through the mockery and mean comments about my size and appearance, I chose to hide from people and this only added to the weight increase.

And so, in many ways, I separated myself from this 18 year old Sabrina.  I never wanted to be like her again. 

It’s only been these recent months, through meditation, that my mind has been gently nudging for me to reconsider this separation… a way to reconnect and show this younger version love.

I’ve reached a point where I finally realise that this past version should actually have the MOST admiration from my present self.


She had the courage to walk into a gym with the intention to change her life for the better.

She kept going, despite the self consciousness that she was the biggest one in the room… and she also picked herself up to return on the fitness journey after each dip.

She had amazing strength to persevere when young men (mainly) would laugh at her trying to do a sit up and other exercises.

Ultimately, this past self sparked the drive within me to change.

And so, through a recent meditation, I finally summoned this past self and thanked her for the gifts she has given me.

And then, we reunited as one.

We all could do more to think back about our past selves more fondly and recognise what they had to offer.

So, what could you thank one of your past selves for today?

Sabrina Mistry

As a qualified Personal Trainer and 2nd Dan traditional martial artist, Sabrina combines both to deliver workout programmes, martial arts instruction and fitness classes that are designed with the longer-term health of the body in mind. Get connected on Instagram and Facebook: @beyondthedojang

Leave a Reply