Me and my health: Sonya McAllister on her lifestyle
Sonya McAllister (40) is the owner and founder of weight loss club We Slim Together. She lives in Randalstown with her husband Liam and three children Dylan (24), Katie (16) and Molly (10).
Q: Do you take regular exercise - and if so, what?
A: My work would be my main exercise, loading and unloading the car with my equipment to run my We Slim Together groups. I also try to find the time for at least one Pilates class per week.
Q: What is the worst illness you have had?
A: I suffer from joint hypermobility syndrome, which can lead to stiff and sore joints as well as fatigue. Since losing weight back in 2009 and being introduced to Pilates, though, my symptoms have dissipated and are now less than they were when I was over 21 stones and eating an unhealthy diet.
Q: How healthy is your diet?
A: I follow my own We Slim Together guilt free plan. Healthy eating is part of my life now, which revolves around good nutrition and supporting others to make healthier lifestyle changes. In saying that, I do love to indulge with a treat from time to time, however, these days I am more aware of food and cravings and how to manage them.
Q: Any bad habits?
A: Yes. Tayto cheese and onion crisps. If I have one bag it leads to a lot more, so I have to be restrained when I'm around them.
Q: Do you drink and/or smoke - if so, how much?
A: I don't smoke, I'm glad to say; I gave up 15 years ago. And I do like to relax at the weekend with a gin or two.
Q: Do you take any health supplements?
A: I've never taken supplements, my eating plan gives me all the nutrients I feel my body needs.
Q: How do you take time out?
A: Spending time with my husband and kids. Family time is important as we are all busy during the week. Getting time together can be hard, so it's important to us to do activities such as cooking together or having PJ days at the weekend.
Q: How well do you sleep?
A: I was always a light sleeper and slept very little until recently. Now though I've been trialling a new Modius Health Device and I haven't slept as well in years. Now, I'm sound asleep from the minute my head hits the pillow.
Q: Do you worry about getting old?
A: I used to; when I was 30 and a size 26/28 I told myself I didn't want to be this weight when I was 40. That was the beginning of my mind-set changing and adapting a healthy eating regime. I'm going to be 41 in a few weeks and although back then my only worry was my weight at a certain age, my age no longer matters. I feel great and I am loving being in a position to see people's lives changing daily in my job. I'm very much an advocate about living life to the full and being healthy and happy, whatever your age.
Q: What is your go-to product or habit that keeps you feeling healthy?
A: My water bottle. I have this great bottle which I carry my water around daily, it reminds me to keep my fluid intake up as it has times printed on the side of it. We all know how important hydration is for our health, so I've created a habit that my drinks bottle is my best friend.
- For more details on We Slim Together groups in Northern Ireland, visit weslimtogether.co.uk or tel: 028 9422 8129