Monday, December 31, 2012

Looking Back at 2012

I have to say, I've had a GREAT year!

A lot of things came together for me this year, and the most rewarding thing is that it all came because of my hard work and effort. I feel like a lot of the projects that I started many years ago finally came to fruition. The best part is that I feel like I've grown and my attitude plus outlook on life has changed so I am actually able to enjoy, appreciate, and celebrate these accomplishments. The former-me would have still been sullen, moody, and unfulfilled. I still have a lot left to accomplish, but I am ready to continue working hard and enjoy the process.

My 2012 highlights:

1) I got my PhD!!! After 4 years of research, writing, (crying), and lots of travel to and from Canterbury, Kent (England) - I am finally Dr. PlumPetals :)

May 2012

2) I am ending the year at my lowest weight and smallest size out of the past 7 or 8 years (maybe longer?). I lost a total of 13 kg (27 lbs) this year and dropped 4 dress sizes - All through pure hard work and effort.

December 2012

3) I've only ever had two things on my bucket list - see Madonna in concert & visit Rome. This year I did both! [I know, it doesn't sound very ambitious, but those are the only 2 things that I really wanted.]

Madonna concert in Abu Dhabi (UAE) - June 2012

Me heading to the top of St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City (Italy) - July 2012

4) I've been extremely phobic of dogs since I was 4 years old (I'm talking full blown anxiety/panic attacks - crying, racing heartbeat, etc. not to mention the screaming). Since last summer I've been working on just being calmer around dogs ... and this year, I finally pet one.

 Me and Otto in Le Marche (Italy) - August 2012

5) I got my first race bib and medal for running a 10K (though I didn't run the whole thing, but still - I did quite well, especially with no training!) I also completed my first fitness instructor training and am now qualified to teach Zumba!! :)

6) I started CrossFit and am ending the year lifting heavier weights than I ever thought I could (110 kg back squat; 120 kg deadlift were my biggest records of the year).

120 kg (264 lb) Deadlift - Sept. 2012

7) I had a fabulous year of travel - Argentina, Uruguay, England, the States (brief stop), Mexico, Italy, the UAE (twice), Bahrain, Bangladesh, Germany, India [5 new countries to add to my list]

8) My eating habits have completely changed. I am so much more conscious of what I'm eating and aware of how my body reacts to different kinds of foods. I've been experimenting with different recipes and working on making them cleaner and healthier - it's taken some time and effort, but it's been worth it!

9) I finished New Rules of Lifting for Women. This was the first time I started a program and stuck to it until the very end. If you're just getting started with weights, I highly recommend it. I was able to see my strength increase dramatically. It was a terrific program that increased my love of lifting weights and also gave me the confidence to try CrossFit.

10) My increase in confidence has to be my biggest achievement of the year.  I am not always overwhelmed with feelings of insecurity, doubt, fear, and hesitation. Those feelings still exist, but I have a much better grasp of how to handle them and how to move forward.

Seeing my progress in weight loss has definitely helped me in all other areas of my life. The confidence alone has been quite a transformation. In addition, learning how to face my fears - even if it means failing or stumbling along the way - has been an important process for me to go through.

I hope that all the things that I learned and achieved in 2012 will help me continue to move forward and do even better in 2013.

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year!


  1. Congratulations! You've really had an impressive 2012! All the best to you in the next Year!

  2. wow that does sound like a great year ...congrats on the loss too

  3. You're a rock star! Really excellent year!

    :-) Marion

  4. Awesome; you have been such an inspiration to me this year. Look forward to following in 2013.

  5. Congratulations on a tremendous 2012! You really had an amazing year.

    Wishing you an equally fantastic 2013 - Happy New Year!

  6. Thats an awesome list of accomplishments!!! Wonderful year!! Heres to another one!!

  7. You have had a great year. Here's to a great 2013 as well. :)

  8. It looks like you had a great 2012! I hope 2013 is just as good! Happy New Year!

  9. Thanks everyone!! Wishing you all a wonderful 2013 as well :)

  10. Wow! I think my entire bucket list need to be "To have a year as great as PlumPetals did in 2012"

  11. You absolutely had an amazing year in 2012, but I get the feeling that the best is yet to come for you in 2013.
    (BTW - I am SO jealous of your Madonna concert!!).


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