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Doing The Work and Getting No Results

This is an area of growth that has been front of mind lately. We have been having deep conversations on the podcast and blog on body composition and mindful eating. However this goes far beyond that. I know for me personally that I am at a stage where wellbeing wise a lot of work done over the last four years is more visibly noticeable. I am also struggling a lot with exactly this – doing the work and not seeing the results – in other areas of my life, including business.

When we take something on – in any aspect of our lives – this is one of the most frustrating, challenging and demoralising parts of the journey.

The world of social media and our image driven society drives this further.

We typically only see the end result.

We don’t see the ups and downs – we might see the gradual ups – but how do we show this….the grind, grind, grind, potentially the backwards steps and the utter heartbreak of no results.

Or what we perceive are no results.

I wanted to crack this conversation open because if I am struggling, and have struggled (many times over) then I am going to guess there are a few others right now in the thick of this.

On my podcast (dropping tomorrow) I talk about some of the body composition changes that I have shared in a reel. This is potentially how you have found this blog. I always have mixed feelings about sharing such content. This is because I feel it only shows the outside – not the work and certainly not the changes and shifts on the inside.

I am four years postpartum from my third baby. Many, many years ago now I had a viral blog called ‘My Real Postpartum Body’ go crazy viral. I know what a huge challenge this is for so many women and the response of my blog shows this. I am no stranger to my body being online but it is still not something that comes easily.

More recently I wrote a blog on my third postpartum journey. I shared this when at a stage three years after having Ray and on the eve of my second surgery. That was about 15 months ago.

How you see me now is after four years of consistent, daily work with A LOT of downs along the way. In this time I have had TWO major neurosurgeries. I don’t need to explain how much these took out of me physically, mentally or emotionally. My healing and recovery is indefinite.

What you cannot see in these images shared is the daily actions taken simply to be as healthy as I could and perform to the best of my ability both physically, at work and at home. At NO POINT has my outside appearance EVER been a focus. Is it a nice to have? Of course but it was NEVER the driver – and still is not.

When I shared that third postpartum blog the very next day I woke up from my surgery and was almost at ground zero again. I wasn’t ‘quite’ at the bottom, thanks to all the preparation I had done, but it was a huge step backwards.

Yet I kept taking the same daily actions – if anything more so as my recovery was depending on it. It can be easy to write this off (all puns intended) but we shouldn’t. It took everything from me. It took the same prioritising of non-negotiables. It took overriding the pull of less healthy and nourishing practices – we all feel this pull even if it has a different flavour. None of this comes easily when you have competing needs especially as a mother and a woman working well over 40 hours a week.

It also takes trusting the process.

We have been talking about mindful eating. This is a practise that I know is hard to trust. Why? We have been programmed with not doing this for so long. Even my early nutrition training was on counting calories. Everyday for the last four years I have mindfully eaten wholefoods. I have never counted a single calorie. I have never restricted my volume and I have never portioned out food other than a rough idea of protein amounts. I could count the ultra-processed food eaten on one hand (if that!) and this is not from deprivation but mindful choice. Similarly with alcohol I would be lucky to have even had 10 drinks total in the last four years. Am I perfect? Nope cue huge coffee consumption. Have I struggled at times with eating? Yes! Especially when stressed and post surgery – it was an active effort to eat but I still did.


There was a particular time in these last four years where I felt myself sliding into a pattern that was not nourishing. I spoke about in that previous blog the importance of making a decision. What I have not even truly admitted openly is that a little while after that  - I found myself effectively over doing things. Juggling the load of yet another lockdown, keeping my business going, trying to fight through all the personal change and emotions plus knowing more surgery was inevitable I started to go from exercise to nourish me to an escape from my feelings.

Looking back this is obvious in the photos as I was very lean. When I checked in with myself I knew that this was heading down a slippery unhealthy slope. I did this though, I self-checked and I made yet another decision to focus on getting strong. This kept me going right up to my second surgery and then yet again in the recovery. To prepare for a surgery where I would lose so much was challenging mentally but I did it.

I could go down a very negative path with this is….or I could truly acknowledge the work and strength it takes to do a self check, to recognise when things are not positive and how I refocused that. This learning meant on the other side of my surgery rather than doing the same – I chose to embark on intensive therapy to manage grief and healing.

In a world where ‘thinness’ is praised it could have been so easy not to do this. To hide this. Instead I faced all of this head on and learned from this.

Trust the process.

This includes trusting there will be some downs, there will be some backwards steps and yet it is all part of it.

I mentioned at the start of this blog that yet again am in a frustrating time in business. I am doing the work, especially with my food brand and not seeing the results I really want.

In preparing this content, its given me pause and reflection.

What are the ‘results’ that I am wanting to see? Are they the made up results of others and society?

I have been grinding away at my food brand for three years now. It feels like such an impossible goal to crack into supermarkets and beyond. It feels like the leap to have the packaging I want and is a fit for the brand is going to take so long to get there – others just start with it right from the beginning and here I am struggling and fighting away.

Sound familiar?!

Can I really put a price on the learning that is happening?

Who came up with the timeline of these supposed results?

Next week on the podcast I am sharing an interview with an amazing woman – Donna Davis. I have been working with Donna for the past two years on publishing her book through my publishing company.

Now I know a thing or two about writing and publishing a book. It is a tough, grueling process. Doing exactly this – all the work and I mean ALL THE WORK with nothing to show for it until right at the very end. It’s been a truly rewarding experience to guide Donna through this.

She has done the work. I have seen her get knocked back – I have needed to even do this to her work in order to bring it to life!

This was all part of why I created my own publishing company but it’s been a huge reminder to even myself to keep just doing the work.

To keep trusting the dam process!

So if you are in this right now, regardless of what part of life it is – or maybe all of it! I just want you to know that you are not alone and to keep going. Maybe you are not seeing the results, maybe it is taking you so much longer than you want, maybe you need to do even more than you are already doing (!!!) because that’s the raw reality.

Maybe you have extra challenges that no one can see and you wish you had a t-shirt with them all listed and printed on and it’s all so unfair.

But maybe, just maybe you can’t see what’s around that corner.

You can’t see that you are in fact so much closer than you think.

You can’t see the version of you that’s on the other side of this.

Keep going, just keep going – those results will come.

P.S I am so proud of you.

Xx Dr Julie  

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