Grab a chai and settle in, we’re going to get more familiar.
I’m Sarah, one of 6 in a crazy blended family, wifey for lifey to Florian, kitty parent to Leo and above all, lover of chocolate. It’s been quite a journey to get here, one that’s led me to live in four different countries and one that’s seen me struggle with some pretty tough health issues.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you my life story in too much detail, just the important parts to help you get to know exactly who I am, why I do what I do and why I might be the perfect fit to help you on your own journey.
I've always struggled with feelings of low confidence and struggled to make friends or put myself out there. This nervousness and sadness led to laziness, lethargy and by the time I was 9 I was moving towards being very overweight.
Aged 11 my migraines started, a horrible hereditary condition which leaves me totally paralysed for a day or more.
Aged 12 my beautiful mother, Debbie, was diagnosed with cervical cancer. She died when I was 16 after 4 difficult years which left me with a much older head on my shoulders.
The night of her death I sang Paolo Nutini’s ‘Autumn’ into my phone - the recording later was set to music and played at her funeral and put on YouTube (you can check out the video here) as a tribute and to raise money for a charity we set up in her name. The song and the charity went viral and suddenly 16 year old me, still very unsure of herself, is being interviewed on This Morning and singing live on Women’s Hour. Safe to say my self confidence transformed. As my confidence grew, I also lost weight quite naturally. Perhaps not needing to hide or protect myself anymore. We made over £2 million for the charity and I had a first real taste of what can happen when you open yourself up to life’s magic.
As a family we didn’t have the best diet, my parents just didn’t really know how. I’m sure that will have played a role in my mother’s cancer. At university I suffered from interstitial cystitis, a painful and embarrassing inflammation of the bladder wall which made living life to the fullest so hard. At the same time, my older sister was struggling with candida overgrowth caused by stress and poor lifestyle at university. It was the first time I started to really understand the consequences of not taking care of my body.
Living in Paris with my sister for a year during my degree, I learned how to cook foods which would help both of us heal, and I discovered so much joy in taking charge of my health. I discovered yoga, and that really sealed the deal.
By the end of my French degree (I know, random), I was all set to head off to New York to train as a natural foods chef to start myself on the journey towards teaching others how to live their healthiest and happiest life.
I came back to the UK and worked as a teaching chef at the Jamie Oliver Cookery school. I loved to teach, but the working conditions were appalling and over the months I could feel my health deteriorating; I was miserable and exhausted. I decided that my health wasn’t worth sacrificing again, so it was time to take the next step towards my overall goal and move away from a situation which was only damaging my mental and physical wellbeing.
I trained with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition to become a certified health coach. I started coaching women and discovered how joyful it is to have impact on someone’s life in that way.
I continued my education to specialise in hormonal health, as this is an area so few of us know anything about.
The final piece of the puzzle came when the opportunity arose for myself and my now hubby to move from London to Germany, where we now live in Bonn. We had a few months window with no rent to pay and so it was off to Bali to complete my yoga teacher training.
The past year (I’m 26 now) a few things have really fallen into place. Other than getting married and living in a home for more than 10 months for the first time since I was 18, I steadily came to the realisation through my struggles with weight and yo-yo-ing since my teenage years, that diets and restriction simply don’t work. It needs to be much more self-compassionate and much more long term. Every woman deserves to be free of the self-shame and loathing that comes with diet culture.
My own experience and the experience of so many women I’ve spoken to has driven my passion for educating women on hormonal and reproductive health. There’s so much that’s neglected, so much that needs correcting here. It will always be a huge part of my mission.