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Life Challenge Week 5: Noha El Shazly

Life Challenger Noha highlights an important cause and enjoys a great night out

Aquarius magazine
8 Apr 2012 | 01:45 pm
  • Life Challenge night out

    Some scraped-clean plates at the Life Challenge night out to B:LUSH Ladies' Night at The Med last Tuesday.

    Source:ANM Image 1 of 2
  • White Ribbon Day

    November 25 is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

    Source:Supplied picture Image 2 of 2

Week 5, day 2

Life events

Sometimes certain events may happen in your life, where you wonder what good can ever come out of it. Then you realise after the fog has cleared that it served you in other areas of your life. Everything happens for a reason and I believe it’s always for your best at the end. Whether it is a lesson learned, a self-discovery, or simply embarking on something new. 

I’m half way through my challenge now, and I’ve learned so much more about myself in the past month than I have in the past two years. I’ve realised that subconsciously I’ve built a place for myself where I had the walls too high for the sun to shine through, where I locked the door and lost the key. Now, a month living outside my comfort zone, I can feel the walls are coming down day by day. To be honest, I think most of them are completely destroyed (the sweet tooth one needs to go still!). 

For so long I was avoiding people to avoid conversations about what happened. After Patricia’s enormous help, where she literally re-programmed my thoughts and shifted my limiting beliefs to empowering ones, I feel like myself again – confident in who I am and in my judgments. For the first time in a very looooong time, I feel happy, fulfilled and constantly moving forward.

Thinking about all this for the past couple of days got me to start searching for foundations where I can volunteer and help someone out – women and child victims of abuse – until they make it safe to the survivors’ side. Unfortunately there is not enough awareness yet about abuse against women, even though it’s happening and very easy to cover up. Did you know that 25 November is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and that it has two coloured awareness ribbons, purple and white. 

Through researching, I got to know about “DFWAC – Dubai Foundation for Women and Children” the first licensed non-profit shelter in the UAE for women and child victims of domestic violence, child abuse, and human trafficking. It provides a helpline, emergency shelter and it aims to protect. I didn’t even know we had such a foundation here in the UAE, to be honest. I didn’t need shelter when I was in a bad, abusive situation, thank God, as I was blessed with a safe one. But I needed support as, for quite sometime, I kept what was happening to me under wraps. I settled for crying myself to sleep and the wishful thinking method. I was embarrassed, ashamed and afraid. 

Now that I’ve got through it safely and am much stronger than I ever was before, I’ve realised that reporting it and getting out of it was the best decision I ever made. I understand more about it and want to be there for someone who needs help. Check out the DFWAC website – tell friends, or to volunteer as I did.

http://www.dfwac.ae/

 Week 5, day 3

Music charged!

Cardio in the gym can be really boring sometimes! The max I would do if I’m not distracted by anything like a chat or watching whatever it is interesting on TV, is a whole 10 minutes!! Then I’m done. As an alternative I started jogging outside on the Corniche, super-beautiful and I can do up to an hour powerwalking, jogging and running (I never do one thing or the other). I had to cut down on my Corniche cardio, though, as I need to build more muscle mass (mine was under normal when I began the challenge) so Vanessa advised more lifting and less cardio.

The other day in Fitness First, while at the treadmill, this song was playing, I had my iPod on so was only watching the video clips on TV, but I was hooked and it earned me an extra 60 minutes of cardio! After listening to the song, I simply can’t stop singing it (out loud, in the car and sometimes in the shower)!!! 

Week 5, day 4

Second colonic

Today was my second Colonic Hydrotherapy with Kay. Funnily enough I was looking forward to it. Or, to be more specific, I was looking forward to the way I felt afterwards. So I had another good session with Kay (who admitted she does a colonic treatment herself about once a month or so) and it got me thinking, if I could have the same glowy complexion and glossy, super-healthy-looking hair as hers, I’ll be damned if I don’t go back for more. 

After the treatment, I went grocery shopping following Sarah’s instructions on my gluten/lactose/sugar-free diet (which turns out to be super-good) but, before I go for my grocery shopping, I wanted to make sure I ate something so I don’t end up over-indulging in food I don’t really want. Kay suggested I go to Planet Nutrition, located at the Dubai Mall where had my first wheatgrass shot (surprisingly didn’t need any orange or pineapple after) followed by the Turbo Charge smoothie, which contains apple, pineapple, cucumber, spinach, celery, avocado and lime. For me, I’ve always stayed on the simple side of things and am not really into mixing fruits with vegetables, in general. But Kay swore by it and, when she said that my body will absorb all the nutrition right away, I stopped arguing and got the big size! With all the excitement I forgot to take a photo but it didn’t look so bad but I only ended up drinking half of it as I was full. 

Week 5, day 6

Bonding on a night out

Even though I had an exhausting day but I was so looking forward to last night. I met up with Kate, Louisa, Charlene, Karin, Paola, Inga, and Bhawna, (Accalia was missed by all of us!) and we were laughing our lungs out and chatting away in the back of a pink stretched Hummer on the way to B:LUSH Ladies’ Night at Media One Hotel, followed by dinner at THE MED outdoors – and the weather was lovely. 

Let me tell you, we were eight women who didn’t really know one another, but got along perfectly as if we were old friends. We laughed, joked around, had conversations, talked about the challenge (of course), and got some cool beauty tips from Charlene. I can’t fail to mention that it was some sort of a ‘day off’ for all of us food wise, as we indulged and enjoyed our food, mostly desert (It wasn’t a KitKat Chunky but let’s hope Sarah and Vanessa won’t read that part!) but it was so worth it. I’m sure you know what I mean when I say I felt a lot of woman-power. Each woman is truly inspiring and I’m honored to have met such incredible, strong REAL women. 

The night left me feeling very positive that even sleeping for only five hours didn’t affect my performance the next day. (Louisa and Paola were kind enough to offer me to spend the night at theirs.) It was a lovely catch up and a great idea (thanks Louisa and Kate!) and much needed. It was just like your typical ladies’ night out… simply fab! Only difference here is that each one of us left with more friends now.  

Aquarius magazine

Aquarius magazine

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