It's been just over a year since I started Slimming World, after 5 years of doing different kinds of diets and eating plans (Weight Watchers, Herbalife etc.) I finally 'got my head on'. Anyone who has lost weight and kept it off will know what I mean when I say I got my head on; something clicked in my brain and said 'right now you need to lose weight'. I've lost 5 stone so far and although I'm not done yet, losing that amount of weight has made a massive difference to my life and I wanted to share a bit about me and my weight loss. It's going to be a bit of a wordy one so grab a drink and relax...
What's different this time to all the other times?
I actually properly wanted to lose weight and I wasn't looking for a quick fix, I was prepared to see it come off over a period of time. I was ready for change whereas I wasn't before. Anyone who has lost weight and kept it off will know what I mean when I say I got my head on; something clicked in my brain and said 'right now you need to lose weight'. Changing your eating habits is like giving up an addiction and learning to live controlling your intake of unhealthy food, unless your mindset is right you simply will not do it; you might start off with good intentions and probably lose a bit but it won't be a long term thing. This time I knew it was long term.
What made you lose weight?
Of course, I lost weight for myself. I knew I was built to be solid but my weight had got out of control and it was starting to affect my life; my job involves spending a lot of time on my feet and it was becoming very uncomfy to stand for long periods of time - my feet would hurt, my knees hurt and my ankles sometimes felt like they could give way at any time. My skin was really bad (I've always had spots but they were particularly bad) and I couldn't wear the clothes I wanted to wear.
There were also some incidents which triggered that 'click' in my head and whilst I'm not going to go into detail about exactly what happened, two incidents will always stick in my mind: firstly, being behind a bar is quite difficult when your confidence levels are low and when I had some very pretty, slim barmaids standing next to me it made me feel extra fat and ugly. There was one time when the girls I was working with had gone home and there was what can only be described as a drunken a***hole stood at the bar with his mate, he looked at me and said 'urgh god we're not left with her are we'. That crushed me. Like, really made me feel horrific. All I wanted to say was 'well you can always f*** off home!!!!' but I couldn't, I just stood there, gulped and vowed that nobody would ever say anything like that about me again.
The second incident involved someone putting a status on Facebook about me 'never having my head out of the fridge'. This didn't upset me as such because I would imagine most people would think 'what a cruel thing to say' but it did spur me on even more to make changes in my life to make sure that nobody could do that to me again.
How long did it take before you saw results?
I would say around the two stone mark I started to be able to tell (which sounds like a lot of weight to lose but in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't even halfway there), my clothes became loser and I had to start buying new bits here and there. I think this was the point where other people started to notice too.
What's the best thing about losing weight?
I can't pick a singular 'thing' so...
- Being able to wear clothes from any shops. Once you get to a size 14 the boundaries of which shops you can shop in are suddenly opened and they welcome you with open arms (This, in my opinion, is all kinds of wrong, but that's a different post altogether).
- The massive boost in confidence due to the compliments from other people and also feeling more comfortable in my own skin.
- My body doesn't hurt, I can stand on my feet for 16 hours and other than a bit of hot foot-burny foot I don't really feel it.
- Being able to stick the middle finger up (in my head) to anyone and everyone who has ever said anything about my weight, whether it's too my face or not.
Why did you choose Slimming World?
My mum has done Slimming World for years so I've just kind of grown up with it so I've always known the basics of the plan and I know it works! Of course, I couldn't do this post without a cheeky plug of my weightloss blog, I posted about why you should choose Slimming World when I first started it up and it explains the basics of it and the benefits of doing it over any other eating plan so if you're interested go and have a read.
Any tips for losing weight?
- Make sure you want to do it for you before you start, I know that there were triggers for me which weren't technically from 'me', the root reason why I started Slimming World was for myself, I felt that losing weight would make my life better. I know society is so-anti fat in a lot of ways, don't let that push you into dieting because you'll never stick it out and you'll make yourself very unhappy.
- Do a sensible eating plan and do not tell yourself that you're going on a diet because as soon as you mention the d-word you'll psych yourself out of it. You'll feel deprived and that really isn't a good foot to start on plans like Slimming World & Weight Watchers help you to lose weight safely, healthily and without leaving you feeling deprived.
- Don't think you're going to get to your target weight overnight; the average amount of weight you should lose each week is 1.5lb, this is healthy and sustainable but obviously isn't going to get you overnight results. But I can tell you that if you lose weight at 1.5lb per week you're much more likely to keep it off than if you did a 10 day crash diet and a stone in that time.
- Keep things fresh: don't eat the same thing over and over again (unless you REALLY enjoy it) because it will quickly get boring and you'll want to resort to your old favourites (which are very often the wrong choices). Try looking on Pinterest or other weightless blogs and you'll find some lovely recipes which are usually a healthy version of a traditional recipe but they're often just as good if not better!
I'm so determined to keep this weight off, my life has completely changed in so many positive ways (the only negative is my bank balance!). I'm not saying that everyone should lose weight, this post was for anyone who was considering losing weight but needed some motivation. If you're reading this and you're struggling with your weight just keep in mind that one day you will have cracked it and you'll know when it happens! Once I hit target I'm going to do a before and after post but at the moment I'm still not where I want to be so I'll just keep plodding along...