I had added the category ‘health’ to my blog when I created it some months ago now and it has hitherto remained empty. I’m not sure how typical of a woman in her 30’s I am, but here’s my story and how I intended to fill the next pages of this tale.
I was a fairly healthy teenager – I was of average weight, I have always had broad shoulders and I’ve never been small but I was never ‘thin’ nor ‘fat’. I fell pregnant with my eldest daughter aged only 16 (one way to mess up my body I suppose) and suffered with pre-eclampsia. As a result of this condition I ballooned from a healthy 11 stones to 17.5 stones. After the birth I found it difficult to shift the weight. Looking back this was due to a lack of education in weight loss rather than anything else. My daughter was 4 before the pounds began to shed and I eventually reached 10.5 stones when she was 7 years old. I achieved this through healthy eating and initially walking. Eventually I joined a gym to shed the last stone or so.
My weight floated between 10.7 and 11.7 stones until 2012 shortly after my wedding when I quit smoking. Looking back, I can remember snacking on unhealthy foods, not just because I was missing the cigarettes, the main cause of this was an increase in my taste buds. I could taste foods properly for the first time in years and I wanted that experience continuously! Shortly after, I fell pregnant with my youngest daughter and again suffered with pre-eclampsia. History repeated itself and I went from 12 stones to 17.5 stones rather rapidly. Following the birth (October 2013), I used water tablets to reduce the water retention shedding 3 stones in the process.
My friend and I decided to begin a weight loss journey together. From January to July 2016 I had lost almost 3 stones weighing in at 11 stones 12 pounds. I achieved this through a combination of healthy eating and taebo workouts 3 times per week. Life once again took over and ever since I have gradually added most of the weight back on. I joined the gym earlier this year, but rather than loosing the weight I simply seemed to pile more and more on. I am now 13 stones 10 pounds!
A New Beginning!
Last week I decided enough is enough! The sudden realisation hit me – I could do all the exercise in the world but there is no way to work off a poor diet! I sat down and thought about what I eat (as I tucked into a huge bag of popcorn). I yo-yo diet – Monday to Thursday I was eating what I should have been to loose weight; snacking on fruit, salads for lunch and a healthy breakfast and dinner. Friday night is pizza night in our house. I would reach Friday, eat the pizza and then throw in the towel. All weekend I would scoff down bags and bags full of sweets, chocolates and crisps. Sunday night I would be sobbing into a family sized bag of crisps saying “I start again tomorrow”! I’ve come to realise that I have no problem with exercising, it’s my diet I need help with (incidentally my poor diet has made it increasingly difficult to exercise).
Last night my friend and I joined Slimming World. We were welcomed by the friendly consultant and given an introduction to the programme. Rather than a diet, Slimming World is pitched as a lifestyle over which you are in control. We have been provided with books and leaflets explain the entire process and were then weighed and given our membership cards.
Each day I am to choose one item from a healthy A section and one from the healthy B section. Section A includes an allowance of milk and cheese, whereas B is breads and porridge type foods. I can eat as much of the ‘Free’ foods as I like. These include almost all fresh/frozen fruits and vegetables as well as meat (with skin/fat removed, or lean mince), potatoes, pasta, rice and some yoghurts. Syned foods are those which are less healthy, for instance, biscuits and puddings and each individual decided how many syns they are allowed per day (between 5 and 15).
Breakfast: Porridge oats, yoghurt and berries.
Lunch: Chicken breast with lettuce, red cabbage and carrots.
Snacks: Banana, orange and grapes.
Dinner: Spaghetti Bolognese (slimming world recipe).
Evening snack: Apple and yoghurt.
I haven’t found the meals difficult at all – the spaghetti Bolognese was in fact almost identical to my own traditional recipe. I just added celery and peppers to cram in some more filling vegetables. What I am struggling with is a headache. Perhaps this is because I am a serious coffee drinker (we’re talking at the very least 10 coffees per day, all strong). I have limited the amount of milk I am drinking as per the diet (I could use additional milk and ‘syn’ it, however, as is permissible, I want to save today’s syns because tomorrow I will be having pizza with the family). I’m hoping this will settle down in a few days as my body adjusts to the changes.
I have set a target weight of 11.7 stones. I don’t care how long it takes to achieve this but I am determined to reach and stick to my goal!
More posts to follow … including my weight loss journey(s) in pictures!1