As I sit here munching my bag of cheese ‘n’ onion, I’ve decided to write a little about my weight loss journey. Yeah, this journey includes cheese and onion crisps and galaxy bars too.
So at present the NHS still classes me as overweight, apparently I should be between 7st, 3lbs & 9st, 11lbs for my height. Personally I think this is ridiculous…..I’m pretty sure I was born 7stone! Pre-October 2014 though, I was actually obese. I’ve been overweight for a lonnnng time…I blame the desk job…not my hands shoving food and drink down me throat. God, when I was 16, I remember thinking I was the largest one on our footy team…I wasn’t! (To be clear, none of us were.) Now I take out them old footy shorts and scold myself for calling myself fat back then…they’d surely go past me knees now!
Annnyway…so yeah, Small Monkey was just over a year old and I was still carrying an extra stone and a half of “baby weight” as well as the extra stone I was just carrying for the craic. I didn’t even manage to lose weight for my wedding!! I knew I had to do something, I wanted to be able to run around with Small Monkey without huffing and puffing like Donna the tank engine. I’d also suffered from pregnancy diabetes and although it’s gone now, I’m told I’ll probably get it with every pregnancy I have. Well I don’t want diabetes of any kind, thank you very much, one’s will pass on that one thanks! I don’t actually know if my weight loss will decrease the chances of me getting it in pregnancy too, I just hope so…trying to test your own blood sugar level during a contraction is a pain in the bumhole! Of course, vanity is involved….I wanted to be the “Glammy Mammy” at the school gates waiting for me little man. You know, the Mammy that people say “oh doesn’t she keep herself well” or “doesn’t C’s Ma look great”. I just had visions of myself gaining a stone for every child I have (you’d swear I was having million like), not losing it, then becoming some sort huuuge weeble like creature resigned to wearing lotsa stretchy pannnts (you gotta say that with an American twang). Not that there’s anything wrong with them and not that I’ll ever be seen as the Glam Mam at the school gate, I’m more a “roll-outta-bed-last-minute-and-throw-on-the-trackie-bottoms-I’m-only-going-to-the-school” kinda girl, BUT I’d like to have the option to be gorgeous and glammy and envied. Don’t get me wrong, despite putting on weight during pregnancy, weirdly I became more accepting of my squidgey body and actually loved it a little bit more, but it needed a little kick up the bum all the same. Also I had a slightly sadder reason for joining lingering at the back of it all too (altogether now…..aaaaah), I was lonely and this was another way for me to get out more.
With all that in mind I did try to be good on my own but there were no really astounding results. I love walking and had actually built up to running (very slowly, with much redness, jiggling and huffing and puffing….feck it though, I was doing it…what were you doing?) before becoming a baby baker, so I tried to squeeze that (walking, that is…one step at a time peeps) back into my life. It wasn’t really working, I wasn’t doing enough and as with before, whatever I was doing, my brain would say “nice work Don, you made space, go home and eat something silly now” so I never really lost anything. A friend though had recently joined a slimming club and had been seeing some great results, I had thought about joining a club but I’d been there before and although I’d lost a stone, it went back on over time and the thoughts of having to weigh and measure everything just did not appeal to me this time ’round. After much humming and hawwing I decided to give her club a go.
October 2014, I took myself through Slimming World‘s doors and I’m not looking back. I mean, I’m not coasting through like it seems some people are, but hey, who cares? This is me and it’s my way. Now I will admit, during my first week I was ready to quit BUT that was purely because I didn’t feel the first group leader I had was very explanatory…or maybe I’m just extra thick, even reading through the book after didn’t help and I lived for a week purely on salad and veg. Jayzus it was horrendous!! I had headaches, felt dizzy but didn’t ask for help for fear of sounding like a thick…don’t do this…this is stupid…ask for help! My second week in, we had Lisa covering and she explained the basics to the whole class. BEST.THING.EVER!!! It was so simple! I could eat anything really, yeah I couldn’t go and eat 3 buns and a mars bar in a day but I could eat A bun and MAYBE a mars bar depending on what other syns I’d had that day.
So let me tell you the basics of how it works, well this is my version…have you noticed the way I don’t call it a diet? That’s cos it’s not…it is a healthy eating plan. I think the main reason you lose weight with Slimming World is because we “learn” to cook again. What I mean by that is, you better be prepared for some chopping and dicing baby ‘cos we’re tryna make everything from scratch…no packets…no preservatives…no E-numbers. Preparation and planning is key here lads! Everything is fresh really, packaged food is avoided for the most part, you will use it but not like before…not as much. The best thing about it is, it’s great for all the family, you don’t have to cook special meals for yourself. In my house, 97% of the time we’re eating the same. We’re constantly trying new things and we eat more fruit and veg plus most things can be adapted to a healthier option. I’ve always given Small Monkey what we’ve eaten anyway, he’s never had jarred food, I just pureed everything and as I started Slimming World when he was one, he’s just come along on the food ride with me, with no drastic changes for him to get over. He’s tried veggies I’d never even seen ’til I moved to Londaan! Yes, there are things you have to limit but you don’t have to give up anything. If on the rare occasion I do go out, I go out and enjoy it but I am certainly more mindful of what I’m eating and drinking. Sometimes i gain, sometimes I maintain but one thing I do know is I can’t lose weight alone and I think I’d still be wandering about blindly in the obese zone if I hadn’t of joined…so thanks bud (she knows) for encouraging me to join the SW family. Oh, in relation to gains, I’ve had two noticeable, happy gains since joining…Suzanne and Courtney. It’s also brought me back in better touch with an old friend….she guided me through my first stint at shedding the poundage…Shannon.
At the mention of the girls there, original suggestive buddy included, as with anything you hope to achieve, support and encouragement plays a massive part. I alway stay for Image Therapy…I love this, it sounds tres posh! Seriously though, I love staying to group, having a cuppa, listening to how everybody got on, sharing ideas and new things we’ve found. It’s great, I mean if you’re really good you get stickers and certs!! C’mon…what’s not to love here? This tied in with walking and I’m onto a winner! HUP YA BOYA!!I have never been ashamed of any weight loss plan I’ve embarked on but with this I chose not to tell everyone ’til now, I suppose. I just found that previously, it felt like some people would discourage my attempts at losing weight or I felt like I was made to feel ashamed because I couldn’t do it on my own. Don’t let people dissuade you, there’s a good chance they are jealous of you, it may not even be the fact that you’re trying to lose weight as they might not need to themselves, it’s the fact that you’re doing something, anything, it doesn’t have to be weight loss, and they’re not.
I won’t lie, of course I ask myself “why can’t I eat what I want and not worry about it? Why can’t I be one of those people? Why is it when I look at a bun it adds instant pounds to my butt?” but I guess we can’t all be “those” people and maybe God, Allah…Buddha…whoever just wanted to test me that little bit more.
Love Donna xx
P.S Just so ye know, Slimming World have not asked or paid me to write this, I’m sharing what works for me and it may be helpful to you. This will also explain why I post foodie pics over on FB and Instagram (anything you see will more than likely be a SW recipe or something adapted to fit).
P.P.S Thank you Hubbalicious, Small Monkey (although you have no choice) and the ladies mentioned above for all your support the year or so.
P.P.P.S…..ah no just kidding!! (Is there such thing as “p.p.p.s?)