I still have 3 odd stone to lose, at least in my head that’s my lose, distant, where I want to be, type goal. It’s certainly been a slow progress, and I’m not going to win any prizes for extreme weight loss (thank goodness!).
In the past I have lost a significant amount through some diet or other, and then something has snapped. I have rebelled. The weight has returned.
I don’t really know what is different this time. I feel more chilled, I guess. I don’t place all my happiness on a divine number on the scales. I don’t believe I’m worthless if I can’t stick to a plan for a day. Things happen, meals out, time with friends, I’m not wasting those moments wishing to eat or drink what those around me are eating or drinking. I don’t constantly listen to the messages belittling me and telling me I need to be thin to be beautiful/clever/accomplished. I listen more to my inner voice, and my reasons for weight loss are my own and no one else’s.
So I joined Slimming World a month ago, more to help me get back to eating slightly better than I was. I know I *know* the right foods, the importance of veg and so on, but sometimes it is easier using another persons hard work and compilation of stuff! I am a realist though, and I knew the summer holidays are not the easiest to scale. Days out, holidays, lazy evenings, intravenous wine when the kids drive me to the point of despair. School Holidays are a jungle! But I wanted to keep on top. I didn’t want to end the holidays half a stone heavier, and so joining Slimming World was a way for me to keep a bit of a check on myself. And it has worked in that I weigh the same I did when I started.
The dubious non dieter may look at this result and see FAILURE. They may think “What a waste of £20”. After all, you don’t need to spend money to find diet guides and weight loss information. The internet is loaded with stuff that might have helped. So why did I go? I guess, for me, I wanted some accountability. And I wanted company. To meet other people wanting similar goals. To chat and share ideas.
One could argue that I’ve spent £20 to lose absolutely nothing. And I would have argued a similar thing a couple of years ago. But then I thought about it. And I thought about the fact that £5 is the cost of a bottle of wine. I’m cutting down on the wine, so that’s the money already covered. And it’s a week. OK, over time it will add up, but there will be weeks where I might lose 3lbs. And then I thought about how much I’d spent this time around to lose 2.5 stone and feel a bit more relaxed and a little more confident than this time last year.
I started Weight Watchers in October. It was £20 a month, but some months I got an extension, so over the time I was a paying member I got a month free. So I paid out about £160 for the 9 months I was a member. In black and white it looks a lot, and I acknowledge that. And in that 9 months I lost 35 lbs. So, each lb cost me about £4:50. But over those months I had such lovely support. I had the loveliest consultant, funny, supportive. And the meetings were a joy. There wasn’t ridicule and criticism when a gain happened, there was a friend to ask what might help. The ultimate goal was weight loss, yes, but it wasn’t an all consuming stress. It wasn’t until my stress fracture in May, and my depression returning and my disordered eating rushing at me that everything went hay wire. And so I left Weight Watchers, and managed to maintain that loss as my depression faded away again, and I relearned to say nice things to myself!
I won’t lie. I started Slimming World four weeks ago in the hope that I might lose a bit over the summer holidays. But it didn’t happen. And that is ok. It’s ok because I read so any stories of people piling on weight as they lose control over the holidays. It’s ok, because I’ve managed to pass that stage of diet thinking. It’s ok because when I do overindulge I am learning the ways to bring myself back to a kinder way of eating, without criticism and ridicule. I don’t starve myself or live on soup to compensate. I tune in and go for the stuff that will make my body happy.
So I’m seeing this summer holiday as a huge success. There isn’t a miraculous weight loss where I will go into the playground and people will be stunned by the difference. There is, however, a happy woman, who is still 2.5 stone lighter a year on in her journey. And ready to see what the next year holds.