As some of you may know I managed to loose a lot of weight last year and Slimming World has been the the main reason why I have not only managed to loose the wieght but keep it off too. Last week I was nominated for the Brant Road “Mr Sleek” award; I was one of three nominees.
Last night we all voted for the “Miss Slinky” and the “Mr Sleek” award, before the voting took place each of the nominees had to show some before photographs and also talk about their reasons for joining, the weight loss journey (so far) and the difference it has made to them.
Although I didn’t win – congratulations to Peter who did – I was grateful for being nominated and it was good to hear each person’s story and there were a lot of common themes in there too.
To help me work I out what I was going to say I wrote down a few of my thoughts and I have posted them here for anyone who is interested.
First here is a before photo:
An here is my journey:
Back in 2012 I was in a bad place – apart from an amazing holiday to Florida with my family, amongst other things I was overweight. I had trouble finding many “before” photos of me – I hated having my picture taken, I didn’t like to go out and I really hated buying new clothes.
I have been overweight almost my entire adult life and although I had tried loosing weight on my own (managing at best a stone), it wasn’t long before old eating habits would kick-in and the weight would come back again.
It was brought home to me when I had to buy some new trousers and my waist size had increased to 36″ – I had been a 34″ waist size as long as I remember. In November of that year I decided I needed help but wanted to get Christmas out of the way first. I was going to join Weight Watchers, but after I told my sister about the this she recommended that I give Slimming World a go as in her words “you like food to much!”. She is also a member of Slimming World too.
So on January 2nd 2013 I ventured into the Brant Road Slimming World not sure what to expect and although I am in a minority (there aren’t many guys here) it has never been a problem. Catherine was amazing and welcoming as are all of the regulars and the committee members too.
I couldn’t believe that I could lose weight by still eating most of what I like (Potatoes, Pasta and Rice are staple foods to me). And I have to admit I was skeptical of the possible weight losses and thought it sounded to good to be true.
However, after loosing just over half-a-stone in the first 2 weeks it showed me what was possible and over time I managed to get to my initial target and then went for a new one. I had good weeks and no so good weeks as well as a couple of bad weeks but I kept focused to the point where food optimisation is now part of my daily life.
On 30th October last year (2013) I reached my target of a 4 stone loss and have been at target since then with only a couple of lapses outside the 3-pound threshold; when this has happened I just focused on losing the weight and would always be back within the threshold or at target by the following week.
I still don’t believe that I could have ever lost so much weight and when you see what 4 stone weighs it really brings it home as do the before photographs.
The difference between Slimming World and doing it on your own is the support that the group brings, I always know that I need help it is a quick call or text message away and the Brant Road Facebook group is there to help as well.
Although I am a target member and have been for just over a year now I still come to group and although I cannot make it every week I do try and if I miss a week I make sure that I am there the following one. Staying to group is the reason why I stay on target.
Do I see more weight loss – possibly a few more pounds but if that is the case it will be next year.
I no longer have photo phobia – I still prefer to be behind the camera but that’s because I like photography. I also don’t mind buying clothes – I still get a kick that I can get into 30-32″ trousers and no longer need to buy XL size shirts and T-shirts (I am now a medium). I also meet up with friends who I have not seen in a while and they always ask if I have lost weight.
The fact that I carried a lot of weight for so long has irreparably damaged my knees so running is not something that I can now do but I rarely have pain anymore and stairs are no longer the enemy that they were; sometimes going down stairs hurt more than going up.
One final point about the journey; the weight loss is only the start of the journey but staying to group and keeping on target is the real journey.