Lost: 6st 4lbs*
I was someone who always struggled with my weight. However, because I used to dance almost 7 days a week when I was younger, I could get away with it to a point. Everyone knows how to lose weight. Eating healthily and exercising regularly sounds simple on paper but putting it into practice is where it becomes an enormous challenge.
My weight began to spiral out of control when I was studying nursing in college. Studying around the clock whilst working shift hours on placement was a challenge in itself, so dancing never got a look in. I then went straight into full time employment and this is where I lost my way completely. I became so unhappy with the stress of work demands that my weight just piled up even more. When friends would arrange to meet up or go on nights out, I started making excuses because I had lost all confidence and was so ashamed and embarrassed of how I looked. I started missing out on things with my best friends and it was all down to my weight and how I felt. I stopped going clothes shopping for about a year because I knew that the clothes, I liked wouldn’t be available in my size nor suit my shape. I ended up picking clothes because they fit, not because I liked them. Every day I’d come home from work in bad form and spend the evening on the couch eating because that’s where I felt most comfortable. I could hide in big pyjamas and continue to eat more food because that comforted me. In my head I was always imagining the things I would love to do if I could only get out of this rut and lose some weight. I was literally watching my life pass me by because I didn’t have the confidence to be a part of it.
I enjoyed Christmas, mainly because once again I sat on the couch eating all around me. However, I knew in the back of my head that it was only temporary enjoyment due to food. January came and of course everyone has the best intentions. I remember thinking to myself, this is it. I am finished being so unhappy. I decided that life was too short to be letting years pass me by while I sat on the couch. I am only 24 years old, I should be out enjoying life. My weight was the thing that was holding me back from doing what I loved and only I could change that. Something in my head just clicked.
In my first few weeks of joining WW Weight Watchers with amazing Coach Celene Maitland, someone in my class was awarded a three stone weight loss. I remember thinking to myself, how do people do that? It was such an achievement! I could never imagine being that person. It just didn’t seem do-able, how could someone stick to a plan for so long? From then on, I just took it day by day and week by week. I found that if I started thinking to the road ahead the challenge seemed too big and overwhelming. Every week that went by was a week closer to being back to myself. Every pound is such an achievement when you realise how quickly you can gain four or five pounds.
As I lost the weight, my confidence and self-esteem grew. I couldn’t believe that just following the plan was turning my life around. I was fortunate to have a number of holidays during my journey but I never let these ruin my weight loss and wellness journey. I stuck to the plan for each holiday, had a great time and believe it or not, most times I came home from holidays with a weight loss! Before Weight Watchers I never would have believed I could enjoy a holiday if I couldn’t eat whatever I wanted!
Doing it with my mum Anne was so helpful. We always had each other to keep motivated. If I felt like I was struggling, seeing my mum do so well kept me going and the weekly weigh in kept me focused to do the best I could. Everything in the house was labelled with Points values so we were organized and didn’t need to keep checking individual foods every day. It was all about making it as easy as possible.
I never thought I would reach the stage where I could say that I don’t need to lose anymore weight. I joined the gym recently and for the first time in a long time I didn’t need to write down that my goal was to lose weight. I couldn’t believe it. When I say to people now that I have lost just over 6 stone, I honestly cannot believe I am talking about myself. I know to some people this sounds absolutely ridiculous but joining Weight Watchers, going to class every week and following the direction of my coaches, has given me my life back. To this day I still track and write everything down and for me that’s what made me reach my goal.
I am no longer hiding at home ashamed and embarrassed. I am back dancing four days a week and have even been asked to start teaching dance classes again. I now have the confidence to go to a gym where I previously would never have gone because I felt so intimidated. I am now the one organizing all the nights out with my friends and I am also now officially broke because I can’t stop buying clothes but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
How I did it:
- Follow the plan – there are no secrets
- SmartPoint everything and write everything down
- Save SmartPoints for night time
- Cheating means you are only fooling yourself, no one else
- Keep focused and remember what made you start initially
- Don’t let the stresses and pressure of daily life become an excuse to fall off the plan
- The more times you cheat or stop tracking, the longer the journey will take
- Stay focused and keep your goal insight because trust me, you will achieve it