Here I have a guest post from a lovely blogger Laura who shares her experiences of a few different diets and why the Body Coach 90 Day challenge/Lean in 15 didn’t work for her and what has worked for her. Well worth a read if you are looking into different weight loss plans and wondering what will work for you! So, I will pass you over to the lovely Laura!
I really love food. Especially pasta. I just don’t seem to have a ‘off’ switch sometimes and no matter how I feel – I just keep eating. If someone were to serve me a portion size for six people, provided I had a nice bowl of parmesan, I would eat the lot.
The above scenario happened a lot whilst I was a university. I was in a fairly rubbish relationship and didn’t feel good about myself. I eventually weighed about 13 stone – four more than when I started university.
Through going to the gym and starting running – I lost a stone but it wasn’t until I joined a weight loss group that I actually found success.
A friend had wanted to go along and had asked for support. Happily, as things turned out we actually ended up supporting each other.
I found that having a weekly weigh in, and very fixed rules worked for me. At that point I also had a lifestyle which was very easy to control. I didn’t have children to worry about and I had a great budget to be able to buy good foods. It helped that I am incredibly competitive too. Eventually, I left the group weighing 9st 10lbs and felt the happiest I had in a long time about my body.
So much so, I had the confidence to ditch the unhealthy relationship (albeit a year later) and believe that I wouldn’t end up as a old lady with red wine stained lips with loads of cats.
Over the next couple of years, although my weight fluctuated a little I did successfully ‘maintain’ my weight using the knowledge I had gained. I had switched so many little things – like milk for example – and just never had changed back. I also kept up exercising which definitely helped.
I did gain a lot of weight with my first pregnancy but lost in fairly easily in the first year by breastfeeding and then rejoining a dieting group. However, I found things different that time round.
The ‘rules’ had changed and I found I didn’t really have the time or headspace to understand them. It was far too complicated in contrast to the system I had worked with before. So soon just went back to what I knew – simply relying on the food and portion sizes I knew were appropriate and going to fitness classes at the gym.
After having my second child, things didn’t go quite a smoothly. I was still 1.5 stones heavier than where I wanted to be a year later so I eventually enlisted the help of a personal trainer. I managed to loose a stone (which was great) but then just hit a plateau. Fast forward seven months and I was still in the same place.
I was still working with the same personal trainer but honestly, not really putting the work in. I would go to our sessions but not work out in-between. Which logic would say wasn’t enough to really see results.
So when a friend suggested we sign up for the Body Coach 90 day challenge – I thought what’s to lose?!
I was sent recipes for ‘training days’ and non ‘training days’ – all of which were very straight forward given I could very easily menu plan. I did notice they were very protein heavy and my shopping bill massively increased as a result. But I really was enjoying the food itself.
Usually, I would’ve just taken a sandwich to work but instead was putting together quite elaborate meals. Which took a crazy amount of time each evening but was nice to eat. Even when I had to attend work events where the food was provided, I just took along a Tupperware box.
I also started getting to the gym for 6.30am four times a week to get a HITT workout in too.
By the end of the ‘cycle’, I had lost 4lbs (I didn’t have much to lose) but had lost an inch from my chest, waist and hips. I was feeling confident in myself, leaner and stronger.
I’d love to say that the next cycle was as a good. But it’s here I really found failure and find myself utterly angry and frustrated at myself.
For the last four weeks, I’ve been on holiday. Utterly out of routine and away from any scales. I’ve certainly not been eating or drinking to any real excess but I haven’t been watching and weighing every bit of food.
Usually, I would gain a couple of pounds through doing this. Instead, I return to find I am more like 12lbs heavier. I know that ‘Cycle 1’ was not meant to lead on ’normal life’ – it was meant to follow on to more carbs, and then another 4 weeks of a different.
So do I return to the start of Cycle 1 and hope that I will get back to where I was…? No.
I’ve realised I don’t have 12 weeks to follow a diet that involves hours of prep and a huge shopping budget. I have a life that is varied, involves 3 kids to feed, and a limited amount of money.
I also really don’t want to be in a situation ever again when not weighing food leads to this kind of weight gain, this quickly.
For some people, they would shrug and say that this isn’t a big deal. But for me, it is.
I think weight is actually really a personal thing. Some people would love to weigh 11 stone. I really don’t. I like to weigh around 9st 10. I like it when I feel strong and able to do anything I want.
Equally, if someone else feels that way at 11 stone then great! Or 12, 13, 14 or 15. It’s their body and their life.
I don’t believe you should want to look or feel any particularly way for anyone but YOU.
I’m personally angry because for me, 12lbs takes a long time lose – at least 6-8 weeks. I’m angry because I followed a ‘fad’ diet that I didn’t understand on some hope I’d turn into ripped goddess.
So what now?
I have two weeks before I return to work after the holidays. So two weeks in which I need to be in a situation where my work clothes will fit. But I need balance.
Those two weeks have got to involve time with my friends and family. I can’t start eating out of boxes again – it’s got to be ‘normal’.
So, I’ve signed up to a 10K in October. I’m following a running schedule and posting about it on my personal Facebook (being accountable to others), I’m getting back to the gym, and I’ll be eating in the way that I know. Choosing healthy options, and only ever cooking sensible portion sizes.
Whilst this may not get me to ‘lean in 15’ – maybe that’s just not me. Some things are just not for everyone. And that’s ok!
If you have enjoyed reading this do pop over to Laura’s blog and take a look and say hello to her on social media and give her a little follow or like!
Laura’s Blog https://edinburghwithkids.com/
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