My Weight Loss – Your Questions Answered

During my Facebook live session I answered a lot of questions about my weight loss journey and following some questions afterwards also I thought here would be a good place to put those answers down into words. For future live chats I will focus mostly on different areas asking you to put questions to me based on that subject for example comfort eating, Snacking, eating out etc.

How did you stay motivated when losing weight was tough?

Firstly during my initial weight loss journey from being a size 30 to reaching my target weight which made me a size 6-8, I found taking each half stone at a time helped. I had a lot of weight to lose so breaking it up into more manageable chunks made it much easier to stay motivated. I concentrated on aiming for the next clothes size continually and working towards that with every pound lost.

Secondly during more recent months as I have been trying to sort myself out and get back to target my ways to stay motivated have been very different. Previously I hadn’t known what it would be like to be at my target weight, how I would feel etc. This time I do know and I can feel the difference in myself being bigger now. Now my motivation is pound by pound to be back in those clothes that I felt amazing in. I look at each pound lost as a step closer to feeling fabulous in my bikinis again.

The best advice I can give you if you are struggling to lose weight is to break it down and look at it in small manageable amounts at a time.

This is where I want to get back to again, not perfect but I was happy with it.

Has your confidence and self esteem changed as well as your body? and if so how?

I have never been a confident person, I have always struggled with speaking in front of a group of people and after university even burst into tears during a job interview when I had to do a presentation as I just couldn’t do it. Losing weight has given me the confidence to do things like this now. I have given a number of talks in Slimming World groups to a room full of strangers with up to 60 people at a time listening to me talking. I am still not an overly confident person but I am so much more confident than I ever was as a morbidly obese lady!

I used to be so shy and hide away in dark clothes

Why did you decide to share your journey with everybody?

Initially when I was doing well with my weight loss I was often asked what food I was eating so I started putting all my foods in a separate photo album. People kept telling me that my story was inspirational and that I should share it but I honestly didn’t think it was that exciting and kept just sharing it occasionally in Facebook groups to inspire others that it was possible to lose weight like I had. Only a few months after reaching my target I started thinking about sharing my story in a blog. This was around the same time I was interviewed for Take A Break Magazine (which can be found here). From starting my blog about my weight loss it has now expanded a little to cover other things too because no one wants to just read weight loss and recipe posts all the time do they! I just hope that me sharing the ups and downs of my story helps others to start or continue their journey and be happier and healthier.

It all started by me sharing food pictures!

How do you manage when you are out and about with treats and when those around you are drinking and eating desserts etc?

As a vegetarian my eating out options are always quite limited. As a result when I eat out generally if I don’t have a jacket potato or salad then I am eating “off plan”. I accept this and usually I plan to have a jacket potato if it is for a normal meal out but for celebrations or going somewhere special then I choose to be off plan and eat and enjoy a nice meal, after all it is just one meal in the 21 that week! When it comes to drinking I am very often not affected by this as I am not a big drinker and only tend to drink on holiday! It can be hard when others are enjoying desserts but I make the decision and if I am comfortable with a weight gain that week then I enjoy a dessert too.

Have you any tips for people who want to join Slimming World?

I would say that you should do it, I was nervous at first and everyone will be it is only natural but if you can overcome that it could change your life. The Slimming World Consultant does not have to speak to you in front of the group if you do not feel comfortable with that at first. Do not keep putting it off because if you wait now until January then in that time you will gain more weight instead of joining a group now and starting to lose right away. I wrote a blog post about joining Slimming World and you can read that here.
I can’t get my head in it at the moment it seems like a vicious cycle, can you give me any advice?My advice to anyone in this position is to look at why you want to lose weight and use that as a motivator so if it is a certain outfit then put the photo of that on the fridge or in your purse for when you go shopping to remind you. Think about what is stopping you and if it is truly stopping you or if you are using that as an excuse and be honest with yourself!

What has it been like on the journey with your son and boyfriend?

I lost a large amount of my weight before I started my relationship with Stuart however being on the journey together has made it easier in some respects as we both eat the same kinds of foods and are less likely to tempt each other. This is not always the case though and I wrote about some of the pitfalls of losing weight as a couple in a post here.

Since Ben joined Slimming World it has been lovely knowing I am feeding hi more healthily but also I have found it harder in the image therapy part of group as I am less likely to be open if I am struggling because I don’t want Ben to have to hear that I am not doing well. We have recently decided Ben will no longer need to weigh every week so this should help me to get back on track too. If you want to read more about Bens healthy eating journey you can do so here.

How is your Fibromyalgia since losing weight?

My fibromyalgia has not disappeared completely but it has improved a lot. I still suffer with some of the issues I used to due to the fibromyalgia but they are not as frequent and not as severe so I am very thankful for that. I used to struggle to walk around a shop without pain and now I can take Ben out on his trike (pictured below) which he loves! I will be writing a post in more detail about this so will share this in the next week or so.
What is the best bit of advice you’ve ever received?
The best bit of advice I have been given or heard is “Do not reward yourself with food you are not a dog!”. It sounds silly but it is so true whenever I am pleased with my results on the scales I remind myself to stay on plan and not have a “cheat meal” by remembering I am not a dog I do not need to reward myself with food! A post I wrote about dieting mistakes we have all made covers some of these little things we do and can be found here.
Do you have any advice for emotional eating?
This is a subject I have written about many times and previous posts can be found here. My main bit of advice would be to look at the root issue of the emotional eating and try to approach that. I have had counselling and have been on antidepressants which have helped with my underlying issues and due to this help I do not eat as often due to my emotions. Of course I still do, we all do, but I think if you can get help with the underlying cause whether that be with counselling, medication or just chatting to friends then this can help in the longer term. Many foods that feel like comfort food can be made healthily. This paella for example (recipe here) is syn free but is one of those foods that is filling and feels naughty!
How do you cope with the pressure of staying at a certain weight or to get back to a certain weight?The only pressure I have is that which I put on myself. I have recently realised this and on taking the pressure off I feel so much better. I think sometimes we need to realise that we are only human and we will slip up sometimes but that is ok! Once you accept that I think you are half way there.

This is where I am pushing myself to get back to!

I lost weight but then regained it and eat to punish myself how can I lose again?

Do not give up, take it one day at a time and you will get there. I think a lot of this is about mindset and accepting that you have made a mistake and that now you have a bit of weight to lose but the more you eat the worse the situation will be. I know for me realising that I was digging myself a bigger and bigger hole was what it took to realise I needed to stop and refocus!

About to cross the finish line of the Great North Run September 2016

Do you miss running and will you get back into it?

Yes I miss running so much, which is something I never imagined I would feel. I had really enjoyed running and completing the Great North Run, a half marathon in just 2 hours 22 minutes was just amazing and a feeling I really want again. I do hope that I will get back into it but the main problem I have now is getting my asthma under control enough to make that possible and also overcoming the fear I now have that my asthma will get bad whilst running. If I am honest I am terrified now of how bad my asthma could get after months of struggles with it and I know I need to work on my confidence in my lungs as much as my running when I start to run again. I will follow doctors advice though and wait until they think my asthma is well enough controlled to start again.

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1 Comment

  1. August 25, 2017 / 4:04 pm

    So inspiring Jen! Lovely to read your blog and learn about your journey with slimming world

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