Howdy!!! I have another awesome guest post for you from the lovely Ffion. You can read about her amazing journey and inspirational progress over at her fab blog- so do go and check it out! 🙂
Hello everyone! I’m Ffion and I blog over at ‘Chocolate and Raspberries‘.
I want to thank Jemma for allowing me to take a post over 🙂 My blog is made up of pictures of yummy food, random musings and the joys and frustrations that comes from being on a weight loss journey. Today’s post is about my journey up to now, my back story if you will, so by the end of this post you’ll know quite a lot about me! And you’ll see quite a few different hair styles, as well as some dodgy drunk dancing!
My weight loss story so far
I’ve pretty much always been overweight. Even as a very young child I used to think of myself as fat, but looking back I realise I was much taller than all my peers, and therefore was obviously ‘bigger’. Unfortunately I’m not tall now, I remember distinctly the point in Year 7 when I realised that I was shorter than everyone, and trying to figure out how that happened, as when I was in Year 3 I was even taller than the boys. Anyway, I digress.
I’ve always half arsed attempted at loosing weight while a teenager, however I never really knew what I was doing. I’d eat healthier for a day, and then give in to a packet of crisps. Actually figuring out what was ‘healthy’ was actually confusing in itself. When your thirteen life is a bit confusing as it is without, having to figure out what defined ‘healthy eating’.
One failed attempt I can recall is one day I decided that I wasn’t going to eat a thing. I’d been trying to eat ‘healthier’ for months, but wasn’t seeing any progress, so this was a latch ditch attempt to test my willpower. Nada. I spent the whole day irritable and rude, and telling my friends that I ‘wasn’t hungry’. I got home from hanging out with friends at about seven o’clock completely shattered, and proceeded to attack the fridge. I decided that I just couldn’t loose weight, I just wasn’t capable of it.
When I got a bit older I used to go to the gym or Circuit Training intermittently, and do my best to eat healthy. This is the point that I also discovered under age drinking, and suffice to say, alcho-pops are laded with calories.
I kind of trundled on like this through my late teens, kind of half arsed trying to loose weight, making pretty much no progress and thinking to hell with it come the weekend.
Its at this point that I went to University. Partying hard really does not bode well with being healthy! I lived with a group of very sociable people, and we used to go out drinking multiple times a week. I’d try and be healthy in the week, and then blow it all on booze and takeout on the way home at 4am at the weekend.
It didn’t help that my boyfriend was actually in a university the other side of the UK, so ever few weeks I’d go down and visit him, or vice versa, and in order to make the most of being together we used to eat lots, drink lots, and party lots. I could easily put on a few pounds in those few days away!
I’ve always been a healthy eater, I gravitate naturally towards whole foods such as houmous, yogurt, brown rice and pasta and I’m all about the fruit and veg! My problem is that I also have a sweet tooth, I’m also all about the chocolate and cake! My challenge has always been to gain balance between my two loves! Portion sizes have also always been a bit of a bugger.
While in college I discovered food blogs- seeing how these women eat healthy filling foods, the odd piece of cake or glass of wine, sometimes eat cake but still looking fabulous, maintain weight, and most of all being healthy completely blew my mind. I wanted to be them, and most of all I wanted to start writing a food blog to share my foodie adventures. However as I was overweight, and and not actively trying to rectify that fact, I didn’t think all the partying and takeaways would fit in with how I envisioned my food blog to be
I counted calories most of the time in first and second year, but in third year I was under a lot of stress, and calorie counting fell by the wayside. I wasn’t really that concerned, as I figured I wasn’t really making much progress anyway, in fact, over the past two years, due to Christmas’, Holidays and generally having too much of a good time, I’d actually gained about 10-15 pounds!
Needless to say a year of not counting calories and stress eating I gained weight. I realised that while I was calorie counting I was at least generally maintaining. When graduated from university I was the heaviest I’d ever been. My sister suggested that I join SW with her, and so a week after I graduated… I joined SW. SW helped me get into the healthy eating mind set. I have to say that the way of eating wasn’t completely different from the way already eat, as I’ve always snacked on fruit and bulked up my meals with veg, but I loved the accountability of the scale, and sharing thoughts and struggles with other people going through the same thing.
And it was after a few months of SW that I decided to start a blog! I have to say I didn’t read any British blogs before I started my blog, I am so glad I’ve managed to find you all! It also helps with motivation to have some like minded people, who shop at the same places and eat the same ‘weird’ food!
I have to say that my weight loss has been much slower than I would like. Its easy to over eat, even if it is on fruit or mug shots or Muller Lights, they still have calories, and your body will still gain weight even if they are free on whatever plan you are on. I then decided to take on calorie counting again. As strange as this might sound, I LOVE IT! I still eat healthily as I love healthy food, but it allows me to have healthy things I love such as PB or green monsters, without feeling guilty as they have Syns.
I think the reason I am finding calorie counting easier this time is accountability and routine. I actually never told anyone that I counted calories while at university- I didn’t want to bring attention to the fact that I needed to loose weight. Through my blog I’m starting to work through the feeling of guilt and embarrassment I associated with being fat. Being open about the journey you are on is the number one advice I give to people. If people know you are trying to be healthier they are great encourager’s and motivators, and will stop you from reaching for that cream cake in their presence!
Throughout my journey what I have struggled the most with is exercising. When I first started last summer I was able to go for two hour hikes in the afternoon when I wasn’t working (I worked part time at the time!), which worked out well as long as the weather wasn’t too horrible (gotta love Wales for its rain!). When the weather got decidedly worse, in October I decided to join the local gym. I have to say out of all the gyms I’ve been a member of, this has been my favourite by far! It was small, not pretentious, the staff knew you personally and where friendly! However, my exercise regime was inconsistent at best: I’d go 2-4 times a week for a month and then nothing for a few weeks. (The snow over Christmas didn’t help!). I also struggled with pain in my calves when I ran I ran consistently, which I now think is from pushing myself too far, and therefore aggravating my weak muscles and resulting in a re-occurring injury. I don’t particularly like going to the gym, and going to the gym when its busy I just hate, as I have a social fear of working out in front of people (I’m working on it!)
Since January my weight loss has been ridiculously slow (about 2 pounds a month!), and ever since re-booting my diet by calorie counting I have decided to kick start my exercise regime. I cancelled my gym membership back in March, as now that I work full time, I know I would never be able to hack going at the busy after work slot. I have instead started jogging. It is going very slowly, but to me, just getting out there and moving for thirty minutes at a time is an achievement. I have been gradually building up my exercise, mostly working out 2-4 times a week, and it is by making these achievable goals is what I believe has turned it into a habit! I am now working on exercising 3-4 times a week. I know that my body has limits, and can be prone to injury if I run more often than two times a week, with twice being ideal, and so I supplement my running with the 30 day shred. Jillian Michaels is a devil genius. I love and hate her at the same time!
And so this bring me to today, where in the past week I’ve exercised three times, I am gradually increasing my running after a lot of time away travelling, and I have now lost a total of 34.5 pounds. Not the most earth shattering weight loss of all time, but I’ve worked hard for those 34.5 pounds: I own them. I know that if I had not started out on this journey that would of been the number of pounds gained and not lost, and I would be miserable. Instead I am happy, loving life, loving food, excited about the progression in my fitness and wellbeing! 🙂