Katie's Amazing Six Stone Weight Loss Success
|Time Taken||2 years|
I was a student when I first started to address my weight issues. All the parties, junk food and library snack food had taken its toll.
Luckily I went to a university which prided itself on sporting excellence and I was able to try out sports that I would have never thought of like fencing, yoga and aqua jogging.
I also found that the gym was a perfect way for me to de-stress and motivate myself.
My first long-term employment was shift work, often doing 26 hour shifts with no official breaks and only 4 hours of guaranteed sleep.
"My current job is 9-5 in a hospital. It is perfect as it allows me to plan my exercise and my meals properly, plus everyone is so health-conscious!"
My living situation has fluctuated throughout my weight loss journey.
Sharing accommodation with friends meant temptation was constantly in my face. The food diary became my strongest weapon!
Living with partners who all loved unhealthy food in abundance resulted in me seriously learning about portion control.
Currently I live on my own and cook for my partner when he comes round.
I do love eating out though. I need a curry a week!
What Diets Have you Tried in the Past?
- SlimFast (ended up eating my own food as well as the shakes!).
- Apple diet.
- No eating after 6 diet (didn’t really fit in with my hectic life).
- Weight Watchers (found too complicated and too expensive).
- Porridge diet (this actually worked well for a while, but I got bored after a while and found that the lack of fat resulted in me becoming very cold).
- Crunchy Nut/Special K diet – I couldn’t survive on their tiny portions and ended up eating twice as much cereal as I should have done! Plus I got very irritable and tired.
How Being Overweight Has Affected You…
I was never a thin child. I kept my weight down when I was young with Irish Dancing.
I was diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 14.
Although I don’t recall this upsetting me I gave up a lot of activities at around this time.
I still socialised but I remember eating a lot secretly – stuffing packs of Jaffa cakes and Pringles behind the sofa whenever my Mum would come into the room.
As my weight increased so did the comfort eating. I went to an all-girls school, so when we did mix with boys socially there was a lot of pressure on appearance.
"I couldn’t compete with my friends, none of whom were overweight. I settled for being the last to be chosen and often the one not chosen at all."
I compensated for this by presenting myself as being confident and bubbly. I would then go home and cry to my mum.
I didn’t have the will power to stick to any diets (I was 16 yrs when I tried SlimFast and Weight Watchers) and I was too picky an eater to change my diet.
When I left school I moved out of home and took a gap year living and working away from my family in Southern Ireland.
"I immersed myself in complete independence and took control of my life. Part of my job involved cooking for 12 other people and I quickly learned new skills and tried new foods."
When I went to university in Bath I found myself at a university priding itself on sporting excellence.
In Freshers week, I was offered so many sports I had never even heard of. I discovered a love for fencing and yoga.
I had friends doing sports science degrees and found myself going to the gym and swimming.
"Without even trying I lost weight through exercise alone. However, my long distance boyfriend would visit and his way of showing love was through food."
Every time I lost weight I found he would visit and I would sabotage my efforts.
I would lose weight during term and pile it all back on during the holidays.
I graduated, moved back home and eventually split up with him. A month later I bought a gym membership and took back control of my weight.
Motivation to Lose Weight?
- My doctor had been consistently telling me to lose weight.
- As a size 26, clothes shopping always ended in tears and I sweated profusely.
- It took a photograph in which I look like my ex’s mother to really motivate me! It terrified me that I looked the same size as someone who I considered morbidly obese.
How Weight Loss Resources Helps
Keeping a food diary has been invaluable. I never realised how important it could be to weigh food to be accurate about how much you are actually eating.
I love the support from the other members and find the running and fitness pledges on the Running and Fitness & Exercise boards, Members Forum, fantastic.
I also love the recipe database. It allows me to indulge in my love of food and trying out new things.
"Another side to my weightloss? I became very obsessed for a while and got my weight down to 7st 6 (Christmas Day, 2007) and I feel my story wouldn’t be complete without a mention of this side of the struggle."
It was through the concerns of my best friend that I saw my GP who began to weigh my regularly and it was WLR that taught me to eat more (I used to eat around 600 cals a day, beating myself up, often crying myself to sleep, if I ate more) but not too much.
The Best of Weight Loss Resources
Message boards – particularly food ideas, runners and fitness and exercise, the Recipe database and I couldn’t survive without my food and exercise diaries!
Why do you think WLR has helped you lose weight where other diets have failed?
Peer support, and being comforted by the knowledge that you can slip up and it’s not all over. I love that I can have dessert every night (as long as I earn it first!).
- Try something new every week – be it a form of exercise or a new food. It makes the weight loss journey so much easier if you make it an adventure! Go to fruit and vegetable markets for ideas.
- Talk to people in the gym, I joined my gym on my own and now have a whole support and advice network there. It keeps me motivated and makes my classes so much more bearable if I have someone to giggle with afterwards!
- Throughout my weight loss I would buy a clothing item one size too small. This gave me something to aim for and was also a reward.
- New clothes, compliments (make sure you post updates on your profile, Members Forum, so we can encourage each other), making constant changes and trying new things.
- I may never be satisfied when I look in the mirror but I no longer break down in tears.
- I have the confidence to eat out. I used to believe everyone was looking at me and judging me.
- I love to meet new people and try new experiences. If someone is rude to me or things don’t go my way I no longer blame my appearance. I am happy to assert myself if I feel I am not being treated fairly.
- I don’t panic anymore whenever I am asked for my size in a clothes store. In fact I relish in it!
I rarely eat chocolate or crisps. I don’t think I ever really liked them. It was just a habit.
I still love desserts and I love my weekly curry. I don’t drink as much as I used to.
I still have one or two drinks, but not enough to jeopardise any training I might want to do the next day.
"I love vegetables and fruit – eating an average of 27 portions a day!"
Typical Dinner – Before
A lot of fried food and a lot of bread. Very low in fibre.
Lots of cheese (which I found out I am allergic to!) and creamy sauces.
Typical Dinner Now
Usually baked or stirfried vegetables, fish or quorn, a healthy dessert.
I can’t believe how much I love exercise. I get agitated if I don’t do any exercise daily. I walk 5 miles daily (to and from work).
I used to be a devotee of body combat, attack and jam and RPM.
"However I was encouraged to try running by the gym instructor (who is a running coach and champion of cross country) and have formed a running club at the gym."
When the gym closed at Christmas and I didn’t have access to my classes I began road running.
I now run up to 5 times a week, with several events lined up including the Dublin marathon in October.
My new boyfriend knew me when I was a teenager but he was (and still is) very sporty and I was ‘not his type’ – nor he mine!
He finds my weighing of food a bit odd but he loves the results of my cooking!
"We play squash together and he is also running some of the upcoming events with me."
It makes such a difference to have the support of those close to you.
Lots of people like Katie have achieved their weight loss success using the tools, information and support that WLR has to offer. But don't take our word for it – take a free trial and see for yourself.
* Note: The success stories published on Weight Loss Resources are written by WLR members, past and present, telling their own stories in their own words. As you will see if you read more than one or two of them, everyone's story is different and they have reached their success from a variety of starting points and lost weight at varying rates. Individual results may vary.