Displaying my stickers on a board

In the past when I’ve received awards at Slimming World I followed the accepted practice of putting the award stickers on my book.

However, I don’t bother taking my book to the group any more. I log all my weight losses in the Slimming World app, so I don’t bother with the book. I keep it at home in case I want to look anything up – but even then it’s often easier to look things up online.

So when I get an award, I take my sticker home and put it on a cork board that hangs in the kitchen. It’s a more visible reminder of my progress.

At the time of writing, I’m 8 weeks into going to Slimming World, and I’m rather pleased to have lost 1½ stones, and received SOTW and SOTM twice!

In fact, for a few weeks there – between my wife and I – we won SOTW three times in a row, and kept bringing home the same tin of kidney beans that we brought along to put in the SOTW basket!

Five stones, and then some

I wrote last week about how the idea of going for my five stones peaked my competitive spirit. Well it seems to have paid off!

I was so determined this last week, that nothing would derail me from my goal of getting to my 5 stones, and as it happened I ended up losing 4½ pounds this week, and have now lost a total of 5 stone 1½ pounds! That’s the lightest I’ve been in about 10 years!

Even on Friday night when we went to a leaving drinks party for some friends who are emigrating to Spain, I kept my determination. When everyone around me was downing pints and scoffing pizza, I nursed two gins & slimline tonic (4 syns each) over the course of the night. And that was with the rugby on!

When the misses bought me some chocolate eggs as a treat, I didn’t eat them. When there was cake at work, I didn’t have any. When everyone was having Chinese takeaway for lunch on Friday, I was happy with my salad.

I didn’t feel I was depriving myself of anything. I was making conscious decisions to avoid things that would derail the progress towards my goal. And I’m so delighted at having achieved it!

Onwards and upwards towards the 5 and a half!

It’s amazing what a bit of healthy competition does

At class this week it was pointed out to me that both me and the misses are just 3 pounds away from our next ‘stone’ awards! In my case, I’m 3 pounds away from my 5 stone loss, and for the misses, it’s her 3 stones.

Having lost 3½ pounds this last week, it seemed to me to be a ‘big ask’ to lose another 3 pounds the following week, so I dismissed the idea at the time. But we talked about it when we got home, and agreed that we’d give it a go, and see if we could both lose 3 this week.

Now my dear lady wife is generally the more competitive one between the two of us, but the idea of working towards a target has really solidified my determination for this week. Of course, it also means that I’m going to obsess about my progress for the whole week, and will probably be jumping on the scales every day to track progress.

The weigh-in is next Wednesday. Wish me luck!

Couple of the Year

Couple of the year

We were awarded Couple of the Year at our Slimming World class this week.

In fairness, there wasn’t much competition. We’re the only couple that come to class together, so there wasn’t even a vote. We got the award by default. But I’m not complaining – it’s another sticker for my book!

I really do think that it helps that we’re both doing Slimming World together. It means that:

  • We encourage each other. We celebrate each other’s victories, and are there to commiserate and support each other when we fall off the wagon.
  • We don’t lead each other astray. It’s hard to keep your will power when your partner comes home with a high-syn takeaway or a load of crisps and chocolate!
  • We don’t have high-syn food in the house. We don’t need to cater for one person who’s on-plan and another that wants loads of treats in the cupboards.
  • We share the cooking. When you’re food optimising the time it takes to prepare meals can increase. By sharing the cooking it means that the time spent chopping up all those vegetables doesn’t seem so bad.

It’s a real shame that more men don’t join their wives and girlfriend to join Slimming World. After all, there are plenty of overweight guys out there that could do with shifting a few pounds.

I know that slimming clubs can be a bit intimidating for men, and it’s true that women do dominate in terms of attendance. But I would say to any guys out there, don’t let that put you off!

We also had a taster night this week, where people brought along lots of different syn-free and low-syn treats for everyone to try.

I made some Chickpea Patties that seemed to go down very well. I like my Indian food quite spicy, so I increased the spices from what’s in the recipe – tasting it along the way until I got them right!

The wheels have fallen off the wagon

I’m not feeling very good about my recent weight-loss, or lack thereof.

The figures don’t lie. For the first two months when I joined Slimming World I was going great guns. In just nine weeks I had lost 2½ stones, averaging a loss of about 4 pounds a week. It was falling off me, and I was winning Slimmer of the Week or Month almost every week. It seemed easy. Follow the plan, eat plenty of speed, and enjoy my syns – and the weight loss will follow.

However, we then went on holiday at the start of September and it all fell apart. We enjoyed our break, and ate and drank well, and it made a dent – albeit not a large one – in my progress. But ever since, I’ve done terribly. My weight has yo-yoed up and down from week to week for the last 2 months; so much so that during September and October I’ve only lost a total of 2 pounds!

I went from losing an average of 4 pounds a week to only 2 pounds in two months. That’s not good.

It can only be attributed to one thing. I’ve been going off-plan far too many times in the last while. I guess I’d grown a bit complacent, and told myself I could cheat on the odd day and get away with it. But I’ve not been getting away with it. Every time I’ve raided the cupboards at home, or thrown caution to the wind when ordering a meal out, it’s come back to bite me in the ass.

To be honest, I feel pretty disgusted with myself, and I feel a total fraud for accepting the Mr Sleek award in group during the week. I really don’t deserve it. Not based on my recent lack of progress.

I’ve lost my way, and I need to find my way back. Because I don’t want to quit. I don’t want to give up and go back to how I used to me. My life is already immeasurably better for losing 3 stone, and I know it could be even better for losing another 3 stone or more. I just need to renew my determination.

I need to question every decision. Every time someone places a menu in front of me, every time I go food shopping, every time I pass a convenience store, and every time I open the fridge door. I need to remind myself, every time, why I’m doing this. And each and every time I need to make a better decision. I need to ignore the voices that tell me I can cheat “just this once”, because inevitably there ends up being far too many “just this once” times.

My amazing wife, who is on this Slimming World journey with me, has suggested to me that I need to go back to basics. She has suggested that I re-read my food optimising book, and start keeping a food diary. And when she said it, I must admit at the time I pretty much dismissed the ideas. But upon reflection, I’m starting to think she’s right. Maybe I do need to start again from scratch, and follow the plan to the letter.