The image above is what has spurred on this blog post. I have started this post several times, I have slammed the lid of my laptop in frustration of not being able to find the words but really wanting to share this journey I have been on.
SO you may ask what does some sun in the trees mean in terms of a blog post, well let me explain…
I took this photo on a walk home through the park with my little boy, even though it was not particularly warm, the sun was streaming through the trees. As Noah was asleep, walking through the park gave me some thinking space to myself. Looking at the view it reminded me of spring, the warmth of the sun on my face with a slight chill in the air, of things coming to life and changing after time in hibernation. That is what I have been doing, working on myself, changing myself, and now I’m ready to come out of hiding and share it with everyone.
Before any of my lovely family and friends say you don’t need to change, I do. Since having Noah, I have ruined the health of my body, I became ashamed of what I had done to myself, through lack of respect, bad eating and zero exercise. I was most ashamed of the fact that, before I had Noah, I had lost a lot of weight and had taken real pride in how looked. Obviously pregnancy changes a woman’s body, which I fully take into account, but after given birth to Noah, I fell back into really bad habits, secret eating, several snacks a day which were definitely not healthy based, making excuses not to do any exercise (I’m tired, I’m recovering after having Noah, I don’t have time).
This went on for months, my health declined, and so did my general opinion of myself worth.
Then during a mother and baby class, we had a group talk from a lovely lady from Crawley Wellbeing, to give us some simple healthy eating tips, and ways to start getting active. At the end of the group session we were offered the chance to join Crawley Wellbeing, and have a full body composition done, on some very snazzy scales called “Tanita”. I took this opportunity because for me I had reached the end of my tether with myself. It was time for change.
I started in April 2015, I had the Tanita body composition check, and got the shock of my life. I had put on 4 stone on my pre-pregnancy weight. I had put it in a two stone ballpark, but reading those measurements was a shock, and made me realise I really needed to try and get my health back under control.
During my meeting with Crawley Wellbeing, I was offered the choice to join a Weight off Workshop (or WOW) I jumped at the chance, though I didn’t eventually go down this route I was offered another alternative, I was just looking for a little direction and help with how to change my lifestyle.
When it came to signing up for the WOW, I was sent the forms for that course, or for a more intensive group called Why Weight. This is usually only available for people who are thinking about bariatric surgery, I am not going to have surgery, but my BMI meant I was a candidate. I chose this route because it felt more personal reading through the pamphlet, rather than a class where I felt I could hide in a group.
This group has changed my life completely. I have worked on my relationship to food with counselors and dietitians, in terms of emotions, and why I reach for food at certain times, sometimes without thinking or realising, using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to change the way I interact with food and learning what a portion size really is. I also have been seeing a exercise coach who gives me tips and helps me find the direction I want to go with exercise so I don’t get bored, and so I can also make it work with my life as a single parent.
At the time I write this I can’t tell you what I weigh exactly, I get weighed once month by my dietitian, in my previous appointment on the 25th of January I weighed 17 st 4lbs. I’m not ashamed of the numbers anymore because I know they are numbers on the way to a new me, a healthy me.
I know size and numbers don’t make a healthy person on their own, but for me I need to work on them. I need to bring my BMI down ( my blood pressure is tip top, no complaints there), I need to make my lifestyle healthy so I can show Noah how to eat right, how to fuel his body properly, and not just turn to eating because he feels emotional and wants it for comfort.
Before I round up this blog post, I want to say to anyone that is looking to lose weight or change their lifestyle, that you need to learn to love yourself first. I didn’t start my weight-loss journey at a point where I loved myself, I hated what I saw in the mirror, and was stuck in an awful spiral where I nurtured that hurt with food. I have reached that point though, because if I don’t learn to love myself as I am right now, I will never have the respect to give my body what it needs, and accept the changes that happen.
I am going to keep you all updated during my weight-loss, the ups and downs, and any techniques that I have used. I am not professing to know all the answers, I have muddled through the last 9 months and have fallen off the figurative horse and got back on it again, but now I feel in place that I feel confident and motivated. I will welcome any tips you have or any healthy meals, I will be sharing a few with you too in future posts.
Lastly if you made it to the end of this biopic and you wish to contact Crawley Wellbeing for a Wellbeing Check and take a turn standing on Tanita for your body composition here is a link: Wellbeing Check