Thursday, 27 January 2011

My Fitness Story... PhotoPuddle

Today's story in the My Fitness Story.... series is by a lady known to many as PhotoPuddle, who blogs at It's all about the photos, which contains some stunning photos taken by her and others. PhotoPuddle wanted to tell her story of how she lost over a stone. That doesn't sound like a huge amount, but it's all relative, isn't it? Anyway, over to PhotoPuddle, who has decided to call her story:

Weight loss – the everywoman’s tale

When Kate said she was after people to guest post about fitness and weight loss, I was quite excited as last year, I finally lost the weight I’ve been meaning to shift for years. I really am very proud of myself so wanted a place to shout about it and my own blog wasn’t really the place (It’s a rather nice blog about photography though, so do come check it out!)

Anyway, this is my story. I’m not exactly slimmer of the year but I hope I can be a bit of inspiration to someone who just wants to shape up a bit. I’ve never been fat exactly but slowly over the years, my weight just kept creeping up and I really wasn’t happy about it. I’d tried dieting before but to be honest, I really lacked motivation. I’d lose a couple of pounds but then I’d be back to my usual snacking ways. I even failed to get motivated to lose anything before my wedding or before a holiday in the Caribbean.

So what happened this time, I hear you ask? Well it was the way people often decide they need to lose weight – a holiday photo! I just looked at this particular picture and thought enough is enough.

I started the way I usually do when I go on a diet and that was by keeping a food diary. It’s really the best way to shock yourself into realising just how much junk you shovel into your mouth in a day. My problem has always been snacking. I’d come in from being out with my daughter and cram a few biscuits in to my mouth. I’d be out at coffee with friends and always order a cake to go with my drink. And evenings would be the worst. I’d have dinner and then an hour later, be tucking into a bag of crisps or some chocolate. So the snacking had to stop and this time I meant it! And you know what, something inside must have clicked because I did stop snacking. Now if I do want a snack in the day, it’s a rice cake or a piece of fruit.

And I am proud of what I’ve achieved because it’s not been a diet - my whole relationship with food has changed. I really don’t feel the need to snack on rubbish any more. I realise that it was just boredom or habit that made me eat in that way. I had final confirmation that my eating had changed over Christmas. On Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day I decided that there were no calories and I could treat myself to whatever I fancied. And you know what, I really didn’t fancy much at all. I was a bit naughtier than usual but the day I imagined with my face in a tub of Celebrations just didn’t happen.

So the result? We’ll I’ve lost over a stone which, as I said, isn’t a huge amount but it’s what I needed to shift. I’ve also gone down at least one jeans size which is actually a little bit annoying as none of my jeans fit me any more so I’ve had to have a bit of a shopping spree on that front. But it’s amazing how much more confident I feel about myself now.

So there you have it. That’s my story. I know it’s not a dramatic weight loss and I know I could still eat better but I thought I’d share simply because I think many of you out there can relate it. There are so many people out there saying they want to shape up but never really get round to it. It’s simple really - eat less (and exercise more of course!). By that I don’t mean make food the enemy, just stop with the pointless snacking and huge portions. Start enjoying your food and making what you do eat count.

Oh, and I still don’t think there are any calories on Christmas Day. Or your birthday in fact! Result!

Thanks to PhotoPuddle for sharing her story with us. I totally agree that food diaries are a great way to start becoming aware of just how much you're eating - and not just in snacks; many people underestimate their portion sizes and actually eat way more than they realise. I also think that getting your state of mind right can be critical to your success or failure. Sometimes, things do just click mentally - I think starting off with a goal in mind, but not expecting it to go overnight helps a lot. Weight loss is not a sprint, it's a marathon and there are no prizes for coming first, everyone who crosses the finishing line wins. 

If you'd like to tell your fitness story, please get in touch with me, either on Twitter or via the email address on the About Me page. Please feel free to share your experiences via the comments below if you prefer. 
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