So what happened? I think the answer is that I have a life to lead. By no means have I not made any progress - I can tell that my clothes are looser, or fit better - I even wear a belt on my jeans now to keep them up and the belt doesn't cut in half so much as it used to. But I also know I still have a way to go to reach the goal that I've set myself, which is to be able to fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes.
Big chunks of life have got in the way. In November, I went away to a family wedding. And there was Christmas too. Actually, I don't think I did too badly then as I was ill just after and I didn't eat properly for a few days. I overate on Christmas Day but hey, that's what you do on feast days, don't you? And I had a birthday with an amazing 10 course tasting menu experience. I'm not going to begrudge any of that because I enjoyed every minute of those times. And every time, I've got back into healthy eating afterwards.
Something slightly more crucial might have hampered my progress. I stopped being quite so careful about recording my food intake. I find, for me, that it's the best way of keeping things in check. I always used to use Food Focus for this but I've recently discovered My Fitness Pal which is very good, and it has phone apps so I can enter my food intake when out and about. So, for the last few weeks, I've got back into that again and because I find the site easier to use, I'm keeping on top of it again. It really helps to make good food choices too. But before that time, I hadn't regularly kept properly on top of things and it's so easy to have an extra few calories here and there which hamper your attempts to lose weight. And it's the food intake you need to be wary of - it has a much bigger effect on your success than anything other than the most punishing of exercise regimes.
Talking of which, my new exercise regime is probably the thing that has gone really well. In October, we got a family membership to the local sports centre and I started going to classes again. In particular, Body Pump which I really love - perhaps even more than I ever did before - as I noted in my post a few weeks after I started back. I go to 2 or 3 classes of that each week, coupled with maybe the odd Combat class. I've had problems with that class recently, in that I was getting backache afterwards which, on talking to the lovely Wendy, appeared to be related to not engaging my core muscles properly when doing lots of side kicks. So, I've had to ease up and that's made me enjoy Combat much less - which upsets me in a way, because when I exercised before, I loved Combat way more than Body Pump. When I've not felt up to that, I have gone back to my old favourite - an EA Sports Active workout on the Wii. My back's a lot better now, and I'm spending a lot more time working with the core muscles.
I probably need to turn my progress into numbers but I don't weigh myself; I'll perhaps cover why in another post. I always used to measure myself to record my progress. Occasionally, I check key measurements and I know that they still mostly equate to the measurements I took when I was six months pregnant with Monkey. I can't help feeling that's quite shocking - and that maybe, my starting point was further from my goal than I first thought.
My only other way to do this is to compare my picture from August to me today, wearing the same clothes and everything. Here we go...
What do you think? I think I can see a difference and I definitely have more "shape". Editing the photos and putting them side by side may change the proportions too! I am not where I want to be yet, but I'm definitely getting there. There's no going back now. Please comment and tell me what you think - I have a fairly distorted self-image sometimes and find it really hard to make comparisons.
And just to finish off, I'm going to post a pic I snapped with my phone yesterday. I like it because I think I look happy and healthy in it, even if you can't see the difference so much since August because of what I'm wearing. And looking healthy, that is what matters, isn't it? I'm never ever going to be stick thin. Thanks to why my shape has changed, I don't think I will ever wear some tops that I wore pre-pregnancy, but the rest of me can get there. If I have to drag it there kicking and screaming, I will. Expect further updates - at the very most, in another six months.
(I've not been paid to mention any of the sites I've linked to. I've mentioned them because I like them!)