Friday, January 2, 2015

Weight loss - a kick up the bum.


Weight, weight weight. The bane of my life. I have let my weight get in the way of SO many things over the past 10 years and I'm just sick of it.

I got so disheartened the last time I lost "the weight" - I lost 3 stone by following Weightwatchers and went from a size 18 to a size 16. One dress size. I see other stories about women who drop 2 stone and end up going down a few sizes, or I hear "10 lbs is a dress size" and I think "why not me? Why was I still big even after I lost so much?" - and that was the beginning of the end for me. I sabotaged myself again and thought "well if I lose 3 stone and only drop one dress size, what's the point?". Looking back now, I wish I hadn't given up. I've gone right back to the "before" again. I look like someone took a bicycle pump to my face, FFS!!

Left - size 18. Right - size 16. I don't understand it either...

As a result of that, plus the baby weight that I put on AFTER my twin pregnancy, here I am again. Squeezing into size 18 jeans and size 20 tops, fooling myself that I don't have a double chin, that I'm no worse off than I was this time last year, thinking "ah I'm grand, I don't look my weight" - but I'm fed up.

I smoked for 15 years. I smoked between 10 and 15 cigarettes a day for most of that time. In June 2012, I read Allen Carr's "Easyway to Stop Smoking" and I have not touched one cigarette since. Nor have I wanted to - I swear to god, not one craving. Not one. I know I'll never, ever touch a cigarette again, it's just fact - I know I won't. Trying to get my eating under control is a million times more difficult than that was.

I've tried Weightwatchers. I've tried Slimming World. I've tried Paleo. I've tried 5:2. I've tried Slimfast. I've tried Special K. I've tried Soup diets. Do you know when I've lost the most weight? When I've relaxed, started the day with a half hour brisk walk, drank about 2 litres of water a day, cut out processed "food" and eaten stuff like boiled eggs for breakfast, soup and salad for lunch, and stir fries or lean proteins for dinner. When I read up on weightloss plans, I go bald-headed into it for about 3 weeks and then it all goes to pot. I find myself trying to "sneak" bad stuff in, like "oh I'm sure 5 chips don't count" or "it's hot, it's only an ice cream, everyone's having an ice-cream" or "one extra slice of toast won't make a difference" and before I know it I'm in old familiar territory - "I'm having a bad day, I'll just eat what I want and start tomorrow", then "it's been a bad few days, I'll just eat what I want and start Monday" - but Monday never comes.

What the hell is it, in me, that pushes that button that makes me think it's acceptable to eat a whole tub of Pringles in one go? Or 6 cream crackers with butter and cheese without even breathing? Why is it that I can eat a dinner, feel full, and hear the word "Chinese" and start foaming at the mouth? Those "sharing" bags of crisps? I never share. Those instant pasta things full of additives that serve 2? They serve me. Why do I do it?

I have no idea. But I do know that unless I shift some of "the weight", I won't live long enough to do the things I want to do. I want to be able to see my boys marry their future wives/husbands. I want to babysit my Grandchildren. I want to run around and play football or have races. And you know what? On a completely superficial level, I want to be able to walk into a room and have people think "isn't she pretty". Not "she has a lovely face, but she's very heavy for her age" (overheard, and true). I don't ever want my son to come home from school again and say "I don't like that boy, he said you were fat." (mortified and embarrassed). I want to feel good about myself.  I want to look and feel sexy (for myself and for my husband). I want to be able to walk into someone's house and be able to sit on a chair without thinking "shit, will that take my weight?". I want to be able to walk around for a few hours and not worry about sweating or being told "your face is really red". I want to be able to have a conversation without thinking "I bet they're thinking she has put on so much weight, god she's very heavy". I WANT A FAMILY PICTURE GODDAMMIT.

There are heart problems in my family. There are cancers. There's diabetes. My own father died with cancer aged 49, my maternal Grandmother had 3 heart attacks and breast cancer. I've already had a heart scare - I started drinking far too much coffee when I had the boys, and it triggered an abnormal heart rhythm. My GP told me to stay away from coffee, coke, alcohol - I've done that for months now, and I don't miss any of it (honesty corner - I did have a small hot whiskey on Christmas Eve). I've never been as terrified in my life - I spent the morning of my twins' first birthday wired up to an ECG machine worried sick that I was going to have a heart attack.

I'm not going to tell you what I weigh, today. But what I am going to do is start treating my body like the wonderful, special thing it is - instead of dumping rubbish into it. I'm sick of feeling like shit, sick of panicking if I can't find a particular black cardigan, sick of scanning a room full of people to see if I can find anyone my size or larger. I'm sick of turning down events or outings or parties because I feel so uncomfortable in my own skin. I'm sick of feeling like I'm trapped in a fat suit. Sick of it all.

I came across Stephanie O'Quigley's latest post on her site last night - and it was the kick I needed to start this now. I was all set to start Monday - but it's today. Today is the start. I am finished poisoning myself.

I did a huge shop in Tesco based on things Stephanie recommended and things we like to eat as a family - here's a pic of everything, and I'll also write the details down underneath. My weekly shopping bill for 5 of us including household items, dog food and nappies is always around €120 in Tesco - today my bill was €133 so there wasn't much of a difference. The chia seeds were €10 and they're not something I'll need to buy every week, nor will I have to buy coconut oil or peanut butter every week so I'm happy with that. I haven't pictured the household/baby stuff or the stuff I got for my husband (he likes rashers, sausages, butter, ketchup, cows' milk, etc.).

I'm going to update once a month, because I'm only going to weigh myself once a month. The first of the month instead of every day going "ah I'm the same weight as I was yesterday, that means the spicy chips didn't do any damage, may as well have them again today" - AAGH. The babies are great eaters, they love rice/veg/chicken/fish so I'm hopeful that they will benefit too. My eldest will be a little more hard work, but I'll ease him in and see where it goes from there.

Here goes, eh?

Healthy Eating Shopping List: Prices Valid as of 02/01/15 at Tesco

Curly Kale €1.23
Little Gem Lettuce (Twin Pack) €0.89
Salad Tomatoes €0.99
Brown Rice €0.98
Glenisk Fat-Free Natural Yogurt €1.94
Mixed fresh Chillies €0.85
Ready to eat Avocado (Twin Pack) €1.99
McCambridge's Brown Bread €1.79
Mushrooms €0.95
No Added Sugar Alpen Muesli €3.75
Cucumber €0.69
Celery €0.79
Salad Onions €0.79
Stewing Beef (great for Slow Cooker) €3.00
75% Dark Chocolate €1.89
Grapes €2.49
Meridian 100% Peanut Butter €2.95
Tuna x 3 €2.67
Oatcakes €1.65
Tesco Unsalted Mixed Nuts €1.45
Unsalted Cashews €1.69
Turkey Breast Mince €4.00
Peppermint Teabags €1.19
Chia Seeds €9.99
Limes €0.75
Lemons €0.74
Mixed Peppers (I hate green peppers so I got a pack with yellow/red/orange)€1.59
Cabbage €1.49
Wild Salmon (6 Pack, frozen) €5.49
Blueberries €1.99
Red Onions €1.29
Strawberries €1.99
Sweet Potatoes €1.13
Petit Pois (frozen) & Brussels Sprouts (frozen) both for €2.50
Sweetcorn (frozen) & Baby Carrots (frozen) both for €2.50
Broccoli x 2 €1.49
Coconut Oil €1.99
Chicken Breasts €7.50
Eggs €2.85
Watermelon €3.99
Unsweetened Almond Milk €2.19

Total: €92.07

I know that food is only a tiny part of being healthy, and I'll tackle the exercise too, but food is the one thing that always trips me up. If I can get that under control first, I'll be able to go and enjoy a walk or cycle without coming home and eating a sandwich in disgust because I haven't instantly dropped a stone.

Here goes!


  1. Brilliant post Sharon and fair play to you. I'm actually upset that people have made the comments to you that you mentioned, you're a beautiful person inside and out and don't deserve that. People are sh*te. I love your healthy eating plan- I need to do the same. I've been bloated with poor sleep and headaches of late and I think cutting out bad foods and caffeine and making more of an effort to treat my body with care is the way to go. Looking forward to your updates- hopefully they'll give us all a kick up the arse to do better. xx

    1. Thank you Chloe xx I normally wouldn't be overly annoyed by comments but it was S coming home upset because another boy said I was fat - that did it. I was horrified and so embarrassed for him. I have serious issues with caffeine because of the heart thing, really don't want that to happen again, so I'm slowly getting used to herbal teas again! Fingers crossed this will be the time it finally all sinks in x

  2. Great post, having the right food in the house is half the battle. Good luck.

    1. Thanks Cali, definitely - I can't gorge on Pringles if there aren't any! :)

  3. Best of luck Sharon. This post could've been written by me I tell ya. I'm looking forward to hearing how you get on and am also knee deep in motivation myself so let's do this!

    1. Thanks K xx Super motivated now, end of all the shite, this is it!! I've had a party for the last 31 years and it's time to cop on xx

  4. Great post! Even though im slim, ive been doing yo yo diets all my life. What does work is when im not focused on food, eat clean and just general keep busy. Im sure that 2015 will be your year, good luck! xxx

    1. The yo-yo is such an easy cycle to get into! The focus is definitely the key, hopefully this is it xx

  5. Good Luck Sharon. Im back on the wagon as well. I find myself doing the same thing: inhaling a tube of pringles and wondering how on earth I did it.... my kryptonite is chocolate digestives. I've stopped buying them as I can't just have one. Ive started being mindful of how I eat as well. No music, no tv, no books, no phone. I'll take a pic before I tuc in, but as soon as my ass hits the chair at the dining table I focus just on the food, and I eat it slowly so I can savour it. And if I eat something I make sure to sit down at the table and eat it. This has helped with the snacking for me.

    I really hope you find the strength to keep at it. If you need a peptalk or a virtual kick up the arse... Im here if you need me!

    1. Thanks so much, Cindy. Hopefully you will do great too, I'm so determined this time but I've been here before, so I can't do the same as I've always done. I do not want to continue doing damage into my 30s, it has gone on long enough already. Brilliant idea about no distractions, too. Definitely going to try and savour food more, enjoy it. I can't have biscuits in the house at all, there are still some Christmas ones and I've just asked husband to hide them. xx

  6. Wonderful post and shame on those people for judging you on your appearance. My goal this year is getting healthy. This means quitting smoking-2 days in and i feel like killing everyone :/ but it'll pass in a week or two I hope. I'm eating a lot more fruit and slowly adding veg in as I hate pretty much all veg but I'm getting there, slowly but surely. I'm excited to see how you get on and I wish you all the willpower in the world x

    1. Thanks so much! Best of luck with the smoking, you're doing brilliantly xx

  7. Great post and good luck on your journey to a healthier lifestyle. Just let you know aldi are now selling aplro unsweetened almond milk for 1.99 and chia seeds for 2.99 about half the size of the tesco bag. I sound like an advertisement for aldi but since goin low gi and lacto free in November I know how "healthier" foods can be a pinch on the wallet so every little helps looking forward to reading more :-)

    1. That's brilliant, thanks so much for letting me know! x

  8. What a brilliant post Sharon. I can totally relate to how you feel with weight. I just think - oh this is my size - and I never get anywhere. We have to believe we can. Wishing you all the best for 2015 with it. I'm on the same challenge with mine too xxx

    1. Thanks Kathleen xx You can do it, best of luck! We'll all help each other out xxx

  9. Good luck Sharon. I really enjoyed reading this post. One thing I would suggest to avoid fads and "hearsay" about weightloss and fitness. Choose your sources carefully because there is a world of misinformation out there. A world! Feck anyone that made you feel bad about yourself because of how you look. You are beautiful and you are on track to taking control of your own worth and image and that is a brave step. You can absolutely do this! It's all about feeling healthy and confident!

    1. Thanks Claire! Definitely, I'm just trying to change my habits at the minute and get away from processed foods, get more water in, and stop reaching for the press when I get annoyed. Thanks so much xx

    2. It's a challenge but you'll smash it. I always used comfort/anger eat but I found other, more positive ways to channel negative emotions (Lifting weights and going for long walks mainly)

  10. You go girl! I believe you can do it hopefully having all that good food in your cupboards will help and keep the cravings away! I really hope you can get to where you are happy with your weight it's great that you are ring honest and know what you want! You can do it! I heard such good things about that book I really need it! Smoking is a love hate thing for me seems like mission impossible! Thank you for ur kind comment it made me smile! We are all behind you xxx

    1. Thanks so much Christina, hopefully I can do it! Best of luck with the smoking too if you decide to tackle it xx

  11. Great post. I know I used to get a bit obsessed by sizes but recently had a chat with Louise from style me curvy (god I love her she is so lovely) she has an amazing figure and always puts what size she is wearing and it blows my mind, in my head she is slim but will say if she is wearing a size 16 or whatever. I think the yo yo gets us all eating healthy is the way to go ;) good luck

    1. Thanks Mags! Yeah the size thing is just all over the place. Even today I wanted a light rainjacket and had to get a man's size XXL. Like I KNOW I'm not an extra, extra large man. It's ridiculous! I have a weight in my head that I know I look happy at (it's actually still over my recommended BMI by nearly a stone) so that's the end goal, but for the moment I just want to feel more comfortable in my own skin xx

  12. I love this post! I never really understand sizes either ha ha I've stopped letting it get me down now though as it changes depending on where I shop *sigh* ha ha. I love that you posted your weekly shop, its a handy for me to read as before now, I almost always ate pre packaged or takeaway foods :( so its great to have ideas for my healthy food shop! I wish you all the best on your journey, I'm sure you'll smash it! xx

    1. Thanks so much Rachel, and best of luck to you too! Pinterest is fab for healthy ideas, have found some lovely recipes on there that are nicer than any takeaway. x

  13. I'm very late to comment here, and i'm sorry about that!!
    I've reread this 3 times so far, I've had tingles and tears....I can relate to almost everything you've wrote and felt how you are feeling.... I want you to know that I believe in you, I can feel how much you want this and i believe that you will achieve it... 2015 will be your year to win the battle.
    I'm with you 100% YOU CAN/WILL DO THIS.


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