But, I didn't change my diet at all. Some nights I would come home from aerobics and drink two cans of beer! So, of course, I didn't lose weight, although I did improve my stamina and tone up in some places (arms mainly).
Around September 2010, I began to feel unhappy about my shape again. Both my kids had commented on my fat tummy. Of course, I'd noticed I hadn't lost weight doing the little exercise I did. It bugged me, but I didn't know what else I could do. I didn't think I could fit anything else in around childcare and work (which I did most evenings after the kids had gone to bed), and I certainly couldn't afford much more (I stopped going to aerobics in October after the instructor raised her class fee).
I started to think about my choices. My daughter was soon due to turn 3, meaning in January she would qualify for free childcare. If I planned properly I could work during the day, freeing my evenings for other things. After chatting on Twitter with someone from my village who had joined the local running club, I decided I would start running in January. I knew the person who ran the club, and he suggested I give it a go too. Decision made, I felt much happier.
I also realised my drinking was an issue and I needed to cut that back substantially. And if I was going to subject myself to the trauma of running, I might as well make it count by changing my diet. However, with Christmas approaching, I knew that starting a new diet straightaway would be doomed to failure. I decided that could wait until January too.
At the beginning of January, just before I started running, I roughly counted the calories I'd consumed in one day, and I was completely shocked at how many were in alcohol, chocolate, ice cream, etc. I resolved to make my diet count.
Now, I kind of wish I'd been organised and remembered to blog weekly about my weight loss, my diet, and my exercise routine, but honestly, I didn't think I would be so successful.
Diet-wise, I've cut out bread, cheese, alcohol, chocolate and other snacks. I eat lots of homemade soups or salads, or a much smaller version of the "family dinner". But it's real struggle. For example, I eat salad or soup then realise I didn't include any protein ... I avoid all fat but forget some fats are "good"... I'm unsure about carbs (when I should eat them, how much, etc). And, with my kids being fussy eaters and my stick-thin husband taking one look at wholewheat pasta and lentils and telling me he'll leave me if I make him eat them, I've sometimes been cooking two lots of meals a night. Very stressful, and makes me feel a bit useless sometimes.
My weight loss has been great though. I lost 7 lb the first week of my diet, 4 lb the next, and the weight continues to fall off. The more I lose, the more determined I am to make this weight stay off and never come back. (I've lost 21 lbs since January.) I've dropped a dress size too, going from a size 16-18 to size 14. I'm really pleased about this!
With respect to exercise, at the beginning of January I was running once a week, by the end of the month I was running once on my own at the weekend (just around the village), and now I'm running 4 times a week (to the next village and back). This weekend I ran over 10 miles. (As my running partner Becca says every time she sees me: "you're addicted, no doubt about it.")
There's definitely a feeling of panic though, I'm desperate not to put any weight back on. I'm sure one week I will, and I'll be gutted. But I know I've made a good choice, and I'm determined to stick with it. I'm definitely not going back to this...
|Taken on New Year's Day, 2011, at about 2 am!|