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Posted on 19 May 2019 Views 7352 Comments 13

Alison Shedwick progress blog

I am one of those people who has always been big, not helped by the fact that my mum was a fantastic cook and baker and we were brought up to eat everything on our plates, something I never had a problem with and was even willing to help out my siblings with their leftovers. As the years passed, I got bigger and bigger, and I was always dieting, losing a little here and there, but never sticking to the diet for long before I gave up and gained all I had lost and more on top. At my heaviest on 18th May 2010, I had reached a massive 28 stone 8lbs, and I virtually starved myself for almost three years and managed to lose 10 stone, most definitely not the best way of doing it, and it made me extremely ill.

So, over the previous five years, as it is for most people, a lot of good things have happened and also a lot of bad. My biggest bad thing was that most of the weight I had lost had slowly crept back on, and by Thursday 8th November 2018, I weighed in at 24 stone 11 lbs. I was devastated, but it was all my fault. For years I had kidded myself that I was on a diet, blaming weight gain on illness, while that may have been true at the beginning as the months passed by, I was only kidding myself, I was eating way too much rubbish. It got to the point that I had regained so much weight I was finding it difficult to get around again, constantly breathless even after a few minutes. I had so much pain in my hips and knees caused by the heavy burden they had to carry around. Walking around a supermarket was like climbing Mount Everest, and to think that five years previously I was about to take my black belt in Tang Soo Do martial arts, and now, all I could make was my black belt in couch potato. I was so disgusted with myself. I decided to take action, this time following the Slim & Save VLCD plan.

Ok so years ago I remember trying the Slim-Fast meal replacements which just consisted of shakes and chocolate bars, they were disgusting so needless to say that didn’t last long, and they tainted my view of any VLCD meal replacement plan and since that time I had stood by the fact that I did not agree with any meal replacement plans. However, a friend had recently started the Slim & Save plan and was doing really well, and she sent me a link to the website for me to have a look at. I pored over the website, reading everything and could see that this VLCD plan had come a very long way since the shakes I had 30 years ago. This plan provided food packs, and you also get to eat vegetables and a range of other food, and in comparison to other VLCD plans on the market, it was very affordable…so what did I have to lose apart from weight?

I sent off for my meals on the Wednesday, and they arrived the following day, so Thursday 8th November 2018 became the first day of my new journey.

Day 1

  • weight: 24 stone 11 lbs (347lb / 158kg)
  • waist: 60 inches
  • chest: 64 inches
  • hips: 68 inches
  • upper arm: 17.5 inches
  • forearm: 12 inches
  • thigh: 31 inches
  • calf: 21.5 inches

So, the end of the first week arrived, and I felt so strange, not once over the week did I feel hungry or have the urge to cheat. I think it may have been because this was something new and different from what I had tried before. Always in the back of my mind was the disgusting shake meal replacements I had tried over 30 years ago, but this was so different, and I can honestly say that there was nothing that I had that I didn’t enjoy. It was all still very new, and I was continually asking loads of questions from the online chat staff. I felt a little bit of a nuisance going on so often, but they were all great and always ready to offer as much help, and advice as I needed, which I have to say was fantastic, this was like having my own personal adviser with me all the time! So, all in all, by the end of this week, I was starting to relax and felt very positive about my first weigh in.

  • Alison Before
  • Alison Current Progress

Due to having high blood pressure I have to go to see my GP every month, and my visit fell exactly on the day of my first weeks weigh in and speaking to my GP about the plan I had started, we agreed that I would pop in weekly so he could weigh me on his more accurate scales. We were both amazed when I got on the scales, and they showed a loss of 13lbs. I understand that in the first week of any new diet plan that a larger than average loss is quite normal as the body loses fluid, but never in my wildest dreams did I expect a loss as big as that and I left the doctors office on cloud nine with my motivation levels through the roof.

I thought that the weekends were going to be my biggest challenge on the plan as we have our granddaughter and we always have snacks and takeaways, how on earth was I going to cope? Saturday arrived, and I had my breakfast and lunchtime meals as usual then when it came time to order the takeaway I genuinely didn’t want it. Yes, I was able to stop myself eating things in the past with sheer will power, but I have still wanted it, this is something different. For someone who used to constantly eat, even going to the extremes of hiding food so I could eat as soon as I was alone to now feeling comfortable about not wanting to eat anything that would take me off plan, either when I am with someone or even when I am alone, was such an alien feeling and one I am still trying to get my head around. It is so difficult even to try to explain how I feel.

Yes, I am still looking at food and thinking how tasty it looks and looking at things I would literally die for before, yet I have no urge whatsoever to eat it. So on the Sunday, the proof was in the pudding, as they say, hubby went out for the day on a motorbike ride, I was alone, a house full of food and no one to see me cheating, but did I?….NO I DIDN’T!!! Did I want to?….NO I DIDN’T!!! Am I pleased?….HELL YES I AM !!!! I actually sat next to an open packet of cream crackers that my macaw loves, when she has them it used to be one for her one for me, not anymore, it’s just one for her. For the first time in a long time, I was really looking forward to getting weighed and Thursday of week two could not come quick enough for me.

On day 13, I am not quite sure what happened, but I felt hungry in the afternoon, the first time since starting the plan. My only thoughts were that it was psychological. I had a large breakfast (large for me I never usually eat early) pancakes and syrup, I had another large lunch, Burger with stir fry zero carb noodles onions and mushrooms, and I knew because I had vegetables for my lunch, I wouldn’t be able to have any with dinner. If I am really honest with myself, I don’t think I was really hungry, and I think it was more in my head. I was thinking about dinner all afternoon, wondering if I would be able to get through the evening without wanting to eat before my bedtime snack. However, I did not need to worry I managed it easily enough but it has taught me I should try not to focus on my food and go back to how I started the programme and that is with something light for breakfast and lunch and save my main meal for dinner. All in all, although it was a good day and I loved the meals, it was still very much a learning curve getting used to knowing what I could and couldn’t have and when. I knew I would get there, and as always I had the great support of the admin staff and the fantastic members on the Facebook page.

So now I am six months down the line and can I say there haven’t been tough times? I can’t lie, yes there have, but there is always support. Some days are excellent, and I feel on top of the world, however, on the bad days, I go back to before I started the plan, knowing I wanted to lose around 13 stone, it seemed like an impossible task, it is a whole person and then some. Having so much to lose, I could only see how long the journey was going to be, and I could only see the journey as being starting fat and ending thin, there was no in between. But that is most definitely not the case, I heard it time and time again, over the years that you should set yourself small goals and to reward yourself when you reach each one, but I never did, and that is probably why all my previous weight loss attempts failed. But now I can’t stress enough how important it is to set these goals. So, I have a weight loss journey board, the board consists of small pound sized holes, and for each pound of weight I lose, I put a pound into my board, when I reach my final goal that money is going towards buying me a beautiful new wardrobe of clothes. One of the main things I have found is that you are the last person to see the changes in yourself. If you are anything like me, I can still only see how fat I am, the bulging legs the massive arms and huge boobs and belly, but the thing is everyone else can see the difference, and we should all take the compliments and let it boost our motivation.

I have relaxed a lot now that I know what I am doing and I have found that the more weight I lose, I can do more and more things. Something slim people take for granted are a massive achievement for me, something as simple as being able to bend over while standing up to pull my shoes on when they have slipped off, or being able to walk all the way to the top of the stairs when going to bed without having to stop halfway up for a breather. I have realised that small victories add up to increased motivation and an increase in the likelihood of reaching your final goal.

I have been following the Lifestyle Plus plan, and that means I can have a low carb meal so I have been searching the web for keto recipes and I have found some delicious ones that fit in very nicely with the plan. I love the meal packs. I think the only one I didn’t like was the Bombay potatoes and that was because it was too spicy for me, but adding different recipes keeps things fresh, so I have something to look forward to and something different to eat every day.

If you had told me 6 months ago that in six months’ time I would have lost over 6 stone I would never have believed you, and although I still can’t see a massive difference in myself even though I know there is as my clothes don’t lie, I am now down from wearing a size 30 – 32 to 22 – 24. The most significant indicator is measurements when you have had a small loss take your measurements, you may have lost inches. One thing I did this week was look at the total inches lost since I started the plan and it amounts to almost 63 inches, yes that sounds a lot, but I went one step further and converted the inches to feet, and it amounts to 5ft 1 ¾ inches, the equivalent of a small person…now that really does sound a lot. So, for anyone having a tough time, please remember the effort you put in is most definitely worth it.

There is one thing I can guarantee is that no matter how long it takes if you have a bad day, forget it and move on, you cannot fail if you never give up. The admin team and the other members on the Facebook page are always available to give you as much support, advice and help as you need. I intend to continue my weight loss journey and would be happy to report further along the line my future progress.

Comments on Alison Shedwick progress blog
Karen Sayer 26/10/2019 07:47
Hi Alison congratulations on your weight loss your story is so inspiring and thank you for sharing with us. I have a long journey still and you are an inspiration to us all X
Jayne Elliott 28/07/2019 17:36
What an inspiration you are. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017 and ended up having a double mastectomy. In order to have my reconstruction, the hospital has told me I need to lose 3 stone. Your story has really inspired me. Well done!
Sue Parchment 12/06/2019 16:31
Hi Alison, you are amazing!! Your story is exactly what I need. I started off so well but I’ve fallen off track these past 4 weeks and am struggling to get back on - well I was struggling until I read your blog. So thank you Alison, you have truly inspired me!! xx
Clare Rose 24/05/2019 17:52
Well done. I too have around 13 stone to lose and my husband had around 5.5st. We've been on the plan for 9 weeks and have both lost almost 3st and couldn't be happier. We love the packs and really are enjoying it. It helps we're doing it together but so many of our friends and family have also started the plan after seeing our success. We are definitely taking this all the way and look forward to sharing our journey in the near future.
Lizzie B 23/05/2019 14:31
Thank you for sharing such a lovely and motivational story Alison and it is just the kick start I need!

Keep up the brilliant work and I for one am looking forward to your next instalment.
May 20/05/2019 21:33
I want to steal some of your amazing strength and willpower. I have started and gave up Slim and Save so many times, I could be a shadow of myself. I desperately need to start again and stick to it, my cupboard is full of shakes and bars so will start again tomorrow. Fingers crossed for me please everyone.
Jacqueline 20/05/2019 19:04
You are an amazing woman! Keep up the good work for yourself and thank you for the inspiration! Xx
Alison Jackson 20/05/2019 17:12
Hi Alison, you are doing amazing and can I thank you for sharing your story. I started day1 today and so it was great to read such an honest and motivating account of your journey so far.
Gemma 20/05/2019 14:51
This is great motivation hanks Alison and well done of he weight loss you've done great x
Tanya Gordon 20/05/2019 12:53
Really lovely to read about and learn more about your weight loss journey Alison. You are a huge inspiration to so many of us. Well done and good luck!

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