For a long time I misguidedly believed that maintaining a weight loss would be rather easy and the hard work would come from the diet and exercise. How wrong I was! Of course I also think when you are dieting, you do have to have some belief that it won’t be forever or you won’t get very far with the diet. Let’s face it if someone told you one month into your diet, that you can never ever go back to eating what you like, when you like; you might well be inclined to politely tell them to get lost at the very least….
Unfortunately they would be telling you the truth. At least in my experience. I have found that if I want to keep the weight loss off, then I have to watch what I eat every single day. Trust me, I have lost large amounts of weight (four or more stone) three times in my life and plenty of smaller amounts and until now, every single time has resulted in the weight piling back on and more often than not, some extra weight too.
So I knew I would need to work hard at keeping the weight off this time. To start with, I went to the gym three or four times a week and that really helped. Unfortunately I no longer have a gym membership and due to my chronic IBS I can’t exercise at all, right now. This lead to a further reduction in how many calories I can consume in one day. Fortunately not exercising also meant a slight reduction in appetite too. Sadly it did nothing for my inner fat girl who was still demanding cakes and crisps.
So, much like my diet, my maintenance eating plan involves eating a small amount of whatever I want. In fact, if I’m honest, probably a good quarter, if not more of my daily calorific intake comes from chocolate, cake, crisps and ice cream. I just have a very small evening meal to compensate and keep the portion sizes of my treats small too. For example, three Cadbury’s Heroes instead of half a box. Not particularly healthy BUT neither was being four stone overweight. Not to mention all of the emotional problems that stemmed from being a big girl.It’s not easy, always watching exactly what I eat and never allowing myself more, (Christmas and Birthday excepted) but it is far preferable to gaining the weight.
I love being a slimmer girl, admittedly it doesn’t make you completely happy all of the time. Life has a sneaky way of reminding you that many of your problems remain the same, regardless as to whether you are fat, thin, or the size of a small country. Celebrities can make a fortune from their yo-yo weight battles, sadly the same can’t be said for our finances. But what weight loss can do, is make you feel so much better about yourself.
There are the obvious ways, such as being able to walk into any high street shop and know that as a size 14 there will be something in there that fits. Sadly the same can’t be said as a size 22, when I would go shopping with my best friend in the now defunct Etam. As a size 12 she would get to shop downstairs, while I would take my heavy heart to the plus size section upstairs. Perhaps situating the big girls clothes upstairs was a cunning way to get us to exercise, in reality it was demeaning and embarrassing. Why the sizes couldn’t have all been together, I don’t know. Maybe the brand would still be in business, had they not alienated a large section of their clientele?
My health is perhaps the most important factor in staying a size 14. My fatty liver has disappeared, the fat not the liver that would have been a lb too far! I’m not as tired as I used to be and I can keep up with my active my boys. I also hope that I now set a better example to them, with my more healthy lifestyle. I no longer dread having my picture taken, the chances of my double chin making an unwanted appearance have lessened considerably. Although sadly not gone completely!
That said, this is my choice to be this weight and I loathe the fact that bigger people are sometimes viewed with contempt. Now I have lost weight, I see a different side to people’s attitudes regarding weight. I hear the way big people are spoken about in a way that I hadn’t been privy to before and to be frank it has royally pissed me off. People almost whisper, when they mention a bigger person and they always seem to assume that the person must have issues with their weight.
Sadly, some seem incapable of accepting big people CAN be happy with the way they look. They wonder what has caused the weight gain and happily gossip as to why some people never seem to lose any weight. Others assume that they must be lazy and attribute any shyness to their weight. If an invitation to a social occasion is declined, it is assumed that it is because the person is self conscious about their weight (maybe they are just busy!) I once even heard someone declare that a person possessed a caustic sense of humour, simply because she was over weight!
The terribly sad thing is, these were the very things that I feared people were saying about me as a size 22. It has shocked me to hear that it does indeed happen. Of course for every small minded person, there are dozens more that don’t give two hoots about the way people look – thank goodness. Not least because the odds are that one day, my currently restrained inner fat girl, will gain the upper hand and I will give into my piggy nature. So please don’t be judgmental of bigger people, being fat is currently not for me, but it may well be again one day and I will still just be me.