It was about this time last year that I started on my Thinking Slimmer journey. I can't remember the exact date but I know it was early May as we were going away on holiday to Rome for a week. I remember wondering whether this was a wise move - starting a new weight loss method at the same time as going to the land of my favourite food. Surely a recipie for early failure?
But the thing is Thinking Slimmer is different. Really different. No foods are banned and there's no diet to follow. All you have to do is set your goals, listen to the Slimpod each night for 10 mins and record the positive changes that you notice each day in the handbook that comes with the Slimpod. Sounds to easy and good to be true doesn't it?
I remember noticing changes almost from the first day. We were sitting having pizza for lunch in a beautiful little piazza in Rome when I noticed that I felt really full up and didn't want to eat anymore. This had never happened to me before with pizza! I think my husband thought there was something wrong with me, I have always finished all my pizza - it's my favourite food.
Other strange things happened - I didn't spend the whole week hankering after gelato and finding any and every opportunity to have one, as I did the last time we had gone to Italy. I had it once all week, savouring every mouthful and that was enough for me. Something was definitely changing.
So a year on what else has changed for me?
* I have control over food, it no longer controls me. I eat what I want to, when I want to but I no longer think about food all day long. I stop when I am full and eat only when I'm hungry. This might seem obvious to anyone who's never had a weight problem but after years of eating in response to feeling happy, sad, bored, tired, angry - you name it - this has been a huge breakthrough for me
* I have become a runner! I have dabbled with trying to keep fit in the past but nothing has ever 'stuck' like the running now has. I am active every day and run at least 3 times a week. I have also found yoga which I love and is a perfect complement to my running. In the last year I have run 5 races a 5K, 10 mile, half marathon, 16 mile and the big one - the London Marathon.
* I have met some fantastic, inspiring people who have supported and helped me along the way. I'm now very happy to be able to 'pay it forward' by providing support to other people just starting out on their journey through the online communities that Thinking Slimmer provide.
* I have dropped two dress sizes, 18 inches have disappeared from across my body and the scales say I've lost 1 stone and 4 pounds. I feel as if the scales owe me around half a stone but as we all know the scales are a rubbish indicator of how your body is changing, especially if you exercise a lot. I think the camera is a better indicator of progress as these pictures show..
This is me waiting to take part in my 5K race back in June 2011
And this is me waiting to run the London Marathon 2 weeks ago
The best thing about all this is that I know these changes are permanent. There's no diet to fall off, there's nothing to fail at and even if for some reason I wasn't able to exercise I know that my body would then regulate my food intake and stop me from gaining weight.
The key to Thinking Slimmer is goal setting and having completed the London Marathon in size 12 running gear and smashing my fundraising target I have met all the goals that I set myself back in October. So I need some new ones
* To fit into my size 12 pink coast dress by June 9th so I can wear it out for my marathon celebration meal with my friend Lisa. The dress now does up but feels a bit tight so that's my focus for the next few weeks
* To fit into my skinny grey jeans in time to take them on our holiday to New York on June 16th. At the moment they *just* about do up.
* To run 10K without stopping on May 27th in the BUPA 10K
* To take at least 5 minutes off my current 10K time of 1 hr and 13 minutes by July 8th when Darin and I run the British 10K together
* To be able to touch my toes with straight legs by Christmas - I suffer with tight calves and hamstrings and have never been able to touch my toes. This one is going to take lots of yoga, stretching and time!
I think that's enough to be getting on with for now!