Well I wasn't really sure where to post this....I've been using a mixture of VLCD products for over a year now, but I rarerly post on the forums (I lurk dozens of times a day though!). I did want to post my story though, just to give hope to anyone who's starting, and to prove that it really can be done - and given that I started my VLCD with Exante, I thought I'd post it here first!
So where do I start? I joined Minis back in January 2010, at around 18st 12lbs, but the reality is that I'd already been dieting for the previous 9 years, repeatedly losing and gaining large amounts of weight, but never getting anywhere close to where I wanted to be.
My original start weight back in 2001 was 20st 11lbs....I'd never dieted before, and didn't really want to in all honesty (despite being deeply unhappy about my size) but I agreed to support my mum by joining a local Slimming World class with her... given that I didn't really want to diet as such, I took their 'free food' policy at its word, and ate mountains of slimming world friendly food. Luckily, the weight started dropping off, and I eventually lost 5st 10lbs with Slimming World, taking me to roughly 15 st 1lb.
Unfortunately, that's where my yo-yo relationship with food/dieting began...something 'snapped', causing me to go off the rails, and I learned that I have an inbuilt self-destruct button that enables me to block out all the consequences of overeating from my mind, and go on food 'benders' lasting months, and causing stones worth of damage....
I won't bore you with all the details, but over the course of the past 11 years I've done Slimming World, Calorie Counting, Xenical, Reductil, Weight Watchers, and finally a VLCD....Exante to begin with, but I also use(d) products from Slim and Save amongst others.
I started this part of my journey in September 2011 with my boyfriend (AKA The Man) weighing 17st 2.5....he was attracted to a VLCD because he wanted to lose weight quickly, and didn't have the food knowldge/interest to start counting calories or to join a slimming club. I just wanted to shift myself out of the 15-17 stone bracket that I'd been inhabiting for what seemed like an eternity.
We both planned to do the diet strictly until Christmas 2011, but that would be as long as we thought we could manage....Famous last words, because here I am, over a year on! We both lost a lot of weight in our first week, and more than we ever expected to by Christmas. It was hard saying no to so many social occasions, but doing the plan together made it easier.
Since Christmas we've taken a slightly more scenic route, allowing ourselves breaks for holidays, birthdays, weekends away etc. but the majority of the time we've been sticking to our daily routine rigidly (mine does include other foods such as vegetables, protein and fish - more in line with the S&S plan really)
Like I said earlier, my original plan was just to get into the low 15s before Christmas 2011 and then go back to WW or whatever....but when I acheived and surpassed that, I decided that I would carry on this year and get down to my lowest weight of 12st 7lbs (which I did using Xenical in roughly 2007). And then when I acheived and surpassed that goal too, I eventually decided upon 10st 5lbs as my ultimate goal....
I wasn't sure if it was even do-able as I'd never been anywhere near that light, but it just seemed a good weight to aim for, as it would be half my original body weight...pretty mind blowing really.
But slowly and surely, I've got here somehow! It hasn't been an easy ride....I've battled with my tendency to binge when I'm off-plan, and I've also had periods of feeling afraid of food and deviating from the plan. As you can tell from reading my diary I'm a bit of a 'thinker', and I do tend to over-analyse myself and my behaviour around food. Maybe I need to do that though, I can't take the risk of pressing that self-destruct button ever again... so I need to think things though, to understand myself properly and to develop strategies so I NEVER have to do this again!
So onto the positive stuff....how does it feel to be a goal??? Absolutely AMAZING!!! My body may not be perfect...I have stubborn pockets of fat, and lots of loose skin, and yes, I'd love surgery at some point. But for now they are my battle scars, and a reminder of my journey to where I am now.
For anyone who's interested, I'll post some before and after pictures in a minute. I'll also post a link to my diary in the Exante section, where I posted an entry recently about the day I got to goal and how it felt....
I know this has been a VERY long post, but it's been a very long journey so it's kinda hard to sum up in a few lines!
I just hope that my story gives hope to anyone who's struggling, or yo-yoing, or re-starting, that you CAN do this. It may have taken me years to do, but that is the only regret I have....I just wish I'd got on with it 10 years ago
Thanks for reading
x x x
http://www.minimins.com/exante-diari...te-duo-30.html (Double Trouble...The Exante Duo!)
Before Pics from 2001, weighing 20st 11lbs
Pics at the beginning of Exante...weighing 17st 2.5