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Just Do It's Route to Management

C: 13st3.0lb
Hi there,
I feel a bit self conscious doing a management thread, it is only my new self confidence and the thought that it may be of help to others who have managed to stay abstinent and don't want to go back on to food.

Anyway, my LL history : I started the year having decided I wouldn't bother with Weight Watchers this year, I was so fed up with hearing myself say - this year I'll do it, and blabbing on to my sisters about the meals I was going to make the exercise I was going to do etc.

I realised that wasn't going to happen, and I gave up, I decided I would be Fat Old Forty (one) and Ugly, FOFU. That thought used to echo round in my head and I could see myself getting older and fatter and just eating whatever I wanted until I died. I lost all ability to motivate myself and only moved from the sofa to get food which I then would scoff in secret. I wore my husbands huge undies as nothing else would go anywhere near my huge backside. Needless to say I was utterly miserable.

I was out having a birthday meal with my mother-in-law when her husband told me his daughter in law had been on a special diet and looked amazing, he had never seen her legs so thin. From that moment something clicked inside me and I wanted to do it.

He didn't know what it was called and got into huge trouble from my Mother-in-law for telling me about it when she had forbidden him as she thought it sounded dangerous.

I was so anxious to do it, I was surprised my husband was willing to allow me to do it knowing the cost, but our relationship was really sufferering with my size, and my low low misery.

I was really worried about everything, what it would be like trying to live without food, could I do it, would I even get accepted by a doctor, how would I get there etc. But on 18 April I finally made it to my first meeting.

From the moment I left the meeting I was saying to myself Just DO IT. And I did. I felt almost no motivation, no huge feelings, I just switched my focus onto LL and have not strayed.

I saw the journey in my head, Foundation, 2 to 3 months of Development then Management. I saw the summer months in my head, me going on holiday with my packs, me staying at my sisters with my packs, me going out for meals with my packs, me catering for parties and then having my packs etc.

In retrospect I think that this helped because when I came to these situations I followed through just doing what I imagined

I switched to a different counsellor for my last couple of weeks of Development and specifically to do Management because she had been a locum at two of our early meetings and had inspired me, she has completed LL and done management and just finished training. In fact I am the first to do management with her.

So on Wednesday night I reached my goal. I felt strangely calm and not elated. I think that is because to me my goal will come when I complete management, that has always been my focus. My LLC insisted I start this week as she is worried my BMI is getting too low! I never thought that would happen. But I feel comfortable on packs and very apprehensive about food.

But I got my books and treated myself to a black coffee at McDonalds to go through them in peace and quiet. Well ignoring the boy racers in the car park, the revving motorbikes and the arguing couples etc, it was much quieter than home!
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JDI - you've done amazingly well - just brilliant.
I've so admired your 'just getting on with it' approach after all of my own drama fulled moments!
I think your visualisation techniques sound perfect and will definitely help many many others who are just starting. Made me think that my most successful LL periods were when I was doing exactly this. You've inspired me to get some serious visualisation stuff committed to paper.
C: 13st3.0lb
Day One
I had gone over everything in my mind, my biggest question was which pack would I miss out? I have my routinte that makes me feel comfortable so how would it feel changing it to have some food?

I had already decided months ago that my first meal would be some ready roast chicken from the M&S food shop. So I planned that in. Just thinking about the choices made my mouth water worryingly and it made my stomach rumble so I tried to stop thinking about food. I discovered a glass of water sorted that out nicely.

I was at work and received some great compliments, one person said I had gone too far. I feel like I am really happy with where I am, I am so surprised at myself that I want to stay at this weight and not lose anymore. My childhood goal was always to be 7 stones (I am only 5ft) but at 8 stones my figure looks so different to how it looked at 8 stones when I was a teenager, even my freinds say I have never looked like this.

I went to the Blood Donor session (we are allowed to go in work time). Unfortunately I was freezing, they couldn't get any out and she had to press really hard to stop a bruise forming. I felt myself thinking I deserved a biscuit or something sweet to make me feel better.

I met that thought head on - No Way. But then a smaller, sly thought, a splash of milk in the tea, that would make it lovely. But the book says no milk until day three, then a splash of skimmed in tea or coffee. I felt my adult mind say, No I am sticking to the rules totally. I want to succeed.

I congratulated myself on the way back to my desk.

Then my long awaited trip to M&S for the food! I had the chicken I had dreamed of in my hands - then I thought I had better check the ingredients, it had been coated in brown sugar. Well that packet was in and out of my basket a dozen times in the next 10 minutes. Even thought the fat content was only 0.3g per 100g different from that in the raw chicken I knew I would feel like I had not stuck full to the rules so in the end I reluctantly bought raw breast fillets.

But in a stunning move that totally amazed me and the family I decided to have smoked fish as my first meal and I don't really like fish at all.

I had decided I would eat it when I was hungry and by 5pm I was ready for it. I cleared the table, popped it in the microwave and sat down by myself assessing how I felt. I was hungry, my mouth was watering, it smelt good. But how much should I eat? I weighed it when it came out of the microwave. 156g.

I took my first bite, it tasted good. By forkful 3 I was wishing I had had the chicken. I continued to eat, waiting to feel full. I felt I could have eaten all of it, it didn't look much. I wasn't sure if that was me being greedy or not. I kept weighing what I had left. In the end I left the skin and a small amount of fish because I had heard other people say for their first meal there was no way they could stomach a whole chicken breast. I thought I should feel the same but I could have eaten it all, in the end I had 80g of smoked fish.

I didn't feel full and I didn't feel empty. I did feel unsatisfied. I should not have chosen fish. Lesson learned.

Fortunately I had left myself a chocolate shake to have hot at night which I know satisfies me so I focussed on that. That got me through to bed very nicely.

After doing my shopping I had drunk a coffee in Sainsbury's and read the paper. In the health pages was an article titled "Why do slimmers always get fat again?" What are the chances of that being in the day you complete your diet??? I read it and felt so anxious and scared.

I talked to myself, others have managed, think of those on MiniMins, your LLC etc. It dawned on me that in the past I once got to goal 18 years ago, but was there for only that week. So my track record was get to goal then put it back on. I had completed 1 day of maintenance, so I have been at goal for 1 day. If I can make it 1 week I will have done so much better than in the past.

My new goal - take it 1 day at a time.


Gold Member
S: 13st3.0lb C: 11st9.0lb G: 10st7.0lb BMI: 28 Loss: 1st8lb(11.89%)
we can both do the journey together as I start management monday

good luck to us both xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Good luck with RtM JDI - your account of your first meal made me smile. I too had read the threads and was expecting not to be able to manage much (how wrong I was!). However had no problems tucking into very large portions of protein! Despite this I kept the same weight throughout after losing half a stone the first 2 weeks. I think it's helpful to follow the "rules" (or guidelines as my LLC calls them) fairly closely but it's not the end of the world if you stray from the path. It's easy to make a mistake about which food comes on which week! I've put on a few pounds since finishing RtM but nothing catastrophic and it's in hand - we're bound to make errors but now we can learn to balance them out. My LLC reckons doing RtM is the key to long term success. Hope she's right. I remember really looking forward to a proper cup of tea on Day 3 and being quite disappointed that I didn't enjoy it. Soon got back on it again though. Hope the next few days go well - I did enjoy eating again; it felt so positive.


Silver Member
S: 17st2lb C: 11st10lb G: 10st5lb BMI: 27.3 Loss: 5st6lb(31.67%)
Good luck JDI - I look forward to reading about your journey - and congratulations!
C: 13st3.0lb
Thanks everyone.

Goombagirl, I know about that longing for a cup of tea, honestly that is all that has got me through day 2.
I have been feeling really, really weak all day, I can't decide if it is real or just in my mind. I really think I have gone low enough in the weight loss and I was shocked to have lost another 1.5lbs this morning. That would take my BMI (nude) to 21.5 and I honestly think I looked better with another 3 lbs on me.

At the same time I find it hard to believe that, as my goal has always been to lose weight. I spent a lot of today telling myself that my goal is now to MANAGE my weight. I don't need to lose. In fact I need to stop losing.

I decided to have chicken today and grilled the breast goujons I had treated myself to in M&S. I was about to split them into three to last three days and weighed them out. Looking at them they seemed to be hardly anything. I rationally decided that splitting them into three was being silly.

Logically I need to maintain my weight which surely must mean getting my calories to a normal level. There were only 200 calories in the whole lot of chicken so I made myself put them into two packs and chilled them.

I had to have a whole bar at breakfast time. I adore the new cranberry ones and had intended to split it into 2 and save some but I reckoned I probably needed the energy and that if I had half put away for later then that is all I would have thought about. So I ate it all and enjoyed it.

It must be in my mind but missing out on a pack and having the protein meal makes me feel as if I am hardly having anything at all to eat. I was fine with the 4 packs so I think it must be reading all the lists of food coming up that is causing me to feel like this. I have had to consume a lot of water to block those thoughts.

Spent a lot of my thoughts panicking about putting it all back on. It doesn't help that my OH thinks it is hilarious to joke about me piling it all back on and more, and stuffing myself with pies all day long. I have told hime to stop but then he says I am being silly. I just don't want to hear even a joke about putting it back on. I believe in staying away from negative stuff.

I decided to have my goujons at about 3.30 and cleared a table in front of the fire. I felt hungry before them and ate slowly. I decided to stop just before I had finished them all just so I didn't feel greedy. Five minutes later I was glad I had as I felt quite full and also lethargic. I hadn't really enjoyed it, it was bland and not my kind of a meal but I had my hot chocolate to look forward to later.

A break through thought came when I realised that UNTIL NOW I HAD NOT MANAGED MY WEIGHT FOR A SINGLE DAY OF MY LIFE.

I have now managed for 2 days of my life.
Hello JDI

Just caught up on this thread. Well done on getting to goal!! That's such a fantastic achievement. I am going to read your Management thread because I think it will help me, even though I am ahead of you! LOL!

Already I can see that you have much to teach - just the fact that you have acknowledged the management of your weight. For two days. It makes such a difference. I haven't really done that and I should have done. It gives YOU the control!

Are you doing the exercises as well (from the Blue book)?

Questions, questions, questions. Well done - one day at a time is the best philosophy you can have right now.

Take care.

Mrs Lxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
C: 13st3.0lb
Hi again, hi Mrs L, I wouldn't know about learning anything from me, I'm very much just drifting along, in my own little boat clinging on to the hope that I will be OK. I read the blue book whenever I can, it seems so much to take in.

I have been writing a lot in my notebook which I think has helped me. Just takes the focus off the moment I think.

But day 3 was dreadful, my hardest ever. I was so weak and cold I could hardly move, and my hands were tingling all day. I felt so hungry and empty but got by on huge amounts of black coffee.

I started off with the mug of tea I had been longing for and had to have the whole cranberry bar again, I was desperate for the energy. But it didn't come. I realised I had accidentally used the semi skimmed instead of skimmed in my tea and felt that thought popping up of having cheated, but I managed to tell it not to be so ridiculous .

I had to spend the whole day doing paperwork which is my worst time as I realised I would do anything to distract me and of course that in the past had been food. So the water, coffee and sneaky peaks on Minis dragged me through the day.

I had been really looking forward to having green salad and balsamic vinegar which I love. I did it with the tuna and boiled egg white. It tasted absolutely heavenly. The colour was fantastic. I made sure I left a bit although I could have eaten it all. After I felt full but freezing cold and looking forward to my hot chocolate.

I was so weak and useless I had to go to bed before the kids, I felt like I was fading away and the only thing that got me through the night was the thought of the cup of tea in the morning.

After reading Mrs L's words I am going to acknowledge that I have now completed 3 days of managing my eating.
Hi JDI, hope you're feeling a bit better today. You might have a virus - feeling tired is not always about lack of food! There are a lot of bugs around - one of my kids is off school today. It sounds like you're doing brilliantly. You are wise to keep looking at your blue book - the green one is worth looking at again too. In fact I read loads in management - Eating Less by Gillian Riley is worth a read; I got it from the library. I wish I'd written more down - my LLC often suggests this and is right - I'm too lazy about writing I'm afraid! You're nearly halfway through the first week and the food gets more exciting from now - enjoy it and well done.
C: 13st3.0lb
Thanks Goombagirl,
But I woke up on day 4 feeling like a different person. Considering it had only been the thought of the tea that got me through the night I was surprised I didn't have one for an hour after I got up.
I chose the nut bar as well instead of the sweeter cranberry one I thought I would have had so I wondered if it was hormonal. Always a good excuse.

I felt so much less hungry, I managed til 1.30 without my protein meal, and this time I ate it all without feeling guilty.

I can see how breaking abstinence affects the whole balance of mind and body. Before a mousse/hot chocolate seemed satisfying and filling. Now they feel like a small snack and emphasise all of the food I can't have yet.

Also, it is so much harder to concentrate on what I have had, now food is back. My routine is altered and I really have to think about how much I have had, where I am going to be when I need it and how many meals I have actually had.

Saying that I am OK with the quantities and numbers of meals, it is only my mind that is having a problem with it. Hungerwise today has been fine. I am just thinking too much about the food to come.

But 4 days completed successfully.
Glad you're feeling better! I think it's very normal to think a lot about food at this stage. It's worth turning the thinking into planning (menus, shopping lists etc). One of my group was hot on planning and did very well. My planning was and is too sporadic. Having written that, I feel inspired to go and write down some menus!

I think that is because to me my goal will come when I complete management, that has always been my focus.

I think that's a very positive way to view it - several of my foundation group have "disappeared" and I'd be surprised if they managed to keep the weight off. Hope they do though.
C: 13st3.0lb
Day 5 and I met my arch enemy full in the face, Stress, Worry, Bad Self-image and the old ally wanting to help, food.

A letter from the Inland Revenue arrived demanding a huge fine for not filing a form on-line, which I was convinced I had done. I felt the familiar sick stomach, panicky feeling. How could I be so stupid? why had I not done it properly? what a failure I am? how many times do I keep on making mistakes? I can't afford it, I am in so much trouble etc.

In situations like this in the past I would have felt sick and empty all day, not feel like food in the slightest but then start on the coffee and biscuit which would lead to more and more biscuits and chocolate followed by an almighty binge, possibly lasting for days.

It is a situation I have known would test me since I started LL.

I rang the IR office and to my horror broke down into tears, not like me in the slightest. After sobbing my heart out to the poor nice man on the other end who seemed shocked to have an hysterical woman weeping uncontrollably I decided to have a hot chocolate. That went against my previous patterns because it was like having a meal in the middle of a crisis. But maybe it worked because I didn't get a chance to build up the hours of starvation I would have done in the past.

I could feel part of my brain thinking go on have that cranberry bar with some coffee, calm down with it, go on, go on.

To counter act this voice I drank a few glasses of water and a strong filter coffe, while it was brewing I kept going and looking at my reflection in the window. It sounds vain, but it is still a novelty and I am so pleased with it I know I don't want it to change.

It seemed to do the trick, I managed to marshall my thoughts, remind myself that maybe I seem to make a lot of mistakes because I actually have a lot of responsibilities and 95% of the time I don't make mistakes. I reminded myself about my LL success. I really had to go on with looking at my new figure, probably to build up some positive strokes.

I managed to meet my daughter to take her to the dentist as pre-arranged, without having the bar, by promising myself that no matter how late we were I would still have the double shot Americano in Nero's. It turned out to be a triple shot because I had insisted they serve me as I had been waiting in the queue for ages when a tall, young, blonde student tried to push in and I think they realised I was on the brink of some kind of caffiene rage.

I really enjoyed the coffee and I was so pleased with myself for having saved the bar to go with it as I had intended. I got through the rest of the day in a much more positive frome of mind, didn't feel hungry, had my protein meal at about 8:30 followed immediately by my hot chocolate.

I really felt like I had achieved something today, two positive strokes, overcoming a 'situation' without food and managing my weight for 5 days!
C: 13st3.0lb
I can't stop posting today - it is the first time I have been alone with the PC for ages.

Anyway, Hot thought of the day is

I am supposed to be managing NOT losing.

I recognised a feeling of disappointment when I went on the scales today, I was the same weight as I have been for the last three days. It is lower than my goal by 4lbs, so why was I disappointed?

Partly I think because for the last 20 years my aim has been to lose weight, to see the figure on the scales going down. I am going to have to get used to wanting to see it say the same. So I am reapeating to myself "Managing not losing", "Managing not losing".

I must equate managing with success.

Part of the disappointment is that if I am eating such small quantities of food a day ie 3 packs, about 80 g of protein and some lettuce leaves, is this the tiny amount I am going to have to eat for the rest of my life to stay the same?

Surely not, it must only come to about 600 cals a day absolutely max. My meal satisfies me, I love the balsamic and lettuce, but I suppose I doubt my ability to keep on loving that, what will happen when I introduce the rest of the foods. I can't wait for some yogurt on Thursday, Week 2, but if I add another 100 cals a day or so like that, will I still maintain? And then fruit, and all the other stuff, its too much to contemplate.

I really need to take one day at a time. And I need to remember I have lost about 3 lbs at the beginning of the week, so stop panicking.

And I am still Doing It.

Phew I feel better for getting that rant out.

It can be so easy to rush ahead of yourself and get panicked with management. You have the key right there - one day at a time. It is so tempting to want to "fast-forward" to see the final outcome of all your hard work - but the focus of management and the tools you need to be a successful weight holder are all about the journey not the destination.

Don't panic about the scales at the moment - you must know deep down that there is no way you will have to live on 600 cals a day to maintain. The programme is structured to build us up slowly so that the glycogen we lost in week one can be restored slowly enough to not constitute a weight gain overall. What I mean by this is that there is no way of telling so early on what your final calorie allowance for maintaining your weight will turn out to be. So try your best to relax and not panic. The programme has worked fantastically so far for you - so you have to trust that so long as you continue to follow the guidelines that it will continue to do so. Just concentrate on the week you are supposed to be concentrating on and the rest will fall into place later I promise.
I find it helps to say to myself when things get a bit mental "it's only food" it helps me put it in perspective and remember that I don't want to be ruled by food and thinking about food any longer - I have wasted enough of my life doing that (the last 10 years for example) This is my chance for a clean slate and a fresh start.

Good luck with it all and we will keep in touch.
Love Laura


Gold Member
S: 13st3.0lb C: 11st9.0lb G: 10st7.0lb BMI: 28 Loss: 1st8lb(11.89%)

thats a fabulous piece of advice, thankyou, I am starting to eat today also.

JDI, we can do his hun xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
C: 13st3.0lb
Thanks a lot. I really do love it here on Minis, it is so much easier with friends around to help.

And I have just had a phone call from my accountant to say that the mistake I made filing my return on-line may not have been my mistake after all. Apparently 175,000 other people say they filed on -line and have also had the same letter as me telling them they hadn't and they would have to pay a huge fine.

So I am looking back at my past 'mistakes' and actually a lot of them have just been me panicking that they are my mistakes and they have turned out to be something quite different. But putting that together with my reaction to calories above, CC you are right, I panic.

More chilling out for me!
Hello JDI - woman on the verge of a caffeine rage (very well put!)

Well done for making it to Day 5?? Really well done. Second, Laura's advice and Goombagirl's is fantastic.

The only advice I can give you, based on your experience of LighterLife to date, is do not focus long into the future. You had a goal from Foundation, you stuck to LL and you reached your goal. Now you need a different goal; to hold your weight through 12 weeks. And beyond. But guess what? You don't need to worry about beyond. You don't even need to worry about weeks 2,3,4,5 and beyond. You need to focus on Week 1 and that's it. In fact, all you need to worry about is now.

I want to say I totally understand the thing about food suddenly taking up so much time - choosing what to eat, when to eat, blah blah blah. It did my head in. Literally. BUT planning takes the time-consuming choice away - if you decide, in advance, what you are going to eat, you can recapture the abstinence mentality - it's only food, this is what I am eating. In a way, you need to detach yourself. I did NONE of this. Am still struggling, to be honest. But I recognise what is needed.

So, I hope this helps. When panic strikes, do a thought record. Or, do what my diet heroine suggests - Dietgirl, that is - and get some fresh air, move around and have a cup of tea. I don't think you need ANY more coffee!!!

I wish you well and am following your progress!!

Take care.

Mrs Lxxxxxxxxxxx


Gold Member
S: 13st3.0lb C: 11st9.0lb G: 10st7.0lb BMI: 28 Loss: 1st8lb(11.89%)
I hated my first experience with food and dont want to eat tomorrow,

I feel sick, big and bloatery again.

am so disappointed :(

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