New year, new start

It’s time to make a fresh start and when better than at the start of a new year? Christmas and all that tempting food is out of the way, party season is over, back to the grind. 

I’m doing it differently this year because, to be honest, I’m fed up of “dieting” and obsessing over food. I love Slimming World for a number of reasons. It sustainable, there’s very little weighing and measuring and I love the company at my class, but…(there’s always a but right?) I’ve been doing the diet healthy eating plan (on and off) for about 17 years, I had some success back in 2004/5 but since having children my heart isn’t in it. I don’t have time to work out syns, or remember if I had one Healthy A choice or two etc. I’ve really struggled because of the lack of time to plan and think about what I’m doing. The only time I do it successfully is when I stick to what I know the syn value of and then I get bored of the food I’m eating. Getting to class is also a bit of an issue for me, my life is so hectic and every class I miss is £4.95 down the drain. 

I’m a stay-at-home-Mum so money is tight. I’d very much like (and benefit from) attending some sort of exercise class, but my budget only allows for one or the other. My reason for slimming has changed considerably since having children. I no longer care about being thin and beautiful, I simply want to be healthy and live a long life, watch my children grow, maybe meet my grandchildren etc.. so exercise is very important to me. 

So it’s with a heavy heart that I am making the decision to swap my Slimming World class for an exercise class (yet to be determined) and rather than counting syns and healthy extras, I will be…

  • Cutting out unnecessary snacking. If I NEED to snack it will be on fruit or raw veg
  • Making healthy choices. Over the years we have changed our eating habits considerably and I’m confident that 90% of our meals are healthy, balanced meals. Snacking is my biggest problem.
  • I will try to include at least 1/3 veg in every meal. Pasta dishes will be served with salad, omlettes packed with veg, sandwiches packed with salad and so on. 
  • My portion sizes will decrease. 
  • I will track my eating (on myfitnesspal.com), but not until the end of each day when the children are in bed. It’s the only time I have to think*

* I know it seems like I could spend this time pre-planning the next days food, but I seem to be in a habit of doing things spur of the moment and don’t know what I’m doing from one moment to the next so pre-planning wasn’t working out for me. I need to be able to just choose the healthiest option at any given moment. At the end of the first week I should have an idea of what (if anything) I need to change (smaller portions, more exercise, choose different meals), I’m hoping over time, I will learn what I can and can’t get away with and change my instinctive choices when it comes to food. 

MyFitnessPal lets me to use the calories burnt during exercise, towards my daily food allowance. This will allow me to be flexible on days when something special is going on or an unexpected lunch date occurs. It should also encourage me to exercise more.

The bottom line is, if it doesn’t work out, I can always return to Slimming World, the lovely ladies there will no doubt welcome me back with open arms.. I will miss them terribly, but I need to make a life change, I can’t spend my entire life turning down sandwiches at friends’ houses because they used white bread, or because I already had my allocated healthy extras. Worrying about whether a pasta dish was cooked with oil or if the mayonnaise in a tuna mayo sandwich is full fat or low fat. 

I started my healthy eating quest yesterday. Day one went great, today I had one last post Christmas celebration to get through but I pulled it back a bit with a session of Zumba. 

If anyone would like to join me on MyFitnessPal (it’s not a diet, it’s a tool to track food and exercise so even if you’re following Slimming World it’s a useful tool) you can find me here http://www.myfitnesspal.com/laymon23

Wish me luck! 

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