I haven’t written a Slimming World orientated post in a while because all my head space seems to be occupied with impending marathon panic, or ‘maranoia’ if you prefer. I can’t wait til I get home from New York, as I will be free of my training schedule and therefore free to concentrate solely on diet. Please God I can get myself back down to a neat twelve stone (or even below) for Christmas. That would truly be a Christmas miracle!
I’m averaging out at 12 stone 6 pounds these days. That’s since May, so despite sometimes being anything up to 12st 13, or as low as 12st 2; I’ve been pretty much the same weight for five months. In fact, I’ve been pretty much the same weight for a year! My shape changes, so people say I look skinnier but I know the scales don’t agree. On the days I know I’m nearer thirteen stone, I think I look like a tub. When I see lower numbers, I think I look skinny; but I bet in reality I look no different from week to week. It’s all in the mind.
Anyway, back to business. This blog is great fun, it’s mad to think that people from all over the world read it and that Google search terms sometimes point people to it. The search terms are sometimes fantastically random – ‘Jessica Ennis favourite sausage’ being the standout one for me! Incidentally, I have never written about Jessica Ennis’ favourite sausage, possibly because I have no idea what it is – maybe I should ask?! Medal winning pork product preferences aside, the most popular search query that leads to my blog is usually “why isn’t slimming world working” or other such variations on the same theme. Given that when thing go tits up in my life, I usually head for Google immediately, I can see why people make it their first port of call when the scales aren’t moving. I have written a post about this before, but this time I’m going to be more emphatic and tell you what to do.
Q: Why isn’t Slimming World Working aka Why Are You Not Losing Weight?
A: A number of reasons – take your pick.
1. You’re fooling yourself. In other words, you’re consciously not following the plan properly. Having fruit for breakfast and a baked potato for lunch, then thinking a wee takeaway for dinner ‘won’t hurt’ wont cut it in the long run. You either follow the plan, or you don’t. Yes, have one day where you eat what you want, but for the other six days – respect the plan and it will reward you. Choosing full fat yogurts instead of Mullerlights because they’re cheaper, or not trimming the fat off bacon ‘because its a waste’ is NOT going to give you the results you so desire. So quit whining and just do it.
2. You’re not eating enough. Yes. It is possible that eating too little is causing a stagnation in your weight. You need to keep your metabolism going, and the best way to do this is to keep things interesting. Mix it up a bit food wise, don’t fall into the trap of eating the same thing all the time. Bulk your meals out with vegetables or nice bit of salad on the side, this will fill you up a bit more and keep your vitamin quota up. Not a fan of breakfast? Shock your body one or two days a week by having something small when you get up – just to kick start things. Always eat a big meal in the evenings? Why not try eating your largest meal at lunchtime and have something lighter in the evening? I’m not saying to eat less, far from it. Just mix up your routine and you’ll find your body will respond, even if it takes a day or two to catch on.
3. The C-word – Constipation. I am so sorry for talking about this! But it’s simple physics – what goes in, must come out. If it doesn’t, well you’re going to be heavier. Don’t get obsessed by this! Just remember to eat plenty of fibre (this will come in part from your Healthy Extras, so don’t neglect them) – breads, cereals, pulses, fruit and vegetables are all good sources of fibre. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water too…….to move things along. Ahem.
4. You’re getting complacent. I covered this one before in my similar post on this topic, but to sum up – you think you know Slimming World inside out and you’re taking shortcuts. This means not weighing healthy extras, underestimating syns etc. I’ve done this before, so I know the effect it can have! Every so often, do The Cheese Test. Take a clean plate, and put what you believe to be 30 grams of cheese on it. Cut a slice, or use grated cheese, but estimate a 30g portion and then weigh it to see how close you were. The results can be surprising! The same kind of test can be done using cereal. I cannot stress how little 30g of Fruit and Fibre/Bran Flakes is – it’s disheartening!
5. It’s THAT time… Yeah. I’m going all out with the icky tonight. The infamous star week can play havoc with losses, so don’t stress it. Also, the body is very mysterious. Sometimes ‘star week’ effects are felt the week before, or the week after, the actual event! Presumably you know how you roll in that respect, so work it out for yourself. Cut yourself a bit of slack on these days/weeks, but don’t use it as an excuse to go mad. You’ll regret it afterwards. Feckin hormones.
So. Once you’ve identified your problem, make a mental note of it but don’t beat yourself up. Just remind yourself of what you want to achieve and move forward. If you want to take a day to get it out of your system foodwise, then just go for it. But when you get up the next morning, get back to basics and read your books again – cover to cover. If you have any Slimming World magazines lying around, pick one up and have a wee look through it. Maybe try out a recipe you’ve forgotten about, or remind yourself of a new Healthy Extra option or branded free food that has been advertised. If you don’t have any magazines, go and buy one! Even if you get one thing out of it that helps, it will have been worth it. My go-to rescue plan when I’m stagnating or feeling out of control is to make a huge pot of Irish Stew. I mean huge. Load it with carrots and good quality floury potatoes, and simply graze on it. It’s syn free and it’s filling, and if you want to have some more vegetables on the side – rock on. The main point is, there’s a lot of it, so there’s no excuse to go hungry! If stew isn’t your thing, try a thick soup or a risotto? Don’t punish yourself for past offences either. It’s a new start, so make sure and have your syns and your Healthy Extras. Main rule: don’t go hungry. Other rule, but just as important: Don’t listen to other people. Granted, you could apply this rule to me! But I’m referring to the so-called ‘experts’ who brag and boast about how they can cheat and get away with it, or those who make up their own rules. Good for them, but find your own way.
And if you’ve been fooling yourself, don’t yap about it. If you want to do it, do it. If you don’t, don’t. If you’re the type that thrives on having something to yap about all the time, then good for you, but think of the effect it has on the rest of us!
That’s enough yapping from me. For now. Hope this has helped!