Alex gave us a choice of before & after photos and we went with the risque version... you're looking hot & it deserves to be shared!
Let me start at the beginning. I've never been slim. I was always a chubby kid who preferred sitting around reading to running around outside and climbing trees. I seem to remember thinking I was massive when I was in my mid teens but as I was quite happy to go clubbing in satin trousers and a crop top (good old 90s fashion eh?), I can't have been that bad! I suppose it was just a gradual case of weight gain. I wasn't the lucky type that loses weight at uni. It went on and it went on going on. Big can certainly be beautiful but for me it never was. I didn't suit it and I was miserable.
I think ostrich syndrome just developed at some point. I hated how I looked but it seemed too overwhelming to do anything about so I just buried my head in the sand and ignored it. Not so difficult to do really - you just don't look in mirrors, ignore people who shout "fat bitch" at you as you walk down the street and don't care too much about clothes because nothing fits or looks nice. And I didn't get in front of a camera for about 6 years. There are very few photos of me from the end of uni onwards.
So why am I fashion blogging and regularly prancing round in front of a camera now? I got my arse into gear. Simple as that. No faddy diets, no organisations, no paying someone £5 a week to tell me what the scales said. Just me and a lot of willpower.
I will stand by this wholeheartedly: diets are not difficult. They are boring. Oh my god, they are boring. 1200 calories a day for a year? That is dull. Saying no all the time? Really dull. But please don't let that put you off. It's do-able, it really is. I don't think I have anything outstanding in the way of willpower but my mind was made up when I started and I was *not* going to give up. I didn't do anything faddy or stupid, just kept a limit on the calories and made sure it was all good, healthy, home cooked food, then started to exercise. Again, nothing special - just walking and swimming.
There's got to be something stuck in the back of your mind that spurs you on. Once you start seeing results then that just makes it easier. Kate Moss gets so much stick for that "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels" line but I must admit that I sort of agree with her in a way. I don't want to be skinny per se, but you have to have that bottom line of "do I want this giant bag of chips or would I rather stick to my guns and keep on losing weight?" Stick to it and it will work.
I'm not going to reveal exact weight figures because christ, they're depressing reading. Suffice to say that I've lost 8 stone over the course of about 18 months. 8 stone! Not to blow my own trumpet or anything but that's practically a whole person! I still have an inner "woah" moment every now and then when I think about it. I stepped back a bit after a year on the diet and went into my version of phase two which was basically just increasing the cals and treats a bit and working them into an ongoing lifestyle, rather the diet mode I'd been in. The weight still came off, just a bit more slowly, and that's exactly what I wanted. I know I was very strict for that first phase but that's just what worked for me - I had a LOT of weight to lose.
So the process is boring but the results are FUN. Not so fun for my bank balance as I've had to buy an entire new wardrobe but even for a girl that doesn't really enjoy shopping that much, I've found it really enjoyable. The sensation of fitting into something that I never thought in my wildest dreams would ever fit is something that will always bring a big grin to my face. I feel so much better. I'm so much more confident. I don't hide away from things because I'm fat anymore.
It can be done. I'm nothing special, honestly. Just someone who stuck to it.