I could fit in the seats at the funfair!

Hi everyone

So, apologies that it’s been nearly a week since I’ve blogged. I just needed to give myself a break from the weekly weigh-in but I wanted to share with you that I let my inner child play last night. I went to a funfair on Brighton Pier which is on the south coast of England jutting out into the English Channel towards France. Brighton is a very popular and wonderfully vibrant city where people can truly be individuals and it’s a city that’s just a short train ride from London. In fact, it’s where I got engaged!

Yesterday, on a gloriously warm evening, I headed down to Brighton. I didn’t plan to go on any funfair rides and I assumed that the pier itself would be closed but, as I drove past, I found it was very much open, much later than usual as many people were soaking up the sun. I have to say that I hesitated for a moment when I reached the end of the pier wondering how daft it’d be for a 40-something year old going on rides but sometimes you just have to not worry what others will think and play. Before I knew it, I was going down the helter skelter on a coil mat, sitting on a horse on the carousel, being strapped into a rollercoaster and then being tossed about on another ride that made me very glad I hadn’t just eaten! But the best feeling was that I could fit into the seats! My head hasn’t caught up with the fact that I’ve lost 164 lbs so far but once I managed to fit on the first ride, that worry soon disappeared.

So, I’ll be back on Monday with a bit of an update with the professional support regarding atypical anorexia as I’ve finally found somewhere there’s been brilliant so far but more about that in a few days.

Hope you have a great weekend, everyone

Love Erika xx

Week 57 weigh-in: 1 lb away from being in the healthy range!

Hello!

I have to admit that I really hoped to wake up this morning to announce “Ta daaah!!! My BMI’s under 25” and be able to squeeze this accomplishment into the very end of May. But is losing weight a race? Does it have to be today? Let’s check out this week’s report card:

What’s happened this week?

  • I lost 1 lb
  • My body fat is now under 30%
  • My body water is now consistently above 50% after often being dehydrated
  • I’ve signed up to do another fitness medal

What could Erika improve on?

  • Increase my calories…. yes, still finding this hard

Erika’s next target(s):

  • 1 lb until my weight’s in the healthy range! A single, solitary, standalone 1 lb left!
  • 2 lbs until I’ve lost over half of my original weight!
  • 8 lbs until my ultimate goal so that I have a 7 lb buffer to stay in the healthy range

— ❤ —

Last year as the pandemic broke and my weight loss journey began, I discovered an international community of people who walk, run, jog, etc. so that shiny new medals drop through their letter boxes. There are SO many websites doing these medals such as Virtual Runner UK, Race at Your Pace and The Conqueror (if you’re on Facebook, do check out The Conqueror Community page for the loveliest and most supportive group of people). Whether you want to cover a marathon distance in one go or set yourself the challenge of walking 5 km over the course of a whole month, there’s a medal out there for everyone and for every level of fitness. On Saturday, I did a 7km walk with a friend across fields and past lakes. Right now, I do need to strike a balance between pushing myself and being kind as, whilst my legs were absolutely fine afterwards, I felt dizzy for hours once I actually stopped walking. But it was very warm and I just need to listen to my body more.

When was my BMI last in the healthy range? Probably about 28 years ago so once I see my BMI go under 25, I’ll be straight on here! I never thought with my BMI starting out at 50 that I could halve it but I’m on the verge of doing that. I’m right on the cusp ❤

As ever, please feel free to share your diet / weight-related successes, frustrations or anything else on your mind.

Take care

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since starting to blog:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
142 lbs8 lbs166 lbs25.1
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

Week 52 weigh-in: One year of blogging!

Hey guys

Today’s blog comes from a rather bleary-eyed Erika who, based in the UK, stayed up until the early hours watching the Oscars! But, yes, I’ve now blogged for a whole year and I can’t thank you enough for joining me on my journey. Honestly, I truly appreciate it. I know things are getting a bit serious at the moment with the atypical anorexia and I’ll find out this week about how the eating disorder is affecting my body but, right now, let’s crack on with this week’s report card:

What’s happened this week?

  • I lost 2 lbs
  • My weight’s now in the 170 lbs!
  • My BMI is in the 26s

What could Erika improve on?

  • Increase my calories…. yes, still finding this hard …

Erika’s next target(s) along with the big ones!

  • 2 lbs until I’m the same weight as 10 years ago
  • 3 lbs until I’ve lost 11 stone in all
  • 3 lbs until I’ve lost 90% of my excess weight
  • 4 lbs until my BMI is in the lower 26s
  • 8 lbs until I’m at my wedding weight from nearly 25 years ago
  • 13 lbs until my weight’s in the healthy range (under 1 stone to go!)
  • 20 lbs until my ultimate goal so that I have a 7 lb buffer to stay in the healthy range!

A very close friend came round to my home at the weekend but, because of Covid, I hadn’t seen her for months. As she walked into my garden, her first words were “You’re so tiny!” Although I have lots of loose skin, the thing I found when I was this weight 10 years ago is that I get to the point where I’m heavier than I may look. 10 years ago, I had people telling me not to lose any more, despite me actually being overweight. So it makes me wonder how I’ll look when my BMI does get into the healthy range… but I’m not looking too far ahead. I’m just focusing on that next pound. That’s how I’ve got this far… one step, one pound at a time.

I’ll be back on Wednesday but, as ever, please feel free to share your diet / weight-related successes, frustrations or anything else on your mind.

Take care

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since starting to blog:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
130 lbs20 lbs178 lbs26.9
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

Feel bigger or smaller than you really are?

Hey folks

Gosh, I’m finding that almost regardless of my size, I don’t really sense the dimensions of my body and I’d love to know if anyone else ‘gets’ this.

So, at 329 lbs, I obviously knew that I had a body but I couldn’t connect with it. I think my mind was telling me that I was smaller than I really was and I’d then be surprised when I couldn’t easily fit into a chair or when a piece of clothing seemed really tight. I’d see people on TV or social media who were apparently my size or had the same BMI and I’d be thinking “Am I the same size as them?” Ultimately, it was like my mind was disconnected from my body….

Currently at 180 lbs (which is a mid-week weigh-in spoiler alert!), I feel bigger than perhaps some evidence would suggest:

  • I’ve gone from US size 18-20 (UK size 22-24) to US size 8-10 (UK size 12-14)
  • I’m currently binge watching the very first season of The Biggest Loser Australia on Amazon Prime and I was really shocked to see the contestants initially weigh in heavier than my current weight…. I could have sworn that I was larger than at least 3 of the ladies. The show doesn’t reveal the contestants’ BMI or height but, at 5 foot 8, I’m pretty tall so I doubt if they were all taller than me
  • I know that my wrists have got smaller because when I got my FitBit last summer, I had to wear the larger strap whereas I’m now wearing the smaller strap on the 4th smallest out of the 11 holes
  • … and I know my waist is smaller as it was 48 inches a few months into this journey… now it’s 32.5 inches

I do celebrate the scale and non-scale victories but perhaps it’ll just take time for me to really recognise my body for what it is. Work in progress, eh?!

This weekend, I’m going to head out for walks as it’s warming up here a bit and I’ll probably pace around my living room when I watch this weekend’s Romagna Grand Prix. It’s incredible how steps can build up when distracted! And then I’ll be back on Monday with my next weigh-in when I’ll be declaring some very exciting goals coming up. Hope you have a great weekend

Take care all

Love Erika xx

THIS shows me how far I’ve come!

Hello guys

Sometimes, I find it hard to think back to where I started off 14 months ago except that I weighed 329 lbs. However, yesterday, I was flicking through my Filofax where I found something I’d written. It’s not dated but I seem to recall it being reasonably close to the beginning because, weeks later, we were in lockdown and therefore I certainly wasn’t meeting friends for lunch! Anyway, this is what it says…

I now feel more comfortable when I’m asleep

I don’t feel the fat around my neck so much

I got behind the restaurant table when I met up with Claire

I walked to the post box there and back without stopping

I don’t get out of my breath when I walk upstairs

The sofa no longer squeaks when I sit down

#small things #tiny goals #Illgetthere

This is precious! This illustrates how far I’ve come on this journey. Little things, eh?! Yes, it’s good to look ahead to our goals but goodness it’s great to glance in that rear view mirror to see where we’ve come from and smile!

Love Erika xx

Week 49 weigh-in: skinny fingers… loose rings!

Hello folks

Before I tell you about the rings, let’s check out this week’s report card:

What’s happened this week?

  • I lost 3 lbs
  • My weight’s now in the lower 180s
  • My BMI’s in the 27s
  • My BMI and waist size are now smaller than the average for women where I live
  • My in-laws saw me yesterday wearing jeans for the first time in about 10 years
  • I bought spinach!! Yep, I’m not really a fan of veg so I just need to come up with a plan now
  • I had the blood test that my GP ordered last Monday so hoping that no news is good news

What could Erika improve on?

  • Increase my calories…. finding this hard

Erika’s next target(s) along with the big ones!

  • 1 lb until I’ve lost 85% of my excess weight
  • 2 lbs until I’m halfway through the overweight category (with a BMI of 27.5)
  • 2 lbs until I’ve lost 10.5 stone in all
  • 3 lbs until I’m under 13 stone
  • 5 lbs until my weight’s in the 170s
  • 19 lbs until my weight’s in the healthy range (that’s under 1.5 stone to go)
  • 26 lbs until my ultimate goal so that I have a 7 lb buffer to stay in the healthy range!

So, yes, my engagement ring is loose and I can now slide it to the end of my finger. My wedding ring is also loose and so you can probably my next ring-related goal! Not that I’ll actually take off my rings though as I’ve worn them continuously since our wedding coming up 25 years ago but, you know, I thought my fingers looked slimmer yesterday so I’m super excited 🙂

I also realised an incredible coincidence yesterday…. when I get into the ‘healthy’ BMI range, I will have lost just over half my original body weight! Yes, I’ll be down from 329 to 165…

I’ll be back on Wednesday but, in the meantime, hope you have a good couple of days. As ever, please feel free to share your diet/ weight-related successes, frustrations or anything else on your mind.

Take care

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since blogging:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
124 lbs26 lbs184 lbs27.8
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

Dare to dress! 2 items on their way I never thought I’d buy!

Hey folks

When I hit the ‘buy’ button on the UK clothing website New Look last night, there was a tiny part of me saying to myself “Really, Erika? You buying those?” But there was a much louder internal voice going “You go, girl!” You see, I’ve bought a couple of items that I’ve never worn as an adult.

First is a pj set with SHORTS!!!! The last time I wore any shorts was part of my school games kit and, before that, I might have worn them around the age of 8 or 9? You know, I’ve got so much sagging skin at the tops of my thighs (front and back) from the weight loss but I don’t care. I genuinely cannot wait to wear these, even if I don’t step out of my bedroom in them. So, US size 8 / UK size 12 are on their way to me and I’m really excited that I’ll be able to get into them straightaway.

The other thing I’ve bought are these ripped jeans!!! Am I too old in my late 40s to be wearing ripped jeans?! No! If I’m not going to wear them now, when will I?

At the end of the day, the rules, boundaries, etc that I impose on myself about what I ‘should’ wear are very much in my head. I lived in maxi skirts day in, day out until very recently but I could have worn jeans or trousers. I guess I felt that wearing maxi skirts would hide my size from others. Wearing something new for the first time might feel awkward or wrong but there has to be that first time when we step out of our comfort zones and play. Yes, I’m now playing as I discover my new style and I’m not going to always get it right. But I’ve now bought several items that are items I wouldn’t normally wear and, in fact, these jeans are going to go fab with the most gorgeous second hand Jaeger coatigan I won on EBay. Perhaps one day, I might put a few photos on here of me wearing these clothes…. well, not the pjs! I’m not that brave!!!!

Hope you all have a lovely weekend and I’ll be back on Monday with my next weigh-in

Take care

Erika xx

Weight up? Weight down? Let’s draw a time line!

Hey guys

I thought I’d share something I did near the beginning of my 13 month journey because I was aware that there’ve been times in my life when I’ve been smaller and others when I’ve been bigger.

Now, there are different reasons why we can put on weight and, to be perfectly open, I usually love cake! I love candy, I love lots of other things that are going to move the scales in a rather undesirable direction. But I’m also aware that stress, emotions, mood, life events, etc. can also really impact.

So, this is what I did:

  • I drew a time line from when I was born to now in my late 40s
  • I got highlighter pens to note times of weight gain, weight loss and stability
  • I then used this to create another time line but with peaks and troughs which helped illustrate the changes in my weight
  • I then thought about what was happening when changes in my weight happened and added notes

— ❤ —

So, I was a 7 lb baby and I didn’t have a problem with my weight as a young child

Primary school, I went through some trauma (all dealt with now ❤ ) and my weight started to go on a little bit as a result.

I started secondary school (aged 12) where I lost some weight and was back in the average range.

My weight started to go on during my secondary years because of some difficulties at home

Bulimia started and the bingeing and purging sent my weight in all directions

In my early 20s, I got married so weight came off – I had a dress to get into!

Months after getting married, I was pregnant so lots of weight gain but I then lost it extremely quickly afterwards… restricting for a while rather unhealthily. Motherhood was a blessing but a bit of a shock at the same time.

My weight was pretty stable during rest of my 20s and for most of my 30s although I was a bit heavier than I wanted to be. Too much socialising!

Late 30s, I developed anorexia due to a significant trauma (all resolved now) and became ill. Started trauma therapy and weight went right up.

I became a carer in my early 40s to one of my children and my weight had remained high until last year. Stress. No binge eating but just found myself turning to snacking.

Last February, the pressure of being a carer started to impact me along with a couple of other things but also Covid presented me with an opportunity to focus on myself. Hearing more and more about Covid and obesity, it spurred me on. But, as I shared on Monday, I’ve now been diagnosed with atypical anorexia due to some pressures.

— ❤ —

So, I found it helpful to do this exercise as it showed that stress and trauma impact me. Now I know this, I can find healthier ways of coping with stress including talking it out with others. Life is full of events and who knows what I may face in the future so I’m determined to stop this yoyoing.

I hope this helps at least one other person out there. Reflecting on our past isn’t always easy but I guess facing up to events, etc. can help free us from this constant cycle of weight changes

So, I’ll be back later this week but, in the meantime, take care

Love Erika xx

Those jeans I couldn’t get into? I’ve bought a belt!

Hey

Well, my plan for today’s post was to keep writing about how I’ll be continuing with my weight loss journey after lockdown finishes but I had to come on here to share something completely different. I’ve bought a belt for my jeans! And it’s size ‘MEDIUM’!!

The reason why the jeans are so significant is that, back in July, I couldn’t get into them. They went up no further than my knees but I decided to try them on once a month and take a photo. Finally, in December, I could do up the button! Documenting my journey through photos was extraordinarily motivating because there were times when the scales hadn’t shifted hugely yet I could sense the changes in my body and it helped to focus on the non-scale victories too.

Since then, my jeans are now very much gaping at the waist and the belt will be delivered later on today. Yay! But I ticked off another ‘push that comfort zone’ challenge yesterday as whilst I’ve worn my jeans around the house, I wore them outside yesterday for the first time! Yes, I revealed to the world that I…. have …. legs!

Have a great weekend everyone and I’ll be back on Monday with my next weigh-in.

Love Erika xx

Will my eating habits change after Covid?

Hey folks

It’s really been quite a year, hasn’t it? I’m SO aware that whilst I’ve spent much of the last year not working due to Covid lockdowns, I’ve been lucky in many ways in that it’s given me the space and time to focus on me. Gosh, that sounds very indulgent doesn’t it but, pre-Covid, I was just ticking along in life and focusing on everything else other than my mind and my body. Needed to go into a shop for some milk? Chocolate would quickly be in my basket! Needed to grab lunch at a drive-thru motorway service station? Couldn’t beat a chocolate milkshake and something with cheese in it. Needed to chill after a long day where all I wanted to do was to slouch on the sofa to watch TV? I could sit there for hours without thinking about how I could combine watching TV with some indoor walking or working out. But Covid has genuinely made me take stock of myself.

When we’ve come out of each lockdown, work has been busy even though I’m working only from home and I was worried whether my good intentions to keep up the fitness would abruptly stop… but I’ve carved out the time to get my body moving and, in fact, I’m loving my evening walks in particular.

But what happens post-Covid when friends ask to meet up for lunch and dinner again? What happens when there’re family events involving food? In many ways, I’ve been cocooned for the past 12 months and I haven’t faced these pressures. So, whilst I want to keep coming back to this topic over my next few posts, my thoughts today are about how I’ll cope with going to restaurants:

  • I can look online to check out the menu. By looking in advance, I can make healthy choices rather than suddenly decide when I’m there and hopefully work out calories too.
  • I can ask for substitutions to the meal. It’s okay for ask for a smaller portion of fries or swap entirely for a salad. I can ask that the sauce is on the side so that I can choose how much to add.
  • I can try to be the first to order. How many times do you think you know what you want and then, hearing a friend order something different, you think “Ooh, that sounds even better. I think I’ll change my mind“! If I go first, I won’t be influenced by others’ choices.
  • I can say “no” to a dessert! Just because others are eating dessert, I don’t have to.
  • It’s okay to rehearse my responses. If I know I’m meeting someone who’ll be quick to question why I’m not having a dessert, I can decide in advance how I’ll respond. “Mmm, that main course was lovely and I’m actually quite full“.
  • But I can choose to have a dessert because treats are okay. At the end of the day, it’s all about balance so I can always cut back on calories the next day. And there’s the option of sharing a dessert too (although I personally think that something like New York cheesecake is way too nice to share!)
  • I can leave food on my plate. Yes, although we’re sometimes conditioned as kids to make sure we’ve eaten everything, it’s okay not to – even if everyone else finishes their food.

Can you think of anything else that’d help you if you were going to a restaurant? As I’ve said before, planning ahead is key to controlling what I’m eating…. but, that said, it’s okay to still have times when I’m completely spontaneous!! Dans Le Noir (in London) and Blackout (in Las Vegas) are just two of the restaurants around the world where you actually eat in the dark, finding out only afterwards what you’ve eaten. Sounds kinda fun and perhaps I’ll give that a go one day!

I’ll be back either Friday or Saturday but, until then, take care

Love Erika xx