5 things to manage those hunger pangs

Hey folks

I’m sure that food talks sometimes! I might be sitting in my living room but I can hear the entire contents of the fridge shouting out my name! “Erika, eat me. Go on. You know you want to”!!

So, I thought I’d share my top 5 tips if you’re feeling hungry .

  1. Check whether you’re thirsty instead. Thirst is super clever at disguising itself as hunger so a drink may be what you really need after all. If you don’t think you’re thirsty, drink anyway. Apparently, we’ve already hit the point of being dehydrated when we feel thirsty so having a drink isn’t a bad idea and it may fill you up.
  2. Distract yourself. Get walking or anything to get you moving. I now throw myself into a workout or focus on getting a job done around the house because at least moving will do my body some good. But, alternatively, put on some telly and get absorbed in a movie. By the time it finishes, it might be a regular meal time.
  3. If you’ve nothing at all to distract you, delay eating. Wait for 30 minutes before again checking with yourself about whether food is what you want or whether it’d been a fleeting thought. And then ask yourself “Do I want that slice of bread or do I want to see those scales move?” If it’s late, would it be best just going to bed?
  4. If you’re at the point of deciding that your body needs food, make good choices. What can you have that will fill you up which is the least calorific / least sugar-ladden / least fatty? What will leave you feeling the least guilty afterwards?
  5. And if you’ve found that something a bit unhealthy is the answer, be mindful about access and speed. Rather than bring a pack of cookies into the living room, take one from the kitchen. Then, you’ll have to walk to get another one rather than subconsciously work your way through the packet and wonder who’s eaten them! And slow down your speed. Put down the cookie after each mouthful (yes, eating a cookie in one go is most unlady like!) and taste the food. Think about how the food is tasting, what parts of your mouth it’s touching, etc.

For me, the above is really working well. Beforehand, food would disappear in no time at all and I wouldn’t have any recollection of what I’d eaten. I would just know that food had disappeared and it was trying to solve some unmet need. Especially in the late afternoons, I now find that if I keep myself busy doing something, I don’t think about food and I can hang on until dinner time. And if I do slip, I review what happened and what I can learn from it. I’m no weight-loss genius and I don’t always get it right but doing the above certainly helps me along my way. I’m going to blog in the next few weeks about emotional eating.

Before I sign off, I said that I’d tell you what I treated myself to when I hit the 32.5 BMI mark. I ordered a bouquet of flowers! They’re just gorgeous! If you’d like to read my post about weight loss rewards, please feel free to check it out here

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

Love Erika xx

Rewards to celebrate weight loss

I wasn’t going to blog until the end of the week but I’ve been thinking about how I’m rewarding myself after this week’s weigh-in. Of course, our choice of well-earned rewards will depend on budget, perhaps how significant these particular milestone are to us, etc. but hopefully this give you some ideas too.

Have a massageNew outfit or the whole wardrobe!Ornament for house/gardenNew necklace/ bracelet/cufflinks
Cinema/download a filmSubscribe to blog about your journeyDay trip to somewhere newNew bike
Charms for a braceletFitness trackerNew pair of scalesBouquet of flowers
A week’s worth of cooking kitsPersonal trainer sessionBoot camp sessionTree/shrub
Weekend breakMagazine subscriptionFood prep gadgetNew pjs or dressing gown
Manicure/pedicureDownload a gameDownload an album/trackBeauty products
Hair makeoverPersonal shopper experienceUpgrade phoneArt work/wall hanging
Photo shoot of the new youNew water bottleNew bag/purse/walletHave your car valeted
Personal chef for the eveningLuxury bath/shower productsRevamp makeup including new bagBird feeder/bath
New shoes/bootsBucket list experience Jigsaw or craft kitDIY gadget
Pay-to-view music or sports eventMotivational fridge magnetWrite a letter to yourself about how you’re now feelingTest drive your dream car
Eat at your dream restaurantNew beltNew candleNew poster for your room
Rent a musical instrument for a week/monthTrial horse riding lessonNew fragranceBe treated to breakfast in bed
‘Me’ day with the children looked after elsewhereNew journalNew beddingBottle of your best tipple

What have I chosen? You’ll have to wait to find out. Photos coming later this week ❤

Love Erika xx

P.S. Please feel free to share this post if you think it’d inspire others (plus, of course, any of my other posts!)

Week 37 weigh-in: another milestone :)

Hello folks

If I’d focused on the huge goal of losing so much weight when I started out, I would have felt overwhelmed. There’s so much inner dialogue that goes on in my head and no doubt I would have thought something along the lines of “No way am I ever going to achieve that! That’s just a pipe dream’. For some people, yes, eyes on the long term prize is what works for them but I need constant opportunities to celebrate success. And, this week, I’ve achieved another one.

Not only am I out of the super obese, morbid obese and upper obese ranges but I’ve hit the midway point of the lowest obesity category with my BMI hitting the 32.5 mark. Yay! So, I’m going to treat myself to something to celebrate and I’ll let you know what I decide on. On the days when I get frustrated with the scales, I remind myself that the figures I’m seeing now would have been my ‘no way will I get to that weight’ figures months ago! And yes, it’s hard to believe that I’ll get to 154 lbs but I will. One pound at a time!

No longer being super obese (BMI 50+)
No longer being morbidly obese (BMI 40-49.9)
No longer being in the upper obese range (BMI 35-39.9)
No longer being obese (BMI 30-34.9)
No longer being overweight (BMI 25-29.9) because I’m a HEALTHY WEIGHT! (BMI 19-24)

And, as for my weekly report card:

What’s Erika done well this week?

  • I’ve lost 2 lbs
  • My BMI is now in the lower 32s
  • I’ve had great fun selling clothes that are now too big for me on EBay
  • I’ve drunk more and now my body water levels are in the normal range

What could Erika improve on?

  • Nothing this week 🙂

Erika’s next target(s):

  • 3 lbs until my BMI is in the 31s
  • 4 lbs until I’m under 15 stone
  • 14 lbs until I’m in Onederland (yes, I’ll be less than 200 lbs)
  • 17 lbs until I’m no longer obese as I’ll be overweight

Anyway folks, I’ll be back later this week about what we can do when we feel the hunger pangs…but don’t want to give in!

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since blogging:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
95 lbs55 lbs213 lbs32.4
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

My lockdown weight loss goal!

Hey folks

A few days into 2021 and, bam, we’re into another lockdown for at least the next 6 weeks. On the one hand, all my work has suddenly stopped and there’s an abrupt pause to the things I like to do. Anyone who’s followed me for a little while will hopefully know that I generally see things positively and, after a couple of days of feeling a bit meh, I’m now fully embracing that whilst I can’t control the pandemic, I CAN take control of other things. I can decide to exercise with my kettle bell each day. I can aim to walk 5K a day (even if it’s all indoors). I can still make good food choices. I can still work towards being a US size 8 / UK size 12. So, I’ve set myself the goal of getting under 200 lbs by February 18th. Is that a challenging goal? Yes, it is because that’s 15 lbs away and I find that weight loss slows down when you’ve already lost but let’s see how that goes.

But I thought I’d also share with you the topics of my next few blogs which run alongside my weekly (Monday) weigh-ins. So, over the next few weeks, please feel free to keep an eye out for:

  • Creating a visual board for success
  • What to do when those hunger pangs are loud!
  • Exploring a time line for yo-yo dieters
  • How to find the motivation to get off the couch

So, hope you have a super weekend everyone and I’ll be back on Monday with my next weigh-in

Love Erika xx

Week 36 weigh-in: I’m gonna feel great THIS summer!

Hello and happy new year to you all!

You know, it actually did me the power of good taking off last week from blogging. I needed to sort out my head but I’m back and SO focused on 2021. One of the things that helps me most? Visualisation. I’m picturing what I’ll be wearing this summer, how I’ll be feeling in my body because I’m more likely to stay focused if I can visualise success. And I’m back here with my weekly report card so here goes:

What’s Erika done well this week?

  • I’ve lost 2 lbs. In fact, after not weighing myself for a couple of weeks, I discovered that I’d somehow put on 4 lbs when I weighed myself on Boxing Day. Perhaps it was at least partly water weight because I’ve managed to lose this quickly plus a further 2 lbs, taking me to my lowest weight for about 10 years.
  • My BMI is now in the 32s.
  • I’m now under 15 1/2 stone.
  • I’m halfway through the 210s.
  • Despite clearly exceeding the weight limit for years, I’m now officially light enough to use my step ladder! Yes, my top weight of 329 lbs may have exceeded the 220 lbs weight limit but I’m now well under this 🙂

What could Erika improve on?

  • Drink more water! Yep, I STILL need to work on this!

Erika’s next target(s):

  • 5 lbs until my BMI is in the 31s
  • 6 lbs until I’m under 15 stone
  • 16 lbs until I’m in Onederland (yes, I’ll be less than 200 lbs)
  • 19 lbs until I’m no longer obese as I’ll be overweight

******

I’ve also been thinking more about my wardrobe. My aim is to feel super comfy in my jeans so that I can wear them everyday from the mid January. I’ve also bought a stunning maxi dress for the summer but, as I mentioned here fairly recently, I’ve loved buying second hand on EBay. Yes, I could treat myself to a brand new wardrobe by buying directly from shops but, when losing a lot of weight, it’s not cheap! One of my favourite bargains so far is this Jaeger coatigan that I won on EBay for a tiny fraction of what it would have cost new. Another 30lbs or so and this will fit nicely perhaps with skinny jeans?

Anyway guys, I’ll be back later this week to give you an overview of some of the topics I’ll be blogging about over the coming weeks. For now, take care and, as ever, please feel free to share my posts or comment if you’d like to share your own weight successes or frustrations.

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since blogging:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
93 lbs57 lbs215 lbs32.7
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

Christmas Day… this year versus last year :)

Hey folks

How do we measure non-scale progress? For me, one way is to look back on where I was this time last year and so, back on Christmas Day 2019, what was it like living in my body? Yes, I was 112 lbs heavier than now but what else was happening?

  • I remember sitting uncomfortably on the sofa, aware that I was perhaps taking up more than half of the sofa designed for two people
  • I remember washing up, struggling with back ache after just a few minutes and therefore needing to do it in stages
  • I remember struggling to pick up something off the floor whilst sitting on the sofa
  • I remember having coming back from the beautiful Belgian city of Brussels 3 days earlier, loving the city in its festive spirit but aware how physically exhausting it was walking around
  • I remember being aware that I needed to lose weight but completely lacking motivation

This year, I’m wearing clothes 5 sizes smaller, I’m feeling much more comfortable in my body and the washing up? Easy! One of my Christmas presents is a fabulous book called ‘101 Weekends in Europe‘ which I’d asked for as I’m now far more likely to be able to fit in a plane seat and, once Covid allows, I’m going to be jet setting probably once or twice a month for weekends away. There’ll be no stopping me! Prague, Budapest, Copenhagen, Tallinn, Rome and SO many places!

But, guys, I’ve also made a decision this afternoon. I need to do a bit of self care and so I’m going to take off the next week or so from blogging. I guess I need a very short break during which I want to focus on making good food choices and see if I can maintain when I’m at. But once we hit New Year’s Day, my weight loss journey will continue and I’ll be blogging about the remaining 59 lbs left to go. So, I hope that’s okay but, goodness, I’ll be back very soon and I hope you’ll still be around to join me on this journey.

So, my lovelies, here’s to a happy Christmas to everyone who celebrates it and let’s make 2021 a fabulous year. Whilst there are many things we can’t control, there are certain things we can and that’s what I’ll be focusing on

Love Erika xx

When your mind tells you to sit in the big chair

Hello folks

I had a HUGE revelation this week! With being in some pain yesterday with my feet, I popped along to a medical walk-in centre which was eerily quiet due to Covid. Once I got through the initial questions to make sure I was Covid-safe, I was asked to take a seat and this tiny act is what this extra post is about today.

You see, in the waiting room, there were regular-sized chairs dotted about and also some that were clearly wider than others. And where did I sit? Yes, I instinctively went for one of these wider chairs because that’s what I’ve done for years. I’ve feared chairs with arms because I’ve not always been able to fit. And I sat there for a moment sensing lots of space either side of me before daring to ask myself “I wonder! I wonder if I’ll fit in that standard-sized chair over there. Do I take that risk?” The other thing to ask myself was how it’d look to the receptionists and nurses behind the screened off desk. It might look a bit silly for someone to get out of a chair in an otherwise empty room and move to another one for no apparent reason but this was my opportunity to take a chance…and so I did. And, yes!!! I could sit there without my body touching either arm! Gosh, I wanted to cry with happiness but I just sang a victory song in my head and gave myself permission to feel a tiny bit smug!

It’s these non-scale victories that are there to be celebrated, these victories that others may not ‘get’ but, boy, help us walk along with a spring in our step. And I can’t wait to one day check out other seats like planes, theatres and rollercoasters. Perhaps I can start to imagine life without continually thinking “Will I fit?”

Love Erika xx

Week 33 weigh-in: I’ve lost more than 1/3 of my body weight!

Hey guys

I can’t wait to update you so let’s get straight into this week’s report card:

What’s Erika done well this week?

  • I’ve lost 3 lbs
  • I’ve now lost more than 1/3 of my original body weight (takes into account the 21 lbs I lost prior to blogging). So, my weight has gone from 329 to 217 lbs
  • I’ve now lost exactly 8 stone (i.e. 8 x 14 lbs)
  • I’ve now fewer than 60 lbs to go until I hit my target weight
  • I’ve been eating more in the past few days to make sure that I’m not undereating. Carbs are still down but protein is up 🙂

What could Erika improve on?

  • Drink more water!

Erika’s next target(s):

  • 1 lb until my BMI is in the 32s
  • 8 lbs until I’m under 15 stone
  • 18 lbs until I’m in Onederland (yes, I’ll be less than 200 lbs)
  • 21 lbs until I’m no longer obese as I’ll be overweight
  • To start wearing my jeans every day after finally being able to do up the button the other day. Another 7 lbs or so and I think I’ll feel much better in them.

*******

I was thinking earlier that there are so many things that I’d love to be doing now that I’ve lost weight, such as going away on weekend trips and not have to worry about fitting in a plane seat. The only thing stopping me right now is Covid although it doesn’t stop me planning. But I guess what I’ve also reflected on is how I’ve still ‘lived’ during the past few years even when I was around 329 lbs. I still did an off-road driving experience, joined the police for a night shift, went to Disneyland, wandered around Paris on a day trip and so much more. You see, we can think “When I’m smaller….” or “When I’m lighter….” but we never know what’s around the corner and so, yes, whilst there are things we can still dream to do, live for today! You might need to go a bit slower or adapt your plans a bit if you’re not yet your ‘ideal’ size but, more than ever, embrace today!

I’ll be back later this week but, in the meantime, please feel free to share your weight loss successes, frustrations or whatever’s on your mind ❤

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since blogging:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
91 lbs59 lbs217 lbs33
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

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Week 32 weigh-in: an advent calendar with a difference!


Hey guys

I can’t wait to show you my advent calendar. The rest of my family have chocolate ones but my one is, er, a little bit different! More about that in a moment but, first, let’s take a look at this week’s report card.

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What’s Erika done well this week?

  • I’ve lost another 3 lbs 🙂
  • I’m now under 100 kg! (99.97 kg to be precise)
  • I’m light enough to take a helicopter flying lesson with a local company
  • I’ve been focusing on upping my protein (mainly cooked chicken) and cutting back on carbs

What could Erika improve on?

  • Mmm, this is going to be the subject of my blog later this week but I’m at the point of thinking “Am I just super focused on losing weight or am I beginning to develop the symptoms of atypical anorexia?” There can be such a fine line between the two and I’m not saying that I have an eating disorder again but, if it’s okay with you, I’ll think aloud on here probably Thursday or Friday. As ever, I’ll be very open and honest about where I’m at.

Erika’s next target(s):

  • 1 lb until I’ve lost a third of my original body weight and I’m out of the 220s
  • 3 lbs until I’ve lost 8 stone in total
  • 4 lbs until my BMI is in the 32s
  • 21 lbs until I’m in Onederland (yes, I’ll be less than 200 lbs)
  • 24 lbs until I’m no longer obese as I’ll be overweight

*******

Right, back to my advent calendar… this is a fitness one! Virtual Racing UK organise this every year but post these calendars abroad too. The idea is that behind every door, you may find part of a medal which you build as you head towards Christmas and you also have a fitness challenge. Today’s challenge? 30 x crunches, 30 x cross crunches, 20 x leg raisers and 60 second plank….. and repeat all of this TWICE!!! It’s actually really exciting to see what the daily challenge is. If you fancy this, perhaps follow them on Facebook so you can see when the 2021 advent calendar is launched. But once my whole medal has been built, I’ll share a photo with you.

*******

Right, I’m off to do my daily challenge workout but I’ll be back Thursday / Friday. In the meantime, please feel free to share your own weight loss successes, frustrations or whatever’s on your mind ❤

Love Erika xx

Recordable weight loss since blogging:Still to lose:Current weight:BMI:
88 lbs62 lbs220 lbs33.5
Plus 21 lbs lost prior to blogging

Some more photos! Here’s what I’m eating…

Hey folks

Having lost over 100 lbs, I’d love to tell you that my dinner plates are filled with colourful veg, that I’ve a fruit bowl overflowing with exotic specimens from all over the world and that I’m eating huge volumes of oily fish. But, I’m such a fussy eater! The only food I’m staying away from 100% are chocolate, biscuits, cakes, etc. but, apart from that, it’s all about portion control. Saying that, I do want to reduce my intake of carbs which I’ve started doing today and chicken salad is on my lunch menu 🙂

So, here are some dinners from recent weeks. You know, before February, I would have filled up my plate and not thought about quantity but my stomach (and, very importantly, my head) have adjusted to knowing when to stop.

Yes, for the first time ever, I had a double burger as shown in the photo above but these were turkey burgers. I’d never had these before but I’d read that turkey is super healthy. And the pizza that was delivered to my home? Low fat mozzarella, thin base, etc. all of which makes it as healthy as possible at around 750 calories.

I do love a quiche and, in my quest to reduce my carbs, I was so excited to find this low fat crustless one at 270 calories.

But here’s my latest discovery. No-added sugar jelly! This is 8 calories per pot and, eating it with a teaspoon, I probably burn more calories eating it! I currently have about 20 of these pots in my fridge and they’re the only sweet things I have. It’s been about 35 years since I’d eaten jelly and it was a bit weird eating it again initially but having this ‘go to’ if I’m getting peckish is really helping.

So, let’s see if I can reduce my carbs and perhaps check out some new veg! But the main thing for me is portion control and making this journey sustainable. Yes, it can be hard initially to adjust but, on the occasional time when I wonder about having an extra slice of bread, all I have to ask myself is:

Do I want that slice of bread or do I want to do up the button on my skinny jeans?”

I know the answer every time!

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

Love Erika xx