I feel like me again

Chloe Walker knew she had to be hon­est with her­self if she was ever go­ing to change

Woman (UK) - - Contents -

Mov­ing to an idyl­lic Caribbean is­land with my fi­ancé, Rus­sell, was the ad­ven­ture of a life­time… and a dis­as­ter for my fig­ure. Both work­ing full time – Rus­sell as an IT sup­port en­gi­neer and me as a hair­dresser – we spent our days off in hol­i­day mode. we’d sun­bathe on the beach and in­dulge in the del­i­ca­cies such as deep-fried chicken with a sweet bar­be­cue sauce.

I barely no­ticed the weight creep­ing on and when my size 10-12 biki­nis be­came too tight, I sim­ply bought big­ger ones. The heat made it harder to ex­er­cise. Some paid for gym mem­ber­ships but we were sav­ing up for our wed­ding. Af­ter a year in Grand Cay­man, I’d gone from 10st 7lb to 11st 7lb.

In Jan­uary 2012, with just six months un­til our wed­ding and a size 10 dress to fit into, I pan­icked! I went on a self-de­signed crash diet, ex­ist­ing on sushi and green tea. It was a pretty mis­er­able way to live. But by the time we re­turned to the UK for our wed­ding in June 2012, I’d lost 1st and squeezed into my dress. We had a fan­tas­tic day and then hon­ey­mooned at an all-in­clu­sive re­sort.

Back on the Cay­mans, Rus­sell and I fell into our happy rou­tine again and in time we were ready for a new ad­ven­ture – par­ent­hood. We were

‘i lost steadily each week’

thrilled when we dis­cov­ered I was ex­pect­ing. And my preg­nancy be­came the per­fect ex­cuse for me to in­dulge in all of my favourite foods. I gained a few pounds ev­ery week. We’d al­ways planned to re­turn home to bring up our chil­dren, so as my due date neared, Rus­sell and I flew back to the UK. Back home, I reac­quainted my­self with all the home com­forts I’d missed, in­clud­ing fish and chips and sug­ary tea. By the time I was full term, I was 15st 7lb.

stress­ful shop­ping

Our daugh­ter, Bon­nie, ar­rived safely in Au­gust 2014, weigh­ing 6lb 15oz. Al­though I loved ev­ery mo­ment with Bon­nie, I’d al­ways pic­tured my­self be­ing an ac­tive young mum. In­stead of zip­ping around with her in the buggy, though, I felt breath­less and slug­gish.

I only re­alised how bad things had got when I was in­vited on my first girls’ night out af­ter hav­ing Bon­nie. I im­me­di­ately raided my wardrobe and was left with a sea of clothes on the bed that didn’t fit. Dur­ing a stress­ful shop­ping trip, I man­aged to find a top that cov­ered my arms and tummy. When I wore it out, though, I felt dread­fully self-con­scious.

Though I’d of­ten pass our lo­cal church hall and see a Slim­ming World ban­ner, I couldn’t muster the courage to go along. Then Rus­sell and I had a con­ver­sa­tion that brought things into fo­cus for me. We wanted to give Bon­nie a brother or sis­ter Sud­denly, ev­ery­thing was clear. ‘I’d like to be healthy this time,’ I told Rus­sell. ‘I’m go­ing to lose weight first.’

So in May 2015, when Bon­nie was nine months old, I fi­nally took the plunge. On my first night at group, the Con­sul­tant, Han­nah, gave me such a warm wel­come that I won­dered why I’d been wor­ried about join­ing. Al­though I was a bit shocked to learn I’d reached 13st 7½lb, I went home full of de­ter­mi­na­tion. I started with sim­ple changes such as swap­ping fatty sausages for Slim­ming World ones and re­plac­ing olive oil with lowcalo­rie cook­ing spray.

Af­ter a month at group, I was de­lighted to find I’d lost 5½lb. Then some­thing un­ex­pected hap­pened – I was preg­nant again. I was thrilled, but I didn’t want to go through an­other preg­nancy with my weight spi­ralling out of con­trol, risk­ing com­pli­ca­tions.

Yet I felt sure that when I told Han­nah I was ex­pect­ing, she’d ad­vise me to stop go­ing to my group. To my re­lief, she ex­plained Slim­ming World is the only weight-man­age­ment or­gan­i­sa­tion to work with the Royal Col­lege of Mid­wives. So mem­bers who are preg­nant or breast­feed­ing can safely at­tend.

At six months, I went out and bought some size 14 ma­ter­nity jeans and pretty tops. For the first time as a mum, I felt stylish rather than frumpy.

In March 2016, three days af­ter our sec­ond daugh­ter, Tal­lu­lah, was born weigh­ing 6lb 14oz, I re­turned to group and took her with me.

I lost steadily each week, and by the time we jet­ted off on our first fam­ily hol­i­day to Spain in July 2016, I’d reached 9st 7lb. I felt so at ease in my size 10 bikini. But it wasn’t just about be­ing slim; I felt like my­self again.

When I first had Bon­nie, I only walked small dis­tances. Now, I reg­u­larly walk four miles a few times a week and aim for 10,000 steps a day. I now at­tend group as a tar­get mem­ber. There’s no chance I’m let­ting go of my new habits – the slim, happy, healthy Chloe is here to stay. ✱ Slim­ming World Mag­a­zine is on sale now. To find your near­est group, visit slim­ming­world.co.uk or call them on: 0344 897 8000.

Chloe wanted to get healthy for the birth of her sec­ond child

Chloe’s new slim and stylish look is as much about con­fi­dence as health

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.