I’ve been following the slimming world programme for a year now and I absolutely love it. From the heaps of food you can eat and still lose weight, to the warmest welcomes you always receive from the consultant/group leader and your fellow slimmers, it’s a fantastic, healthy approach that leads to sustainable weight loss.
I appreciate that this time of year is when so many people may be looking for additional advice or reassurance on the plan if they’ve just joined, so I thought I’d share some tips based on my experience. In no particular order….
1. Water, water everywhere! It’s been said so many times but water really is crucial to being healthy. A dehydrated body will struggle to lose weight, so make sure you sip up.
2. Measure yourself now. Right now. You’ll have weeks where, despite your best efforts, you won’t lose weight. It could be time of the month or just your body catching up on an off plan week the week before, but it can bring you down all the same. These are when you need NSV – non scale victories. The proof your hard work is paying off without looking at numbers on the scales. So by measuring yourself now, at the start of your journey, when you hit a rough patch, grab the tape measure again and you’ll see just how many inches you’ve lost.
3. Take monthly update photographs. Up your selfie game and document your weight loss in picture format. You’ll be amazed at how much your body changes but you don’t notice it every day.
4. Don’t avoid the weekly weigh in. The Scales don’t lie and sadly, your syns will find you out and show up on the scales if you’ve overindulged. But don’t sweat it. If you’ve had a rubbish week, maybe filled with wine and chocolate or it’s been that old Mother Nature paying her monthly visit, don’t dwell on it. Draw a line and move on. No group I’ve ever been to is judgemental and they will just want to help you get back on track.
5. Feel the need for speed! Fill your plate with speed speed speed and the weight will drop off. One thing to watch out for is when you cook a one pot wonder or in a slow cooker – make sure you add speed on the side, even if you’ve got some in the main dish. Microwave veg packs, either fresh or frozen, are a god send for us as I’m just too busy to be chopping veg all the time.
6. Measure your healthy extras. A few extra grams of wholemeal bread adds up to more than a few syns over a week. Same for milk or cheese.
7. Social media stars. Use your local group’s Facebook page for midweek support. Whether it’s a question about syns or healthy extras or just asking for a helping hand back on the SW wagon after a few off plan choices, it really is a lifesaver. Instagram is also a great place for recipe inspiration and motivation. Search using #slimmingworld or other similar hashtags. You can find my instagram account at @mrsjamesblogs
8. Don’t avoid eating out. Try using the SW app. It’s such a great tool with tips to choosing on plan dishes at a range of restaurant chains, including Frankie and Benny’s. My fave go to meal is steak and salad or jacket potato.
9. Stay to group. Image therapy works. I have noticed a big difference in my attitude to SW since I’ve been able to stay to group. It’s so reassuring to hear your fellow SWers talking about issues you’re also facing and working solutions out together. It’s easy to think you’re alone on the journey but group makes you realise you’re really not.
10. If you want that slab of chocolate, calorific takeaway or piece of cake, have it; don’t deprive yourself because you’ll crave it and have a massive fall off the plan. Just don’t have it every day! Being flexible like this is key to weight loss, I’ve found. I have a treat day on Monday after I’ve weighed in and enjoy a cake or takeaway…but then I’m straight back on plan the day after.
11. Use up your syns. You have an allowance of up to 15 syns a day to use however you wish. For me, at the moment, I’m using them on hot chocolate with squirty cream and mini marshmallows every night (3-3.5 Syns), then frothy coffee, Freddo bars, mayonnaise, ketchup or sauces. Take a look at the syn value of your favourite things and see how they can fit with the plan.
12. Don’t compare your journey to others. Everyone loses weight their own way at their own pace. The slimming world plan will work for everyone but you may not do it at exactly the same pace as the person who you sat next to at the new joiners talk. Don’t ever feel sad that another member has lost a stone in the same time you’ve lost half, just stick to plan and you’ll get there.
…..and finally, just enjoy the slimming world way!! It really does work and it was the best decision I made when I walked into that community centre for the first time last January.