The Magic Pill

21 Dec 2014

Ive traveled the country chatting to many different groups about my weight loss journey and the various issues surrounding weight.  At the end there is a Q&A session and there are two questions that ALWAYS pop up.  I’ve got to the point of having a little bet with whoever is organizing the event as to just how soon those two questions will be asked.  Both are usually asked within the first five questions.

The first question is “Where did all the skin go?” and the second is “What is your secret?”
Alarmingly Ive even had weight loss consultants asking me the same question.
There is no magic pill.  There is no trick.  There is no secret. There is no fad. There is no easy option.  You may not want to hear that, but its true.

After the decadence of Christmas, the media will be flooded with weight loss options.  Everything from hypnosis to overpriced yogurt will be advertised as the ONLY way to lose weight.  I will tell you the only real way to lose weight and keep it off is to get your head in the right place.

I lost most of my weight with a very well known Slimming group but I kept it off by sorting out the emotional reasons for becoming overweight in the first place.

All diets work.  Every single one.  If they carry on working, keep you healthy, nourished and slim for life is another matter.  Most won’t.

As a member of a slimming group I saw so many people who had lost weight with the programme so knew it worked, but had left and regained it.  They had treated it as a diet and not a lifestyle change.  If losing weight by drinking vile shakes is your preferred method that’s great, are you sure can you drink those shakes for the rest of your life?

The only real way to lose weight and keep it off is to have some form of surgery or make sweeping, permanent changes to the way you live. And in order to be ready to make those changes you need to commit to making changes to the way you think too.

Ive discussed this issue with therapists, counselors, hypnotherapists, others who have lost life altering amounts of weight and people who have lost and regained weight and the universal opinion is the same as mine.  There will always be a small amount of people who succeed on crazy or fad diets.  Just enough to perpetuate the myth and sell the dream of an easy, pain free transformation but these people are in such a minority so as to not influence my opinions.

Dealing with emotions may not be any one lightbulb moment or recalling a childhood trauma, it may just be as simple as realizing finally that no one will ever do it for you.  My moment of enlightenment wasn’t a moment as such, more a growing realization that I had to either grow the hell up and assume some responsibility for my actions. No one was forcing me to be overweight and unhappy. No one tied me to a chair and forced  me to eat.  No one wanted me to be unhappy.  I was doing it to myself.

That was what got me started.  What kept me going was a combination of fierce competitiveness, feeling better every month and remembering why I wanted the change.  It keeps me  going now.  I still crave the foods I used to eat, but I crave the feeling of achievement more.




I can't honestly say I struggled with my weight my whole life as for most of it I wasn't doing much to fight the fat, rather I consciously shut my eyes to the problem and let it grow to fairly epic proportions. At the age of 34 I weighed 22st 7lb and four years later I'm ten stone (and a bit) lighter. It hasn't been straightforward, along the way we have moved country (TWICE), my son and I have both had cancer and we were involved in a not-very-much-fun car crash. So if ever there was cause to dig through my catalog of excuses... Regardless, I'm at my target. Sometimes by the skin of my teeth, but I'm NEVER going back.

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