I’d been a yo-yo dieter since my teens, trying all kinds of different weight loss plans but nothing ever worked. In fact, I normally ended up putting more weight on. But, after dating my now husband for just over a year, being so happy and in love, talking about getting married and having kids, and knowing I was turning 30, I decided to finally sort my weight out after being overweight for so long.
What was different about LighterLife?
I liked the different approach where I didn’t have to think about food, I just planned out my 4 food packs for the day and that was it. And I loved the weekly group CBT Mindfulness sessions as I was with people who were just like me, so I didn’t feel alone. My Mentor and the CBT Mindfulness sessions really helped me to understand the reasons behind why I over ate, and why I’d been struggling to lose weight and then keep it off.
The first week was quite hard. During the first few days on TotalFast I had some headaches and felt a bit hungry but, once I got into ketosis, I wasn’t physically hungry anymore and found I had so much energy. Plus, after my first weigh in I was so motivated it spurred me on to keep going.
And OMG the Salted Caramel Bars are amazing – even my kids try and steal it if they see me eating one!
Following the plan
I started TotalFast on 2 January 2018, reached my goal weight on 15 September 2018, and have maintained that weight ever since. I used to be a size 24 but after losing 9st, I’m a size 8!
How did having a Mentor help?
My Mentor, Claire Bonner, and her weekly CBT Mindfulness sessions kept me going. They made me feel accountable and that encouraged me to stay on plan. The work we did was so beneficial, especially when I had, “Aha!” moments – and not just with food but with other things in my life as well.
Sometimes I would find myself thinking about a previous group session a week or two later and be like, “Ohhh that makes so much sense now,” or I’d have a light bulb moment in the middle of a group meeting. I loved our meetings as we all supported each other and helped each other out.
Claire and our group offered non-judgmental support and really helped me to understand why I’d struggled for so long. They encouraged me to realise I am normal and do deserve to be happy and live my best life. The mindfulness sessions also allowed me to bring behaviours into my awareness and to build my mental tool box. So, now I can handle any situation thrown at me without reverting back to old destructive behaviours.
My husband has always been my biggest supporter, helping me achieve my goals and lifting me up whenever I felt down. And the LighterLife private Facebook Community Group is also amazing, there are so many inspirational people on there and I love being able to help others.
What can I do now that I couldn’t before losing weight?
I am so happy and confident now and, after dropping 7 dress sizes, I love showing off my figure! I love wearing dresses and skirts and I love wearing colour, whereas I used to wear darker colours and baggy stuff to hide my size before.
I also feel more confident to do activities now and not worry about what people will think and say about me due to my size. I can run around after my kids and enjoy playing with them all day long.
Alongside Chronic Fatigue Syndrome I have Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, where my blood pressure could randomly drop. Losing weight and leading a healthy active lifestyle means I no longer need to be on medication as it’s controlled by my diet and lifestyle.
I’ve recently been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis too. But I honestly believe I’m able to cope with them so well due to not having the extra 9 stone to deal with – something my consultants have also confirmed.
My new Lighter Life
I’m married to the love of my life, have two amazing little boys, and we’re trying for number three! LighterLife saved me and changed my life. I believe in the programme so much that I’ve become a LighterLife Mentor too, and if I can help even one person the way LighterLife helped me I’ll be over the moon. I love running my weekly CBT Mindfulness sessions as I’m always learning new stuff and it helps me keep my own mental tool box sharp as well.
What have I learned?
My Mentor and group helped me build my mental tool box to keep me on track. I now understand so much more about my thoughts and behaviours, and how to handle situations in a different way, allowing me to feel in control. Planning is key for me, especially at certain times of the year like Christmas. Now I can enjoy myself without feeling guilty and without going crazy. And I can teach my kids to have a healthy relationship with food too.
Kat’s Top Tip
You deserve to be happy and healthy. Yes, the first week on plan can be difficult, sometimes you may need to take it one day or even one pack at a time, but it’s so worth it. Make sure you go to the weekly groups, they are such a vital part of your weight loss journey and also once you’ve hit your goal and you’re into managing and maintaining your weight. I love that they’re all via Zoom now, which means you can sit at home all comfy and cosy and still take part, even on cold Winter nights.
Congratulations to Kat – did her story inspire you too? Find out more and read her fabulous interview with the Daily Star here.