Sunday, 2 March 2014

How I lost 33 pounds In 5 months.

So I have been thinking about writing this for about 6 months now.
I haven’t had the courage to share but I find myself home alone on a Sunday evening Ironically feeling stuffed full from brownies I just made and a little inspiration came to me.
Now I’m not really sure where to start or where to end, to be honest and I’m not sure there is an ending?

I will start from the very beginning .I had never had a weight problem growing up I was a fussy eater as a child and my mother would take me to the doctors in tears begging them to try anything to make me eat.
And I am regularly reminded that I lived of apple juice and chicken nuggets and nothing else, and a practically scary trip to Italy resulted in me eating nothing but ice cream and apple juice for over 2 weeks, mum said I had about 2 hot meals in the whole holiday! 

However at the age of 11 I clicked out of this and began to eat slightly more normally and got the normal puppy fat but nothing extreme and slimed down by the age of 14. I was a keen dancer and would dance 3/4 times a week in school and in a local dance school, this allowed my diet of bags of crisps chocolate and chips to do little to my figure and I was a healthy size for my 5’7 frame and was never bigger than a size 10 but mainly sticking with size 8. I never felt pressure to look a certain way at school I was reasonably happy never bullied or called fat  and my biggest stress normally resulted in doing my hair rather than the size of my hips or bum.

                      Above trying on my Prom dress aged 15, and my last day of Secondary school at 16. 
                      Excuse the lack of photos here phone no iphones back in 2006/2007! 

When I left school I also stopped dancing so much but didn’t edit my diet to accommodate this The endless supply of food in college wasn’t much help either with Mc Donald’s and pizza hut also opposite the college.
 It was at this time I also had my first “ Proper” boyfriend and as I got more comfortable I would eat more (date nights with endless sweeties didn’t help either) In the years between 16-18 I can imagine I put on around 10 pounds. (I work in pounds rather than stone sorry!) Nothing to drastic as I was very slim before and now was a size 10/12 and a healthy weight.

                                                        Above In 2009 aged 17/18

After I finished college is when the issues really started. I decided to do a degree in fashion promotion at UCA in south London. Just before I moved I found myself a new boyfriend and was blissfully happy that summer and probably slimed down about 4/5 pounds that I had gained at college.

However when I got to University I was miserable, I was 18 years old and had never been away from my home for more than 3 weeks, and the 6/7 hour trek from Cornwall and the hefty train fare was dreadful. I missed my boyfriend the most and would cry for hours and hours and hours. I hated the course I was on and the tutors and just felt very out of place, I wasn’t into drugs, I didn’t get wasted and I didn’t have an endless supply of mummy’s and daddy’s money to live off to go partying in central with.

As the months went on I would get more and more depressed I would quite literally sit in my room and cry over and over for days and days I wouldn’t go to lecture the only thing I would leave the house for was to get chocolate AND LOTS OF IT!
I would eat and cry and cry and eat ( yes a hilarious image for many I’m sure) But in all seriousness I was in quite a deep depression.

 The only full length photo I could find of my time at UCA! End of 2009

When my boyfriend would come and visit this was escape time to forget the screw up of my life and the massive debt I was in and the few friends I had, we would have amazing weekends filled with you guessed it.. FOOD Nandos, Wagagmamas ice cream cinema and shopping probably consuming more than double 20000 calories in one weekend! And when he was gone it was back to crying and eating some more.
I noticed that my jeans no longer fit my skin had broken out and was pale and grey looking As I never weighed myself it hard to know how much I put on or even weighed but My estimate Is that between September 2009 and march 2010 I gained about 14 pounds.
One day I woke up in my little uni room called my dad and begged him to come get me, I knew I had to get out and leave before I did something silly.

I left UCA and never looked back and spent the next 5 months in Cornwall working on and off in waiting jobs in these 5 months I don’t think I gained or lost anything just my sanity!
September 2010 rolled around and I had applied for a fresh start at a new university just 3/4 hours drive from my house I was starting a new course in Events management and was going to be having the “ Real” uni experience that I craved so badly at UCA.

I moved into halls and met some of the best people in my life so far I drank properly for the first time (I was 19/20 by then) and Was even sick from alcohol for the first time ever (bless me) I loved my course and the area that I lived and I was very happy Of course this meant I ate When I’m sad I eat and when I’m happy I eat. You just can’t win can you?

So Christmas and New year 2010/11 this is a major stand out point for me I was back celebrating in Cornwall with friends and family and for new years had gone out with a group of girlfriend’s of course pictures were taken etc etc…
I remember the next bit so clear in my memory I get tears in my eyes just thinking about it. Myself and my boyfriend had gone to the beach for a new years day walk when I started getting notifications on my phone that I add been tagged in photos on facebook Now you will see from the photos below why I was so devastated and upset.
I looked awful.. the dress wasn’t doing my ANY favours But I felt physically sick looking at them and burst into tears.. Our lovely day out was ruined. I do know my weight from this time as I forced myself to weigh myself and it pains me to say I was 183 pounds I vowed to join a gym back in Cheltenham and get fit..

                                      Yes that is me.. YES Its bad!! NYE 2010/2011

Did this happen? Of course not with the de tagging of the photos it was easily forgotten and going out and drinking was a much nicer option than joining a gym.
In January 2011 I also got a new part time job as a sales assistant as a boutique in Cheltenham this allowed me the income to not join a gym but to by even more pizza of course!
Time and uni went on and no weight was gained or lost and I stayed the same pretending I was happy with how I looked when in reality I would dodge every photo I could and would de tag any photos taken of me!  Because no one had ever said Ali you are fat.. and because I  had a very loving boyfriend I never really allowed myself to think I was.

Over summer 2011 I contracted a bad tummy infection and was ill for around 4 months in and out of the doctors this was a slight blessing in disguise because It meant (again predicted) I lost about 6 /7 pounds. I soon got over the illness once back in uni for my 2nd year but luckily I don’t think I put the 6/7 pounds I lost. (Well maybe one or 2) haha!

So the year went by and I landed myself a yearlong placement in SUNNY FLORIDA. (This is where it gets juicy)
I packed my bags and my bikini (although I should have re evaluated that bit) and on the 4th October 2012 got on a plane!
Now.. it was hot hot hot when we arrived which meant little clothing had to be worn again photos got uploaded and I cried myself to sleep about the way I looked… but this time it was different I didn’t have time to be worried about the way I looked or even felt I was working up to 15 hours a day on my feet all day..

 The people I worked with slowly started saying I looked good and had lost weight due to being active and on my feet all day I was so happy for the first 5 months of my time away. Sadly My boyfriend and I Decided the distance as to much as he was now living in Spain for work and we just didn’t have the time to speak and we ended our 4 year relationship in January 2013.
Luckily this didn’t quite effect me the way I expected as I was working so much I didn’t have time to be sad!

I was starting to slim down and probably lost around 4 pounds in the 4/5 months. While in America I met a new boy.. We had been good friends since the day we met but nothing had ever happened as I was committed to my boyfriend.
Now this is the bit I like to call “ this wasn’t Ali.. this was another human all together lets call her Alison”

In the next 5 months I became someone now to myself unrecognisable I don’t even know how to explain or where to start.
I began being woken in the night with the most excruciating pain I had ever felt in my life.. it would keep me awake for 6 hours at a time I would sit up crying ( very quietly so not to wake Jordan my room mate)

I would take 4-5 painkillers at a time and that wouldn’t even knock the pain out. Before I had come to Florida I had been told I had gallstones ( f you aren’t sure what this is go to Google and find out this blog posts long enough with out that bit)
They hadn’t caused me any pain in the first 5 months but as soon as work started getting more stressful my relationship ended and I began a new one with some I knew wasn’t right for me at all the pain began every night all night. I was exhausted I would work 10 hours.. on 1 hours sleep I was grumpy because of the lack of sleep.. any type of food would set of the pain I was emotional all the time I stopped laughing at things and I had a glazed expression I just wasn’t Ali.. I was nasty Alison!

The pain started getting so bad I began not eating .Probably consuming 500/600 cals a day and working on my feet all day. The stress got more the pain got worse until one day I got so bad that I collapsed and had to go to hospital where I was put on a drip and given morphine.

This is when I knew I couldn’t stay in America anymore the doctor told me I needed an operation because I had a potentially life threatening condition and needed my gallbladder removed.
I decided to leave my placement in Florida with a heavy heart I had such a mixed experience and by now was totally emotionless in pain and miserable. My parents had booked a holiday to Miami so I stayed around for that when my mum saw me she cried because one she missed me and also because I was in such a terrible physical and emotional state.
That holiday I mainly stayed inside the air-conditioned hotel room lying in bed in agony.
This is the week I LOST ALL THE WEIGHT! My estimate is that in 10 days I dropped around 10 pounds. (Pretty crazy!!)

I flew home to England at the end of June and my goodness was I happy to be home the stress lighted of my shoulders to be away from the place I worked (I hated where I worked but that’s another story)
I ended the relationship with the boy I met in Florida and cut all ties. And guess what the pain left.. from the day I landed in England to this day now I have not had one bit of pain.
This to many is unexplainable.. maybe I passed my gallstones? 

Maybe but highly unlikely as my whole gallbladder was clogged and to pass so many I would notice and it would hurt!
I was tanned and had my hair done bright blonde and was about a stone lighter than when I left and newly single And then attention started rolling in..  something I had never experienced before being chatted up in a club.. or even asked for my number in a shop was insane to me!
I decided to join a local gym and boy did I go HAM! I went nearly 5 times a week for 8 weeks.. and lost a further  14 pounds or so ( one stone) bringing my total weightless from Jan 2011- Aug 2012 to around 33 pounds!! Most of which was lost in less than 5 months!

                                           Me at my heaviest start of 2010.. and then August 2013

I began to take notice for the first time in 22 years of what I was eating No more crisps chocolate was cut out completely for a month ( although I haven’t stuck to this I have kept it much lower than what it ever was)
I found I started to enjoy exercise for the first time in 4 years since I left my dance school. I loved the cross trainer and rowing machine and started doing weights and squats to tone.

So that brings us to now.. Yes I have gained 6 pounds since the summer I had forget how hard it is to eat well while at uni.. and with cheap alcohol  and nights out its hard!! But I am still proud to say that I have gone to the gym every week (minus one week where my membership ran out) for 8 months now!  I am a size 10/12 and Hardly ever de tag a photo anymore!

I am determined to lose the 6 pounds I have gained and a further 4 in time for my summer holiday at the end of June. And am starting with a personal training session on Monday to turn it up a notch.

                                                                         Jan 2014 

I am  still not sure why I wrote this blog post but its been strangely therapeutic and  I even shed a few tears. Seeing the person I am now to what I was is incredible. I am so proud of everything I have achieved so far.
There is so much more to the story, which I will add to one day! But this blog post is rather rather long.. I shall leave it here and if you got this far. then thank you and well done!
Bye for now!