WEIGHTLINE 100: 83.5Kg (WEIGHTLINE 001: 95.5Kg) - 12Kg drop
This is it! The end of a 100 day, change my life, lift off my weight, public jaunt. It has been challenging, surprising, interesting, painful and ultimately rewarding. Woohoo! Time to celebrate, but not as in the past, an excuse to return to old ways! This was not a 'diet', this was a complete change of dietary lifestyle set over 100 days to try & ensure that habits were set in motion that I can now sustain.
So, what have I learnt over the last 100 days? That I can change my eating habits, embrace some foods I thought I'd never consume and not have to be locked in to foods I don't like for the rest of my life! That it is possible to eat out, dine with friends & have an enjoyable social life without spoiling everyone else's indulgences. That it is possible to eat until you feel full and still lose / maintain weight. That you can never out-exercise your mouth - it will take you 40-60 times longer to lose, plus a great deal more effort, than it took to eat. That what you look and feel like is much more important than what you actually weigh. That if you are changing your diet to lose weight simply because others have made you feel like you need to look 'better', it will never work for you long-term. That the sun and sunshine and warmth are much more important in helping you maintain life changes than anyone gives them credit for. That most health professionals can only give you standardised advice, a bit like going on a standardised diet, that will never be absolutely right for you because everyone's body is completely different. That no-one knows your body like you do, if you can be absolutely frank & honest with yourself. That you must avoid ALL processed foods and ingredients & source only organically grown, organically fed, fresh natural foods. That you must avoid sugar, specifically, like the plague, because that is what it is, a modern plague in a sweet disguise. That food intolerances are on the rise & it has to be related to the way we are processing all our food. That price is completely the wrong way to choose food ingredients. That you must cover your ears when the 'experts' sound off about avoiding something specific - if it's natural & organic, it is very unlikely to be bad for you in moderation. That you should watch out for marketing parading as health advice - the whole 'milk is good for you & your bones' fiasco that is entirely erroneous, for example. That you should look at all the 'blue zones' around the world, where a great number of people live beyond 100, and look at what they are eating. That you shouldn't copy any one diet, but educate yourself about all the many good diets around the globe, find the ingredients you like and can source, and set up your own bespoke diet. That you should try and vary your 'good' diet to avoid getting bored with repetition. That you must never follow any fad diet without a very well-planned exit strategy about how to maintain your new weight long-term when the fad has run its course. That you must never eat or drink anything to excess - "a little bit of what you fancy does you good" has never been truer. That you must never feel guilty about having the occasional treat or blowout. That you must never allow the occasional blowout to be an excuse for slipping back into bad habits. That you must face up to why you want to change what you eat & be absolutely mentally prepared for what it means, long-term. That you must plan your strategy in the early days of change, when temptation will be at its strongest, and elect for isolation if necessary. That you must read all the ingredients labels fully, do not be taken in by any other slogans or words or brand names on the packaging, and decide whether to buy on ingredients alone. That you must start, or continue with, regular exercise; walking is fantastic, as is swimming. That you must take regular more strenuous cardiovascular exercise - pick any sport you like, or try some new ones - to get the heart pumping fully. That you must find sport or exercise that you can enjoy long-term - do not sign up for a gymn just to get fit, sign up for a gymn if you know you are happy going for the rest of your life. That signing up a personal trainer, especially in the early days is a great idea if they are happy to work with your chosen exercises, not just theirs. That you must check your blood pressure reasonably regularly & be aware of anything in your body that requires monitoring. That you must enlist the absolute support of your spouse or partner, because they will be sharing the change with you, whether it is their initiative or not. That water is the stuff of life - drink until you can drink no more, then drink some more. That you must watch out for & resist the triggers, the automatic responses to certain actions or times of day - like putting the kettle on or settling down to clear the email for the day or going outside for a midday break… That you mustn't set yourself unrealistic goals or goals that are too absolute, because if you miss one it can derail the whole enterprise; you must instead set the process steps as your goals & the targets will take care of themselves. That having a major, certainly public, goal a reasonable distance out is a great motivator, like the World Masters Games 2017 has been for me. That you must open your mind and heart to new experiences, both culinary and physical - try some yoga or pilates, go tramping or hang-gliding - because it is the mind that controls whether you stick to a new lifestyle diet, not the body and an active mind will not stagnate & yearn for the old ways so much. That you must become aware of where your food comes from & what is done to get it to your plate, and decide both ethically and morally whether you support it, even if it is fresh, organic & home-grown. That you must avoid, wherever possible, taking 'supplements' and 'additives' because it is far better if you lack certain elements in your diet, to find natural foods that contain them & include them in your regime. That banana & berry smoothies with almond or coconut milk are the perfect carrier for all those ingredients your body needs but you don't really want to eat. That portion size and overeating are crucial - if you don't need to finish what's on your plate, then don't. That you should decide when it suits you to eat & not be entirely controlled by those that insist you eat only at pre-determined historical meal times.
So what have I learnt? Quite a lot! But simply… We are spending enormous sums of money on experts and so-called experts who can only ever, at best, produce standardised guesses at what we should be eating. So, spend some time understanding yourself and your own body & what it needs. Do regular exercise and eat fresh, local, organic, free-range food, heavily plant-based with lots of fruit and veg & you can't go wrong…