Like many people, I found it quite difficult to manage my weight during the pandemic. Juggling working from home (just a few steps away from the fridge!) and homeschooling my daughter, Evie, didn’t leave much time or headspace for healthy eating. Having previously been a Slimming World member, I knew I was missing having that weekly ‘me time’ and support.
Fate had other plans for me, though, because while I was pondering going back to group, I discovered I was expecting. So instead, I used my Food Optimising know-how to eat healthily during my pregnancy, and then, when baby Poppy was four months old, I felt ready to rejoin Slimming World. At 16st 3½lbs, I was the heaviest I’d ever been, and I now had three extra-special reasons for making a change... As well as wanting to be a fit and healthy mum to my two girls and feel more confident giving presentations for my job, I was also engaged to my partner, Kevin, and determined to look great in the wedding dress of my dreams!
Taking the first steps
From the very first session, I knew that returning to group was the right decision. Even though I’d heard the new-member talk before, there were things I’d forgotten. It reminded me that Food Optimising isn’t about denying myself – it’s about eating more of what’s good for my health and weight loss.
I got lots of ideas during IMAGE Therapy – the part of the session where members get personalised support for the week ahead – as well, such as making enough spag bol or chilli con carne so there’d be leftovers for the next day’s lunch (a great hack for busy mums!). The other members always had plenty of new recipe suggestions, too, which helped to keep our mealtimes interesting. Within a couple of months, I’d lost my first stone. Even so, the thought of setting myself a dream target was daunting. Could I really keep this up and go all the way this time?
Setting goals that mattered to me
Feeling unsure, and with my determination wavering over Christmas, I chatted it through with my Consultant. She suggested starting with the Club 10 award, which meant losing 10% of my weight (a stone and a half). She explained how it would bring all kinds of health benefits, including lowering my blood pressure and my risk of stroke and type 2 diabetes – so it seemed a pretty good place to start! Now I had something to aim for, I lost about half a stone every month.
By Easter, I was clutching my Club 10 certificate and ready to set a new target. Knowing that I’d done it once, I decided to shoot for another stone and a half. Whenever I had a wobble, I thought about the wedding and how I was going to feel in my dress – slim and confident. And it worked! After almost a year, I’d thrown away all of my stretchy size-18 clothes and even my size-14 trousers were slipping down. It was time... That weekend, I stepped through the door of a bridal shop and started the exciting process of saying yes to a dress!
Forming fit habits – as a family
As the pounds dropped off and I started feeling more energetic, I decided I was ready to kick off my Body Magic journey – especially as I knew it would help to keep the weight off. I challenged myself to complete a Couch to 10K training plan, and it didn’t take long to get from the initial stage of lots of walking and a little bit of jogging, to just running. I felt proud that Evie was seeing me become more active – and I loved that it was encouraging her to throw herself into sport. It soon became our family’s new normal!
After going through quite a few stone-and-a-half mini targets, I was approaching my final one. Just before Christmas, I hit my target weight of 10st 2½lbs. When I immediately had a gain over the festive period, group was my rock and I came away determined not to let it hold me back. I even decided to lower my target to a nice, round 10st. Two weeks later, I got there. I knew I couldn’t have done it without my group, so I made the decision to keep going each week, knowing I could attend for free as a target member. Slimming World gives you all the tools to make those new healthy habits, and the ongoing support in group helps you stick to them for the long term. Joining transformed my life completely – it allowed me to feel amazing on my wedding day and to be the best possible mum to my girls.
I got my fairytale happy ever after, but that’s not where my story ends... After having such fantastic success with Slimming World, I decided to train to become a Consultant myself. These days, I love running my group and helping my members to achieve their own weight loss dreams.
In the past two years, I’ve lost more than 6½st, starred on the cover of Slimming World Magazine, run a half-marathon, married my best friend and launched a brand-new career. And 2024 is shaping up to be just as incredible, because I’m expecting a baby boy in February!
My advice to anyone who’s starting or restarting their slimming journey is: don’t be afraid to set yourself meaningful goals. Whatever’s on your wish list – whether it’s feeling fantastic for a special occasion, boosting your confidence at work or ticking off a fitness ambition – Slimming World will help get you there and support you to keep the weight off for good.
Make your weight loss dreams come true
Whether you’re new to Slimming World or you’re rejoining after some time away, we’re ready and waiting to welcome you with everything you need to get the long-term weight loss you want, including:
✔ a flexible, easy-to-follow Food Optimising plan
✔ personalised Consultant-led support in a weekly Slimming World group
✔ our unique physical activity programme, Body Magic
✔ more than 1,900 Slimming World-approved recipes
✔ our members-only website, where you’ll find handy weight loss tools, inspiring success stories and expert strategies for challenging times
✔ a top-rated members-only support app that includes a barcode scanner
Sascha’s day on a plate
Bacon sandwich from a food van, or rounds of toast with peanut butter.
A bowl of Healthy Extra ‘b’ cereal, or some Slimming World mini quiche muffins I’ve batch cooked the night before.
A supermarket meal deal of a sandwich or wrap, crisps and a sugary fizzy drink.
Something like a pasta bake or chicken enchiladas made with a jar of sauce, oil and lots of cheese.
Crisps, chocolate and biscuits.
Fruit, seafood sticks and Slimming World Hi-fi bars.
Weight loss will vary according to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose.