Feeling myself slip away during an emergency caesarean was the scariest experience of my life. And what came afterwards – crippling headaches and being temporarily unable to walk and talk – was terrifying, too. What happened to me was no one’s fault, and the medical staff who looked after me were amazing. Once I’d recovered, though, it made me seriously reassess my life. I felt so lucky to be better that I was determined to be as happy and healthy as I possibly could for my new son, Adam.
My pregnancy hadn’t been trouble-free either. I was told that Adam could be born with a low birth weight, which I took as a green light to eat more, hoping it would help make him heavier (not realising that doing so wouldn’t necessarily bring his weight up). Of course, I know that it’s normal to gain weight during pregnancy, but by the time I went into hospital to give birth in January 2020, Iʼd gained 5st, gone up to a size 24 and was past the point of a healthy weight. Little did I know that things were about to take such a difficult and dramatic turn.
Once I was well enough and had settled into life as a new mum, I felt ready to lose weight and I decided to join my nearest Slimming World group. I actually work for Slimming World, so I already knew all about the warm, welcoming groups and how easy to follow and effective the Food Optimising plan is. I’ll admit that I still felt nervous walking through those doors for the first time, though. It was difficult for me to admit that I needed help to lose weight, but I quickly realised there was no need to feel embarrassed. Everyone was so friendly and we were all there for the same reason. I found the other members so inspiring and I’ve made some fantastic new friends there.
Before I started Food Optimising, my husband Mohamed and I used to rely on takeaways. Now, we regularly cook from scratch and Iʼve discovered slimming-friendly recipes for all our takeaway favourites, which we think taste better than the real thing! The best part is, weʼre all benefiting from me joining Slimming World. I lost 8st 2lbs within just 15 months, and Mohamed has lost 5st, too. I think Adamʼs enjoying having parents who feel so much better, as well. These days, we’re loads more active and we go out for lots of walks as a family. I’m also training to run the London Marathon as part of the Slimming World team, to raise funds for Cancer Research UK and the Irish Cancer Society. Those charities are really important to me, as I lost both my grandad and aunt to cancer. I love our new lifestyle and Iʼm sure our healthy new habits will be part of our family life forever.
I’m raising even more money for those charities this year, by taking part in the Slimming World Big Clothes Throw. It’s an opportunity to get rid of all your old clothes that no longer fit and do a good deed. It’s so motivating to see what you’ve slimmed out of, as it really shows you how far you’ve come. I can’t wait to ransack my wardrobe – I’m a size 12 these days, so I’ll be able to fill my donation bag to the brim!
Slimming World’s Big Clothes Throw will run from 9th to 21st May 2022. Visit your nearest group to pick up a donation bag and you’ll not only be supporting a worthwhile cause while decluttering your wardrobe, you’ll also be in with a chance of winning one of five luxury shopping sprees! You can find out more about the Big Clothes Throw here.
Sian’s day on a plate
Crumpets with lots of butter.
2 wholewheat biscuits with skimmed milk (using my Healthy Extras), a fresh fruit salad, or a cooked breakfast with low-Syn vegan sausages, beans, tomatoes and mushrooms.
A cheese sandwich, crisps, a cookie and orange juice.
Takeaway burger and chips.
Chocolate and cake.
Low-calorie hot chocolate, a pot of sugar-free jelly, or fresh fruit.
Weight loss will vary according to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose.