NEW TERM, NEW ME

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New term, new me, that’s my motto for the next few months (in fact, the next year). A New Year’s resolution four months early if you like! Last week, while we were in the South of France on holiday, I made a pledge to my husband that I would wear a bikini next summer. For those of you who don’t know me, you may well think I’m planning rather far ahead, which I am, but for those who do know me, it will probably make a lot more sense.

Since I gave up smoking (ahem) in my late twenties, I have always struggled with my weight. I am what is known as an emotional eater. I eat when I’m stressed, I eat when I’m unhappy, and on the whole, I eat when I’m happy too. I love food and also have a tendency to be greedy.

Last year, with the help of a personal trainer and sheer determination, I lost two stone. I was fit and healthy, losing weight, and for the first time in years I didn’t wake up with a huge foreboding sense of guilt that I had ‘failed’ again. And it felt good.

I thought I had faced my eating ‘demons’ and dealt with them. I even wrote about it for Red magazine, under a pseudonym because I didn’t want my mother to read it. However, late last year, my mother was diagnosed with dementia and over the following eight months, we went to hell and back. I wrote about it for Grazia magazine back in March, but that was only the beginning.

As a result, I stopped exercising (I was visiting my mother in hospital everyday and simply didn’t have the time or energy), and started eating. It was a gradual process, but as time went on, all the weight I had lost piled back on. So here I am, back to square one.

However, my mother is now finally settled and as Daisy goes back to school this week, I can start focusing on other things, such as getting to the weight I really want to be. Summer 2016 feels like a realistic goal for losing four to five stone in a slow and steady fashion. No fad diets for me, been there done that.

So it all kicks off tomorrow. No more wine, no more bacon sandwiches for breakfast, no more snacking on crisps and tortilla chips, it’s now high protein, good fats and low carbs. Healthy and realistic. I’ve booked a personal trainer for twice a week (I loathe exercise, but perhaps one day I will start to enjoy it), and I’ve signed up to a beginner’s Ashtanga yoga course.

To keep up the incentive – apart from a wardrobe of things I can no longer wear – I am going to give myself mini goals to achieve, so that I have something to look forward to. I have lusted after the dress pictured above and below, from my friend Anna Mason, for over a year now, and finally I am going to treat myself to one. But there’s a catch. Anna took my measurements back in October 2014, when I was over a stone lighter, so that’s my first goal.

I have ordered the dress in fuschia pink and I am going to wear it on my birthday at the beginning of December. So there you are, I have made it official. It’s not a matter of if it happens, but when it happens. Watch this space…

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Anna wearing the beautiful Bardot dress