Slimming World Ruined My Relationship with Food

Before I started working with Rachael I was not in a good place at all. I was really miserable in myself, although if you asked my close friends and family, they wouldn’t have known because I keep a lot of how I’m feeling to myself. I try and put on a big smile and try to act confident and fool people because I don’t want people to know.

I wasn’t eating the right foods, I was drinking a lot of alcohol, binging on crisps and chocolate, biscuits and sweets.

“I was in a vicious circle of sometimes starving myself through the day and binging at night.”

Every week it was like – Monday, right let’s start, this week I’m gonna blast it – but it just wasn’t working.

Because I was starving myself through the day, I felt ravenous by 9 pm and would be dealing with cravings for salt and sugar. I was going through every cupboard, I was eating two packets of crisps, bars of chocolate and then sitting there thinking ‘I can’t believe I’ve just eaten all that.’ I believed I had sabotaged the diet once again and would wake up the next morning and feel really crap. Bloated, you know that horrible sluggish feeling? It was really hard to get up in the morning and get going

If I was going to have friends and family around or if I was going out then I would just say: ‘oh well, I had a crap night last night, I’m going out tomorrow night – so stuff it, I’ll just eat what I want until Monday (again).’ Then I’d be getting ready to go, wanting to put on a nice outfit or a nice dress and I’d be miserable again because it was too tight, it was frumpy and horrible and then I’m kicking myself for making all the wrong choices through the week and beating myself up again.

On top of all of this, my husband and I were arguing all the time, because we’d be getting ready to go out and I’d be miserable in my clothes. He would tell me I looked nice and I would argue back, it was awful.

I was in a vicious cycle like that all the time, I suppose it was disordered eating and thinking really negatively about myself. And because I felt miserable I was eating more, and drinking more and wallowing in self-pity. It got to the point where I thought this has just got to stop!

Last year on the school summer holidays, we were going to take my girls swimming and I literally sat in the changing rooms crying because I was too scared to go out, and I’ve got my two little girls outside shouting from outside the changing room door shouting ‘come on mum’. I was physically shaking and so upset because I didn’t feel good and I just kept thinking this has got to stop! This can’t go on anymore. I’m missing out on valuable time with my friends and family. It was stopping me from doing things that I really wanted to do.

Sam feeling confident on holiday this summer in Devon with her daughter

Sam feeling confident on holiday this summer in Devon with her daughter after crying in the changing rooms last year taking her swimming.

What have I tried before? Oh my gosh. I’ve tried loads of things before – Slimming World for a start –  I did it for a year. I’ve also tried starving myself, fasting, cutting out all carbs and all sugars, and literally just cutting out everything except for protein and veg! I ate loads of fat-free things too, thinking they were good for me. And don’t even mention the mug shots and muller lights!

“On Slimming World I lost weight, I lost about a stone and a half but as soon as I stopped going, I put two stone back on.”

I was so fixated on those numbers that were on the scale. If I didn’t lose anything I would be really disappointed in myself. On weigh day, I was practically starving myself, I thought that I couldn’t eat beforehand because I might put some weight on.

Then, once I had got myself weighed, depending on what the number on the scale, I would go home and binge eat. If I lost I was treating myself, if I had gained I was in ‘fuck it’ mode. Weigh day was a Thursday, so I was going home and binging,  then because it was Friday and the weekend, it would carry on and I would start again on Monday.

“I was fixed on the number on the scale – nothing else mattered to me.”

One night, there was a lady there who was 2lbs away from her target, and when she stepped on the scales she’d only lost 1lb. The leader let her strip down to her underwear and get weighed again so that she would lose the additional pound. And then they were all celebrating! The week after, she’d put 3lbs on – and she said: “I don’t understand how this happened!?”

The fixation on the number on the scale became an obsession. It didn’t work in the long term because it never taught me about real food choices.

Then I joined the Ditch the Diet Academy and it really opened my eyes. I’ve loved the fact is was all educational, and simple!

So now that I’ve done the Declutter Your Diet and Transform 21, all I can say is that it is just such an amazing program, it’s really informative and educational. Rachael takes no shit, which really makes you accountable for your actions because ultimately if you want to lose the weight you’ve got to want to do it and want to put in the work because it’s not easy.

By changing little habits and learning one new thing every single day and apply everything that you possibly can – it works.  

I feel like I’ve learned so much and I feel so much more in control and so much better about myself.

I’m not comparing myself to other people as much as I used to. I just feel so much better in my mindset and I’m setting small achievable goals now. There’s this pair of shorts I couldn’t get into a month ago, they feel lovely now and that’s amazing. I’ve still got a few dresses and pairs of jeans that I want to get into and I’m getting there. I’m feeling a lot better than where I was.

I also feel much more organised and less stressed. As a full-time teacher and mum of two girls, as well as being a wife, I’ve got a really, really busy life. I’m up at 6 am every morning and I don’t stop until 9 pm at night.

Now? The number on the scales and measurements don’t really matter. My body and mind are relaxed and that is the greatest thing I could ever have achieved. My mindset has completely changed I’m feeling a lot more confident in myself. To me, that is the best gift anyone could have given me.  I was borderline depressed and this has been the best antidepressant in the world. It’s the most valuable thing I have ever done. Get it done, you will not regret it, it will be life-changing for you. Just do it.

"All in or all out" Rachael is a vibrant, no-bullshit-talking Scottish nutrition geek and coach helping women to lose weight without giving up their confidence OR their favourite foods.

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