Load Shedding

All of us know how weight creeps up on us, like a thief in the night! One day you go for that dress and find that it doesn’t fit! From size 10 to a size 14 waaaaa! You want to scream, but still denial gets the better of us. Yes, for a while you refuse to admit that you’ve put on weight beyond your wildest dreams and continue to squeeze yourself  into your tight clothes and you put on jackets and long scarves to hide the bulges. For a while, can be years! Yes years!

Then you finally realize you’ve put on lots of weight, so you are in a self piteous mode and start wearing big clothes again to hide the bulges, so you wear tents and generally funny clothes that make you look even bigger and more untidy that you usually do! This is my personal account and I guess maybe some of you have not gone through this and it’s always great to hear all experiences.

My journey started when I discovered my iron levels were low a condition known as Anemia,  it took me quite a while to discover that I was anemic, I couldn’t climb hills, was always tired, and for an energetic person like me it was difficult to understand why I had no energy. Then one day my legs were really swollen and uncomfortable and I went to see the doctor whose first reaction what to look at my eyes and palms and immediately ordered a blood test which confirmed I was anemic. My body was not making enough red blood cells between menstrual periods hence I was losing more than I’m making. That’s how I met my first nutritionist and homeopath, the nutritionist made me eat foods high in iron and eat fruits that helped absorption of iron. So…”I ate like a King at breakfast – a full meal of meat, green vegetables and a starch; like a Prince at lunch – a smaller portion of breakfast and a Pauper at dinner – soup or a salad”.  The portions were small and I ate fruit in between to help iron absorption. I took my supplements religiously and had a personal trainer I visited 3 times a week! The Homeopath put a different perspective to all this and talked about the key use of iron in your system, that in fact without iron one has no energy, therefore unable to handle difficult tasks including conflict resolution and other day to day battles! So he advised supplements and also asked me to bear in mind that iron is a tool for battle and it’s important I built iron back.

This motivated me, so I was obsessed in building my iron more than weight loss and succeeded in building iron and not losing weight, in fact my new style of eating really appealed to me, so my portions grew bigger and bigger!

So it was back to the drawing board, I got another health scare, this time oddly enough my 83 Kgs apparently was fine because according to the doctor “I’m an African woman, therefore my weight is expected!” Really weird statement I thought! The health scare “superficial thrombosis” basically blood clots, we discovered due to a past injury that had not healed properly. When I was going through the test to determine the cause, I was reminded how precious good health is! Good health is something to be grateful for even with the cliché that “you can have all the wealth in the world, but without your health, you have nothing”. I was prodded and poked everywhere and the ultrasounds and scans, including CT scans! I knew, this “African woman” look had to go! So back to another nutritionist courtesy of my good friends Rachel and Gladys who were looking fabulous every time I saw them, they still look fabulous!

Bear in mind, by now I resigned to the way I looked and in fact had decided this is it, I’m a big mama and it’s okay and I’ve learnt how to buy clothes that fit properly, and I’m comfortable in my fat! A bit of denial because when I see a lovely dress, a woman who has the ideal look, I wonder about this comfort! The new nutritionist reminded me of those no nonsense teachers, as soon as I got on to the weighing scale she said, “you will lose 13 kgs!”,  ”No joking and you must do what I tell you!”. So, we started by talking about what I like eating and she wrote them down in her diary with my name and weight. She then advised I can eat whatever I like but in small portions throughout the day and a glass of water every hour and I must walk not jog every day to start then cut down to 3 times a week. To her this should be my new lifestyle for the rest of my life! The whole idea of this programme is to avoid over eating and eat small portions of food you like throughout the day. Even when I went out for dinner, I’d cut the food in half and carry the rest home, till today I carry doggy bags home every time I eat out. At home, I put little food and avoid being hungry because hunger makes you over eat!

When I started in the middle of March 2011, I kept an open mind, was a bit concerned that 13 kilos is a lot but I was determined to go for it, after all what do I have to “lose” apart from weight? Every Saturday at 10am, I was at her house to weigh myself and monitor my progress, first 3 weeks I lost a kilo a week! Then it started to get frustrating, 800grams lost 200 grams gain, by month 3, I was at 76 kilos. Whenever someone commented on my weight, I would gladly appreciate their comments and inform them how much more I had to go. When I got to 74 kilos I stayed there for months and in fact decided that perhaps this is where I’m supposed to be. However, I religiously weighed myself once a week to monitor my progress and one day I weighed 66kg and thought something is wrong with the weighing scale and the following week I was up  68kgs and realized I have truly surpassed my target! That was exactly a year and two months later.

I’m glad I took my time to do it, the walking has been extremely erratic and usually on weekends I do long walks, 10kms, 14 kms, etc. During the week I do short fast paced walks. The nutritionist has since gone to London and I believe she would be very proud, can’t wait to show her the progress.

Everyone has a different story to tell about their weight loss and whatever it is you are doing , I hope it’s healthy.


4 Responses to “Load Shedding”

  1. Koki
    June 29, 2012 at 1:25 am #

    Shiela very inspiring. If you can do it so can I. Watch this space :)

  2. Miriam Mwende
    June 29, 2012 at 7:46 am #

    Congratulations – you look wonderful. I think I should ape you – mmm am huge. Don’t go back to your old self – once again you look wonderful.

  3. Gladys O
    July 9, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    I believe what made you lose all that weight is your fighting spirit! I am sure you had built enough iron to help you in the fight. Am sooo proud of you. This is an achievement that has eluded very many women, so for you to achieve it, congratulations!!! Soooo proud of you….and you look fabulous

  4. James Sserwanga
    August 7, 2012 at 10:50 am #

    Congratulations Jebet you look fabulous. Looking at the picture we took in 1996 and the 2012 pic here, you look great today.

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