Slimming clubs are NOT the answer...


I’ve had a troubled relationship with food for as long as I can remember. 

It started when I was young and it continued up until a few years ago.

I had a pretty difficult time growing up, my parents split up when I was 6 and my mother remarried a controlling, very unpleasant man who made my home life …….very unpleasant. As a child, I felt unwelcome in my own home. I learnt from an early age that food was the one thing I could turn to, to soothe unpleasant emotions. I would eat for comfort, eat to feel anaesthetised from the stuff I couldn’t cope with. 

Because I was eating more than my body needed, I put on weight and this brought on more difficult feelings. Shame, awkwardness, embarrassment. I felt I was larger than I should be and I thought I’d failed. My mother, loved me fiercely, but was pretty into dieting, so I adopted her rules. Feeling guilty about food. Trying really hard to not eat the foods I was craving. Then, giving in because I would HAVE to eat it, and then the guilt and self-disgust would come flooding in. 

  • Why did I eat that? 
  • What’s wrong with me?
  • Why can’t I stick to my diet? 
  • I want to be slim.
  • I’ve been bad, I must try harder.

It brings a tear to my eye writing this, because I can almost remember the girl I was before all that started. I wish I could turn back the clock and help her out of that cycle. I realise I wasted a lot of my childhood and my adult life, worrying about stuff I really didn’t need to. In retrospect I can see what a waste of time that was, but when I was in it I couldn’t see a way out. 

I was in the thick of disordered eating,

which started for me in childhood and continued for YEARS. I was either dieting, or I was overeating because I’d fallen off the diet. I can remember congratulating myself for not eating chocolate for 6 months….and having lost lots of weight…and the very next day I was ‘back on the chocolate’ and boy, was I back on the chocolate! It was one extreme or the other. But neither was a happy place. 

My weight has cycled many times over the years

Weight cycling is what happens when you lose and regain weight, aka 'yo-yo' dieting. I can think of countless people who’ve done the same thing. And it’s exhausting. 

Sense told me that going to slimming clubs was not the answer-

I wanted a ‘normal’ relationship with food,

not to be striving hard to ‘stay on track’ all the time. I knew that having to weigh and measure my food was ridiculous. They even call them ‘syns’ for God’s sake!

The subtext was all wrong for me and I knew was not the way to resolve my issues but I felt lost and desperate and knew I needed something else. But what?! 

Picture of an empty plate with an unhappy face, symbolising a disordered relationship with food

It took me a long time to find out how to deal with this. How to find balance and peace around food. But now I have and this is why I do what I do. I KNOW how soul destroying dieting is. How one minute you feel on top of the world (if you’ve lost a few pounds) and the next, you feel like a total failure (when you’ve put on a few pounds). When you understand the psychology behind all this you see how laughable it is. Not when you’re in it though, that is no laughing matter. 

It’s not even complicated, but it is a process. It’s not a quick fix (sorry!!!) but whoever said that something life changing would be? If you’d told me years ago, I could sort out my overeating, my relationship with food, my compulsion to eat foods that I thought were ‘unhealthy’ and the guilt (and low self-esteem I suffered as a result) then I’d have taken it like a shot!! 

When the pieces started to slot into place for me it changed my world

So much so that I decided to train to bring this approach to the UK. I know how important this stuff is. It affects people’s whole lives. 

You know if these are issues for you. If they are, I hope you will do something about it, because your precious life is too short to be feeling bad about food, your weight and your body. You don’t need to xx

My next ‘Food Freedom’ course starts on Thursday 6th September in Bristol 7-9 pm and we meet every Thursday evening for 8 weeks, to really dig deep into diet thinking and learn new ways of approaching your relationship with food. 

There are currently 6 places left and I really want to fill them, because I want as many women as possible, out of this cycle. 

If you aren’t in Bristol you'd like to work with me, or you want a more personal service, I also coach people on line. Feel free to get in touch if you want some help.