Over the weekend I got out some old favourite clothes, what I call my favourite shirts – after the Haircut 100 song of the same name – to see how they looked. Needless to say, none of these clothes are actual shirts. Some are even, ahem, underwear bought when slimmer and hardly worn. One lovely pair of flower-print designer knickers bought in a sale at Kendals I’ve never worn as despite the label saying large, the fit said otherwise. However, I got them out and I tried them on. They fit!
Also tried on a 38DD bra I bought yonks ago in Marks. It fitted once, briefly, and then it… didn’t anymore. But I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away. I’d been properly measured and fitted for this bra so I was determined that one day, one day I’d get back into it. Well, yesterday I did. And while, yes, it’s bit tight it’s nowhere near as tight as I thought it would be. Like most Marks bras, it’s a beautifully-designed piece of kit and does the job superbly.
So is this a better way to judge and measure your progress? Surely beats the tyranny of the tape measure and bathroom scales?
Keep favourite clothes
I think it’s a much kinder way to assess progress as well as being at the same time a lovely incentive. I also tried on several designer dresses bought when I was richer and thinner. They weren’t particularly expensive – when I say designer I simply mean a step or two up from Marks. (For my American and European readers Marks means Marks and Spencer and no, they’re not paying for this mention.)
They too fitted though in one case, a lovely embroidery-style slim-fitting Linea dress, it literally fitted everywhere it touched. It was a size 14! Oh why didn’t I get the 16? Still, it fitted once. It’ll fit again. I love it too much to throw it out. I’ve also got a shiny red very slim-fitting suit from Warehouse that I’ve never been able to chuck out. That I didn’t try on. It too is a size 14 but one day, maybe.
I’m gradually replacing my “fat” clothes with slimmer ones. Slimming fitting as well as slimmer sizes. But I’m glad I kept some old favourites. They’re a useful barometer and even if I never wear them again, they’re old friends and it’s nice to be able to see evidence of increasing slenderness.
Sleep it off
One way to help stick to a diet is to make sure you get enough sleep. I’m lucky in that I don’t have a proper job so I don’t have to be up by a certain time each morning. Thus if I have a bad night – and I do sometimes – I can sleep it off in the morning. I don’t mean I lie in till midday. But I can stay in bed till eight some mornings if it’s been a bad night. Lack of sleep definitely causes us to eat more to compensate. And it’s much harder to control what you eat if you’re tired and stressed.
We can’t avoid being tired or stressed some of the time. But you can do your best to try and ensure you get sufficient sleep and de-stress by exercising every day if you can. Just a few minutes walking each day is enough to make a big difference. More if you can manage it. It will help with the weight loss but far more importantly, you’ll feel far better and you’ll sleep better too so, win win.
The 16:8 diet
I heard the other day about a diet called the 16:8 diet. It’s a variation of the 5:2 semi-fasting diet but easier to follow. Basically you eat in an eight-hour window and then you eat nothing for 16 hours. So thereby sort-of fasting every day between, say, 6pm and 10am. Or 5pm and 9am. I tend to do this anyway. I don’t eat after my evening meal which I try to take as early as possible. And with eating high-protein meals, I don’t feel hungry in the morning.
On conventional low fat/high carb diets I’d feel hungry by the time I went to bed if I’d eaten at 5 or 6pm. And be ravenous in the mornings. I’m not now.
But if you tried 5:2 and couldn’t stick to it, this may work better for you. It’s worth a go. According to one website if you simply cut carbs in the evening and don’t eat any for 16 hours, you’ll lose weight! Not sure if that’ll work but I may give it a go and report back.
Have a good Monday and a great week. More later.