"Setting my goal"

It was difficult, frustrating, disappointing and sometimes a triumphant ride to bring about a substantial, uninterrupted change in my diet. That’s why I always needed help and constant encouragement. I sought the help of Essex lifestyle services in Colchester.

It taught me to incorporate small lifestyle changes in my diet and physical activity. My weight was a bit too much and I had to lose weight to undergo right knee replacement surgery at Colchester General Hospital.  I have osteoarthritis and asthma; both conditions exacerbated by overweight.

I had to lose weight fast. So, Tracy Nudd, my lifestyle coach, gave me 6 sessions all spread out to suit my work and family life. I originate from an Asian cultural background, so the local weight watchers and slimming world made little impact.

"I lost 10 pounds and happily had the operation"

I had to be inactive and be at home after the operation, due to intense pain at my knee. The pounds slowly piled back. I did some eating changes like drinking a glass of water before every meal and restricting my desserts and pudding to once a week routine. Decreasing my portion sizes and increasing my physical activity. In the course of this 1 year, I lost my beloved dog so the thought of walks in woods was thrown out of the window. I did try but I got bored. Gym; very costly and it needed determination to continue.  Running and jogging, though I had a nice neighbourhood friend and companion to do with, couldn’t due to my knee pain, so I was restricted in lots of ways. But chats with my mentor were both encouraging and interesting.

"Uplifting and boosting"

Coming out of my sessions made me more enthusiastic and hopeful. She used to really listen to me and then suggest ways to combat my cravings. For instance, I simply loved sweets, chocolates and desserts at evening time. So she suggested ways to first restrict the frequency, and then limit to fresh fruit which I liked, such as sliced melons, bananas and pomegranate seeds, which helped greatly. The sugar in my tea and coffees got replaced with half sugar, and slowly I eliminated the sugar from all teas.

"Portion sizes"

Yes, I sill struggle with it. I bought a wellbeing plate from Next and used it to eat my food. It reminded me of my carbohydrates and vegetable portions. The sessions were only half an hour but were very positive; seeing nuts, a banana and a bottle of water by her side gave me an incentive. The talk about gyms and swimming gave me the idea of learning to swim. I never knew how to swim so started learning at First strokes, which I’m still going to.

The struggle is still there, but I have a clearer picture to deal with it.  That’s why I would highly recommend the Essex Wellbeing Service in Colchester. The people there are extremely dedicated, attentive, hardworking and above all, friendly.

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