Favourite snacks: Mini toffee malt loaves 95 calories, felt like eating a cake but lower in calories and satisfies after one instead of wanting to eat the whole box!!
Favourite meal: Cod in butter sauce (100) with homemade chips (130) and marrow fat peas (70) 300 calories altogether
Types of exercise used most: Be Strong HIIT. Walking, running (before getting injured). Recently started weight training to tone up.
How you stayed on track: Didn’t give anything up- at all! I knew I had to change my relationship with food and my goal was to be able to still eat food I liked but be sensible about it and not binge and over eat like I used to. I could of got where I wanted to be faster by completely cutting certain things out but that wasn’t the goal for me this was a complete lifestyle change and I needed to make sure I could be in control on the food I ate.
Your advice to others starting out: There is only you that can do this, and you need to keep a goal in mind. Stay focused and always think back to the reason your doing this.
Name: Debbie Schofield
Weight lost: 10st
Favourite snacks: Don’t really snack it was a habit I found hard to break so don’t want to get back into it, but before a run I will have a broghie with peanut butter 50 calories or freedom organic banana bread 90 calories (30g)
Favourite meal: Tuna steak 100g with balsamic dressing 190 calories with carrot and swede mash 90 calories
Types of exercise used most: HIIT sessions and running
How you stayed on track: Surrounded myself with like minded people! When you see people achieving amazing things it’s hard not be inspired. I also try very hard not to miss any Be Strong sessions and still attend 2 a week. Getting involved in the monthly challenges also helps to keep me focused and on track as I’m quite competitive and love pushing to achieve a goal every day.
Your advice to others starting out: JUMP!!!! Everything is scary when it’s not your norm! Ask questions, take advice, challenge yourself, find an exercise you love and above all relax and enjoy the ride xxx
Name: Louise Wylie
Weight lost: 4 st
Favourite snacks: Tesco crayfish tails approx 100 cals per pack – Aldi benefit bars 72cals
Favourite meal: Tesco giant mushrooms stuffed with cream cheese and garlic (180 cals for 2) with a fresh mixed salad with either prawns or diced chicken (350-400 cals)
Types of exercise used most: Walking dog every day, Be Strong HIIT session once a week, run before Be Strong once a week.
How you stayed on track: Total focus, having a goal and writing it down, attending class every week (only missed due to holidays/work commitments), increasing exercise, changing habits. Set myself challenges eg walking the 3 peaks, signing up for a 10k run etc.
Your advice to others starting out: Track your calories, come to class – especially if you think you have had a bad week…the talks are so motivating and get you back on track. Focus on exercise and small lifestyle changes and the weight loss will follow, write down your goals, join in with the social activities eg walks etc, believe in yourself…I have done things this year I never thought possible and I feel stronger mentally as well as physically. This is only the beginning.
Name: Nicola McCumskay
Weight lost: 4 stone 4.5 lb
Favourite snacks: Aldi yoghurt rice cakes 85 calories
Favourite meal: Be strong PIZZA with ham and mushrooms 391 calories
Types of exercise used most: HIIT sessions at Be Strong, Fitness Pilates, walking
How you stayed on track: Once I had got my head in the right place, I found that attending groups each week, seeing my progress and that of others helped me to stay on track. This time last year I was on a lot of strong painkillers, using a walking stick to help me after spinal surgery/hip replacement surgeries, and I want to keep moving and enjoying life. Also once I could actually see my body changing this helped. I also have my awful before pics that I do look back on from my holiday last June, and remind myself that I am not going back to being that person.
Your advice to others starting out: Try not to think that you are on a diet. Think of it more of a lifestyle change, both with your food and exercise. Come to group regularly, I have attended 2-3 per week – some just for the exercise, and find that it helps me to keep focused.
Name: Colette Mullally
Weight lost: 3 stone 2 lb
Favourite snacks: Strawberries with light and free Greek yogurt- 130 cal or a chocolate orange kitkat 104 cal. With a coffee of course! (20cal with a splash of skimmed milk!). I also love sweet chilli thins 29cals with laughing cow light- 25 cal per triangle.
Favourite meal: Medium baked potato with tuna mayo and salad 400cal ( 1tsp light mayo only!)
Types of exercise used most: Walking the dog daily, swimming and Be Strong HIIT.
How you stayed on track: I try to stick to plan all week but always allow myself a treat at the weekend. Often a meal out or cheat meal in with a glass (or 2) of wine. Also motivation and encouragement from family and friends and attending the Be Strong group every week.
Your advice to others starting out: Start believing in yourself and you will be unstoppable. You only live once.
Name: Lorraine Almond
Weight lost: 2 stone 6lbs
Favourite snacks: Banana 110 calories – Laughing Cow light 25 cals with cherry tomatoes 20 cals on Melba toast 77cals – 100g strawberries 31 cals and 25g low fat squirty real cream 55 cals **Although I usually save my calories for my meals and alcohol
Favourite meal: Fresh tuna 138 cals, lots of lettuce 20 cals, 100g Tomatoes 20 cals, Couple of rings of yellow peppers 10 cals, 2 tbsp Black Olives 25 cals, 1 tbsp Capers 2 cals, medium boiled egg 60 cals, 2 tbsp low calorie dressing 35 cals Total 310 calories
Types of exercise used most: Running and HIIT but I got a back injury so couldn’t do either for months. I replaced them with a 4 mile brisk walk 4 times a week and kept moving until I was able to run and exercise again!
How you stayed on track: Got a whole new circle of friends who challenge me (Be Strongers) Kept moving. Consider what food goes in my mouth before eating it. A chip barm from the chippy once a week keeps it real but I try to keep it within my calories and go easy on other meals that day. Tell myself I’m not going back to what I was. I owe it to myself. It’s my health and my life and I want to live it this way.
Your advice to others starting out: Small changes at first. Keep moving. Don’t eat more just because you did a walk or a run. Mix it up so that you enjoy your food. Never miss a Be Strong session. Listen to the advice. Get involved where you can with the challenges. Keep looking for inspiration on the Facebook page.