It has all started, they weight ins have happened and the targets have been set.
Louise from Dublin’s starting weight is 13 stone 12.5 lbs. She desperately wants a baby. She is obese, with Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), and smokes and has a 43.5 inch waistline. Veronica’s challenge is to shift her goal from getting pregnant to getting healthy. Too often women focus on being healthy while pregnant and not on getting their healthy for pregnancy. When she went to the fertility clinic she was asked to lose weight. Easily said but clinics and GP’s need to give people the tools to lose the weight. That’s what Operation Transformation is about.
Eilish’s starting weight is 13 Stone 2 lbs. She is from Wexford and runs an old school greasy spoon cafe. She is surrounded by food all day and samples the fare, mindlessly. Eilish is the lightest leader. Yet she is obese. She represents most people, as 70% of the adult population is overweight and obese. Our lens on weight has completely changed as overweight has become normal. We have lost a sense of what is normal. Just because we have normalised it does not mean its any safer – there are still heart and diabetes risks. She represents all of us. She is a very determined lady and will succeed. Eilish needs to adjust her mind to be more mindful and her environment to have a place where there are more healthy options.
Alan from Moate is the youngest and heaviest male leader ever. His starting weight is 26 Stone 7lbs. Alan food diary was absolutely shocking. For example he drinks 6 cans of coke a day which is half a bag of sugar every day. This helps wash down a daily takeaway. I think Alan has so many life skills to learn. Alan is the follow on from untreated childhood obesity. He has a 60 inch waist circumference, thats a five foot waist. For Alan its not about changing his life its about saving his life. He has taken the first step which is the hardest. Brave fellow.
Mark hails from Louth. His starting weight is 21 stone 11.5 lbs. He is a giver. He gives selflessly to his family and community but now its time for himself. Mark is a very high achiever. In his work life he can hit all the sales targets. Yet he finds it difficult to apply these tools to himself. Persistence not perfection is the key to weight loss, healthy eating and weight maintenance. He has lost a sense of himself and uses comfort eating and secret eating to soothe himself. Tools to address this are on the OT website.
Veronica aged 24 is from Cork. Her starting weight is 17 stone. She is a brave women who has overcome bullying experiences that triggered her to self harm. Veronica represents hope as she emergences from a negative adolescence to adulthood. Too often food has acted as a crutch to numb or sooth negative emotions. If hunger is not the problem then food is not the solution. Over the next weeks I will be working with Veronica to tackle her inner critical voice. Veronica says she will love herself when she loses weight. Her challenge is to love herself regardless of her weight. Then the transformation begins.
So it all begins, the enthusiasm is high. Everybody is in good form. This will last a few weeks and then the stress will start loading – food plans, exercise regimes, online pressure etc. Without the crutch of food our leaders will falter. Thats where a good support plan needs to come into place. Change is not easy but is it worth it. Fear most often forces us not to change. What would you do if you were not afraid?