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Abby: “Small steps now, massive changes forever”

Abby has proven to herself that with the right information and guidance, she can reach her goals without depriving herself of the foods she enjoys.

Abby: “Small steps now, massive changes forever”

After feeling defeated following other weight loss programmes, Abby decided to sign up to Second Nature. At first, she was apprehensive but now she’s about to finish the programme, she’s feeling amazing! Abby found that Second Nature helped her to think differently about her relationship with food. She proved to herself that, with the right information, help and guidance, she is capable of reaching her goals without depriving herself of the foods she enjoys.

A little bit about you

I’m Abby, I am 31, and a wife and mother of 2. I work in a CCG for the NHS and I have Axial Spondyloarthritis (AS).

I started this programme the same as I start all diets, with dread! My youngest was born in 2019, and I found out I was pregnant whilst on another well-known programme. Although I could have carried on, the morning sickness got me, and I left the programme feeling defeated again.

It took me a while after that pregnancy for my body to feel ready to get healthy. Not only have I got AS – after the pregnancy, I was also diagnosed with PCOS. So with reluctance, I signed up to the Second Nature programme, gave myself a stern talking to, and prepared to make these big changes.

“In the past, I thought I was incapable of losing weight because of my conditions. I’m not – I just hadn’t found the right lifestyle for my body.”

I’m just about to finish the course, and how different do I feel?… I feel pretty amazing to be honest! I’m not going to lie – at times, it’s been mentally challenging and my progress has been a little slower than I would have liked. However, I now understand it is supposed to be slow and steady weight loss, in order for it to be a lifestyle change and for my progress to be sustainable. I didn’t quite reach my goal that I put in on week 1 ( a little unrealistic of me), but I am 1 stone lighter in 12 weeks and I’m smiling from ear to ear. I am wearing clothes, I’ve not had on in years!!

The SN programme changes the way you think about food and your relationship with sugar in my case. In other programmes, I’ve been given free rein with pasta, carbs and rice. It’s obvious now that I abused this and, although I did fill my plate with veg, I 100% filled up on carbs first and the weight just didn’t come off.

This programme must be the right one for me and my body. In the past, I thought I was incapable of losing weight because of my conditions. I’m not – I just hadn’t found the right lifestyle approach for my body.

“The science behind it all has been eye-opening.”

The SN programme has given me weekly support, meal planning tools, daily articles, and great recipes. I’ve had peer support and our coach has been so helpful. I’ve felt I’ve had someone there every step of the way. I’ve learnt to understand the science behind healthy eating. I also understand other big factors that affect weight changes such as mood, sleep and exercise – the basic stuff you think you know, but the science behind it all has been eye-opening.

The biggest change I have made is admitting that, before the SN programme, I was a serial snacker. My main meals haven’t changed that much, maybe less carbs, but we’ve always eaten healthily. However, prior to joining the programme, I would open the cupboards of an evening, find some snacks and sit down with a brew. 

While I still sit with a brew, I no longer feel the need to snack anymore. I feel full and satisfied after my meals and I understand the psychological reasons I used to snack and felt addicted to sugar.  Now I can have a treat, but more mindfully, knowing I have stuck to the plan. 

I’ve also been out for meals while on the programme but am more aware of what I am ordering. I’m careful not to be excessive but also enjoy myself. Understanding that balance has been mentally hard but I look at the bigger picture and it puts me at ease.

“I genuinely believe if I can do it, with my health and mobility issues, then anyone can!”

I actually can’t believe that I’ve lost a stone, and I plan to continue. I’ve got another half a stone to lose to hit my first SN goal, and after that I plan to lose another 1.5 stone – this time I know I can achieve it.

A massive thank you to my coach, Nwakaego, she has been so helpful and insightful. Without the Second Nature Programme, my weight still would have been increasing and I would have just accepted that’s how my body works. Now I know it’s not – I can carry on with good food, good recipes and a plan to move forward. I know the weight will continue to come off!

I genuinely believe if I can do it with health and mobility issues, then anyone can, and it’s totally worth it! Small steps now, massive changes forever!

You can read more Second Nature stories here. 


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