Sue was an active grandmother of 12 and a proud dog owner, but when she was informed that she was’ pre-diabetic’, she decided it was time to make a change and was motivated to get started right away! Since joining Second Nature, Sue has completely changed her diet, lost weight, is more active, but more importantly, is happier in her own skin and there is now no looking back!
A bit about me
I am a retired grandmother with 12 grandchildren, a great grandmother of 4 (soon to be 5!), and an owner of a much loved Heinz dog. I am pretty fit for my age, but when my last blood tests revealed I was still pre-diabetic, I realised I needed to take better care of myself, especially as I am a widow and live alone. My surgery nurse recommended Second Nature as a way of doing this, and I haven’t looked back since then. My main aim, of course, was to reverse the diagnosis and also to lose some weight.
I decided I’d prefer to ‘do it online’ rather than attend group sessions, as I knew I was very motivated already and felt this was best for me. I was introduced to Second Nature by my health coach Rosie through an initial phone call and then by many messages, hints and tips etc. There was also an introduction to a group of fellow members and communication with them through a chat group. Rosie was outstanding in steering me away from possible temptations by giving alternative suggestions, always helpful without being judgmental – I found her encouragement and support invaluable. I had contact with some of the other members, and this also helped me stay on track.
A new found confidence in food
My main lifestyle change was in taking control of my diet. I started by getting rid of all the ‘bad’ food in my cupboards and fridge, and using the book provided by Second Nature; I made lists of store-cupboard essentials. At the same time, I wrote down what I would eat each day for the week and did a big shop for both lists. This was very motivating, and I was excited to begin.
I used the recipes from the book supplied for the first few weeks, and gradually started losing a few pounds, and this spurred me to continue this way until I felt more confident to try other recipes from online, the supermarkets etc. I had never been a big spice or herb cook, but gradually came to realise the difference they make to food when you cook from scratch, and I’m now a huge convert. I’ve always been a ‘plain’ cook, but now I’ve become quite adventurous and thoroughly enjoy my food.
I found most of the articles interesting, some motivational, some just common sense! However, they always made me feel in touch with what I was trying to do. I got on board with the exercise regimes early on – my daughter and I did them together, which was good for me. I then had a problem with my upper back and shoulder, and this meant I was unable to continue for some time.
I’m afraid I never really got back on board with the exercise regime, but I do what I can when I can and I walk my dog, with my daughter, each day, for an hour or so. I do try for 10,000 steps, but it’s not always there. I did find the mindfulness article quite helpful and practised this for a while.
Onwards and upwards with Second Nature
I am so pleased my doctor’s surgery enlisted me with Second Nature – I’m pretty sure I would not have lost the weight I have without this plan. It made me think about my food intake, realising how bad my diet had become, and giving me the help and encouragement to change. I feel so much better for my weight loss; I am happier when I look in the mirror and know I’m doing my best to ensure I stay healthy. The bonus is that hopefully, I won’t be a burden for my family if I live to a grand old age.
Finally, I would advise anyone thinking of joining the programme to embrace all the help and advice given, to start as you mean to go on. If you make changes from the start, after 2-3 weeks it will become your new lifestyle and habit. I can’t imagine returning to my old ways now; the supermarket holds no fears for me with their tempting promotions! However, I’m no saint, and I do allow myself to indulge in chocolate and ice cream very occasionally. I suppose the big thing is that I know my limits now and try very hard not to go beyond them.
You can read more Second Nature stories here.