My name is Paul. I work in IT and have a few hobbies, one of which is 3D printing.
I could feel that my health wasn’t what it used to be. I started to notice I had a little bit of a twinge in my leg every so often and thought it’s probably because of the extra weight I’m carrying. I had been looking for something and had tried a few other weight loss programmes, but none of them did it for me. I figured I just needed to lose weight and have a pattern in my life that I can stick to. I found out about Counterweight in a local Bexley Council magazine. It seemed to tick all the boxes, so I decided to give them a ring and take it from there.
“I found it quite useful, straightforward, and easy to use”
When you've got the structure and the meal replacement, there's not too much thinking about what you need to do; it's all set up for you, so it's nice and easy to follow. The app is helpful too; reviewing your numbers on the app keeps you motivated. Having a dietitian on hand is surprisingly helpful too! That phone call every few weeks or so means you can ask questions, see how you're doing, and see where you can improve. It really does help having a dietitian in the background there for you, and even on text. If you have one little problem or one little thing you want to question, they're there for you. So that was great!
“It feels fantastic!”
I've managed to lose five stone, which has been really excellent, and beneficial to my health. My knees don't play up anymore. I have had slight asthma over the last few years, and now I don't use my pump anymore at all. Moving about is much easier too. You don't realise it when you're bigger, but when you're slimmer, you realise actually everything is easier. Even tying shoelaces is easier. I've been cycling for years to work and back, but I noticed that it was getting harder and the extra weight was slowing me down. Now losing the weight, I fly down the road. It's so much easier, so much so that my wife and I both managed to climb Ben Nevis, and we went the hard route as well. Without the weight loss, I don't think I would have made it. So it's been great and it feels fantastic!
There are quite a few changes that are somewhat subtle, like for instance, it's a lovely day today; it's nice and hot. When you’re bigger and it's hot, you're really hot! And once you've lost the weight, you realise you don’t actually feel quite so hot anymore.
“The programme teaches you to change your habits.”
The programme itself just naturally teaches you to change your habits. Before the programme, it’s like I was on autopilot; you get home, you have a meal, you have a snack without too much thinking. But with meal replacements, it's changing those habits. So, you no longer go for the chocolate; you go for the apple, and after a while, you manage to change those habits in a permanent way, so you stick with it. In that sense, you're teaching your system to choose healthier routes and healthier benefits. Counterweight has got me into the mindset of eating for health reasons permanently, which is a change that I've seen and I should be able to stick to. So I am happy with that.
“Go for it!”
If anyone is looking at doing a programme and nervous about it, go for it! You've got everything to lose in weight and everything to gain in health, so just do it! Make the phone call, send the text message - one little step at a time. And the dietitians are great - they will help you through it. The right mindset helps. I was determined to do it. I went into the mindset of achieving a decent amount of weight loss. I didn't realise I'd lose this much, I'll be honest. I thought maybe three stone, but it's such a good programme that five stone came off and I'm maintaining it, which is great.