Newcastle Photographer and Content Creator, Mandy Charlton, Always on a quest for adventure, often seen on buses, trains and planes. On a quest to be happier and healthier. Lives in Newcastle with her 3 cats, Iris, Maggie and Arthur. Loves good vibes, musicals and cakes. Full time professional wedding photographer in the north east of england alongside content creator on Tiktok, Instagram and Facebook

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Why I've resorted to meal replacement shakes to lose weight

1 week into the XSL Nutrition Plan, I'm fat and failing to lose weight, Mandy Charlton, Photographer, Writer, Blogger

I am fat!  There, I said it and it's not even a joke!  The truth is, I was at a happy weight and then I changed my meds for bipolar and my HRT and I ballooned out of control.  I've since reverted back to the original doses and yet my weight hasn't budged at all, put that together with the long winter where it was so dark and depressing that all I wanted to do was eat and sleep and....yep, things have seriously got to change.

The first thing I tried was cutting out sugar in February but I didn't last at all, for some unknown reason, I just didn't have the willpower I'd previously had, I've struggled on and off since then so when XLS Nutrition got in touch to ask if I wanted to be one of their #BoostBuddies I thought about it long and hard, if you've read my blog for any length of time you'll know I hate processed foods, I hate diet companies with false claims and you might even remember my big old rant about Slimming World.  

The thing is though, I was promised advice from a dietician, a personal trainer and there would be a group of us all doing it together.  I'm not being paid to do it, I'm simply receiving 8 weeks of product plus some new Sketchers and a Fitbit to help motivate me and so I accepted, after all, I'd just spent the last few months working on having a better face and so now, well it's time to change my body for the better too.

Last week I went down to the launch event in London, met my other boost buddies and after the indignity of being weighed, measured we were given motivational chats and a lovely healthy dinner, I came back with much excitement and started the plan on Thursday.

So, 2 shakes a day for weeks 1-4 and 1 shake a day for weeks 4-8, average expected weight loss, 2lb per week meaning a potential stone off in just 2 months.  For the last couple of weeks I'd already upped my activity levels, I'm not quite back to 10k a day but most days I'm on 8, sometimes 12 and I even did 15k when we were in Ireland.  The best thing about the shakes is that they're fully adaptable so if you want to have one shake for breakfast and one for lunch it's fine, if you want to have one for breakfast and one for dinner it's also fine and since I've realised that I mostly go out for lunch every single day that's the way I've been doing them.  I've never felt hungry through the day, it's only really around 9ish in the evening that I find myself thinking about food!  It's also been weird as I rarely eat breakfast and now I'm having it every day, albeit in 250 calorie liquid form.

So the plan is supposed to work with a simple calorific deficit, 250 cals per shake, 2 shakes a day, that's 500 calories leaving a potential 1000 calories for the other one meal a day if you want to lose one pound per week, that's based on the average woman needing 2000 calories a day to maintain their weight and 1500 calories per day if you want to lose 1lb per week.  I'm not sure I've even managed 1000 calories in the one meal other than a couple of days where I was out doing a review or out with the family at the weekend.  I'd say I'd done a pretty good job!

So, after getting weighed last Tuesday night I decided to weigh myself on a Tuesday and always in the mornings or I'd forget and I jumped onto the scales with glee this morning and...

I gained 2 pounds in weight, that's not supposed to happen, I'm supposed to be getting thinner not more rotund and if I am getting more rotund I want to do it by eating cakes and tasty foodie treats not Vanilla thick milkshakes twice a day, I don't mind sitting with the family whilst they have a tasty takeaway and I have a shake if I know it's all for the good of my health and waistline but I can't pretend that I'm not a bit disappointed, in fact I'm a lot disappointed.

Hopefully it's just a small glitch or my bodies way of adjusting to it's new way of life, I've never believed that you can control your weight by calories alone though so I have to at this point remain sceptical but I suppose this is the best thing about this experiment.  As an influencer and blogger, what I say holds so much weight (no pun intended) for you my dear readers and that's why I'm always going to be honest and I'm going to be blogging an update on this once a week and you'll be the first to hear me scream with glee if I step on the scales this time next week and my body has caught up with itself.  Just to say also, I have smart scales which are incredibly accurate and detailed so I know it's not a set of dodgy scales...if only!

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