Best-selling author Lesley Lokko lost weight with LighterLife five years ago. Here she tells us how the programme helped change her life forever…
‘I was an overweight child, a ‘fat’ teenager and an obese adult, heading rapidly in my 30s towards being ‘morbidly’ obese. I was a university lecturer with a doctorate under my belt and a busy, fulfilling social life. I spoke at conferences around the world, wrote an academic book and genuinely enjoyed my job. For years, though, I’d harboured a secret ambition – to write a blockbuster novel – which seemed about as unlikely a thing to happen as losing weight – but, five years ago, I did both.’
‘When I joined Jo Ostlere’s LighterLife group in Edinburgh in 2007, one of the first things we were asked to do was to write a letter to ourselves, outlining what we wanted from the programme, our hopes and fears, and what we hoped to achieve. Our Counsellor told us that at the end of the programme, we’d be asked to write a second letter to ourselves, outlining what we thought we’d achieved.
My initial letter was all about my weight and the unhappiness it was secretly causing me. Six months later, my ‘end’ letter didn’t mention the word ‘weight’ once. Instead, it was all about the confidence I’d gained and how, having done the impossible, anything could – and would – happen.’
‘Managing my weight in the longterm is the most difficult thing I’ve ever had to master. I now think about what I eat, and I’m mindful of the choices I once made seemingly blind. I allow myself a little leeway – no more than half a stone – as soon as I find my weight creeping up, I trot back to LighterLife for a refresher course – and it works.
Management helps me focus and realign my thinking, bringing things back into perspective and reminding me why I made the choice to change the way I think, feel and behave around food in the first place. One of the worst aspects of my previous, food-dominated life was the sense that I’d somehow lost control. The most important lesson I learned from LighterLife was how to take it back again, to take charge. I’ve learned to uncouple the way I feel from the way I eat – that’s been the greatest liberation of all.’
A rewarding life
‘When I look back now, I realise just how much time and energy I spent worrying about my weight. What do I look like? Will it fit? Will I fit? What do others think of me? Nowadays that same energy goes into other, much more valuable and rewarding things. Friendships, family, writing, travel… thinking about the future and about things I want to do. One life. Make it count.’
Check out Lesley’s personal website – we love her books here at LighterLife HQ!
If you want to find out how LighterLife has helped others develop the mindset for life-changing weight loss visit our LighterLife Facebook page, Twitter or our website to start your journey toward a lighter life.