Sunday, 21 August 2011

Week Twenty Six Six Month Update

Well here we are six months in with  I have decided to have a look back and see exactly what I have achieved with the help and support of friends and family. This has been a journey that at this stage I truly cannot believe that I have reached because as much as I wanted  this to happen I always had doubts that I would fail because I had always failed before so it was my default setting.

Bariatric surgery was my goal for about two years I believed that was the answer to my weight and diabetes problems and I knew of no other solution so this was the route I chose to go down. My story is out there so I won't bore you with details but I did go to the press because I needed help and I did not know where to find or get the help that I needed. The story was not handled sensitively but as we all now know help was out there and it found me. Do I regret anything I did up to that point? Absolutely not I would not be were I am today without going through that process.

Depression, well had that longer than I care to remember most of the time not realizing I had it. What an ugly destructive condition to have it eats away at you and leaves a burnt out empty shell. I don't think that doctors take the time needed to explain offer help etc. I went straight on tablets and told I could have some counselling sessions if I need them. I Spent several years going to work then on my rest days sitting at home watching television my mind dragging me down I was a zombie really. I think the time is right to see the doctor  to come off or cut down the depression tablets, I feel I am so much stronger now than six months ago.

The biggest bonus was meeting Trevor Silvester this man is a genius and has helped me no end with lifting the depression and helping me to sort my own head out, Sandra Roycroft-Davis is also a great help with phone calls emails and tweets, this really is a company that cares so much for its customers and not just about taking your money. The support network is truly amazing and it allows us the opportunity to help and support each other as well. For me being able to give something back is the best most powerful gift of all.

Diabetes, If it was not for the fact that Thinking Slimmer had Diabetes UK as one of their charities I may never have made the call to them. On little things are such big decision's made that can or cannot change lives. My advice to anyone would be take the plunge make the call make the visit be positive you never know where it may lead you, by doing something rather than nothing will change the way you do things. My blogs may not concentrate on my Diabetes to much as they are weekly and time is needed to see an improvement. But beyond my wildest dreams has there been an improvement in six months.

My hba1c for the first time is in the normal range, the biggest thank you for this goes to Sandra for hearing me when I first spoke to her, I really felt like I was wasting her time and effort because I was going to fail and never once has Sandra been unwavering in her trust of the slimpod nor in my ability to allow the slimpod to work and get control of my life back.

Lifestyle change, this become apparent very early on with the slimpod that this was not a diet and that I would need to think very differently than I had ever done before, the positive message from the slimpod was open your eyes noticed what is happening around you and the positive decisions you can make now to make a difference in your life. That was a mind blowing moment for me when I realized that I was now being given the tools to take back control of my life. I have made many decisions in the last six months that have been solely for me and I make no apologies for doing so, either then, now or in the future this is my lifestyle journey and mine alone. I love being empowered to make choices and I know that on the whole they will be good choices.

Peer Pressure, One Hundred per cent support what does this mean? This section may upset some but this is my blog and I wish to give an honest account of my journey not only for myself but also for others to aid there journeys in taking control of there lives.

First of all I am a man clearly a lazy (obese) thinner man who tries to get away with doing most things. So what does Hazel my partner get out of this relationship? Only she has the answer to that question but rest assured it not a lot it seems to me. Am I being selfish regarding my lifestyle change? No way, the option of surgery was hated by every member of my family but they supported me because that was the way I felt I had  to go. And not realizing until after Thinking Slimmer that they were scared for me about going under the knife,I had no fears because I believed this was the answer and the only way forward. It is only now that I know surgery was not the right thing for me and I am so glad that I never went down that route in the end. There are people who need this surgery but also many who do not but cannot find the right way forward for them yet.

Anyway whilst my journey is going well I have had many hiccups along the way, most of them I have been able to work out or with the help of my support network, some have caused more hard work to keep them under control, I wish I could say that I have won and its easy and I will never have any problems,but this is the real world and as its a lifestyle change the word LIFE is the important one. I will always need help and support because eating for me is addiction and if it ever takes control of me again I honestly fear the worst remember 45 years years of abuse and only 8 months of taking control this is still very early in the process hopefully another 25- 30 years to go.

I need people to realize that I do not wish to fail and that only hard work will keep me on my toes. I will keep my end of the deal but I need the help and support of others for the rest of my life. Temptation must be kept to a minimum at all times for the rest of my live the lifestyle change is not a fad its the real deal I love the new me I love having my life back and I want it to stay. My biggest fear is my default setting that is why I work so hard to keep it as far away as is possible. The only way forward is to be positive at all times, this again takes work, and to stop negatively creeping in from myself and other people.

Exercise, this started off naturally as part of the slimpod originally when I first met Sandra another of my brick walls was that I was not going to do any exercise how wrong I was and how right Sandra was when she mentioned it. Not only have I embraced exercise but I have gone on to enter this years Great South Run and there is talk in Thinking Slimmer circles of the London Marathon in 2013 (too many women and far to much talking I feel) but I'm up for it. I have had 4 months full training not including August. I have done 65hrs 15mins on the X-Box Fitness and 12 hrs 31mins jogging for the Great South Run I have used 36,053 calories in that time. I have had a few problems with injuries the main recurring one is my calf I have this week gone to a running shop and have a brand new pair of running shoes I could feel the difference straight away so I am hopeful that I can train without the fear of injury and have the confidence to complete the race.

UPDATE Only lasted 10 minutes before calf went again after feeling sorry for myself and having some old bad thoughts about myself I tweeted and facebooked and got some great help and advice from friends who know what they are talking about I now have a compression sock to aid recovery and protect calf I will also be icing my calf and having hot baths I will rest my calf for at least 3 weeks then I will be able to carry on training for the Great South Run and be in a position to complete the race before I was worried about letting people down now I am in control again.

The improvement in my fitness is quite amazing and I have the figures to back that up so that I can see how I am doing and improving again this is part of my lifestyle change and something I will do for the rest of my life my aim between now and the end of October is to get the miles in my legs and hopefully increase the distance I run, I am behind my schedule that I thought I would be at but I took no account of injuries which was a tad hopeful on my part.

Overall the highlights over the last six months are losing 5 stone and only having 3 stone to target weight not freaking out about my weight and accepting the fluctuations as my body adjust's to its new lifestyle. Losing 12 inches round my waist. Having control over the decisions I make about food although still not total control. Having my diabetes under the best control ever. Enjoying my exercise regime and the training for the Great South Run. Taking part in the Great South Run. Having the tools to be aware of and deal with problems as they arise. The new friends I have through Thinking Slimmer who help me as well as I help them. The help and support from Dr Lorraine Albon my Diabetic Doctor an absolute star and the reason I've entered the Great South Run.

My weight from the start of the year was 133.6kg or 21st when I started with Thinking Slimmer 126kg or 19st 12lb to my weight this week which is 103.6kg or 16st 4lb a loss of 30.0kg or 4st 10lb and Thinking Slimmer 6 month loss of 22.4kg or 3st 7lb or 49.4lb. My Trouser waist size was 48in now 36in.

The Future is very clear, to improve my Diabetes so that I come off of insulin is the number one goal to reach my goal weight of 13 stone and re-evaluate where I am how my health is and set new goals if needed otherwise to maintain that weight and never lose control over food again. To be a role model and to help people like myself to get there lives back without the need for surgery. To offer help and support to anyone that needs it and to Thinking Slimmer. To keep up the exercise and to keep running. To run the London Marathon in 2013 and the most important one of all is to keep learning how to like/love myself.

Information details for anybody interested are Facebook: Darin McCloud Twitter: unitedarinm Blog: Just Giving webpage: Just Giving text: Text SLIM65 £5 to 70070   (any amount where £5 goes) Slimpod:

I hope this makes sense to everyone its only taken a week to write this blog I may not get across fully what I'm trying to say but hopefully enough, I am not moaning about anything or anyone in this blog just trying to produce a record of my journey to help myself and others who may use this blog, It can only work if I am honest and I will always be honest to myself as the only person I am cheating is myself.



  1. I have just three words for you - You are amazing. What a great blog and what a journey you're on, fantastic success so far and so much more to come I'm sure. I'm really glad to have shared part of your journey and am looking forward to meeting you at the GSRun.

    OK, so that was more than 3 words but I am a woman and perhaps I talk too much ..... ;-)

  2. Wow what a journey. What a strong and determined person you are. Awesome.