I’d been noticing a few blog posts recently about Thinking Slimmer and also recalled seeing quite a lot of tweets about ‘Slimpods’ a while back.
I’m not a calorie counter (though I did try it at uni for a bit), but I do tend to go for fad diets of one kind or another – usually ones that sound healthy – detoxes of various kinds have had some success and my favourite has been low GI, which I feel has a good scientific basis (probably). I continue to be aware of GI and try to keep to a medium GI diet for the most part, which certainly makes it more successful than other diets (because it’s life-changing rather than a quick fix).
What I did really feel the need for was a way to keep motivated, though, especially in terms of exercising, but also in terms of healthy eating. I had a couple of months where I was doing Zumba and I loved it when I was doing it, but really struggled to get back into the routine. I tried the Mutu System (thanks to winning a copy on Mari’s blog), which started off really well, but then I lost motivation there, too (though, I am still doing the core exercises naturally and without really thinking, so it’s been good in that sense).
So, Thinking Slimmer seemed like it could be very useful, especially reading the results of people who had been using it for a while. The strongest appeal for me, I have to admit, was that you didn’t really have to put much effort into it. It’s not necessary to go out and buy £50-worth of vitamins and supplements (as I did with Carol Vorderman and Gillian McKeith plans) or buy special oils and non-wheat flour (which I did for low GI, though actually I love the non-wheat flours and use them a lot still – with those and agave syrup I can make healthy cake!). The slimpods do cost money, of course, though if you follow their Twitter stream and Facebook page they frequently have excellent offers (they were recently giving away a fitness pod for £5, for example). It’s not a weekly outlay like Weight Watcher or Slimming World and others and it comes with a lot of support. (I was fortunate enough to get mine for free, but I was planning on buying it anyway.)
How does Thinking Slimmer work?
All you do is spend 10–15 minutes, listening to a slimpod (MP3 file) just before you go to sleep every night, and write down the changes you’ve noticed at the end of every day (this latter part is, I believe, of great importance, as I did slack on this side, but noticed more changes/felt more positive when I started doing it again – I ended up writing it in a notes file on Sky Drive, which I could access through my phone, rather than having to remember to carry the pages around to write in).
That’s it. Yes, really. Listen to some MP3s and write down the changes you’ve noticed.
Everything else will just happen naturally, without you making it.
What changes did I notice with Thinking Slimmer?
My changes started very fast and I have to say that I did freak out a little bit at first (worrying that they might be happening too fast!). Chris described it as the ‘Stepford Wives Diet Plan’, because I had this sudden urge to do loads of extra housework – cleaning the floor, scrubbing cupboards and other things. That did seem to calm down a bit (a shame in some ways, as the house could do with being super-cleaned), and I have settled into going on a longer walk with the dog in the evenings, rarely missing it (where before I would miss in once or twice a week), walking faster in general, happily climbing the hill to school in the morning, instead of dragging myself up, and doing lots of mini exercises while doing other things (Zumba steps while waiting for the kettle to boil or in the shower, dancing while hanging washing out. I’m not wanting to sit or lie down as much and, when I do, I tend to do stretches or other exercises without thinking about it (so much of this is un- or sub-conscious behaviour change).
In terms of eating, I am very rarely snacking between meals (where I used to do so a lot) and, on the rare occasion I do, I’ll have two spoonfuls of ice cream instead of bowl, or one biscuit instead of 4 or 5. I am almost never buying chocolate or pastries when in town, rarely noticing the sweets and crisps at the tills (I wonder if they could invent a podcast to make the children stop noticing them, too?). I am taking more time over most of my meals, though especially lunch, putting the fork down between mouthfuls. I am having second helpings far less and even stopping before finishing what’s on my plate sometimes. If there are delicious leftovers, I might have a spoonful as I pass and savour the flavours, rather than stuffing down a whole plateful in the evening.
It’s been almost 5 weeks now – the idea is that you do it for about 42 days and your brain should be switched over to slimming by the end of that, then you can just listen now and then if you feel you need a boos, or move on to the Keep Weight Loss Going slimpod – so I’m not done yet, but am well on the way.
I’ve lost about half a stone, though I’m not hugely interested in the scales anymore. I have clothes that are feeling looser, I can feel muscles in my thighs and have definitely got more definition round my hips and bum. My tummy is a bit tighter, though I am far from losing my muffin top (I have a feeling I may be returning to Wendy’s Mutu System soon and I’ve just started up with the Zumba again, as the walk is not quite feeling like enough now – it’s become the norm and I feel the need for an extra, enjoyable, exercise element in there).
My boobs do seem to be getting smaller, too, though that might also be down to stopping breastfeeding. I’m walking with a bounce and holding my tummy in and pushing my chest out, rather than with a slouch (and I’m doing this naturally, without thinking). And I have more energy, even when LaLa ends up in our bed wriggling and kicking because she’s ‘scared of the monsters’!
I feel more confident and positive in myself, which I think is a big bonus. If you feel happy in yourself and walk about smiling and standing tall and with a bounce in your step, you actually look slimmer, even if you’ve not lost any weight or inches at all.
Best of all, I haven’t had any big lapses like I would with other plans. I just have a generally, permanent, change to the way I think about food and exercise. A little bit of what you fancy is fine and exercise is actually fun and not a chore. Who’d have thought it?
Would I recommend Thinking Slimmer?
Absolutely. It’s probably especially good if you tend to diet for a month and then immediately go back to your bad habits with a vengeance (like I did) or have phases of being really good then phases of being really bad. If you feel you lack willpower too, I think it’s probably pretty good. Go and look at the Thinking Slimmer website, though, and read about others’ successes (there seem to be quite a few people who have taken to running marathons – I don’t think I’ll be doing that, but who knows) and check that it’s OK for you.
I have the Slimpod+3 saver, which includes ‘Drop Two Dresses Sizes Or More’, ‘Make Fitness Fun & Easy’, ‘Keep Weight Loss Going’ and ‘Chillpod’ and currently retails at £44.99.
Disclaimer: I received my Slimpod Plus free of charge but, as I said, I was planning to buy it anyway and these are my honest opinions.