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Last year I lost a couple of stones only to put it back on by the end of the year. I realised that my relationship with food was getting out of hand. A way was needed to rein back in how I was acting, as I had no discipline around what I was eating and drinking. I needed to gain back some control, and feel more in authority over my diet. So I decided to try something new, and turned to The 1:1 Diet By Cambridge Weight Plan.
*this is a collaborative post – for more details please see my Disclosure Policy
The 1:1 Diet By Cambridge Weight Plan
Formally known as just the Cambridge Diet, the weight plan incorporates meal replacement packs to help you lose weight. I looked on the website at One2OneDiet.com, which answers a lot of questions about how the plan works. By inputting my postcode I found a counsellor close to me, and made an appointment.
The most important part of the plan is that you meet once a week on a 1:1 basis with a weight loss counsellor. Who supports you, provides the products and can answer any questions. They also need to ask you some medical questions before you start. If you have medical issues you may not be able to do the plan. Though if you are concerned, it is always good to discuss it with your GP before starting a weight loss plan.
But what else do you need to know before starting the plan?
It is a VLCD
The 1:1 Diet By Cambridge Weight Plan is a very low calorie diet. Or at least Step 1 is. There are actually 6 different weight loss steps within the plan. Step 1 lets you have 3-4 Cambridge Diet products a day, so 600-800 calories. But some of the other steps let you have a balanced meal too. It does not have to be a massive change to your lifestyle. It can be whatever you want from it.
I am pretty all or nothing. As I said I really needed the break from food and temptation. My counsellor asked me why I really wanted to lose weight.
- To rid me of my backache and hip ache, which I think is predominantly down to my extra weight.
- I want to live long enough to see my daughter grow up (bit morbid I know, but I do worry)
- I want to be able to run after my daughter, at 3 she can out run me, which is just not right!
- This year I want to get married, but don’t want to look fat on my wedding pictures.
- I want to make myself some lovely clothes. Although I do have some lovely products of my sewing, there are so many more patterns out there!
I started on step 1A (3 products a day), with the option of the occasional extra pack if I really need it. The packs contain the full RDAs of all the vitamins and minerals we require in a day. So in theory, you are getting everything you need.
Is It Expensive?
24 meal replacement products a week cost me about £60. Now, whilst this may seem expensive, you have to think about how much you would spend on food normally in a week. With alcohol, takeaways and extras I certainly think I normally have spent more than £60 on my weekly food. So I think this will be a saving.
You Need to Drink A Lot Of Water
This can be my let-down. The plan asks you to drink at least 2.25 litres of water a day. I bought a bottle which holds 600ml, but find it difficult. But the more you drink over the day, the better. (Note however, your body cannot take to much water in one sitting, do not drink 2 litres all in one go!)
You Cannot Cheat
On step 1, you cannot eat any food, or have milk in tea or coffee. Diet drinks are off the menu. And no alcohol. Like any diet, if you cheat, you don’t lose.
Although the Cambridge Weight Plan are trying to move away from the whole ketosis diet image, step 1 still does get you into a ketosis state. Ketosis occurs when we go on a low/no sugar diet. The body uses up all it’s glucose and glycogen stores (sugar stored in the liver) and then the body goes on to burn fat, which produces ketones.
Of course, on a 600 calorie a day diet you are bound to lose weight anyway, but the biggest advantage of going into ketosis for me is that you just lose your appetite completely. You just do not feel hungry. Whereas, if you do cheat, this stasis is broken and you feel hungry. Ketosis also gives you a little bit of a mood lift.
What Are The Meal Replacements Like?
I must say, there is such a lot of variety. There are bars, shakes, desserts, soups and meal-type dishes. And there are even some ready made shakes with a straw for when you are on the go.
I like to start the day with one of the 3 different porridge flavours (apple and cinnamon, pecan and maple, or original) and that sets me up. I may have a bar if I am out for the day, they really do taste like a proper chocolate bar. And the spaghetti bolognaise meal is one of my favourite meals, as it really tastes good.
How Hard Is The First Week?
Some people get really moody or lethargic at the low calories. Some people get headaches. But it does pass, usually by day 4 or 5.
I am not going to say that it was dead easy, but for me the motivation outweighed the worst of the side effects of following such a strict diet. And you just have to think about how much weight you are going to lose quickly.
In the first week I lost 8 pounds!
And Going Onwards?
That first week fully motivated me to go onwards with the plan.
In the second week I lost a further 4 pounds, in the third week I lost 3 pounds. But in the fourth I only lost a pound.
And this is sometimes when people get a little disheartened and give up. A plateau when losing weight can be a big obstacle to carrying on to a lot of dieters. But it can also be the body retaining water in what is know as “The Whoosh Effect”. This happens to most people, and most people get a bad weight loss in week 3 or 4 on the plan. Why?
You might feel like you are doing everything right but not losing.
As you start to lose fat, your fat cells start to retain and fill up with water. They want more fat to come in, so they are retaining this water as a place holder. They can hold onto this water for days, before realising that there is no fat coming, then….’WHOOSH’. They release the the extra water and the fat cell collapses. You finally get the weight loss that you have worked for.
So – don’t give up. It may just be ‘whoosh week’! I have still lost 16lbs in 4 weeks which is great.
What are the Biggest Benefits of The Plan To Me?
Having that 1:1 time with a counsellor is a great thing. And my weight consultant sends me motivational messages and gets in touch regularly to check in that I am doing ok. Having done the plan herself, she knows how it feels and can understand how hard it can be to stay motivated.
The plan if you follow it is proven to work in a short time. And recent studies have shown that it doesn’t matter whether you lose weight quickly or slowly. The old adage of “you have to lose weight slowly to keep it off” is just not true. So I am all for losing my pounds fast.
I have more time. Because I am not constantly thinking about what I am eating next, or rummaging through the cupboards looking for snacks (i’m definitely a little picker) I just seem to have more time on my hands. Which means that I am getting jobs done tidying and clearing out a lot quicker than I was. My eBay sales have improved thanks to this too.
But at the end of the day, the biggest advantage is that I have already quickly found that I am losing inches and feeling better. Yes, I still have a long way to go, but losing 16 pounds in the first month with The 1:1 Diet By Cambridge Weight Plan has set me on the right path for getting to my goals!
Why not Follow My Progress?
If you follow me on my Instagram Account, you will see that I am documenting my loss more closely. Plus I am sharing my gorgeous wardrobe of clothes that I cannot wait to get back to wearing. Have you got outfits that you want to get back into? Follow me and share with the hashtag #motivationaloutfit
I cannot wait to see your snaps!
Or read my tips on sticking to a diet in tough times.
Why not pin this post for later?