A Slimming World consultant for Gamlingay and Great Barford is encouraging people to start their New Year's weight loss challenge.
Leader Penny Prior is hoping to transform the lives of residents with several simple steps, as she embarks upon a recruitment drive for her village groups.
The Chronicle country consultant has advice about fitness, mental health, setting goals and striking a balance - advising that the best way to lose weight is with the support from fellow Slimming World members.
Penny said: "For many of us, becoming slimmer, fitter and healthier will be at the top of the list of our New Year’s resolutions for 2022. Spending so much time indoors, often coupled with more indulgent food choices and disrupted routines, saw many healthy habits fall by the wayside during the pandemic – and then Christmas rounded it off!
"If you’re ready to make 2022 the year that you take control, lose weight, get fitter and gain confidence, read on."
When it comes to diet, Penny recommends swapping high calorie, "unsatisfying foods" - think chocolate, alcohol, pastries - for snacks and meals that are lower in calories and more bulky, so they fill you up for longer.
Penny said: "Research shows that by basing your diet on low energy dense foods, like fruit and veg, and foods that are most filling – like lean meat, fish, eggs, pasta and potatoes - you can actually eat a larger amount of food and feel more satisfied while losing weight."
Neither do you have to be an athlete to start your slimming journey.
"Just making a commitment to moving more all adds up," explained Penny. "Finding an enjoyable, achievable, and sustainable way of building new active habits into your routine is key – anything that gets you moving more, from heavy gardening or vigorous housework to brisk walking, dancing or cycling counts.
"What’s most important is making it a regular habit – as natural to your day as brushing your teeth."
Meanwhile, Penny also recommends being kind to yourself if you have a set back - criticism will only lead to comfort eating - and setting clear goals from the beginning.
"Shoot for the moon – you never know where you might land," said Penny. "To avoid becoming trapped in a yo-yo diet cycle, it’s important to approach weight loss as a permanent change to your lifestyle – and focus on developing new healthy habits that are sustainable for life."
Thankfully, Penny says "a little bit of what you fancy" also key, whether it's a Saturday night glass of wine or a bit of chocolate in the evenings - better than restricting yourself and "giving up completely".
Finally, the bonds struck with fellow Slimming World members "brings more success than going it alone."
Dr Jacquie Lavin, Slimming World’s Head of Research, said: “The power of the group and the peer support members give one another is what sets Slimming World apart. Our members become part of a community, something special, which helps them to realise that they are not alone in the challenges they face."
To find out more about Slimming World and how to join, visit slimmingworld.co.uk or call 0344 897 8000
You can join Penny at 6pm on Mondays at The Eco Hub in Gamlingay or on Thursdays at the Great Barford Village Hall at 6pm.
Message or ring 07737 809516 or visit: https://www.facebook.com/slimwithpennygamlingayandgreatbarford