Sunday 18 February 2018

'It's time to draw a line under the summer of sausages, sweet-and-sour and sauvignon blancs' - Dr Ciara Kelly on Operation Transformation

Dr Ciara Kelly
Dr Ciara Kelly
Dr Ciara Kelly Photo: David Conachy
General practitioner Dr Ciara Kelly
For many of us, our jeans don't fit as well in August as in June

Ciara Kelly

How are you feeling? All good?

It's the end of the summer and lots of us are probably more or less ready to bite the bullet, buy a few Aertex polo shirts in Lidl and stock up on colouring pencils. Because yes, it's back to school time this week, and I too have dreamt longingly of sending the children in with the pots of chopped fruit and homemade humus with pitta fingers I see in the ads, instead of the usual curly ham sandwiches and an apple. Even though that's been the way since the eldest first darkened the door of junior infants, many years ago.

And I ask how you are because on the one hand we're always a bit sad about the end of the summer - let's face it, it's nice being able to laze about that bit more. Not having to get everyone up and out to the same extent in the mornings. No dreaded homework. And a general air of relaxation.

But on the other hand, it's been going on for months! And we're just about ready for change. Just about ready to get back into a routine. And maybe just about ready to give up wine o'clock every second night and BBQs every weekend because it's the summer and we're sort of on holidays even when we aren't!

And that's what I really want to talk about. Many of us over-indulge during the summer as family holidays, weddings, weekends away and BBQs fill the months and even though that's wonderful, for lots of us it means our white jeans don't fit quite so well at the end of August as they did at the start of June.

There are many stages during the year when we take our eye off the ball health-wise, and the summer is usually one of them. But unless we're happy to put on weight constantly in an upward trajectory - we need to balance the scales so to speak by reining ourselves in so that whatever weight we've put on when we're in holiday mode doesn't just sit around our middles, waiting to be added to when we rack up our Christmas half-stone.

We are usually at our lightest point during the year in and around October - that's before the party season kicks off in November and after we have shed the holiday weight we gained over the summer. But to get to that Halloween low - we need to take action now!

And that's what I'm here for! To help you! Because yes help is at hand. Tomorrow the Celebrity Operation Transformation website goes live! And there is absolutely no time like the present to get stuck in and draw a line under the sausages, sweet-and-sour and sauvignon blancs.

Look, I know as well as the rest of you that you have to let your hair down sometimes - there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, and the summer months are lovely because of that holiday indulgent vibe. But if you don't do something about it now you may live to regret it over the winter as your size 12s turn into 14s or indeed your size 16s turn into 18s, and worse, you are out of breath walking up the stairs and find yourself struggling to push your trolley around the supermarket.

Operation Transformation, unlike most slimming clubs, is completely free, is designed to take you from totally sedentary to fairly active, and has a balanced, calorie-controlled diet where you get to eat five times a day including BREAKFAST - which you've been skipping again. Yes, I do know what you're like.

This is a natural time for change and for starting something new with the whole back-to-school back-to-routine thing going on. The five leaders this year are totally awesome and extremely easy to identify with - they range in weight from just needing to lose about a stone, to having several stone to lose - so there's someone everybody can follow.

And yes, we should all aspire to humus and carrot sticks in our kids' September lunch boxes but we should be no less ambitious for our own diets. And very often we think about their needs while ignoring our own.

Tomorrow the plan goes live. There are shopping lists, simple recipes and easy exercises. It's a great way to get in shape and do something positive for your health. Sure what else would you be doing? Go'wan - check it out www.rte.ie/ot

@ciarakellydoc

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