New Unislim class launched in Renmore

Weight loss

I have struggled with my weight since my late teens. I began to lose interest in exercise and developed an unhealthy relationship with food. My weight began to slowly creep up, but I just hid behind baggy hoodies. By the time I went to college I was quite overweight but covered up my insecurities by becoming the “bubbly” one in the group. Over the years I have tried to lose weight both on my own and with other slimming groups. I would follow a healthy eating plan for a few days and then reward myself with a treat. I wasn’t adapting any new habits just trying to reduce the amount of food I was eating on weekdays. Weekends were treated as anything goes and I would allow myself to make unhealthy choices.

In June 2016 I entered a Facebook competition to win a 6-week Unislim class. Subconsciously I was ready to try to lose weight again, even if I wasn’t quite ready to admit it. I was 6 months married and any weight I had lost for the wedding I had put back on and more. I wanted to be able to start a family in the future and I knew I was not in a healthy position to do this. So, I said I would try out Unislim for the 6 weeks and see what it was like. I took all the information on board from my first class and began to make small changes like filling out a food tracker. When I returned the following week, I was shocked to see I had lost 9.5 lbs. This was the turning point when I realised I had found a plan that worked, and I could finally lose the weight for good.


After a few weeks my local class closed, and I had to find a new class to go to. The nearest one I could find on the same day was on the other side of the city. This meant getting a bus home from work and then a bus across the city. So, there was a thought about whether I should continue to go to class or use this as another reason to give up. I was nervous going the first time, but my husband came with me to show me what bus stop to get off at. Once I walked into Sharon’s class I knew I had made the right decision. From day one Sharon and everyone in the class were so welcoming and supportive. After a few months I swapped to the Saturday morning class and yet again was welcomed into the group.

Every week I continued to make small changes to improve my habits to build up a healthier lifestyle. The focus of Unislim is to eat better, not less and this was key to my weight loss success. It’s a common thought that people are overweight from overeating, but I was not eating enough and most of what I was eating was unhealthy. So, for me tracking and introducing healthy snacks were the most important healthy habits I introduced. This has improved my overall energy levels and helps to keep cravings at bay.

Dublin City Marathon

Since joining Unislim I’ve begun to enjoy life again and feel like a new person. I started to exercise again and have taken up running. I completed the VHI women’s mini marathon (10km) in Dublin in June 2017 in a new personal best of 1 hour 16 minutes. I was lucky enough to win a trip to walk a section (117.3km) of the Camino de Santiago with my Unislim class in August. This was a trip of a lifetime and was an amazing feeling of accomplishment when I completed it. When I came back from this trip I completed the Streets of Galway (8km) in just over an hour, my first proper run since June. Following on from this I signed up for a half marathon (21km) at the Run Galway Bay event. This was my first half marathon and I was very happy to complete it in 2 hours and 36 minutes.

It has not always been easy and there have been times when I have thought about throwing in the towel. But that’s when my supportive network of my husband, family, friends, my leader and the members of my class have picked me up. I recently received my 5 and half stone award and the feeling of getting this was amazing. Reaching target weight is the best present I have given myself by focusing on living a healthier lifestyle and can now enjoy my life with a new energy.

I am now lucky enough to have become a leader and opened my new class in Galway City on January 9th  this year. I am looking forward to helping others work towards achieving their weight loss goals.

For more details about Unislim in Renmore visit:

About the Author

Grainne Siriwardhana
Originally from Monaghan, Grainne came to Galway in 2011 to study a MSc in Biotechnology in NUIG. After graduating she stayed in the city and has now made it her home. She lives with her husband and works full time while also leading a Unislim class in Renmore. After recently taking up running to coincide with her new healthy lifestyle, she completed the Streets of Galway and Run Galway Bay half marathon last year. The goal for this year is to compete against and beat last year's times!

1 Comment on "New Unislim class launched in Renmore"

  1. Well done! I wouldd find it hard to walk 10km never mind run it!!! Its an ambition someday to to the Camino, or part of it!

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