28 February 2012

Move it

OK, so the gym and the rower has been off the agenda for a while (Grrr! Thanks asthma, I don't think!) but that doesn't mean I haven't found some ways to keep my posterior moving.

Most of this has been through walking, using the stairs not that tempting lift, and some half-hearted abs stuff. Sure, it's been a wheezy experience a lot of the time, but I have not given up. And it's this movement that has largely helped to save my bacon, I think, and means I haven't turned back into the giant flab monster once again. And, just let me assure you, it wouldn't take all that much.

Constant vigilance is definitely the watchword for keeping weight off, methinks. Seeing it as a 'lifestyle' choice not a diet, and remembering the health reasons for wanting to lose the weight from the beginning, is of the essence.

Making sure I move every single day, even if not up to my usual standards, is such an important thing for this fat lass. I just cannot stress enough how much it helps me, nor how different this is to my previous way of life in my obese days when a nice sit down was my aim for much of the time. Even if I 'could do better', doing something is vital. In many ways, doing at least 'some' exercise is as, if not more, important than good eating these days.

That's not to say I could (or would even want to) go back to my old bad habits in the food department. It's amazing to think I would miss my fresh fruit and veggies and oatmeal far more than I would enjoy a bowl of chips, a box of chocs or a full English fry-up.

Somehow though I can understand the change in my tastes, and this helps keep the eating on track. But never in my life was I ever someone who was considered (or considered myself) remotely 'sporty' and I am actually a confirmed exercise-phobe... particularly if 'exercise' involves any sort of 'team' activity. Bleh!

I can't begin to account for my sea-change in approach to movement. I suppose finding things I can do which pander to my 'loner' tendencies has been of great help. Walking and my indoor rowing is not competitive in the least and that works for me. Whatever the cause of the change in 'me' I'm just grateful for it.

Finding what works 'for me' has been the biggest help to getting the weight off in the first place and keeping it off. I guess the message in this is to listen to your body and figure out what it is trying to tell you. When you've heard what it has to say, and understood what it wants from you, do your body a favour and act on its requests. But if you don't get it quite right at first and it needs a little tweaking, then tweak. Between you, you'll figure it out.

27 February 2012


My lovely hubby has given me a great incentive to get my motivation kicked up a notch. Er, we made the mistake of looking at the sale rail in East at the weekend...

I came away from there the proud new owner of a 'target' dress, in deep purple merino wool, fitted at the bodice then A-line skirted, which, being soft and slinky wool, slinks across every little bump and wrinkle.

My mission (and I've chosen to accept it) is to minimise those bumps and wrinkles to provide a smooth(er) canvas for the beautiful dress.

OK pounds. Your days are numbered. It's gloves off time, and I am coming out of this the winner.

23 February 2012

Keep on keeping on

Remember that 'positive' button from a few posts ago? Hmmm, I just need to keep my head above water and try not to let myself get disheartened. If I don't make active progress so be it, but what I DO NOT want to do is go backwards.

So, I've decided to cut myself a little slack until I feel properly well again and then I'll get back on the rower. In the meantime I'll remember to keep drinking my water, eat healthily (lots of vitamin rich fresh fruit and veggies) wherever possible, walk at lunchtimes, even if I don't stride out in my usual fashion, and I'll try to keep reminding myself to stay away from those naughtier tempting nibbles.

Speaking of which, I managed to pull off a major coup (for me) yesterday when I said a firm (if a little regretful) NO to a gorgeous looking piece of Key Lime pie. It was definitely calling my name (OK, it was bellowing 'eat me'!) but I turned and walked away. Even when a colleague offered to share the slice he'd just bought, I still (just about) managed to restrain myself.

Rush off to buff up that halo now, fat lass - NSVs = good!

22 February 2012

Not plain sailing

Indeed, the water is pretty choppy and I'm not finding things at all easy at the moment.

Mostly, this is because my chest is still nowhere near right. This sporadic cough (which produces nothing to cough up) is not going away and I'm getting very fed up with coughing fits which leave me breathless and shaking. They seem to come out of nowhere and, whilst the inhaler helps, I feel rotten for ages afterwards. My chest feels pretty much permanently a bit 'tight' at the moment, but nothing like a chest infection feels. Just can't figure it out.

Whatever is up, this means the rower is very hard going (I gave it a miss this morning cos I just couldn't face it) and even my midday walks can be a bit of a trial. It also has a pretty marked knock-on effect on my frame of mind. I feel down and mopey a lot of the time and am much more likely to want to nibble than is usually the case.

I guess I just don't feel 'well' at the moment - to the extent that I've cancelled a trip to see my darling Mum at the weekend (much as I'd love to) as a five hour drive each way seems too much to handle.

The only thing to do is put up with it, carry on and and hope for smoother seas. In the meantime... pooh, bottoms, wobbly bellies and similar expletives!

20 February 2012

The right direction

Once again I'm moving in it... albeit slowly.

Although the chest is still a bit problematic (thanks to the inhalers it's manageable though) I got back on the rower this morning. Oooooh, but that was rather hard going she says... putting it mildly! My stamina seems to have dropped to near zero so I didn't stay at it too long and was shaking and felt weak as a kitten when I got off. Still, it's a start.

I did a shortened version of the abs stuff too - again not finding it anything like easy, but it was do-able. All this activity sort of caught up with me on my way into work though, with a massive coughing bout so an enforced break at a coffee shop with the inhalers to the rescue. But I'll keep at it and it'll improve.

Foodwise, things are better too and the carbs and comfort food are not quite as magnetically attractive as they seemed. The scales are beginning to reflect this with a small loss. Yep - the correct direction, and there is only one way... straight on, right?

OK, let's see what this week brings.

17 February 2012

Found a chink

Well, I gave myself a smart kick in the metaphorical pants after I'd posted my miseries for the world to see yesterday, and that heavy shell of blue armour now has a couple of wee cracks in it - maybe this'll get my black dog on the run?

A lunchtime walk in the fresh air did me a whole lot of good. OK, I wheezed a bit and coughed even more, but I moved my flabby bottom more than I have in near on a fortnight and it felt good. I'm going to repeat the prescription today!

What's more, I saw some beautiful spring flowers (celandines?) under a tree at the side of a busy street, lit by a stray ray of sunshine. If I hadn't been in public it might have had me in tears, it was so sweet to see.

What's even better again was that, whilst I was walking, I actually took note of what lovely hubby told me on Tuesday, which was all about the results from his latest blood tests. Cholesterol and HbA1c all much improved from the last round of bloods. Good, great, better and fantastic about sums it up!

I was too deep in doom to properly appreciate the good news when he mentioned it, but results like this are down to his hard work and weight loss - well done to him :-)

Right, let's keep pushing that positive button - onwards ever...!

16 February 2012

Feeling blue

You know how absence from posting is usually a good indication that something just ain't right? Well, I'm no exception.

I'm still not properly over this blasted bug so still feel tired, run down and horrid, especially first thing in the morning and at night. Despite my optimism, the little blighter bided its time and hit me with a real wallop last Friday (wiped out the whole weekend), and I haven't felt up to much since. For nearly two weeks now I've done precious little of note in the way of exercise... except wheeze and cough!

Add to this that lovely hubby and I have both agreed we've been eating too much at home too. Ho hum, I've waited a while to get on the scales and see what the damage was because I just haven't felt up to knowing the true picture.

I felt capable this morning and it is not pretty. I've gained five pounds in the last couple of weeks... and it seems as though I can feel every ounce of them. This is part of my being 'down', but there's been a welter of other stuff feeding my mood too.

Saw a delivery of flowers arrive for a colleague on Monday and whilst it made me smile to see her face, it also made me feel sad as it reminded me what the day was. It's not that I'm against Valentine's day for any reason to do with romance. Indeed, good luck to lovers everywhere and I hope everyone had a very special day.

But 14th Feb happens to be the date on which I lost my darling, very much loved and very much missed, Dad. On this day, many years ago, he took his own life, after a long and painful illness with absolutely no chance of recovery and precious little to relieve his suffering. Somehow, after that I've never felt inclined to celebrate this date.

It's now been some thirty years since it happened but it still saddens and hurts me, some years more than others. Don't misunderstand me, please - I've never blamed him for a second for ending things. On the contrary, if I were ever to find myself facing similar circumstances I would just hope I'd have his bravery. I just miss him such a lot even now, and so often wish I could share something which happened during the day with him still.

I'm sad for another reason too. A childhood friend, just a year older than me, has been given only a few days left on this earth, if she's able to hang in there that long. She's been very, very ill with cancer for a while, but her chances faded despite all best efforts of her medical team, and she just cannot carry on much longer. She'll leave a family of three boys and her devoted husband in pieces, and her mother who cannot understand why her beloved daughter has to go first. We were never particularly close after we grew up and I moved away, and we lost touch for too many years, but she is a lovely lady who reminds me of happy memories and times gone by.

To add another layer (as if it's needed, huh) I spoke to another friend last night who has just been informed she is losing her job. This is the second time in just over a year. She's on her own, in her sixties and will struggle to pay the bills. Sometimes life just doesn't seem fair.

I don't mean to rain on anyone's parade - I'm just feeling down and miserable and not really able to see anything much good in this week (it's been a toughie at work too). I have to say that this has been reflected in what I've eaten... and I'm still craving stodge.

Ah well, I'll pick myself up and crack on with shifting the weight. I'm hoping some positive things will find a chink in my blue armour and shine through. I'll at least try to look for them. Here's to a better tomorrow.

07 February 2012

Wonderful weekend, miserable Monday, but a tolerable Tuesday?

Saturday brought us quite a bit of walking, which was lovely, but also quite a bit of sitting down (on a coach journey to visit a friend, which took about three hours each way). It also brought pretty moderate and reasonable eating, as I could happily portion share with my friend as her appetite and mine are quite similar, with neither of us often stretching to eat complete restaurant portions. A successful day, all told.

And Sunday? Well, we didn't make it to the gym, as we'd planned, but the deeper than expected snow meant we both had a darned good workout anyway, clearing the white stuff from all the paths for about an hour and a half to two hours just after first light. I guess that counts as decent exercise, eh? Certainly feels like we used a few muscles. It was pretty though and, boy, it was C O L D!

Food was once again quite decent. We had planned to treat ourselves to a naughty-but-nice bacon buttie at the local greasy spoon after our exertions, but went indoors for home-made porridge instead (just polishing my halo as I write). The hearty winter stew we cooked up in the slow cooker for a late lunch was a good thing too. Not only was it tasty and warming (with a healthy dose of garlic, cinnamon and cumin), but I'd got carried away with the prep so it contained way more veggies (of all sorts) than it did meat. What's more, when we started dishing it up we decided there was too much, so it'd do us for two days. Guess what was going to be on the menu Monday night.

Unfortunately, the good news sort of ends there. After a great morning, I started feeling pretty rotten in the afternoon and actually went back to bed for a few hours late on in the day as I felt so groggy. I ended up having a very uncomfortable and pretty sleepless night on Sunday, with bunged up sinuses, an aching jaw (hmmm, coincidence?) and a throat like raw meat.

Getting up on Monday morning was hard work, and I really didn't appreciate slithering into work in the icy slush. Not a great day. It felt like my day at work was only made possible by throat sweets and paracetamol aplenty, although I felt a teensy bit more human later in the day than I did first thing. Flagged by evening though, as you do.

Today saw a little bit of an improvement. Although the bug is still rampant I had a somewhat better night so have felt slightly less 'orrible! My headache is down to manageable proportions, but the throat is still quite a picture. Not only do I have the swollen,tender and undercooked steak look but I've sprouted a couple of odd yellowy-white spots too. If this doesn't go away pretty soon I may have to take it to the doc. Until then, throat sweets 'r us. Unfortunately, not being used to so much sugar, I've now broken out in mouth ulcers to add to the fun. Ho hum.

Here's to a reasonable rest of week. Onwards ever.

03 February 2012

What's the time?

It's tooth hurty!

An old joke, but quite appropriate at the moment. Two evenings ago, whilst eating a soft-boiled duck egg, there came a delicate crunchy sound from my mouth. Thinking it was a piece of shell, I immediately blamed lovely hubby... like you do.

Indignantly, he told me I must surely be mistaken (or some less polite variant thereof) and, at that point I realised that the hard bits in my mush were ex-fat lass. OK, I thought, it's part of a filling, but no. On closer examination, all fillings remain resolutely in place. What had collapsed into tiny bits, leaving a filling balanced in mid-air, was what remained of my poor molar!

Hmmm, we have a cold snap here in the UK. Cold air plus hole in tooth = ouch! Let's leave it that, over the last couple of days, the fat lass has closely resembled a bear with a sore head... mostly because I have indeed had a 'sore head'.

But, thank the Fates for paracetanol and emergency dental appointments. I am the proud owner of a new 'temporary' filling which'll keep me grump free for a week or two and I can have the 'proper' job done.

Ah well, at least I haven't wanted to eat madly! Silver linings and all that jazz.

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