Tuesday, August 22, 2017



I'd spent two days not really feeling it - eating a bit too much and not exercising enough. I didn't get to my goal of 7,500 steps either day. But I'm back today! Doing well with the calories, 11,000 steps and a session of digging in the garden.

We haven't done any planting yet, we're still moving the dirt around and picking out some of the big rocks, sticks, old tuna cans, plastic, cigarette butts, chunks of concrete etc. Hard work! Also did some TAFE homework. My mental focus probably wasn't as good today, I wanted to be up and doing instead of sitting still and freezing.

Monday, August 21, 2017



Monday is weigh in day, and this week that is an exciting thing! I started the appetite suppressants on Wednesday but I actually started eating healthy on the Tuesday so I lost my water weight before I started Duromine, so I'm just going to keep Monday as my weigh-in day. Other days just don't feel right as official weigh-in anyway.

Last Monday: 84.7 kg
Wednesday: 83.8
Today: 82.4
Week one loss: 2.3 kg

That is such an awesome loss! I'm very happy with that. My pants are already back to being comfortable.

Back to my 'normal' sleep pattern, unfortunately, waking at 5am for an hour of tossing and turning before drifting back to sleep for a little while. Managed about seven hours.

For some reason today I felt a bit down. No motivation or energy. I forced myself out for a walk, but afterwards was so sleepy I dozed off in front of the TV. I've got quite a heavy workload of study and I'm feeling a bit behind already, it's only week 5 of the semester. I need to get started on my assessments. And of course there is always a long list of other things to get done.

Normally if I'm out-of-sorts or depressed, food is my friend. Entertains me when I'm bored, cheers me up when I'm sad, keeps me company when I'm lonely. So what do you do when you're trying to change that toxic relationship?

One thing I did do, I realised I was whining to the kids (yet again) about Sydney tradesmen and suddenly realised what a first-world problem that was. So we've had delays getting things done, boo hoo. We've got a comfortable house, and a pool, and food on the table, and money for dance lessons... the kids joined in with me listing all the things (material stuff, this time) that we are thankful and fortunate for. Next time I'll focus on the non-material things, like family. I honestly did feel better after we turned the conversation around.

Sunday, August 20, 2017



This is our waterfall working! The water looks clearer now too. Sparkling green.

I had an awesome night's sleep last night! At least eight hours of solid sleep, no restlessness or early waking, woke just before seven. Amazing!

And here is a really weird thing that I don't think can be related to Duromine, miracle pill though it is, this morning I could almost do my bra up by myself. I tore my left shoulder years ago and have had several rounds of physio (rarely doing my homework) without getting much change, I could hardly put that arm behind my back at all. I could get my thumb to the small of my back. Well today I can suddenly reach all the way up to my bra, not quite enough reach to do it up yet. Not sure why the sudden improvement, I'm sure I couldn't do that a couple of weeks ago.

I don't know if I was actually hungrier today, but I ate more. 30 calories over my limit! I'm trying not to make a big deal out of that, but I'm a bit disappointed. On the other hand I didn't actually weigh my dinner so maybe I overestimated! We had lots of family over in the afternoon, when I ate some cheese and crackers but did NOT eat a brownie, then casserole and mashed potato when I had more than I really needed. Only two bites of dessert. Two bites too many!

Saturday, August 19, 2017



Another fairly poor night's sleep, not unusual for me plus see reasons detailed below, but of course the Duromine might have contributed. My weight continues to go down a bit each day which is awesome.

Yesterday before dinner I decided to do some exercise. I already had more than 10,000 steps but my Fitbit wasn't registering me as having done my 30 mins for the day, presumably walking around shopping centres and on gentle hills doesn't get my heartrate up high enough to count. I tried a bit of Just Dance but found it a bit hard on my shoulders, too much arm work (my shoulder pain varies a lot with things other than too much computer - cold weather, being sick, or that time of the month) so I switched to Kinect Adventures. I did a game where you are on a virtual conveyer belt and have to dodge obstacles as they appear. Squat and duck to get under, jump high to get over, dodge from side to side. Really intense exercise. I was puffing and panting, sweating, heart rate up to 150 at one point. Totally normal for my level of fitness.

The thing is, the medication has given me energy and motivation to exercise, but hasn't magically made me fitter or given me extra endurance. So half an hour of that was really tough, and then I realised after my shower how sore my legs were! All the squatting and jumping. I was stiff and sore for the rest of the evening, and it was one of the things that might have kept me awake a bit last night. Sore this morning but better once I started moving around.

Tim's plane home last night was delayed due to the weather - it's still really windy today - and he wasn't going to get home until nearly midnight so I decided to go to bed at my usual time of around 10:30. Just as I was drifting off there was a loud high pitched electronic beep. About 10 seconds later, again. I got up and tracked it down. The smoke alarm was telling me it's battery was low. Every 10 seconds, a horrible screech that echoed around the house. Problem was, even standing on a chair I wasn't even close to reaching it. The kids didn't seem to wake up. I decided to just go back to bed and wait for Tim, but I of course I couldn't sleep. Poor Tim got home after a day that started at 5am, after a long week, and had to deal with that.

A bit of nausea after breakfast again, and worse after lunch. I went for a brisk walk to get some steps in, won't be over 10,000 but should be over my current goal of 7,500.

We spent most of the afternoon with the pool guy here doing the handover. It took two and a half hours! Explaining all the switches and how to balance the pH of the pool and everything. Most of that time Tim and I were standing outside with him, and as the afternoon wore on it got sooooo cold. By the time we came in I was an icicle. BUT it's (nearly) all done. Sort of. We have to spend the week adding more acid slowly, then test again next weekend. Not that we want to swim anyway! We all put our arms in at various times to feel the spa jets or lift the filter and it was so so cold. The water feature looks great, it was getting dark when  I took a photo, I'll take a better one tomorrow and post then.

One problem came up though, the heat pump isn't wired up to electricity yet! The plumbing is done but not the electricity. Pretty sure no one told me I had to get that organised. But anyway, I'll call our electrician on Monday. So we still don't know how that is going to sound, or if we need to move it to pacify the neighbours.

You may remember we got a big skip bin two weeks ago for our big clean up. Well it's still sitting out the front. I've talked to the guy three times and he keeps saying he'll pick it up, yesterday he said he would today. But it's still there! What is it with Sydney tradesmen?

And our tiler in the past couple of weeks has promised Monday, then Thursday, now next Wednesday. Sigh.

Oh well, we have a pool with a working light and beautiful waterfall and it looks lovely when I'm not freezing my toes off.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Ducks and drums


Busy day. I slept poorly last night. The Duromine might have contributed to that, but it's just as likely my silly brain being over-vigilant because Tim had to get up really early for a flight. There was extra stress too, he got a text last night that his flight had been cancelled and he'd been put on a later one, and he called them to see if there was anything earlier and was given the run-around and never actually got confirmation about what flight he was on! Just 'they would call if there was a problem'. So it's typical for me to wake frequently under those circumstances, to check the time.

I felt fine in the morning though, I haven't felt tired at all today. And my jelly legs are back to normal!

I had a full-size breakfast (omelette) then spent the morning out shopping. I went to the further-away big shops to get things I can't get locally -- like mascara that doesn't make my eyes explode, and books -- then grocery shopping. By the time I got home at 1:00 I was starving! I made myself a big stir-fry of vegetables with some cashews and garlic, but only ate about a third of the bowl. It's like my stomach has shrunk, or been stapled. I still get hungry, even ravenous, but a small amount of food satisfies me. The best thing is that when I'm not hungry I'm not obsessing about food or craving junk or sugar. I do still think about food and plan my meals but I'm not being driven to eat all the time just out of boredom or whatever.

Still slight nausea sometimes after eating, and I burp and feel better.

It is dangerously windy here today, driving home there were four lots of branches on the road. I had to change lanes to go around them. Tim's flight was ok getting away, I hope planes are still landing to bring him home again and not too bumpy! I walked up to Aiden's school in the afternoon to see his assembly, it was a bit scary walking under trees, branches dropping everywhere. Maybe I should have worn a bike helmet. But I was determined to get some exercise in.

On the way, almost opposite our house, were a lovely family of ducks.
Such cute little babies!

I went to assembly because Aiden was playing drums. He's been having lessons before school all year, for some reason they've teamed drums and ukuleles. And for this performance also the choir. He was the only one playing 'real' drums - i.e. a big drum kit, the others were playing little bongos. Or ukuleles, as the case may be. And there were two separate groups of choir/bongos/ukuleles who did one song each, but Aiden stayed on for both! Very exciting. But. I literally couldn't see him at all once they were all on stage. He was at the back, with everyone else standing or sitting in front of him. And he is very little. I could hear him though. I'm very pleased that he was chosen for the more complicated instrument, we are a musical family. It might have helped that we have a drum kit at home! (and three guitars, keyboard, ukulele, accordion, two violins, clarinet...) Not that he ever practises at home, of course. Jasmine hardly ever practices either. And I can't play anything - I only sing!

I had some fruit and yoghurt in the afternoon though I wasn't really hungry yet, and I'll have a nice dinner tonight of small steak and salad. I feel it's going really well. Duromine doesn't magically melt the fat off, but I'm definitely getting hunger suppression with minimal side effects. I do the rest.  

I also joined a Dietbet, where you have to lose 4% of your bodyweight in 4 weeks. I find the groups there very supportive. No trolls, just people cheering each other on. 

Jelly legs


Report on Day Two...
The Duromine didn't seem to affect my sleep at all. It was the same pattern as it has been most nights for a while now, get to sleep fairly easily, stay asleep until 5 am, an hour of restless tossing and turning and short periods of drifting off, then another hour of lying awake before I get up. And none of the 'cotton mouth' that a majority of users seem to get.

It was my day at TAFE. I always do a lot of walking on that day, over 10,000 steps just getting from place to place, but today it seemed harder than usual. Hills were exhausting. I chose to walk up three flights of stairs instead of taking the lift, normally that wouldn't challenge me much. Today it left me with jelly legs and out of breath! Unfortunate if I get less energy rather than the boundless amounts most people seem to get! I've been on the forums and it has happened to a few people. Like all side effects it should pass - I hope.

The actual promise of the diet pill is as a appetite suppressant. It seems to be doing that, a bit. I've eaten lots of small meals and snacks over the day. I definitely get hungry. But I can eat a smaller amount and be satisfied. And I haven't been tempted by junk. No apparent cravings.

A possible alternative cause of the tiredness is that I actually started eating healthy on Tuesday, a day before starting the pills (because you have to take them first thing and I didn't get them until late morning) so this is day three of no sugar or junk food. Could be withdrawal? Or the lower calories, but I am definitely still eating a reasonable amount of food. I want to eat a bit less, still getting too hungry between meals.

Anyway, I'm hoping that the weakness will pass. I'm due to increase my dosage after the first week, so that will be interesting to see if the appetite or side effects change. I can always drop back to the lower dose if that works for me better.

Here is the nice bench I sit on at lunchtime at TAFE, about the only pretty spot in the rather grim campus.
Oh, good news, my friend Sarah is back in class. She is working part time but her schedule changed so she is in one of my classes now. Yay! She is the English one. Looks a bit like Adele. So that was nice.

(Edit: Tim says he is crushingly tired the past few days and blames it on current pollen count or pollution from burn-off, so my jelly legs and lack of energy could be environmentally caused.)

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Day One


For the record, I weighed in this morning at 83.8 kg.

I had my usual restless sleep last night, waking for a long time from around 5am then drifting off for a while into night sweats and frustrating dreams, then waking about 6:30 with a bit of a headache, when I got up and took my first pill. I mention the bad sleep and headache to show they predate taking the Duromine are not a side effect (necessarily) if/when it happens again. My night sweat frustration dream was funny, I couldn't find the diet pills and then was trying to weigh myself and had to wait in line for all my relatives to weigh themselves first and then the scales kept giving me crazy numbers like 2.5 kg or over 200 kg so I had to keep trying over again. Silly. I don't enjoy these dreams but I'm very glad I don't have scary nightmares instead, I can deal with a bit of frustration.

Early morning was much as usual, I never want breakfast and have to make myself eat so that I don't get suddenly ravenous mid-morning and make bad choices, no change there. Slight nausea after breakfast of homemade yoghurt with passionfruit and chia seeds. I've made a careful food plan for the next few days, just in case I lose all interest in eating - still have to nourish and fuel my body!

BTW the skin around my eyes is still sore and dry and inflamed after three days. I tried putting some soothing cream on but it stung like fury, which probably means the skin is broken. But then this morning I tried slices of cucumber on my eyes. So nice! And with lasting effect. Sometimes the old remedies are the best. Apple cider vinegar worked on my foot wart when none of the commercial preparations or freezing did.

When my Fitbit finished charging, I went and did some exercise. Half an hour of Just Dance (Xbox active game) then 10 mins Tai Chi to cool down. I felt a tiny bit lightheaded during dance and kept my eye on my heartrate (132bpm was the highest, which is fine, right in the zone. When I looked it up just now it said I should be able to talk but not sing - well I was trying to sing along to a couple of songs and really struggling so that was about right!) and made sure I was drinking. That is a lot more exercise than I usually do (ie mostly none) but I can't decide if the Duromine has actually given me more energy or if it's a kind of placebo effect, where I'm determined to make the most of any possible extra energy... whatever, I did it.

I was definitely hungry by lunchtime, certainly not 'no interest in food'. I had a nice stir fry of pork, cashews and vegetables. Again, a little nausea after eating, not too bad. I went for a walk after lunch, to the shops and back, 30 mins gentle exercise. My legs were tired, maybe after already exercising this morning, I found the hills hard. But that is a bit more exercise, a bit more fat gone!

But all this exercise meant less time to study today. I didn't get everything done that I wanted to.

I was hungry in the afternoon and ate my afternoon tea of fruit and cheese, and now dinner is cooking in the oven and I'm definitely hungry again!

Verdict after most of Day One: I've eaten less and exercised more with minimal side effects so that is a win. But I'm not sure how much is due to Duromine and how much to the general pattern of the first day of a new diet, when motivation and hope are high. Certainly no dramatic changes in the way I feel. Still interested in food. Which is not a bad thing! But I'll withhold judgement until I have a few more days under my (shrinking) belt.