Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tired tired tired


After another night of little sleep, I only went to the gym because I already had Aiden booked into creche. After dropping him off I went into Club Pink, into their little "reading and relaxation" room with the two massage chairs that don't work, lay on the little lounge, and went to sleep for half an hour. Got up, had a cup of tea, and did 20 mins on the stationary bike while reading a magazine.

I'm still pretty amazed I did anything at all.

Tired tired tired.

Monday, September 26, 2011



There is a teachers' strike this morning but I had it all planned, I had Jasmine booked into creche so I could go to the gym despite being super busy. But it all went wrong.

Tim worked very late last night and got home after 10 pm, we got to bed around 11. He woke again at 6 am, which of course woke me (and Jasmine). 7 hours might be enough for some people, it might even be enough for me if I was properly rested to start with. But I wasn't properly rested, and I didn't get anything like 7 hours. It took me a long time to get to sleep and then I woke twice in the early hours of the morning. Even though I needed to pee, I lay very still and quiet so as not to wake Tim and I eventually got back to sleep. To be woken at 6. I feel absolutely wrecked.

We all got up much earlier than usual so I dropped Aiden off at childcare quite early and went to the gym. I thought I would just use the equipment rather than waiting around for Zumba, allowing me to get home earlier to get on with my work. But discovered that creche wouldn't open for another 25 mins. I tried going into Club Pink with Jasmine, thinking we could sit together in the tea room and look at magazines or something, but they wouldn't let her in. The nearby library doesn't open until 10 am these days (which is grist for another rant) and it was freezing outside. So we came home. With the option of turning around as soon as we got here to go back again, or forfeiting the creche spot and just staying home. We have gone with the latter. Jas can watch TV while I work.

On the upside, I have more time to work (if I can somehow get my brain working) and I am too tired to want to exercise anyway... but I did try.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Crash and explode into fragments of self-loathing


Tough day. Tim woke at 6am. He's been doing that a lot lately due to stress. So I get woken too by his tossing and turning. And he comes to bed late, most nights, and I rarely sleep before then. So neither of us are getting near enough sleep. I was/am exhausted from the weekend of cleaning and looking after guests and eating junk food. My body is abused wreck.

My father-in-law and his girlfriend were still here when I left to take the kids to school (in fact Chris wasn't out of bed yet) but I went to the gym anyway. BodyPump. Ye Gods it was hard. My legs were cramping up horribly during squats. But I pushed through it and even stayed for the abs and stretches even though I couldn't do much of it. I was really hoping the guests would be gone by the time I got home because I really needed to get to work and my father-in-law is a talker. No matter how frantically busy or disinterested or actually-leaving-the-room his audience, he keeps talking.

So I got home and they were still there, Chris still in her pyjamas, and they stayed until 11.30. Frustrating. Then I did some work, had my healthy back-on-track lunch, did some more work. Then the little voice started...

I had encouraged brother-in-law Nick and his wife to take junk food away with them yesterday, and Des took more today. But there was still lots left. I packed it away in a bag in the cupboard ready for D&D tomorrow (enough there for about three suppers, actually). I was confident, this morning, that I could resist it until tomorrow. After all, I was saturated with junk food. Over it. With a mouth ulcer that made it painful to eat. First day back on my diet. Easy to resist. Yeah, right. About 1 pm, the little voice...

"Chips." "No, I'm not going to." "You know you will." "No I won't." "You might as well give in now, you know you will eventually anyway. Save yourself the painful struggle." "You're probably right, I will give in, I always do." "I know." "But no, not today, I will be strong today." "You know you won't. It's chips. Lots of yummy chips. You can't resist chips."

It didn't really take very long, once I started thinking about them. So I got out a bag of chips. And ate the WHOLE BAG. When I was eating them, I felt great. I was simultaneously watching an episode on The Doctors where they were talking about how doing addictive behaviours gets the brain to release dopamine. Oh yeah, that dopamine is good stuff. But of course when I finished the bag, with just a handful left in the bottom, I felt ill. Physically and emotionally ill. A whole bag is unusually excessive for me. I just kept eating and I don't know why. Apart from the dopamine, of course. And the tiredness. And probably PMS. But they are just excuses. More than 900 calories worth of fat and salt. I now feel miserable and ashamed of myself and bloated.

I will get Tim to hide the rest of the bag tonight, offer it tomorrow night at D&D, and get people to take home the rest or throw it away - anything that tempts me, at least. Chips, in particular. I don't have a sweet tooth (apart from chocolate) and I don't care much for lollies.

Another downside to the binge-eating is that it took quite a big chunk of time when I was supposed to be working. I sat and read while I ate, and not even one of the many books I need to read. It was a plunge into destructive time-wasting.

Just after eating, I was reading a sexy love-scene in my book. My first reaction was a spark of arousal and looking forward to spending time with my husband. My second reaction, so quick I barely had time to notice the first reaction, was self-loathing and feeling like I didn't deserve sex. That my chip-laden body was disgusting and unlovable and most definitely not something anyone would want to have sex with. The ephemeral spark was crushed.

I refuse to simply "write off" today like I have for the past few where I didn't bother to track my food or eat well. I will eat a healthy dinner and write it all down and move on from here. And get rid of all temptations out of the house.

Maybe I should open the packets now and tip it all in the bin where it will be irretrivable. But I have already told people they don't need to bring anything tomorrow. And I really am convinced that I won't be tempted again before this evening when Tim can hide it. Surely I've had enough to hold me until then.

Sunday weigh-in: 79.2 kg; down 0.1 kg


I am absolutely gobsmacked that I haven't put on weight this week. This is my sixth day in a row with no exercise, and for most of those days I also ate an unnecessary amount of junk food. I was sick during the week and then have had houseguests all weekend. It was lovely having visitors, but I am now tired and cranky and have a mouth ulcer from too much sugar, so it hurts to eat. Maybe that will stop me. Ha!

Although I didn't do any formal exercise, I probably did burn quite a few calories this weekend. I spent several hours yesterday morning housecleaning, and then today we went to annual spring Canberra flower festival, Floriade, and walked around for three hours.

My father-in-law and his girlfriend are still here tonight, but I am going to go and watch Junior Masterchef now. They can entertain themselves.

photo by Sallysets

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bucket full of steaming whinging


Is it Friday already? I've caught my daughter's germs and I am sick and miserable. Not like really really sick, but just sick enough to feel like crap. And I have been self-medicating with food. Which makes me feel worse. And of course I can't exercise. And I have a party here tomorrow night and houseguests all weekend. And a house full of party food. And I am weak and pathetic. I just see this long stretch of empty calories and sloth in front of me so I feel pre-emptively guilty but at the same time not willing to apply any self-denial. And I have so much work to do after a couple of days lost to illness and busyness.

I shall leave you to try to digest that bucket full of steaming whinging while I get on with things.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Attack of the common cold


The plan for today was BodyPump (with Aiden in creche) then library then the big weekly shop. But this morning Jasmine, who has had a cold for a couple of days, was crying at the breakfast table so I sent her back to bed. All plans out the window. Home all day with one sick child and one well bouncy child. Arg.

So it is going to be a very challenging day, diet wise (and in other ways as well). As it's shopping day, I don't have much suitable food left in the house. I have 4 eggs for protein but no bread. Some fruit but not much in the way of vegetables. I'm sure I can cobble together some lunch but it's probably going to be home-delivered pizza for dinner. And two days in a row with no exercise. Oh well, these things happen.

Actually I am not so bothered about the no-exercise. I am showing some symptoms of coming down with a cold myself. I am so tired I can hardly keep my eyes open. I think a restful day will help me fight off germs. Along with lots of water with a squeeze of fresh lemon. Hopefully the fact that I have been looking after my body lately will help -- but not much can stop the common cold.

One of the blogs I started reading recently (I think it is called Why the Weight? but I don't know the link) is by a woman who today reached her goal of losing 101 pounds. Yay! She was laid off work 22 months ago and decided to devote her time to looking after her body; just like me but I only did it for 4 weeks! She lost weight slowly and mindfully instead of trying crash diets like she had in the past. She was finally forced back into the workforce when her unemployment ran out and at her last post she was 3 pounds away from her goal. She said she was ok with that, close enough, although it would have been good to make her goal. Then today, her first day of work, she weighed in 3 pounds lighter!! Cool real life success story.

Nothing much


Not much to tell today. It was a non-exercise day but as usual I didn't get as much work done as I would have liked. I scoffed a couple of Chocolate Wheaten biscuits but kept my overall calories within reason. See you tomorrow.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Too much fat, not enough time


I weighed myself this morning and finally got all my bodyfat percentages etc.
Weight: 78.8 kg (yay - down since yesterday!)
Fat: 38.2% (anything over 25% is "poor")
Water: 45% (should be 50-55%)
Muscle: 30% (so variable they can't give a "should be")

I can't help noticing that 38.2% + 45% + 30% = 113.2%. No wonder I weigh more than I should! My body mass is overflowing! And that doesn't even leave any percentage space for bones or internal organs. Or brain. I don't know how they work these things out, perhaps some of the water also counts as fat or muscle.

I went to BodyPump and did the heavier weights and it was all good. Strangely, today the bicep track was a bugger (even the instructor said it was horrible) but I could do most of the lunges! Half of them were "power lunges" which I quite like -- you step back, lunge down, step together. Sure beats the strain of holding position and just raising and lowering over and over. My very favorite move, though, is the clean and press where you lift the bar over your head then lower it back to your knees. It makes me feel mighty.

I've had another good day with my diet. Two punnets of strawberries and lots of salad. I'm eating around 1300 calories a day. All that meat is very filling, I am certainly not going hungry. Actually, if I ate everything in the plan each day it would be more calories than that. Today, for instance, I am still owed a slice of wholegrain bread and a serve of dairy -- probably another 200 calories. But I am very full from dinner and don't need any more today. I am doing very well not eating after dinner, as well. So I am feeling good about all that.

I am struggling a bit to juggle all the aspects of my life. Work is going really well, I have freelance clients booked for the next seven months and have had two other prospective clients say they aren't willing to wait that long; so I seem to be well established there. I've got the health side covered with the dieting and exercise. I am reading dozens of fantasy novels for the Aurealis Awards and enjoying it (although there are some other books out I would love to read that I don't have time for). And finally I have enough time in my evening for a certain amount of time relaxing -- watching TV, playing computer games and mooching around the internet.

But... I am not spending a lot of time with my husband and children. My novel is not getting written. The house is a pigsty and is only meeting minimum standards because my husband pitches in on the weekends. I haven't returned to learning guitar or practising singing. I used to love gardening but now rarely step into the backyard, which is a wild ugly tangle.

Some of these are more important than others, obviously. I need to give up a bit of free time to spend with my husband and children, and do some housework & gardening. But I like some TV! And my computer games and reading blogs.

Oh well, I know it is the same for everyone. Just not enough hours in the day for everything you would like to do. As PastaQueen mentions quite a few times in her blog (now completed and wrapped up), getting healthy takes up a lot of time. One hour at the gym means a least an hour and a half out of my day, once I include travel. Today I spent half an hour just preparing a healthy lunch. I don't do that every day, but still. So today I had two hours less for other things. Quite a big chunk of day.

I was supposed to go out to a writing group tonight but I'm too tired. So I will just sit here and read other people's blogs for a while.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sunday weigh-in: 79.1 kg; down 0.2 kg


I unpacked the new scales this morning and programmed in my height and gender etc but couldn't work out how to get my body fat analysis. I was running a bit late so I gave up and I'll try again tomorrow. But my weight was 79.1 kg. This is only down 200g since last week but I am actually happy with that after my poor exercise and eating this week.

I was feeling much fresher and full of energy today, which was great after yesterday's grumpiness. I got up a little bit late, and after messing around with the scales and scoffing my breakfast I was a tad late for the gym and they had already started. So I ended up in the middle of the front row -- where no-one wants to be! It was my 50/50 class, half an hour of attack (aerobics) and then half an hour of Bodystep. I worked hard through the attack so I was already feeling a bit tired by the end of that section. But I put a brick under my step anyway. It was agony! By the second track my whole body was hurting and I kept telling myself I just had to get to the end of this track. And then the instructor told everyone to lower their step -- so I made it! I was very pleased with myself. I somehow got through to the end of the class on my low step, completely fatigued by the end. My legs felt like they had nothing left.

51 mins, 7% zone o, 48% zone 1, 39% zone 2, 6% zone 3, 204 calories, average HR 123, peak HR 149.

Then I stayed for Bodypump. Crazy, but I kidded myself that we would be working different parts of the body. I think only one other person from 50/50 stays for Pump. I tried to up my weights like I did on Wednesday but couldn't for all of it, I was just too fatigued. The squats, which I usually quite like, were horribly difficult. For the lunges, I kind of just hid behind everyone else (I had moved up the back between classes) and bobbed up and down gently. I didn't stay for the abdominal track. I still think I'm pretty awesome.

47 mins, 78% zone 0, 22% zone 1, 101 calories, average HR 96, peak HR 126.

I was good with my food all day, even when the rest of the family were having treats. So it's a great start to the new week.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Little milestones


This morning I really really didn't want to go to the gym. But I had to. So I did my BodyStep class. For the first time, I added "bricks" under my Step - usually I just have it very low. I went up to intermediate level. I got through two tracks but my calves were burning and I didn't think I would make it through the whole class so I took the bricks out. I will try to use them for a bit longer each time. The second half of the class you are supposed to lower your Step anyway, so I only have to get to halfway. That is my first goal, at least. Eventually I will use two sets of bricks, moving down to one set for the second half of the class. One day!

I didn't wear my heart rate monitor today.

Then in the afternoon we did some gardening. I pruned our three big hydrangea bushes. This involves lots of squatting to get to the low bits, and various bending and stretching, and then lifting the branches into the greenwaste bin. I thought about stopping after I'd finished the first one, but decided to keep going. I think it took about 45 mins altogether. After I finished I realised that this was probably the first time ever I had done all three in one session. Usually it takes me two or three. Awesome! So maybe I am gaining a little fitness after all. I wasn't sure I was, my exercise classes always seem just as hard. But maybe that is because I am pushing myself harder.

Small milestones, but it is good to feel I am getting somewhere.

I have kept to my diet plan today, so I am feeling better about that after three really bad days this week.

I ordered a new set of bathroom scales with my frequent flyer points and it came today. I haven't tried it out yet, I will wait for tomorrow morning. It will be interesting to compare results to our old one, and the one at the gym. But I will now be able to weigh myself every day, if I want. This one tells you bodyfat percentage and stuff.

Friday, September 16, 2011

The smoke of weight-loss doom


I feel like this whole week is a write-off. Last night a nearby chemical factory exploded. We weren't in the exclusion zone, but all the schools in the area were closed due to toxic smoke so the kids were home with me (again). It was too late to book them into creche, so I couldn't go to the gym, and I still had to try to get some work done.

Of course if you try hard enough you can find a way to exercise. I had the car, I could have taken the kids out somewhere (away from the smoke) active like a walk or bike ride. I could have used my Step and hand weights at home -- I planned to. But I didn't.

And tonight I am going to a trivia night. Everyone will be taking yummy unhealthy supper treats along. I will try to be moderate, but I plan to have something.

So three days out of four will be lots of calories in, not many calories out. Not so good for weight loss and I dread the scales on Sunday. But I am certainly not giving up. The best way of looking at it I ever heard was comparing it to brushing your teeth. If for some reason you didn't brush your teeth for a couple of days, you wouldn't then decide to never bother to brush them again! And if you don't exercise and/or if you eat poorly for a couple of days, that doesn't mean you give up on it. You just start again as soon as you can.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

More binging. Whoops.


So. Binge Tuesday night, good yesterday, then today... It was another scheduled day off exercise so that I had more time to work, and also Tim had the car today and my toe hurt. It's a stupid little "injury", I tore the toenail on my little toe on Monday night. It's all bandaid-ed up but it is a bit sore when it presses against the side of my shoe. So it's a bit uncomfortable when I walk. Mostly better today. In future I don't think I will take both Tuesday and Thursday off because they are almost in a row, only one day of exercise in between. It's a bit impractical in terms of resting my body between days of exercise.

Anyway... so I was home all day, alone, working away at the computer. A bit bored. A bit lonely. Lunchtime turned into a degustation. First things from the diet plan. Then some inoffensive soup. Then some low-calorie but extra-carbs-not-on-plan cruskits. With butter. Finally I raided the cupboard for leftover junk from Tuesday night. Mmmm, chocolate. Quite a lot of it.

When Joe brought a big bag of chocolate treats over on Tuesday and it was clear there would be lots left over for next week, I said "I thought Janet didn't want chocolate in the house."

"That's why I'm leaving them here," he said.

"Oh no no no," I said. "I am on a diet. This is my treat night, but I don't want junk in the house."

"Oh." Crestfallen. "Maybe Brenton can take them home then."

But I changed my mind. I am strong now! I can trust myself! And I put them away in the games cupboard.

I am strong. Most of the time. But not this afternoon. I ate them after the kids got home, so I snuck the scrumptious little treats up to my bedroom to gorge in furtive secrecy.

Looking at my diet checklist, over the past eleven days of this diet I have eaten the most calories on the three days I didn't exercise. That is just wrong. I need to eat less on those days, not more! But I think when I exercise I feel all virtuous and healthy so it is easier to eat healthily. And when I sit at home in front of the computer all day it is easy to get bored and sluggish and go looking for a wake-up from extra calories.

I need a balance between forgiving myself for being human, and not being so casual about overeating that it becomes acceptable. I'm still working on it.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011



During all my struggles on Monday I stayed strong, but yesterday I was finding everything easy so of course I went on a huge binge last night. I had planned one indulgence and ended up eating about five -- a 700 calorie bender. On well, moving on.

Today I did BodyPump and really worked hard. I had some anger to fuel me -- Jasmine broke yet another pair of school shoes yanking the band to achieve her tournique-tight preference -- so I upped the weights on the back and tricep tracks and did all the lunges and even tried some modified abdominal work.

Then I took Aiden to the library and picked up the CSIRO diet's recipe book, and did the grocery shopping. Unfortunately I didn't have time to go through the book before the shopping, so no exciting new recipes this week. We had salmon tonight, and as usual everyone (including me) complained. We just don't like fish, no matter how excitingly it is prepared. So we definitely won't be having two serves of fish a week. The occasional tin of tuna or stir-fry of prawns at lunchtime will have to do.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Much better


Well I am very glad to say that after yesterday's struggles today doesn't feel difficult at all. I am having a day off exercise to rest my body so I have been working; instead of yesterday's bleariness I am feeling fresh-brained. Sticking to the diet is easy again and I made a recipe from the CSIRO book for lunch -- prawns with chili and garlic and lots of asian vegetables. I guess some days are going to be harder than others but I am so glad that they are not all that hard. And I did so well! Yes I had a bit too much pasta; but compared to the binge I was longing for, that was nothing.

Thursday night's supper has been moved to tonight so I am looking foward to having one of my indulgences; but it is a pleasant anticipation, not the desperation of yesterday. I was planning to have both my indulgences at once, but was reminded today that I am going out on Friday to a trivia night so will save one for a treat then.

I just feel healthy and light-hearted today.

Jodie made it through Day 1 of her extreme diet with no problems.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Struggling today


Today really feels like a struggle. I am not physically hungry, but I want to eat. I want to nibble at something crunchy and salty and unhealthy. I know what I have planned for dinner and I hope to get some tasty fruit for afternoon tea while doing a mini-shop with the kids after school, so the only thing that would be acceptable to my diet right now is a yoghurt, basically. And I don't want a horrible cold slimy sweet yoghurt. I want fried chicken! Or chips! Or a hot chocolate.

I could have a hot chocolate, if I was prepared to spend an indulgence on it, but: 1. I want to save both indulgences for supper tomorrow night, and 2. I don't want to have an indulgence in this mood. It would feel like I've given in.

I went to the gym this morning and got changed in the downstairs part even though the class was upstairs because I wanted to weigh myself again. Even though I knew a bad result would make me feel bad/worse. But the door to that room was closed and I didn't want to try it in case an instuctor was giving someone a health check in there. So I didn't get to weigh myself.

Then I did BodyPump, which I usually enjoy. It was hard. It was my fifth day in a row of exercise, including two classes yesterday -- one of them Pump -- and my body was just tired. My shoulders hurt and my knees hurt and my toe hurts where I tore the nail last night. I left before lunges. I just couldn't face them. This meant I did about 40 mins. I am trying to see the positive of having done that much.

I am working today -- really easy work of the first read-through of a manuscript. But my mind keeps wandering and my eyes keep blurring staring at the screen. I've done a bit of housework. Anything other than what I really should be doing. I don't know why today is so hard. I don't even have PMS. I feel guilty for feeling like this when my life is so easy. Maybe I'm just tired. I think I have found before that the fifth day of exercise in a row is bad, maybe it's still a bit much for me. I have to push myself hard -- but in moderation. Hmm.


At the shops both kids chose a packet of chips (crisps) for their Monday shopping treat. I got a punnet of strawberries for myself. I love strawberries, and a whole punnet to myself really is a treat this early in the season. But oh Gods I wanted those chips. Standing in the check-out queue I was seriously debating with myself whether I wanted to lose weight more than I wanted a family-size bag of cheezles with cream cheese in the middle. It was a close-run thing! I was literally nearly crying as I struggled with myself. If there had been a junk food display next to my register I don't know if I could have stayed strong.

Then the kids ate their chips in the car and I was inhaling that beautiful salty fatty potato smell. I wanted to ask them to share. But I felt that "just one" would be my undoing and I would end up crash-tackling my own children for their whole bag of chips. They finished at home, and when I was clearing up the empty packets I saw one tiny chip on Aiden's chair. So little, so tempting... I threw it in the bin.

In the end, I settled for having too much pasta at dinnertime and fatty Thousand Island dressing on my salad. I am feeling over-full and bloated, but much more at peace with something really satisfying in my stomach. I think I did pretty well today, after all.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Sunday weigh-in: 79.3 kg; down 1.1 kg


I was very nervous again about getting on the scales this morning, and with good reason. 79.3 kg. Up 200g since Friday. I know that weight fluctuates, and that it is still a loss of 1.1 kg since last Sunday, but my weight has been going up and down so much that I really really wanted to see it go down twice in a row. It was quite disheartening to see it up a little bit. Actually, when I first stepped on the scales it said 79.6 kg! I refused to believe it and tried again, getting 79.3 three times in a row. I knew I couldn't trust my home scales but I had put my faith in the gym ones. Now I'll have to resist the temptation to get on and off a few times each weigh-in to check.

Over the past 8 weeks, my Sunday weigh-ins have been:
79.6, 80.0, 79.4, 79.8, 79.9, 80.9, 79.9, 80.4 and now 79.3. So you can see my frustration with this up and down of up to a kilo, and why I am not ecstatic about losing the same kilo yet again. I just have to tell myself that this week, now that I am watching what I eat as well, is the start of a consistent downwards slide.

CSIRO starting weight: 80.4 kg
Goal weight: 58 kg by my next birthday (10 months); approx 2 kg/m
Mid-goal weight: 70 kg by Christmas (4 months); approx 2.5 kg/m
Mini-goal: 75 kg

I went into my 50/50 class feeling a bit crushed, all my energy suddenly evaporated. But I pushed through it and then did a BodyPump class as well. Of course I couldn't have done more cardio, but Pump is different. And I was in the mood for needing to feel strong. Each track focusses on a different muscle group, so just when you think you can't do any more they change the muscle focus and you can. It's the first time I have done two classes back-to-back (or even on the same day) so that was pretty good.

Stats for 50/50: 57 min, 17% zone 0, 65% zone 1, 18% zone 2, 199 calories, average HR 116, peak HR 138.

Stats for Pump: 47 min, 69% zone 0, 30% zone 1, 1% zone 2, 108 calories, average HR 98, peak HR 127.

My four weeks off work are over, so I need to make a new exercise plan starting tomorrow. I am trying to plan my work better, for a start, so I don't get frantically busy was the deadline approaches. I freelance so I am in control of every aspect of my work: how many jobs I take on, what deadlines I give myself and therefore the client, and how I organise my time. In the past I have tended to slack off a bit in the first couple of weeks then worked weekends and evenings at the end of each job. It is not good time management. I will pace myself better, and I am also giving myself a week space between each job in case I go overtime or other things come up as they tend to do.

I have four working days with no kids; I will keep two devoted entirely to work, and exercise plus work on the other two; then see how that goes time-wise. Getting the kids to school/preschool in good time rather than at the last minute will help me do a little cardio before my classes.

Monday: BodyPump + elliptical if I have time before class. Work.
Tuesday: Work.
Wednesday: Bodypump + elliptical (Aiden in creche). Shopping, library, time with Aiden.
Thursday: Work.
Friday: Zumba + treadmill if I have time before class. Work.
Saturday: BodyStep.
Sunday: 50/50 + BodyPump.

Exercise on five days, three cardio classes and three weights classes plus bits of cardio on weights days.

I need to get a bit more incidental exercise into my life. Walking the kids to school. Housework. Gardening. Using my little weights and Step at home. Riding my bike.

Friday, September 9, 2011

More rambles about my "journey"


I had lovely sleep-in this morning and remembered to have lunch before I went to my BodyStep class, so I had enough energy to get through it without actually collapsing. It felt more achievable than last week, but still completely exhausting. I had to have a nap this afternoon. After all this exercise, I still don't feel that much fitter. But I will just have to keep going.

Stats: 57 mins, 15% zone 0, 54% zone 1, 31% zone 2. 205 calories, average HR 118, peak HR 135. Maybe I should start recording minutes in each zone rather than percentages.

After two days of wholemeal bread, both times fresh (not toasted) with cheese, today I had poached eggs on a slice of toast for lunch. And it was HORRIBLE! The same bread, yet now it was back to my previous experiences and dislike of wholegrain bread. I don't know if it was the fact that it was toasted instead of soft, or the difference in topping, but I hated it. I ate it, rather than toasting a hi-fibre white slice, because I didn't want my eggs to go cold; but I resented every calorie that I was eating without enjoying. I will experiment, but might have to only have wholegrain when I have just bought it fresh and not get a whole loaf. I am not willing to eat something I dislike so much. My hi-fibre low-GI white bread is a reasonably good alternative.

Speaking of resenting food, last night after dinner I had still only had 1.5 of my 3 serves of dairy and although I wasn't at all hungry I decided to have a yoghurt. Dairy is important. And I probably missed snacking. I didn't like the new flavour I tried, so I put it back for my husband to have and had a hunk of tasty cheese instead. It was yummy, but afterwards it kind of just sat in my stomach and I was a bit disappointed with myself. I was genuinely trying to do the right thing by eating all the elements of my nutrition plan, but I felt I had made a mistake by eating something when I totally wasn't hungry -- and well after dinnertime. I need to listen to my body more and only eat what I need.

Other than these tiny hiccups, I am still doing really well on the plan. Looking over my checklist, I haven't quite managed to get in five serves of vegetables most days, and sometimes only have two dairy instead of three. My meat serves might have been a bit smaller than allowed, too, on some days. But I have had a good balance of everything each day. I have had one scheduled "indulgence" (2 squares of chocolate) and am saving the other for tomorrow. I have exercised for an hour or more five days out of six. The only thing I haven't done is eaten fish. The diet recommends two dinners of fish per week and I haven't had any (I had half a tin of sardines one lunchtime). I will work on that. It is tricky because none of us like fish much, especially my husband. He only likes salmon, which is very expensive. I think salmon is the only one my daughter eats, as well. I'll find some new recipes. We need fish that doesn't taste like fish. I currently have both versions of the CSIRO book in the house, with lots of healthy recipes.

The other thing to focus on is liquid intake, this is an ongoing struggle for me. I will continue with it.

I am excited about my weigh-in tomorrow.

Ye Gods but I am tired. And cold, because I am tired. Time to whip up a healthy dinner. Sigh. I like cooking, but often when I am menu planning I decide on complicated recipes then when it comes to that night I don't feel like all the fiddliness and wish I had just bought a steak.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A sneak peak at the scales


It is still two days before my official Sunday weigh-in, and as I started the CSIRO diet on Monday I have only been on it for four full days. But this morning I was in the section of the gym that has my scales, and I was desperate to know if the diet was doing any good. After seven weeks of vigorous exercise, last Sunday I weighed half a kilo more than when I started. No weight loss at all. So I was very nervous about getting on the scales today. I didn't feel like I had been depriving myself much -- especially when compared to the "Crunch Time" diet I looked at yesterday. I felt that I would be miserable, yet not very surprised, if I hadn't lost anything.

79.1 kg! Yay! That is a 1.3 kg loss since last Sunday. My weight has been going up and down the whole time, so I need to keep working to make it stick, but this is the first time I have been down into virgin fat since half-way through my first week of exercise.

Pure awesomeness.

I was so so relieved.

I went into my Zumba class with a light heart and threw myself into it. I even did jumping shuffles where I usually just march. Stats: 56 min, 31% zone 0, 48% zone 1, 21% zone 2, 181 calories, average HR 114, peak HR 142.

Then I went and bought some wholegrain bread.

The soles of my feet were still a bit tender this morning, the first time I remember it lasting until the next day, but they were fine through Zumba. It is only the long walks that hurt me. Very odd.

Wholemeal bread and sore feet


This morning I did the shopping I couldn't do yesterday. At Bakers' Delight (a bread shop, obviously), buying my usual hi-fibre low-GI white loaf, I looked over at the wholegrain bread. "But I don't like wholegrain," I whined to myself. "But they have a half-size loaf," I told myself. "You could just try it." "It will still be a waste," I insisted. Then I saw that, of course, they have rolls. So I was forced into the decision by my roving eye. I bought a Country Grain roll, just to try.

Back at home; I cut it in half to make a single-slice equivalent, put a scrape of butter on it, and had a nibble. Actually not too horrible. Rather than the sponge-cake experience of white bread; it was denser and kind of nutty. The seeds/grains/whatever they are -- detested as a child, like little crunchy bugs in the bread -- were surprisingly ok. So I put my cheese ration on top (camembert today) and ate it up. And enjoyed it. Satisfying and yummy. I can't believe it. Am I sick or something? Me, eating wholegrain bread?

Then I went on my walk around the lake. Today I decided to be wacky and different and walked around the lake clockwise instead of the other way. I'm full of surprises today. But I didn't like it so much. Firstly, when crossing bridges I was now next to the traffic rather than on the outside so I got more noise and pollution. Secondly; as Australians walk/drive/cycle to the left, I was now walking that little bit further! When counter-clockwise I was right next to the lake, on a fractionally tighter circle. Every step counts, people! Thirdly; which is completely pyschological but/therefore important, it felt further. Where I park is close to one of the bridges, so usually when I cross the second bridge I am nearly "home". Walking the other way, after crossing my second bridge I still had a long way to go.

I was wearing my new joggers, and actually did two short jogs of about 50 metres each. My feet were just as hot and tired and sore by the end as they were in my cross-trainers.

Now here is the possible deal-breaker. Every (i.e. all three) times I have done this long walk, after sitting for a while at the end (library or even just driving home) my feet are horribly painful when I stand up again. It isn't the muscles or tendons; it feels like the soles of my feet have been sandpapered and I can literally hardly walk. It is worst initially, but still sore for the whole rest of the day. I hobble out to my car, trying to stand on the sides of my feet rather than the soles; hobble around the school getting the kids, trying not to look like I just had an enema that went wrong; and collapse at home. This cannot continue. I can accept muscle stiffness from exercise (my thighs are sore right now) but this pain just feels really wrong. I assume that my feet get sweaty and rub against my socks, even though I wear sports socks. I have tried different socks, and now different shoes, with the same result. I exercise for just as long and more sweatily at the gym without even a hint of this problem. I might try once more next week, taking a change of shoes and socks in the car to see if that helps, but otherwise I will have to give up my walks which would be a shame.

My feet get a bit sore while I'm walking, but the pain doesn't really hit until I have been sitting for a while and then get up.

After school pick-up we went to a friend's house and I had a cup of tea with Jodie while the kids played. She put out some food for us -- with things I liked including camembert and the rice crackers I had brought -- but I had no difficultly saying no. I had actually brought a piece of fruit with me, as that was my allotted afternoon tea, but I didn't eat it. I was happy with my cup of tea. I still felt full from lunch (is this the wholegrains kicking in?). One thing we chatted about -- for just about the whole visit actually -- was dieting and exercise. She had the book I am dieting from and loaned it to me which was lovely. I had looked at it again at Caroline's house on Tuesday and found something I was doing wrong, and looking at it again today I found something else. So it's good to actually have a copy to read carefully, and it has lots of recipes in it too. I am getting a copy from the library but I was about 4th on the waiting list.

The things I was doing wrong were 1. you can only swap out one of your slices of wholegrain bread for pasta/potato/etc, not both, you have to keep one slice of bread -- presumably for the graininess -- and 2. my protein at lunchtime is up to 100g. I don't have to force down the whole 100g, which turns out to be quite a lot of meat. I do still have to eat a whole 200g at dinner.

Jodie had tried this diet and said she liked the recipes and still uses them and that she lost 3 kg in the first week she went on it. Trying not to get my hopes up. Hmm, didn't ask why she isn't still on it, if it works so well.

Because she is about to start a new diet. Our Biggest Loser trainer, Michelle Bridges, has a book called "Crunch Time" and now has an online program to go with it. You sign up for a twelve week course and get menu plans and exercises and chat to other people on it and watch little videos from Michelle. A whole lot of people start at the same time. She had registered and paid without really checking it out, so we looked at it together this afternoon. The exercises looked alright, for week 1 at least, 6 days a week and a good variety. But the menu plan! OMFG! I was heavily critisized for going on a 1000 calorie per day diet, but this is lower! Most days were around 900 calories, one day was 805. Saturday you got to splurge on 1200. Jodie is going to lose her 6-8 kilos in about 2 weeks, I reckon, but she will be fainting at work every day. And cranky and miserable. How is she supposed to exercise on that?

I should say that I haven't seen the whole plan or read it carefully and maybe there are snacks that you get to add in every day or something. But it didn't look like it. I will keep you posted. Jodie said that a friend of hers did it last year and it was "hard" but she lost a lot of weight.

Don't you lose a lot of muscle with weight-loss that dramatic? It sounds unhealthy to me. Caroline, my dietician friend, would have a fit. The funny thing is that Jodie actually works for dieticians, I wonder what they will think of it.

I am very happy with my CSIRO diet. Oh, but if I don't lose weight in this first week it will kill me.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fighting it off, damnit


Looks like my tiredness and muscle soreness yesterday weren't just from lots of exercise. My daughter came home from school tired, but I didn't pay much attention as I just been telling her what a lovely "nap day" it would be if we had the time -- cold and dark and rainy -- I thought she was just agreeing with me. Until she fell asleep at her playdate. She didn't eat any dinner and went to bed very early, her forehead rather hot. I was continuing to feel tired and achey and a bit headachy, and didn't go out to my writing group meeting.

This morning Jas and I are much the same as yesterday. I am keeping her home from school, and she is still in bed. The only problem this may cause is that it is my big shopping day. Not many vegetables left and no meat for dinner. If Jas is well enough, we might go on a quick shop later, just getting enough for one or two days. Otherwise it will be home-delivered pizza -- horrendously bad for the diet.

I don't care if I am sick for a day, I needed a rest day anyway, but I really don't want a long break from exercise. I was getting into a routine! Getting fit! Arg! My eyes are grainy and sore and my throat is feeling very tight and my nose is starting to run.


Jasmine perked up by mid-afternoon and we did a quick trip to the shops for dinner ingredients, so that was ok. I've been headachy all day and my back and knee hurt, but nothing too bad. Hopefully all better tomorrow.

I am very proud of myself for not using feeling unwell as an excuse to stuff myself with junk food. I decided to have one of my two "indulgences" for the week, two squares of chocolate which I melted and drizzled over strawberries. Delicious. I did go a bit over expected calories for the day, but I ate very well.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Zumba and sardines


Zumba was hard today, maybe because it was my fifth day in a row of exercise. I still don't have as much stamina as I would like. I knew I needed a break soon but didn't want to miss Pump tommorrow -- but the decision was taken out of my hands as when I went to book Aiden into creche (Wednesday is his home-with-mummy day) I found they were already booked up. You are only allowed to book two days in advance, but one day in advance is nearly always too late!

The instructor added some new tracks, which unfortunately meant my favourite Bollywood-style track has been dumped! I actually called out in class to complain, doing a little dance to show which track I meant. It is usually the second track we do, so I knew straight away when it was gone. But the instructor said we'd been doing that one for too long. :(

Other bloggers who say things like "no one is watching you, no one cares, just do it": you're wrong! I watch other people all the time and wonder about them. There was a lady up the back today, hiding right in the corner next to the stack of Steps and weights. Middle-aged and a bit overweight, what was comment-worthy was that she was in normal street clothes -- a long-sleeved synthetic blouse and a long skirt, flat shoes not gym shoes. She kind of stepped through the class tentatively, not moving much. I wonder if it was her very first time in a gym? I'm not trying to say don't do it, just that there is always someone interested in you!

My stats were: 60 min, 49% zone 0, 43% zone 1, 8% zone 2, 168 calories, average HR 107, peak HR 135.

My body was definitely tired, my left thigh started aching almost straight away and my lower back was hurting by the end. Still is. I was wearing my old shoes not the new ones, so it wasn't that, just a bit of overwork I think. Day off tomorrow.

Still "perfect" on the diet. I am shopping tomorrow so I have spent a bit of time meal-planning this morning. I was feeling rather peckish last night, despite being full -- mainly bored because my husband didn't get home until 9.30 -- but just had some home-made vegetable broth which is allowed and practically calorie and fat free. I had struggled with drinking enough fluids during the day and foolishly had a couple of glasses of water after dinner, plus the soup. I was up three times in the night to pee.

I had sardines as my protein for lunch today. I used to like them as a kid, but I think I last had them about 15 years ago. I remember it well. I was living in a little flat at the time, and one day I went to clean the oven by using a commercial chemical cleaner than you spray on the walls of a cold oven and then leave for a couple of hours before scrubbing. I forgot about it. The next night I turned the oven on to preheat it and was in the kitchen preparing dinner. I noticed an odd smell but ignored it for a while. Eventually I saw strange white smoke coming from around the door of the oven, and remembered. I don't know how much of the nasty chemical I had inhaled.

I assume this was the cause of my illness over the next couple of months. I had frequent bouts of vomiting (I think it started the day after the incident) but felt ok other days. Eventually I went to see a doctor who arranged for a stomach x-ray. This was one of the more unpleasant experiences of my life. First, as the stomach is a bit wrinkly, they need to smooth it out for a clear x-ray. They give you two liquids to drink which combine in your stomach to make gas which expands your stomach a bit like a balloon -- nice and smooth. Then they give you thick radioactive drink like concrete or liquid chalk. If you vomit anything up of course you have to start again. I didn't care so much about the barium meal -- the radioactive bit -- it wasn't nice but it was bearable. But the starting liquids were just revolting. You have the nurse there talking calmly into your ear "Don't throw up, don't throw up" but holding a bowl just in case.

I think I did throw up once so had to drink the stuff again, but they got the xrays in the end and I went home. I knew I was going to empty my stomach, I couldn't hold it in forever. But the thought of tasting that stuff again, on the way back out, was horrifying. So I started to scoff whatever strong-tasting foods I had in the flat, anything to disguise the taste of the liquids when I threw them up. I remember sardines clearly, and chocolate I think. It sort-of worked.

The end of the story was that the doctors didn't find anything wrong, but also I stopped having my vomiting episodes. Was I cured by that huge purge? Maybe it cleaned all the chemical residue out of my system. Or maybe it was coincidence and I had just had a series of normal tummy bugs.

So, back to today, I didn't enjoy the sardines at all and couldn't finish them. Whether from the bad memory or just because I don't like fish much, they seemed a waste of my limited calories. They are off the list of my approved proteins. And the taste stays in your mouth for way too long.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The beginning


Day one of the CSIRO diet is going well. Of course it has only been about 5 1/2 hours, but I am feeling strong.

I forgot to mention that I weighed myself at the gym yesterday -- 80.4 kg. Up half a kilo (about 1 pound) since last week. Up and down and up and down. But with the diet starting today I am hoping it is all down from here.

Woke with a bit of a headache this morning and had the usual hassle getting the kids ready for the day. They were playing some game at breakfast that involved lots of giggling and lots of Cheerios on the floor. The cereal I had planned to have was down to the last bowlful of the packet which meant it had a lot of crumb dust. Luckily we had another box, so I threw the old stuff away. Had my cereal with milk and a little piece of cheese to bring it up to a full serve of dairy.

Dropped the kids off, no spare time before BodyPump so straight into it. I increased the weight on my bar to 1.25 each side and went up to a 5 kg plate for the squat track. It seemed just right for me at the moment. I left before abs.

Stats: 47 mins, 82% zone 0, 18% zone 1, 98 calories, average HR 96, peak HR 123.

Then I jumped on the cross-trainer (otherwise known as elliptical machine). As I was doing it after Pump today instead of before, my sprints were not the sprints of yesterday. Still pretty good effort.

Stats: 20 mins, 17% zone 0, 44% zone 1, 29% zone 2, 10% zone 3, 78 calories, average HR 121, peak HR 148.

Finally I got on the treadmill for a 10 min cooldown, 20 calories.

I had my banana in the Pink tea room then had a shower and went to the shops. I talked to the shoe saleslady about my revised shoe needs. She thought the cross-trainers I owned were great for Step, Attack and Zumba; but not so good for walking or elliptical or future jogging. So I bought a new pair. I have two pairs of exercise shoes! A new pair before the old pair have fallen apart. This really is a new me. The saleslady said it didn't matter which ones I wear for BodyPump, so if I was going straight from class to the elliptical I should wear the new ones.

The shoes were expensive but came with a free heart rate monitor, which I will save for when mine breaks.

I went to Target for some depressing sportsclothes trying-on. My existing 2 pairs of shorts and 3 t-shirts that have a nice low neck to release the body heat were just not enough. I got a new pair of shorts in size 14 but had to go up to 16 for a t-shirt which was weird as I am not at all top heavy. I hate having to buy size 16. I only got one, I couldn't be bothered changing all the 14s I tried on for 16s.

So I am all geared up for as long as I am this size. I'll buy new stuff when I get to size 12!

I had my high-protein moderate-carb lunch of leftover roast beef and potato with lots of salad. I am drinking water with a slice of lemon instead of cordial to cut down on sugar, but I will still be having sugar in my tea, which is apparently fine. I have ordered the CSIRO book and recipe book from the library.

This diet doesn't count calories, but I plan to at least for the first couple of weeks. I am also going to put in my exersize; but CalorieKing registers about 3 times as many calories used for exercise than my heart rate monitor does. So I am going to make up my own exercise categories rather than rely on their calculations.

My long term goal is to get down to 58 kg, which is the top of "normal" for my height; and to be fit and healthy, which is a bit harder to quantify. A steady half a kilo weightloss would get me there in the 10 months before my next birthday, so that is my plan. 16 weeks to Christmas, an 8 kilo loss would get me down to 72 kg which would be awesome. But in the slightly shorter term, I plan to stick to this diet for 12 weeks, basically the whole of the Australian spring, then review.

If I can't lose half a kilo a week on a healthy, balanced diet while exercising five or six days a week... well... I don't know what I will do. But there is no reason why I shouldn't.

Later: I have finished my eating for the day; eating everything I should and nothing I shouldn't. I didn't quite manage to eat 200g of meat for dinner, only because that wouldn't have left enough taco mince for my husband. I had two taco shells, then wrapped the rest of my meat/tomato in lettuce leaves. I think the main challenges are going to be to eat 5 serves of vegetables every day, and the 3 serves of dairy. Oh, and not eating any junk food. I was at shopping centres twice today; with the smells of the food court and the visual lure of donut shops and chocolate bars and everything else I like.

But day one went very well.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Father's Day -- the last hurrah


We all slept in a bit today then the kids came into our bed for a cuddle and presents for Daddy. Jasmine's presents were hilarious (I thought). She had bought them from the Father's Day stall at school and chose a stubby holder to keep beer cold (Tim doesn't drink beer) and a car air freshner (he rides his bike to work and I mainly use the car). But she made a beautiful card with hours of work sewing the word "Dad" in wool on the front in an intricate design. She is only 7 -- apparently they had some kind of template to help them do it.

Little Aiden made a lovely card in preschool with a lolly taped to it. He was very excited about the lolly, Tim was basically forced to eat it straight away. I gave Tim a board game and some chocolates.

Then we all got up and I cooked bacon, eggs & hash browns for breakfast. I couldn't eat my second poached egg on buttered toast, so my calorie count was only 518 instead of about 700. Actually not as bad as I had feared. There will still be some extra calories later, with snacks at afternoon tea and dessert after dinner.

I went to the gym after letting my stomach digest breakfast. I started with 20 minutes on the cross-trainer and pushed myself really hard with four sprints. I do the program with four hills, each one steeper than the last, and I sprinted for the first half of each hill. I had so much more energy than yesterday! Maybe bacon & eggs isn't so bad.

Cross-trainer stats: 20 mins, 3% zone 0, 20% zone 1, 48% zone 2, 28% zone 3, 1% zone 4. Go me! 95 calories, average HR 133, peak HR 160. That last hill was a killer, but I fought back.

Then I did a BodyPump class. I had some problems at first with the weights nearly falling off; I went and got new clips but it turned out to be the bar. Too skinny for the standard clips or something. Today I really paid attention to how I was feeling during each track, whether I had the right weights for my ability and restrictions, and wrote down comments on each one. There are some tracks I can't use any weight at all -- chest and shoulder work -- but on the other tracks I think I can go up a little bit. I will increase from 1 kg each end to 1.25 kg. I know it isn't much, but I am being careful.

I stayed for the abs track at the end but I really couldn't do any of it. It hurts my neck/shoulders too much to do crunches or planking. Many of the stretches after that were also too twisty for me.

I really enjoyed most of the class and powered through it. Everything was so much easier today than yesterday, and doing some cardio first might actually have helped. Lunges are horrible though!

BodyPump stats: 57 mins, 52% zone 0, 42% zone 1, 6% zone 2. 146 calories, average HR 104, peak HR 134.

The CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet

Three posts in one day. Hmm, have I nothing better to do?

Anyway, remember what I wrote this morning about taking the dieting thing slowly with just a couple of mini goals a week? Well, nah. I think I do better throwing myself into something and getting measurable results which motivate me to continue.

So, from Monday I am going on the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet. Some Australian science boffins came out with this book a few years ago, apparently based on actual science and studies of people on different diets, and it went straight to the bestseller lists here. I don't own the actual book, but I was looking through it at my dietician friend's house a few weeks ago (she doesn't totally agree with it, by the way) and I wrote down the daily plan. I really feel that I need firm guidance. Just "eat better" is not doing it for me. I just read through their website, which confirmed what I had written earlier, and I was able to print out a weekly diet checklist which is great. The amount of calories allowed is much the same as on my online journal at (which I haven't been using very often).

CSIRO stands for Commonwealth Scientific Industrial and Reseach Organisation, by the way.

I am really excited about going on this diet. I have already planned out my menu for Monday and Tuesday.

The diet is described as being high protien, low fat, moderate carbohydrate. It allows more (lean) meat than most diets and less carbs but it is not ultra low-carb. About three serves of bread/pasta etc a day plus two fruits and lots of vegetables. Plenty of protien, which suits me as I am a carnivore. It also includes two indulgence foods per week.

I tried a low-carb diet once, SureSlim (paid for by my mother, who has always worried about my weight more than I do), just before my wedding. I did lose 5 kg but I was obnoxious and miserable the whole time. My husband has often said I am never allowed to go on a low-carb diet again.

Conversely, a diet that worked for me without the horrible side effects was when I had gestational diabetes. They put me on regulated carbohydrates spread throughout the day. I found this very easy, especially as I was doing it for the baby not myself, so I think this CSIRO diet will suit me. It has small amounts of carbs spread through every meal and snack.

There are two ways in which I will not be sticking to the plan religiously. Firstly, I will be eating hi-fibre low-GI white bread instead of wholegrain which I hate, and I hope this doesn't make too much difference. Secondly, I will be having full fat dairy products; and I know that this will make a difference to calorie count and fat intake. The diet calls for low-fat milk, cheese and yoghurt but I just don't like the taste or texture. Maybe eventually I will get to that, but I want to still enjoy my food even when dieting. I'm sure it will help me stick to it, if I am not trying to force down food I don't like. Quality not quantity! I will keep an eye on my calorie count and I may have to reduce my fat/oil allowance. I don't actually have to count calories for this diet, it is based on serves of various foods, but I think I will at first just to see.

I am a bit torn because I want to start now but I don't want to miss out on junk food tomorrow. I shall try to be moderate. And start on Monday.

I run like a girl


Today my gym instructor had a t-shirt that read: "I run like a girl!" I think there was more in small letters at the bottom that I couldn't read from where I was. I thought that was an excellent sentiment, turning what can be an insult into an affirmation.

Tim has his hip hop class in the morning, so I went to the gym at 12.30 when he was supervising the kids at their swimming lesson (first of the season) in the pool downstairs. I had meant for us to have lunch before we left but somehow we didn't have time. I don't know if it was the lack of food, or the time of the month, or the fact I hadn't done BodyStep (by far the most strenuous of my classes) for a few weeks, or a mix of everything -- but I had no energy at all. I was struggling by about the 12 minute mark and I took a while to pick up the new choreography and even had to stop a few times. As usual, I didn't stay for the ab work.

51 mins, 41% zone 0, 56% zone 1, 3% zone 2, 135 cal, av HR 109, peak HR 127. You can see I was going pretty slow, I barely got my HR up at all.

And I was ravenous. I didn't shower after my class but went down to the kiosk and scoffed a Picnic (chocolate) bar in about three bites. Mmmm, chocolate and nuts and caramel and wafers. [I didn't mention this bit to my husband, but he reads this blog -- hi darling!] Then I went into the pool area and helped Tim get the kids back into dry clothes, and easily convinced him that we needed fried chicken and chips for lunch. It was nearly 2.00 pm by this stage and no-one had eaten since breakfast (except me and my chocolate bar, of course).

We finally got the food home about 2.20 and shovelled it in. Obviously future Saturdays are going to need better planning. The kids and I will have to eat lunch very early and have something ready for Tim as he's only home for a short time between activities.

Such a late huge greasy lunch meant that I wasn't hungry at dinnertime and only ate a quarter of my steak and a few mouthfuls of corn and gnocchi.

Tomorrow is a celebration day with more "sometimes" food. Monday I will get back on track. Perhaps that "back" is a bit misleading -- have I been on track yet? Anyway, I will make some careful food plans and work on it.

I had a bit of a chuckle to myself at the start of class today. I got a Step with two "bricks" for each end to raise it as usual. As the instructor was about to start I suddenly noticed that most people around me only had their Step one brick high. But everyone always has two... in Pump! In BodyStep I can barely get through the class with NO bricks, and here I was standing behind two. For some reason I found this funny and couldn't stop smiling as I put the bricks back on the stack. Until class started, and I was too buggered to smile.

Gym six times this week. Five and a half if you want to get picky about leaving early on Tuesday. So a pretty good week for exercise. Very bad week for food intake. I wonder what the scales will read tomorrow. And how will exercise go after bacon and eggs for breakfast?

image by yum9me

Friday, September 2, 2011

What do I really want?

Last night I remembered a scene from Australian Biggest Loser from a few years ago. The contestant, Munnalita (?), mainly wanted to lose weight so that she could have a baby as she hadn't been able to get pregnant. About half-way through the series she gave into a Temptation and ate two Mars Bars (chocolate). Her trainer, Michelle, went ballistic. She said something like, "Is a Mars Bar more important to you than having a baby? Because that is the decision you just made."

Munnalita was furious and upset that Michelle would say something like that. But after a rant and a cry and a long walk she came to accept the validity of the accusation.

Every day we make lots of little choices about our health that add up. Will I exercise or sit in front of the TV? Will I eat three chocolate biscuits or an apple? What is really important to me.

It is important to me that I lose weight and get healthy, and I am prepared to do quite a bit to achieve that. But if I had the choice of giving up ALL junk food: chocolate, chips, biscuits, fried chicken etc to be thin I would stay chubby. I am prepared to moderate my intake of food and exercise a lot to be thinner and healthier. Maybe I will never be truly slim. I can live with fit and curvy.

I am doing well with the exercise, about 5 days a week, but I only have one more week devoted to this. It will get harder when I am busy with work as well. But I just have to prioritise it in my life.

Food is more difficult. I have been reading the archives of DietGirl and, where I am up to, she has started setting herself mini goals each week. I think this is a good idea. My plans tend to be more far-reaching. There is so much I want to achieve, so many areas of my life to improve. But I can't do it all at once.

1. This week, I will drink at least six glasses a day. I am always struggling with this. The idea that we need 2 litres a day has pretty much been debunked, but we need more liquid than I consume to be healthy. I usually have one cup of tea per day, the rest very weak lemon cordial. When I say very weak I mean it, most people wouldn't even taste the cordial. Maybe a tablespoon? I can't believe the instructions on the label that suggest the glass should be about 1/5 cordial. Yuck. Disgusting. Anyway, so I'm going for six glasses.

2. No eating after dinner. Every time I eat late at night (often) I feel bloated and horrible afterwards, so this isn't just a weight-loss thing. I always have a pretty big dinner, and I can have a yogurt of a piece of chocolate or something afterwards if I want, but then I will stop. The only exception will be Thursday night supper when we have people over.

I think two goals is enough. I will continue at least five days per week exercise, but I am not loading myself up with too many other goals or I will just set myself up for failure. Future goals will include tracking my food and cutting down on junk food, but for this week I am drinking more and no eating after dinner.

And, to get back to the start of this post, I will be more mindful overall. I will look at what I am about to do/eat/not do and remind myself -- is this as important to me as losing weight?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Fresh air and sunshine


I found that I didn't have time today to do two lots of exercise, so I chose a walk around the lake over Zumba. Lovely day, already significantly warmer than last week. The photo is of the fountain that spurts up from the lake, on a windy day you can get quite wet walking past. Photo credit to Rowan (Atkinson, presumably not the famous one).

I took a little under 1 hr 15 mins; I think I walked at the same pace as last week but I didn't detour over the little bridge to the Carrillon to read the timetable, and I didn't stop for a drink except at one bubbler (drinking fountain). Last time I carried a backpack with a waterbottle, a banana, my wallet, my phone, and a book just in case I needed to have a break. This time I just put my phone, keys, & ID in my pockets and relied on the bounty of nature.

My feet were a bit sore again by the end, but not as much as last week. Strange that walking for a bit over an hour can make my feet sore when more strenuous exercise doesn't.

I did some work this morning and then went to my daughter's school assembly because her class was hosting; so I did my walk after lunch and went straight from there back to school pick-up.

I really enjoy my walks. I haven't taken music mainly because the iPod needs recharging, but it is nice without music anyway. It gives me thinking time that other forms of exercise that need concentration don't give me.

I have bacon & eggs & hash browns & other unhealthy things lined up for Fathers' Day on Sunday. Still need to work on my diet.

Only one week left of my devoted-to-exercise time. Where did the days go?