Monday, December 30, 2013

On the road again...

...from (very) flabby to fit.

Oh hi!

Here I am (again). Starting (again). Because, yanno, it's that time of year to take stock of things - and "things" are looking mighty flabby, lazy, tight, yuck.

This time last year I was in the midst of 12WBT fever - had lost 5 or 6 kgs (eep - I was 74.4kg on Boxing Day 2012!!!). This morning it's a very scary 82.1kg. Heaviest EVER.

Dec 2012
Dec 2013
Last Christmas, I got a bunch of running booty - Garmin, earphones, cap, 2XU running tights. This year, I got none of that and my tights don't actually fit at the moment.

Last New Year I made a goal to do a half marathon in 2013. At the moment, on the brink of 2014, that feels so ridiculously out of reach! I would be happy to run 5km. 

So (I feel like a broken record) - this is bad, and I have to do something. So I'll start again - nothing fancy - fast days, cut back on junk, get into a exercise routine. I'm starting with just walking the dog - my feet have been killing me (not plantar fasciitis this time, the outside edges of my feet), so if walking is not a goer, I'm going to get in the pool. Whatever - just start moving again.

I went for a 3km walk this morning. So many people out there doing the same thing and running (oh my gosh - I can't even). It's a start and I just need to keep going. If I learnt nothing from that Michelle chick, it's JFDI.



Life is busy, but it doesn't appear that's going to change any time soon. I did the 12WBT and 10km run and lost 10kg whilst being busy, but I didn't sustain it. So I need to find a way to keep healthy for the long haul. Baby steps. I just have to do it, or I'll be posting here that I'm 90kg and that would be scary.

How did you go this year?
Lost/gained weight?
Got yourself into a routine?
Any tips for the fallen?



Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Trying AGAIN!

Hello all my lonely readers! You can take my silence here and on Facebook as confirmation that I have, indeed fallen off the 12WBT bandwagon (again).



My life has been very stressful of late, and although I know that following Mish's advice and guidelines will help me lose weight, look better, feel better and be healthier, it was just the straw that broke the camel's back and I couldn't deal with "being good" on top of everything else I've had to do.

And so I've been paying Mish $20 a week (again) for nothing. Well not nothing, because I've saved her recipes and running plan to my computer this time.

As you would expect, living a lifestyle of crap food and plenty of wine and little (no?) exercise does not lead to good things on the scales. I'm back to 78.9kg as of yesterday. Sigh. I'm on the yo-yo.

So, Weight Watchers, joined gyms, bootcamp, Couch to 5km, Run Fat Bitch Run, juicing, Weigh It Up, 12 Week Body Transformation - I've done them all - lost kilos, run further than I ever imagined, gained kilos...

However, a friend posted something earlier this week that piqued my interest - the Fast Diet (or 5:2 Intermittent Fasting) as "discovered" by Michael Mosely (love his science docos!) on the Horizon documentary Eat, Fast, Live Longer. Go watch it. In his case (and mine!) that all the standard advice is not working.

The idea is that you fast on two (non-consecutive) days a week - where you only eat 500 calories (or 600 for men) on those days. Eat what you want on the other days. Sounds doable! Fasting made easy! And with some good science to back it up. I went and bought the book.

So yesterday, I fasted for the first time. I was HUNGRY in between breakfast (cottage cheese and apple) and dinner (pork yakitori, pumpkin, feta and beans). But I didn't cave - because today I am enjoying my standard fare of raisin toast and chai latte. I really had to stop myself reaching out and just mindlessly eating. It took some thinking, but I did it! And I am so mentally relieved that I don't have to watch what I eat every day - just two days a week.

Just for fun, I took all my starting measurements yesterday - and today, 24 hours later, I am 1.5kg lighter. 1.5 KILOGRAMS! I expect much of it is water, but wow. On Thursday, I'll do it again and then go back to normal.

It is obviously early days and my long-term track record is not great. And as always, I'll blog about it - good, bad and ugly. Because I know I'm not alone here. Keep following me on my journey!

Monday, July 15, 2013

What I missed about running

Finally got my butt off the couch and out there this morning. Just my usual run down at the beach. Me and the dog. Did a little warm-up walk and then jogged (with the odd walk-break in between) for 30 minutes. 3.91km according to my little iPod nano as my Garmin wasn't charged and I now have a humongous "phablet" for a phone which is ridiculously large to run with. Not terribly accurate, but I'm not a terribly elite athlete or anything.

Anyways, I was out there and thought to myself "gee, I really miss this!". Not the huffy-puffy of it all and the tight calves and the niggly sore hip (which is sore without running, so not sure how putting it under duress will pan out), but the joy of running.

In particular I missed:


  • Being out in the fresh morning air, looking at the pretty beach scenery. How lucky am I to live next to the ocean?
  • Listening to my music! I really missed just listening to uplifting, boppy music that sadly has most of it's origins in the 80s (although I can boast the Veronicas and Pink on this morning's playlist as well).
  • Taking my dog for a walk. My slow running pace is his perfect trotting pace. But I wish he didn't feel the need to claim the park grass as his own and pee every 20 metres (note to self - I am the pack leader, he does what I tell him!).
  • The sweaty, tired feeling of a good workout. I'm hoping I'll sleep like a baby tonight. 
  • The smug, self-satisfied feeling that I went for my run this morning.
Do you run?
What do you love most about it?


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Back in the saddle again!

You can take my lack of blogging here that things haven't been going so well in the weight-loss/maintenance stakes and you'd be right.

Since my last post (many, many weeks ago you will note), I have been for zero runs and pretty much eaten (and drunk) what I liked.

OK - it hasn't been THAT bad!

I don't really have any good answers as to why I've fallen off the wagon. I just have made not so great choices. I know that eating potato chips won't be good for my waistline. I know that wine contains a billion kilojoules. I know these things.

I know I feel better when I exercise. I know the dog is better behaved too. I know these things.

And yet...I lapse into old, unhealthy habits.

And so here I go again. Time to lift my game and start treating the old bod a bit better. I've downloaded the first week's Weigh It Up 3 Week Winter Challenge. I am going to just Freaking Do It and start run/walking again. There's a pretty good view from the Sydney Harbour Bridge in September, I hear...

So here is my new starting point:

73.9kg - 162.9 lbs
And away we go again!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

I'm baaaacckkk!!!!!

Oh hello fitness blog! I nearly forgot all about you, but I'm back!

Ready for some stats?

Weeks away: 4
Countries visited: 5
Total distance (Sydney to Beijing): 7271 nautical miles (8367 land miles, 13466 km)
Buffet breakfasts: 27
Four course dinners: around 12


Roast quail main

Chocolate and peanut slice

Visits to the gym: 2
Walks around the promenade deck: 2
Migraines: 2
Colds/flu: 2

Peking duck consumed: 1
Street food hoovered: lots

I can confirm that Peking duck fat is, in fact, divine...

OMG this pork was TO DIE FOR!

 
Dumplings - YES!

I will add that there was lots of food I DIDN'T eat!

Seafood lunch in Korea!

But I also walked. A lot. And climbed a few stairs:



So given I was pretty sick for a lot of the trip and ate a lot and didn't do a lot of exercise, I was thrilled to bits to come back home and get on the dreaded scales and see this:

70.2kg = 154.8 lbs
Alas, I fear that no exercise (brought on by yet another virus and another migraine - them's my excuses and I'm sticking to them) and wine and cheese and pizza and who the hell is Michelle Bridges? may have seen those numbers creep up a bit in the last two weeks.

But guess what? Today I went for a WALK! I know - it's impressive. And I even jogged a fair bit of it. The dog was fairly beside himself with excitement. So hopefully the colds, flu and migraines will leave me alone for a bit and I'll go shopping and get organised and get myself back on track before I undo all my hard work.

Stay tuned to see how I go!


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Holiday health kick???

Regular readers will know I'M GOING ON HOLIDAYS!!!!

Yup. Just 3 more sleeps in my own bed before I board this:


Read it and weep, people!

So. I will be away on a floating smorgasbord for over 3 weeks, followed by a stay in Beijing (a.k.a. home of Peking Duck). How do I reconcile holidays with weight loss/maintenance??

First up, I give up any notion of losing weight. While I don't want to undo all my hard work, I will give myself a break. If I can come home within cooee of 70kg, I'll be a happy girl.

I will use the gym on this floating palace. It looks nice:



There is also a lap pool:


and a jogging track:



I will be restrained at the buffet:



So I can enjoy my Peking Duck in Beijing and Yum Cha in Hong Kong:



But I might climb a lot of stairs:


Wish me luck for 4 weeks without scales!!!!

What are your holiday weight "maintenance" tips?
What's the best holiday you've ever been on?


Thursday, February 28, 2013

Stalled...

Yesterday was Weigh-In Wednesday. 69.6kg (a 400g gain). Happy to say that this morning 300g of that has gone. But my weight loss has stalled somewhat. The post fun-run thing has kicked in. It's almost as if I'm too scared to run. My hip hurts and although recovering, my groin hurts. My holiday starts in just over a week. I don't know why, but I'm just not freaking doing it.

But I'm eating OK (not following the plan 100% but not going over). At least this thing has taught me how much I can eat and I'm making better food choices. I've lost 10kg and that is a huge achievement. I like how I look in the mirror a lot more now.

I've read some stuff on the interweb lately where women are trying to deal with body image - more specifically, the fact they are overweight. This is such a huge issue. And some of it has bagged out Michelle Bridges and the 12WBT program. Apparently we are all  being sucked in by media and this chick who uses plastic surgery to achieve her look. If you believe what you read.

There is a large campaign to not view your self-worth through the lens of media-constructed ideas of beauty. That we need to accept every body is beautiful.





I have mulled this over.

Yes, I agree, your size or your weight should not be connected to your worth as a person. Losing weight is not magically going to make you happy. If you are overweight, it does not automatically mean you are lazy, ugly and stupid. There is a hell of a lot more to life than a number on the scales.

But... Ultimately, being overweight is not good for your health. It means you are consuming too many calories, whatever way you cut it. It means you are at risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease. It means you have fat sitting on your internal organs. It means you are not really looking after yourself.

So when I look at photos of me looking like this:


I know I've lost 10kg and can "run" 10km. But - I need to lose another 10kg. I still have rolls of fat around my middle and therefore in my insides. Those legs are working too hard lugging all that extra weight around.

So. I'm going to get off this keyboard and onto my rowing machine. I might be too scared to run and further aggravate my hip, but I can do something cardio related! This journey isn't over just because I reached a couple of big milestones! This is the hardest thing about this journey - it just never "ends", does it? I know I'm not the only one out there dealing with this - the forums are full of people like me who "fell off the bandwagon" or "lost motivation". 

But we just have to keep on putting one foot in front of the other, don't we? Because I do not accept this body yet - I love it for what it has achieved, but I also love myself enough to keep going.



How do you feel about your body?

Monday, February 25, 2013

The ecstasy and the agony...

The ecstasy:

I can see that I do pronate a fair bit and my Mizunos work hard!

But yay - no heel-striking!

A smile for the camera!

Nearly finished!


The agony:
Friggin' hell it was hot.

And really, really hard work.

And since that day, I've not run at all. AND I've pulled a muscle in my groin and it really hurts (I did this trying to sit cross-legged on the ground - obviously I am too old for that now!).

I want to run but I don't want to exacerbate an injury. I need to get back into a routine (any exercise, I'm not fussy right now). I can see an eery sense of history repeating and I don't want that. What's Mish say? JFDI...


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Wednesday Weigh In!

Alrighty. So if you recall, last week (Week 1 of Round 2 of 12WBT) saw a gain and sadly had me back in the 70s, after scraping into the 60s at the end of Round 4.

This week, I've eaten well (95% of the time), done a 10km fun run, walked the dog and done my toning. What happens when you stay consistent?

69.2kg!! 152.6 lbs
Woot! That's 1.5kg gone from last week! I'm sure a lot of the weight gain was fluid retention from the birthday weekend wine - and a good incentive to stay away from the stuff!

Hopefully, that's the last we'll see of the 70s. And my BMI is now 25.7 - still just in the Overweight range, but ever so close to Normal!

I'm so proud of the 10+ kilograms I've shed. I've been consistent, not silly, however I still have few more to go judging my some of my photos from last weekend:

Rolls of fat begone with you!!!

It's interesting, because when discussing (my obvious) weight loss, some people feel the need to say "oh you can stop now" or "don't go getting all skinny on us" or similar. Well, that's just annoying, people! Because this week I picked up some interesting blood results back from the tests I had just before Christmas - my Fasting Glucose Levels were 5.6 - which by some standards indicate Insulin Resistance or Metabolic Syndrome, especially coupled with my high blood pressure and waist circumference of over 80cm. It's not drastic yet, but I need to keep working on this - not just my weight, but my health too. Luckily all my triglycerides and cholesterol levels were OK :-)

I think those comments come from a place of denial, maybe guilt. I certainly view all my previous excuses about my weight as just that - excuses. This healthy lifestyle CAN be done, it should be done. Sure it involves some choices - less wine, no thanks to chips etc. But that short term "pain" is a hell of a lot better than long term insulin injections!

Other milestones that don't involve the scales this week are my "tight" jeans shorts getting loose:

The things I subject you to!!

And I blogged a while ago (on my homeschooling blog) about putting my "too small" clothes away. I found the bag in the shed after a big cleanup on the weekend - and lo and behold, my size 12 shorts fit me!!! I couldn't do them up 4 months ago!! 

I have a ways to go before I go and buy a bikini and get back to the good ol' days, but if I keep on being consistent, that just may be a goal that's in sight:

That's me in the orange bikini circa 1988!!

Next "mini-goal" is to get to 66kg - that's as low as I got in 2009 when I did bootcamp when I was teaching (but I wasn't starting at nearly 80kg then!). Next week should see me a tiny step closer!



Monday, February 18, 2013

Husky 10K Fun Run Wrap Up!

I did it!!!!



I finally have enough energy/time to sit down and post about my big 10K Fun Run on Saturday!

The days in the lead-up to the big day were filled with sore DOMS legs from toning on Tuesday, feeling very under the weather with a sore throat and fatigue, so I just took it easy, took my vitamins and took a little walk around the block.

The day of the race dawned sunny and steamy. Big storm clouds threatened the horizon. When I went to pick up my husband from work, it was a stinky 30C:



It was so hot and steamy that as I did my housework, I sweated buckets. I wish I took a photo of my bra which was nearly sweated through, but I took pity on you and thought better of it :-) I drank heaps of water and even a coconut water to make sure I didn't dehydrate myself. I had wholemeal toast with banana for breakfast and chicken and pesto pasta salad for an early lunch.

The check-in was at 2:30pm. As we drove there, the heavens opened! 



Hubby was not looking forward to standing in the rain for well over an hour (I bet he was wishing he married a faster runner at that point!). We met up with my partner-in-running-crime Tracey and her fabulous kids who had just competed in the kids triathlon.

We look nervous! What on earth have we signed up for???
It was sprinkling and then raining as we gathered in the start area. There were some very serious looking athletes there and only a few weekend-warriors. We didn't want to be up the front, but I was afraid if I was at the very back I would stay there for the whole race! 

Not a flattering shot - still have a few kilos to go!

That looks better - check out those clouds!

The rain magically stopped, leaving high humidity just as the starters pistol fired!


In both my fun runs (such experience!), the early pace has been fast. And I tried to balance keeping up and not going ridiculously faster than what I'm capable of.  Trace and I just wanted to be able to run the whole thing (a tough ask given the conditions) or failing that, finish!  I soon found my place at the back of the pack, as runner after runner past me, and I felt totally out of breath and stressed! Turns out my pace for that first kilometre was (fast for me) 6:03 min/km. 

Racing down the main drag.
I tried to settle down into a comfortable pace. I turned around and was relieved to find at least a couple of people behind me. Tracey had settled into a comfy pace just in front of me - I watched her bouncy little ponytail most of the race! 


Me at the far right, Tracey to the left in white. Someone else forgot to get a  babysitter... 

I think the only  good thing about this pic is that I'm not heel-striking

I have to say that apart from a few hundred metres or so, it was not an enjoyable run. The only thing in its favour is that it was relatively flat. It was very uncomfortable and my face felt beetroot red for most of the way. The water was for pouring over my head, although I think at one point I must have poured energy drink over my head because my white peak was all orange afterwards! There was some beautiful soul with a hose whom I'm forever grateful to.

The crowd was great, cheering us last few runners on - particularly as we came back to the start position to do lap 2. It was the best feeling to see my hubby, patiently waiting for me to turn up! I handed him my peak as it was just too hot on my head. 

I just kept trying to keep running and not stop. At the halfway point, it was pretty depressing to think I had to do it all again. But our training 10km run is like that, so in some way, I've learned to deal with that. There were only a couple of points (water stations, a little uphill stretch) where I slowed to a walk, but to be honest at times it felt like I was running slower than the girl in front of me who seemed to walk the whole way! I would just catch her, have a little chat (we cheered ourselves on!) and then she took off and I could not keep up.

But I did it. I ran (mostly) 10 kilometres in a race. And I didn't come last - but in fact, even if I did, I still did my best. It wasn't "fast", it wasn't pretty, but I did it! 

The scenic course


Just got slower and slower (but a spurt at the end!) - still a good pace for me :-)


Add caption

So - that's a PB!!! I think perhaps I need to rethink my half marathon plans - not entirely, but for this year. I will continue to work on my weight (much less to lug around!), my fitness and my speed. Next year, I should be able to shave quite a few minutes off that time and move up the finishers list a bit! 

And I have to say a HUGE thank you to Tracey - she and I have done this together and shared a common goal - we ran a 10K! She spurred me on to turn up at dark-o'thirty on Saturday mornings. She kept me running when I wanted to stop. She gave me a ponytail to focus on. And we are going to keep running and keep trying :-)



PS: No bling!!! What's with that? If I run my little heart out, I want a medal - just sayin'....