Friday, 2 September 2016

Still here - more so, in fact

I know.  Radio silence for – well, ages.  So what’s up?  Well, the first thing that’s sodding up is my weight.  I have been going nowhere for ages and then a week’s hiking (in which I walked almost 50 miles) combined with my birthday and the stress-eating caused by being in a smallish tin box with my mother for a week.  Reader, I put on 4lbs.

My initial goal was to get in not the next stone bracket down but the one below that before we flew off on holiday; it didn’t seem too ambitious but more realistic.  Then when it became clear that I had absolutely no chance of meeting that goal, I revised it to a half stone heavier.  Then when it became clear I wouldn’t reach that, I amended it to just tipping down into the next stone bracket down.  I have no chance of meeting that.

I feel as if I have to pick myself up and carry on regardless too many times.  But what else is there to do?  I certainly shouldn’t be surprised about the exercise not making any difference – I have proven this again and again.  Why do I do the same things and hope for a different result?  Because – and that question was largely rhetorical dear Reader (if there are any of you left! (and I wouldn’t blame you)) – what else can I do?  And yes, because I’m stupid. 

But I can’t think what else to do.  All my plans now are versions of things I’ve already failed at.  So I’m doing the 5:2 (still) and trying to cut my carbs right down because I know I felt better on that and hey, I’ve not done that one for a while.  And I’ve also noticed when I’ve had quite a bit of sugary carbs I get a emphatically dodgy stomach (as in function – obviously form is and has been dodgy since, well, time immemorial).  This is something that has recently clonked me on the head, revelation-wise. 

Of course, my latest incident could also be exacerbated by an unpleasant evening with my mother.  She’d obviously saved up quite a bit of resentment and anger about P and decided to hit me with it.  I wasn’t expecting it – I’d gone over for a birthday meal as she’d not bothered to buy me a present (she couldn’t think what to get, apparently).  Then she was indignant that I was so upset: “Well, I hope you’re not going to let it spoil the evening.  We’ll have to draw a line and get on with it”.  Um.... my evening WAS spoilt – I didn’t even want to eat (I KNOW!) but had to because she’d made a stir fry thing and lemon meringue pie.  P does needle her, but he is also generous with both his time and money and support and she doesn’t deal with it very well.  Either way, I didn’t want to bear the brunt of it.  And I can’t see how we can move on from it – I don’t want to put P in that situation or myself.  And since we’re the only ones who host her for Christmas, I’m not sure what we can do.  I’m trying not to think about it.  Which is always a great tactic for dealing with anything.

Anyway, that was a VERY long winded way of saying that I’m down.  I’m really struggling in fact, humiliating as it is to admit it.  And although I’m looking forward to our holiday in a fortnight’s time, I can’t help but think of all the things that last time caused me to swear that I would be thinner this year – and I think I’m fatter (a few lbs but in the wrong direction).  Okay I won’t be mountain hiking or white water rafting this time (as far as I know!) but there will be plenty of opportunities for me to feel like I look wrong – as there is in everyday life already.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Unhappy anniversary

Oh dear.  You know how my modus operandi is slogging away at the diet and seeing little result or no result?  I went off-piste last weekend.  As in spectacularly off-piste: Reader, I went berserk.  I knew I was going out for dinner on Friday – a deal for three courses and a glass of champagne – and I knew that we were going to meet for a couple of cocktails first in our favourite bar (this was inevitable given that by some twist of happy fate, both places were in the same hotel).  But. 
  • ·         4 cocktails
  • ·         Glass champagne
  • ·         Flight of champagne (three small glasses)
  • ·         Shared a bottle of wine with P (I definitely had well under half)

Eek!  I don’t drink a lot – mainly because of being calorific – so this is a LOT of booze for me.  P went on to have dessert wine and a large whisky – and he’d had two gins before I got there.  Suffice it to say though that when I got up on Saturday I am pretty sure I was still drunk.  This – combined with a dress rehearsal and performance that day (choir) – led to random and reckless eating on Saturday.   And you know that I beaver away and get a fractional loss?  SO doesn’t work the other way around: I put on 4lbs. 

Overall – WI was today – I’m 2lbs up.  And I looked back across my stats and I can see that I’ve been in this stone bracket for a year.  I cannot believe I’ve been slogging all this time and have only got to x.4 – currently I’m x.7.  I had really wanted to be down in the next stone bracket by now.  Hell, by months ago.  Still, I’m not allowing it to de-rail me into another weekend like last weekend.  You may start talking about stable doors and bolting horses.  You may even be right.  But given that I can do that much damage in two days, if I went free-style, it’s possibly for the best. 

Monday, 4 July 2016


We’re coming up to an anniversary for me and SoD.  Yes, it’s been a year that I’ve been in this stone bracket.  A whole sodding year.  So in essence, I’ve done a lovely job of maintaining but not actual losing.  And I’m far too fat for maintaining – it should be coming off me at a far more rapid rate. 

And we had a weekend away with friends so my weight has shot up to the wrong side of the half stone bracket.  Why is this so hard?  Don’t worry dear Reader, it’s a rhetorical question.  I keep plugging on.  I’m hoping that the 4lbs I put on in 3 days comes off as quickly.  But it doesn’t seem to work like that, sadly.  Fast on, slow off.  Would that it was the other way around.

I bore myself with my lack of anything to say.  That’s why I haven’t blogged much recently – it’s bad enough that I’m bored with this, I don’t want to bore you too.

New goals (surely a triumph of optimism over experience): Into the next stone bracket (down, DOWN) by the end of this month and then it should be c6 weeks until our holiday (I say ‘should’ because we’ve not booked anything yet).  I’d really like to have made significant progress towards the next stone bracket by then.  Potential obstacles include: my birthday (end of August), week in Suffolk with my mother (late August – plenty of walking but I can’t imagine doing starve days then), P’s birthday in late September and an afternoon tea in two and a half weeks’ time.

Today is the first starve day of this week; the next will be Wednesday.  I have one sociable thing – dinner with my best friend on Thursday.  This is not a blow-out occasion or even close.  No booze, no pudding, just a main dish and I can chose a (relatively) safe dish – either chicken salad or chicken, side salad and rice.  And that’s a WI away yet.

Head down for weight down.  Fingers crossed.

Thursday, 9 June 2016


I am being cautious as I say this – and maintaining full body contact with wood – but I’ve had a reasonably good week.  By this I mean I’ve been really conscientious on starve days, diet days and weekend.  I was disappointed to see the scales rise after the weekend when I’d been so good, but the total loss for the week is -3lbs, which for me is pretty damn stellar.

I may also have achieved this by dint of buttering Scales of Doom (SoD) up by cleaning it.  Either that or the dust and talc on it weighed quite a bit. 

Either way I’ll take it.  I definitely improve my mood if I’m sticking to it.  If I can skip a meal relatively painlessly I’m positively glowing with satisfaction.  Not quite sure that’s great psychologically but at this point, I don’t think that matters too much.

Today is not one of those days of denial and satisfaction.  It’s our monthly cake bake for charity, and although I’ve foregone both breakfast and lunch to compensate, I have had several small pieces.  But I also threw away (surreptiously) two pieces where I’d had a bite or two and decided it wasn’t worth the calories.  I am also having dinner with P tonight on a deal at Yauatcha (it’s one of those deal things).  I love dim sum and I’m hoping it’s not too disastrous – it’s not burger and chips for instance!  I have to be brave and weigh tomorrow even though I know it’s going to be up – and then focus on getting it back down.  I don’t think there are any other trip hazards before next WI.

I haven’t been at this weight since the end of February.  Which is simultaneously depressing and good.  I stand a faint chance of meeting my goal of getting into the next stone bracket by the end of the month.  You know, dear Reader, that I feel scared thinking that, let alone typing it: I’ve been here too often where even with a concerted effort I fail every single goal.  I don’t want to set myself up for that stomach dropping fall if I don’t make it, but.... but.... I really want to get cracking on with this, I know I’d be happier.  It’s an ambitious goal tbh – means losing 5-6lbs – but I’m hoping that over the next 3 weeks this might be possible.  If it means polishing SoD, so be it.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

The bog of despond

It’s not going well.  I should qualify: SoD is being a git.  I am managing to do the starve days (I always did) and to be stricter on the diet days and the weekend days.  I see a drop after the 1st starve day, usually STS on the 1st diet day, lose a little or nothing on the 2nd starve day and go up slightly on the 2nd and 3rd diet days and over the weekend.  Is your mind boggling at all this?  Mine is.  I come out marginally up, marginally down or STS but overall I’m making little progress.  I can’t believe I’ve been faffing about in this stone bracket since mid July of last year.  That is not progress.  I want to be down to the next bracket by the end of this month.  It ought to be possible – if stretching – but looking at my progress so far (or lack thereof) I’m not sure that all the determination in the world will help me. 

I also want to be down another stone bracket by the time we go to Canada at the end of September (see above for possible/stretching/impossible blah blah). 

Eleven months at the same stone bracket (and not one which would be anyone’s natural weight.  Unless one is a hippo I suppose) is really shocking.  I’ve got to break this deadlock and make some progress.  I do have days when I’m really pleased with my effort – this is usually when I’ve managed to skip a meal if I’ve had a glass or two of wine for example.  I did this the other week: we’d arranged to meet a friend for a cocktail or two and then she and P wanted to have something to eat.  I went, hungry, and whilst they had a cheeseboard apiece, I ate nothing!  Okay, I tried a tiny corner of one of P’s cheeses but practically nothing.  For this heroism alone, I should have shot straight up a ladder down a stone bracket.  That’s the most convoluted metaphors ever – but you get my point.  I guess that two cocktails probably equate to a meal but it still felt pretty damn noble and at least I didn’t do the classic sod SoD and think that whilst I was having something forbidden, I might as well go the whole hog.  Or cow in this case.

Starve days this week are today and Friday (yuck) but I doubt I’ll eat tomorrow night.  The main difference between starve days and diet days tends to be breakfast: I have a coffee on a starve day and fruit and FF yoghurt with a sprinkle of granola on a diet day.  Lunch  tends to be equally light – or near enough – on a starve day and a diet day.  I eat a lot of crudités.

I think I probably need to go back to cutting my carbs right back.  I am going to finish my granola which at 25g three times a week could take some time.  I also often have a packet of low cal crisps as my lunch which I love but which I probably need to cut.  All calories are not created equally, sadly.  Nor are all metabolisms, even more sadly.

The lack of progress is begetting inertia: I feel stodgy and stuck.  I can't summon up enthusiasm  - or even write much - because I feel bogged down in a wearying routine that I am not seeing achieving much.  It's no point in thinking 'well, this week will be different' because it's not.  At least, not so far.  Seems a bit early (and heavy) to be plateauing.  And a bit flipping long.  Renewed determination and focus this new (freezing, wet) month and then regroup to suck oranges and think of my tactics for the rest of the 'summer'.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Future perfect

Oh dear, it’s all a bit heavy weather at the moment.  And of course, heavy me.  I looked back at my numbers and essentially I’ve been faffing about in this stone bracket for about a year I think.  I need to get down another stone bracket (and another and another .... repeat ad lib to fade).  And I feel better if I’m on course and not mucking about – Monday evening, at the end of a long starve day, I felt... I don’t know, powerful?  In control?  Determined?  Yes, all of those.

But as we know, dear Reader, it’s the non-starve days where I mess up.  Yesterday was a challenge; today has been a challenge.  Yesterday as a strict-diet-but-not-starve day added an additional potential spanner in that I had to travel for work (nowhere exciting or exotic) and stay in a Travelodge.  This posed two problems: one, the only food nearby was a Toby Carvery (*shudder*) or a Burger King.  Now, I’ve not been to a Burger King for years, but onion rings and a fat burger issued something of a siren song (yes, I’m totally thinking of singing burgers now...  Surreal.).  Two: being away from home overnight somehow is a trigger to ‘treat’ myself to chocolate and/or cake.  Reader: I bought a low calorie chicken salad and some fruit from M&S before getting the train (almost missing the train in the process and only finding out later that I was on a breakaway half of the train which was suddenly going elsewhere.  But that’s by the by). I even had to go to a petrol station right by the Travelodge (remember what I said about not exciting or exotic?!) and only bought a bottle of water.  If there was any justice in the world, I would have a spectacular loss just for this.

But there’s more.

Today would ordinarily be a starve day.  But with an early start and a work thing away from the office – a work thing with much pressure and many snacks – I knew my usual routine would be hard to stick to.  And then a friend happens to be in London and we’re meeting for a couple of cocktails.  Well, there it is, right there, I might as well eat freely (and plentifully) and starve tomorrow, right?  Wrong.  I’ve eaten frugally – if somewhat randomly – in a kind of semi-starve day and will still do a starve day tomorrow.  I’ll probably be steaming drunk on a couple of cocktails but there we go.

I suspect though that I’m not going to have a good result on the WI tomorrow – only one proper starve day plus evening cocktails tonight is likely to lead to a mean and vicious Scales of Doom tomorrow.  But I feel kind of proud of myself – I just can’t sustain that if my weight doesn’t go down.  We’re likely to be going to Canada in late September and I’d really like to be out of this stone bracket, through the next and into the one below that.  I know.  But I can’t help but hope for this just the same.

PS Canada- we may be going to Nova Scotia for some of it AND (if there are any other Anne Shirley fans out there – she’s the patron saint of all ginger girls with overactive imaginations) we may even go to PEI!  I am actually ‘squeeee-ing’, if only on the inside.

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

The numbers game

Yesterday: cups of green tea = 1 (down from 6), temperature in office = 32 °C (measured but climbing), number of umbrellas in bag = 0, number of torrential showers caught in = 1, number of loose paving stones that sent a tsunami of dirty water over me from above the knee downwards = 2, number of expensive haircuts ruined by rain = 1.

It was not a good day.  It was a Monday. Nuff said.

Oh.  Those numbers.  Well, I’m still gently ricocheting between 2lbs over the half stone mark to 1lb under it.  I really need to make progress down into the next stone bracket – I’ve been in this one since February.  I’m still finding it hard but trying to rein in.  Today for example is a Dieting B day (not starve but not weekend) I’ve just eaten some pickled onion Burton’s Daily Fish n Chips (123 calories) and I really want to eat another bag.  I’m telling myself that I must wait for 20 mins and then see if I still want them.  Ssssh though – I’m not going to have them then either.  I’m also eating out tonight with a friend in Wahaca and I’ve researched the lowest calorie options.  And the colleague – and friend – who buys a steady stream of snacks for the team is on leave for 2 weeks so I don’t have to resist/succumb to those. 

On the negative side, I had booze twice at the weekend.  I usually have 1 aperitif and share a bottle of wine (making sure I have the lesser share) just once a week.  On Sunday we had (extremely delicious) English fizz.  This was a kind of reward for making it through a family lunch – in-laws.  And that’s not fair as they’re mostly very nice but my MIL picks the worst places to eat so we knew what to expect.  The waiter was like a cross between Basil Fawlty and Manuel.  He kept leaning on my shoulder as I was seated, or punctuating his exclamations by swatting my arm.  He even managed to spit on me.  We had a tussle over the right way to lay a table (he was wrong) and he brought serving plates of food from which he – quite literally lobbed – food on to our plates in a jumbled mess.  And it tasted as good as it looked -  Seren would have been appalled.  I left a lot of mine and palmed my pudding off on to P.  The best thing was the After Eight at the end.

Let’s see where all this takes me to on Thursday WI.