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 crudit├ęs.

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.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Not waving but drowning

Yes, okay.  I said I’d write twice a week.  I said a lot of things.  And, as we know, the way to hell is paved with good intentions.  Although I’ve never quite understood why you don’t get points for at least trying.  Harsh.

Overall I’m holding steady.  But underneath that top layer is a whole mess.  I’m doing well at the stave days, am wildly erratic on the other weekdays and putting on too much at the weekends.  I have got to get a grip.  I’ve not achieved anything since the beginning of the year and I am not at a weight where a bit of faffery would not be a disaster.  I’m at a loss to know how to hold myself to account – the blogging twice a week was supposed to do that and look how well that went! 

It is the time of year where we do extra long hikes but frankly, this has never made an iota of difference to my weight and I don’t see why this would suddenly change.

Every night I tell myself firmly that there will be no deviation – but I’m not achieving this sufficiently often to have any result.  What to do?  I’m fresh out of fresh ideas – other than digging deep and sustaining the period of resolve into waking hours.

Wish me luck, determination and godspeed (I typed this wrongly as dogspeed – which I like the sound of other than that my mother’s dogs are Labradors and not therefore a good example in terms of greed).

Friday, 22 April 2016

Love is....

Remember those saccharine sweet cartoons? I'm not sure whether they created the phrase or whether they illustrated an existing phrase, but I'm pretty sure that there's an almost infinite number of answers to 'love is...'

Fat is...? Maybe there are as many answers but to me 'fat is..' always wondering whether life would be less difficult if I weren't - and whether if I weren't, I would attract more forgiveness and less condemnation.

Friday, 15 April 2016

Seeing red

Something happened on the tube the other night that gave me pause to think.  Often I try not to think on my commute in case I run screaming into the open air, shouting that it’s unbearable.  I was standing on the tube (obvs) by two girls in their early 20s.  Despite being immersed in my kindle, it became obvious that they were talking about me as one would look at me, turn to the other and say something, then they’d both look at me, then the other would say something... It went on for a bit and my heart sunk.  I started to feel really uncomfortable, unhappy and defensive.  In true passive-aggressive British style, I gave them a hard stare.  Then one said “We were talking about you – about your hair, saying what a lovely colour it was and how much it would suit a friend of mine”.  I guess they must have been hairdressers as they were then saying something like “oh yes, an 897 – maybe with a dash of 278”. 

I have a bit of an ‘issue’ with my appearance at the best of times.  At the worst of times it causes me quite a lot of distress and anxiety.  I guess it’s bubbling up to the surface recently – partly because there’s a lot of pressure to have my photo on my work’s website and partly just because.  I really hate photos btw – I think I look even worse in them that in real life.  But this incident on the tube reminded me that actually, just because I think the worse, it’s not necessarily the case.  If that girl hadn’t said anything, I would have got off that tube, beating myself up mentally for my ugliness and feeling very upset.  It would have ruined at the least my evening, if not my week.  I’d have spent countless future moments obsessing over it again and again (I know this as I’ve had certified bad moments dating back quite some time and I still think about them occasionally).  I can’t, hand on heart, say that it will cure my paranoia, but I will try to remember this.

Still not getting back into a successful chub-reducing mode.  I’m seeing small dips on SoD but my overall stats for the week were 2lbs on.  I had a jump up over the weekend and it’s been steadily – if not very quickly – dipping down but, as I say, overall up.  I’m not letting it derail me though.  At least not yet.  And actually, overall, although I haven’t done very well, I don’t give up, I do just adjust my approach and relentlessly carry on. 

So, outlook for the next week is good – up to official WI day.  No pesky social life to interfere with dieting.  And the following week is looking less good so I really need to make hay this week.  Metaphorically speaking.  Next week I have a pizza evening planned with office pals, and cocktails and dinner (a posh Italian. Restaurant not person) for my stepson’s birthday.  But there’s a whole other WI before then so I won’t fret about that just yet.