Monday, 28 June 2010

The blues

It's been a mixed weekend. I walked 8 miles on Saturday, 5.5 miles on Sunday, yesterday I cycled in and home, despite the utter uselessness of the cycle path re-colouring exercise and today I've done weights and intend to walk in (if it stops raining).

But over the weekend I had - count them - THREE ice creams. What's even more annoying is that they weren't for the right reasons. The first one was. The second one was mid-walk because I was hot - and it wasn't very good. The third one was as a result of rage that I'd been denied my much anticipated tea on Sunday (the shop was closed). I'd allowed myself to get far, far too hungry to offset as many calories as possible and was at the wretched, tetchy stage when I found out the place was shut. We had to go into the nearest cafe and have a lacklustre sandwich - I couldn't even summon the energy to come up with a Plan B (most unusual). I then had an ice cream to 'make up for' not having had tea - and again, it wasn't very good (note to self: Bennett's ice cream is just not worth it). I really, really resent using calories for something that I don't enjoy - and although I can learn from this, the damage is still done.

I am feeling increasingly panicky about my weight and not losing it - mainly because of last week's fiasco - and that feeling makes it more difficult to get a grip on sensible eating. Ridiculous but true. So I'm still fighting but not very effectively or successfully. I'm white knuckling it, hoping for brighter things ahead (but finding it difficult to expect that they will happen). Yesterday I was very hungry (as a reaction to the carbs over the weekend and cycling I suspect) but managed to eat pretty sensibly - but it's still a real effort.

I experienced parts of the much exaulted cycle superhighway yesterday - most of the cycle path cunningly shuts randomly and dangerously with no provision for exactly where you're supposed to go safely (or at all). But curiously, in Limehouse and Poplar, the cycle path is more of a series of blue boxes, randomly scattered along the road. I am not sure of the significance or purpose of these (far less the actual usefulness or cost-effectiveness) - are they sanctuary where vehicles aren't allowed to hit me? Or am I supposed to jump, frog-like, from one to another? Grrribitt

Thursday, 24 June 2010

SoD bothering

Well. My love-hate relationship with Scales of Doom continue. I hate it, it loves to hate me. Previously on Peridot (to be said like the intro to each episode of 24). Week 1 – lose ½ lb, week 2 - lose ½ lb, week 3 – lose 4lbs (yay!) ......and..... week 4 – put the whole sodding lot back on. Yes, UP 5lbs. Now, I had accepted that I might show a modest gain this week, what with being dehydrated last week and a few slips since then (although, frankly, they were just nibbles and slips – no dramatic binges) but THIS IS BEYOND THE PALE. It’s beyond a whole dairyful of pails actually. The rest of the world is probably entirely denuded of pails after this.

I don’t think I need to say how utterly, utterly depressing this is. Last week I was within a sniff of a stone bracket down; this week I’m back up in the middle of the higher stone bracket. I was even thinking how once I slip down into that lower stone bracket, I would only be just over a stone off (ha!) the point where I don't feel wretched and blubbery. I try not to over-dramatise but found a tattoo of panic beating in my head on my walk in (note: WALK IN, SoD) – I’m going to be a fat bride, I’m going to be a fat bride (repeat, ad lib to fade). True, it’s over 2 years away but I am going no-where fast. I could cry, I could dissolve into a pool of panic and misery which would require bolstering with sugar and sympathy. Instead, dear Reader, I will try and quell my panic and just. Keep. On. (Sodding). Going. And hope for better next week. Please let it be better next week.

This weekend is going to be a bit mixed in terms of getting me further towards or away from my goal. My mother and the Lab pack are coming up to the tin hut for the weekend. We’re having fish and chips on Friday night (mercifully small portions - it's a v posh chippy), Saturday will all be healthy and Sunday we’ll probably do tea in lieu of lunch (and quite possibly dinner) in a dear little tearoom – which means carb city central of course. So I’ll have F&Cs, wine and tea to atone for. On the other hand, we’ll be walking on both Saturday and Sunday and I will be trying to cut cals everywhere else to make up for it – I should at at least manage a super virtuous week next week. If anyone ever finds out how to have your cake, eat it and not register the cals, do please let me know.

And I’m still not back to cycling because of the whole imperilled life thing. In fact, I got a slightly snotty response to my email to the council on this. They said that there was a diversion sign in place and probably “cyclists” were ignoring it. I replied that there was one lack-lustre sign which appeared to be pointing towards a busy road (picture yourself cycling the wrong way on the hard shoulder of the M1 and you won’t go far wrong) and that couldn't be the case. I wondered whether there was some sort of safe but secret path that opened up if you went in the direction of the arrow but that it was only accessible by magic means, much like Brigadoon. I have yet to hear a response to this.

And finally - please let it be better next week.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Getting a grip

I have rather gone off the rails over the (long) weekend. I would say that my eating from Thursday to yesterday was less than impressive. It wasn’t awful and certainly didn’t compare to one of my sugar fest blow-outs but I didn’t make careful choices and consequently ate a load of junk and carbs. Why? Well, it’s something I’ve been mulling over. Is it that after a loss on Friday, I got nervous because I knew I couldn’t sustain that and would in all likelihood see a gain this week, whatever I did? Especially since I’ve got a B-I-G meal on Thursday night and my period is due? Is it that my current weight is 2lbs away from dropping into the next stone bracket (down!) and that is a milestone I’m anxious to achieve – and scared that I’ll be going in the other direction (so near, and yet so far!)? Is it actually because the pressure has ramped up even more at work which always sends me bucketing sugar-wards? Or is it – as Naughty R once said to me - actually because I am “just fucking greedy”?!

I don’t know – it could be all or none of those reasons in truth. But with a birthday party in less than 2 months, a summer holiday in c 3 months and a wedding in, er, two and a half years(!), I have to keep focussed and stick with the programme. I’m getting a bit of help to tweak aforesaid programme too, btw. I’m still doing that thing that I suspect all people (women?) who want to lose weight do: ‘if I lose 2lbs a month then I’ll be X for Y occasion.... Right, but if I lose 4lbs a month then I’ll be Z for Y occasion.... Right, but if I could manage to lose 7lbs then...’ Then, that would be fairyland, dear Reader! I can only do what my sluggardly body will allow but I’m not helping myself with extra noshing on crisps, haribo, wine, chocolate (albeit the dark stuff) or bread. So, that’s stopped sharpish. And I’m going to weigh myself on Thursday this week – before the B-I-G meal. I suspect I will still be up on my dehydrated state of last week but why make it worse for myself? Then I’ll keep the faith until Friday 2 July and perhaps aim to get underneath that pesky stone barrier then. Keeping calm and carrying on.... (Honest)

Weekend was mixed – it was lovely to get down (up? Across?) to Suffolk but the weather was freezing. I met friends for dinner on Saturday night with a ginormous fleece on top of my outfit, I was so cold. E had a fleece on too! BNF toughed it out and looked like a normal person with 2 weirdo girls (and one of their husbands), whereas we actually know it’s the other way round! Ha! We spent most of Saturday trying to find and then fit a new wiper blade to the car – surely a task that must feature in the torments of the rings of hell. We had to keep stopping because of the rain even to buy the sodding thing. It’s not on properly even now and we kept expecting it to ping across the road – I think it’s held on with a mixture of hope, perspiration and frustration.

Sunday was my most chaotic day of eating – basically because I had a random day and no food so ended up grabbing stuff when I was desperate (never a shrewd strategy when that food is a white cheesy-bread roll – a gazillion calories, I imagine, and utterly no satiating qualities at all, but damn quick into the blood stream). As BNF said – and I’m not impressed by this AT ALL – I have a long way to go to lose the weight I want for the wedding (he did say he has too). I’m most particularly not impressed by this since he said it after an afternoon in the pub with his family where he drank 4 pints and I had 2 mineral waters. Just because he walked up the stairs and I got the lift! Admittedly I’d just scarfed most of a cheesy-bread roll (not the stale crusty bits around the edge, a girl’s got some standards!) admittedly whilst he looked on, slightly pained and superior. And beery.

Friday, 18 June 2010

SoD moves in mysterious ways

I plead the fact that it was early, but when SoD first showed me that I’d LOST 4lbs this morning, I immediately assumed I’d actually put on weight (I look at the big lines (stones and half stones) and where the dial falls relative to those. Then I wandered around perplexed – what had I done differently? Was there a pattern? I remembered that last month I’d lost or gained dribs and drabs for 3 weeks and then had a more respectable loss for 1 week. Was it that? Then I remembered that I’d pretty much had my bottom soldered on to a loo for 2 days. Ah, I thought, that’ll do it I guess. Frankly, it was a better result and more pleasant than doing Lighter Life, but not possible (or desirable) to replicate every week. And the pleasure was marred by memories of my mother warning me that although it might seem that I’d lost weight, it would actually be dehydration and would come back. My next SoD encounter will be fraught with anxiety as I mentally keep my fingers crossed that I manage to hold on to that loss...

I managed to do quite a bit of walking since last WI (despite illness) and weights twice too (justification for loss, frantic justification). I haven’t cycled – partly because of illness but also because the cavalier destruction of the cycle paths and cheerful redirection of cyclists into peril and possible death has also put me off rather. Call me a coward if you must. There will be no cycling next week either because of various evening commitments, though I should be able to get some walks into work in in my fitflops. Milly asked me if I’ve seen any benefit from them btw. Unfortunately I can only say it’s the equivalent to painting the Forth Bridge with an eyeliner brush - so I don’t think the fact that my arse is still lardtastic rather than peachy and perky is necessarily an indictment of the efficacy of Fitflops.

I’ve also gone cold turkey on the nut butter – I noticed that I was having 2 hefty tsp in the morning to tide me over until I got to work to have breakfast, another in my porridge and then probably at least as much again in the afternoon on an apple. Beth reckons this could be 400cals! Eeek! My fears were justified. I’m trying a summer breakfast of homemade low cal granola, 0% fat Greek yoghurt and fruit so no nut butter required!

I’m actually going to have a good hard look at my diet and work out the best way forward to try and lose at least two stone by this time next year (have given up on looking decent for my birthday party this year). At an average loss of 0.5lbs, it will actually take me a year and 2 months to lose that weight. And I know that my birthday and Christmas at least will cause my weight to go up instead of down and set me back. Depressing, isn’t it? If I can manage 4lbs a month though (a tall order for my flatlining ‘metabolism’), by this time next year I could be shopping for a size 12 wedding dress. Actually I can’t even imagine that. I’ve not been that size since I was 16. Even with sylp and sylphier as bridesmaids, I’d be very happy to be a small size 14. I think. I guess I won’t really know until I start trying dresses on though – what I can get away with to look okay.

This weekend we thought we might sleep in a bed in our tin hut, you know, just for a change. I for one am going down by train (my boss wouldn’t allow me to have so much as an hour off today) so I definitely won’t be sleeping in Morrisons petrol station. But am relying on BNF to collect me (and not be drawn irrestibly and irrevocably to any dispensers of fuel) or I will instead be sleeping in a station which doesn’t sound any more appealing. Or warm.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Oh what a night

So we set off for our little tin hut rather late on Friday - BNF was out with a friend and didn't get home until later. I was going to drive and had packed up my banger (don't like driving the whale (stylish whale but still) that BNF drives). I had half a tank of fuel but thought I'd stop at the petrol station at the end of the road and fill up.

BNF arrives home and annouces he's only had a glass and is okay to drive. Now, he is by far and away a better driver - and faster. Which means that we'd get there sooner. So, yay! Our usual road comes up as having had an accident on it so we decide to go the longer way round to avoid queues. It's still a nightmare as all the traffic cones in existence were having a cone symposium on the A14 and it was down to one lane - so, not as quick as we'd hoped and we reckoned we wouldn't get there until 11am. My car - which is old and tetchy - at this point decides to go from 'yes, just over a quarter of a tank' to 'FEED ME NOW'. Okay, no panic - we know where there's a petrol station coming up - just about where we turn .... now. Except. The exit is completely coned off and we can't turn. Before we know it, we're driving round Felixstowe looking for petrol stations. We see a few. They're all shut. By dint of the gps on my phone - which I have never used before - we get to the nearest one at 11.30pm. It's shut and all we can do is wait until 6am when it opens. Six and a half hours is a veeerrry long time to be sat in a Morrisons petrol station. Even Waitrose would have been a bit more glamorous, for pity's sake. It was cold, it was uncomfortable and I nobly managed not to bite BNF's head off when he said perkily that it would make a good story one day. Instead I took his hand and told him that if I had to be in that circumstance, I would rather I was with him than anyone. (I confess that I was thinking about managing my mother's hysteria at this point, should it have been with her. I didn't mention this).

It was not the best night of my life. I will not be reprising it as a honeymoon idea. Or at all, ever, if I can possibly help it. I had a bath mat over me as the only warm thing in the car (I was in a knee length skirt and bare legs). We had nothing to eat, nothing to drink and obviously no 'facilities'. I haven't left my make up on all night since I was about 20 and I swear I could feel zits gleefully forming.

Unsurprisingly, the weekend looked up after that. Back to the tin hut for 3 hours sleep and then up and a 7 mile walk to blow the cobwebs away. Then MORE fizz with one of my best friends, her husband and my god-daughter - and those Lola's cupcakes which were delicious. Amazing they survived the Morrisons night really - if ever a woman was in need of copious amounts of buttercream, it was me that night. Then some spankingly fresh crab and skate from the fish sheds and a very long, very comatose night's sleep. The next morning I had an upset stomach (unusual for me) which consisted of an invisible giant twisting my stomach in his hands every now and again, leaving me breathless and incapable of doing anything but ride the wave of pain out (man). We did another 7 mile walk despite this. Then we went home.

Today, my stomach pain has developed into a can't-leave-the-loo burst of diarrhea which means I'm off sick from work (not good timing but frankly unavoidable). Okay, TMI but it's relevant because doesn't this mean that all calories will be instantly er, 'washed' through me? Could it be in time to cancel the cupcake? My mum reckons I'll be slimmer - but 'only because you'll be dehydrated'. Pah.

Friday, 11 June 2010

The wrath of SoD

That little SoD hates me. Today it announced that I had put on between 0.5 – 1lb, depending on how many times I leapt on and off it. So Debbie may have urged me to enjoy the bubbles (I did, Debbie, I did!) but SoD was determined to make me pay. This is in a week with 3 shorter walks in fit-flops, a long walk and 2 or 3 weights sessions. And pretty sensible eating too – I can’t remember the last time I went a bit mad and had a sugar frenzy. Yes, there were a couple of treats in there but I subbed out other food to compensate and largely lived off salad for the rest of the time. I deserve more (that’s more poundage off, not more sugar although that would be nice!)

Well it all makes me pretty nervous about my friend, her husband and my god-daughter coming over to our tin hut for fizz and cupcakes tomorrow afternoon. I’m planning frugal eating for the rest of the weekend to compensate - and a longish walk tomorrow - but this week’s experience seems to hint that that is not enough to diminish me (in size anyway)

One of the bridal mags I bought had pics of plus size brides in. They looked as if they were acting that they were happy. Which of course they were; they’re models! But it’s not something I want to have to do. When I put my dress on, I want to hold my head up and feel fantastic (even with my skinny-minnie bridesmaids!), not self-conscious, regretful and apologetic. I don’t want to have to make choices based on camouflage (tricky as a bride I imagine anyway), nor for the photos to send me into a frenzy of self-loathing.

Thanks for the virtual card wishes! It's odd, I don't think enagagement cards are a modern penomena somehow. We got one from a good friend's mum but not from him. I may be guilty of over-carding, I think!

On the bright side, I managed to wear my cream lingerie set yesterday for a whole day. Yes, I had welts on the sides of my breasts when I took my bra off but about 4-6 weeks ago, I could only keep it on for 4 hours because it was so painful. I count that as progress.

Next week also could be a tricky week for exercise. I’m out Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings at the moment (very unusual for me) so that means only cycling on Tuesday (weather permitting). I can walk in in my fit-flops when it’s not raining on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday – although fitting in the time to do that AND do weights is tricky so I might do two days walk and two days weights.

Actually cycling is pretty dismal at the moment because they're ripping up the cycle paths to paint them blue - forcing cyclists onto a very narrow one way street. It's incredibly dangerous, cars get angry and irritable even if you're going the right way down it, because they can't get past (v narrow) and there appears to be nothing else to do but risk oncoming traffic if you want to go the other way - or ride on the pavement slowly (and apologetically) and accept that pedestrians will be pissed off. Still, it'll be worth it when they're all blue. Unless I'm, you know, squished or dead. I'm sure it will make an incredible difference to my cycle though. It'll be, er, bluer and ......

Tuesday, 8 June 2010


I am ridiculously childish at the moment – I run to our postbox (we’re in flats so don’t have a letterbox) to see if there are any more engagement cards. We’ve got a few which are proudly displayed (thanks, R!) and I’m avoiding telling BNF that I might well want to keep them all for posterity. Actually, we've only got a few (am slightly embarrassed admitting this!) so my wedding book which suggests that you could only invite those that send you an engagement card, to keep numbers down, is being overly zealous!

Weekend was lovely but I drank too much – this is fairly unusual to be honest. I shared a bottle of champagne with BNF no fewer than three times (three different days I hasten to add) and then on one day I also had a half bottle of wine too. Sigh. Usually I have one glass – or two if I’m going mad. It’s a calorie thing, rather than natural abstemiousness. Other than that, I continue to be remarkably disciplined about mainlining sugar. And that’s with some very bad and upsetting news. I hope SoD recognises my effort but I’m not holding my breath. Since our last encounter (aka WI) I have walked twice in fit flops (only a couple of miles each time admittedly), done a proper walk of 10.7 miles, done a weights circuit and cycled to and from work once (although prospects for doing so again look to be very limited without a snorkel). For the love of SoD, is that not enough?

Watch this space....

Friday, 4 June 2010

SoD fearing

It was with even more trepidation that I stepped on the Scales of Doom today. Our little honeymoon period is clearly over – I apparently lost zilch this week. I did my usual dance on and off the scales – at which point it got a bit pissy and threatened me with 0.5lb on which instantly forced me into meek compliance. Pah.

I was scared that our next brief encounter would end thus. I’ve done precious little exercise this week (one walk in in fit flops (and another today but post WI) and one weights session), as pimping my ring around for admiration has meant I haven’t been able to cycle in. My eating has been pretty exemplary, but that clearly was not enough to move SoD into compassion and lower figures. I fear it’s going to be a long and bitter trawl towards a (UK) size 12-14 wedding dress, marked by frustration and angst and probably tears. But it won’t be short on determination and sheer bloody mindedness.

I realised the other day with a sudden wave of horror that I’ve picked my two slimmest friends as bridesmaids. All my friends are slim but these two are wafer-thin – or waif-er-thin, if you will. Shows I did it out of love but it does mean that I have to – HAVE TO – feel good about myself when I walk down that aisle. Either that or force feed them in advance. Or maybe both! Either way, one is a size 8-10 and the other a 6-8 so I’m utterly doomed to be the ‘fat one’ – plus ça change, sigh!

Bridesmaid R (or ‘Maid’ as the bridal press coyly refer to them) is one of those ethereal, slender, willowy blondes that looks like someone from the 1930s (she rocks a pair of Katherine Hepburn trousers). She’s possibly even paler than me – one of those very English blondes with very fair skin and dark blonde hair to go with enormous green eyes. Bridesmaid C is a razor slim, leggy girl with dark curls and exotic colouring who’s fashion-edgy-chic (more of a skinny jean girl than Katherine H). If I can manage to be less of a heifer, we’ll certainly be a striking trio – blonde, redhead, brunette! Again, a co-incidence. Then my oldest niece will be the third bridesmaid – she’ll be 9 – she’s white blonde but with dark, dark eyes and my god-daughter will be flower girl (she’ll be 6). She’ll also be wanting to wear pink which is never going to happen! Never. I set that down now.

We’re in our tin hut this weekend for its inaugural stay – the car is groaning with stuff we have to take down there and the de-beiging will commence as best we can manage. Bf queried, with some disapproval, why I felt the need to buy Cath Kidston mugs @ £4 a pop – well, it’s just that kitsch vibe, I suppose. I also got to use the word ‘fiancé’ for the first time in connection to this as I enquired about the price of a mattress topper in John Lewis. £150! I swallowed and squeaked that I’d have to talk to my “fiancé” about it. Then I had a little frisson of pleasure and felt silly.

Anyway, we will be doing a very long walk this weekend – think bf (or more like bnf (brand new fiancé)) has a 12 miler in mind. Next week I’m hoping to cycle three times (weather permitting) and do weights twice. Maybe even walk in one day too. All power to the de-lardification of this Aged Bride. Are you listening, SoD?

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Wedding waffles

Aw, you GUYS! You RAWK! As I would absolutely never say in real life! Thank you all so much for your best wishes. I’m particularly loving Isabella’s suggestion that the weight will automatically start falling off now (that IS what you meant, right?!) and I’m hoping that my long-cherished dream of having to eat just to maintain my figure (NOT the one I have now, I hasten to add) and keep myself from vanishing into the ether will now come to fruition! In case that doesn’t work out, I’m on Plan B which is my usual – eat little, as healthily and low cal as poss and get as much exercise as possible. And the vital stuff too - such as keeping my fingers crossed, performing obeisance to the Scales of Doom and making plea-bargains with any deities who may or may not be listening – that kind of thing.

So, Naughty R’s wedding. Well, she looked amazing. Quite 1950s I think. The moment when I turned and saw her coming up the aisle gave me a massive lump in my throat and the strong inclination to cry – which I had to dispel firmly as I didn’t have waterproof mascara on. She had a very full on dress, strapless with a loooong train and a bow that tied at the back and a long filmy veil. The weather was awful but she looked calm and radiant – until she gave me a very Naughty R wink as she went past! My other favourite bit was when the electronic violin player struck up some sort of Irish jig at the reception and the strong Irish contingent roared approval – and one man was shoved up to do impromptu proper Riverdance style dancing. The sun came out for the reception and we lined the drive to The Naughties-Senior’s house to throw white rose petals over Naughty R and her very handsome Mr Naughty, clutching glasses of fizz to ourselves. Bf and I (and love Debbie’s idea that I have to change his name – was thinking F, as in fiancé (and also F*cker for when I’m annoyed with him – perfect!)) felt a bit loved up as we were thinking about when it would be us. I managed in heels until ooh, about an hour or two into the reception and only then because the last hour was spent sitting down. Shoes are clearly going to be an issue for my own wedding day...

To top off the weekend, we went to visit our little tin hut (static caravan) to take possession. It needs some intense de-OAPing but it’s going to be wonderful. Our first weekend there is this weekend and we can’t wait!

Thanks for the encouragement about my monthly loss of 4lbs too. Milly was asking how long it would take for me to get to goal – er IF I were able to keep it up, 15 months I reckon. Now, I have plenty of time but that does seem a slog – and I think I might need a long, long time to get a dress. Firstly because I look unimaginably awful in most dresses (if not, indeed all dresses) – although I’m hoping that as I get smaller, my choice of dress might get larger. And secondly, because I really want to hire something fabulous rather than buy something (probably less fabulous) that will be the single greatest cost-per-wear item in my wardrobe. By far.