Sunday, November 5, 2017

Add what is lacking!

Step one in changing my habits for a lifetime was to add water to my essential list.

Step two is adding fruits and vegetables!

Notice the 'add' in both of those?

It is so much easier to add stuff to our diets!  There is no sense of deprivation!

Eat whatever you like, but make sure you get your minimum requirements of fruit and vegetables!

The Australian guidelines state a catchy '2+5' as a minimum - 2 serves of fruit, 5 serves of vegetables.

But what is a 'serve' exactly?

One serve of fruit is roughly 150g, except for dried fruit which is 30g.  It's certainly not precise though!  One medium sized piece of fruit (about fist sized), two small fruit like plums or kiwi fruit, a cup of larger fruits like melons or pineapple, or a cup of very small fruit like grapes or berries.  Vegetables are about half the size of a fruit serving at 75g, usually half a cup. Leafy greens are a full cup per serve, but cooked greens are half a cup.

Variety is essential to ensure you get a full range of vitamins and minerals and fibre and all the other compounds in plants that make them so good for us!  Eating to the season helps with cost, quality, and freshness.  There are so many delicious fruits it should be pretty easy to get in the minimum 2 serves, but vegetables seem to be difficult!  It can be daughting to know just which veggies to eat!  There's your leafy greens, brassicas, pod greens (beans and peas), fruity vegetables like zucchini and pumpkin, capsicum, cucumbers and tomatoes, root vegetables, and grains like corn!  

Right now, I'm just going for variety within the season!  It's spring, going into summer so there should be lots of choice!

There is also a huge potential for waste here, although any waste can go into the compost or used to grow more food, many throw their waste into the bin.  So to minimise waste I will be shopping every three days under the previso that I use everything I buy!  I'll be shopping at the supermarket and not buying organic to start with but eventually I want to shop at the local farmers markets and take my own bags.  I will need to learn how to wash and store everything correctly as well!  Quite a steep learning curve for me on this one!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017


I feel the need to change.

To grow.

To shrink myself to my healthy self.

I've done this before.

So first up, for those who have done 12wbt know well, is to look at my excuses.

My main excuse is 'I don't feel like it'.

There is too much going on, I'm too tired, I'm too stress, I have too much to do, etc etc.

What it comes down to, is that I am scared.

Scared that I will be uncomfortable.

Scared that I will be judged.

Scared that I will fail.

Scared that I won't cope.

It feels like a wall goes up.

It's time to break down that wall.  And the more I do it, the weaker it will become.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Okay! I'm hydrated already!

Really!  I am!

I've been drinking just over a litre of water each day and I feel great for it!

I have not stopped my morning coffee, had a couple of cups of Coke, and certainly didn't magically turn into a health nut!

And I'm not constantly peeing, regularly yes, but not annoyingly so!

I'm doing good.  Ready to take on my next challenge!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

How to change a life!

One step at a time!

I want permanent change.

Achievable. Realistic. Flexible. 


Step one: Drink more water!

Well, I'm also on patches for nicotine but that's my stupid tax.

And back to the water.

Just the act of drinking water uses energy and getting your daily 1-2l could result in a 2kg loss of fat over 12mths.  That's right, just the physical process of drinking, processing and peeing will add to your weight loss!  Bargain!

The other awesome thing about drinking water is that it usually replaces soft drink, fruit juice or sugar filled tea or coffee.  And research shows that you don't tend to replace those calories with food.  You might find that if you cut soft drinks without increasing your water intake you will eat more, but keep up the water and that is less likely to happen.

And it's easy enough to do! Success breeds success!

It helps your mindset as well.  If you feel like you are making healthy choices you are more likely to make more healthy choices in other areas!

You'll snack less.  Keeping your mouth and stomach occupied will undoubtedly help with boredom eating.  Usually sugary drinks are sold along with salty foods crating a cycle of thirst and hungar - salt makes you thirsty, sugar makes you hungry. Break the cycle!  Water will also help to process all that salt and fat, and fill you up to prevent overeating.

Water is just simply good for you. It's necessary for life!  You'll feel great and your body will love you for it!

Hydrated skin is beautiful skin. 

Drinking water will wash away the food and acid in your mouth to prevent cavities. That means great teeth!  A drink of water will also help to signal the end of a meal and help with after dinner sugar cravings!

Fibre plus water equals a well lubricated bowel! And softer movements. That has to be win!

The downside? You might pee more.  Especially at first, but your body will adapt. Start slow if you need to with 1l a day and build up. Drink a little often rather then downing a full glass at a time. Drink extra when you exercise or if it's hot. You know you are getting enough when your pee is clear. There is also a skin pinch test for dehydration.

Won over?  Ready to start?

No need to go out and buy some fancy drink bottles and water filters just yet.  Start where you are at.
Tap water in a rinsed out soft drink bottle is fine. Buying a pack of water from the supermarket is fine (please recycle!). A water filter is great though, and a glass water bottle, or least BPA free.  Do your own research so you can choose a filter and bottle based on your own values and beliefs. You can even get insulated water bottles!

You'll need to get in a habit of refilling your water bottle and figure out where you can refill when out and about. Water coolers are quite common in waiting rooms and workplaces and keep extra water in your fridge.

But start now!

And you will reap the benefits straight away!

But but but....

What about my morning coffee?  It's okay - have one or two a day, or quit altogether.  Make water your priority and you'll find it difficult to keep up an eight a day habit!
It's okay, my soft drink is sugar free. Umm.. Sorry but no.  Sugar free drinks have all the downsides of soft drinks but without the calories.  You will fill the calories in elsewhere, you'll still be hungry, and you still need to walk the evil aisle at the supermarket to buy it!  Your body will also have to process all those chemicals which can and will affect your health both short term and long term.  Again, if you make water your priority, these will naturally fall away from your diet.

What about herbal tea? If it's unsweetened it counts. Soda water is also fine. Adding apple cider vinegar is fine, as is a squeeze of lemon or lime if that floats your boat.

A word on caffeine... It's a drug. An addictive drug.  Although it's not only socially acceptable but promoted as a way to socialise, it's an addictive drug.  I can't drink it safely at all. Cut down or go cold turkey as you see fit but be aware you may get symptoms such as headaches.  These will be offset with better sleep, a calmer body and mind, and better overall health in the long term.

Start right now. Take your time, and when you are happy you've got this down move on to the next step!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Groundhog Day

I have no idea what Groundhog Day is except the movie reference.  A day that repeats. 

Over, and over, and over.

That is my life.

I never ending cycle of sitting on bed, Netflix, Facebook, smoking, gaining weight, Cany Crush, depression and anxiety, interspersed with random days of hope and self-care born from a place of desperation to be free from it!  But I can't break free.

And I don't why I feel that way when I've just had the most wonderful couple of days teaching!  I loved it and I'm pretty sure I did well!

I am once again on patches after smoking for a week or so.  Only because I ran out of money.

I bought a blood pressure monitor.  It cost a lot!

And left me broke until payday!

A routine trip to the doctor to get my yearly Valium script and suddenly I'm so very aware of the consequences of my choices.  I asked about beta-blockers for anxiety. I mentioned how I'm feeling the physical symptoms of anxiety and that a quick Google search found they are used quite commonly for performance anxiety as they stop the andrenaline type symptoms. Like insomnia, restless legs, a tight chest, tension headaches, being fidgety and shakey, heart palpitations, irregular periods, speaking so fast no one understands me, hot flushes and not being able to stand the heat - either from the ambient temperature or from getting sweaty and over heated when I exercise.  I lose weight so easily but I can't stop eating because it's the only thing that keeps me calm. 

And I've had enough.  

Anxiety sucks!

So she took my blood pressure and hello health anxiety!

It was high, hypertension high. 

So now I need to monitor it daily and record it for two weeks, and go for a blood test.  
A FASTING blood test.

We need to rule out iron and B12 deficiency, hyperthyroidism, and cholesterol issues and whatever else they check for on blood tests!

It's only been a few days but it looks like pre-hypertension is my 'at home and relaxed' setting.

Who knows what the blood test will bring!

But I'm not invincible. 

And I don't like it.

Sure, I've been sick with panic disorder, agoraphobia and whatever else you want to call this messed up anxious ball of anxiety.  Sure I have eczema, dust mite allergy and an intolerance to banana and avocado.  Hell, I even get bad indigestion.

But I've never actually been sick sick.  Like the kind of sick where I might die.

My reaction - eat pizza and smoke!

Yup, real mature!

At some point, I'm going to have to wake up and go for a run.  I'm going to have find a way to eat healthy.  But most importantly, I need to find a way to live.  Really live.

To get out and swim, and climb mountains, and go to dinner and the movies, to play with my kids, get a job.  Be happy.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

A Fresh Start

Today I quit smoking.


I've been smoking for a week and it was killing me.  Killing my spirit.

I didn't exercise, didn't do housework, barely left the house.  I stopped walking, stopped playing Pokemon Go, stopped my life.

I spent too much money on smokes.

Netflix was my company.

My breathe is wheezing, I've been on the verge of a cold, and have the most horrid taste in my mouth that never goes away. The headache finally stopped just a couple of days ago.  I've had barely a day with more then 5hrs sleep and I'm tired.  So tired. Tired of myself and my stupid self indulgent ways.

But how do I change? I've tried and keep ending back here, in this same place. Disappointed, disillusioned, depressed.

My husband showed me his love today. A touch.  A glance. Hope.

I asked for help.

He bought patches when I asked, along with a supply of chocolate, chocolate self-saucing pudding, ice cream, bourbon, and cat food.  The cat food was not for me. Obviously.  The bourbon was. I declined.

I am sitting on my bed where I have napped, played Candy Crush, and indulged in reading the Twilight Saga once again in an effort to banish myself away from all temptation. I am slightly ill from the chocolate and plagued by that bad taste in my mouth and a wheezing cough that I know will take days to resolve.  The chill of the evening is encroaching and I wonder how I will sleep without pharmaceutical aid given the restlessness that is sure to come as i adjust to life without my addiction.

I wonder how I got to this place. 

A place where sleep is as elusive as hope.

A place where I have achieved so much but have no confidence.

I have my degree, waiting for the outcome of my PhD that cost me 6 years and my belief in my ability to be successful.  I have my children who are now approaching adulthood with the scars I've inflicted upon them with my mistakes.  My inadequacy. I have my husband of 25 years who loves me even now, broken, damaged, ugly.

I should be happy.  

But I'm not.

Another sign of my imperfection.

But when my husband touched me, when I saw the desire in his glance, a spark of hope ignited in a dark corner of my mind.


Maybe I can get up one more time.

Maybe it's worth fighting another day.

Maybe I can be the person I want to be.

Maybe I already am.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The Day Two Fizzer

The day began at 5:30am.. when I rolled over and hit stop on my alarm. 

And promptly went back to sleep.

There was some bargain going on in my head like 'I'll do it later'.

Then later came, at 4:30pm after work.

About the same time three other things happened.

1. I realised I'd forgotten to get the meat out to defrost for dinner
2. The husband appeared with a magical bar of chocolate that somehow got consumed without my being conscious of it,
and 3. I remembered that I'm pretty exhausted by the time I'm finished work!

So I watched Netflix and we had a kind of healthy version of 'take-out' - roast chicken with a couple of chips and salad.  I ate it all. Along with the chocolate bar and my afternoon tea (a chocolate muffin with Nutella for icing).

Fortunately, I didn't end up over calories - if I calculated them correctly - and even though I didn't do my workout, I was still fairly active with over 7k steps.  Definitely sub-par, but not catastrophic!

Well, except that today is my monthly Day One.  Yes, that explains my foul mood yesterday, and the chocolate today.

Let's hope the scales aren't too nasty in the morning! 

Speaking of which.. time for bed if I want to get up and run in the morning!