Trying something new…..

I’ve spent the last 3 weeks of my life on a concrete floor in St Pancras Station, hunched over a laptop. I figure that deserves an explanation…..

Well, I’ve been volunteer co-ordinator for the Save Wild Tigers Initiative between 1st – 21st of March. Basically, I’ve been responsible for recruiting, scheduling and managing over 100 volunteers for this campaign, and honestly, it’s been no easy feat! I’ve spent long hours at the station with my colleagues and volunteers to raise as much money as possible for tiger conservation. It’s been an incredible experience and I’ve had so much fun and have met incredible people, but I’m absolutely exhausted!

Having spent so much time in front of my laptop, constantly being on my feet and working long hours, I decided to give myself a treat. Yesterday, I went for a hot stone massage and it was amazing! I now have a relatively tension free back and feel loads better. However, something strange happened during my massage….

Now, I don’t know if the masseuse shares this information with all her clients, or just those of the larger or more svelte persuasion, but I had the pleasure of getting some unsolicited advice!

She told me that I should stop eating wheat, because it would help me lose weight. A little personal for my Saturday morning I have to say, and I wasn’t sure if I should’ve been offended or not, but I listened anyway. It might not have been her place to talk to me about it, but regardless, I can’t argue the fact that I do need to lose weight. Well, we ended up with a big discussion about cutting out wheat and all the health benefits that go along with it. She recommended a website called Wheat Belly:

http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/

After doing some research and considering all the positive elements that I could potentially get from trying this, I’ve decided to give it a go. As of tomorrow, I will be cutting out all wheat from my diet for the whole of April, and depending on how it goes, hopefully continue doing it. Of course I will keep you all up to date on how it goes!

Have any of you ever tried to cut out wheat? Any advice would be amazing!

x

 

 

Liar, liar pants on fire!

I came across an interesting article on the Yahoo website recently which rang true……It was titled Food Fibs that will make you Fat and you can read it here.

No matter who you are, you know you’ve done at least one of these things. I know I’m pretty much guilty of all of them, so let me share a few now……

I exercised today so I can have it: I do this all the time! I justify the bigger plate of food because I went to gym that day. I need to get it in my brain that by doing that, I’m just stalling in the same place. I have positive reinforcement for the exercise I’m doing, but undo all of it by not lowering my calorie intake. A vicious circle I tell you!

I deserve it: I believe that everyone deserves a reward for achieving weight loss goals, but these rewards shouldn’t be food. I do that sometimes, but am trying re-programme myself to instead buy myself something nice that I can use or hold on to. Perhaps a new top, or a new haircut….whatever doesn’t go in my belly to undo all my hard work!

I’ll never eat that again: Yes you will. Simple as that. Don’t ever deny yourself a type of food because you’ll just be making it that much more appealing. Inevitably the temptation will become too much and you’ll break down. I once tried cutting out all bread, and I lasted for a month. Then I had a total mental breakdown….my boyfriend and I refer to it as the “Bread Roll Incident of 2008”. It was not pretty. So my advice….never cut something out. It’ll all go downhill pretty fast!

It’s a salad, so it’s fine: I try to keep my salads pretty healthy, but I can fall into this trap sometimes. I love a good salad, but occasionally it’ll include way too many carbs or oily dressings. As long as 9 times out of 10, I try to keep it really healthy, it’s all good in my book. Just be careful of being tricked by the assumption or appearance of low calories and pay attention to what’s really in there!

It’s a waste to throw food away: This is something I’ve always struggled with. Growing up, my brother and I were always told to finish all our meals and you’re taught to appreciate the food on your plate. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good upbringing, but sometimes you’ve got to be more sensible about how much you’re eating. You shouldn’t be made to feel guilty about not finishing everything on your plate, at the risk of your own health. You can say no sometimes. The simple truth is….when you’re full, stop eating.

Well, there are a few more points in the article, so please have a read here if you want. It’s not easy programming your brain to think differently about various aspects of your nutrition.  In all honesty, I used to be absolutely stick thin and I never had to worry about my attitude to food. I could eat what I want, when I wanted to. 8 years on, I’m still struggling with merging my reality with years of not having to worry about what I eat. It’s not easy, but perhaps I can try to tell myself fewer of these little white lies, perhaps it’ll be a start.

Are there any other fibs you tell yourself? I’d love to hear from you all…..

xxx

Stop Moaning. Just Do It.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve received loads of advice from various friends about losing weight. All different. All good. So, this is where it gets tough….whose/what advice do I take? It’s all relative I’m afraid….

Well, as I’ve said before, I consider weight loss to mostly be a psychological problem. I say this in terms of overcoming psychological barriers and ingrained habits that prevent you from achieving what you want to. We all have the tools to lose weight and we all know how to, but it’s putting that knowledge into practice that’s the difficult part. It’s here where our mental resolve fails us most often.

I recently read the following article, and I found it to really ring true….It’s titled “If You Want To Be Fit, Don’t Buy New Running Shoes”! In as nutshell, it deals with feel-good tasks and how they can in fact hinder actual positive productivity.

For example, if I spend ages working out a training schedule or weekly menu, I will feel good, because I’m positively contributing to losing weight. The problem here is that I’ve spent a large amount of time on these schedules and menus instead of actually just going out and exercising or choosing healthy food as I go through the day. These feel-good tasks might not be directly aiding your goals, but you trick yourself into believing that you’ve done something positive, so stop there instead of actually just doing it.

I hope this is all making sense so far….Have a read of the article here if you’d like….or here:

http://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/2009/08/05/if-you-want-to-be-fit-don%E2%80%99t-buy-new-running-shoes/

Now, I know different things work for different people, but I just wanted to share this article with you all today. I just don’t want people to lose sight of what they really want to achieve. Instead of spending so much time planning things, just do it. Don’t even think about it. Just get it done. I’m not trying to tell people not to plan anything at all – some structure and goal setting is always good – I just don’t want people to over think things. That’s where the trouble lies.

So, how am I going to incorporate this into my life? Well, I do like planning, so I’m not going to give that up all together. For example, I’m running a 10K in July, so want to stick to a training schedule for that, but I’m going to keep it flexible. I’m going back to roughly working out menus for the week, but only for dinners (I want to cut out carbs for dinner!). BUT (and it’s a big but), I’m going to take every day as it comes. Not plan too much ahead and not think of my goals in big terms, rather tackle each day at a time.

Well, I hope I’ve made some sense in this post. I’d love to know what you all thought about this! 🙂

picture courtesy of http://www.someecards.com

The Lurgies. Again.

I spent the whole of last week struck down with some severe “lurgies”! I was not happy. It meant I couldn’t do my usual gym routine, I didn’t eat properly, I felt terrible and I even had to miss a friend’s birthday party. Very uncool.

What bothered me the most, was the fact that when I told people that I was ill, a lot of people responded with the following: “Sick? Again?” This really got me thinking, and it’s true, I’m constantly sick. This time around it was a throat infection and when I asked the doctor what could’ve caused it, he told me that it was probably caused by stress or just a low immune system. Well, if that’s the case, I’ve seriously got to start doing something about it. I don’t want people to think I’m this sickly weakling….

So, I’ve been googling some stuff (you know, as you as do….DIY Diagnosis), and I found the following article…..

http://victoria-anisman-reiner.suite101.com/10-ways-to-boost-immune-health-a8274

It’s 10 ways to boost your immune system and I really think I should give it a go. There are some interesting points, for example, cutting out sugar & coffee. Now I know I can cut out sugar, but not the coffee, so I might only have one coffee a day, but with no sugar?! Perhaps if I even just pick a few of the things, I might start feeling a little better.

It seems as if every time I start out really healthy and exercising regularly, there’s always some kind of ailment that stops me in my tracks, and I’m done with it! Another question might be….is it my subconscious that’s creating these illnesses so that I don’t have to exercise? Or maybe it’s fate telling me that I should really be a fatty! 😉 But that’s a whole other discussion!

In the meantime, I’m going to make a concerted effort to try these immune boosting tips…

Now What?

Since quitting (horrible word!) Weight Watchers, I’ve been trying to “re-strategise” my weight loss approach. Here’s what I’ve come up with….Please tell me what you think!

  • Smaller Goals. I need to stop thinking about how much I have to lose, or how often I have to go to the gym, or how long I have to run on the treadmill, or what I’m cutting out of my diet, etc….I have to start setting myself smaller goals. As in: For the next 3 weeks, I’m going to go to gym 3 times a week or more; or, I will cook & prepare all my meals at home for the next 2 weeks, etc. You see where I’m going with this?
  • Reward Myself. If I can stick to these smaller goals I set, I can reward myself when I achieve them. I’m not talking about food rewards, I mean a new top or something nice for me. Like a little reminder of what I’ve achieved, but something that won’t break the bank either! 😉
  • Patience. I really struggle with this sometimes. Contrary to what logic tells me, I always end up with unrealistic expectations. For instance, I think that by going to gym 4 times in one week will magically make me fit into that one top I’ve been trying on for ages but that just doesn’t fit…yet. Unrealistic. Weight loss takes time, and instead of getting disheartened, I should just stick to my guns and power through!
  • Consistency. By this, I mean not only consistently sticking to the goals I’ve set for myself, but now that I don’t have my weekly weigh ins with WW anymore, I’m going back to doing it bi-weekly, and then posting it here to keep tabs on how I’m doing.

Well, that’s it for now. Nothing too extraordinary, but achievable. I didn’t want to end up juggling too much and invariably drop a few balls along the way. 🙂

Why I’ve left Weight Watchers…

Today I decided to cancel my Weight Watchers membership. I know there might be some people out there that might not agree with this, but my reasons are as follows….

  • I can’t always find the time to attend specific sessions, which in turn means that I don’t have regular “weigh-ins”. I do try my best, but sometimes it’s just not possible to get to every week’s session.
  • I pay £20 a month for a service I can’t always attend. It just seems silly to pay money for something that I’m not getting a full service out of.
  • Their online weight loss tools are really effective, but I find that it’s not as accurate and user-friendly as I’d anticipated. I sometimes don’t always have time to update this every day, so end up missing days of logging food. This in turn is not an accurate record of what I’m eating every week.
  • The meetings were interesting, but in the long run, they weren’t as supporting as I’d hoped for. I’m not quite sure what I expected in the first place, but it wasn’t really what I was looking for. 
  • The “weigh-ins” were really helpful to begin with, but eventually I found them really demotivating. It always seemed that on the weeks where I’d be working really hard on eating right and exercising, I’d end up gaining weight. Then on the weeks where I’d been less strict with myself, I’d lose weight. It just got to the point where I couldn’t wrap my head around it, and they kept asking me if I was really following the program properly! I ended up feeling really frustrated and would turn to food to make me feel better.
  • Most importantly, I found that they didn’t really address a person’s relationship with food. It all boiled down to points you were consuming every day. Even if I was eating less healthy food, I’d just try to make sure I didn’t go over my daily points. And if I did, I’d just add them onto my weekly points and would sometimes even go over on those! It just seemed that I never really addressed my lifestyle in relation to food. I just ended up trying to cheat the system so that I could still eat what I was eating before and get away with it! 

Well, there are my reasons. I just want to reiterate that these are my personal views, and Weight Watchers might have worked wonders for others. Everyone’s different, and unfortunately this just never really worked for me. I tried, I really did, but it just wasn’t meant to be for me.

In the meantime, I’m still sticking to my gym schedule and am trying to address my issues around food.

Every day as it comes right?!

xxx

No Excuses.

I’ve been lazy. Really lazy. I’ve been indulging for the last few weeks and now I’m done.

Knowing your body....

As per my last post, you’re all aware that I recently got my Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK (which I’m totally psyched about!), but I spent the following week “celebrating“, which then culminated in 3 weeks of “celebration“. So can see where I’m going with this….

I’ve been making up one excuse after another about why I haven’t been to the gym or why I’m eating an entire plate of Mac & Cheese (besides it being delicious!), and the list goes on!

So, I had 2 wake up calls this week….the first occurred when I was walking into work – sans make-up & crazy hair – and I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. Now, I’m the kind of person who usually just skims at their reflection and never really stops for a closer examination, so this came as quite a shock. The bright flourescent light didn’t help either! Well, it appears that my second chin has come back for a rendezvous with the original and they appear to be best buds at the moment; my belly – albeit very satisfied – is happily spilling over my jeans again; and my ass definitely has a plumper feel about it. All in all….not good.

The second wake up call was when I logged out of my Yahoo account and came across the following news story...

http://uk.health.lifestyle.yahoo.net/surprising-health-problems-of-being-obese.htm

To sum up, it basically lists surprising health problems linked to obesity. Out of the 10 problems listed, about 4 or 5 apply to me. I’m not giving it all away, so I’ll let you all guess which ones I’m referring to. It’s super scary though. I don’t want my life to revolve around damage control just because I’m lazy!

Now, I know I’ve said this a million times and you guys have heard me say this a million times, but I’ve got to get my fat arse back in gear! I’ve got a lot going for me at the moment (but that news for another post), and I’m feeling really positive. So, it’s back to the health grind.

There might be people out there reading this, who might feel tired of me repeating myself when it comes to all the resolutions I keep making, but please don’t disregard how difficult this really is. It’s a battle you fight with yourself every single day. It’s waking up with a positive mentality and making the best decisions you can every day. And sometimes you’ll have a bad day. It’s as simple as that.

I know I’ve also said this before, but it’s not the falling off the horse, but it’s whether you get back on that counts!

So true!

XXX

photos courtesy of http://www.someecards.com