#2015HereICome – Beginner exercise 1

 

So, it’s Boxing Day and dear spouse (henceforth to be known as WJJ) is sitting, chilling and watching the first day of the SA/West Indies test at St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth. A rude interruption from me rolling in a very dusty “Big Blue Ball” (BBB). A couple of years ago, I used this ball as my office chair and I still have the pictures to prove it! Smile  Also lugged into our living room is the “mini trampoline” or rebounder as they are also called. WJJ’s face was a picture!

My plan is for us to sit on the BBB for ever-increasing periods while watching DSTV. A sort of penance for watching our favourite channels?!  LOL  I am an “app’ addict and have a great timer on my phone and my tablet. I will monitor the planned increasing times spent on these very basic exercise resources.

The rebounder is also an excellent beginner resource to start us off walking on the flexible surface. I know from experience that my dormant calf muscles protest quite ferociously if I just walk. Obviously, we will not be bouncing around wildly and injuring ourselves bouncing right off the darn thing!

Also hidden in my Dad’s old tool box, which we use as a coffee table in this room, are some hand weights and stretch bands. But that will be a story for another day!

 

2014-12-26 11.27.30Big Blue Ball!!!

When did it become OK? Just when?

So, I ask again, when did it become OK? Just exactly when?

Just what am I on about now?

Yesterday, we spent several hours at CT International airport. On the Saturday before Christmas it’s not a good place to be. The place was heaving with people who were heaving themselves along….. as in lumbering along with their obese bodies no doubt protesting quite strongly.

Of course, there were many folk of healthy weight among the masses but, it seemed to me, that every second person I saw was obese to morbidly obese. Lumbering along with that peculiar rocking gate of protesting bones and muscles slack with lack of exercise….. Or traipsing along with muffin tops offending my eyes. (Maybe I’m just prudish and old fashioned with that one!)

I will refrain from including myself in any pics at this time, but my family companions looked pretty good!

2014-12-20 12.19.29

Sitting in the Spur, watching the planes come and go (I love doing that), I also observed people come and go from the various tables in the restaurant. One family in particular came directly into my line of vision and I covertly observed them for quite a while. Grandparents, morbidly obese, trying to squeeze into the benches at their big table. The granny, I wondered about her. What did she look like when she married the old man? Slim? trim? Or already plump on her wedding day?  The oupa; I imagined him just eating whatever was put on the table in front of him at home. The children, ‘30/40-somethings’, severely overweight. The son; maybe it was rugby muscle now overtaken by fat. The DIL; very plump indeed. Maybe she was trying to control her weight? Who knows? Lastly, the grandchildren. Not yet in High School. Seriously podgy and pasty looking from lack of sun & exercise. Perhaps that was the saddest part of the picture in front of me. The grandchildren.

Why do I keep thinking about the grandmother? Should she have informed herself and controlled the diet & habits of herself and her spouse? Which, in turn, could have inculcated better eating habits in her son? Maybe she is in fact informed but just could not get control? You know, somehow, I don’t think so. I think she just gave up on the calories, the ‘low fat everything’ that was supposed to help her slim down, the never-ending diets, the never-ending failures.

The food choices that family of six South Africans made yesterday were ill-advised to say the very least. And I, for one, will never give up on myself and my quest for permanent, sustainable healthy weight. I will never give up on my Odyssey.

Baby steps nutrition.1

 

One of the things ‘they’ say is that Green Tea packs a power punch nutritionally. My daughter-in-law (Taiwanese born) has always stated that the green tea we get here in RSA is not the ‘real thing’.

She and I agree, though, that LIPTON CLEAR GREEN – MINT  is rather ‘lekker’! I confess to adding a sachet of Huletts Equisweet sucralose. (the green one). I also let the bag draw in the tea cup for quite a while and drink lukewarm-ish.

According to Diane Kress RD CDE, 2 cups of green tea per day is non-negotiable Smile 

Weight Loss : Spring has sprung .. or so they say…

All rightee! Listen up you lot!  After an absence of over a month from my  soapbox, I am back in full voice! You poor people!

Have endured damn nearly 3 months of pure hell business-wise. No, rather make that work-wise; business is good. The pace has slowed down very slightly from  barely concealed hysteria to the usual controlled chaos!

I also had what I am resolutely calling My Pitstop for the last two months. A slight weight gain over the period which I have firmly decided I will not beat myself over the head about. Various reasons for this and I am fully aware of all of them! Here are a few:

No food journal. Too busy to take time to record what I was eating. It was so easy to just mindlessly eat whatever was put in front of me with my left hand while my right hand was wielding the mouse at literally all hours of the day or night!

No meal planning. No proper shopping trips to make sure we had the right food in the right quantities in the house! Increased incidence of takeaways when we were too exhausted to bother with cooking which was a lot of the time.

Not enough pure water. Too many mugs of coffee (also mindlessly consumed while wielding the mouse!) and not nearly enough portions of fruit and vegetables to make up for the drought. The 500ml Aquelle bottles are now back on my desk – I try to swallow 4 bottles through the day. I particularly like the Aquelle bottle shape and they go to gym with me too.  

No regular exercise. I kept up the mandatory 2 days a month at Virgin Active but did little else there. We went walking several weekends – up the mountain, walked on the beach and over the rocks from Llandudno to Sandy Bay, climbed up above Simonstown to Admiral’s waterfall… All spectacular stuff and we have amazing photos to show for it but it was not nearly enough. We plan another walk this Sunday – out Hout Bay/Llandudno way again. Looking forward to that and do hope that the weather co-operates.

I also joined a unique ladies gym called Adrenalynne. The owner is an amazing person called Lynne who is not young enough to be my daughter which is a plus for me!! She is a previous Mrs Fitness SA title-holder and the fabulous framed photos and qualification certificates in her well equipped home gym have to be seen to be believed! I go (try to get to!) to a twice-weekly class of ladies who call themselves the Golden Girls. Enough said! The first couple of times I went, I thought the gentle dance/stretch routines were a little tame for me. I very soon changed my mind however and have left several classes quite puffed and feeling lekker ‘loose’ all over from all the stretching we do.

Zero self care. Hurtling from one day to the next; battling one computer issue after another. Dealing with multiple and extraordinary client issues all coming at me at once. All culminated in severe stress, fatigue, serious night leg/foot cramps from all the sitting for hours on end and weight creeping stealthily up each day on the scale – that is when I did weigh myself in the mornings!  Most days, I was already at my PC by 4:30am and often stayed right there until midnight.

As I prepare for my resumed onward and downward Odyssey, I am looking at a number of things:

Body Fat Percentage – as opposed to plain old body weight which can be deceptive.

The Metabolism Miracle – a New York Times bestseller by Diane Kress, RD, CDE.  I have never been one for fad diets and I could not care less about NY Times bestseller lists but this book resonates with me and it is anything but a fad diet.

Nutribase software – yeah, yeah, OK. I know. Just do it Eileen!  Don’t mess around with theory. Or get too technical/analytical.

Well, I see it this way for me, myself and I!  I achieved a 25kg weight loss and have almost brought the real Eileen back to life by making a big deal of plotting on graphs, keeping food logs; weight logs; BP logs; Glucose logs; examining food labels minutely, etc. etc.  It works for me and millions of others as well if we go by the sheer volume of health-based software available on the http://www.  So I let you’all know how it goes!

So do let me know how things have been for you over the worst of the Winter? Or the best of Summer for those of you in the Northern hemisphere?

Talk again soon, have a great day, Eileen

Reading : one of my favourite pastimes

I am a voracious reader. Have been since a very young age. Always will be. Come rain or shine, workday or holiday, I cannot live a day without reading something.

Am I talking Tolstoy? No, I have no conspicuous literary pretensions. I am a reader of washing machine manuals, cereal boxes, crime thrillers, craft & nutrition books by the dozen, cookbooks, biographies, business tomes, ‘pop psychology’, income tax and VAT manuals, – you name it, I read it. For my business and for my pleasure.

I love nothing better than curling up under a duvet with a good book and preferably a large slab of chocolate. Well, OK, the slab of chocolate has not happened for a very long time unfortunately. So I make do with 3 Provitas and hummus! Not quite the same but I am a hummus binger!

So, amidst all the very serious crashing computer issues I am dealing with at this time, I was thrilled with the arrival yesterday of  4 books I had ordered and eagerly awaited.

New editions of the SA GI & GL Guide and SA Edition of The Complete Kilojoule Carbohydrate and Fat Counter.

SA Cookbook for Diabetes & Insulin Resistance Book 2.

More Jewellery in a Jiffy.

No rocket science as you can see!

Interestingly, I see that the new edition of The Complete Kilojoule Carbohydrate and Fat counter now has nutrition software available as a companion resource. This is something new and I will be checking it out and will let you know what it’s all about.

Have a great day.

I am really upset … 3 Poor self care and diabetes complications

Those of you following this blog will know the story about my friend T who works for a friend/client of mine. At Christmas time he scraped his foot while swimming and by March his foot had been amputated.  He is still getting around on crutches while he awaits a prosthetic foot.

I was upset once again yesterday when I was told that T was admitted to hospital last Thursday with deep vein thrombosis in the remaining ‘good’ leg. He remains hospitalised at this time and I will contact his son later this morning to get the latest update. The grave danger and possible consequences in this situation do not have to be spelled out.

What really, really gets to me is that this whole unfolding crisis could quite probably have been avoided completely. It need never have happened.

T really needs to supplement his pension income, his employer wants to accommodate this but also has to deal with T’s lengthy  absences from work. It has placed my client in a  difficult situation which will have to resolved one way or another.

When we blithely ignore the warning signs that our lifestyle is causing our bodies to deteriorate, we are literally toying with our  lives. There are thousands of medical conditions that can befall us over which we have no control whatsoever. Surely it makes sense to take charge of what we can control and influence? But we just don’t do it.

I am relentlessly driven by a number of things to continue on my odyssey back to optimal (optimum?!) wellness. I cannot just let it go. I cannot just let things slide – much as I am so often tempted to do. I deviate from the path – badly sometimes – and yet I cannot throw in the towel.

  • I value my financial independence and the lifestyle that this affords me.
  • I dread the day my children have to step up to the plate and provide for me financially.
  • I fear being dependant on others to care for me physically. I cared for my dying mom-in-law for over a year before she died and it was a harrowing experience for both of us. Well do I remember the two of us crying bitterly in each other’s arms as I changed her filthy disposable nappy yet again. The anguish she suffered from the pain and loss of dignity is something that still lives with me  26 years later.
  • I am angry at myself for the stupidity I exhibited over many years in not looking after my health and lifestyle.  I still exhibit this same stupidity ; work and stressful deadlines still predominate in my life.

One small consolation is that sanity has now prevailed long enough for me to appoint a temporary office assistant. After only 3 mornings with us, the ‘advent of Nicky’ is changing my office landscape and I will talk more about this in a later post.

Weight loss: we must know where we are headed

“One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. “Which road do I take?” she asked. “Where do you want to go?” was his response. “I don’t know,” Alice answered. “Then,” said the cat, “it doesn’t matter.””

— Lewis Carroll, author

Reducing my weight and maintaining at goal weight is the single most important element of my journey to optimum wellness. With my weight at a normal level, the other ills I have will come right. Well, if not ‘come right’, they will certainly be the best results I can achieve given my specific circumstances.

Damn it all to hell! I have said it before and I will say it again. It’s all self inflicted. By upping the ante as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I am placing a much higher value on self care.

By doing this, I will be better able to cope with a stressful, busy life and better plan for the more rounded lifestyle I yearn for.

The first thing I am doing, as of this morning, is re-looking at portion control. W & I have been eating far too much and this is one of the main reasons why our weight is not shifting as rapidly as it was. With W-L and the very comprehensive food list booklet they provide, I am able to instantly see what size my portions should be. So, I have no excuses. Period.

The other day, I saw a list of portion sizes compiled by Dr Ingrid van Heerden (DietDoc on Health 24.com). I am sure I made a copy of it. I’ll dig it out and post it later in the day.

Chow for now. Have a good one.

Weight Loss : I’ve got to up the ante

It’s now exactly two weeks since we returned from our wonderful break at Pinnacle Point. A fading memory I am afraid. 😦  We had to jump right back into the fray and catch up on time lost while we chilled out.

There’s something fundamentally wrong with the whole scenario; with the way that we live our lives in our house. This work, work, work is not a good place to be. We should be relaxing and I suppose I should be relaxing doing crochet or something or maybe gossiping with the other tannies in our quiet apartment block. Nah, just can’t see that ever happening.

I, for one, am right up there with my kids checking out the latest Blackberry, muttering about what in the cloud data backups are costing me, taking on new payroll work for small businesses. I would just like to have a more rounded life and in truth am striving towards that goal; without any notable success at this time!

What has happened since returning to Cape Town two weeks ago? Well, on the weight front nothing much at all and therein lies the problem. Having lost 23kg, my metabolism has settled down and decided that this weight is quite OK, thank you very much. So, another dreaded plateau. I have 7kg to go to the W-L goal set for me and I still want to go at least another 5kg down after that!

I feel good! I’m told I look good (but not when I am still working in my dressing gown mid-morning!) I am much smaller than I was, of course. I had the most amazing experience just before we left on holiday. I simply had to go to Woollies and find some denim pants to take on holiday – the old ones were all hanging like sacks on me. Great feeling actually! 🙂

Not having a clue what size to buy, I confidently took home two pairs of denim pants in size 18. Bearing in mind that I had been wearing size 22 stuff, this in itself was a major victory for me. Got home to find that the jeans as well as the pull on elasticised denim pants were both far too big!

As I hate trying on clothes in shop fitting rooms, I went back, changed the pants and came home with size 16’s. Tried them on. WOW!  The fitted jeans were fine – even a little loose. The elasticised pants were too big!  So back to the shop again to came home with size 14’s. Anyone who has worn size 22 clothes and now wears size 14 will know exactly how I felt!  I was and still am over the moon about this very tangible evidence of my progress so far.

SO FAR

Two very crucial little words for me. I have come so far and am justifiably chuffed with my efforts. But now the real test must begin. The last 7kg’s will be difficult to lose and hence the expression below :-

“ If you up the ante, you increase the importance or value of something, especially where there’s an element of risk as the term comes from gambling, where it means to increase the stake (the amount of money bet). “    Wikipedia

The element of risk for me is, of course, the real possibility of deteriorating health issues due to too slow intervention on my part. I must place a much greater emphasis on where I am heading and pick up the pace substantially.  I will have to worry about all the loose, wrinkled, floppy bits that will only get worse once I have arrived at my destination! The value of goal weight as the basis for optimum wellness has to be the most important element of my odyssey.

So, onward and downward again – are you joining me? You are most welcome!