Thursday, 26 February 2009

This stops here!

I weighed this morning at personal training and I have GAINED a lb! When I am losing so slowly, I cannot afford even a single lb to go back on. I knew I was straying from the path of Becktiousness so I'm not surprised.

It is not the end of the world - just a set back and a timely reminder for me to get back to reading my book, the cards and implementing the plan, all the time, not just Monday to Friday afternoon!

So, I've put the book in my handbag to read at lunchtime at work and a properly chastened but determined Lesley is back on track.

Personal training was tough today to - running intervals and tricky weights. I feel better already!! Have a good one everyone.

Wednesday, 25 February 2009


I knew it would happen but had hoped to enjoy a temptation free life for a bit longer. I've been rubbish for a few days at reading my book and my cards and now I'm suffering the consequences. Nibbles are creeping in; exercise has left the building; the desire for treats has returned; and portion control is going out of the window (sounds like a particularly weird party...with strangely named people coming and going!).

It's not terminal but I must get it back together.

Unfortunately though, tonight I'm going out so no time. Will take my book to work tomorrow and read it at lunchtime rather than lusting over the snack table!
I promise.

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Standing still

The clock tower (now a house) at Bamford Mill.

Shelagh suspiciously guarding her stock of sticks.

The weir at Bamford Mill.

Shelagh pleading for me to throw sticks for her to fish out. Minty not bothered.

The road leading down to the Mill. I just like the name (and the ivy).

I must admit to myself (and you) that my dieting efforts are not really "dieting" as such; they are more "maintaining" efforts. If I were judging them on that basis I would say A- but for a diet, more like a C.

I think that the problem has been that I'm having too nice a time. You will probably remember that some of D's previous trips back from the rig have been characterised by grumpiness, rows, upsetting words and just general lowgrade marital misery all round. This trip has been lovely: relaxed, happy, no rows, lots of togetherness. And, as a result, the dieting has taken a back seat.

I have much to be happy about in terms of behavioural change but, after a 4 day weekend, today I could feel small slides back into temptation and away from my Beck regime. The only actual slip up was a small biscuit (don't know what they're called - one of those rings iced with crunchy pastel coloured icing that you used to have at birthday parties when you were a kid - just couldn't resist it - but I should have!) but I nearly gave in several times.

So, this is a reminder to get back to Beck - menu planning, reading cards, the lot. So - more exercise this week and just generally more attention to detail. I can live with maintaining for the time being but I MUST see some reward however slow soon.

D is back to the rig next Tuesday and I will cut back severely then in the hope of shifting a few lbs while he's away when I can de-stock the fridge, do more exercise and not be tempted to eat and drink out together etc. In the meantime, I must stay strong.

Sunday, 22 February 2009

He's just NOT that into you Minty!!

Minty meets a little Jack Russell on the Rec yesterday morning.......heellloooo, do you want to play??
Er, no, not really you big nutter, leave me alone....

Are you sure....go on....I'm nice, honest....

No! Leave me alone! Go away...

Mum, help! This big girl is scaring me....!

Minty trots up to me bewildered, she hadn't touched the wee fella (and God knows where his owner was) but he just wouldn't cooperate in her crazy games, what had she done wrong.....I had to break it to her...he's just not that into you Minty!

We had a gorgeous meal out last night - I worked very hard on making reasonable choices, eating them slowly and carefully and not eating more than I wanted, which worked well until the hot chocolate melty pudding thingy..... D and I were laughing at the difficulty I have in making a plate of food last as long as his meal...I have to consciously put down my knife and fork, chat, drink, anything and still I finish before him! I suspect I could do a crossword or knit a jumper and I'd still finish first! I'm afraid I'll always be an efficient eater; I just have to battle against the "wolfing" propensity in me (hey - "The Wolfing Propensity" - sounds like a sequence to the Bourne Ultimatum!).

Still, the bistro was lovely, the food tasty, healthy and not served in overlarge portions and the wine very nice indeed. The company (D) cheered up too so all was very well.

We've also had a lovely Sunday - quiet with lots of chores, but nice nonetheless. We tidied the house (and in the process found a hoover attachment that actually removes dog fur from the carpet which is a serious breakthrough in the Doyle household!), laundered, paperworked and did the thousand and one other tasks which accumulate. But today, it was strangely satisfying rather than irritating and boring. Maybe the sunshine and hint of spring in the air??

We didn't go for a long walk but I've got tomorrow off so hopefully we'll head into the hills then. It was very windy today so we just stayed in the valley.

I'm off to the pub quiz this evening which is going to be interesting...instead of our usual league game against another local pub, we have a bye so we've brought together all of our pool of players and made up 2 teams and we're playing A against B at home. I reckon the competition is going to be intense. I am captain of the B team and, to be honest, we don't stand much of a chance but we might get lucky! I'm just hoping not to be slaughtered.

I'm finding food at the weekend to be a challenge. I'm not so much following Beck, as following D. I'm trying to eat nice things but not a lot of them - basically, when D eats, I eat. This means, at weekends, I tend only to have 2 meals per day but one of them is likely to be a non-diet type option like pancakes!! But to balance the pancakes out, I don't have anything else until supper and then limit the spuds and portions etc . It makes the weekend very pleasant but I'm not sure yet whether it'll work. Weigh in on Tuesday so hopefully I'll see a small change. If not, a rethink of the laissez-faire approach will have to be on the cards!!!

Hope you had a good weekend (or as good as possible in some cases)!

Saturday, 21 February 2009

I better

Minty sniffing through the snowdrops (as opposed to tiptoing through the tulips!)

view up the Bamford Edge and the Quakers.

As quickly as it arrived the mystery illness has disappeared.

I felt much better yesterday just a bit under the weather but woke up today feeling Grrrrrrrreeeaat! The sun was shining; it's Saturday; I had the footie to look forward to and all was right with the world. I went for a lovely walk with the dogs on the way to the garage to pick up my car and I really thought that spring might have sprung a little bit.....I not going to say it though as it is still a bit early.

The footie went well - we got a win!! I had a good laugh in the pub with Jimbo and stuck to my plan of no breakfast and a chip butty and 2 pints of bitter for brunch (some diet eh?!)!! and now I'm being taken out for a somewhat grumpy D. But even that is not denting my good humour!!

I'm going to make good choices and really enjoy my night out - I'll let you know how it goes....have a good one!

Friday, 20 February 2009

I sick...

The start of a doggie race from our walk last Saturday. I walk down the hill to get in position for photos while D holds back the slathering hounds. Then he lets them go!!

Minty winning...come on Shelagh!
No, Minty has youth and stupidity on her side...

But, what's this? She's taken a wrong turn!!

I can't lie to you, Shelagh definitely brought up the rear!

It's been a bad year for me being ill. I have had more than my usual quota of coughs and colds this winter and now I've got a new and exciting lurgy - horrible roiling stomach pains, like stomach ache and time of the month ache rolled into one, combined with shivery high temperature. No noticeable cough or cold. It's a strange one alright.

I felt terrible at work yesterday, on 2 occasions I was speaking with a colleague (different ones)when I was seized with a nasty stomach cramp and just had to stop talking and moan quietly for a few seconds (which is a bit embarrassing to say the least). And then last night it just got worse and worse until I was sitting wrappd up in front of the fire with fleece and blanket burning up yet feeling freezing cold. It was horrible, teeth chattering and sweating.

I think the fever spiked last night 'cos I feel much better now and just have the remnants of the stomach ache and a tired, achy body. What a wuss I am. Anyway, sorry for the moan, I just feel sorry for myself this morning and wanted to whinge to someone.

I'm not going into work and I had already booked Monday off so this is the beginning of a long weekend!! I hope I feel up for some fun soon.
On the positive side, last night, while in the grips of sickness, I didn't turn to food for comfort. I know you're not meant to feel hungry with a fever (or is that the cold?) but my modus operandi is always to try and self-medicate away any bad feeling with food, whether it be emotional hurt or physical discomfort. Last night, I had a small supper, a pear and a milky coffee, all of which were on my food plan. As the evening wore on and I started to feel really bad, I did wander into the kitchen a few times on the hunt for "something" but didn't give in to either the toast or biscuits which were on offer, or even take a consolation prize of a pear which might have been my fallback position pre-Beck.

I must have been feeling terrible though as I got as far as taking the loaf of bread out of the bread crock and holding it for a few seconds while I wrestled with my Beck mantras before summoning the strength to stuff it back and and leave the room. That hasn't happened for weeks now!

I've also felt incredibly fat over the last few dys. I think it must be a combination of the time of month and this stomach cramp thing but my stomach has felt like a football and I've not shifted a single lb all week despite being pretty good and doing loads of exercise. I suspect this contributed to my wobble yesterday about wanting to rush back to the world of quick fixes. Hopefully, when this phase is over, I'll see a small loss and that will restore my faith in the world again!

Personal training yesterday morning was awful - I didn't at that stage know that I was ill so couldn't understand why I felt so rubbishy and weak. We did loads of aerobic stuff as I'd done a heavy weight session at the gym the night before and, as I was running on the treadmill, I just felt like a giant achy stomach on legs! Whinge whinge, moan moan....

I'll stop now. But I've reminded myself that, just because I'm not feeling great, there's no need to eat more. Food is not the answer, unless the question is "what is my problem?".

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Is it too slow???

D's usual happy smiling face!! He is a bugger for not smiling for photos. He says it's because I take far too many but I say "get used to it"!

Me on top of Whinstone Lee Tor with the Derwent reservoir behind me.

D on the same rock!

And the snowy view...
Peridot said that I was a star pupil and sometimes I think I am doing pretty well but not, by any means, all the time! I also wonder whether I'm taking to it well because I'm hardly dieting at all??

At this rate it'll take me a year to drop a couple of stone!!

When I read Peridot's impatience to lose that first stone and the fact that Mrs L has already lost a fair bit, part of me gets a big pang and wants to rush off for that quick fix. This is expecially true when, after my bad Saturday, it is touch and go whether I lose even a lb this week.

But, I'm going to keep the faith and, if possible, just adjust what I'm eating downwards a notch or so until I can be a bit more secure in losing something nearly every week. The main reason for sticking to it is the fact that I can see such massive changes in my mindset towards food.

  • I measured out my pasta today and it looked paltyr compared to my pre-diet portion. But I carried on with that amount, ate it and am now pleasantly full.
  • After the pasta, there was a brief tussle in my head concerning whether I was going to go and have something else....and I won the tiff easily; I didn't even head for the kitchen.
  • I went to a petrol station this evening, hungry and on my way to the gym and didn't give in to a snack. Pre-Beck that would have been a nailed on cert.
  • I haven't had a single biscuit or chocolate at work for over 3 weeks.
  • I've cut back my work day lunch and yet really enjoy it and don't want more.
  • I've cut out my daily MacDonalds cappucino and don't even think about it as I drive past.
  • Apart from on "Bad Saturday", I've not had bread at home for weeks.

So, all that is positive but the difference between maintaining and dropping weight is obviously quite small as I'm not dropping much and it feel painfully slow.

Also, I'm prone to giving into temptation in some circumstances - football being one of them. I met my pal at Pizza Hut last night and, having already checked out the nutritional values, I chose a pasta and a glass of wine. I then gave into 2 slices of garlic bread and, when Jim's individual pizza was upgraded to a large by mistake, I had a slice of that too! That's an extra 400 or so calories! Not great.

But, forewarned is forearmed and I'm determined that, next time, I'm going to choose the same pasta but add a side salad to it so that I feel happy turning down half the garlic bread. It was partly the fact that I hadn't had that pasta dish before and I was almost nervous that "it wouldn't be big/nice enough"!! How daft is that?? And partly that I associate going to the football with excess in food and booze. I'm reining it back in but it's taking time.

In case you're interested, Wednesday played terribly and lost to our other local rivals Barnsley which was dire....sigh.. That's the life of a fan of a mediocre club; up one minute, crashing down the next.

So, into the shower and off to the pub...have a great week everyone.

Monday, 16 February 2009

Back to the grindstone.

Some more pics from last Saturday. This one is the view from above the Ladybower Inn over the A57 (Snake Pass towards the Ladybower reservoir and Bamford. My route home from work some nights.

Minty enjoying the view.

Sheep in a wood. They're glaring at Minty who is vainly trying to climb the snowy slope to get to them. She doesn't chase sheep but she really wants to ....more training required there methinks.

Meee - looking very hot and sweaty considering the weather... In my defence, it was a very steep hill!

Strangely, I don't really find it too hard to get back onto the straight and narrow on a Monday even if I have had a really good weekend (by "good" I mean enjoyable, not good in a dieting sense unfortunately!). I just wish that I hadn't undone some of my hard work of last week over the weekend so I'm going to try very hard next weekend.

Although I think I can "get away with" relaxing at the weekends for a while longer, the extra food at the weekend will eventually mean that I don't lose anything overall and that would be a massive waste of time. I must focus on what I want to achieve in the longterm, not just coast.

If I can lose a lb a week, it will take me until Christmas to reach my slimmest weight. I'm pretty sure I DO want to get back down there but I know I will be happy with my weight quite a long time before that. Even a stone off my current weight would make a big difference. I would be comfortably into size 14 clothes and I'm sure running would be a lot less tiring.

So, the long, slow game is the one for me but I mustn't lose sight of the end and relax away from dieting altogether just because I'm not expecting to see dramatic results. That is what I've done in the past and what I'm desperate to avoid this time.

I've noticed that, while I've been following Beck and seeing some early results, I've been much more relaxed in my life in general. I have felt much more able to let little things slide with D and, as a consequence, we have not had a row (yet) and have enjoyed a lovely, happy weekend together. I'm less defensive and less snippy and I'm more willing to go out and dress up. It can't be the weight loss itself as that is only a few lbs overall. It must be the mental side; the fact that I've found something that can work for me and can see light at the end of the tunnel.

Which is all the more reason not to take it for granted and muck up this new dawn as I have been known to do in the past!! I must treat every sucess as a precious commodity to be nurtured and developed until this new way of life is well and truly consolidated.

Today was pretty good. Once again, Boots were out of the king prawn salad I had put down on my food plan. I fancied a hoisin duck wrap instead,which is about 100 calories more than the salad. So I had it but I substituted a small pack of carrot batons for the raspberry yoghurt granola I usually have which easily balanced it out. I turned down chocolate or biscuits at least 6 times today at work, probably more. And this evening, although I've had some cravings, the only snack I have eaten is a couple of small slices of melon (which I had allowed for on my plan in any event).

Also, I've finally got round to joining the gym so I'll be going to my first class on Wednesday evening.
I know I can do this but I have to keep working at it. The coming weekend is going to be my next big test and I'm going to have planned the ass out of it by then...and that's promise!! I get the feeling that, if I can manage one reasonably disciplined weekend, I will realise that it's not that bad after all and more will follow. Have a good week everybody!!

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Saturday strikes again....

Phase 1 of our big walk, Minty still very excited and enjoying the view.
Looking up toward Bamford Edge and Stanage Moor.

D and the dogs.
Me! I suspect you would have worked that out without a caption though!

Shelagh bottom up in a snow drift while Minty eats snow.

It's like I just don't care on a Saturday!! And, to be fair, I don't really. If I can keep shifting the lbs, albeit slowly, while still enjoying one day a week without the dreaded dieting, then I will take that. We'll see though. If the lbs do not not shift this week then I'll have to blame Saturday (and my lack of Becklike application on said Saturday) and have a rethink.

It was a nice day. Up late, minimal chores and shopping and then we made some sarnies and hit the hills. It was quite an arduous 3 hour walk over some big hills made harder by the snow and the cold. We were slipping and sliding on the compacted and melting snow which really makes your legs and feet have to work that much harder. I can definitely feel those miles in my legs this morning! So, that will have burned off some of extra calories at least.

But I'm not kidding myself that it will have offset them all. I had a good breakfast, a sandwich lunch with extra flapjack, a 3 course Valentines supper (cooked by myself!) of crab salad, leg of lamb and sticky toffee pudding and 4 glasses of wine.

Now I look at it, it was not a terrible food day, especially given the big hike, but it was not a good diet day. And obviously 4 glasses of wine is not going to help any diet!! What made me feel that Saturday had struck was the fact that I didn't overtly apply my Beck techniques. I purposefully shut them out of the room.

I didn't then go mad or anything but I was not thinking, "do I need this flapjack? Am I really hungry or is it just desire and habit?" (Answer - no not really, but D is having a chocolate bar and I want a treat while we're walking too....) I also didn't read my cards or do today's exercise from the book. That is the 3rd Saturday now.

So, what do I do about it? Do I do anything? Part of me thinks, why bother? If I can continue to stick to the diet 6 days a week and drop lbs and I can get back on track every Sunday, what is the harm? Part of me is concerned that I'm "getting away with it" now but these Saturdays mean that I'm not really committing to the plan and the new mindset longterm thus threatening what I'm desperate to achieve, which is not just about dropping lbs.

I think that that second, irritatingly goody goody part of me is right.... smug, prig that she is..... so I need a plan in time for next Saturday (as well as getting back on track today etc).

I think I'm going to purposefully plan a generous amount of food into my food plan for Saturday so I'm not actually changing what I can eat, but what I am changing is that I continue to be accountable while I eat it. I'm going to the football next Saturday so I'm going to write down 2 pints of bitter and a chip butty on my plan and then I'm going to stick to the plan! That should make it easier to adjust my plan in the event that I stop losing weight and have to readjust what I eat and cut out the naughty stuff.
I hope that helps me to stick to the straight and narrow for the rest of the day. I'm off to read my book and catch up with my menu planning! Have a good day everyone.
On a slightly sombre note, yet another part of me is horrified that I care so much about this dieting rubbish that it's all I talk about in my blog when there are such scary things happening in the wider world. In particular, obviously, in Australia but on a much grander scale in Gaza or Zimbabwe. It just doesn't seem right to be so self obsessed when there are such tragedies occurring. It's an issue I've thought about every single time I've pressed "publish post" for the last few weeks. But I've just not felt qualified to add my two penn'orth to the subject and I'm not really now. I just felt the need to say that, in my real life, I'm constantly moved by events, try to do my bit where I can and try to live right and appreciate my blessings.

Friday, 13 February 2009


View of Win Hill from Bamford Edge.

Minty Moo (as christened by Ameythist - the name has stuck with me Am!)

More Minty..

Elizabeth Bennett and her Aunt enjoy the view above Pemberley..

A very poorly positioned self timer shot!

I enjoyed the strange feeling of planning to enjoy a meal today. I knew I was going to have a nice big steak with mash, veg and fried onions tonight (albeit a very small amount of onions and only a small portion of mash too) so I deliberately had a smaller breakfast and no yoghurt with my lunch saving me about 300 calories. I may still go over a bit but it's the thought that counts!

And, when I was walking round town doing a bit of shopping before my hair appointment this evening, I didn't stop for a cappucino which I'm almost sure I would have done in the past. And I bought biscuits for work but didn't have one (I deliberately bought biscuits I don't like...there is such a thing!).

I had a Mrs L type epiphany today. I thought about the future, really visualised it. I pictured me around Christmastime (2009) and I'm slim, wearing size 12 clothes; I'm back running again (in new trendy running gear); and I'm buying a lovely slinky dress with high heels for the party season. I'm able to wear short skirts and chunky's great!

Then, like the spectre at the feast (inappropriate word that, in the circumstances), the thought hit me that, if I am to suceed in making that picture real, I would still only be eating around what I'm eaing now in terms of calories, give or take and depending on how much exercise I manage to fit in. Normally that thought is my cue for pouting and stamping of's not faaaiirr.....whine.

But not this time. Today, as I walked to the office, the thought came to me that, if it meant I would stay slim and stable and be fit and healthy (and look damn hot in a pair of jeans!) then I could happily eat what I'm eating now and exercise the same control forever.

Woah......does this mean that I'm growing up??!

Now, I must stick with the fantasy but not get ahead of myself as there's a long way to go before I'm a size 14 let alone a 12 but it is a good motivating dream so I'm going to hold onto it.

I've got straight hair tonight so I'm going to dress up and head off to the pub early and make the most of it! Have a great weekend eveyrone!

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Habits can be broken.....dammit!

I've run out of snowy photos for now so I found some I took the weekend before the big freeze up on Bamford Edge. it was gorgeous but a bit hazy.

Minty admiring the view.......she has a bad habit of standing very near to the drop which tends to make me nervous as she's not right bright... (as they say round here!)

Me and the lovely Shelagh on self-timer

I've no idea what they were doing in the bracken but they were at it for ages...just their waggy tails popping out . I hope they weren't terrorising some poor little critter in there!

Minty looking noble and beautiful for once...what a hound she is!

You know I said I was going to try and break the mold and NOT row with D as soon as he gets back off the rig? Well, that's going well. I feel much more relaxed and less defensive than I have for the last few trips and it shows.

But - I also want to eat more than I have for the last few days. I think Diarmuid being around has triggered me to want to comfort eat. Bizarre I know. He went up to the pub 20 minutes or so ago and, ever since, I've been desperate to go and have some totally unnecessary snack.
Beck says I should read my cards - done - and call my diet coach (who I haven't appointed yet - bad Lesley!). So, instead, I came up here to blog it out.

All I can think is that, because we've had a lot of stress about my weight and eating in the past, often when he first gets back from the rig, I associate D leaving the house with a release of tension and therefore want to turn to food. Sad eh? Anyway, it's daft because there has been no tension. D is very tired and not quite back on days but it's been very chilled so the desire for food can only be some sort of habit hangover from the past. And it WILL be broken!

I prepared my menu for today and have hardly complied with it at all. That's not to say that I've done badly or anything, just that circumstances conspired against me. I had to substitute sushi for my usual salad at lunch but fewer calories so no downside there. I gave myself credit for resisting buying something else which I wanted to do as the sushi "looked smaller" than my salad! I was actually worried that I might be hungry! So, actually in the queue in Boots, I reminded myself about the Beck hunger exercise and how the sushi would be plenty and, even if it wasn't, it wasn't the end of the world and talked myself out of the madness quick smart.

Then I didn't go to my french class because of the snow so didn't have my budgeted cappucino and fruit snack but came home instead, leading to a whole different evening menu - salmon salad instead of chicken stir fry. But I've kept to the basics and not added anything. Resisted biscuits at work despite everyone chowing down on a new pack of chocolate digestives! Big pat for that!

So Beck can be flexible but the idea of having a plan is helpful. One of the difficulties I'm finding is remembering all the different techniques to apply. That's where the reading and re-reading will come in handy and the response cards too. Some things though are almost second nature even now, like always eating sitting down and eating slowly and deliberately. It's quite rare that I have to remind myself to do those. The cravings and portion control are probably harder and I still forget to praise myself during the day when I make a good choice. I remember here when I'm blogging but not as I'm moving through the day. I'll get there.

Anyway, I'm a bit waffley tonight but it's served it's purpose; I'm a lot calmer about the snacking thing now and am NOT going to give in. Hope you have a good evening too.