Firewirks over Sydney Opera House

Firewirks over Sydney Opera House

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Reflections on the TV thing

I hope you have some patience for pictures of aircraft as I took a lot at RAF Waddington! It was a brilliant day out with D and my cousin Jo and her husband. We had gorgeous weather, a lovely picnic, a great spot near the runway - what more can you ask for? I really enjoyed trying to capture the aircraft with my long lense too. I had some serious camera envy though - there were some proper geek boys and girls there with some major hardware!! I have a life though... I have a life I tell you!!

The awesome Chinook - the piot is waving - look!

It's like watching a house doing aerobatics in the sky - it shouldn't work but it does.

A Lynx doing a full loop the loop.

The ever mean looking Black Hawk....looks like an angry hornet I think.

The Chinook bowing at the end of its display.

And the Falcon sky-diving display team. they were amazing - my niece who is into sky-diving, would have been salivating.

I've concentrated on the helicopters today - next time - Red Arrows!!!

2 weeks ago now, we had our penultimate measurement session for the TV programme. I actually wrote most of this post around then but have been too lazy/busy to finish it off and post it. My bad. Still I think it still holds true. I'll do some more recent updating about what we've been up to soon as I've got a bit more time over the next week of so.

We were weighed, measured (the dreaded skinfold!) and had another go at the 1km time trial. I'm not going to give the results out as I don't want to spoil the show so tough!! It was our last mid-term checkpoint before the final session is filmed on Friday 24 July. In other words, the final chance to kick us up the backside as we then had only 4 weeks to go (now just over 2!).
Now is, therefore, a good opportunity for me to begin to assess how the experience has been for me.

Overall, positive. It has been surprising though. You think, when something like this starts, that it will be all-consuming; that you will be conscious of the demands of the telly all the time and that not a morsel will pass your lips without censure as you'll be so concerned about being filmed at the end. Sadly (or happily perhaps) that has not been the case. I've been surprised how laidback it has been. We have been on our own really as the support has been available (if we ask for it) but certaily not omnipresent. Maybe this won't make such good telly as we've not taken it as seriously as I think the TV company perhaps wanted us to, taking our lead from the input from British Cycling.
But, for my selfish purposes, it has been ideal. I didn't really want a spartan bootcamp for 12 weeks during which time I would lose a stack of weight and get fit but didn't live in the real world or learn anything of value going forward. I've already done that with knobs on in the form of Lighter Life. I know I can lose weight by depriving myself because I did that in 2007 and lost 9 stone! I wanted to learn how to live in the real world and control my weight and exercise habits in that real place. And I have (well, I've made a good start).

It has taught me a lot. I have lost weight. Not a huge amount (just over a stone (18lbs) so far in 10 weeks) but enough and, crucially, I have done it while I have been eating and enjoying life!! I have re-ignited my love of exercise and put it back to front and centre in my life. I have learned a lot about how my mind ticks as a healthy, human woman. I feel as though this programme will not be the end of the matter. Unlike with Lighter Life, where, when the foodpacks stopped, so did the regime, this is NOT a "diet" so will not end abruptly, leaving a vacuum in its place. I'm already planning my continuing exercise regime through the summer and beyond and rehearsing to myself how much weight I will realistically lose by the end of the summer, and then by my 40th birthday in November.

I'm not frightened of continuing with this way of eating and living FOREVER! That is a first for me. I've always secretly (and not so secretly in the case of Lighter Life) resented whatever diet I've been doing and had those treacherous little thoughts at the back of my mind "when you come off the diet, you can...." with fish and chips and chocolate biscuits featuring heavily. I don't think I'm ever going to come off this diet because I'm not on one.

I feel as though a massive weight has been taken from me and, when I really press my little brain to work out what that weight is, I conclude that it is the word "should". It is the cumulative effect of the shame and guilt which has, for me at least, been hitherto intimately associated with eating and exercising. The TV programme's biggest gift to me has been demonstrating to me that I'm not a bad/weak/failing person just because I have not always been able to control my eating or exercise. That it is about learning skills to make me suceed at my goals (staying slim and healthy) not "being a better person". Once that moral judgement is removed I have found it sooo much easier to focus on what I'm doing.

If I really don't want to go for a run, well, I'll do something else. It's not about willpower or forcing myself to do stuff I hate, it's about being healthy and incorporating some form of exercise into my life. If I eat a bit more than I should, I try to work out why and how I might not do so in the future, I don't beat myself up as a failure and then want to eat all the more.

So, it has been a resounding sucess for me even though I am not going to be on telly, punching my way through a paper screen looking like a twiglet!!


Peridot said...

What a fantastic and fascinating post! I really think that you've got the psychological side of this 'dieting' business well and truly licked and it really sounds as if you're going to go from strength to strength - literally and figuratively.

Peridot x

Shauna said...

love this post! sounds like a positive exprience, it's been really fascinating witnessing your mindset shift over the last 10 weeks. and 18 pounds... YEAH BABY! result! :)