I now have that new-diet zeal and feel full of energy and motivation. I'm determined to keep this going for the next couple of months and see at least a stone leave my frame. It's do-able and I want it!
Having said that, I have a couple of strategies to guard against failure.
Firstly, I'm going to allow myself meals out occasionally but make sure that the rest of the meals that day are suitably austere. The reasoning behind this is that I don't want to put my life on hold as I did during LL. The situation is nowhere near as bad as it was pre-LL days so the solution need not be as drastic either.
Secondly, I'm going to make sure that I have enough fuel for exercise. I exercised all the way through LL but, looking back, it was not as demanding as what I do now. I was a big woman and I used to go running (shuffling I called it!) for around 30 minutes or so, or do personal training with lighter weights and fewer reps. Now I do a very hard gym workout involving weights and aerobic stuff which totally drains me.
I really enjoyed the gym last night - doing the Rowing Machine Challenge was great. I was dreading it before I started - my chimp going mad trying to persuade me not to do it - it'll hurt, you don't need to do it; why put yourself through it? etc etc - but my competitive instincts kicked in and I overrode her objections. I saw some other names up on the board with their times and thought - if they can do it, I can bloody well do it, especially as the "theys" in question are both several years older than me!! And I was childishly pleased to be in the lead on the board; the fastest woman and faster than several of the men too. I'm sure one of the women in particular will have another go and probably overtake me but there's still time to fight for my top spot!
So, harnessing my chimp's natural competitiveness is good (as long as I don't go too far and feel bad about losing, which won't happen). Teaching her that what she wants is not always good for us is also good. But most important of all is reminding myself what it feels like to be in charge. It's very liberating and it's what I need to be to keep happy and healthy. And on the subject of competitiveness, I've just made a date in a couple of weeks' time to play squash against a colleague. We used to play quite a bit early last year and he always beats me but by very close margins; one day I will take a game off him!! So there's variety and challenge in the mix too.