She's very protective.....
And very suspicious......
So, I have been blithely bleeting on about staying the same over Christmas (which I did!) and feeling pretty smug. Behind the scenes, however, I had been gearing up to tightening up my diet and exercise routine and getting serious again so that I lose some proper weight in 2011. Well now my body has taken over and given me a kick up the arse so that I HAVE to get serious. It has piled on 3 lbs since Monday! How did that happen? I've not done anything different but there they are sitting somewhere about my now amply padded form. But not for long.
Luckily this is the season for dieting; it is EVERYWHERE! From Special K and their slinky woman in jeans to Martine McCutcheon exhorting us to detox with some form of yoghurt (uselessly I'm sure) to "Britain's Fattest Man" on the telly last night to the world of blogging (hello again Mrs Lard!!). The list goes on and on and there is scarcely an advert break, newspaper or billboard which does not contain some reference to "new year, new you".
So I'm clearly in good company. And I'm feeling ready for the challenge now. Before Christmas I just wanted to limit the damage (which I'd done up to this Tuesday morning!!). Last year, my priority was establishing and enjoying a balanced life where spending time with Richard and making a new social life was in equilibrium with working hard and keeping my job safe as well and being kind to myself through the inevitable trauma of the divorce. Well, I've done that but now it is time to nudge my health and fitness a bit higher up the scale. It's all very well spending lots of lovely time with Rich, cooking nice meals and snuggling on the sofa or going out and about eating and drinking but I need to balance that with exercise and sensible eating. I think I can just about tear myself away a couple of evenings a week to go to the gym or for a run now....
So, remembering what used to work for me: accountability, frequent blogging and bite-sized, short-term, achievable targets.
- I will dig out that chart for my wall. I made it before Christmas but didn't get it stuck up and used.
- I will go swimming at lunchtime tomorrow (Friday)
- I will do some form of "proper" exercise this weekend - either a run (ideally), a bike ride or a trip to the gym.
- Foodwise, I'm not going to go onto a "diet" as such but I'm going to cut out a lot of the bread, potatoes and fatty stuff. Lots of veggies and soups, casseroles and stir fries. I know what to do.
In the longer term, I've been toying around with finding some sort of fitness challenge to work towards but am not keen on making it a running one after the problems I had with my feet last year. Will have to give this some thought. A triathlon perhaps although I didn't have much luck getting to do one of those either last year or the year before!!
I feel as though I'm approaching this challenge as a totally different person. Last year (and every other New Year I can remember) I felt I HAD to lose weight. It was like a black cloud looming over my life, a dreaded but inevitable priority and the endeavour was tinged with fear. I would be kicking myself for gaining weight in the first place so there was the element of failure and guilt hanging over me and, all in all, the whole thing was a draining, negative experience. Obviously, once I got started on any regime I experienced that dieter's high and the zeal of the convert etc but the process of starting was always an emotional quagmire.
I don't feel like that now. I am doing this because it is the sensible thing to do. My waistbands are a little tighter than they were, I have put on 5 lbs over my acceptable level and now is the time to take action before those 5lbs settle and multiply. I'm looking forward to doing some running. I'd like to persuade Rich to come to the gym with me but he's hurt his arm (golfer's elbow - like tennis elbow just on the other side) and he's currently using that as an excuse.... But, either way, I know that this is what I want to do. I'm also enjoying the fact that there is no pressure on me to lose weight and that I feel as loved and wanted now as I was when I was half a stone thinner. Just writing that last sentence brought it home to me how ridiculous it was to feel that acceptance and love were dependant upon my weight and my eating habits. But, rightly or wrongly, that is how it was and it is liberating not to feel like that now.
As an aside, I have noticed that the second half of this post has been full of how I "feel" and "felt". Strange how one's emotions come to the fore when thinking about weight and exercise eh? I'm sure Dr Steve Peters would have something to say about it, probably that my chimp is taking over and manipulating me in some way. I haven't got time to go into that now though so am going to take this at face value and plough on with my targets. If I don't report back - nag me, peeps!!
How bizarre is that!! I have just had a text from Rich saying that one of his friends is organising a team to do the Three Peaks Challenge in July (Ben Nevis, Sca Fell Pike and Snowdon in 24 hours) and were we interested? I have said that, yes, I am very interested. Rich has replied to his friend and said we're up for it so, watch this space.... I now have a perfect challenge to work towards and one we can take on together. Serendipity.