Thursday, 3 March 2011

February "mid-term" report and house hunting update

Some pics from our walk last Sunday. Just started - halfway up Win Hill "admiring the view" or possibly taking a crafty breather...
Most of the team at the top of Win Hill - Tom, Rich, me, Sarah and Minty.

Now with added canine - Shelagh and Jacob. Minty being very suspicious of Jacob....and vice versa...

Halfway up Lose Hill - very muddy and very windy.

Didn't seem to bother the girls though...

The lovely view of Win Hill from Lose Hill.
Me and Tom at the top of Lose Hill waiting for the others...tee hee...

The whole team at the top of Lose Hill.

Rich and Shelagh.

Then we forgot her while we went to admire the rainbow!!

And then the sunshine came out...

But it didn't stop me slipping over in the mud!!

The offending mud.

And our final reward - a pint and roast pork....

So, how did I get on in the eternal battle in February? Well, better than in January so that is progress although not particularly stellar progress. In January I failed to lose any and, in fact, gained 2. In February I have lost 2, maybe 3 lbs depending on where it settles at. So, downward progress which I will take but I do want to accelerate the rate of progress.

I have definitely re-established a good pattern of exercise which I am finding easier and easier as the nights get lighter and the weather (marginally) warmer. I had never stopped exercising but the frequency had fallen off in the dark winter days. Now I’m back to a steady and consistent 5, usually 6 lots of exercise per week and am upping the intensity of that exercise. Last week, for example, I managed: personal training on Thursday; rest day Friday; hilly (and cold and wet) run on Saturday morning; long, hilly walk on Sunday; dancing on Monday; run on Tuesday evening; gym Wednesday and back to personal training today. Not bad....

It’s been good in that I’m varying what I do quite a lot – hill-walking, dancing, gym, personal training, running and maybe swimming will come back eventually. I’m also doing some of this with Richard which means it’s more sustainable. Yesterday, for example, I was pushing him to go to the gym in the evening but last week it was the other way around. I don’t mind going when he’s with me but it’s a lot harder to go when you want to have supper together and not waste your rare spare evening in in different places. for the record we went and did an hour but his heart really wasn't in it...still, we went!

My food intake is better too. I’m managing to eat my sensible muesli breakfast and low-cal sushi lunch more often than I could manage in December/January and having fewer treats.

So, what is stopping me from dropping more weight? It’s pretty simple – big nights out! I’m having too many of these and they are tending to be pretty big. So where I might previously have had a big night out involving unlimited booze and/or food once a month, if that, recently it has been nearly every week. So all the good work of the previous week is undone by a session on the beer/cider/wine followed by some heinous food crime like a kebab, fish and chips, burger and chips or something equally sinful. I’m making all that effort and ultimately just treading water.

I suppose the point is that Rich and I are having a lot of fun. Going out with friends, going out with each other, going to away games..… It’s great but the excess is derailing me. I need to remember that I don’t need to go all the way every time and can still have a decent night without throwing all restraint out of the window. At least I used to be able to. I really don’t need the end-of-evening kebab/burger just because I can. I could cut out a few of the beers and swap to shorts and diet mixers or wine and soda. I could be more organised to make sure we eat sensible stuff before we go out so I don’t fall for the fast food trap.

Treading water would all be fine and dandy if I were happy with my figure as it is but I’m not really. I do want to actually lose a stone at least and know that it would help my health, fitness, the Three Peaks Challenge, golf and make me happier in the summer when I want to wear shorts and skirts so it is worth putting the effort in now.

So that’s me told!

Anyway, back to house news. I'm very excited as the house which I was beginning to think was going to evade us looks like it will come through after all. It's a good-sized 3 bed Victorian semi with a decent size garden. It is also in the village we'd prefer to live in, where we are now, Bradwell so we will not have to change pubs or dog walkers, again!

It's much more spacious than our current cottage and on a quieter, wider street. Where now we're crammed into a maze of higgledy-piggledy cottages on a steep hill with little lanes and snickets everywhere and everyone squeezing their cars in wherever they can, this street is entirely more genteel. Most house have driveways and garages (we don't, well, we do but the landlord has let the neighbour have OUR garage!) so, although we still have to park on the street, it is a much wider street and there shouldn't be the same pressure for space. The rooms are in a nice proportion (the Victorian were good for that in general) and it's just been totally overhauled so we'll have brand new carpets, newly plastered and painted walls, new bathroom, kitchen and heating. Yay!

The best thing for us though is the basement room - a giant downstairs utility kitchen which will be perfect for muddy dogs, boots and coats, golf clubs, mountain bikes and storage. It opens out onto the back yard which I think we will be able to secure so the dogs will have a run in the daytime. The upstairs kitchen, which opens straight out onto the dining room can be kept clear of all the doggie mess and washing stuff and will be a general living room leaving the front room as more of an evening parlour...a bit old-fashioned perhaps but a nice way to live. I'm looking forward to having enough space to have people round and to stay, in other words, not living like a student/young professional any more and getting back to being a grown up again! Rich might not know what has hit him!!

We have a very busy month of March ahead of us. Rich has to sort his flat out and get ready to move and I will have to do likewise with the cottage. We also have 5 home games at Hillsborough to fit in, 3 on a Tuesday evening and 2 Saturday afternoons. Then there's the training walks, my sister-in-law and nephew visiting the weekend after next and God knows what else. Time - we need more time!! And less booze/food.....

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