Friday, 1 January 2016

Hey, it's 2016! How did that happen??

I'm hoping that 2016 is the year I wanted 2015 to be.  2015 started with promise. A steady diet with plenty of low key exercise meant that I slowly dropped a stone and 4lbs.  I began to feel confident that I had it cracked (ha!).  Then the rate of loss slowed, we went on holiday at the end of May and I stopped dropping all together and summer  and foot pain arrived hand in hand.  I fought the gains but without success.

Who knows whether I might have turned things around and managed to hold onto some sort of overall drop for the year if my mum hadn't had her accident but she did.  The second half of the year certainly put paid to any movement on the diet and exercise front (other than, sadly, movement in the wrong direction).

I am totally fine with this.  Mum and Dad were my priorities.  As you know Mum did not pull through after the accident and died in September and we're still so sad to be without her (although I know her relatively quick passing was a blessing to her and Dad in the great scheme of things).

Also, I know that I had to deal with my foot pain.  I could not contemplate a life without exercise in it and it was beginning to make golf and even dog walking painful.  So I had the operation and now I'm anxiously waiting to find out if it has done the trick.  Although the bony growth on my big toe joint has been scraped off (sorry), the wound has healed and the toe is more mobile, it is still stiff and sore. I don't know yet if this is leftover operation pain or if it is residual arthritis pain which has not gone along with the bony growth.  Keep your fingers crossed for the former please.

So, the hard truth is that I'm right back to where I started at the beginning of 2015, almost to the lb!  I suppose that is almost a positive isn't it?  I haven't actually gained any net weight this year.  Hmmmm, it doesn't feel very positive as I feel quite porky and unfit.

One way or another, foot pain or none, I WILL be getting fit and thinner this year.

I feel gym membership coming on.  Given the foot pain it is probably the most reliable form of exercise I can manage at the moment.  I'm actually looking forward to it after so long.  I think I'll get January out of the way though as gyms are always a nightmare in January!  And food (and booze) is about to become simpler and, just, less.  I'm also looking forward to that in a strange sort of way.

Luckily, I have an excellent incentive for this task.  As we finally have a little spare money this year, we are looking forward to a special holiday.  Ideally, I wanted South Africa and safari but this didn't appeal to Rich so we have reached a compromise on an active, outdoorsy trip to the west side of America.  Specifically Arizona, Utah and California.

The problem with this is the sheer number of wonderful places to visit and the lack of 3 spare months within which to see them all.  We have a list which includes whale watching, the Grand Canyon(natch), Antelope Canyon, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, golf in Arizona (ideally Dove Mountain but anywhere would be good), Canyonlands National Park, possibly San Francisco, possibly Napa Valley, possibly Las Vegas, possibly the Arches National Park....something is going to have to give.

Has anyone been to this area?  If so,what were your highlights?  What could you have lived without?  ANY recommendations would be gratefully received while we're at the planning stage but please don't comment just before we go and say - oh, you really must nip up to X or Y!!

So, in order to get the best out of this great trip, I WILL be considerably smaller by the time we go (probably October or November for the cooler weather).

In the meantime, what news of Christmas and New Year?  As my Dad had a houseful for Christmas, we stayed at home and entertained Rich's mum.  I had worked right up to Christmas Eve (never again) so my preparation was late and somewhat rushed.  It didn't stop us having a lovely and very relaxed day but I would have enjoyed more time to do the optional extras.  Next year maybe.

Football on Boxing Day and a fabulous home win against Birmingham City.  Over to Lincoln for a hectic family meal and presents on the Sunday - 14 for dinner catered by my sister and her eldest daughter, Liz - not me for a change.  Monday was a trip to Middlesbrough (the glamour) for the football.  This time a disappointing 1-nil defeat but a good trip nonetheless.

Tuesday a gorgeous sunny dog walk up on Stanage Edge and some relaxation.  Wednesday a rainy day so chores and trying to get some pictures hung (with limited success) and a friend over for supper.  I cooked a turkey lasagna for the first time and was surprised and impressed with the result; definitely to be repeated with next year's leftovers.

We went over to my Dad's for New Year's Eve as everyone else had by now gone home.  As we've all been stricken with colds and coughs it was a quiet night in the local but it was a pleasant night anyway and I think Dad enjoyed himself.  I wouldn't have left him alone on his first solo NYE!!

Today we have just ventured home and parked ourselves in front of the darts (well, I cooked a scrummy cottage pie too).  Tomorrow we're off to London for the football (Fulham).  A long day starting at 6.15 and home by midnight but I'm looking forward to it.  We had a similar day out for the Charlton game and it was a cracker!

Not sure if these Christmas photos will post but if they don't will try again later - get me, Rich and dogs in full Sheffield Wednesday/Christmas regalia!


Melinda Gerow said...

What a wonderful sounding trip! Please consider coming to Santa Barbara. I'm a long time reader and would love to host you and Rich for a cocktail and give you the insiders tips for seeing our beautiful little city. We have the best whale watching site on the California coast, amazing wineries and gorgeous Spanish style buildings.
Happy New Year,

Pam said...

Happy New Year! Lovely to see your happy photos.

Peridot said...

I just lost a massive comment on Seren's site so will keep it reasonably concise (given that it's me!):

we 'did' California for our honeymoon so can recommend a few things. I'll send you a link to our honeymoon blog but I would recommend Sonoma over Napa - more laid back and an amazing diner-ish restaurant in a proper silver trailer which I'd seriously detour a long way to visit. And I LOVED San Francisco in the way I so very seldom love a city.

I'm sure it will be a wonderful trip - how exciting!