Tag Archives: diet

Back in the Groove…

Well, it looks like I’m not quite back in the groove, as I wrote this last night and then forgot to post it.

Ah well, if it’s a bit confusing try adjusting it by 24 hours.

Looks like it’s five days since I last posted. Sorry about that – I have plenty of things to write about, loads of photos and plenty of typing fingers (even if I don’t actually use nine of them) so there’s no excuse.

It’s a bit like being trapped in a chocolate factory – so much choice I just can’t get to grips with it.

However, I do have a plan. I’m going to start by writing a short paragraph about not writing posts and I’ll see where that takes me. In fact I just did that.

Now for Part II.

The day started, as so often, when Julia’s alarm clock went off early. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but she has a problem with setting alarms. For some reason her alarms always seem to go off ten minutes early, which is why the alarm went off at 4.50am. I’m beginning to suspect she does it deliberately.

Having had a poor night (two trips to the bathroom during the early hours) I muttered my suspicions about her setting of the clock and went back to sleep for another 20 minutes, where I dreamed of urology. I’m going to have to put myself in their hands again I fear, and have mixed feelings on the subject.  Actually, that’s not quite true. I have feelings on the matter but they aren’t particularly mixed.

I dropped her off at 6am and went to pick Number 2 son from work. There were nine pied wagtails in the car park, all seeming to find food. There was also a woman wearing a sheepskin jacket and pyjama trousers, which was strange. It reminded me of a scene out of Dawn Patrol (if I recall correctly) where David Niven goes out on patrol in his pyjamas and returns to the squadron, still wearing them, after being shot down.

Next, off to the launderette. I was the only one in there and took advantage of that by using the big machine and doing the hot wash with pre-wash. It takes over an hour but Julia is always complaining the short wash doesn’t do things properly. She may be right, but the truth is that you normally have to rush it to get a drier.

Today I only just got a drier, as the place suddenly filled with people just as my machine finished. It would have been annoying to have missed out.

Julia had slipped a rainproof top into the washing. It was dirty and had plastic tape on the seams. It is now clean and, after the tumble drier, no longer has plastic tape to worry about. It probably isn’t waterproof now either.  We will no doubt be discussing it further.

While I was waiting I made notes, planned a menu for the week, wrote a shopping list and read a book on Vikings. I bought it for 50p yesterday whilst shopping at Sainsbury’s – there were some good books on the charity table yesterday.

Then I nipped along to the cafe for a bacon and black pudding cob with brown sauce and a nice big mug of tea.

The diet, in case you were wondering, could be going better.

This took me up to 10.30 am. That’s probably enough excitement for one post.

 

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I went to McDonalds for breakfast a couple of days ago after my blood test. I’m drawn to junk food, and have no excuses. While I was there I indulged in several of my favourite pastimes, including procrastinating and eavesdropping.

Can you guess who I was eavesdropping on? The clue is in the title.

I’ll pause for a moment while you work it out. I bet Derrick gets it. He has that sort of mind.

Any way, there they were, talking loudly about husbands and work and friends and children. All pretty standard stuff, even though I did have to smile at the irony of a conversation that dwelt at length on diet, low-fat recipes and the merits of various slimming group leaders. McDonalds is not generally associated with slim people. Despite this they semed passionate about the idea of dieting.

This is an example of why I shouldn’t really listen to the conversations of other people, as I felt a growing urge to tell them they’d be better off staying out of fast food outlets rather than going to Weight Watchers.

Conversations can be a bit dull at times, I know mine often are, but then it became unexpectedly entertaining.

One of them, it seems, is in the habit of taking confidential papers home to shred them instead of shredding them at work.

“Why’s that?” One of them asked.

“Because they have a cross-cut shredder and it cuts the paper up into little bits. The one at home leaves nice long strips.”

“What difference does that make?”

I waited with bated breath, expecting some gem of wisdom relating to document  security and confidentiality.

“My pet rabbit prefers the long strips.”

 

Another Fat Lady...

Another Fat Lady…

Have you worked the title out yet?

It’s based on the bingo call for 88 – two fat ladies…

 

A New Leaf

I’m tempted to write a post about how I’m going to turn over a new leaf.

Regular readers will know that I’ve already dieted, eaten more fruit and vegetables and decluttered the house on a regular basis. Or, more accurately, I really, honestly, sincerely meant to do all those things.

The fact that my shirts are now tighter than they used to be and my total clutter total has been reduced by two bags of books indicates that things might not be progressing according to plan. The fruit and veg plan isn’t going too badly, though it does rely on a fairly liberal view of what counts as fruit and veg. Chocolate, fruit flavoured sweets and tomato ketchup are, according to my view, all acceptable. They aren’t necessarily as good as kale, apples and avocados, but they’re better than nothing.

I’m looking at various ways of improving on this. One way is what they call “reframing”. I learnt about that when they sent me to speak to someone about my weight. Basically, as I understand it, it means that if something goes wrong you take a step back, look at what happened and have another go. So I’ve stepped back, I’ve examined events and I’ve come up with a new plan.

I’ve decided to stop worrying about my weight, so that’s the weight problem solved. I’m going to add the jam in doughnuts and the cherries on Belgian buns to my list of “fruit” so that’s another item ticked off the list.

That just leaves the clutter. If I can find the book on decluttering that I bought a few months ago, I’ll finish reading it and then give it away. Every little helps…

 

Blood and Weight Loss

It was blood testing again today. They are bleeding me weekly as my results are failing to impress. There’s probably a pun or two in there somewhere, bearing in mind that I’m not much good at bleeding and am therefore bleeding weakly. I’m also getting bleeding irritated at having to go in every week.

This week I managed to provide a sample after being stabbed in the arm just the twice. This is better than recent results and I’m glad to report I hardly felt a thing.

I thought I’d get weighed while I was there, as I wanted to check if I was actually losing weight or whether the slack trousers were merely an illusion.

It turns out that I have actually lost nine pounds in the last four weeks.

I’ve not used any fancy diets, and done very little exercise, just cut out bread, potatoes, pasta and rice. And cut back severely on chocolate and cakes. I’ve also started cutting down on portion sizes. Simple things, small steps, and so far it’s producing reasonable results.

 

 

 

The Moral Maze

I am in a quandary. When Julia went to work this morning she left five chocolates in the box from yesterday, and a clear explanation of what would happen if there weren’t at least three left when she returned.

An hour or two I found myself looking at an empty box. I’, mot sure what happened, and this isn’t really the place to discuss it, but we seem to have been the victims of some sort of specialist robber.

I bought a replacement box when I shopped this afternoon and the box is sitting on the coffee table waiting to be eaten.

The question is – do I eat most of the chocolates to reduce the numbers to five (and endanger my diet) or do I leave the box full and hope she doesn’t notice?

After all, if she sees it has filled up again she might think it is a magic box and might expect it to fill up every morning…

What would you do?

Julia’s New Project

Julia’s first project of the year was to make me fitter and thinner. I’m going along with it because it’s easier than becoming industrious and efficient.Two months in and I seem to have lost half a stone without inconveniencing myself too much. I can also walk significantly further than I could at Christmas, and my joints are feeling better.

So far it’s down to eating better, rather than eating less. The next stage is to start reducing portion sizes too. You will have to imagine the expression on my face as I type that last bit.

Storm Doris is currently whistling round the house so I’m cutting back on the walking today. I’m in the middle of an Amber Weather Warning at the moment, with gusts of wind of up to 80 mph. That’s the magic of the information age. When I was a lad “windy” would have been the only word I needed. I was certainly never on first name terms with the weather.

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Squirrel stealing bird food

Anyway, now that exercise I am (slightly) smaller and fitter she is transferring her attention to a new project.

The Danes have hygge and the Norwegians have Friluftsliv . Even the Germans have Gemütlichkeit, and they aren’t a famously cheerful nation.

Julia’s new project is to discover a suitable English equivalent. We have mindfulness, though I’m not sure it’s quite the same. I incline to morosity myself, which is about as opposite to hygge as you can get. Yes, it is a word. More than that, it’s a word I’ve never used before.

Looks like we need a new word for English-style happiness. I favour something with a Scandinavian twist, because they seem to be the leaders in the field.

Julia favours something more domestic, something along the lines of “middle aged man snoring in front of the TV, which sounds more like the basis of a haiku to me.

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Can you see it now?

I have translated  “middle aged man snoring in front of the TV” and my favourite (“ducks and sunshine”) into various Scandinavian languages.

English: Middle aged man snoring in front of TV – ducks and sunshine

Danish: Den midaldrende mand snorken foran TV –  ænder og solskin

Norwegian: Middelaldrende mann snorking fra foran TV – ender og solskinn

Swedish: En medelålders man snarkningar framför TV – ankor och solsken

Is there anything there we can use, do you think?

Julia doesn’t seem impressed; she’s just wandered off muttering “idiot with a laptop” and I don’t think it’s a suggestion for translation…

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Julia hiding in shrubbery

Photographs have been selected to show examples of things that make me happy. I don’t have a picture of ice cream.

 

First Lambs

Well, I was right about the sheep being less reliable than a calendar. The first lambs (twins) came a couple of hours after the last post, though only one survived. The other one isn’t looking particularly healthy either. It’s not an upbeat way to start a post, but that’s farming for you.

That’s the problem with sheep, too much drama. Chickens will lay eggs by the hundred and pigs will pump out dozens of piglets, but ask a sheep to drop a couple of lambs and it’s like a Shakespearean tragedy. Royal babies are born with less effort.

Julia and the group collected the eggs, planted bedding and measured the micro-climate in the agroforestry project today. We’ve also been watching the Peregrine Falcons on the Nottingham Trent University webcam.

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Meanwhile I’ve offered encouragement, sent emails, done a couple of bookings, tweeted, blogged, had a neighbour in to discuss the Easter Egg Hunt, helped another with an email account and had half an hour on the phone to the NHS discussing the state of my health. They are convinced that I’m unhealthy because I’m fat, and though it’s true that I could be thinner and fitter I don’t generally feel too bad. However, by the time I’d finished with the telephone consultation I did feel a bit peaky. The NHS tends to have that effect on me.

We did establish one interesting point – I have more units of cake a week than I do of alcohol. Two biscuits is one unit. Two! I admitted to eight units a week. What has it come to when I am completely open about my smoking (gave up 15 years ago), drinking (almost none these days) and exercise (ditto) but find myself lying about my biscuit habit?

It doesn’t look like a particularly industrious day, despite the effort involved in lying about my biscuit intake. It’s certainly not, as the man from the NHS pointed out, been a day of exercise.

Now I’m going to brew tea and have a meeting, and no, I will not be having a biscuit.