Monthly Archives: January 2017

A Wrong Turn Down Numb-Nuts Alley

You know when you wake up with what feels like a cracking idea? That was me yesterday morning. I know, (I thought to myself, having updated the Shitbird Says page with this week’s 2.5lb loss) why don’t I look back at my weight-loss journey in the round, and see if I can spot any patterns that I can learn from, now I’ve rekindled that fire in my belly

Yeah. Really cracking idea that was. At the end of January 2016 I weighed in at 267lbs having lost 11lbs in the month. And I started this year weighing 267lbs. Effectively what I’ve done between the end of last January and the beginning of this January is have a fucking gap year. Are you kidding me??!

In my head it didn’t look like that at all. I mean even a few days ago when I did a blog post reviewing my journey I knew I’d lost weight much more quickly in the early days and then fannied about a bit, but despite the highs and lows I didn’t realise that I’d netted out over the last 11 months to a big fat zero.

I sat there for a couple of minutes trying to decide whether I should laugh or cry but in the end it was a chuckle that found its way out. I mean come on, seriously?

Over the last year I’ve held the diet up to scrutiny, examining every forward and backwards step in forensic detail. I’ve listened carefully to all your advice and followed the bits that worked for me, and I’ve fallen down and pulled myself up again more than a few times but throughout all this I’ve felt like I was cutting my way through the mire, you know? Making progress.

Seems I took a wrong turn down numb-nuts alley and I’ve sweated and slogged my way around a circular route back to where I started. Well, not quite…by some miracle, the weight I dropped in the first five months never found its way back into my pants. It always has done in the past like a sort of arse-shaped boomerang, but thankfully I didn’t go right back to square one this time. I’m 65lbs down as it stands right now, and that’s still awesome.

I refuse to join the I’ve tried everything and I just can’t lose weight massive. I clearly can lose weight, when I’m on it. Let’s be honest, my problem is staying on it, right? But you know what, January’s been a good month for me, with nine and a half pounds gone. Technically, providing I lose two more pounds between now and the end of December I’ve beaten 2016 into a cocked hat.

I’ve got three weeks left before my forthcoming holiday (well, if we’re splitting hairs it’s actually two weeks and five days 🙂 ) and by the time me and my friend fly off for a dose of winter sunshine I’d like to be six pounds lighter than I am now. That would put me at the same weight I was when I went on holiday last August, and I felt great. There’s a novelty, two holidays six months apart and me wearing the same clothes…that’s a rare and beautiful thing.

It might look like I was treading water last year but I wasn’t, not really. I made very slow and steady progress. Mainly forward momentum, but when the fuck-ups happened they really happened. I can’t pretend I’m impressed with the speed of my journey overall, but you know what, I’m stronger, I’m fitter and I’ve learned a lot about myself so it’s all good.

Now it’s time to pick up the pace…I’d quite like to reach Skinny Town before I’m too old to enjoy it 🙂


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Pain Without My Meds

I’ve been hurt this week – a betrayal by someone I considered to be a friend. The betrayal didn’t happen this week, actually it happened a while ago but I only just found out about it so it’s very raw. And I know, shit happens. We’ve all been there, right? We’ve all experienced one of those moments when we discover someone isn’t who we thought they were. I’ve been knocked sideways by my own naivety and I’m still processing the things I found out, so it’s fair to say I feel a bit down.

I guess sometimes you have to cut people loose from your life and move on. And that’s where I’m at…it’s true that wisdom comes with age. I’m as far from fond of the wrinkles on my face as it’s possible to get, but I do appreciate the things my advancing years have taught me – namely that if someone treats you like shit it’s generally their problem not yours. And I’m not responsible for someone else’s problems, in fact they can kiss my fat ass.

An interesting thing happened…despite the shit hitting the fan, I didn’t face-plant into a vat of cheeseballs. The opposite in fact. I dealt with it like a normal person. I talked about it with a friend, I brooded about it, I got upset and I got mad. I fantasised about what I’d like to say to the main protagonist in a world where my words would come out right first time and cut them down to size, but what I didn’t try to do was soothe my hurt feelings by working my way through half a dozen Daim cakes and a ton of salty snacks.

What’s that all about then? It’s a first, it what it is. I’m not sure how or where the wiring went wrong in my head, but somehow I’ve always carried a baked-in belief that stuff doesn’t hurt as much if I’m chewing whilst I get my head around it. Five thousand calories stops the bleeding far more effectively than a band aid ever could, or at least that’s what my past experience has taught me.

And this week, I could have gone down that route, you know? There’s a selection of cookies, Reece’s peanut butter cups and cake bars doing the rounds in our office at the moment…dry January is starting to bite and everyone seems to have the munchies. It’s not helpful when I’m shaky, but when I’m in the sweet spot it doesn’t bother me one little bit. So despite the maelstrom of emotion going on under the surface yesterday, none of the naughties came knocking on my door at all. Which is pretty awesome, when you consider the straight-as-a-dog’s-hind-leg nature of my more recent attempts at losing weight.

It’s a ray of sunshine in an otherwise shit week. And folk say things happen for a reason…maybe it was time for a bit of a life detox as well as a focus on clean eating. My emotional bruises will heal, and I’m as sure as I can be that they’ll do so without the assistance of asshole-driven comfort-food decisions.

He’s back in his box ladies, and that’s got to be worth celebrating, right? 🙂

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Rediscovering The High

I drafted this post as I was laid in bed last night, reflecting on the day. I’m not going to lie, I was feeling very smug, having aced day twenty three of my new start. And yes, I know that smug is beyond irritating…I was even getting on my own nerves to be fair but there’s no other way to describe it really…I was smug. I can’t recall the last time I managed twenty three days on the bounce without sneaking in a single treat. Hell I earned smug, right?

It’s interesting to look back at the lifecycle of my diet. It’s gone through different stages over the last seventeen months and one week, which is exactly how long I’ve been on this journey. It’s already taken the crown for the longest diet I’ve ever been on, and it’s depressing to think that if I hadn’t pissballed around I could have been much further down the road than I am right now – let’s not forget that the pounds I’m losing at the moment have already been lost and then found again. Still, it is what it is.

Phase one was nailed on, feet planted firmly in the sweet spot and the thought of cheating on my diet would have filled me with horror. It was all about eating the right things in the right quantities, and slowly weaning myself off the armchair/TV combo. Phase two kicked in when I’d signed up for the Cuba trek and the hurt machine took up residence. The food plan still held firm and my weight-loss started to gather a bit of momentum…happy days.

Phase three was when I got a bit cocky. I’d upped the exercise but at the same time I upped my intake of food and carried on losing, just more slowly. In hindsight I was looking at it all wrong, you know? I sort of fell into the mindset that I was earning the right to eat more because I was working up a sweat and walking several times a week. Or, to put it another way, I was eating more and getting away with it. 

Phase four was when I met the God of Pain, and the exercise descended into torture on a regular basis. Cuba was getting nearer and I was working hard. And yet I was still eating my efforts…sure, there was a slow saunter down the scale but my losses weren’t especially impressive. Cuba came and went, and that’s when I bumped headlong into phase five, which by and large was a fucking disaster. My foot was completely off the gas, my food plan was peppered with binges, and reclaimed poundage moved back into my pants at warp speed.

So this is phase six, and I’ve come full circle. I’m back in the sweet spot and I feel unshakable…maybe because I’ve switched it up a notch. I mean, the diet hasn’t changed as such, I’m just spending my food budget more wisely and shopping like a grown-up. And let’s be honest,  the thought of having to take a picture of my conversation with the Shitbird Scale and show you if the needle has moved in the wrong direction is enough to bring me out in a cold sweat. It’s proving to be quite an effective appetite suppressant to be honest.

I’ve also rediscovered the high which comes with knowing I haven’t put a foot wrong. And I’m here to tell you that it hands down beats the high I get from a crinkly wrapper and a sugar hit. Any day of the week 🙂

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A Moment Of Flirtation

Is it just me, or does January seem to be whizzing past us at warp speed? I can’t believe we’re in the last week already, and I honestly don’t know where the time went. Last week was a wretched one. We’ve had trouble with our drains at home and the kitchen flooded twice. Okay, I’m being a drama queen, I mean I didn’t have furniture floating past me or anything but I did have to keep mopping up water when it all blew back up the pipes because it couldn’t find its way outside, and the drain people had to come out three times before it was finally fixed.

I feel like I’ve been tested, you know? I can think of numerous examples of domestic crises in the past  which I navigated with the help of yellow pages and a packet of hob-nobs, but I’m happy to report that on this occasion I didn’t compound an already shit week by falling off my food plan. That’s progress, right? In spite of my heroic efforts, Shitbird scale awarded me a very measly three quarters of a pound yesterday, but in light of my big loss the week before I’m taking it on the chin…it’s better than nothing.

There was an incident last night…a moment of flirtation between me and a box of chocolate covered donuts. Which incidentally I don’t even like. That’s the reason they were in my kitchen in the first place…my boy put a request in for chocolate when I went shopping, so I took great care to bring treats that I wouldn’t generally cross the road for. I’m on day 22 of my quest to spend my food budget on healthy choices, and not a single bite of anything naughty has passed my lips since I glued the wheels back on after Christmas.

So I didn’t bring home anything that would tempt me. I brought him chocolate-covered donuts instead because I’m immune to their charms. Except last night, I wasn’t. As I wiped down the kitchen counter, I must have stood and stared at that box of donuts for a good five minutes, wondering how they would taste if I took a bite out of one of them. Just one bite. There was nothing else at all in the house which could have led me towards the danger zone – trust me I mentally rifled through every cupboard just to make sure – and all of a sudden those fucking donuts looked like the most appealing treat I’d ever seen. I don’t care for them, but I was desperate to eat one.

I didn’t though. The moment passed. Wave two hit me when I’d been in bed for about half an hour, and the house was quiet. The asshole voice tried his level best to talk me into going back downstairs and moving in for the kill. You’ve proved you can do it now, you’re totally in control. So you can choose to have one now, and that would be okay…

He got nowhere. It’s funny isn’t it…my mind wanted the donut, even though my mouth doesn’t particularly like the taste. Weirdo, who does that?

Actually, not me 🙂

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A Soupçon of Worry

On the surface of it, the prospect of working off-site for the afternoon is generally something I enjoy. We have lack of decent-sized meeting rooms in the office so if there’s a few of us squashed in for a longish meeting it can get annoying, you know? Besides what’s not to love about a change of scenery.

I was off-site yesterday with one of the teams I support, and our venue was a local brewery. As one of our suppliers, they were keen to host us and they’d even offered us a complimentary lunch. I was a tiny bit worried about that – I know it sounds silly, but you do when you’re sticking to a food plan and someone else is in charge of what’s on your plate. Whatever, I figured I could flex enough to deal with it and to conserve my daily points just in case, I made my porridge with water at breakfast time. Which, by the way is taking dedication to a whole new level because it tasted more like wallpaper paste.

Just before I left, I took a phone call from a colleague wanting to know what size shoes I wear. Weird question…um, size seven…why..? Turns out the brewery were going to kit us out and give us a full on factory tour. Excellent…except. What if ‘kitting us out’ involved actual clothes? And what if they got to me and looked me up and down before shaking their head sadly and pointing a finger…she can’t do the tour, we don’t have anything to fit her…old worries take a long time to die, right?

I needn’t have spent the next hour in the car worrying about it. As it turned out the outfit comprised nothing more scary than safety glasses and a bright red hard hat disguised as a baseball cap with a day-glo yellow high-vis jacket. Apart from looking like Ronald Macdonald it was all okay…but the fat-girl paranoia had kicked in big time and given me a very uncomfortable morning as I speculated about what might happen.

Still, on the bright side, it doesn’t hurt to be reminded with a sharp poke in the ribs now and again as to exactly why I’m on this journey. My days used to be filled with worries like that…which room is my meeting in and therefore which chairs are in that room? The ones with arms? Oh no my arse won’t fit in those ones. Oh no, I have to go there..? God that’s at least a ten minute walk from the nearest place I can park my car, I’ll be wiped out by the time I get there…maybe there’ll be somewhere I can have a rest between A and B…on and on and on.

I had to navigate my whole life worrying about the problems that being fat threw at me on almost an hourly basis. And now, I don’t. The legacy it’s left me with is the odd soupçon of worry here and there…well you know what, I can live with that. Nine times out of ten these days I worry for nothing but it helps to keep me grateful for the fact that I’ve escaped that life.

Something I’ll never take for granted 🙂

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