Category Archives: In the here & now

No Fat Incidents To Report

Aside from the fact that the Shitbird Scale didn’t wholly climb down from its position of Chief Pisser-Offer yesterday morning, I was buzzing as I got ready to go out on my first bike ride in more than seven years. I’d gone to bed on Saturday night having laid all my gear out in readiness, including my old skinny-life cycling shorts, my cycling gloves and my helmet. My bike was standing in the kitchen in newly serviced anticipation.

The only bits of me that were quivering with nerves rather than excitement were my bum cheeks, and to be fair they had a hall pass on excitement for obvious reasons. Size of saddle vs size of arse…no further explanation needed, right? In the cheeks department it was never going to end well, and I’d already made my peace with that.

Pulling on the cycling shorts, I was immediately filled with gratitude towards the person who invented lycra back in the day. You’ve got to bear in mind these bad boys are actually four sizes smaller than the size I should rightfully be wearing, but although it felt like I was wearing an arse corset they did make an heroic effort to stretch far enough to provide padding in all the right places.

On the downside, being squeezed between the waist and the knee area meant that the areas just above the waist and just below the knees looked…well, lumpy is how I think I’d describe it. I pulled a second pair of exercise pants on over the top of my cycling shorts in an attempt to disguise some of the more obvious overspill, and it wasn’t entirely successful but it was better.

I had to swallow my worries that somewhere along the route I might explode out of all that lycra but surprisingly, everything held together and there were no fat incidents to report. And you know what, my friend and I had the most awesome morning. We cycled for the best part of 15 miles, and I can’t even begin to tell you what it felt like, zipping along the greenway on two wheels. I felt free, somehow. Well, apart from having no circulation below the waist, obviously.

And agile…I felt agile. I wasn’t a fat girl on a bike, I was just a girl on a bike, same as all the other cyclists who were out for a Sunday morning ride. It took me right back to the time where I was a fully paid up resident of Skinny Town. And after sniffing the air of that life again yesterday morning I’m more determined than ever to go back and stay there this time.

Now, I’ve got to be honest, by the time we got home, my arse cheeks were not feeling the love. Without thinking, I perched on the edge of a chair last night to talk to my boy and shot up again like a scalded cat but it’s a small price to pay, you know? It’s no worse than the aches and pains I’ve pushed through after working out in the Kingdom of Pain, except the saddle managed to reach places the kettle bells can’t get to. It’ll pass. By mid-week I’ll brave another outing, once the bruises in my pants have calmed down a bit.

I can’t help feeling that a whole new world of possibility has opened up to me, and I’m excited. Eighty five pounds ago, I couldn’t have done this, and now I can 🙂

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Me? Fussy??

You would have laughed at me on Wednesday night if you’d seen me at dinner. I was working away, and it was the end of a long day which had seen me making my usual fifty mile commute in the morning, before doubling back for a quick pit-stop at home then driving another hundred and forty odd miles in the opposite direction to get to a working dinner with one of the teams I support.

Bear in mind also that I was trying really hard to step away from the edge after the Shitbird shocker on Wednesday morning, and I was beyond determined that two days out of control wasn’t going to turn into three, or four or the rest of 2017. Yeah, I see you nodding…you know me.

Throughout the day, I’d dodged all manner of food bombs, with my shiny new resolve. I’d managed to get lost on the way to my first meeting, which was at a hotel in the city, and when I eventually got there with one minute to spare, having been stuck in traffic (which is doubly stressful when your bit is first on the bloody agenda) it was not easy saying no to breakfast pastries. There was a massive tray of pain au chocolat plonked right next to the coffee and they’d been largely ignored by everyone in the room, which my fat-girl brain still struggles to comprehend. Same again with the freshly baked cookies at coffee time.

Anyway, I resisted. Despite the best efforts of my Asshole voice, I might add, who was lobbying hard that Wednesday to Saturday this week should be classed as off-limits to all things diet-related because after all I was starting again on Sunday so technically these four days shouldn’t count.

When I got back home and packed my overnight bag I grabbed a very light lunch before heading south, and it’s fair to say that by the time I’d met up with a bunch of colleagues in the bar that night I was ravenous and looking forward to the meal. I was confident, you know? I had plenty of points in the bank and I was feeling strong.

When they brought the plates out, my fat-girl eyes were practically out on stalks. It was roast beef and Yorkshire pudding and I shit you not, the Yorkshires were the size of tyres. There was plenty of beef on the plate and a pile of vegetables…man, I was in heaven.

Until I tasted it. Meh. It was lukewarm. And I don’t think the chef had fully engaged with the concept of seasoning, I mean it took bland to a whole new level. And the vegetables were a bit soft, you know? The beef was just sort of okay…a bit well done for my taste. Actually I’m being kind, I could have soled my fucking boots with it, but the biggest letdown of all was the Yorkshire pudding…it was all style and no substance. It looked big and fluffy and amazing but it tasted of nothing. All fur coat and no knickers, as my Grandma would have said.

That said, since I usually think like a fat girl, disappointed tastebuds wouldn’t generally disrupt my ability to clear a plate, you know? But they did on Wednesday. I decided that the sides of the Yorkshire pudding reminded me of burned toast and the base was swimming in fat, so that got pushed to one side, followed by the mushy vegetables and the tough-as-old-boots beef. The mashed potato had a tinge of grey and the roast potatoes were soggy. So I nibbled at a bit here and a bit there but I mainly pushed it around my plate.

The bloke sitting beside me noticed that I wasn’t overly impressed and confided in me that his wife was a picky eater too. I just stared at him in astonishment, I mean do I look like a picky eater? I weigh two hundred and forty one fucking pounds so I can’t be that picky, can I? It proper amused me.

Eff why eye, I turned down dessert too, which was chocolate brownie with walnuts and clotted cream, and by the way it looked amazing, so I think it’s fair to say my wobble is over, and I’m back in the game. I’m feeling strong 🙂

I have two treats in store for you today…first of all, we have a brand new guest post on our Thoughts From The Posse page. It’s written by a very special lady who has taken her courage in both hands and shared her story, which I have to say is pretty amazing. It made me laugh, and it made me cry. She’s a bit nervous about putting herself out there, and I know she’d love to hear from you if you can relate to her journey.

The second thing I want to share with you is a brand new feature. It’s been a while since I tinkered with the format hasn’t it?  I figured it was time to mix it up a bit.

Lots of people have written to me and talked about the fact that I post my Shitbird picture every weigh day. Mainly folk think I’m slightly bonkers to even think about going public with what I weigh, but I’ll tell you what, it’s a really effective accountability tool and a handful of people have said they wished they had something like that to keep them playing with a straight bat…well, be careful what you wish for!

If you’d like your very own weight-tracking page, consider it done.  Nicola, who shared her story today is my guinea pig, and she’s taken the plunge with her very own Shitbird page…check it out, and if you’d like one of your own just let me know…I’ll happily build one for you. After all, we’re all in this together, right?

 

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A Question Of Perspective

I remember taking part in an experiment, donkeys years ago, at a children’s museum, you know one of those places where it’s all about experiential learning, and touching and feeling stuff? The experiment that stuck in my mind was in a room dedicated to the five senses, and there were all kinds of neat things lined up for little hands to touch.

I remember these three tubular steel bars, all fixed to the wall next to each other. The one on the left was really cold, the one on the right was really warm and the one in the middle was just at room temperature. If you grabbed hold of the middle bar with your right hand when it had been holding the warm tube, it felt cold. If you grabbed hold of the middle bar with your left hand after it’d been holding the really cold tube, it felt warm. It was all about helping little minds to understand perspective, right? A clever demonstration that something can feel different in different circumstances even when it’s exactly the same.

My perspective on the dirty number offered to me by the Shitbird scale this morning is different to my perspective on that same number last time it stared back at me from the little digital display. Then, I was hitting the number from a position of power. It was a smaller number than the week before, and you bet your sweet ass I felt skinny as I snapped the picture.

This morning, off the back of two or three dodgy days where my food plan has gone a bit off reservation, and I’ve felt horribly out of control to the point where my fingertips are shredded from where I’ve clung on so tight to my place in the sweet spot, instead of making me feel like a rock star, that same number was practically hollering fat bastard in my face as I reluctantly picked up my phone to record it for posterity.

And share it with you guys, obviously. Good, bad or ugly, at the end of the day, that’s the deal…I promised.

One number, and two different perspectives. I celebrated it last time, but right now, today I want to smash the fucking Shitbird thing with a big hammer and make the number go away, because it’s jumped in the wrong direction.  A lot.

Now, logic tells me that I cannot possibly have gained over four pounds from just two days of questionable choices. Sure, in the old days when I was power eating that might have been a possibility but I haven’t gone all out and had a balls to the wall binge. Not even close, but I have eaten too much. I know that.

Making the protein balls which contain nuts and dates and peanut butter and honey wasn’t exactly the brightest thing I’ve ever done, especially since playing around with my food plan had made me feel wobbly. I mean, talk about dangling myself right in front of temptation…? And I already knew at the weekend that my crazy work schedule and the revision I had to do for my exam meant I’d hardly be working out this week, so if ever there was a week where protein balls weren’t fucking needed in the first place it was this week. And yet, out came the blender.

I am such a dick sometimes.

Anyway, it is what it is. I’m hoping that this obscene number is an aberration, and when I reboot both my weigh day and my food plan on Sunday things might look a little brighter. At the very least I’ll have time to kick the Shitbird scale around every tile in the bathroom until it gives me something I can live with. For now, I remain pissed off to the max. The experiment is over, and I’m going back to my steady-away poodle down the numbers.

Bah 🙁

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Just Not For Me

So if you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll remember that me and a couple of the posse have been experimenting with a different way of spending our food budget, to kind of shock our respective metabolisms and see if we can’t fool their ass into working harder and faster. I’ve given it a good go over the last four weeks but honestly, I think I’m scoring an epic fail.

And I’m troubled. I don’t think it’s working for me on a number of levels so it’s time to chuck in the towel…I’m going to go back to my old non-experiment way. Here’s why.

Firstly, the pounds in my pants aren’t disappearing any more quickly than they did before, in fact they’ve slowed down if anything. Apart from that one amazing week where four melted away pretty much overnight, my weight loss has been distinctly underwhelming, and a couple of weeks ago the needle went up for the first time this year. The following week it nudged down again but only by one quarter of a pound, so the results aren’t great.

I don’t know what I’ve lost this week yet, because weigh day isn’t until Wednesday, and I don’t like that either. I like my weigh days on Sundays, not Wednesdays and I can’t get used to it. I walked into the bathroom yesterday and looked at the Shitbird Scale, but I didn’t stop for a chat and call me a weirdo but it just felt wrong.

I can’t approach it with the same sense of anticipation on a week day somehow. I don’t have time for my best of fifteen routine for a start, and I miss being able to potter about afterwards and pick over the bones of how my week shaped up. There’s no sense of occasion when I do it on a Wednesday because I’m generally flying around getting ready for work. It’s just not for me.

Most important of all, giving myself license to eat all my weekly points on one or two days is driving exactly the sort of behaviour around food that dug me into deep shit in the first place. For me to maintain any kind of balance I need to take a measured and considered approach to eating, and yet I can feel a really unhealthy focus forming around the days where I can eat and eat. It’s not good for me…I think it’s pushing all my buttons, and getting a bit too close for comfort to the big one that says self destruct.

Yesterday, I made protein balls, so I had a quick and nutritious protein-rich snack for after my workouts this week. They’re quite rich, and you can only really eat one or maybe two at a push. Yesterday, I ate ten in one sitting. I needed to use up my points, and of course the Asshole voice was egging me on…more more more…happy days, right? Except it wasn’t. It felt like a binge. And usually if something looks like a binge and smells like a binge, well…it‘s a binge. Consequently this morning I’ve woken up feeling as sick as a dog and like something happened that shouldn’t have. Which technically it didn’t but it still feels wrong.

It’s not the first time the wheels have wobbled in the last couple of weeks either, there was an incident last week too if you recall. I think a light-bulb has come on in my head and I’m feeling flaky because the new routine just isn’t for me. I tried it on, looked at it from every angle, and the long and short of it is that it just doesn’t suit me. What about you guys, has it worked for you?

I’m glad I gave it a go because it never hurts to mix it up a bit, but my gut is telling me it’s time to re-set everything and go back to normal. I’ll hop aboard the Shitbird on Wednesday, record whatever it says but then my next weigh-day will be my old friend Sunday.

I might even do a best of thirty, just because I can 🙂

 

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Back In The Saddle Again

I’m so excited, and you’ll never guess what I’ve gone and done…I’ve only dug my bike out of the shed and taken it to the bike shop to be serviced. I know, right? It’s at least seven years since it saw any action, and I’d kind of thought in the back of my mind that I’d hold on until I reached a certain size before I took the plunge. The size where children and small animals wouldn’t run for cover for a start, at the sight of my arse in cycling shorts.

But you know what, I was chatting with some friends last weekend after one of the gang had been out for a spin, and we all agreed we’d enjoy riding along the canal path together one of these days, so I thought knickers to it, why wait. And now I’m really really giddy.

Cycling is the only active pursuit where I’ve properly caught the bug, you know? Where I’ve done it for pleasure as opposed to doing it for exercise. Last time I lived in Skinny Town I used to go out on my bike pretty much every day and I’d think nothing of hopping aboard and killing twenty or thirty miles. One or two of my favourite ever days have been spent on two wheels so it’s fair to say that now I’ve decided it’s time to get back in the saddle, I can hardly wait.

It feels like a bit of a milestone moment to be honest. It’s a thing, you know? A throwback to the fit and skinny life that I spent a long time missing, and a long time doubting that I’d ever get back to. It’s one of the things I’ve most looked forward to since I started this journey and I’m so grateful that I’ve managed to come this far, although you might need to remind me that I’ve said that when my arse cheeks are rubbed raw from the first two or three outings.

Most of all, it means that now the nights are lighter, on the days that I get in  from work too late to get down to the Kindgom of Pain, I still have a workout option, and that could be a proper game-changer.

I was hoping to have it back by Saturday but I think it’s more likely to be after the weekend. To be fair, years of inactivity meant it limped across the threshold of the bike shop with two flat tyres, and a set of seized up gears,  so I suspect it’ll need more than a little TLC to breathe life back into it.

It’s perhaps just as well, because I’ve got a final exam next week relating to some professional development that I’ve been doing at work. At least I won’t need to sit on an ice pop whilst I revise over the weekend…every cloud, right? 😉

 

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