Tag Archives: control

The Ground Beneath My Feet

You know I’d forgotten how good it feels to have solid ground beneath my feet. I walked into the bathroom yesterday morning ready to face the Shitbird Scale and I was bordering on excited to see the number…it reminded me of being in school and walking into the classroom to take a test that I’d studied for, as opposed to my usual adolescent approach of winging it and hoping for the best.

As a child, I was naturally bright which is a double-edged sword in a lot of respects. Deploying half an ear in the classroom whilst daydreaming about Duran Duran, and a cursory flick through my exercise books the night before an exam usually saw me scrape through with middle-of-the-road marks and a could do better on my school reports but hey, a pass is a pass, right? I didn’t learn to apply myself until much later in life but I have to admit, much of the last year has been about winging it…the last 3 months in particular.

Last week – with the exception of Sunday’s false start – saw me really colouring inside the lines. I pointed everything, wrote it down and added it up. I didn’t buy any naughties when I did the food shop so there’s been nothing in the cupboards to tempt me. I ate clean – well, with the exception of one Chinese takeaway which I chose carefully so I could stay within points – and I planned well. Shitbird Scale handed me a 2.5lbs loss, which when you consider that I had to write last Sunday off as a disaster and had only 6 days to shine wasn’t half bad. Worth an A on the old report card for sure.

The process of photographing the number on the scale as I stand on it then posting it on here is working beautifully, because there’s nowhere to hide. It’s about as accountable as you can get, right? Honestly, I hate that it’s out there, I mean even skinny string beans mostly like to keep the actual number a secret, but by the same token I’m finding it’s a great way of focusing the mind.

Better than that, yesterday morning I found myself deciding what I wanted to weigh in at next weekend, and I even wrote it down…I’m hoping the thought of that mini-goal will help to add another layer of gatekeeping to support the cause this week. Every little helps, and it goes right back to the concept of the article I shared with you back in the early days on the aggregation of marginal gains…it might be just a little thing, but lots of little things gather momentum and make a big difference.

I feel happy, positive and incredibly upbeat as we go into this week. I’ve gotten over last week’s Diva moment, where life felt unfair because I was being forced against my will to pass up food opportunities which should have been mine for the taking. In hindsight, I made wise choices. I can look back and celebrate my self-control, instead of regretting my decision to give into the need for short-term gratification. I laid in bed last night thinking about the lunch I’ve carefully prepared to take to work today, and the big plump grapes which are washed and ready to eat, and I felt almost euphoric.

May I be so bold as to declare that I’ve reclaimed my place in the sweet spot..? I know I’m taking it one day at a time and today is only day eight… but already, the ground beneath my feet feels more solid 🙂


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Nailed On

I looked like I’d swallowed a beach ball when I went to bed last night, but at least I hit the mattress knowing that I have five days’ worth of self-control safely over the line. I felt fat, but actually that was more to do with the mountain of vegetables (and the resulting alchemy) that I had eaten for supper with my chicken. I still feel bloated this morning and it’s a bit of a nudge in the ribs – there are some in here somewhere, I swear – to remind me that eating late isn’t such a good idea.

Thing is, I didn’t get home from work until way after seven, and I was knackered and starving in equal measure. What I should have done was to have a light supper and an early night, but having failed to talk me into being naughty with all the free cookies available during our meetings yesterday, no way was the Asshole going to be talked out of the planned dinner. Not when a light snack would have been higher in points than the huge chicken and veggie plate…it was never going to happen. Hence me retiring last night feeling like Shamu.

I’m properly going for it this week, and knowing that I was going to wake up skinnier today than I did yesterday meant I wasn’t remotely offended when I caught sight of my Buddha belly as it led the way past my mirror. Once upon a time, catching sight of that reflection would’ve made me want to gauge my eyes out with a spoon, but I’m a bit less offended by it these days…now it just feels like I’m wearing my body like a fat suit on top of the real me. The picture I posted on Wednesday – and your reaction to it – has given me exactly the boost I needed. That skinny girl is in there somewhere, trying to break out.

I’ve even treated myself to a couple of new tops for the festive season – I did good this week so far, you know? I figured I deserved a reward 🙂 I mean I know it’s only five days but this run of five days have been hard-won and I’m celebrating it, so there. It’s been a while since I did five days on the bounce.

I mentioned the free cookies yesterday…there were dozens of twin-packs of cookies thrown in with the cost of our meeting room at an off-site venue, and once upon a time, any we had left at the end of the day would have come home with me ‘for my boy’. After all we’d paid for them, right? The reality is they probably wouldn’t have made it home at all, in fact by the time I’d left the car park the mobile cookie party would have been in full swing. I dodged that bullet yesterday, and it feels great.

How I’ve missed that feeling 🙂

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It’s Like Going Back In Time


Monday was a good day. So was Tuesday, and Wednesday and Thursday, and today’s going to be a good day…I can feel it in my water. It’s fragile, but my feet appear to be back in the sweet spot and they’ve held tight for four whole days. I nipped in through the back door when the asshole wasn’t looking and claimed squatters rights, and I can’t even tell you how good it feels at this point to have four days’ worth of skin in the game.

The week so far has been full of little victories. Yesterday I turned down a festive bakewell tart at the last minute even after I’d set up my surroundings to enjoy it, how about that? My friend had bought them at lunchtime to have with a mid-afternoon cup of tea. I’d eaten oats for breakfast, and chicken and ham salad with a banana at lunchtime so I was primed and ready for a little treat.

And they were little so I figured it’d be fine, slipping one into my food plan, you know? My tea was in the cup and my mouth was actually watering in anticipation as I picked up the box and zapped the barcode with my phone…then almost fell over when it proclaimed they were nine smart points each. Nine! I only get thirty six in a day. So I drank my cuppa and said no, thank you. Without drama. No asshole voice jumping up and down like rumplestiltskin demanding that I change my mind…just no, without a fight.

Now I’ve got to be honest, last week I would’ve had my head in that box faster than the speed of light, without a second thought about barcodes or points. I’d have vaporised the first one, and then spent the rest of the afternoon hoping for seconds, I mean who can stop at one, really?

Except yesterday I stopped before I’d even started. It wasn’t worth it. The last four nights I’ve gone to bed feeling strong, and I’ve woken up the next morning a few ounces lighter than I’d been the night before. Too many times recently it’s been the opposite way around, going to bed feeling disappointed with myself and waking up at least a few ounces heavier than the day before. It’s such a fine line between the two, right?

Putting all those reflections together earlier in the week and finding the right words to play them back so they were crystal clear in my mind was exactly what I needed to help me pull my head out of my arse, where it’s been languishing for the last few weeks. And I feel like the crisis has passed.

I’m aware that I left you hanging and never finished my jungle tales, in fact I think I only got as far as day two…sorry, I got sidetracked by the asshole in my head. I’m looking forward to filling you in on the rest of it now I’m no longer having to spend all my energy clinging on for dear life.

There are a couple of things that will test me over the next few days but I’m feeling up to the task, in fact it’s a bit like going back in time. This time last year I was feeling strong, invincible and utterly convinced that nothing would knock me off course. And right here, right now I feel the same. I could weep with relief that the storm appears to have passed…it was a nasty one, but I appear to have weathered it. I survived.

Game on 🙂

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Why Am I Even Debating This?


I don’t know about you but these dark and cold mornings are not supporting my efforts to get up and out of bed with any kind of enthusiasm, especially when I’ve booked into an early morning exercise class. I must have laid in bed for twenty minutes or more yesterday trying to think of an excuse why going to box-lite was a bad idea.

It’s a good job I came up blank otherwise that snooze button would’ve been pushed with indecent haste. But I couldn’t help thinking, as I drove to the Kingdom of Pain how draining it is every day to have the same debate with myself on a loop. I should go – I don’t want to go – I need to go – I’ll go tomorrow instead – can’t, won’t finish work on time – I could book in and then say I’m stuck in traffic – stop being ridiculous, I’ll enjoy it once I get there…on and on and on. Every time.

Why do I do that? I do enjoy it when I get there, and I enjoy the feeling afterwards. It’s just the thought of going in the first place that puts a spanner in the works. And that doesn’t make sense to me. I mean, let’s imagine for a second that I was going to the cinema, which I also enjoy. I wouldn’t have to steel myself to get off my arse and go, would I? And the cinema doesn’t even leave me with a surplus of endorphins to make me feel good. Well, unless Hugh Jackman’s in the movie, obviously. *Leers*

I can’t think of any other example of anything where I like doing it but try my best to come up with reasons not to do it. Other things which I don’t especially enjoy doing, like housework, or supermarket shopping just happen without this ridiculous negotiation with the asshole voice, so what is it about exercise that makes it different..? The long standing hatred of getting off my arse which I’ve harboured all my life is clearly more deeply engrained than I realised.

I don’t hate exercise now, but my mind is taking quite a lot longer than my body to cotton on to that fact and get with the programme…I went from hating it, to being irritated by the fact that I had to do it (and just getting on with it through gritted teeth) to the point where I am now…I appreciate the opportunity to poke those endorphins and feel like I’ve earned my tired. And yet. I still have to negotiate with myself before I can bring myself to to pull on my stretchy pants and go work out.

Is it just me? If you want to tip the contents of your own head out and share any insight you may have as to how I can flick the switch from let’s discuss this to let’s go, well that would be awesome. I often hear people say yeah well that’s non-negotiable, and that’s what I want to get to, you know? That place where working out is non-negotiable instead of it being up for debate every single fucking time.


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Challenge By Challenge


So the first half of the week hasn’t been bad, in fact I went to bed on Tuesday night with a chunk of food budget left in the bank. I know! I stood in front of the fridge wondering what I could have with my remaining daily Smart Point and it struck me that I didn’t really want anything. I could’ve licked the corner of a Malteser, you know? Mind you, I’d just eaten a huge portion of melon and was nursing a significant food baby at the time, but even so it’s the first time in a while where I’ve underspent my budget.

Maybe it’s because I’d just been mooching on-line and totally blown my actual budget on another handbag, which I didn’t need and couldn’t really afford…maybe I just needed to demonstrate to myself that I AM in fact capable of acting with restraint..? Whatever the reason I’m claiming it as a victory. And the handbag is gorgeous (shoot me now) 🙂

I was in a full day off-site meeting yesterday where lunch was provided, and being familiar with the venue I know it’s never very healthy so I’d prepared a boxed salad to take with me, and I just asked the restaurant manager for a little bit of ham. I’m trying to get right back into the discipline of proper planning, you know? Last week I was in the same venue and I almost broke my neck at lunchtime getting to the sandwiches and chips but this week I headed my fat thinking off at the pass and it was no drama at all, the guy was happy to help.

My challenge is going to come this weekend…it’s our bi-annual girly get together. If you’ve been reading along for a while you’ll remember the last time, where all my friends turned up with exercise gear for the first time ever in support of my training regime. It was a real departure from our usual drink-your-own-bodyweight-in-prosecco and eat naughties ‘till your eyes pop out kind of weekend, and don’t get me wrong, the bottle bank saw a fair bit of action as we left, but their support made it easier for me to stay in the right mindset all weekend – I made it work for me.

This time, given my recent wobble I’m planning very carefully. I’m going to walk on Saturday…it’s a beautiful spot and if I get three or four miles in I’ll go some way to counteracting the prosecco and an odd treat here or there. I’m going to take masses of fruit, and try not to eat loads of chocolate. And Sunday, as we leave, is a brand new shiny week so any indiscretions can be wiped off the map, right?

Being in this for the long haul goes right back to finding some kind of balance…it has to work for me. If I’m sat there resenting the fact that all my friends can have things I can’t it’s going to piss me right off and I’m likely to face-plant into the naughties at warp speed without a second thought.

I know I planned a super-clean eating week this week, but actually these weekends with my friends are precious and no way do I intend to sit off to the side sipping water and nibbling a fucking carrot stick. Of course it’s about the company not the food and lets be honest, if I can go to Las Vegas for five days with this gorgeous lot and lose a pound, managing a weekend in a log cabin without the wheels coming off should be a walk in the park. Even when my head’s had a wobble and the Asshole who lives in there has had a higher than average strike rate over recent weeks.

I’m playing the long game. I always come home from these weekends with my soul lifted by gossip and giggles and the joy of spending time with friends who get me and whose company is effortless. I’m planning to step out of the weekend on the other side without regrets and if I’ve consumed my own bodyweight in crap I won’t be able to. So I’m not going to. Challenge by challenge eh? I can do this.

I’m posting early because I’m tied up tomorrow and then I’m scooting off to the middle of nowhere with my besties for two days of R&R. Have a great weekend everyone and see you on the other side 🙂

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