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My Skinny Talisman

I set off for the office yesterday morning with a bit of added spring in my step, it being my last full day in work and all…don’t you just love that feeling when you’re winding down for holidays? I have a few bits to finish off today, before my out of office gets whacked on at lunchtime and I head off to get my spray tan and my holiday toes. Not even the thought of those paper knickers can dampen my mood, I’m too giddy for words 🙂

Yesterday was the ultimate test of my pre-holiday willpower, and as I took my place around the table at work for our full day meeting I did a quick recce to see whether the usual nibbles had been provided…who am I kidding, of course they bloody had. There was a box of flapjacks to my right, a box of marshmallow teacakes to my left, several bowls containing wrapped sweets dotted around, and in the middle of the table was a massive bowl of green bananas.

Flapjacks are my favourite. So are marshmallow teacakes, as it happens. Green bananas are not. They make my teeth squeak and my toes curl, and unless they can be dipped in hot frothy coffee (yes, I know, I’m weird) they’re to be avoided at all costs.

I’m puffing my chest out with pride as I tell you I didn’t put so much as a toe out of line. Well, in the spirit of full disclosure I did risk squeaky teeth by having a crack at a green banana, but as for the rest…not a single naughty morsel passed my lips. I wasn’t bothered, not one little bit.

Now, I’d love to tell you that this masterclass in restraint set off some kind of skinny chain-reaction, but according to God of Pain’s scale this morning I’m a pound up. On Wednesday night the same scale said I was two pounds down. His scale is clearly as barking mad as the Shitbird in my bathroom, however due to the Asshole voice’s continued hiatus I shrugged it off as some kind of normal body fluctuation and it hasn’t even come close to putting a crimp in my mood.

So, the challenge now is keeping it going, right? I am forty seven days food sober and tomorrow I am flying out to meet our ship in a land far far away, where chefs will be lying in wait around every corner with the intention of feeding me. Let’s be honest, it does have the potential for disaster written all over it. I’ve been really excited about the trip whilst harbouring a degree of trepidation about how I’m going to deal with the barrage of food opportunities. ‘Just saying no’ isn’t always that easy for a food addict.

That said, my recent steadfast occupation of the sweet spot has made me feel a lot more relaxed about the whole thing, and I’m also taking a secret weapon in my suitcase. God of Pain introduced a three month clean eating challenge back in the New Year, and various milestones of food sobriety have been rewarded with a magnetic disk. Bronze seven, fourteen and twenty eight days for month one, the same in silver for month two and gold in month three. I’m currently on silver fourteen and I’m due for my upgrade to silver twenty eight in nine days’ time…the day I get back from holiday.

If I fall off the wagon, I have to give up this hard-won badge of honour and start all over again. Over my dead body, right? So it’s coming on holiday with me. My silver fourteen will be liberated from its spot on my cooker hood and will be carried with me right throughout my holiday so it can act as my skinny talisman and help me keep my eye on the prize.

That, along with the thought of having to post a picture in here of my conversation with the Shitbird Scale when I get home, might just help me to get the balance right between eating well, and diving headlong into a week of culinary hedonism. Watch this space… 🙂

I may get chance to post a few pictures on Facebook over the next week or so, wi-fi permitting and I’ll be back a week on Sunday. Lots of love to all in the meantime and I’ll see you on the other side!

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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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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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The Myth Of Straight And Narrow

It’s the sole topic of conversation right now, this dieting malarkey. Just about every bit of small talk and chatter I’ve overheard relating to the festive season has involved folk exchanging war stories about the obscene amount of food and drink they’ve consumed, and how they need to drop the additional pounds now it’s all over. I’ve got to say,  most of the people I know don’t actually look any different despite pretending that they ate as much as I did. Me, well…the party going on in my pants tells its own story.

Its also impossible to dodge the multitude of programmes on the telly about this diet or that fitness regime, to the point where normal people must surely be getting pissed off with it all. I know from experience that fat classes up and down the country will be bursting at the seams for the next few weeks, and gym regulars will be muttering under their breath as the latest batch of fatties adjust their brand-new-out-of-the-box fitbits and form an orderly queue for the exercise bikes. There’s definitely more traffic than usual on this road to Skinny Town.

What I’m beginning to realise, is that this isn’t the long straight road I’d imagined as I embarked on this journey, you know? On the 17th August 2015 I set off thinking there’s no reason why I can’t achieve a steady loss of 2lbs per week, so that’s… *screws face up, thinks for a minute then gives up and reaches for a calculator* …175lbs too heavy divided by 2lbs per week is 88 weeks, and 88 weeks from now takes me up to…15th March 2017. Ta Daaah!

That’s the day I’ll shimmy into my skinny jeans and sashay down the road with my neat and tidy tushie, right?

Hang on a minute… *looks down at buddha body still encased in elasticated waistband* …that’s only 10 weeks from now. Fuck. How did that happen? To get back on track I’ll need to lose 12lbs per week every week between now and then. Yeah, good luck with that, Dee. Way to go.

So maybe there were some weeks where I didn’t lose two pounds…yeah, like the last three months where you’ve been fannying around and regained a bunch of weight. Theres been a distinct absence of solid 2lb losses in recent times, in fact most weeks out of the last twelve I’ve either clung on by my fingertips and maintained, or I’ve hurtled backwards at an alarming rate of knots. I didn’t account for that when I was doing my calculations.

Still. I am where I am but you know what, I refuse to get down about it. I could so easily have been sat here, dying a little bit inside and polishing the wing mirror on my mobility scooter with a tear-stained sleeve as I saw only failure behind me and reflected on the fact that I was now 70lbs heavier and knocking on the door of 400lbs because the 22nd August 2015 was just another false start that went nowhere, you know? My dieting life is peppered with false starts that went nowhere.

But that’s not where I am, is it? I ended 2016 around 60lbs lighter than my starting point and I’m still fucking hanging in there. So what,  I might be only one third of the way towards my goal instead of almost there but shit happens and the important thing is never taking your eye off the end game and getting up when your feet get knocked out from underneath you.

I’ve already clocked the tiger waiting for me when I’ve clawed my way out of this valley, I suspect he’ll actually come in the shape of my forthcoming holiday. And beyond that there appears to be shark-infested waters and the odd cyclone but fuck it, at least life won’t be boring, right? I’ve got you lot to keep me company, and it’s all good.

Come on then, let’s crack on 🙂

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