Perhaps I can too! This week at Weight Watchers was “Ambassador Week” which meant we got to hear from some inspirational Weight Watchers members who courageously agreed to share some of their story. At the meeting I attended on Friday morning we heard Deb and Stella speak. Both were wonderful and Stella is already a dear freind of mine but I found I could relate a bit more to Deb’s story as Stella is at a slightly different life stage to me.
Deb wasn’t into exercise at all when she started but that has really changed now. It was a great moment when someone asked if she had toned up by going to the gym and she flexed her very shapely biceps in reply! I could relate to that because I’m currently in the process of moving from absolutely no exercise at all to trying to do at least something each day. I’ve got many things in mind but haven’t followed through on them all yet. I have done a couple of sessions at my own gym but until now had stuck to the plan I had worked out with my wonderful physiotherapist. As of Tuesday that will change because I’m meeting with one of their trainers to work out a proper plan. I’ve also got my eye on Yoga and Pilates classes, then Body Balance further down the track. I’ve gone as far as working out the times of the classes and thinking through what might happen if I cannot make it through a class but I haven’t actually got there yet. They are both on at 7:30pm and I’m still finding that I am very tired by that time of day. I have considered the Yoga class that is on at 5:45am on a Friday but only for about 10 seconds! Deb is now being flogged by a personal trainer on a regular basis and I’m certainly not aspiring to that at the moment but it might be possible later on when I am fitter financially as well as physically.
When asked about how she managed to lose weight without exercising Deb insisted that she was “anal” about her food intake. She counted, measured and tracked fervently in order to reach her goal. So as of today I have gotten myself back on the tracking bandwagon. I’ve already got dinner in the tracker so that I don’t slip up tonight although there is still room to wiggle this week as I haven’t yet touched my 49 spontaneity points.
Deb looked sensational. She had curves and wasn’t afraid to show them off in a stunning dress. Apparently I have curves too but I wondered where they were hiding until I found this photo which had been taken quite some time ago. They are still there but just hidden temporarily. I think this photo needs to be displayed on my fridge!
That is our little catch cry at the end of Weight Watchers meetings and I often say it with grim determination that doesn’t come to fruition. We also say as we high five the people next to us at the start of the meeting, “you are looking great”. It sounds bit corny as I type it (sorry C when you read this!) but it really does lift the mood at the start of the meeting and it also means the meeting ends on a positive note. It was positive all round for me this week because I lost 2.5 kg! Even more high fives at the scales!
I actually thought that I wasn’t doing too much different but then we I gave it some thought I really have started doing things differently. The biggest change is that my exercise has gone from zero to 30 minutes most days and lots of incidental stuff. I’m spurred on the “incidental” department by my trusty pedometer. I haven’t yet reached the desired 10000 steps in a day. My highest was 9000+ but my average each week is steadily rising.
I am also trying to be very mindful about what I eat and to a certain extent get the boys to think about what they are eating too. This morning I told them that they had to have something for breakfast that wasn’t a ham and cheese toasted sandwich. I don’t have anything against ham and cheese toasted sangers but to Daniel in particular they area food group of their own! So Daniel ended up having an orange and a mandarin which wasn’t ideal but we did discuss that fact that he probably had a Vitamin C force field around him. Eric bravely tried oats and didn’t finish them but it is all a good start and at least they are thinking.
The fact that we are very short on cash certainly has an impact on what I’m eating as well because I’m eating at home wherever possible, cooking my own food and only having very well considered takeaway.
I’ve now got a very good looking graph on the kitchen wall and I’m hoping to keep it looking good. I’d really like to have a different “tens digit” in my weight next week! The photo of Vera? She is my next secret weight-loss weapon. Once we get here a collar that fits she and I will be pounding the pavement regularly!
Thanks to a very generous friend who has negotiated her way through peak hour traffic to pick me up last Thursday and the Thursday, I’ve been able to re-join Weight Watchers and start again. I know that quite a few people who know me well will be saying to themselves, “Here she goes again. What will be different this time?”
Well, there are quite a few differences already. I’ve got a Chronic Condition Health Care plan set in place by my wonderful GP which will give me access to an exercise physiologist (a cross between a personal trainer and a physiotherapist). My GP will be keeping a closer eye on things and the nurse who is part of the practice will keep up with me too.
I am still seeing my wonderful physio as my ankles continue to heal and he and I have been discussing possible exercise options for now while my ankles are still quite wobbly and weak and later when I can do more weight bearing exercise.
I’ve been to the gym and was quietly pedalling the recumbent bike as I had been instructed by the physio when the trainer asked if I would like to join in a weights circuit with three other ladies. After a bit of encouragement from him, I did join in and much to my amazement, I was able to complete a 45 minute circuit with very few modifications. It was the most amazing feeling to do that successfully.
I’ve got a great circle of friends who are “in the loop” about my efforts and are encouraging me every step of the way. Eric is right behind me cheering me on and Daniel, who still lacks tact and diplomacy at almost 8, has asked whether my big belly (which he illustrates by holding his arms out wide) to going to shrink up to the size of his belly. Probably a bit extreme but he is being positive in his own way.
One of my friends is going to join the same Weight Watchers meeting as me so I will be meeting up with her each week. I can’t say how glad I am about this. Not only will I get a free pampering session and she a 3 month movie pass due to a membership promotion but I will look forward to seeing someone each week who is truly on my side and has much the same dry sense of humour as myself.
However the number 1 things are weighing in each week (which involves fronting up the the very formidable Carol) and staying for the meeting. I certainly won’t paraphrase the meeting content here because if you want that you should really go to Weight Watchers yourself. But when we recieve information, we all process it in different ways and take away our own responses and hopefully, action plans.
This week was all about monitoring hunger signals. We discussed the difference between being so hungry that you would eat almost anything to having eaten so much that you feel like your clothes would burst. Ideally we should aim for something in between. That is going to happen for different people in different ways but for me hunger signals are controlled when I eat small amounts often during the day, keep moving and maintain my water intake. Please excuse me for a moment while I uncap my trusty water bottle and take a big swig.
Ah, that’s better.
We have discussed many mantras and saying that we can use to keep our goals in mind and to stay on track. It was recommended that we have a saying that describes ourselves at a healthy weight in the present tense and includes some tings we can do or have achieved. Mine is:
I am slim, fit and focussed.
Then I thought more about what would help me to monitor my hunger signals and indeed, lots of other signals from my body and I came up with this:
What do I really need right now?
Some of the answers to that question in the last few days have been:
salad instead of chips
baked fish instead of crumbed fish
more water instead of more coffee
one small dessert that I really liked instead of just eating dessert whenever it was offered whether I really liked it or not
doing my physio stretches
walking a few more steps
keeping up with my pain relief so I could keep up with moving more and healing faster
not staying up for the end of the movie/tv show but going to bed when I needed to
taking a nap during the day when I needed it
doing something pleasurable during the day
talking to people who woud help me with making good choices
The camera worked for long enough this afternoon to get a shot of my very unattractive ankles in socks and splints. They look a bit powdery because I need to put on prickly heat powder before the socks so I don’t get driven mad with itching and it certainly makes me glad not to be in plaster.
Today hasn’t been a good day. I’ve been down, teary and tired all day. It was a combination of things. I was still pathetically exhausted after my trip to hydrotherapy yesterday, today was bit of an anti-climax because I wasn’t going anywhere and I’m not going anywhere for the foreseeable future. Hydrotherapy will only continue once it is approved by Work Cover as I already had had the five automatically allowed physio sessions while in hospital. It is really my only prospect of getting out of the house because we will be reimbursed for the cab fare. I’m not able to drive yet and I don’t know how long it will be before I get behind the wheel. If I was to get taken somewhere like a shopping centre I would have to hire a wheelchair and then have someone to push it. The potential “someones” are either a bit old to be pushing me in a wheel chair or they have small children to deal with. We can’t afford to spend any money on cabs that will not be reimbursed as my work prospects are going to be limited once again and for who knows how long.
Dh is working full time 5 days a week and may be doing overtime on Saturday and of course the boys are at school. They will be off on holidays at the end of next week but we will still be housebound because it is too far from here to get to any public transport and we cannot afford cabs. The book club girls took me out last night for coffee and book discussion but I came away from that realizing that everyone is still really busy and the fact that I am out of action doesn’t change that. So while plenty of people have asked, “What can I do to help?”, I’ve really only been able to ask for people to bring the boys home from school and even that was quite difficult to organise. Life goes on as normal for everyone else which means they don’t have time to stop for visits or cups of tea. Everyone balances multiple roles and has a busy schedule including me when I’m not on crutches. So I can hardly ask someone to pick me up and cart me around in a wheelchair and no one really has spare time to spend here with me. I think all of that hit home for me this afternoon and I felt really black.
The flood of phone calls and text messages that happened while I was in hospital has dried up to almost nothing. I’m lucky if I get two texts in a day and no one has time for phone calls these days. There isn’t really much to say either because I don’t know when things will improve with my ankles and there is nothing happening here at home.
I also realised that I wouldn’t be able to get to Weight Watchers tomorrow night as I had planned because the boys have hockey training. I cannot ask them to miss it as they missed out already last week while I was in hospital and it is on every Thursday so with great sadness I changed my Weight Watchers subscription to “on-line only” even though I need it and the meetings especially now more than I ever have before. My weight has made this whole injury thing even more complicated and I really can’t see things improving while I am so sedentary and while I am relying on everyone else to supply me with food.
Dh really is doing all he can. In fact he has been quite legendary since I’ve been home. He sets up the lounge room each night ready for me the next day with the TV left on stand-by, the remotes all put where I can reach them and most importantly, makes sure that the floors throughout the house are almost completely free of clutter. We are both terrified of what could happen if a crutch slipped on something that shouldn’t be there and went out from under me. He gets the bathroom ready for me to take a shower each night with the transfer bench half in and half out of the bath and everything where I can reach it. Then he puts on my socks and splints for me afterwards in the lounge. I get a coffee made for me in the morning before they leave and yesterday he left a ham and cheese sandwich in the fridge and the sandwich toaster out on the bench. I was so glad to find that when I got home from hydro!
As for the boys, the novelty has well and truly worn off. They are usually very put out when I ask them for anything or to do something for them because it takes them away from their all important computer games. And of course, their projects and activities must always come first. Eric was very impatient for me to get to the computer and help him fix a flyer he was making this evening and kept coming out to ask me when I’d be there despite the fact that I didn’t have my splints back on. The flyer was about him offering his services as a cross country coach for the the other kids at school but that’s another story!
My parents came to help out today but even that is a mixed blessing. While I truly love that our bathroom got cleaned and the sheets on my bed were changed I didn’t need to be told that I must not apply for any job until I am off crutches, that knitting is waste of money (again!) and that I really must do something about my weight. (If I didn’t already know the last one it was brought home to me when I had to crawl up our back stairs on the night of my fall!). I know they mean well and they are really the only ones that are in a position to offer us any help but some moral support and encouragement would be nice once in a while.
That is the end of my whining for now. There are some good things happening. Unlimited time to knit, stitch, read and watch TV. Time to read lots of stories to Daniel. I get to sleep in because there is nothing to get up for and I would be in the way during morning rush hour anyway. I have a couple of projects to tackle – writing and researching some pieces for the school magazine and doing the “end of season” achievement cards and certificates for Little Athletics. The latter is an enormous but tedious job but I certainly don’t have the excuse of not enough time to do it.
It’s awful to say this but I am dreading today (I’m writing this after midnight which shows how ell my sleeping pattern is going). I’m going to miss a couple of my regular Thursday activities, my ankles will still hurt and I will still have the long day on my own. But I guess I just have to take a deep breath and think “this too shall pass”.
One of the Weight Watcher’s catch-cries is to “Sort Your Surroundings”. And I have been doing that in more ways than one in the last week or so. I’ve certainly sorted more than just the food surroundings but more on that later.
Last week Mum and I attacked my kitchen. Dh actually helped in the initial stages so there was a frenzy of pulling stuff from cupboards and throwing stuff out. One of the plans that has come de-railed since January was the one about the boys taking charge of dishes. Dh complained that they couldn’t reach the cupboard to put them away. So, Mum and I cleared out and cleaned the top shelf of our pantry and the dishes are now happily living there – not all our dishes but a good supply of what we need for everyday use. Our pantry is a very annoying cupboard, under the microwave shelf in our kitchen and so deep that it reaches back to the wall – so deep that things can be lost in its murky depths for like – years! I can almost swear some things had been breeding in there. If anyone has need of creamed corn or chick peas, I’m your girl!
We moved on from the pantry to the dreaded “corner cupboard”. You know those ones with folding doors that look so convenient but then you find that they stretch back further than any normal human arm can reach so stuff get lost in there almost forever? Well, we nearly climbed into the cupboard tog et everything out, only to find that there were many things we didn’t want to put back – more space. I now have a Breville Kitchen Wizz and a large Tupperware strainer that are looking for good homes. E-bay – here I come!
Another thing I was very happy about was the Tupperware situation. I bought several containers a while back and never got around to actually putting the stuff in them that was meant to go into them. They had gradually crept to all corner of the house to store things like receipts and toys! This was not ok! I am happy to report that almost every Tupperware item I own has been re-purposed to its intended purpose, labelled and stacked. The label maker almost had a nervous breakdown from all the work it did that day.
But the best thing of the day was finding two items which I thought had gone forever. I was absurdly excited which means I probably need to “get a life” but I found the two seals that go with my Tupperware sifter (and Tupperware sifters are the BEST in the world!) and I also found the metal bits that go into my double cake plate. This is the double cake plate that has NEVER been used as I had lost the metal bits to put it together. Now I need to have a posh morning/afternoon tea to use my beautiful plate.
Photos are coming but I thought I’d publish this now as it has been a LONG time between blog entries and I’ve really enjoyed writing this one.
I is about 7:00am Saturday morning. I’ve sat quietly at the computer for long enough to let the rest of the family sleep in a bit so now I’m off to put the kettle on which will cause Vera to go into a frenzy of excitement because some is awake. Roll on Saturday!
I began my great mealing/recipe project a few weeks ago and it is travelling along nicely. Yesterday I took the next step of organising my new Recipe Binder. It isn’t flash because there’s no spare money for flash binder and dividers around here. I bought a lever arch file, some flouro plastic dividers with an index page at the front and a box of 100 plastic sleeves. I LOVE plastic sleeves – just needed to say that!
I simply wrote out my categories on the index page, slipped some recipes into plastic sleeves and I was done. The recipes are either from Mum which means they arrived by e-mail or I’ve typed them out. If it came by e-mail I’ve just printed the e-mail – not time to muck around! For all the others, because I’m doing Weight Watchers, I either get them from the Weight Watchers website or I type them into the Recipe Builder in E-Tools which then works out the points for the recipe and enables the recipe to be put into my Pro Points Tracker. This gives them some uniformity as they all have the same sort of formatting on the site.
They are all in individual plastic sleeves so they can go to kitchen and back again easily and I’m adding recipes as I do them and they are “successful”. Two new ones are being added tonight from this weekend – Sweet and Sour Braised Steak (Slow Cooker) and Banana and Malteaser Muffins.
I’m getting back into the good routine I used to have of planning the meals for the upcoming week on the Saturday, making a shopping list and doing the weekly shop by Sunday. I’ve also baked today to school lunches (so I’m feeling particularly accomplished!)
Now for Laura’s questions this week:
Questions to ponder:
1. Let’s talk stuff! What have you tossed out this week?
I have tossed coffee cups, lots of paper and quite a few odds and ends from back deck (when I was preparing the Valentine’s Night Dinner). This included our hermit crab gear – the last hermit crab died over 2 years ago!
2. Have you ever regretted something you’ve gotten rid of? Why?
The only things I regret getting rid of are the books I had as a child because I would have dearly loved to pass them on to my boys and my niece (she would probably appreciate the “Little House” series and possibly “Nancy Drew” more than the boys would!). I’ve got one large volume of Frances Hodgson Burnett with three of her books in it that Eric has read from cover to cover and loved. It may be time for my niece to borrow it!
3. How tempted are you to rush out and pick up pretty organizing containers first?
I’m tempted but money is an issue so I’m forcing myself to wait. I’ve saved the link to this bookcase type thing from Ikea which I would like to use in our entry way horizontally as part of a launch pad but I have to work out where to put the cupboard that is there presently as well as save up for it. Simply having more clear spaces is helping me to be more organised!