We are not afraid, we are proud.

My thoughts are with all of those people who were affected by the Manchester attack this week.

Living in London as a child in the 80’s, I grew up in the times of the IRA bombings. I was always taught to be vigilant. Usually in the East End, if someone left a bag or package somewhere it would have been snapped up and you would never see it again, but times were different and anything like this was now seen as suspicious.

When I first started working in London at 19, having moved to Essex 5 years ago. My dad, who works in public transport, told me of a code they had at the station to alert staff of a suspect package and that if I was to hear this, I was to leave the station. Even though the IRA bombings had long stopped, I was aware that there were still threats around us.

15 years on and still everyday I listen out for the codes, I watch those around me and everyday I arrive into the London terminals wondering if something will happen today, its second nature to me now, it doesn’t interfere with my day, or my life for that matter.

This morning, after the terror alert had been risen to severe, my thoughts on my journey were no different, if anything I felt safer. I looked around me and saw everyone carrying on and getting on with their day. Everyone still barging past each other and walking so fast the soles of their shoes would probably be worn by the time they got to the office. I felt a huge surge of pride & gratitude, so much so that I wanted to hug all the police outside St Paul’s Cathedral but I didn’t think that was very appropriate. I felt truly grateful that there are people out there willing to put their lives at risk to ensure we are all safe. How amazing that we British, with our funny little ways, when it comes to it, will ALWAYS stand together. I am so very proud.

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Getting Unstuck

I’ve been feeling a bit “stuck” I guess is the only word I can think to describe it right now. Its like there is so much I want to do, but I am being held back, I’m not even sure what by. Is it me? My lifestyle? I’m feeling quite frustrated but I can’t quite put my finger on it.

Recently, I was doing my usual commute to work. It takes around an hour door to door, half of my journey is spent on the train. I’ve always loved working in London, I’ve been in the city for 16 years now (God I’m old!) The commute has never bothered me and I’ve had many different commutes in that time, including the Central Line, otherwise known as the Greenhouse on wheels. Yet the other day I decided that I wasn’t sure if the city life was for me anymore. I started thinking seriously about my career future. I’ve never wanted to be a big cheese, I had a supervisor role when I was younger and although I am admittedly very bossy, I much prefer to be able to do my job and go home, I could never be someone who works endless hours or takes their job home with them, well at least not this job. I want to feel that passion and excitement that I see in others.

A friend of mine has recently opened her own holistic treatment room. I admire her so much, she has a family, she is the same age as me, she knew what she wanted and she went for it, she took that leap. Her doing this really made me think, what do I enjoy doing? There was only one answer to this, it’s the only thing I have ever enjoyed and that is what I am doing right now. Writing.

My dreams and aspirations have come and gone, when I was in primary school I wanted to be a nurse, since then I have wanted to be an estate agent, a journalist, a hairdresser, a singer and an actress but one thing I have always wanted that has never ever faltered over the years, is to write books. When I was younger I used to “borrow” blank exercise books from school and write stories. I would read books and then have a sequel in my head on what happened to all the characters after. I remember finding a “choose your own adventure book” when I was younger, I was in heaven! All those possible outcomes in one book!! My boyfriend is always amazed at how many books I get through, he’s been reading the same one for months. Reading and writing has always been my passion, I get excited when I have a good idea. Since starting this page I have random thoughts about things I want to write about, it can at times consume me.

My ultimate dream is to make a career out of writing, work from home where I live with my then to be Husband and LOTS of dogs. I just need to make the leap (and time) to do this and get myself unstuck! Any tips on how would be gratefully received!

The end of Cycle One – Finally!

I’ve finally finished cycle one of the 90 day SSS plan! Hurrah. It was a looooong road as I had to pretty much start it all over again because of injury then illness but I’m so pleased I finished it.

I could have done better but the second time round I was beginning to get bored with eating the same stuff, it would have been fine for 30 days but not after 50 odd.

I’ll admit that the week before I was thinking of jacking it all in until after my holiday which is in 6 weeks, I wasn’t feeling any different, why wasn’t I a size 8 yet?

I was due to submit on Friday but having come down with another virus (I’ve ordered some vitamins!!) I decided to submit a couple of days early in case I was still ill come Friday, it’s Saturday now and I’m actually feeling worse, so good job really.

I went down and got on the scales. I weigh in stones & pounds but you submit in Kg, I originally thought I had only lost 1 pound but when I converted it was actually 3 pounds, then I measured,  4 inches off all over. Bring on the tears! I’m not sure what I was expecting given I was still drinking a lot at weekends and had had a fair few takeaways, I think I was more disappointed with myself than the results as I know I could have done better and had I not got an injury & had to start over my results would most certainly been better.

I asked my boyfriend to take pictures, I felt really self-conscious, even though he sees me naked all the time, after seeing my weight & inches it just made me feel horrible. Obviously I hated the pictures, you submit your front, side & back, looking at them I could just see fat me.

Then something amazing happened, I looked at the two pictures together, before & after cycle 1. I had a waist again! I could see some actual significant change in my body shape. Hooray! Then I had another thought, if that change could happen in that time when I was really only giving it 70%, imagine what can happen on Cycles 2 & 3 if I put more effort in!!

At last I have my mojo back! I’ve missed this feeling so much. Cycle 2 arrived on Thursday morning so I spent a while reading it. It’s so different to cycle 1 & there is much more freedom when it comes to food and more carbs!

You exercise 4 times a week it’s HIIT & weights so the exercise is longer but not by much and you get to have 3 carb meals per day on training days YESSSSSS! Rest days are the same as on cycle one.

For food you are given some recipes for both training & rest days but you are encouraged to create your own & are given a guide of how much of which foods to have, on training days it’s meat, veg, spices, sauces & carbs, on rest days carbs are replaced by fats. The snacks differ from training & rest days too.

Luckily being holed up on my sofa gave me plenty of time to work out some recipes, I found the best way was to use joes cook books, there’s also a page on Facebook called mydietburble that gives recipe ideas which is really useful.

So I am really excited to start, I’m going to start with a rest day tomorrow, just in case I’m still ill and do my first training day on Monday.

So here are my tips for cycle one.

  • Plan ahead for each week, I found that working out my training days and my meals for the week ahead helped keep me focused.
  • Batch cook if you can, I was doubling up on dinners so I could have them for lunch or dinner later in the week, it saves lots of time.
  • Join groups on social media. The support there is amazing, everyone is going through the same struggles and even just reading some people’s success stories can keep you going when you need it.
  • Buy Carb killas for snacks if you have a sweet tooth, they’re amazing and you’re allowed 2 per week.
  • If like me you hate plain yoghurt, buy some flavour drops from my protein, I saved my yoghurt from some recipes and had as a dessert with toffee flavour drops or added a strawberry flavour drop to my protein shake was a game changer! 
  • Don’t weigh or measure yourself until the end of each 30 days. This is one thing I did actually stick to but I see so many people on the groups becoming anxious as they’re not seeing the change that they want, someone in one of the groups posted this which helps explain why this happens
  • And finally, trust in the plan. It isn’t this successful for no reason you may want to give up at times, but stick with it. I am yet to come across someone who has finished the 90 days and said they’ve seen no change.

Bring on cycle two!!!

The uninvited Chimp

So I have spent the last few days feeling really sorry for myself. My mojo is creeping back but that little negative voice in my head aka Barry, is back for a visit and I didn’t bloody invite him.

I have my first ever cold sore, which I am convinced everyone is staring at. I can feel it growing like its its own person, I shall name him Colin if this carries on much longer.

I don’t feel like I have lost any weight or inches coming to the end of cycle one, even though I have still drank a fair amount of booze and had a few takeaways so probably shouldnt be surprised. This is making me panic as I have a hen do, a wedding and a girls weekend away coming up in about 6 weeks and everything I wear makes me look like a bound up piece of meat

Meat

I havent slept very well for the last few nights which I think is making my head whirl, it’s just constant chatter in my head: “Dont forget to….” “What if …. happens?” “Why did …. do/say that?” and the very popular “Why isnt ….. replying to my message?” Oh its been such fun! My boyfriend is then talking about going out for a few drinks after work, which my initial (internal) reaction was not very good. “Is he going to come home late? Is he going to be ok? I something going to happen? I mean he only said he might go out!? I he even going??”

Then I realised that Barry the Bastard isn’t in charge of me anymore! I went against him and messaged my friend and felt instantly better, then started thinking about what I was going to watch on TV, what I was going to make myself for dinner, house to myself YAY!!!! Screw you Barry!! You’re certainly not invited to sit on the sofa with me and watch 13 reasons why, you and Colin can eff right off.

 

Misery does not love company

I’ve fallen down a slippery slope and completely lost my mojo. I am now on a vicious cycle of having good intentions, treating myself, hating myself and then feeling guilty about anything & everything. What a time to be alive.

I was doing so well on my plan but I have seem to have lost my get up and go. I’m not sure if it’s because I am coming off of my tablets, because I am tired or because I am still unable to fully avoid booze. I feel great when I exercise and eat well but for some reason it’s not enough to keep me going at the moment, I took Saturday off of the plan as we were out for the day and one day off has now turned into 4. God damn you bank holiday weekend!

I woke up on Sunday feeling depressed, I didn’t want to go anywhere, I didnt want to see anyone, I just wanted to shut myself away BUT this does not include my boyfriend, why can’t he get this? Why does he not telepathically know that I need him to just come check on me every now and then, instead of avoiding me as if I am some unexploded time bomb.

I decided to have a bit of a pamper and declutter my bedroom, as we had the kids and I didn’t have the patience for dealing with whose go it was on the computer or who pushed who. I want them to like me and at the time I think I would have just thrown the computer out of the window to settle any arguments, then no one would like me.

My boyfriend getting ready in lightening speed, in my head this was to avoid me, but in actual fact he was running late, I decided I didn’t actually want to stay in on my own, I wanted to go with them to his parents, sitting in all day alone wasnt going to lift my mood.

I went and had a nice day, but this resulted in more drinking and me going home alone crying myself to sleep for no apparent reason.

The following day all I wanted was some peace and quiet, I need a day to just collect myself and get my house in order so that I could go back to work without feeling like I had a thousand things to do. Unfortunately, this wasnt going to happen. The entire weekends washing up was still on the side in the kitchen and the laundry basket was overflowing but I just can’t get anything done when the kids are in the house and with the weather against me I had no choice but to resign to my bedroom whilst they all played the computer and watched wrestling downstairs, I wasnt in the mood to compromise today. I finally went down to cook them all dinner and give in to a glass of wine.

It helped, until this morning when I felt even worse. I’ve had a moan to a few of my friends and have cancelled my plans for the evening so I can literally get my house in order and start again tomorrow. Hopefully the black cloud will piss off and my mojo will return.