Close up of the front heart

Time heals all heartache

So it’s been a long time since I last posted. A very long time. I don’t even dare to look back and see what the last post was, but I’m guessing it’s probably about 18 months or so.

A lot has happened to me over the last 18 months, and I’d like to say it’s all been good, but the truth is, life has not been kind, to myself or my family. There have been losses – oh so many losses, and sickness and just much, much heartache. I’ll admit, that most of the heartache has been my own, which I will get into later, but not this post. This post is about good things.

Like quilting.

I may have been having a pretty crap time of it, but I’m happy to say that I’ve still been quilting (and crocheting) up a storm. And then, I joined the Modern Quilt Guild. That was a shining moment for me, the day that I got my MQG pin. It sits proudly on my desk, next to my computer so I can see it all the time. It cheers me up. To know that I belong to a group of people around the world who all love to quilt. And create.

So I happily signed up for my first Fabric Challenge back in February – creating a quilted product out of some Michael Miller prints. It was exciting, being forced to extend my creativity and make a quilt out of fabrics not of my choosing. Exciting, but daunting.

Fabrics supplied for the challenge

Fabrics supplied for the challenge

When I received them, my first thought was, I would never in a million years pick those fabrics out in the store – just what am I going to do with them. But that thought was short lived, the fabrics just lent themselves to an idea I’d had floating around in my head for some time – creating a quilt that showed my move from the city, to the country – my home, a place I could never imagine not living in anymore. So I sat down, and started drawing up my design, and ordered more fabrics to go along with what I had already recieved. And then I started sewing – curves, lots of curves. Something I don’t really ever work with. But it was fun.

My first curve

My first curve

And then life got in the way again and things made me sad. I put the quilt away and forgot all about it. I’d lost the will to do the quilt and I didn’t love anything let alone my beautiful city I call home.

But eventually, the fog lifted and over the last week and a bit I pulled it out again and just like that, I had the perfect idea on just what I wanted to do with my quilt. I wanted to make something that was beautiful that I could hang up on my wall and remind myself that while there are always going to be black times, there will always come a time when the happiness is going to push that blackness in my heart away.

So again, I sat down, and quickly drew up my design (and I have to give a huge shout-out here to Caro Sheridan and her fantastic Craftsy course – Pictures to Pixel Quilts, for teaching me everything I ever needed to know about creating my own pixel quilt and working out how many squares I’d actually need. THANK YOU, your class was uber awesome) and got cutting and quilting.

So I ended up with a quilt that comes directly from my heart and I’ve called it “Time heals all heartache” – because I truly hope that is the truth.

The quilt measure 50″ by 73″ and is a two sided 2″ square pixel quilt. On the one side is heartache overwhelming everything. The black (sadness) in the heart is taking over the colour (happiness) and pushing it out. But when the quilt is flipped over, the happiness is fighting back and pushing that blackness out and up and away.

The quilt front - sadness overtaking the happiness and pushing it out of my heart.

The quilt front – sadness overtaking the happiness and pushing it out of my heart. (Click for a larger view)

Close up of the front heart

Close up of the front heart. (Click for a larger view)

The quilting was done by me on my Janome 2160DC and is quilted in a clock face. It is 60 lines – each representing a minute – to reflect that time heals.

I’ve made this quilt mostly to be a wall hanging – I don’t intend to use it as a lap quilt, but as an art piece. Oh. And in the end? I’m so glad that these fabrics were given to me to participate with. Because while I might never have actually chosen them, they worked so well with my idea and I actually really love them now. (Secretly, very glad that I ordered extra and have leftovers that I can make something else with).

The back of the quilt, where the happiness is taking over and pushing out the hurt and sadness

The back of the quilt, where the happiness is taking over and pushing out the hurt and sadness. (Click for a larger view)

A close up of the back, and the line quilting

A close up of the back, and the line quilting. (Click for a larger view)

I really hope you all love this quilt as much as I do, and I am really looking forward to getting back into my quilting with a vengeance and back into the blogging again. Now that I’m in here and typing away, I realise just how much I’ve missed it. I also intend on taking some better pictures tomorrow or over the weekend, but it’s late and dark and cold and raining outside, so those photos just weren’t happening tonight.

Happy New Year - 2013

Welcome 2013

Happy New Year everyone. I hope that 2012 was a good year for you all and that 2013 will be an even better year for everyone.

I’ve spent the last few days going over the past year in my head and thinking about what I would like to achieve over the next 12 months (and beyond that as well), in all aspects of my life – not just fitness and food related goals. There are so many things that I would love to do, but I know that I can’t achieve all the things I would like to do, so I’ve had to pare my list down a little, to make it achievable. I didn’t really accomplish what I set out to last year (isn’t that the story for so many of us), in fact, I rarely accomplish my new years resolutions. To see just how much I didn’t accomplish, you can take a look at last year’s resolutions here. I think you will note by the lack of blogging over the year, the fact that my weight is only a few kilos less than when I started 2012 off and the fact that I haven’t written about my fantastic day swimming with the sharks, that I didn’t accomplish much on that list. Again…. So do I think that I’m going to be more successful this year? Of course, I have to say yes, isn’t that what we always do? Do I really believe that? Partly yes, and partly no. I would like to believe that I’m going to be more successful at achieving my goals, but I know what I’m like and the reality is that a lot of my goals will slip by the wayside pretty darn tootin’ quickly. But I will attempt, once again, to make goals and stick to them. So what are they for this year?

  1. Blog more.
    I love blogging, I love the feeling of release it gives me and the ability to get things off my chest, usually without harming anyone except myself. Sometimes though, I find it so hard to write down what I’m feeling that I bottle it all up and then it gets too hard to come back to it. But this year, I would like to blog about anything and everything, whether it’s good news or bad. If I feel it’s something I can’t share, then maybe it’s time I put to good use the fact that I can make my posts private! Blogging is good for the soul!
  2. Eat healthy and exercise more.
    These two need to go hand in hand with each other, they’re like black and white, the sun and the moon – you can’t have one without the other. Of course, I want to eat healthy and exercise more so that I can lose weight. I have about 40kg still to lose (hmmm about what I started 2012 off with – see my earlier comment about resolutions going undone!). I’d like to think I can do that in the next 12 months, but rather than say that, I would like to further add to this goal by saying that a sub-goal of mine is to:

    • Have steady weight-loss
      This is as opposed to having a set amount of weight I would like to lose this year. Of course, I would love to lose all 40kg this year, but more importantly, I want to get off this yo-yo merry-go-round. I would like to lose weight consistently this year. Not down, then up, then down, down, down then up again. Just a gradual down. If it takes me 12 months, or 24 months to lose my weight, then so be it, so long as it’s on that downward spiral only.
    • Have a steady exercise routine
      Just as I am always up and down with my weight, I’m also up and down with my exercise routine. It’s either all or nothing for me, which quite frankly, the older I get the harder I find it to cope with one week increasing my fitness, only to then slack off and six weeks later try and get back into it, feeling like every second I’m about to have a heart attack. So steady, regular exercise is going to be my mantra for this year. I have decided to join in on a goal of doing 2013 kilometers in 2013 – this can be done by either walking, running, cycling, swimming, or climbing. It’s doable, IF I am consistent.
  3. Finish off my quilting and crochet projects.
    I have so many on the go at the moment, I really need to pull my finger out and get them finished. It’s just slackness that stops me. So no more excuses.
  4. Read more.
    I love reading, but last year I found that I didn’t do much of it at all. So this year, I want to take a few hours each week and dedicate it solely to just sitting back with my Kindle and relaxing with a good book. Whether it’s a crime novel that keeps me on the edge of my chair in suspense, or even just a trashy romance novel that makes me smile at the end of it, it doesn’t matter, so long as I’m taking that time out to just enjoy reading again.
  5. Be more organised around home.
    I wish I was one of these women who was just a natural homebody who kept an immaculate house and didn’t get narky with her partner if he left her to do all the work. I’m not. I do get narky when M leaves me to do most of the housework, to the point where sometimes, I will just leave the dishes sitting in the sink for a few days out of spite. If he’s not going to put them in the dishwasher (oh yes, we have a dishwasher, I don’t even have to clean them myself…. slack aren’t I!) then why should I? This year, my aim is to keep a cleaner, more organised home. (We’ll start that one tomorrow though hmmmmm).
  6. And last, but by no means least -

  7. Save more.
    We want to buy our own home. But that’s not going to happen if I don’t stick to my budget. So this year, my aim is to create my budget (done, can check that off the list already) and to stick to it, so we can save enough and finally buy a house. I don’t even care at this point if it’s only a small one bedroom place, so long as it’s ours, though really, two bedrooms would be so much better!

So those are my goals for this year. I have a few more, but to me these ones are the important ones. The ones I need to put out there, to you all, in the hopes that you will help keep me honest and on track with them. Let’s see how I go this year. I’m looking forward to my next resolution re-cap in twelve months, hopefully checking these off the list.

Happy New Year - 2013

Happy New Year – 2013

Let the Christmas celebrations begin

Why does Christmas have to include masses of food celebrations. I mean really, aside from the gift giving aspect of Christmas, the only other thing I can really see happening is eating – eating lots and lots of food (of course, this eating is normally done with loved ones, but it’s still all about the food). Now I know I’m sounding a bit like the Grinch at the moment, and also sound like I’m complaining, but as someone who is trying to lose weight, I am already struggling – and it’s not even really Christmas yet!

I go to the shops and everywhere I look there is candy, biscuits, cakes, puddings, chocolate, rich deserts, dripping roasts and my favourite – mince pies! And I’m frustrated, because I just want to buy them all up and sit down at a table gobbling everything in sight, but I know that I can’t. So I’m getting frustrated, angry and just a little resentful, which really is not putting me in the Christmas spirit at all. I know that there would be people out there saying, well just buy one mince pie and eat that, make sure you count it into your daily calories, and work it off. To those people I say, I wish I could. But really, my self control is almost non-existant (otherwise I probably wouldn’t find myself 40kg overweight now would I?) I honestly feel like I can’t tempt myself, because I will cave in. Which just brings on that angry frustration again.

Last night we had my work Christmas dinner to attend. It was all planned weeks ago, before I had even contemplated doing 12WBT over the Christmas period, while I was stil quite content to blithely shove food into my mouth while trying to secretly convince myself that I wasn’t gaining weight and that it wouldn’t creep up on me and that I wouldn’t pay for it later (pfftttt, paying now I can tell you!). We had organised to go to a local winery who were putting on dinners where you could select from a few things on the menu and voila – instant fancy dinner. In the end we probably didn’t choose too badly and thankfully going to a winery, they don’t exactly serve up massive serving sizes, but let me tell you that I would definitely have gone over my calories yesterday.

I spent all day thinking and obsessing about food. Minimising my food intake – small fruity breakfast, little leftover serve for lunch, a snack of celery in the afternoon (with a smidge of cream cheese on it) and masses of water, all to compensate for this dinner last night. By the time we got there I was ravenous. But a funny thing happened – I didn’t gorge myself like I normally would have. As they brought out dish after dish (we had six dishes on the menu), I ate from each of the small serves very slowly. I didn’t take any of the extras that were offered to me (though I admit, I ate my bread roll – I was THAT hungry) and I had one alcoholic drink all night. I felt in control and very well full and satisfied when it was all over. So well satisfied in fact that I turned away from the chocolates that were on offer (OMG lush looking truffles too, that’s how serious I was, I turned down truffles) and I said no to dessert.

I did well – at least I think I did well, and I know I did well considering what the old me would have done. I didn’t lack for food, it was all excruciatingly delicious, I had great company while I was eating and I even allowed myself one alcoholic drink. So why do I feel like I was still missing out? On the one hand, something must be sinking into this brain of mine about eating properly and moderation and portion sizes, but on the other hand, something else in my brain is seriously lacking if I keep thinking that I was still missing out because I didn’t shovel food into my mouth, and it wasn’t all fries and schnitzels. I’m hoping that eventually something clicks in my head and it just happens and these stupid thoughts keep popping up.

So tonight, we’re off to a pizza night with friends. This one I’m really dreading, but I’m going to go through my list of 12WBT recipes and find some options that I can make. I will not undo my good work of last night! Nosireebob!

Oh and on other news – weigh in on Wednesday went really well. I was down 2.2kg – biggest loss for me in one week ever I think. Here’s to a good weigh in next Wednesday and here’s to Christmas finally being over so that the food shopping and eating can go back to some sense of normality!

Weigh in day

Previous weight: 107.0kg.
Today’s weight: 104.8kg.
2.2kg loss!

Keep calm and do yoga

Yoga and the fat girl

So two new things have happened to me lately.

  1. I have started using the word FAT. *ugh* *shiver* I hate that word, but hey, let’s be honest, I am fat, it’s a truth I can’t deny, in fact people have called me names of so many variations of the word for almost my entire life, that I thought “hell, if I can’t beat them, I may as well join them”. I really hate the word though, so in some respects it’s a bit of a motivator for me to lose weight. So that I can stop calling myself fat. FAT FAT FAT. See I’m saying it all the time. Tina is a fat girl! It’s almost cathartic. (Almost, I won’t pretend that I like it).
  2. I tried yoga! Who knew I would ever do something as insane as that. I’m very lucky that in the town I live in we have a system set up where there are two free yoga classes offered every week (though the ones who go regularly are encouraged to make a gold donation – hell I think the least we can all do is make a gold donation, I don’t know anywhere else where I can get a yoga class for $2 at the most). I have never been before, but I have a good friend who has gone to every single class since they started six months ago and she loves it. She has tried so often to get me to go along with her, telling me how much better she feels for going, and how it just makes her feel taller and stronger. But I always associated yoga with hippies. I laughed when people would talk about doing the downward dog and other moves (I won’t pretend that I know any other names, except for the downward dog), but I have to take back everything I have ever said. I apologise to all yoga lovers and goers out there. I was wrong. I have a newfound respect for those of you that put yourself through that torture every week. You are all awesome! I swear to God!

    Turns out though, that being fat and doing yoga do not go hand in hand. Turns out that when you have a big stomach, it makes some of the moves very hard, trying to kneel and bend and touch my toes (TOES? I could barely touch my knees thanksverymuchly). It also turns out that when you have a plate in your wrist and can’t do weight bearing exercises using that wrist, it also makes it quite hard. But you know what, I did the whole class, only stopping twice to say “WTF???” but quickly getting back into it. I didn’t burn a whole lot of calories, but I’m okay with that. I get now why my friend kept going on about it. I left that class feeling stretched and pulled and overall more relaxed with myself and my life. I still don’t get the mumbo jumbo (again, sorry for offending all yoga lovers out there) that goes along with it, I can’t quite get that last relaxation part happening, I don’t lie there thinking of sandy beaches and thanking my body for being wonderful (because let’s face it, my body isn’t wonderful – yet), I lie there during the relaxing part thinking of all the things I have to do when I get home. But maybe with time, I might get that last relaxing part. Strangely, I’m looking forward to next Monday when I will be attending my second ever yoga class, and then again on Wednesday. I’m going to make the most of these free (or rather, gold coin donation) classes while they last.

So here’s to trying new things. Saying ugly words to empower yourself and not letting others hurt you with those words and to trying exercises that you only ever found to be kooky. I know I feel better for trying these new things. So what new things have you tried lately?

A loss… and a win (or two)

Tuesdays are supposed to be my super smash it day, the theory being that I get up first thing in the morning and go for a swim, do my 40 laps and then have a nice relaxing spa for ten minutes before heading home to start the day, whereupon I finish work and head back to the pool to do an aquaerobics class. That’s the theory anyway. The reality was that I spent way too long watching tv last night and ended up turning my alarm off this morning and sleeping. It was bad and it was the wrong thing to do, but I know my body well enough by now to know that if I had gotten up, by 2pm today I’d have been a walking zombie (note to self, get some more iron tablets from the chemist…) So I felt quite guilty this morning when I finally got up and Mick asked me what happened to my early morning session. I think the look I gave him was enough for him to know that this was NOT a conversation to have with me first thing without any coffee (bless him, he really is so patient and tolerant with me). So that was my loss.

But – and yes, there’s a but – I had a win. Actually I had two wins. One a physical win, and two more mental.

First off, I did actually make it to aquaerobics tonight. Got home from work and put up our new Christmas tree (not a lot involved really, it’s just a wooden one, that really doesn’t require decorations – I’m going for minimalistic this year) and pottered around and contemplated – I hate to admit it, I really did contemplate it – calling my mate and telling her that I couldn’t make it to aquaerobics. But that’s giving in and I can’t continue to do that or I’m never going to get where I want to go (and I’m still trying to decide exactly where I want to go) so I struggled through the laziness and went off to do the class. And I’m so glad that I did. It was just fantastic. I could really feel it in my core and I think I’m going to continue to feel it tomorrow. I feel so refreshed and pumped now, that I’m really sad that I didn’t go swimming this morning. But it’s okay, there’s always tomorrow and every day after that.

Second little win was a thought that I had on the way home from work. Normally, when I get home from work, I scoff down food. Sometimes it’s healthy, most times it’s not. I have no idea why I thought of it as I was driving home, but I suddenly realised that A) I only eat when I get home because it’s habit, not because I’m actually hungry and B) I haven’t done that since I started 12WBT and OMG I’m still alive and haven’t starved to death… Hmmmm. So that just made me happy, because I realise that I can come home and just do things, without having to shove food in my face and that habits can be broken. Not that I think this habit is broken yet, but it’s a work in progress.

Third little win, was again a mental thing, and actually happened last night. I was watching TV last night (the reason that I was up so late and missed swimming this morning, so maybe this isn’t a win after all…. Might call it a draw) in particular the documentary “Fat, sick and nearly dead”, about Joe Cross who started drinking fresh juice every day for two months. Not just drinking a little juice, but only juice. He stopped eating and just drank. He convinced another few people to do the same and the whole time I was watching it, I was thinking “Wow, what an easy way to lose weight” (okay, now that I’m not half asleep, rationally, I know that wouldn’t be easy, would require a lot of willpower – we know I don’t have much of that, read above to see my exercising willpower *sigh*) at the time, I really thought that would be great. I watched him lose so much weight in two months and kept thinking to myself. Two months, that’s eight weeks, that’s two weeks less than the end time of this round of 12WBT. I could totally almost get to my goal weight in that time just by drinking juice! I almost convinced myself that I should do it. But then I mentally slapped myself. What the hell was I thinking? Why would anyone in their right mind (and I’m really sorry if you’re a fan of Joe Cross – if you are, maybe stop reading now…) why would anyone who is mildly sane, willingly cut out every other food group except for fruit and veggies to lose weight? That’s all he was doing to start with, drinking juice. Not exercising, not actually cooking food up, cutting it up, chewing it and swallowing it. Just drinking. WHY? Personally, I think he took the cheat’s, easy way out (and again, I know it wouldn’t be easy…) And that’s where I’m counting my last win. For brief moments, I seriously considered cutting out my eating and just drinking juice for a couple months. But I’m so glad to say that I thought better of it. I love that on this program I don’t have to give up any food group. That I can learn about healthy eating, that I can still enjoy the occasional piece of chocolate if I so wish to. That I am learning about exercising and creating a healthy balanced life. So to Michelle Bridges, I say Thank you. Thank you for not getting me to only drink juice (and it really was vile looking juice too!)

Now here’s hoping that tomorrow morning I get my lazy butt out of bed at 6am and do some exercise.

She believed she could - so she did

Another round of 12WBT

This year Michelle Bridges has decided to run a holiday round of the 12WBT program, and this year I am partaking in it. After my dismal attempt at the beginning of the year, I just sort of gave up on the weight loss thing. I knew in the back of my mind that I shouldn’t and occasionally I would actually look at the food I was preparing and eating, but I didn’t let any of that register in my head. I just went on eating what I wanted, when I wanted. To the point where I gained weight and nearly got back up to my start weight of the beginning of the year. I kept trying to lose weight and exercise and “get motivated” but nothing really worked. I kept saying that this week was going to be the week that I really did something, but the weeks came and went and nothing got done and a few more hundred grams were gained (never lost).

I can’t really say what made me do this round. I get emails from the 12WBT team all the time, but mostly I just ignore them. I’d grown a bit disenchanted with the idea of 12WBT, it seemed to be all the same information repeated again and again and I didn’t want to keep paying money for the same information (no, I’d rather sink my money into junk food apparently). But I was just reading one of the emails that came out about the holiday round and something in my head just snapped. I signed up, pretty much straight away, without thinking about it, and for the first time in many months I feel like I’m a little bit more in control of my life. I didn’t really spend as much time as I should have doing the pre-season tasks, (mostly because I joined up a couple of days before the round officially started) – but I did do them and I plan on revisiting them this weekend and going a bit more in depth with them. By then I will have completed nearly three weeks of the program and I will have a bit of a better idea about what my actual excuses really are, and what I really want my goals to be, because at this stage, I just want to lose weight and get back under the 100kg mark.

I’d love to say that I’ve been better with my exercise this round, but alas, some things never change. I still avoid exercising like the plague and when I do exercise it seems to be mostly swimming that I do. I have yet to really get my confidence back up to go shuffling again, still so petrified that I’m going to fall over and hurt myself again. But I will get there. I am trying to get up at 6am and exercise and it has happened a few times, though not as many as it should have. Tomorrow will be another 6am start, for a swim session in the morning. Funny, but I seem to be able to easily get up for a 6am swim, but getting up for a 6am exercise DVD is just beyond me. But again – I WILL get there, I am determined.

So here’s to the next 10 1/2 weeks, and hopefully to the rest of my life. I need to get this weight thing under MY control and not be under IT’S control. I need to take charge of my own life. So this is where it starts.

And here returns the slackness

WOW for someone who was going to post every single day in October, I’ve not really done so well have I?
Let’s see what else has fallen off the bandwagon shall we?

Rocktober? Umm that’s a bust. I hadn’t exercised at all until today….

Octsober? Huh, this one was supposed to be the easiest one for me to do. Then we went to Adelaide for 5 days and had a hellish time, so I bought a bottle of Kahluah. Yep, been having a few glasses here and there throughout the weeks to add onto the Adelaide trip. So nope, Octosober is a bust.

Blogtoberfest? Well, lack of posting shows that I haven’t been doing that. I’ve tried to get crafty as well, but that’s just not happened either. Lots of good intentions, followed up by no action.

Lead up to NaNoWriMo? Also a BIG HUGE BUST. I really haven’t done much with the month so far, except crocheting. I’ve been doing a bit of that. NaNo is the one thing that has me worried though, because I really want to complete it this year and I want to do a great thing with my story.

So, do I have any excuses? Nope, none. Just general lack of caring. Add to that, more family dramas and I just lost motivation or care factor to do anything at all. But I did join a gym today. It’s only for ten days, but i’m going to see how it goes, and then see if I can find money in my budget to keep on going after that. I need to get back into doing something that makes me feel good and energised. I need to get back into losing weight. I need to stop saying I need and rather actually DO.

Speaking of weight. Weighed myself today and am quite disgusted to note that I have gone back up to 105.8kg. I’m more than when I officially started the 12WBT challenge at the beginning of the year. So I’m going to attempt to set myself another goal. By the end of this year, I would like to be 95kg. That’s only 10kg, but it should be doable. So here we go again, let’s get rocking for October and make the most of the rest of this month. And here’s to more posting and crafting :)

Down Under Collection

Quilting conundrum

I stopped off at my local patchwork store today and grabbed myself some luscious fabric. I grabbed four fabrics from the Mint Collection Down Under collection. I’ve had my eye on these pieces for a while now. I am having a bit of an obsession with grays and there was something about this collection that just shouted out to me with its pops of yellow and turquoise. Now I am not a yellow fan. In fact, I used to openly say that yellow was probably the one colour that I detested. But as I get older I find that I am liking it more and more, which is a little worrying to me because I have nothing in my house that will go with yellow. But, I saw this fabric and fell in love with it.

A while ago now I bought an old second hand rocking chair, with the intentions of restoring it there and then. Well, move on a few months and the rocking chair is still sitting in my study in all its ugliness, with its even uglier 70′s brown and orange cushions. I would cringe every time I saw it, except it’s piled up with so much crap that you can’t really see the cushions. Just the ugly dark wood. When I saw this Down Under collection I immediately thought of making new cushions for the rocking chair out of it. With the rocking chair stripped back and painted a nice crisp white, I think these fabrics would just look glorious. (Of course, this means I will have to eventually get off my buttski and strip and re-paint said rocking chair.)

Down Under Collection

The four corner pieces are from the Down Under Collection. The top one is a gorgeous grey chevron.

Now my dilemma. WHAT pattern am I going to use to create fantabulous cushions? I would ideally like to combine these fabrics with splashes of white and perhaps a little more yellow (omg here comes more yellow!). I have gone through Moda Bakeshop and Elizabeth Hartman’s quilt book, but I just can’t seem to find the right pattern. Any ideas? Something simple. And square. I admit, I’m truly stuck.

While I was at Patchwork Pear today though, I did pick up a few more little fat quarters in some greens. These I have plans for… But it’s all secret squirrel at the moment :)

Special Greens

Not so much crafting, but a lot of working

Why is it that when you set yourself a goal to do exercise and be crafty and to generally do things that you want to do, that something gets in the way to destroy those plans. And to generally mock you!

Such is my life today. I’ve been at work all day, come home and spent a further 4 hours working on a document to the point where I have gotten nothing else done (including cooking dinner – thank goodness for takeaway). Sadly, that means I can’t leave you with any grand crafty accomplishments for today. But I can show you a few things I’ve recently completed and started…

Hexie colour wheel blanket

These are some of my green hexies that I am making for a crocheted hexie colour wheel blanket. It’s a bit slow going, but it’s going…

Fingerless gloves

We recently went camping, and with my dodgy wrist I needed to have some gloves that would be thick and warm over my wrist, but still leaving my fingers free to stoke the fire (and eat marshmallows with). Couldn’t find any, so I made some.

Star Stitch blanket

A friend and I recently discovered Panda’s Zoomy Yarn. After hunting high and low we finally found a website that had some of this gorgeous discontinued yarn. So we bought many balls of it. With no idea what to make. After many failed attempts at making a granny square I could fall in love with in this thick, thick yarn, I finally gave up and just started searching around for fancy stitches. I found this star stitch and I have fallen in love with it. It’s so quick and easy to do and so effective. I cannot wait until this blanket is finished.
http://freevintagecrochet.com/how-to-crochet/star-stitch

And last, but not least here is my photo of the day for October…

2 October 2012 - Lunchtime

So I admit to forgetting to take my lunchtime photo, so I thought I’d share with you a part of what I had for lunch instead. I love Cup A Soups. Sooo yummy.

October – the month of many’s

So I’ve been seeing things all over the internet about things that are happening in October – First there’s Rocktober – which goal are you going to try and rock? Secondly there is Octsober – obviously, that’s keeping sober and not drinking all October. Thirdly, there is Blogtoberfest – a month long blogging festival. Fourthly (is fourthly a word?), there is Photo a Day for October. There was another one, but do you think I can remember it with my guppy brain? Last, but not least, October is the month before NaNoWriMo. So, which ones will I be participating in?

All of them!

Yes folks, you heard me correctly. October is going to be the month of stressing myself out.

So here are my goals:
Rocktober – My goal that I want to smash is to exercise 4 times a week – or 20 times. Do-able a lot of you out there might say, but for those who have kept track of my blog over time, you will all know that exercise is something that I struggle with. So 20 times is a big deal for me. I would also like to smash out a bit of a weight loss goal – 5kg. Time to really get back onto this weight loss gig that I’ve been struggling with – forever it seems.

Octsober – Well this one probably won’t be hard for me. I very rarely drink anyway, so not having alcohol for a month isn’t really going to faze me either way. So this one, I think is a slam dunk.

Blogtoberfest – This one I might just struggle with. I said in my last post that I wanted this blog to get away from only talking about weight loss and fitness. These are still issues very close to my heart, but it’s not all I’m about. I also love to be crafty. I love quilting, and I’ve recently come to love crocheting too. I would like to share more about the things I’m doing in that regard. I think that by joining in with Blogtoberfest I may actually get a chance to be a bit more crafty in my day to day life, rather than hiding myself behind the computer all the time as I seem to do. (Though, having just bought a new computer, tearing myself away from her, might prove a little hard…)

Photo a Day for October – I’ve been trying to do this one for the last couple of months, and every month I get a few days in, and I forget to start taking photos. So, I’m trying again. And I’ll be posting them all up here for you to see, so if you see that I miss a day, please remind me.

And last, but by no means least – Lead up to NaNoWriMo. I love NaNo, I’ve written about it a few times here. Last year, I started to do it, but just couldn’t get into it. There were so many other things going on in my life, like trying to find a job after having moved to a new city, that I just stressed myself out even thinking about NaNo. The first time I did NaNo, I just winged it. Didn’t go in with a clear thought of how I wanted to proceed, didn’t even go into it with a real storyline in mind. Just let my mind and fingers wander and let happen, what happened. It was a success. But this time, I have a plan of what I want to write. A story that has been hanging around in my head for quite some time now. I really want to do it justice. So I think this October, I will be sitting down and organising and planning exactly how this story will go – and hopefully have another NaNo success.

So that’s my plan for this month. What are your plans? Will you be joining in on any October festivities?

Before I leave you tonight, here’s my first photo of the day for October. (Phew, one day down, 30 more to go…)

Where you stood

There I am, standing in my dining room, because I couldn’t stray too far from the computer today. It just wasn’t happening. Dig the groovy slippers :)

Abducted by aliens

It’s true. I realise I’ve been gone for quite some time and the only reason I can give you all is that I was abducted by aliens. Do you believe me? No, well I wouldn’t either.

Okay, so the truth is, I was slack. I’ve been pretty slack in a few aspects of my life. I lost my mojo, went looking for it, couldn’t find it and just couldn’t get back into eating healthy, exercising or blogging. I felt like a big fat failure, and who wants to blog about that? So what’s been going on since April you ask? Okay, so here’s the quick re-cap.

I got fired from my job – the one that I was really hating. I was looking for work elsewhere, but the boss beat me to it and fired me first. He’s made a few harsh (and very, very inaccurate) accusations and I’m pretty much just keeping myself far away from him (which is turning out surprisingly easy, even for a small town). I know that I did nothing wrong, and that my work was up to scratch, and I sleep fine at night. So to be honest, I’m quite happy to be out of that place. I hadn’t really written much about it, but I was so sad and depressed at that place I was working, I hated it. But, good news is, I was only between jobs for one day. I got fired, left on the Thursday, had an interview on the Friday and then started a new job on the Monday.

Took me a while to settle into that place, but I eventually did, just in time to move onto another job. I was torn about leaving this other place. I was finally settling in, and making some great friends – friends I will now cherish for life – but this other position was back with Government. And the government will give me paid maternity leave, which this other place just couldn’t do, so in the end that was the winning decision. So now I’m back with government. Not pregnant, but at least I now have maternity leave when I finally need it.

Now, about this eating healthy and exercising thing. Well, the truth is, I haven’t really been doing either of these things. I’ve let my eating slip back into old habits and I’ve been ignoring that little voice in my head that says to me every time I put something bad in my mouth that I shouldn’t be doing this. Then I ignore that little voice in the back of my head that says I should get up off the couch and exercise. I’ve ignored both these voices so much, that I’ve managed to put back on 3kg. Although, looking at my last weigh in figure, I’ve actually only put on 1kg since my last weigh in back in March. Hmmm I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not.

So this is me, back again and ready to get back into healthy eating, exercising and just generally being happy and enjoying life again. Oh, and I plan on getting back into blogging again, and maybe adding in some posts about new and exciting adventures (such as crochet club – oh yes, I am part of a crochet club and you know what, it’s freaking awesome!) and some more posts about quilting, and possibly, quite possibly, more posts with photo goodness, because, well I just spent my tax return on a great camera, so now I need to learn to use it and I need to start doing something with all the photos I take, so they’re probably going to end up here. I just started to realise that there has to be more to my life than just eating healthy and exercising.

God, it feels great to have blogged again. I’ve missed this, and I’ve missed you all. I’m back babbyyyyyyy :)

Blogger Challenge Week 7: Motivation

Time for the 12WBT blogger challenge for this week. I will be answering a few questions this week:

  1. Why did I join the 12WBT?

    My reasons for joining up on the 12WBT haven’t changed since I put up my first blogging challenge post. I still want to lose weight to get to a fitter and happier healthier version of myself, and also so that one day when I do have children of my own I will be a good role model to them. I want to learn about good nutrition, so that I know when I feed these children one day, I will be feeding them good, healthy, nutritious food and that I will be giving them a proper portion of food – not my over the top portioning that I tend to do now. More than anything, I don’t want my children to ever have to deal with a weight problem and have to join up on their own 12WBT challenge. And yes, being able to wear a slinky dress, or nice lingere is also a bit of a factor for me, I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t!

  2. What has been your biggest achievement to date?

    I think there are two achievements. Last week at weigh-in I was only 500g off my end weight of 12WBT in 2010. So close I could taste it. I was pretty chuffed that I’d managed to lose nearly 10kg this year. This was really brought home to me on the weekend when we went out for cricket presentation night. I was standing with Mick while he was talking with one of the young guys, when all of a sudden he turned to me (the young guy – not Mick…) and said to me “You’ve lost weight haven’t you Tina. Like, really lost weight. I’m sorry I don’t mean to sound rude, but you really have, haven’t you?” I was so chuffed that finally someone had really noticed it. I told him I loved him and I could have kissed him ha-ha. It made all the work that I’ve done worth it, and gave me that little kick I needed in the arse to get myself back on track and get going again.

    My other big achievement was that I ran. I’m not much of an exerciser, as I’m sure you will have noticed from my constant complaints on the blog about having to exercise, but I was pretty chuffed with myself when I got out there to do my walk/shuffle/jog/run thing and when I actually did run. It wasn’t even a jog, but a run. It wasn’t for long, but I did it and it gave me the enthusiasm to get out there and keep doing it. Until I fell over that is, and the mornings got darker. Now I struggle to get out there and do it, but it’s a plan for the future. For now I’m concentrating on my swimming, which is also an achievement for me – taking lessons and learning how to swim properly. Now I’m practicing, practicing and practicing some more to get really good at it.

  3. What have you struggled with? How can you overcome these issues?

    I struggle with exercise. More than anything else that is my Kryptonite. I try to like it, I really do, but I just don’t. I’ve waited for that feeling to hit me that everyone talks about – how you start to love and crave it. But it hasn’t hit me and to be honest, I don’t think it ever will. The only thing that I really love to do is swim. I don’t really feel like that is exercise, because I can just totally tune out the world and focus on just moving my arms and legs and I can think about whatever. When I go for my shuffle or am doing a dvd or something else, I can’t get into that Zen zone. I have to concentrate – either on the roads/paths (so I don’t go arse up and fall over again), on my feet, or just on what the instructor is doing in the dvd. But swimming isn’t like that.

    I don’t really know how to overcome this issue I have with exercising. Apart from just getting out there and doing it, there really isn’t anything I can do to make myself love exercising. So for now, that’s what I do. I just force myself (sometimes) to exercise. And loathe every second of it. Maybe, just maybe, one day that love of exercise will come to me. I’m not really expecting it to though. *sigh*

Blogging challenge week six: Adjustments

Weigh in day

Previous weight: 102.0kg.
Today’s weight: 100.2kg.
1.8kg loss! Sooooo close to double figures.

Time for the 12WBT blogger challenge for this week. I will be answering a few questions this week:

  1. What adjustments have you had to make to your exercise regime over the last 6 weeks?

    i.e. Have you upped your training? (Added more weights or can run faster/harder, etc) Or have you gone up to a new fitness level in the 12WBT?
    My exercise regime has been a bit wishy washy and a bit up and down over the last six weeks. I started out strong, earlier this year in pre-season, but when 12WBT officially started I kind of fell by the wayside a little and lost the plot. The one thing I have been very consistent with is my swimming. I set myself a goal to take swimming lessons to just learn how to do freestyle properly, but not only have I learnt how to do that, but I have also learnt how to do backstroke and breaststroke properly, and I have also learnt how to do the butterfly – which I admit I am still struggling with, but I persist, because I really want to master it. Other than that I have tried new things that I have never really tried before – such as running. I also got a stand for my mountain bike to turn it into an exercise bike. The good intentions are there, now if I could get my body into it too, I’d be alright.

  2. What have you changed in regards to your food intake?

    i.e. Do you follow Mish’s plan to the letter? Have you had to alter it due to dietary/family needs?
    I never follow the plan to the letter. I always alter it. I am very much a creature of habits and tend to have the same thing for breakfast every day, and most days I will have the same thing for lunch every day. So for me, having all these different breakfasts and lunches just does my head in and I’m just not interested in having so many different things to make first thing in the morning. I stick to my tried and true breakfasts. I’ll give most things a go on the menu’s, I did try the mushroom and lentil loaf – but it seriously nearly made me throw up, I just couldn’t eat it. So now I figure if it doesn’t sound good, and if I think I’m going to dislike it I’m not going to waste my time or money making it. So ocassionally I will change the dinners around as well. I like to have something I can make ahead for Tuesday and Thursday nights because that is when I do my swimming and get home quite late. Apart from that I haven’t really changed my eating habits at all, just continuing on with what I’ve been doing all year. Oh and I do let myself have “bad” food when we go to the pub for dinner. This is a lifetime change I’m making here, and I will admit that I’m not going to deny myself chicken schnitzel for the rest of my life when I go to the pub for dinner, so why deny myself now. I try to be a bit more sensible when we eat out, but more often than not, I just order something I know I will enjoy.

  3. What is the difference in your mindset?

    i.e. Are you more confident? Are you happier within yourself? Do you still struggle to get out that door for your workout?
    I feel happier in myself when I look in the mirror every day now. I’m not completely happy with myself – with 35kg still to lose, I shouldn’t be completely happy either, but I’m a lot happier now. I can almost see my collarbones and that makes me smile. The day that they really are pronounced I will be super happy.
    In regards to exercise, well I still struggle with that. I never feel motivated for that, I don’t think I ever will. I have never enjoyed exercising, I think it’s just the way I am. I can pretend that I do, and hope that it’s going to change, but let’s be honest, after 36 years, I doubt that I’m suddenly going to start loving exercise. I do however love to swim. So I find I am doing more and more of that lately. It’s exercise, that’s the main thing right?

Running out of time in the day

I have had such a busy few days, jam packed full of excitement and a lazy day thrown in between. So I have to say that I’m sorry for the lack of updates here.

Saturday was full of excitement and joy as we went to the Port Lincoln A grade cricket grand final. Mick plays for Charlton (admittedly, he’s only B grade now – age is not nice to cricketers) and it had been 21 years since the A grade had won a premiership. So of course, it was mandatory that we attend the grand final on Saturday (though there wasn’t really any disagreement from me about attending) and we sat there for 6 hours – though sat wouldn’t be the right word, there was a lot of pacing – until that final run when we won! It was so damn exciting and quite honestly the best game of cricket I have ever watched. I could go into the dribs and drabs of the game, but I won’t, but let me just say. Oh. Em. Gee. Nerves, pacing, nail biting action.

The nail biting action, followed by the win, was followed by a trip to the pub where I can honestly say that I didn’t drink anything, but I did have dinner there – a lovely hearty chicken schnitzel. Yes you read correctly. I had a chicken schnitzel and at the time it was great, but afterwards I felt so sick. No guilt, just sick. Lesson learned. Next time I will have a steak. I’m not in that headspace yet where I can go to a pub for a pub meal and have grilled fish and salad. I can do that at home, when I go out to dinner I want to eat something yummy that I don’t make at home – and I never make steak as good as a pub does.

Anyway, Mick decided he would stay at the pub to drink with all the guys, so I went home and said I’d wait up for him so I could pick him. No drinking and driving in this house people. Finally at 3.30am I got him. Got home, fell asleep and got a grand total of about 4 1/2 hours sleep.

Sunday was a do nothing day. So that’s exactly what we did. I finally got my New beginnings quilt finished, sat there watching movies while I sewed the binding on. Then we started watching season one of Sons of Anarchy. I’m hooked, gotta admit it.

But all this sitting around doing nothing didn’t help my 10,000 steps a day for the Everest challenge, so I’m a bit behind on that. So this week I’m getting up at 6.30am to do an hour of exercise before getting ready for work, and I’ve been to the pool for 90 minutes of swimming both last night and tonight just to catch up on my steps. I may only have one sponsor, but I will not let that sponsor or the team down.

So with all that said, I’m going now, need an early night, for an early start tomorrow. Promise I will do a proper post again in the next day or two.

Winners are grinners

Buying Tim Tams again

Oh. My. God. Put the Tim Tams down woman. Is that what you were thinking when you read the title of this post? It’s sure as hell what I would have been thinking.

But relax everyone. While it’s true that tonight when I did my food shopping, I picked up not one but two packets of Tim Tams, I am very pleased to say they were not for me. Neither packet. No, they were for a wonderful lady in America that I have to send a mini-quilt to as part of a swap (which I am so very far behind in now, so much so, that the quilt is now late.. I apologise) and I like to try and include something so very Australian in the parcels that I send overseas and you can’t get much more Australian than Tim Tams, and Vegemite. So when we did our food shopping tonight I picked up a packet of the original Tim Tams, a packet of white choc Tim Tams and a tube of Vegemite.

Can I just say how weird it felt picking up those Tim Tams. Even though I knew that I wasn’t going to be eating them myself (and I wasn’t even tempted to buy an extra packet for me – yay me!), and that they would be going straight into a padded envelope and sent away, it still felt a little (actually a lot) wrong. Which made me happy. Happy because I’m feeling that way again, not dreading the whole eating healthy and exercise regime thing, which I’ve kinda been feeling lately. Happy because I felt bad that I bought food that a few months ago I wouldn’t have thought twice about buying multiple packets of and scoffing down.

Yeah baby I’m back on track again!

Charting my losses

Weigh in day

Previous weight: 102.7kg.
Today’s weight: 102.0kg.
700g loss!

So I updated my weight on the 12WBT weigh in page today after yesterdays weigh in and I was confronted with my weight loss graph. What I saw almost made me cry. In the 6 weeks I’ve officially been doing the 12WBT all I have lost is 2.7kg!

What the hell is going on with me that I have lost so much of my mojo? Two weeks ago I was at 100.7kg – I could almost taste the double digits, and then I went to Adelaide, gained 2kg and am having such a slow weight loss again. When I set my goals for this round in pre-season task 3 I had my one month goals set down to be at 98kg by the end of February. Here we are nearly at the end of March and I’m not even nearly there yet. So my overall goal of getting to 85kg by mid May when Round 1, 2012 12WBT is over, are nowhere near achievable. I think I’m going to be lucky if I even manage to get to 95kg at the rate I’m going and this saddens me.

I said that I wasn’t going to worry about what the scales said, so long as I was having consistent weight loss and that I was feeling better about myself. But I’m not really having consistent weight loss as you can see by the other graph below (which shows my overall weight loss over the last 12 weeks of this year vs. pre-season weight loss vs. official weight loss). I’m up one week, I’m down the next. The time that I was having good weight loss was before 12WBT officially started. Which is making me wonder what the hell is going on with me – am I sabotaging myself, am I just plain sucky, WTF is going on?

All I know is that I want to lose weight. I want to be slimmer and I want to be healthy. I admit I’m still struggling with the whole concept of exercise – I still just don’t like it, but I do it (grudgingly) but what is it going to take to just have those graphs go down, rather than up, down, up, up , down, up, down… you get the drift.

Okay, rant over. Here’s to a better day tomorrow!

Blogger Challenge Week 5: Health

Time for the 12WBT blogger challenge for this week. There was a wee little glitch last week, so you may notice that there is no week 4, but never fear, because week 5 is here. And the question I’m answering this week is:

So, what does being healthy mean to YOU? What is it that has made you start this journey into being a healthier you?

This is a very interesting question, and one that goes deep with me. For so many years I’ve struggled with my weight – actually, my entire life I’ve struggled with my weight, but it wasn’t until I hit my mid twenties that I ever really thought of my weight as a health issue and what I could be doing to my body. Actually, it wasn’t until my mum was diagnosed with diabetes that I ever really gave it much of a thought at all.

When my mum was diagnosed, I said to myself, that if I was ever diagnosed with diabetes, then obviously I’d do something about my weight, and get myself “healthy”, and that it would be the one thing that could really make me give up sugar. Isn’t it sad, that I had to get diagnosed with something as serious as diabetes for me to want to give up sugar and fatty foods! When I went to the doctor a few months later and was diagnosed with pre-diabetes, that should have got me going on my path to healthiness. And for a while it did. But then I got bored with eating salad and fell off the bandwagon. I had no idea what I was doing, I would follow the diets that the women’s magazines had in there each week and hope and pray that I would get skinny (which I equated with healthy). I didn’t of course. But then, neither did I ever stop to ask someone for some proper help and guidance. This abusive cycle continued on and on until I joined a gym 6 years ago and went on their 12 week weight loss and exercise plan.

Finally, I started learning what it meant to truly be healthy, how to lose weight, how to exercise to help me lose weight and help my heart out. And I did lose weight, and was really happy with myself. For some reason, that I’m still not quite sure about, I kind of stopped going to the gym, and I started gaining weight back. I only knew I was gaining weight because all the new clothes I had bought myself were getting too tight again. I had yet to invest in a set of scales (they were the enemy).

Fast forward to nearly two years ago now. We were invited to a wedding where Mick was to be best man, and I was going to be meeting a whole plethora of his friends I had never met before and I wanted to make a good impression. I want Mick to be proud to introduce me to his friends (which he would have been, no matter what – seriously, what was I thinking?). So I joined up on the 12WBT challenge. This is where health/exercise/weight all started to really make sense and sink into my thick head. I’m proud to say that (including a few weeks before officially joining 12WBT) over that time, I lost 16.5kg and I did make a good impression at the wedding and now that we live over here in Port Lincoln, some of those people at that very wedding are now my friends (though I know deep down – they would have accepted me even if I hadn’t lost 16kg, they’re just great [normal, un-judgemental] people).

Even though I managed to gain back 10 of those kilos since Round 2, 2010 ended, in the back of my mind I’ve always kept that “healthier” attitude. I let myself slip back into some bad eating and not weighing myself and I had a few personal issues that helped contribute to that “feed my face now” attitude. But always, I knew to make sure I was eating more veggies and fruit, eat less fatty foods and exercise. But ah, the exercise – we have a love hate relationship exercise and I. I love to hate it. Simple as that really. And since finishing up Round 2, 2010 I have barely exercised at all, even though I know it does my heart and body a great deal of good.

The reason for me joining up again, is because I want to get it into my thick head once and for all that being healthy, doesn’t necessarily mean being skinny. That I can still have a bit of flesh on me and be okay. But that eating wisely, and doing regular exercise are only ever going to be good for me, while at the same time, being able to recognise that occasionally enjoy a piece of cake with friends is okay too. But most importantly, I want to have a child. I love Miss Princess, but she’s not mine, she never will be mine and she will always have her mother no matter what and I missed out on the first 12 years of her life. I admit it, I selfishly want my own little piece of Mick – a Mini-Mick! But before I do have a baby, I want to be able to get my head screwed on properly in regards to the food and exercise issue, because more than anything, when I have a child, I want to be able to teach him/her about healthy eating and about having a healthy well balanced life. I never want a child of my own to have to make use of a 12 Week Body Transformation challenge. I don’t care if my child has a little extra “flub” one day, so long as they understand what’s happening to them, and know how to change it and fix the problem – or issue – before it becomes a problem. I want to end this cycle of bad food and no exercise that seems to run in my family once and for all.

Phew, that was a novel almost, but there you go – that is what being healthy means to me and that is why once again I am doing the 12WBT, and why I will in all probability continue to do 12WBT for the rest of this year at least.

Going AWOL again

I admit it, I’ve been slack lately, and that is in all areas of my life.

My exercising has been very slack, my eating has been – well, not the best, my blogging has been almost non-existent and my quilting has also suffered. I’m not sure really what’s been going on with me, but ever since I went to Adelaide and had my appointment with the specialist, that black hole has just been sitting there in the background wanting to swallow me up. I’ve found it so hard to get excited about anything, or to really care about anything.

I really want to get back into my healthy eating and exercising and get back on the weight loss track, but I’m really struggling and I don’t know how to get my mojo back. I’m trying though, I really am.

Mick and I went fishing yesterday and I counted that as my Super Sunday Session (SSS), and wore my HRM the whole time. Two hours, fifty six minutes and thirty three seconds of surf fishing later, I had managed to burn myself a nice hefty 1587 calories. Pretty proud of that. Not so proud of the fact that all I caught was one wee little mullet (which I had for dinner tonight, quite yummy he was…) and Mick only caught one little salmon. Depressing, I love catching the big fish, the ones that give me a challenge.

1,587 calories gone! Yeah baby!

Tonight I had another swimming lesson and I learnt how to do the butterfly, and really, it’s probably the funniest thing you would ever see watching me do that, so even if I myself am not laughing very much at the moment, I could at least make someone else laugh! But having gone fishing and having my lesson has made me realise, that I can’t wait for my mojo to come back to me, I have to go out there, find it and drag it out from under the rock that it’s gone and crawled under.

So on that note I’m going to leave you with a couple of pictures from yesterday, the first day I’ve been really happy in quite a while. I will get back to my happy place, I really will! Starting right now.

My catch from a great day fishing. (On a side note, I gotta say I'm actually liking this photo, because I can really see that I've lost weight. Finally, I can see it.)

Super buys from Adelaide

Weigh in day

Previous weight: 100.7kg.
Today’s weight: 102.7kg.
2kg gain! I was expecting this though after the weekend.

With winter fast approaching us (I know, I know, I can hear you all shouting now “We’re only just into Autumn” – but seriously I don’t think summer actually ever really made it here to Port Lincoln!) I have been thinking about what exercise I will be doing in the coming months. I would like to say that I will be super fantastic and get out there and go shuffling/jogging/running, but I’m not so sure I can say that in all honesty. I haven’t been out running for the last couple of weeks to be honest. The mornings are so dark and gloomy now, that the thought of going out there for a run at 6.30am is just off putting to say the least. In the back of my mind is that whole thought of falling over unseen rocks, or getting attacked by some weirdo along my lonesome path (why I think these things will only happen to me in the dark I cannot explain, but that’s how my mind works). So with these thoughts in mind I really had to start thinking about what I was going to do to make up for that lack of running. I have to admit, that I’m also not a huge fan of riding my bike in the wet weather either – and I hear vicious rumours that it can get quite wet over here in Lincoln in winter.

So I can hear you all shouting now “join a gym woman!” but I’ve been there, and done that, so many times actually. I like the idea of a gym, where they have all the pretty shiny machines to use. But they cost so much money, and there’s always the extra added factor of having to bypass home to go there and then drive home all smelly. My memberships just never end up getting used properly and to their full advantage so I’m spending money on nothing. I can find other ways of spending my money on nothing to be honest. Like buying quilting fabric and cutting it all up to make “stuff”.

Enter my trip to Adelaide and a visit to Anaconda on the weekend. It just so happens that they were having a big sale on while we were there and I managed to pick up to very nifty little(?) items that I believe are going to help me get my exercise groove thing happening over the coming dark, cold and gloomy months.

First up, let me introduce you to Frank – my new Fluid bike mount. Frank will be helping me by holding up Bert (the bike) and allowing me to daily pedal my way to nowhere, all in the comfort of my dining room (we are heathens at home and hardly ever use the dining table…) and in front of a TV. No getting all cold and wet outside and having to deal with cars driving past me really close and spraying up dirty gutter water on me as I ride my way around Port Lincoln. I am trying to source some DVDs at the moment that are spin class type programs, something that I can follow along to, just to help me vary my workouts on the bike. So far, I haven’t found anything. Might have to go to one or two spin classes at the gym just to see what they do.

Secondly, we have Trevor the timer. Trevor here will be measuring my distances travelled, my speed and the time it takes me to do my training, allowing me to better my times and work on improving my speed vs. distance.

I’m actually considering putting up the pedestal fan in front of the bike and turning it on full blast when I get on the bike to help simulate riding outside in the wind, but I think that might be overkill. So between Frank and Trevor, some exercise DVDs and actually getting outside and shuffling/jogging/running on days that aren’t too bad, I do believe I may have winter covered. I’ve really got no excuses now do I! I was wondering though, if any of you wonderful people out in the wide world have one of these bike trainers. How do you find them, do they work for you, and do you notice a difference when you take the bike off and go for an actual proper ride?

Adventures in Adelaide

Hi everyone, did you miss me? I missed you all that’s for sure.

Have had a really busy and jam packed four days over in Adelaide. Had a late getaway on Thursday night and didn’t get in to Adelaide until 2.30am on Friday, had a quick sleep then it was off to the specialist first thing on Friday morning. That was the general theme of the whole weekend. Lots of doing “stuff” and not a whole lot of sleep. I’m desperate for a good sleep-in – which I’m planning on getting this coming weekend.

Plans for the weekend went a little awry, I didn’t do Mt. Lofty due to unforseen circumstances, which was a little sad, but at the same time, there was a wee little part of me that breathed a huge sigh of relief. Having said that, I’m planning on going back to Adelaide again in 8 weeks or so – at the end of 12WBT and I will climb Mt Lofty then, so it’s not all over red rover yet. The fat lady (that would be me) hasn’t sung her last song yet!

What the fat lady has sung her last song on though is softball (insert big sad face here). I know that I’ve complained about softball on here before, and there was a certain love hate relationship I had going with the game, but at the end of the day, it was always my choice on whether or not I continued to play the game. But I had a specialist appointment on Friday for my wrist – our whole reason for going over to Adelaide in the first place – and the news I received wasn’t as good as I was hoping. So let me explain…

I was expecting to go in and have the specialist look at my wrist, do a few little exercises and have her tell me that things had improved and would continue to. Well that was what I was hoping – not necessarily what I was expecting. I walked into the appointment with Mick – I made sure he came with me so he could ask questions I would likely forget to ask – and then started the grilling. There was the whole back story on how I had broken my wrist, what things could I do, what things could I not do, how had these things changed over the last three years etc etc. Possibly one of the worst parts of my appointment was where the doctor asked me what I weighed. First thing that popped into my head was “thank god I’ve been doing 12wbt and lost about 10kg, otherwise I’d be even more embarrassed than I am now”, second thing that popped in was, “how do I get Mick out of the room before I answer this”?

Because in all the time that we’ve lived together Mick has never, ever known what I weigh. It’s always been my deep dark secret – that I share with everyone out there in the world via my blog, but have never actually told Mick. So I had to answer her, in front of Mick, and I wanted to die of shame. All the pride that I had in having lost 10kg went out the door, and in it’s place was the shame of having gotten so overweight that I had to tell the doctor in front of the man I love and adore that I weigh 100.7kg. You know what, Mick just held my hand and gave it a squeeze and smiled at me. I think I fell even more in love with him at that point.

Which brings me back around to what I was saying about softball. My wrist hasn’t gone so great over the last three years. I have to go back to Adelaide as soon as I can to get an MRI done, as they think there could be some separation of the bones and perhaps some ligament damage (I’m hoping not, but in another way, hoping there is so that there is some explanation for the masses of pain that I still get). The doctor asked if I did any exercise or played any sport (and I was quite happy when I could tell her all the exercise that I now do, as compared to last year when I was doing nothing) and told her that I was playing softball as well.

Who knew that softball was an impact sport? I didn’t. The doctor did. Which she then kindly informed me was now off limits. No more impact sports for me, because apparently, that doesn’t do the wrist any favours whatsoever. So no softball, no hockey like I was hoping to do, no cricket. The doctors suggestion? Golf. Seriously, she suggested I take up golf. What I didn’t tell her was that I’m planning on taking up mixed touch footy lol. I don’t think she would have really thought that was a good idea. I might have also forgotten to ask her if fishing for big salmon was still an okay thing to do. I can’t give up everything I love can I!

As for the rest of the weekend, well it was go, go, go. Appointment and catching up old friends on Friday, shopping for some great bargains on Saturday – picked up some goodies which I plan on sharing with you tomorrow – and more shopping and family dinner on Sunday night. Please though, don’t ask me about my eating over the weekend, it wasn’t great and there wasn’t any exercise to help combat all that food. Needless to say I’m not really looking forward to weigh in tomorrow. But at the end of the day, I had such a great weekend surrounded by family and friends (and my sisters new 12 week old Bernese Mountain Dog who I have fallen madly in love with!) so for me, any gain is okay because it was a gain of love (that’s how I’m spinning it to myself. Do you think Michelle Bridges would agree? I don’t think so…)

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