My journey from 59 to ………

Archive for the tag “Weight loss”

Back On Track – Week One 

Tuesday 26/01/16

Braved the scales – important to face your demons!

Breakfast – black coffee then pineapple, banana, celery, almond & chia smoothie

Training – went to gym and did my full program but not in the right order because other people were on MY equipment! 😃


Lunch – no time as had to go to a funeral. Had a kale, spinach & mango smoothie and a protein bar

Snack – almond bar, black coffees

Dinner – carrots, broccoli and bolognese

Snack – prawns

Happy with that!

Wednesday 27/01/16

Breakfast – Black coffee then pineapple, banana, kale, carrot, almond & chia seed smoothie

Lunch – crayfish salad

Snack – black coffee & vegetable crisps

Dinner – mince & mediteannean vegetables

Snacks – protein bar and a box of raisins

No exercise, always busy on a Wednesday so rest day

Thursday 28/01/16

Breakfast – black coffee, pineapple, banana, kale, carrot & spirulina Smoothie

Lunch – tomato soup (the only thing available without starchy carbs!) & eat well bar

Dinner – crayfish & anchovy salad with sweet potato crisps

Snacks – eat well bar & box of raisins

10.3 km walk in my boots, which are nearly 2lbs heavier than trainers. Need to get my leg strength back!


Friday 29/01/16

Breakfast – Black coffee.  Chocolate protein powder, banana, almonds & chia seed shake

Lunch – Frankie & Benny’s ABC salad

Dinner – Lemon sole salad

Snacks – box of raisins

Trained with Darryl for the first time this year! Started using My Fitness Pal


Saturday 30/01/16

Breakfast – black coffee, pineapple, banana, kale, carrot, celery, almond & chia seed smoothie

Lunch – prawn salad

Dinner – crab stirfry

Snacks – protein bar, eat natural bar

Out all day with the man trailing dogs. 10.4 km plus time on my feet!

Loving My Fitness Pal, it’s going to help me make better choices

Sunday 31/01/16

Breakfast – chocolate protein powder, banana & carrots smoothie

Lunch – prawn salad

Dinner – butternut noodles & homemade bolognese sauce

Snacks – vegetable crisps, eat natural bar

Another day with the trailing dogs. 8.85 km today.

Monday 01/02/16

Breakfast – pineapple, banana, kale, carrot, celery, spirulina & almond smoothie

Lunch – a burger with coleslaw and side salad (didn’t enjoy it 😏)

Dinner – ham omelette with beetroot crisps

Snacks – eat natural bars, box of raisins

10.08 km walk

I’m pretty pleased with my first week back on track.

When I trained with Darryl (for the sake of any new readers he is my personal trainer and Jiminy Crickett – http://www.clubonehundred.com) on Friday he suggested I try My Fitness Pal, not for calorie counting (I’ve moved away from that) but to help with nutrition and portion size.

I am hooked! It’s already changed how I eat!

I get fed up with people telling me I need carbs (I never eat bread, pasta, rice and try not to have biscuits/cake!) but I’m easily meeting my carbohydrate target from fruit and vegetables

I’m loving seeing the ‘sugar’ record, it’s made me really look at the amount of fruit I eat and I’m going to change my snacks once I’ve finished my ‘stock’. I now eat the little box of raisins a few at a time, don’t just swallow them in one go!

I’m realising how good fish is for you (thank you Sally Osborne, big shout out to Osborne’s fishmongers for getting me to try new things!)


I’m on getting my fitness back and I finally seem to  have recovered from all that kidney stone nonsense!

From now on I’m screenshotting My Fitness Pal!

Tuesday 02/02/16

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Wednesday 03/02/16

Got the munchies tonight, typical the night before weigh in!!!

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And here’s the nutrition information for the week, aiming for less sugar next week!



That’s 1.6 pounds off!!!!


Read more…


Time for an update. 

I was going to write a really long post giving all the details of the kidney stone surgery but I’ve decided against it. 

I’m just going to give a quick overview so ……..

New Year’s Eve – surgery to remove remaining stones. Stent inserted. Hospital were brilliant, slept for what felt like days afterwards. 

08/01/16 back to have the stent removed, not a pleasant experience, I’m halfway through my second course of antibiotics but I’m just feeling (8 days later) that all my bits are starting to work properly again. 

Good news is that the report from one of the scans they did when I couldn’t wee seems to show that my insides are in good nick. 

It also shows there’s still a stone in there and as far as I’m concerned it can stay there. If it moves and gets stuck again I’ll go with the loads of drugs route, I only want another stent if there’s no real other choice!

Anyway, this has all been going on since last September and has had a huge impact on my fitness, nutrition and ‘brain’. 

Having reached a sort of meltdown when the first course of antibiotics didn’t work I am now confronting everything and pulling myself back from the edge. 

I’m the heaviest I’ve been for years, but I’m nowhere near the heaviest I’ve ever been. 

I’m the unfittest (if that’s a word) too, but again nowhere near the levels I was at 7 years ago. 

All of this has mucked up the planned start of my targets for this year. I’m going to stick with trying to cover 2016 kilometres and averaging 3 training sessions a week (but I’m writing January off!)

The fat has got to go!!!!

I’m going to post a blog each week describing nutrition, training, activities etc. I probably won’t post about these on Facebook so if you want to follow them just check in regularly or subscribe to the blog. The posts will really be for my own benefit to make me accountable but if it helps / amuses anybody else that’s good. 

I faced the scales this morning. Let’s see what next week brings …… 

Just added this for your amusement – my text conversation with my nephew this morning!


Fun, games and a bit of lunacy

Having got into a muddle I’ve decided to split this update into 2 posts. This one will be a sort of diary and the other will focus on health / nutrition / training. They will of course overlap but it will suit me better!

So what have I been up to?

Oh, only the normal sort of things!
I’ve been ‘on duty’ at the prison for 3 of the last 6 weeks. As I’ve said before, I’m a member of the IMB. A ‘different’ sort of volunteering. Have a look at what we do http://www.imb.org.uk/ you may want to volunteer! I haven’t got any photos of that to show you though!!!
I’ve been to Highgate Cemetery with a group of friends. Recommend it, the guided tour was interesting as were the tombs and graves, modern as well as Victorian. I really liked the house that had been built there, but not everybody felt the same! (Here’s a small selection of the photos I took, they will enlarge if you click on them.)
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I marshalled at the North Downs Run (where I got covered in tiny black flies!)
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and at the Dirty Dozen race.
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where I managed to get only a little bit muddy!
Two very different sorts of races but both of them gave me the opportunity to shout! I used to be a very good shouter but I don’t get much opportunity since I left Deptford Green so I need to keep in practice!
The mud / obstacle races are great fun to marshal and I’m looking forward to marshalling for Nuclear Races http://nuclear-races.co.uk/events/
Talking about races, we entered a different sort of race this year. Dragon Boat racing!
Before racing team shotWhen you stop having fun
Renei and I continue to visit National Trust properties. We went to Polesdon Lacey, Chartwell,
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I’ve continued to act as a misper for the search dogs and I’m now thinking about joining Essex Search and Rescue. Right up my street as I love being out of doors and the unpredictability of what you may be asked to do. And night training
Des’s retirement
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7 years difference
Mountain bike National trials
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Ray – scan, hypos
Westminster Hall Magna Carta trial
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Ray’s mum
 Wheelchair service, british Gas
I bend I don't break
Deadlift 75kg Deadlift face Row 2000 metres in 9-42-4


I was a “misper” on a three day man trailing seminar. Those dogs never cease to impress me!

And there’s always opportunities to do silly stuff if I’m left alone for too long!

Now I’m sat in a hospital bed pumped full of painkillers waiting to see if I can pass this kidney stone!









Fat / Weight / 2 weeks 1 notch

My blog has sort of turned into a diary of what I’ve been up to which I like as I write it for me and one day, when I’m old, I’ll look back at all this stuff I used to get up to.

Today I’m going to write about something else first though.  That ongoing relationship between me and my fat!!!  Although I’ve got fat in lots of places I’m only really bothered (as regular readers will know) by my belly. I don’t care what I weigh because I’ve understood how meaningless that is, so I’ve come up with a new way of looking at this.

When I started at the prison I was really skinny and, when I was given my belt the officer said he thought id have to make extra holes! I didn’t, but now I have spare holes 😦  So I came up with the idea of 2 weeks – 1 notch. In 2 weeks I needed to be able to wear my belt one notch tighter.

That meant starting with getting rid of the sugar monster AGAIN!!!!!!!!

I have a real problem with sugar. Ray likes Viennese Whirls and so did I. (Notice the use of the past tense!) But I wouldn’t have one. I could eat 10 in a row. I could be shoving them down my throat despite the fact that I felt sick.



But I am also very good at visualisation.  I have now convinced myself that at the end of every conveyor belt that produces Viennese Whirls there is somebody with exceptionally dirty (leave what that is to your imagination) hands who touches each cake before it us packed!  I have not had any since!!!!!

My nutrition has been much better over the last couple of weeks although I have to confess to sugar free sweets. I know they are worse for me than natural sugars but I do seem to be able to control myself with them so it’s time for the pragmatic approach!

I’ve also eaten some interesting things but more about that later!

I’ve been doing a weighing experiment. As this is not about weight that may seem strange but, as I’m not looking at it emotionally I thought I’d do an experiment and weigh myself daily.  The evidence shows that this is definitely not a good idea! As you can see from the graph my weight gives up and down on a daily basis. If weight loss was my goal I’d have thought ‘Well sod it then’ several times!


2 weeks – 1 notch was a success.


Now I’m not naive enough to not realise that by moving the position of a belt you can change hue it does up but this wasn’t really about the belt, it was about getting my head back in the right place and it has definitely worked! I have now got 4 weeks to be able to tighten it another notch 🙂

I’ve now added another thing.

When I was at the Westminster Mile / BUPA 10k this weekend I stayed overnight. Carrying my rucksack about I realised how heavy it was so ………… although this isn’t about weight I came up with an idea (I’m really good at these!).

The rucksack is now full of cans of food, jars of sauces and bottles of water. Every night I have to put the rucksack on and go for a walk, do things in the garden etc just to remind myself what I’m carrying all the time.  When I think that I used to ‘carry’ 4 or 5 of these everywhere ……


Diary time now..what have I been up to? (Note form!)

Havens to Havens – a 10 mile walk with Nigel & Renei

The Branches at Havens

Garden furniture – I bought this at the end of last summer, the table has just arrived and the chairs changed for a matching pair. Others thought I’d been ripped off and would not get them. I never had any doubt!!!! So much safer for Ray to get I and out of.

London marathon – only watching this year, with my friend Lindsay, but the ballot has been entered for 2016


Ham house – Renei and I have joined the National Trust and are going to visit as many places as possible.

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Pedal for Js- marshalling a bike ride for Js hospice

Great Bardfield garage sale

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Nuclear races – watching the Club One Hundred team!


Meal with Zung & Lien – two ex pupils and now good friends! Felt a bit like Bear Grylls as I had chicken feet (ugh, preferred the crispy version), ducks tongues (did you know they have bones in them?) and cow’s stomach (which I liked but they thought that was because of the oyster sauce!)

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New car, Ray can get in and out of this one!


New programs = loving them!

4 weeks – 2nd notch starts

Westminster mile – thank you Sweatshop Bluewater!


Premier inn – the luxury of a bath as opposed to the practicality of a wet room (and a night off from caring!)


Doing the baggage for the BUPA 10k

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Getting a packed lunch from Fortnum & Mason!

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And I’ve just got a physio appointment about my knee for next week!

2015 has started well.

Well here’s my first post of 2015, halfway through January.

Christmas and New Year are over, thank goodness. They are never a good time for us and this year was no exception. Once they are out of the way things can settle down (until Ray’s next major stress point, my birthday in March!).

So what about my new targets? I was struggling to come up with some for this year. Well, let’s face it, the last couple of years were pretty spectacular 😀 and how do you follow those?

But, after a lot of thought I came up with these:

1) To be leaner on 01/01/16 than I am on 01/03/15
2) To improve my PBs at upper body strength exercises
3) To do whatever the physios say is necessary to sort my knee out!

The first one may sound a bit odd, but let me explain.
I am NEVER going to be a naturally slim person. Yes, for the first time in my life, I have control of my weight, I still go up and down, albeit over a much smaller range.
Like most people, I start the year full of good intentions and with strong will but, over the course of the year it sneaks back up so I thought the best thing was to do was use that pattern to try and break it.
As you may have noticed, I do not like not meeting my targets so, hopefully, this will work!
I’ve just finished my two week detox and begun the year with a 7lb loss so that’s a good start.

Because of my knee (boo) I have been concentrating on upper body exercise, latterly strength work, for about the last 3-4 months so it makes sense to have a target in this area.

Again the knee …. I’ve now started the arthritis physio classes and, after one session, been promoted (or got rid of) to the functional exercise class!
Giving been given the ok to start doing some leg work I’ve been doing some gentle squats and lunges and I can’t believe how tight my quads are. At the moment it’s like I’ve never done legs before. I’ve been using the foam roller and tiger tail on my quads and IT band – it really hurts, but I know it has to be done! I can’t tell you how nice it us to have these feelings again though!

I am so busy at the moment. As well as training with Darryl, doing the program’s he’s given me at least three times a week, I’ve also signed up for two months of bootcamp at Club One Hundred! This means going out in Tuesday and Thursday evenings, breaking a pattern of sitting at home and eating! I have to say that I am loving it! The sessions are great fun and get me doing cardio!!!!

Today I was out fundraising with Search Dogs Essex. They are a great group of people, and dogs, who are all volunteers and give up their time to assist the police in searching for missing people. Not only do they give up their time to search, they have to do a massive amount of training. I have an easy role, I get left hidden in the woods as a ‘misper’ (missing person) and wait for the dogs to find me!

While we were there today I met Davina McCall! I gave always liked her on the TV and I was completely hooked by her Comic Relief Challenge. One amazing lady!
Well, we got talking (me? I know that’ll surprise you!) and she was interested in what I’d been up to!!!

Well, that got me thinking on the way home.

Darryl has got me listening to an audiobook called The Secret. It’s had a big impact on me. It stresses the importance of being thankful for the things that we have and, in trying to practice this, it has made me think far more openly and honestly about all aspects of my life and, today, I finally began to see why it may be that so many people have told me that I am inspirational!

– I taught, for ever, in a secondary school in one of the toughest areas of London (& loved it!)
– I survived a couple of pretty disastrous relationships!
– I’ve been the sole carer for Ray for the last 26 years!
– I lost masses of weight and have succeeded in keeping most of it off. I’m still more than 6 stone lighter than I was!
– I have been a non smoker, after being on 40+ a day, for over 4 years.
– My Multiple Sclerosis has gone from relapse & remitting to secondary progressive to benign (hooray, hooray!!!) I no longer need walking sticks or a Blue Badge!
– at the age off 55 I took up exercise for the first time and I am now completely addicted.
– Whilst I can no longer work I do interesting voluntary work including in a prison and with the search dogs!
– I’ve amassed a large collection of medals from different races including the London Marathon!
– I’ve built up a wide range of friends all of whom are positive (younger!) people!
– I am definitely the fittest and healthiest I have ever been and I think I am also the most positive and content as well.

For all of the above I give thanks.

Life is good! And there us no reason why it should not continue to improve.

Better stop now, I need to get to bed, I’m off to hide in the forest for the dogs tomorrow. 😃

How much difference can two weeks make?

All the difference in the world!!!

When I last wrote I was on the point of tackling my nutrition and saying how I had to get off some of the weight that had crept back on.

I got out my nutrition plan from Club One Hundred and really studied it, then decided to commit to doing the two week detox properly.

I’m not going to tell you what the plan says. that is part of their business after all, but I will say that it doesn’t involve calorie counting or weighing and measuring food. In fact non of the things normally associated with weight loss!

It is so true that, with almost anything, if your ‘head’ is not in the right place you are not going to succeed.

Finally, at long last, my head IS in the right place and I have followed the plan to the letter as well as doing all my programs.

Last Thursday I trained with Darryl and told him that I’d lost seven and a half pounds! I have NEVER lost that much weight in one week!!

I showed him my food diary and he told me it was the best I’d ever done (gold star for me!)

He gave me some advice as to how I could improve it further and then we went through my three new training programs. Total happiness 🙂

Week two began and my resolve was as strong as ever. I have completely stuck to the nutrition plan, and taken Darryl’s advice on board. I’ve been doing my new programs at the gym and loving them.

I’ve found that I have changed ……. yet again!

Somehow, over the course of the last two weeks I’ve found that I do not feel that I HAVE to finish food. For the first time in my life I have been able to reseal whatever I’m eating and put it away for later. I’ve been varying the foods I eat and trying out new stuff.

I’m loving my food, here’s a couple of  examples:



Friends keep posting pictures of foods like this:


But I can honestly saythat I do not want it.

There have been chocolate biscuits in the house and I have not even been tempted.

I’ve been nibbling at food, rather than guzzling it, and found that I get fuller quicker. There are times when I have to tell myself to eat because I know I should rather than because I’m greedy!

Could it be that I am finally understanding that food is a fuel, not a comfort?

My new programs are awesome. All upper body and core because of my knee and no cardio. Happy times!

(Seeing the physio on Friday so I hope to find something out. Hope s/he doesn’t just say stop being a wimp and go and get on with it.)

I never ache, but these ones have really got me. Love that feeling.

Last Sunday I went to do the baggage for Ride London.

I was aching but it was due to be a rest day so no problem I thought.

People don’t half pack a lot of stuff in their bags! Steve and I had it off to a fine art though. Steve was on the lorry, I was on the ground and we threw the bags to each other. As always, as soon as I started exercising the eche went.

I am so proud to say that I did not drop a single bag! My throwing and catching have improved as well.

I had a great day but, as you can see, I did get exceedingly wet!

Although I was really wet and cold I did not stop to get a cappuccino on the way home. Every Costa in the South East is in shock at my change to green tea!


Oh, and my weight?

This week I lost  2.4 pounds , my belly has shrunk and I’m getting definition back in my arms.

That’s 9.9 pounds in two weeks!!!!

i’ve never lost that much so quickly before, after last week I wouldn’t have been surprised to see no change.

It has NOT been hard, I’ve had no cravings at all.

I can do this and I will do this!

And, as always, remember that if I can, so can you!

BTW this is not and advertising feature but if you want to have a look at Club One Hundred and what they do go to:


There’s free stuff there and lots of people’s stories.

They train people all over the country, and abroad as well! I can’t recommend them enough!

Operation Gok Wan …….

………. appears to be being successful, and I haven’t bought any clothes!

I’m not really in to buying clothes, which is a good job really as I appear to be permanently skint!

When I first lost weight I kept buying new clothes in the smaller sizes, especially as I had the joy of discovering I could buy really cheap clothes in Sainsbury’s and Primark (other cheap stores are also available). But I hardly ever wore them. I live in gym kit. I have full length trousers for when I need to be more discreet, and I have one dress.

And I bet I get more of a reaction when I wear that one dress than any of you do with your selection of outfits often bought at great expense!

So where does operation Gok Wan come in?

Well, as I understand it, his forte is dressing women so that their good points are emphasised and attention is drawn away from their bad points. So, if he can do that with clothes, why can’t I do that with my body?????

My training program at the moment is based around HEAVY weights, and I am loving it.

As I’ve been doing my program at the gym, and my training sessions with Darryl, I have noticed how much my upper body shape has changed. My shoulders look squarer and the muscles in my arms are more defined. The squats and lunges are keeping my legs and butt in check too.

But the deadlifts have not only improved my strength, they’ve improved my posture too.

I’m tall, I’ve always been tall, and I’m the only person I know who, as I get older I get taller. I’ve also always had big boobs and hated them so I’ve developed round shoulders and stooped to try and hide both things.

You cannot do that and deadlift!

I hear Darryl’s voice telling me to hold my purse between my shoulder blades, and ‘back straight’ so I’m having to stand properly!

When I was doing my program today I was doing goblet squats, holding a 16kg kettlebell upside down in front of my chest whilst doing low, slow squats.

At the same time there was a girl also doing squats, holding a 16kg kettlebell by it’s handle so that her arms were straight and the kettlebell was between her knees.

Same weight, both doing squats. But, whilst my back was straight, my shoulders were back and my core engaged, I noticed her back was pulling forward and her shoulders were rounded. Bloody clever that Darryl, gets me with every exercise!

So, back to Gok.

What’s been changing could be down to two things.

1) My body shape has changed so much that people now see the arms, shoulders and legs and no longer notice the belly


2) My confidence has changed with every increased weight I lift so I stand taller, put my shoulders back and don’t think about my belly (well, not as much anyway!)

Whatever it is, things are changing. The ‘big’ boys at the gym are saying hello and giving me the nod of respect. A fireman did the same in Morrisons.

Although it could be I’ve got a dirty mark on the end of my nose (if I have it came from the deadlift warm up). Or it could be they’re humouring the loony with the big grin on her face.

But whatever it is, it’s making me happy.

Today started really badly, again I had thoughts about anti depressants, but I hit the gym and those endorphins started jumping about and got me back in positive mode.

I feel obliged to point out that Darryl keeps reminding me that if I get my nutrition right, the belly will be less of a problem anyway (but he also knows that whilst home is like it is that may take a little longer!)

I was lifting 70 kg on my own today. I have lifted 80 kg at Club One Hundred with Darryl. I WILL lift more.

Why? Because I can, and because it helps me retain whatever vestiges of sanity I’ve got.

As for Gok, it may not be what he intended, but it’s working for me!!!


Success breeds success!

I’ve put on weight.

There, I’ve said it. I’ve now faced up to it and I knew it was time to take it on again. Not a problem, done it before, just need to sort myself out and do something about it.

So I talked to Darryl (my trainer) about it.

We both know I know how to lose weight.

Darryl has told me, several times, that if I stick to the Ancestral Solution I can lose up to 3 lbs a week.

“Yeah, right”

As I’ve told him, this may be true for a young person but not for me. It gets much harder as you get older. Weight loss slows down. My weight loss plateaus all the time. I lose weight, but slowly.

But I decided I’d give sticking to the plan religiously a go. I’ve been eating ancestrally for well over a year but ive been eating more and more other stuff too!

Week One
Stuck to the plan about 80% of the time. Result? I lost 3 lbs 🙂

Week Two
Stuck to the plan about 95%. Result? I lost another 3 lbs! 🙂 🙂

Week Three
Stuck to the plan about 95%. Result? Lost yet another 3 lbs! 🙂 🙂 🙂

I have NEVER lost weight like this before!

And how does ‘Success breed success’?

Every time I’m tempted to eat something that’s not ancestral I think of how well it’s working ….. and I don’t want it!

So it’s not a question of self control or will power, I don’t want it.

There are sweets in the house that I’d normally shove down my throat as fast as possible, but I don’t want them!

Can’t believe it, but I like it!

There is a downside however. Darryl is right ………….. again.

The Ancestral Solution combined with the right supplements and exercise program works!

I want to be right. I like being right. But then, if I was right, I’d be 9 lbs heavier!

If you want to know more about it visit their website:


There’s a free book you can download!

And have a look at their blog:


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