I have teamed up again with the talented Sandra (or Daffy as I like to call her), from Wild Daffodil to bring you another bit of silliness this Saturday. Sandra is incredibly artistic and creative, and I just love the images she has created out of shells, stones and flowers.
One of the nicest things about Sandra’s blog is that you never know what she is going to get up to next, from beach art to knitted wigs, and mandalas to making spirals in her garden.
Meet our old friends the Aliens. This time they are getting into yoga and rather enjoying the benefits. Click here to see more shell friends.
This yoga is really quite good
Sometimes it’s been misunderstood
When feeling depressed
Or when life gets you stressed
It can help to lighten your mood
It can make you look and feel great
Helps you focus and concentrate
The different types of positions
Help some medical conditions
There’s even one for the prostate!
Those earthlings have got it all sussed
This yoga lark is a must
You don’t have to be wealthy
To keep yourself healthy
With a body strong and robust.
As some of you may know, in my quest for a healthier lifestyle, I have decided to take matters in hand, and embark on losing weight and getting fit. I wrote about my experience last week when I went for the induction at the gym and how I didn’t even get to go on any of the equipment here.
Well, I got myself geared up and down the gym for 9 am bright and early and raring to go. I had the bag packed with most of the stuff I needed from last week still, and just added the extras that I thought I might need.
I saw the same lovely lady as I saw last week. She and I seemed to get on well and share the same warped sense of humour.
First things first, she showed me the changing rooms which were quite large and roomy and decked out with plenty of lockers. She eyed my huge bag and pointed out the bigger lockers for my convenience. I was then to put my stuff away, and she would meet me in the gym.
Already dressed in my workout gear, it was just a case of putting my stuff in the locker, and I was ready to get active! Well, I started sooner than expected trying to ram my bag into the locker. Despite it being a large locker, the bag kindly donated by Mr Grump was one of those that you can use to carry luggage in. It has wheels on the bottom and pull out handle so it can be trundled if heavy. There was no way I was going to wheel my bag into the gym, as I would like a right plum.
Anyway, as the bottom of the bag was so rigid, I spend a fair few minutes trying to shove it into the locker and slam the door. It was not working, and I was getting hot and bothered already! Finally, I put it on its side and shut the bloody thing away.
The exercise bike was our first stop, and I hopped up eagerly, keen to get started. Well after two minutes I could barely talk and thought my heart was going to explode right there and then. My instructor turned the resistance down (right down), and told me to ease up a bit as I was working too hard! (I think that was her polite way of saying that I was unfit)!
After the longest ten minutes, I then wobbled over to the treadmill for a bit more punishment. Now, I do not have the best record with treadmills having fallen off one many years ago which you can read about here, but I put all of that behind me and started walking.
Luckily, I redeemed myself a bit here as she turned up the speed several times as well as the gradients as I was ‘too comfortable! ‘ Not so on the barbaric rowing machine though. To my utter shame and humiliation, I could only manage five minutes on it.
The rest of the workout involved the toning up and strengthening equipment which wasn’t too bad. Then that was it; my hour was up. My face was tomato coloured, my skin slick with sweat and I scuttled off quickly to the changing rooms after thanking my torturer for the workout!
After wrestling with the locker several times, putting stuff in, taking stuff out, trying to close the locker, then forgetting something else, I was getting very wound up. When I realised that I had left my lovely blue water bottle out, I decided that I would leave it by the locker while I had a shower.
Now, this was something I was looking forward to. We don’t have a shower at home, just a bath which is lovely, but is not as quick or convenient, especially for washing hair! As you can imagine, my hair was rather sweaty.
I was bitterly disappointed, The shower was one of those that go off every twenty seconds or so, There was no temperature control, and it was rather hot (now I love a hot bath, but this was nigh on scalding)! Added to that there was a powerful stream in the middle which I thought might cave my head in such was the pressure (not that I could stay under it for long anyway, and on the outside, a few wisps and fine spray was the best I was going to get. It took a while.
I get myself changed and luckily am the only one in the changes rooms, and brush my wet hair, glad of the coolness and wetness of it as I was still boiling. I thought I had better dry it though as it was cold out. Another lady walked in just as I picked up the hair dryer which didn’t work. I nonchalantly picked up my bag of stuff and headed off for the reception to pay for my new membership.
The reception was quiet, and I asked if anyone had handed in my water bottle as I realised I didn’t have it before I left. They hadn’t. Just as I was paying, and halfway through the transaction, the whole computer system went down, and the receptionist had to call someone out to help her.
By now, of course, several other people had arrived, all skinny. A lot of eye-rolling was going on as they looked at each other than at me, and I wanted to get out of there. After a while, I was handed my receipt as apparently that part had gone through but as she would have to re-enter the whole lot again for her records or something, she hurriedly gave me my membership card and told me I would have to get it activated next time I came.
When I got home, I yanked everything out of the bag, deciding that next time I will forget the shower and bag and wait till I got home. After I had sorted everything out, I realised that I had also lost my new hairbrush I had taken with me God knows where that went!
To top it off, in the evening I looked through all the classes that were available and decided I would love to have a go at the Power Hooping, as I have previously dallied with a hula hoop. I went on the website to book up, but of course, I was unable to and had to phone up.
The classes were this Saturday morning at the stadium which is very close to where I love so I thought that would be perfect. Well, of course, it wasn’t as the membership I have does not cover me for both the sites even though they come under the umbrella of the Leisure Trust for my town.
At least the lady I spoke to was lovely and gave me a PIN number for my membership card which I had been told nothing about (Because I had a GP referral, I was not sure how it worked but thought I had paid membership for all classes)! I phoned up the original sports centre where I joined, and it seems the phones are all down as I could not get to speak to anyone no matter how many times I tried calling.
I am trying to be positive although I do not think I am cut out for the gym. I will stick with it though as I do hope that with this and the healthier food choices, I will lose some weight rather than some of my possessions!
As some of you may remember, last September, I embarked on a low carbohydrate diet as recommended by GP in order to lose weight, I had steadily got bigger and bigger, and I knew that I needed to do something about it. The fact that I have Type 2 diabetes as well means that I have to be extra careful about what I eat to maintain healthy blood glucose levels.
I was going back monthly at first to monitor how I was doing, and to start with, I lost 5kg (about 12lb), and that gave me a great incentive to carry on. For over six months I had no crisps, no bread, pasta, rice, pastry or potatoes, and of course no cake either! Even at Christmas, I didn’t overindulge, in fact, I hardly indulged at all. This healthy eating lark was not proving to be much fun, but I was on a mission.
I didn’t lose any more weight, in fact, I put a little back on. To say I was disheartened was an understatement. In April I started University and still managed to keep to the no-carb lunches (mainly because I just took in fruit).
At the end of July, I went on my first placement, and this is where everything changed. The place that I was at offered a complete meal at lunchtime for a reasonable price, which often included starchy carbs of some kind. I piously left them for the first couple of days, but running around working twelve-hour shifts left me starving hungry, and to be honest, downright crabby!
I justified eating the carbs for lunch. Then I ate sandwiches now and again; oh, how I had missed bread. Chocolate crept in next, velvety smooth, milky chocolate, followed closely by crisps. I crunched my way through a 1/4 of a tube of Pringles without even blinking; they were soooooo good! Then came my home-made steamed puddings, Yes, I can cook, and by then I had started my holiday from Uni and placement so had some time to do so.
Bad idea! I have worked a couple of shifts for my old job, and I noticed that my uniform was a little snugger than before. I also felt bloated and huge (not surprising with all that stodge) and decided that I had better get myself weighed again. I am 4kg (about 10lbs) heavier now than when I started off in the first place last year!
That serves me right I know, but I wallowed (right word seeing as I feel like a beached whale) around in a bit of self-pity yesterday, had a good cry then decided that I need to get a grip of myself
So, it’s back on the low carb wagon again. I am going to eat a little bit of the starchy carbs but no more that about 120g a day. At least I won’t feel like I am missing out and there is a bit of substance there to fill me up! Oh, and I am going to take up exercise this time too!
There, I’ve said it! I bloody hate exercise, well I do if it involves me wobbling about with a load of skinny people, feeling ashamed and humiliated at the size of me. I haven’t quite worked out my exercise plan yet, but I am going to commit to doing it this time, and not using the excuse that ‘I run around a lot at work!’
Thankfully we have some of lovely bloggers like Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor who have joined forces to bring us lots of healthy and nutritious recipes which you can find here. In fact, I have already bought the ingredients for Sally’s Brown Rice Pilaf that I have been meaning to try for some time. Esme from The Recipe Hunter, also features many delicious recipes.
I am starting again with renewed vigour and determination and hopefully will not be making the same mistakes as I did last year: I have learned that
- Nothing tastes as good as losing weight feels (yes I have nicked this quote and tweaked it to suit).
- It is not nice to have squeeze into tight trousers that didn’t used to be tight!
- My scales did work, it seems I just didn’t like what they said!
- Healthy eating works better with exercise for losing weight.
By the way, I have started a Healthy Eating Board on Pinterest where I am going to pin recipes, inspiration, and some motivational quotes. If you would like to contribute to this board then please just send me a message.
Oh, I’m sick of this dieting
In my quest to be all lithe and slim
Some food is so difficult to give up on
And, I am not really keen on the gym!
This spare tyre that I carry round my middle
Spills over the top of my jeans
I need to ditch the roasts and the curries
And eat more salads and greens!
I’m fed up with looking so chunky
And hate to see myself in the nude
I really must get some willpower
And take control of my food!
I know my lifestyle is unhealthy
That’s why I have diabetes type 2
I have given up smoking and drinking
And there is just this one thing to do
I have to become more assertive
If I am going to succeed
And stick to what’s healthy and nutritious
Instead of giving in to my greed!