Year 2 week 25

18th – 24th June 2017

This week has been a very slow week,  It has been frustratingly slow. The reason it has been like that is because I couldn’t get out much and I couldn’t exercise at all. 

We are having work done in our house at the minute and everywhere you turn there is some kind of building equipment around the place. I can’t get things without moving something out of the way first. 

One day I needed to get my shoes out of the cupboard but blocking the way was 15 sheets of plaster board.  I needed my shoes so I tried to struggle and get them out, while doing so everything slipped and the next thing I knew I was lying on the floor with the plaster boards on top of me. 

I never really knew how heavy plaster board was. Apparently each one weighs 25 kilos that means I had 375 kilos of weight fall on me and I was lying there in my house with no one around to ask to help. 

 Eventually I managed to get myself out from under it. I don’t know how I didn’t break a bone.  However I did come out with many bruises, lots of swelling especially on my right leg and I think I ended up a lot worse than the plaster board. 

Because of that I have spent most of the week with my leg elevated which has meant that I couldn’t really do much except get very bored.

Boredom usually makes me eat. But despite this set back my eating has been pretty good considering.

Before I started this weight loss journey my energy levels were fairly nonexistent and I would limp and I would never plan to go out for the day – it would just be too tiring. 

One thing that has been on my bucket list for years was to go to Royal Ascot.  It’s a place I didn’t think I would ever go to because of the amount of time you are on your feet. This year was my chance. I was looking forward to dressing up, wearing a fancy hat and maybe even have a flutter. 

I did manage to go but I felt like I was back to the old me – limping everywhere and struggling to get around. Despite the pain I had a really nice day and I enjoyed it immensely. 

One thing it did was make me glad I am not like that anymore.  These struggles are temporary because I will soon heal.  It has also made me think how did I live like that before for so long! 

It has made me realise that I am so much happier now, even though I have bruised and swollen legs and temporarily walk with a limp.

Year 2 week 24

11th – 17th June 2017

The other day I was driving and Matt was in the passenger seat. We had just been shopping and Matt decided that he wanted to try on one of his new shirts. 

He found it quite a struggle putting it on in the car. Once he had got it on he thought that there was something wrong. He realised he was now totally entangled in the seat belt and he was trapped and couldn’t move. 

My first thought, was not to help him or pull over – it was to laugh hysterically.  The only trouble with this was that I laughed so hard that tears were filling my eyes and I couldn’t see. Which was not a good situation when driving. 

I eventually managed to control myself  fortunately without having an accident. Matt eventually managed to untangle himself without any help from me. 

I told him that I had actually done that before and I soon realised that changing while in the car is something you must never do.  It got me thinking about other things that you shouldn’t try and do as you will see below. 

This week has been quite a busy week for me. This week I have had 4 parties to go to.  I have always been a person who loves a good party, but 4 in one week can take its toll. 

3 of the parties have been black tie events 

It’s nice to dress up on occasions and have a good night out and I have to say I enjoyed them all. At this type of event you get to meet people you haven’t seen in a long time, it’s a good time to catch up, wear out your feet on the dance floor and eat good food. 

Last week I also decided to start a detox. Detoxing, I have learnt, is a really good thing to do. So this week I have also learnt that you shouldn’t do it with so many events coming up. 

The trouble with a black tie do is that it’s a set menu and you don’t get to choose what you can eat. The fact that I was detoxing meant that I was extra hungry by the time the food came. This meant that the detox went out the window.

I was also staying in a lot of nice hotels, which also meant a lot of nice food. It was like I was really trying to punish myself. The thing that crossed my mind was who in the world would ever start a detox with so many events coming up. 

I thought I would not be able to get back on the detox after. However I did and I actually lost a few pounds this week too.  But I wouldn’t recommend it – neither would I recommend changing shirts in a car with your seat belt on!

Year 2 week 23

4th – 10th June

This week has been a much better week, I seem to have abolished my fears of last week and I have got my act together and done something about it. 

I had focused so much on my fear of going backwards that it didn’t give me much room to do something about it. 

This week I have been really focused on my food. I have tried to get it back under control. For me to get it under control has meant cutting out the carbs, eating healthy and going hungry. 

It has been a good reminder of what it was like for me a year ago. I have absolutely no idea how I did it for so long because this is really hard. Last year I got the shakes went through sugar withdrawals and I felt really hungry for a long time. Now all I am getting is the hunger but it’s a struggle.

I have tried to do some exercise too. I didn’t want to go so mad because of my energy levels and the lack of food. So I thought gentle exercise would be ok at this time. 

I have had a few appointments this week. So for my exercise I decided to walk to my appointments rather than take the car. 

Leaving the car is something I have never done. I take my car everywhere. Walking on my own is also something I have never done. For me to exercise I have always needed the motivation of someone being there with me. 

To be self motivated is a big step up for me. For me to feel that I can go out by myself and not rely on other people is great. I just hope I can continue it because it means I can go out for a run, walk at my own convenience rather than waiting for people to be available. I do find going with others is more fun but now I have the option. 

To you this may sound silly, people exercise on their own all the time. To me though it’s not. I have always wanted to be self motivated to do it alone but there was always something holding me back. It was usually the sofa, the TV or even my bed – they always seemed so much more appealing. 

When you have to meet someone it’s easier because I would never want to let them down so I would always turn up whether I wanted to or not. 

So I’m going to try and do things on my own a bit more now. 

Year 2 week 22

28th May- 3rd June 2017

I always knew that my trip to Rwanda was the end of one thing and the beginning of something else. I just didn’t really know what. 

However I don’t know why I had that feeling because, as far my weight loss goes, I still have a very long way to go until I get to my goal. 

If I think about it I haven’t really started anything new and as far as the diet is going I feel like I have taken about 100 steps backwards. 

I have never been a fearful person.  I’m not afraid to fly, I am not afraid to go on roller coasters or things like that. If I am afraid of anything it would probably be the fear of failing, the fear of getting it wrong, the fear of looking stupid, a fear of going backwards. So in past I wouldn’t do much because of that. 

Before I went to Rwanda one thing that almost stopped me from signing up was the fear of failing. I have to say that fear continued up until the day I left. I was so worried that I wasn’t going to cross that finish line, that I hadn’t trained enough, that I totally underestimated my ability. 

While in Rwanda on the day before the run I was sitting on a bus and I put my headphones on. I was happy listening away when a song came on that really affected me. I was sitting there with tears running down my checks. It was a song that I had heard many times before but it never affected me like that before. 

The line that affected me the most went,”I’m no longer a slave to fear, but I am a child of God”. Knowing what I was about to do I found that this song really helped. 

By subconsciously taking off those shackles I had a sense of freedom and excitement while doing my half marathon. I felt like a weight had been lifted. 

But since coming home I have come to realise that I have put those shackles back on again.  This time though it’s a fear of going backwards. I don’t know what it is about fear, but I find that sometimes by fearing it I am helping it to happen. And I feel that is exactly what is happening with me. 

Since feeling this way I have heard that song a few times and it has had the same emotional effect on me. 

Over the last few days I have been to a women’s conference with 8,000 people there. On the last day they played that song. I couldn’t believe it. I had already drawn my picture too. It was so much more than a coincidence – it was like God was trying to tell me something. It was like that song was played just for me.

After the preacher talked about the fact that sometimes we need to begin again. It’s not always an easy thing to do. I thought at the time it doesn’t apply to me because it’s something I have already done 16 months ago. But then I got to thinking that I already knew since coming back from Rwanda that it was the start of something new. So why was I denying it? 

For me to begin again is to go back 16 months and start it all over again. That in itself can be really scary because this time I know exactly what I am getting into. All those days of being hungry, all those days of watching people eat nice food and me craving to eat it too. I need to get an awful lot of will power back again as well. 

So I have decided I am going to take off those shackles and embrace the journey I have ahead of me. After all I have done it before I CAN do it again and it can’t be as hard as last time!

Year 2 week 21

21st – 27th May 2017

Last week was such an amazing week, with lots of fun and laughter. My time in Rwanda was so busy and was spent meeting new people, going to new places and of course completing my challenge of running a half marathon. 

Since coming home it has been a bit of a come down from last week. It’s been a bit of an anticlimax. I thought I would enjoy the rest and catch up on some sleep. I thought I would enjoy getting back to normal. But I have to say, now, I find that going back to my old routine is totally boring. 

I never found it boring before I went. I think it’s because, now that I have accomplished my goal of running a half marathon, I find that I need a new focus – something to keep me going down the same path. I just need to keep moving forward one step at a time. 

While in Rwanda the food was mainly things like rice, pasta and potatoes – all things that I shouldn’t eat to much of. They even provided spaghetti bolognese for breakfast!!!

Since coming home I have been trying to cut down on the amount of carbs and eat more salads and fruit. I am finding this extremely difficult. I found it easier to do a half marathon than cut back on my food intake! If anyone offered me an apple or a biscuit at the moment I think I would choose the biscuit.

Since coming back from Rwanda I am even finding it hard to exercise. I went for a 5k run and I was so tired when I got back that it made me wonder how I ever did a half marathon at all.

So I think I need a new focus to aim for because staying on that right path is hard and challenging at the moment. All I know is that I can’t go back – I need to keep moving forward. I just have to!!!

Year 2 week 20

14th – 20th May 2017

This week has been amazing. My time in Rwanda has totally exceeded my expectations. 

The run up to my trip to Rwanda I was worried, apprehensive, and very unsure about going at all. It has turned out to be the best and most rewarding thing I have ever done. 

While in Rwanda we went and saw some of the things Compassion do. We went to some of the projects where Compassion help children, mothers and babies and families out of poverty. 

One day we visited a child’s home who is sponsored by Compassion. We saw first hand how Compassion helps each and every person and family who goes through their program. 

I also had the opportunity to meet my sponsored child. It was such a special moment and something totally worth doing. I think it will be something that we will both remember for a long time. 

I was so much more impacted by the whole experience than I thought I was going to be. At first I thought I was just going there to run a half marathon but it became so much more than just that.  

On the run up to going I would get nervous every time I would have to do a long run. The night before I would not sleep with worry knowing what I was to do the next day. 

In Rwanda I didn’t worry at all. The run was on the last day and I hardly thought about it all week. I was just enjoying each moment as it came along. 

The night before the big day I slept really well. I had such a peace about what I was about to do. I had spent the last few months thinking and worring about this and when it arrived I didn’t have one concern. 

In the morning I was eager to get going. Up until that point I had been counting up the miles. This was the first time I could start counting them down, knowing I wouldn’t have to do them again if I didn’t want to. 

The day was misty and overcast at first but warmed up through out the run. I had no injuries or problems on my way around. It was such a special moment. I ran with another lady from our team the whole way around. We had kids come and run with us. They would hold our hands as we went. It was such a lovely moment. 

The last few miles were the hardest. We were getting tired and starting to slow down. All we knew was that we needed to keep moving.  We did and then we heard it in the distance – we heard drums. Those drums were there to welcome us across the finish line.

To hear those drums was the best feeling ever. It showed us that the end was in sight and we had almost reached our goal. It helped us and motivated us to run faster. 

We ran across the finish line with the drummers playing in the background. It was the most amazing experience of my life. Straight afterwards we hugged each other and just cried. 

We had both been down such an amazing journey to get to that point and to find that we had actually done it was so overwhelming. 

I will never forget that experience of crossing that line. It has been the result of a lot of hard work and pain. But the more work you put in the greater the reward and my reward was great indeed.

One thing that made it extra special was that over the last few days of the trip Matt came out to join me. Knowing that he saw me cross the finish was wonderful!

I have learnt quite a lot from this experience. I learnt that I can and should go out of my comfort zone more often than I do. 

I have learnt that it is a good thing to go all out and aim for your goals however hard it may seem to achieve it.  It’s good to reach beyond ourselves, to stretch ourselves and push through. 

I have learnt that ordinary people can do extraordinary things. That’s all that we were on that trip – just ordinary people but all wanting to make a difference. And doing things for others rather than just thinking of yourself  brings its own rewards. 

And we did learn that the money that is donated to Compassion actually goes to help people out of poverty.  We can’t necessarily help everyone all the time so it might just have to be one child at a time – but with enough children being reached maybe we can all make a difference.

I have made so many great friends on this trip. I don’t think you can go through something like that without making friends.  

If you are interested in a challenge, in pushing yourself, in making a difference in your life and the lives of others, then I definitely recommend you think about doing a Muskathlon. You might even see me there!

Year 2 week 19

7th – 13th May 2017

So this week I have been very busy packing for my trip to Rwanda. 

The day I was to leave I had changed my mind and I decided I didn’t want to go. I am comfortable with my home, with Matt and my family around me. I was going to Rwanda alone, and it’s totally out of my comfort zone.

When I was a teenager I was very adventurous. I can remember catching a plane by myself at the age of 15 to go to Zimbabwe on mission for the summer. 

Over the years I seem to have lost that adventurous spirit. So that is why I found it so hard to go.

However this time I wasn’t alone – I was meeting 23 other people most of them I had never met. Speaking to them they felt exactly like me! 

So I stepped on that plane, and as it flew off into the sunset I actually started to feel excited, excited for the adventure I have ahead of me. 

We landed in Rwanda safely and I spent time getting to know my new friends. 

We went to the genocide museum. This is a place that really makes you think about what went on, and the pain and suffering that still continues today after 23 years. It has put my problems into perspective I can tell you!

While I am here I am happy to be helping people who were affected by that. It makes me glad that I can help them in my small way. 

If you feel you can help too click the link

Year 2 week 18

30th April – 6th May 2017

It’s less than a week now until I go to Rwanda and I face a pretty big physical challenge for me.

Training for a half marathon has been really hard. If I think about it now, I think I must have had a moment of madness. It seems a crazy thing to have done.  When I signed up it was something that was totally out of reach – at that time there would have been no way I could have ever done it.

I think one of the reasons I did sign up was because I wanted to continue on this journey I have been going down for the last 16 months. I was finding it hard to stay focused on my goals and I felt I needed a challenge to continue. My focus changed from myself to all the children I will be helping along the way. 

It has taken a lot of grit and determination to train for this event. I don’t think I could have done it though without a few people helping me along the way. 

Matt has been great – he has trained with me on some occasions. He has also been a great encourager. 

There are also a few ladies that I train with once a week. One of those ladies has gone out of her way to help me. One week we went and with no warning I said I wanted to go 8 miles. She was brilliant and totally up for the challenge. This week I told her I wanted to do 10 miles – she went out of her way planning what route to do. 

We did pick the hottest day, but we did it. We actually went 10 miles. Sometimes I think I dreamt it, but I didn’t – we really did it. After, when I got home, I was so happy that I was dancing around the house. I don’t know where I got the energy from. 

For the past 6 weeks I got myself a running coach because I felt I needed all the help I could get. He has been brilliant, he has shown me a few techniques that should make it easier for me when I am running. He has told me where to position my feet with every step, how to swing my arms, to look up, how to breathe and so much more. 

You would think that these things would come naturally that you would automatically know how to swing your arms and breathe. But no – apparently there is a wrong way. So the training with him has been vital and I think I have come on a long way since he joined ‘Team Debbie’!

I think when it comes to doing the half marathon I will have his voice going around in my head telling me to lift my head and control my breathing – much to Matts dismay I’m sure. 

Thank you everyone who has sponsored me too. It shows how much you are all with me in this. If you haven’t yet but want to, tap on the link

Year 2 week 16

16th – 22nd April 2017

This week has been a real struggle. I don’t know why, but I am struggling to get motivated to do anything. 

I always seem to find things harder when the kids are off school, I think it is because my routine changes. With the kids off school this Easter, I have forgotten appointments, struggled to eat healthy and I have found it hard to go out training for my half marathon. 

I have taken my training very seriously. I know if I don’t train there is no way I can do it. Even though I have struggled this week, I have still managed to go out running. 

One thing I have noticed lately is that I seem to have slowed up a lot, things that I found easy all of a sudden now seem hard, I also feel like when I am running I have a big heavy weight on my back slowing me down. 

I feel like I have led weights in my shoes too. I am managing to do the distances I want to achieve, but it seems to be taking so much more out of me than normal.

I am hoping that when the kids go back to school again next week I will start to find things a bit easier again. Until then I will have to continue struggling.