Year 3 week 1

1st – 7th January 2018

My eating in December was so bad that now we have hit January it’s all systems go.

There is a saying that I hear every new year and that is ‘New Year, New You’ and I always go by it. I make new years resolutions to try to improve certain situations and I have to say that this year is no different.

The year always starts well and as the months roll by those resolutions have gradually slipped. That’s definitely how last year went anyway!

For now though I am going for it. I have decided to give myself a challenge every month.

I have decided that my challenge this month is swimming. I have been using a pool that is 15 meters in length and the challenge is to swim 2018 lengths this month.

I set it on the 1st and thought for me to achieve this goal I will need to swim 100 lengths a day with 2 days off a week.

My challenge has started well and the first few days it was good. But once I got to days 3 and 4 it was taking its toll. Towards the end of the week it was getting easier.

I am not really finding this challenge easy. When I set it I thought it would be a challenge but not a huge push. I am finding it quite a chore though.

I have however managed to make the effort every day this week and I have already knocked 600 lengths off that target.

My eating has improved this month but it’s not perfect with all this extra swimming. I’m finding I am getting extra hungry which isn’t always good when you are trying to cut down.

Maybe I can do better next week.


Year 2 week 51

17th – 23rd December 2017

Here I am with Christmas only days away and I am trying to relax and enjoy all the festivities.

Usually on the run up to Christmas I am running around like a headless chicken buying last minute presents, doing last minute preparations and getting very stressed. This year though, from way back in November, I decided that I couldn’t really be bothered.

We usually have a few parties at our house that we haven’t done this year. Partly because I couldn’t be bothered and partly because we have had work going on in our house for about a year and we are still in a mess.

I have been saying that I feel like I am a bit of a Scrooge this year. However, if I think about it, my can’t be bothered attitude has meant I had my Christmas shopping finished in November, it’s meant that when putting up the decorations they are so much better than previous years and I even made my own front door wreath.

It has meant I have been able to do more baking with the kids like making gingerbread men and other Christmas related treats. Christmas dinner for me is the best and there are only ever 2 people who can cook it – one is me and the other is my Mum! Eating out on Christmas Day is never an option. But this year we have decided to eat out. So now I find I am not half as stressed as I usually am and a lot more organised.

All I have to do now is wait for the big day and see the excitement on my kids faces as they come down in the morning with all the presents around the tree and their stockings filled with presents.

For me this year, even though it’s all enjoyable, I can’t seem to wait for it all to be over. All I can see happening over the next 2 weeks is all the big meals I’ll be eating, all those boxes of chocolates that always comes out every year and me not sure I have the willpower to resist.

I feel I am waiting for the 1st January when I can get back to normal and get more motivated but for now I am just going to enjoy Christmas.


Year 2 week 50

10th – 16th December 2017

Throughout the month of November I did really well with my eating. I did a month long detox. I thought it was time to take back control of my food intake. I feel I did really well.

My plan was to continue the detox throughout December as well. I have to say that hasn’t gone quite as well.

I am a person who loves Christmas and the fact I have kids I like to make it fun for them too. I now only have one child who believes in Santa and all the magic of Christmas. I am trying to preserve that for as long as I can even though I don’t think I will have that for many years more.

I also love the celebrations that Christmas brings. There are usually lots of parties and events to go to.

I love the fact that Christmas is a time to let your hair down and have some fun. It is a good time to catch up with people that you haven’t seen in a long time.

It’s also a time where all the naughty food comes out the cupboard and you can’t seem to resist eating it even though you are not hungry.

I have definitely fallen in that trap this year. It’s like I have never seen food before and have to sample everything on offer.

My detox in November was great but it’s had totally the opposite effect on me in the month of December.

I have decided I am going to enjoy my Christmas within reason. I am going to take a little bit of control over what I eat, but I am not going to beat myself up over having something I shouldn’t but all I do know is that I am back on it in January.

Year 2 week 15

9th – 15th April 2017

Training for the half marathon in Rwanda is well under way. I am managing to get out at least 3 times a week and averaging at least 12 miles a week running. 

It has caused a problem. With all the extra running means I am ending up extra hungry which means I am eating extra food. 

One of the rules I am finding hard to keep is only eating my meals and not eating for 5 hours between my meals. 

Last year I spent half of the year hungry and I seemed to cope with it ok. Now the hunger seems to get to me a bit more. I don’t know if it’s because I have lost my motivation or because the extra exercise is making me hungry. 

The good thing is that I have noticed it and I can now start reeling it back in.

I am finding the training pretty tough. I am not a runner and I have not, in recent years, ran 12 metres a week let alone 12 miles. I have still got a long way to go and a lot more miles to put in before I go to Rwanda in less than a months time. 

I have never trained for anything in my life before. I am starting to wonder if I can do it at all. I think it is going to be the hardest thing I have ever done. The more I train the tireder I am getting and the more I am doubting my ability. 

One thing that keeps me going is knowing I am going to be helping children out of poverty – it makes every step worth the effort.

Year 2 week 6

4th – 11th February 2017

I find in life that you can live a lot of contradictions. For instance I find myself a lot having to shout at the kids to be quiet. 

I have to shout sometimes though just to be heard. 

I have also found that much of what I have learnt about nutrition is a contradiction to what is normally taught.  Like having butter and oil instead of low fat alternatives. 

Apparently fat burns fat, so by using the proper butter and oil in its natural state is so much better for you than low fat products because of all the preservatives used in them. 

Since my operation I find I am living another contradiction. I spent all of last year losing weight, doing lots of exercise and generally getting physically stronger in myself. The operation was to get rid of the excess skin that was left behind. 

However I find that since the operation I have needed to rest. I have not been on any walks, I have not been for a run, I have done no exercise at all. I am finding that against my will I am getting lazy because I can’t really do much. I can’t even pick up anything heavier than a cup of tea. 

I am finding it fairly frustrating. Going from being very active to not active at all is taking its toll. 

I have not changed my eating habits but I feel like I am putting on weight. I can’t tell at the minute because the swelling I have got since the operation doesn’t give me a true reading of my weight. It is just my own opinion. 

I did talk to Jenny about it and she has told me not to worry. She also reminded me of when I first went on the detox and that I couldn’t exercise for a few months and I still lost weight. She said it’s like that for me again now. 

It doesn’t stop me worrying that I am putting on weight even though I am trying my hardest to lose it. 

Living a contradiction isn’t always the easiest thing to do but I have no choice and it will have to end at some point. 

Day 352

Saturday 17th December 2016

Over the last 3 days I have been out for a Christmas meal 3 times. I always knew that the Christmas period was going to be a struggle and I am being proved right. 

I have always loved going out celebrating with friends and family but when you are trying to watch what you eat it can be difficult. 

Two of the meals have been a set menu, which means I don’t get too much of a choice of what I can eat. 

I have tried to compensate a little by being extra good on my other meals of the day which has meant that when the time has come for my Christmas meal I am really hungry. 

It has also meant that over the last few days I have eaten things that are not on the list of foods I can eat. It’s mainly potatoes. 

I know it doesn’t sound like much but when I am failing for no fault of my own, it can be very annoying. 

All year I have been good, I have managed to lose weight on the holidays I have been on. I have managed to stay focused when the weight has not gone down at all. But if I survive Christmas without putting on weight it will be a miracle.

The last stone I have lost, every pound has been a real struggle and to think I might be putting some of it back on is not really sitting well with me. 

I am eating about a quarter of the amount of food that I ate last Christmas and I am still trying to be careful when I can. Maybe the fact I have noticed this will help me stay focused on my goal but it is really hard at the moment. 

Start weight 21st 5lbs

16st lbs. ⬅️➡️. 75lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

101.6kg. ⬅️➡️. . 34.8kg⬇️total

Day 335

Wednesday 30th November 2016

At the beginning of the year I wasn’t very determined at all to lose weight.  I thought I would give it a go though

After a few weeks my determination levels began to rise when the weight started to fall. 

It wasn’t long before my determination levels hit maximum. I have maintained that level for a long time. I feel I have been very determined and motivated to succeed even when things got tough. 

But lately I feel that those levels are dropping. 

Tomorrow I start my 12th month which I think is some going, but I have a feeling that this 12th month is going to be one of the hardest. 

With Christmas nearly here and all the food that will be around at parties and evenings out along with all the extra food that always comes out this time of year, I feel all this is really going to test my determination. 

There is one thing going for me and that is that this year I have got myself into some really good habits. I can’t seem to stand the smell of anything sweet anymore, I don’t really like the smell of anything milky either. I just hope that will mean I can resist and not succumb to temptation.

My desperation to lose weight has also reduced as the weight has dropped which has caused my determination levels to lower.

With the fact I am writing all this today means I am conscious of it which hopefully means that I won’t let that determination lower anymore but maybe send that needle back in the other direction. 

Day 321

Wednesday 16th November 2016

One thing I have noticed this year is that my weekly food bill has gone up. 

Walking around the supermarket this morning I spent a lot more time down the fruit and veg aisle and I didn’t even go down the sweet and chocolate aisle. That would have been the other way around a year ago!

One thing that really annoys me in the supermarket is that the unhealthy foods are so much cheaper than the healthy foods. 

There are also so many more deals on the unhealthy foods. I have never seen a 3 for 2 on vegetables and fruit but there are always some on chocolate and sweets. 

We are always hearing on the news and from doctors how obesity has gone up and we need to do something about it. But these deals in the supermarkets don’t give you any incentive to try healthier foods. 

With healthier foods being expensive and people watching their spending, that extra cost to get healthy can be a real problem. 

This year, though, I have realised the importance of eating healthy and I understand a bit more of what unhealthy foods are doing to your body. So for me I am willing to pay a little more for food. But it would be nice to see a few deals on the healthy foods!

Day 256

Monday 12th September 2016

Sometimes I get a bit amazed that I am still sticking to my healthy eating plan. 

When I first saw Jenny I started on the metabolic balance programme which is healthy eating especially designed for me. People who do it all get different foods that they can choose from. For instance, I couldn’t eat beef to start with. Beef contains acid and I had to lower the acid levels so I didn’t eat beef for a while. But others might have beef on their list.  I can eat it now though. 

My food diary is a lot more relaxed than when I first started. There are a few phases I have been through

Phase 1 – a two day detox, which was horrible!

Phase 2 – Two weeks of protein and vegetables with no oil or butter which was a little better but not much. I had the shakes a lot and went through food withdrawals and I didn’t have much energy either. 

Phase 3 – The same as phase 2 but I could add oil and butter. This stage was great as I could add a lot more flavour to my food. It took a while though for the shakes to go and to get my energy back but it did return. 

I am now on relaxed phase 3 – it’s the same but a few more foods have been added like beef, oats and a few more vegetables. 

At the beginning Jenny told me that you can live on relaxed phase 3.  I didn’t believe her. At the time I didn’t even think I would get past phase 1!

But I did and I am still going. I feel like the Duracell bunny – I could go on and on and on. 

Eventhough I could keep going it doesn’t stop me on occasions from getting really bored. My food diary now is so much more limiting from what I was eating last year. The only difference is that I was piling on the weight last year and this year it’s doing the opposite. 

So the times I get bored I remember how far I have come and not wanting to go back. 

Ok so my food is a little more limiting but I am also preferring all the flavours now and I don’t think I could ever go back even if I wanted to.

Start weight 21st 5lbs

16st 7lbs.        0.4lbs⬇️.    68lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

104.8kg.     0.2kg⬇️.      31.7kg⬇️total

Day 243

Tuesday 30th August  2016

I find shopping for food I can eat is becoming a lot easier. Most of the food I buy is fresh so that is easy.  I know what meat and vegetables to pick now organic is better. 

I have now changed the way I make certain things. I am getting I nice collection of healthy recipes now. 

But when it comes to reading packets it has taken me a little longer to grasp. I have to keep asking Jenny what to look for. 

This is what she says-

When looking at food labels for carbohydrate levels you want to look at the 100g as that gives you an equal comparison to other foods

On this example ideally the carbohydrate level needs to be under 60g per 100g for a reasonable level of energy from carbohydrate based food, which I would call a starchy carb

Look at the sugar levels underneath, aiming for no more than 20%, so this example is 3.8g of 45g, so that’s good at about 10%.

Then with the fibre -this level helps to reduce the impacts of the sugar, so the higher the better!  This level is quite low at 2.8g compared to 45g of carbohydrates.  As a comparison spinach has 3.6g of carbohydrate per 100g, of which 2.6g of that is fibre – superfood!! 

Finally the protein levels – so if over 3g this has a reasonable level of protein so would use this protein element as the main element of the meal. As an example eggs are 10grams of protein per 100g and fish is 22g. Ideally you need 1g of protein per kg of your muscle mass, 

So Debbie has approx 50kg of muscle mass, the 3 meals per day will equal a total of 50grams of protein per day, which is approx 16-18grams of protein per meal. 

In summary you’re ideally looking for mid carb, less than 60g per 100g, with low sugars and high fibre, >5g is good. 

Or high fat, over 20g per 100g, low carb = low sugars & fibre. 

Or then high protein, over 10g per 100g, low carb sugar, fibre. 

The trick is to pick one main macronutrients, carb, fat or protein as the main element of each meal and accompany with greens salad/leafs (leafy carb) = low carb and high fibre foods.. 

This concept has helped me a lot, it has been one of the guides I follow when buying food. However, I do find myself still asking Jenny if it’s ok. 

Start weight 21st 5lbs

16st 8.2lbs.    0.2lbs⬆️.   66.8lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

105.3kg.    0.1kg⬆️.        31.3kg⬇️total