Year 3 week 13

26th March – 1st April 2018

This week I have struggled to complete this months challenge. It has meant that on some days I have had to double the amount of exercise just to catch up and complete my challenge.

I am at the moment doing an hours exercise at least every weekday and sometimes I extend it to the weekend too. I have never exercised so much in my life. This week though I have done about 2 hours almost everyday just so I can complete my challenge before the end of the month.

All this is for training for another half marathon I’m doing in June. Sometimes I wonder why I put myself through all this pain. If it wasn’t for the kids I am raising money for I think I would have quit long ago.

I have also really cut down on my food intake too. Upping the exercise and lowering my food intake has been one of the hardest things I have done so far.

You would think that this would mean that I would lose weight. I did lose a few pounds last week but nothing this week. I feel I am doing all this effort for no reward.

These challenges are something that I have set myself to do. No one is pressuring me to succeed. I am however pressuring myself to succeed and as the weeks go by that pressure gets stronger.

I saw a quote this week that says “a diamond is just a piece of charcoal that can handle pressure extremely well”

It got me googling how a diamond is formed. They come from deep under the ground, they start as carbon (like coal and charcoal) and they are a mineral of carbon in a concentrated form. They form because of the amount of pressure sitting on top compacting it tight.

After that deep sourced lava comes up through the earth pushing them to the surface heating them to incredible temperatures in the process.

Once the ground cools they just need to be dug up and shaped to the diamonds we all see today.

I have a few diamonds that are very special to me, not just because they look nice but because of what they represent and who bought them for me.

I have never once realised what it took to get that diamond on my finger or around my neck.

This whole process of how a diamond is formed is what makes it so strong and the reason why they can’t be broken.

This little lesson on diamonds has made me think that the pressure I am putting on myself is a good thing. Upping the heat on my training is making me stronger, hopefully it is shaping me into a much better person.

So I think I will continue on my current course and hopefully it will make me stronger

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Year 3 week 12

19th – 25th March 2018

This month it has been a real struggle completing my challenges. 8 days away this month hasn’t really helped much. I feel it has meant I am behind on my goals

To run/walk 30 miles I am on schedule but with the swimming I am very behind and I have been trying to catch up ever since I got back from my travels. I also gave myself the added challenge to lose weight this month too. Up until now I have been failing miserably.

I have found that these challenges have been really good for me. I have risen to the challenge every month and I have not failed once. This month though I might be looking at just that – FAILURE!!! I feel the swimming I can catch up on but the losing weight, well that’s a different story

I still see Jenny my nutritionist and this week I told her that I was really struggling to lose anymore weight. I think it was nothing she didn’t already know. I also told her about this little voice I have got going round in my head telling me to eat the food I shouldn’t. I have been struggling with this little voice for a while and it wouldn’t go away until I had succumbed. I know this sounds really silly but I feel by the fact I shared it with Jenny it made that voice disappear.

She then went on to give me a new diet plan to follow which I was really happy about. I thought to myself great I will start tomorrow. Straight after I went to lunch and I thought if this diet is starting tomorrow I will eat today. I was sitting there in this cafe not even eating anything majorly bad but I was still eating something I shouldn’t and I found myself looking around and checking that Jenny wasn’t there to witness it.

I think the thought of Jenny witnessing what I was doing was far worse than the other voice I had just got rid of. So really you could say I have just replaced one voice for another.

The next day I started her diet. All I know from Jenny’s diets is that they are not easy – she likes to remove all carbs, bread, rice, pasta, potatoes and anything with sugar in. I thought with my motivation at the moment there was not a chance I would even get through the first day. I am now on day 4 and still going strong I even watched the kids eat pizza today at lunch while I had a homemade vegetable soup.

I think having Jenny’s voice going around in my head, having her as my conscience, on my shoulder is definitely a good thing and I am happy to say that the scales are going down too.

Year 3 week 10

5th – 11th March 2018

Up until now I have been doing really well with the challenges I have set for myself.

I don’t think they have been easy – they have been quite hard at times.

This month the exercise part of the challenge is going far better than I expected. This month is a really busy month for me so I wasn’t sure how I would find the time but I have managed to grab a bit most days from somewhere.

The eating part of the challenge is not going quite so well. I am not eating bad, but I have to say I am not eating good either it’s just ok and there’s definitely room for improvement.

I just can’t seem to get the motivation I need. It got me thinking “how on earth did I ever do it before?”

It has meant thinking back quite a long way and I remembered that I was desperate and it was that desperation that drove me on and gave me all the motivation I needed.

I still have the desire to lose weight but I don’t have that desperation anymore. I have achieved my main goals even though I haven’t got down to my ideal weight.

To me, having the energy to keep up with the kids and being able to do so much more than I ever could before has taken away my motivation, but I want it back!!!

Matt reminded me that when I started this diet I was very strict with myself – he said I was very military like. I wouldn’t step out of line once and I did exactly what I was told.

He said that he would sometimes say “go on you can eat that it won’t hurt”, however I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t even have a small bite.

I felt that Jenny my nutritionist was the expert and I was to do exactly what she said for my own benefit and it worked. It was like she was my Sergeant Major.

I really need to get back to that but I just can’t seem to do it. I need to get desperate again but since I have been seeing Jenny I have learnt a lot and I think that knowledge is hindering my motivation because I now know what to expect.

So I think I will get Jenny to get that Sergeant Major head on again and maybe do something new.

Year 3 week 3

15th – 21sth January 2018

I have been swimming now almost everyday for 3 weeks. It is going really well and I only have just over 400 lengths to go until it’s completed.

This challenge has taught me a few things. I have realised that I can commit myself to doing an hours exercise a day even though some days are really hard and some days I am really busy. I always thought that I could never cope with that much exercise.

One of the reasons I am doing it is because I am doing another half marathon in June and I thought swimming was a good way to strengthen my legs with low impact on my knees. I do feel it is working – I feel like I have more energy and more strength in my legs.

I also feel so much thinner. My clothes are looking so much better on me than at Christmas. Since doing this challenge however I haven’t lost any weight at all!

I have been seeing Jenny, my nutritionist, for 2 years now. I have always done what’s she has told me to. Somethings she has asked me to do have been extremely hard but I do them because she has never lead me wrong once.

One thing she has told me from day one is that you can’t exercise out a bad diet.

It is very easy to do exercises and then think you deserve a treat afterwards and go and eat cake or something just as bad.

Since Christmas I have really struggled to get my diet back on track. All that swimming has made me extra hungry too. I haven’t been horrendously bad but I haven’t exactly been good either.

At first doing all that exercise and not losing any weight was frustrating but what it does do is prove that Jenny has got it right again and I need to physically sort out my diet.

That is always easier said than done.

Year 2 week 52

24th- 31st December 2017

I can’t believe that this is my last post this year. This year has seemed to have gone so quickly and the last 2 years since I started this journey has just flown by.

The Christmas period has been quite hard for me – there has been so much food around that hasn’t helped but it has been a great time for me to relax and meet up with a lot of family and friends.

One thing I did that I have never done before is make a gingerbread house. I have always wanted to do it and I thought because I am a creative person I thought I might be quite good at it .

I had a picture in my head of how I wanted my gingerbread house to look.

However, in reality my gingerbread house looked so much different to that. I bought a pack and I thought I would start there. I naively thought that the gingerbread was in there and I just had to make into the house, but no. I physically had to make the mixture and bake it too.

Once it had cooled then came the part of making it look like a house. It was a lot harder than I thought. I ended up with it falling down a few times, the icing ran all over the place. By the time we had finished I think it looked more like a rickety old shack rather than a grand house that I imagined.

I would have shown a photo but it was far too embarrassing to even take a picture of. My boys thought that the only thing it was good for was destroying which they took great pleasure in doing!

This scenario totally sums up my year. When I started the year I had very high expectations I was going to lose so much more weight and reach my goal by now but in reality the total opposite has happened. I haven’t lost any weight at all in fact it has gone up a little.

Last year I lost 5 and a half stone – this year I have lost nothing. It has also made me think what a waste – it made me think that I have totally wasted my year.

But if I think back on my year I have realised that I haven’t wasted it at all. Ok, so I haven’t lost any weight, but I have kept up with my healthy eating most of the time, I have managed to keep doing my exercise, I haven’t gone back into that state of feeling worthless, my confidence has grown, I can still do so much more than I ever could before.

I have been able to think of others rather than myself which has entailed me going on 2 mission trips – one to Serbia with some women and the other to Rwanda where I even managed to do something that I would never have ever dreamed.

Running that half marathon was such a huge achievement for me. I can’t believe I actually did it – it’s my greatest achievement to date. So that’s why I don’t think I wasted my year.

As I now step into 2018 and start my 3rd year of this journey I have that image of my perfect gingerbread house again but to get it that way will take a lot of hard work, determination, and overcoming things that I can’t foresee.

A bible verse was given at church today. It’s in Philippians 3 verse 13-14:

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me to.”

That’s what I am going to go by this year.

Happy new year. Have a great 2018

Year 2 week 45

5th- 11th October 2017

Every time I try to lose weight I always do really well at first. The first few stone has always been very easy – it’s probably because I always start a diet with about 7 stone or more to lose!

After the first few stone has come off the next few are slightly more hard work but they do come off gradually. 

Usually after 5 stone has come off I stop. The weight from then on in just doesn’t want to budge. It’s like I have hit a brick wall with absolutely no way of getting around it. 

I have hit that brick wall many times before. I have tried everything to get through but that wall always seems to stay intact. The longest I have ever been there is 6 months and then I give up and ended up turning around and going back again usually putting on more weight than I ever have before. 

This time though is different I have been standing at that wall now for over a year and however hard I try I still can’t break through. 

Since my half marathon and the holidays I have been on over the summer the weight has been gradually creeping back on again – not much but enough for me to notice. I have stayed healthy with my eating but I have had a slightly more relaxed attitude. I think my portion sizes have been getting bigger and some treats were creeping back in too. 

It has got me to a point where I am standing at that wall and wondering what now. 


I feel I can’t go down this journey and gradually put the weight back on again. I have come too far.  There is only one option and that is to try harder.  It means going to the beginning again. You may be thinking that I have done that before and you would be right. 

Last time though I was doing it out of desperation. I had to because I couldn’t continue down the road I was going on. I think my determination came from my desperation to change. 

This time though I have gone back to the beginning without that desperation to change. I feel I have achieved all my goals other than getting to my ideal weight. I have so much more energy, I can go into a regular shop and there would be lots of clothes that would fit, I am eating healthier and lots more. 

Without that desperation to change I wasn’t sure if I could do it. In someways I prefer to start with the desperation because it drives you. Starting again now has been so much harder. 

I am now 10 days in my current detox and I am actually surprised with how well I have done. I have managed to lose 8 pounds in that time. I have felt a little hungry but not as much as I thought. I just hope the weight continues to fall. 

Year 2 week 44

29th October- 4th November 2017

One thing I have really struggled this year with has been motivation.

I think it’s because I achieved one of my main goals this year. One of my goals was to have enough energy to keep up with my kids. My kids are typical kids and have heaps of energy. 

Before I started this journey I couldn’t even walk up the stairs without being out of breath. 16 months later I did a half marathon! 

For me doing that half marathon in Rwanda was so amazing. It was something that I never thought I could ever do. I was so overwhelmed at the time that I did it. That to me that was my ultimate goal. I felt that there was nothing I could do any better than that. I felt that I had climbed the highest mountain and actually reached the top. 

Since then it has been hard staying motivated. The trouble with reaching your goal is that there is nothing left to aim for. Once you reach that point and you get to the top of your mountain there is only one place left to go and that’s DOWN. 

Sometimes to go down can be fun. It means that there are no restrictions on your life. It’s like I can do anything and get away with it. However you do end up with a feeling of guilt that you have let things slip so bad. 

The getting away with it can only last so long. With falling there comes a point where you hit the ground. Hitting rock bottom can be very painful and usually at that point it’s very hard to see a way out of it. 

I feel that since Rwanda that is what I have been doing – FALLING. In my mind though I didn’t want to fall I feel I protected myself from the impact – it’s like I put on my parachute so when I hit the ground it wasn’t so painful. 

This month I have set myself new goals.  I have hit the ground now but I have decided to turn around and start climbing that mountain again. 

I have decided that for the month of November I am going to concentrate on my eating again. I have already had a carb free 4 days and lost a few pounds too. I would like to continue my healthy eating throughout this month and hopefully it will give me the boost I need to continue after. 

I have also signed up for another half marathon – this time in Kenya. It’s in June of next year. I will be raising money again for the charity Compassion UK.

I think for me the fact I am doing it again isn’t quite as significant as before. What it does do though is help me to keep active, gives me something to focus on and I get to help some needy children in Africa in the process. 

I came back from doing my last half marathon thinking I would never do one again. My fitness levels have depleted so much that I feel I have signed up without the ability to succeed. Knowing this is coming hopefully will get me motivated to train.

After June next year, when I’ve completed my second half marathon, I’m hoping that I won’t fall like I did this year. Well that’s what I’m aiming for. 
 

 https://challenges.compassionuk.org/profile/500/debbie-wattis

Year 2 week 38

17th – 23rd September 2017

Things have improved greatly – I have been able to sort out my eating and I have also managed to step up my exercise too. 

I have always thought I am quite an easy going person, I have been a person who gets on with everyone, I am not a person who would intentionally create an argument. Matt and I do argue but not really very often – it’s probably because I always let him believe he is right, when really we both know I am!

This week I had an appointment with a lady I never met before. I was recommended to go to her because she can analyse you and tell you about your health and the type of things you should be eating. 

After the brief examination she told me what she discovered. She asked me what I had for breakfast I said a green juice and some oats. She then went on to say that it sounds very healthy what I am eating but in fact it is not. She then says that I should be eating things like shepherds pie or curry for breakfast. I said I’m sorry but I’m not going to eat that for breakfast, it just seems wrong 

She said that there is someone in the family with a heart condition and I said no. Then she said TB – again I said no. She listed lots of ailments and after about 7 she got one where I agreed. 

She even told me that everything my nutritionist has told me is all wrong and I would never lose weight that way even though I had lost 5 and half stone with her. 

She carried on with her diagnosis and started to talk 3 times faster than a normal person, she was adding lots of jargon that I didn’t understand – you needed a PHD in biology to understand it. If she spoke French I think I would have understood her better! Because she spoke so fast I couldn’t get her to stop. 

After about 5 minutes and her telling me of all the things I couldn’t eat I burst into tears – I just couldn’t take it anymore. All I was hearing was I was doing it all wrong and my brain had information overload. 


You would think that because I was a little emotional she would have a little sympathy but no. I just asked her to slow it down and get rid of all the jargon. Her reply was “I am used to talking to intelligent adults and shouldn’t have to put it into baby talk!!!!”

I felt I stayed really calm even though I was emotional. She however couldn’t take it and was ready to kick me out. I don’t think she was used to people questioning her methods.

After an hour and a half of listening I said I’m sorry I don’t think I am going to do a lot of that advice because it seems to me that you have it backwards – eating your dinner at breakfast for one. 

When I left I thought about what just happened and realised I had paid for an hour and a half of constant abuse and some really bad advice.  If that was 2 years ago I would have taken everything she said to heart, not questioned a thing and been so much more emotional. 

This time when I left I just laughed and thought what a sad old lady. I talked to the person who recommended her and she said that she gave her the same advice, which to me proved it was rubbish. 

One thing positive I got out of it was that it made me realise that I know my own mind. All those questions of who I am were gone and I came out knowing myself better and being happy with the result!

Year 2 week 35

27th August – 2nd September 2017

This year seems to be going really quick and the summer is almost over. I have always loved the summer – a time to relax and wind down. 

This summer, eventhough I have relaxed and had time to unwind, I have found it really hard. I just haven’t been able to concentrate on my diet at all. I have managed to do a little exercise but nothing like I was doing before the summer started.

The kids have been off school now for over 8 weeks. It has been long enough for me to pick up some of my old bad habits. I am hoping it is also short enough to get back with my good habits quickly and easily. 

I have to admit that over the summer I have put on a little weight. It’s only half a stone but I have struggled to get it off since. 

Over the last few weeks I have been preparing to get the kids back to school. It is usually a busy and expensive time of year. There is usually lots of school uniform, shoes (4 pairs per child) and stationery to purchase. 

I am very happy to say that next week the kids go back to school, and I go back to normality.

Well I hope I can go back to normality. I have for a few weeks been craving a little bit of routine and normality. I am looking forward to getting back to my normal exercise regime too. 

I am hoping with the kids going back to school that I can get back motivated and I don’t sit and waste another 8 weeks of progress. 

Year 2 week 31

30th July – 5th August 2017

Now that I am back from my holiday and at home for a while, I thought I would take the opportunity to get myself back on track – back on track with organising healthy meals, organise my food intake, continue with my exercises and hopefully lose more weight. 

18 months ago, when I first met Jenny my nutritionist, she told me that at first the weight would come off very easy. Then I will get to a stage and it will stop. In that pause I was to maintain my weight and after a period of time has gone, to try again and see if I can lose anymore weight. 

That is exactly what has happened to me. In previous diets, that pause has been a frustration for me, it has been the part where I give up and turn back to my old habits. 

This time I am not as frustrated. It would have been nice to continuously lose weight but I haven’t. Instead of getting down about it I have just tried to continue and not really worry too much about what the scales say.

Now that I am back from my holiday I feel I can concentrate on it a bit more. I thought I would go back to basics and start from the beginning again. It meant I had to take a look at what I did all those months ago. 

Hindsight can be really good and useful but looking all the way back to the beginning, seeing what I went through, makes me wonder how I ever did it the first time. 


What I did back then was the hardest thing I have ever done. The pain and suffering I went through to change my eating habits was so immense that I don’t think I could do it again. 

My habits have changed so much and all that hunger, shakes, eating less, low energy levels, tears, eating food I didn’t like, cutting out food I did, pain and suffering were worth it. 

Looking back now, knowing how hard it was, makes it even harder for me to start again. So on this occasion hindsight isn’t good. 

However things are a little different and should possibly be easier as I am already eating less and I won’t have to eat food I don’t like anymore because I have grown to enjoy it. I will have to cut back on foods I have let creep back in and I will have to go hungry again. But it seems like nothing in comparison.

Because I’ve looked back it has made it difficult to start again, so I have decided to tweek things a little and do it slightly differently so I can’t see what’s coming.  Hopefully when I start seeing results again it will help me to continue