Year 3 week 2

8th – 14th January 2018

I am now on my 2nd week of my swimming challenge. At this point of the month I was meant to have done 1,000 lengths of a 15 metre pool.

My challenge has been going really well. I have planned 2 days off a week but I have found that I have only taken one day off a week so far. Which means I am ahead of schedule having done 1,200 lengths.

I am a person who would prefer to exercise in the mornings. I like to get it out of the way and then the rest of the day is my own. With this challenge I have found it difficult to go every morning because sometimes things crop up that I have to do instead.

For me exercising has always been a bit of a chore – it’s something I do because I have to and not because I want to! To exercise when it’s not the morning is even more of a chore – I have to be really pushed to go later in the day.

A few times during this challenge I have had to really push myself to get the lengths in and that, on occasions, means going later.

This one day I did my swim later in the day and after there is a seat I usually sit on and look out of the window while I catch my breath. Through the window there is a field and lots trees to look out on. I have found it a nice time of reflection. On this occasion though it was especially nice as I got to see the sun going down and the sky was full of lots of amazing colours .

I sat there in awe as I watched this amazing sunset coming through the trees. One thing that went through my mind was that it was my reward for all those lengths and all the hard work I had put in. It made me proud that I hadn’t wasted my day.

As I said, exercising at night is particularly hard for me. But if I hadn’t of done it, if I hadn’t put in that extra effort, I would have missed that reward.

I have learnt, especially on this journey, that when you put in the effort, when you go the extra mile the rewards can be so much greater and that sunset was my reminder.

I don’t think I can now look at a sunset in the same way again from now on.


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.

Year 2 week 36

3rd – 9th September 2017

I went to see a friend this week and while I was there we had a conversation about how she used to talk to her son almost every night. It was a talk to encourage him, to make him realise that he is worthy, to boost his self esteem and to show him he was loved. 

She then went on to say that it was like she was a cassette tape that would be played every night. Just then the son walked in and said that all those encouraging words when he was younger really helped him to be a more confident adult today. 

I am old enough to remember what it is like to play cassette tapes. When I was growing up all my music was on tape I had a Walkman that I played all my cassettes on. 

There was no DVDs or the ability to download your music onto a device. A cassette would play, it would get to the end and then you would have to rewind to play it again. The rewind I remember was really boring it would take a few minutes to go back to the beginning and half the time I would have rather have just changed the tape rather than wait.

I feel like I have played the tape and I now need to rewind to play it again. 

I have heard that when you repeatedly hear things eventually it sinks in and you end up believing it. It happens with the negative as well as the positive. 

I just feel I need to take the time to rewind that tape of encouragement and play it everyday. 

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 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 1

1st- 7th January 2017

New Year’s Eve was great.  I felt I ended the year on such a high with so much achieved and overcome in that year. 

When January 1st came around the feeling was so different. I was looking at my year ahead with dread that I had to do it all again. Knowing the struggles I had last year all I could see was greater struggles this year that I have to face and get over. 

Last year I didn’t know the struggles I was going to face but I tackled them head on as they came about. This year, though, I can see a little more about the struggles I have ahead of me and I have to say I am not looking forward to the challenges I need to face. 

On the 2nd I woke up with a different attitude again. All I knew was that I need to seize the day. Not worry about tomorrow, not regret what I should have done yesterday but just do it NOW.

I have tried to abide by that concept all week. I have started my walking up again. But I hadn’t managed to do any running yet this year. I am wanting to go running outside because all I had done up until now was run on the treadmill. 

Last time I managed to run 5 miles I am now aiming for 6 but I find that there is one thing that is stopping me from running the 6 miles and that is the 6 inches between my ears. 

Those 6 inches have a lot to answer for and very often it stops me from achieving my goals. 

I have always found it so much easier to talk myself out of doing something than putting in the hard work and actually going for it. 

However today Matt has seen my lack of motivation and said we are going out for a run around the block rather than a walk. I think it was just what I needed because I don’t think I would have done it for myself. 

I said ok without even an argument. I think it was because I knew he was right. But I do think that he totally over estimated my ability. 

We went out and at first I struggled a little not with the physical side but with my breathing. We came to the first hill and I have to admit that I walked most of it. 

I knew that running on the road would be a lot more challenging than running on the treadmill.  I was expecting it to be hard but I did however run more than I did walk which was surprising. 

The second half of the run seemed to be easier I even managed to tackle the steep hill. I almost collapsed when I got to the top though.  

The run was 5k I must have ran about 3.5 of it. So for my first time out I finished quite happy with myself. 

I still think that Matt over estimated my ability but I really under estimated it too. The fact that Matt believed I could do more and encouraged me all the way made it easier in some way and I think that’s why I did better than I thought I would do. It just goes to show how much easier it is to run on a treadmill when compared to outside on the road with hills!

One thing I have had this week is extra time. It was taking me about 2 – 3 hours a day just to draw a picture and do my blog. Now I am a bit freer I am wanting to use my extra time wisely. 

However I find I have been totally wasting it. I am though having a little time to practice with my Christmas present. I got a stylus which is a pen that allows me to draw on my iPad (hence the different style of drawing today). 

But I do want to work hard and do something more worthwhile with the extra time I have. 

Day 322

Thursday 17th November 2016

I find that I have got to the stage of being really happy and content with my achievements this year. 

I feel I have dealt with so many issues I have been living with for many years. I feel I have sorted out my bad eating habits and changed them to good ones, I have more confidence than I have ever had before and I have even stopped trying to hide behind things. 

Generally I would have always said that I was a happy person. But I think really I was good at showing my happy face while inside I wasn’t really happy with myself. 

Now I feel I am happy inside and out. However, I know this may sound stupid, but I am not happy that I am happy!

People have told me lately that I now look normal. Some people have said that I don’t need to lose any more weight. I know though that I still have at least another 3 stone to lose.

Feeling happy and content with myself is hindering my motivation.  Being told that I now look normal is not necessarily helping with the motivation either. The fact is that I am probably still classed by doctors as being obese. 

It just goes to show how your emotions and how you feel can impact on your weight goals. My emotions and feelings contributed to me putting weight on, a change of heart and thinking has helped me lose weight (along with big changes in habits), and potentially becoming too content and happy emotionally could stop me losing more weight.  

I am not asking for the issues to come back. I want to stay happy and content. I just feel I now have to look for my motivation from somewhere else instead. 

Maybe it’s time I set myself some more goals – something that is out of reach now but with a little hard work and determination I could do it.  

The question is what?

Start weight 21st 5lbs

16st lbs.      ⬅️➡️.   . 74.8lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

101.6kg.      ⬅️➡️.   . 34.8kg⬇️total

Day 175

Thursday 23rd June 2016

I think motivation can come from many different experiences.  

On January 1st (day 1) I was not very motivated at all.  I didn’t really believe that I would do very well. When the scales went down for the first time I all of a sudden became really motivated. 

I think motivation comes from how much you really want it and belief that you can do it.  So when I saw the scales go down for the first time I knew then that I really wanted it and I did believe that I could do it. 

The more the weight has been coming down the less self motivated I have become because my desire to lose weight has reduced. I think it’s because I am over half way to my goal. 

I find now that my motivation is coming from all the support I am getting. I know yesterday I said that when I get a compliment I found it hard to believe. However I do find that without the compliments I don’t think I could get as motivated. 

You are all my coxswain sitting at the front of the boat encouraging me to continue. 

So I just want to say thank you to all of you who are supporting me, encouraging me and believing in me. 


Start weight 21st 5lbs

16st 13lbs.        0.4lbs⬇️. 62 lbs⬇️total

Start weight 135.6 kg

107.5kg.          0.2kg⬇️.    29.3kg⬇️total

Day 119

Thursday 28th April 2016

12 weeks ago when I first met Jenny the nutritionist. She sent me to get a blood test. It was to test my metabolic balance to see what was going on with my health, and why I couldn’t lose weight. 

The results were very enlightening and helpful. Since then I have been trying to get my metabolic rate back in balance, by controlling what I eat. 

It has been really hard work but I have done everything she has asked me to do. I have overcome so much in that time – eating food I don’t like, going cold turkey with sugar (which was the worst), not eating for 5 hours between my meals just to name a few.

Today I had another blood test. The last time I was dreading the results but hoped they would bring answers. This time however I am looking forward to them because the results must have improved.

I woke up this morning with a different attitude. It is the end of the 12 week course with Jenny. However it’s the beginning of another 12 weeks. 

I am very excited about what it has in store for me, which amazingly has renewed my motivation.

17st 11.3lbs.     ⬅️➡️.          49.7lbs⬇️total

113.1kg.             ⬅️➡️.            23.4kg⬇️total