Year 3 week 8

19th – 25th February 2018

Back in October I went to Serbia with 8 other ladies from our church. One thing we were going to run was a women’s retreat while we were there.

It was a few days away with a group of Serbian ladies. The idea was we would go and share our stories, take seminars, do workshops and generally connect with the women.

To do this retreat it entailed us doing a year of planning before we went. We all had our own particular jobs. One of mine was to organise a few of the workshops. Which was great for me because it meant I could get creative. Creativity, I feel, is one of my strong points.

While in Serbia we felt as a team that somethings we prepared weren’t going to work. It meant changing a whole afternoon. We found ourselves in the situation of trying to fill in 6 hours with something totally new.

We came up with this new programme and it was a huge success. It was a great laugh and highly entertaining – it ended up with so many people opening up. For me it was the best part of the whole retreat.

Through this experience I learnt something about myself. I learnt that I totally enjoyed this whole experience and I found I thrived off changing the plan and coming up with something new. I was totally in my element and I really jumped in feet first. I am not sure everyone else got as much out of it as me but I have learnt I can totally wing it if I have to.

This week I have had to wing it a lot. The kids have been off school for half term which always means a change of plan. It has also made it difficult to continue with my 50 mile challenge for this month.

I thought though that I could go on the treadmill a few times. We have had workmen in our house this week and they would constantly move the treadmill into a place where I couldn’t use it. It didn’t matter how often I tried to move it back it was always the case that when I came to use it I couldn’t.

I found this frustrating as I knew my time in February was running out and I still had 19 miles to go. It meant I had to totally rethink my plans and resort to plan B.

Changing plans can very often take you in a totally different direction and it did for me this week.

I managed to meet up with a friend and we took the kids bikes. We went to a place by a lake, the kids went off and we made our way around the lake a few times meeting the kids on a few occasions. We ended up going 5 miles which was more than my normal distance and it was so much more enjoyable too.

A couple of days later I went again doing 6 miles this time though. I managed to get out a couple of times by myself upping my total by 17 miles this week.

So plan B ended up being so much better than plan A and so much more enjoyable too. There are only 4 days left to this month and I only have 2 miles to go to complete this challenge. I feel I can do that no problem – if not I will be resorting to plan C!


Year 3 week 7

12th – 18th February 2018

Sometimes I find it hard to remember how I use to be. I feel I have been going down this journey for so long now that I can’t believe how I was.

I do remember though that I let things get to me really easily – it didn’t seem to take much to tip me over the edge and for me to feel like I couldn’t cope. I think it must have been all that excess weight on my brain!!

To have a sudden change in my schedule or finding that I had extra things I had to do would cause me to have a mini meltdown and it usually resulted in Matt sorting me out.

Matt would on occasion have to go away on trips and that was always a particularly bad time emotionally for me and it would usually consist of me collapsing in a heap when he got back.

I have been wondering how I would cope now with all those things. Well this week it has really been put to the test.

Matt has been away this week leaving me with the kids at home. That always means I have to add a lot more to my schedule. I have been prepared for this one so I feel I have coped with it very well.

However this week I have had so many unexpected things fall on my lap, things that have also added to my schedule and giving me so much more to do.

It was also my birthday this week too so I got to go out a lot more.

So this week I don’t know if I am coming or going. I feel I have been pulled this way and then that way. My head is going through a whirlwind of emotions not knowing which way to go next.

If this was a couple of years ago I think I would have had a total meltdown by now.

This time though I have embraced it, got on with the job at hand and actually enjoyed the experience.

I have even managed to stay on schedule with my running/walking this month. I have now reached 31 miles only another 19 to go.

The only negative I am getting out of this is that I am a little more tired than normal but I can totally cope with that.

Year 3 week 6

5th – 11th February 2017

This week I have really put in a few miles. I have managed to run/walk 16 miles so far this month which I feel is a great start to my total of 50 miles by the end of the month.

My knees are feeling really good – it seems the more I run the stronger they get. That’s how I feel after the run but during it is a totally different story.

I run outside but I also do some on my treadmill. On my treadmill I can do so much better than outside. It seems I can go faster, I can keep up the same pace throughout and I feel good while doing it.

When I go outside for a run I seem to be in pain with every step. My knees seem to creak, I am so much slower too and I can’t seem to warm up.

The weather has been so cold lately that when I run outside I feel like my joints are like a block of ice and I have icicles hanging off the end of my nose.

When I get back it seems to take me all day to thaw out. Even though I have run more this month it has left me a little disheartened.

Then I got to thinking of last year and how did I train for my half marathon in May and why couldn’t I remember it being so cold. I remembered that last year for me to run I had to have an operation to remove the saggy skin from my arms. It would flap against my body causing problems when running which meant it had to go.

This time last year I was still in recovery I was practically bed bound, I couldn’t pick up anything heavy and exercise was definitely a no go.

Remembering this means I am not so disheartened anymore. In fact I have found it quite encouraging. It means I am so much further ahead than what I was last year and I have so much more time to train for it too.

Last year after I recovered from my op I only had 6 weeks to train. This year I have 6 months so I have no reason to feel disheartened but every reason to feel encouraged.

So now I get why I can’t remember the cold. I am just looking forward to some warmer weather.

Year 3 week 5

29th January – 4th February 2018

My swimming challenge is now over and I have now started my running challenge. This week I have really put in a few miles.

When I go for a run I can’t seem to run it all I have to walk some of it, I can’t seem to keep up the same pace throughout. This month that is something I am trying to work on.

When I went to Rwanda to do the half marathon last year. I met all the other people doing the challenges too. One of the guys would always refer to us as athletes. Every time it was mentioned I would laugh because in my head that was the last thing I was.

I have to admit that I don’t look like your typical athlete. Even though I have been on this weight loss journey for over 2 years I still have an awful lot of weight to lose.

A typical athlete to me is someone super fit, super thin, has energy in abundance, can run like it’s no effort at all, wears all the cool matching gear.

Not someone like me, someone who struggles with every step, someone who would love to have the matching outfits but they don’t make them in your size, someone who is likely to damage there knees with all that weight pounding on top of it and someone who is so tired afterwards that I am not fit to do anything else.

I have been running again now for a few weeks. My knees have been fine. After one run though they were so sore that I thought I might have overdone it. The next time I went running though they were fine

Sometimes I think to myself “why am I doing this?” I am overweight, I am not your typical runner, why am I putting myself through this torture?

One thing I have found on this journey is that keeping the weight off is so much harder than getting the weight off. I feel I have to do this otherwise that weight will be piling back on again.

My motivation isn’t the best so this trip to Kenya to do another half marathon is helping with that.

To do something for a good cause is all the motivation I need. Knowing that I am going there to help vulnerable children and help provide solar lamps to provide light and electricity to homes that need it. Things that we take for granted in our everyday lives.

Knowing that I’m helping in some small way makes the pain worth it and makes me think “who cares if I’m not your typical athlete.”

If you feel you would like to help those kids in Kenya too then click on the link.

Year 3 week 4

22nd – 28th January 2018

I decided at the beginning of this month that I wanted to do a challenge. The reason I wanted to do it was because I have a half marathon coming up in June and I needed to start training for it.

I decided to swim 2018 lengths of a 15 metre pool. I thought it would be good training to strengthen my legs with low impact on my knees. The discipline of doing it has been tough. Forcing myself to go everyday has not been easy. It has definitely given me focus though because I just didn’t want to fail this task.

I am happy to say that I completed this challenge this week. I thought this challenge was going to be tough but I find when I get my determined head on nothing stops me from succeeding. That’s probably why I finished with nearly a week to spare and I did more lengths than I was supposed to.

I have never really been very good at maths but I found myself calculating how far I actually swam

If I calculated correctly it turns out that I swan nearly 20 miles/ 32 kilometres in that time. Seeing the distance that way was really encouraging I couldn’t believe I actually swam that far.

As January is nearly over and the challenge for this month has gone really well I have decided to set a challenge for February. I have decided that next month I am to run/walk 50 miles. It seems like a totally unachievable task at the moment but if I get my determined head on I am in for a chance.

I suppose we’ll see how it goes.

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.

Year 2 week 13

26th March – 1st April 2017

This week has been quite a tough week. Training for a half marathon is hard – a lot harder than I thought it would be. 

Last week I ran my first 10k. I was really happy with my achievement to run 10k with only 2 weeks training since my operation. It made me feel that a half marathon is achievable. 

This week though things have gone totally in the other direction. I feel like I am making 1 step forward and 2 steps back. 

I have managed to do some training. One day I went with Matt and Jake (my youngest son).  Going with Matt is usually really good and helpful but on this occasion it was slightly demoralising. Jake is a very fast runner, he is always winning his cross country races at school and Matt started physically running circles around me. 

Then the running circles turned into skipping circles and laughing as he did it. He was trying to get me to enjoy the experience and have fun. 

I did laugh along with him but for me seeing him and Jake with so much energy while I was totally exhausted I don’t think really helped. 

My pace is just not challenging enough for him. It made me feel like I was putting in so much effort but physically going nowhere. 

However when I got back home and collapsed on the sofa I realised that I did it a minute quicker than normal. So I think Matt running circles around me worked. 

It hasn’t stopped me feeling extra tired this week. One thing that keeps me going is knowing that I am doing it for a worthy cause. 

Every time I run I think of the fact that I will potentially be helping some children that need it. It is exciting to think I will be actually meeting the children I will be helping. I will be seeing the good work Compassion does and see where that money I have raised goes to. It makes every step, however hard, worth it. 

If you feel you can help me on my challenge and help those children get out of poverty then click the link.

Day 302

Friday 28th October 2016

This morning I woke up at what felt like the crack of dawn when in reality it was later than I normally get up on a week day. 

I was, however, the first up in the house for a change. I was up early because I had a training session first thing. 

There was something nice about being up before everyone else, the house is peaceful and it gave me a bit of time to reflect on the day. 

I have been quite fed up and frustrated lately but having time with myself this morning has made me think it’s a new day – I could sit and wallow in self pity or I could start afresh. 

I have decided to start afresh. Forget all that has past and just focus on where I am heading. 

I don’t know how long it will take me to get there but it’s good to have a goal and have something to aim for even if it seems impossible sometimes to achieve it.

Doing my training this morning has also helped me to start afresh because it seemed to cheer me up. It must have been just what I needed today. 

No weigh in

Day 295

Friday 21st October 2016

It must have been at least a month since I did one of my daily walks. The reason I haven’t done them recently is because I felt I needed to do something different.

I have been going to exercise classes and I have also upped the amount of training I do with my personal trainer. 

For the last few weeks I have either had an exercise class to go to or a training session. There has been one every day of the week, sometimes 2 a day, only having a break at weekends.

Over the last few days I feel that I have worn myself out. I have put those trainers on one too many times and now I am exhausted. 

I feel I need to do it to keep me motivated. I also still enjoy it which is good considering I am so tired. 

Hopefully though I will quickly get used to the extra exercise because I am worried that the enjoyment will get replaced with exhaustion and I won’t want to do it anymore. 

I feel I really need to keep to a routine of certain exercises a day just to spur me on. I have noticed while doing the exercises that I am achieving so much. Last year I would never have done any running, go on a bike, do half the exercises I am doing now. I just wouldn’t have had the energy 

I am actually quite proud of my achievements this year. I now feel I can do these exercises which I wouldn’t have dared to try last year.

I just hope my energy comes back soon though. 

Start weight 21st 5lbs

15st 13.8lbs. ⬅️➡️. 75.2lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

101.6kg. ⬅️➡️. 34.9kg⬇️total

Day 271

Tuesday  27th September 2016

Today was a very different Tuesday for me. I usually have a few ladies round and we sit and spend the day sewing. They didn’t come today though. I have however had another training session instead.

Jenny told me that she thinks I need to up my exercise and have more than one session a week with my personal trainer. So today we started. 

For a good few years now I have been boxing. I love boxing – there is something really satisfying about punching someone. I don’t go round punching people as a rule but it is really enjoyable when you are told to. Ok, so he is holding pads and I punch them, but it’s still good. 

For about 6 months now I haven’t done any boxing at all as I have been doing some HIIT training instead. Today, as we have added in another one, it gave us the opportunity to get out the boxing gloves, brush off all the cobwebs and use them again.

I didn’t realise how much I missed it. I really enjoyed it too. 

I have been told that I have a really good punch and I put a lot of power behind it. I think it was because I put all my weight behind each punch. Let’s face it, it was a lot of weight. 

I thought I might have lost some of my power and at first I really wasn’t as good as I used to be but it soon came back. Even with the lack of food at the moment.

Start weight 21st 5lbs

15st 13.3lbs.     0.2lbs⬇️.    75.7lbs⬇️total

Start weight 136.5kg

101.3kg.            0.1kg⬇️        35.2kg⬇️total