Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Wednesday

I found out today that the contract I'm currently on is not being extended due to the company persuading someone to do it as a permie. So in a few weeks I'll be back to the joys of job hunting while unable to go for restorative walks due to it being winter and the weather being rubbish. Ah well, it was (sort of) nice while it lasted. And it won't do me any harm to get away from the vending machines in the hall... Or to make up for the shameful lack of housework since I started working again.
Last night I trained after posting then pigged out on 3 slices of home-made fruit loaf. To say that I've taken my eye off the ball lately is an understatement. I can't seem to find my way back just now and I'm not sure what it is that is making me so greedy - unless it is my body trying to build a nice warm layer of fat now that its suddenly so much cooler here. If so, I'm determined to disappoint it - but I've been telling myself that for the last couple of days without changing my behaviour. Maybe if I just spend all day on the elliptical walker once I finish this job it will help.... Which is a good point, I haven't lost it all together because I'm still getting lots of exercise, my main meals are mostly still under control (ignore the alarming number of takeaways lately when reading that sentence please), its just the snacking that's getting less controlled - and even there, I'm finishing up within calories most of the time (thanks to the exercise and some menu re-planning, but still) and a lot less over than I used to be on bingeing days pretty much all the time. Cling to the positives, Chrissie...
Rain all day in Wiltshire today so I didn't walk at lunchtime. However, my doctor's appointment was this evening so I decided to walk even if it was raining – as it turned out it was quite sunny here in Wales.

I have a prescription now, a low dose of a mild antidepressant. I’ve been warned that it may take 2 weeks to help, and may make me feel worse until then, so if you want to bugger off to a more cheerful blog in the meantime I’ll miss you – but I’ll understand;-)

I actually feel better right now – probably because I am finally doing something about it.

Food today:
Breakfast: All ban with berries & a dollop of Greek yoghurt
Lunch: Chicken, veg & barley soup with a toasted 'sandwich' of lite bread & LC

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Dinner: Slow-cooked layered dinner - I put sliced onions, peppers & mushrooms in my new small slow cooker, shoved a potato wrapped in foil and a frozen sirloin steak on top, scattered steakhouse pepper seasoning over everything and added a dash or two of water and Worcestershire sauce, then just left it to cook all day. It was very tasty, the steak was very tender, but as my normal preference is for rare steak I wouldn’t necessarily do it again that way. The potato though, that I would certainly do again!

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After my walk to the doctor I also had a slice of fruit loaf

Snacks: Greek yoghurt with We Are Bear granola (I forgot to take a portion of home-made granola out of the freezer, where I'm storing it because of the fresh banana); Greek yogurt with defrosted fruit; bag of Snack-a-Jacks


Weight: Day 2 of misbehaving led to a depressing 10 st 5 lbs (145 lbs) on the scales. Even though I know I've been bad, I know I haven't been THAT bad, so it didn't bother me - much

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Tuesday

Well, I had a lovely time yesterday evening overall (once I recovered from an unbelievably tedious day at work) but it was a bit depressing off and on. My mum's always been very active - she played a lot of badminton when she was younger and used to walk a lot as well - but is now very badly suffering from an osteo-arthritic hip. She's having a hip replacement (hopefully in November) but in the meantime has had to almost completely give up going out (she's a National Trust member and loves walking around the gardens), and is now reduced to only managing her weekly food shops by car. Watching her get up is really painful, she doesn't sleep well, and she walks so slowly its hard to believe how active she was before. I really hope they don't keep her waiting too long for the op and it all goes smoothly... Mum's trying to keep positive about things, but even with all the pain has pretty much constantly she's still dreading the operation and I can't say I blame her. Her sister also has osteoarthritis - so badly she's registered disabled because its in her spine as well as her hips, hands and wrists. I guess all that makes me a likely candidate for the future as well... note to self, eat more salmon & tuna, keep up the exercise... but not too much...
Back to the normal drivel now....
Walked at lunchtime, I thought it would be pretty tedious because its now firmly the wet season here in Wiltshire so I had to stick to the paths and roads rather than exploring over the fields. Given that I didn't even walk yesterday (while stuffing myself with an extra 800 cals on top of my maintenance allowance) I felt I should make the effort anyway, and also to train this evening. In the event there was bright sunshine, which I enjoyed, and I explored a different route, which always helps even when (as today) it ends up taking you somewhere you've been before!  I'm still trying to cut back on the caffeine - I'm not cutting it out altogether because the withdrawal 'ice pick in the skull' headache turns me into a b*tch the scale of which the world could not survive, so for now I'm not drinking anything caffeinated after lunch, and even before that I'm focusing on tea and decaff coffee, both of which I know have small(er) amounts of caffeine compared to coffee. The plan is to cut back on those too over time, not least because unlike my plain black coffees I drink both of them with added calories most of the time - fruit flavoured iced tea (flavoured with fruit juice I mean) or milky decaff - and would prefer to eat those calories rather than drinking them, thanks all the same. If I do weaken on the coffee front I'll be having milky not black, as I've heard that milk reduces the impact of caffeine and even if it doesn't, using the same mug with half of it full of milk definitely will deliver less caffeine. Having said that I did resort to a Pepsi Max this morning because I was feeling so sluggish I wasn't sure I could make it through the morning. (Clients frown on contractors falling asleep on their PCs - so narrow-minded of them....)
Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries
Lunch: Corn chowder with lite bread and LC

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Dinner: A hodgepodge of leftovers! The situation of my over-full freezer has become critical and I now have to eat leftovers and frozen foods as much as possible - and not cook multiple portions of anything until I've made room for them. So I defrosted a portion of English style curried chicken casserole and a portion of slow-cooked vegetable curry to go with it instead of rice. Plus a little salad. It wasn’t bad, but both curries would have been better with rice!

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with defrosted summer fruits; Greek yoghurt with granola. And a bag of Snack-a-jacks salt & vinegar mini rice cakes.

Didn't weigh today because of yesterday's bingeing behaviour.

Monday, 27 September 2010

Twofer

Sorry I didn't post yesterday, no more calamities or suicidal depressions, just a day that got away from me a bit!
In the morning I'd decided to walk into Chepstow again - I'm going to do so weekly while the weather lasts, so apologies if you're bored by hearing that! My brother came over to walk in with me (he starts a new job with a long commute next week and doesn't expect to have the energy to go for long weekend walks after that!) We chatted all the way into town, had a short wander around and chat, then a coffee at my normal coffee shop (I had a skinny pumpkin latte - never had one before!) before going Tesco shopping and then heading for home. He then stayed for a good chat, and left around 2pm. After he left M and I watched a movie - 'Up in The Air' and enjoyed it a lot, despite the fact that it didn't exactly have a great deal of discernable plot!
By the time the movie finished I had to start prep for dinner, then organising my stuff for the week ahead (I spend large parts of my Sundays weighing out cereal, fruit, etc so that during the week that part of my bag is just grab and go.) So it was a quiet not particularly exciting day apart from a very nice walk on a cold, bright sunny but windy morning, but somehow I never found time to sit down and write a blog post!
Food today:
Breakfast: Steel cut slow cooked oats, with cookies & cream whey & pureed apple mixed in in the morning
Lunch: A very poor effort at spicy baked beans (made by me weeks ago and shoved into the freezer) on toast. I didn't even want to take their picture - so I didn't bother!
Dinner: Spaghetti Bolognese - slow cooked sauce - with a salad. Quite nice, but I think I'll add some dried chilli or hot sauce to the other portions!

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Snacks: Some healthy banana granola, a protein bar, and a yoghurt/granola/fruit pot at Coffee #1 with my pumpkin latte

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Weight: 10 st 2lbs (142 lbs)


Monday
My Mum & her OH came over today to stay the night. It is lovely to see them and we’re having a really good chat! It did mean that I didn't get my evening work out in, but I'm quite willing to miss out on that every now and then to spend time with family! Especially after a monster walk into town yesterday! They brought me home-grown potatoes, onions & tomatoes, and I gave them home-baked berry muffins & fruit loaf.
I spent the whole morning eating and had had my days calorie allowance by lunchtime. I didn't stop then, either... ! I was tired, bored and I don't think I'd eaten enough yesterday for the walk we did. I really felt hungry for a lot of it, although by the end I can't deny I was having thoughts about 'getting it all out of my system' rather than genuinely feeling hunger. Plus I knew I was eating takeaway for dinner and I know I've pointed out the effect that has on my behaviour before the meal - my 'I'm going to be bad so I'd better be even worse' mentality! Plus I'm trying to cut back on caffeine so I couldn't have a cup of coffee to wake myself up, so I guess I went for sugar instead...
Food today:
Planned:
Breakfast: All bran with berries, soy milk and a dollop of Greek yoghurt
Lunch: Corn chowder with lite bread and LC
Dinner: Takeaway vegetable chow mein
Snacks: Greek yoghurt with granola; Greek yoghurt with fruit

Actual:

Breakfast: All bran with berries, soy milk and a dollop of Greek yoghurt

Lunch: Baguette from sandwich van and chocolate chip cookie

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Dinner: Takeaway prawn curry with boiled rice

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with granola; Greek yoghurt with fruit; baked apple crisps; small protein bar; apple; Cadbury's Caramel bar; mini eggs * 5,  toast with LC and reduced sugar jam (should have been for lunch but I ate it at 10:20 am)....

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Saturday

Busy busy… shopping, walking, shopping, laundry… I actually almost had a lie in this morning – didn’t get up until 5:50 am!!!

It was actually bordering on cold this morning when I went to Tesco. And my walk – into town – was sunny but cool, and pleasantly lacking sweatiness so that was fairly nice.

When I got home I made some granola based on a recipe I found on dietgirl’s blog. It isn’t quite sweet enough for my taste, but that’s because I had a smallish banana. I made about 11 portions, and expect it to grow on me anyway, as most things that I expect to be sweeter than they are generally do.

This afternoon we watched a Bruce Willis movie called Surrogates. We’d seen some dodgy reviews, but we both enjoyed it – a nice surprise when that happens – although the world they lived in at the start of the movie was very bleak and dystopic.

Food today:

Breakfast:

Steel cut oats cooked in the slow cooker, mixed with cookies & cream whey and pureed apple this morning. Not at all bad!

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Lunch: Grilled vegetable sandwiches

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Dinner: Quorn cottage cheese with roasted vegetables. I was supposed to have that yesterday, but the takeaway kebab proved more tempting at the time.

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with homemade granola, strawberries & blueberries;

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Chocolate mint protein bar (not bad, but not as good as the vanilla flavour); a small snack pack of dried dates. Oh yes, and a plum.

Weight: 10 st 3lbs (143 lbs) – all that meat yesterday!

Friday, 24 September 2010

Rest Day

So no evening training session - which is no bad thing as my lower back is still a bit painful, largely I think due to the incredibly uncomfortable chair I have at work. It is a grey and depressing day today and matches my mood - I slept very badly last night and am struggling to stay awake with eyes that feel as though they were rolled in sand this morning. And the fact that someone spent the morning using an electric drill in the office really improved my mood....
I think I'm getting depressed again, and may have to go back to the doctor to talk about mind mood altering drugs ;-) I've always been very reluctant to follow that path but I don't seem to be doing too well without it these days, and I don't think its fair to myself, my family, or indeed you guys to just wallow in it. Although I'm sure if you've read for very long you will instantly realise the degree of panic that will ensue if I get a prescription and (as I hear is often the case) I immediately start gaining weight... anyway, appointment made for next week so I'll have to see what happens...
I didn't walk either, instead eating at my desk and reading an absolutely brilliant book-from-a-blog called 'More Blood, More Sweat and Another Cup of Tea' - its based on a blog by Tom Reynolds, pen name for a member of the London Ambulance Service, about his working life and experiences, and a lot of it is very funny while other chapters make me rage - or cry, depending... This is his second book, and I'm sure he'll have the scope for several more!

Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries

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Lunch: I wanted to get a baguette from the sandwich van - didn't fancy soup today - but I failed to hear the announcement that the van was at the office, so I had sweetcorn chowder and a banana toastie again - still yummy!

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Dinner: Chicken shish kebab with pitta and sala

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with fruit & granola; protein bar because my protein percentage was too low

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And a gingerbread pumpkin…

Weight today: 10 st 1.5lbs (141.5 lbs)

Ouch

As forecast, it started raining... I think it must have rained quite heavily over night and was drizzling / lightly raining as I drove into work as well. It's dark nearly all the way in now, so I don't get to admire the views anymore.
I wanted to walk at lunchtime, I didn't feel I could go over the fields though since they had just been rained on, so I settled for a boring walk into this village instead. It was too grey to be really enjoyable but as always when I do go out I was glad to have taken a proper break away from my desk, even if it did feel more like a duty than a pleasure. I decided to try to make up for it in the evening instead, though Wednesday evening’s stationary bike workout (44 minutes) was a bit disappointing due to legs like lead. Unfortunately I think I pushed myself too hard increasing both the resistance and the incline on the elliptical walker for 40 minutes, and hurt my back. Which I didn’t realise until after doing 10 press up and a number of pull ups & chin ups.
Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries & a dollop of Greek yoghurt

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Lunch: 'Mystery' soup I found unlabelled in the freezer with a toasted LC & Banana sandwich - which was much more delicious than it had any right to be! I enjoyed it far more than the soup actually, and considered making a second one before getting control over myself and eating the second half of the banana straight instead..

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Dinner: Teriyaki tofu stir fry (using a stir fry prepared pack for convenience)

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with defrosted garden fruit and granola;

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Small protein bar

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Weight: 10 st 2.5lbs (142.5 lbs)

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

A better day

Well, I may possibly have sorted out my PC although I won't trust it for a while yet! Now that that is out of the way I can finally look at starting to catch up on my blog reading properly! Well, as much as work permits anyway.

No training this morning again, I'm doing quite well at not getting obsessive about it I think, and I've managed a massive 2 consecutive days of evening training! I put laundry away and tidied up a bit instead, even though I'd far rather be sweating in the gym! I had a horrible drive into work this morning due to fog. Yesterday the motorway was foggy and the other roads were clear as a bell - that didn't bother me too much because the motorway is so wide and a lot of the time so straight, but today the reverse was true. It was still dark, the fog was heavy, and I was driving on narrow, windy hilly roads where at times I couldn't see the bend. Lovely relaxing start to the day! I just slowed down compared to my usual driving and got here without any actual problems, but there were times my heart was in my mouth a bit!

Lunchtime walk again today - over the fields once more. The weather is due to change tomorrow with heavy rain forecast, so I wanted to make the most of the opportunity before the fields turned into bogs and I had to avoid them to keep my work clothes clean! I wanted to look for a village shop that I know is in the next village and get a chance to investigate what it can provide. It's not a supermarket or anything, so I knew it would be limited, but I like to know where I can pick up a pint of milk if needed. I expected it to be like the community shop in the village where I work, offering mainly junk food, booze and newspapers, but it actually surprised me by having an actual produce area that included sweet potatoes and aubergines, spices that I can't even get in Chepstow, and plenty of cupboard staples like soy sauce. Plus junk food, booze, and biscuits! I didn't have any cash on me (sometimes I take my 'no money means no bingeing’ rule a bit far) so I'll have to go back to stock up on the spices.

The walk over the fields was really nice again. I took a small detour to take a look at the weir on the Kennet & Avon canal just there. It was bigger than I expected, though I'm not sure how much luck the two fishermen I saw sitting there were having!

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I’m happy to say that although I could happily have nibbled extra food today I didn’t feel I was starving the whole day so I guess my ridiculous out-of-control appetite is finally calming down a bit!

Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries

Lunch: Roasted roots soup with lite bread & LC.

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Dinner: Slow cooker English style curried chicken casserole with cauliflower rice and a little cucumber & tomato

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with apple puree & granola; Greek yoghurt with defrosted fruit and a mini babybel light

Weight: 10 st 2.5lbs (142.5 lbs)

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

A mixed day

My PC problems continued this morning, with the wretched thing agreeing to boot up on the fourth attempt, staying that way long enough for me to copy a few key files onto a USB drive then crashing again...  This evening it took half a dozen attempts to get it to boot, and since then its stayed on for about 3 hours with no problems, I don’t know if its fixed or lulling me into a false sense of security!

To add to the fraught morning I'd tried to bake a sweet loaf in the slow cooker overnight, but the electronic timer I use to control the slow cooker because it has no timer of its own didn't work (we had a couple of power cuts over the weekend and I think that reset the timer settings, so I had to set the timer up again this morning and transfer my baking into the ordinary oven)

Technology sucks and I'm going to learn how to cook over an open fire while handwriting letters, possibly on a wax tablet with a pointed stick...

Because of all this I didn't train at all this morning - well, that and the headache I woke up with. I decided to do a circuit based work-out after work instead. I did a 20 minute interval program on the elliptical walker, 10 minutes of intervals on the stationary bike & the rower, and before, after, and in between the machines I did some chin ups and pull ups as well.

I did manage a walk at lunchtime, and it was a great relief to get out and away from the PC for a while. And it was a great walk even without that - I went over the fields to the next village, which is a pretty little place with some lovely old houses, a proper village green, and an excitingly named pub:

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Today I just wandered around smiling a lot because it was nice to find somewhere new to walk instead of also going the same way to the same place. Next time I'll explore a bit more!

I was starving all day again today. Could it be because there’s a nip in the air in the mornings to remind me that autumn is here and winter isn’t far away? I had both my planned snacks AND an extra protein bar before lunch – and then a Twix afterwards. I had to change my planned dinner, walk at lunch time and train after dinner to stay within calories – but I did manage it, so long as the exercise calculations on WLR aren’t too far out!

Before I forget, thanks for the award, Lis! I'll have to think about my answers to the questions...  and you've reminded me that I forgot to think JAG for her award some time ago - and to follow the rules! I'll do them both I promise, and thanks again to both of you for the awards and for reading!

Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries

Lunch: Chicken, veg & barley soup with lite bread & LC. Sorry – I was so hungry after my walk I forgot to get my camera out! But you’ve seen it all before…

Dinner: Vegetable fried rice with a couple of turkey rashers added at the last minute when I remembered they needed eating.

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with granola; Greek yoghurt with defrosted fruit; small protein bar; Twix; one small slice of my sweet loaf spread with LC for post-training snack / supper

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Weight: 10 st 2.25lbs (142.25 lbs)

Monday, 20 September 2010

TGI Monday?!?

I had a rubbish weekend, so I'm going to ignore it and pretend it never happened except for these photos of a few foodie highlights

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Skinny caramel frappe-no cream – Saturday morning (too sweet really)

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Tapas for lunch in Chepstow – garlic prawns, spicy (except they weren’t)meatballs, potatoes bravas & bread to dip in all the sauces

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Dessert – a small slice of cherry cake

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Kebab shop vegetable pizza – gorgeous!!! Even M the carnivore thought so!

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Singapore chow mein for Sunday dinner – this takeaway, plus all bran with berries & a protein bar, was all I ate on Sunday. I wasn’t feeling the cooking thing obviously, but wasn’t fussed about eating either by then. Of course that didn’t last…

Now a new week, and I was actually not sorry to reach Monday!
I didn't train this morning, or go for a walk at lunch time; I did go on the elliptical walker for 4 minutes after work. I've decided to either forget the morning workout or keep it to 20 mins so I don't feel I have to get up in the middle of the night to start training, it does mean that I need to start being more conscientious about fitting in an evening workout  - I know it might not work this way so I'll try it out and rethink it if I have to. The lack of walk at lunchtime was down to the fact that I was a starving ravening beast by lunch and couldn't motivate myself to walk before eating, but didn't have time to walk afterwards. I don't know why I was so hungry this morning, but my husband reckons its down to the 2 takeaways we. had over the weekend... I think myself it was Monday-itis, which has apparently also infected all the PCs in our house – mine seems to have died, and this one is staggering a bit too, so I haven’t had any blog reading time today and this is my second effort at this post after it crashed while publishing attempt #1
Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with blueberries and strawberries

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Lunch: Corn chowder with lite bread (toasted with LC and strawberry jam - reduced sugar)

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Dinner: Biz's best buffalo chicken chili (except mine was made with turkey breast instead of chicken. I also substituted green pepper for red because I didn't have any red pepper and used disproportionately more beans - I halved the meat and most other ingredients to halve the recipe but still used a full tin of chilli beans. I intended to add onions (sorry Biz, but I like them!!!) and mushrooms - my favourite low cal bulker for chillies - but forgot to add them both - next time!) There will be a next time, it's a fantastic recipe and when I finish the 5 portions I made I'll try it again with some mushrooms at least. Served with rice and a little salad

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with granola; Greek yoghurt with garden fruits (defrosted from a pack bought at Waitrose) plus some peanut butter, raisins & almonds for the stress of computer nightmare. Have I ever mentioned – I HATE COMPUTERS!!!
Weight: 10 st 2.25lbs (142.25 lbs)

Friday, 17 September 2010

Friday at last

No training again today, I just didn't have the energy. I am finding it hard to work out a viable routine for fitting the training that I want to do around this contract. If I want to train in the morning I have to get up between 4:30 and 5 am, which even though it's kind of natural to me, leaves me quite tired by the end of the week. I can't really fit in eating beforehand, so I know that I'm unlikely to have as productive a training session as I could later in the day - and so far I just can't face Jillian at that time. On the other hand, I've always been an early bird when it comes to dinner so I'm hungry when I get home, making it difficult to train straight after work. And of course waiting to feel like training after dinner gives me time to get busy with other things / comfortable and makes it less likely that I can find the motivation to get on with it in the evening. I can't believe how hard I find it to fit healthy living around work  - clearly I need to be fabulously wealthy so that I can train when and how I want to without all this other stuff getting in the way. Now what did I do with that lottery ticket...???

I didn't train or walk today. I've decided that its time to formally introduce a proper rest day every week as I'm prone to forgetting for a couple of weeks at a time - and if I'm ever going to get more consistent with the resistance training this will be even more important. So, rest day = Friday from now on!

Food today:
Breakfast: All bran with berries

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Lunch: Innocent Veg pot - Mexican sweet potato chilli & lite bread with LC

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Dinner: Bean burgers & salad – the salad was an odd concoction of home-made coleslaw, lettuce & cucumber, with raisins and blanched broccoli & carrots (because I don’t much like them raw)

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Snacks: Greek yoghurt with granola; Greek yoghurt with summer berries