Something of Meltdown

Me throwing myself back into Slimming World did not go to plan. In fact since my last post I’ve mostly been eating (vegan) ice cream! I did feel much more positive after my last post, but then my mood took another massive nosedive. Actually it’s the worst I’ve felt in several years.

I’ve been trying to analyse what exactly went wrong in my head. The thoughts about surgery and my body image were still swimming around in my brain, then on top of that I couldn’t sleep, I did overtime at work which exacerbated that particular problem, my friend told me a story about when he was a bouncer and they weren’t allowed to let fat women in… all of a sudden I felt angry, helpless and lost, so I went home, got under the duvet and cried my little heart out. It keeps playing on my mind how those women must have felt, being turned away like that, and how it might have affected them. It was decades ago, but it’s still disgusting.

I’ve also been worried about how my diet is becoming mixed up with my fitness regime. I have so many issues (mostly with guilt and shame) relating to food, but exercise has become something pure that I do just for fun. My trainer means well, and keeps saying about how the weight will fall off of us both now we’re training regularly, but for me the training and my weight are totally separate in my mind. Apart from the fact that if I’m too heavy it won’t be feasible for me to run (because of possible knee damage).

I’m going to communicate that to him though, because I’m still trying to unlearn 20 years of behaviours relating to food and really don’t want to make the same mistake when it comes to fitness!

I can’t even remember the last time I cried for myself. I cried a lot before Christmas, because I saw a sad video of a pig about to be sent to slaughter that stuck with me for weeks. I’ve cried a couple of times at films, too, but it’s been so long since anything felt bad enough in my own life to bring me to tears.

Maybe I was just waaaaay overdue!

Things aren’t actually bad though, far from it. Everything just built up and became a little bit too much until something had to give. I’m now caught up on sleep and my eyes have stopped leaking, so I’m ready to go.

Yesterday I went to see my trainer to help him prep for a job interview, which is in fact happening as I type. The weather was bloody marvellous, so I put on my factor 50 and a dress with capped sleeves. I went out in all of my bingo-winged glory, and felt bloody fabulous doing so. That was a boost of confidence that I needed.

I also wore designer sunglasses that my trainer lent me, which he paid £150 for. He likes fancy things, he does, whereas I’m more of a bargain kinda gal. Therefore these are the second most expensive things I’ve ever put on my face (the first being when I tried on his normal glasses which were £400!!!) Madness.

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Anyway, I have a plan in place. Another reason I think I’m struggling is because my daily routine has been completely turned on its head. I’ve gone from having lots of spare time during the week to trying to fit in all of my training, lunches out with friends, quality time with Pea, household chores, spending time with my mum and my siblings… so if I’m going to keep on top of these things I need to adapt and get properly organised.

On Monday, because I won’t have a chance until then, I’m going to go into town to get some jars and I’ll make a batch of overnight oats to eat after training. Then I’ll prep my work lunches for the whole week. When I need an energy boost I’m not going to let myself get too hungry and then mess up, like I have been doing, instead I’m going to eat fruit to keep me going.

From now on Monday’s will be known as Meal-Prep Mondays! If I at least have food ready to go at all times then I’m much more likely to eat well.

I feel much, much better now things are all straight in my mind.

This morning, after two rest days in a row, I went out for a 5k run. I found a comfortable pace and stuck with it the whole way round. I did stop one single time, because I wasn’t sure whether to go left or right, but other than that I kept going even up the hills.

The weather today has been even better than yesterday, so when I was done I went to lay down in the shade and drink some water. It was just so lovely – the grass was cool and damp, and even though my face has erupted in spots after I put sunblock on it, I was all blotchy from the running and generally looking a mess, I felt wonderful.

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When I got home I decided to stick my headphones in and listen to some ‘choons’ whilst cutting the grass, mainly because I was feeling pumped and wanted to move more!

Hopefully there will be more training tomorrow, my sister is visiting Saturday, then I’m out for a meal with my trainer on Sunday. Plus I have three more shifts left at work. Ugh. So it’s busy, busy, busy! Thankfully I’m too busy to really think about how on Sunday I’ll be meeting a whole bunch of my trainer’s family, including his daughter and his mum. So, y’know, no pressure or anything…

Well I’ve sat still for too long now, and there just isn’t time for that.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Disco Dancing

That’s that then. I’ve had my one night a year where I go out clubbing so now I’m almost ready for everything to go back to normal. I just have a meal out with an old friend tomorrow then I’m going to smash my diet and fitness goals. It seems weird writing this, because I honestly had to work up the energy to even begin this post. I’m that tired.

Although I was sensible and drank a lot of water last night, and I don’t feel ill as such, I do feel like I’ve been hit by a bus. I’m cold, exhausted and aching all over. But I suppose it’s understandable since I danced the night away and didn’t get home till 5am. Full disclosure: I also tackled my friend to the ground (just for fun, I didn’t get into a fight!) but I made sure I didn’t hurt him and landed squarely on my backside. Hard. With him on top of me. So my behind is aching somewhat too!

I did want to get some nice pictures of myself but once I met up with my friends I completely forgot about it. I did however manage to capture my matte lipstick (completely cruelty free, vegan, and from a lovely independent shop called VE Cosmetics) and one obligatory toilet selfie.

Because of hormones and no small amount of falling off the wagon I haven’t been feeling great about myself, but I think I scrubbed up OK and my friends did give me a lot of compliments. I’ve also found that a few of the work guys are treating me a lot differently lately, and some were certainly more, ahem, touchy-feely than they have been on previous nights out.

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I’ll do a comparison shot some time next year (the next time I go clubbing) to see what progress I’ve made, and in the meantime here’s what I looked like the first time I went out with the work people in 2016:

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Yeah… I haven’t been perfect lately but I’m sure happy with my progress when I see these pictures!

This is why when I fall off the wagon I can never truly give up. Even if progress is currently slow pretty much non-existent, one day I’ll be looking back on last nights’ pictures and I’ll be thankful that I kept going. I’ll spend today recovering then despite the fact that I’m out for a meal, or rather because I’m going out for a meal, I’m going out running first thing tomorrow morning.

My last training session was actually awful. I really struggled and for the first time I didn’t enjoy it. I think there were several factors at work but the main ones are my hormones sapping me of energy, and that where I’ve been eating badly I hadn’t fueled my body properly for exercise. I didn’t imagine it would make such a huge difference, but clearly it does. So there’s yet another incentive to eat well!

I expect my run tomorrow to be tough as hell, but if it is then I vow that it’ll be the last time it’ll ever be that bad.

Right now all I can think about is my my bed that’s calling to me, so I’m going to go for a little nap.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

No Fluke

Incredibly, the scales are still showing me to be in the 13’s. It’s not a fluke! I’m now going to stop weighing myself over the next few days since I’ve established that the scales haven’t malfunctioned.

Everything has been a bit of mad rush since yesterday, and I really should be getting dinner sorted but I chose to sit down and write with a cup of coffee first.

Yesterday evening my friend dropped over my new (to me) car. It was dark when he turned up so I didn’t get a chance to look at it properly, but oh my word I am chuffed to bits.

After driving a massive 3l 5 Series BMW for the last two years, I simply cannot look at my new car without bursting out laughing. It’s simply ridiculous!

When I parked up at work and got out it looked positively comical sitting there in my usual spot. I could easily fit another one in the space.

After work this morning I was able to get a picture.

This afternoon I had to go out and in the proper daylight I could see just how filthy it is. It was my friend’s friend’s dad’s and it’s been sitting on a driveway for a long old time, just gathering dust.

There are plenty of perks though. Both my tax and insurance payments have literally halved, and I should be getting more than 14 MPG from now on!

This weekend I should be able to give it a good clean as I have a surprise long weekend. Work announced last night that there’s no Saturday shift while they do a huge stock take. Get in! This week is turning out to be a corker.

To top it all off my brother told me that he’s getting the shocks on his motorbike sorted after payday which means it’ll be able to take our combined weight. Then we can go on a road trip.

I went out with my brother and my ex, me riding pillion on my ex’s bike, for a brief period in 2014. It was the first time I’d ever been on a bike, and it was absolutely thrilling, but there was a downside.

I got the biggest size in trousers and jacket for women that I could (a size 22) and it fit like a second skin. It’s supposed to be snug, so that if you come off your gear stays on and keeps you alive, but sitting on the back of a bike with my knees somewhere around my ears meant that I couldn’t really breathe properly. Kinda problematic.

This also coincided with me gaining huge amounts of weight again, so it wasn’t long before I was struggling to get them on at all. When the bikes were put away for winter, I had to put the trousers on with the zip open (they have a kind of flap) and still I could barely get them on. I told myself I’d be back in them by the summer, but it never happened and I haven’t been on a bike since.

Today I got my gear out of storage and had a little try-on.

Wow.

I am over the flipping moon! Everything is too big, to the point where if I end up going out regularly with my brother then I will need new gear and I will need it soon. As it is all of the Velcro straps are pulled in as tight as they go and it’s still too roomy. I’ll have to wear thick layers underneath in order to stay safe.

Buying new gear means hundreds of pounds being spent, but maybe I can sell what I have to raise funds.

Right now I don’t care, I feel too good! I can take the trousers off without even undoing them, and the flap that was like a second skin? Take a look…

I’m so happy I could cry. In fact I just might.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

A Wibble

It was weigh in this morning and I put on 1.5 lbs. Despite my recent positivity this (entirely expected) event totally knocked me off track. For a short while, anyway. I hit the bread bin, and I hit it HARD, and now I feel doubly guilty for the initial gain and the subsequent emotional eating.

This will NOT do.

So I did the laundry then had a nap. When I woke up I still felt bad, so I spent half an hour just laying quietly and thinking things through. Until then I hadn’t figured out that it was the gain that made me feel bad. I thought perhaps it was a delayed bad feeling from yesterday, although at the time of eating I definitely wasn’t thinking about why. It was a total knee jerk reaction, without pause for thought, which is unusual for me these days. I think if I’d given myself that pause then the outcome would have been different.

Ho hum, I can’t go back in time! Going forward, I feel better after my little self-therapy session and getting the thoughts out here on the blog is the final step.

I’ve had a healthy dinner, I’m currently writing on my phone whilst pacing around the house to get my step count up before work (it’s quite likely I’m going to walk into something) and I have six whole days in which to turn this completely around.

Depending on hunger levels I’m going to try to reduce my carb intake and up what used to be my Speed Food intake. Speed food is just Slimming World’s own way of describing the less energy-dense fruit and veggies, so I shall henceforth be munching them like there’s no tomorrow. Bring on lots of top up shops in Lidl this week!

I have training on Thursday but in the meantime the cat has the vets and I have to try to find a cheap car as my head gasket is in a bad way. Hopefully I can find a run around to tide me over because I need wheels to get to training and to ferry my mum around to various hospital and doctor’s appointments.

Also, I’ve taken another exciting step even further out of my comfort zone. An ex-colleague saw some of my photos on Facebook and wants to hire me to take some shots of his wife before their wedding vow renewal. At first I said no, and was about to recommend a lady I know, when I thought ‘I can actually do this!’

I AM scared, because it will involve talking to people I don’t know and I’m going to have to my friend’s wife at ease when inside I myself will be the least at ease person there ever was.

But who knows what doors this could open? I was asked to do a wedding once but couldn’t stand the pressure of potentially messing up some of the most important photos of their lives. The very thought still fills me with dread, but I don’t have to start out doing weddings. I can do smaller things and see how I feel.

I’m not sure I’d like a photography business, but it would be lovely to take it further in my spare time. Let’s see what happens!

It’s nearly time for work now, and already I can’t wait for it to be over so I can get back to my own department.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Rollercoaster

I think I made the right decision. By letting myself be lazy for a few days my cold went away before it really got started and I feel mostly back to normal again.

Over the last few weeks me, my mum and my brother have been watching the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy (extended editions, obviously) and for the first two weeks I was really proud of myself for not snacking while we were watching. With the final instalment though I admit it, I cracked. The film is 4 hours and 23 minutes long, and although I get completely immersed I just wanted things yesterday. So I went ahead and had them.

I am annoyed with myself, but not furious, and certainly not to the point where I’m beating myself up about it. Last night I confessed my transgressions to my training buddy (whether I’m attending a group or not accountability is very important) and arranged to meet up with him today for, well, training!

Weigh in is tomorrow morning and I’m not sure how it’s going to go, especially as I ate lots of bread yesterday (bring on the bloat) and I’m having a super late dinner tonight. Hopefully I get a maintain, I’ll be happy with that.

Now let me get on and tell you about the emotional rollercoaster ride I’ve been on lately, with the express permission of the aforementioned training buddy.

First let me give you a bit of back story. The last time I made a real good friend at work was about two years ago now. He’d been there for a few months when I started to get the impression that he was vaguely human and I went out of my way to try and talk to him. I do not find that easy. When he moved to my department I tried to encourage him, because I could see that he was going to be a good forklift driver, but it still took me about another twelve months before I became comfortable around him and could count him amongst that elite group of my most excellent friends.

The point I’m trying to make? I do NOT make friends easily – it takes a long, long time. At least that’s what usually happens.

Then my training buddy starts talking to me, and flips my usual system on its head entirely. Within a matter of weeks I have become so incredibly comfortable around him, it’s actually bonkers. I don’t know how this happened. Who even am I?

Especially with work people, normally by now I’d be at the stage of having friendly yet stilted conversation, and mild panic about how much eye contact should be made if I pass them either leaving or entering the building. I am not exaggerating.

Yet I’ve been running with this man, something I thought I couldn’t do in front of anyone, ever. So it’s no wonder that I started falling for this amazing person who has brought out so many good things in me. How could I not?

When I split up with my ex I honestly thought I was done with any kind of romantic feelings. It didn’t happen straight away, but as I started learning to live my life without constantly thinking I should have a romantic partner, I started to love my single life. I still do. I became more independent, but I also started to value existing friendships more and to get excited about forging new ones.

I learned so much about myself – what I do and don’t like, what makes me happy, what makes me miserable and what I want for the future (a dark concept that never held much appeal until recently).

But even so, though all of those things still stand, I was now faced with a situation where I had feelings for someone and it was actually transformative.

All of a sudden things became clear in my mind – I knew that it was unlikely that things would go exactly the way I would like (i.e. he would sweep me off my feet, tell me he felt exactly the same and kiss me passionately) so in all likelihood I would be setting myself up for a crushing rejection.

The difference between me now and me a few years ago is that current Hayley decided that it was worth the risk. This is partly testament to how lovely my friend is, and partly that I’m effing strong.

This me knows that if my feelings aren’t returned then it’s not because I’m worthless. Of course there are nagging doubts (I’m too fat, too tall, too weird… whatever…) but ultimately I know full well that I have a lot to offer a potential partner and that their life would be better for having me in it.

I’ve been feeling awesome these last few weeks. My friend has given me a huge injection of confidence, and I feel lighter (not in weight, but in myself, although I am physically lighter too!) and happier. I’ve been smiling more, I’ve been dancing at work (unheard of) and in the shower and generally loving life. And if things didn’t go the way I wanted, then I decided I’d continue riding the wave of feeling awesome no matter what and just revel in the fact that I was actually brave enough to put myself on the line and tell him how I feel.

Which is lucky, because it did NOT go the way I hoped! After I made the decision to actually tell him, I was then faced with two agonising weeks before I could actually carry out the deed. What with illnesses and the weather I thought I’d never get to do it!

But I told him today, and short of the previously-mentioned fantasy scenario I probably couldn’t have asked for a better outcome. I am certainly no closer to changing my single status than I was this time yesterday, but I still feel good. I sure as hell don’t feel crushed, especially as my awesome friend never once made me feel that the reason he doesn’t want me is because of any shortcoming on my part. Which is good, at least he realises that I am lovely!

I mostly feel like, ok, it’s not meant to be so that’s that. I don’t feel that if I’d done something differently then there’d be a different outcome, it simply is what it is.

Best of all (because this is the thing I had worried most about) our most amazing friendship is completely intact. And that really is the most important thing. I’ve fallen for friends in the past, and when I’ve wanted to remain friends I’ve always said out loud that I wouldn’t risk the friendship for love (or lust, whichever!) but it was never true. I was actually just hoping that they’d change their minds given time. They never did by the way…

In this case it is true – this is one friendship you do not take lightly because they don’t come along often. To mess this up would have been devastating. As it is we had a great training session after me dropping my little truth bomb, then I was treated to a delicious and veggie-filled healthy lunch.

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I’ve also got to admit that there was a certain amount of relief in not facing the prospect of getting naked in front of anyone just yet. Losing 7 stone is not kind on the body and I’m glad to have extra time to come to terms with that. Look at me, still looking for those silver linings!

I have so much coming up to look forward to – I really don’t have a thing to complain about!

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Not Exactly My Week

Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing has gone to plan this week. One of my work friends has started nicknaming me ‘cancelled’, because every time he asks me how something has gone that’s been my reply.

On the flipside, nothing and I honestly mean absolutely nothing at all is going to get me down. There are upsides to everything that has annoyed me.

Obviously training (or lack thereof) has been the biggest annoyance, but then the last couple of days I’ve really struggled with tiredness and last night at work was the final straw. I felt so weak and could hardly lift anything, so when early finishes came up at 4am I grabbed the opportunity and got out of there.

I popped to the 24hr Tesco for some essentials, then tried to have a sing-song in the car on the way home but there was something wrong with my voice. As I stepped through the front door and did five consecutive sneezes I realised that I’m coming down with a bloody cold and that’s why I feel so icky.

Now I have the feeling I was swallowing razor blades in my sleep because my throat is raw, but I’m so happy I’m ill now rather than when the snow is thawed. Come Monday at the latest I reckon I’ll be fighting fit and ready to go, and if training was an option now I’d be furious that my body chose that exact moment to let me down. As it is, it’s all worked out pretty well.

Work has been annoying too, and I’ve officially had enough of the department I’m on at the moment. When you get (via the luck of the draw) decent equipment, then everything runs smoothly and the night flies by. Unfortunately this doesn’t happen very often and it’s just about driven me nuts. I have two nights left to do of this week then one more full week before I’m back on my base department, not that I’m counting. After that it’ll probably be another year before I have to spend any significant time doing that job. See? Upside!

Work hasn’t been terrible in general either. I got talking to a chap on yet another department and it turns out he is an excellent source of advice when it comes to matters of the heart. I also know from experience that he’s completely trustworthy and it was just great chatting with him.

Another work friend has been great too – he picked up that I was in a bit of a mood a few days ago and went out of his way to make me feel better. He was so sweet he almost made me cry!

Yet another work person is becoming a closer friend and that’s just wonderful, especially considering in the past we didn’t get on at all. Plus I got talking to a new-ish man which is really difficult for me because I’m so shy, and it turns out he’s nice too.

I also can’t go on without an honourable mention to my friend who has been getting WhatsApp updates from me at regular intervals (you know who you are!) He never fails to reply with words of advice, so all of these things combined mean that I’m feeling incredibly happy and loved!

The meal out on Sunday with my siblings has been cancelled (see, that word again) or at least postponed until the weather is more predictable. Although I was looking forward to it, I’m also happy that there’s now no temptation to avoid – staying on plan this weekend will be that much easier.

Yesterday after training was cancelled (grr!) I tried to make a snowman as promised but the snow is just way too powdery for that. So instead I took a few pictures, and although they aren’t as sharp as I’d like because it was too windy, and nothing interesting really jumped out at me, I still went out and did something. Something is always better than nothing.

Today I’m having a duvet day, at least until I have to go to work. Rather than struggling on and making everything harder, I’m going to be kinder to myself now, feel better sooner, smash my exercise goals next week.

And sit here feeling smug that despite all of the irritations of the week my eating has been perfect.

Speaking of, it’s time to go and get me some nice warming porridge.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

The Great Outdoors

It has been so flipping cold this week, but at least the sky has had the decency to be blue from time to time. It makes finding the motivation to actually go outside so much easier.

Yesterday me and the brother went on our long walk, and ended up being out for three-and-a-half hours. It was windy, and bitingly cold, but we both had hoods which kept the worst at bay. When I took mine off I actually got brain freeze.

I was working the night before, so we went out about 6:30am, which coincided perfectly with the blue hour (the hour before golden hour).

I checked the light and sky indices using the (free) app GoldenHour.One, which tells you how likely you are to have a nice sky for a decent shot, but I also use it just to tell me whether it’s likely to be a depressing grey day or a nice interesting one. As it happens Thursday is looking to be a stonker!

The skies were lovely and clear yesterday so I managed to get a blue hour shot that I’m really happy with. There’s something really magical about that these times of day. 110218_2479

And my app informed me that the sky index would be quite good. It was right!

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How gorgeous? We did a gentle 7.5 miles, since my brother is way out of practice with his walking after spending most of the summer either fishing or on his motorbike. I was happy with that too actually, since I was feeling pretty tired after all!

I found out that my expensive new boots are in fact waterproof as advertised, which is always nice to know.

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They’re not quite as shiny as when I first got them though…

After we’d finished exploring one half of the nature reserve, we crossed the road to visit the other part which is also home to the visitor centre.

We arrived there at the exact right time, when it was still empty, so we purchased a bag of duck food and sat down for a cup of coffee. Just as we had finished the place started filling up so we moved on to the duck lake.

Before we got there though we met a friendly robin who hopped into a bush just feet from me. And it turns out robins like duck food too. Who knew?

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In fact the robin seemed to like the duck food more than the ducks, who weren’t all that hungry. We did see some tufted ducks, but they were timid and wouldn’t come very near. Mostly it was just seagulls dive bombing and stealing it all.

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By the time we got home I was absolutely exhausted, and vaguely aware that the only thing I’d put into my body since two in the morning was coffee. But I needed sleep more than food, so I had a quick nap.

When I woke up it was a mad rush to get ready to go to my friend’s house. I took him over a load of dirty washing, because I’m nice like that, and we left the washing machine running while we went to the cinema to see Downsizing.

On the drive to the cinema I realised that I was actually ravenously hungry, and Tesco was due to shut in 15 minutes. Once there I just grabbed whatever I could find, which ended up being a vegan sandwich and wrap from the new Wicked range, and some chocolate.

Not the healthiest choices ever, but in terms of calories in vs calories out I reckon I was way in credit for the day, so I don’t feel bad about it at all.

The film was not something I would have chosen to see myself, it’s mainly that the showing time fit in with mine and my friend’s schedules. It wasn’t at all what I expected, and although it’s been slated it’s actually quite an interesting film. Not great, or perhaps not even good, but interesting (if poorly executed). Hardly a glowing review, but there you go!

After that I dropped my friend off, picked up my laundry, then crashed out for an epic sleep. Today I have a day filled with bits and bobs to do, but with the sun shining through my window it’s not all that bad.

From tomorrow I’m looking after my sister’s birds so that should sure keep me busy, training with my friend has been pencilled in for either Wednesday or Thursday, and I’m doing the physical job at work for four weeks that I should have been doing for the last four weeks, only for it to be cancelled. Hopefully it actually happens this time!

I will update again tomorrow with weigh in results, especially since I’ve no clue how it’s going to go.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

 

It’s the Little Things

I’m feeling super duper good today. I’m almost frightened to say it, because whenever I say things like that my mood seems to take a nosedive. But I don’t really believe in that kind of stuff, so here I am saying it anyway. Things are really good!

I’m so thankful that the mood of the last post only lasted a few days. It was intense, and my eating and exercise did suffer, but it went away just as quickly as it arrived.

Yesterday I went out for a family meal, and I wasn’t really feeling it, so I did use food to make myself feel better. We were at Zizzi’s, and their vegan menu is excellent, so I went ahead and ordered my usual – garlic bread to start, peperonata pizza for mains, followed by an insanely delicious chocolate praline torte.

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There was a small amount of vegan cheese on there, but since I stopped eating the real thing I’ve discovered that pizza is all about that base. If the base is on point then I definitely don’t need a cheesy topping, not even the vegan variety. It’s probably also a huge calorie saving, not that it would make that much difference in the course of my decadent meal.

On the plus side I was worried that I’d struggle to get to my 70k steps for the week after such an atrocious start. As it happens I ended up on over 90k and also managed to hit my minimum calorie burn goal (with a couple of thousand on top for good measure).

The best thing though is that I’m not feeling guilty at the moment. I’ve had enough of feeling guilty to last me a lifetime.

Today has been a success on many levels. Although I haven’t eaten entirely on plan, I haven’t eaten unhealthily. I had avocado on toast for lunch which was amazing and great for healthy fats, it just doesn’t fit in easily with Slimming World. I’ll be back to the proper Slimming World way tomorrow though.

In the morning I was at the dentist for 9am for a filling, and after the ordeal of having wisdom teeth removed this was nothing. Having said that I was still shaking when I came out, because I was scared, but I went and did it anyway. And all on my own this time! I also had the hole from the last visit packed out with a dissolvable dressing as food keeps getting in there and was causing pain, and having that done hurt quite a lot. But now it feels so much better and it should heal faster now.

I’m pretty proud of myself for doing two brave things last week, too. At least for me they were brave, so I’m celebrating them even if some may not agree.

Months ago my manager mentioned that he had two 10kg kettlebells that he never uses and said I could have them for free, but then he forgot and I was too shy to ask again. I wondered if he just said that in the moment and didn’t mention it again because he didn’t really want to give them to me.

But this week I decided that I definitely need two kettlebells of the same weight, for certain exercises that I want to do. So I plucked up the courage and reminded him of it even though I felt like a cheeky cow for doing so.

Of course I needn’t have worried, because he was happy to get rid of them. Turns out his memory is just as bad as mine! It seems such a little thing, but for me it’s progress.

I had half an idea of just chilling out after the dentist, but then I decided I wanted to work out so I gave them a little test run. Let’s just say that I’m going to be sore tomorrow!

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The other brave thing I did was simply saying yes. You may remember me telling you about an awesome colleague I got talking to a while back. Well he invited me out hiking, which we should be doing tomorrow as long as it isn’t chucking it down. When he asked a rather large portion of my brain was shouting ‘SAY NO, SAY NO, SAY NO!’ because what if there’s an awkward silence, or what if I fall over and make a fool of myself, or what if a thousand other things? But the new, brave part of my brain just said ‘YES! I’d love to!’ Because after all that’s the absolute truth and I can’t wait.

Besides, I’ll also be christening my new walking boots which I’ve been itching to do.

Apart from the kettlebells today I’ve also been hula hooping, and I’m going to jump on the exercise bike in a little while too. I’m wearing a pair of leggings and a sports bra, and although I’d never leave the house like this (for now) I’m feeling really body-positive today.

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I don’t know exactly how I feel about my weight at the moment, because I’m stressing myself out and getting too desperate to get to target. It’s a shame it has the opposite effect and makes me want to eat.

But then again I need to keep my goals in the forefront of my mind because I can’t afford to let things slip. Otherwise before I know it I’ll be back where I started.

At the moment I feel like I’m walking on a tightrope!

So I’m now hunting for some middle ground, because I don’t want to get into a binge/purge cycle and I can see myself heading that way. I’m thinking of trying to focus on enjoyment. It’s been working with the exercise this week. Yoga was getting boring when I was doing it every single day, so apart from the basic exercises I’m doing that need consistency (press-ups, squats etc) then I’m just doing what’s fun.

I want to do the same with food – I really want to normalise the healthier foods that I like and eat them because I want to, not because they’ll make me thin. I hope this makes sense. Because although I won’t really be eating differently, the way I feel about food will hopefully change so that one day I won’t have to be constantly aware of what I’m putting into my body.

That’s the plan anyhoo.

Now I need to going and get my bits ready for hiking tomorrow, because it’s going to be cold. And while I’m on that subject I’m still waiting for my friend to reply to confirm when we are meeting tomorrow. To be honest a tiny little part of my mind is expecting something to go wrong and he’ll cancel, but I’m trying to shut it up.

I need to start thinking about what can go right!

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Back on the Right Track

I weighed myself this morning and let out the most enormous sigh of relief – I lost 3.5 lbs! That takes my total loss to 6 st 6 lbs and leaves me with 2 st 2 lbs to go till I reach target. I’m still convinced I wouldn’t have lost much if I hadn’t been so, so good, but who cares? It worked out for the best!

Today there is no time to relax. I’ve just completed my 10k steps for the day, nice and early so anything more is a bonus, and once this blog is finished I’m jumping on the exercise bike for a 30 minute workout. Then tonight I’ll be on my feet for 7.5 hours too, and it all adds up. After my workout and a shower I’ll try my best to get a pre-work nap, otherwise I will struggle big time to get through my shift.

I’ve been doing some calculations and if I stay on track (I intend to) and don’t let anything distract me (as I did in the whole second half of last year) then I can comfortably be at target by the 1st of May. It would be so amazing to be there before my holiday, which is at the end of May. I just have to stay focussed. For now though I will put that goal out of my mind because it’s too far away, and just concentrate on the next seven days.

I’ve reached my first goal of the year – to get back into the 14 stone bracket, and if I lose 2 lb I’ll get my 6-and-a-half stone award back. Fingers crossed.

There really isn’t much else for me to tell you, so I’ll keep it short and sweet for today. I just had to tell you about my results though, didn’t I!

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Remember This Day

I use Google to backup all of my photos, and every now and then I get a little ‘remember this day’ notification pop up. I think it’s a sign that my life is actually pretty good that I look back on these memories either with ‘that was cool, I’d love to do that again’, ‘what an awesome day that was’ or ‘boy I’m glad things have changed since then’.

Today’s reminder was from 2015. My boyfriend at the time’s niece had been given a camera for Christmas and we’d gone over to be her guinea pigs. I knew I’d hate the photos of me, but I also knew I was ready to start trying to lose weight again and they would serve as excellent ‘before’ photos. As it happened it was another year-and-a-half before I really knuckled down and started losing weight, but they are still handy for that purpose.

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I’d say I’m pretty pleased with my progress so far, even if it isn’t quite as fast right now as I’d like to be!

When I was last in work I got talking to the most awesome man. I instantly liked him anyway when he first started a few months ago, because he is simply so full of life. Most newbies especially are so dejected, as they often don’t realise how much physical work can be involved working in a warehouse, but this guy looks as if nothing on earth could bring him down. Sometimes it’s like he’s like the only alive person in a sea of ghosts, and I can’t help but grin whenever he passes. He is an awesome dude.

As if that wasn’t already enough he also used to be overweight so he knows the struggle, and when I mentioned I wanted to get fitter he was so encouraging! He even offered to draw me up a running plan and assured me that anyone can run, even if they don’t think they have it in them. I don’t think I’m ready to start seriously thinking about running yet, even though it’s something I’m always considering in the back of my head.

He got an early finish from work because he was going out running that morning with his daughter, and that was just the icing on top of a very awesome cake. What a fantastic geezer, and how nice to take the number of people at work who share an interest with me up to the grand total of two!

This morning I got up when my alarm went off at 7am. As soon as I moved I realised I had the most atrocious headache, and my first thought was finally. I haven’t gone mad, it’s just that a really thumping headache is a sure sign that my hormones are sorting themselves out and things will surely improve. So I took some painkillers and laid down for another hour.

Sure enough once they’d kicked in I was back to my normal self, so I got up, had breakfast and walked into town. The weather this morning was bloody awful but thankfully I brought my camera with me because what did I see but a pair of these!

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Nope, they are not floating, feathery quenelles. They are young swans! I was especially excited because I haven’t seen swans in the local park for years. At least not since the council filled in their favourite pond and built a housing estate on top of it.

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I do hope they stick around, although they were nowhere to be seen on my way back home again. There wasn’t much to be seen at all though, as it was pouring down with rain at this point and only the ducks were still out and about.

Now I have a whole load of fairly boring stuff to do with the rest of my day so I’d best get on. I may be hindered by the fact that I have everything crossed for weigh in tomorrow. Wish me luck!

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x