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st lover’s day…

I do believe no-one will buy me flowers today. And I’d probably frown on them if they did. Why buy flowers just because there is a day marketed on the calendar and the prices are jacked up? It’s the same problem I have with RUOKday. Why ask people if they’re ok only one day a year? To me it seems less than genuine and it’s why I don’t like it. I don’t like things that seem forced or are instigated. If you actually care about someone then you’ll find ways to show them you love them on a regular basis. You won’t wait for one day of the year to do it. You will find times to ask people if they’re ok more than once a year. Because let’s face it, when people ask me if I’m ok on RUOKday I feel like punching them in the face. If people care enough to notice that I’m down or struggling any other time of the year, I am likely to feel they care. 

Consistency is the key people. If you care enough about a person, then you will be there asking how they are, and showing your love any time. If you need a hallmark day on the calendar to remind you to express your feelings, then I challenge you that they are not actually there. I challenge you that your feelings are not strong enough to give voice to. 

I don’t think this idea is new to anyone, I just felt the need to give voice to my opinion. I believe that @ericalick put it best yesterday on facebook when she said: “If you feel like you need to remind your significant other how much you love them on Valentine’s Day, you’re doing every other day wrong.” 

I’d agree. Live to the fullest everyday. Feel what you feel everyday. Don’t wait for a day on the calendar to express a feeling. If it’s real you don’t need February 14 to express it. 

 

All of the above said, I’m not one to steal anyone else’s fun times.. so if you want to celebrate love.. go for it… you don’t need my permission…. 😛

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For those of you who know, I worked hard last year and I lost 30kg. I have always been the chumpy kid, and as I grew up nothing changed. In fact I got chumpier. I do not have a natural athletic ability, I never have and I never will. But I got to a point where I stopped comparing myself against other people and started competing against myself. I got to a point where for the first time in my life I was able to run, and became quite fit. I was really enjoying my new level of fitness, mentally, physically, emotionally. It felt there was little that would get in my way… How wrong I was.

I fell off a dirt bike in April this year, I hyper-extended my knee and landed on it the wrong way round, basically snapping or damaging 3 of the 4 main ligaments in my knee. I ended up having surgery, and a number of months of rehabilitation. I am still going through physiotherapy and rehabilitation, and I will be to some degree for at least the next year or so if not longer…

Last night I went back to the gym for the first time since April. I went to my first spin class, and oh how I have missed the endorphins. I don’t think the class went particularly well, and I felt extremely unfit and unable, that is until I realised I am back to comparing myself against others. As far as I could tell, I was the only person in that room last night returning from major surgery and at my first session back, and I know I am the only person who is me.

Back in the day when I used to be obese, my excuses for not exercising amounted to laziness. Essentially, I was able to exercise, I just didn’t want to. When I did start going to the gym on a regular basis, I found that there was very little I couldn’t do. I would improve each session and I would slash through my previous best efforts. Each gym session I was happy to push the limits, and I was happy to go further than before.

Last night when I went I felt victim to my body. For the first time in a long time, I was no longer in charge of the body; I was instead being limited by it. I felt scared to push the limits, and scared of doing more damage. I still worked hard last night on my spin bike, but I felt I didn’t work as hard as I might have previously. In some ways, I feel that my body is failing. In the mind, I am ready, willing and able to get on the bike and ride my little ass off, quite literally! But my body just doesn’t respond the way I want it to.

Over the time I have been immobilised, disabled, incapacitated, call it what you will! I have struggled against this leg with a mind of its own. I have also managed to put on 2-3kg. I want to move that and even more. It’s action time. Even now, there are few excuses I will allow myself to make when it comes to doing the things I want to do.

In a way, it’s an important lesson for me to learn. I am going to be a nurse/midwife at the end of next year. I will have patients who are not in charge of their bodies. Patients who have the willpower and motivation but a body that won’t co-operate.

I guess in a way the hardest part of all of this is that it’s not quite mind over matter. In a sense, mind over matter is a good attitude to have, but I need to be careful to listen to the demands of my leg and not push beyond its capabilities. Because pushing too far would be the ultimate casualty here. But I will continue in my determination. Can you guys help me…? Losing the weight again is not going to be easy…. I’ll need encouragement…

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Another year on….

 


 

 

It’s the time of year that does this to me…. It’s the drawing to a close of the calendar year, and a new one beginning.. A new year looming around the corner…. I know… It’s petty to place such importance on the click of a clock and the flip of a calendar page.. But really… If there is something that prompts you to take stock, sit back and re-evaluate… So sit back and allow me to take stock on this arbitrary turn of a page….

I think it can only be a positive thing to sit back and see where life is taking you. To apply some form of a measure to your life and see whether in fact progress has been made.. I do believe life is not a race, but nothing wrong with trying to grab all you can from it…. And that’s what I want… I wanna get to the other end and know I did the best I could… If you don’t measure where you came from, then how can you plan to do better next time?

So while I sit here and justify away the way I am feeling and what I am thinking.. I have been deciding on my next goals.. the next things I want to achieve…. I guess putting these goals up here is my way of putting it out into the universe.. nothing wrong with that….. so here are my goals for 2011.

1. Lose the last 5kg on my weight loss journey.. This is proving almost harder to lose than the first 30 was to lose.. :-/ But I can do it…

2. I want to get no parking tickets in 2011. And that will be quite the feat.. Coming from me…. Maybe aim for no speeding tickets too? Should be easy right?

3. I would like to start developing myself professionally. I’d like to start doing some professional networking. Even if only to gain some support networks in a professional sense. I have gained some contacts already. And I’d like to build on that… #MidwiferyRelated

4. I will stop smoking. For those who know me.. I smoke on occasion.. Once a week, to once a fortnight. It’s sporadic. Usually when I am drinking… And I wanna stop it all together.. I am done. It’s not healthy and it’s not helping any of my fitness aspirations…

5. I wanna complete the half marathon… To do this I will need to run like a mad fucker.. Which will no doubt help with goal no. 1.

6. For once and for all I will sort out my issues with boys and relationships.. or at least I might work out what they are…I’m not suggesting I will have everything sorted.. By gawd, that’d be a ridiculous thought.. But at least I might learn what it is that I’m working with…. :-/

7. I won’t stop making mistakes. Cos making mistakes is how you learn new things…. and I learn things the hard way. Which I am ok with…. I discovered a long time ago it is the only way for me….

8. I will not make any silly resolutions about becoming neater, more organized or more punctual. Cos I know they won’t last… I am who I am and I am happy with it… 😀

9. Next year I plan to achieve better results on my assignments and exams… But that is achievable right?

10. I will treasure every moment I get to spend with my family. New and old. New and old moments and new and old family…. On that note… I will call my sister more often, and I will eye-roll less often….. :-S

Nothing wrong with setting a goal right? I mean.. If I set no goals then I have no idea which direction I am headed in….. And though I can’t read a map, and probably never will.. At least I ought to know what direction I am headed in for the next year…. This my little neglected bloggy blog might see some rather large changes coming to it…

What are your plans for 2011? Is there any way I can encourage you? xxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Merry Fucking Christmas Kids!!! And a happy new year…….. xxxxxx

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For those who have followed my story for some time.. You will know I have been on a weight loss rampage.. I have been working very hard and over the last 10 or so months I have lost 27kg. I have lost 30cm off my waist line, and I have re-discovered life. I was feeling fitter and stronger than I ever had. I even learnt how to run…. And run I did…. But you can read more about my rampage here.

The point is: I have done it. I have lost the weight, and now I am just keeping it off, as well as enjoying the spoils of my new body… I am enjoying all the new things I can do.. I love watching people’s faces when I tell them I used to be 27kg heavier than I am now… I can’t lie.. I *do* love that reaction!!!!! Most have a look which is a combination of shock/horror/disbelief on their faces….

I also love all the new things I can do.. I can run, I can lift weights and I can run up the stairs at work without being puffed… I can wear pretty mini-skirts and short shorts and most of all.. I feel as though I look on the outside how I have always felt on the inside… Only better…. So all in all.. I am pretty proud…

I was at uni earlier this year with my special friend K… She and I were first googling some errr.. funny stuff :-S , all in the name of education, and then we got to talking.. We decided to do a half-marathon…. I was dubious to begin with… But I was willing to try…. And try I did.. K and I embarked upon some serious training and between us we racked up some decent k’s worth of running… We were on top of the world.. We were training like mo-fo’s…. And we were doing well.. smashing it out.. Both of us noticing some major toning going on and just general overall fitness… It was great…

But here’s the thing.. I have sciatica. Google it. But it’s basically got to do with the compression of the sciatic nerve which runs directly down the centre of each buttock. It causes a huge amount of pain and can cause some numbness. It can come on suddenly with twisting or turning the torso and thus compressing the nerve. It can be resultant from strenuous exercise or from a bulging disc etc. I happen to think my spine is likely to be out of alignment. And it’s something I am going to have to have looked at. Last year when I got up suddenly after a lecture, I was so crippled with the pain of it that I could not stand. My legs just wouldn’t work. And the pain was so excruciating. I have never felt anything worse in my life…..

Anyhow, all of this fun…..? How could my training possibly go wrong? Right? RIGHT? Nooooooooo!! So while I was on placement this year, training slipped a little.. You’ll have to excuse me…. But the 7-day-weeks were a little hard to handle. And training was tough to make.. But Idid keep it up.. Instead of training 5-6 days a week, I slipped to 2-3 times a week… That’s not so bad…..? Is it….?

Then a few weeks ago… I went to hit the treadmill for a big run.. I was ready.. I was well-prepared mentally… But as I started to run, I noticed my legs were losing feeling as I would run.. Which was *very* hard to handle… Numb legs are not that easy to control.. It was hard to handle.. The first time that my body was not allowing me to train… Even though I am at the peak of my fitness… I mean, I have trained so hard before that I fall to the floor in exhaustion.. I have trained so hard my body can’t take another step…. But this was something new.. My body wasn’t even going to let me exert myself so far… My body quite simply: WASN’T WORKING!!

So it is without further ado that I get to my point… I have withdrawn the half marathon and downgraded to the 10km.. I will try for the half next year.. I can’t do everything….. Not this time…… This time last year I fell off the treadmill when I put the speed up to 8km an hour.. Now I can run at 11km an hour for at least 20 mins straight.. And all. without. falling. off!!!!!!!!!

Needless to say… K is amazing and will be running the half on Sunday without me.. That girl is an inspiration. And with her help, I will get to the half next year.. That’s if she’ll still wanna do it again…..?

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Ok.. so it was through a quick little conversation on twitter tonight that I got to thinking.. It was something I was thinking of earlier too.. I had a conversation during the day as well..  I saw an old face from the past.. It was a very special friend who I hadn’t seen for about 5 or so years…

The friend I am referring to made a comment about a particular location in Melbourne. I shrugged saying I didn’t know where that place was, and I probably never would know.. I made the flippant comment: “It might well have been 5 years, I still have no sense of direction and I probably never will….”

It got me to thinking… And bear with me on this…

There are a number of traits about me I don’t like, and a number of traits which my family don’t like, and in general I am sure can be very irritating.. Though I am coming to a place where I am starting to accept some of these things about me.. I am seeing that they are what they are.. No point in worrying over them.. I mean, why make myself more miserable with worry right?

So here are some of the things I can’t, won’t ever be able to do well….

1. I have no sense of direction, and I can’t read a map. I won’t be able to, but I will always leave myself plenty of time to get somewhere when I am going somewhere uncertain. Will I offer to navigate when others are involved? Probably not.

2. I can’t drive a car. I don’t do it well. I never have. And I can safely say that 8 years into having my license, I’d expect to have mastered the basics by now. But no. I haven’t. And I won’t. I will improve, and I will do my best to be safe, but drive well.. I will never do. Teach my own children to drive one day? I think it best I don’t. I prefer not to drive if there is another licensed driver in my company.. Both because I value my life, and theirs…

3. I can’t eat what I want, when I want. I have now lost all this weight… (see here) but this is a lifestyle change… I will never be able to eat what I want, when I want. Unless I want to eat lettuce, brocolli, and snowpeas everyday for the rest of my life and never eat another slice of cheesecake. 😛

4. I am not good at computer related tasks. Sure I can use a computer, and I can usually type stuff into it, but the minute something goes wrong I am cactus. It all confuses me…

5. I can’t seem to be on time.. for anywhere… I mean, you know.. for real life.. everyday stuff… like uni and so on… I always feel like I am in a rush to get out the door.. I always seem to forget something.. I run inside my house usually once, sometimes twice before I manage to drive away.. Badly…

6. I am as clumsy and unco-ordinated as they come. If there is a cake to drop on it’s top, then I will do it. If there is a knife I can slice through my finger with, I will. If I am carrying a bucket of water, I can be as careful as possible, it is guaranteed I will drop some somewhere.. If I can somehow manage to rip something I will.. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t *try* to do these things.. They kinda just happen.. I try my best.. But this just seems to be the natural pattern…

7. Maths- counting.. I mean, I can count from 1-infinity. But I can’t add, subtract, divide or multiply anything more than simple equations. I can’t do it. My mind boggles, and all the numbers running around in there just look like that number-ghetti they sell in the baked bean aisle…

8. Walking- I don’t do that well.. I seem to fall down quite a bit more than the average adult.. I mean, I had hoped it would be something I would grow out of.. Now I just tend to stay away from climbing up ladders, and you know.. general tasks which require balance or precision in any way.. I’m not too fussed.. I just won’t be table-top dancing any time in my life… Which some ppl might be happier to hear than not… 😛

Ok.. I think those are enough negative things for now.. But in all honesty.. I don’t see them as all that negative.. I see these things about me as fact.. I am who I am.. I can’t worry myself about it too much.. It is what it is.. I mean, there will never be a day I live where I don’t try to improve myself… But all I can do is try.. and at the end of the day, isn’t it better to be real and accept those things I can’t change..? Be content with what they are. But accept and be who I am in the same moment…? Can that be done? Is that my realist attitude? Or is it one of pessimism? I guess I don’t love these things about me.. But I recognise that I can fight the tide and end up MORE frustrated with the things I can’t change.. Or I can accept me as I am and be pleasantly surprised with any improvements I happen to manage…..?

I am not too worried about the things I can’t do.. I am not going to focus on those.. I’ll do my best, and fake the rest.. I don’t know that there’s anything wrong with knowing where my strengths and weaknesses lie.. it’s just a realistic attitude to have right?

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So I have been working at losing weight for some time now. I have been asked by a few people what it is that I have been doing. Over the years I have done a lot of reading on diet and exercise and healthy living. I have not always been the pillar of health, but I guess I have tried to adapt what I have read and what I found worked into a plan that worked for me. Most importantly, I decided last November to make *me* a priority. Since then, I lost 25kg, I lost 30cm off my hips, I learned how to run, and I gained life…. Here is a few little areas of my life that were “out of shape” and here’s what I did about it….

Eating

I eat healthily. I eat frequently, and I eat for fuel. I plan my food for the day. I think about it before it happens. I think about it beforehand so that I am not trying to decide what to eat when I am FUNGRY. I don’t like to be trying to pick something to eat when I am hungry. Cos I will go for the carbiest filled meal there is.

I don’t eat carbs much at all. I eat a diet high in protein, and low in fat. I don’t eat those lo-fat meals or those “diet” meals. I don’t like them, they are full of sugar. I focus on eating salads, vege’s, and protein. This fills me up so I don’t eat more, and the protein helps with muscle repair.

I usually have a high-protein meal replacement smoothie for breakfast as it is a routine. It is high-protein. It fills me up. And it is healthy. I usually don’t feel hungry again til mid-morning. And in fact, I rarely let myself feel hungry. I always carry water and food on me so that I don’t. It was hard in the early days, but now I am no longer in a habit of just eating because I am bored or sad… It’s a lot easier…

Drinking

I drink 2-3L of water a day. I have a 750ml bottle and it gets filled 3-4 times a day. I don’t drink tea or juices. And I don’t drink any flavoured drinks. I do however allow myself one coffee a day. This is because of research I have seen which states that getting caffeine into your bloodstream not only wakes you up, but it also helps to reduce the pain caused by exercise. I read somewhere too that caffeine has something to do with the metabolism of food and can aid in weight loss. I only drink 1 cup a day, and am very strict about maintaining that amount. If I am tired and feel the need for a coffee in the late afternoon, I will eat an apple. It works. Getting off the coffee won’t be easy for some. But strict limits of a maximum of 2 cups per day! And NO JUICE! NO CORDIAL, NO SOFT DRINKS.

All of this being said, I haven’t even touched on ALCOHOL!!! I made myself a rule that I only drink on weekends. I think it is far too easy to drink every night. There are a few reasons for this. When drinking alcohol. So often, this means that you eat certain foods with it. Cheese, wine, sandwiches etc.

I drink on weekends. Weekends can be a little hard to define, but I define them as Friday and Saturday night. On occasion there might be an event during the week where I know I will want to drink. As a result I will forfeit one of my 2 “weekend” nights. These rules are strict. But they work.

Sleeping

All this talk of alcohol and coffee brings me to sleep. It is particularly important to limit coffee in relation to sleep. I don’t have coffee after 3pm in the afternoon. It would interfere with sleep too much. And while you may not lie awake at night tossing and turning just because you’ve had a coffee, it does keep you more alert and more awake, so more likely to head to bed later.

As far as sleep goes, it is important to try to get 8 solid hours a night. If this can’t be achieved, then 7 solid hours is good too. I try to make sure that I get a solid sleep. As you may know sleep is responsible for restorative processes in the body. But these restorative processes can’t be happening in the earlier stages of sleep. They happen in the latter stages of sleep. Obviously sleep can be helped by regular exercise. It’s a bit of a vicious cycle in that regard.

Exercising

Ingredients I can’t live without for exercise. iPod, good sports bra, good sneakers and good socks.

Each day at night before I go to bed, I consciously reflect on my day and what exercise I have done for the day. I also then think about the day to come and what exercise I will do for the day to come. I think about where I am going for the next day, how can I fit in my exercise.

When I exercise I like to make sure I sweat. I like to make sure I work up a sweat. I like to work so hard that the sweat pours off my head. I like to push myself. I like to push myself harder than I did the day before. And when I get to the end of my workout, I like to make sure that I need a full 15 minutes to sit down and recover before I can think about taking another step.

When I work out, I mix it up. I like to ride, lift weights, and I like to box. These are exercises that work for me. I also like to improve on my exercise, each time I go. I like to stride out faster, harder and stronger. The tracking of this is made easier through apps that the iPhone has. Some track the distance, and some just track the time.

Socialising

I think that in any diet, any change of lifestyle, it is important to have a balance. It is important to maintain this balance. Part of socializing is unfortunately food, and this is where so many of us come undone. Because we meet with friends and family and enjoy good food. But what I did do, is set aside a rule that I have one break day a week. This break day is something I plan at the start of the week, and on said day, I can eat whatever I want. It means I don’t have to go without birthday cake when my family has a birthday, or I can enjoy some pizza with my brother when I go visit… It means I don’t feel like I am missing out on too much…

In the end, I haven’t missed out.. I have gained so much more… The journey continues.. My next goal? To run 10km in an hour… Where to from here? I stole the keys to the skkkkyyyyyyyy!!!!

Before

after

after

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So what was I saying? Oh yes.. How much harder it is to walk away from someone who you think you are in love with than what it is to walk away from someone you don’t give two shits about… In the end, it is harder to walk away from someone who has anxiety and depression issues, someone who is a compulsive liar, suffers from obsessive compulsive disorder… Someone who deals with all these issues with substance abuse..

So I walked away.. I knew it would be better for him to stand up on his own, and I knew it would be better for me.. I would not need to drown any longer. I would not need to fight to stay alive.. For such a long time I neglected myself in caring for him, and it was never returned..

I got to a point where I had given and given and I could give no more.. I gave him every chance to change.. Some would say I am even stupid for doing that.. When you love someone it can sometimes be hard to see their true colours.. It can be hard to tell who they truly are… As I have said, some would call me stupid for not leaving any earlier.. Some would call me stupid that I didn’t leave at the first sniff of trouble… That I didn’t leave the first time my money went missing.. The first time my jewellery was stolen…

For a long time I forgot who I was.. I forgot what I wanted out of life.. I became consumed with trying to rescue this human being from certain fate. I don’t really know why I but I thought I could rescue him.. I thought I could help him.. I don’t know why.. But I did.. I guess I wanted to believe it was possible that he could be alive again, that he could amount to something… But I don’t know that he ever will.. I think he has all but given up now…

I have always believed the best in people. I have always believed that people can achieve anything they set out to.. And I guess I still believe that…

For a long time… I was angry.. But then gradually, the anger just turned to sadness.. And now it stays as sadness… I am sad for the life he has lost, for all the things he could have become that he hasn’t. I am sad that he couldn’t fix himself. And neither could I…

But it taught me a very important lesson.. I can’t help everyone.. Even if I try..

And when I look back on it now, I may not have been able to help him.. But I learnt… As I said, I learnt that I can’t help everyone.. I can help me, and I can most certainly help those who want it, to help themselves…

I think I still feel a certain amount of guilt about leaving him.. But that will pass, as will the anger.. And most of all… I can’t believe that this person I thought I knew and loved, I didn’t actually know at all. I guess that is the hardest part of it…

I guess I understand though why I went for him in the first place… *Breathe in, breathe out* About to admit something here… I liked the feeling that I was needed.. I liked the feeling that I could bring something to someone’s life.. It was nice to be able to be important to someone…

But I have learnt I can’t be reliant upon other people for how I feel.. I need to feel and be who I am all on my own.. I need to be happy without someone else.. I need to be happy with me….

I learnt that I need to be consistent.. I learnt that I am a good, positive person, who is deserving of. so. much. more.

I need someone who loves, respects and accepts me for me. I need someone who brings out the best in me, who encourages me.

Of Slagathor, I believed the best. I believed he *would* change. I believed he *could*. Of this I am certain.. But whether he wanted to is a completely different story.. Whether he was strong enough to do the things required to change are another thing..

People always tell me that I am a strong person.. But you know what.. I don’t feel like I am.. I don’t feel like I am any different. What I do feel is that I have a choice. In every situation I have a choice, and I set the bar high for myself. If that makes me strong then ok… I’ll take that… But I don’t feel like I am.. I feel like I am just a girl who is trying to do my best.. I would expect no more or less of anyone else…

So here I am.. I left Slagathor behind… I left him to deal with himself… I left him to sort his mess out… I don’t need him or anyone else to tell me that I am worthy of more.. And so I continue to learn more about myself than I ever thought possible. And through learning, I continue to grow… All I ever want is to be better than I was yesterday.. That is all I want…

In the end, I might not have it all figured out.. But I trying to do the best I can.. I am glad, cos without all of this having happened in my life, I may not have had the motivation or the guts to do what I am doing now.. I am studying a double degree in nursing/midwifery.. Which I just *know* I was meant to do.. I have just lost 16kg, and I am getting fit and taking control of my life…

It’s a happy ending for me.. Cos I can be who I am… I can be the best me….

(For those who missed part 1 it’s here)

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