Monday, January 31, 2011

Good day/bad day

Yesterday was like one of those good news/bad news comics.

Bad news: I rolled over and turned off my alarm at 6am instead of going for a run.
Good news: I found time to go for a run at 4pm instead.

Bad news: I didn't run as far (only 3km) because I don't think my body likes afternoon runs as much as morning ones.
Good news: I finished off with some hill runs - run up the hill, walk down, repeat.

Bad news: I ate fish and chips for dinner because it was my mum's birthday.
Good news: I offered to bring a salad, and ate lots of salad and only a dozen chips.

Bad news: My partner left for the airport for another week away, at 9pm and it was hard to get the kids to bed. I ended up being awake until almost 3am once I finished my calendar (deadline today) and did the dishes, and had a Matso's ginger beer and a handful of lollies to keep me going.
Good news: I only drank one ginger beer, despite there being a six-pack in the fridge, and only ate a handful of lollies despite there being other junk food in the house.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Greek-inspired lamb & feta salad

According to Calorie King this comes out at about 270cals each. I spread some home-made dukkah on the lamb before cooking, but just a smidgen - as it’s home-made I really can’t be bothered working out the calories for it so that is not included. I also just made it up with the salad veges I had on hand, so you could substitute, but the stuff I had on hand made me think 'Greek salad', hence the title.

Ingredients (serves 2):
200g lean lamb leg steaks
olive oil spray
half (90g) a large pack mixed leaf salad
1 lebanese cucumber, sliced in semi-circles
1/2 a yellow capsicum, sliced
a small amount red onion, diced
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
handful snow pea sprouts
60g reduced-fat feta cheese
juice of approx half a lemon
1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Cook the lamb, either grill, or use an olive oil spray and cook in a non-stick frypan or chargrill pan, cook to taste (I did 3-4 mins each side) and rest.
Meanwhile, combine all the salad veges in a large bowl, crumble the feta over the top. Shake/mix lemon juice & vinegar together and dress the salad just before serving.

This felt really indulgent and even my partner really liked it (he usually wants everything to come with pasta, rice or potato). I didn’t measure my ingredients exactly (except the meat and cheese) so please give me feedback on the quantities I’ve written, if you try it. You could easily add more salad veges without upping the calorie count much.

And, like any salad, so quick!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Excuses, excuses

Ah, the excuses I make to myself for not exercising.

I'm too tired.
It's too hot.
I don't have time.
I don't feel well.

None of them original, all of them oft-used.

You know what? Get over it. Just do it! And if I don't do it one day, do it the next, until those excuses are squashed for good.

One that I really struggle with is "I'll look silly", or "I won't be good at it". This has been part of my personality since I was a child: my mother often tells me the story of when she tried to teach me to knit, and when I couldn't pick it up within a couple of days, I threw the needles away and never tried again! (For the record, I taught myself to knit a few years ago, mostly from YouTube videos. I did ALMOST reach the point of throwing the needles away again first, though.)

I'm a Virgo, and though I'm not a huge astrological devotee, one Virgo personality trait that fits is that I am a pedant; a perfectionist. In some ways, this is good, but like many personality traits there are two sides to the coin. If I can't do something well, I would rather not do it at all.

Co-ordination has never been my strong point. I ran, in school, because that didn't require any, except the basic co-ordination required not to fall over. I never danced at school socials, because I don't do it well - in fact, I still don't dance at most social events unless I'm tipsy.

When I joined a gym six months ago, I tried one Zumba class and hated it, because I could not get those moves. I doubt anyone was paying any attention to me, but I just couldn't hack being so bad at it. RPM is more my style because all you have to do is go slow or fast! Similarly, I never did the resistance exercises that the trainer recommended, because I didn't know if I did them right and I didn't want to be told that I wasn't.

But you know what? I am an adult now; I need to get over this.

I did a kickboxing workout DVD tonight, and without anyone watching, it was FUN, even though I didn't get all the moves. Maybe I'll work up the courage to try a Body Combat class or something. One day.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Today was a Bad Parenting Day. My eight-year-old is pushing all my buttons - probably a combination of being the end of school holidays, and her dad being away for the week. Oh, and I am a Mean Mum because I didn't take all three of them down to the crowded foreshore on my own, for the fireworks ...

In the past, when I've had those days, as soon as I've gotten all the children to bed I've drowned my sorrows in food. If there was no junk food I'd make some, or eat healthy food but so much of it that it wasn't healthy.

I'd like to say I resisted temptation and exercised instead, but I wasn't *that* good. I had a vodka, fresh-squeezed lime juice & soda water (ignoring the six-pack of alcoholic ginger beer that is in my fridge), and 10g of dark chocolate (I have some individually-wrapped chocolate thins). And I sat and had it slowly, and enjoyed it, and that was enough.

As the title says, babysteps.

And what am I doing up? Painfully ekeing out that March calendar for work, doing up an invoice for the article I wrote, and trying NOT to procrastinate by blogging!

Weigh-in Wednesday

Apparently Weigh-in Wednesday is a tradition in the 12WBT, and since I obtained my starting weight last Wednesday, I thought I'd start keeping track even though it's only pre-season.

Last week: 81.1kg
This week: 79.6kg

I lost 1.5kg!

I'm stoked, because I've only been following the food plan since Friday, and have only exercised hard on two days. The other days it's just been my normal incidental exercise - walking to/from bus stops, chasing the kids around, housework.

I am feeling confident that once I establish good exercise routines I am going to ROCK this.

Monday, January 24, 2011


The 12WBT is only in pre-season; I'm trying to use this time to really get in the right headspace and iron out any hiccups. Mostly working on the food, because with my partner away and school not back for another week and a half, it's hard to get any exercise more strenuous than just walking and playing with the kids. I pulled out the Wii Fit for 40 minutes, but still only burned just under 200 calories - it just really doesn't burn that many.

So, what are my biggest issues with food?

First things first

Breakfast. Even when I was very fit as a teen, breakfast was an issue for me. I don't like the typical easy breakfast foods (cereal, toast) and I just don't feel like eating in the morning. I'm one of those people that could go right through until about 2pm hardly eating anything - of course the problem there is firstly that my metabolism wasn't getting kick-started, and secondly that I ate heaps at night to make up for it.

I'm working on it. I have my breakfasts planned, and I will make them, even though that means getting up earlier. I'll pick a couple that are easiest for me, and use them over and over. If all else fails, I'll boil an egg and grab a piece of fruit.


I suffer from social anxiety. I am one of those people who hangs out by the food table at a gathering, because if I'm eating, I don't have to talk to people. Plus, the people I socialise with make awesome food, and most of it is healthy-ish, in that it's home-made from real, wholefood ingredients. Healthy in small doses, not if I eat five of those muffins even if they *are* made with wholemeal flour, nuts and minimal sugar.

What am I going to do about it? I haven't worked that out yet. I guess it is time to push beyond that comfort zone, to stay away from the food table and work on striking up conversations.

Fear of failure

I don't want to say "I am changing the way I eat", or "I am going to lose weight", because what if I don't? Everyone will know I've failed!

This blog is that work in progress! I've told my partner and some friends that I am doing this. Hopefully that is enough.

It all comes down to this in the end

Night times are my downfall. I am - no, wait, I was, an emotional eater. All the stresses add up and when I finally get all the children to bed, that is MY time, and I need to reward myself ... by eating. Eating the things that I don't want the children to eat or to see me eating.

Well, while my partner is away, there won't be any late-night shop runs to buy junk, so if there's no junk in the house, I can't eat it. It's not as simple as that, because I could eat six pieces of toast and that would still be a bad thing. Hell, I have a Thermomix, I could make custard in seven minutes with virtually no effort.

But, I won't. I just won't.

Tonight I hopped on the Wii instead. So, even if I only burned 200 calories, I didn't take any in, which is a huge thing for me. I have a deadline on Friday morning so it's not bedtime yet, but I will not eat. I am not hungry (that is the truth! It's all habit).

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Meal plan

This week's meal plan! My partner's away this week, so plenty of leftovers. Most of the recipes come from the Crunch Time Cookbook.


Breakfast: poached eggs on garlic toast with wilted spinach
Lunch: chicken & eggplant pita bread
Dinner: pumpkin soup (makes leftovers)


Breakfast: beans on toast with fried egg (put aside leftover bean mix)
Lunch: [leftovers]pumpkin soup
Dinner: lentil, leek & mushroom loaf (makes leftovers)


Breakfast: porridge with berries
Lunch: salad sandwich
Dinner: minestrone (makes leftovers)


Breakfast: fruit & muesli
Lunch: [leftovers]minestrone
Dinner: beef, chickpea, tomato & basil salad


Breakfast: cottage cheese toast with tomato & rocket
Lunch: tuna & salad wrap
Dinner: [leftovers]lentil, leek & mushroom loaf


Breakfast: fruit & muesli
Lunch: [leftovers]minestrone
Dinner: kangaroo sausages with sweet potato mash


Breakfast: spiced pear and ricotta toast
Lunch: chilli beef stir-fry
Dinner: [leftovers]pumpkin soup


Confession time: I don't like dieting, I hate the dieting industry. However, I need to lose about 15kg, and more importantly, inches off my waist as my waist measurement puts me in the high-risk category for heart disease. I am an emotional eater; I eat when I'm upset AND I eat to celebrate or reward myself. Also, while I'm relatively active and not too terribly unfit, I don't really raise my heart rate enough to effectively burn calories and fat.

So I am aiming for a "lifestyle change", but that's semantics really: it's a diet. It's time for harsh truths!

I am doing the Michelle Bridges 12-week Body Transformation. I do know how to eat properly, and I know how to exercise, but the frame of mind I'm in, I want someone to tell me what to do and give me that push.

At least, judging by the cookbook, it is real food, not artificial sweeteners and shakes-instead-of-meals. Yesterday I ate a poached egg on wilted spinach with toast for breakfast, and a chicken, eggplant and salad pita bread for lunch. And two cups of coffee (small amount of milk, no sugar) because I am not giving up coffee :P Pumpkin soup (no cream) for dinner, and a nectarine. I wasn't hungry, though I did feel the pull of the habit of eating lots at night-time.

In the interests of accountability, my current weight (as of Wednesday) is 81.3kg.