Snowy sunshine

Snowy sunshine

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Moving day!

They moved!!  And not just a poxy 0.4 lbs!  2 whole lbs down this morning and I finally feel like I'm on the way again after my body's weird, little 3 weeks blip.

So, that's that.  I was right, as long as I keep sticking to the regime I will drop weight.  It was no biggie but I'm still proud of myself for not giving in to temptation and straying from the plan.  It means that the plan is bedding in nicely.

I was chatting with a pal at the football last night - a bloke but one who has dieted in the past (WW) and understands the whole dieting schtick.  He asked me what my goal is and I spoke it out loud for the first time - to drop 5 stone this year!  I have thought it, written it but certainly not shared it with anyone in real life.  Not even Richard.  I don't know why not but it seemed like a big thing and maybe unmanageable, like I shouldn't aspire to something so ambitious.

That doesn't make sense.  When I started Lighter Life I made no secret of the fact that I wanted to ditch all my lard and get bona fide slim.  I wasn't sure how much weight that would actually be as I had never been slim in adult life but I knew it would be a LOT!  I used the pressure to motivate my chimp and get her onside.  It helped a lot and made it more real, achievable somehow.

So I'm not going to be shy about it now - I'm going to ditch the lard this year!

I've been musing on what my motivation for this quest is this time round.  Last time it was pain - I was seeking the absence of the pain caused by being fat.  I had been told for years that, if I would only become slim, everything would be alright.  Ha!  By that time, things had become so bad in my marriage that dieting seemed like the only solution.

But this time, I'm happy and loved (and also not as fat).  What drives me this time?

Health.  I'm serious about being healthy as I grow older. I suppose, as you get older, thoughts of your retirement and old age become more frequent and more pointed.  I'm also childless.  I want to make sure that Richard and I stay healthy for each other.  Dropping weight and becoming fit and healthy is one of the best ways to lower one's risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer and even dementia.  I want to be able to go walking, dancing, gardening, golfing, football watching long into my old age so I need to do to hard work now for that future.

Pride.  I don't want to be beaten by this thing.  I shed 9 stone in 2007 and had re-gained 2/3rds of that over the last 7 years.  I am still "up" and want to make sure that I stay that way.  As it stands, I weighed more that my present weight for 15 or so years prior to 2007 and less than it for the last 7.  I can make sure that I reverse that statistic if I keep the pressure on and this is my best chance.

Vestigial girliness.  I want to look nice in (and out of) clothes.  I'm still young enough and don't want that side of my life to be over, to be stuck in frumpy, fat lady clothes, looking older than my years.

So, enough navel gazing for now.  Back to diet and exercise chat soon!


Tuesday, 27 January 2015

At last

It appears that my scales are not, after all, irredemiably stuck! I saw a small drop this morning. Only 0.4lb but enough to give me heart to carry on....hark at me being all melodramatic!!

Monday, 26 January 2015

Week 3 weigh in news

Well, it has been a disappointing and somewhat frustrating week of no progress.  The scale this morning STILL showed exactly the same figure as last Monday (that's 5 consecutive days now without so much as a flicker up or down).  I even resorted to re-weighing myself carrying the senior dog to make sure that it wasn't somehow "stuck" but, once the dog was released, it reverted directly back to that same, confounded number.

(You might be interested to learn that Shelagh weighs 21lbs which is not bad as the vet wants her to be around 10kg so she's probably only 0.5kg over that.)

But back to me and my angst.  It's not so bad actually.  I dropped 5lbs last week so there was bound to be a settling.  I have stuck to the plan and have not gone over on the syns.  I had allocated myself 11-12 syns per day but I suspect I should tighten this to 10 so will try that this week.  I have written everything down and done more exercise than my poor sickly self could manage last week so it MUST come.

My waist feels a little smaller and work trousers which were exceedingly snug are now more comfortable so the weight will follow surely.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

A weekend without football or the quiz - what to do??

We actually went out on Friday evening!  For the home birds we have become it was a big move.  We always take Rich's mum for a meal and to see the latest episode of The Hobbit in January and Friday was it.  I met them at the cinema complex straight from work and we went for a (carefully selected) meal at Coast to Coast.  It was delicious but my choices were TINY!

I picked a chowder to start which was weirdly served inside a crusty cob loaf.  Obviously I didn't eat the cob but putting it inside the cob basically meant I only got a few mouthfuls.  What a swizz.  If you are ever tempted by this choice, pretend you can't eat bread and ask for it to be served in a plate and they wont be able to hide behind the bread and will have to give you decent portion.

I then picked a classic Caesar salad (dressing on the side of course).  Once again - minuscule!  So pathetic that I actually complained nicely to our very pleasant server.  She had the grace to look embarrassed and took it back to double it up.  But honestly, a tenner for no more than 6 spoonfuls of lettuce, 4 croutons, a dusting of parmesan and 4 fresh anchovies??!  The other meals were fine - not great but I wouldn't have complained.   Gah!

I'm not a major fan of the Hobbit franchise.  I have found the previous 2 instalments too swirly and BIG with a dearth of plot.  But I actually enjoyed this one (to a point).  I don't know how anyone can say that Orcs are fighting machines though - they seem absurdly easy to kill when even hobbits and dwarves can despatch them with a single swipe of a sword!!

We had a decorator in over the weekend to do the ceiling and high bits of the stairs and landing.  So Saturday once shopping and chores had been done, we headed out into the murky gloom.  I was bored of our local walks so we headed back to Bamford for a walk I used to do often but haven't done for a couple of years now!  It was hillier than I remembered|!  I used to jog up the lane with my(former) friend Shelley (although I think I walked the really steep bits).  I was struggling walking it yesterday!

Anyway, here are the pics:

We started at Bamford and headed down Joan Lane past the golf course and out towards Hathersage.  As you can see, the snow is disappearing fast.



We walked up a long rocky track to a small cluster of gorgeous farm houses then up a couple of steep fields towards Bole Hill Wood.


Admiring the horses and their view down the Valley at the stile leading into the wood.




After the wood we hit a back road which follows the contours of the hill round to Bamford Edge.  The light was tantalisingly just over there.....I was hopeful that we would see it once we rounded the corner.




A slightly different view of Win Hill for a change.


Bamford Edge to the right and Win Hill to the left.  It was gorgeous but sadly the sun had just disappeared....grrr....






All in all, a lovely afternoon's walk which we rounded off with a couple of drinks (red wine for me....mmmm) in the Anglers' Rest.

Today has been good too.  The snow eventually buggered off and the golf course opened.  Hurrah!!  Rich joined my club on 1st January and today was his first round as a member.  It certainly suited his golf as he trounced me! I had thought I was 100% recovered from my lurgy but I suspect that carrying my clubs up the steep hills was a step too far as I was absolutely knackered after only 14 holes.  I couldn't seem to take in enough oxygen so kept getting light-headed and faint when I bent down to pick up and clean the ball!

But nice to be out for the first round of the year.  Gotta start somewhere.

And, even better, when we got home the decorater had nearly finished and luckily I still like the grey I have chosen for the big wall....phew!  He's done a better job than I had thought possible on the ceiling too which is great news.  Now Rich and I will have to crack on and finish off the woodwork and the walls we can reach.  Not long before we can have the carpets we have already paid for down.  Oh come on!!

In diet news, I'm still frustrated.  The scales are still EXACTLY the same as on Monday morning, to the 0.1lb.  Grrr  Please let me see even a tiny movement downwards??  Pretty please....

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Winter Wonderland (and hints of frustration)

I was working from home for the 3rd consecutive day on Thursday which is pretty unusual for me.  Partly due to the weather and partly because I had some urgent and ridiculously over-complicated drafting to break the back of.  However, much as I enjoy working from home, the cabin fever had started to set in.  We hadn't been out since Monday evening so I was not seeing people during the day either was a bit weird.

So, I called a friend who also works from home in Bamford and we arranged to meet up at The Anglers for lunch.  I decided to take the dogs for a quick walk around Ladybower reservoir near Bamford before lunch - two birds with one stone etc etc

Here are the pics of my walk:

It was a grey and gloomy day with a hint of fog but the reservoir was still and the reflections were stunning. At one point I watched a goose flying low and lazily over the water and it was just perfect.



I may have this one printed onto a canvas for the hallway which is presently being painted a pale, pale dove grey.

Someone had left a pint-sized hipster snowman perched on the wall but his legs had melted away sadly for him and he had his back to the view!



Bamford Edge in gloom.



Once over the dam wall, I took a left into the woods on the lower reaches of Win Hill.  It was muddy and a bit dark.  My plan was to get to the crossroads, turn left and then walk down to the track around the reservoir.  A short walk of about 45 minutes.


It became gradually snowier as I climbed up the hill.


And at the crossroads, I had a choice of left back towards the mud or turning right uphill following the white, thick, snowy wonderland.  Of course I took the latter.  I had planned to take a forestry track a bit further up back to another path downhill through the woods.





It was stunning.  Like Norway or something.  Perfectly still and quiet.  Nothing but the occasional trill of birdsong and the flutter or thud of snow falling from the trees.



Trouble was, I couldn't find the forestry track in the thick snow.  Eeek.  This meant I had to carry on uphill until it met up with Parkin Clough.  The Clough is the extremely steep path alongside a rocky stream which heads straight up Win Hill.  It is, frankly, horrible.  Going up hill is sheer torture as the path is rocky and riddled with twisted tree roots.  And, as it is so steep, the steps up are often more than a foot high.

What I hadn't appreciated until I was faced with the prospect was the fact that going down the Clough is even worse than going up! The thick snow partly covered slippery mud and one side of the path borders a steep ravine with a rocky stream at the bottom.  Uuurk.

It was genuinely quite scary.  I was slipping down, thighs burning from the big steps, muddy and wet up to my knees, sweaty from the stress of it and soggy from snow falling onto me where I clutched at passing tree branches to steady myself.

This photo does NOT do justice to the steepness of the path!



I was running late for my lunch date so had to jog the last part (once I'd come off the Clough) so I must have looked like an absolute madwoman as I emerged from the woods onto the dam wall!  Not to mention when I burst into the pub.  I had intended to change my shoes and brush my hair etc....hmm.  Ah well, I lived to tell the tale and Vicky had a good laugh at my story!!

The hints of frustration in my header come from the fact that, having dropped the lb I unaccountably gained early on in this week, I have now stuck stubbornly to the exact same weight of my last weigh in. I have been sticking to the plan and have even upped my exercise now that I feel a bit healthier.  My walks have been longer, brisker and hillier and I even managed a run yesterday.  So why are the lbs not rolling off me.....wail.......

I will continue to have faith and stick to the plan.  It WILL work.  I suppose, being brutally honest, I have probably had a few more syns this week than last so that is something to focus on.  Wish me luck peeps!!

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Well the weather out there is frightful...

So, as a result I do not have much to say.  My days are pretty samey at the moment:  work from home, walk the dogs at lunchtime, cook supper, watch TV, blog a little.  Repeat.

I was supposed to be driving over to Mum and Dad's this morning to work from home their while dad did his shopping and went to the dentist.  The overnight snow put a stop to that however.  I might have been able to get there as the road cleared by mid-morning but I don't know how bad it was over the tops and it is just not worth the hassle of travelling in that sort of weather, especially with an elderly car and 2 dogs.  Dad was able to arrange respite care at least so could still do his chores and I'll go over as soon as I can.

Which meant that I could go for a proper snowy walk at lunchtime.  Here are the pics:

We headed up Smalldale which is straight up hill.  The road was clear-ish at the bottom but became progressively snowier the higher we got until we reached this study in black and white with yellow and red accents.  I would recommend anyone interested in purchasing Smalldale Hall checking it out in all weathers, especially these!




We came across these very stoic, cold looking sheep.  Several were rootling through the deep snow to the grass beneath....


but most were standing vacantly around the feeding trough waiting their turn for winter silage.




A splash of colour in the snow.  It must have been popular with the birds as the air was alive with birdsong in that spot.


Then we headed down the hill back towards the village.


Shelagh had a bit of a sit down.  She really does NOT like posing for photos!





And once home, I cleared the driveway.

Dietwise I've done well today.  Didn't eat until lunchtime (for no particular reason) when I had bacon, eggs, mushrooms and tomatoes with the 2 tiny pieces of wholemeal bread which is all I'm allowed on SW.  Supper was a delicious, packed with veggies, chilli con carne and rice.  I've had a few syns through the day but nothing to worry about so I might even have a chocolate with my evening coffee.

I trust all this virtue will show on the scales tomorrow as I had a stay the same this morning which was a tad disheartening.  After a fortnight of almost daily drops, this immobility is boring!!

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Challenging times

Today is the first day of the new regime when I've seen an unexpected rise on the scales.  Only a lb so nothing too worrying. I know these things happen and as long as I stick to the plan it will even itself out.  Still, it's tricky to remember that and not to fall back on "tried and tested" chimp responses to adversity - eat, hide, freeze.

But, that said, I've managed it.  Another day on plan and a good, long walk at lunchtime.  I find the day time pretty easy but the evenings are a bit trickier.  It's not that I want loads of really bad stuff or to drink loads but the temptation is always to just push the boundaries a little.  A mini stollen here, a glass of wine there, nothing bad or unmanageable in itself but they all add up.  Today I had both but no other syns so I think I have avoided disaster.

Here are some pics from my walk.  Set off from Bradwell past the cement walks towards Castleton.




We turned right at Pindale and admire a snow-covered Win Hill.


 Sheep dining on Eccles Lane (also with a view of Win Hill)


I was tempted to add another loop to our route and cross the fields to Brough but reluctantly decided I didn't have time - that lease was not going to draft itself!!





Now on the downhill back into Bradwell


Past frozen fishing ponds...