13 Jun 2012
in Bedraggled Mum Tags: Exercise, Fat, Hair, School, Squidge
Yes, it has been VERY quiet here on the site. I’m sorry. Half term is always a juggle a minute and I have been trying to keep work and gorgeous child happy. Sort of successfully.
This past two weeks, 12 days to be exact, I have also been fighting two of my personal demons – my weight and my smoking. I have always been a thin person and eaten whatever I liked, but pregnancy and a bad diet and stress soon helped me recover from that and I’ve been getting steadily bigger over the past two years.
So, what I decided to do was a Challenge. I entered a competition, along with a bunch of other equally insane people, to completely change my diet and exercise and achieve the best body I can. It lasts for 98 days and asks that I walk away from every single ounce of refined sugar on the planet. That means saying goodbye to cakes, chocolates, pizza, hamburgers and and and…
I’m not going to lie, it has been incredibly tough. Right now I am sitting here and gagging for something sweet, but instead I am probably going to drink a glass of water and do some exercise. This is the first time I have ever been so determined and I really don’t want to give up.
When it comes to smoking this is also a first. I have gone cold turkey. There is not a patch or a pipe in sight. And today, day 12, sees me grappling with those urges and taking it all one day at a time.
So, these two things have kept me pretty occupied for the last while. But the new term has started, new hairdos have been made, and I shall start popping these beauties up on the site. WISH ME LUCK!
15 Sep 2011
in Bedraggled Mum, Fascinating Things Tags: Exercise, Fat, Husband, Saffa, Turning 40
You ever have a fat day? The day where you turn and accidentally catch sight of your ass in the mirror and a part of you starts screaming like Munch and doesn’t shut up for at least 24 hours?
I get them. Funny how I get them more now that I actually am fat. I look back at skinny me and mentally slap her for stupidity. If I still had that old figure I’d be sitting here naked and wearing nothing but knickers on the school run. If I did that today, there would be heart attacks, medical emergencies and a restraining order. And that’s just from my husband…
I read, recently, that as you get older and into your 40s a woman’s body deposits fat on the arms and thighs as a part of some or other ageing process (translation: god has a sick sense of humour) but I had no idea this happened OVERNIGHT. Yes. If you are not 40 yet, please be warned that you will go to bed 39, looking ok, but wake up 40 with your upper arms and ass dragging on the floor behind you. Allow me to give you the name of a good surgeon…
Anyway, this morning, as I was wrestling my arms into some sleeves (kidding) I got an email from a dear, dear Saffa I love. This email has officially made me laugh so hard that I may need back surgery. Here it is, enjoy…
30 Aug 2011
in Bedraggled Mum Tags: Exercise, Fascinating, Fat
…do I really LOOK like a drug addicted maniac?
Let’s start at the beginning. Last week The Husband and I set out on our planned Home Renovation campaign that involved a lot of painting, sanding, cleaning, washing and (occasionally) yelling at each other. On our very first day I went down the stairs, slipped on a hidden puddle of paint, and fell down.
I only fell maybe three steps. Not far AT all, especially seeing as they are carpeted and I am well padded. Unfortunately the one step hit my left shoulder at exactly the wrong angle and knocked it out. The “()£*)(“*()*£” thing.
The pain is, I have to tell you, extraordinary. I screamed. No, wait. I fucking screamed. I didn’t bear down with stoic composure. I didn’t gracefully bite my lip and whisper to my husband for help. No, what I did was this…
As I hit the second step and felt the bugger pop out I screamed (and this was punctuated by the bonk thunk of my ass hitting subsequent steps) “AAAAMBUUUULAAAANCE!!!!”
The Husband went, “Oh no, not again“
It wasn’t a heartless remark, it was one filled with utter fear for me, knowing how agonising it can be. Off he ran to get the phone. I sat at the bottom of the stairs, holding onto my left arm as tightly as I could while sweat POURED off my face. When the nice paramedic arrived I stuck my arm at him and gasped, “Morphine!”
Ok, OK, I know this doesn’t look good. I do. But if you have ever dislocated anything you will know how completely painful it is. Apparently (I have no way of confirming this short of empirical testing, which I don’t plan to do any time soon) it is more painful than a break. I also have zero pain threshold and cannot cope with pain.
So morphine and entonox were, literally, my only lifeline. Last time my shoulder stayed out for around 6.5 hours as the A&E was busy. A real bugger when you realise that it takes about 10 mins to put me under and whack it back in.
Luckily for me, the arm swacked back in as I stood up to get in the ambulance. We didn’t know at the time, it took a VERY confused X-Ray technician for us to realise that the agonising pop that happened when I stood up was actually my arm returning to sender.
However, while I was there (and I must point out that my hair is still growing out of the short haircut and looks AWFUL and I have put on a ton of weight and I was wearing clothes covered in paint) a nice doctor sort of rushed me through the system so I wouldn’t have to wait six hours again.
I was beyond grateful until I suddenly realised, two days later, that maybe he wanted the scary bag lady out of there as I was scaring the elderly? Or I was his charity case for the day.
This was reinforced today when I went to the hospital for my check-up and, after vaguely poking at me and making me lift my arm, the guy goes, “It is very badly bruised and torn, don’t do anything for another 2-3 weeks.”
Fine. Frustrating, but I can live with that. However, when I asked him for pain relief he said, “No more for you, take paracetamol” like I was some kind of drug addicted freak.
To be fair, he didn’t know I spend all day in front of my desk typing as I work from home and have no choice BUT to work. STILL! Do I LOOK like a bloody codeine addict?
I think, perhaps, I need to get this mad mop of hair and this diet sorted out before someone hands me a trolley and 6 cats and tells me to get on with the mad cackling…
12 Jan 2011
in Fascinating Things, Get Fit For Charity, Saffa Tags: Charity, Child, Exercise, Get Fit For Charity, Husband, Saffa, School
Photo stolen from The Husband
As you all know I started a Get Fit For Charity theme last year which, sadly, fell by the wayside as the month in South Africa, illness and work overload put it to the side. I’m not very good at exercising and dieting when I’m tired and under pressure so I failed to raise a cent for LearnAsOne.
However, a few months ago I had an extraordinary experience that defined 2010 for me – a woman working for a company I used to work for, contacted me via Facebook and told me that the aforementioned company owed me money. This was due to some law that was passed in SA and I ended up with an unexpected windfall of R24,000. A lot of money!
I swore that a portion of this money was to go to a charity. But I didn’t want to just donate to an organisation, I wanted to see my money actively change a life. So, I gave the money to The Husband as he was venturing back to Zambia and to the LearnAsOne project, and I asked him to give it to the school.
After buying some shoes for the kids, he also ended up donating the remaining money towards building and maintaining a nursery on the land. I honestly could not have asked for a more amazing investment. What an utter honour and privilege to be able to change young lives. It is incredible.
You can read the whole story on The Husbands blog, he reveals the ins and outs of the nursery and how it came about.
If you would like to help me keep this nursery going and these children educated, then please do donate to LearnAsOne. It doesn’t matter how much you donate, it really doesnn’t. Every teeny bit helps. The nursery is a part of the school project so any money donated will ensure that these kids keep on learning.
30 Nov 2010
in Get Fit For Charity, Review Tags: Charity, Exercise, Fascinating, Fat, Free, Get Fit For Charity
- Image from: http://www.brmemc.com/
I electrocuted my stomach and I liked it. Wahooo!!!
But first, before I reveal all, a word from our sponsor…
“Oooh, it has been AGES since my last post. The utter madness of my approaching holiday is sucking up every last minute. And, to be fair, I did fall over and play endless Peggle on the weekend because I was a big lazy git. HA! Sorry, please come back. I love you.”
So, what am I wittering on about today. Well it is actually a review of a product I was sent about a month ago. A Slendertone Abs Kit.
Now, let me tell you, I was sceptical. I’ve always wanted one of these but I’ve also always been very wary of their claims. If I have a load of fat wibbling about on my belly then there is no way that flexing the muscles is going to strip that fat away.
This time, because I am on the Get Fit for Charity Challenge (back in full swing there, mates!) I have been eating six times a day, on a strict calorie regime, and exercising every morning at around 6am. It was obvious that I would lose weight on my belly whether I used the Slendertone or not, so I decided to do a controlled test.
For two weeks I ate the same food and did the same exercise, the only difference was that for one week I did sit-ups and for the other week I used the ab buster. The first week was the sit-ups. 90 sit-ups spread over three different positions with varigated holding times. By the end of that week I’d lost 1.5 inches on my waist at the thinnest part, and .5 inches on the fatty bit just above the hips.
In the second week I used the Slendertone. After two days I realised I was doing it wrong and had to start again. I wasn’t really pushing it to the limits. Once I pushed it to really zap me, a sensation that I have come to REALLY enjoy, I was actually stiff the next day. Genuinely stiff.
This took me by surprise. For nearly 40 years I thought these were gimmicks, and yet I was feeling more burn after using the Slendertone that I did when I was doing sit-ups. I did this every day with two rest days, over a period of seven days. Exactly the same schedule as the abs in my usual routine.
So…want to know the results? I lost two inches on my waist at the narrowest part and .5 inches on the fatty bit just above the hips.
It appears that the Slendertone works just as well as standard ab exercises and has measurable results with a controlled diet and exercise regime. I can’t say that it would compete with, say, a workout like Shaun P.’s Insanity, but for anyone looking to tone their abs while watching CSI, this is great.
The entire system really appeals to me. I love running and gymming and all those things, I do. But after a day of running around with school stuff, work stuff, house stuff, admin stuff, blah blah blah, it IS nice to flop on the sofa, plop on the Slendertones and get exercised while doing NOTHING.
I just have to add, though, putting them pads on your bare flesh? COLD! Is very COLD. I pull that face you get when you are about to get in cold water or do something you know you have to, but don’t wanna.
So yes, I electrocuted my stomach and I liked it. Yeah, baby, yeah.
22 Nov 2010
in Bedraggled Mum, Review Tags: Exercise, Face, Free, Husband, Review, School, South Africa, Squidge
I did. It was all inspired by the post entitled “My Face Fell Off“. Someone from the Modern Herbals offices got in touch with me and recommended I try out their Syno-Vital Hyaluronan product which is made from….the same stuff that you find in the vitreous humor of the eye. Awesome.
Eye- juice. How could I resist?
The box arrived all nice and shiny and I whipped it open to find lots of little silver packages lurking inside. I was instructed to rip off the top, tip the contents into some water, and chug it down. All before food!
Now, I am rubbish at remembering to take pills of any kind. You should see how crap I am at remembering my echinacea so I don’t get sick in SA. I had to put these guys right next to the bread bin so that I wouldn’t miss them when I went to make breakfast every morning.
It actually worked! I took the sachets every single day for 30 days. The taste was, ahem, unusual. It’s an almost faintly salty, flat flavour that doesn’t offend the palate but does kind of make you feel like you really are drinking eye-juice.
So what is it? Hyaluronic Acid is a natural part of the body found in the joints for lubrication and it binds 1000 times its weight in water, making it the ultimate natural moisturiser and nutrient carrier. Oooh.
As we age our bodies produce less of the stuff (stupid aging) so theoretically if you use this every day you will be keeping your body nice and moisturised and your nutrients will be wonderfully transported.
This particular product is made from premium grade Hyaluronan with a molecular weight of between 2.1 and 2.5 million Daltons. Sadly this is NOT Timothy Daltons. Not even in his heyday. Sorry. I still don’t know what a Dalton is but it looks important here and these guys apparently have far more Daltons than some competing brands.
At first I didn’t notice a difference at all. And I honestly did peer into the mirror a lot, an experience I don’t particularly relish anymore.
It was a hellish month – these 30 days that I took the product – with The Husband and I getting about 4-5 hours sleep a night. Squidge was struggling to settle into school and had bizarre sleep patterns, we were both manic with ridiculous amounts of work, and I started my diet (that hasn’t been going to well. Am very ashamed. More on that tomorrow).
Needless to say, the Syno-Vital had one montrous task ahead of it. I monitored my skin and I have to say that, in spite of no sleep and lots of work, I wasn’t looking as haggard as I usually do after a month like this. It looks like this stuff really works. I’d be interested to know how well it would do when I am well rested! So I have plans to buy a box for South Africa holiday and do another check.
I waited for another three weeks after the product finished to see if my skin reflected any changes. Again, it was a tough few weeks with me getting about 3-5 hours sleep a night and, let me tell you, this was a period of definite Face Falling Off.
As I am not a scientist I can’t say that I discovered any miracle results as my tests were not entirely scientific in nature. However, I can say that a month ON the sachets vs. three weeks OFF the sachets shows a difference. Not a massive difference, I only took it for 30 days, but a difference nonetheless.
Considering the cost of creams and other such things, I am inclined to make this my new beauty regime treat. I like the fact that it does more than just make me “appear” younger, that it also promotes health and well being. I didn’t get a cold while I was taking it, but am suffering from a monster one today.
03 Nov 2010
in Get Fit For Charity Tags: Charity, Exercise, Fat, Get Fit For Charity
The Get Fit For Charity challenge I set myself met with something of a snafoo over the Half Term Tour. After three days of having to rush into kitchens to prepare meal number 4 or 6, I was distressing my hosts so much I gave up. Also, you try and get low fat, calorie controlled food on the road – impossible!
So I was very afraid of today’s measurements. Even though I continued the workouts and really pushed myself, the food was high in calories and likely outweighed the exercise. As I thought, the measurements were not as drastically reduced as they were a week and a half ago. If nothing else it has inspired me to work harder!
Total inch loss as of last measurements: 5.7 inches lost in week 1
AND here are today’s measurements…They are a bit late but I am hoping all parents get the post half-term madness.
Neck: 13.4 inches (gained!)
Chest: 34 inches (lost one inch)
Widest part of hips: 37 inches (lost .5 inches)
Waist: 27.5 inches (lost .5 inches)
Thighs: 21.5 inches (lost .5 inches)
Biceps: 10.5 inches (lost .5 inches)
Weight: 10st 2.5 (er, negligible weight loss here I’m afraid)
So the total loss of inches is nowhere near the LOVELY 5.7 lost in the first week! However, it is a fairly respectable 3 inches in total lost, but .4 inches gained on my neck. Not sure what THAT’s about so have notified Evil Trainer to see if she has words of wisdom.
I mean – my NECK? Really?
01 Nov 2010
in Fascinating Things, Parenthood Tags: Child, Exercise, Spooky, Squidge, Zombie
Oh, how I love zombies, vampires, ghosties and ghouls. As much as I love brilliantly creative people who can make food that completely and utterly captures the delightful creepiness of Halloween and spookiness.
Yesterday Squidge and I went for tea at a local cake shop that makes the most divine creations ever. She wore the hat I got her on our half-term travels (and that she won’t take off at all) and I took photos of her special spooky treat.
It was hard to watch her devour that chocolate when I am still on my hardcore diet (more on that later) but I was extremely, very proud of my self discipline. Still, how awesomely weird is this cupcake? I love it!
Please excuse blurry photos, they were done on me old crappy HTC Hero.
The scary mouth ghost
Phone art: What she made when cake was done!
20 Oct 2010
in Get Fit For Charity Tags: Charity, Exercise, Fat, Get Fit For Charity
It has been a week. A week! I can’t believe it either. Today is Day 7 and it is a No Exercise day so muscles can rest and get all strong, ready for more torture tomorrow. I spent most of yesterday faintly terrified that I hadn’t lost any inches at all and that my Get Fit For Charity plan was going to be an epic failure.
WELL. Here are the measurements of today, one week into the 12 week programme. But first, a reminder of what the measurements originally were:
Neck: 14 inches
Chest: 35.5 inches
Widest part of hips: 39 inches
Waist: 30 inches
Thighs: 22.7 inches
Biceps: 11 inches
Weight: 10st 8.5
And here those measurements are today:
Neck: 13 inches
Chest: 35 inches
Widest part of hips: 37.5 inches (!!!)
Waist: 28 inches
Thighs: 22 inches
Biceps: 11 inches (no change there!)
Weight: 10st 2.75
WOW! How is THAT for spurring me on??? That’s one inch off my neck, one and a half inches off my hips (WAHOO), and a TWO inches off my waist. GASP! I shall demand that The Husband take photographs tonight so you can see the difference. Although I doubt it will be obvious with only a couple of inches here and there…
18 Oct 2010
in Get Fit For Charity Tags: Charity, Exercise, Fat, School
It is Day Five of my Get Fit For Charity mission and I wish I could say I couldn’t feel my legs. Because I can. I really, really can.
They hurt. When I stand up I walk in this stiff-legged rocking motion – I sort of fall gently from one unbending leg to the next – and have been found by The Husband rocking against the wall because I was too afraid to bend my knees in order to escape.
The Evil Trainer is not nice. She laughs at me. She spends a good portion of her time on texts and Skype crying with laughter as I wheeze, groan and cough my way through another day.
Even when I told her that last night I had to, once again, go down the stairs on my bum because I couldn’t bend my legs, all I got were giggles.
I don’t think that’s very motivational, do you?
I am also eating a VERY strict diet. This is six times a day, set calories per meal, MUST use scales, food. I am not used to this. On my first day I asked the Evil Trainer how she could expect me to eat only a teaspoon of yoghurt as Meal 2. Again with the laughing. THEN she explained about how the measurements she gave me were per gram, not per 100g. It all made sense after that.
I had visions of eating 1 asparagus, 1 egg, 1 tsp of yoghurt, 1 banana all day.
While that isn’t the case (thank the great Eating Deity) all I want is fudge, chocolate cake, and delicious chocolate croissants. I actually dream of them now. I am drooling on my keyboard as I write. FUDGE! CHOCOLATE! I want to bathe in you! Come to me!
Meanwhile, back in Reality Bay, The Husband and Squidge have eaten the following items in front of me since I started: fish and chips (my FIRST NIGHT), pain au chocolat, doughnuts, pizza, cake and pasta dripping with cheese.