Having managed to stick to 8 st 2 or 3 throughout most of 2018 unfortunately I put on a few extra pounds at Christmas… Thankfully my new smaller clothes still fit and at least I am still around 2 stones less than I was just over a year ago! I am keen to get back to 8 st 3, the weight I had begun to feel comfortable at. I’m therefore planning to get back to my exercise routine together with a calorie cut down for the new year…
Thankfully I’ve lost most of the weight I gained while on holiday at the beginning of November although I’m still keen to lose another lb or two. This might be difficult now we are coming up to the festive season 🎄
The cheese picture above was taken last weekend where I overindulged (again) at a fab activity weekend. As well as lazer clay pigeon shooting, segway riding and axe throwing, the other activities were drinking Prosecco, gin, wine, Baileys and consuming huge amounts of food. I’m just about managing to keep my weight down by burning hundreds of calories at the gym and walking over 40 miles a week…
I’ll do a final 2018 post at the end of December, right after Christmas!
As I was on holiday for 1st November I’ve included pre and post holiday weights.
Oh dear… a week of all inclusive indulgence resulted in a weight gain of 7 lb! I must say I was a bit reluctant to get on the scales this morning, the first full day back from the holiday 😦
In the past I wouldn’t have faced up to the weight gain and would have ignored the fact my clothes felt a bit tighter… this is how my weight got to 10 st 7 lb by this time last year. However being honest with myself and acknowledging this weight gain has inspired me to get rid of the extra pounds quickly so today I’ll resume calorie counting and up the exercise for the next week or two and see what happens…
Above is a ‘Nutty Russian’ an example of one of the delicious cocktails available. It contains generous measures of:
46 of these 48 miles were walked in Croatia this week, mostly in and around Makarska, our base for 7 days. We stayed in an apartment and while close to bars, restaurants and the sea it was about 1.5 miles to walk into the Old Town and marina. Some days we did this 3 or 4 times which soon racked up extra miles! And most mornings I got up an hour or two before the rest of my family and went for a 3 – 4 mile walk.
The above photo was taken during one of my early morning strolls where I could see the sun rising above the mountains behind Makarska. This was a lovely time of the day before the resort became busier with holidaymakers!
One of the most powerful and emotional books I’ve ever read was ‘One Child’ by Torey Haden which I read sometime around 2004. The contents of that book were horrifying and humbling and caused me to take a different approach to life and really appreciate my own upbringing.
This short book was also sickening and also described the abuse of a 6 year old girl. The girl had been removed from her own evil parents and was taken in to spend Christmas with a foster family. While only a short story I feel full of admiration and respect for families such as Casey’s who consistently give generosity and kindness in such tragic circumstances.
Wow… another superb book which I read quickly as I found it difficult to put down! Having travelled pretty much the length of South America in 2016 I could closely relate to many of the places Alastair visited on his epic adventure from the tip of South America or ‘El Fin Del Mundo’ (the end of the World) to the top of Alaska.
OK… so Alastair cycled and I took the soft luxury option travelling by plane, bus and cruise liner however I was able to visualise many South American places as well as LA, Seattle and Alaska.
The book continued with Alastair’s incredible cycle journey through Siberia… in the winter and then through Asia and back into Europe inspiring me to do something more adventurous and push a few more boundaries… I’m not yet sure what…
Alastair had some awesome quotes in his book too, particularly towards the end as he reflected on his fantastic journey:
Page 341: “How mad we are to neglect our body, the very machine that carries all our thoughts, emotions, ambitions, dreams, fears and our life itself. And yet we still expect to live smoothly, healthily and happily to a ripe old age.” So very true and something I am very conscious of… especially now that I am 50…
Page 339: “I decided to see some of the world and to escape from England and the conveyor belt of my life” most people probably do live on a conveyor belt of a life and conform to a similar pattern without even questioning they could be doing something different…
A trip to Below Zero ice bar in London seemed a different and somewhat novel treat for my daughter’s birthday and an opportunity for me to tick this one off my list!
We arrived in sweltering temperatures of +31 degrees so it was a good day to spend some time hanging around a bar made from ice and drinking a pina colada from an ice glass! We had to ensure we were wearing gloves to pick them up so that our hands didn’t freeze to the ‘glasses’ and as we drank from them the rim of the thick ice glass slowly began to melt!
Comparison pictures! The top picture was taken during a holiday in Antigua in November 2017 where I was enjoying a pina colada and just about to tuck a pizza! At this time my weight would have been around 10 st 7 lb.
The picture underneath was taken in Montenegro in May 2018 shortly after reaching my (now) usual weight of 8 st 3 lb. I found these two pictures where I was wearing the same top… one of my holiday tops 🙂
One of the main reasons for this particular challenge began on 4th December 2017 when I had a health check at the gym at work. I was dismayed to find my weight had crept up to 67 kgs (10 st 7 lb) and my cholesterol was 5.67 which was bordering on ‘high’!
This kick started my personal health campaign and I was determined to start the next decade of my life as a fitter and more energetic 50 year old! I don’t want to get to the age of 60 or 70 and have to take medication because I hadn’t taken responsibility for my health by looking after myself now.
From 4th December I successfully lost an average of half a stone each month and reached my 9 st goal just in time for my 50th birthday in February. I continued with my exercise routine and watching my calorie intake beyond February and by the beginning of May I was 8 st 3 lb. I’ve managed to maintain this weight for the last 3 months and this is where I feel happy, healthy and comfortable.
Weight today: 8 st 2 lb
Losing this weight as a result of healthy eating and a considerable amount of exercise has been an incredibly positive experience. I’ve got far more energy, I’m almost always in a good mood, I’ve suffered hardly any annoying little minor illnesses and I’ve gone from a size 12 to a size 8. I am determined to stay at this weight and not allow my weight to creep back upwards again!
Eager to find out if all of my efforts have reduced my cholesterol levels I had another health check at the gym at work today and these are the results:
4th Dec 2017
2nd Aug 2018
66.8 kgs (10 st 7 lb)
51.8 kg (8 st 2 lb)
% body fat
Yay! I was really pleased with these results and particularly my cholesterol level! This is the first time I’ve had it checked since 4th December last year when it was borderline ‘high’ but now I’m within normal range. Achieving this with hard work and commitment will motivate me to keep up my healthy eating and exercise in order to retain good health and without the need for mediation.
The fitness instructor suggested I needed to gain a few lbs as my ‘ideal’ weight is 56.3 kgs however I am happy with my current weight and I’m still within the healthy BMI range (a BMI of under 18.5 would indicate an unhealthy low weight).
And according to http://www.nhs.uk the weight range for my 5′ 3″ (160 cm) height is between 7 st 6 lb and 10 st 2 lb… so I was definitely a bit of a chubster at the end of last year..
The glucose test is a blood sugar test for diabetes. Like the previous time I didn’t fast in advance of the health check (having had a bowl of muesli a couple of hours before). ‘Normal’ 2 – 3 hours after eating is between 4 – 8 mmol/l. However this time was much lower so this seems pretty good too!
Finally my metabolic age has reduced from 43 to 35! This is an indication of the speed your body is ageing and basically the lower, the better… woohoo…
Having done a huge amount of walking and trekking this year I was keen to do some cycling and get some practice for a more lengthy bike ride later on. Chris and I hadn’t ridden our bikes for about 3 years and they sat forlornly outside under a cover slowly rusting away and getting covered in spiders webs!
We recently dusted them down, oiled them up and have spent some of the recent gorgeous summer evenings out and about exploring our local countryside. With our mountain bikes we always stick to tracks and try to avoid roads as much as we can.
One of our favourite expeditions is a 4 mile trip across the fields where we stop and dine in a fabulous local Indian restaurant before cycling the 4 miles back across the fields again!
We are hoping to go further afield later today with a 24 mile round trip to a larger town! I say ‘hoping’ because we are currently experiencing the first rain in about 3 months on this Saturday morning. In contrast to most years the UK has experienced an ongoing heatwave with many records being broken for example, the hottest London Marathon in April, the hottest May Bank Holiday and one of the driest Junes and July’s, as explained by Wikipedia.
I’m happy to hike in the rain but I don’t fancy riding a bike for a rainy and possibly thundery 24 miles not when more sunny weather is forecast for the next couple of weeks into August!