Tub on the Run


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Janathon Day 5 meets Whole 30 Day 1

As the sun sets on day 1 of my Whole 30, I am very much in the realms of “well this isn’t so hard”.

I thought I would have been more organised for breakfast, but I am not the most speedy of people in the morning and didn’t get my groove on quickly enough – so an egg and juice it was!  I’ll try to be a bit more adventurous tomorrow (meanwhile – anyone who has completed the Whole 30 – what did you eat for breakfast?  I need inspiration!).

While breakfast was small, it did the job until about 11am.  Ordinarily I would be reaching for a biscuit or chocolate (or several) to tide me over to lunch.  Lunch was a bit more organised:

http://instagram.com/p/xeS4MBH1HU/?modal=true

 

Tea was a beef stew with sweet potatoes.  The best! (Even if it doesn’t look it!)

 

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The only thing is that I now want something sweet.  I’m not hungry, it is just a habit I need to break.

I decided that there was a choice for Janathon – yoga or kettlebells.  I could do either depending on how I felt at the end of the day (grumpy would have been kettlebells, everything else would be yoga).  Yoga won, which I was a bit surprised at given it was my first day back at work.

I enjoyed the Andrew Wrenn video, so that was my choice for this evening.

What is your favourite breakfast?  Mine would probably have to be eggs benedict.


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Whole 30 Eve and Janathon Day 4

It’s T-1 for my second Whole 30 now.  That meant it was time to get the measurements – circumferences and weight.  It’s pretty miserable reading to be honest.  No good wallowing and throwing myself a pity party, things needed doing and Janathon needed completing.

For Janathon today, it was house clearing, including walking up and down three flights of stairs with heavy loads several times, and dashing, fully laden, into charity shops to declutter.  I think clutter breeds in our house.  Another sweat broke out, and that was before we went to Sainsbury’s in a mad dash to get something for lunch and top up with veggies for the week ahead.  I feel that my sitting down to blog has been well earned!

As my Whole 30 looms tomorrow, I thought I’d take a few minutes to explain why I want to go through 30 days of strict paleo style eating.  For those who aren’t sure what Whole 30 is, essentially it is stripping out all refined sugars, processed foods, legumes, grains and dairy for 30 days.  You’d think that wouldn’t leave you with much to eat, but actually it isn’t as hard as it sounds.

My reasons for doing another Whole 30 aren’t massively dissimilar to my first go at it – the control over my sugar cravings features high, and weight loss would be nice.  I just feel like my diet and spending on my food has got completely out of control and I have lost the off switch.

Anyway, my “before” photo has been taken, so let’s see what 30 days later looks like!

Whole 30 Day Minus 1  Tub on the Run

Does clutter breed in your house too, or are you good at keeping on top of it all?  I am not good at putting things away, which I don’t think helps.


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My #Whole30 results

Day 30 came and went without too much notice.  I had started to feel a bit anxious about what I was going to eat when the Whole30 was over, and partly for good reason.  Matt and I were due to go to the Silverstone Classic on Thursday 24th July.  We made it there in good time, but hadn’t really catered for a camping trip for the Thursday (our Day 30).  We’d already planned to eat whatever we could rather than try to find compliant food when we were out and about, and I had deliberately started the Whole30 when we did so that camping wouldn’t be a problem.

Thursday morning was a bit of a rush, taking photos and measurements before work, but we got it done, and I am certainly pleased with the results, and I know Matt is pretty chuffed with his too.  At the beginning, in my elevator pitch of Whole30, I wrote about what I wanted out of the 30 days:

  • Making significant inroads into breaking my problem with sugar

  • Learning more about what I truly benefit from and what does me harm

  • I won’t lie, some weight loss would be nice!

  • I’d also like to see if some of the skin problems I have are linked to my diet.  I imagine that they probably are

Looking at it in a bit of detail, I think it was a worthwhile exercise.

Energy

I didn’t think I was really one to suffer with mid-afternoon slumps, but one thing that has really made itself known since we came off of Whole30 is that I do.  My concentration is poor and I don’t feel like I am firing on all cylinders for a sustained period of time.  On Whole30, I felt great.  The world was my lobster and I felt ready to take on the challenges.

Sleep

I’ve never been a bad sleeper.  I’m a fidget and nuisance as I have restless legs and sleep walk and talk sometimes, but it rarely wakes me up.  Poor Matt, on the other hand, can often be the victim of a randomly flung leg or arm.  I wouldn’t feel like I would wake up refreshed and raring though.  Whole30 didn’t change this for me much.  I continued to sleep well, but I woke feeling a little brighter.

Sugar Addiction

This, for me, has to be one of the greatest successes.  I’m not “cured”, but these 30 days have helped me to sit out a craving, or find something else.  It’s proved to me that I don’t need the sugar and that I work better as a human being with less sugar.  I am still getting cravings every now and then, and although we’re not really following paleo or Whole30 right now, I haven’t slipped back in to my old ways of reaching for the first sweet thing I can find.  I feel like I have made a significant inroad on this particular aspect, and one that I am very keen to continue.

 (source)

Skin

My skin has never been great.  Ever since I hit puberty, the dermatology gods decided that I was destined to be plagued with breakouts and problem skin.  This has continued into my late 20s, though thankfully it isn’t as bad as it used to be.  That said, I am still unhappy with it and I find it to be a source of self-consciousness.  The Whole30 website says that improved skin can be one of the benefits of the 30 days, but I didn’t really find this to be the case.  I must make a point of saying that I have stress related breakouts and July was a stressful month, so Whole30 might have saved me a couple of nasty spots, but I’ll never know.

Weight

I don’t think there is a huge difference between the photos, but there is a good difference on the scales.  I started the Whole30 at 18 stone 9.5lbs and weighed in on Day 30 at 17 stone 7.5lbs, losing 16lbs and 8 inches.  Is it water weight?  Maybe.  I don’t really know.  I have really tried to make this more than just about losing the weight, but this is one of the best indicators for me. Something you can actually see.

Tub on the Run Side Comparison Whole 30

Tub on the Run Front Comparison Whole 30

Life after Whole30

Since finishing the 30 days, I have not stuck to any semblance of the principles of Whole 30.  This has seen my moods go up and down, my ability to cope with stress is compromised, I’m not feeling as efficient and I’m bloating.  I don’t feel great.  I actually feel sad.

Matt has seen a return to bloating too.

We’ve discussed what our next plans are in terms of diet.  We’ll be returning to a paleo/primal kind of eating soon, working on a 90% rule.  We’ve loved most of the meals that we’ve eaten and definitely want to keep them in the meal plans going forwards.  The issue is that August tends to be quite a social month for us, and eating out on paleo seems quite difficult, though not impossible.  With that in mind, we’ve discussed doing another Whole 30 in September.

I’ve got a few more thoughts on Whole 30 that I will write down at some point soon, but I thought this post was long enough, without getting in to the rest of it.


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One of those light bulb moments

A few weeks ago, Matt brought home a magbook by Runner’s World.  I have to admit I was a bit surprised as Matt will generally be happy to follow my lead when it comes to weight loss methods and he has had absolutely zero interest in running after I dragged him out of the house last spring as I was getting towards the end of Couch to 5k.  The book is “Run Your Belly Off” (or RYBO from this point on).

My current reading pile

My current reading pile

He read a few chapters himself and liked the sound of it.  A few days later, I picked it up and started leafing through it.  It was at this point I had a bit of a light bulb moment.  I know this won’t come as a shock to many people, and if I am honest, I suppose I’ve known this all along…

Weight loss is simple maths.  Calories in versus calories out.  There must be a deficit.  Everything else is just advice or diet industry spiel.

Deep down, I know all of this.

I know this is probably a bit “durr” to some people, but for years I almost feel like I have sought for the magical solution to it all.  Slimming World gloss over the simple fact that it’s maths by introducing “syns” (though there is logic in restricting some fats and sugars etc), and Weight Watchers have their points system.  Distractions? Maybe.  I guess it depends on your mindset, and clearly some people do really well following these kinds of plans and I am in no way knocking it.  For me, I’ve used it as a crutch, going to the classes and feeling as if that alone, that small commitment in itself should be enough to yield spectacular losses on a weekly basis.  Sustainable?  Not for me at this moment in time.  That much is evident by my own journey so far.  Meal plans, syns, points have all meant that I have become lazy and reliant on just doing what I’m told and not really thinking for myself, eventually “rebelling” and ordering Domino’s, Chinese, Indian etc.

This really shouldn’t be surprising news to me.  My sister lost a large amount of weight a few years back just by being more mindful.  There was no cutting food groups out, no deprivation, but tweaks like more veggies, better meat, more fish, less processed food.

Can I calorie count?  Yes, of course.  There are plenty of apps and websites out there to help you do just that.  Will I calorie count?  I would be interested to see what I am shovelling in every day or week, definitely.  Longer term?  I won’t rule it out, but I suspect that after a period of re-educating myself on labels and portion sizes, I will have it as a fall back tool.  It is not something I see myself doing on a daily basis in the long term.  How many calories do I need?

I did the maths…

Right now, my basal metabolic rate (BMR) is 2,021 calories.  That is what I use per day.  Without doubt I eat more than that as I have gained weight since January (5lbs up – whoops!).  The book then goes on to say that in order for a person to lose 1lb of fat per week, there needs to be a weekly 3,500 calorie deficit.  The deficit can come from exercise and/or cutting down on the calories.

There is a running plan in the book too.  It takes 12 weeks to complete, at the end of which you’ll be running for 30 minutes.  The first week is all about walking.  I have to admit I was surprised that it is 3 weeks longer than Couch to 5k, but I’ll be seeing how it goes.  It is time to build my confidence back up and get back to running for 30 minutes in one hit.  I have things that I want to do at the end of the year which mean I need to stick at this (I WILL be beating my 10k time set at the Weston Christmas Cracker, and I am literally counting down the days to the day that they accept entries).

Pleasantly surprising is that Matt also wants to start running with me.  As I mentioned before, he doesn’t like running.  Despite this, I think he had a nasty shock courtesy of the scales.  Also having had a conversation with his friend J recently, where J is now studying to become a personal trainer and needs a victim guinea pig person to practice on, Matt has volunteered to be just that.  However, rather than be completely unfit, he wants to build a base level of fitness in preparation for his PT sessions.  Woo – I have a running buddy!

Watch this space!

Now I must go and plan some meals!  What are you having for tea tonight?


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Janathon Day 14: Are we nearly there yet?

As I started on the downhill slope to home time, the usual demons started up…

“you don’t want to go out for a run… It’s dark, cold and wet”

I will freely admit that I agreed with my little demon.  It is dark, cold and wet.  I won’t lie – I considered not going out.  Then some synapse fired and reminded me that it is less than 7 weeks to Silverstone Half Marathon, and every little piece of training helps.

I’d considered nipping in to the gym.  It was only meant to be two miles, which is just about bearable on the treadmill.  But no.  I decided to go around the marina, which isn’t a route I usually do.  I thought perhaps the change of scenery would be helpful.

Out of the house I ventured.  Into drizzle, wind and cold I stepped, and of course, my Garmin took a little longer to lock.  Not my best start.  Once the planets had aligned and the Garmin locked on, I started off.  Or rather, I attempted to get the two lumps of concrete attached to my hips moving.  It was unsuccessful.  Ok… Maybe I’ll feel better when I get into it.  After all, I have been harbouring intentions towards trying my hand at lamppost intervals.  I tried a couple of lamppost intervals.  Nope.  Not working.  Ok… Maybe back to familiar territory?  I headed back towards the trainline.  Still nothing.

I never regret going out for a run, despite all my whinging about it beforehand, but I came very close to regretting today’s attempt.

14th Jan Run

I aborted the run as I was becoming progressively more miserable.

Tuesday nights are Slimming World weigh in nights, and I pootled off, convinced that I would have put weight on.  Upon arrival, I took my jacket off, and H (who helps out at Slimming World), pointed out that I had a rather unfortunate wet patch across my chest.  Yep, it looked like I had some pretty spectacular boob sweat going on.  Delightful.  It would appear that my waterproof jacket that I wear for running is not as waterproof as I give it credit for.  Fortunately, I maintained my weight this week, so I didn’t quite put the cherry of a weight gain on what was turning into a rubbish evening.

I got to thinking why my run was so awful today, and I suspect it could be one or a combination of the following:

  • I need to buy a new sports bra.  I had bounce, and bounce is not good.  I need strapping in, and firmly.
  • I haven’t had that much in the way of protein.  I didn’t have much after my long run and I have been sore.  I know that if I eat more protein, I am generally a happier (and less stiff) bunny.
  • I am tired.  A lot of things feel like a chore at the moment, and those things are less physically demanding than running.
  • My legs are physically tired.  Yes, probably they are.  My shins are a bit sore, right ankle isn’t happy and my left knee is joining in the chorus of niggles.
  • Not eating close enough to a run.  I hadn’t eaten anything for nearly 6 hours before I went out (and even then, it was hardly a nutritious meal – a stuffing baguette and Diet Coke).

Four miles are on the card tomorrow.  My plan?  Wear my other bra, bed early tonight, eat something at about 4:30pm and start feeding myself with proper food instead of rubbish.

Let’s see what tomorrow brings!


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My line in the sand

This week is flying by!  I had a reasonable weigh in – it was a line in the sand for me.  I weighed in at 16st 3lbs.  It was a 3lb gain.

Today, I weigh exactly the same as I did in the summer of 2008.  A real turning point for me was my little sister’s 21st birthday party.

tubontherun.wordpress.com 2008 16.3

I don’t remember now what exactly made me feel that I had to change, but there had been a few photos that I really began to notice how much weight I’d piled on.  The top that I was wearing in the picture didn’t fit nicely when it once had, but I couldn’t face going to buy a new top.  I probably knew I wouldn’t be able to find many nice clothes in a size it fit me.

It was at a time when I wasn’t too happy either.  I’d split up from my first proper boyfriend the year before, and had piled the weight on throughout 2007 – comfort food fed the emotion and did its best to mask how empty, worthless and lonely I felt.  I was living up north, with hardly any friends (most of my uni friends moved back home or went travelling), and I had cripplingly poor, exceptionally low self esteem.  I did have a job I loved though.  So, in June 2008, I vowed to make a concerted effort to blitz the blub.

The thought of going to a weight loss group did not inspire me (though ironically, it probably would have done me the world of good).  Instead, I researched Tesco Diets – their GI plan specifically.  I loved it – the food was great, I felt like I was always eating, I didn’t have the spikes and troughs in my energy levels, and my mood improved a lot.  The pounds also started to melt away.  To start off with, it was really easy.  I lived on my own, Tesco Diets provided a shopping list, I had no social life so I could spend my evenings cooking a huge variety of food.  When the company I worked for sadly went into administration, my job sank with it and I made the move back to my home – Devon.  Back in with my parents I moved, and within the month I had a new job to go to.  I got more active and started horse riding again.  I kept up with the diet and hit Christmas 2008 at 13 stone dead.  I’d lost 3 stone 3lbs.  I really began to feel attractive again.

Bruges 13 stone

I hated my job, but everything else was going really well.  I was enjoying being back home – somewhere where I was loved.  However, over the next 4 years, I added over a stone on to each year.  In those years, M and I got together (and I was welcomed into an additional family of perpetual fat fighters), I changed my role, I hit rock bottom in my job and mental state, I moved out of my parent’s house into our first flat (which was, and still is horrid), I lost my confidence with horse riding following a couple of bad incidents, and all manner of other things changed and I reverted back to being a binging comfort eater.

Two weeks before M proposed in March last year, I joined Slimming World.  I joined at 19st 1.5lbs.  My size 22 trousers were getting too tight, and I didn’t feel right in my own skin.  I felt and looked hideous, and my weight had started to affect all that I tried to do.  When my weight blinked on the screen,  I could have fallen off the scales (but for the fear of damaging myself and/or someone or something else).  My journey with Slimming World started off ok.  Then spent the next 9 months bimbling around and not really losing the weight.  I started 2013 on a high, with 10 consecutive weeks of losses.  Then I started bimbling again.

This is my line in the sand.  I can do the next three stone.  I did it before, and I can do it again.

From fatter to thinner

I’m in a much better place than I was then, so… Where did I put my running plan and food diary?!

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The cost of not dodging the doughnuts

The cost of failing to dodge doughnuts is a 2.5lb gain on the scales.  I keep thinking “yeah, well last week was an unusual week, I mean, I drank and everything” (I’m not tee total, but I don’t drink a lot).  So yeah, I’m licking my wounds a little bit and trying to stop feeling so annoyed with myself.

I know what I need to do.  Hell, you know what I need to do too, and rather than write about it (again) I’d just better get on and do it.

I opted for a self pitying day, which I shall call my rest day for this week.  Tomorrow is a run.  The weather is promising to be hideous tomorrow, so I’m quite looking forward to a run in the rain.  It means the pavements will be clear and free, and I can huff and wheeze and turn a lesser shade of beetroot all to myself.

I can’t think of anything that’s going to get too much in the way of me blasting that gain off, with the exception of a meal out on Friday.  It’s tapas, I’m poor, so it will be cheap on both the pocket and waistline (thankfully).  There will also be no alcohol as I am driving.  One thing I really do need to get back on top of is drinking enough.  I’ve had two cups of tea and half a glass of squash all day.  I don’t think that comes to a litre.


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A good weigh in

I am really pleased to report a good loss of 3.5lbs this week.  I even updated my photos page.  I am now the lightest I have been for probably over three and a half years.

I think what really helped was having a good variety to my meals.  It was getting all a bit samey – chilli con carne, lasagne, carbonara etc, and it made a nice change to have a lot of salads and some new meals (and some variations on a theme).  When I feel myself getting into a rut, I think it will do me some good to follow a 7 day plan from the magazine.  The only thing I would say is that having such a variety in my diet does make for an expensive shopping trip.  However, if it kick starts my weight loss again, then it is worth it.

I have found it easier to resist the office snacks too, which I think has been down to the more grazing approach which the 7 day plan seemed to encourage.  I’m not saying I have been 100% saintly (there was that trifle sundae on Sunday after all), but I’ve been trying to pay more attention to how I feel.  Also, I am a scan bran convert – it takes me nearly all morning to eat the prescribed 5 for my Healthy Extra B with cottage cheese.

I’m pleased with how things are shaping up, literally, too:

January 2013 253.5lbs

January 2013 253.5lbs

So January 2013, I felt and looked like a blob.  My face was all podgy and I just didn’t feel good in my own skin.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not exactly wasting away now, but I can see a difference, and I can definitely feel a difference.

June 2013 - 221lbs

June 2013 – 221lbs

It’s only about a dress size worth of difference so far, but it is pleasing (for me) to know that I am slimming, as there are times when I just don’t feel like I am.

It’s another 3lbs to my next half stone award, and I am hoping that with some sensible eating, taking away some of the learning points from last week, and keeping up a food diary for this week, I will be close to achieving (or actually achieving) this next milestone in my weight loss.

Exercise wise, I haven’t really been doing anything.  While my foot is on the mend, I wore my running shoes around the house, and my feet weren’t happy, so I have postponed running by another week.  As it turns out, I don’t have the opportunity to go to spinning tomorrow night, as I am meeting my dad for tea as we need a catch up.  I have decided that, when I am getting back into running, I will do a week of 1 milers so that I don’t aggravate my foot too much.  From there, I will get back to my Hal Higdon 10k plan, starting at Week 1 again.


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Weigh in result

I’ve just had my tea, having come back from Slimming World this evening.

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Tea was delicious!  It was a lot of veg, with meat and pasta.  It was also incredibly filling, and I risk slipping into a food coma right this very moment.

The day has been pretty good, food wise.  I had prepared lunch last night, breakfast was quickly thrown together (and the worst part of my food day), and I haven’t felt too hungry for the most part.  Breakfast was, what I thought, a healthy option.  A Dorset Cereals Honey Granola pot.  Yep, 18 syns.  That was 3 syns over my daily allowance in 75g.  Argh!  I haven’t eaten anything else in terms of syns today though, so while it’s not ideal, I am not beating myself up about it.

The foot is no better at all.  I had hoped that it might be getting a little better, but 4 days in and I’m still hobbling.  A couple of people have mentioned wearing insoles though, and I do have a pair somewhere (I’m just not entirely sure where).  I have failed in my Juneathon attempt today.  I have done little exercise other than walking to and from various offices, and I’m pretty sure that doesn’t count at all.  I am trying to summon up the courage to go swimming though, just in case I don’t get anywhere with the foot.

Weigh in?  I put on a pound.  I’d love to say that I don’t know why, but that would be a fib.  We ate too much last week.  I’m not losing sleep over it though, as I am on Day 1 of the 7 day plan in the magazine, and I know next week will yield a loss, despite a potential lack of exercise.  Interestingly, quite a few of us in group have been putting on and losing the same pound or two for a number of weeks, and we’ve all had a bit of a light bulb moment over the last couple of days.


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My successful camping trip

You know those weekends where they’re really good and you collapse into bed exhausted?  Yep?  I’ve had one of them.  I have split this post out, as I can appreciate not everyone will want to read my camping/marshalling ramblings.

Camping/Marshalling

For the first time in the four years I have worked where I do, I left for a week off before 9pm.  I get really paranoid that I will have left something huge and it’ll stitch up my team in my absence.  Inevitably, I never do, the company doesn’t cease to trade in my absence, and no commercial incidents happen.  Anyway, M and I left work on Friday (ok, a little bit late) and headed up to Silverstone.  We encountered all manner of weather on our way up, from gale force winds, hail, rain, sunshine, the lot.  As we got closer to Silverstone, the wind didn’t seem to be dying down.  I hate/loathe/despise putting a tent up in the dark and in the wind.  I swear that as soon as we arrived, the wind died.  Putting up the tent was actually easy.  We didn’t do too bad a job of it either.

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A weekend of marshalling the British GTs ensued.  I love sports cars.  You can keep your silly F1 cars (though I don’t dislike single seaters as a general rule).  For me, it’s all about the wishlist cars.  I love the sound, the look, the smell (yes, the smell – nothing quite like an early morning pit walk to indulge the petrol sniffer side of me).  I won’t bore you with the details (if you really are that fussed, you can read an excellent report here).

Saturday, I collapsed into bed at 9pm, and slept until 5.30am.  I hadn’t realised quite how sunny it would be, and had neglected to put on sunscreen on Saturday (ouch).  That was soothed though, by a shot of icy cold water, courtesy of the shower that didn’t have an aimable head and spurted out cold water at such velocity as to make me scream (I’m sure the other marshals in the campsite wondered if I was having a When Harry Met Sally moment).  Another day, avec sunscreen and thankfully less wind saw the 3 hour endurance race for the GTs.

At the end of the day, the leader of the post (a “post chief”) had upgraded me, so I have now officially gone from Trainee Marshal to Track Marshal.  That doesn’t actually mean much, except I can now be left to look after Trainees and can apply to do the F1 (which I probably will do, as M wants to do it one day) and Goodwood Revival and Festival of Speed (which I am much more interested in doing).  Otherwise, it will probably be business as usual, with a little bit more responsibility.

Originally, we had planned to camp at Castle Combe on the Sunday night, ready for a day of racing at Combe on the Monday, but we made the decision to stay at the local Travelodge because of a lack of electric hook up at Combe (and therefore, a lack of airbed).  Another great day marshalling.

Food, Exercise and Weigh in

I was quite pleased with myself this weekend, as normally camping is a bad food time for me.  It is definitely much easier to eat complete rubbish when you camp.  However, with a bit of thought and willpower, I made better choices.  M and I found the Tesco at Towcester, so managed a quick trip on Saturday night for supplies on Sunday.  I used my food vouchers at Silverstone for salads.  Now, while the salads weren’t exactly brilliant in their Slimming World values, they were a much better option than others available.

Eating properly last week and over the weekend saw me lose 1.5lbs at Slimming World today.  I had been on track for a better loss, but I’ll definitely accept that.  Especially seeing as my exercise over the weekend was negligible.  I am going to redo last week of my 10k plan, as I didn’t hit the runs at all.  One thing that is bothering me is that I don’t seem to be able to run for 30 minutes like I could at the end of Couch to 5k.  I am sure it’s a mental problem, and I know I have mentioned this problem before.  I definitely seemed to do better with no music on my long run last time out, so I might try podcasts or audiobooks.  I’ve also done a couple of runs on the dreadmill, and I think that’s killing a bit of the joy of running, so I’ll head back outdoors again.

I have the week off, and I am thoroughly looking forward to doing nada (well… kind of nada).