Bumpy Road 2 Smooth Curves

Join me for the ride

Where did the time go???

Time-runningDear me, looks like the intention to keep regular updates here went completely out of window! Work has been busy and some evenings I didn’t even feel like opening my laptop to write something up. And then one day lead to another and before you realize week past by. One week transforms into two weeks and I start panicking that I really SHOULD write something. So here we go (utilizing last few minutes of my lunch break ;)).

The good news, the bad news and the mediocre.

Towards the middle of the last week I was so spread out and rushed that my will power barriers crumbled and I caved into my temptations. In other words I had few normal meals. I didn’t go completely off the rails but I was in desperate need of some comfort foot. So my compromise was to have normal lunch but the rest of the day only juices. I have been doing this for a week and I will be ready to jump back into full juicing mode next week. In a hindsight I think it wasn’t only the stuff at work but also the colder weather and not getting enough sleep. I don’t know how about you, but I can’t do anything about the weather, however I will make it my goal for next week to get decent sleep every day. And I will make sure to stick with it. It is interesting how such simple thing can influence you so much! So this was the bad news.

The good news is that I still managed to stick to juicing for the two meals a day! I think this deserves a recognition as I could have spun uncontrollably food wise and the damage to my healthier lifestyle ‘experiment’ would have been far worse. So well done on balancing on a beam above the abyss.

And mediocre? I think it is the perfect word for my last week or so performance.

So this weekend, I plan to put myself back together and get on with it. Talk soon 😉

Renny x

Relax and enjoy the ride, mate.

imagesYesterday, on my way home from work I jumped on express bus as it is much quicker to travel that way. I usually jump on the last stop in the city centre before the bus dashes without stopping towards the outskirts. As always, the bus driver makes the customary announcement that we are not stopping until the XY stop and who needs to get off before that should get of now and take corresponding regular bus. Run of the mill for most of us who travel this route, but there is always one person who doesn’t listen and consequently is very surprised when his/hers bus stop comes and goes and we are not stopping. The bus was packed! You couldn’t squeeze in more people even if you tried and we all were content with our small spots for next 30 odd minutes.

I was standing right at the front of the bus and surely, 10 minutes into the journey a guy is trying to squeeze through the crowd to go and talk to the driver. You can see all the knowing looks and knowing half smiles from the regulars! Few minutes later the guy is standing next to me and this exchange takes place.

Guy: Hi, sorry, you are not stopping?

Bus driver: No, this is express bus. I made the announcement earlier that we won’t be stopping until XY.

Guy: I was on the phone. Any chance I can just jump of anywhere?

(At this point everyone in the front part of the bus is listening intently, secretly chuckling at each other.)

Bus driver: Not really, everyone here just wants to quickly get to their destination. Otherwise they would have taken the regular bus. Are you in a hurry?

Guy: No, not really. I just wanted to jump off.

Bus driver: Then relax and enjoy the ride, mate!

The whole front of the bus roars with laughter! To be fair, the bus driver was clearly a  nice guy as he let the poor guy jump off near tube station 10 minutes later. But he clearly made few people’s’ day that evening.

On another note – news from my juicing world – days six and seven were pretty uneventful juicing wise and I was going back and forth between juices and smoothies (just needed a change). Interesting observation – I didn’t feel bloated at all before  the usual ‘time of the month’. So thumbs up for me. 

Today, day eight, I am doing smoothies for the day, so for breakfast and mid morning I blended 1/4 of a honey melon, 1 red grapefruit and 1/4 of a small watermelon. As these are very watery anyway the result is more like a juice with a pulp rather than a smoothie. Still it is very nice and surprisingly more on the sour side than the sweet one. It is really refreshing and I can imagine having this in the hight of summer with some ice cubes or just blitz the ice right with it 😉 And for the long summer nights, when you have some people over, it would be a nice cocktail with a shot of vodka in it.

And for lunch I have my classic ‘salad smoothie’ – 1 avocado, 1/2 red pepper, chunk of cucumber, two tomatoes and bunch of  spinach. I usually add some flat leaf parsley (cilantro) but I run out. I like to add a dash of salt and black pepper and it is like summer salad in a cup 😉 Really yummy and definitely  on my top favourites list.

Renny x

Damn you, onions!

onionDay Five came and dumped me, unceremoniously, at the bottom of a steep learning curve. So far my approach to juicing could be described as a bit of haphazard. In other words, throw something in the juicer and hope for the best. And it surprisingly worked for a few sweet days. Today, I got the payback! Last night, while preparing my juices for next day I clearly went for one too many combinations. Firstly, I put too much ginger in my morning and mid morning apple and carrot juice. It wasn’t exactly pleasant but it was drinkable. Where my full potential for deadly concoctions flourished was my lunch juice. Not only did I combine too many vegetables, but also for a good measure I included almost full scotch bonnet pepper and one very feisty shallot. The overall look of the final product was unappealing brown -ish, green -ish dish water and the taste wasn’t much better. As I was in the mood for sacrificing myself in the name of health, I managed to have few sips that night and decided that if I drink it quickly, I can pass it for ‘not so nice but healthy’ lunch.

Little did I suspect at this point, that the scotch bonnet pepper and the shallot will work miracles over night and by the time we approach lunch, this concoction will have to be reclassified as a weapon of mass destruction. Embracing my fate and knowing fair well that the taste had lot to desire, I approached the juice with less caution that I should have. I just started to gulp it down until I couldn’t do it anymore. As soon as I put the juice back on the table, I knew that this is not going to be pretty as the burning sensation hit me. I thought I could professionally spit fire after I took first breath. The onion was so pungent that I thought it will eat my stomach like an acid and the scotch bonnet pepper was so hot that I could only gasp for air. 

And so I ditched the juice. It wasn’t humanly possible to drink a sip more and not to end up in A&E. I don’t have to tell you that I was still hungry at this point and there was nothing reasonable I could get at work that will have a small impact on my fast. And so I ended up eating four dry crackers to calm the stomach and satisfy my hunger. I wasn’t proud of this but there was no other way.

On a positive note, I stepped on the scales yesterday, and ta daaaa I have 5 kg down 😉

So all lessons learned and it is only onwards and upwards my friends.

Renny x

Oh, those weekends!

fruit-juices-of-tropical-glass-food-widescreen-470589Sunday, day four of my juicing fast, and I was peckish the whole day! No matter what juice I tried, I couldn’t shake meat dishes out of my head. I guess, during week days, I have plenty to do in the office and have set times for meals so my mind doesn’t wander around and dream about food. As I realised, that is not the case over weekend. At least yesterday I was quite busy, in and out of the house all the time, so I grabbed juice when I could. But today, the weather wasn’t great so I decided to do the usual washing, cleaning, tidying and catching up on stuff I put aside during the week. And this was the perfect playground for my mind to occupy itself with food thoughts. I had various juices during the day, but on top of that (trying to prevent any disasters) I had one spicy avocado and for my dinner I had sauerkraut. I was so obsessed by food today that I had to do something about it. Luckily I really desired sauerkraut for some reason. I haven’t had it for quite some time, but always keep a jar of it in my fridge. So instead of juice for dinner, I had bit of sauerkraut. I figured that this is the lesser evil and at least sauerkraut is very healthy.

On top of this, I am not very happy with my juicer. I bought a middle range centrifugal one and I don’t like the fact that it leaves quite a moist pulp. This of course means that I need to use more fruit and veg to get the same amount of juice. I think the last drop for me was this evening when I was preparing juices for tomorrow. I was happily juicing and in the middle of the session the juicer died. I bought it only week ago! And so I went, searched another one with good reviews and apparently dry pulp and bought it. I just didn’t want to be without a juicer longer than I have to! Devastated, that my fast might be cut short or intermitted, I went to clean the broken juicer. Once I put it back together, I thought I would just check again that it is definitely broke and guess what. It worked again! Well I am just not impressed with this so I will contact the company and try to get refund as the juicer is just not reliable at all. I will keep you posted.

Keep juicing, it is a lot of fun.

Renny x

 

Breakthrough

yes-you-can_2Day three, and all is well in my juicing world. I was bit tired today, so my wake up time was bit later than usual and I took a short nap in the afternoon, but I think it is just my body adjusting to the juicing. On the positive side, I wasn’t hungry today. No hunger pains, just a tiny bit of a tummy grumble just before my meal time, but that was about it. Looks like my body and mind made peace with the juicing programme and are embracing it.

Surprisingly, when I prepared my juicer and started juicing, that is when I realised that I am quite hungry. It was just a sudden realisation and was shortly satisfied by the prepared juice, so no harm. But apart from that, all is hunky dory 😉

As you can imagine, my full body is aching after the yesterday’s tumble but I just keep stretching and doing everything I would normally do, just slowly so I don’t strain my muscles more than I have to.

Now, for my morning and mid morning juice I had  four small pears with good size ginger, two apples, three smallish parsnips and few carrots. It was lovely, but the pears were kind of lost in it, so will need to try something that will give their flavour more of a room.

Today was a first day I didn’t have s smoothie! Just juice all the way 😉 But I had such an appetite for avocado! As avocado is a very soft fruit, I saw no harm in actually normally eating it (you can’t really juice it…). So I put a tiny bit of salt and pepper and chilli on each half and indulged the treat. It was divine, however, next time half of avocado would suffice.

For my lunch and dinner I was pulling all stops and went totally veggie. I juiced whole cucumber, very small head of broccoli, two peppers, two shallots (for a great kick), one small scotch bonnet pepper, four tomatoes, four radishes and three carrots. I also added two handfuls of spinach, but I prepped it in different way. I don’t think my juicer would be able to deal with spinach, I put it in a blender with  about 150ml of coconut water. Blitzed the life out of it and then poured it through the blender. That gave me nice green juice.  Overall, nice juice with a kick from the shallots, the scotch bonnet pepper kind of got lost in it. I will either have to blitz her with the spinach or take much bigger one. I just didn’t want the juice burn through me, so I was quite cautious with it.

That’s all for now. Stay strong and keep juicing.

Renny x

Very cautious pat on the back

bandaged-man1Second day done. Whoop whoop! And I am still on track 😉 If I wasn’t so battered, I would have made a victory bum wiggle 😀

I don’t know how about you, but I am not exactly a morning person. This means that my mornings are in a bit of a slow stroll and I properly wake up when I step out of the house to ‘dash’ for the bus. So I am usually on an auto pilot as each morning is the same – wake up – lights on – teeth – shower – make up – clothes – hair – shoes – handbag – keys – pit stop at fridge to take breakfast and lunch with me and I am out of the door. Not today! That would be just too simple to follow the fool-proof system carefully established over the years.

Last night I prepared all the juices for today and had the breakfast one in my big mug in a fridge ready to take in the morning. Everything went according to the plan – 6am wake up – lights on – teeth – shower and while showering I thought that it would be a good idea to grab the juice in the kitchen after the shower so it is not so cold to drink before I go. What a great idea! You would think that, wouldn’t you 🙂 Well, I think you should know that I have my room in a converted loft so I need to take stairs to get to the bathroom on the first floor and ultimately, kitchen is in the ground floor. Enough said. I usually go out of the bathroom, turn right take the stairs up and that’s it. This time, it was turn left and go down. This unfamiliar morning move coupled with me still half dreaming and paying no attention of what I was doing resulted in me misjudging how close the steps were and I less than elegantly slipped. As we are talking about a spiral staircase, there was luckily no way I would fall all the way down, but I managed to nicely ram the side of my left knee into the banister frame and as I caught my self with my right hand (applaud for swift instincts) I bashed my thumb a bit as well.

So the sequence was – thud – thud – one or two expletives – very slow and careful hobble down the rest of the stairs…  After few minutes of checking that nothing is broken and that I am still alive, I grabbed the juice and got on with my morning routine. Before I went to work, I also bandaged my hand as  it felt really tender and I didn’t want to strain it any further. After that, my day was pretty uneventful, which I am really grateful for.

On a positive note, my plan worked well! Juice in the morning (this time around 7am) and juice around 10am is a good combination for me. They both were same – just a mix of carrots, parsnips and two apples. Surprisingly very tasteful! For lunch (around 2pm) I had a smoothie made of radishes, bit of cucumber, half pepper, parsley and one avocado. I added a bit of salt, pepper and chilli. So it had quite a kick and I really enjoyed it. I felt bit hungry after 5pm but that just came and went. I must admit I am not even that much bothered about smelling and seeing my colleagues’ lunches. I committed to the juice and I just get on with it. The only think I noticed was that I had mild headache most of the afternoon. Nothing serious, just a small one hovering there so you know about her but never fully developing into normal headache.

I went slightly different way home and the first thought that crossed my mind was ‘Oh yes, I go through that bus stop, I can get fresh popcorn.’ And the next thought was just ‘Actually no, you are on the juice.’ And that was it, no regret, no sadness, nothing. I was then standing at the bus stop for good 10 mins waiting for the bus right next to the shop smelling the popcorn and surprisingly it did nothing to me. Once my mind decided that juice is the way to go, there was no need to question the decision. Quite liberating.

So I think I am doing pretty well so far and I am looking forward to tomorrow to try new juice combinations.

Stay strong and keep juicing.

Renny x

Feeling like a road kill…

squirrelWell, if someone tells you that juicing is easy and fun and you will love it, then turn around and run! Its hard! I mean, really hard! I just about survived day one and sincerely hope that it will get easier soon! The whole day I was in full on combat with myself. I am starting to feel that juicing is the new form of surviving of the fittest, because if you have small will power, then you will very likely cave in in the first few days! It is definitely worth it to have a support group to help you through this.

It all started rather nicely. I had my breakfast juice at 7.30am and I treated myself to a mixture of grapefruit, carrot, apple and a hint of ginger. It was yummy, and when I got in the office I made a big mug of hot water with lemon and ginger slices. No need to mention that around 10am I was ready to polish half a cow! I was so hungry! It didn’t help that the office was quite cold and I didn’t have much sleep last night. I was ready to crawl into warm bed and feel sorry for myself. I tried to distract myself with work but it always came crashing down with me having a mini day dreams about food. It was almost like watching a movie that you don’t want to watch but keep looking. Pure self torture! It didn’t let me go until about half 12 but my tummy was rumbling the whole morning. I was so ready to throw in the towel several times during the morning and the only thing that prevented me in doing so was the thought of how would I be able to explain it to you lot that I gave up on the first day! So, even though you didn’t know it, you saved me today 😉 Thank you xxx

I finally managed to have my lunch smoothie just before 2pm. I blended one kiwi, two pears, half of an avocado and handful of spinach. This tied me over to dinner, but by the time I was preparing dinner at 6pm I was hungry again. This time I went for full veggie concoction – four radishes, half of pepper, three inches of cucumber, half avocado, bunch of flat leaf parsley and handful of spinach. I put a pinch of salt, pepper and chilli in it and it was delicious. I was full and it was tasty, but not really satisfying. I think my body is just fighting the fact that I don’t give it any proper solid food that it is used to. And so I drink more water and hope that the hungry unsatisfying feeling will go away soon.

But don’t worry, I have a plan how to tackle this tomorrow. I will have my juice at 7.30am as today, but then I will add additional one around 10am and that should take care of the hunger pains.  Apparently the first 3-4 days are the worst! So I am going to take it step by step and see what happens. Now going to bed to get some beauty sleep and strength to tackle tomorrow 😉

Renny x

 

And that’s where we are now…

explosionSo many things happened and so little time to give you the run down. To cut the story short, I gave the gym fair run for several months but it just wasn’t up my street. Over all it was a good experience, but I don’t think it was totally suited my physic. The walk on treadmill was fine, most of the weights were fine, but if you put someone of my size on the bike and tell them ‘go as fast as you can’, you will ultimately end up with sweaty misshapen blob bobbing up and down on a tiny bike. And once belly gets in the way of your peddling, then no matter what supper sports bra you have, you just end up with boobs all over the place. And of course it doesn’t really help when people kept obviously staring at you during all this. As if they didn’t have anything better to do. No need to mention, that when you hit the gym in same time pattern, you see the same people staring and that just gets quite creepy.

And so I gave up.

Towards the end of last year, I started to do more walks outside and a bit of yoga. Basically, trying just to move my body bit more with exercise that is more suited to my body frame at the moment. And as I want to shift some pounds so I can do more exercise, I decided to do some juicing. Actually, the idea came after watching the document called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and if the trucker can do it, so can I! And so for the past few days I have eased my way into this by drinking bit of juice and having a little bite to eat, but from tomorrow (well, technically already today…) I am doing full on juicing/smoothies. I hope to get at least 10 days behind my belt, 2 weeks would be good, but ultimately a full month is the goal. I will see how I feel after the few days.

I also try to make short posts every day so you know what yummy juices I indulge and how I feel. For me, this is not about being on a diet, it is more of a life style change.

Are you turning your life around? Fancy a support buddy? Then get in touch.

Renny x

Hmm, September…

It all started rather well – I signed away my body and soul to the local gym (for random experiments) and booked my Full body MOT session and Induction session. In other words, I didn’t fancy going to the GP to tell me that I can exercise (I just don’t like doctors…) so I opted for the ‘easier’ check up offered by the gym (hence the MOT).  So I apprehensively stepped into the gym, got changed and was waiting for the personal trainer. If only did I know what is about to happen… First, there was a slight confusion who am I supposed to do the MOT with (and yes, I slightly fuelled the confusion 🙂 ), then once seated in a small room with a very lovely girl it turned out that the computer doesn’t want to cooperate. As you can see, everything run smoothly like a well oiled machine :D.

Finally even the computer started working and we were off the starting blocks – weight, hight, waist and hip circumference, blood test for sugar and cholesterol and then we hit the screeching halt – blood pressure. No matter what we tried, there was no way we could get the sleeve on my arm! Embarrassing? Totally!!! I wished the ground would open and swallow me whole! Or I just self combust, both options were more than acceptable. Unfortunately neither of the options happened and at one point I was on the verge of crying. Luckily I stopped that and we agreed that the middle-sized sleeve is a no go.

After all this, when I desperately tried to turn this into a joke, I was offered to take few tests but only if I fancy doing them. Well, at that point, I thought it can’t get any worse so I might as well go and bite the bullet. I knew I have no stamina to talk about, limited flexibility (belly kind of get in your way a lot) and muscles that aren’t used to exercise – so basically starting from zero. I didn’t need to convince anyone else about it but I thought I might as well put it out there so we all are clear that there is nothing we can build on. We are just starting from scratch!

Flexibility test turned out the best out of the bunch – I could almost touch my feet. Can’t breath at the same time, but hey, who said that this test was about multitasking! 😀

Squats test – the aim is to do as many squats in 60 seconds as you can do. What can I say, it put a smile on my face. And no, it wasn’t because I am a superwoman and excel at squats, what made me smile was the time limit. It just made no difference to me. I also got offered whether I want to do full squats or half (girly) squats. At that point I thought that either I am in a comedy club or the lovely girl across me totally failed to see me in 3D. As you can guess I opted for the half squats. I got ready, hoping that this will be quickly over and that I manage one decent squat. So when I was offered a test run, I politely declined – not going to waste any remains of muscles I might have on a test run! When I heard ‘go’, I slowly lowered myself to the ground and after a strenuous try my hands gave up, there was a slight thud when I hit the floor and I realised that there is no way I am going to accomplish the second half of the squat. ‘Shall we put 1/2 of the squat on the assessment paper?’ the trainer asked. Still on the ground, I looked up, bless the girl, she was really nice, but at that point my shame just reached the sky (and my dignity left me high and dry) and there was literally nothing to lose anymore. So I replied, ‘I can’t really take credit for the gravity as that was more or less a free fall! Let’s be honest and put zero there.’

The last test was walking four laps on treadmill (after one train lap aimed for heating up) – 1600 metres. This test was meaningful only if I were able to find my pulse and count the beats after the exercise. I was meant to alternate quick and slower parts to get some good reading. Anyways, to cut long story short, 20 minutes later I finished the four laps panting, sweating and with more or less beetroot face. No need to say that I wasn’t able to find my pulse because I think my whole body was pulsating. So we gave up on getting any reading from that and that finally concluded the MOT. There were few bits that we weren’t able to do as one test machine wasn’t working so we will revisit those next time. I finally got to the changing room and was glad that this was over.

Next time – the Induction session – hey, what can go wrong there 😀

Renny x

That’s that and what now?

 

As you can see, my determination to lose weight the two and half years ago wilted down just about as fast as my determination to write my first blog… Not a great start, eh? Now that I am revisiting my goals, aims and aspirations it just seemed more fitting to start fresh – new name, new blog and new fire in my belly. In another words – LET’S GET CRACKING AND NO SLACKING!!! Well, that is kind off the ‘ideal world’ scenario, the past few months in real world looked more like this…

July

My brother has been cycling to work for about two years now, but few months ago he decided to shift some bulk and properly trim down. Yep, you can cycle every day and still be big and bulky. Recently joined gym and got really dedicated. To cut long story short, so far he managed to lose between five and six stones. Impressive if you ask me. So now that I saw that this is possible I started toying with the idea in my head that actually I want that as well! Once you decide what to do, it is pretty much straight forward to go and subscribe to the gym and get started. Said that, I had my concerns, I am a big girl, I didn’t want to injure myself or over/under do it and I knew that I will need some support for this to work. Hence I started searching for a gym and found one that offers an hour session with a personal trainer every six weeks for free. That way, I will have my training plan updated regularly and my progress will be monitored. This just ticked all the boxes. All was ready, I was buzzing, the only problem was that I knew that from mid July until the mid August I will not have time to do anything (yep I went Olympic mad…) and why would you pay for something you wouldn’t use? So, the plan was postponed till after Olympics.

August

Olympics came and went and so did my money… Surprisingly it turned out that you can’t sign gym membership just with a gleaming smile and without parting with some hard-earned cash… and so after the payday I stepped into the gym to sign that I will regularly (and willingly) part with blood, sweat, tears, flab and money until a new and improved me walks out of the doors at some point in the future. And where would be the best place to start than a full body check up and assessment to know where we are at, which brings us to September. More about how it went in my next post 😉

Renny x

 

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