Hold onto your hats, it's going to be a bumpy ride! Thank you for stopping by and joining me for a while. I've recently been juggling (as all mums do) more balls than I am comfy with, and just when I felt like a professional juggler - BAM!! I get hit with this - BREAST CANCER!! I'm hoping that writing this blog will serve as some sort of therapy for me, to get me through this 'rough patch' ahead.... if it's interesting, entertaining, thought provoking or helpful to anyone else out there then that's an added bonus. If you like what you read, please visit again or click the "join" button below, and feel free to spread the word.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

The Fast Diet - 2 weeks in

I've now done 2 full weeks on the 5:2 Fast Diet so thought I'd update with my progress so far.   The second week of fasting was much easier than the first week.  I didn't get any headaches or sleep problems.   Keeping busy on your fast day really helps.  The worst part is my "chill out" time of an evening, when I would usual have some dark chocolate or graze on a Graze box whilst watching the tele.   I have to be really strict with myself to not nibble, and try to go to bed without calming my tummy rumbles.   On Weds night I failed and ate 2 rice crackers at 8 calories each! before retiring.

As I don't own any bathroom scales I use the scales in Boots the Chemist, so am obviously fully clothed when weighing in - I don't want to get arrested for public nudity just to get an accurate weight reading!!! Anyway, if I always wear similar clothes when I weigh in, it makes no difference really and any loss will show up the same way.   However I wore different footwear this time and it recorded my height as been 2 inches taller than I am!   Therefore the BMI calculation is wrong.    Also, could those shoes have been heavier than the ones I wore before??? This has been bothering me, so now my own bathroom scales are on order.

SO, the weigh in showed I am now 9st 9lb!!  A loss of one teeny weeny little 1lb.  I had expected more over the 2 weeks.   Maybe my "time of the month" this week has had an impact?   Maybe the scales are dodgy?!  They were in a different branch of Boots to my previous weigh in.   Oh well, its better than nothing.   Let's hope it will be more next week.   I'm pleased to say that the measurement around my middle has dropped 1 inch! Yay! A good start. Incidentally I call this my "waist measurement" but actually I measured around the part of my tummy that sticks out the most! about half an inch under my belly button. The Fast Diet book tells you to measure around your belly button, but I went for the part that sticks out the most as that's the bit I need to reduce the most.

When my fancy new scales arrive I will be able to way myself sans clothing, first thing in the morning, which will then reveal the true Me.  Whatever they say, I am still going to stick by this diet for a while as I really need to cut down on the weight I'm carrying around my middle.  I'm aiming for being under 9 stone and staying there.   

Also this week as part of my fitness regime I have done 1hr 30 mins of yoga, jogged over 12k (2 separate outings) and done a 30 min Kettlebell workout.

So I'm feeling pretty good and just need to keep up the momentum.  I went out to jog on Sunday with the aim of seeing how far I could go, but going back to interval training to help me increase my distance.   I managed to cover 8.75k by jogging for 20, running for 5 then taking it down to a walk for 5 mins.  I even RAN (not jog) up a hill!! it really helps if you listen to the theme tune from Rocky (Gonna Fly Now) when you do this!

Friday, 6 September 2013

The F word

.... now I've got your attention, it's not a rude word at all, at least not in my book, but I'm going to talk about FASTING - to be precise, the latest "craze" in weight loss which is Intermittent Fasting aka the 5:2 diet or The Fast Diet.

Now although I've always felt blessed with a size 12 figure, at only 5ft 2", currently weighing in a 9st 10lbs, I am on the heavy side for a short arse and I carry most of my excess weight around my middle.   I'm well aware of how unhealthy this is, plus I could be carrying who knows how much fat on the INSIDE of my body, I figure it's time to get myself sorted.   My BMI is 23.8 (according to the scales at Boots) which is acceptable but could definitely be lower and therefore healthier.   I've even got the tape measure out and horror of horrors, my waist measures 38 inches!!!!   I am being brave and sharing this with you all in the interests of research and transparency, to see if this diet actually works.  I hope to be reporting losses as the weeks go by.  I hereby pledge to stick with it for 12 weeks and see how it goes.   Can I live with it?   Does it actually work?

It is called a diet but I do prefer to think of it as a STRATEGY.   The basics are that on 5 days a week you eat normally and on 2 non-consecutive days you Fast, consuming just 500 calories if you are a women and 600 calories if you are a man.  I'm currently reading The Fast Diet book and it is very persuasive stuff, claiming health benefits that include:

  • weight loss of 1-2lb a week,
  • improvements in blood pressure,
  • improvements in cholesterol levels,
  • reduced risk of age related disease, such as cancer,
  • reduced risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and dementia,
  • a greater sense of wellbeing and happiness!
On the cancer subject, the book refers to research undertaken at the Genesis Breast Cancer Prevention Centre in Manchester where a study of women showed that those on a 2 day diet lost twice as much weight as those on a full-time diet - interrrrrrresting!

So taking all the above into account, myself and the Hubster have started on The Fast Diet.  The beauty of it is, that you choose whichever 2 days fit in with your coming week the best.  You don't have to stick to the same 2 days.  So this week I have fasted on Tuesday and today (Friday). I must be honest, that Friday is not a great day to only allow yourself 500 calories, but as yesterday my mum was round for dinner plus I had a hospital appointment (just a check-up), I felt today would fit better.   So, yes I have felt deprived of my usual Friday glass of wine, but tomorrow is another day and I can have one or 2 if I like, then!

Today I have eaten:

Breakfast - 2 boiled eggs and 4 asparagus spears (to dip)
No lunch
Dinner - one lightly dusted Cod Fillet with 3 Broccoli florets and about 50g of steamed spinach
Drinks - MANY!!! lots of herbal tea or water (hot and cold) - my downfall here is that I can't bear herbal tea unsweetened - I tried today and it was grim!! So I use a sweetener called Agave Nectar which is similar to runny honey but has lower calories and a lower GI.  However if I have that every time I have a drink, the calories soon rack up.
Snacks - 1 satsuma

The above totals 525 calories - it is quite tricky to keep it at 500, however practice makes perfect. On Tuesday (my 1st fast day) I had 562 but that was because I really couldn't sleep and got up to eat a chocolate covered rice cake!!  I'm hoping tonight I will do better on the sleep front.

Today has been quite tough if I'm honest.  I have been home all day pretty much, other than the school runs.    I have kept myself busy with household chores etc, but I think next time I fast I'll make sure I get out and about more.  This is early days though right - the book promises that after a few weeks you get used to it and the feeling of hunger barely registers.   So I've got to stick with it.   Nothing worth doing is ever easy.   And tomorrow is another day - one in which I can eat whatever I like AND have some vino.     I should point out though, I'm not a fan of junk/fast food.   We have very occasional take aways and the closest we get to junk food is a pizza from the freezer once every couple of weeks.  So, when I say I can eat whatever I like, I won't be going on a junk food bender and stuffing my face silly on unhealthy food.   Cos that would obviously undo all today's hard work.  

Have you given this diet a go? I would love to hear from you with your experiences and any tips.

Sunday, 1 September 2013


Well, after a very long wait, getting on for 3 months, I finally received a phone call last week about my blood test results.    The good news is.... drum roll please.......THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH MY GENES!!!!

Whoop Whoop!!!  I am so very relieved.  This has been a very heavy weight on my shoulders, more so as the weeks dragged by and I was left waiting way too long to hear the results.  They had to do run the tests twice, because a part of it wasn't working properly, I have no idea why, but the most important thing is, being told there are no problems with my BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes.  
So fantastic news! as now with no impending operations or further treatment, I can finally get on with the rest of my life.     And on that note, I've already found our forever friend - a black Labrador puppy, whom we shall be bringing home to join us in early October!

So please visit again for more puppy news and photos.   Plus my 2 other "projects" - training for a 10k run (yikes) which is happening in Brighton on 17th November and going on "The Fast Diet" because I need to lose to my fat tummy and am bowled over by the other health benefits this way of life offers - if you haven't read the book, you really should.

The kids are back to school on Thursday, so I will have more time for all the above, and blogging, of course.  Bye for now. X