Changing Seasons

It’s feeling massively colder here and the rain, the never ending south west rain, has begun to fall, and we can feel that winter is here and with it has come a definite feel of discontentment of how I’m doing lately.

Most of this year I’ve maintained. Looking back I’ve lost around half a stone (7 lbs) overall which is fine, a loss is a loss after all and we’ve a month of the year to go so I may lose those over 45 lbs targeted lbs yet ;) but you know it’s no where near what I wanted but life has a way of getting involved in best laid plans of mice and men. And very busy mums who want to make something of their lives other than a healthy BMI.

All year long I’ve had people telling me the same message and I’ve been brushing it off because really I’m not sure how else to work but lately I’ve realised that I HAVE to make a change or I’m going to do some serious damage to myself. I work on full blast. I want to do my very best so I work my very hardest. I expect my very best all the time. I do more. I do extra. I expect more. I take on more. Recently I’ve started to feel a little bit swamped while at the same time feeling disappointed that I’m not making progress with my weight loss or running further or faster.

This has come to be true of food as well. While I can’t keep eating in the slap dash way that I have, with little planning, long gaps between meals – 12 hours at times – and little consistency of health in those meals, I’m no where near getting a balance of carbs and fats or any kind of nutrition at the moment which is exacerbating my tiredness and general feeling of awful, I can’t put pressure on myself to eat perfect Paleo either. Whole 30 right now is not right for me and nor is any kind of uber restrictive plan. I need to eat to fuel myself well and eat to lose weight. Right now I need to simplify, take a step back and start finding my way back to something manageable for me again. I’ll try and remember to instagram my stuff but I’m bloody useless.

Not many people know this but I’m an epileptic, Until 18 months ago I’d not had a seizure for about 8 years, and was completely free of medication, then one seizure hit and initially we agreed I wouldn’t take meds as it was a one off but I started experiencing migraines and headaches recently which would literally leave me debilitated for a whole day and my neurologist surmised that this was likely linked to my epilepsy symptomatology and I was risking another seizure without medication. So during the past 3 months I’ve begun to titrate up on a dose of a medicine to prevent seizures and a medicine which will hopefully control my migraines. Sadly, as with most meds, I’ve had some unpleasant side effects, one of which is that even walking up the stairs has left my heart pounding and my resting pulse has raised significantly which obviously has an impact on a lot of things, I’m waiting for a GP appointment to discuss it further. Obviously it impacts how much I can do in the way of physical work so I’ve been trying to up my lower intensity stuff and stay on my feet more which at work right now is not a problem!

My diet though is whats letting me down but I’m trying not to let myself down any more in that area. I refuse to brand myself a failure anymore though. My life is not a failure. I am not a failure. My life is far from failure, what I see right now is a massively bright future, I am going to do awesome things with my future, but right now, this is part of my present that I want to move on a little and I have to start listening to the person who has done it, rather than the person who is struggling to do it.

Vegan Tuck Box

Now anyone who knows me will have raised an eye brow to hear me talk about a vegan product because I’m far from a vegan person, I eat meat and eggs like they may never reproduce again however I do love a great snack and I love a healthy great snack even more so when Vegan Tuck Box offered to send me one of their jam packed boxes I couldn’t resist.

Vegan Tuck Box are a monthly subscription box who send you yummy gorgeousness through the post every month to your door from snacks to crisps to chocolate and biscuits. You get the choice of a mini box (with 5-6 products) or a standard box (10-12) products and you can even just buy a single box or a subscription.

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Inside is packed with loads of yummy things the whole family can tuck in to, my family decimated ours in a matter of days but your family is probably more controlled and less piggy like.

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Those cookie shots are amazing, AMAZING. I also loved the Almonds and they went down really well at work too, the Oloves and the cookies, the granola bites are delish too. I think they are great value at £17 a month for all these goodies which would keep you going easily through the month and keep you full up as you graze to your hearts content.

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Things I learnt from the Whole Life Challenge

One

Holistic health is a challenge. That it’s easy to concentrate on one thing and let lots of other things fall by the wayside, for me often when food is going well exercise gets lost, or visa versa, having to think about all of it all at once is a challenge and I guess that is all part of having a rounded life. When it’s not being part of your life for a long time its hard to remember it all, doing the challenge was like having a check list every day. It’s hard on some days to not feel like you are going through the motions especially when you throw in family life and work into the mix, on those days I did think am I really doing this for me or for the points? Thats when real life bites and you are doing it for the challenge but it teaches you it can be done even if the reasons may not be the best.

Two

Starting a line of medication (wholly not optional) in the middle of a challenge is going to change things for you. You can’t control that just work with it. Sadly I had to start on epilepsy meds in the middle of the challenge, the first time I’ve had to take meds in 8 years which is a bit of a bummer but anyway my health is way more important (and my driving license!) so I have to take them, as with all chemicals they have side effects and they have hit me fairly hard during this challenge and have ranged from fatigue to heavy room spin and fainting. Pushing through when I have a heavy work load, and a demanding home life has been a challenge to, sometimes I’ve just wanted to curl up at home in bed.

There will always be stuff you can’t control. Learn to adapt and work with it and do the best you can in the circumstances you have. That is life no?

Three

You can’t have it all. I realised mid way through the challenge that it would probably be too much for me to maintain, I pushed through but I wasn’t able to make the most of it really. Over the next 12 months I will have an extraordinarily busy life, after that point it will calm and I will be able to focus more on things outside of my work and immediate life plans. I have to prioritise right now and decide what is most important to me. Is it seeing those numbers on the scale or the numbers on the screen? Which ones are more important to me? I think this challenge and the events in my life during it bring that sharply into focus.

My health is vital to me achieving my goals. But it isn’t my goals. Does that make sense?

Four

A lot of the things in the challenge I’m already doing! Water? Check. Stretching? Check. Generally the day to day stuff I did, the challenges weren’t too taxing, I’m quite reflective generally and I am mindful etc so I didn’t find that too tricky. I found it reassuring though. I’m doing a lot of the stuff I need to be doing and thats good. I’m meeting a lot of wellbeing targets already just naturally day to day and I’ve built them in to my life. I really have made a lifestyle change.  Go me!

I’m proud of what I did achieve even if I didn’t see massive weight loss during the challenge I did see a change in body shape and a little change in my attitude and focus. I am happy that I got through it all.

Clean Eating Christmas Treats!

Yup the C word is well and truly out there and although that word really doesn’t get used until after my sons birthday (Nov 24th) and decorations certainly don’t appear until after this time but there is no mistaking it Christmas is next month for a lot of us. Hannakuh, Divali and all kinds of other winter celebrations are happening too of course.

Christmas is a time for indulgence for so so many and usually thats me included and I always give a handmade treat to my family too, but this year I’m going for one of these, so I thought I would share with you guys too what I’ve been stockpiling, I’ve not chosen yet, would you think about making any of them? As always click on the pic to follow the link!

Paleo Marzipan

 

 

 

Reconnection

Recently you may have noticed a bit of a shift from me, a gentle turning of tides I suppose in how I’m feeling about everything in my life, I’m not posting you a million pictures of me working out, even when I am working out (which I’m not prolifically but I am doing stuff) but I don’t feel the need to revel in it, it’s just a thing now, what I’m loving more is the leaves turning, the cold coming, the skies becoming clear and blue and crisp.

I’ve recently had to start taking some medication and its knocked me a bit, I’ve had some side effects and I’ve had little ability to do anything really, the room spin and the shakes have been very difficult to manage and fit in killer workouts as well, so I’ve been gentle with myself instead. Walking, getting extra steps in, a little workout at home, some stuff with people at work. Little bursts, little bits, little extras. I’ve lost 3 lbs.

The title of this blog post is Reconnection because that was the Whole Life Challenge challenge this week, reconnecting with people you want to reconnect to, you’ve lost touch with. For a long time that person was me. I lost myself completely, in the process I buried myself under layers of fat which protected that person who I wasn’t ready to be and I knew would be damaged if I tried to become her again. I hid her to protect her from an environment which would have damaged her in a way in which I would have never gotten her back again. So in a way I did the right thing for her but she stayed down there too long, I did a lot of damage to the outer me, and that I need to work through now.

 So I’ll be reconnecting with me and really prioritising the things that matter to me, my future, my life and planning for those things with my family, working towards the rewards that my family deserve, making the most of what I have to offer to that.

I know life makes us very much glorify busy these days, I’m not sure I like that, lately I’ve really been pondering if I’m on the edge of burn out from all the busy and the glorification of it. I thought for a long time that busy would make me happy but actually people I love make me happy. My mental kitten makes me happy. Having a working shower again makes me so so happy. I can’t even explain. I realised that I spent a long time plugging holes in my soul so that the real me wouldn’t come creping out, cause she wasn’t ready to. Now she’s been out a while and she likes it, and people seem to like her too.

So I’m going to continue to reconnect with her, and reach out to old friends too, hopefully that circle can keep getting to know me too.

Joseph and Joseph in the Kitchen with Suppose.com

Recently the fab people at Suppose.com got in touch and offered me a chance to try out the Joseph and Joseph Elevate Kitchen utensil kit, which I jumped at the chance to try as there stuff is always super well designed and thought through.

 

They are designed to keep mess of the work surfaces and brighten up the kitchen and the best thing about suppose is that it gets it all too you at the best price! Suppose helps you keep track of all the best prices across loads of products.

I’ve been using the products all week, I cook from scratch several times a day and they really are great, hardy, solid, and they really do keep your surfaces clean and tidy, I hate having to scrub sauce off of worktops when its dried on after a prep session! They are great value, very sturdy and I can see that they are going to last some time. They brighten my kitchen up beautifully too. The rubber grips certainly help when you are working with different boiling pots, easy to hold and easy chunky grips mean you can work with them well.

I’d say a great purchase for anyone and a lovely gift from suppose for me. Obviously even though they were a gift, I wasn’t paid for my positive opinion I am always honest.