Tag Archives: work

where work and healthy living intersect

I started my new job this week and I am really pleased with how I have already introduced my healthy routines into my new work atmosphere.

– At my new office, you are not supposed to go through the main foyer in exercise gear. You are supposed to go through the ‘bike’ entrance from the basement. I am ok with this (although I was surprised when I read it initially). In the basement is set up with bike storage, change rooms and lockers, showers and a hairdryer and ironing board and iron. This week, I organised to get a locker so that I can keep my shoes, running belt and hat and some other bits and pieces down in the change rooms so that I can get in and out of the building in my gear easily. It costs $10 a year (plus locker key deposit) and I decided to pay up. I am really pleased I got this set up because it makes it easier for me to get changed and going at lunch times. I like easy options when it comes to my healthy routines.
– I went out at lunch two days this week and am working out a new walking/running route – I mapped it and know distances. It is a little long at the moment but that is ok.
– My colleagues know I go out to exercise which is a good thing. I like that the expectation is that I will go out at lunch. It is also good for me so that I don’t have to explain my red face when I come back.
– It is good for my head that the expectation is I will go out and exercise. There is less thinking about it, I just do it.
– I told my team that I have lost alot of weight. I didn’t give weights but I did talk about clothes sizes. It means that when I refuse to eat something I don’t have to give an explanation.
– It is getting hot as summer approaches. I want to acclimatise to exercising in summer and if I don’t get out then I won’t acclimatise. Getting out twice this week shows me I can run in warmer weather. 30’C is not an excuse not to go out and run.

First week of work is done. I have made some good healthy choices this week when it comes to my work routine.

many steps forward, a couple back

Tired today. I started my new job and it was a good day.

I also weighed in this morning and I have put on weight in the last two weeks. I was up 4 kg this morning from a fortnight ago. I know some is water, some is overeating and some is hormonal. But it is also not unexpected. While I did some exercise last week, my eating spiralled out as I made cake for my toddler’s birthday and decorated cake and planned party food. It was not a good week. And I didn’t check in here because that would mean I would have to face what I was doing.

A couple of times during the week I was aware of how I felt physically, having eaten too much sugar and too much food in general. I thought about how I felt in my body – It is important to notice the bloating, the trouble getting to sleep and the sluggishness when I don’t eat well. It is important to recognise that eating too much sugar leads to sugar cravings and it is so very hard to stop once I have given in. It is important to remember that I feel so much better when I eat well; I sleep better, my body moves more smoothly and I am confident in myself.

Here I am. I have taken some steps back. And I have learnt some things. I think that these are lessons it is going to take me some time to learn. My brain is still wired from decades of poor choices and it will take a long time for the rewiring to be the default.

But, I am going to start taking steps forward again. I am not yet done.

This morning I went out and did 50 minutes of walking/running, a total of 5.8km. I was at work today and I took my snacks and lunch. I have packed my food for tomorrow and have done some prep for dinner tomorrow night. I feel like I am in control.

I am not going to meet my goal for Christmas with regards to seeing numbers on the scale. That is ok. But I will aim to be at my lowest weight this year for Christmas – which means I am going to get the gain off and then some. I will work towards running a 5K between Christmas and New Year. That gives me time to train and I hope to see an improved time since my 5K. This is a good goal to set.

I wish that my emotional mind could take orders from my rational mind. My rational mind knows what to eat and how much. It has logic and evidence with regard to food choices. But eating/food is more than that for me. It is comfort and pleasure; it is part of how I interact with my friends, it is how I am generous with my friends; it is part of how I express my creativity. I am finding ways to be creative in a healthy way with food. I am finding ways to be social apart from food. I am finding ways to manage stress without food. But it is not easy. I don’t think it will ever be easy.

But I believe it is worth it.

I am already living so many benefits of my weightloss and improved fitness.

I will keep looking for new ways. I will keep taking small steps forward; in healthy food choices, in exercise, in stress management. I will be healthy, fit and strong. This I promise to myself. While I may take small steps back, that will not be the end. I will stop, look at what I am doing, look at where I want to go and then keep going. This I promise to myself.


Last day of work today. Things got a little haywire mid last week, then mum was here on the weekend and today… well, I did not find it easy . Things will return to normal programming soon – particularly with exercise and food tracking. And blog posting.

But not today.

And now I have two weeks holiday so things might not return to routine quite that quickly, but the exercise and food tracking start tomorrow.

Tonight I raise my glass of warm cider and cheers friends and colleagues who made my work more interesting, challenging and fun in the last decade. Thank you.

Third Trimester Wrap

I thought I would have a look at the last 13 weeks today so that I don’t forget in all the excitement of the 40 weeks.

The last 14 weeks have been difficult. Work stress has resulted in some uncontrolled binging. I have had 4 gains in this time. But overall I have lost 9kg and I am happy with that.

Each time things went badly and I started using food as comfort or to suppress my stress, I did have some awareness that it was happening. I remember thinking things like this ‘things are hard, so hard, it is ok to stop and use any way you have right now to manage. but come tomorrow, there will be exercise and better eating. this is a way to manage today but not a way to manage long term. so for today and today only, it is ok to use food for comfort and food to forget’. And then I ate and felt the relief that came with that. And then I felt physically uncomfortable from overeating and I tried to remember that ill feeling for next time. It took 3 or 4 days after a binge to get back to feeling right again. The loss of that time frustrated me and I tried to remember that as well. The awareness of what was going on is a big step forward for me. It helped me limit my comfort eating and get back on track. So, I am glad that I have been able to learn a little about myself in this area.

I also know that I managed so well through this time because I had been exercising consistently leading up to it and I kept exercising through it. I don’t want to think about how difficult it would have been without having the exercise to keep me mostly sane. Having exercise challenges was a wonderful thing to have in place 🙂 And walking buddies 🙂

Apart from those times of really high stress, I did ok foodwise. There were also some social occasions I did really well at and some I did badly at. But I learnt through them, too. I did not cook as many new things but I did get the soupmaker and I am still having soup every day for lunch.

Exercisewise, I started jogging more in my walks and signed up for the Up and Running 5K course. In the week ending 18 August I was proud to be jogging for 2 minute stretches. Now I am halfway through the course and can jog 14 minutes! Amazing!!! Looking back, I have not done much resistance training. Maybe I should think about my routine and where I can make it fit because I think it is important. But I have exercised between 4 and 6 hours every week, usually getting in just over 5 hours. Exercise helps me feel strong and powerful.

I have noticed my shape changing alot in the last 6 weeks. I am enjoying my waist and I watch the muscles move in my legs. I can feel my hips and my pelvis. And I like feeling my ribs. I love my collarbones!!! This is my body and it is starting to look good 😀 I am also starting to wear clothes that cling to my curves.

People comment regularly now on my weightloss. And I talk about it alot. I am humbled that people look at me and are inspired to make changes to their own lives. That also helps remind me that what I have done is actually unusual and I am proud of what I have done.

There has been alot of good things in the past 13 weeks; good learning, good exercise and food, amazing support. I am happy.

Post 40 Weeks

I need to put some thought into what happens from Monday. Going into things without a plan is not a good idea for me; I am likely to get sidetracked when I don’t have clear goals and plans.

So, what happens from here???

I want to keep the current momentum going through to the beginning of December; so another 8 weeks. I have the Up and Running course which takes me through to the start of November and then I want to push through to December.

Up and Running gives me an exercise commitment. There are also running workout plans for the 5K level available from Up and Running that I can commit to once the course is over. I think this is a very good idea. Now that I am running and training I don’t want to lose it once the course is finished. I want to at least maintain my fitness in this area.

Generally, with exercise, I am getting in about 5 hours a week. That is 5-6 dedicated exercise sessions of about 40 minutes plus the incidental exercise to and from work 4 days a week which is an additional 20 minutes on those 4 days. I would like to keep up this amount of exercise; it fits into my life and it helps me stay sane. I know that no exercise is bad for my head; I feel that now when I miss as little as 3 consecutive days. But 5 hours a week is also not taking away from my other responsibilities. It feels like a good balance.

Foodwise, I like what I am eating at the moment, the food and the amount. My weekdays are pretty similar for breakfast, snacks and lunch. Dinner brings variation into the day. It is pretty easy and healthy. I like that weekends I have different breakfast options and greater flexibility for lunch and dinner. I am aiming for about 8000kJ a day at the moment and that allows me to have some treats but makes me think and plan my food. I like being aware. This amount of food is enough to lose weight but still support my body with the amount of exercise I do. And to maintain at a healthy weight, I would be eating about this amount of food so getting used to it is a good thing.

There are some variables which I will need to take into account. I start a new job in a new part of town at the beginning of November. That will impact starting and leaving times, where I park and the incidental exercise to and from the car and possibly my lunch time exercise. But I can work with this, I want to work exercise into my day so I will build it in right from the outset. It should also reduce my stress levels which would be a wonderful thing.

But then, what happens from December???

December and January are such social times. My thoughts are a little vague but I would like to track my food for most meals and snacks except for those social occasions, thinking of one or two a week. Most food then should be similar to what I am having now and that will give me some stability. Then, at social things, I will make healthy choices but try not be too concerned about not having total control. I would like to learn to trust myself a little in this area. I will plan to keep exercise going through the summer but might need to shift it to early mornings because of the summer temperatures. That is ok, I can do that. Over Christmas and New Year, I think my goal will be not to gain weight. If I can keep things stable that would be an excellent result.

I am also starting study next year. I am going to do a Graduate Diploma in Human Nutrition. I have found it so interesting to look at my food this year, looking at the kilojoules and macronutrients and building an eating plan that works for my body. And I want to learn more. The study is going to be a fascinating way to learn more and then I can look at applying it to me!

My longterm weight goal is 65 kg. If I can get to between 90 and 93 kg by the end of the year that will mean I have less than 30 kg to goal. I have lost 30 kg already, so that is not such a scary thing to think about. I know that the first 30 is different to the last 30 but I can apply the same principles. I am looking at consistency in my eating and exercise; making these patterns of behaviour ingrained; making healthy choices most of the time. That is what I want to do for the rest of my life; make healthy choices most of the time, live long and prosper.

The great unknown

I go to work today but I am going to a different position. This should help. This should make a big difference.

The week was busy and stressful. I was still stressed over the weekend. My guess is all that nervous energy is helping me weight wise because I have not been consistent with exercise in the last week. I will take this week’s loss as a gift and encouragement to continue.

Starting weight: 140.9 kg (310 lbs)
Today’s weight: 102.4 kg (225.3 lbs)
This weeks loss: 0.9kg (2 lbs)
Total lost 38.5 kg (84.7 lbs)

I have some big thoughts floating around in my head. They are around the fact that I don’t know what I will look like if I lose more weight, I don’t know what I will feel like in my body. This is uncharted territory for me. Which makes it kind of scary. Where I am is known and feels good in comparison to where I have come from. So, I will be working on these thoughts because I don’t want to sabotage myself.

It is going to be a good week at work. It is going to be a good week at home. The days are getting longer and warmer. This week, I choose to be healthy.


Hello! Still here.

Trying to eat reasonably healthy, trying to get in exercise. Succeeding for some of the time as well.

Trying to move jobs. Making progress there.

Today I went walking at lunch. And jogging. Today I jogged for 1.36 km (which is 0.84 miles) in 9.20 minutes. Next goals are to break 10 minutes and then 1 mile. And this week I paid for my online running course Up and Running Online, which is starting 5 September. Check it out at upandrunningonline.org I am excited about the jogging.

Hopefully there will be new food on the weekend…

Work stress

My stress levels at work are such that I am having trouble making decisions. I spoke to one of the OH&S people and I am getting support now. The stress/anxiety is impacting life outside work; at the shops this morning I almost had a panic attack. I had to choose between similar things and I couldn’t. There were so many people and so much noise. I started panicking. I kept going by pulling my focus in so narrowly that I only thought of one thing at a time. And I did some breathing exercises. I got to the car and cried because of the relief that I could go home.

Things are changing at work. I will be moving positions very soon and I have an appt with a psychologist on Friday. I think I will go to my own doctor early in the week for sick leave. I am almost through the worst of it.

Until I am, I am not going to worry to much about my eating. I will try to exercise every day. I will try to eat a balanced healthy diet. But I won’t be posting stats or focussing on weight loss. I just need to get through this time.

Hurrah for weekends! Prawn and Spinach Chowder!

Another rough week and I am so happy it is the weekend. I have exercised every day this week; it is going to be the first week in a while I will have done something every day. That makes me happy.

Today I made orange scented almond butter. That also makes me happy.

Today I also made a light creamy chowder for lunch with prawns, potato and smokey bacon. It was very good. And I think the recipe deserves to be here.

I don’t know where I got the original recipe from. I found it during the week when I managed to save some files from a laptop that was briefly resurected. We have family staying for a little while and the weather is cold so soup is a good thing to have. It was very good. I have changed it a little from the original, I have increased the prawns, decreased the butter and potato and replaced the cream with light evaporated milk. It is still rich and creamy but much lighter than the original. You can make your own stock to go in the soup but I did not have time today. If you do, buy prawns that are still shelled and use the shells with a bit of carrot, celery, bay leaves to make the stock. Then the soup will be spectacular.

Prawn and Spinach Chowder
(Serves 4)

20 g butter
1 onion, finely sliced
50 g lean smokey bacon, trimmed of all visible fat and finely chopped
1 tsp paprika
2 tbs plain flour
300 mL light evaporated milk
3 cups fish stock
3 potatos, peeled and diced in 2 cm chunks
400g shelled green prawns
100g baby spinach
2 tsp worchestershire sauce

Melt the butter in a large saucepan, add the onion and bacon. Cook over medium heat until the onion is soft. Add the paprika and the flour, stir to distribute evenly and cook for 1 minute. Add the light evaporated milk and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat. Add the potatos and simmer for 30 minutes, covered. Add the prawns and spinach, increase the heat and cook until the prawns are cooked. Stir in the worchestershire sauce.

nutritional information
total: 5486 kJ, 7.2 g fat, 33.9g protein, 112.9 g carb, 9.2 g fibre
per serve: 1372 kJ, 7.2 g fat, 33.9 g protein, 28.2 g carb, 2.3 g fibre

random tired musings

My work hours changed this week so that I am doing Mon, Tues, Thurs and Fri. It feels like a Thursday night for me right now and I am exhausted. There won’t be new experimental foods on Friday anymore… but hopefully I will be able to do some cooking on Wednesdays and weekends. Being able to pull things from the freezer this week has been wonderful.

I have had a really good week so far. The scales this morning were down a good way from Monday. I am tracking and eating well. I am exercising. I haven’t done any resistance training this week but I will do some over the weekend.

We had a work morning tea on Thursday and I took in a sultana cake and a chocolate hedgehog roll. I knew how many kJ were in a piece of each and I really enjoyed both. I was asked for the recipes. I had my cup of tea in my hand to stop my fingers from wanting to pick up more food. It helped having really nice tea and my teapot. I stood away from the table with the food on it and talked to my colleagues. It was a nice morning tea and I managed to avoid the leftovers for the rest of the day. I went out for a brisk walk at lunch and I stayed within my kJ target for the day.

People are commenting regularly now about my weight loss or my exercise habits. I like that. Most days, I have a little strut in my step because I feel good in my clothes. I look in the mirror and I tell myself how well I am doing. The saying it out loud is a good thing.

I have won a soup maker in a magazine competition. It has not arrived yet but I am looking forward to it. I want to make soup: roast tomato and garlic, curried vegetable with lentil, zucchini and parmesan, chicken and sweet corn, roasted root vegetable soup, broccoli and blue cheese. So many soups! I am going to need to get some sturdy containers that are freezer and microwave safe.

This weekend we need to cook some things to stock the freezer. I think there is a party to go to, I need to relax. I want to spend some time with my family and enjoy that. I have some little jobs to do.

Life is good. I am getting closer to my goals while enjoying the journey.