Unsurprisingly, after putting on 4lbs last week, I was very fed up with myself and was determined to obliterate the interloping calories. On Sunday, I marched to Lidl (I did, literally, march…) and stocked up with grapes, strawberries, chicken fillets, two kilos of yoghurt (yes, Lidl does yoghurt by the kilo), sauces, noodles, bean sprouts and masses of mushrooms. At home, I carefully split the chicken fillets in 100g parcels to make 6 lots ready for Sunday to Friday.
Each day I stuck to the routine rigidly. Fruit and yoghurt, as much as I wanted, as often as I wanted. At least two litres of water a day, and up to three Vitamin C effervescent tablets. And for tea, the CSFs were back with a vengeance. Using 50p chilli noodles and sweet chill sauce, plus lashings of mushrooms and bean sprouts, it’s become my ultimate comfort food, best enjoyed with an episode of The Amazing Race. By Tuesday, I already felt much ‘lighter’. Grapes are a wonderful laxative, by the way, so a handful of these with two mugs of very strong coffee every morning, lets just say I was more than sorted for the rest of the day.
I weighed in on Friday this week, as I was decamping to mum’s for the festive season, and her scales aren’t my scales, and my apartment is the coldest place on earth (on Wednesday night, I actually slept in my woolly hat…). I expected to lose one, maybe two pounds, and I definitely felt so much better than the week before. But even I was surprised when I saw I’d lost six and a half pounds. Three separate readings, there was no mistake. I always weigh myself at the same time of day, on the same bit of wooden floor, in all my glorious nakedness, so I knew the reading was right, and I was just astonished. Apart from cutting out the crap, I did do a couple of long walks, too. Monday, it was a 3-mile round trip to the job centre. Thursday, I went for a power stroll around town, including the uphill walk back home. So maybe there is something in this “exercise helps you lose weight” thing, which I’d previously been very doubtful of.
Work-wise, I managed to bag another rude story commission, but I was annoyed to lose out on another gig, that the employer had all but promised to me. It was a travel e-book, and I’d spent an entire day putting together a detailed proposal and contents plan. Only much later, did I discover they’d given the job to three separate writers, whose combined fee was just $10 less than my own. Angry doesn’t even cover it. For all I know, they’ve probably taken my plan and given it to the other guys, who’ll use it as the template for the book. A whole day wasted, that I could have spent chasing other work. And with Christmas around the corner, well, “skint” is putting it mildly.
So, since yesterday, I’ve been at mum’s, all lovely and warm, where I’ll be until January. I’ll have to pop back to the apartment to top up the leccy meter and check I haven’t been burgled, but for the next three weeks, it’s going to be tough to be disciplined, because there’s a very big fridge in this kitchen….
Better make the most of my smugness while I can. I’m the lightest I’ve been in 12 years, and it feels fantastic. I did get drunk with mum last night, though, in Ma Egerton’s, so I’ve already got some calorie catching up to do. And I had a spam sandwich for lunch. Oh God, it’s started already…
So, halfway to my target weight, just another 17lbs to go. How hard can that be? Er…
Things I’ve Learned This Week
1. Discipline works
I’ve always known that I am my own worst enemy, and the only reason I fail to achieve the things I want, is because of myself. Focusing, really getting my head down, and being disciplined, yields results. That, and not eating much, obviously.
2. Bananas don’t ‘go’ with yoghurt
It’s nasty. The lack of acidity in bananas means that there’s nothing to counter the acidity of the yoghurt. Mixing the two together just doesn’t work. Banana milk works, like that Nesquik stuff we used to have as a kid, but bananas and yoghurt….eugh.
3. ‘Value’ biological washing powder is a chemical weapon
Couldn’t afford any proper stuff, so was forced to dumb down with a box of Tesco Value Biological Automatic Washing Powder. My skin is sore in places I didn’t even know were places, so I’m going to have wash everything again, in plain water. Or maybe I could squirt some Fairy liquid into the drawer, or chuck what’s left of my Dove bar into the middle of the drum and hope for the best.
Things I’m Dreading This Week
1. Mum’s cooking
Not that I ‘dread’ mum’s cooking, as such. More that, now that I’ve decamped here for the festive period, it means proper meals every day, that won’t necessarily be as low-fat as the good old CSF. It won’t be a problem having my double doses of fruit and yoghurt, but for evening meals, I’m probably looking at some hearty stews, something with cheese in, and a few pasta dishes. I don’t think I’ll be losing 6lbs this week.
2. A family ‘session’
My sister and brother-in-law arrive from Singapore at the end of the week. It’s going to involve alcohol, and a lot of it. Car crash.
This Week I’ve Mostly Been Watching…
1. American Horror Story: Asylum
Am up to Ep 8 now. And I was right about Zachary Quinto. But if he is going to make a lampshade out of Sarah Paulson’s skin, I wish he’d get on with it, because her simpering is annoying me intensely. And now we know more about Sister Jude, she’s obviously going to end up saving the day. Hurrah! And no sign of Adam Levine since he got deaded. Double hurrah!
2. Homeland – *Contains SPOILERS for those not up to Episode 11!!
This was so twisty turny in the first 6 episodes of Season 2, but now I think it’s losing its way. While it could never be called ‘realistic’, the drama level was always high and I didn’t care how ridiculous some of the situations were. But now they’re just making schoolboy errors, to push things along, and Ep 11, especially, was just silly. So they realise Abu Nazir is still in the building, and Carrie (unarmed and unprotected) is allowed to just follow four FBI agents (all heavily armed and kitted out accordingly) inside, like she’d just wandered in off the street.
And when Carrie and an agent get separated from the rest of the group, and discover the room in which Nazir has been hiding, it somehow doesn’t occur to the agent to radio his colleagues. No. Instead, he and Carrie tiptoe inside, and Nazir kills the agent and nearly kills Carrie. Every single FBI protocol broken in about 10 seconds flat. The storytelling has been brilliant, but I think they realise now that to keep the pace up, they have to ‘shoe-in’ certain situations that are really stretching our credibility levels, now. My friend Louise and I regularly swap Monday morning emails dissecting everything that happened in Sunday night’s episode. I am a week ahead of her, though, so I have to try not to give stuff away, like I just did, above, but Homeland has been bugging me for a couple of weeks now, so I hope it manages to pull itself back from the brink of silliness.
3, The Amazing Race Season 16
Still on this, but next door’s wi-fi keeps crashing, so I’m stuck on Episode 7. I was totally wrong about Jet and Cord, last week. They’re turning out to be a couple of very canny cowboys who are running rings around everyone else. To be fair, there have been several tasks involving cowboy-type things, like lassoing, and ranching llamas, but now the action is shifting over to Europe, they might start slipping up. Having said that, Jet just refused to take his Stetson off while he did a bungee jump. He’s awesome.
The Stats Bit:
Weeks 1-4: 8.75lbs
Weeks 5-8: 5.25lbs
Week 9-12: 1lb
Week 13: zero
Week 14: plus 4lbs
Week 15: 6.5lbs
Total after 115 days: 17.5lbs