Saturday, 31 October 2009

Leaving Tomorrow

I'm going back to London tomorrow evening. I've been the best I can be with eating today - had my usual fruity breakfast, then got pasta instead of chips at lunch of which I packed up half, and then had hummus and pita bread for dinner. I ate 2 oranges and an apple after lunch - this unfortunately did not prevent me eating 3 biscuits in the afternoon that were lying in front of me on the conference table. Of course we worked on a Saturday. I'm working Sunday morning too.

By and large, Africa sucks as a continent for vegetarian food. I love Liberia but I'm looking forward to getting back home so I can eat properly and go to the gym.

Friday, 30 October 2009

Forward Thinking

I have a lot of travel ahead in the months remaining of this year. I'm currently in Monrovia for work. I return on Monday and am 90% certain to go to Sao Tome and Principe
on Thursday. Yes, that's 3 days after I fly into London from Liberia. Just over a week after I return from STP, I leave for India where I'm taking an extended holiday for the whole of December (yey!) having saved up all my holiday throughout the whole year. Yes, I do dread to think of my carbon footprint as well (I am finding ways to make up for it though)

So, how am I going to ensure that I stay on course when the next ten weeks will see four countries and a completely different lifestyle from the fruit/ salad/ gym routine that I try to establish in London?

Before coming to Liberia last time in May, I was doing really well but had a setback during my time here and ended up gaining a few kgs in just my two weeks here. Why? For the following reasons:
1) Meetings with coffee breaks which should be re-titled 'biscuit and cake breaks.' I just completely lost it and had cake after biscuit after cake - at the morning break, at the lunch break and at the afternoon break
2) The complete lack of choice for vegetarians in the country which meant that the only item I could order for dinner was pizza or pasta. Big portion sizes led to expansion in stomach capacity!
3) Snacks in the fridge at the guesthouse where I was staying. These included cheese that I'd picked up in Brussels airport on my way as well as lovely waffles drenched in syrup and biscuits - mmmm....
4) Complete lack of exercise - driven to and from the meetings

I'm so proud to say that I've avoided the pitfalls of last time. I sneakily stopped off at M&S at Gatwick Airport to buy fruit and salad. It's served me really well as I've been able to have an apple, a pear, an orange and a banana for breakfast, filling me up for the day. In addition, the salad that I'd thrown into my basket as an afterthought were priceless yesterday when the buffet lunch served ended up consisting of rice, meat and fish. Being vegetarian my whole life has gotten me used to people forgetting about it when ordering catering! Also, I'm so happy with myself for not touching even one biscuit/ cookie yesterday that were displayed tantalisingly on the plate of my colleague next to me 'for sharing.'

I have to stop myself from feeling that I've slipped up slightly today by ordering penne arrabiata for lunch, especially as we're going to a beach restaurant later on today where I know from bitter experience that the only thing I'll be able to eat is margherita pizza. When there's no other alternative, what can I do? I can't realistically bring enough food for my whole time here - if nothing else, it looks unbelievably precious to eat only food from England!

Never mind. I'll have fruit for breakfast, salad for lunch tomorrow and whatever is around for dinner. I then leave Sunday evening - only two days to get through eating wise before I'm back in London and hitting the gym on Monday, and Tuesday and Wednesday before leaving again.

Fingers crossed I'm hitting 85kg by the time I fly Thursday afternoon - mostly because STP = beaches and it would be so great to have BMI=30=overweight (!) rather than obese then. Not that I'm going to let the small matter of a little (actually lot) of excess weight get between me and the sea anyway (I'm such a water baby) but it would be nice mentally to know when I bare my body to the beach that I'm 'overweight' rather than 'obese'...


Hmmm.... It's been a while.

I can't believe that it's been a whole 5 weeks since I blogged - especially as I was so committed to blogging at least once a day back then. I stopped two weeks before the award ceremony and the conference that I was organising (within 4 days of each other, on top of my full time job) and then just didn't get back into the swing of things. I missed one day and then didn't have time anymore. Blogging really is a habit. Even when I'm crazily busy I can take a couple of minutes to write a 'quick post before going to bed' - which then turns into a lengthy essay (!) - if I've been logging and checking in every day that week. However, when I've missed writing a post for a while, even when I come home at 10pm, I would much rather chill out with my favourite TV programme than write a blog post.

Not only had I been not blogging for a month after my last post, but I'd also not been paying much attention to food and exercise. Despite that, it's amazing how some things stuck though. Every day I had fruit for breakfast and salad for dinner. Even though I had more snacks that when I'm sticking to my plan and dinner often went to pot, it was a much better situation than this time last year.

Proof? I went on the weighing machine last week praying that it wouldn't show above 90kg but mentally prepared for anything up to 95kg - to find 88.9kg. How amazing is that? That my dears is called maintenance. I checked myself a couple of days ago (my life showing concerted effort in terms of eating choices and visits to the gym in the intervening period) to find the weighing machines showing 87.1kg. That's 1.8kg in just a few days.

When it's easy, it's so easy but when it's difficult, it's so hard - and it's the slightest thing that changes the routine from one to the other. How can you tell I've made the switch from one to the other? When I start/ stop blogging about it.

I use this blog to stay on track but when I need it the most, I stay away.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

1st October 2009

1st October looks like this:

Weight: 87.5 kg aka 194 lb aka 13 st 12lb - yey!
Healthy = 70kg

BMI: 31.4 - eek!
Healthy = 18 - 25

Body fat: 31.6kg
Healthy = depends on the total weight

Body fat percentage: 36.1%
Healthy = 14 - 31%

Water percentage: 46.6%
Healthy = 50 - 55%