Thursday, 7 April 2011

Epic Wedding Dress Fail

Oh dear, seems I'm not very good at this. Have just eaten a Magnum.

But it's summer! And the sun is out! And it's a beautiful day! It should be accompanied by ice cream!

Okay. I'll go for a run this weekend.


Thursday, 10 March 2011

The Tracy Anderson Method

So today, inbetween reading some old pieces of fanfiction (and its associated review) and actually working, I have been looking at the Tracy Anderson Method. For those of you not familiar with Tracy, she is a top LA personal trainer who trains the likes of Madonna, Shakira and Gwyneth Paltrow. Once a dancer, she is now the first person the celebs turn to when they need a non-surgical skin tightening i.e. to lose a few pounds. And hell, clearly she can tone people up. While someone like Gwyneth is uber-skinny, you cannot say that she is not well toned. And while I think I can pretty safely say I will never be uber-skinny... I think the possibility of being a little more toned is certainly there.

So, Tracy's moves are mostly based on dance. She focuses far less than the conventional DVD trainers on things like squats or lunges: instead, she looks at the small interconnecting muscles that are mostly ignored, but make a huge difference to your outline.

Went through a huge number of Amazon reviews and have ordered some DVDs. In my search to get an idea of exactly how long a workout might take (let's not lie, I don't have more than an hour to spare on this a day - if that!) I came across a video.

This is Gwyneth Paltrow doing Tracy's arm work out, to get in shape for her role for Iron Man.

Now, I'm not sure what happens after three minutes because I was so exhausted from just watching that much. Suddenly regretting that 'Click to Buy' button on Amazon - have a horrible feeling these ones might go dusty...

No! Why am I being so defeatist? They can't be that bad, surely? I'll give them a good go, anyway, and see how I turn out.

Hopefully buying some new trainers tonight, and then having dinner out with the Fiancé (don't worry, it's only a salad and I won't eat the breadsticks...!) before doing my workout. I'm thinking Pilates tonight - found myself getting a little too short of breath yesterday after being so ill all last week!

Hope you are all well and the sun is shining where you are.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Where does the time go?

Well, I must first and foremost apologise for my extended absence. It seems to have been one thing after another - super busy-ness the first week, and then a period of five days in bed with the flu. At least the Fiancé's sickness is on the mend - he has looked after me so well over the last few days. Bless :)

Gosh, well, so much has happened over the past ten days or so in the big wide world! I'm afraid my brain is still not on full form, so this may be rambling and full of loop-holes, for which I profusely apologise at this stage!

So. Unescapable has been London Fashion Week. It's been difficult to escape the constant press attention of it all: every tube ride has someone else staring at those images in the constant flurry of free papers. Yet, it doesn't seem to be the clothes that have caught the eye of most reporters: it's the models. The thousands of stick-thin figures gracing our catwalks this year. Most reported on model of the season is Chloe Memisevic, whose hauntingly gaunt face has frightened me at many a moment during the night. I look at this girl and I feel really sad: there is no way in hell I would ever want to look like that. Other than borrowing that dress, that is.

What is it that possesses designers to hire the most skeletal of models to prance their clothes down the runways? Many of these girls are even slimmer than the mannequins these dresses will be displayed on in store.

My theory is that it must be a financial status thing: if you cannot afford to keep yourself this thin, you cannot afford this dress. That is to say, that if you cannot afford to not have to work and be able to focus all your attention on your appearance, if you cannot afford to only eat hyper-organic foods bought fresh from the market and vitamin supplements (Gwyneth Paltrow, I'm looking at you...), then this dress is not in your price range. Elitist, sadistic, ghastly little bastards. I think fashion designers have a duty to be socially responsible and socially reflective, and they should be held accountable. I'm not saying send a size 16 down the runway - but I am saying that sending a size 10 is not an unreasonable request! Girls like Chloe are not the right example to be setting.

Ugh! Unfortunately, I know that the above is a scramble of assorted jumbled ideas but thinking is making my brain hurt!

On another point: today is the first day of Lent. Instead of giving something up, I am taking something on - I see it as the more positive version of Lent. Every day, for the next forty days, I will be either going to the gym or doing a DVD. Oh yes. Despite having been unwell over the last few days, I'm intending to face one of the aforementioned this evening in an attempt to get my endorphins back on track. Hurrah!

Anyway, hope all is well with all, I'm going to sit in my chair for a little while and close my eyes.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Crunch Time

Huzzah! Last night, I did eighty sit-ups and I actually think it might have had some magical effect, because today I feel AWESOME. Could also be affected by the fact that I got a solid eight hours sleep... but I'm going to go with the sit-up theory.

So, I decided that normal sit ups are SERIOUSLY boring, so I decided to switch it up a little bit. With The Fiancé playing songs from the musicals - inspired by watching Hairspray all evening - and me in my pyjamas on a yoga mat in the middle of the room, I did ten reps of each of the following sets:

Crocodile crunches - raising arms straight and legs straight and meeting in the middle.
Reverse abdominals - holding legs straight up in the air, and then legs and bum off ground.
Half-half sit-ups - bringing yourself up into a sit up in two graduated moves. (x2)
Half-half sit ups with knees bent to side - bringing yourself up into a sit up in two graduated moves, with knees bent to the side. Repeated for left and right.
Cycle sit-ups - using cycling leg motions, and touching alternate knees.
Full pull-ups - a complete sit up, complete with The Fiancé holding my ankles down.

What a sight that must have been. Anyway - hurrah! I am very chuffed with myself. If only I could do that every night before bed... Well, we should all aim for something!

Really fancy sushi for lunch, so think I will indulge in Abokado today. Yummy and fresh! :)

Tonight is a big night out with the Lovely Ladies from work, and then on to some card games. Must avoid drinking cocktails. Fingers crossed, team.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Deepest Depressions

Today, I was horrified. Having been a VERY good girl for the last few days, with all my commitments to the stairs and eating (almost) no carbs and (mostly) low fat, I would have thought that there would be something positive to look forward to today when I jumped on my Wii Fit scales for a boost for the day.

So when my scales cringed under my hefty feet, and the television told me my BMI was too high, I looked up to see, to my horror, that I have gained weight. No, wait, what? GAINED? But I have been so good! I have cut down the amount I am eating to about half. I have upped my exercise - and am about to hit the gym effing hard at 6 o'clock. I am really disappointed :(

I'd love to con myself into thinking that it's muscle but it's not. I'm really not sure what's happened, but there is clearly something naughty slipping into my diet. Which is a shame, because I'm suffering from the usual Diet Symptoms: headachey, tired, breath that tastes like nail varnish remover (yum x_x). Oh, and NO FUN FOOD.

This is the worst day ever in the history of all days ever.

On the bright side, I don't find myself craving things like bread or chocolate. I don't even really think about them and, as such, don't keep reminding myself how much I miss them. Except for right now, of course!

Am in a bit of a grump today. Think I'll sign off here. Gym tonight, for crosstraining fun. Moo :(

Monday, 21 February 2011


You should always enjoy your food.

Six Months

Saturday was the arrival of The Big Day. Well, not the actual big day, because that isn't until August. But the biggest day in reference to The (actual) Big Day so far. Six Months To Go.

Now, this on its own would already be impressive but, even more excitingly, I made the biggest commitment of my life so far (other than, you know, picking Him). I chose my wedding dress. I would go into details, but I know The Fiancé reads this so I can't...! Let's just say it was my first choice, and after a few attempts, I found myself reverting to it with certainty. It even made my Dad tear up a little bit. Possibly because he saw the price tag.

But in all seriousness: choosing the dress finally put my scales (both time and weighing) into perspective. Six months to the day. In one month's time, I will be measured, and all those numbers - hips, waist (or lack thereof), underboobs, overboobs - will be sent off to the Dress Fairies. And then, through some Cinderella-type Disney-esque magic, mice and birds will put my outfit together and my dress will be made. And, once made, it can be altered to a size less - and that's it.

What, wait, that's it?! A month today, I will commit my sizes and I can only drop a dress size from there. Nobody tells you this in the magazines! Where did that come from? That means the majority of weight-shifting work will have to happen in the next month, and the rest will be about severe toning.

I guess, if I'd thought about it, it makes sense. With a dress with an internal corset, losing too much will mean that all the structure will be, well, wasted (if you'll pardon the pun). But gosh, in some ways, my long-term motivation has been a little dashed.

However, counter-balancing to that - my short-term motivation is ON FIRE. I have run up every escalator and every set of stairs so far today, even though I'm wearing heels. I've had a non-carb breakfast, non-carb lunch, and I'm aiming for a non/low-carb dinner too. Oh, and a DVD session with Davina McCall tonight. If I've got one month to really cane myself, then I am going to. And then, I'm just going to enjoy watching all the wobbly bits tighten up.

Realistically, I'm not actually going to lose more than two dress sizes in six months - I think that would be unhealthy and, truth be told, I probably wouldn't keep it off. So maybe this is for the best... I just wish someone would have told me!

Anyway, as an aside: my lovely friend Helen sent me this to cheer me on, for which I am very grateful indeed!

Friday, 18 February 2011

Priscilla versus the Cookie Monster

Aha! So twenty-four hours have passed since I made my resolve! And, unfortunately, they have not been as strong as they could have been.

Not helped, of course, by my buying a bag of two giant cookies on Wednesday (prior to my wedding realisation, I hasten to add...) The Fiancé, doing the decent thing, left me my fair share.

*crafty glance sideways... glomp*

That thing was gone in an instant. And it was good, too. Caramel and chocolate, something extravagant and indulgent. Yum yum YUM. Followed with a glass of soy milk. One would think it was the perfect end to an evening.

Except, today, for the first time ever, I woke up with real and genuine Food Guilt. Perhaps it was the slow and serious realisation of what I had done. Having vowed to behave, I had not done so. I had given in to my baser needs. Not even needs - wants, desires. Sabotage. Now I've never murdered someone, but I think if I had, I would feel a bit like I felt this morning. I found myself thinking, 'What did I do that for?' Yes, it tasted really good. And yes, it hit the spot for that brief moment. But for the rush of pleasure... I now feel that I have to be super-hard on myself to make up for it.

Now, I know it seems silly, but exercise is something I am really, really not built for. Maybe it's all the curves - and not the good kinds. Not only do I have a muffin top, but also a cake shelf and a potato wedge. Oh, and some bajungas that really need strapping down three-times over before I can move with any sense of urgency.

Basically, I'm x stone 1 lb because I'm full of excuses. I looked at myself in the mirror and I felt genuinely sad. I don't want to be that girl. I want to look beautiful and glamorous and sexy and pretty on my wedding day, and I'm not at this rate.

And I thought, very simply, no more.

With a determined pace, I strode to the station, complete with giant arm movements. I ran down the escalators at Waterloo, and up those at Oxford Circus. I clambered up those five flights of stairs to my office. While today does not have a reasonable chunk of time to go to the gym in - there are little things I am determined to do to have even the smallest impact. I consider it penance for my sins but, actually, I'd be better to think of it as a nice little habit I can get in to with actual minimal effort for decent reward.

On the bright side, I feel a little better for it. Didn't have too heavy a lunch but am still suitably full. Will be running up and down the escalators again later to get my train home before a long drive home. And Monday is the beginning of one hell of an exercise plan...

Have a good weekend, all - rest, and be happy :)

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Act 1, Scene 1: A dessert place

It has just occurred to me that, in six months and two days, I will be married.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

Let's be honest. Breakfast consisted of fruit toast, elevenses of a cereal bar (and yes, I think elevenses are acceptable - if hobbits can, so shall I) and a lunch time sandwich. Not so bad, you might think. Except the sandwich was accompanied by a bag of crisps, and I snuck some chocolate in at around four.

If I'm going to be frank with myself: I am a terrible eater. Not only am I a terrible eater, I'm also a lazy little madam. I count running for the train as my daily exercise, which is wrong. I have programmed my mind into 'minimal effort' mode, and, over the next six months and two days, I am going to undo all of that twenty-four years of wrongdoing.

Wish me luck...