Resolutions old and new

It has got to the time of year where one traditionally assesses the progress of the last 12 months and sets out ones plans for the next 12 months.
Its a somewhat depressing tradition for those of us not inclined to make the newspapers with our epic adventures and financial gains; but it does help put some perspective and motivation to the whole time-passing malarky Continue reading

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2012 – Summer Update

So somewhere over halfway through the year, how is my 2012 goal list going?

Physical:

  • Lose 1-2 Stone
    Still 13st and a bit… aargh. I want to be get down to 11 and I can’t seem to drop into the 12s – I have gained 10″ round both bust and waist since I was 17. I hate it.
  • Create (and stick-to @ least 4 days a week) a daily exercise routine that incorporates both shoulder physio and some muscle toning (pilates/yoga & weights?)
    fail 😦
    Need to work on managing the pain
  • Walk at least either 1 Munro or 1 Alpine 4000;
    Looks unlikely with knee probs 😦

Mental/Academic

  • Submit! 
  • Write, deliver & publish my conference paper
    Wrote and gave, hopefully once the thesis is submitted….

Emotional

  • Commit to another round of counselling (as booked through Talking Therapies) and/or psychiatrist
    Tick – not sure where to go next tbh. I’m ok I think so?
  • Take 1 week off each with W & B and ideally 1 week with both together
    Malta with W in Jan, a couple of days in Cornwall with B and a couple with W already achieved and a week in Scot for the three of us planned…….what else?
  • Get my F***ing sleep pattern under control.
    bugger!
  • Make sure my weekly time routine is balanced for all involved
    Not sure  – ask them.

Domestic

  • Puppy!
    Woo Hello Rory!
  • Actually successfully grow some vegetables…
    Potatoes done, spring onions done, spinach done, strawberries and raspberries also harvested
  • Finish the painting
    About half way there
  • Celebrate mine & W’s 10th Anniversary
    Its not til Oct.

I am trying to decide if I need to add to these goals and revise them…I think that I not only need a few more specifics but also stuff to build on longer term. Please bear with me.

Dancing in My Living Room

I am fundamentally lazy.
As a youngster I perfected a Rincewindian analysis of the most efficient way of processing tasks – the art of balancing, for example, whilst moving the contents of say a bookcase upstairs how to take the minimum number of trips without exhausting oneself by carrying too much at any one time or precisely how long it was possible to stay in bed without having to then run to get to school on time. It is an art form.
It also makes exercise and losing weight an anathema.

I used to be a fit person by default; horse-riding, walking, drama, active life-style…but years of depression, anxiety, joint trouble and sitting at a computer screen doing research have eroded my ability to get up and out, piled on the pounds and left me uncomfortable in my own skin.
So since eating less isn’t entirely the answer I am trying to think of ways to incorporate exercise into my days which in part involves re-arranging my world-view and in part involves massive amounts of will-power (seriously lacking).
My default option of walking further is letting me down in part due to my failure to go to town except for specific non-negotiables (like work or counselling) and in part due to current knee troubles. Getting a good cardio work-out through sex is apparently not sufficient and my physio stretches seem to be uninspiring so my plan is dancing in the living room. I am hoping that the right music will in itself get me going without the horror of leaving the building or depressing regimen of set moves.

Just another stone and a half to go…

Sunshine

Its March in the UK and the sun has been shining so enthusiastically I have colour on my cheeks and..decolletage.

I have mixed feelings about this burning ball of gas making such an unfiltered appearance. In general, though I like to see some brightness, it makes me homesick for the sea. On the other hand there is a delight in seeing the mood of others lift with the light (especially while it is still not too hot).
The fact that I spent the day in the company of a member of my extended family made it quite hard for me because despite the heat I was too uncomfortable with my scars and body shape to wear less clothing. I want the good weather to get me outside exercising, perking my vitamin D and otherwise improving my life but I am still ashamed of how I look and why and that makes it difficult. – Just as well I’ve got a garden to muck around in these days! [on that note have I mentioned we have baby chilli plants and little tomato seedlings whoop!] Why does improving self-confidence require faking it so much of the time?

In other news: dry weather is good for pub painting – so the refurb and name change are tootling on as best they can, but its bad for my thesis and conference paper writing productivity..
Next few weeks are going to be special.

March Already?

So To Do list? Where you at?

Well the good news is mainly garden related. Not only are the raised beds filled but the pear and gooseberry have now found permanent homes (and seem to have survived being moved from the allotment and wintered in pots). We have also planted strawberries and early potatoes – which are being reticent about sending up shoots sadly – and are trying a first round of seedlings. Despite the fact our success rate looks lower than 33% we do have some chives and purple-sprouting basil showing their heads and I am trying to work out how long to leave them inside before transferring them to the uncertain world outside.
Trellising, painting and puppy are still waiting to happen, in part its a financial issue, in part it is due to the distraction of fireplace and in part it is inertia. Nonetheless I’m determined to have trellis and paint finished before my parents visit again, if for no other reason than my father thinks its is faintly amusing that I repeat his pattern of building up jobs and then blitzing them in a panic rather than getting stuff done piece by piece.

I will confess to having completely letting the calorie-counting slide. Partly out of sheer laziness with regard to spending 20mins each day trying to work out how much of each individual foodstuff I have consumed and partly the distraction of working on thesis etc. It is perhaps not surprising then that the scales tells me I still weigh 13st 4 – its less than January but its hardly monumental. The issue is of course exercise – I need to do some. I am proving rubbish at fitting it into my daily schedule and even the sunshine is not forcing me out and about on my feet more. Someone throw me some motivation pretty please.
On the other hand as you will have seen I’m doing that counselling thing. Can’t say I feel better for it (every session begins with dread and ends with a knot and the desire to cry) but its good to force myself to think about things differently rather than sliding back into the comfy-but-damaging patterns. I guess it will be back to drugs after this bout of talking but hey ho I’ve known this was long-haul for a while now.

So what next?
Well by the time I reassess my goals next I will have: given my conference paper (which is not yet written eek); spent a few days away with B; done more planting; put up trellis(?) and lost another 4lbs!

January

So Recap of how my goals are going this year… and the short answer is that so far they aren’t but…

On a day-by-day level, I am getting up before midday more days than not and in bed before 2am everyday. I am still off the anti-depressants and haven’t yet begged my Dr. for more painkillers..It would be fair to say I might not be calm and cheerful but I’m at least in a ‘stable’ state that I know how to deal with.
The scales say I’m 13st 8lbs, I want them to say 11st.
I am re-starting my calorie counting after the holiday break and although I haven’t actually set out a proper exercise regime – the plan is to: walk to work at least once a week, (swim once a fortnight) and work on the mindful movement practice each day I’m writing my thesis
So far I am working on my thesis at least 2 days a week and I want to make it 3. I can’t really sit at the desk for very long at one go both because my shoulder is stiff and sore and because the anxiety gets too much.
No Further Comment Necessary

In other news, soil delivery for raised beds next week and then trellis to go up and seed shopping. After that we are going puppy-hunting!!

 

On We Go

Pretty nearly time to start a New Year so it must be time to get on with the process of setting goals for myself.
I am aiming for a combination of physical, mental, emotional and domestic goals and a mix of fixed points and regular targets…Although I know that I am potentially setting myself up for failure and self-criticism, without something to move towards there is no way of knowing if I am making progress.
In no particular order then..

Physical:

  • Lose 1-2 Stone
  • Create (and stick-to @ least 4 days a week) a daily exercise routine that incorporates both shoulder physio and some muscle toning (pilates/yoga & weights?)
  • Walk at least either 1 Munro or 1 Alpine 4000;

Mental/Academic

  • Submit! 
  • Write, deliver & publish my conference paper

Emotional

  • Commit to another round of counselling (as booked through Talking Therapies) and/or psychiatrist
  • Take 1 week off each with W & B and ideally 1 week with both together
  • Get my F***ing sleep pattern under control.
  • Make sure my weekly time routine is balanced for all involved

Domestic

  • Puppy!
  • Actually successfully grow some vegetables…
  • Finish the painting
  • Celebrate mine & W’s 10th Anniversary

Thats all I can think of for now and I think it will do.
Wish me luck

Progress..

Sowhere am I at right now?

I have been trying to manage my weight for about a month now and have lost…wait for it 6lbs  – that’s right, not even half a stone of the 3 I want to lose. I know I haven’t been doing as much exercise as I should and I am really fighting myself.

It is also nearly a month since I quit my anti-depressants cold-turkey. Whilst I realise it was probably a dumb thing to do, I don’t regret it. My appetite has gone back down to more normal levels and since the mirtaapine stopped working I haven’t noticed much of a change in my sleep patterns. Since this is the first time I have been med free in 18months or so I’m trying to notice how I actually feel – I’m more irritable, snappy and anxious; not sure if I am more miserable, I’m at a semi-comfortable base-line right now but I have been crying more (otoh W thinks I seem more down). Hard to tell when you have lived this way for a long time..
In a few more weeks I will be able to have another chat with my GP about where to go next. I have applied for more counselling with the local Talking Therapies team but haven’t had a response yet – I am probably low-priority having been seen before. GP wants to know if I want to try Sertraline or a Psychiatrist next.. so what do we think folks?
Shoulder-wise the cold weather has really settled into my bones and it would be fair to say I’m in pain most of the time. c’est la vie. More co-codamol it will have to be and maybe I will think about sleeping pills so it stops waking me up in the night.

Have finished the corrections my supervisors gave me for chapters 3 & 4; so my next challenge is to strengthen chapter 4 conclusions (a never-ending task methinks) and write Chapter 5 – The Conclusion! I am determined to have it done before the mrs and I go on hols in Jan. It terrifies me almost as much as rewriting my literature review but needs must – a thesis without a conclusion is rather pointless.

As far as the 3 of us are doing – I think we are pretty stable and comfortable right now.
So all-in-all we are doing ok peeps. One day at a time.