Sunday, 30 May 2010


By Belinda

Another week, and going down, slooooowly, but going down--7 pounds since the start!

Every morning this week at 7.00 a.m. I have been out for a short walk with Molson--just under 2 km. On Saturday and Sunday, when I had more time, we walked 3.5 km each morning. I've even got out several times during the day at work for a quick round the block walk, to clear my head and get fresh air. I think I can safely say that walking is a daily habit and I'm loving it. I think that walking what seems like a short distance, but doing it daily, has been a key thing. It's too little to seem impossible or inconvenient. It only takes 20 minutes. Molson loves it too.

I'm finding that eating is so much less of a problem than it has been to this point in my life. I think it's a combination of realizing the fat addiction, reading a book that is helpful (Press Pause Before You Eat by Linda Mintle) and deciding that since I turn 60 on June 1st, I would like to be my "best me" for the years from here on.

Writing here is a key part of my encouragement too.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Sunday, 23 May 2010

152.4 --Journey Home

By Belinda

On the plane coming back to Canada from a two week vacation in England, I realized that a simple but profound change has taken place--somewhere deep and lasting. I don't completely know how or why, now, but here it is: I have become a "choosy eater."

There is more than a good chance that the change has some connection with the book I've been reading: Press Pause Before You Eat by Dr. Linda Mintle.

"Pressing Pause" is what I am doing. Each day my eating is now based on three things:
  1. A heightened awareness and attention to, how hungry I really am.
  2. Multipe decisions based on appeasing that hunger with food that is nourishing, healthy and satisfying.
  3. Weighing; thinking about; the cost-benefit of food eaten, i.e. is that utterly decadent slice of honey almond cream torte, worth the calories and moments of pleasure? Last Sunday, it was! I savoured every last morsel; appreciated it to the utmost and enjoyed the memory of it for days afterwards.
On the other hand, it is hard to believe, but I, until now a dedicated lover of fish and chips, only had one meal of fish and chips while in England, and that was shared between three of us! It was enough to have a taste of them and I didn't crave more. The thought of the fat drenched batter and starch, no longer held the appeal it once did, and I remembering that I am addicted to fat makes me want to steer clear of it in general.

These choices are an example of what is happening each day.

At the airport, on the way home, when I would usually be stashing away a few Cadbury Flakes, I bought a bar of nuts and fruit called, "Eat Natural, with brazils, sultanas, almonds, peanuts and hazlenuts...and nothing dodgy."

On the back of the bar it said:
Those of you that enjoy reading stuff on the backs of "certain packs" may be a little disappointed when we tell you that this bar probably won't change your life, and it certainly won't prolong it. Sadly, there's not much evidence to suggest that it'll make you more attractive. No, it's just a bar of nuts and fruit. Mind you, when it comes to taste...Eat Natural--Simple--isn't it?

I tucked away the bar in my carry on bag, and during the flight, when a snack was served with tea and coffee towards the end of the flight, I looked at the big double chocolate muffin in the cellaphane bag and reached for my Eat Natural bar instead. My seatmates looked on in envy. "That is much more to my taste," said the lady next to me. Me too!

Sunday, 16 May 2010

10st 8lb

By Belinda
I will know in a few days what my true weight is at home, but according to the ones I'm using here, I am down one pound this week. Yeay.

I have been "feeling" for hunger before eating, and stopping when full. And I have had occasional treats, but mainly stayed away from high fat and sugary foods and chosen high fibre, fresh foods.

Of course I have had lots of exercise while in England, walking a high energy dog twice a day. This is something I am determined to fit in faithfully when I return. I have a dog who will benefit as much as I from at least daily exercise, rather than the three or four times a week I had just "worked my way up" to!

Exercise must be a priority as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

10st. 9lb

By Belinda

I don't know for sure how much I would weigh at home! I arrived in England on Tuesday and on Wednesday morning I was 10st. 10lb on our old faithful Salter scale--the same scales that I used as a teenager, over 40 years ago. If it weighs the same as my scale at home it would mean I am 149lb, but I have a feeling that it weighs less.

Here's how things have gone. I have been to the fish and chip shop once and Rob, Mum and I shared one regular portion of chips. Mum and I shared the fish.

I brought home treats from Druckers coffee shop on Saturday and Rob and I both had a banoffee eclair and a slice of kirsch laced black forest cake each. I probably bought them because I had been out shopping for most of the day and wanted to bring something home for Mum. Truth be told it would have been enough just to pop my head around the door and say, "I'm home--let's have tea." It seems that food = celebration somehow, when really that is so unnecessary.

Other than having an eccles cake when some friends visited on Friday, I haven't gone overboard, but as I write this I realize that if I piled all the extra bits and pieces on one plate, they would add up.

I have walked a fair distance almost every day and walking around the hilly village of Alvechurch involves a great workout for the legs.

Tomorrow I will try to do less nibbling and eat real food if I feel hungry.

Friday, 7 May 2010


I used to think that if I slept less, I would burn more calories and therefor be more likely to lose weight.  I read some articles today on the relationship between "sleep" and "weight loss" and completely re-educated myself.
Apparently, the optimum amount of sleep for losing weight is 7-9 hours.  Any less than seven and your dopamine (the sense of "well-being" hormone) levels fall.  One of the substances that supplies dopamine to your system is - you guessed it - sugar.  So you are much more likely to crave sweets - and fats (another substance that scores high in the pleasure centres) - when you're tired.  (And you thought it was only because you were looking for something to give you more energy!) 

There's actually a double whammy, because there's another hormone level that is affected when you're tired.  The levels of grehlin go up when you're lacking sleep.  Grehlin is the stuff that tells your body you're really hungry.  But at the very same time, your leptin levels are falling.  Leptin is the hormone that helps your body acheive a sense of "full".  So at the same time you're feeling hungrier with a strong sense of "more-ish", and craving sugar and fat, your lack of leptin is making you feel like a bottomless pit that can't ever be filled.

Good information to have.  And a good reason to go to bed on time.  (You'll live longer too!)

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Hope is Rising

By Belinda

I am writing this from England--the land of clotted cream teas and fish and chips (and many other delicious treats.)

I have to send this update because I have this seed of hope rising in me that something has really changed with my epiphany about fat addiction.

On Monday--the day of my flight, I had many details to cover before leaving. I had a bowl of 1/2 a cup of Presidents Choice Fibre 1 cereal with milk  for breakfast. I have noticed before that this cereal is one of the most satisfying things I can eat.

I had a lunch in the fridge, but I never did get time to sit down and eat it and fortunately I wasn't hungry, but here's the thing. I ate the cereal at 7.00 a.m. and I didn't eat another bite until we were at the airport at 5.15 p.m., when I had a tossed salad with grated cheese. Of course it isn't healthy to go without a noon meal, but I am so surprised by how long Fibre 1 keeps me satisfied.

On the plane we finally ate at about 9.00 p.m. and then had another meal (hot breakfast of baked beans, a one egg ommelette and a roll) at 1.00 a.m. just before we landed.

Today I ate a mid morning snack of a banana, 3 Ryvita crackers with margarine and a poached egg for lunch and Rob, my brother made us a macaroni and cheese sauce dish for supper. That's it folks! Short on veggies for sure, but I'll be buying some tomorrow.

Oh, I also chased Bruce, a Staffordshire bull terrier made of solid muscle, around a playing field for as long as I could. He was carrying a huge stick in his mouth while running and every now and then made it easy for me to grab it and pull. I called that resistance training!

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Everyday Health and Fitness

Hi There,
Irene sent me a link to great health and fitness site with many delicious and healthy recipes. I will put a link in the link list. Thank you Irene!


By Belinda

I must confess to being sorry to see 154.4 on the scales this morning on my official weigh in day. For the past two days I was 153--and yesterday I had been pretty faithful. But maybe it was the fruit flan I had after supper.

However I am not discouraged because I am generally making overal changes to the way I'm eating that I know I can live with. I'm packing for England (I leave tomorrow for two weeks) and I have packed a supply of rice cakes and high fibre cookies. When I get there I'll go to Sainsbury's and stock up on Ryvita and some fresh veggies, fruit, fish, nuts, cheese and fish (I know, I'll go easy on the cheese) and I will be ready to withstand the call of the fish and chip shop. Just thinking of my fat addiction makes that a pretty obvious place to avoid.

Our son and daughter-in-law, Pete and Sue, visited this afternoon with our four grandchildren. I noticed in church that Pete looked clearly trimmer this morning. I had noticed a distinct pulpit bumper a couple of weeks ago. He has lost 11 and a half pounds with the aid of Sue, his personal dietician and trainer. :)

She has cut off white bread and has him eating whole seed bread and protien and lots of vegetables. The next step for Pete is exercise. Since he works on the 16th floor of an office complex she has instructed him to start this week walking up four flights of stairs. The ultimate goal? You guessed it!! Pete will be 40 on May 23rd, so this is a great investment in life long health and wellbeing.

Today we all enjoyed a nice family roast beef dinner with all the trimmings, but also lots of vegetables--cauliflower, carrots, corn and acorn squash.

I got out for 4 walks with Molson last week and started to jog part of the way. The first time I tried it my legs felt like lead and my feet as though they were stuck to the floor, but I am amazed at the difference a week can make. I have far more stamina and strength in my legs already. I will keep walking in England, although I will sorely miss my furry walking companion.

So, friends, another week begins. For me this is the start of week 4 and I have lost 4 pounds so far. 12 more to go, and a lifetime of health, vitality and fitness.