Tuesday, 20 July 2010



TWJ took this shot a few weeks ago. I'm not proud of how I look. I'm fat. This is reality. It should have been a wake up call to improve my daily plan but the truth is I have continued to muddle along rather than live with purpose.

I am neglecting my journal. That's sad because I have a lot to say.

Do I have an excuse? NO!

I've been mainly at home, thinking, reading, watching videos. In other words mostly frittering away my time.

One of the things that come with retirement is an abundance of unscheduled time. That is if you are not heavily involved in community affairs, volunteering, good works, various hobby or sporting activities and watching out for neighbours.

Because I have a poor ability to handle stress I took 'Time Out' when we moved to Matarangi in July 3 years ago. At first I was busy running backwards and forwards to Mum's because she wasn't at all well for the first 18 months we were here. We also worked part time at the SuperMarket for 18 months, ending that less than a year ago. During all this I lost the habit of going to Church regularly nor did I become involved in the local Matarangi Community. I am a very social person. This is extremely unusual for me.

When we left the SuperMarket it was as though I was burnt out. Juggling my share of Mum's care with work was sometimes a big ask. This year Mum's health is generally good and my time with her is much shorter. Most weeks I am only required Wednesday and Thursday with weekends once a month. Friday I usually pass the honour on to TWJ. He has a day out, gets library books and has 'man time' around the shops, auto workshop, marina etc. all the places that bore me stiff and he sees that Mum has her afternoon cuppa before he comes home. Mum has a Home Carer come in to supervise personal care and lunch on Friday so I'm off the hook. I've had plenty of time to rest and get into a routine that suits me. It has become a recipe for laziness or ... and here is my positive slant.

I have time to write, read, visit Blogland, play solitaire, do puzzles especially Sudoku, plan, dream and get my weight down while improving my overall fitness and health. Gotta keep the old brain active and challenged so lots of brain exercises going on but not much else.

Have I used my time well? Hmmmm! I'm thinking I could have done a lot better. On the positive side I have lost almost 10% of the weight I was carrying at Christmas. I am seeing a different future for us and I am making some positive steps toward making the dream become reality.

I know many people our age, (TWJ 74 and Myself 71), would be satisfied with what we have but I also know we are not ready to vegitate. We have a lot of living to do yet. Neither TWJ nor I are likely to have the life span of my mother, who is 95 years old, but we still have a good 10 years before we should consider 'SETTLING DOWN.'

I really must keep on this health kick. It is a FOREVER thing. My weight has bounced around so much this year that I'm almost embarrassed by my slow progress. Nevertheless, it is progress and I am fit enough to walk 10 km in a single hit, if I choose to. I cannot do it day after day but there is no reason I cannot aim for that level of fitness. My heart would love me for it.

I'm thinking out loud here. There is much I can do to improve my life. Sitting around like an old lady is doing nothing for me. It would do me good if I spent a little less time blogging, reading blogs and got off my backside more often. There is one small downside. As I become more active I may not have the energy to journal as well or as often for a while. And then again I may.

Until now I have given food, what I eat and how much I eat, greater emphasis than exercise/walking. My food is largely settled. There are bad times, especially if I get tired and then hoe into TWJ's bread, but most of the time I have developed a style of eating which is conducive to weight loss and sustainable in our kind of lifestyle. Food intake has to be the number one thing in relation to weight loss/gain. Exercise is as much for general health and well being as weight loss. Exercise improves one's ability to lose weight and improves muscle tone, strength and so much more. It is essential to good health and I am neglecting to make it as much a part of my day as meals. Would I miss a meal? .... Not deliberately unless I decided to Fast for a certain period.

Would I miss a walk or any other date for physical activity. Oh yes! Without a qualm. I can tell myself day after day that I'm too tired, too hot, too cold, too stressed, too busy tooo, toooo, tooooo! All feeble excuses.

Why is a walk not as essential as my breakfast? Do I have to think about it?

It's time to make a date with my feet. It's time to say I will walk every morning for at least 30 minutes. The only excuse for not walking is heavy rain and we have a cross-trainer. I can't last more than 5 minutes on it at present but a few months ago I was up to 30 minutes so there is no excuse for not keeping the date with my feet.

I had to make a determined effort to have my Breakfast Smoothie before 10 am. Occasionally I am late, like yesterday when it was after 11 am, but most days I have it between 8 and 9 am. So it has become a done deal. It didn't come automatically. It remains something I have to be conscious about, some days more than others. TWJ is helping to make it easy for me by putting all the stuff together so it sits on the kitchen bench *growling* at me until I get up to mix and drink. It is a good healthy breakfast and sets my day up well, keeping me satisfied until lunch time and has a good balance of protein, fats and fruit, (berries) and other necessary healthy stuff.

I need a different strategy to get with walking. TWJ has a short walk every morning when he goes to the shop for the newspaper. Most days I have nothing to encourage me to leave the house except my own plans and decisions. You'd think it would be easy to get into a routine to do something I enjoy so much but I tend to go in bursts and then give up. It's been a long time since I maintained a regular plan to walk or do any exercise.

Last week I jumped out of bed full of enthusiasm to get a sunrise photo. That's not going to work everyday but maybe it would be an incentive.

What if I make a committment to self to take a sunrise photo every morning?
What if I make a personal date with my feet to be on the beach around sunrise every day? Except when it's hosing down!
What if I make a promise to post an early morning photo everyday?
Would that be boring? Maybe but it might be the incentive I need.

To do this I would be up early, getting my day off to a good start. Breaking bad habits. I would be getting some regular exercise and still have time for longer walks on days when I want to.

I have always liked to walk before breakfast but some years ago I began getting severe gut pain on those early morning walks. After a few times of hobbling home, wishing I could die I gave them up. Recently I think I am not having those same problems. Something is healed, I hope. This would not be a long walk. A couple of kilometres, about a mile maybe. Something I can add to as and if I feel like but certainly a huge improvement on what I'm doing.

The decision is made. It's been flitting in and out of my head for a very long time.

Starting from today I have a date with my feet to go for a walk and take a sunrise/early morning photo.

I was awake and up long before sunrise this morning but that was before I made this date.

Tomorrow I will get up, get dressed, I won't go out in my nightie it might be a little too cold, and hit the path to the beach, camera at the ready. I've no idea how good the photo will be but I do know it will prove I kept my date with my feet.

I've made a date with my feet.

This is already too long but I will not finish without this rant.

Cottage cheese with chives. Yukk, Yukkk Yukkkk! Why do I always seem to come home with this instead of the plain version? I hate those little black bits that have sat inside the carton for however long. If I want chives in my cottage cheese I will cut my own, fresh. I am so annoyed. I'm told this is a good seller so they are always easy to reach. If I forget or am in a rush I miss the plain cottage cheese and end up with the stuff with little bits of black rotting chives. Well maybe that's an exaggeration but that's how I feel about flavoured cottage cheese. Same thing applies to many other flavoured goods on the grocery shelf too. The rice crackers I bought are flavoured. I prefer plain but thought a change would be good. Not so!!! I loathe all those artificial flavours on crisps, crackers and the like. Give good old plain and I'll add my own flavours, Thank-you! That way I won't have overtones of artificialness and strange chemicals. Packaged food might be convenient but there are too many chemical tricks manufacturers use. I need to be more alert and aware when I shop then I won't be cross when I open stuff that I don't like. I really can't afford to buy stuff I find inedible.

Can I end here?

The sun is shining and I need to walk. It's too late for sunrise but not too late to enjoy walking.
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