It doesn’t look like the weather is going to brighten up any time soon – but honestly that doesn’t really matter.
Although blue skies are always preferable to grey there’s definitely a pleasure to be had in going outside on a cold and windy day with a pressing need to warm yourself up. Having to get quickly into a brisk stride and feeling the blood beginning to pump is a really nice sensation and has been further enhanced today by my new toasty yet simple pleasure.
My new gilet.
In the 80’s before things got very posh we called these body warmers and I’ve not owned one since I was at school. I’ve already mentioned this in a previous post but it makes me really happy so I’m waffling on about it again!
Part of the joy of wearing it is that it’s an XL size and (I think) it fits perfectly – which gives me a real sense of pride. I’ve noticed that I’m looking at my reflection with a wry smile as I’ve walked past shop windows today and it’s a good feeling.
Not all that long ago I’d trained myself to just look straight ahead when I passed any reflective surface. I didn’t turn my head once. The consequences were too grave.
I didn’t want to accidentally catch sight of myself for fear that I’d be faced with the reality of how I looked (as opposed to my necessarily deluded self image if I was in a happy place) and worried that the unvarnished truth might pollute any good mood that I might have been feeling.
In contrast today I’m not only proud of my own reflection but also stepping outside of my usual comfort zone and meeting up with someone that I don’t know at all for a twalk.
This came about rather unexpectedly as a request by one of the ladies in the audience of a Slimming World talk I did a couple of weeks ago.
She asked after I’d finished my story whether I’d like to tag along with her husband on one of my excursions. Without thinking too hard about it I replied that I’d be happy to.
I try and say no to as little as I possibly can these days.
It turns out (after I did a little online stalking) that he also writes a blog and has been trying to do 56 challenges in 12 months – mostly related to running with people and often with a charitable emphasis (link).
He’s been expanding his horizons just like me and seems like an interesting guy to chat with.
I’ll be meeting him shortly – but not before I get caffeinated.
Since I ate a bit more than I usually do yesterday I’ve decided to walk to meet him before our twalk today in an effort to get my steps and miles up.
At the moment I’m having a quick Starbucks filter coffee whilst I add up yesterday’s damage and contemplate my weigh in on Saturday.
To be 100% honest – if I wasn’t writing everything down then I’m sure there would have been a lot more boredom related damage in the evening.
I have a regular reader (and fellow blogger) to thank for this. It was her brilliant idea that I get all hashtagged up for #onplanoctober and so far it’s kept me honest!
Consequently I only went over where I’d planned to cut myself off for the day (1900kcal) by a couple of hundred calories – so everything should hopefully still work out.
- 6 small tomatoes 60
- 190g (half jar) pickled gherkins 57
- Pickled onions 20
- Tub of cottage cheese with onion and chive 176
- 300g baking potato 231
- 250g frozen Aldi summer fruits 84
- 250g natural yogurt 154
- Banana 89
- 500g 5% fat pork mince 555
- Red pepper 30
- 380g mushrooms 80
- Large courgette 54
- Small onion x2 60
- 240g Aldi Cannelini beans 192 (these are a useful tweak instead of using a can of kidney beans in a chilli – they save about 80kcal)
- Bunch of broccoli 40
- Can chopped tomatoes 74
- 2x apples 140
Total calories consumed 2186
- Active/total calories burned 1252/3892
- Cardio minutes 86
- Steps/miles walked 19,293/9.83
(Author heads off for his walk)
Well that was fun!
I’ve just spent a lovely five miles sharing details about how we got to where we are in our respective lives with a total stranger and feel like this is the way that life should be for everyone.
People should just go for a walk and get to know eachother!
Whenever I talk in depth with people like this I’m reminded that (particularly when it comes to charity and wanting to create and give something back to the world) there are lots of people all around us every day that just want to do the right thing in life and leave everything and everyone better than the state in which they were found.
We touched on some quite personal topics during our walk and I can’t help thinking every time I meet someone new that as human beings (despite who we are and where we come from) that we are we are all more alike than we are different.
We all have hopes and dreams and we’re always just trying to find our place in the world whilst feeling that we belong and are needed.
I’ve also reminded myself of one of the reasons I have gotten to the point that I’m at now.
Back in February 2016 (when I started my blog) I remember getting really angry when I was attending a support group related to alcohol abuse.
I was listening to people making excuse after excuse about why they had whatever addiction they were afflicted with. Apart from one other guy in the room I was the only person that wasn’t continually saying that it was someone else’s fault or some other circumstance that caused me to eat or drink to excess.
The truth was that the very first time I’d had a drink it was related to my mother’s abuse.
The following instances immediately after were also directly attributable to bad times under her control and attempts to block things out.
Food was just the same.
However whilst she may have been the catalyst it was ME that continued the patterns. ME that drank alone. ME that decades after she had any kind of control over me was still ordering pizza or kebabs.
In the end it was all me and there were no excuses. Now she’s gone and I have to own it.
All of it.
For all the bad things she did and said to me I’m now the one that’s left behind with the bits of my complex mental jigsaw puzzle and how they relate to my relationship with her.
I can either avoid them and leave the pile in a jumbled mess making everything look bad or I can slowly piece them together and look at everything from above.
In trying to work through this I’ve had to let go of my anger, accept that no one is perfect, that there is no mileage in regret or hatred and that there can be a future – even if you think things have gone too far and that there’s no way back.
My decisions were always mine to make – and whilst I could have benefited from better guidance early on in life – I made them.
Now I still do but instead I choose to make good ones, for the right reasons and in the process to make my own life better and give back to others whenever I can.
If I don’t internet then my lovely lovely gilet won’t fit any more and no-one wants that 😏