Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Seeing its the 30th of June today I couldnt resist reflecting back over how things have gone for me. So I did a cut and paste of what I wrote back in January (italics print) and my June review follows it in red. Here goes.


For the first time in my life as far as I can remember, I'm not starting the year with a resolution to lose weight and to be X kilos by Y (date). Its not about body fat %s or the number on the scales for me any more. So here are some beliefs, values and habits that I want to develop further. These are my versions of "resolutions" written to suit me.

1. I will continue to develop my belief in myself. I will have faith that I hold the answers to how to eat for the lean and toned body that I desire.

In all honesty there have been times when I've lost sight of this. Just recently I've gone looking for answers in the wrong place only to wake up to myself fairly quickly and realise the error of my ways. One thing I've realised lately is that developing that self belief takes effort and must be practiced frequently. it aint just gonna appear out of the blue.

2. I will run, run and run some more. When my legs are tired from running, I'll lift some heavy weights to keep my upper body toned. Oh and I'll devote some time to improving my core strength.

One out of three on this one. Running gets the big tick. Upper body training has been neglected due to my training room doubling as a study, storage space, junk room, and "if I dont know where to put it, I'll put it in the training room". Plans are brewing for a training studio but this is still a few months away. Core strength sits in the same basket.

3. I will strive to be more patient and less grumpy. My son deserves this. So does my husband.

Hmmm I reckon I've improved in this area and will continue to work at it.

4. I will continue to place the highest importance on my family, their wellbeing, our wellbeing, harmony, support, nurturing and caring for. Doing this makes me truly happy.


5. I will continue to nurture my friendships. My circle of friends is small and precious and I'd be lost without them.

Tick but room for improvement.

So there it is. The things that are important to me as I face this new decade. The end of 2009 saw big changes in my life and now its time to embrace them and take them further to make 2010 and the new decade the best one yet.

Its been enlightening to reflect back over the last 6 months. I've patted myself on the back for many of my victories and achievements - both physical and mental. On the other hand I've realised there are areas that need more work in the second half of the year and thats ok. I havent failed in those areas. I've just neglected them or accidentally gone off on a tangent for a while. At least by taking stock as I have, its helping me to refocus on whats important.
So at the risk of sounding all shmartzy and corny, I will rejuvenate, renew and reinvent for a bigger and better 2nd half of 2010. I'll be here blogging until I get my new look blog sorted out but its a little way off right now.
How are you tracking against your goals for 2010?

Sunday, June 20, 2010


My lurgy is still hanging around in the form of some pretty awful coughing. Its the dry raspy stuff that annoys the crap out of me cause it doesnt feel like it helps at all. Give me a good meaty chesty cough anyday. I have cough mixture but its proving to be pretty useless so last night I had a crap nights sleep and then vacated the bedroom early so as to not disturb Peter with my coughing in the hope that at least one of us would be reasonably well rested.

Therefore I started the day in the foulest mood having missed a sleep in opportunity when I felt so tired. So what would cheer me up and lift my spirits??

Lets start with a one hour walk. (Will ease back into running soon - but I'm not pushing it just yet.)

Lets follow it up with a long and very hot shower and then back into my PJs until it was time to go out to lunch. In fact we all lounged in our PJs until we went out and it was such a lovely relaxing morning - even though I was ironing and making sandwiches.

A phone call to our boy from his best friend who recently moved to the country. Six months after the move, my boy still misses his friend and the phone chat today was a very welcome surprise. I love seeing my boy so happy.

Then it was lunch out at The Bath Hotel. When we werent eating we were doing a family exercise for a school project - name 5 things you'd take to a tropical island to survive and say why you'd take each one. It was a lot of fun.

Then a walk on The Parade followed by coffee and dessert at a cafe and then home to watch Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (again!) while snuggling up on the sofa. Hmmm nap time for me :-)

I'll be off line from tomorrow working on some other things. One of those is getting rid of my psoriasis which has again flared up in the last couple of weeks. Its quite simple really as for me its very much diet related. If I overindulge in some foods, it rears its itchy head to remind me to clean it up and reign it in so that is exactly what I'll be doing. I hope to get some spin off benefits from this as well.

So thats me over and out taking a mini break from blogging. See you all on my return.

:-) Magda

Saturday, June 19, 2010


With quite a bit of time to myself today I found myself reflecting over the events of the last 12 or so months. I'm constantly amazed at how fortunate I am and what a great life I have (thats not gloating but just being really grateful).

A year ago I was still expecting my current job to wind up and I'd be left with 2 choices: go back to my previous government job (not a bad job but one I had definitely moved on from) or start looking for something else in government (and deal with the application writing, interviews etc). To be made permanent and not have to face either of these options is like a mini lottery win. Its THAT good.

A year ago we had just made the decision to sell our house in NG and build a new home that would be EXACTLY what we wanted. The wierdest chain of events took us through some rough and stressful patches but we enjoyed a gorgeous rental in a very cosmopolitan area. During that time we realised that our family of 3 didnt need a 4 bedroom house with 3 living areas etc etc and we decided to follow a dream we'd always had. So after some more rough patches and stressful times we bought the house we live in now in an even better area that we both love.

I have trained for and run a half marathon in under 2:30 and although I've had some ups and downs and still battled the BM on occassions, overall I've ditched the strict dieting and managed to lose some more weight and then generally maintain to within a few kilos.

I have two goals that I'm aiming for over the coming month in the lead up to my birthday. One will see me pursuing a dream that has been dormant for a VERY long time. But I think about it so often now that deep down I know its time to dust it off and give it a go. The second will see me fine tuning an area that I'm not totally happy with. My aspirations arent huge or unrealistic but nevertheless will require a damned good effort to achieve. I'll be doing both off line but hope to share my adventure with all when I return.

Celebration Day tomorrow. Oooooh I'm so hanging out for a nice bubbly :-)


Friday, June 18, 2010


Today is a great day.

I went back to work still feeling like crap but knowing there was some stuff that I just had to get done. I did it and went home early. Then later in the day I had the most welcome email.

Almost 2 years ago I took up a temporary position in another government department. It was a promotion but being temporary, I always faced the prospect of going back to my previous position (and lower level of pay).

Today I was made permanent in this promotional position :-)

I am so fortunate on so many levels. My employer promotes and supports work / life balance arrangements. And I dont mean just talking the talk. They walk the talk and I take advantage of this. I have a great director as line manager and my new director as of 1 July is different but just as good. I manage a small team and we all work really well together - we're all Cancerians so I call us the "caring and sharing corner" LOL. No kidding we are really well tuned into each other's feelings.

I have a special colleague to thank for helping me achieve this. I worked with Miss R many years ago at my previous employment. She moved on and achieved great things but we stayed in touch as distant friends. Its her job that I'm in and I know she would have put in a good word for me when her job came up due to her maternity leave. She is still working with us and I will extend a VERY special thank you to her.

So tonight I have enjoyed a small bottle of champagne and shared a nice bottle of red with Peter. There is more celebrating in store for Sunday when I have lunch out with Peter and our boy. Peter says this is well deserved and I'll indulge accordingly (but not to excess).

Then I plan to take a short break from blogging while I attempt a small project which is currently under wraps. My return should see a slightly different focus to my blog.

Cheers all


Thursday, June 17, 2010



So I've been home for 2 days fighting off a bout of the winter lurgies. No I havent resorted to watching DOOL but have enjoyed a very long lie in bed on both mornings. I've also taken the time to review some of the work I did with my SP except this time I resorted to a different source of information and strategy.

Many years ago I bought Dr Phil's "The Ultimate Weight Solution" and thought it was pretty good. However it never really gelled for me as I had too many unanswered questions about me and the workings of my mind. But since then I've had the benefit of 1:1 work with a professional which really helped me to understand me. So last night when I picked up Dr Phil (not literally LOL) and kept reading today, his advice really fell into place.

So why do I constantly need to go back over this stuff?

Because every so often I lapse back into old habits and old self defeating thought patterns. Sometimes I can very quickly see it for what it is but sometimes its not obvious (and maybe I dont want to see it) and I slip into that old downward spiral. And we all know that once you're in that spiral, its damned hard to stop and start moving the opposite way. Sometimes you just need that "something" to give you that aha moment to cause the mindset to change.

Now how many of you scoffed when you read "Dr Phil"? I'm not advocating that you become a follower of his TV show or other aspects of his work (I havent read any of his other books so I cant commemt here) but I do believe his TUWS is really well written with sound and sensible advice. And as proof of this, I noticed that everything on the psychological front that he wrote about was covered by my SP in my 1:1 sessions. He just presents it a little differently and has to cover things in a lot broader detail to cater for his vast audience. I would highly recommend his book to anybody who struggles with the emotional side of weight loss.

So today the run-away train came to a halt and got back onto its tracks to continue moving in the direction it always wanted to travel. A small detour but in this journey of the days of our lives. Call me whatever you think but I maintain that I'm a work in progress travelling a road that isnt always the straightest and most direct. However I do believe that I will reach my destination.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Tomorrow my dad turns 75. On Saturday we'll have a family BBQ (his choice of meal) to celebrate. Mum will make his favourite dessert which right now is a sweet cream cheese filling rolled around a puff pastry case and sprinkled with icing sugar. They are pretty yummy.

Dad still has amazing strength and stamina, the product of his long and lustrous career as a tradie (carpenter, joiner, cabinet maker and shop fitter). He succumbs to mum's and my nagging about eating a healthier diet but deep down he just wants to have white bread, few vegies and some sort of cake every day LOL. He's had 2 angioplasties, the last one requiring 3 stents to be inserted and he takes medication for cholesterol. He's had 2 colonoscopies to remove polyps. I live in dread of the "C" word rearing its ugly head one day.

All that said and done he's the most down to earth call-a-spade-a-spade person I know and he'll tell you what he thinks, no holds barred LOL.

So happy birthday dad and may you live a long and (relatively) healthy life so we can enjoy having you around.

XX Your daughter M

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Wow no blogging for a week and geez a lot has been going on, but then maybe its not that much really.

My last post had me pondering the universe and asking a lot of "why" questions. I've come to the realisation that all of those answers are within me and will always be within me. The real question is whether I'm prepared to dig deep and face up to the facts.

I've spent the last week ignoring the obvious and living a more "que sera sera existence". On the one hand an unintentional science experiment has proven that consuming foods higher in fat and/or sugar does actually keep you warmer on those chilly winter days. Especially when pasta is on the menu EVERY day. Remember "que sera sera". Sadly this attitude guarantees that my waist gets thicker and thighs are quick to follow. (The black fat pants are still loose but wont be for long if this experiment continues.)

Then because I never do things be halves - remember its often all or nothing - I've slipped comfortably into slothdom as well. How's this for a string of excuses?? Raining last Wednesday morning; cant remember why I didnt train on Thursday (need to up my intake of fish oil); worked late on Thursday night so slept longer on Friday; Saturday morning got stuck into cleaning as we were having friends over that night; Sunday woke up feeling chesty with the start of a cold; Monday etc etc. Phew what a run of doing nothing.

So today I pondered the week that was and admitted to myself:

1. I do know how to eat to maintain or lose weight without following a strict prescribed diet.
2. I do understand why sometimes I binge and I know how to manage and minimise those instances.
3. I love to train but I also love to be lazy (wow I'm actually like most other people).

and finally the piece de resistance ....

..... sometimes I just dont want to do the right thing(s).

Lack of motivation? Maybe.
Lack of dedication? Probably.
Lack of consistency? Absolutely.

Lack of accepting that this is who I am and I'm OK? Not on your life any more.

I think its time to reign it in tomorrow but geez it was fun (and tasty) while it lasted.

Cheers all


Tuesday, June 08, 2010


After a cracker weekend I started the week with a fantastic Monday. I literally felt AWESOME. I was in the best mood, despite feeling cold and constantly hungry.

Its easy to be positive, objective and insightful at those times. My mind works clearly and efficiently then. Its like all the ducks lined up and marching in unison.

But when the situation goes awry and you reflect on the day and its not what you wanted it to be it takes a lot of effort to stay balanced and objective, let alone positive. This is the roller coaster of life. Good days. Not so good days.

On this challenging journey of finding my happy place with food and eating, I sometimes wonder whether its better to concentrate and focus on what you want, making a conscious effort to practice good behaviours OR is it better to stop focussing and obsessing about it all and live by the motto "que sera sera". I suspect that different things work for different people and I havent worked out what works best for me.

One thing is for sure though and that is the rollercoaster ride that life takes you on. The question is do you hop on and enjoy the ride with all its highs and lows or do you relish the highs and dread the lows? I think I'm doing more of the latter when I'd rather be doing the former. I guess the choice is mine to make and see through.


Monday, June 07, 2010


Since my last post I've been thinking about those niggly bits that I mentioned back then. I've come to realise that I will never achieve perfection and that living with "niggly bits" is ok. I've said it before and am reminding myself again that life is not a matter of black and white. In fact a lot of life is spent living in the grey and the more I can embrace that, or at least accept it, the better off I will be.

For a long long time I've been an all or nothing person and changing that has to be a very conscious effort. It certainly doesnt come naturally. But the more I think about how my life is spanning out and the person I'm becoming as I mature (hehehe ok I should just say "get older") I realise that its ok to not always strive for perfection or do my best to be my best. Flowing on from that I'm learning to live in the grey.

Sometimes that means just going with the flow or rolling with the punches. Sometimes it means accepting that I wont always choose whats best for me. Sometimes it means just not sweating the small stuff. It also means that I'm learning to accept myself warts and all, faults and all and honouring the uniqueness that is me.

I may never be a champion Half Marathon runner but I'll always be able to say that I had a goal to run a half marathon in under 2:30 and I achieved that. I may never be a world class figure competitor but again when I had the goal to compete I saw it through and managed a placing at the state level and got up on stage at the nationals. Who knows what else the coming years will bring? But one things for sure and that is my dedication and commitment to achieve goals that mean something to me.

And when you open your eyes to the big picture and look back over all you've done and achieved, it sort of puts the little niggly bits into perspective. Are you celebrating your big picture achievements or sweating over the little niggly bits?


Thursday, June 03, 2010


Its been a while since I updated on my lifestyle changes, so here goes:

1. I have not relapsed on the sugar free lollies and am nearing the end of week three. I still miss them at times but I ride out the craving and get through it ok. Big tick for this one.

2. The elimination of artificial sweeteners is progressing as planned. I wasnt going cold turkey but instead was not replacing what I ran out of. I still have my SF maple syrup but admittedly not as often lately. The Forme yogurts have gone and I'm now having brasil nuts with fruit in the afternoon. In the fridge I have a large bottle of Coke Zero that was a give away with a previous take away dinner. It hasnt been opened and tonight it caught my eye and I really felt like having a glass but decided not to open it. It'll come in handy when we have people over and somebody wants a Diet Coke. There are other odds and ends around (a Snack Attack protein bar for one) that will get eaten at some stage but that will be it. Gradually I'm saying farewell to artificial sweeteners.

3. I'm really inspired by the general principles of the Mediterranean diet and lifestyle and have decided to incorporate more of those principles into my own life. My Dad is facing some health issues again and they are of the hereditay nature. So whilst I dont want to be all neurotic or alarmist about it, I believe some subtle changes are in order. Peter and I have discussed it and he has agreed to the changes on the condition that it doesnt become a restricted diet. (I'm surprised he thinks I'll end up going that way but hey he's lived with me being like that for over 20 years so I should cut him some slack). It'll be interesting making the shift to less meat and more legumes (He's a meat loving man) but deep down I know my health will benefit.

Finally, today I've spent quite a bit of time pondering what I call my "niggly bits" (NOT "jiggly bits" in case you think thats a typo LOL). So what are "niggly bits"? Well I can best describe them as those things in my life that arent quite what I'd like or how I'd want them to be. I dont sweat the stuff I cant change but this stuff sits in the "changeable" category ... or does it??  I'm not sure.

For weeks now I have suffered with pains in my glutes, upper legs and hips. They're especially bad after I've been sitting for a while and when I get up to move. Every run starts off being painful as my body struggles to get going. Once I'm warmed up I dont notice it as much. I should get it looked at but of course I just worry that I'll have to give up running. Its niggling at me.

The other niggly bits are far more deep and meaningful and will be saved for another post when its not so late and I can write eloquently, or at least coherently about them. In the meantime they can continue to niggle at me.

Cheers all


Wednesday, June 02, 2010


Now here is a "diet" that I like the sound of. Interestingly there are no wild claims and promises for ground breaking weight loss but more commentary on its health benefits. Lets take a look at its key features:

1. High consumption of virgin olive oil. Fantastic. Good fats are filling and tasty. No more feeling hungry a couple of hours after eating because the meal was uber low in fat. You'll have healthy skin, shiny hair and healthy insides.

2. High intake of vegetables and fruits and legumes. Does this even warrant a comment? To me its basic commonsense. If you're not familiar with legumes, buy a vegetarian cookbook and experiment. There's a whole new world of very delicious foods to be explored ... oh and they're good for you.

3. Use of non refined carbohydrates (portions to be adjusted to physical activity). Well worth the effort to substitute with non-refined instead of what is otherwise known as "processed crap". Again, this is a no-brainer.

4. Consumption of fish, specially oily (or “bluish” one) three or four times a week Atlantic salmon is one of my favourites so this is a pleasure to follow. But I think some clarification may be required .... this does NOT include battered and deep fried from the local take away (remember the Mediterranean peasants didnt have a Barnacle Bills to rely on for a Friday night take-away)

5. Consumption of milk and derivates, cheese and yogurt (the original cheese was fresh goat cheese). Keep an eye on the saturated fats of the dairy products. Not too much! I like the flexibility here. By all means have dairy foods ... just NOT TOO MUCH.

6. Three or four eggs per week. I'm sure that unlimited egg whites would be appropriate as we all know thats not where the saturated fat lies. But again up to 4 eggs a week is fine so there is flexibility here.

7. Moderate consumption of meat and saturated fats. Now this is where all the figure athletes are tuning out (on the meat issue, not the SF issue). And thats ok. If your sport requires a particular diet then thats what you need to eat. I'm looking at this from a general health and wellbeing aspect ... something that COULD be a lifestyle beacuse its easy to maintain and promotes good health. I know that with the addition of legumes to my diet, I could easily cut right back on the meat. Again I like that its not totally banned.

8. One or two small glasses of wine a day, preferably red and at the main meals. White wine and beer are alternatives. Now this is what has sold the diet to me 110%. Pass the cab sav and cheers :-)

9. Nuts as snacks As much as I (secretly) love some junk food and do indulge from time to time, I love nuts as much if not more. I see this as taking something away (the less healthy or "junk" food) and replacing it with something equally as tasty but healthy. I'm sold.

So today our local paper had a short article on the benefits of the Mediterranean Diet hence my inspired post. What is painfully obvious though is that the Dukan Diet with all its unrealistic promises, rules and restictions and sensational claims got a 4 page spread on Sunday whilst the MD got 5 paragraphs on page 9 (admittedly with a great picture to take up 1/3 of the page).

Sad that society still promotes the sensational (at the expense of our health and wellbeing) over the sensible. Is it any wonder that there are still many very confused individuals who struggle to know what to eat to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

OK stepping off my soap box now and going to buy some nuts for my afternoon snack :-)


Tuesday, June 01, 2010


Today we celebrate the first day of winter. Normally I hate winter. I've never liked the cold so winter is a struggle. It always feels like it goes on forever and I find myself pining for the warm months.

But this year I've decided to embrace it and not whinge and moan about it. Whats the point? It just drags me and those around me down. So lets get this winter show on the road and enjoy each cold and crispy day (unless its a soggy one of course).

Here is my plan for enjoying winter:

1. I'm still getting up at 5am and going for a run of about 40-50 minutes during the week. I have a wooly lined vest thats waterproof (a hand me down from Peter actually) and a beanie for warmth. I admit that I do look a fright but my morning run is NOT about presenting the most glamorous version of me that I can muster.

2. I love a hot cooked breakfast on cold mornings. I havent had porridge for quite a while but am planning to try it again after losing my taste for it last year. If not porridge then my fave oat / egg white / ricotta / apple / cinnamon pancakes are a great alternative. When all else fails, an egg on toast will always satisfy.

3. I make my office comfortable with a radiator style heater under my desk. Without it the room is cold and drafty which = very grumpy Magda. Enough said.

4. A hot lunch is always in order. The old standyby of brocolli (or other green veges), brown rice/wholemeal pasta and a lean protein is still a diet staple for me. I eat it because I like it not because I have to :-)

5. Every day I pay homage to Sara Lea by honouring the layer upon layer look. I may soon break the record for the most clothes worn in a day but its about keeping warm and comfy to stay balanced and happy.

6. And finally, nothing beats traditional winter foods done in the slow cooker enjoyed with a nice glass of red wine. When you put all that together, whats there NOT to love about winter?

Cheers all