A few days in, and already benefits

I’m just a few days into the Michelle Bridges 12WBT and I won’t kid you, my t-shirt has been soaked in sweat. When walking previously for an hour within my suburb I’d sweat, but not to the same level for less time.

Day one and I was up at 5am for my first workout, I was truly peeling myself out of bed, my eyelids remained on the pillow for a good 5 minutes more I’m sure. Workout gear on, we kicked off with warm up exercises one-by-one. I’ve never done this before, it was always bang, go walking, come home hit bed and surf the web for a bit with the fan on.

It was  little difficult doing the exercises, not because of the exercise, but because I kept having to authenticate into my iPhone X and look at what I was to do for the next exercise. My workout Monday ended up being around 11 minutes longer than they suggested it should take, but I got there in the end.

Tuesday’s workout was one with Michelle Bridges and following what she was doing in the video. I’ve never participated in any class-based exercises before, even at school I’d wag sport so don’t know if they ever did it there. I am perhaps the must unco person south of the equator, I struggled with following Michelle’s constant changes to routine so just did the best I could to keep up; I was just grateful for the fact I was at home and not in a class situation. Again shirt was dripping with sweat, even more so than the day before.

Today was weigh-in day. After work, and stupidly after I’d eaten for crying out loud, I got on the scales, and was already down 1.1kg. Holy Shit Batman! Of course the difference is not the same scales, its Doctors scales on Saturday and my scales on Wednesday, and mine tend to report lower than do hers, so I’m not actually sure the real difference tbh. But at least I know from today the weight on my own scales to go from.

Today was a break day for some reason in the program, but we’re back into it for the next three days. Another benefit from the past few days has been my sleep, whilst not sleeping any longer the quality of the sleep has been far better making the $199 fee well worth it already.


Signed up for a new me

I started my morning with a monthly visit to my GP, the joys of being a diabetic. I’d just had my HBa1c test to check my blood sugars over the past 3 months, and thankfully after a result that went strangely awry last time all is back on track again.

Carrying more than a few pounds discussion eventually shifts to how to shed them; finally I agreed to consider the 5:2 diet where you fast 2 days (non-consecutive) each week. That lasted about 3 hours before I committed myself to something entirely different.

One thing that had always concerned me about the 5:2 diet was how I might commit to it as peeps in my office regularly chew on the chockies, coffees and other goodies. Temptation and reminders would be everywhere. But what also concerned me was that it only examined half of the equation, the diet ignored exercise and it never teaches you anything. Further, dieting like that I’ve seen reports people often end up regaining the lost weight.

I’d seen some time ago a program developed by Michelle Bridges called the 12 week body transformation (12WBT), this focusses upon exercise, meal plans, lessons, learning & participation in forums with those in your 12 week block. There are multiple programs structured to meet various people’s needs and abilities. I paid up front for a 2 week saving at $199.

I’m excited to give this a go, though also a little nervous as I know it’s no walk in the park, it does get more intense as weeks progress. Week 1 begins Monday!

Burning candles at both ends

As we neared end of the work year I grew more anxious for it to end and holidays to begin. It has been a year marked with losing another three family members, after losing three in 2016; the final loss in 2017, that of my little brother to suicide was certainly the most difficult to deal with.

I think also working full-time and then providing out-of-hours support to one of the schools has led to my burning the candle at both ends. Come November I was really starting to feel exhausted, plus this month was also my brother’s birthday – it was hitting home the fact I couldn’t text, call or email to celebrate his birthday, nor would we have a get together.

Physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted my end-of-year annual leave had finally arrived, three glorious weeks that would commence with our office Christmas party. It was great to have a nice sit down buffet meal at the nearby resort, we had a great time. Before leaving our Director handed out the staff awards, two joint awards nominated by Schools and then the award nominated by our staff, I was so surprised when my own name was called out.

Ironically this would be the only Christmas celebrations I’d get to partake in this year. The following afternoon I would get ill and not recover enough to attend our family’s early Christmas celebrations at Burswood’s Atrium restaurant. By mid-week I was starting to feel somewhat better and headed out to wrap up present buying.

I had been invited by my other brother to his place for Christmas and had purchased a few items to take on the day. One week after I’d gotten sick “WHAM!” I was struck with

stomach flu and Norovirus; I had never experienced diarrhoea as I did over this weekend, over 30 bouts causing me to get a little dehydrated despite trying to keep fluids up.

Sadly, I was again nowhere near well enough come Christmas Day to join, instead was sleeping or laying on the couch. I honestly wonder what part my being exhausted contributed to being ill and missing family events, or was it just bad luck? At least in 2018 the level of out-of-hours I’ll work will be reduced, so hopefully I will not find myself in the same boat. I look forward to a better 2018, preferably death free as I’ve had my fill of that frankly. Good riddance 2017!

Blow me over with a feather: PTSD

I had my first visit with the psychologist today to discuss issues surrounding my brother’s death, as well as everything else that has happened since day dot. It’s probably as well she had a new looking pen, there was plenty for her to write down. She was much better than other psychologists than I have seen previously, so much more engaged, not the usual ‘mmm, right’ that leaves you wondering where to go next.

As I discussed events recent and past I mentioned how I often relived events over and over, often vividly, especially when I felt I’d made mistakes, constantly judging myself for having done so. It was the bullying from my childhood that often replayed though, constantly reminding me of what had occurred. Based upon what I’d discussed she suggested it was highly likely I was suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). I was a little shocked to say the least, I honestly thought this was limited to people in the military, or those who were raped or similar highly traumatic incidents.

There’s an eye-based therapy they can use which will assist with transferring the memory from short-term to long-term, thereby removing the memory from likely being relived over and over. My little sister, currently working towards becoming a psychiatrist, says the therapy is very effective in practice, so I am encouraged to hopefully move forward and get past these long-lived memories, finally.

Cancer claims another in my family

The past six months I have lost a number of my family. It all started in September when my godmother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, then just two weeks later she was gone. The following month my Dad’s sister passed, thankfully not from illness.

In December, Aunt Bev passed following a several year battle with ovarian cancer. Her long battle was a painful one, it was such a cruel way for her to die. Whilst she was battling her own cancer, her husband, my dad’s brother was diagnosed with a tumour. Despite several operations his outcome was terminal, and sadly today he too passed just two months after losing his wife. 

Cancer is such a dreadful way to pass. I am grateful my godmother Margaret’s suffering was brief, barely knowing she had it before she was gone. Unfortunately Bev and John endured prolonged periods, but thankfully had good support networks to ensure they were cared for. 

All are missed, hopefully one day cancer diagnoses will be a thing of the past or easily cured. 

Ovarian cancer

I last saw my Aunt Bev back in the mid-1980’s when a teenager, so I didn’t really know her any my Uncle John terribly well. A few years ago, in her early 70s, she was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer, which sadly today claimed her life at the age of 75.

It is so sad that you live a long life not to pass in your sleep from old age, but in pain from this horrid disease. I lost my God Mother a few months ago to Pancreatic Cancer just 2 weeks after her diagnosis, the only good thing for her was not suffering a protracted battle like Bev.

My step-mother, Joy, has since Bev’s diagnosis posted daily posts of roses on Facebook to try boost her spirits as best she might from hundreds of kilometres away. Bev often commented how much the gesture meant to her.

Let’s hope that a cure for this and other cancers is not too far off, it would be nice to know that a diagnosis is no longer met with fear but the knowledge we can cure it. RIP Aunt Bev.