Monthly Archives: April 2010

A banal miscellany.


I am an assortment of aches and pains. A case of join the dots. The bit where the neck joins the shoulders. The bit of the back between the small of the back and my left butt cheek. Tight hammies. A niggle in my left lateral knee. Most recently, my left groin has joined in the achy party. That was the bit that I pulled during trailwalker and aggravated on my morning run going up a small hill on Sydney road. So pilates was out this arvo. I am taking my sorry carcass to the sports doc tomorrow – the one who looks like he happily runs a marathon before breakfast. But I suppose that is what they all look like.

Ian is out gallavanting this evening, so I have the house to myself. On a friends advice, I have rented out some chick flick DVDs, “It’s complicated” and “Whip it”. Should be good.

The dog is out chewing some old meat from the freezer, which I defrosted for her (truth: I ran out of dog food and that was all I could find – it was either that or chuck the meat out).

Don’t even ask about the weight goals, but I feel good at the moment – kind of energetic. Inspired. I want to do some drawing. I want draw some old people’s faces. They have character.

Maybe the unblocking of the creative bunghole has something to do with the lack of things I like on telly at the moment. More time, all the better to use wisely!

I think I might go and look at one of the dvds now. I will pop my anti-inflammatory pill, drink some tea made of expensive herbs that look like garden mulch, and relax.

A brain workout.


As you will all be aware, I have been gearing up to do some research next year, in obesity in the elderly. I thought I would set aside this day to write an article for a major journal on this topic.


It is very, very, hard – all I do is keep finding new articles. I have to narrow it down. Get a slant, an angle. I have racked my brains trying to think of one.

So I have decided to put my energy into a research proposal, the literature review is more focused and less involved. I have already got a general idea of what I want to say, anyway. And I don’t have to contend with doing footnotes, just references. Footnotes are hard because every journal wants them done differently.


I have had a good weekend – some exercise, more eating, lots of cooking (vege lasagna and apple crumble), catching up with friends and spending quality time with hubby and the dog. I have done a spin class and a run. I am about (hopefully) to go out on another run, maybe just around local streets.

We are probably going to head out to the belgian beer cafe in the city. More dietary drama. Dunno if the goal for 1st may (73.5kg) is going to happen – my lowest weight for this past week was 74.3. That is 800g. So I will have to be pretty disciplined if I want to make it happen. So better get my arse out for a run. A run, dammit.

I need lots of inspiration this week.

I ran, ran like the wind.


I am feeling like one tough sheila.

I thought I would go out for a run tonight, as my DOMS had settled. My blisters have not quite healed, though.

But I sucked it in and went. I pushed myself. It was kind of like a tempo run – my stride was longer and faster. I was quite out of breath when I finished, with a stitch. Good pain.

And dagnammit, I enjoyed it. I ran into my old running coach at prinny and it was good to see him, he was duly impressed by my run so soon after trailwalker.

I am hanging out for the sytycd finale.



Managed to drag myself out to walk for about 30 minutes in total, really slowly. Going up and down steps was a bastard, and I really felt the blisters. I may have to wear sandals tomorrow, so as not to stir the buggers up. I also have a rash on my feet from the tape that I used, so my feet have been itchy as well as sore.

I have also been bloody hungry today, but have kept to the WW points. Made a really nice rice noodle stirfry with prawns and cashews.

Now I know how my frail, arthritic oldies feel.

I have done quite well today – tidied up all the mess, with Ian’s help. Done about 5 loads of washing. Have even baked some muffins with rye flour to take to work tomorrow (dunno how they will go down). Am now installed in front of the telly watching the biggest loser.

I have also signed up for Run Melbourne, the 10km event. I will pick up the training again once I right myself – may take up to a week. I have joined the 61 mins plus start wave, to take take the pressure off, but I will start up the front of it. I shall see how I am going as to whether I go the sub 60 pace with one of my run buddies.

I have not had a chance to do any of my research paper, it has been a bit of a hard weekend for it, but I have given myself a goal to do as much of it as I can this week, while I am laid up recovering, so I can enjoy the long weekend.

So the goals this week are

  • the paper
  • stick to my points
  • do some gentle exercise
  • watch NCIS and SYTYCD finale (these will be super easy)

Trailwalker – licking the wounds.


I did not get a lot of sleep the night before, but it turned out to be a brilliant, sunny day which kept the mind awake!

I met with my fellow supersheilas at 0730 hours, raring to go. Tony stepped up to the plate as support person, with Shell’s Steve as backup and Duckgirl otherwise occupied (she stepped up to the night duty).

We started at a comfy plod, but all needed to go for a whizz at the first toilet stop – we were queued up for about half an hour, so that set us back.

A flying stop through CP 1, with a banana and some GU drink, and a stretch.

About halfway to Lysterfield, the blister burn started up in my hindfeet. The damage was inspected over lunch at CP2 and dressed with the caring assistance of Tigerboy.

We were lucky enough to have TB come and meet us on the way to CP 3, and he helped haul us up the hills. Another flying stop at CP 3. I was feeling fantastic from the ankles up.

Grants to Mt Evelyn was an unenjoyable part of the course – the track was slippery with mud, with loads of branches poking out, and a sheer drop on the right! Then Hacketts. I was very lucky to get some text messages during this time, so texting back distracted me. Then a seemingly very long walk to CP4, Olinda.

Dinner was some noodles, bread and chippeees, then to inspect the damage on my feet – the blisters had gotten larger despite the dressings, so I changed over my dressings and socks, and sucked it up. Berny and Dave (Mr and Mrs Wombatoutofhell) came along to join us on a tough part of the trail.

The Olinda to Mt Evelyn part is one of the toughest (save for Tanty Hill) parts of the trail, with Melba track and its steep up and downhills. The uphills were fine – made much easier with a walking stick (thanks to Jay for teaching me to use it properly). The downhill was very slow (but faster than what I had done previously). I saw quite a few people fall over and was glad I took it slowly. Unfortunately, it really mushed the crap out of my feet, and stirred up the blisters big time. The uneven, gravelly path after this didn’t help.

Finished the big hills and met up with Corrie and Buster the lab. Buster had been cheeky, stealing food. Gotta love hounds – they like to look unfed. Dave and Berny had very kindly got us some coffee.

After this, my walking slowed to a crawl down the warby trail from Cogs Cafe to CP 5- the hindfeet were really hurting and I was starting to get muscle strains from walking on tippy-toes. Finally made it to CP 5 and again surveyed the damage – the blisters had grown to about 1 x 2 inches and were very big and tense. The “to pop or not to pop” debate moved up a notch. The other girls were preparing to move on in colder weather while I agonised about whether to continue. I got out of the car and had difficulty standing on my hindfeet, and then really doubted whether I could continue. The girls waited (freezing their collective tits off) while I had my feet tended too. I thought that it would do the trick but I was still stumbling about and realised that I was not going to be able to do another 40km.

I was very disappointed – felt like crying – as the rest of the body was holding up well. But as Jay pointed out I would have buggered my feet.

So I got Ian to come and pick me up, which he graciously did.

It was all a bit of a bastard, but I had tried my best – had hiked about 40km with ever-enlarging blisters. I had also trained hard, and, otherwise, I would have been able to continue. I had sustained injuries (hip and ITB) and gotten over them. Just a bit of a bugger, but I will get over it.

Well done to Jay, Shells and Michelle, who gallantly kept going, and finished at about 2pm in quite warm weather – that tanty hill would have been a bitch.

A big happy 30th to Shelley, what an amazing way to ring in your thirties – onward and upward from here.

Michelle also did a fantastic job – she bravely carried on up the hills despite saying “I can’t do them!”. Yes, you could, and you did!

Also a big thanks to Tony, Dave, Berny and Duckgirl – they were magnificent.

Even though I did not finish, I still achieved a lot from training for the event:

  • fitness up hills
  • conquering (to a degree) my morbid fear of downhills and uneven surfaces
  • endurance by time on the feet
  • fueling for long exercise
  • Discipline and commitment to a team – I had never done a team sport before.

I will not be doing it again though! I was thinking, while I was waiting for Ian, that I need to change my approach to exercise, from masochistic to a little hedonistic. I found the longer training walks quite difficult to recover from – I needed lots more sleep for a week after, and the DOMS was a bitch sometimes.

My new goal is a good (<= 60 minute) 10km time. I will take Dave up on the offer to pace me. Training for this will likely be a bit less tiring and time consuming. It is also quite an easily achievable goal.

And also, much more of the exercise I enjoy – mindless sessions on the x-trainer, step classes with Jessica, jazz and contemporary classes, fun runs (8-14km distance). I was previously finding it difficult to motivate myself for exercise because I felt I had to go hard – but in order for it to be sustainable it needs to be enjoyable.

Tonight – some time with my hubby – because he has not been seeing a lot of me with the training. I am sure all the girls will take the opportunity to spend more time with their loved ones.

What a good idea!


Normally I stay away from getting into political or religious debates, but…

I heard on the radio that Richard Dawkins (uber-atheist) was planning to have the pope arrested on arrival to the UK.

And I think – what a good idea! Smashing! Brilliant! Can’t think of a strong enough word for it fantabulous!

It sends a very strong message that no man, nor any man of God (if he, or she, exists – would like to hope so) is above the law, or above the judgement of God (if he, or she, exists bla bla bla).

Well that is a very garbled way for saying to the pope (note no capitalisation) ..

You think you can cover the evil of your hangers on and cronies…


I would love to see that.

Well that was my rant for the day.

I really like the idea of goals.

First goal – slow weight loss. I have made it easy on myself (and knowing it will slow down).

  • get to 73.5kg by the end of April
  • get to 71.5kg by mid June
  • get to 70kg by the end of July
  • get to 68kg by mid-Sept.
  • Then maintain….
  • And then, maybe for melb marathon time, do a 10km in 60mins. This may seem slow to some people but it is a big goal for me, a sign that I have finally made it to fit territory.

Can anyone suggest any cool rewards for each goal?

I would like a Diane von Furstenburg dress when I lose the weight, but some interim (not too costly or revolving around chocolate) rewards would be good.

Sassy’s happy school.


I have been to my headshrinker and we are cutting down on my antidepressant medications. He has warned me that there is a risk of relapse – dunno how high. So I need to have depression prophylaxis. I need to focus on the little things that make me happy. Such as:

  • Hitting the bed when I am really, really tired. A good feeling.
  • Red lipstick. I have a ChiChi lipstick that is called Boy Magnet – it is a deep blood red, matte, stays on long. It looks best without other makeup on – then it looks a little “Rock Chick”. It is the ducks nuts. Love it.
  • At pilates – doing the “rolling like a ball” exercise. Basically you roll up like a ball and roll back and forth, mainly using your abs. A great way to get in touch with the inner child.
  • My dog putting her chin on my  leg when I am sitting down at the table. She looks up at me and looks soooooo cute.
  • Actually most things my dog does, apart from farting. Or pooping where I step. Or piddling on the floor.
  • Looking at babies and little kids, except when they are crying.
  • A really good cup of coffee. I had one of them recently. It rocked my world.
  • A good burp. Makes me giggle. As does a good fart joke, or any joke really.
  • Dancing and going into my happy place.
  • Finishing a run, especially when I finish faster than I start. Also, the feeling I get when running and a really good song comes on and I do the air guitar.
  • My hubby’s cuddles – particularly just before I go to sleep or just after I wake up.
  • Chocolate. Any way shape or form – though I must not rely on this, otherwise my arse would be way bigger than what I would like it to be.
  • Step class – I love the teacher, Jessica. It would not be nearly as fun without her. She knows all of our names and always keeps an eye out for us. She makes us do the “funky chicken” and pose at the end of each track. She also makes us clap on certain beats. I love the sound of synchronised claps.

The other thing is that I have lost 0.9kg this week – I am down to 74.5 kg. I am aiming for 73.5kg by the end of the month. It will probably be easy, cause I am doing TW in the interim and that may burn off a gram or two.

I have also lost 6cm in total off my waist (or 5.5 really) but I will round up! It feels that sweet fanny adams has been lost from butt and thighs though – I may have to come around to the fact that I will always have some variation of thunder-thighs, and that most pairs of jeans will send me into a hissy fit.

Other news:

  • I have met with the professor of medicine and it looks like I will be starting a Ph.D. next year – on obesity in the elderly, which is a big interest of mine. Though this is a pay cut, this is quite an exciting thing. It is research that has never been done before, to my knowledge, and it has great public health implications.
  • I have learned, on good authority ( that perms have come back in. This is quite exciting for me, as I was not allowed to have one when I was 12 or 13 (when perms were last in fashion and a couple of my friends had one and so did all the cool kids). I have always had dead-straight hair but would have loved to have curly hair. If it takes off, and when my hair grows, I might get me a body-wave 😛

Well, I had better get on with my lit review.

living with less.


I was going through my wardrobe and drawers today, and I realised that….


I have tops of every description. Loads of skirts. Not so many pants. A stash of clothes (pants, dress, skirts) that are being saved for “when I get slim” – some I’ve had for a couple of years.

Profligate spending. I am a bit annoyed with myself.

I will buy myself some new “bottoms” when and only when I have lost and maintained the weight for a while.

I also need to do a “stocktake” and devise some new outfits with the clothes and accessories that I already have. I will go to etsy for accessories.

This is because my income will likely decrease next year. I should learn to live with less, or be happy with enough. Enough is as good as a feast, is what my deceased grandpa said.

Speaking again of profligacy, I got onto WW online forums, bemoaning the fact that that I was not losing weight when I more or less ate the prescribed number of points. I got a bit of a kick up the bum (in a frank but not unkind way) from a fellow forumite. It was what I needed. So I bought myself a set of digital kitchen scales and am getting my portions just right. I have also set myself a mini-goal of 73.5kg for the end of April. I think I need little goals, as the big one is too nebulous, too easy to put off.

Despite the bun and choc ingestion, I am down to 74.8kg. I think a bit of fluid loss is at play here but I ain’t arguing 🙂

Had a great easter. The dog has been sleeping A LOT – lots of walkies, visits, treats, pats, cuddles and farts. A very big weekend for the dog.

Am meeting up with the prof tomorrow – wish me luck and I will let youse know how it goes!

OMG is it EASTER?!


But OMG it is a 4 day weekend!

Friday – some exercise (20min x-trainer, 20 min treadmill run) then off to Sare’s for Hot Cross buns – I had them in lieu of lunch. Gotta love HCBs but it masquerades as raisin toast throughout the rest of the year. Yet I don’t eat raisin toast. Good to catch up with old friends from uni – one of whom has just passed his final (of 22) exams for opthalmology training. He was a different person, in very fine form. Then we went out for the obligatory good friday fish and chips (had the fish grilled).

Saturday – out to South Melbourne, Cafe Sweethearts, for brekky, then to St Ali for coffee. It is good coffee but not life-changingly so. St Ali is much hyped for its coffee. Then off to the gym for more xtrainer exercise.

Off in the arvo to the Mother in Laws in the sticks to stay. The dog loved the company and the car ride, though she gets a bit whingy at the end of it. Kind of like “are we there yet” in dog-yap.

Sunday – off to the Bendigo easter festival, beautiful weather for it too. We took the dog and she was given treats by stall holders. This arvo, after lunch, a nap. I don’t know what we gave the dog to eat (possibly left over hcbs) but she has the farts really, really bad. We have had to banish her outside on multiple occasions.

My ITB is playing up – I think the x-trainer stirs it up rather than the running, so I will pop the anti-inflamms and avoid the x-trainer! Need to keep the body in tip-top condition because it is now LESS THAN 2 WEEKS till trailwalker. AAAAARRRRGH. Am trying not to think too much about it.

In some other exciting news, I am meeting up with a professor of medicine on wednesday to discuss commencing a research degree (MD or PhD)  next year. It is quite common to do research degrees in other specialties (actually nearly mandatory if you want a consultant post) but not in geriatrics. I am interested in researching obesity in the elderly – it is a confluence of 2 epidemics that is approaching. I spoke with the prof on the phone last week and he sounded quite positive about it. I just need to look for scholarships to supplement my (very) part time income next year. Will let youse know how it all goes…….

Well  enjoy the last quarter of the break! Drive safely too (what is it about holidays that brings out the dickhead in dickhead drivers??)