Thursday, 31 October 2013

Where we are at

Just a quick one because you can understand this is a very busy time…

I didn’t get the job in London, so will be working away for 3 months from Monday (I asked them to put back my start date from today so I could do the house move necessaries and they kindly agreed)

We’re actually moving into the rental property today (we got it – and in under a week, yay!) having spent yesterday with a removal man packing everything we weren’t actually using while he went around the house. Including things we could have done with today actually - when we finish the move in 6 months time we’ll need to give him a better list of things not to pack on day 1!!! He was very efficient but he achieved that by packing absolutely everything, which is obviously quicker than considering each thing as you go around.

Due to the very short notice between exchanging and completing, getting the rental property sorted etc. we will be without phone and broadband until Monday (assuming things go to plan on Monday) so there probably won’t be another update until then unless I find myself in a wifi area with my laptop or the iPad – I’ve never figured out how to post from my mobile.

We’re eating out / takeaway / crap because I literally have no kitchen. For expedience sake I’m even eating sandwiches made with normal non-gf bread, which is not making my stomach entirely happy but so far anyway that’s mostly showing itself as a feeling of bloated fullness all the time rather than anything more intrusive / extreme.

I realised yesterday there’s no microwave in the rental, which M will need once I’m working away. We’re also leaving the Bibo behind in our current house and not replacing it until we’re in a house of our own, so I need to pick up a cheap kettle, water filter jug & microwave this weekend, all of which I’ll be throwing away in 6 months. Sigh. On the plus side we complete the sale tomorrow as early as our buyer can swing it and then the house sale from hell will be over; the house move from hell of course will not be over till we’ve unpacked all the essentials at the other end.

I think I slept about 90 minutes last night, so if this post looks & reads as though it were written in Sanskrit by a 2yr old that’s why…

Roll on (more or less) normal life… I miss you!!!

Friday, 25 October 2013

Last day in the office

I had no real work to do so I had no distractions from stewing as I waited for the letting agent to get his references and things to confirm we get the rental property we want.
I have an interview for the second contract - the one I really want - but its not until Tuesday morning so too much time for worrying about that too. I'm starting to feel mildly ill about it all in fact, my stomach is churning fairly constantly and I'm still waking up in the middle of the night - generally about 2:45 am. I'm overeating and I've regained the weight I lost on the whole30 plan as a result, so now I plan to repeat it once this upheaval is out of the way and I have the chance to take control again. And at 2pm I was hiding in the ladies at work having a very small weeping fit.

Four people are leaving our office today so everyone (including me) brought cake &/or cookies in today. I admit I ate a cookie to destress this morning (no, obviously it didn't work) but only one, and at lunchtime, when we all went out for lunch, I ordered the only gluten free meal on the menu (with a diet coke).
As my order arrived a colleague who'd ordered the same thing commented that they hadn't skimped on the Cajun seasoning and he was right - spicy!!! Too bad my stressed out stomach had me feeling slightly sick as I walked back to the office (not a comment on the food I assure you)
I'm sorry to whinge and whine so much today, I know everything will probably work out but I'm so tired and so uptight I can barely see straight, and certainly can't think of anything positive to write. I wish I could hibernate for a month and wake up to find everything had just happened without me... Except even if I could try to hibernate I'd just wake up at 2:45 and lie there worrying Smile

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with cooked gf sausage, mushroom & leek
Lunch: Cajun chicken skewers (a whole chicken breast I think) with side salad
Dinner: Bolognese sauce on courgette noodles
Snack: nuts & a cookie

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Written (started) yesterday

Today we exchanged contracts on our house finally - such a relief after all these months! I also discovered I'm still in with a chance on the more local contract I interviewed for yesterday afternoon after all. So the stress hasn't ended, but it has moved on a bit.

I spent a somewhat embarrassing amount of time on the phone to various people and institutions about moving along the process, and then when we got home we went out for a celebratory dinner & drink

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with cooked gf sausage, spinach & leek
Lunch: leek & sweet potato soup
Dinner: Starter: Baked potato skins with chorizo sausage & cheese. followed by Lamb & Beef fajitas (minus the tortillas) with sangria
Snack: nuts & roast turkey slices

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Wasted day

I worked from home today because we were supposed to be exchanging on our house and I had private phone calls to make as a result. Except we didn’t exchange, its now supposed to be tomorrow but who knows…

That was followed by a phone interview for another job (yes, I have one already, but this one was much more convenient. It didn’t go too well though, so I’m still expecting to be working away from next week. Sigh.

I consoled myself with cashew butter. Sigh again. But at least it was gluten free

Food today:

Breakfast: hard boiled eggs, bacon & avocado in homemade mayonnaise
Lunch:leek & sweet potato soup and a bag of dried fruit, nuts & seeds                               
Dinner: chicken thigh stir fry with sunshine sauce

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Sigh

Thanks Joy & Diane for your nice comments that didn't call me for being a dumbass - which I was. I should have avoided the prosecco, celebrations or not, and left my judgment unimpaired. (though far from good as we've all got reason to know...) Sigh. Ah well, I did feel better very soon because the one advantage of diarrhea is the way it quickly clears the toxins from your body Winking smile

I was back in the office today and booked the removal service first thing. M & I have agreed that I will spend the weekend directly following the move at my dad's as agreed since I'd be useless after the exertions of Thursday & Friday anyway, and with me working away there'll be no-one there wanting to cook or get at my clothes & stuff anyway, so it can wait till the week after, (when I will have to pull my weight.) Thank god. The stress response has fully kicked in now with the obligatory 3 am mental wake up call to allow me an extra couple of hours building mental to do lists while my brain spins uselessly in place at 200 miles an hour. In fairness that would have happened anyway with the new job coming up, but possibly not quite as early as this.

This afternoon at work I was terminally bored and desperately trying not to let myself go into a tailspin. I found myself standing in front of the vending machine with cash in hand staring at crisps and chocolate, chocolate & crisps, my hand moving towards the coin slot… I wasn’t hungry and didn’t even particularly crave chocolate either, and when I realized these small yet important details I put the money away and walked back to my desk sans chocolate, sans crisps, sans regret…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: leek & sweet potato soup, mini chicken satay and strawberries
Dinner: venison (roe deer loins) pan fried, with jicama chips & sautéed mushrooms & onions
Snack: nuts & homemade pork rinds

Monday, 21 October 2013

Progress

Things are moving along, we’ve found a rental property so long as no one steals it out from under us (they should only have 2 more days to that so it probably won’t happen) and the removal company is currently available for the dates we want. I’ve been signing documents and getting sorted – but although I should feel better I’m still feeling antsy about the actual move. My father in law has said he’s let the guys in and out of the houses, since M & I should both be in work on those days. That means I should feel totally relaxed about it happening without me, but all I can think about is having to start a new job with long drives on the Thursday & Friday, then come home to lug boxes all weekend before dragging myself back again. (on a weekend I was planning to visit my father in his new home). Am I horribly selfish because I would really like to visit my dad as planned and let it go till the following weekend? I probably am, but that’s just the kind of person I am…

Today I worked from home so that I could make lots of phone calls as and when needed without having to go out to a quiet spot in the office. It was very productive I suppose, not a fun day, but I did get the work done as well. Foodwise I did Ok today due to being too busy for anything else. I kept thinking I’ll get a drink and then pop to the bathroom, and then 20 minutes later realised I didn’t do either…

At the weekend the same was not entirely true. M and his father were going to Brands Hatch yesterday for  motorbike racing day. As they had to make an early start his dad came to visit on Saturday, and we wen out for lunch to celebrate the progress we’ve suddenly been making on the house move thing. At the meal M ordered Prosecco, which is my favourite sparkling wine so I drank it even though its fairly high carb. My first two courses were fine, marinate Northern Herring followed by pan fried halibut, then it got to dessert and I was going to order cheese just to join in… but I didn’t fancy the cheeses on offer, and then I saw the Rhubarb & Custard Cheesecake with white chocolate ice cream… and I broke

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After lunch my father in law and I went for a 5 mile walk and then I drank a few beers, not a huge number but like the cheesecake not gluten free or low carb either. On Saturday night I woke up around 2am with a splitting headache and agonising cramps in both calves. I took pain killers and managed to go back to sleep eventually, but in the morning I had an upset stomach with diarrhea. So once again I prove I have to think harder about whether things are good ideas. On Sunday I got things much more under control – a good breakfast and dinner, only a little bit off at lunchtime, and no snacking at all. I did have a couple of beers again, but they didn’t have any untoward effects.

Food today:

Breakfast: 2 eggs scrambled with a gf sausage & a rasher of bacon                        Lunch: soup made with homemade chicken stock, another gf sausage and a ton of veg Dinner: Beef casserole with veg

Friday, 18 October 2013

Stress…

I have a lot on my mind at the moment, mostly house sale / move with a hefty dose of new job coming up soon and working away. So I feel unsettled - we are unsettled - and I'm not training again. Once the new job starts that will change - what else am I going to do with myself alone in a hotel room every evening? But right now I'm firmly held in the trap of 'I'll do it when...', 'I'll start when...' 'It'll be all right/easier/more productive when...' Sigh. I see the trap but can't find the energy to pull out right now, and I'm trying not to be too annoyed with myself about it since I'll still not train while hating myself if I do.
This morning the solicitor for our house sale informed us that the purchaser wants to exchange on next Wednesday - the 23rd - and complete on either the 31st of October or the 1st of November (aka the first day of my new job or the 2nd day of my new job). We've been waiting for this since July and now we might be moving on the same day I start a new job!!! Because we've been so convinced that everything was going to fall apart for so long we haven't yet found a rental house to live in while they build the one we're buying - and of course once we do find one we'll have to go through the process of references, credit checks etc. We asked for 2 weeks between exchange & completion to let that happen; they're proposing 1.5 weeks. Cue phone calls to letting agencies that don't call you back, removal firms & a (non gf) white chocolate chip cookie. Or 2.

Must find a better way to handle stress.
Must find a better way to handle stress.
Must find a better way to handle stress....

Rental house viewing #1 tomorrow morning. It would be nice if that were the only one we needed. Even though we can't sign anything until we exchange in case it all falls apart leaving us owing 6 months rent... There's no way this is all going to just fall into place...

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables & gammon
Lunch: gammon & veg soup, Greek yoghurt & a snack pack of grapes
Dinner: chicken stir fry with sunshine sauce
Snack: nuts & crème fraiche with summer berries. And a cookie... or 2

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Still chocolate free

(but I ate dried fruit) and stuffed full of fat & protein. I've been researching hotels for my new contract and if it works out, may go to stay at a serviced apartment block with a full kitchen and fitness room - fingers crossed that works out!

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: curried beef mince soupified with homemade chicken (paws) stock.
Dinner: courgette noodles tossed with a 'pasta sauce' of gammon, leeks, mushrooms & peppers with crème fraiche
Snack: biltong, cashews & coconut cream with summer berries

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Crawling back from the edge

Stuck to allowable foods again today, with noticeably less inclination to eat sweet things, thank God. Still over eating but I'm more focused on getting back to eating the right things, I'll work on quantities next. I spent the whole day thinking about food - but not in an obsessional 'what can I eat, when can I eat it' kind of way, more in a 'how can I most easily eat Paleo while working away & living in a hotel?' way. I know the easiest answer would just be 'buy a roasted chicken breast / whole rotisserie chicken and bag of salad every day' 3 meals a day, but I wouldn't last a week if I tried to do that so I need a little more of a plan. I'm going to be working in the centre of the city so shopping should be easy enough, but unless something amazing happens I won't have storage or cooking facilities. I am considering buying a small electric rice cooker (obviously not to cook rice, but most of them will also steam veg and meat / fish as well.) Assuming there's a microwave & fridge in the office I may be able to keep things interesting at lunchtime & possibly breakfast without too much effort (interesting may be an exaggeration, but not too tedious anyway) and maybe make the evening meal more snacky. It's all just speculation until I can check out the situation anyway, and luckily the very first week I'll only be at the hotel for one night anyway. If anyone has any ideas for really portable Paleo friendly snacks or meals that don’t need refrigeration or cooking I’d be very grateful… don’t ask for much, do I???

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: pork & ham soup. Last portion finally!
Dinner: grilled chicken thighs with stir-fried veg & sunshine sauce
Snack: biltong, cashews, pork rinds & crème fraiche with summer berries

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Developments and discoveries

I worked from home today because I was due to get my central heating boiler serviced. Due to a problem with the online appointment booking offered by British Gas this didn't happen... I called to check the time mid-morning, but they had no record on their system, and the nearest appointment they did have was not possible for me, for reasons that are about to be made clear...

Development #1
9 days before the end of my current job, I have been offered and accepted another contract. This one sadly is over 130 miles away, so I will be working away from home during the week; however I won't have the soul destroying experience that is searching for a job for months, and I will be working only an hour away from my Dad's new home, so I will have opportunities to visit them much sooner than I expected if I'd been working full time around here.
Development #2
It looks like our house sale may go through after all the drama!!! All of a sudden, out of the blue, things seem to be falling into place and we may actually succeed in moving somewhere much more convenient for M's work - which is a huge relief
Discovery #1
When I was doing the Whole30 I survived unsickened when surrounded by man infected with the plague - including my own husband. I was whiny and whingey I admit, but my body laughed at cold germs and I suffered nothing worse than a slight sniffle. Since deciding to treat myself to evil sugary chocolate on too many occasions following the plan, I had developed an annoying tendency to sneezing fits and have a massive - MASSIVE!!! cold sore outbreak on my lip. Coincidence? I'm not so sure... SO I AM DETERMINED... proper low carbing (with the inclusion of dairy unless I continue feeling sub par) is BACK!!!

Happily today I ate too much of the good stuff, but apart from dairy, which is open to interpretation, nothing at all that isn't at least Primal - a step in the right direction!

Food today:
Breakfast: Lettuce wraps filled with a salad of hard boiled egg, gammon and avocado in homemade mayonnaise
Lunch: Pork & vegetable soup
Dinner: Thai coconut beef heart with cauliflower rice
Snacks: Toasted coconut flakes, cashews, creme fraiche with summer fruits (partially defrosted), biltong

Monday, 14 October 2013

Busy weekend

My brother visited as planned and on Saturday we went into London for the day. The forecast was heavy rain while we were planning the trip, but in the end it was not just dry, but also sunny some of the day, so we were lucky there. First thing on arriving at Paddington we went down to the underground bit to get the tube out to Whitechapel. As we went down the first thing I saw was a little shop - almost just a kiosk - selling South African specialties such as biltong, droewors, and boerewors. I tasted some biltong, then bought some for a snack while we traveled, and at the end of the day went back for more :-). According to Carol, the lady working there, they make the biltong themselves, from grass fed Aberdeen Angus beef.
Whitechapel has a market on Saturday which is well known for its Asian ingredients, fruit & veg (fabrics too, but neither of us was interested in that) so we walked up and down the High St a bit and I bought some fruit / veg without knowing what they were... Here they are, I eventually worked out that I have (from right to left) 2 kaffir limes and one bitter melon gourd, but I still don't know what the other two are - any ideas?

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When we left Whitechapel we walked down to the Thames and followed the Thames Path to Tower Bridge. We had lunch in a bbq place called Bodeans and thoroughly logged out on excellent, unpretentious food. If you like bbq meats and you're in London I recommend it! Then we walked over Tower Bridge, and along the South Bank of the Thames to the Borough Market, where we both went slightly nuts (but mainly me!) at a stall called The Spice Mountain - this is their website, and I bought quite a few types of flavoured salts there as well as a bag of Long Peppers.
Finally we went to Whole Foods Market on Kensington High Street so I could buy some more jicama and then walked back to Paddington.
Sunday it rained all day, but my brother & I were hardcore walkers and went out anyway - about 3 miles around town first, then we caught a train into Reading and walked around some more, before going home for lunch and then walking another approximately 4 miles to a garden centre with a good farm shop. In Reading I went to an oriental supermarket and bought a bag of chicken feet to make stock with!!!!

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I've been meaning to try that for ages and intended to get them from Chinatown in London but we ran out of time. After that even we were glad to get home and sit down, watching multiple episodes of the wonderful 'Parks & Recreation' till it was time for my brother to leave and me to go to bed :-)
The only downside to such a busy, active weekend is that the time flies by, and 2 minutes after leaving work on Friday evening you're already getting woken up on Monday morning to go back to work Sad smile Absolutely worth it though, and we're already planning his next visit!

Now a question: why is it that its impossible to eat sweet stuff then put it aside again? I need to get back to low carbing it, but so far its harder than it was to start it in the first place... failed miserably today as you will see below…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: pork & ham soup
Dinner: prawn salad
Snack: carrot cake & chocolate

Friday, 11 October 2013

Binge :-(

So, no post yesterday because I had a stinking headache and was avoiding all computers. I'd been contacted by an agency the day before arranging a phone interview for a job working away and I guess I was stressed about it, because Wednesday night I got no sleep. So I didn't go to work, dosed myself with caffeine to get through the interview, then spent the day alternately resting - trying to nap - or taking short, slow walks to try to work the headache off before I ran out of energy. Not my favourite kind of day home from work!
Today I woke up feeling groggy from painkillers and medicinal whiskey, still knackered, but went back into work.
Yesterday was dry and fairly sunny with a strong cold breeze,so that every time I went out my head did feel clearer and I actually in total (across multiple attempts) walked about 5 miles I think. Today it was wet, cold and windy as I drove into the office, with more rain forecast, leaving me wondering why I got out of bed. The decider was probably realising I wouldn't want to go out in the horrible weather so I might as well get paid... Especially as this contract is nearly over and I might have a gap before being paid again...
Foodwise yesterday the meals were good bit the snacking not so much - as usual when I'm that lacking in energy I tried to eat energy, in the form of large quantities of cashew butter. Yes, I know I said I wasn't buying it any more. I was right to say that and wrong not to stick to it. But at the time it cheered me up, so I'm not (very) sorry...
This weekend my brother is planning to visit and we intend to go into London tomorrow. Of course the forecast is for heavy rain all day... Left to myself, and because I live in such a convenient place, I'd put it off until the weather was better but my brother lives much further away and works a funny shift pattern that rarely gives him weekends off, so when he has the chance he's taking it no matter what... He also firmly believes that 'there's no bad weather,just bad clothing choices' so we'll be tramping around in the rain... If its as bad as the forecasts say I may insist we get tube passes and don't walk everywhere as we usually do, since I'm such a delicate blossom... :-)

This afternoon I binged. I binged on chocolate and crisps, neither of which I should have touched. I don’t feel ill but I do feel regrets.. DON’T EAT THE FIRST BITE then you can’t binge…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: curried pork & ham soup
Dinner: leftover Paleo Bolognese sauce over courgette noodles
Snack: 85% dark chocolate

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Cooking - Experimenting

I've been reading yet more books regarding ancestral / traditional foods and their benefits since finishing the whole30. First it was The Perfect Health Diet - I like them, they'll let me eat white rice & potatoes and drink beer for silicon supplementation - and now Nourishing Traditions, which allows you to eat most things except modern refined foods so long as you're willing to prepare them traditionally. This book reminded me of one of my favourite foods that I haven't had for ages - yoghurt cheese made by straining the whey out of plain yoghurt until its so thick and firm you could eat it with a knife & fork if you wanted to. There is a batch setting up nicely in my fridge as I write... In the past when I made this I used to throw the whey away (or at most add it to smoothies) but the book also describes using homemade whey (not processed whey powders) to make lacto-fermented foods and drinks, so I'm considering making some 'pickled' veg with some of it, and adding some to my next batch of mayo to extend its fridge life. Watch this space...
At lunchtime today I walked my usual 2 mile walk, to a massive Boots superstore. Since reading The Perfect Health Diet I've been trying to find some Vitamin K supplements - all the books on low carb dieting, if they support supplementation at all, agree everyone should be taking it. So why is it impossible to find anywhere except on the internet at massive cost??? Ah well, the web to the rescue again...

I intended to train after work but got swept up into the never-ending house sale screw up and didn’t have time. So the sale is making me cranky, stressed and fat…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables
Lunch: salvaged slightly curried soup - actually turned out pretty nice!
Dinner: Korean style beef short ribs cooked on the hob per one of the comments, and made with blackberries and apple (I followed your example, Diane, and found the ribs at a semi-local butcher after striking out at every supermarket I tried) with salad
Snack: cashews

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Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Whoops… and that’s why you taste when you cook

Yesterday afternoon I made some fake split pea soup - replacing the split peas with cauliflower & green beans. I've made it before but this time I decided to boost the ham flavour with some ham stock as well as the ham that goes in the soup. That was a bad decision, as I discovered today at lunch (no, I didn't taste it yesterday - I'm so ashamed! But I'd made it successfully before) as the soup ended up inedible due to being too salty... rather than throwing it away I added a ton of extra stock, boosted it with some other soup I was getting bored of, and made an enormous vat of soup. Some of it I've added curry powder and garam masala to; some I added lemon juice to as its supposed to combat saltiness. I'll be adding more veg and stock again to the rest, and hopefully it will all provide enough variety to make the whole vat enjoyable! Also fortunately I worked from home again and could improvise an alternative lunch with no difficulty to speak of.
I had a short walk at lunchtime, just into town for some shopping, and wanted to train after work but I'd been told I would be getting a delivery between 4:30 and 5:30pm, and by the time he came it was too late unfortunately. I'd been wearing training clothes all day so I wouldn't forget, or make excuses, too!!!

Reintroduction of dairy continued with some whole milk (non-homogenised Jersey milk no less) – still no symptoms! The goat’s milk yoghurt I snacked on was fine too but I expected that as goat’s milk is considered more digestible. Now I only need to try cheese…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with vegetables, sauerkraut & smoked rainbow trout followed by cashews
Lunch: sweet potato & bacon salad
Dinner: chicken stir fry with courgette noodles and my favourite sunshine sauce
Snack: goat's milk yoghurt and toasted coconut flakes.

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Monday, 7 October 2013

Aftermath

Well, after the mistake I made on Saturday yesterday was not the best day ever. I had diarrhea for most of the morning and spent the morning in bed or in the bathroom. I had no energy all day - which could have been a food reaction but seems more likely to be caused by the way food kept shooting through me without much of a pause for digestion - so after eating a late breakfast of fried eggs & bacon with sweet potato home fries around 10am I went back to bed for a couple of hours - not through feeling ill by then so much as because I wanted to indulge in a whole lot of nothing. In a way it was actually a nice relaxing, self-indulgent afternoon! Later I transferred to the sofa and started watching The Silver Linings Playbook but found it depressing so we stopped that and watched The Angel's Share instead.
Today I was only working for a half day, so I decided not to drag myself into the office in the morning, instead working from home. Due to environment problems I didn't get a lot done, but I was still glad to finish!

After finishing work I took a short walk then came home and watched TV and cooked some soup before training on the mountain climber. I ended up spending 50 minutes on the climber, but in all honesty I wasn’t giving it my all for that 50 minutes. Still worked up a hell of a sweat though!

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled smoked rainbow trout followed by almonds
Lunch: a salad from the recipe book Tasty Paleo Salad Recipes - fennel, okra, endive & orange salad with lemon & parsley mackerel - very different and delicious. I've never had raw okra in a salad before and it was nice - but annoying to make as I tossed the salad by hand and the slices of okra kept sticking to my fingers!
Dinner: burger with horseradish mayo, salad & raw jicama chips

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Too much at once

During yesterday I was continuing my snail’s pace reintroduction of dairy by having butter in my breakfast eggs – and considering a pot of Greek yoghurt to really push the boat out.

Then I went slightly nuts, realised how uptight / obsessional my behaviour was still being, and agreed to go out for a Thai meal last night.

Mistake.

First of all I don’t like eating late at the best of times. We generally have dinner at 7pm – somewhere between 6:30 and 7 anyway – and last night we didn’t leave the house till almost 8, so I was already hungry and out of my schedule. Then I had 3 courses, which is more food than I’m used in one go, and ate a few things I’ve been avoiding.

Soy / fish sauce

Sweet chilli sauce

A couple (literally) of prawn crackers – the restaurant in question does the best prawn crackers in the world – dipped in (gasp!) peanut sauce

White rice (coconut rice & a single forkful of rice noodles)

I had steamed mussels with chilli – they were delicious, it’s a favourite of mine, but they do come with a little soy / fish sauce (I don’t know which, I’m woefully ignorant about Thai ingredients and the menu doesn’t specify)

Then pork stir fried with garlic & chilli (plus a little of M’s stir fried squid with chilli – notice a chilli theme????) with the aforementioned coconut rice. Very possible it was stir fried in peanut oil or rapeseed / soya oil, all excluded on the Whole30, and again there was soy / fish sauce.

Then fruit salad, which I don’t feel guilty/doubtful about. Though I should probably have had cream with it and didn’t.

Plus approx 1.5 – 2 glasses of rose (not very strong) wine

Woke up this morning feeling full, even bloated, yet hungry, and with a splitting headache. I know I’m a lightweight where wine is concerned but I really didn’t drink enough to give me a booze hangover, even after 33 days of no alcohol at all. That combined with the bloated yet wanting to eat feeling tells me there was something there my body wasn’t happy about. Of course because I changed so many things at once, and don’t even know how many, I’ve no idea what. Probably not the butter, as I’d eaten that in the morning and felt fine for the following 12-14 hrs. I think the wine and soy are most likely myself. Even before whole30 I was replacing traditional soy sauce with tamari and barely drinking.

Anyhoo, coffee, lemon water and painkillers took care of the headache and the bloated feeling has almost worn off, but I don’t think I’ll be doing that again in a hurry. Today I guess I’ll have to eat clean again (and I really fancy that Greek yoghurt right now) to let my system settle down.

Eating out is nice, but not if it leads to several hours of discomfort…

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Friday, 4 October 2013

A little dairy…

Well, today I had a flat white coffee with whole around 9am. No ill effects so far (apart from slightly light headed all morning from too much caffeine) so hopefully things will be ok with some dairy. I must admit I didn't enjoy it as much as I used to, so probably won't bother much. I'm finding that now I'm free to be more relaxed about food the idea of eating things that were excluded for the past month is not that appealing to me, I suppose in fear of ill effects or even just in fear of regaining the weight I lost. Or maybe just a change in habits, though almost certainly one that wouldn't take much reversing. Last night M suggested eating out since I was refusing to do so while on whole30 and it didn't appeal to me at all, so we didn't bother - though I might have been more interested if there were a greater variety of restaurants in town or at the weekend when we can take the time to travel somewhere without worrying about work the next day.
NSV today... My office has casual Friday and this morning I grabbed a pair of black jeans from the wardrobe. It wasn't until I reached work that I realized I'd picked the wrong pair of jeans - instead of size 10 I'd grabbed a pair of size 8 that I hadn't worn for about a year (last time I wore them I used the belt loops to pull them up and one loop broke under the strain Sad smile so I put them away). Today they felt the way I expected them to if they'd been the pair I washed last weekend - a little snug until they relaxed! The only reason I checked the label and realized what had happened was finding the broken belt loop!
I declared today a rest day as yesterday's 'less intense' workout of yoga instead of mountain climber proved stressful and sweaty. I walked at lunchtime then again after work for a total today of 5 miles. There was some sunshine at lunchtime, which was nice, and it was actually warm too.

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with tomatoes, mushrooms & spinach followed by cashew nuts
Lunch: pork & veg soup with strawberries, melon & almonds
Dinner: grilled chicken thighs in a stir fry with sunshine sauce over courgette noodles

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Thursday, 3 October 2013

Can’t think of a title

Jess, Deniz, thanks for your lovely comments to yesterday's post! I feel pretty good about the whole30 experience myself but I must admit I like the external validation :-)
And thank you too Sue! I expect reintroducing dairy will be the next step, but after really wanting it when it was forbidden, yesterday I considered getting a latte, and later some Greek yoghurt, but both times realized I genuinely wasn't fussed... so I plan to wait until I actively want it rather than just adding it arbitrarily. I'm not aware of it ever giving me any inflammatory effects, but this is the first time I've ever eliminated it from my diet for long enough to get it completely out of my system so when the time comes I will be evaluating my feelings very carefully! In particular I'm wary of my 2 favourites, Greek yoghurt and cheese are both foods I've overdone in the past and now I'm out of that particular habit I don't want to jump straight back in!

I'm feeling quite tired today after training & walking 3 days in a row (although a very short walk on one of those days) so I planned to walk at lunchtime (2 miles, it poured with rain when I reached the halfway mark - otherwise known as the furthest point) and then do a yoga DVD after work. I am so inflexible and stiff! I knew it would be hard as I haven't done yoga / any kind of stretching for over a year, but it was HARD. A sign of how much it was needed of course... I now plan to do that a couple of times a week at least but who knows if I'll stick to it. It was kind f embarrassing… a Beginners Yoga DVD I couldn’t come close to keeping up with and that made me sweaty…

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with asparagus, mushrooms & spinach followed by toasted coconut chips
Lunch: pork & veg soup & cold boiled gammon with 3 dates & an apple
Dinner: pan fried tuna steak and prawns with pesto veg

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Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Looking back over whole30

In some ways I did well, in some ways less well. For one thing I didn't eat any forbidden foods for the full 30 days; considering how often I say I'm going to do this diet or that plan and then stop talking about it or admit I've changed my mind I'm happy about that; I'm also happy that I experimented quite a bit with new veggies and making dressings and condiments (and falling in love with pesto) as well as herbal teas.
On the less happy note I whinged too much about can't haves, almost dreamed about some of them, and did abuse the eat sometimes list (cashew nuts / nut butter, I'm looking at you...)
The main thing I didn't succeed in doing was cutting out snacking, which is actually a fairly important part of the plan. The theory is that eating satiating, higher fat meals should mean you don't need to eat in between meals, and this combined with stable blood sugar should help with avoiding cravings and emotional eating. I didn't really find that to be true.
That doesn't mean the whole30 failed me or, in my opinion, that I failed at the whole30. I lost weight, avoided full on bingeing almost entirely - absolutely avoided the completely out of control grabbing everything half-edible within a 3 mile radius - didn't drink for a full month... and felt physically much better for it.
Next time I do a whole30 I will work on cutting out snacking and incorporating training. There will be a next time, because I can see the benefits I've gained this time and definitely see the advantage of building on them in this way. However, I'm going to wait until the additional stress in my life eases off - the house situation is resolved and we've moved, mainly. I know that the day when there is no stress never comes, but the truth is house moving is described as one of the most stressful things you can do for a reason, and I don't think the month went more easily because that was going on as well.
I didn't really want to weigh in today because of the nut binge on Monday and TTOM, but did it anyway. I lost less weight than the average set out in the whole30 - averaged out at 1lb a week - but I am now on the 'healthy weight range' (as defined by the admittedly flawed BMI system) for my weight for the first time in as long as I can remember - a year, maybe 18-24 months? So I can't say that doesn't make me happy even though of course I wish it was a little more.
Today was a pretty good day... I walked 2.2 miles at lunch and trained 45 minutes after work as well. I also discovered a new cozy murder mystery tv show I liked - Miss Fisher's Murders (watched while training) and have plenty more to catch up on!

Food today:
Breakfast: scrambled eggs with spinach, leek & peppers
Lunch: homemade soup; roast beef and raw carrot slices
Dinner: grilled chicken thighs (recipe from Well Fed) with stir fried veg & sunshine sauce - also from Well Fed, a peanut-free version of satay sauce containing (in my case) almond butter

What no dairy???? I'm as surprised as you are...

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Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Whole30 day 30

Yesterday I went ape and ate approximately 5lbs of nuts. Ok, slight - slight exaggeration. I was hungry all day and fought as long as I could, but lost my grip late evening. Then later realized it was TTOM. Ah well. Annoying to have a full on bingefest at the very end of the plan, but at least I managed to figure out why, and steer clear of the forbidden food list again. Next time I do a whole30 I think I'll be cutting out nuts and nut butters (though I will allow pine nuts in the form of Paleo pesto, as I can't taste them and it isn't quite good enough to eat by the tub). This one has been a learning curve and I intend to plan better for the next time rather than just deciding one day that I'm starting tomorrow as I did this time. I'm thinking that the next one might start Jan 2nd as long as I'm not on holiday or about to move house. I'll be working on seriously curtailing the snacking, cutting out the trigger foods that are still allowed, and using the dressings and sauces that make the plan more enjoyable from the beginning rather than waiting until I'm already feeling bored and emotionally dissatisfied too.
I walked 2.2 miles at lunchtime although it was still grey and miserable. It's that time of year when you'll never go out if waiting for nicer weather sadly. After work I trained again and then did some very tedious house work before dinner. Keeping busy to avoid temptation...

Food today:
Breakfast: breakfast bubble & squeak / hash - cold roast beef and leftover steamed veggies reheated by sauteeing in coconut oil
Lunch: chicken veg soup & cold roast beef followed by strawberries
Dinner: Asian beef & broccoli - another recipe from It Starts with Food. Served on a bed of baby spinach.

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