Goodness me – where to begin? Yesterday was the Pavelka Day…and what a day it was!
I arrived early and managed to give Jessie his bag of swag which has been stashed in my car for a few days – one of the ladies from my events, and who was also there yesterday, works for a sports company and had kitted him out – he was in his element…like a kid at Christmas…and I had kept it safe in my car for him whilst he was on his world tour!
The day began with introductions and a little mapping out of what was to come. Right from the offset there was a lovely vibe – the gym we were at (Lifestyles in Wallingford) had a fantastic atmosphere and the ladies who run it were top notch – seriously excellent people. The venue was lovely – gorgeous grounds which were explored on our warm up walk. The catering was excellent…seriously gorgeous food…I am thinking of enquiring about home delivery! I cannot think of a single criticism!
My fellow participants were amazing. All of us had our stories which were shared and discussed over the course of the day. As I mentioned last week with my events, I was inspired, motivated and moved by each person – and anyone who thinks the the overweight and obese just need to move more and eat less need to hear some of these stories…it might give them a dose of reality. We are the way we are for a number of reasons…life is complex and food is a crutch that we use to help us! Anyway, I digress…
So we began the day with the exercise. This was the part that I was dreading. Not only am I extremely unfit – despite singing the praises of exercise and my treadmill – but I had also buggered my back and shoulder up when I fell down the stairs the previous evening…so I was not in great shape…never have been really! We began with a walk around the big field in the grounds, and then followed this with some circuits and then some exercise in the gym. When I say ‘we’, I mean ‘they’ for a lot of it – apart from the walk and some of the gym work – as I had to wimp out and go and see one of the Lisa’s who run the gym; she checked out my dodgy back and shoulder and poked and prodded and had me doing some wonderful stretches!
What I absolutely loved about the exercise was that it covered the whole spectrum – the outdoor exercising with no equipment (walking), the outdoor exercising with minimal equipment that could also be done indoors (the circuits), and then the gym…that equipment that can sometimes be intimidating if you haven’t been to a gym before. So there really was something for everyone and their tastes and budget. I managed to reacquaint myself with a cross trainer and loved it! I get such a buzz from being in a gym and so I am on the hunt for one. In fact, one of the ladies who owned Lifestyles Gym is from my neck of the woods and has offered to help me scope out some places locally and have a chat with them about my needs. Seriously though, if I lived down there, I would be joining Lifestyles in a heartbeat and may well head there for the odd session anyway!
After the workouts we headed back to the conference centre for some ‘mind’ work. This was possibly one of the areas in which the most ‘feel good’ and ‘breakthrough’ moments happened. When you want to go on a diet, you decide which eating plan you want to do…then you might consider exercise…but you rarely think of the mind. It was funny actually, as the blog post that I had written the night before the event was so in tune with what was being said that it was almost as if I had a déjà vu moment…it reinforced for me why I have been able to lose this much weight this time around.
The mind work involved some happiness, some sadness and some anger. There were heightened emotions and a few tears and it was quite emotional to be a part of it all. I think this demonstrated how comfortable we all felt in each others company to be able to do that. Jessie and Jill had created an environment in which people were able to make real progress and it was a privilege to be a part of it.
We had healthy snacks too – which were welcome after the workout! You can’t forget the importance of a healthy snack! We were very well looked after!
Then there was a nutrition lecture. For me, with all the research I have done and the nutrition diploma that I am doing, it was familiar stuff – and actually had so many similarities with my current diet (and Slimming World) that I didn’t really take much from this, apart from a sense of reassurance that I was obviously on the right track with my food. We discussed that shopping around the edge of the supermarket, and avoiding the inner aisles with the processed food, was the best way to go. Cooking from scratch, lots of vegetables, some lean protein and some good wholemeal carbs – not at all different from what I do now…although my Snack a Jacks and melted LowLow cheese probably wouldn’t make the cut. If I had one criticism then it would have to be about the nutritionist. What she said was not so much of a problem, it was how it was delivered and some of the phrases she used. I did share my concerns and these were duly noted – I will let you read into that what you will! So the nutritional stuff was fantastic for reassurance – and would be absolutely brilliant for people starting their journey who have little healthy eating knowledge. There is nothing at all wrong with a bit of reassurance so I think that it was great to have this as part of the day. Given how many food myths there are out there, it was nice to have it clarified. We can EAT! And we can and should be eating REAL food…not shakes, pills, or too few calories and crappy processed stuff!
It was then the yoga! I loved the yoga…although the occasional look of discomfort during it on my face might have indicated otherwise…but I bloody loved it. It actually helped to ease my back pain immediately doing some of the moves. We did some great breathing exercises, we did some warrior poses – I love the word ‘warrior’…I think it’s my inner Lara Croft wanting to break out! – we did some lovely spine stretches and then everyone else got on the floor for some work down there. I did some of the moves from a chair…I was worried that my stair-beaten back would not allow me up from the floor and I didn’t think that ‘lifting WLB off the floor’ was a workout that would catch on! The yoga instructor, Denise, was fabulous – and for an older lady was a cracking advert for the merits of yoga – thighs like steel and so flexible too. More than this though, it gave you a sense of inner peace which I think is something that those of us who abuse food could really do with. So I am now seeking yoga inspiration locally too! In fact, I was so inspired that the kids and I have been doing some yoga moves today!
After the yoga we had some more inspirational / motivation stuff going on. We also had 1:1 sessions with Jessie and we went back over to the gym individually for gait analysis. This was fascinating stuff. My poor feet have been through so much carrying me around, and my poor skeleton has been pulled out of alignment and buggered up basically – I can tell this based on the aches and pains I feel daily! So I had my gait analysed and the issues with my foot that had the stress fracture recently were instantly picked up. Basically – and it will be basic as there is so much science behind this that I wouldn’t have a clue how to describe it – I had to stand on a pressurised mat which took a scan of my feet. This showed Lisa what needed to be changed in my posture – which links to a series of exercises – in order for me to alter my gait…and walk properly using my body correctly.
So once the initial diagnostic had been completed, we did some more of the stretching exercises of that morning, with some foam wedges under my feet, and then a bit of walking, and I was then analysed again. The difference in such a short space of time was amazing! It felt so different to walk and I could feel that those previous pressure points were released and relieved. The poor Lisa’s who owned the gym actually touched my feet…my manky trotters were on display and they were prodding and manipulating them…lots of cracking noises were coming from my poor abused feet! I was so interested in this stuff and think that I am going to arrange to go back again. They are sending us all a tailor-made exercise and stretching programme to help us. I loved it!
So once my gait analysis was over, I went into a discussion that Jill was having with the ladies. This was really motivational and I know that everyone got a lot out of it. It is hard to describe what it was about – as we were all chipping in and Jill was responding to our cues…but in essence it was about the choices we make and the power that we have…how we perceive things and how we choose to respond. It really was an excellent part of the day…and probably a part that we would have welcomed more of!
It was then time for the 1:1 with Jessie…and, not surprisingly, my focus needs to be about fitness. We talked about the fact that my mind is there, and my eating is well on the way…but my fitness is the area of focus for me. So that is what I will be working on! When I spoke to my other half about it last night, I was a little downbeat and upset…not about the day at all…but about my fitness levels. He then reminded me that a year ago, I couldn’t really walk, and I couldn’t stand up for more than a few seconds at a time. So as well as working on my fitness, I need to be nicer to myself and recognise the progress that has been made.
I cannot encourage, or poke, or prod you enough to keep an eye out for future ‘Pavelka Days’…everyone there took something positive from the day, and I have seen emails back and forth already between us that highlight just how motivated people feel! I am thrilled that this is the case; I know what it feels like to be at rock-bottom…I have clawed my way up to a certain extent and still have a long way to go. With the support of people like the ones I met yesterday, and those that I already have in my life, I know that I will do this. There is already talk of a November reunion and an annual reunion…I feel like I have a new, supportive, motivational and inspirational family.
On that note, I am going to shut up…as I don’t want anyone to lock me up for being too evangelical…but it was seriously bloody excellent…and if they could make one improvement, I think that a two-day event would be the way to go!
Right then…let’s look at today’s usuals…
I had a good sleep and woke up feeling a little less stiff in my back and shoulders – thank you Lisa! I popped up to see my Dad who was babysitting the kids, and ended up going on an unscheduled walk to the local park to pick blackberries and avoid dog poo…it isn’t the nicest of parks! To recover from that, I showed the kids some yoga moves and we all had a giggle doing that. My sister arrived home from work and told me that they were heading out to a local pub for lunch…so I invited myself and my other half! It was a spur of the moment decision, but I really do need to start getting out there…and where better than a packed pub? So my other half and I quickly popped to the shops, then to the horses, and then we took the kids to a proper park for a play and for a run around with my dog before we went for some food. We had food – I was very good and swapped my non-SW stuff for veggies and avoided the desserts…but did sit and watch everyone else have one! After this, I caught up with my Mum before heading home to just relax.
Breakfast: Two turkey, tomato and egg rolls with a banana (2 x HEB).
The food was immense…not so much my food…but the event food! I had made a couple of rolls to take on the journey – just turkey rashers with egg and tomatoes…I have to eat first thing to take my medication and after the forgetfulness of the other day, I didn’t want to flake out! We then had a lovely mid-morning snack of fruit, and then the lunch was amazing – a real feast of healthy and colourful food. I was having an Original day and so couldn’t partake in the gorgeous looking bean, couscous and rice salads…if I hadn’t eaten what I already had, then I would have tried it all! I did have a second plate with some more salmon and some gorgeous fruit – the first time that I had tried figs and liked them, and the first time that I had tried white raspberries too. We then had more food later, but I opted for fruit again. Once home, and rather late it was, we ate dinner…which was not as tasty as what I had eaten during the day…just not up to my new standards!
Breakfast: Scrambled egg with spinach, tomato and cracked black pepper on a toasted wholemeal roll (1 x HEB).
My food today has been nice. A protein packed brekkie, with yet more protein at lunch – I managed to give up all of my roast potatoes and a huge, delicious-looking Yorkshire pudding…which was all swapped with my other half for his veggies, as he had ordered extra broccoli cheese! I even managed to avoid the puddings…although I did look at the menu…it was like my version of ‘Playboy’ magazine! As lunch was dinner, dinner was lunch…my usual sardine combo, followed by a banana as a snack. No syns as I have no idea how many syns were in the gravy at lunch – it was made with meat juices so I am guessing all of my syns for today and those that I didn’t have yesterday too!
Exercise: Just what has already been mentioned. My body aches today more from the stretching moves, which were really gentle yet pack quite an impact.
Thank you for reading…and get a little piggy bank going for the next Pavelka Day!
Weight Loss Bitch xxx