Well hello there stranger.

It’s been a little quiet around these parts hey. It’s about seven weeks since my cipramil-triggered psychotic episode. It’s about five weeks since my metformin-induced anxiety and when the shakes arrived. It’s three weeks since I started Starvation September. It’s two and a half weeks since my back packed it in.

So where are we.

The depression is medicated and has dissipated nicely. The shakes finely stopped at some stage over the weekend. I’m 3.5kg lighter and the back is about 80% better.

There will be no Tough Mudder for me this weekend. I was secretly holding onto it when I finally accepted that if a car drive to the Mall (15 minutes away) is excruciating then perhaps the 1.5hr drive to the event was a big enough pipe dream, let alone completing the 16km course.

Curiously I’m not as upset as I thought I would be. I think because the pain has been so tangible. I mean, last Friday I sat at my desk – and could sit at my desk relatively pain free – for the first time in two weeks. I still find sitting really difficult and painful for any extended (as in more than 10 minutes) period of time.

Apparently there’s going to be another TM event in February so that is now on my horizon.

I am indebted to Ash and my friend Sarah for recommending a chiro who also does acupuncture. The acupuncture has been so effective and also remarkably telling in terms of revealing just how much tension I’ve been holding in my body.

Starvation September has seen me return to a way of living/eating I was following before I had kids. I basically follow a low-GI diet in which I don’t eat carbs with fat or protein. Way back when I religiously followed the book Dine Out and Lose Weight (what, we were a dual income no kids couple) which has now morphed into the Montignac Method. It works for me (clearly) so I’m just back on the horse.

There’s other stuff but that’ll do for now.



Fat Runner : Tough Mudder : Starvation September

On Saturday I woke in a panic as per usual. I must stay, feeling jittery and on edge all the time is really really boring AND exhausting. But it was bootcamp day so off I went, shaky and all. I saw the WOD (workout of the day – I KNOW) and just felt beaten. There was no way. We started and Trainer Pete caught my eye and was all YEAH! as he likes to be, so naturally I burst into tears on him. Klassy.

I had a big sob and then went on to do the whole thing. Yeah, I know.

I’m a week in on Starvation September (I started on 30 August because I am THAT keen) and my GOD is my body cranky at me for taking away the lovely refined carbs.

It’s showing its anger by taking out my back on Sunday night. Now some would say that timing is a bit dubious, what with it being father’s day and all but out it went.

Monday was spent working on the floor on a yoga mat. Yesterday was spent on the floor with heat packs and doing the gentle exercises I’m meant to do. There was a trip to the GP where I procured more Celebrex – yes, totally getting in touch with my inner geriatric.

Then, at around 6:30 last night, it set. Like concrete.

Back pain and tooth-ache are in the same family as far as I’m concerned – excruciating and debilitating. The only way back trumps tooth is that it physically incapacitates you as well. Life with four kids and not being able to bend, sit, pick things up, move is god awful.

At 3am this morning I woke from the pain. Poor Chef, if his wife isn’t going batshit crazy she’s whinging about her back. Off to the hospital we went where a jab in the arse with a strong anti-inflammatory, some panadeine forte (sweet sweet codeine) and endone (sweet sweet morphine derivative) meant I could move with pain sitting at around 6 rather than eleventy gagillion out of 10.

We got home just in time to get Oscar up for school and then all the rest of them.


I refuse to accept this could put me out of the running of completing Tough Mudder. Refuse.

Hilariously, my team-mate Bronwyn has just been told she is so anaemic she’s beyond a shot of iron or supplement but will probably need an infusion and has to see a haematologist.

What a fine pair we make.



Fat runner: 10 weeks to Tough Mudder


One day I’ll do one in another country.


Today I did my first pull-up. Not a proper one mind you, it was more an L-plater pull-up where you stand on a box, hold onto the bar (which is above your head) and push off to then lift yourself above the bar.


This shows you the burpee and the pull-up:

And this shows you how to be energy efficient when you all start practising this at home:


Yeah, I know. Cool.




Fat Runner: the super sized update

My goodness so much to tell.

Last week I did this:

Manly to Spit run
9.5km of up hill down dale. Lucky Dale.

When we started the sun had barely started to rise. It was sitting just on the horizon casting the most stunning crimson hue as we, at the tale end of the pack, conquered the steps of death and came to a flat rock facing straight east out the Heads. That this bushland setting with incredible views is in the middle of our city never wears thin, even when your heart is bursting through your chest and your legs are mounting an impressive campaign of mutiny.

I did not know there were such steep sections. Or torturous sections of graduated steps heading ever upward. People say it’s such a pretty walk. It’s a hellacious run.


1 hour 18 minutes.

Hats off to R who ran it in 56 minutes. I’m not even sure that’s allowed. Most of the crew did it in just over an hour which is, you know, alarmingly impressive.

The hardest part were the two steep rises after the massive one at North Harbour headland. For me a telling psychological impass for the sole reason that my brain was mighty cranky that we’d mastered those god-forsaked steep irregular sandstone steps and now you’re telling me to do it again? Even if it is for a quarter of the distance of the first round?

The 20 or so stairs up to Spit Bridge from the harbour below almost killed me.

Our trainer (now in the States for the CrossFit Games – GO CHRISTIAN AND TEAM!) stuck with me the entire time – WALKING as he was heading to the US the following day. I would have been offended were I not so exhausted. We had a fantastic chat as I ran and he walked along behind me (what a  farewell vision for him) about my dodgy thyroid and chronic stress blah blah blah.

The upshot of it all was this flogging myself uber-aerobic is probably the worst sort of exercise I could be doing – putting my already stressed and highly toxic body under even more stress. The ironic flipside of this is just how good it makes me feel in a comprehensive manner. There’s no way I’m stopping but it has opened my mind to the reality exercise can take many forms and that’s something I’ll explore once Tough Mudder is done.


So fast forward to this week. Three eight minute circuits. I got through the burpees, ring rows, wall balls session (I think there were 45 burpees all up? MAYBE 55? RIDICULOUS whatever the total.) but came totally undone on the kettle bells, 400m runs circuit. During warm up with the kettle bells I commented my back was a bit niggly and then, first session with them I knew I was in trouble. My first 400m run had my lower back feeling like it was slow setting cement. It was difficult to get my feet off the ground (Cliff Young shuffle anyone?) and I could feel the panic and hot tears of ‘oh no’ welling.

Coach of Awesome Pete (he took us for the soft sand running session weeks ago and I just like how he does it) got me through some really deep stretches and I actually pushed out another run (a bit disappointed because I think I would have got at least 4 maybe 5 runs in that workout)  and then did the final session of rows, walking lunges and bear crawls.

Of course I’m now paying the price. My back is busted, I’m popping anti-inflammatories at stomach-ulcer inducing levels and am, once again, intimate with heat packs. I need one of those stretch bands to get into the deep stretches Pete showed me but have a kids birthday party to get through today. I prepped most of the food last night and am about to get my parental tones on to get the boys cleaning and stacking lego away.



Fat Runner: inside the mind of an athlete. Not really.

Crew. Something’s happened to my brain. Remember the packhorse week? When I carried what felt like a human corpse and ran 800m? In hindsight that was a turning point. Then running the 5k in 30 minutes last week compounded it. It culminated in Saturday’s workout being awesome. Amazeballs. Remarkable. It was also bring-a-friend week so I dragged my Tough Mudder buddy Bronwyn along. She was thrilled, if by thrilled you mean giving me the stink-eye from when I pull-up at her place at 5:40am to when I drop her home again two hours later.


CrossFit cooldown


Something’s clicked in my brain. I rowed 1km  at the speed our coach said we should be at (I’m always a good 5-10 seconds slower). I did FOUR x 7m lengths of monkey bars. I did 4×10 proper push-ups and walking lunges and FIFTY THREE wall balls (a deep squat then throwing a weighted ball above a line on a wall – what? I never said it was rocket science.)

I did 3 1km runs this week, one carrying the 10kg (I checked) sandbag that almost killed me two weeks ago without any of the ‘holy fuck I’m going to die’ internal monologue. OH sure, it was all hard and painful and arduous but not once, in my head, did I think to myself, ‘I can’t do this’. It wasn’t that I was thinking I could, it just wasn’t even part of the conversation.

I call that The Breakthrough.

I was on an absolute high at the end of it, completely incapable of NOT babbling incessantly to Bronwyn the whole way home. Eventually she looked at me and said, ‘you’re on some sort of sick post-exercise adrenalin high, just shut up.’ As she got out of the car she flipped me the bird. I’m so hoping she comes every week.

This week we’re doing The Spit to Manly run. I can not WAIT!