The drugs don’t work

Subtitle: my failings with meal replacement shakes.

I am the heaviest I’ve been since I was pregnant with Grover SEVEN years ago. I could put the blame on the head meds, one of them is a sure fire vehicle for weight gain. I could put the blame on the thyroid, lazy bastard that it is, or I could own up to the somewhat dubious diet I’ve engaged with this year. Why yes, that would be some jazz hands of junk food appearing behind me.

I think it best we put it down to a mixed entree of medication, biology and life. 2013 has been a real stinker.

One of the things I have tried – and which I tell myself almost daily am going to commit to – is the land of the meal replacement shakes. I’m doing the RapidLoss ones and the “latte” (pffft, please) one doesn’t taste half bad. But I’m just not good at taking them. For starters, I think they would work a treat if I didn’t like food so much.

The main problem is I just forget to make them. Then I eat something, remember I was going to have the shake, have the shake then realise that probably counts for two meals and hooo boy do I feel queasy.

Sometimes I get it the other way around. I have the shake, forget I’ve had the shake (they take a little while before you feel full) so have something else to eat.

I’m the village idiot of the dieting industry.

The corker for me is when I negotiate that I won’t have a shake but I will eat a large packet of potato chips. All made better by drinking vast amounts of water. I have been known to then have the shake in the vein hope it’s effect is retrograde.

My shrink keeps reassuring me that I will lose the weight but at the moment life trumps everything so curiously he’s putting me not topping myself above me not looking like Violet Beauregard.

I’ve decided to cut myself some slack and perhaps 2014 will be the year of the disappearing 20kgs.

Have you tried the shake option? Did it work for you?





The start of my quest to lose weight and get fit. Again.

I am back at my heaviest. Things that fit are those outfits that scream “nothing else in my wardrobe fits”. My jeans taunt me. One pair I can still do up, just. The other I can do up but they keep falling down because my gut keeps pushing them southward. I can feel my gunt sitting on the top of my thighs. It’s repulsive.

There is a mixed cause of this. For started my exercise – from incredible in the last six months of last year all while my back was crushing itself – is now non-existent. I was walking three mornings a week until about a month ago when my mental health went southwards and I am back on meds that make me sleep like I am in coma. Getting up to go walking is just not going to happen. It’s not even that I turn the alarm off, I don’t even hear it – when it’s on full volume AND on the bed beside my pillow.

That medication is also the cause of shooting my metabolism into oblivion. My shrink knows this, we tried to get me off it and we tried another drug which does the same thing without the metabolic side-effects. Off it my anxiety was crippling. On the alternative I was deeply despairing and suicidal. So back on it I am. The price of sanity.

We do have a goal that it will *just* be a three month strategy because it’s not an ideal long term solution for someone who is unipolar. But every time I’ve been off it in the last 12 months the anxiety has been terrifying. I’m not going to get ahead of myself, we’ll see how I’m travelling at the beginning of November.

Then there’s my thyroid. My lazy-arsed good-for-nothing thyroid. Three times bigger than it’s meant to be – although I’ve been on thyroxine for 18 months so I’m hoping it’s shrunk a bit at least. My neck is still fat so who knows. The Hashimoto’s disease means I’m prone to weight-gain and will struggle to lose weight.

Oh good.

But then there is the cherry on top. I take all these factors into account and then think “fuck it” and eat a block of chocolate or a large packet of chips or have that second – and even third – helping at dinner.

So yesterday I drew a line in the sand. At least, I think I did. I couldn’t see over my belly to really see if it was a line. It could have been more of an arc, we’ll never know. Today was Day 2 and it wasn’t too bad. Back to thinking about what I was going to eat rather than shovelling in anything that stood still long enough. And no more crap.



38 minus 6.7

So dudes, it was my birthday on Wednesday (8 December if you, you know, need to diarise for next year) and I had an absolutely lovely day. There were not presents as such*, finances being in a particular category known as ‘dire’, but the delicious messages of birthday wishes and just having a very chilled day (as opposed to the current daily status report of ‘frantic) was just what I needed.


I’m not one of those to feel dread or refusal-to-acknowledge about getting older, I for one know that what I have learnt over the years and how I have changed has all been for the better and at 38 I can say that I probably am my most content. Oh sure, the money thing is harrowing to say the least but I have spent time this year hatching a plan to eradicate lessen that issue in 2011 and as we have been in similar states of financial woe before I know that this too shall pass.

As most of you know, this year has not been without it’s challenges: finding a high school for Oscar; waiting to see if he got accepted to the High School of Awesome; Mum having a hip replacement; Oscar’s bi-lateral ankle surgeries and 6 weeks in a wheelchair and three months rehabilitation; Mum falling over; Chef losing his job; Mum needing another hip replacement; Chef’s new Job of Awesome but salary reduction; the arrival – and ongoing STILL – of whooping cough along with all the other sundry hiccups that come in a household spanning three generations.

But I would actually say this has been a fantastic year. I know.

We have a whole new team of specialists and allied-health professionals working with us and Oscar, we’ve had myriad new opportunities and activities for Oscar, Mum’s on the mend, Chef is the happiest and most engaged I have ever seen him in a job, the boys kill me every day with their flux of attempting to kill or play with each other, Chef and I are as committed to each other as ever and we are surrounded by beautiful friends and family.

Life is good.

The only aspect of me that was doing my head in was my weight and the severe state of self-loathing I was in. At the first sign of warmer weather this Spring I started to have real anxiety attacks about it. I spent several weeks hating myself all while shovelling more food into my mouth and drinking even more alcohol because yeah, that’s an awesome response to health issues and weight management.

Then a few Twitter friends started a group geared to losing 8kgs in the 10 weeks leading up the Christmas. I thought, this is it. This is what I need. So I joined up.That was seven weeks ago – or thereabouts. I also started the C25K program – 9 weeks of getting me off the couch and able to run 5kms.

So here I am, into week 6 of the program. This week saw me run for 20 minutes without stopping – including doing so along a road that was going uphill.

All up I’ve lost 6.7kgs and am feeling all the better for it. I like myself again. I have some very real goals more related to fitness than weight loss and I am feeling good.

And isn’t that what it’s all about?