Hello Southern Hemispherites!!

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  • Good morning

    I haven’t been in this group for long but am very sorry to hear of Penguin’s death. I could see how well loved he was.

    And Neil that is hard news to have. Others have said wise and comforting and encouraging things. I second them and send my warmest good wishes.

    Helen Kate

    Oh what terribly sad news….rest peacefully dear Penguin xx

    And best wishes to yourself and your wife Neil for a speedy recovery xx

    Wow…..have no heart at the moment to say anything more

    I was so sad, although I’d suspected it, to learn of the passing of penguin. He added many a colourful story to this forum. I think of a robin perched on a shovel handle where penguin had been digging in his garden.

    Merry, thank you so much for making contact and please let Mrs p know that we greatly valued his contribution. This had been one of the reasons that several of us exchanged contact details years ago. Of course, I only have a mental image of him but imagine him to have been a true gentleman.

    Neil, I’m very sorry to learn your news too. All good wishes for speedy and successful surgery for Mrs Neil. Things will get better for you. Thinking of you.

    P.S. Just read your post Cinque, lovely flowers in memory of dear penguin. And your garden shed images – so close to mine.

    I just had a big catch up and I am so so very sad to hear about our dear friend Penguin. He always had lovely things to say about Maxx and he loved labradors as much as I do. Rest in peace Penguin

    Thank you for letting us know Merry and yes please let Mrs Penguin know how much he was loved here. I’m sure it will bring her some small measure of comfort

    Cinque, Thin, I too have a vision of Penguin standing at the edge of a forest with shovel in hand, admiring his garden – perhaps with a labrador or other furry companion by his side

    Neil, such a shock for your family and I am sending every positive and healing thoughts for your wife.

    Such sad news of Penguin’s passing. I too remember his his many stories – such an interesting and varied life he’d lead. (Merry, thank you for the news)

    Neil, such troubling news. I truly hope there is a safe and speedy treatment for your wife.

    So very saddened by the news of Penguins passing, thank you for relaying such terrible news Merry, I think we all had our suspicions but didn’t really want to think the worst of course. I concur with so many other sentiments on here, what an amazing person he was, a true gentleman, always had an ear to listen, and often replied with very dry wit and humour. We all so often chuckled at his well narrated stories. Finally at peace Penguin.

    So sorry for your bad news Neil, such a shock, at least it is operable but shocking all the same. Take care of yourself and the boys, your wife will need you. Sending lots of best wishes down the South Island to you.

    Tuesday morning,

    I didn’t mention Mrs Penguin yesterday, but I have been thinking of her so much, it would have been such a hard time because they were buying a new place and trying to move on top of all his treatment. I am so glad she is near family now.
    I hope she will be pleased to hear how highly regarded Penguin is here.
    It has also been precious to read what everyone has written about him.

    I had a slow, delicious, mindful pot of coffee this morning. My fast day on Sunday was good and fasty and I am currently back in my rhythm of eating good food with nice long breaks between, being able to tolerate the hunger, and enjoying every bite of what I do have.
    Yay, what a nice report to make.

    Thin, haha yes re my sister. The rest of us are not religious, and she was enduring such a lot of stress at each juncture that I am not sure how blessed she felt, except the Darwin one when she posted a very grateful prayer on fb and all her church friends responded. She is up there now enjoying the deckchair cinema among other treats.

    I bet you had an excellent fast day with all those fresh ingredients.

    LJoyce, wonderful work on the garden! Good luck sorting out the watering system.
    Did you have your niblings over? Or is that tonight? You are minding them today I figure, so sending lots of good wishes.

    Helen Kate, we will be so delighted if you can work out how to send a photo of Paddy.
    You can use https://imgur.com/upload You don’t need to sign up or log in, just click to choose a photo, then click on ‘open’ and then copy and paste the web address here. Should be simple (she says hopefully).

    I hope your evening danger times have been going safely. They were my danger time too (for decades!) but (touch wood and whistle) I do think they are changing for me. Hooray, old dogs can learn new tricks.

    Merry, were you able to mind grandchildren without your ME/CFS symptoms flaring dreadfully? I do hope so. Sending best wishes anyway, but especially if your health is suffering.

    Neil, just letting you know I am still sending good wishes, a stream of them!

    Fast day tomorrow for me,

    Best wishes to everyone.


    Kia ora, fellow fasters. This is your occasional poster reporting from the deep south – Dunedin, NZ to be exact.
    The forum news of recent days is very worrying, what with Penguin’s sad passing and now my fellow Dunedin bike rider Neil’s wife receiving some worrying health news. I’m thinking of you and your wife, Neil. I hope the treatment goes very well, mate.
    My weight loss journey is still stalled. I lost 10kg in the first 25 weeks, down to about 96kg, and then arrived at an invisible plateau in late March and have been about 96kg ever since, even though I am seriously fasting two days per week. However, our cat Bruce offered an explanation – every winter he gets bigger, then in the spring he loses the weight again. That must be it – it’s winter which stalls fasting diets. And don’t give me that rubbish about cats growing a thicker winter coat . . .
    I snapped today’s pic on Mt Cargill recently during a recent adventure by my bike group, the AOK Shark Bell Riders. The riders are looking down to Otago Harbour on a stunning winter’s day. Unfortunately since I took this the lady on the left (pink jacket) was badly hurt when she was out riding with her husband. A kid ran out in front of her bike and she crashed heavily (I think she missed the child). Vicki is now recovering from her injuries. She’s the second female rider injured in crashes in the last two months – neither incident was on our Shark Bell rides, thankfully. The rides are still going well, despite the winter conditions. On one ride on the Taieri Plain the temperature was -7degC at the start but they all cheerfully pedalled off. Suitably attired, of course.
    OK, time for bed, as the weekly ride is tomorrow morning at 9.30am and the weather looks dodgy. I reckon that even if there was a metre of snow or bad flooding some riders would still front up – they’re tough buggers!

    All the best everyone and keep your chin up, Neil. Everyone’s thinking of you and your nearest and dearest.

    Ka kite ano

    Hi Jony,
    What a spectacular view.

    Sympathy re your 5:2 plateau (but what would your scales be saying if you weren’t doing 5:2?).
    It is much easier come Spring.
    On the other hand I laughed when I read your cat lesson. Miso the cat also puts on weight in Winter and my lesson was ‘Goodness me, I am feeding her more because she seems so cold and hungry. Oops, I am doing that to myself too’.

    The things our brains do!
    Speaking of which, I have found a very interesting podcast by Giles Yeo. I have only listened to the first episode, which is on the brain. It was great.

    When they were discussing people who eat when stressed, the expert pointed out that when we are being flooded with cortisol, it is glucose that stops it. This doesn’t mean we need to eat sugar to stop it, but may explain why our brains so strongly want carb rich comfort foods at these times.

    Fast day for me!

    Hoping your day is a good one.

    Hello all

    I am fasting today and am doing my best to cultivate Cinque’s attitude and embrace the hunger! My stomach is rumbling gently as I write but I am about to quieten it, I hope, with a cup of tea.

    And thanks, Cinque, for your encouraging words about the evening danger times. I hope this old dog can also learn new tricks.

    Speaking of dogs here are a couple of pictures of Paddy, my sister’s lagotto pup.
    I hope these work – thanks for the guidance, Cinque.

    In the first picture he is sitting on the couch during one of my baby-sitting days. In the second he is over at my sister’s place on Kangaroo Island, where he is loving the beach and the space. Because they are out in the wild with their own beach frontage they can let him be out in nature, whereas in the city he won’t be able to go out to the streets and the parks until he is fully immunised.

    He is only about 9 weeks old. I think he will be a big boy! We are all totally in love with him.

    Jony, that view of Otago harbour is stunning. Wonderful country. How mysterious that your weight loss has stalled. The more experienced fasters here will no doubt have dealt with such experiences and may have some useful things to say. And now I’ve just read Cinque’s comment about what the scales might be saying if you weren’t doing 5:2. There are worse things than staying steady!

    Cinque, the Giles Yeo podcast looks so interesting and I have now added it to my library. Thank you.

    And now I’ve got my Zoom Italian conversation class coming up and had better get myself organised.

    Good wishes to all

    Suddenly, I am able to view the imgur photos without changing a thing. Great photo Jony, and what a sweet doggo HK.

    Cinque, interesting findings. Hopefully, the knowledge can help those who tend to succumb to stress eating to avoid doing it. I did a silly thing last night after a heavy dinner. We are moored near a particularly pretty pub and will be moving on today so decided to have a drink there last evening. The craft ale half pint wasn’t worth the 400g I’m lumbered with this morning. I thought I’d earned it after a long walk and some contortionist boat painting, but not so.

    Jony, sorry about your stalled weight loss. Have you tried something radical like completely cutting out bread or other carbs? Just for a while to see if you can kickstart it. I was a reluctant adherent to this advice but It worked wonders for me.

    Good morning, very cold here, crisp (I hung out the clothes) but the lovely Winter sun is shining through.

    HelenKate, Paddy is so CUTE. He looks like a living teddy bear.
    What fun to be part of his life.

    You are so gracious. I was thinking this as I read your post, especially because I discover writing touch wood and whistle does not protect me from having what I write blow up in my face. Eep.
    My fault surely because I think I didn’t ACTUALLY touch wood and whistle.

    I mean it is true I am an old dog learning new tricks, but on the very evening I wrote about how I am better in the evenings now, I was eyeing off a loaf of bread I had made earlier, and my internal dialogue was all “Oh dear, I think it was over proofed, I wonder what it is like inside? I could just cut off the crust and see… and then eat the crust. Yum. I have eaten within my limits today, so surely I could add just a little something. And it is fast day tomorrow so I won’t be able to do it then. Ooh wouldn’t that be nice. It would only be one small slice.”
    Well it turns out the bread was perfect and delicious and I ate three slices with butter and the tiniest scrape of honey. Which would have added up to the entire Fast Day calorie input I ate the next day.

    So I gave myself the look that Anzac gives Maxx when he grabs the tea towel again, and hope that next time I won’t undermine myself.

    Let’s see how I go embracing the hunger today :).
    I should be good as I am busy. Zoom sisters this morning and the prep for Ms6 who I will pick up around 3pm and we will see if she can sleep through tonight.

    Thin, hooray that your computer has unglitched itself, or whatever it took to see the imgur pics. I bet the 400g is partly retained water around muscles after all that contortion and walking. But sympathy for an unfortunate decision (see above) 🙁 .

    Worrying about the whole world with covid again, and especially hoping that Sydney has some extraordinary good luck, or does a stronger lockdown. Numbers aren’t through yet, but they are flagging several days of rising cases.

    Good evening all.

    After 2 days of small children and a sleepover (Mon-Tues) I am just resurfacing from my subsequent coma. I would do it again in school holidays, but I have learned that it must be in a week when I have several free days afterward as it takes time to regain the energy to do anything constructive. Unlike Cinque’s bad sleepers, my great-niece and great-nephew are good sleepers, once you actually get them to bed. We had lots of board games, went to the moves and the lego store and then finally I taught them how to make mini meringues – which they both love eating.

    My NFDs have been mostly GFDs which is pleasing. I have accepted that it might take a while to get back to the weight prefer to be. As long as I’m heading down and not overeating my way further up the scale then that’s ok. I normally panic and go into highly restricted diet mode – which always leads to me overeating once I get close to my weight goal as I feel deprived.
    On days when I’m really hungry at lunch time I’m swapping my planned lunch and dinner to avoid snacking in the afternoon if I just eat a light meal for lunch. It does help, but it isn’t what I always feel like, so I’ve found it needs to be a daily decision.

    Cinque, I can absolutely identify with the self talk you described. How often have I used a fast approaching FD as an excuse to eat now what I won’t be able to eat tomorrow – telling myself it will still be there the day after tomorrow rarely works.

    HK, what a cute pup. I will say he looks large for a 9 week old.

    Jony, I’m not surprised that you keep cycling, with scenery like that to see on your riding tails. I have hit plateaus a few times – I found that I basically have to either be patient and wait it out or change something about my diet that provides a reliable and regular calorie deficit. I had been trying the second option recently but it’s not working so I’m now opting for the first option for a while.

    Thin, as I’m not a fan of beer, I would agree that a pint of ale is never worth the calories. Give the recent football result, I suspect there were far too many pints of ale consumed in England in recent hours.

    Hello to everyone else, hope you are doing doing well.

    I’m coming to the end of a successful GFD and will fast tomorrow.
    I did a FD Monday, despite having the kids – which meant providing chicken nuggets, chips, popcorn, icecream and chocolate milk without actually consuming any of it myself. They also had garlic bread and I did have one small piece of that to go with my FD dinner of tomato soup.

    Morning everyone

    I’ve managed to get on top of my eating for the last few days. I’ve started eating breakfast, cutting out snacks and sticking to 3 meals a day. I’m finding it a lot easier to avoid the after work binge by having two solid 500 calorie meals during the day. Breakfast has either been frozen fruit, greek yoghurt and a toasted mixture of spices, wholegrain oats, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds or poached eggs and vegetables.

    Ljoyce, sounds like you had pretty good restraint, especially avoiding the nuggets and chips, well done

    Cinque, yes I’m also concerned for the covid cases, especially in my wife’s home country of Fiji. The report on the news said that their infection rate is now the highest in the world, even higher than India at their peak. They only have a population of 900,000 and they’re currently getting almost 800 cases a day. Per capita wise that’s like New Zealand getting 5,000 cases a day, or Australia getting around 25,000 cases a day.

    Thin, I wouldn’t worry, a bit of water weight from the alcohol should move pretty quick

    Helen Kate, that is one cute furball!

    Johnny, looking forward to a ride on Wednesday. It’ll be my first ride outside of the Gym since about April. I’ve been doing 4 gym sessions a week on the bike to keep my cycling fitness up, and hopefully I’ll be able to get out on the road again in a couple of months when it’s a bit lighter in the mornings/evenings

    Gday, Anzac and Turnabout, Thanks for your thoughts regarding my wife. She’s actually looking forward to the surgery now, The tumour is behind her ear, so she’s hoping it will get rid of the tinnitus she’s been suffering through recently. The only thing she’s dreading is losing her hair. She has beautiful long black hair which obviously all has to go if she’s going to get surgery. She gets it cut once every 3 years and donates the hair to a wig maker who makes real hair wigs for chemo patients, so hopefully we can get one of them made for her.

    Well it’s my last day of work before I have a week off. I’m going to be pretty busy over my holiday because I’m spending it stripping the lining off our living room and son’s bedroom, installing insulation and re-lining.

    Have a good one everyone

    HK, what an adorable little doggo! I can see why you love taking care of him. Evening eating is the most challenging time for many of us. It usually isn’t hunger in my case, it’s just being less occupied with daily things. Cinque, I can totally relate to your logic with that loaf of bread.

    Neil, having to cut off her hair for the surgery will certainly be sad, but it will grow back and hopefully she can find a wig or other head coverings that she likes in the meantime. It would be great if it gets rid of the tinnitus. Does she have a date for the surgery yet?

    Jony, it’s good to see you posting again. I love the photo. We have recently started watching a tv series called “800 Words” that was filmed in NZ. I looked up the locations which are Warkworth, Piha and Karekare Beaches, and Huia among others. It’s so beautiful! Some scenes are also filmed in Sydney. It’s kind of a soap opera series, but entertaining. Have any of you watched it?

    We are headed into another hot several days with temperatures predicted to be about 38 to 42C. We have air conditioning to keep the house cool, but the big worry is the drought and everything being so dry. Last week we had 4 or 5 small grass fires that weren’t very far from here. They put them out quickly but further up north there are at least 3 large fires that they’ve been fighting for over a week. The high temperatures are supposed to last through Monday. Then, more excitement today with over 50 earthquakes near the California/Nevada border, OH and I didn’t feel the biggest ones which were about 6.0 but my sister who was working upstairs felt them. I did see the hanging light fixtures moving. Our neighbors all felt them. In the 19 years we’ve lived here we never felt an earthquake. Small ones are still occurring tonight, sometimes every few minutes as shown on the website. They are about 130km from here and too small to feel, but still stressful, just wondering if something will happen closer to home.

    LJ, I’m glad your niece and nephew slept through the night when they stayed with you. It sounds like they had very busy days. I can see why you would need a few days to rest up.

    It’s getting late here so I will have to catch up more later. Please be careful with Covid precautions. I’m glad most of you have had at least one jab so far. With the variants, it’s more important than ever. I hope the lockdowns work in the meantime.

    LJ, that’s great that you played board games with your charges. No screen time would have aided their ability to sleep well. I miss our board games nights with our Perth neighbours. I’m sure you’ve told us their ages but I was thinking they’re older than Cinque’s sleepover littlies. Or perhaps not if they weren’t in school on a Tuesday. I’d have been happy to fast through their dietary intake!

    CalifD, by the time you realise you’ve experienced an earthquake, it’s usually over. So disorientating. Once when OH was away, I woke to find the rocking chair in the bedroom rocking. Spooky, until I realised what had happened.

    CalifD, what weather. Perth friends have sent photos of cars floating down the streets.

    Neil, all good wishes for Mrs N’s surgery. What do you mean by stripping the lining?

    Cinque, hope you had a good day with your little person. Covid isn’t finished with us yet. OH and I will continue to wear masks and social distance, regardless of the rules.

    Anyone following the tennis? Betsy, I seem to recall that you’re a tennis fan. It’s fun to watch it live without having to be up in the middle of the night. The other day, we sat outside in socially distanced deck chairs and watched some doubles on a big outdoor screen. I’m not much of an armchair sportsperson but fever is building for the Euro football final tomorrow.

    Looking forward to tomorrow’s FD and having a re-set. We are moored outside a Tesco’s so it was a good opportunity to stock up on LL milk and other heavy items. But a few other items crept into the boat as well.

    Hello all

    I have been a bit sick with a sore throat and cough for 9 days now. I couldn’t take time off work and it’s crazy so I’m exhausted. Then I found out my local supermarket had a covid positive worker and unfortunately I was there while he/she worked. I found out via our local FB page where both Coles and the Village Shops management posted the dates. I only received the text from NSW health this morning – 5 days later! So many people have therefore been out and not isolating for 5 days as they were unaware. No wonder it is spreading. I’ve had two tests and both negative thankfully

    So of course I have been stress-eating and the weather has been terrible just to add to everything. This morning I woke up feeling a bit better and the sun is finally out so with great trepidation I stepped on the scales. I managed to put back on everything I’d lost over the past weeks plus a bonus 100g.


    Sorry for my negative ramble

    Two of our much anticipated weekends away have been cancelled due to Covid. There isn’t anything we can do about it but it makes me sad. However there are so many people so much worse off without jobs or alone in lockdown so I am not complaining

    Cali – one of my favourite all-time shows is 800 words. I was gutted when they announced they were no longer making it. How terrifying about the earthquakes! I lived in Wellingon NZ for two years and there were regular shakes and they freaked me out completely.

    Sadly England lost the soccer. My English friends on the Labrador forum are gutted

    Out of all the drama in Australia, out came our wonderful Ash Barty! We needed something so wonderful as a Wimbledon win.

    I’m sorry your wife is going to lose her beautiful hair Neil. I do hope the surgery cures her tinnitus. I also hope you are finding some downtime for relaxing during your week off

    I will try to catch up some more later today but for now a big hi to everyone else

    Hi all, quick drop by. I’m on holiday this week and using it to get some Reno done, so I probably won’t be posting much. I’m not eating a lot either. Too busy to eat at the moment, you don’t realise how much you eat out of boredom until you’re flat out and realise you’re not hungry. I got the walls stripped off and cleaned on Saturday. Yesterday I got all the building paper pockets staples in. Today I got the insulation installed and the first couple of pieces of Gib installed. I’m hoping to get most of the rest of the Gib done tomorrow, then the rest of the week will be doing the skirting, arcatraves and Gib stopping

    Hi all, Another quick post (yes again) with some good news on the weight loss front, I’ve lost 4.3 kg in the last month so I’m super happy to finally see a downward turn on the scales. Obviously my revised routine is doing the trick. Will post more later. Happy Monday everyone.

    Anzac, I’m not an armchair sportsman but it turns out I may be a deckchair sportsman. We sat in deck chairs and watched the entire women’s tennis final on a big outdoor screen. After a boring start, it became very exciting. Congrats Aussies. The men’s final was good too – and lovely to see such a gracious loser and a humble winner. As for the football, not a fan at all but the nation could have done with the boost.

    I had a good FD yesterday and I’m back at my 58kg baseline to start the week.

    Thin I would have loved to watch Ash Barty but it was on too late over here. Congrats on yet another amazing FD.

    You too Gday, 4.3kg is an amazing loss in one month. You must feel fabulous

    I am back to my controlled eating and have been able to do a good walk with Maxx and Mr Anzac before work (about 4,000 steps) and 20 minutes on the exercise bike. Still find myself wandering into the kitchen without thinking but then I firmly march myself out

    LJ, how you can feed the kids chicken nuggets, chips etc without having any yourself is simply amazing. Well done! And also on the GFD’s

    Cinque. Bread. It is my nemesis, my scourge, my torment and my biggest downfall. And that is store bought bread. If I made some home-made it wouldn’t stand a chance. So I don’t make it!

    Jony, great to hear from you and sorry to hear about your friends terrible crash. Sorry to hear about the plateau, especially as you are still doing two FD’s and lots of cycling. Hopefully spring will see some downward movement

    HelenKate, what a gorgeous puppy! I’m sure you will have lots of wonderful times with him

    Sydney Covid numbers lower today so I hope that continues. It feels so strange and scary that it is literally all around us here. We are in the Sutherland Shire and there are loads of hotspots now. We do nothing except walk the dog and do very quick and pointed shops at Coles (now that it has been deep cleaned). My poor Dad is on his own but luckily he is a home-body and enjoys his own company. He gets the paper delivered every day and follows the sun through his little house reading it and doing the puzzles. Luckily Mr Anzac dropped a heap of groceries and frozen meals over last Wednesday that should do him for at least a week and a half. I want to get 14 days between my visit to Coles when the infected worker was there before either of us go and drop more groceries to him. I was only a ‘casual contact’ and the advice is that you only need to isolate until you get one negative results but I’m playing it safe. My sister is very ill with bronchitis and her hubby is also unwell so they can’t go either.

    What a strange world we live in now – but we will get through it with patience, respect for our neighbours and following the health advice

    Take care all

    Hello all

    There has been a lot of news from people since I last wrote so I am going to scan back through the emails and quickly respond, starting with the most recent one.

    Oh and one has just come in, and it’s from you Anzac. Yes, what a strange world we live in now. Hard that you can’t visit your father but good that he is well stocked up and a resourceful person. I liked the idea of him following the sun around the house and settling in it to do his puzzles or some reading. And good on you for the controlled eating and the exercise, and for walking out of the kitchen when you have wandered in! Sometimes I open the fridge door for no good reason and look and then close it again.

    Also I agree with you about bread being almost impossible to resist, especially home-made bread. Cinque I was impressed that you stopped at three slices when you had your lapse that evening!! I doubt that I would have.

    My sister has a loaf of locally made wholemeal spelt bread delivered every Wednesday and often gives me half. It is absolutely delicious – just the fragrance of it delights me – so I am only accepting her gift every few weeks at the moment rather than every week. Makes it all the more of a treat.

    G’day, 4.3K is a lot! Congratulations. And good on you for doing it in this very chilly weather.

    Neil, hope the reno work is going well. You sound as if you know what you are doing. Do you have building experience?

    Anzac, no wonder you’ve been stress-eating – work pressure, illness and this Covid alarm. Hope things ease up for you. Pity you can’t get your weekends away.

    My daughter and her partner were planning to get married on July 22, just a little wedding with celebrant and witnesses, held in the local bookshop – with friends and family watching on Zoom – a good way to put his family in London and Annie’s family here in Adelaide on an equal footing. But anyway the wedding and their holiday in Tasmania are off the agenda now. Thankfully it is a very simple thing to postpone.

    I was going to be visiting Sydney mid-August and Annie had tickets for us both to see Hamilton. Not much chance of that happening either. But, as everyone here says, there are so many people having a really really hard time, and I am not complaining about these small disappointments. And I am very grateful that DD and her partner are fully vaccinated. And glad that I will get my second Astra-Zeneca this Friday.

    Goodness Calif, earthquakes and fire – all pretty scary. I hope the fires are still staying at a distance from you.

    Neil, I was sorry to read of your wife having to lose her beautiful hair, but glad that she is feeling positive about getting on with the surgery as soon as possible. How generous she’s been over the years in donating her hair to that wig-maker. I hope she gets a beautiful wig made for her.

    Thanks for all the comments on my canine ‘nephew’ Paddy. LJoyce, you’re right, he is quite a big boy and I think he is going to be on the large side of medium when he is full grown. My sister and her husband are both big people so it will be ok!

    LJoyce your great-nephew and niece must have such a good time with you – board games and meringues and so on! When I was a child we played a lot of board games in our family – Monopoly and others. My sister and I loved a little-known game called ‘Park and Shop’, which we feel trained us for a life of making lists and getting ourselves organised!

    How are you going, Cinque? I have listened to one of the Giles Yeo podcasts and really enjoyed. I will be listening to more – especially now that I have invested in a set of those little wifi ‘airpods’, which I am loving.

    I haven’t said anything about my eating because my last FD on Saturday collapsed in a heap. I went out with a friend to an art gallery thing. I’d planned to have just soup for lunch somewhere, but the only eating place near the gallery only served hamburgers and I succumbed. It was delicious! Never mind. Tomorrow is another FD. And I do feel my non-FDs have been fairly moderate, with much less snacking, not through any great effort but just a kind of flow-on effect from the FDs.

    All the best to everyone

    Anzac, the smell of fresh bread or even toast does me in too. I’ve learned to live with OH having a lunch time sandwich and me having nothing. Good job walking out of the kitchen. Stay safe. Supermarkets are the worst for failure to SD. And then the special people who aren’t required to wear a mask.

    HK, what a shame about your daughter’s wedding even if it was to be a small affair. That’s great that you’ve managed to control your NFD eating so well. That’s hard for most of us. If you have a planned outing, you could always switch your FD to the day before. I think you might find that much easier than walking into the unknown even for a bowl of soup – who knows what’s in it or how many calories. Not that you were asking for advice so feel free to ignore me but I always feel that FDs are best planned ahead down to the last calorie.

    There is a move here in England to require restaurants to post calorie counts on menus. They’re arguing that it’s not the right time because so many have struggled to hang on during covid. I think people would be quite shocked if they were made aware. Even a commercial coffee can contain hundreds of calories.

    I really agree with you Thin as so many people have no idea of the horrendous amount of calories in takeaway / restaurant food. Even often supposed ‘healthy’ options if you don’t study exactly what is in it. People think a Caesar salad is healthy but an average serve in a restaurant can be 450-650 calories. I love it so if I make it at home I use a smidge of dressing, no cheese and 100g grilled chicken, lettuce, one rasher of bacon and a sprinkle of home-made croutons. I calculate it is about 200 calories

    I’m so very sorry about your daughters wedding Helen Kate. And also most likely being unable to come to Sydney for a visit and to see Hamilton. I hope it can all be rescheduled soon

    Good evening everyone.

    Yet again I have gotten behind in the online posts.

    I have been struggling with lower back pain. It is a chronic and degenerative problem, but I probably exacerbated it with the recent flurry of gardening. It was so bad last week I couldn’t reach down even to coffee table level to pick something up without such acute pain that had me panting and frozen to the spot until the pain eased and I felt safe to move. I was quite embarrassed at the supermarket when this happend while trying to get something out of their freezer. I have been experimenting with either analgesics or anti-inflammatories (prescribed drugs) to determine what combination is the best solution. I have discovered that the analgesics have only a slight impact on the frequency and severity of the acute pain – it manages the dull constant pain quite well, but not the acute pain that occurs from movements like reaching down. The anti-imflammatories, on the other hand, get rid of the constant dull ache but they also reduce the frequency of acute pain episodes significantly and they increase my range of movement without that pain occurring. I can reach to the coffee table but still have to be careful reaching down to floor level. This means I probably need to take the anti-imflammatories daily – the side effect of this (and the reason I wasn’t already doing this) is that these meds elevate my blood pressure. However I think I need to accept this and discuss this with my GP at the next visit.

    My eating has been mostly OK with just an occasional NFD where my eating what far too excessive. That said, I am not losing weight so those occasional bay days will need to dealt with.

    Neil, I hope everything goes really with with your wife’s surgery and that she finds a gorgeous wig.

    HK, so sorry to hear that your daughter’s wedding has been postponed, but what a relief that it didn’t involve major venue cancellations and loss of funds. They were very sensible keeping the plans so small in this current climate of unexpected lockdowns.
    Eating out can be a serious challenge on a FD – something I rarely attempt. I do what Thin suggests and move my FD. I hope the gallery event was lovely.
    I admit I have never heard of ‘Park and Shop’ – monopoly was my firm favourite growing up.

    Thin, you are right my great niece (7) and nephew (10) are a little older than the other little ones that regularly appear in these posts.
    I am taking a leaf out of your book and eliminating bread for a while (just a week or two to see if it makes a difference). I find it just too easy when I can’t be bothered to reach for the toast rather than making better choices.

    Anzac, Glad to hear your covid test was negative. I hope you are feeling better not.
    I got into trouble for pointing out just how many calories there were in a caesar salad when I last went out to lunch with my neighbours. One was saying her cholesterol results were up and her GP was threatening her with statins so she needed to have a salad for lunch. When she said the caesar salad looked good and she thought she might add grilled haloumi to it, I just couldn’t bite my tongue. She was briefly very grumpy with me for ruining her lunch plans. I never understand while people think “salad” on a menu means low cal – even lettuce is bad for you if you smother it in mayonnaise.

    GDSA, what a wonderful turnaround. So glad you finally have found an eating and exercise pattern that is working for you after so much struggle.

    Cali, I hope you see a break in the weather soon. I am keeping everything crossed that none of those fires in the north head your way.

    Cinque, are you OK, you haven’t posted in a while.

    I spent Sunday making a birthday cake – vanilla sponge (my mum’s recipe) with chantilly cream and berries. I usually decorate the family birthday cakes with fruit, but I tried a different design this time. https://imgur.com/a/SF2706T I was happy with the results as I seemed to get more of a 3D effect using sliced strawberries than I usually get with the whole berries. This is about as inventive as I get when it comes to decorating cakes.

    Some weeks ago some of you asked for photos of the garden. Here are some that show you the progress to date. https://imgur.com/a/UUcA3Kc Firstly lawn removal, then digging lots of holes to plant the salvias, lining the whole surface with thick layers of newspaper and cardboard and then planting and mulching. I still have to source and plant the dwarf nandinas around the border and I’m waiting for the new letter box to be installed. I also have to put up the guide wires for the climbing plants along the fence. The planting looks quite sparse at this stage, but those salvias will eventually have a 1 metre span. I decided it was more sensible to allow for their mature width and just put up with the first few years of the plants looking sparse.

    Hello to everyone else. Take care.

    LJ you have made so much progress on your garden! Thank you for posting the pictures. It looks amazing. You are right about the spacing of the plants. We have had to remove plantings in the past that looked overgrown when they filled in. Better to give them plants of room. I’m sorry to hear that some of that hard work was at the expense of your lower back. Not being able to bend down sounds awful. I hope you get the meds sorted out while it heals to what is normal for you. Does heat or cold compresses help? I know you’ve used that in the past.
    Your cake looks beautiful. You do an amazing job with decorating. I love fruit decorated cakes.

    Helen Kate, I’m sorry to hear about your daughter’s wedding plans being disrupted by the lockdowns. They were smart to think ahead and plan a small reception. But it’s better to be safe with cases popping up around the country lately.

    GDSA, congratulations on the weight loss. It sounds like you have turned a corner and are heading in the right direction.

    The very high temperatures are gone for a while with the you highs under 35C and nighttime lows into the high teens. It also gives the firefighters a bit of a break with 4 large fires burning north of here. We’ve had a couple more small ones closer to here but they’ve managed to put them out quickly.

    My eating hasn’t been great lately, but am still managing to hold the line at this higher weight without gaining any additional.

    Anzac, happy to hear that you enjoyed the TV series that we’re watching here now, ‘800 Words’. We’re on season 2 out of 3. While I was reading your comments, the show ‘Luxe Listings Sydney’ was streaming on the Amazon Prime channel. I don’t often watch the real estate shows with all the drama among the realtors, but they were showing some gorgeous properties along the Sydney coastline, with price tags to match. The show is a series with several episodes. You probably have it there as well.

    Thin, what a nice way to watch the Wimbledon matches, on a big screen from the top of your boat. Safe and entertaining. Restaurants in California and a few other states have had to post calorie counts for a few years now. It varies by type and size of the restaurant, with some requiring you to go to their website I think. People seem to ignore them as evidenced by the growing number of overweight people. I don’t think it hurt businesses any. It’s definitely useful to see how many calories are in some of those innocent looking salads. With the dressings and extras heaped on, they are often higher than a burger and chips!

    Cinque, I’ve missed your posts the past few days. Hope it is just you being busy with your granddaughters or recovering from one of their visits.

    Neil, it sounds like you are making good progress with your building projects and it’s a great way to get exercise and also get through stressful times. Please give Mrs. Neil our best.

    1.good morning 5 k this morning – nice and easy after 12 hours in the office a relaxing hour row in the evening – trying to do this monday to friday (heavy night of drinking the night before and/or business trips get in the way of this!!) – and a half marathon one day on the weekend – a year ago used to be able to do 10k sub 40 four times a week and trying to get back to that level of fitness and my ideal weight of 90kgs (weighed in at 108 start of feb before my rower arrived!! 6 months of living the good life and no rower) already down to 100 and 500 splits are coming down….love my rower

    It has been SO LONG since I have managed to post. Extreme busyness followed by recovery.

    I’m going to do a long catch up, in parts, with coffee!


    Thinking of your wife, and sending so many good wishes. I do hope the surgery is soon and completely successful. It does make sense that it could cure the tinnitus, so fingers crossed. Ooh, lots of pictures of her with her beautiful hair. I am so glad that it will grow back.

    I hope the renovations went really well. Hooray for that satisfying busyness that makes us forget all about eating.

    I thought of you (and Jony) when the latest ‘Chewing the Fat’ episode dropped. It is about exercise, the first big story is on cycling, and the expert Alex Hutchinson was very good on the intricacies of exercise, hunger and food. https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/dr-giles-yeo-chews-the-fat/id1572126266?uo=4

    Hello, it is me again 😉

    What fun, and how exhausting, to have those little ones with you.
    What a great time you gave them.

    But Oh dear, so sorry to hear how that heavy garden work has caused you so much damage and pain. Hooray that the garden is done, it looks so good. And well, if you have to do any more… time to hire someone.

    Has the pain been easing? I really hope you are able to do all the everyday things again soon, especially those little bend downs to get something, we depend on them so much! Hooray for anti-inflammatories but I hope you can ease them soon and/or that your BP doesn’t get too bad.

    Haha pointing out the calories in the Caesar salad. I bet the poor neighbour just reacted badly because she had been SO SURE she was doing something good for her health, and you pricked her bubble. It would have been hard to hear. She will have taken it in now. Job done. We were so brought up to think of salad as the healthy option.

    What an absolutely stunning cake! Lucky birthday person!

    I am glad your eating has been mostly fine, and you have a chance to curb those NFD’s when you are overeating.

    I am in a similar boat, but the last week was too hard to do anything but make it through. I have been very aware of how, at my age and physical frame, a bit extra is too much. I really need to stick to my version of a GFD, plus fast days, if I want to lose these 6 or 7 kilo (I just put on everything I had taken off). My good food days are not a lot of food, but perfectly satisfying and delicious, so I just need my health and busyness to stay at a level where I can keep them up.

    …And to learn to cope better with bad days.

    Glad to say I had a good fast day on Wednesday (but my breakfast today was a bit too generous). The rest of the day I will nail!

    Good morning, yes it is me again 😀

    it is so hard to see the awful climate news from your part of the world. The heat and drought and fire danger, and now earthquakes on top of it. Let’s hope the world swells in its addressing of climate change. And hoping your little corner of the world gets some rain and stability.
    Well done holding the line regarding your weight, through this stressful time. That is a victory.
    You will love it when you get to a space where you can lose again.

    Victoria is in another short sharp lockdown, fingers crossed it will work. My second covid vaccination is on Tuesday.
    So true about the variants, Delta is like a grassfire.

    I had a bad night with my little person. She had a coughing fit at 1 am and woke soon after 4am and couldn’t get back to sleep. I wasn’t feeling the best to start with and felt dreadful for days. I only feel I am recovering now. 🙁 I don’t think I will offer overnights for a while.

    I am like you and Mr Thin, haven’t stopped wearing masks any time I am indoors or on peopled pavements. Interesting that our latest outbreak has come mostly from removalists who were working without masks. The man whose stuff they were moving was wearing a mask and has not caught covid. The neighbours weren’t wearing masks in the corridor and did catch it. Masks are powerful.

    Omg you are going to be so sick of my posts 😀

    But I have remembered how Mrs Neil is from Fiji and the terrible way Fiji is being ravaged by Covid19 at the moment. Also Indonesia. And it is scary in PNG. And more. But I am especially hoping Mrs. Neil’s extended family can stay safe.

    so wonderful to read your quick catch up. Losing 4.3kg in a month is amazing. All power to you!

    hello and cheers for being back to controlled eating, walking and exercise biking. I hope the last few days have continued with it.
    Today’s covid numbers have just come through and hooray that they are under 100, but oh dear, too many out and about while infectious. Fingers crossed for lots of good luck and all the hard work paying off soon.

    Special good wishes to your dad. How is he going? Say hello to him from me 🙂
    And is your sister recovering from the bronchitis? Special get well wishes to her too.

    Bread does seem to be everyone’s nemesis. I need to be on top of my game to have it in my diet, but as soon as I am not on top of my game I eat what is left. (Naan this morning, leftovers from the dough I had for yesterday). I will wait til after Fast Day Sunday to make bread again.

    Hi HelenKate,
    So sorry to hear of your daughter’s wedding postponed. They will have a brilliant one when it is finally time! I hope they are managing lockdown okay. It is great that they are both fully vaccinated.

    Ooh that visit and Hamilton. Isn’t it hard on the arts community. I’ve got tickets to take my daughter and grandkids to ‘Bluey’s Big Play’ in a couple of weeks. It was meant to be August last year, and this is the third attempt. Hoping they won’t have to postpone it again.
    (Okay, not quite Hamilton, but still 😀 😀 :D)

    I am glad you enjoyed that podcast. My doctors Van Tulleken have a good one on too, so I am busy with podcasts these days.

    Oops the hamburger, but at least you enjoyed it fully and you are rolling beautifully with the fast days. Hooray!

    Well I’ve lost concentration a bit, but I am pretty well caught up, except for Ahmet who sounds spammy but mightn’t be… Introduce yourself again Ahmet if you are here for 5:2!

    Off to do some pottering around and continue recovering.

    Merry are you okay?

    Good wishes to you all.

    No Cinque, I’m not sick of your posts – just very glad to see you back. It sounds like you have been overdoing it, but I’m glad you have recovered now.

    Cali, thanks for your concern. The back pain has improved a lot and I’ve mostly stopped panicking about it. Yes heat packs help, but they aren’t enough without meds. I do sometimes use hot wheat bags, although I find the constant heat provided by heat patches that you stick inside your clothing work better, especially at night. I keep one of these inside my clothing over my lower spine almost constantly.
    Very pleased to see that the cool change finally made it to you.

    Finally I have had a reasonably good week. A couple of good FDs and the remaining days were all good food choices and mostly restrained quantities. I am pleased that I’ve managed to exclude bread in recent days and make more balanced meal choices. I’ve had time to do more meal planning and cooking which has helped. I’ve had a quiet week, with no appointments since Monday. The slower pace has really helped me slowly catch up on housework, interspersed with an occasional walk and plenty of resting and reading time. I feel better for it and my lower back is now just annoying rather than debilitating. I have an exceptionally busy week next week, so I am very glad of this lull. Despite all the rain I have managed to snatch brief dry breaks for walking. I even managed to get the grocery shopping done today without getting wet – given the storm that’s been raging all day, that feels like an achievement. I didn’t really want to shop today, but given the covid situation I’m trying not to get too behind with my supplies, just in case a lock down comes unexpectedly. Unlike everyone else in the supermarket today, I was masked.

    Now that I’ve worked out that anti-inflammatories are the key to reducing my back pain, I have started experimenting with dose and frequency, to see how little I can get away with. I’m hopeful I can manage with just a quarter of a tablet daily, but I’ll continue for a full week to be sure.

    It’s getting late so I need to close. I hope everyone has had a good week. I hope those of you in lockdown are coping. Take care.

    Thanks LJ!

    So glad to hear your pain is easing and that you might be able to manage it on a 1/4 anti-inflammatory a day.

    Hooray for a reasonably good week.

    I had a good day yesterday and today is looking good too. Back into my good eating (and realising that last week my problem was mostly not enough water. Again. Sigh.)

    Those nice long hours between meals are my best friends, and just appreciating an hour or so of feeling hungry before I do eat.

    Mid lockdown, so need to be disciplined in keeping myself busy. Plenty of housework to do! Ha.

    Sending good wishes

    Day before fast day for me.

    Dear all

    *Note: I wrote a message a few days ago but when I look now it seems not to be there on the feed so I must have done something funny! So I’ve updated it and am sending it again now. Apologies if somehow it did get through and then disappeared. I see there have been no other messages the past few days which is unusual, but there is plenty going on in people’s lives and the world to keep us preoccupied and busy and away from the keyboard. Hope everyone is doing ok.*

    So glad to see you back, Cinque. I was starting to get worried!

    So first: a quick report on where I am in this 2:5 WOL. Well, I have learnt over the last couple of weeks that people here are right in saying that it is not a good idea to eat out on FDs. It’s too easy to ‘blow the budget’ and that’s certainly what I’ve done each time.

    Saturday should have been my FD but I had my second Astra-Zeneca shot on Friday and didn’t sleep well that night so made it a GFD instead. And in preparation for future FDs, and for a nice dinner that night, I made Thin’s Chicken and Bacon Casserole, a recipe I found on the Southern Hemispherites FD Recipes thread. It is delicious and I have a couple of portions now in the freezer.

    Tomorrow I’ll have a proper FD, with a 600 to 800 limit – not 500 as that feels too hard and I am not in that much of a hurry to lose weight.

    I am doing a bit better in the evening danger zone, but haven’t mastered it. If I can manage to make myself wait for 15 minutes, the impulse to eat often disappears, but it is surprising how hard it is to take that pause.

    LJoyce, I am sorry you are having a bad time with pain. Hope things are improving on that front. It must give you a lot of satisfaction to look at the results of your garden work. Nice to have all this rain now to settle things in.

    I am puppy-sitting today, and was yesterday too. Little Paddy and I are getting to know each other and work out patterns of entertainment and quiet times. I have sacrificed a big old cardigan and a few of my daughter’s old stuffed animals (with her permission) to this little critter. He is particularly fond of a little penguin and large moomintroll.

    All the best to everyone in this warm and supportive group.


    Afternoon all

    Well I got the majority of my work done over the last week. Walls off, building paper pockets stapled in, insulation and soundproofing installed, new Gib board up, first coat of gib-stopping done, and the sanding and second coat of stopping done in one room. I just need to get the sanding and second coat of stopping done in the second room, paint the rooms, and get the skirting and scotia put up.

    I hate to admit that my eating went out the window halfway through the week, we couldn’t cook because the house was full of plaster dust so we did takeaways for most of last week so although I started the week not eating much, I think the second half of the week cancelled it out.

    I’ll try to be a little more disciplined in my eating in the coming week now that I can get into a bit more of a routine

    Have a great one everyone.

    Hi Everyone, regulars and lurkers all.

    Wherever you are in Australia, New Zealand, Britain, California, and elsewhere in the world, I hope you are all doing well, you and your family are staying safe, and whatever is happening where you live is reasonably OK and get-throughable.

    Neil – So sorry to hear of your wife’s health challenge, and sending you both all my best wishes that she will come through this well. Good to see you getting on with what needs to be done, and getting back on track with working out the evening munchies. Yes, it’s amazing how much we turn to food when we’re not busy! Your renovations will be well worth the effort when you’re done, both the house and your weight!

    LJ -your garden is coming along well, and it will be lovely to enjoy the couple of growing years while the plants flourish and mature. Hope the veggies are going well too!

    Ahmet – well done with the rowing and the weight loss!

    Back later folks,
    If you fall off the horse just get back on.

    Hi all, another week and another 1.1 kg weight loss. We have just started a 7 day full lockdown here in SA so no gym classes or work experience for me. No big deal as I have plenty of home gym equipment and am motivated enough to keep up my workouts each day. Plus we can still leave home to exercise so my 6 km daily power walk can still be done. I’d much rather walk outside, I only use my treadmill for HIT running.

    I have to go grocery shopping in the morning (still allowed during lockdown) but local FB pages are showing the supermarkets shelves stripped bare. Why oh why are people panick buying when essential services will remain open is beyond me. Fingers crossed the shelves will be restocked tonight, although 95% of my shopping is from the fresh food sections.

    Going to be chilly the next few days, expecting some minus temps for the early mornings, plus some rain which is very welcome. I’m a little over winter now, craving the warmer weather as I’m tired of being rugged up all the time.

    As a reward for my weight loss, and for deciding to permanently give up alcohol (been nearly 2 months alcohol free now), I treated myself to some good quality fitness apparel which was on sale from an online store. I did buy quite a bit, 12 items to be exact, so it was a little bit costly but I’m extremely happy with every piece.

    Decided to drag my push-bike out of the shed, knock the dust off and get back into the swing of bike riding. I’m definitely turning into a fitness junkie that’s for sure.

    Dear all

    It has been very quiet. I hope everyone is ok.

    Neil, you have been incredibly active and achieved so much.

    G’day, you also sound very active and congratulations on the steady weight loss. Yes, we south Australians are coping with a lockdown and extreme cold (by our standards!) at the moment. Like you I am not too bothered with either, and am glad about all the rain, glad also that we can hopefully avoid the Delta variant spreading in our communities.

    I could relate to you spending some money on quality fitness apparel in the sales. I was feeling very dreary and sick of my clothes – a real mid-winter feeling – and I ordered a few things on line in the sales. Like you I am very happy with my purchases. It has brightened me up.

    Thin, I really enjoyed the chicken and bacon casserole on my fast day yesterday. I think it actually got even tastier with the freezing and defrosting. It was very satisfying and a great evening meal.

    All the best to everyone

    HK, I had read in your earlier post that you’d tried the casserole and liked it. It’s an easy recipe when out of your home environs as all the ingredients are easy to find anywhere (I used it in Spain). It’s hard to believe it’s a FD meal isn’t it?

    Merry, are you on or off the horse?

    I haven’t posted in a while, the weather has been glorious (Brits are all swooning in the 30C heatwave!) and we’re taking advantage of long, summer days in every way. We are currently psyching ourselves up for the Caen Hill flight of locks down to Bath. I believe there are 29 locks within a 2-3mile stretch. I must eat my spinach.

    I hope everyone is doing well.

    Morning all.

    Renovations are going slowly now that I’ve finished my holiday. I’ve got the primer painting done on my boy’s room last night and I’m planning on doing the colour tonight (should be able to do two coats after work if I start quickly enough) After that I just need to chuck back up the skirting, architraves and curtains over the weekend and it’s done. I still have to do the sanding, second coat of gib stopping, and the painting in the living room, which I hope to be able to get done over the next week.

    On the bad side of things, my weight continues to rise, I ticked over the dreaded triple digits last weigh in. I got myself a phone so I can track my food in real time and hopefully I can start to turn the corner on that, but it’s been such a struggle. I’m not sure why it’s been so hard since I didn’t have that much trouble on the way down a couple of years ago, but it’s been a case of one step forwards, two steps back since the start of this year.

    I hope everyone else is doing ok, I’ll try to get back and read the comments later, but I’ve been pretty busy the last couple of weeks and I haven’t had much time to sit down and read.

    Have a great one everyone

    Hello all

    I have been absent, apologies but drowning in work. And food. I just can’t seem to string a week together without sabotage. I feel your pain Neil and I hope the phone tracking works. Good work on the renos

    Thin, my labrador friends in the UK have been moaning about the extreme heat. Someone said that it was 24 degrees and too hot to take the dog out for a walk. Australian dogs would hardly ever get walked if that were the case! Glad you are enjoying the heat and sunshine

    Helen Kate you are really going so well and I’m happy for you. Nice about the online purchases! You too G’day. You are both very inspiring

    Sydney continues to be very concerning and today the Premier declared a state of emergency. I live in fear for my Dad. His cleaner is not vaccinated and yesterday my sister and I had to get VERY firm with him and make him call and put her on pause. He is nearly 96 years old and yes he is vaccinated but he can still get very sick. My sister is going over to clean for him thank goodness. My house looks like a tip and is filthy (Mr Anzac does everything but just not so good on the housework) as I am doing crazy hours. I intend to roll up my sleeves this weekend and give it a good clean

    I continually say ‘get back on the horse’ when I fall off Merry, thanks to your mantra!

    Ok I hope to have a better catch up this weekend. Take care

    Greetings all.

    Apologies for not posting. During lockdown my brain seems to be in a bit of a fog and every time I try to start a post I find myself staring blankly at the screen.

    A big hug to those of you who are in lockdown, struggling with your health or your weight, stressed, or just in need of a hug. I hope the silver lining in the clouds reveals itself soon and makes life look a little better.

    A big well done to those like GDSA who are actually losing weight.

    I’m afraid that I’m in the struggling with my eating camp at the moment. Being stuck at home means being too close to the fridge and pantry. I’ve upped my FDs to 3 a week while we are locked down to try an counterbalance the issues with my NFDs.

    Take care everyone.

    Hi everyone!

    Ha ha Thin! Rumbled! I’m off the horse atm. and keeping my weight steady. Not sure if I’m Arthur or Martha at the moment!

    We went 800kms north to be there before school holiday’s started, to look after our young grandchildren. Left home when it was OK to do so, and then the next day were part of a 14 day health order that was backdated, so had to do 12 days “at home” at our daughter’s home. Meanwhile 1800kms away another of our children, single, had what should have been a life improvement turn into an absolute disaster, and we got a call for help. When we could we drove there, going a bit west to avoid Greater Sydney, had an orange Victoria border pass, done our -ve Covid tests and Vic Gov health requirement, and we’re now in Melbourne lockdown. These 2, I could say ‘old farts’, did a mad scramble getting medication with some fabulous help from our pharmicist, pharmicists here and there, and still waiting on 1 to arrive in slowed down mail – they reckon mail is at Christmas level in NSW and Victoria -slow as.

    Just to make it special I’ve spent the last week in bed with CSV, without 1 compounded medication that helps support my energy production. Nastiest bug I’ve had since the $million virus 24 yrs ago. Covid test again tomorrow. Melbourne has been rather cold and we finally got proper heating 2 days ago, so bed wasn’t such a bad place to be through this cold snap.

    When I’ve got my sense of humour back I’ll tell you about ‘the house from hell’ situation my Melbournian, and we are on a mission to sort out. This one of our children has done solo Melbourne lockdowns all through 2020 and 2021 lockdowns, so we’re glad to be here! And yes, cats are great lockdown companions.! Well these ones are!

    Well, nothing about 5:2, but I’ll get back to sorting me out in the next couple of days.

    Enjoy those lockes Thin! I’m imagining you jumping off the boat to do whatever you’ve got to do at each one, or is it less involved but just tedious? Such fun!!!

    Bye for now,
    Finally out of bed and determined to watch the Opening Ceremony.
    If you fall off the horse, just get back on!

    I am another one who has had a run of bad days and resultant too much eating.
    But my second vaccination is done, my daughter’s family has moved home (compassionate grounds helping from me) and I am back on the horse.

    Neil sending you good wishes. With the (necessary) renovation ready meals it is no wonder your weight has gone up again. And don’t underestimate the effect of the stress you are under at the moment.
    It is a hard balance, you need to keep your family together and give Mrs Neil all the support she needs, not just for a short time, but for a long time, until she is through the operation and recovered.
    But you don’t want to put on heaps of weight that only has to come off again later, and you really need your health at this time.
    You are battling old habits and probably a body that still thinks it needs to be a higher weight.
    Hoping you can find some easy rules to follow through the next while, and manage to be kind to yourself too.

    Hi Gday, well done and woot for presents as a reward! You fitness junkie you.
    I hope the supermarket had everything you needed when you got there.

    HelenKate, I hope your lovely new outfits have cheered you up. Hi to Paddy!

    Thin, hello to that long summer.

    Anzac, I have been thinking of you as the pressure of doing too much and too fast derailed me, and it made me feel such fellow feeling for you. I do hope you can transition to work that is easier on you soon. In the meantime, you are a hero for doing the best you can for your health. Keep on keeping on! You will get there.

    I hope you get a bit of housework done over the weekend, you will feel so good! Best music on loud?
    Fingers crossed it won’t be long before you get a wonderful cleaner again.

    Sending good wishes to your dad too.

    LJoyce, I do hope the fog is lifting, but it is a good time of year just to hibernate at home. I am hoping to post daily again so I will be sure to ask you a question so you have something to write! (I want to hear from you more often.)
    Which days are fast days at the moment?

    Merry, oh no, when I think how easily I have been knocked off the horse this week, I can’t even imagine how this time of work and travel and stress has effected you.
    So glad that things seem to be sorting out (with all that hard work and effort) for your family. Hooray for your sense of humour!

    Fingers crossed it has calmed down and you have the time and health to do all the good things for yourself 5:2 wise.

    Well I get back on the horse by having a day where I can eat what I want so long as it is vegetables (with a bit of protein thrown in). So that is today. (I do love those little microwave pots I found in opshops that cook a couple of cups of veggies so well).

    I am planning my Sunday Fast Day I do so hope I am up to it. I am longing for a day with nice periods of hunger and that wonderful feeling of waking up the next morning so light and empty.

    Sending best wishes to everyone

    PS Catalyst on Tuesday is on fasting. https://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/ They follow people for 6 weeks. Haha. 6 years might be a better idea!

    Hi everyone but especially you Neil,

    Hang in there Neil, and you will keep learning lessons that help you to get you through this time of ‘Life’ and the stress that comes with it.
    Mr Merry got prostate cancer in the middle of the years I’ve been a 5:2er. We’ve been through surgery, radiation and a couple of little hiccups and he’s now doing really well. We know what you’re going through and for me, how it impacts on my 5:2 journey. I’m a stress-eater from way back, having to keep it in mind since my mid-teens.

    Here are some stress-eater strategies I hope will add to your 5:2 toolkit. What works for 1 doesn’t always work for another, but maybe there’s something here you can tweak to fit your personal situation.

    * As an evening meal only FD and Hunger Dragon person, putting off the time I ate on any day was imperative for me. I couldn’t do FDs and that was adding to my stress so, with suggestions and encouragement from others here I went to a 7 day strategy, and to work to keep my weight steady.

    * My 7 day strategy ended up started at not eating till 12 noon, but I later had to switch that up to 7 day- no food till 3pm on any day. I still had days where I was just so stressed I either had to eat carbs, or couldn’t eat at all, but it was mostly the carb thing.

    * Still working at getting protein, veggies, fruit, complex carbs, good oil in there each day, vitamins etc, probiotics, but if eating a cake or hot chips or an icecream in the hospital cafeteria got us through a bad day we just did it. And we did those to celebrate as well. It’s a balancing act of stress control versus nutrition and increased needs for both.

    * Stay on the forum when you can. I wasn’t very good at this, but I’ve just kept coming back, and my head is still here. These are good people who understand your needs and will help support you and understand. We’ve been here for years now, many of us, and we understand what you’re going through food and weight wise, and how variously individual that is.

    * I have 1 pair of trousers I never get rid of, and they are my litmus test. If I’m really struggling putting them on and wearing tgem helps me know how I’m going, and if they’re tight I wear them tight and as much as possible because it helps remind me when I’m battling the stress urge.

    * Don’t drink calories!
    Don’t forget to drink lots of water, as it’s easy to dehydrate when very distracted and usual routines have gone out the window.

    * Rest when you can.

    * Walk or ride when you can. Burn off stress energy and burn off the fight-flight-freeze reactions. When hit with them and once you get through the very immediate situation, burn off the excess stress chemicals by running onnthe spot as hard as you can for 5 mins. (I can’t do that one for medical reasons, but I do a minute on a rower, even 30secs sometimes, and it all helps.

    *. Get outside in the fresh air and sunshine. We need both!

    * Negative ions in the air help our thinking. 3 sources:
    1. The beach or anywhere near the sea- walking on the beach helps a lot to put things in perspective and calm down. If no beach available then any body of running water has negative ions in the air next to it.

    2. The bush – that quality in the air in the bush (woods,forest) is also negatively charged ions in the air. Walk in the bush.

    3. A negative ion generator. You get what you pay with these but they are available in various price brackets.

    * Stop watching or reading the news. It is literally physically, mentally and emotionally depressing. Try to put some laughs into your day. For me, it’s on youtube or iview or BritBox in Australia, or comedy audiobooks.

    * Music. Keep some music in your life you love or you feel helps you in some way, as much as you need it.

    Re Covid: We did treatment and some day surgeries through Covid as well. You may not always be able to be with Mrs Neil, but the hospitals are supergood at looking after the Covid situation and they will keep you both safe. Find your basic Covid info source re changing conditions and check it briefly, each day if necessary, but don’t dwell on it. I took food, drink, a book , a crossword book, chargers, headphones, something to do with my hands, listened to the radio in my car, with a pillow, warm clothing etc when I couldn’t be in the hospital. And chocolate and nuts.

    This has got very long, but hope there is something there to assist.
    Bye for now,

    Anzac, your post prompted to me to try and allay your fears for your dad. Of course you want to protect him. Not to diminish your concern for him in any way and I do agree that it’s probably better to have a bit of mess around the house than to expose him to unvaccinated people. But you can be comforted somewhat in that, even though he could potentially get covid after vaccination, he’s unlikely to become seriously ill from it. England has a lot of statistics that you can draw from – hardly anyone over 80 that’s been vaccinated has become seriously ill, hospitalised or died. Those clogging up the hospitals with it are overwhelmingly the unvaccinated. It makes me so angry because these preventable cases mean that patients with genuine need (thinking of people like our dear penguin) are on an increasingly long waiting list. It’s great that your sister can help your dad. Ha ha, a sweltering 24C! They’ll be able to walk their labs today – in the thunder showers!

    Merry, funny opening to your post but sorry to read on and discover all your difficulties. We were lucky with the locks as there are volunteer lock-keepers and we were first in line to come down when they opened at 8am. I was driving the boat, OH doing the locks and, for a while, he had an entire team helping him. As I came out of one, the next was already prepared. Gradually, they moved off to help other boaters coming up but we had one volunteer with us for the entire flight. They’re always friendly and good for a chat. It was fun with spectacular views across Wiltshire. Worth googling Caen Hill Flight if you can be bothered.

    Merry, do you tackle cryptic crosswords? I find them easier than the ordinary synonym type. DD loaned me her game of ‘dobble’ to help improve my word-finding problem. Anyone familiar with it? It still takes me nearly five minutes to complete the tin, naming out loud all the matched safari animals, etc.

    LJ, Neil, sorry to hear of your struggles with your weight/eating. C’mon you two, you can do it. Pull yourselves together! The alternative will be worse. Nice tips and advice from Merry and Cinque above.

    Neil, I’m sorry that I’m not up on every post as I used to be. I seem to remember that you went to maintenance 6:1. Is it possible to go back to where you had all the success – weight loss mode – and revert to 5:2? I’m not a stress eater so I can’t empathise but I can tell you that you’re better equipped with deal with life’s irritations when you’re happy and healthy in your own skin. Please don’t become a statistic, I know you can do this.

    Here, there are plans underway to develop a govt. backed app to reward people for buying fruit and veg and fewer calorie-filled items at the supermarket. An alarming two thirds of adults are apparently obese. Nations with over 50% overweight people suffered ten times worse with covid. Boris attributes his own near-death covid experience with obesity prompting work to make changes for himself and the nation.

    Cinque, so pleased you’re double jabbed. I can’t quite work out whether Rose and family have moved in with you? And who’s helping who. That must be lovely if so. Hurray for Sunday fasting. I’m looking forward to being my boring old self and making a chicken something or other (one of about four recipes) for my FD. With a plan to stop drinking so much alcohol next week.

    Cold Melbourne Sunday,

    But very happy with Vic (and SA) managing to get on top of that community transmission, and fingers crossed NSW is turning a corner. Brilliant numbers getting tested and the number of people with time in the community didn’t go up today, in fact down 1%. Fingers crossed so hard.

    My fast day isn’t very fasty but still being done from up on the horse!

    Ha Thin, sorry to be so unclear. My daughter and MrD have bought a little apartment close to where they have been living. It is a bit of a squash and ofcourse they are finding all the things that aren’t working properly. And it is still post move chaos. (Fingers crossed our covid measures are working well enough that they will let the littlies back to school on Wednesday)

    LJoyce, How is that front garden going?

    Cheers to every single one of you, best wishes for the day.

    Good evening.

    Yesterday I awoke with a frozen shoulder – I couldn’t lift my right arm up to the side. After doing many exercises with theraband, judicious use of heat packs and an attempt to massage the area myself I am very pleased that it has improved a great deal. I now have most of my normal movement range back, although it’s still a bit stiff and sore.

    Merry, Good reminders of how to follow 5:2 succesfully.
    It sounds like you have been to extremes to support your kids lately, including doing quarantine on your return. I hope you properly recover from your latest ill health and feel much better soon.

    Thin, I will attempt to pull myself together and get properly focused on eating more carefully every day.

    Cinque, I gather that your daughter has been renting previously and has now bought a small place of their own. While it comes with all the maintenance issues and a mortgage, I have personally found home ownership offers peace of mind to not be subject to a lease.
    There is little happening in my garden. After all that digging I needed a break. When I summon some energy from somewhere I will have to source the variety of nandina that I’m after – and dig more holes.
    I hope our weather isn’t heading your way, we had a weekend of pelting rain, hail and thunderstorms. Although many areas lost power, thankfully I didn’t this time.

    I did a FD today and it wasn’t as strict as I’d prefer – definitely 800 not 500.

    It’s very late, so time for bed. Take care all.

    Cinque, congrats to Rose and Mr Rose for their new home ownership. Your explanation was probably perfectly clear to those following closely – no apology needed. I hope it all works out with the schooling.

    So your FD was not so perfect today. And LJ is reporting of the same. Mine was great although I admit to slacking off with measuring milk in coffee these days. So we all made it through just like the old days.

    LJ, ha ha, glad that you’re pulling yourself together. That instant frozen shoulder sounds a worry. I empathise. I’ve been achey since hurting my lower back on a broken swing bridge more than a week ago. Today I decided to cave in to OH’s offers of medication (he’s a floating pharmacy). I prefer not to succumb to pain meds at any time but especially when it comes to backs because I feel it’s important to listen to the pain and work within its parameters so as not to do further damage. But I did have a much better day and did my share of locks and paddles.

    It’s 9pm and I’m just watching a spectacular sunset and then I’m off to lie down with a big fat book.

    Have a great week all, stay strong.

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