Hello Southern Hemispherites!!

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  • Good evening all, just a quick note to wish you Happy Holidays. I’m having a FD today, Saturday, because I always eat a mince pie on Christmas Eve. That would be with rum and egg nog in Australia but they don’t sell the latter here.

    I got my stitches out on Wednesday, yippee, hopefully that long saga is now well behind me. That event coincided with the winter maintenance programme on the Napton locks being completed and so we are finally on our way to Oxford to our winter mooring. We’ve knocked out 13 of the 34 locks. The hand and foot warmers work a treat – although it was sunny and quite warm, 13C, today. A beautiful sunrise as we came up the first set of locks and a spectacular sunset as we decended another. Heron, sheep abundant. The scenery is just magnificent on the South Oxford canal. There are very few boats moving but we’re all festive – our boat has its Christmas lights flashing along its roof length, another had tinsel everywhere and a third boater wore a Santa hat.

    I hope everyone has a great Christmas and is able to manage the excess food without drama. We’re all pros now after all, no excuses. Have fun!

    Hello everyone,
    I woke up early (4am) and couldn’t get back to sleep so I went for a walk just as it was getting light and it was so nice! Flying foxes, owls, a micro bat (well, a little one anyway) and the scent of lemon gum.

    And then I treated myself to a cup of coffee (I usually wait until after breakfast).
    I’m trying to wait until 7 am to eat breakfast, so isn’t it lucky I have you lot to write to!

    Gday, I have a pattern of reading your posts, replying, and then finding out you never read them. You had better come back soon to give me the confidence to respond! 😀
    Fingers crossed you can.

    Neil, wow, you won’t be reading either, for a while. What a wonderful trip to be on! I do so hope the weather is good for you. I hope you have the best time.

    Happy Holidays to you too Thin. Hooray for the stitches out! I do hope it might be the end of the bunion saga. What a lovely Christmas present.
    Thank goodness for the hand and foot warmers. I hope you are enjoying Oxford. I am rewatching the Endeavour series, so I will be thinking of you as they show the spires, and even more so when they show a bit of the countryside.

    I managed to avoid excess food by having a gentle Christmas on my own. My daughter gave me the most exquisite laksa broth that she had made, and some cold chicken, and two of my Christmas day meals were laksa! (I do have to have small bowls). What a treat that was. I wouldn’t mind making it my new tradition.

    And now it is my favourite time of year for opshopping as people donate Christmas presents they didn’t want.

    Sending out best wishes to everyone.

    Dear Cinque. Such a happy cheery note. Your early walk sounds lovely.
    So so hot here, and the late storms have been extraordinary. So much damage.
    I hope everyone had a happy Christmas. I did, with my lovely family here on the day, then back with extended family in Boxing Day, and again yesterday for a swim.
    I’m not going to answer all in this note …. I got up early to text our handyman not to come, and I am going to try to sleep for another hour, because I had a very late night.. He shouldn’t be working outside in 38 degree heat. It is still not quite 6, so I hope I have caught him in time.
    Best wishes all.

    Hi all and a very Merry Christmas to each and every one of you.

    I’ll keep this short and come back soon with more, it’s just to let you know I’m still here, lurking and reading all your lovely news but not posting. I find it really difficult to post when I am not losing or even trying?! I’m happy to report I’m back on the horse! I have a milestone birthday coming up so I really want to reach a target weight for that so I can enjoy it without the guilt.

    Currently parked up in Bannockburn, Cromwell, enjoying some really hot days, about 28’c today with lovely clear blue skies, no house sitting for us this year as we have done the previous two years, so relaxing and enjoying some great company, weather, fresh fruit and cricket.

    Speak again soon Turn.

    Cinque, so glad to hear from you. At first I felt a bit sad to read that you hadn’t spent Christmas with the little girls but you seem to have enjoyed the time alone so I decided not to be sad. What a *joy* not to have overindulged. I bet that laksa was delicious. And the early morning walk with the wildlife was a delight.

    I have a few moments while waiting for daylight. We woke at 5am and it gets light at 7.50am. We’re still on our Christmas cruise to the winter mooring. There have been trees down and 50mph gusty winds on two of the days so we had to wait it out, one of those being Christmas Eve. I broke with tradition and cooked our Christmas dinner that day. It turned out well considering the lack of space. DD was alone and recovering from a cold and had rented a small apartment in Argentina and we kept our respective whatsapps open much of the day even though we weren’t necessarily talking. So she was sort of with us.

    On Christmas Day, we pushed on and passed seven deer grazing – not sure what happened to Rudolph but the others must have had a hard night. Every inch of the scenery on the South Oxford canal is stunningly beautiful so it has been a delight despite the cold.

    Today we have a bit of a challenge because a stretch of canal shares its course with the Cherwell River and the river is in flood. We’ll have to walk ahead to make sure there are no downed trees between those locks as obviously we can’t stop in a fast current.

    Cinque, I hadn’t realised that there were so many series of Endeavour. I’m confused on which I’ve seen but I do love recognising the various landmarks of Oxford. Sometimes they show a canal scene and a narrow boat usually when Morse is in the pub.

    Turn/Lindsay, It’s funny that I wrote that it had warmed up to 13C, Turn wrote that it was hot at 28C and Lindsay 38C! I don’t miss those temperatures.

    Neil, I looked up that cycling route and recognised some of those places from when I lived in Queenstown. And Turn, Cromwell I believe is also in that Otago region. A very pretty area.

    I’ll reveal our winter destination once it’s confirmed. We have to be certain we can get the boat safely to its holiday destination first. Nine miles, six locks and five hours to go …..

    Happy New Year to all!

    Good morning.
    I slept a lot better and woke up to the wonderful sound of a kookaburra. Haven’t heard one for years.

    Lindsay hello! Sympathy for the mad weather and destruction poor Queensland has suffered. I hope you are keeping cool. And I hope you got through to the handyman in time, got another sleep, and had a restful day after your late night. Still sending that flow of good wishes.

    Turn, I know! It is very hard to come here and talk about failing to do 5:2 on a 5:2 forum. Well, I really hope you have got back on the horse, because that way we will be getting your posts again. And yes, why not be trim and healthy for your significant birthday.
    I thought Neil must have been bicycling in a circle around you, but I see he is circling just below.

    Is it lovely not to be housesitting for a while? Hooray for relaxation.

    Thin, thankyou, yes. I did have a lovely time alone. I had been with the family just before Christmas day (minding grandchildren so Rose could wrap presents) and then left them to enjoy family time while my SIL has some holidays.

    I am reading your canal update thinking how lovely it would be… and then remembering it isn’t 17c with the sun shining, as it is here. So I hope you are keeping snug and there are no fallen trees or other canal snags.

    The five hours will be gone, so I hope you are safely at your destination with all the locks and miles behind you.

    Merry, are you there?
    Intesha, how are you?
    Hi Anzac,
    Cheers to everyone.

    Having a go at a haiku

    So many years unheard
    Glorious, heart-filling sound
    K-kookaburra

    Morning all, I’m back from my ride, it wasn’t the most enjoyable I’ve done. The scenery was fantastic, but the ride was mostly on gravel roads rather than on off-road trails and I kept getting cars buzzing past full tilt, spraying me with gravel and enveloping me in a cloud of dust for a minute or two.

    I successfully completed the full 240km over the three days though and now my legs are dead. I didn’t drop any weight, but I kind of expected that because I was eating like a horse while I was riding. Long rides like that you’ve got to keep your calories up.

    I hope everyone had a good Christmas and have a good new year coming up.

    Hello everyone,

    Cinque my apologies for not reading your responses to my posts, I do promise to be more on the ball from now on 😄😄. It has been frustrating not being here as often as I used too as I do enjoy the wonderful community we have here. Here’s to a change for 2024.

    Apart from cutting down on coffee, which has been going very well by the way, I’m also cutting down on the time I spend on social media – namely FB. I’ve dropped out of a lot of the groups I was in and culled a lot of people/places I followed. FB feed is just full of advertising and absolute rubbish really and I’ve got much better things to be spending my time on instead of mindlessly scrolling.

    The exception to this is my business FB and Instagram accounts which are both steadily growing in followers over the last 2 months. I’ve also jumped out of my comfort zone and am now posting video blogs/posts instead of written blogs/posts. I thought I would be terrible at it and come across badly but actually I’m not too bad, even Miss G’Day is impressed with my videos. I don’t rehearse anything, just decide on a subject to talk about and just start talking. I come across as quite relaxed, composed and natural, which is what I was aiming for but not how I expected I would be.

    Miss G’Day is now my editor, and we are getting quite creative with the videos, adding in bits and pieces to make them more interesting to view. Who would have thought it eh; me, the shy, introvert who hates being in front of a camera or speaking in public would enjoy and be comfortable being a video blogger 😄😄 It’s amazing when we push ourselves outside of our comfort zones, anything is possible.

    Oh Neil congratulations on the ride but also disappointing the conditions didn’t match the scenery.

    Christmas and New Years was very quiet for us as always. I do hope everyone had an enjoyable time. xx

    Hello, newbie here. I’m just about to start my 5:2 journey, have read lots of your posts but weight loss isn’t mentioned very often. Have you been successful on 5:2?

    Hi Gemmo and welcome! Yes! I have been successful on 5:2. I’m in my tenth year having started in August 2014 when I lost 23kgs. I’ve been maintaining that weight (60kgs) for the past eight years on a combination of 5:2 and 6:1. I have never missed a fast day in all that time so that’s my number one tip – don’t let anyone or anything get in the way of your fast days.

    Sadly, I was 58 when I discovered IF after about twenty years of being overweight, losing huge amounts of weight and gaining it all back, always depressed and consumed by my weight. Ask me anything. If you feel like sharing where you’re located or what you’re hoping to achieve, I will love to hear from you. You will find this a very supportive group – I’ve been here since we were on page 42. My FD is Sunday and I look forward to having another buddy here to fast with.

    Hello to everyone else. Internet is lousy but I will reply properly soon. (Cinque, that five hours took several days but we’re finally in our winter mooring.)

    Good morning everyone,

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    Fancy it being 2024.

    Neil, those gravel roads don’t sound fun at all. I’m glad you were able to stay safe, and huge congratulations n completing it! Hooray for the wonderful scenery in between cars.

    Gday, haha and hooray. (That you came back to post again so soon)
    I have had to cut back on coffee too (chronic reflux) and doesn’t it make you appreciate that one beautiful cup we can allow ourselves to have!

    Oh dear, I also agree with how fb feeds fill up with rubbish. I use ‘fb purity’ but it is cracking under the strain.

    And wow, congratulations on video blogging and post presence for your business. You influencer you!
    Cheers to Miss Gday, daughters are wonderful for technology and social media help.

    Welcome Gemmo, I am afraid that learning to manage my chronic reflux (GERD/LPR) has meant I have been unable to do 5:2 over the last year. It was wonderful for me previously (which is why I am still here). It allowed me to lose 15 kg and then (with a bit of up and down and lots of help from friends here) to work out how to keep it off.

    I’m looking forward to cheering you on your way as you get into the rhythm of it.

    Thin, SEVERAL DAYS!
    Hooray that you got there in the end.
    I hope you are happily settled now and that your internet improves so we can hear all about it.

    Best wishes to everyone

    Hi Gemmo, we’re all in different stages of our weight loss journeys. I started on the fast 800 for 12 weeks back in 2019, then moved to 4:3, 5:2, and 6:1 and I managed to go from 132.5 kilos to 84.5 kilos within 11 months. I managed to keep it off for a whole year after that before I had a really bad run with my wife’s health, work stress, financial stress, injury, and then the death of my mother. Since I’m a stress/emotional eater my weight has crept back up over the last few years to the point where I’m now back above 100 kilos. I’m still nowhere near where I was before, but still struggling to shift it this time.

    I am from South Australia 🙂

    Hi Carley Marie,
    Welcome here! Are you just starting 5:2?

    I am doing 16/8 🙂

    Carley, welcome back! Did you lose the 20kgs you set out to shed in 2014?

    Cinque, thank you, yes we’re finally settled in our winter mooring. It’s canal side with electricity hook-up in a small, picturesque village with excellent public transport to Banbury and Oxford. We’re located between two canal side pubs, one of which is the scene of several Morse episodes back in the day. Our neighbour is a trapeze artist.

    I’m fasting today – a small bowl of Hairy Bikers’ Thai Chicken Curry for dinner.

    The internet is very poor. The rain has subsided but now it’s cold again. We’re off to Cuba to get some warmth. It’s a country I’ve wanted to visit for thirty years. I don’t have a fasting plan yet but I will have my trusty travel scales packed in my 7kg of luggage to guide me. With any luck, we’ll meet up with DD somewhere on her way back from S. America. I doubt I’ll be posting as I’m not taking any devices except my small phone and the internet is virtually non-existent we’re told.

    So, I wish you all a happy and successful start to the year and hope to read lots of fasting news when I return.

    Morning all

    Well I’m back at work unfortunately. I didn’t really want to go back, but I only have to last 2 weeks and then I get another 2 weeks off. We’re planning on going to Wanaka for a couple of days, then up to the Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers for a couple of days. Hopefully the highlight will be to take a helicopter up to the glaciers and land on them, but that will be weather dependent.

    Thin, have a great trip to Cuba, don’t smoke too many cigars.

    Hello dear friends, happy New Year!

    I’ve just finished reading all of your lovely posts but I’m on the train going into the office as I was unable to login from home and the helpdesk said I needed to connect to the office network to fix the problem. Drats, not how I wanted to start my working year but it is what it is. It’s tricky to type on my phone so I’ll have a nice chatty catch-up when I am back on my laptop

    Our holiday was fantastic but sadly I came down with Mr A’s virus at the end of our trip. It’s a nasty one but one silver lining is a complete lack of appetite so I lost several kilos that I now plan to keep off and continue losing

    Back soon!

    Morning all. Hope you have all started the new year well. I’ve battled my way through my first week of being back on 6:1 (5:2 to come – social activities meant going full into 5:2 was going to be almost impossible), and after losing .8, it worked its way back up to a total loss for the week of .1. Disappointing, but a loss is a loss so I’ll take it.

    Sorry you were struck down with a virus Anzac, but the silver lining sounds like gold to me.

    Thin, Cuba sounds exotic and lovely. Hope you catch up with DD.

    Neil being back at work doesn’t seem too bad if you have another break looming. Always good to have something to look forward to.

    We have a little break in Sydney planned. My husband’s family (well, 2 of them) are coming out from Scotland to join a cruise around NZ, so we’ll join them for the 3 days before they sail away. I suspect they thought Brisbane is just a hop skip and a jump down the road from Sydney, and were quite surprised to know I’d booked flights. They are delightful people, and I’m so looking forward to meeting up with them again.

    My other news – to continue the NZ connection – is that we have mated Rosy again, to a beautiful NZ import, and all things being equal, should have pups by the end of February. It is too early to tell – she’s showing signs, but then last season went into a full phantom pregnancy, so I’ll wait for the vet to confirm at 4 weeks.

    Carley 16:8 is good, though tough. I stuck with it for a long time, but now, I’m more 14:10, and never ever eat within a 12 hour window.

    Cinque, you are so right about working out how to keep it off. I suspect most of us (the indominatible Thin being the exception) have had that seesaw as we try to manage our losses. My weight is well up from my lowest point, but not where it was where I started, so I’ll work back down from here. Having a condition that you need to manage makes it quite a challenge. My challenge, as you know, was OH’s health issues, but he’s so much better now that it’s time to put that behind me. He still has cancer, and his treatment is about containment not cure, but he is, as my old uncle used to say when asked how he was, ‘still vertical’.

    Turn, lovely to read your post. And will be good to read your updates as you plan for your birthday. It must seem strange for newcomers to the forum to read lots of stuff, but not much about 5:2. We are all getting there, in our own ways, and have known each other for so long now, that the diet stuff can swing under the radar. Trust me though – it’s the foundation of the forum.

    OK, OH is up from the garden, it’s now nearly 14 hours since I ate, so breakfast time. His is a bit more complicated as he needs super nutrition to stay well. Mine will be a poached egg and a slice of sourdough.

    Have a great day all.

    Afternoon all

    Day 2 back at work and I’m starting to get back into the swing of things.

    At the moment I’m trying to bust through this slow but consistent weight gain by starting out on the fast800 that I did so well at originally. I’m into my second day of it now and starting to get that withdrawal thing happening. Fatigue, brain fog, lethargy, dizziness, all the fun parts of keto flu. I haven’t had the headaches yet but I’m only 2 days in, still plenty of time for them to show up. From experience if so can push through the first 4 days or so then it gets easier. Dinner yesterday was beef stir-fry without the noodles that I added in for the rest of the family, tonight will be grilled fish with sweet corn and coleslaw. Friday will be the challenge because we always do movie snacks, and no doubt my boys will still want to eat them. I’ll just try and will myself to not nibble at them.

    The real issue with the keto flu is riding my bike home. By the end of the day I’m really fatigued, and cycling up the hill feels so draining that when I get home so just want to eat. I’ll try for two weeks to start out (if I have the willpower to get that far), and if it’s working I might try to extend it.

    I’ll let you know how I get on.

    Morning all

    Wednesday weigh-in and I’m down 1.5 kilos. I’d only been doing the fast800 for 2 days so that’s a brilliant result so far, the real acid test will be next week’s weigh-in where I have my first full week of fast800 under my (hopefully looser) belt

    Have a good one everyone

    Good morning all

    Neil, that is brilliant. Such an incentive too.

    After my disappointing .1 loss my first week, I now find I’m down another .3, which is satisfying.

    How are things in Melbourne Cinque? Exciting, with the Australian Open starting soon? We went to the inaugural Brisbane Open a few years back, and although the atmosphere was amazing, watching on television gave us a better view of the game. One day we’ll get to the Open.

    Cinque I loved your haiku. Yes, a blissful sound. We have a kooka family – they’ve been here for years – and they call at around 3 am. I find it’s a sound I can wake to, think ‘ah, must be around 3’, then go happily back to sleep. Unlike the frustrating beep of my phone, to find it’s one of those scam ‘Australia Post your parcel address needs updating’ texts or the like. Can anyone answer me this – I have the sleep function on, so proper, legitimate texts don’t ping, but the scam ones do.

    Enjoying my coffee, and about to the diabolical soduku before the roofing man comes. Our new roof had a couple of very minor leaks in the Boxing Day deluge …great to have it tested so soon. The company has been excellent – which is not something we an often say these days.

    Have a good one all.

    Hello everyone,

    It is dry here today! Not that Melbourne suffered much, but there was a long day and night when it was raining and I am really appreciating some clear sky. (I think powdery mildew will knock out my lovely zucchini plants early 🙁 ).

    Hello again Carley Marie, how is it going? I read your other post so you have all my sympathy for that early menopause, what a roller coaster it is.
    Are you having a set 16 hours fast ie 6pm til 10am or something?
    I hope you can work into it being good and sustainable.

    Thin, Cuba hooray! I hope you are there and managing to read posts, even if you can’t write. Have some black beans for me!

    Neil, sympathy for being back at the old work grind, but cheers for a great start to the Fast 800. You obviously did manage the ride home safely, and hooray for such a good result. Your scales are finally behaving themselves!
    And woot for the holidays so close ahead.

    Hello Anzac, Oh no terrible virus AND back at work AND having to travel into work. But hooray for a fab holiday first!
    Yes! Maintain that weightloss. All power to you!
    Hoping for a properly connected catch up soon. Hi to Mr Anzac and Maxx!

    Hello lovely Lindsay.
    Sensible to start at 6:1 and get that working well before you ramp up to 5:2. No point doing something that is not doable, not sustainable. Hooray that the losses are adding up.

    The social activities sound lovely, especially if Mr Lindsay is up to socialising too. A lovely start to the year.
    May the containment treatment contain long and well.

    Exciting news for Rosy. I hope it is a real pregnancy and lots of gorgeous healthy little pups. Won’t you be busy end of February!

    I’m getting close to a whole year of the small meals that chronic reflux demand, and my head still isn’t around it. No wonder I battled with my weight, I just did not need the amount of food I thought was normal.
    Now I get frustrated (ridiculously) because I think I’d like to make something, but it takes me so much longer to go through the food I have already made!

    But the best thing, I probably said previously, is that now I feel satisfied after my small meal. Such a sweet gift, I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life feeling like I hadn’t eaten enough.

    My waist is still sitting under 80cm and hopefully it will stay easy to keep it there.

    Lindsay I have to have my phone in another room at night. I hate that ding. As you say it is worst when it is a scam message. I hope you figure a way to stop it. MUCH prefer kookaburras!

    How are your bees?

    LJoyce, where are you? Lots of socialising too, I imagine.
    Intesha are you still in the UK?

    Cheers all

    Happy New Year to everyone, hope you have had an enjoyable holiday season!
    I have some catching up to do.

    My Christmas New Year was lovely catching up with family and a little holiday. I did over-indulge just a little but also didn’t do FDs since Christmas Day so ended up putting a kg back on. Back to a FD last Monday and eating clean. healthy and normally this week has me going down again, and tomorrow is my next FD.

    Check in:
    Start weight – 73.5 kg
    Goal – 62 kg
    Pre- Christmas 70.0 kg
    Today – 70.3 kg

    Bye for now,
    Onwards and Downwards

    Morning all

    I went slightly over my 800 calories yesterday. My mother in law cooked us dinner so I just ate the meat and salad and tracked everything when I got home. It came out as 900 calories, so not too bad.

    Merry, if you only went up a kilo over the Christmas/New Year period then I would count that as a win, looks like most of it is gone already.

    Lindsay, I’d love to go to some live tennis someday, but the closest one is miles away. Coco Gauff won the NZ open this week. I was disappointed to see that when she won and had shaken hands with the opponent and umpire, she just went straight back to her seat, pulled her phone out of her bag, and went into zombie mode on it until the presentation ceremony. Most players will go and do a bit of crowd work, sign autographs, talk to the ball boys/girls, but I guess the new generation only care about the social media.

    Cinque, I know what you mean about “the amount of food you thought was normal” we’re given food as kids and told to finish what’s on our plates so we never really learn to just eat what we need to make us feel full. As kids we were also told off if our lunchboxes came home with uneaten food in them. It gets ingrained early that you have to finish everything.

    Well have a great day everyone, it’s going to be a hot one for us today, we’re supposed to hit 28 degrees, which is well over what we usually get at this time of year.

    Welcome Gemmo and Carley.Marie.

    Gemmo we have a lot of non-fasting talk on the forum as the majority of us have been here for many, many years and have come to know each other very well, so hence the chit chat about other happenings in our lives. Plus some have been in maintenance mode for quite awhile so fasting patterns are routine with not much to report around weight gain or loss.

    Carley.Marie I’m a south Aussie too, as is LJoyce. Are you city or regional if you don’t mind me asking.

    I joined the forum 2016 or 2017, too lazy to go back to my profile to check the exact year. I lost about 15 kg, regained when I hit menopause and then 5:2 stopped working for me so I switched to my own form of keto and intermittent fasting (48 to 80 hour fasts every couple of weeks) and then lost about 25kg. Have regained a couple of kilos over the last 18 months due to the stress of the unexpected passing of my husband but I am now in the right mindset to get back on track and back to my old routine.

    I must dash, I’ve been up since 4am and it’s time to get into my swimmers and off to the local pool for my daily lap session. I like to get there just before they open at 6am so I can get one of the outside lanes, no particular reason, I just like outside lanes 🤣 Happy Thursday everyone,

    Oh exciting news, my sauna finally arrived yesterday so I’m hoping I will have time today or tomorrow to assemble.

    Hi Everyone,

    Welcome to Gemmo and Carley.Marie!

    It’s good to see you have made a decision to get healthier and you will find as you go along that the forum will help you find out how Intermittent Fasting, whichever version you choose, will work for you and how to individually tweak it to your body, your lifestyle, your way of eating, and if necessary your emotions tied up with food if that’s necessary.

    As you can tell, the regulars on this thread have been here for some time and have formed friendships through our common weight loss and maintenance journeys. This is an old thread on the 5:2 forum, as you can see we’re on page 558! Most of us are on maintenance and that includes handling any weight gain that comes with the various things that life includes or wobblies that Life throws at us. The good and bad life events can throw some of us off our usual maintenance way of eating, exercise, and we can gain a bit back, so we continue to use our fasting to help us get back on track. There are also people who come here, learn and contribute while they lose their excess weight and then wave goodbye.

    There is information here for you to use and please ask for information or advice if you need it or can’t find something. We’ve all discovered that not everyone is the same and we’ve all learnt how to weak things for us individually. We welcome everyone and support everyone on their weight loss and health journeys.

    Currently we have people from Australia and New Zealand, and 1 who started here, now living in England.

    Anyhoo, let us know how you’re getting on with your 5:2, 16:8 and any questions. You can write as little or as much as you want. There is no requirement for you to join in answering everybody and general life stuff as we sometimes do.

    Cheers,
    Merry,
    Onwards and Downwards

    Day after FD Check-in:

    Start weight: 73.5 kg
    Goal weight: 62 kg
    Before Thur FD; 70.3 kg
    Today: 69.9 kg. Yay!!!!

    Getting under 70.0 kg was my 1st mini-goal, so mini-goal achieved. Big smiles.

    Started 5:2 in November 2014 after severe and then long term chronic illness and putting on about 30kgs, and getting stuck after losing the 1st 10 kgs on my own over several years. Started 5:2 at about 83.5 kgs and reached my goal weight of 62 kgs. So a 30kg loss overall with 2/3 of that using 5:2, and being on the forum for a long time.

    Covid years and some other stressful Life and health stuff threw me off track and off the forum and I landed up at 73.5 kgs. So….I’m back on my weight loss journey to get back to 62 kgs and back on the forum again.

    Bye for now,
    Merry
    Onwards and Downwards,
    and if you fall off the horse get back on again.

    Nicely put Merry – good to read your post, and ditto what you say to Gemmo and Carley.

    Gday that daily swim must do wonders for your wellbeing, as well as your physical health. Do you keep it up during winter, or do another form of exercise?

    Neil, that childhood ‘eat everything you’re given’ sticks with us doesn’t it. It’s left me with a real hatred of waste ….but like Thin and Cinque I take restaurant food home in a bag. No shame there – my dogs appreciate a restaurant meal sometimes, if I don’t want it later.

    No real news here – except a .5 gain that’s out of the blue, and totally unexpected. So, water weight maybe? I’ll drink more today, and hope that sorts it out.

    Don’t know if I mentioned, I’d torn two tendons in my hip, which along with bursitis has been somewhat restricting. No longer able to run my dogs or show them, which makes me unhappy. So, I had PCP treatment on Tuesday and I’m holding my breath for a fix. In case you’ve not heard of it, this is what it is. “Platelet-rich plasma therapy is a form of regenerative medicine that harnesses and amplifies the natural growth factors found in our blood cells to help heal damaged tissue”. So first they took my blood then spun it to concentrate the platelets, which were then injected into my hip under ultrasound guidance. It took about an hour, under a local anaesthetic. I hope this works – my doctor believes in the treatment, but as two tendons have complete tears, may not work as well as it would have with only partial tears. Fingers crossed.

    It’s rainy here in Brisbane (as usual!) and muggy. My dogs are soundly snoozing, and OH is off having his rehabilitation session. I am embracing the serenity.

    And Cinque, I am practising your ‘rule of 3’. I think you said 7, but 3 does me. Amazing how quickly things can get tidied up, if every time I go into a room, I do 3 things to mke it better.

    Have a good day all.

    Well…Crap!

    I started getting a sore throat yesterday afternoon, it started morphing into achey joints, raised temperature, then by the time I cycled home I was absolutely exhausted. I did a Covid test, and within 2 minutes I had a thick dark positive line on the test. So looks like I’ll be isolating for the next 5 days.

    Argh Neilithicman, :((
    Commiserations and sending you the ME/CFS Mantra.

    “Stop. Rest. Pace.”

    And from me… don’t push through tiredness.
    If you’re tired – sleep.
    If you can’t sleep, lay down.
    If you can’t lay down, sit with your back and head supported and your legs up and fully supported.
    Stand only when you really need to and shiift your weight more frequently than normal.
    When you can, lean some part of you on something to take some of your weight.

    Take care and we’ll see you on the other side.

    Merry

    Good morning everyone,

    Hello Merry!
    I searched images for ‘congratulations on your mini goal’ and google thought this was appropriate, how can I disagree?
    https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/kCcAAOSwopNiQtOB/s-l1600.jpg

    It does sound like lovely Christmas with family, and now a lovely time of eating frugally and beautifully.

    Neil, Oh No. Sending good wishes for a full and speedy recovery.
    This time I wondered if they had covid specific get well wishes… well, sort of. This was my favourite
    https://02dd5f64038d9e2d7aae-56d86e996af26366aec8b255ed6f7c7b.ssl.cf3.rackcdn.com/img-mwQuVLbO-large.jpg

    Your tennis story made me laugh, that phone scrolling! But ofcourse there might have been a deeper story behind it.
    Lindsay mentioning the tennis did make me remember how much I enjoyed watching it… was it last year? Anyway I found it on TV but my brain was a bit too jumpy and I didn’t settle into it. I will keep trying though, I love it when I do get into it.

    We were brought up to eat everything on the plate, but it wasn’t hard most of the time. 😉 Servings were smaller back in the olden days when I was young (and part of a big family that struggled for money). I was always trying to get seconds. I loved growing up and being able to cook more and eat until I was full and then have dessert.

    I was watching “Poirot’ and the show ended with them eating (1930’s) icecream cones that were about half the size of even the smallest ones we have today.

    Gday, how nice to start the day off with a swim, and woot for a sauna! I hope it has all gone in beautifully.

    Lindsay, I am so sorry to hear about those two tendons in your hip. Let’s see, were you doing high wire acrobatics? Wrestling sealions? Climbing Mt Arapiles?
    And on top of bursitis! I know from my sister how terribly painful that is.
    Fingers crossed the treatment works! If it works, will you notice gradual improvement? I do so hope it works, it must be hard to manage anything at the moment.

    You were right about the rule of 3. 3 is the number! Just 3 things. As small as you like.

    Off to do three things now. (I had better count getting dressed as one or I will be in trouble!)

    Cheers all

    Good morning all.
    Oh no Neil. How unfair (is Covid ever fair though?). Follow Merry’s advice …it’s so correct.
    Cinque yes our meals were smaller then. And we never, ever, saw anyone in the street eat. And as for walking around with takeaway coffees? No, never. Possibly because coffee culture wasn’t as entrenched then, but also spending the equivalent of $5 for a hot drink when we’ve just had a cup of tea with breakfast just didn’t enter the consciousness.
    Off to the island today with the little girls – it’s their last week of holidays. the weather’s not looking promising, but I am sure we will fit in some good beach time. My DD is back to work today, but only til Wednesday so will come over for a couple of nights, and take them back for the weekend, to get ready for school.
    OK I can hear OH downstairs with “Scarlett NO” quite firmly, so I’ll go investigate.
    Enjoy your day everyone.

    Hello everyone, happy Monday

    We have had some horrible humid days but last night a cold change hit so we have opened up the house so the cool breeze can drift through. Even though I love the heat, this was diabolical

    Oh no Neil, Covid again. I hope you are feeling ok and can recover quickly

    Lindsay, so sorry to read about your hip and bursitis problems. I hope the PCP treatment helps. Enjoy your break on the Island with the girls and fingers crossed for Rosy and her pregnancy

    On top of everything else health-wise poor Maxx came home from the kennel with a bug. Lots of vomiting and two vet visits (farewell $600) he is now much better. I’m glad he came good as the next step was x-rays and an ultrasound. Poor poppet but he is back to his bouncing, thieving self and I never thought I would be so happy to see his tail disappearing out the back door with my thong (flip flop) in his mouth. We are looking at other options for our trip this year and have found a lovely couple in the next suburb via the pet sitting website Madpaws who can take him for 4 of the 6 weeks so 2 weeks in the kennel is much better than 6. They have a 4 year old lab so the two of them will have a ball

    Thin, Cuba! We loved it so much but the food was mostly terrible. Can’t wait to hear all about it

    LJ, we have booked a river cruise whilst in Europe! Ours also starts in Hungary but we are going from Budapest to Nuremberg in Germany via Vienna, Durnstein, Saltzburg and Regensburg (down the Danube). Also on our trip: Venice (because we loved it so much), Amsterdam, Barcelona, London, Scotland, Athens and Santorini

    Hello Merry, lovely to hear from you. Congrats on the mini-goal

    Cinque, we too were brought up being forced to eat everything on the plate but our portions were HUGE. My mum was a feeder. I still to this day have to think twice when giving myself portions that less is more

    I have a brand-new spreadsheet with mini goals and so much motivation. I lost my weight for the last big trip in 2019 so I can do it again

    Take care all

    Afternoon all

    Well, I’m through the other side of my second bout of Covid. I was feeling pretty sick for the first couple of days, then the symptoms were pretty mild, mostly just stuffed up nose, blocked ears, and fatigue. Needless to say, my plan to do fast800 went out the window. It’s pretty hard to fast when your body is demanding calories to fight the infection. So my weigh-in yesterday I was back up a bit. Now that I’m feeling well and back at work I can start back up again.

    I hope everyone is ok.

    Hello everyone,

    Neil, so glad the worst is over. Do all the good things, to recover well.

    Anzac, I heard Adam Liaw the other day, talking about how bad the restaurant food was in Cuba. Apparently the trick is to eat in people’s homes, so hopefully Thin has managed that somehow!

    So sorry to hear of Maxx’s troubles. I am so glad he is better now, and you have a good solution for the next time you are away.

    All power to you with those smaller meals. It must be hard when, what with your early life and then the huge meals eating out and in advertising, you try to give yourself a sensible plate of food.

    Mine still have the urge to creep up in size! I have to stay vigilant.

    Hooray for your spreadsheet!

    Cheers all

    Hello everyone from a VERY humid Sydney

    I’ve managed to lose 700g in 10 days so happy with that progress. Avoiding carbs and sugar and making sure I do some exercise bike each day on top of the dog walk. Small things can make such a difference

    Glad you are feeling better Neil and hopefully you can soon resume your Fast800. There is a lot of covid around here so I am not going into the office at all as I must protect my 98 year old Dad

    Cinque the food in Cuba was truly diabolical with the exception of when we stayed at someone’s home – just as you said! The wife fed us so much lovely breakfast we had to beg her to stop bringing more. Mr A was ok with the food in Cuba as they had lots of lovely fresh seafood and in fact he had one octopus dish that he still today says was one of the best he has ever had. Sadly I had to cope with dried out grilled chicken just about everywhere we went. One place advertised ‘roast chicken’ so I ordered it. A few of the workers came to me and between my lack of Spanish and their lack of English I managed to understand that they were concerned because the chicken was on the bone. I was so very excited to have roast chicken but guess what? They must have decided I was delusional and brought out the usual dried-out grilled, tough meat. Gah! When we flew from Havana to Miami we had a bit of a stopover so we both, I’m ashamed to say, gorged on burgers and chips in the airport. Oops

    Any news on the puppy pregnancy Lindsay? I hope your hip has improved

    Must run back to work, have a great day

    Hello everyone.

    Lindsay there is only an outdoor pool here, open from November to April so a very short season to be able to swim. The 2 biggest regional towns either side of where I live both have heated indoor pools open all year but it’s a 2 hour round trip to either one of those towns so not possible to swim all year for me unfortunately.

    Oh Neil am I right In thinking you’ve been hit with covid a few times now ? What a pain.

    Merry congratulations on hitting the mini goal. I remember moving from the 70s down to the 60s, felt awesome to see the new number on the scales.

    Loving the sauna, so easy to put together, 3 walls slot into the floor and lock together with locking clips (they must have a special name but no idea what they are called) then the door front slots in and on with the top which was the only section that had screws to screw in. All up about 20 mins to put together. And it looks fantastic too, beautiful wood paneling.

    Off to adelaide tomorrow (Friday), just a quick day trip to collect some bits and pieces from Bunnings (for me) and IKEA (for Miss GDay). From Saturday for the following 7 days we have predicted temps of 40 plus here so beating the heat with a day trip only. It doesn’t bother me being out and about in the heat but I don’t like leaving our pets outside in those temps so hence the day trip.

    My caffeine reduction is going well. I Abstained for one month and now having just 2 expressos a week, huge reduction from 6 large cups of instant coffee every single day. No wonder I’m not peeing as much in the mornings now !!

    Miss GDay and I have been making pasties today. Yesterday we made 18 batches (yes 18) of the Hairy Bikers Cornish Pasty recipe and refrigerated overnight. Today we made 70 (yes 70) pasty slices for the freezer. Marathon effort indeed, started at 7am and cleaned up and pasties in the freezer by 3pm. I’ve had one of the shed chest freezers switched off for about 6 months as I have been too busy to do much batch cooking so it wasn’t needed but I’m now doing a big cook up each week to restock the freezers again.

    Last week we made 4 large trays of lasagne, the week before it was stew and batches of rice, next week it will be sausage rolls., then sweet potato and ricotta rolls, spinach and ricotta cannelloni and vegie bakes. All frozen and portioned into one person size meals. Before Xmas I made quite a few different soups for the freezers too. Lots of carby foods there but they freeze well and so easy for Miss GDay to get her own meal if I’m busy or fasting. I always have mine with a large salad so I’m not consuming too much white processed carbs, balance it out with a healthy salad.

    Must go, have prattled on enough for one post. Bye for now

    Morning all

    G’day, this is my second time with Covid, the first time I think was 2022 so I haven’t had it too bad, it’s my wife’s third time with it though. I’ve also managed to cut back on my caffeine consumption to just 1 coffee per day. I’ve switched out to a really nice rooibos and vanilla pod tea as my other hot drinks.

    Anzac, congrats on the loss. There is nothing worse than dried out chicken, That’s why I find it crazy that chicken breast is so much more popular than thighs on the bone, Chicken breast not only dries out faster than the thigh fillets, but thighs just have so much more flavour.

    Last day of work today then I’m back on holiday, so thanks to my covid I only had to work 2 days this week. Oh well, I had plenty of time to sit back and watch some cricket.

    Have a good one everyone.

    Hello lovelies,

    Anzac, what a miserable dried chicken story. Hooray for the home cooked breakfast.
    Hooray for that 700g gone. You are right, small things make such a difference.
    I hope you get some clear dry days n Sydney soon.

    Gday, that sauna sounds amazing. Well done! I can’t imagine putting anything together in 20 minutes, I’m impressed!
    I hope it was a lovely successful Adelaide trip.
    What brilliant batch cooking!

    I am just ‘eating my freezer’ and it is taking weeks, even though my bulk cooking is more 4 – 6 serves rather than 70. (I wouldn’t mind having 70 pasties though).
    As well as finishing the frozen meals I made, there are bits and pieces like a little container of left over gravy I froze, and some bamboo shoots, tomato paste, halloumi (yum!) and things like that I want to get used up.

    My daughter has given up on the veg box as they messed around her payment, so I am celebrating what a good and interesting time it has been fitting my cooking around the veggie box, and also enjoying getting back to my old routine of planning some meals first and then buying to suit them… as soon as I have eaten the freezer.

    Neil, Happy Holidays!
    Enjoy that one coffee a day, and all the lovely things.

    I had a very social day yesterday meeting up with my sisters and their partners, my daughter and kids and my nephew for a lovely lunch. I ordered so cleverly (sharing things with a sister) that I didn’t have leftovers for my doggy bag! But then my granddaughter had a couple of her pizza pieces left over for me to bring home 😀 Beautifully cooked in a woodfired oven so a treat for later.

    And it was so good to catch up with the son of my sister Jan (who died 15 months ago) we talked for a couple of hours before he went back to Bendigo.

    I did an absolutely brutal clean out of my wardrobe, and I am so pleased I did. Everything left are things I just love so much.

    Best wishes everyone. Keep doing the good things!

    Hi everyone,

    Well, I guess they say it’s better late than never! I did try and re-start on 8th Jan, but found I was only playing at it again, but last Thursday was a new D-Day. A week ago I had to visit the Dr’s, new practice, new doc, so she decided to take bloods and do a full screen, Cholesterol, diabetes, liver, iron etc, etc. After all the results came in I was so pleased to find everything came back absolutely perfect apart from cholesterol, bugger! So the cheese and coconut cream are now gone and OH and I are back on the 800 every day, I have dropped from 72.2 last Thurs to 71 this morning so more than happy with that. I’ve read all the books again and have filled the fridge with goodies, so on a roll now.

    We are still located up in Bannockburn where most days it’s really hot and windy, sitting on about 25’c right now, but with the warm northerly it feels nearer 30’c which it was yesterday! I’m getting in lots of reading whilst it hot, saving the walking and cycling till it cools down.

    Glad to hear you are feeling better from your latest bout of Covid Neil, there is an awful lot of it about now, it will be interesting to see how it is managed under the present Government. Happy Holidays, are you planning on some cycling?

    That dried chicken sounds horrendous Anzac, Cuba has always been on my list of countries to visit, I know several people who have been and I always hear good reports. Your end of year trip sounds great, how long will you be away?

    I guess your sauna will be great in the winter GDay, I feel like I’m in one already during the summer months!! Although I’m sure it is much much worse further North on the North Island. All that batch cooking, good on you, it wouldn’t be much good for me unfortunately as pastry really doesn’t agree with me anymore and I’m not a pasta fan either.

    Well done on that loss so far Merry, it’s so frustrating how life gets in the way eh? I have discovered through my 5:2/800 journey that I am an emotional eater, and I make really bad food choices when I’m tired. But I have to admit, my sleep hasn’t really improved much yet, I’ve probably not lost enough!

    So glad you had a lovely family catch up Cinque, they are so important, and a wardrobe clear out too! I don’t think I have enough clothes with me to throw any away, one of the joys of continually travelling light.

    How is Rosy doing Lindsay, any news on the pregnancy yet?

    I might make Thursday my new weigh-in day so I’ll report back then if not before, I’ll be off now and pick some more apricots from the orchard next door,

    Turn

    Well what a week it’s been. We headed over to the island last Monday evening, with two of the little girls and the doggos. Beautiful Tuesday morning walk on the beach, swim, icecream and lunch, all had showers and settling in to read and snooze, when I got a call from OH in the bathroom. He was passing blood – not a few drops – a couple of cups, at least. Emergency evacuation off the island, a week in hospital (where he remains) and no answers. All they can say is there’s no sign of malignancy. Very scary. Hopefully he’ll be home tomorrow.

    The little girls were such troupers. After the paramedics took OH, we had a couple of hours until we could get a barge home. They packed all their things and helped clean up the house etc., all without needing to be asked. I brought them home with me – they could gave gone home but I felt if they needed to talk about what happened, it would be best so I could explain things. So we sat on the sofa and we watched The Castle (‘very sweary marmar’, the 10 year old warned), and they went to bed comfortable with the events of the day.

    The 10 year old blew me away. After the paramedics left, she commented that the intertwined snakes on their uniforms were the same as Hermes had. Ignorant me thought she meant Hermes the brand. No, she was talking about the caduseus symbol and Hermes the Greek god. How does she know these things?

    Turn, Anzac, no news yet on Rosy’s pregnancy. We should know on Thursday when she has her ultrasound, but I feel she is in whelp.

    I love the notion of eating the freezer Cinque. Mine unfortunately is stocked with meat (I bought a side of beef, so OH could have more red meat)and not delicious home made things. Lovely to have that catchup with your family, and your sister’s son. You must miss her.

    anzac, yuk for dry grilled chicken. We had something similar in Portugal with translation of a dish, which seemed to say “Mother of Chicken”. In fact that’s exactly whatit was; a boiled whole hen. Nothing with it. Just boiled hen.

    Your cooking sounds amazing Gday ….what a task. Ditto with the sauna. Very practical skills you have.

    Nei, glad the Covid is passing. Still, how very unpleasant.

    OK, dog dinner time, and it’s a stinking 38 degrees so cooking chicken porridge is the last thing I want to do, but it’s so good for them, and makes their coats shine so beautifully. The temps drop by 10 degrees from tomorrow, but a cyclone is circling and the BOM is forecasting severe flooding if it swings south.

    My weight is holding, btw, but not dropping much. Well, .1 of a kilo a week since the start of the year. At this rate, it will take 10 weeks to lose just one kilo which I can then put on with just a day of careless eating. Still, bigger fish to fry just at the moment.

    Hello friends

    Lindsay, how terrifying for you and I’m really sorry your poor OH is back in hospital. Don’t kids truly blow us away sometimes? I’m so glad you were able to spend time with them so they were settled and not too traumatised. I have everything crossed for your OH.

    We had a dreadfully hot day/night on Sunday where it was still 37 degrees at 7pm. It has been years since we had a hot summers night like that. Thankfully a southerly blew in around 10pm and yesterday was only in the mid twenties with a cool breeze

    Neil I’m totally with you in relation to chicken breast versus thigh. The only time we use breast is (1) I’ll cook one to have in a salad and I have a fool-proof method that ensures it is juicy and perfectly cooked every time (2) for when we have schnitzel. I hope you are continuing to get over the horrible covid

    Cinque, well done for cleaning out the wardrobe. It was on top of my list of things to do in the 10 days I had off between coming home from QLD and going back to work. Sadly the virus kicked in and I was too sick to do much at all so the empty garbage bag is still on the floor of the wardrobe. Perhaps Australia day weekend. How lovely for you to have such a lovely family catch-up but I’m sure it was bittersweet as you must miss your sister very much

    Good luck being back on the 800 Turn and that was a great loss straight up. I love apricots and I would be visiting that orchard many times if it were near me. Our trip has been trimmed to 5 weeks as we were struggling to get frequent flyer seats home in early January. I remember when we flew home from India at that time of year and our plane to Singapore was very late and we missed our connection to Sydney. We were stuck there for 3 nights as all flights were booked solidly. We didn’t mind, Qantas paid for accommodation and all meals in a lovely hotel. So we had to chuck out Greece and now we have managed to get all the way home and land on Christmas day. I’ll post the full itinerary when it is finally settled

    That sauna sounds awesome G’day and my mouth is watering at the thought of those pastries 🙂

    Mr Maxx is nudging my elbow to remind me it is walkies time so take care all

    Hi everyone,

    Hi Turn – lovely to hear how you are going and what a good start it’s been. Well done you. Great idea to get everything sorted and re-stocked to set up for continuing 800.

    Lindsay – Woah, hope Mr L is improving, it get’s sorted and he’s back home soon. So grateful for our paramedics and ambos. Quite an experience for you and your kiddies and what troopers they are. Maybe your 10 year old has been reading some of the Percy Jackson series. All revolves around kids who discover they are the 1/2 mortal children of Greek Gods. We’ve had a similar experience of a younger one, and that was the source.

    Cinque – So sorry to hear about your sister. How special to have a wonderful family catchup and some dedicated time with your sister’s son.

    Thin – Cuba hey, you do get around. So interesting to visit there but the universal dry chicken sounds dreadful. Wishing you some much better 5:2ish food.

    Neil – must be a relief to be coming out of this lot of Covid without a nasty dose. While the worst may be over there’s still quite a lot of it around. Best wishes to your wife for getting well soon. Yay for January sport to watch.

    G’day – I’m gobsmacked. What a culinary feat. Hat’s off to you and Miss G’Day!

    Day after Fast Day check-in:
    Start weight: 73.5 kg
    Weigh-in: 69.5 kg
    Loss to date: 4.0 kg
    Goal weight: 62.0 kg
    It’s a bit of the usual see-saw between FD’s but still on a downward average overall.

    Best wishes to everyone for a good remainder of January. A bit of tennis watching going on here.
    Bye for now,

    Onwards and Downwards,
    Merry,
    And if you fall off the horse climb back on.

    Super quick post as I haven’t caught up on reading last few posts to comment, plus it’s nearly bedtime for me. Thought I’d let everyone know of our temperature here today – at 4.36 this afternoon it peaked at 48.2 in the shade under my back verandah. It’s 9pm now and sitting at 39.9. Phew – it’s a tad hot 🥵🥵

    Good morning everyone. I finally have the time and energy for an update.

    I have been busy with school holiday babysitting and had forgotten (as I always seem to) just how tiring that is over the long summer break. The kids went back to school this week. My great-nephew started high school, but he seemed unphased by the transition. More running around for my nephew’s wife though as their youngest is still at primary school for 2 more years.

    My last goal had been to not gain weight over December. I succeeded with that up until Christmas day and then the wheels fell off. Several unplanned social events popped up between Christmas and new year and I ended the month a couple of kilos up. That’s now off and I’m slowly inching my way down further. I’m hovering just above 80kg at the moment and am hoping to be somewhere in the 70s when I head off on the next holiday (only a month away).

    I am trying to keep my increased exercise regime up, but that’s a real challenge on the hot days.

    I’ve had a flurry of medical appointments this week that I deliberately scheduled for after the babysitting ended. Two more appointments this afternoon, including another covid booster with the latest vaccine (I’m happy to be getting that before my trip).

    I’m catching up with all the posts I’ve missed and will post some comments separately.

    Take care.

    G’Day, I just have no words.

    Lindsay – keeping Mr L, you and your family in my prayers.

    Good afternoon. I have now had a chance to catch up on the posts from recent weeks.

    Lindsay, I do hope Mr L recovers soon. What a frightening experience for you all.
    Amazing things your grand daughters come out with.

    GDSA, I hope you are getting some of the rain that’s just arrived in Adelaide.
    I am astounded at the food production happening in your house.

    Merry, excellent work getting back into the the 60s.

    Anzac, that trip is sounding awesome. Make sure you have some days in Budapest. There’s a lot to see. The man who drove us to our hotel from the airport said that it’s a very safe city even to walk around, even in the evening. We took him at his word and it was lovely to see the city lit up at night.
    I seriously looked at an Avalon cruise from Budapest to Nuremberg when I was deciding where to sail – in the end a heavily discounted price led me to my chosen cruise.

    Neil, glad to hear that you got over covid more swiftly this time. Hope you are back to normal now.

    Turn, good luck with the 800cal program – I’m also doing something similar at present.

    Cinque, so nice that you caught up with your sisters and nephew.
    I do have eating the freezer weeks too, where every evening meal must use something from the freezer. I usually have to resort to that when it’s so full I can barely close it.
    I too have been culling clothes – and buying lots more from op shops!

    Thin, I hope you are enjoying Cuba, and managing to avoid the overcooked chicken. Hope you manage to catch up with your daughter during your travels.

    If I’ve forgotten anyone, hello. Hope you are going ok.

    After the weight gain in the last week of December I’ve been very careful with my eating. I’ve mostly been aiming for 800-1000cal every day. I’m not counting calories but have a good idea of food choices and portion sizes that keep me in that range. While the weather’s been hot I’ve been making a large iced mocha for brunch (coffee, cocoa, stevia, psyllium, low cal almond milk and skim milk powder plus lots of ice and water blended in a large tumbler) It’s very filling and keeps me going until mid afternoon when I make a really thick smoothie from one serve of frozen fruit (usually berries), one serve of dairy (usually yoghurt/kefir & almond milk), psyllium, stevia, heaps of ice and a bit of water. It’s so thick I can eat it with a spoon like soft serve icecream. Dinner is a large leafy salad with a small portion grilled chicken or lamb. If the weather becomes colder I’ll need to change my choices, but the cold smoothies have been lovely on the hot days. I’ve been worried about the limited access to exercise while I’m on the ship combined with the apparently excellent cuisine. So I want to be as light as possible before I go. I will be able to walk around the ship, but it only holds 270 passengers, so it’s a much smaller vessel than most cruse ships (no large decks to walk laps around). They have a gym on board so I can use an exercise mat to do some yoga each day.

    As I mentioned above, I’ve been scouring the op shops recently. I had a bit of a panic after christmas when I realised I have to dress in evening clothes for dinner on the ship. I own one wedding appropriate outfit only (I go out to lunch not dinner these days so I never replaced my evening clothes collection from when I was much larger)! I can’t stretch one outfit to cover 10 nights! I have a pair of black pants that are suitable for evening and a reversible organza wrap around skirt (plum one side and dark blue the other). They are both light weight and don’t crease so I decided I’d take both garments and then hunt for tops to go with them. I ended up buying more than I really needed – I came home with 13 items. I have 9 tops, 2 lightweight evening jackets, a beaded black lace scarf and a pleated silver wrap. The total came to $102 (it would have been less but 2 items were quality brands and priced around $20 each). I have enough now that I can work out which garment selection gives me the best mix and match options without taking any more space than absolutely necessary. I only have a medium sized suitcase and I have a large pair of rubber boots for getting onto the Antarctic ice that take up half the suitcase space. Given that I also need bulky cold weather clothing I could see it wasn’t all going to fit. So I ended up buying a carry on duffle bag in the post Christmas sales that I can use as my carry-on luggage, so that I have enough space for everything I have to take. I even considered ordering room service dinners most nights on the ship so I could avoid all of the palaver of dressing up, but decided it was just too antisocial to do that. I did enjoy the socialising at meal times on the river cruise.

    I have a day off from my eating regime tomorrow. My neighbour always hosts an Australia day lunch to which we all bring a salad or dessert. She placed a special request for a specific dessert – mostachon de fresa – Mexican strawberry meringue cake. (It’s a cross between a pavlova and a cheesecake). I did point out the inappropriateness of her asking for a Mexican dessert for Australia Day. I had better get baking very soon as the base needs to be cold before I can do the next stages.

    The drizzle from this morning has turned into heavy steady rain while I’ve been typing. My garden will be very happy.

    Take care everyone.

    Hi all from a not so hot NZ, wow G’Day, I don’t think I could cope with those temperatures.

    Well, Thursday is my new ‘weigh-in’ day, and I’m 2kgs down on last Thursday which was our first 800 day, so really happy with that. OH recorded the same too, so two happy dances here.

    Good to hear from you again LJoyce, kinda guessed you’d be busy with babysitting duties. I know what you mean regarding fitness plans and the heat, we have put off several walks because it’s too hot, or put off cycling because it’s so damn windy! Speaking of which I have just spent a good couple of hours cleaning our bikes that were desperately in need of it, ready to use them over in Arrowtown/Queenstown tomorrow. It’s funny how your wheels fell off the same day mine did, but it took me so long to get my head back in the space it feels like I’ve wasted so much time already. Anyway, it is what it is, onward and upward.

    Well done you Merry, hope you’re enjoying the tennis. Hope to catch you up soon, hahaha.

    All kudos to you Lindsay with all you have on your plate currently, my weight would have increased by so much if I was in your situation. Thinking of you, I do hope your OH’s health is stable and you finally have an explanation.

    Must dash, off for a walk before dinner, cheers, Turn

    Hi everyone, back in the land of the living, just on 10 days. The first week really struggled awake some days for over 24 hours and completely wired. Eventually went and got some melatonin tablets before I drove myself crazy with sleep deprivation. Had two good nights sleep and last night slept without tablets.
    Too many posts to reply to but have loved reading all the messages. GDay you are awesome and such a role model after all you have been through. Hope Thin is enjoying her trip, it’s strange not having her post.
    My trip was wonderful if not somewhat freezing. Spending time with the family for Xmas/New Year indescribable , so many memories. Had a chauffeur driven tour of the London Xmas lights, spent time at the Xmas markets in Trafalgar Square and listened to Carol singers, walked down Oxford Street and went to Covent Garden. Had an absolutely thoroughly spoilt afternoon tea at the 5* Corinthia Hotel, the staff couldn’t do enough for us and the food was exceptional. We even got to take home leftovers.
    Our three day trip to Spain was amazing. Went to Cartegna to view the three kings festival, also amazing and did some other sightseeing.
    Now preparing for my trip to India in March. LJoyce regarding packing. Today I ordered some compression packing cubes from Amazon for $39. I’d never heard of them before but an ad came up in my Facebook feed. They look great, might work for you. There are quite a few varieties of different costs.
    Apart from my India and Turkey trips I have now also booked one for Morocco in October. I’ve decided that this year is for me regardless of cost, as we all know life can throw us curve balls at anytime.
    I received a Xmas card from my brother but have know inclination to contact him. Still waiting to hear from the solicitor to finalise everything.
    Although not back into 5:2 I still leave 14-16 hours from dinner to breakfast. I know it is mostly water but have managed to lose a few kilos since returning. I was 78.3 and last weigh in a few days ago 75.7 Still a long way from the 65 I was a few years ago but I’m determined to get back down.
    Hello to Cinque/Anzac/Lindsay/Turn/Merry and anyone I’ve forgotten. Let’s hope this year is a better one for us all. Take care

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