Setting myself up for success

Hello everyone! Hope you have been keeping well.

Myself – I have yet again been struck down with yet another setback on the health scale – what I thought had started out as hayfever, has turned into a full blown asthma issue with coughing so much that my muscles all along my diaphragm so tender and sore.

ANYWHO!! I am feeling much better but yet again – I am having to start over again on my exercise regime. Got to have 4 rest days this week but have really made the point to ensure that I’m eating nutrients rather than calories. Yes a fresh made vegetable juice is going to add to my calories but the nutrient content is worth it.

The same as my smoothies and my meals. Nutrients – not calories.

I am on the warpath today – I am setting myself up for success for the next 9-12 months to shed 25.9kg.

Things I have done to ensure I have success

* I have ordered my getfitbooks for a whole year to ensure I write down what I eat so I can assess and make sure that I’m not cutting back on my nutrition. It’s said – over and over and over – eat like an athlete. Eat to fuel your body – your body needs protein, fats, carbs, nutrients to just function, repair and do what I’m expecting it to do with these workouts.

* I’m setting up my morning routine so I can have my vegetable juice and lemon juice to start the morning before breakfast.

* I have been working through Chalene Johnson’s 30 day Push book and online challenge. Talk about an eye opener. I will have to dedicate a whole post to my PUSH goal because it will just take up too much time but it’s really helped me get clarity, break my major goal down into smaller pieces and make it seem to be so achievable.

* I am about to embark on a year long challenge set out by The Orange Rhino to not yell for 365 days at the family. So many things happen out of my control in this household every single day and yet, I find myself yelling and screaming about things that are not going to change but I take on the physical effects from MY behaviour. This needs to stop and even though I’m not in control of what the kids might do – I am certainly in control of my behaviour.

Lots of things going on in my world – I don’t get to blog nearly as much as I would like – but feel free to follow me on

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This one is a toughie to write – I think it’s a toughie too because it’s an accountability blog and a proverbial shit sandwich weight loss post but there is a huge positive at the end, so keep reading if you dare.

So – let’s get it out there and done and off my back!

July 8 2012 was a great day – christened our second son and was surrounded by people who mean the world to me. A few weeks later – my ‘mental world’ was rocked when I saw what the rest of the world sees. A fat person.


This was me on July 8, 2012. Hello no neck!

I said I was going to lose this weight for those people that I love dearly – fast-forward a year and I have shed 27.5kg or 60.2lbs. I have removed over 106cm from my body. Fantastic – I’m super happy with that and so glad I started when I did.


Trying to pull the shirt in to show the room I have in it considering it was so tight a year ago

Trying to pull the shirt in to show the room I have in it considering it was so tight a year ago

Don't mind the terror-tot in the background. :) Or the mess in my gym!

Don’t mind the terror-tot in the background. 🙂 Or the mess in my gym!


I have a jawline and my neck is slowly going down :)

I have a jawline and my neck is slowly going down 🙂

I look at those pictures and yes, I can see progress, but in my mind, it’s not much progress.

I am the first to admit that I’ve always had a doubt in my mind that I would be successful with my weight loss. A friend mentioned yesterday that she was ‘comfortable’ with her weight, even though in her mind, (I think she’s stunning regardless of her weight), she says she needs to lose weight.

I have been on this weight loss bandwagon for two and a half decades. Yes, when I was 10, I remember looking at my mother’s magazines for ‘diet’ tips. Although I’ve done really well – I just feel like I’m treading in water. I’m doing what needs to be done but it just don’t see the results.

But here comes the proverbial shit sandwich. I still feel like the woman who weighs 121kg.

  • Yes, I’m able to run for 5km – but the weight on my bones makes my body ache for days after and my feet, ankles, knees, hips, back all scream in agony that I really have to make up my mind of if it’s worth the pain of trying to do simple tasks the following few days.
  • I’m still not able to wear the clothes I want to wear as I still have a lot of fat on my body and if it’s not fat, it’s skin. My tummy has shrunk – by protruding standards. It doesn’t stick out as much. It just hangs over my hips and gets tucked into my pants which means I still have to wear long tops or it looks like I’m smuggling a mile long salami or python through customs.
  • I can do proper on my toe pushups – doesn’t mean shit if you can’t wear a shirt because you are so uncomfortable about showing your untoned, saggy, stretch mark covered arms.

The positive part, well in my mind, I know these are all superficial reasons, but I have not worked so hard on my body and my mental state to still be wearing baggy, unflattering clothing. I want to show off my efforts. My brain finally feels confident but when I see the reflection in the mirror, that confidence gets stripped in an instant. To look at me, you would still call me fat, coz I am, but do a work out with me, talk to me about nutrition and I’m sure I would be able to give you a run for your money.

I know and have always known that I will need some kind of cosmetic surgery on my tummy and possibly my arms. I wonder if subconsciously I have told myself that I will never have the money for surgery, so I need to be comfortable with my apron nappy and saggy arms?

Well, the truth is – I have the money. I just sold my investment property – so now I have put the money aside for my surgery. The day I sat down with my husband to work out how the money was going to be put to good use (kid’s education and property improvements), I said ‘I would like to set aside X amount to pay for the surgery my body is going to need’.

That was like the slap in the face my brain needed. I have all the tools, the money, the time and the ability to get there. A lot of people won’t understand what I’m trying to say – I want to feel comfortable in my own skin. I have felt fat and cumbersome for the majority of my life. Yes, I did that all to myself, just as I’m working my ass off – getting up at 5am in the freezing winter to work out in an equally cold garage and doing all the right things of eating well and providing my body with the nutrition that it’s been starved of for years – all in the name of being the best example to my kids. I’m getting stronger – yes, absolutely. I’m getting fitter – yep – sure am! But am I feeling more comfortable? No. Jeans fresh from the dryer as so baggy around my under bum and thighs but I need them in the bigger size to fit my smuggled python of a tummy. I just want to feel comfortable in my own skin. Some of that skin will have to go but it will go. I just have to make sure that I’m the strongest, healthiest candidate so when the time comes, it can happen.

The only thing that’s stopping me from achieving the body that I want to have – is me. What are you stopping yourself from achieving?

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day wherever you are in the world.


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Someone took the time for me

As I’ve mentioned before, I find myself struggling with balance. Balance of my life, my desires, the desires for my family and for my work.

I’d spent the morning racing around trying to get stuff ready for the boys while I was going to be at work. I’ve said it before and will say it again, I feel like I have to do double duty on the days that I have commitments to make sure that everything continues to run smoothly as possible for the kids and household.

I’m getting set up for work and I thought I was doing okay but it took one person to stop and ask me ‘are you okay? you seem a bit … not yourself’.

And that’s when the floodgates opened.

Sitting at my desk, on the floor with my 40-odd colleagues surrounding me – sobbing my heart out, feeling like such a failure – I had to admit to myself – you can’t do it all Karen.

My point is, when I’m at home – I want to be there 100% in the present. When I’m at work – I want to be there 100% in the zone but all I can think about is ‘what didn’t you get done at home today that is going to put me behind the 8-ball for when you get home’ – it’s just not FUN to come home to a kitchen full of dishes after being at work or seeing that the washing that was dry from the day is now wet again from the dew because it wasn’t on the mind of anyone else to get the washing in.

Ultimately, I’m one person doing the work of four within the house and it has to stop. Hubster is an awesome guy, but he just doesn’t think about things that same way I do. The washing is a prime example. Miracles happen in this house – we should get a crew out to document the wonderful magical creatures that get the washing out, get it in and pack it all away!!

I must use the word balance at least once a day – I’m striving for it – feel like I’m failing at it but I won’t give up on it.

When I got home from work – I wrote that team leader a little note just to say – thank you for taking the time – yes, it caused a gaping hole in the crack she dared to poke – but it helped me get some clarity, and ultimately some systems and solutions in place to make my life a bit easier.

For her taking the time, I’m forever grateful.

So, now, I’m taking the time for you – how are you? how have you been? what’s been bugging you? Anything you want to get off your chest to bring some clarity.

The great Anthony Robbins said ‘spent 80% on the solution and just 20% on the problem’ – I’m working hard on that 80%.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day wherever you are.


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Yes, I’m still here …

and I hate to say it but again, life has just been getting in the way.

More the point, I’m just struggling to find that elusive thing called ‘balance’. Anyone who knows me in the real world, knows I speak at 100miles per hour, often go blank on my sentences (which never used to happen), often forgetting things now and worst of all, unable to keep a lot of commitments due to things cropping up like kid’s sicknesses – a lot of these things are well out of my control but it’s really made me just stop and assess the situation.

All these things that have been happening to me – forgetfulness, vagueness, just plain disinterest – are qualities that I detest. I have never wanted to be known as flighty, vague or unreliable. So I’ve really taken the last few weeks to sit down with a plan, write down a hell of a lot of goals, some strategies and even *gasp* admit that I need help with some areas.

The biggest thing that’s come to the forefront is the running of the household. Put it simply, we have way too much stuff for this house. Way too much stuff that we’ve held onto for whatever reason. Way too much stuff that I feel is stealing my living time as I’m constantly either picking it up, packing it away or looking past it to find another space for the thing that’s in my hand to be packed away.

So, this has lead me to looking and being super inspired by the simpler life idea. The room that’s held me accountable is the kitchen. It became a dumping ground. We purposely built this 4m by 4m marvellous kitchen to be inspired and cook – but that’s exactly what we weren’t doing. Couldn’t find bench space for the stuff in the way. So I dedicated a week to gutting, cleaning, clearing and resetting the kitchen and pantry.

Six huge garbage bags for donations, an over flowing garbage bin, a lot of ‘shit’ food (processed, nil nutrient – just nasty stuff) thrown out we have now got our dream kitchen up and running again. There’s a lot to be said about spending some time and thought in planning where things are located in rooms.

Cooking is now a joy again. I LOVE getting in and cooking healthy, nutritious and yummy meals. I’m slowly working my way around the house – I have currently done the kitchen and pantry, the boys toy cupboard and husband and my bedroom cupboards.

My goal is to move around the house and garage so I can have it all gone by the end of July. A lot of things are being donated or given away – love love love that – and as a last resort, they are going into the bin.

I’ve actually made up a schedule too for blogging – so – thanks for being patient with me – my goal is to absolutely do more writing – it’s just – as many of you know – trying to find that balance of life, family, work, other commitments – some times something has to give, so again, thanks for being patient with me 🙂

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day wherever you are.



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One quarter of the way through a goal

So The Hill to Harbour was the first of my four fun runs that I committed myself to this year is up. I booked a hotel room for the night before so I didn’t have to stress about travelling and being up at all hours of the night for the kids and can have one night of much needed rest and relaxation.

h2h9   This is me – a little excited to be on my own for the first time in years:)

The room was great, huge big bed all for me – one side covered with magazines, books and my journal and a few snacks while the other side was plenty room for me and the TV remote. There’s a reason I don’t watch TV at home because a lot of the shows are infomercials that really manage to work their magic in making me believe that I truly do need that swivel mop or that new saucepan set.

With working as a shift worker and being mum to two young boys – having just a chance to put my feet up – what a luxury. Those feet needed as much rest as possible to face up to the challenge of my 10km the next day.

Fast-forward to race day. My bestie sent me a kind ‘wake up’ message when he hit the road to meet me at 5am – sad to say – I was already awake. Stupid internal body clock and nerves.

Head down in the attempt to get some breaky as I only packed a banana thinking I might not to be too hungry  but I didn’t want to overdo it considering my options for toilet stops on the way were minimal to none.

Came a cropper – breaky doesn’t open till 7am on weekends. Damn you 6am! So, off to the car to go to Maccas to get one of their yoghurt thingers for breaky. On my way, met two people who stayed at the same place – the woman was doing the 5km while the male was doing the half marathon ‘yeah – just decided the other week that I was going to do it’. ‘Bastard’ I thought – no training, no prep, no head games – he just decided where I put so much thought into it, overthinking ‘can I do it – will I come last’ who cares? Just do it!

Get to Maccas and this is a good thing as it shows how long it has been since I’ve been there. No yoghurt thing to order. Hmm, cars lining up behind me, I ordered the bagel with jam, toasted English muffin and some apple slices. Of that order I got one toasted bagel, a toasted English muffin and one little pot of butter. No jam. No apple slices. Karma!

h2h8 Jimmy and me waiting at the starting line for the walkers.

Jimmy has arrived and we set off to get his bib and land at the starting line. I’m feeling pretty good. Do some light stretches and try not to look at the hill that just looks like a shit of a thing. Was lucky enough to see the marathoners – inspiring.

h2h7  Lining up and waiting …

So we line up. Up where the walkers are meant to be. It takes us about four minutes to get to the start line and kick off our time. First challenge – get up this bloody hill. It’s one of those ‘false sense’ hills. With the line of sight – you think that’s the top of the hill. Oh no. Keep going around the hill and up … and up … and up.

h2h4 Officially into the race. The only smile while going up that hill!

I became self-conscious of my breathing as I was trying to power up the hill when Jimmy asked ‘are you okay?’ ‘Yep – just trying to keep up with my legs and we started to pick people off. ‘Red shirt’ and we’d focus on our stride till we passed them.

One kilometre down. I don’t really know which kilometre things started to hurt (probably at the start line lol) but I just pushed it to the back of my mind and started to focus on the woman who would jog past us and then start to walk and we’d over take her. This game of cat and mouse went on for at least four more passings.

Jimmy and I felt like we could have jogged for a little but we signed up for the walk part and I wanted to know what time I could walk it in – not walk jog. Bit disheartening when you see other ‘walkers’ jogging on by. Either way – my race – not theirs. My time – no theirs is what I was focused on.

For me there was nothing but inspiration. Even as I was passing people and being passed, I tried to puff out a coherent sentence of encouragement. Most of them just looked at me oddly. The hardest part for I think both myself and Jimmy was the last three kilometres. Things were hurting, people were starting to run past us to get the job done. I felt like my form was at its poorest. We snaked back around the lighthouse, along the foreshore, past the finish line to continue along the foreshore. The further we walked, it felt the finish line was never going to come. But that’s when the rains did. Just lightly though. Enough to cool us down and make us go that little bit faster to stop us from getting soaked. We started to overtake people as we powered along. More words of encouragement were sent their way. ‘In another 10 minutes – this will all be over and you would have done it!’ that’s when the smiles came.

And speaking of smiles, there were strategically placed photographers and I made it my mission to keep an eye out for them so they got a happy smiley photo – not one of how I was truly feeling. Picture, if you will, that contorted face of pain that’s struggling to breath that verges on that ugly cry face – yeah – you know that one. That’s what I was determined to hide. Coz everything hurt. A walker I am but one that keeps this pace is something I have to work on. At the end of the race, I could barely walk another step. We walked at least another 2km to get to the car and Christ, I just wanted to get my shoes off.

We made it off the road & on to the grass to the finish line. I asked Jimmy if he would hold my hand as we crossed the finish line.

h2h6 One of the beaches in Merewether. Just out of shot are the rain clouds

Our goal was to finish and we had done that. Along the way we had decided to finish in under 1 hour 45. We did it in 1:34. I look like I’m being guided over the finish line in the official photo by my carer but we had achieved our two goals. Endomondo says 1:40 but that’s coz we passed the finish line, dove for the water cups, took off our timing chip and then I was like ‘Oh! Need to turn Endomondo off!’

h2h2 h2h3

Newcastle truly has some of the most beautiful coast lines – even the dark clouds looming out over the coal ships and the sound of thunder rolling over our heads didn’t deter us. The giggles, the sad moments (Jimmy’s dog that he had for 18 years passed just days before the race), the world’s and personal problems that we solved in our walk time. I don’t get to spend nearly as much time as I would like with Jimmy but every time I talk to him, it’s like the conversation had never stopped.

So one down. We are preparing to jog as much as we can and then walk what we need too for the colour run that’s on May 5. Hubby’s shifts and my roster are just going from bad to worse – my youngest had the measles and has been really sick from his needles. He’s teething with about 6 teeth at once so life is quite hard with him (no consistency) but I see this as my challenge.

h2h10 At the end of race one!

On the days where hubster is home, I will have no guilt about getting some training in. On the days where it’s sunny – both boys can go in the double pram and I can get an arm work out in too. On the days where nothing goes my way, at the very least, when the boys are in bed, I can do a dvd. Not ideal but I don’t care how tired I am, or how over the day I am – I know I can never get that feeling of regret if I just get in and get it done.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day wherever you are.


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15.5 cms gone in a month!

I know! Astonishing right!? Well I’ll get to the stats in a minute but this month has been a challenge to say the least.

Started back at work, my bubber boy had the measles (complication with his vaccination), trying to fit everything in (and sometimes failing).

I set myself a challenge for a month back on March 9. I said to myself ‘try and lose as much as you can’. Well – the scales have been playing head games with me and really undermining my mental strength.

Today I finalised and weighed in … I’d lost 400g compared to a month ago. Devastated and shattered could be two words to use to describe how I felt when I saw it on the paper.  So I said to myself ‘may as well see what the measurements say’.

The graph below says it all. I’m thrilled beyond words that I’m officially a size 18 on both top and bottom. The first time in decades and I mean that literally when I say it. I said to my husband – it blows my mind that hopefully in a few months, I’ll be buying size 16!!



  March 9, 2013 April 9, 2013 totals
Weight 95.6kg 95.2kg -400
Dress size 18 -20 18  
Upper chest 113cm 109cm -4
Bust 115cm 117cm +2
Ribcage 102cm 100cm -2
Waist 110cm 103cm -7 woohoo
Hip 134 132 -2
L bicep 39 39  
R bicep 38 38  
L thigh 65 65  
R thigh 65 64 -1
L Calf 39 38.5 -.5
R Calf 39 38.5 -.5
Neck 38 37.5 -.5


That’s a total of 15.5cm gone in a month!!! Hello tape measure my newest lover!

I still can’t get my head around it – but I’m thrilled! Absolutely thrilled.

I have a few goals I’m working on so I’ll update you in the next couple of posts. I’ve actually made to blog more one of my goals, so hopefully when the kids are down at night, I’m not too brain dead to make a coherent sentence. 🙂


Have a great day wherever you are and thanks for stopping by




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Me and the next phase …

Have to share … So I have been on maternity leave since April 2012 for the birth of our second son. I go back to work next Monday. It’s a given, has to happen, 2 mortgages, a business, kids activities and all those other pesky things that we need like food, water and petrol! Anywho – pretty much all the clothes that I was wearing a year ago were grossly too big. Some of those shirts, myself and the boys could fit into if I still had them because I gave them away (all bar a pair of jeans and one shirt that I’m keeping for comparison). So off I head, ready for tears that I would still have to buy big girl clothes. I started at the cheap place, pulled out a pair of jeans that I thought looked alright but was sure I would be holding my breath to get on. I picked out some shirts in the size 18, again thinking ‘no way but we’ll see’.

Well, there was no breath holding, no prayers to a higher power, no shoe-horning to get those jeans on. In actual fact, they are a little on the baggier side but they are a size 18. CANNOT BELIEVE IT!

I head off to the other stores with a new found sense of confidence. Only problem was, most of the clothes were horizontal stripes (Yeah, I’ve learned my lesson! You live – you learn!), or hideous patterns or just too pricey. I don’t plan on staying this size so I don’t want to spend a small fortune for clothes that hopefully in two months time will be donated to my friends and family.

The other exciting part of my shopping trip covers two light knit cardigans. I was looking through the rack and found the same cardigan in a large and extra large. I took both to the change rooms and tried the large on first thinking ‘here we go! arms won’t fit in’. It fit too. I tried the extra large on and it was swimming on me.

It has been decades since I’ve been able to fit into a size 18 and a large! I have always been over the 20s in the bottom and extra large in the top – if not an extra extra large. So, for the first time in YEARS, it has been a nice experience to go shopping. Not my usual ‘go for black, big and blowy’.

I try not to think about the time I will be away from the kids. We have tried to schedule it around when my husband is not on shift. If there is a clash, I can try and work nights when they are sleeping or when their grandmother can help us out. It’s a given, I’m looking forward to being able to just sit and focus on ONE thing for a stretch of time – not the continue rollercoaster that is home life. It has been a hard year, full of adjustments for everyone in this family. There are more adjustments to come. One thing I am eternity grateful and happy that I did was had my reality snap back in September. I’d had to be just starting this weightloss and happiness journey now while trying to restart work.

If I can get my weightloss under control – then everything else pales in comparison.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great day.



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