I Got Red in My Ledger.

I do indeed got red in my ledger, and hopefully eating clean and exercising more will help me to wipe it out.

Diet is one of the major issues in my failure to ‘get shit done’ about my size and fitness over the past few years. So as I mentioned my eating plan is to go Paleo. I am a carb fiend and have binged a lot in the past on bread, rice, pasta and sweet things like cake. Cutting out carbs and grains last year would have been anathema because they were my comfort foods. Sure, I have just been told ‘oh, you’ve tried that before, haven’t you, and… lapsed‘ and yes, yes I have. But this time, bitches, I’m EXCITED ABOUT IT. I want to replace comfort food with ‘comfort exercise’ – to go for a run or swim or training session instead of stuffing my face with something.

This is my EXCITED face.

This is my EXCITED face.

A little history:  I am a 5 ft 11, 259lb geeky girl from Yorkshire, UK, now living in London. I have always been tall and big, but since my dad died in 1998 I turned to food for comfort, battled (and beat) bulimia, and am now left with the weight and a rubbish relationship with food. I was only 147lb before Dad died and that shape is what I’d like to get back to (through reading NerdFitness I know that the scale is a lying hound and if I am fitter and more muscular I may not get exactly to 147, but I would like to try. I’m after the same shape rather than the exact weight.)

I see James Lamper, a psychologist from The WeightMatters Practice for therapy and he advised me to tackle the emotional issues of my eating disorder because I didn’t feel ready to try to fight the flab. I actually now feel ready to tackle the physical problem, get off my butt and do some exercise and become a Hannah Solo rather than a Jabba. I haven’t really done anything like this before apart from a few Zumba classes, which I enjoyed. I have never been excited about health or exercise or fitness before – not until I found NF.

I discovered NF on Christmas Eve 2012 and have been exploring Paleo and NF pages ever since. I have found a butcher that sells bones and marrow which is going to be awesome for making bone broth. His prices are also good for regular meat, and UK meat is pretty much all grass fed AFAIK. I know I will have to change a lot of my cooking habits, but this is GOOD. I NEED to change them, because they’re crap!

I also like this post on bone broth.

So I have made a corner of my room over to NF and my plans. I have 2 whiteboards with my game-plan title ‘OPERATION BOUDICCA’ on them, along with the Paleo YES and NO foods, Steve’s Beginner Body Weight Workout, Steve’s Warm Up from the Hotel Room Workout, and some other bits of info. I added on ‘Moisturise like a bitch’ (I am frightened of getting loose skin so I want to avoid that as much as possible), ‘Body Brushing’, and ‘Drink water like it’s your job’. I also pinned up the photo of myself at 147 lb, which along with finding NF was what started this whole thing.  Here it is.

Excuse the purple hair and godawful straight-leg jeans!

Excuse the purple hair and baggy jeans

I’m away staying with friends as of tomorrow, so I’m not sure I can start seriously until the 3rd Jan. I will be going for long walks with them and their 2yo son, and I’ll be offering to carry him and push the pushchair too. If we can go to the park I’ll try a few exercises on the climbing frame, lol.

One thing I have to do is DRINK WATER. I hate drinking water, but I have discovered it’s OK if I add a tablespoon of pure lemon or lime juice.  I managed to drink a pint of water tonight. That may not seem much but it’s a big deal for me. I have no natural thirst, so I don’t really have a big soda habit or anything, but I really need to up my hydration without using fruit juice or soft drinks.

Like this dude.

Like this dude.

Battle plan for Mons, Weds and Fridays:

– wake up and take Klamath algae tablet (from my doctor to combat depression) with a glass of lemon water. (Steve suggests working out in a fasted state, and eating your first meal at least 30min after your workout. I’ll see how that goes)

– Morning Mile walk as per NF website.

– walk home, warm up and do Beginners’ Body Weight Workout, then eat Paleo-friendly breakfast and get on with rest of day.

– evening/late afternoon: appropriate section from ‘Couch to 5k’ running plan.

Battle plan for Tues and Thursdays:

– wake up and take Klamath algae tablet with a glass of lemon water

– Morning Mile walk as per NF website – walk to my local gym (of which I am a member but have never been – epic fail!)

– Swimming in the local pool.  (Steve says not to do the BWW every day but to alternate. I also have my buddy ‘Thor’ writing workouts for me so I can do different things and not get bored.)

– Walk home, eat Paleo-friendly breakfast and get on with rest of day.

– evening/late afternoon: appropriate section from ‘Couch to 5k’.

Weekends are more difficult as I do theatre work on Sundays sometimes and spend time with friends on Saturdays, but I am sure I can fit in a BWW in the morning or a swim or some C25K. Just so long as I do SOMETHING. I have also found a belly dance class in Watford nearby (I haven’t danced for years so I need to get back on that horse) and I want to find a Zumba class, but that means more money. I don’t work at the moment, although I’m desperate to find a good job. As soon as I have a job, sure I’ll have to get up earlier to fit in the workouts, or do them later in the day – but I’ll have a bit of spare cash to give to a Zumba class or hula hoop class. (I got a hula hoop for Christmas and an exercise ball too. I’ve been looking at Steve’s Youtube channel at his exercise ball videos so that will help.)

I will check back in on Jan 3rd when this plan will be On Like Donkey Kong! (and my Paleo cookbooks should have arrived from Amazon).

And to wish you all a Happy New Year and a Healthy 2013 here is a little ferret enjoying a bath. I couldn’t find one doing a hula hoop class.

You're welcome.

You’re welcome.


Contentment v Happiness… FIGHT!

Contentment is spending my Christmas money from family on 3 fabulous pin-up dresses in my size, 20 (UK) or 2X (US). But happiness is spending a small amount of it on a great sports bra, second-hand weights and kettlebells, and a workout t-shirt. And then putting the rest aside til you don’t need to buy size 20/2X any more and can buy smaller clothes.

I have been reading the NerdFitness website since Christmas Eve and it is amazing. Best Christmas present I ever accidentally found. I am inspired. More to the point, I am excited about exercise. I have never felt like that before.

I am Boudi of London, and I am burdened with glorious porpoise!



Moving on…
I originally set up Operation Boudicca as a ‘sister page’ on Facebook to Operation Thor. There are plenty of inspiring and gorgeous women on OB (and men on OT) who are keen to improve their health and fitness, and are indeed doing so. But I have fallen off the wagon, and into a Death Star made of cake.


1. I’m lazy. I would much rather take the warm comfy bus than walk. I would rather sleep in than get up and work out. I can’t be bothered to make the effort. (I have lived in baggy tops and wide leg ‘boyfriend’ jeans for years rather than make the damn effort to dress for my body shape. Cello, if you’re interested. It’s like an hourglass, only a whole lot bigger.)

2. I make excuses to myself. My knee hurts and it might get worse. I have depression. I’m tired. I don’t have a good sports bra. I don’t know how to exercise properly without hurting myself (I used this for years following a pulled back muscle on a rowing machine). My gym is full of snobby people who judge me.

3. I like cake. (What, you were expecting something more complex? More Freudian? Sometimes a Swiss Roll is just a Swiss Roll.)

Let’s address these, then, if they’re bothering me that much.

I would much rather take the warm comfy bus than walk. OK, so taking the bus when it’s crappy weather is allowed. But in good weather? I’m going to walk if I can from now on. If I can’t walk it, I’ll try and cycle it once I have a bike (yeah, this is cash-dependent, but doable within the next 2 months AFAIK). Also, no more getting off at the bus stop outside my house. I’m going to get off two stops ahead and walk the rest of the way.

I would rather sleep in than get up and work out. Clearly, I am not doing things to make my life awesome. Let’s take someone who I reckon has an awesome life: Tony Stark.

Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist.

Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist.

If my life were that awesome would I want to sleep? Hell no. Does Tony Stark sleep til past noon? No, because Jarvis would kick his iron ass. I am going to channel my inner Jarvis. If anyone would like to give Paul Bettany my phone number, I’ll happily accept his early alarm calls. OH YES. Til then, I’ll have to make do with an imaginary Jarvis kicking my not-yet-iron ass.

My knee hurts and it might get worse. Yeah, so it hurts because I am exercising wrongly, or not warming up right, or because (you think?) I am CARRYING AROUND 259 WHOLE POUNDS ON THIS FRAME. Did I ever have knee pain or back pain when I weighed 147 pounds? Hell no. Warm up, stretch, and take things slowly to begin with. If the knee REALLY hurts, I’ll take it to a doctor or sports physio.

I have depression. OK, personal life demons aside, of course I have freaking depression. I have no job, my creativity output is way down, I’ve beaten bulimia but still battle emotional eating, I feel ‘stuck’ at life, and I can’t afford to see the psych I love working with. But think how stoked I’m going to feel when I get more endorphins and more energy holding me up. I need to think of exercise as my Iron Man suit. (Errr, this is my second Tony Stark reference in one post, which is a little worrying for my obsession with Loki.) Maybe I can’t beat depression by exercising and building a better body and better health, but I can damn well shake my ass in it’s face while singing Ner-ner-ni-ner-ner, you-can’t-get-me.

I’m tired. See above, sleepy weasel. Superheroes aren’t tired. Plus, you do nothing all day. You’re not tired, bitch, you’re lazy (see point 1 where you admitted it). Move that ass.

I don’t have a sports bra. Well, you just sold a ton of ill-fitting clothes on eBay, so go get fitted and buy one. Duh. Or hire Iron Man to hold your boobs in place. (OMG, IRON BRA! I need to make one of these. AAAAAAH! with a wee glow-in-the-dark arc reactor on the centre gore. Dammit, 3rd Tony Stark reference, doooooom.)

My gym is full of snobby people who judge me. It’s not all about me – those jocky guys I think are going ‘wow, what a whale’ and the lipglossy blondes I think are going ‘wow, I’m so much prettier than her’ are probably just thinking ‘what’s my next set of reps again?’

I don’t know how to exercise properly without hurting myself. Well, I’ve now seen videos, ebooks and tips on NerdFitness, and I have friends who exercise a lot. So I’ll ask for help. I’ll get advice. I’ll learn. I can’t immediately speak a foreign language if I were to sign up for a year-long class. Why should I think I can immediately do every deadlift or squat correctly without learning the basics? It’s like me trying to ask in Russian for two tickets to Theatre in the Park and actually asking the box office clerk if he’s wearing his mother’s drapes.
+2 XP if you understood that reference.
+4 XP if you understood the reference about understanding that reference. (I could go on all day but I would run out of XP.)

He's praying that you got that reference about getting that reference. Don't make little Stevie sad now.

He’s praying you did.  Don’t make little Stevie sad.

I like cake. Well, the Paleo diet from what I’ve seen has a ton of awesome dessert recipes which are low-GI, tasty, and still fit within the primal food range. As NerdFitness says, diet is at least 80% of success or failure when it comes to changing your body. Paleo has done great things for some of my friends and it sounds really tasty and doable. More on Paleo later, but suffice it to say that I am going to be trying this for a 30-day minimum trial.

In fact, this whole thing is a 30-day minimum trial. There’s no point signing up for less. I get pissed when I hear beauty companies saying that anti-aging (or in my case, anti-rosacea) products should show results immediately, or within 3 days or whatever. I firmly believe that something like this would take 30 days to make proven changes. So I have taken a photo of me now, as I am, 259 lb and stats 46-42-51. It’s a crap photo, but I’ve sent it to Steve. (Uh… Steve at NerdFitness, not Steve Rogers. I am not sending underwear shots to Captain America. YET.) I will take a more accurate/honest one (the lighting is low here, and my phone cam sucks) when I get home and get to my camera, rather than my brick   paperweight  mobile phone. I will not take any more measurements (including weight) for the next 30 days. As NerdFitness’ Steve advises all noobs who don’t want to gank themselves (self-sabotage sucks), I will then take another photo in the same clothing, weigh myself, and take stats measurements again, at the same time of day as the first, at the end of those 30 easing-into-Paleo-and-exercise days.

I’m following the NerdFitness Rebel Fitness Guide

and doing the Beginner Body Weight Workout plan.

I’m posting this up now rather than on Jan 1st 2013 because I don’t want it to feel like a New Years Resolution. I always break those things, and this isn’t an NYR. It’s a full time lifestyle change. I hope that the ladies and gents of Operations Thor and Boudicca on Facebook will drop by to either comment or talk about their own journeys (I’m happy to host guest spots and success stories!) and I hope that one by one I can, as NerdFitness’ Steve has done, start ticking off the items on my Epic Quest – like a bucket list but more nerdy. That link is Steve’s, I need to build my own. I’ll post it on here when I’m done.

I have various fandoms and geekeries, but I shall leave you with a quote from one of my favourites:

“It does not do to dwell on dreams, and forget to live.” – Albus Dumbledore

Workout plan: pulls open giant double wooden doors.Effect: he is so badass he only looks bewildered.

Workout plan: pulls open giant double wooden doors.
Effect: he is so badass he only looks bewildered.

(Is it a coincidence that he sounds like he has the word ‘dumbbell’ in his name? I THINK NOT. Fitness-wizards FTW!)

– Boudi x