Quick update

Not been brilliant at blogging this week, life has been rather arsey and is continuing to be so.

I’ve kept up with the no sugar no booze thing, regardless even if I haven’t blogged about it. My cunning plan is to screenshot a weeks worth of my fitness Pal data tomorrow once the full 7 days have passed. Clever huh!

The sticky points this week have been resisting the urge to bury my face in cake when feeling rather heartbroken over a few things equally while resisting drowning myself in wine. It wouldn’t make anything any better, but, oh nice things, I don’t think anything will improve either to be honest. I’m in a situation where I can’t see anyway forward. That has made the desire to comfort with food or drink very strong. Food and emotions are very much intertwined.

I’ve started experimenting with making bread as I miss toast and all processed gluten free bread has refined sugar in. This soda bread made with half buckwheat and half gluten-free flour turned out ok but a little crumbly. I’ve tried again today with the addition of xanthan gum, once I get it to work well I’ll share the recipe.

The other tricky time was eating lunch out with my son and a lovely friend. I found a soup I could have but the temptation of the sweet stuff!!! Oh so hard. But if this year is to work I have to cope with the tough stuff without caving and socialise as normal without caving.

Jasper and I have in the middle of this otherwise rubbish week had some lovely dog walks, particularly at Beadnell. I spend more time than I use at Beadnell right now as eldest child has a job there that seems to involve a lot of me driving him there after missed buses.

Exercise has been plentiful and abundant, mostly CrossFit but I also turn on the “cardio” button on my Garmin when gardening. I want those extra calories!!

We had a runaway cat wise who went out then forgot to return for a couple of days. He brought us many dead birds as way of apology. I wish he wouldn’t. Little s**t!

If you find anything of interest or use in my blog please consider sponsoring me and help work towards a cure for Cowden Syndrome. Thank you.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear

Birthday weekend

Long post ahead. Be warned, thankfully like the best books most of it’s pictures. Firstly an obligatory cake selfie. Thank heavens I didn’t catch light!

It was a very wild birthday weekend in the Kelly house this weekend. It started Saturday morning when Charlotte brought me sunflowers and a “best teacher” card. She really is such a sweet kid.

The hedonistic craziness continued with a trip to the gym before meeting the rest of the family (sans middle child at Aunt’s) at a vegan restaurant called Supernatural in Newcastle. They are great for us as a family as my mum is vegetarian and my daughter and I are gluten free and I am now of course sugar free too. They make their own food (doesn’t always happen in restaurants) so they know exactly what’s in it. Even the dog came with us as they are very dog friendly and even have a doggie menu.

Eldest son frequently known as (big lad, you can see why when he’s next to me) kindly paid for the whole thing. He is now a man of work and means!After this my husband, daughter and I headed to the cinema to see MIB the reboot. This was actually very funny and I’d very much recommend it.Now as it was my birthday out I wanted to have cinema snacks but of course not from the concession stand so brought sugar free chocolate and a date bar with me. Shhh don’t tell them, my drink of choice was jasmine green tea. Tea is my drink of choice everywhere at the moment.Sunday the actual day of my birthday, this has been my first birthday without my sons. One is at work and the other his aunt’s. I guess that’s growing up and all that goes with it. I had some lovely presents and cards which showed the rather eclectic nature of my tastes:- vans, a bmth bag, starlord jacket and ruby necklace. Hey even geeks like shiny things.

After presents it was a cooked breakfast (of which I only managed to eat half as my husband cooks like he is cooking for invading armies, both in excess and attempts to please) dog walk and gym (it’s a day ending in y so course gym) followed by a little trip to Warkworth. Here I continued my photo series I think I shall entitle “daughter in doors”

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The day is to be finished with a trip to see Much Ado About Nothing at Hulne Priory which was apparently is fabulous. Just waiting right now for it to start.

Genuinely a wonderful birthday and not a glass of wine or sugar filled cake in sight.

Food in pictures and words

Friday

Breakfast

Corn crackers, avocado with paprika and chilli.

Lunch

Lentil and peppers and cheese

Dinner

Cream of broccoli soup, corn crackers and butter

Snacks

Dark chocolate

Saturday

Breakfast

Oats, apple, strawberries, semi skimmed milk

Lunch

Nut burger (I left the bread as it will have sugar in)Homemade coleslaw, potato wedges

Dinner

More oats, semi skimmed milk

Snacks

80% super milk (sugar free) from hotel Chocolat Oh so delicious – Aldi date bar (both with the film)Montezuma dark

Sunday

Breakfast

Cooked breakfast

Dinner

A table of cheese, fruit and refined sugar free cake. I especially like how the raw food cake turned out.

99 g of sugar on my birthday! All natural. I’m going to talk about that tomorrow.

If you find anything of interest or use in my blog please consider sponsoring me and help work towards a cure for Cowden Syndrome. Thank you.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear

No weigh! – time to measure up

I don’t weigh myself, I haven’t for years. I use to. But I don’t have a healthy relationship with scales. I had a number of friends in my teens/early 20s with eating disorders and as a result a number that I think I should weigh still exists in head. That number happens to be extremely clinically underweight. I hoovered around it for a number of years due to a combination of genes and poverty as a single parent (many years back) but as I got older that number as with many things became unimportant. I know however scales would give me a mind f**k so I don’t use them.

I do however feel totally ok with a tape measure, that’s my preferred guideline and at the start of my last challenge measured myself to see what impact the year of CrossFit would have on me. I’m going to continue to do so across this year again out of interest.

It’s also no coincidence that both the challenges I picked are health based. After my daughters illness I was a little chubby, that’s not a great example to her. Although it’s perfectly normal after massive stress. I want as part of these challenges not only to raise awareness and money for research but also to set an example to her. Not that I think living healthily will save her from her genes but we all know that a healthy lifestyle makes it easier to deal with a recover from illness and surgery. The healthier she is the better she’ll cope. The healthier I am the better I will look after both of her brothers (who have their own struggles) and her.

Anyway the waffle bit done here’s the measurements I started with at the beginning of my CrossFit challenge and now. I’ll keep an eye on them during this year also, I’m keeping calories the same as before the challenge. Between last year and today I’ve lost 17 inches (on the areas I measured). I wonder what a year of no sugar and booze will do…

If you find anything of interest or use in my blog please consider sponsoring me and help work towards a cure for Cowden Syndrome. Thank you.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear

Day 25 – going sugar free (or cutting back) tips

We all know that sugar in excess is rubbish for our health, you don’t need me to sit here and witter on about why sugar is bad. It’s the primary cause of diabetes, it’s linked to obesity and cancer, it causes inflammation did you know it can even cause wrinkles! So let’s face it there are a thousand reasons to cut back on sugar even if you aren’t daft enough to give it up for fundraising.

Here’s what I’ve learned over the last 25 days:-

1. Read labels and generally assume most packet food isn’t going to happen. This isn’t actually a problem most of it is dreadful for us anyway.

2. If it sounds like sugar if probably is, and no there isn’t really any version of it that’s healthy. The sugar in fruit is healthy because it comes in the fruit, extract it from the fruit and it’s as lousy as the stuff in a mars bar.

3. Carry nuts, seriously carry nuts and nakd bars otherwise there will be occasions there is nothing to eat and you’ll verbally savage family members.

4. Cooking is not difficult, all the cooking shows and beautiful cookery books have made it seem like cooking is some kind of mystical art only achievable by alchemists. I mean who actually has saffron in their kitchen? A lot of the time cooking really comes down to simplistic meals, throw things in a slow cooker pretty much anything you throw into a slow cooker other than shoes will turn into food. Make salads with nuts, oils and fruits they are honestly really nice plus super quick. Pasta sauce is a simple as passatta with fresh basil, garlic and a little thickening.

5. Don’t be afraid of fat, right now mfp (my fitness Pal) regularly tells me daily my fat intake is too high. Because I’ve taken sugar out of my diet I’m eating more olives, olive oil and nuts/seeds. Plus if I feel like it adding creme Fraiche to fruit. I needed extra calories and they had to come from somewhere, olive oil, nuts and seeds all contain fats that are nothing but awesome for me. Recent science generally seems to exonorate fat generally in many of the health issues it had been implicated in. But that’s for someone else to explore and explain. I’m not about to start wolfing down lard with my salad anyway.

6. Your taste buds will change, within 2 to 3 weeks fruit will become ridiculously mouth wateringingly sweet, dates etc ridiculously so. I dare say by the end of this year actual sugar will be unpleasantly over sweet

7. People will look at you like you’ve 3 heads. That’s fine your health is your concern not their.

8. You’ll still sometimes want a slice a cake and if you aren’t doing a fundraiser year where you’ve commited to stopping altogether just have the cake. It’s not the one slice of cake that’s ruining people’s health it’s the 6 that come after it. If you can’t stop at one probably best to not have it in the first place, but if you do and you wake up in a sugar coma don’t worry about it just move on.

9. Cinnamon is amazing, blend it in milk, have it on oats in coffee, pretty much stick it anywhere.

10. Montezuma dark chocolate is also amazing, who’d have thought 100% dark could be a treat. But it is.

Today’s food in pictures and words

Breakfast

Banana, oats, cinnamon, milk

Lunch

Corn crackers, hummus, eggs, salad, olives, pomegranate seeds, sprouted pulses

Dinner

Falafels, salad leaves, olive oil, coleslaw

Snacks

2 date balls (more on those tomorrow)

Dark chocolate

Total sugars

If you found any part of this blog interesting or useful please consider sponsoring me and help find a cure for Cowden Syndrome

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear

What is Cowden Syndrome?

Put simply Cowden Syndrome is one of a number of tumor related disorders linked to the PTEN gene. They all fall under the the term Pten Harmatoma Tumor Syndrome, the PTEN gene is one of a number of tumor suppressor genes. They are as important as they sound, our bodies are remarkably clever and have both on switches and off switches. Our cells need to know when to grow, when to heal but also they need to know when to stop. An on switch and an off switch. With Pten disorders the off switch doesn’t work properly, this means benign and/or cancerous tumours can grow at any point. Don’t let the word benign fool you either, simply because a tumor isn’t cancerous does not mean it is harmless. A “benign” tumor in the brain can be fatal “benign” tumors clustered around nerves can cause extreme pain at the worst the loss of a limb. Even the good side of Cowden Syndrome is fairly obnoxious.

The general risks are shown below.

My daughter has Cowden Syndrome, it caused her to have thyroid cancer at 10 and have her thyroid totally removed. She, after the cancer never fully recovered and was later diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome and postural orthstatic tacychardia syndrome. She has also developed crushing anxiety and OCD as a result of all that happened to her. My middle child, the brother closest in age to her started to take drugs as a way of coping with the upset of his sister having cancer. I had no idea at the time. He now is dealing with substance dependency issue. Over a few years our family has been to hell and back all due to a faulty gene.

My daughter spends an inordinate amount of time in hospitals having checks and making sure there are no issues. She had 5 biopsies taken from 2 breast lumps just 4 days ago. I find it hard to put into words how difficult it is to see your 14 year old having breast biopsies. But this is her reality. I am just so grateful we have the NHS so any issue can be looked at.

My hope is that eventually a cure will be found, that one day kids like my daughter won’t have the near certainty that one day they will have cancer. That they won’t know from age 10 before they even had breasts that they will need a double mastectomy in order to keep them safe. Before she had even reached puberty we knew this. It was a horrendous revelation.

This is why I am fundraising, last year I undertook a year of 260 workouts, this year it’s a year of giving up 2 substances linked to cancer in the genetically normal population (it needs to be noted that very little can reduce the risk in those with gene defects).

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear 

Any money I raise during the second year of fundraising will go here :-

https://ptenfoundation.org