What was that I was saying about distractions being a good thing and wishing for some more? Well, I did specify that I did not want the sort of distractions that have me reaching for a bottle of wine at the end of the day. And the major distraction that we are all experiencing right now – the Covid 19 virus – is definitely one that requires wine and crisps and maybe even some ice cream. If I watch carefully, I can almost see my already enormous tummy expanding like a lump of bread dough in a proving oven. It really is quite worrying. Just how big can it get? Will it pop?

Joking aside, I actually feel ashamed of whining about how social distancing is making me fat. When so many in the world are struggling to eat at all, how dare I complain that I have too much? I am damned lucky to have the wherewithal to get fat.

But acknowledging my privilege does not make me any happier about my super-size. I still want to be leaner and healthier. So much so, that lately I have been tempted by the adverts for a “new” wonder diet that pop up on my screen every 10 minutes or so.

I took a solemn vow a few years back, that I would never again pay money in order to lose weight. To me there is, as I have already mentioned, something almost obscene about rich fat folks using their money to eat less, instead of using that money to help people who haven’t enough to eat to stay alive, much less get fat.

In addition, I am firmly convinced that while any diet will work in the short term, ultimately a diet is something you are “on” and when you go “off” it again, you get fat again. From personal experience, and from a number of accounts I have read, one not only gets as fat as one was before, but usually, a bit fatter. That’s why serial yo-yo dieters end up bloody enormous. I know. I am one.

So, while the new diet is quite enticing, I will resist its lures. Which is not to say, I haven’t read about it and had a look at the promotional material for it. This particular diet is taking the psychological approach. I suppose the idea is that you unlock why you have unhealthy eating patterns and then tackle the root causes rather than merely alter eating habits. This makes sense, certainly. They are selling it as a “brand new approach”, but of course it isn’t. I have been thinking and talking about why I eat too much for as long as I can remember.

All the thinking and talking made me reach the conclusion that I am a comfort eater. I eat as a way of making myself feel better. “Poor old you, you deserve something a bit nice to cheer you up”. I have been saying this to myself my whole life. But here’s the thing: for most of that life I have had absolutely no need of comfort.

Growing up, I was one of the luckiest people imaginable. No money worries, no health concerns, no disabilities. A gorgeous, loving and supportive mother and a busy, happy family life. Academic success, a great career, lovely home, lovely holidays and, if you can believe it, lucky in love, too – a really lovely husband. Yet with all this loveliness, while I certainly wasn’t as fat as I am now, I still ate to make myself feel better and I was always a bit tubby. Ridiculous! If I could, I would go back and give my chubby chops a good slap and make sure I knew and appreciated just how little I was in need of any sort of comfort.

It was inevitable then, that when the fickle finger of fate (or whatever it is that balances the universe’s books) decided to deal me an actual nasty blow, my desire for yummy comforting things to eat and drink would grow exponentially. And the real bummer with this is that even when you have coped with your blow, and your life is more or less back on track, or at least manageable again, you are left looking like someone has stuck a bicycle pump up your backside. And, as we all know, looking and feeling like an elephant is not the greatest feeling in the world. Poor me. Pass the bottle of wine.

elephant-Image by Tina Shaskus from Pixabay
Image by Tina Shaskus from Pixabay

13: Good Times

As Kurt Vonnegut asked: “If this isn’t good, what is?”

We come to this little Balearic island every year for a couple of weeks in the summer and it never disappoints. The weather is glorious and reliable, and I spend most of my time floating in the pool with a book and a glass of white wine.A9E6EFF0-08D0-4DBC-AA16-D9AE66AB3A99

The food is also heavenly — luscious  Mediterranean tomatoes, creamy cheeses, dark, peppery olive oil, fresh seafood, crusty bread, perfectly salty olives, and on and on.

The little tapas bar at the top of the hill makes some of the best food I’ve ever tasted and I am seriously thinking of kidnapping the chef and forcing him to hand over his recipe for their patatas bravas sauce.

I had the very good sense to invite a dear friend to accompany us on holiday. Not only is she an excellent cook, but she is also an enthusiastic one and as big a fan as I am of shopping in foreign supermarkets. Somehow the novelty makes a boring everyday errand into a bit of an adventure.

Sumptuous salad courtesy of my cooking friend.

I have been eating and drinking whatever I feel like and I feel fabulous. Not one teeny bit of regret. Salud!

6: Disgrace – My Arse

I am so fed up with myself. I wish I could work out where I am going wrong with this whole thing. The week started off so well. By Friday, I had already written the blog in my head – it was going to be called “The Raisin” and was all about how wonderful it was to have stopped eating sugar and how sublimely sweet a couple of raisins in your porridge can taste once you’ve stopped eating other sugar. I was going to wax lyrical about the amazing life lessons I have been taught by this – be satisfied with less, enjoy what you have, excess is awful, blah blah blah.

muesli-Image by moerschy from Pixabay
Image by moerschy from Pixabay

What happened next, I can’t explain.

Fridays are generally a tricky day for me – I have to get my son to an appointment that he doesn’t want to go to, so it takes a lot of effort, patience and a certain amount of stress to make that happen. This Friday was no different, but I managed it and all was looking rosy. Then the phone rang. My mother-in-law was having some health problems and I needed to spend the afternoon with her. No problem. By now it was nearly lunch time and I was really hungry. So when we went through the Macdonald’s drive-thru to get my son his reward lunch, instead of just ordering a black coffee as I usually do, I ordered a veggie burger and chips.

In itself, I don’t see this as much of a problem. The odd fast food meal is perfectly okay in my book. In fact, I was glad I had done it, because it would be a long while before I finally got home and could have something to eat. But why, oh why did I need to buy that bottle of wine on my way home? And the slab of chocolate? And why, oh why did I need to drink and eat them in addition to a generous dinner? Okay, so I was a bit tired, a bit disrupted, and a bit in need of reward and comfort. But really. That was ridiculous.

But it wasn’t a disgrace. And it wasn’t the end of my dreadful weekend.

On Saturday I had to be up early to get down to the cycle track where my son’s club was holding a big fundraiser. I worked there until 2 pm after which I met my husband and daughter and hopped on a train to go into town to watch a comedy act at a festival next to the river. I completely failed to eat breakfast or lunch, so by the time we got there I was ravenous and had a slice of pizza as my first food of the day at 3 pm. And a big glass of wine, because the sun was shining and we were next to the river and it was all so lovely and sociable and blah, blah, excuse, excuse. Then, guess what? They let you take drinks into the auditorium. So, I had another glass. And after the show, we decided to have dinner, and I proceeded to order some really crappy and not very filling and another glass, and then we went home and this happened…

Disgrace (2)Disgrace.

Also, it turned out that one of the nasty, unhealthy meals I had inhaled during my day of badness had something wrong with it, and I woke with a churning stomach-full of acid at 3 am, and proceeded to throw up for an hour.

Double disgrace.

I just don’t understand myself. I really do want to lose some weight. I am already enjoying the benefits of eating more healthily. Why would I do this to myself? Am I just a pitiable weak-willed moron? What should I do next? I seem to swing from one extreme to another. And the minute I allow myself a bit of smugness at success (as in being pleased with myself for stopping eating sugar) I seem to need to sabotage my efforts. It is so damned frustrating.

I know that if I was reading this blog I would want to give myself a slap and say, “Don’t be so ridiculous. Just stop yourself. How can you say that you really want to be thinner and at the same time not be able to stop yourself putting fattening stuff into your mouth? It’s not rocket science. Are you lying to yourself? Is there a deep, hidden reason that you don’t want to be thin?”

Whoah!!! Just a minute. What exactly am I saying here? I consumed a slab of chocolate, a packet of biscuits and a couple of bottles of wine. So what?? Big bloody deal. I am acting as if I had murdered a small child. I cannot believe I have dived headfirst into the trap whereby my entire sense of self-worth and well-being is based on what I do or do not put into my mouth. Ridiculous. I completely reject this view. The only “bad” thing that has happened is that I am now feeling a bit sluggish and have shocking indigestion. I didn’t even put on any weight.

I have no idea what I am going to take away from all this and no idea what I shall be writing about next week. I hope I lose a bit of weight, but I do NOT want to lose sight of what I believe is really important in life – and that is definitely not the size of my arse.


  • Week six: No weight gain or loss
  • Total weight loss: Minus 3 kg (6.5 lbs)