fast weight loss, weight gain, crash diet, yo-yo dieting, binge, serial starter, biggest loser,

Fast weight loss makes you fat again

Crash dieting leads to a crash and burn.

Crash dieting fucks up your Leptin (satiety hormone) and Ghrelin (hunger hormone) for years. There’s lots of good science about this now.  Leptin and Ghrelin are parts of our metabolism. (Fast weight loss also affects other elements of your metabolism, but these are the main ones and are simplest to explain.)

When your satiety (fullness) signals and your hunger signals are out of whack, that is when people can’t control their eating and binge and yo-yo.

All those “serial starters” crash diet, overeat, rinse and repeat.

 

Fast weight loss causes yo-yo weight gain

 

There’s no point doing a crazy diet you hate then going right back to eating the way you used to. Hello yo-yo!

And that’s assuming you can even stick to the crazy diet long enough to lose any weight!

 

Please talk to a doctor and/or dietitian about your health and dietary requirements regularly.

People seem to think “eating healthy” or “losing weight” means punishing yourself.

Kale, steamed chicken, and 6 hours in the gym a week… Sound familiar?

The endless hype about motivation is your weight loss worst enemy.

 

The idea is to learn how to eat sustainably for the rest of your life. 

 

You don’t even need to “eat less and move more” (a saying which causes a lot of extremism). You could just do one or the other.
Eat back your exercise calories!

If you’re already eating less food overall every day, if you fuel the exercise you do, it’s still going to mean you will lose weight.

 

If you don’t eat exercise calories back, that’s when you lose muscle, get weaker, move less, get really hungry, and can end up with an eating disorder, or crashing and burning and failing to reach goal weight.

 

Then when you fail, you go back to your bad habits and gain more weight back than you lost because your hormones and your perception of food can’t regulate your hunger.

You don’t have to count calories to lose weight, but you need an understanding of the body’s general “Energy Equation”. (A calorie is a unit of energy.)

 

  • Small men less than 15 lb overweight should eat at least 1500 calories a day when dieting, plus what they burn in exercise;
  • Small women less than 15 lb overweight should eat a minimum of 1200 calories, plus what they burn in exercise.

 

If you’re taller and/or heavier, you need to eat more because you need more energy to move yourself around.

 

These calorie figures are the bare minimum you need to function normally while still losing weight.

There are a couple of other general guidelines about weight loss rates.

 

One is not to lose more than 1% of your body weight a week.

 

Or:

 

If you are around 10 kg or 20 lb overweight:

  • To lose 1 kg = 28,000 kilojoule deficit: Should not take less than 4 weeks. E.g. 1000 kj or one Mars bar less a day than if you’re maintaining.
  • To lose 1 lb = 3,500 calorie deficit: Should not take less than 2 weeks. E.g. 250 kcal a day less.

If you try to lose it faster, you’ll gain it back fast!

 

I’ve seen this too:

If you have 75+ lbs to lose 2 lbs/week is ideal (1,000 calorie daily deficit)

If you have 40-75 lbs to lose 1.5 lbs/week is ideal (750 calorie daily deficit)

If you have 25-40 lbs to lose 1 lbs/week is ideal (500 calorie daily deficit)

If you have 15 -25 lbs to lose 0.5 to 1.0 lbs/week is ideal (250-500 calorie daily deficit)

If you have less than 15 lbs to lose 0.5 lbs/week is ideal (250 calorie daily deficit)

 

 

Crash dieting causes people to crash and burn and regain more than they lost. They get weak and lose muscle mass and hence get a slower metabolism (lower Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)) and lose perspective on how much they need to maintain weight.

 

Losing muscle and feeling weak means less non-exercise activity thermogenesis (N.E.A.T.), so it lowers total daily energy expenditure.  You feel lethargic so you don’t do as many little walks or jobs at home or work.

 

To keep losing weight they eat even less, and so it spirals downward towards hormone disruption & bingeing it back, and/or developing an eating disorder.

 

The massive and aggressive competition in the diet industry is a huge cause of so much yo-yo dieting, obesity, and eating disorders.

The diet industry feeds itself on the harmful goal of fast weight loss, offering fad diets, diet scams, quick fixes, and crash diets.

Cutting out all fat, carbohydrates, vegetables, or sugar, can lead to deprivation that is unsustainable.

 

Fast weight loss is bad.

 

Extreme diets are bad.

 

All those “Biggest Loser” contestants gaining all the weight back weren’t learning anything about weight maintenance being on the show.

 

Sustainable eating does not mean punishing yourself.

 

It takes quite a while to think this through.

 

It can be very hard to switch to having a mindset of sustainable eating when all around are advertisements offering fast and extremist solutions.  

 

Once you notice this you see it everywhere.

 

We can’t change our mind about this easily, especially when society, family, and media teach us this mindset.  Also genetics, biology and evolution.

 

Eat what sustains you as long as possible.

Here’s what’s sustaining me:

 

  • Volume Eating. Fruit and veg have fibre which makes you feel full, and they bulk up the size of your meal and add very few calories.
  • Protein and fat (and fibre) can make you feel fuller.
  • My macronutrients are usually around 50% carbohydrates, 30% fat, 20% protein, and that keeps me very healthy, active, and happy.
  • Most days lately, I love eating Greek yoghurt, cereal biscuits, fruit, vegetable and pasta Napolitano, vegetable protein/seafood/chicken with rice/noodles/potato, more veg, and dessert or chocolate depending on my day’s exercise.
  • Some days (after a big sweat, perhaps), I need some salty chips, and maybe a chocolate protein drink.
  • Some days, I like pizza (which can have all the micro and macronutrients you need AND not have too many calories).

 

If I deprived myself of things I love, I would never have lasted the distance.

 

What sustains you?

 

Again, see a doctor and/or dietitian about your health and dietary requirements regularly.

 

“Cheat days?”

 

When you are maintaining your weight and tracking calorie intake, you can’t get the maths exactly right. Some days your intake will be higher than your energy intake.

 

I go by my weekly calorie limit, and make sure I stick to it, and also track my weight daily so I get data for the weight trend.  If you can tweak smaller fluctuations, you don’t need to make larger changes.

 

Having a higher calorie day here and there balances out over the week if you have some lower calorie days. That’s how Intermittent Fasting works, in all its varying personas.

 

You can also gauge your calorie deficit by your weight loss via the scale and tweak that way.

Just don’t be a “Biggest Loser” wannabe because they gained it all back!

 

Diet breaks

The slower you lose as you get close to your goal, the higher the chances of having hormones and habits that mean you can handle maintaining your goal weight for longer.  This process is also aided by regular week-long diet breaks / refeeds of eating at maintenance calories, which let your hunger hormones settle down.

People set a weight loss goal deadline, and starve themselves to get there, not realising that they want to get there so quickly because starving themselves is so awful. A snake eating its tail.

fast weight loss, weight gain, crash diet, yo-yo dieting, binge, serial starter, biggest loser,

“If I lose weight fast, the sooner I can go back to eating too much.” – Pretty much everyone dieting ever.

 

Someone had to tell me something similar after I’d been using My Fitness Pal to track calorie intake for about 6 months and not eating my exercise calories back.  A hard lesson to learn. But I really appreciate what he said now so much.

 

If you enjoy the process you can stick to the process.

Sustainability in eating, running, living

I lost 35 kg and have kept it off 3 years 3 months so far. This is what I’m loving doing currently.

I did a 2 day 60 km bushwalking event (with about 5 km of running at the end) a few weeks ago, rested A LOT, and last Friday I ran a half marathon. That means I’ve now run at least one half marathon distance run (21.1 km or longer) every month for 2 years. Longest run was 50 km. Happy! Practicing not running too much or too hard so I can keep running without injury.

I’m currently busy being a coach/run leader for our Running Club (I’m also Secretary), one of our parkrun Run Directors (my third year doing that), and happy being involved as an artist & volunteer at a gallery for local artists. And working in a financial planning office 4 days a week.

Writing regularly about running, weight loss, logic, self-care, the joys of freedom from alcohol, and more on zenmode.org

I’m obsessed with sustainability, and doing a 3-month “Slow Fashion Challenge” and not buying any new clothes, and involved in groups and arranging a mending/swap event.

Studying a course on The Fashion Revolution & the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2030, and devouring information on The Circular Economy, and on recycling in Australia/globally. Sharing what I’m discovering in our local War on Waste group and page, and pretty much everywhere.

I created a spreadsheet/pic of all the types of recycling and their collection points in town that’s being shared around.

Sustainability in eating, running, living. Perhaps obsessiveness about moderation, hahaha.

If you’ve read this far, I appreciate your interest. Hope you’re thriving and loving life too.

12 Illogical Reasons You Have For Believing in Acupuncture

12 Illogical Reasons You Might Have For Believing in Acupuncture:

1) “It’s an ancient tradition.” (Appeal to Antiquity fallacy.) Slavery is an ancient tradition, but does being old mean something is good?

2) “Eastern Medicine works when Western Medicine fails.” (Appeal to the Orient. False dichotomy.) There are neurosurgeons in Asia, and cardiologists, obstetricians, radiologists, gynaecologists, and do I have to go on? Your belief is condescending, racist superstition.

3) “I had instant relief.” (White coat syndrome. Confirmation Bias.) People think tinfoil hats instantly stop “mind control.” People feel better when someone says they’re praying for them. They think this will help, so the expectation is enough for them to relax when the ritual starts.

4) “I got better.” (Correlation is not Causation.) Your ailment was mild, vague, ; you may have been using other therapies, ; it was an imaginary ailment “cured” by an imaginary cure, and/or it cleared up of its own accord, and/or it seems better but the underlying condition won’t have changed and will recur.

5) “It works for me”. (The Placebo Effect.) Without proof of its mechanism for healing, you’re expecting me to assume the universal laws of Pphysics rearrange themselves magically in your presence.

6) “Chi pathways are real.” (Bald assertion.) There is no mechanism by which acupuncture works, unless you believe in spirit/Chi/energy against all known laws of Physics, and if you do, then you must believe in Voodoo, since that’s an old tradition of pushing pins into forms to alter spirits. In which case, I have some Bitcoin to sell you.Acupuncture, Spirit, Voodoo, Superstition, Logic, medicine, health, TCM, bullshit, woowoo, skepticism

7) “It helped the Chinese for thousands of years.” (1. 6. & 3.) Mao Zedong exaggerated it mostly from obscure ancient bloodletting superstitions to promote patriotism. The Communist Party suppressed any negative study results about it. Then it waned in favour of modern medicine to aid national health and productivity, and now they’re trying to revive it again because superstitious beliefs make money.

8) “It helped my dog.” (Confirmation Bias. Correlation is not Causation.) Your dog’s ailment was vague, non-acute, you may have been using other therapies, it was an imaginary ailment “cured” by an imaginary cure, and/or it cleared up of its own accord, and/or you think the dog seems better but the underlying condition won’t have changed and will recur.

9) “It helps lots of people.” (Appeal to Popularity.) Lots of people believe throwing spilled salt over their shoulder gives them good luck. Does that mean it works? Kidding oneself isn’t logical no matter how many people do it.

10) “I have been (or I have been seeing) an acupuncturist for 20 years.” (Sunk Cost Fallacy.) Believing and investing in something for a long time isn’t evidence of a cure any more than putting $10 on Black 15 all evening and every Roulette spin for 20 years is any evidence that you should keep doing it.

11) “Alternative Medicine is better because Big Pharma are just after people’s money.” (Diversionary tactic. Missing the point.) I’m not going to say, “Big Alternative Medicine are just after your money”, though it sells billions through supplements, treatments, media. You must give good evidence of any treatment’s mechanism of healing.

12) “Scientific studies show Acupuncture works.” (Appeal to Authority.) Do you understand the scientific method? Quality scientific studies show that there are NO good studies giving evidence for it.

That’s 12 reasons you might believe in acupuncture that are not logical.

Now try to give me 12 different reasons why you still think it is.

More information

PainScience on Acupuncture:

https://www.painscience.com/articles/acupuncture-for-pain.php

Wikipedia Logical fallacies:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

Cognitive biases:

https://medium.com/better-humans/cognitive-bias-cheat-sheet-55a472476b18

Current interests helping me thrive

“Whole of Life” list of cool things I’m enjoying doing and exploring.

1. Circular economy.

2. Recycling industry boom.

3. Local recycling collection points.

4. Did a CPR course.

5. 2 Day hiking event in the mountains last weekend. Superlatives are lacking.

6. Not getting distracted by other subjects when I go to look up something online.

7. Prudence.
Classics, minimalist, style, linen, bargain, Prudence, white shirt,

Linen shirts from Target marked down after summer. $10 and $5. Amazing what classics you can pick up if you walk around a lot patiently and see so many things you can choose the best bargains for a style you’re after. Plus, I used $10 worth of flybuys points!

8. Been making and bringing my lunches to work for months like I’m a proper grown-up.

9. Running regularly for joy not kudos.

10. Researching before buying things.

11. Tax planning.

12. Using Scholl Eulactol balm twice daily which has fixed my heels after they became dry and cracked from wearing Birkenstocks all summer.

13. Not replying in anger when someone makes an extremist comment.

14. Not checking the news outlets as often to avoid joining angry mobs or giving extremist clickbait articles any ad revenue.

15. Duolingo Greek lesson daily for 263 days so far.

16. Drawing daily for 10 months now.

17. Sewing pockets on things.

Also, some thoughts I haven’t had time to put into a separate blog post:

A. Fear of guilt or regret as a driver for action can help with:

B. Caterpillars in the stomach that people get when faced with doing something new.

C. People’s cognitive dissonance between:

Guilt about being unfit and overweight; and

Wanting to feel fit and healthy.

D. A can help us by being able to recognise when we’re doing B and C.

What’s got you thinking lately?

logic, thinking, reason, psychology, cbt, compassion, patience, communication, skepticism, honesty,

The hidden years, logic, and why we hate clicking on links

In 1999, my life purpose changed. Instead of avidly devouring information telling me WHAT to think, for the next 20 years I’ve spent all my spare time learning HOW to think.

I began to investigate the many types of Logical Fallacies and Cognitive Biases and how to recognise them being used by others, and, very importantly, when I was using fallacious reasoning myself.

I learned that we all simplify ideas into concepts that are easily explained due to the fundamental nature of communication, and that simplifications are nearly always wrong.

I learned that thinking about thinking is physically tiring, and to try and be compassionate and patient when trying to explain new information to someone.

Ideas and beliefs can be tribal, and some of the most anxious moments come from questioning things that bind us to our tribe(s).

Ideas are tribal and also genetic (nurture and nature). We have an instinctual, genetic reaction to rejecting different explanations that seem a threat to our tribal bonds, and that are an imposition on our time and energy.

Fight or flight is in our nature: We fearfully avoid or flee from rethinking beliefs, or we fight aggressively to defend them.

Rarely do we think it’s worth the time “re-wiring” a conclusion our neurons have already recorded (though we are also creatures of doubt and uncertainty, and this can help being open to new explanations).

I’ve loved reading about the scientific method and the history of how global standards of evidence and methods of proof, testing, and analysis have improved and been built upon exponentially.

I’m aware of how pride is important in our standards of evidence. We can be proud of our tribal or patriotic beliefs, our emotional breakthroughs, and our “Sunk Costs” (time spent maintaining a habit).

I’m also aware that I’m proud of what I’ve been learning and practising, and that makes me vulnerable, and sometimes appear aggressive or defensive.

I have some bad memories of being verbally abused for questioning an idea when I’ve tried to explain HOW to think logically about that idea.

I have learned and must remember that before, during, and beyond all this, honesty, patience, and compassion are the key to meaningful communication.

 

Thought Challenge:

Did you notice I didn’t write about the reason why we hate clicking on links?

Maybe what I DID write about might make you think of some reasons.

 

Further information:

Cognitive Bias Cheat Sheet (Possibly the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.)

List of fallacies (Wikipedia)

About Me (Zenmode)

How I lost weight (Zenmode)

The Psychology of Running (Zenmode)

An Adaptive Spiral (Zenmode)

Less Alcohol (Zenmode)

How I started running (Zenmode)

How to spot a weight loss scam (Zenmode)

Transformation, Identity, and the “True Self” Myth (Zenmode)

 

Is protein more satiating than carbohydrates or fat?

“A review of 38 studies concluded protein is more satiating than carbs and fats in the 10-20% of energy intake range but not above that, indicating the average satiety sweet spot is a protein intake of 20% of energy intake, corresponding to about 1.2 g/kg/d for non-strength training individuals. The effect was far stronger for self-reported satiety than actual eating behavior: ad libitum energy intake didn’t reliably decrease even at lower protein intakes. The optimum protein intake for satiety was closely in line with the optimal protein intake for body recomposition and health (1.2 – 1.6 g/kg/d).”

Menno Henselmans

Haha, that fascinating article pretty much sums my protein percentage up!

I have no medical conditions.

Please see a dietitian if you require advice on eating to assist management of illness.

I’ve been logging everything in My Fitness Pal over 4 years, (lost 35 kg and have maintained 3 years) and never really pay any attention to trying to achieve any particular macronutrient percentage.

My macros have consistently been an average of 20% protein, 30% fat, 50% carbs the whole time. This seems to coincide with the general recommendation from most national health departments.

I love how I was about to say through most of Henselman’s article, but what about fibre? Yep, at the end, he says how fruit and veg are good at filling you up.

You can use them to bulk up your plate and stomach with volume for very few calories.

And I find now that a 300 kilojoule piece of fruit is satiating and lets me stop eating whereas an 800 kilojoule biscuit/cookie makes me want another.

Sometimes, of course, I’m happy to use my calorie limit on a couple of biscuits. That’s a form of satiation too.

Other days, too, I’ll have a 400 kilojoule choc protein bar if I can feel I need it.

I learned a good word last week:

Interoception

“Research has begun to explore how our [lack of] awareness and perception of our body signals (known as interoception) contribute to disordered eating. Interoception includes perceiving various internal sensations from the body. It means noticing things like how quickly your heart is beating, how heavily you are breathing, how hot or cold you are, and whether you are feeling hungry or full.”

Melissa Barker and Rebecca Brewer

It’s risky just following the “intuitive eating” idea if you’re trying to watch your weight – but I’ve found it helps if you have some understanding of yourself and the caloric content of food you can choose to eat.

lineart, selfcare, unisex, health, psychology, depression, decluttering, savings, charity, wellness

Mega list of self-care ideas that are not selling you beauty products

The media is full of girly self-care articles all selling makeup and spa treatments. (Not that spa treatments and makeup are not OK if that’s what makes you chill out.)

Self-care is about doing things that help you feel less anxious, more Zen. It’s something everyone needs. We all have difficult moments, days, weeks.

I’ve compiled a list that’s helped me learn that it’s natural to feel bad sometimes, and that we all need reminders that there are things that could help.

They might also help you go from feeling good to great!

Firstly, some suggestions from The Mighty for when we’re struggling:

  • Get out of bed.
  • Brush your teeth.
  • Wash your face.
  • Shower, even if you just get in and rinse off! The water might feel amazing for you.
  • Eat something. Even if it’s just a cracker or some bread. Just get something in your belly!
  • Walk out onto your back porch. Stand there for 10 seconds and then if you want, go back inside. Great job, you made it outside! If you feel like it, take a short walk. Get some sunshine!
  • Put on your favourite TV show or movie.
  • Check your email and clear your inbox. Respond to anything that is important.
  • Change your sheets.
  • Check your actual mail.
  • Stay hydrated. Fill up a water bottle and keep it close by.
  • Take your medication.
  • Stretch. This can be a small quick stretch on the couch or some yoga.
  • Check your text messages and answer those from people who are important or worried about you.
  • Pay any bills you might have to avoid late fees.
  • Change your clothes if you didn’t when you first got out of bed.
  • If you have a pet, make sure they are good on their food and water. Nothing feels worse than your pet having an empty water or food bowl and you not being aware of it!
  • Do a creative hobby that you like.
  • Open up the blinds to let the light come into your house.
  • Watch a funny video. Laugh.

 

Here are some things that make me feel better:

  • Tidy a space – a table, a drawer, a cupboard.
  • Discuss what feelings or insights you both had today with a loved one, without gossiping.
  • Google articles or watch a video about something you recently wished you knew more about.
  • Go outside for a walk or a bike ride, or to just sit, and enjoy the outdoors.
  • Enjoy your time on social media without feeling guilty or rushed. Use it as downtime and as a treat.
  • When scrolling on social media and you see something or someone that always annoys you, let it go and unfollow them or mute them for a while.
  • Smile.
  • Donate to Wikipedia.
  • Subscribe or donate to an independent news provider.
  • Edit a photo, draw a picture, write about your thoughts.
  • Do an exercise you love.
  • Breathe in for 3 seconds, hold for 2, then out for 3 seconds, hold for 2. Do this 10 times. Don’t worry if you don’t manage to time it exactly.
  • Try a new recipe, meal, or food product.
  • Stretch.
  • Say no to something without feeling guilty.
  • Go to bed on time.
  • Give someone a compliment.
  • Contact an old friend and ask them something you’ve been wondering about them.
  • Leave the office and go for a walk at lunch instead of sitting or shopping.
  • Make a sandwich or bring some leftovers to work for lunch one day if you always eat out.
  • See how much you can save one week/day by not buying coffee or eating out, and put that money in your retirement. fund or savings account, even if it’s only a small amount.
  • Trim your fingernails and/or toenails.
  • Make that medical appointment you’ve been putting off.
  • Go to parkrun.
  • Visit an online energy company comparison platform to see if you’re able to save on electricity/gas bills by switching providers.
  • Meal prep or list meal ideas for your upcoming lunches and/or dinners.
  • Schedule a block of time in the future and plan some self-care or a meetup to look forward to.

 

Finally, some of these ideas could go on your “Absolute No List”:

  • Don’t rush.
  • Don’t spend more on your credit card than you can repay at payday.
  • Don’t gossip.
  • Don’t allow toxic people to waste your time.
  • Don’t answer the phone during dinner.
  • Don’t buy things you don’t have space for.
  • Don’t go to bed late and don’t sleep in.

 

zenmode running self-care anxiety sober quit alcohol marathon training work volunteering administration health medication

Self-care victory

Had two terrible nights sleep earlier in the week and was struggling a lot at work. Felt like people were demanding every minute of my time and I had too many responsibilities outside of work.

 

At 5:30 am I went for an angry, 80-minute run and thought of logical kick-arse ways to reduce a lot of time spent on administration, and implemented them when I got back.

 

This helped not just me but also others to have a limit set now on what we feel we can do.

 

I made it through the day without needing any sort of medication or self-medication, and only realised this when it was all over and it hadn’t even occurred to me to use any. Nearly 400 days alcohol-free. Not even any caffeine for over 4 months.

 

Instead of freaking out with anxiety I’d been proactive.

 

Proud of myself for not pulling out of any volunteer responsibilities completely, since I’m proud of what I’m involved in.

 

Thursday 28 February I realised I’d rather use the money I’ve saved for flights and accommodation (to do a marathon in April) on a faster computer for myself.

 

This will improve my quality of life immensely and reduce a lot of frustrations.

 

I also decided to build a stronger 30 km run base rather than max out my resources for 2 months yet again on a marathon that would mean my glute/piriformis pain would worsen just when it’s been a lot better.

 

This will mean regular, consistent running to look forward to and enjoy.

 

Feeling like I’ve actually won a marathon now!

Noosa National Park running walking trail view palm tree beach

Euphoric scenic run in Noosa Queensland on day 377 alcohol-free

Set out for my run at 5:10 am and it was 24C / 75F in the pre-dawn half-light. I was running gently to take in the scenery and so I didn’t trash myself in the “Feels like 31C” (89F) heat and 88% humidity which had made me quite unwell running 13 km quite hard 4 days earlier.

Four years ago when we were in Noosa, I was 35 kg overweight and barely walking a few thousand steps a day. But that was also when I was slowly trying to increase my activity.

A year ago I had aimed to run 4 km to Noosa then explore the National Park headland trail. But both times I ran there, only I got about 1 km into the park before having The Fear that if I didn’t start running back I’d need a toilet before I had found one.

This run was a victory venturing into the unknown (where there were loads of other people)!

I’d found a map showing toilets a few hundred metres past where I’d got before. I also brought my Camelbak containing chilled water, and was much more Zenned-out and calm, and able to enjoy every moment.

When I stopped drinking about a year ago, I started to lose my anxiety. That, and no fear of a toilet emergency were some of the reasons I enjoyed this.

On top of all this, the scenery was incredible, and I started to feel quite euphoric!

I paused a lot to take photos, and I’m happy with these ones.

Sunrise Noosa Parade bridge Weyba Creek running Queensland AustraliaNoosa Queensland Australia tropical plantsSunrise Noosa Parade bridge Sofitel Hastings Street running Queensland AustraliaNoosa Heads beach Queensland Australia running surfingBoardwalk Noosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach oceanBoiling Pot Noosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach oceanNoosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach ocean tropical plantsNoosa National Park running walking trail view palm tree beachBeautiful Trail Noosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach ocean sunriseNoosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach oceanNoosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach oceanDolphin Point Sunrise Noosa National Park running walking trail view Queensland Australia trees beach oceanNoosa National Park walking trail view running

I’d made a connection in the morning that each fairly typical glass of wine I used to drink had the same number of calories as two slices of bread.

Three glasses of wine a day (or a beer and two wines) plus the usual meals and snacks and no purposeful exercise for 5 years meant the weight steadily crept up and up, till I discovered how to count calories easily for free and started to move more.

Last year’s holiday began during my first month without drinking and I had been so proud to stick to not drinking during it, and happily surprised I found it so enjoyable.

This year, the distances walked and run seemed much shorter and I felt very light-hearted.

AF is the new black. 1 year alcohol-free.

Not sure what’s made me happier today – reaching my 1 year alcohol-free milestone or hearing that friends are winning their battles with their old habits.

One friend online made me very happy by having an AF birthday. Not long ago he was drinking about a dozen beers a day.

Another who was headed for a compulsory detox has now (with doctor’s guidance) reached Day 10.

Four others today said they have cut back or been AF a while. Two plan to do Feb Fast and one doesn’t think she’ll drink again.

This is not even counting all the many users of the Daybreak app or the My Fitness Pal Less Alcohol thread participants I’ve been supporting and learning from who are making concerted efforts to learn strategies and cognitive behavioral therapies to change their lives.

I spent the evening of Day 365 having a chat with my sister and husband, then going to Run Club to do a speed session. You can’t get the vibrant and lovely feeling that you get from running from any sort of alcohol or drug. Had another chat with my son, and a quick stir-fry dinner, an icy glass of blackcurrant cordial and sparkling water, chocolate, and now I’m ready for sleep.