Darning tights. Boro stitch. Japanese slow stitching. Contrasting darning. Rainbow embroidery thread. Slow fashion. Fashion Rebellion. Circular Economy

My Extinction Rebellion Personal Manifesto to Support Sustainable and Ethical Industry

1. Be a relentlessly optimistic and logical realist.

2. Be curious. Learn, practice, share, teach; Learn, practice, share, teach; Circular Economy.

3. Email/communicate with local, state, national government workers and with politicians. Suggest ways to present sustainable policies to their colleagues and voters in a way that makes the people they represent like the ideas and understand how the voters will benefit.

4. Act Global. Online, share, encourage, and communicate information and technological and ideological developments. Be curious! Be part of sharing the circular economies in learning, open source policies, strategies, ideas, data, technology. Connect with innovators and activists.

5. Tell brands I’ve liked what they can do to be even better and transparent and make me recommend them even more.

6. Don’t subscribe to shop email newsletters because they tempt us to buy because something is “cheaper”.

7. Subscribe to alerts on circular economy, open source information, and sustainability in materials, technology, energy, recycling, transport, fashion, architecture, education.

8. Keep my finance spreadsheet updated including my list of any material things I need and only buy once I’ve researched the best product for my needs and situation.

9. Tell friends important things I’ve learned and make their lives easier and more fulfilling by giving them simple ways to be ethical and sustainable.

10. Re-use, repair, retain, redesign, upcycle clothes and goods. Only buy good quality, and ethically or second-hand. Vote with my note. Spend less so I can spend wisely on a few sustainable and ethical things that may cost as much as lots of fast fashion.

11. Act Local. Keep working with my local War on Waste group. Attend the nearby sustainable fashion festival and clothing swap; get ideas for a swap meet of our own. Keep sharing information about Repair Cafés. Learn about mending workshops, and gather interest and ideas to hold one, and hopefully more.

12. Keep walking for enjoyment and health and necessity (never ever had a driving licence since being old enough to get one in the 1980s and seeing my father devastated at hearing David Suzuki for the first time speak about climate change).

13. Activate for more public transport use and better footpaths and lighting in my area.

14. Activate for a running track in my town.

15. Activate for fair wages and unemployment benefits and universal basic income.

16. Absorb information from Ellen MacArthur, Greta Thunberg, Jeremy Rifkin, Rutger Bregman, Fashion Revolution, Slow Fashion Season, #CircularEconomy, The United Nations, The World Health Organisation, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

17. Be prudent.

18. Embrace the Zen.

19. #loveparkrun

20.Run sustainably.

21. Draw daily.

22. Practice sustainable and ethical investment.

23. Call out injustice and illogic.

24. “Now is the time for civil disobedience” – Greta Thunberg.

25. Speak the unspoken.

26. Be awesome!

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.

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.

walking, decluttering, cleaning, minimalism, work, changes, fibonacci, transformation, weight loss, health, happiness, sustainability

An Adaptive Spiral

Turning small efforts into daily habits results in beautiful things.

 

NEAT (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) is the term for activity other than purposeful exercise. E.g. Walking, cleaning, trips to the fridge, playing with your kids, etc.

 

NEAT accounts for a higher percentage of your daily energy expenditure than intentional exercise even if you work out 5-6 hours a week.

 

Increasing your NEAT can make a huge difference to your health and environment.

 

  • Wear comfortable shoes: You’re not in pain or grumpy; better relationships; better posture; you can walk around without hindrance; more NEAT.
  • Bring your lunch to work: Saves money eating out, and you can spend the rest of your lunch hour walking / doing errands.
  • Wear a backpack rather than carry a shoulder bag: You’re more inclined to go for a walk; you walk more easily and quickly; you don’t hunch one shoulder to keep a bag on it (my physiotherapist pointed this out and now I see people with lopsided shoulders everywhere).
  • Bringing lunch and drinks to work means more trips to the office kitchen: Saves money; more NEAT.
  • Put dishes away one at a time: NEAT; and it also doesn’t increase power bills.
  • Put laundry away one item at a time: NEAT!
  • Walk your office mail to admin on another floor instead of putting it in your floor’s mail-out tray: Saves admin staff having to carry it or forget it, and I get more floors climbed.
  • Walk to the shops when you need something (rather than waiting till you have a long list then drive).

 

One of my realisations was to just stop whining to others to do tasks and just get off my butt and do them myself. No arguments; better relationships!

 

More NEAT meant decluttering, and more space!

 

All this NEAT led to feeling better, doing more purposeful exercise, eating according to my calorie limit, losing weight, running, feeling better, round and round…

 

An adaptive spiral.

 

Today I was thinking that NEAT is sort of like doing the “right” thing:

 

 

  • You walk to the bin instead of leaving rubbish on the table – more calories burned; tidy house.
  • I just walked two sides of a triangle along the path instead of taking the short cut across a carpark – safer; more calories burned.
  • I walk the long way to & from work – less carbon emissions; save money; more calories burned.

 

 

Doing the “right” thing has so many benefits!

Losing 80 lb / 35 kg using My Fitness Pal (easy calorie-counting app), running, and participating in community discussions led me to not having drunk alcohol since January 31 2018.

Not drinking meant not needing as much time in bed trying to sleep. Now I sleep more soundly and don’t wake as often, which means I have more time to do nice things.

On Thursday after my run, study, and drawing, I still had lots of time to spare before my last day of work for the year:

  • I put away some things I’d left in the hall after doing some rearranging around the house.
  • I walked to the hardware shop and bought some picture hooks and hung prints of my son’s artwork properly in my yoga room (his room when he comes home).
  • I tidied my room and wiped down all the surfaces free of dust.

And when I came home, it all looked lovely and I was facing 12 days holiday!

 

As each day passes, we can make appropriate and sustainable growth, change, and habits that beautify the overall picture. 

 

An adaptive spiral.

 

IMG_0604

drinking alcohol in moderation

Less alcohol

I drank 2-3 large drinks a day pretty much every day for many years.  At the start of 2018, I had 3 of my running friends do alcohol-free months which made me start to think I should really take on a new challenge.

Then another friend wrote about “Being kind to Tomorrow You”. He made me realise that not drinking is a lovely, sympathetic gesture towards the person we are now, and whom we will wake up as.

I don’t look at a day without alcohol as a punishment for drinking too much.  A night off is a treat for Tomorrow You. You’ll wake up without guilt about last night’s drinking, and without a headache or hangover.  A night off will be an achievement you can be proud of all day.

On February 1 I decided I’d take it one day at a time and see how I went.  One day led to the next, and soon it was my birthday.  Instead of celebrating with a drink, I felt it would be a more significant occasion if I didn’t drink on my birthday for the first time in 30 years.

I also celebrated other milestones (decluttering my room; running my first 50 km run) without drinking.  I found I was enjoying my “streak” and my natural highs much more than a couple of hours “buzz” then many hours feeling crap.

I’ve now passed the 9 months alcohol-free mark.

I always felt “fine” as a daily drinker, but I didn’t know how much better I could actually feel!

  1. No guilt, fear, or foreboding about what the drinking is doing to me.
  2. Sleeping soundly.
  3. Better memory.
  4. Huge boost in creativity.
  5. No mood swings.
  6. Better relationships.
  7. More money!

 

I have an app set up, “Nomo”, which tells me I’ve already saved over $1,600 by not spending the $40 per week I used to spend on alcohol.

I read this yesterday, by an alcohol-free woman who has made and is making big changes.

She writes:

 

“From school, to uni, and at work, at sports and weddings, funerals or even community events – it’s always been a prolific and revered part of any social connections.”

“Somehow, I made it. The odds were overwhelmingly against me – as I kept reading and being told. Some fanatics declared ‘once an alcoholic always an alcoholic’ and I realised that was why so many people cannot beat the stigmas and are overwhelmed before they even start.” Hello Sunday Morning

Sure, it can be helpful discussing not drinking with like-minded others. I wouldn’t have got this far without discussing how to think differently about alcohol with others online.

But many people find the idea of attending AA meetings too confronting, though they do help many others.

To me, thinking you’ll always be fighting a permanent part of your being (“I’m an alcoholic”) seems very unhelpful and defeatist.

I choose to think that alcohol is a form of chemistry that can be fun… for a while, but it has side-effects that snowball with consumption, and increased consumption is one of those side-effects.

Don’t blame it on yourself. Blame the alcohol chemistry.

Once you’re free of the alcohol, you’re free to be whatever you want to be.

I found it easier to quit rather than to moderate, or have regular days off, with a disclaimer.  The way I “quit” was by thinking I’m not quitting forever. I can drink whenever I want. I choose not to for now.  I felt that the occasional drink is how I became a daily drinker. It’s too hard to drink then quit, repeatedly, considering how hard I found it to quit for one day for all those years.

Thanks for reading.

Edited 20 March 2019 to include something about my participation in discussions online. That was a huge part of what helped, along with reading articles such as those in the Hello Sunday Morning newsletter.