Back to the Fat

Two weeks have passed since I got back from my holiday and I have still not returned to the gym! For shame! We’re off to Body Jam this arvo though. Knowing my luck the songs will have changed, so I will spend the hour swearing and untangling my feet rather than getting a decent workout, but you gotta start somewhere.

. . .

According to my math(s), approximately 97.537% of married Dietgirl readers met their spouse online. That figure may be slightly enhanced but from the comments (and an email) sparked by my O, Tortured Love Life entry, it seems this is the way of the future! You all seem incredibly happy and best of all (from my selfish point of view) it allowed you to give me oodles of advice and Things To Think About while I wasn’t busy curling up in a ball and freaking out.

Smalls_1 But then! Everything changed on Tuesday night. I went along to a gig featuring my boy and his band. It was the first time I’d seen him in action. So it was true, after all, he does know how to play that bass, he does spend his Saturdays in a dingy studio that reeks of Man Fumes for good reason. He walked on stage, squinted through the lights til we made eye contact, then gave me a goofy grin and The Fist Of Rock, a la Derek Smalls in Spinal Tap.

And that’s when I felt like I’d been punched in the guts. All of a sudden I just knew, knew knew knew, that I had to have this guy in my life no matter what. Whatever it takes, I’ll do it, and I’ll be happy to do it. All my doubts and fears and freaking out seemed trivial, just annoying little technicalities that we could bumble our through. I just saw everything with perfect clarity, what I wanted, where I wanted to be, and suddenly felt so peaceful.

Let’s hope the feeling’s mutual! Mwahaha.

. . .

Anyway, back to the fat.

My sister and I were both financially crippled by our holidays but we’re in desperate need of some new clobber. Our jeans in particular are looking tired. We want new jeans! But we cannae afford them for awhile. And we don’t want to buy new jeans in our current sizes. Myself in particular – in the past 3.5 years I have bought six new pairs of jeans and each time they were smaller than the last. My current pair were purchased on 4 November 2003 (hours before the first Hot Date with the Scotsman) and have been worn approximately five times a week and almost 11 months later are still the same perfect fit. This is soooo infuriating, especially since in the six months before that I’d gone down two sizes. I’m not used to needing new clothes because they’re worn out – I’ve only been buying new clothes coz the old ones fell off.

So we have set ourselves The Six Week Challenge. Six weeks to scrape together the dosh for fresh denim, and six weeks for the old pair to become at least a little roomy so the new purchase feels financially justified. Our plan is all about gym classes and morning walk/runs, wholesome food, journalling and NO SCALES. Time and time again the pair of us have let our motivation be slaughtered by the scale. We’d weigh in right before our gym class, and if it was bad we’d spend the whole class moaning about how useless we were, how it was all for nothing, looking in the mirrors and pointing out flaws. Which totally takes away from the fact that you made the effort to get to the class and move your ass. Which is 1000 times more important than a number on a scale.

Do you think I can go six weeks without peeking? Hmmm…

Raging Bull

There's been a lot of talk of "discretionary calories" lately but I would like to discuss my favourite calories, and those are Bullshit Calories.

These are either 1) the calorie-dense foods that you can bullshit yourself into eating excessively by focusing on their flimsy bit of nutritional merit OR conversely 2) foods with poor nutritional merit that you bullshit yourself into eating excessively because their calorie content is low.

Examples:

Fry's Turkish Delight
Small bar (approx. 3 x 1.5 inches) of turkish delight coated in delicious milk chocolate. Only 185 calories and 3.5g of fat. This falls into Bullshit Calories when you say, "Wow, that's only got 185 calories and 3.5g fat compared to the 40g fat and 1500 calories if I were to eat that 100g block of Green & Blacks chocolate!".

Well of course if you're going to compare a punch in the nose to having a family car dropped on your head, one scenario is clearly more favourable than the other – but that doesn't necessarily mean the punch in the nose isn't going to hurt you. Especially if you get three of them.

Nuts
High in calories, high in fat, but absolutely packed with health. Nutritionists say three brazil nuts a day is all you need to get a healthy dose of selenium, magnesium, and thiamin. A handful of almonds provides calcium and protects against heart disease. Walnuts ain't too shabby either.

But do you think I can stop at three brazils? And what's a handful of almonds look like? I've got quite a hefty hand. I have the ability to gnash my way through dozens of nuts and seeds in a typical work day, far above the suggested servings. My colleagues ask me if Polly wants a cracker, and I shout back at them with pulverised pecans clinging to my gums and trapped between my teeth, "But they're good for you!".

Marks and Spencer Greek Style Natural Yogurt & Greek Cherry Compote
I love for Marks & Spencer and their ridiculously over-named and over-priced products. Right before our Baltic trip I'd ran out of yogurt for breakfast and grabbed one of the above on my way to work. I cannot resist anything with cherries. I knew full well that the compote was about 2% cherries with half a pound of sugar, but surely that was balanced out by the goodness of YOGURT? Everyone knows greek yogurt is good for you, it has acidophilous and snuffleuphagus and all that healthy bacteria. The 310 calories in this product clearly come under the category of Bullshit, but this didn't stop me scoffing another three of them last week.

So what are your favourite Bullshit Calories?

Crossroads

So here I am back at work after my Baltic jaunt. We had a wonderful time and I managed to eat well.

I just wish I could be wild and witty Dietgirl today but I am riddled with PMS and confusion. I just have this constant pit in my stomach, Worrying About The Future. As of next Monday there’s only six months left on my visa before I can no longer live and work in the UK. So of course I’m busy dreaming up schemes so I can stay.

The day before I left for my holiday there was an internal job vacancy posted at my weekday job,. It was in the field I was working in before I left Oz. The job was at a level that I thought I was well qualified for, so I applied even though I am just a temp. I’ve been here 12 months so I thought why the hell not.

The more I thought about it while I was away the more I got my stupid hopes up. I imagined they would gladly take me on, thankful that someone who knows the company was already here, not needing to be trained. I convinced myself the job was of high enough calibre to be eligible for a work permit. So I had fantasies of finally having a fulfilling job and being able to stay in Scotland with my boy without needing a quickie wedding.

I got back to work on Wednesday then Thursday one of the HR team asked to meet me. I sat down in the meeting room and saw she’d stuck a post-it note on my application. It had my visa expiry date written on it. My heart just sank and I knew that was it. She was so kind and sweet and explained that I only had six months left and they wanted someone permanent. Even when I said I interested in staying in Scotland long-term, she said they weren’t the practice of doing work permits. She went through my application and explained that I didn’t quite match the job profile and asked would I like to meet with her and the Head of the department to talk more specifically about why I wasn’t chosen. Why on earth would I want hear more about why I wasn’t wanted?

Of course I took it personally, because it’s just this whole bloody Issue constantly hanging over my head right now. And of course I have this stupid face that cannot hide how I am feeling so I am trying to be professional and thank her for considering my application but she kept saying, "I’m sorry, I know you’re disappointed". It is so hard when people are so nice. So after the meeting I went and hid in the loos and tried not to cry. That worked for about ten minutes.

Back in the office, my colleagues noticed my radioactive red eyes. My supervisor, who knew I’d applied, took me to another meeting room and he was just as kind and said he thought I would have been great in the job. Cue more blubbering from me. I like where I work, I’d love to stay longer. So I was gutted not just because of another visa scheme gone wrong, but coz I’d missed the chance to get a good job in a company I like.

It’s hard to express how hard this situation is. My only realistic options now seem to be:

1) go back to Australia
2) get the 1-year Working Holiday Visa in Ireland and fly back whenever I can to see my boy, or;
3) quickie wedding.

All these options SUCK ASS.

1) sucks because I don’t want to go home. I am not ready to be back in the suffocating confusion of my family, I have not done all the Eurotravel I want to do. I love my freedom.

2) sucks because I have no interest in living in Ireland apart from it being the closest place to Scotland I would be allowed to live in for a year. I love Edinburgh and the thought of packing it all up then having to find a job a gym a home in another country all over again – especially for just one year – is bloody exhausting. And what happens after that? Besides, I love this guy too fucking much, I have had enough of being apart, the thought of even that far away from him me feel all empty and sad.

3) sucks because I don’t think we’re ready for marriage. I knew right away, POW, that he was the one for me and I daydream about marrying him. But not just yet.

We talked about this last night. We’re both easygoing types who like to let things unfold at their own pace. We know we want to stay together but like things how they are, slowly growing closer every day, getting to know each other, the feelings building and evolving. But it feels like we’re being forced to speed things up, the course of the relationship is being dictated by circumstances beyond our control. It just feels so wrong. We haven’t even been together a year yet, we’re still so shy and tentative, we just want to talk about music and holidays and what to have for dinner, not about how we want to manage our finances or what house to buy or whether we want plastic people on top of a wedding cake.

I’ve had friends who say, "Why don’t you just get married?". But it would be so weird to have it happen like that. A rushed proposal, a quickie wedding, just for a visa. It’s just not romantic, it feels forced, it’s just not us. It wouldn’t reflect the quiet, easygoing and precious connection we have.

BAH.

Are you sick of me going on about this yet? When am I going to talk about The Fat again? I am sorry, I am just really confused and blue and no idea what’s going to happen and which path to take.

But I can’t stay in this mood. I have to have faith that we will work things out and figure the best way to handle this. We still have six months to think. And I need to look after myself and get back to the gym and back into the running after the holiday break. Half this bleak mood can be put down to lack of endorphins.

I have to milk this six months I definitely have left in Scotland and not waste another second. And I will write about The Fat tomorrow.