Sunday, 21 August 2011

My Fitness Story: The Addiction

I have never been a sporty person.

In fact, I would get away with the LEAST AMOUNT of exercise possible when I was younger. I used to count "dancing in clubs" as my exercise.

But I think the fact that I have had a child, coupled with the fact that as you get older *cough* you need to work harder to stay trimmer, has given me this drive t
o want to be fit and healthy. And as a result, get more toned and thinner while I am there. Why not? I think when you start to see results, it gives you that bit of motivation you need to keep going.... and going....

Rewind back to before I had Lincoln.

I was, at that time, going to the gym 3 times a week and running 4/5K each time (half walking, half running) and doing some weights and sit ups. At the time it felt like it was enough, but thinking back, I wasn't pushing myself in the slightest bit. I was barely sweating re
ally (and I now don't feel like I've done nearly enough torturous things to my body unless I have sweated and need a towel).

Then when I became pregnant with Lincoln I carried on (with care) jogging/walking/weights that were safe etc and then jogged the 5K Race For Life in Rhyl in June 2009 whilst I was 36 weeks pregnant (Below). I walked like John Wayne for 2 days afterwards.

And after that crazy idea, I stopped the gym and walked everywhere for the last weeks of my pregnancy which kept my fitness levels up in preparation for Lincoln's arrival. I strongly feel that exercising whilst pregnant is extremely beneficial to your baby as it increases the oxygen level and quality to the placenta and then on to the baby.

After the first 6 weeks of taking care of Lincoln and just trying to grab some sleep(!) I didn't even THINK about exercising again until my C-Section Scar stopped its bitchin' and so I first went back to the Gym again 6 weeks post baby. BIG MISTAKE. After carrying a baby for so long and then losing your core strength and your counterbalance tummy (the
baby), it is stupid to go back that soon. As I found out. I jogged and did some light stuff but even that was too much. I pulled my back the next day putting Lincoln's clothes away and was on Tramadol (warning! do not take! highly addictive!) for the next few nights due to absolute agony in my back!

So I left it another 2 weeks and tried again. This time I only walked. I was ok, so started back at the gym once a week.

It was all I had time for because Lincoln was such a hungry baby and I was feeding him. I used to leave after one feed, then be back by his next feed. Tiring. But, I muddled on and carried on going once a week.

I upped it to twice a week when Lincoln was about 7/8 months old and was back jogging/running half and half of a 5K.

Then, when he self weaned completely at 8 months, 1/2 a stone just started to fall off me (how kind of my body to keep it for Lincoln's feeds lol), so I started to run more and more of the 5K at the gym. But still, not pushing myself hard.

Until... a sickness bug at Christmas time (2010). I lost so much weight so quickly (not recommended but a great way to lose weight!) that I got the co
nfidence to step it up.

Not the most flattering of photos....

Before long, I got the exercise bug and started to make my runs longer and longer, eventually getting to some 16K (10 mile) runs. I was loving it. And felt really happy. I completed this year's Race For Life in 23' 40 seconds.

But that happiness began to be short lived and the day after a gym visit, I had to know, myself, when my next visit would be or I would start to get irritated and uneasy.

It was all I could think about. My next exercise session.

I have never taken drugs. But I could probably liken that feeling of needing to go, to a drug addict's craving.

The thing is, the more fit you get, the leaner you get, the more addicted you get, and the more you need to keep it up so you don't LOSE it! I mean, you have worked so hard to get it.... you can't go back. You can only go forward. And do MORE. Or your body won't feel it or see results! ARGH!

My husband hates it. I get cranky if I don't go when I'm supposed
to go, and now, I crave more and have started to do Kettle Bell Cardio and Purely Kettle Bell Classes twice a week. As WELL as 3 gym visits a week.

I did that for about 3 weeks and then wanted more. (I know). I found out about North Wales Boot Camp through a girl in the KB Classes and was lucky enough to have got a space.

Boot Camp was last week (August 15th - 19th). I felt so empowered and strong after it that I feel like I can do and achieve anything.

I will blog about what we did at boot camp in a couple of days. With horrendously embarrassing photos like this one.Yes that's me. In the sand. Jumping over some poor girl and trying not to head butt in the stomach some other poor girl!

Now I am having palpitations about potentially not being able to go to the NEXT and FINAL Boot Camp of the year (starts next Mon - BH).

I hope I get to go. If not, I think I will cry into my chocolate.

Oh. I didn't mention my diet did I? It's not particularly good. Which is why I need so much exercise.

In all seriousness, I think I have a bit of a problem. But I really enjoy it. Boot Camp was one of the best things I have done in ages. I don't drink, smoke or do any drugs and so an exercise/endorphine addiction isn't really THAT bad in comparison.

Is it?

Friday, 19 August 2011

Poo and Sandwiches

Not together. That's disgusting. But separately? Music to my ears.

You see, Lincoln tried and most importantly ENJOYED his first sandwich the other day. We all had soup with sandwiches on a cold August (yes, you read that right. August!) afternoon, and we were trying for what seemed like the millionth time to get Lincoln to eat sandwiches. I think it's maybe the texture. I really don't know why he will eat bread, or toast, but not sandwiches. Anyway....

The point is, whilst me and my husband were talking away, we didn't realise at first his protests at the tiny triangle shapes that were on his plate and we were happily eating ours and dipping into hot soup. Then, the protests stopped and the next thing we knew he was... wait for it... picking one up!! He dipped it into his soup and ate it! Ok, he then spat the ham out, which he does for most things he has to chew that he's not sure about, but he ate it.

I only wish I had been less anal about his food from an early age and not restricted anything so now he would eat anything. Maybe. I know it's a toddler's way to not eat and refuse just because they can, but it's getting a bit ridiculous now.

I pride myself on Lincoln sleeping well (after starting sleep training at 6 months) and behaving well (after some help with Timeout), with good manners (from me droning on and on) and now on the road to being toilet trained (see below for poo stories shortly), but FOOD?! Forget it. I need help. He will only eat 2 meals.

1) His "Fish Dish" which is a good meal actually. He has had it since he was 8 months ish and is his staple. It includes Salmon, Cod, Cheese, Orange Juice and Cornflakes (trust me). All baked in oven and then mixed and divided up into meal portions. He will have this with....

  • Sweet Potato Mash
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Mini Carrot Waffles
  • Sweetcorn
(any of the above) which he has now ALSO started to refuse.

2) Sausages. Basically with lots of tomato sauce and one of the above options of accompaniments.

That's it. I have tried in vain to offer what we eat, or a version of it. But he will not eat it. And by "not" I mean, will sit there and not eat, and in his head the decision has been made that he won't be eating at all! So all he wants is to either get out of his chair, or have yogurts (which he doesn't get). He has also started to put food he actually LIKES (see above 2 dishes for what these ARE) and then spit it out after chewing for a minute.

It is beating me. I don't know what to do. I need help. And none of this, "just don't feed him" stuff. I've done that. I need strategies. I need you!

On the "poo" front, I am really proud of him. But since when did toddlers become so manipulative? I created a monster. A clever genius that plays us at our own games. After a battle to get him to sit down to do no. 2's, I promised him, if he followed through on the toilet (we've gone straight to toilet - bypassed the potty) then he will get a "Tangled" present. Since he nearly threw a diva strop in the Disney Store a month ago when he spotted a figurine set of the Tangled characters.

This perked him right up and I "thought" the promise of it would be enough.


Turns out he will still refuse to sit and poo, resulting in it eventually escaping when your back is turned for that split second emptying the washer and your toddler running in holding the emergency downstairs potty saying "I need to go toilet". But having already "been" to the toilet in his teeny tiny underpants. *shudder*

So then we decided to, when we knew he was going to the toilet on one of his "attempts", take one of the figurines with us for when he was in the bathroom. And it worked. I have never seen that much concentration on his face in all his 2 years and 1 month. He had a poo! and he was elated with the prize.

That was yesterday.

Today, we had a poo accident because he had refused to sit on the toilet again. (after asking to go for a poo btw), but it wasn't much so I knew there was more to be had here. Sorry. I should have mentioned you shouldn't read this if you're eating. a bit later, I secretly stashed Mother Gothel down my trousers and headed up with Linc to the toilet. He barely sat on the loo when I pulled her out.

And then we had another golden poo.

So, then I go out to boot camp (blog coming about that shortly), and husband puts him to bed. When I got home, he told me about Lincoln manipulating him in the bath! After bath, we clean his teeth. He never really likes it lately and turns away. My husband went to clean his teeth and he just turned round and said "Want. Maximus." then turned back around.............

Maximus is the horse in Tangled. And Lincoln is too clued up. He knows they are rewards for poos and is now using them against us to achieve other things we want him to do!!


.........................................................................he didn't get maximus.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Lincoln's 2nd Birthday and the details...

Lincoln's Gruffalo Themed 2nd Birthday Party was perfect. It couldn't have gone better and the party guests were so lovely, completing a fabulous day for Lincoln. Anyway, I am blogging because everyone has been asking me about 1) The Banner 2) The Cake and 3) The Face Painter.

For all those who asked (and there was a lot of people) I thought I would put the photo and details of where to buy on my blog for ease.

A company called designs-4-u made the banner, who are on facebook (which is where I found them) at this link. NOTE:-You have to click "like" to see anything etc etc...!/magic.print2011

And here is the Banner. It is 6ft by 3ft (I think) and cost £35 including fast posting! It is waterproof and almost untearable and not like a "poster" if you know what I mean.

Give them any theme and they can do anything! Our Cake was also brilliant and was made by amazing women in Prestatyn who have a company called "Cup Cake Cafe of Prestatyn" (I think) who are on Twitter as @QueensofCake. Here is the Cake...

The face painter is called Erica from @occasionsparty and each face/arm/hand was a work of art!

Lincoln had such a great time at his Gruffalo themed 2nd Birthday Party. This photo sums it up I think...

That's Lincoln with Zach :o) His brother from another mother lol...


Sunday, 3 April 2011

Four Word Sentences

Lincoln will repeat anything.

And by anything, I mean, "oh god", "Crikey moses", "shake your body" and more recently, (thanks for this one Catherine) "Lady Ga Ga"......

He started with 2 word sentences. More like commands for us to do (me and daddy). Like...

"fetch it"

"mummy come"

"in there"

Which then led to 3 word sentences...

"I'll fetch it"

"mummy sit there"

"in there please"

(He has really good manners. Which may or may not have been drummed into him morning noon and night)

And you get the idea....

So when he started to speak in at least 4 word sentences, I thought it time to note it down (blog wise).

"Catherine will find one" (talking about a flower)

"daddy sit there please"

"new shoes on mummy"

"I love you mummy"

I could cry. He sounds like a real little boy and is developing into such a lovely person and I'm so proud to be his mummy.

So this mother's day, I am celebrating being a mummy to the loveliest little man I know. Don't ever change.

Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Judgement Day

Lincoln is a genius. No, really, he is!

Or *is* he?

I observe a lot of intelligence and good behaviour in my classes week to week and I have become to feel proud of their achievements even though I'm not their parent.

I see a lot of achievements on my Twitter feed straight out the mouths of the lovely mummies I follow.

I know, being a teacher, that the first 4 or so years of a child's life is so important in training their brain to "learn effectively" (and giving them as much as possible to absorb with their brains being like sponges and all), and that by knowing this, I have consciously "taught" Lincoln, sometimes without even realising I am "teaching" him, every single waking hour of every day.

Cruel mummy? or Clever mummy? you decide. But his achievements speak for themselves. Or do they?

I realised that actually we are all incredibly proud of our little one's achievements no matter how big or small, but what we don't do is truly know at what exact age/stage they should be doing what we are congratulating them for.

Lincoln is my first child (of hopefully many). So what or who in fact would I have to compare him to?


Good god, if we believed Google even 80% of the time, we would all be waiting to die slowly in the corner with our Googled illnesses or believe our child to be

a) a genius fit only for Mensa or NASA or something!


b) completely under-average, non descript, and should never leave the house with a brain that simple and a brain that, by the way, mummy gave you!

So, I am going to be brave. I have no idea how Lincoln fairs in the "your child is a genius" vs "your child is inevitably going to be a wooden top" judgement system that we all have.

There is no set one.

Please comment and tell me your little one's achievements too. If they achieved what's written below at a younger age than Lincoln then please tell me! I will need to save and prepare to bribe future headteachers and exams officers ;o)

..... well, a Mummy's job doesn't stop at teaching!

Lincoln is 19 months and can......

  1. Count to 6 (it took a while for this one)
  2. Identify and say the following Colours - Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Purple, Pink, Black, White
  3. Knows the difference between High/Low, Fast/Slow, In/Out, In front/Behind, Hot/Cold, Hard/Soft, Noisy/Quiet, Wrong/Right (even if he doesn't choose to change or acknowledge he is doing the wrong thing)
  4. Understands the emotions Happy, Sad, Angry, Tired, Scared, Shy, Jealous, Proud and Brave. (sure there are more but can't think on the spot)
  5. Sing at pitch. This one I love.
  6. Identify Shapes - Circle, Square, Rectangle, Triangle, Star, Oval
  7. Name Body Parts - too many to name. All nearly including elbow, hair etc
  8. Identify over 50 animals. I'm not that sad (for those of you who think I may have sat there and counted), we have a 50 animals book and he knows them all.
  9. His vocabulary is (if I do say so myself) absolutely bloody massive. can not count the amount of words he says. I guess constantly giving things a name or label pays off in the end when it comes to speech development.
  10. Can tap in time to music. *ahem* yes, that one is kind of a given due to my subject matter, but still, taught by moi nonetheless, I am extremely proud given his age.
  11. He knows tooooooo many character's names than is healthy. Rex, Woody, Buzz, Jessie, Bullseye, Lotso, Slinky, Ham, Sully, Boo, Randall, yadda yadda yadda, all those off CBeebies, any Pixar movie and yes, I am in the Bad Mummy's Club for even letting him watch tv! *shock*... in my defense, it isn't every day (grins).
I am sure there are various more I have forgotten about, but when you're faced with filling a blog space, suddenly, all words and letters escape you.

So... Cruel Mummy? Clever Mummy? Obsessive Mummy? All of the above?

You decide...

But be kind! ;o)