Nightly notion #7….

With this morning’s pre-emptive assumption of daily troubles, I never imagined that today would be….okay. Well, more than okay, not at all bad in fact.

I didn’t write as much as I’d hoped, but no overpowering disappointment prevailed. And this evening I cooked! I’ve been getting back into my chef mind. It seems I have found the key to unlock that part of my brain, the part I had inadvertently hidden after the breakdown.

A beautiful dish comprising of sea bass with curry spices, caramelised pineapple, burnt cauliflower & cauliflower couscous, avocado & crayfish. It seems like a lot now I’ve written it down, however, it was amurrrrrrzing, if I do say so myself!

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The combination of fish and fruit is something I’ve become very intrigued by.

Salmon & blueberry
Mackerel & strawberry
Scallops & melon

Some may say eww, but it makes perfect sense! Beautifully fresh fish, zingy & refreshing or sweet & vibrant fruit…. essential omega fatty acids, vitamins & minerals. And the bottom line is always the amazing flavour!

I will get round to putting these recipes and more on here soon. Dishes are piling up in my note book and what kind of person would I be to keep them all to myself?!

Eat, smile and sleep tight!

G’night y’all

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Daily drivel #3….

After yesterday’s gym session I’m feeling a little worse for wear. With this being said I don’t want it to ruin my day today!

After a couple of morning stretches, a play fight with the pooch and a delicious eggy breakfast, I’m raring to go again. Yes my muscles still ache and I’m fighting for physical energy, but my mind is in a state of ‘let’s do this!’.

Another day in the garden looming, I’m always excited to check over the fruit trees and flowers. Then it’s on to the grind, the bits that need work and that usually brings with it the chance to dig, chop, saw or build!

With all this being said, in the back of my mind I’m always pondering how much will be too much. As much as this is physical work, when will enough be enough for my head? Sometimes I can go all day, fixing, trimming and planting. But other days, the noise and the repetitive motion can be detrimental to my mental state.

For me this is really frustrating as I’ve always been a physical worker. Why do the two overlap? It’s a pain.

Pushing those thoughts aside, let’s get on with the day and deal with any issues if they arise. Forget what could happen and get on with what makes me feel good now! With a smile on my face and a coffee at hand, what else do I need?!

Keep smiling people. Smilesmilesmile!
😊😊

A change up….

It’s time for a change….again. I’ve spoken of my fear of change before, afraid to alter a routine I’ve worked hard to put in place and stick to. It seems boredom can set in however. And the body can become used to it also.

So I feel change is a necessity. Although I’m enjoying what I eat & the training I’m doing, slight tweaks will hopefully spark the flame which has started to dwindle. My body reacted really well to the increase in fats and the lowering of carbs so I’m hesitant to alter these. My protein intake seems fine also, and the fruit & veg I consume is that of a healthy amount.

So what to change?

A diet and lifestyle isn’t just about what you consume and the exercise you do. It can be about time management also. So with this being said, I plan to play with the clock. Intermittent fasting is a phrase I’m not too keen on. Fasting in general strikes the fear of God into me, I mean, to fast….no food….what?!? Anyway, I plan to eat my usual diet within an eight hour period. So let’s say 10am – 6pm…..this may change depending how it goes in the first few days.

I’m going to increase the intensity in which I workout. At the moment I’m working with lower weights and higher reps. To see what difference it makes, I’m going to implement strength training days with higher weight and lower reps. Increasing my cardio is also a change, this is one that I’m fearful I won’t stick to…..I’m lazy at heart…..and body……I’m just lazy.

So with time management and slight tweaks in training, let’s see if we can stoke the fire and see more change for the better 😊

If this works out well, I’ll be posting a food & workout plan. If it works for me, it could well work for someone else.

The rough with the smooth….

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With a shitty week almost behind me, these past few days have been bliss. After recuperating at the mother’s, the garden has once again brought peace to an otherwise turbulent storm of a brain.

Floods of tears and panic plagued my days for a reason I could not put my finger on. Thoughts and fears I couldn’t fathom.

Grabbing the dog while he slept I jumped in the car and did my best to compose myself before starting the engine. Brief calm, even a second wouldn’t arise.

Pooch with feet on my shoulder, chewing my ear, he knew I wasn’t happy. I sat in the car for neigh on an hour before I felt safe to drive. With the journey to my mother’s that of country lanes and beautiful scenery I seemed to put hell on pause….

With my mum in sight the tears fell once again. I didn’t want to go back. So set on moving forward, I believe a regular ‘bad day’ was dialled up to eleven. Uncontrollable thinking set the scene once again, me versus me versus me.

That was the rough, like sandpaper with mountainous peaks & cavernous troughs. Yet somehow all uphill. The smooth came after. With gradual levelling out, almost sedentary at points, the fresh air started to clear the stink that was betwixt my ears. A safe place at the family home, amazing surroundings and the garden to potter around in. Just like my grandad….

With fruit trees to plant, brambles to tackle and shrubs to trim, I seemed to drift through the next few days with a semi vacant view. It was only when I woke one morning to the sun beaming in, fruit trees still upright (always a bonus) and that vacancy, that I found a smile and a reason to get out of bed without an ever present numbness. Excited for what the day would bring I woke the pup, put my phone on aeroplane mode (camera only day) and cooked my breakfast…….I cooked! It was amazing!

Paprika scrambled eggs, avocado and ham. Granted I only scrambled eggs but that my friends was an achievement. When I cook it means I’m feeling ‘not too bad’ which is freakin’ brilliant!

With all this rambling I’ve forgotten the point of why I wanted to post today….I guess it’s to say, patience even through panic, trepidation and distress is vital. Granted in the moment, the last thought you have is to let the rough breeze by and wait for the smooth. But sometimes waiting is all you can do. This isn’t a bad thing. One day I hope I’ll have the answers. How to avoid the rough and tough times all together. Or how to delete them as they force their twisted pens to paper. One day……tis all I need to keep searching.

You’re not alone. The smooth will always follow the rough. And when life gives you lemons….go eat a brownie!

Here’s to mental health awareness, the great outdoors and overcoming those little demons!

Much love
Smiley 😊

Breaking points and breaking boundaries….

When does an achievable boundary become a breaking point? It all depends on how it is dealt with. Today I hit both, pushing past a boundary to stare a breaking point dead in the eye.

After pushing myself to get out of the house, away from this very screen, a trip to a friend’s eatery was an aim worth pushing for. A pizzanini was on the cards – pizza meets panini. After achieving this feat I was rewarded greatly. Sitting comfortably, even ordering for myself I sipped a cappuccino and slowly DEMOLISHED that carb filled goodness!

With pooch and mum in tow, I proceeded to eat cake! It was a success! With this being said, a boundary overcome, I went fishing for more mind building progress. To venture down the street has long been an absolutely terrifying prospect. Even before my breakdown I feared it, forcing my way through to hide this irrational terror.

All this jostling with boundaries and breakthroughs is surprisingly tiring. Exhausting in fact. The street was hollering to me, however, ‘conquer me and wave goodbye to your fear’.

This was where a boundary, an achievable goal began to slowly turn to a breaking point. With no option to turn back, eyes glued to the pavement in front of me, the counting of steps began. To reach fifty and still barely halfway, vulnerability was like a pitchfork to the head.

With 202 steps on the clock, a detour was a must. Between shops to a people free alleyway reduced the panic no end.

Before it got too much, my breaking point, I reached and surpassed multiple goals. Pushed passed fears. And ultimately, took it right to the point of ‘oh shit, what am I doing!?’ before I backed down. That is the achievement here, that is a victory for Smiley.

I’ve sat and soaked in fear of these breaking points. Terrified that if I get too close to one I’ll lose my mind again. I can’t bare think about that. But this success today helped me realise that, as said before, I control me. I know where that point is and I can face it, avoid it and even narrowly dodge it if needs be.

Don’t be fearful of what could happen. Be aware of who you are, every feeling and do as much as you can up to that point of vulnerability. In time this point will move further and further past where it started. And what could happen turns into a speck. An eye squinting dot in the distance.

I’m pushing to get to a place in life where fear is a secondary feeling, behind that of intrigue, nervous excitement and anticipation. Break boundaries, wave goodbye to breaking points and sayonara to all consuming anxiety!

Cravings….pesky no-no’s or a necessity?…

In a previous post I wrote of a diet change. With this in it’s second week, an update looming, I thought I’d backtrack a little.
With this diet change, I decided to ignore and push past any and all cravings. I wanted to see how my moods and general demeanour would be affected. Even with this short window of observation, the results were fascinating….
I’ve been a miserable b#@tard! To put it bluntly. Granted I’m not a bubbly upbeat being at the best of times, but this lack of treats has turned me into a grumpus! I’m actually enjoying the healthier, more nutritious foods I’m eating, but a lack of indulgence is driving me crazy……er.
I’ve spoken before that life is a journey of smiles and frowns. With this being said, I’d say cravings and indulgence are a necessity. No ifs, ands, buts or coconuts!
Why let a dirty craving that brings a huge smile ultimately degrade to a frown? It’s a case of moderation and will power, or lack thereof. Indulge your ass off when the feeling hits you but look for that want to end. Start the tub of ice cream and stop when you no longer feel the need to fill yo’face…. This is easier said than done, but again it’s about progress and learning.
Cheat days may work for some. In my eyes it’s just a terrible precedent to set yourself. Trudge through the week, miserable and getting through the day, just to cram as much rubbish down your Gregory for one entire day…..why would anyone put themselves through that?!? It’s a baffling concept that can only breed bad habits.
I don’t have a magic trick or scientific solution to aid anyone with their face filling frenzies, nor do I possess great will power myself. A great man once told me ‘food is just a daily medicine, so why overdose?’ this I didn’t quite understand until recently. We as human beings need food to survive, but in a lot of cases it is the very food we think we need that is detrimental to our very being.
Take a step back from your eating lifestyle and tot up what you actually consume. You’ll probably be shocked, unless you’re on point with your diet that is. Personally I cannot see the harm or difficulty in adjusting or completely overhauling your diet to include tasty, healthy meals with small indulgences throughout the week.
When I say diet, I don’t mean diet. That dreaded, disgusting waste of time fad that kills a little bit of your soul. It’s a lifestyle, and with a lifestyle you have to be happy!
I’m going to adapt this ever changing lifestyle I’ve chosen for myself to include the good, the bad and the downright fugly! Maybe a leaner me would have come out at the end of that super strict, indulgence neglecting, miserable me making idea I had two weeks ago. But who cares if I’m not happy?!
If I can get a smile from eating healthy, getting healthy and snacking on a daily treat then anyone can. Smiles are all that matter at the end of the day, week, month and year. Without them, who are we?
Love Smiley 😊😊

Goals…. always growing….

I haven’t been doing this long, but I feel an improvement with the goals I’ve set myself. I’m not saying I’ve reached them all, if any in fact. But I’ve always been a planner….not a doer…
Seeing my thoughts and aims on paper, the written word, has helped elevate my motivation. Seeing it out there, for others to see gives me a kick up the bum. It’s almost a revelation. This energy is something I’ve been searching for, for a long time.
It still doesn’t make the achievement of these goals any easier however. With the daily battles, fought – sometimes won, sometimes lost. The war continues. It is however, easier to see the two as separate entities – goals and little victories versus battles lost and won. The singular line in which I thought I followed has evolved. Parallel, though sometimes foggy, each line can be worked on through victory or defeat. The one doesn’t have to stop the other….
This being said, through the struggles it is hard to un-fog these lines to see any at all. But I’m getting there. Just the other day, that feeling of impending doom loomed over me like a stink bomb. Usually it would hit, no warning, head instantly fighting and battling for clarity. This day it gave me a heads up, a miniscule window in which to visualise those two lines. Setting myself a task, tablet and keyboard at the ready. Write a full chapter of my novel. No interruptions. No mind f#@kery….
I was somewhat successful, using the torment inside to create a similar vision on paper. My fight put onto a character, into a scene. Setting a new path, a new outlet for those horrible feelings to be dispersed.
As happy as I was with the chapter, my mood and fight still ran wild. One of those beautiful little victories almost hidden, but forever on a page. How I did it, I’m not quite sure. But I’m proud of myself for doing so.
A big goal I’ve set myself is to become healthier, look and feel better, and most importantly – find those foods that benefit my mental health (I’ve been rabbiting on about it in previous posts). This one may be tricky to continue working on through tough times but I’m determined to give it a go. Use it to fuel a workout or run with the pooch. It’s easy to say ‘just get up and do it’. Can I really achieve this? We shall see…