Such a lot has changed in the UK since I was last here and it’s not so much where to start, as how to start.
Let’s jump right in.
- I had another birthday (as did my second-born)
- Elizabeth II celebrated her official 90th birthday
- Britain voted to leave the EU
- Glastonbury came and went for another year
- England lost 2-1 to Iceland and came out of Euro 2016
Probably the most blog-worthy subject would be the gift I had for my birthday.
I joined the fitbit tribe.
Since having hip surgery last year the amount of exercise (in particular running) I do has reduced significantly.
This has increased 2 things in my life. My cholesterol and my weight. Although hardly noticeable to onlookers my weight has increased by approx. 12lbs. As for my cholesterol – the increase is dramatic – although it’s not all bad as much of the increase is in the ‘good cholesterol’.
As both increases have been gradual it’s been easy to brush to one side. Equally as easy to blame lack of exercise on my surgery rather than on my lack of motivation. That lack of motivation combined with not very mindful eating means I have jeans in my wardrobe that are no longer comfortable to wear.
For me, knowing that you manage what you measure, I knew that some form on tracking would help. I lost 24lbs before our wedding day by using a food diary (Weight Watchers). fitbit is without a doubt so much easier than writing down every thing I eat.
For those who do not know how a fitbit works here’s a brief summary.
On my left wrist I wear a small band (my fitbit is a flex the most basic one there is and was reduced in Sainsburys to £50). My fitbit flex is linked to an app on my iPhone and it tracks my activity versus the calories I consume (each time I eat/drink something I add it to the phone app). As my aim is to lose weight I have a calorie deficit I need to hit each day – the fitbit and the app constantly recalculates how many calories I have available to meet that target. It very simple. Hand on heart.
Rather than a ball and chain it feels more like a buddy keeping me on track. I don’t have to do much thinking, part from remembering to log my food and drink.
Within a day of wearing my fitbit a huge realisation hit me. I eat too much and move too little. Had I been asked whether I thought that was the case prior to tracking my activity levels and eating habits, I would have said not. I’m a busy Mum who is running around after the kids all day, and I am mindful about what I eat most of the time. That was the official line anyway. Now I know that I actually have been consuming more calories that I have been burning up. Not rocket science, just simple fact. To gain 12lbs gradually I knew that really – mathematics has always been a strength of mine.
This is not an advert for fitbit. My fitbit flex was purchased and I have no affiliation with them at all. I’m sharing for 2 reasons:
- To remind myself what a useful tool a fitbit is for me
- To spread the word to those who may also benefit from a tracker
It won’t be the answer for everyone looking to lose weight, but for those who need to follow the simple formula of calories in minus calories out then I’m thinking there’s no simpler way to keep on track when leading a busy life.
What do you think? Are you in or out? Of fitbit not the EU. This is a politics free zone!