Success is the result of hard work and determination!

I went for my final assessment this passed weekend and while I may not have reached my weight loss goal of 7kgs, I was happy with the results I have achieved! A total weight loss of just under 4 kilos leaves me with a goal of another 3 kilos to lose and to tone the pants off my body in this next 90 day challenge!

The best way to see the results is obviously by how comfortable you’re feeling in your clothes but also before and after photos …

 

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I’m confident that I am going to absolutely kill these next 90 days and in turn have the body of my dreams. Finally, after all these years!!

My successful tips for a 90 day weight loss challenge!

 

Reaching the end of my 90 day challenge, it’s almost as if a light has come on and finally, after my 34 years in existence (let’s say the last 14 being focused on trying to be and remain fit and healthy), I finally feel that I have all my points in place to live a healthy lifestyle and reap all the rewards of being an ideal weight, being able to fit in to a size 10, have more energy than ever and have skin that glows and looks younger than my said 34 years! Below are the most important points that have helped me shed weight and points that I know will help me remain a healthy weight and be fit and fabulous for years to come!

 

DRINK WATERWater

Besides the fact that your body needs water to stay hydrated, drinking water regularly (3 to 4 liters a day) will help with weight loss. Filling up on water before a meal helps encourage portion control and drinking lots of water will flush out your system, leaving you with healthy, glowing and younger looking skin. It has also be
en said that drinking cool water can speed up your metabolism. It also helps smooth out cellulite prone thighs (hand in hand with a healthy diet and exercise). What I like to do is upon waking in the morning, squeeze a little lemon juice into a glass of ice cold water and down it. Perfect way to replenish my body and wake up!

 

TRAIN EVERY DAY AND ADD WEIGHTS! 

One thing I’ve learnt is that no matter how clean I’m eating, the weight loss speed will slow down dramatically if I’m not doing some type of activity every single day. On a daily basis (even on the bad days) I do some form of exercise whether it be a 30 minute brisk walk around the block during my lunch break or with Caleb in his stroller when I get home from work in the afternoons, followed by 3 sets of 20 lunges, 3 x 20 second planks, 3 x 20 pushups, whatever it may be! Lately, and now reaching the end of my challenge I have fallen in love with hitting the gym, usually early morning before work. My session will consist of a 20 minute HIIT run (high intensityexercise alternated with light intensity – 90 second walk followed by a 2 minute all out sprint, and on it goes for 20 minutes) followed by a variety of circuit exercises in one of the studios using various weights. There are so many exercise plans to follow which you can find on the net or even Pinterest. I regularly do a little search to find a circuit plan consisting of 6 to 12 different exercises that I can do. It’s also good to change things up as often as possible. Your muscles have a memory and as soon as you feel yourself getting stronger at something and something becoming easier to do, it means that you need to change things up next time so that you can push yourself to the limit!

Most gyms also have regular classes to attend. I attend one at least 3 times a week to change things up a bit. Always using weights or your own body weight and you can push yourself as far as you feel your body can take you.

I also do a lot of road running. Something I’ve always loved and am good at. What’s your niche?! Find one!

I train 6 days a week. Something I haven’t done in about 10 years and I have more energy than ever to still have a full time job, think with a clear mind and then get home to look after a hubby and a one year old son. I live for exercise and my body craves it!

Bear this in mind: “not only does weight training prevent injury by strengthening the joints, but it also builds muscle (muscle burns fat) and revs up your metabolism, burning calories long after you’ve slipped off your trainers”. 

 

DON’T OVEREAT HEALTHY FOODS

You will all know the recent Tim Noakes craze that hit South Africa. High Fat Low Carb. Yes, I fell prey to this plan (perhaps I was doing it wrong) and perhaps there are thousands of people out there who benefit from it, I however had not gotten my head around the portion control factorhealthy fats – i.e. everything in moderation). The thought of eating as much cheese, olive oil, butter, bacon as I liked completely stumped me and to me, a perfectly healthy salad for example would consist of the following:

Avo, Olives, Feta, Olive Oil

That’s just fat on top of fat and I love salad so would eat this amount of fat often! I also love nuts so I would eat handfuls of nuts thinking that it was ok because it was healthy! The fact is nuts, avocados, olive oil, cheese are all natural and healthy, but they offer high calories. I can safely say that I have learnt how much of these yummy treats I can actually eat without leaving me feeling bloated or aiding the number on my scale not to budge!

(Note: I’ve found a healthy alternative as a salad dressing instead of olive oil: fresh lemon juice, a table spoon of white wine vinegar, a table spoon of apple cider vinegar, parsley, oregano and a dash of Tabasco to spice it up – mix it all together and drizzle away)

 

GET AT LEAST 8 HOURS OF SLEEP A NIGHT

Simply put, your body needs lots of sleep to provide energy for your daily workouts but it also needs lots of sleep to assist in increasing your metabolism. Also, skimping on sleep increases your body’s stress hormone which makes you want to eat more!

Ever been on an all-nighter and then wanted to eat everything in sight the next day?!

 

LEARN TO SNACK EVERY 2 TO 2 1/2 HOURS TO AVOID BINGE EATING

How often have you done this: you either have a crazy busy day at work or rushing around over the weekend that you either forget or don’t get a chance to eat. By the time you stop and take a breather or get home from the office you are FAMISHED so you stand at the fridge or grocery cupboard and smash anything you can get your hands on in your face! If there is one thing I can take away from this challenge and shealthy snack3trongly suggest to anyone who wants to listen is to not feel guilty about re-fueling your body every 2 to 2 1/2 hours … but only with the correct food! A Bar One or packet of crisps is not the right food! That is like peeing in your car’s petrol tank!

A typical day for me consists of the following:

7am: smoothie consisting of protein powder, half a frozen banana, a handful of frozen berries, 150mls soya milk, 100mls water and 5 ice blocks. I eat a Granny Smith apple on the side.

9am: 2 boiled eggs (no salt!), a fruit such as a pear, peach, nectarine, orange. I usually have a black coffee or green tea at this time too.

11h30: a lunchtime smoothie consisting of protein powder, sometimes the above breakfast items, sometimes just on its own with water and other times I like to make it a green smoothie and mix kale, celery, a Granny Smith Apple and a 1/4 avo into it.

14h00: veggie healthy snack2crudites (cucumber and carrot sticks) with low fat cottage cheese or hummus. Sometimes I will make mini crustless quiches and have two of those (egg, mixed veggies, low fat cottage cheese in muffin tins and baked in the oven). Other times I will have a tub of low fat yoghurt and a fruit and another favourite is plain Greek yoghurt topped with frozen berries and a tablespoon of flaxseeds, sunflower seeds and linseeds – great source of protein! There have been times where I have had half a tin of tuna mixed with broccoli, lemon juice, a teaspoon of olive oil and cayenne pepper and other times I’ve had half a tin of bakes beans. One of my guilty pleasures which I try my best to stay clear of because I tend to overeat them is a handful of unsalted nuts! The options are endless!

My stretch between my afternoon snack and dinner is quite long because I eat when my husband gets home from work around 18h30 / 19h00 so inbetween this snack and dinner, if I need to, I will have a tub of low fat yoghurt / half an apple with a small tablespoon sugar free, salt free peanut butter or a handful of lean biltong. It’s important for me to keep my body in the fat burning zone and if I feel myself getting hungry that’s a problem!

19h00: For dinner we always have a protein and veg. My protein will be the same size as the palm of my hand and is ushealthy snack1ually two small chicken breasts, a piece of fish, a piece of steak with the fat cut off, or lean mince (when I make spaghetti Bolognaise for the boys – sometimes I will make spaghetti using zucchini strips and then I eat too). Half my plate is always filled with veg, whether it be a salad (sans all the avo, olives, feta and olive oil) or steamed veg (I love broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, peas) or some roasted butternut or sweet potato (using very little olive oil and lots of fresh herbs and lemon juice.) I very often make a nice pot of veggie or chicken and corn soup and freeze the portions for easy go to dinners.

Remember to try your best to designate time for snacking and meals that’s set apart from other activities. When you know you’re going to have a busy day take boiled eggs, apples or protein bars with you so that you don’t end up starving yourself and remember your water! I always have a 1.5 liter of water with me in the car when I’m on the move.

Portion control is another huge factor for me. I have the potential to eat large portions! I never had a stop button and wouldn’t listen to my body when it was full. If something tasted good, I would finish the whole thing! If we went out for dinner I’d have wine, a starter and a main … on special occasions I’d dig into a desert too! That’s well over 2000 calories at one meal!! If we had a slab or box of chocolates in the house I wouldn’t ration myself to a block of chocolate or one Chuckle like I’ve heard so many people do, I would eat the whole slab, bag without a thought! In fact that is what I would often do – eat without thinking!

I’ve learnt to listen to my body. Meal time is now an occasion for healthy snack 4me and the time where I am conscious of how I am fueling my body! All my meals are snack size (with my one main meal slightly larger than a snack) and I stop when I am full! It takes time to re-set your brain but once you’ve found that connection it becomes second fiddle!

(I HAVE SO MUCH MORE TO SAY ON THIS POINT – SUCH AS EATING SLOOOOOWLY  – WHICH IS STILL AN ISSUE FOR ME BUT I TRY AND CUTTING YOUR FOOD INTO BITE SIZED PIECES BUT NOTICE HOW LONG MY FOOD RELATED SECTION IS IN THIS POST! IT’S BECAUSE IT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT PART TO WEIGHT LOSS AND I HAVE A LOT TO SAY ABOUT IT!)

 

A LIQUID DIET!! (the bane of my existence!)

Oooooooh golly. The social butterfly that I am. What is a lazy day around the pool without a glass (read: BOTTLE) of bubbly in hand? Or a family dinner or braai, without a glass or three of good red wine? Or a girls night out with your best mates, without 3 or 4 tequilas and Dry Lemons (my party drink)? From the time I was allowed to drink alcohol, I’ve been drinking alcohol. It’s fun, it relaxes you, it tastes88f8432e59bb6349f8eb740c4be83de0 good. What’s not to love? Well, the hangovers for one! It seems in my old age and after having Caleb that even one tequila will send me running for the “upchuck bucket” the next day. Does it stop me though? Noooo!

I have known through all my years of watching my weight and trying to lose weight that drinking alcohol jeopardizes your efforts and that if you have a great week of eating clean and training and lose 900 grams and then party over the weekend it will unravel all your hard work and you’ll start from square one on Monday … for years and years I have been on this yo-yo. When I fell pregnant with Caleb I obviously stopped drinking and within two weeks (even though I was pregnadownloadnt), I had lost weight. People were commenting on how good I was looking and how skinny my arms were getting and that I didn’t even look pregnant from the back when I was already 7 months pregnant! I felt good, never had a headache and woke up feeling refreshed every day.

As soon as I had the chance to consume alcohol again when I was done breastfeeding, that’s what I did! In fact, on the day of my assessment for this challenge, I was hungover and feeling terrible!

I recently met with a dietitian and discussed the issue of alcohol with her. Without going in to too much detail, I will rather put this here (you make up your own mind)

 

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While there are a myriad of factors that all play a part in losing weight and maintaining it, these are what have helped me the most! As I continue on to round two of another 90 day challenge I am confident that all these pointers will help me to get the body of my dreams. To be fit and healthy and look better than I ever have at the age of 34! I KNOW I CAN DO IT!! With the support I get from my fellow challengers (who have become friends), every day is a new opportunity to smash my goals and conquer my dream!
BODY GOALS: 2015-12-04 11 07 17_resized
 

 

A goal without a plan is just a wish…

Week 10, day 63.

This morning I climbed on the scale and I’ve lost another kilo! That’s 4 kilos down, 3 to go!

It has taken me nearly 3 months to find a comfortable routine and way of life where being on this journey is no longer a struggle! I have fallen in love with making healthy food choices and being active every single day! Even if it is just a 30 minute walk around the block during my lunch break. I get back to the office feeling energised and what’s more, I’m burning calories that I never did before! Before this challenge, I found myself stuck in a serious rut, and used the excuse that I was a new mom and didn’t have the time or energy to get out there and literally work my ass off! I am feeling better than I have since long before Caleb was conceived and am weighing now what I weighed maybe 3 years before we decided to start trying for Caleb!

My goal for the next 3 weeks is to lose the remaining 3 kilos. I know what I need to do (exactly the same things I have been over the last few weeks!) and I am determined to shed them and look and feel the best I have in many, many years. How many mommies are out there who manage to shed their weight within the first year of baby’s life? I beam with pride when I’m told on a daily basis (no exaggeration) how good I’m looking! More than this, I have tons more energy to be the young and youthful mama that my boy needs. I want to be healthy and active for the rest of his life so that we can have fun together while he grows up. It’s not the same if you’re overweight, lazy, unhealthy and hungover!

We will be celebrating his first birthday in 7 weeks time. My challenge will be over by then but I plan on continuing to do what I’m doing so that when those first birthday photos are taken, I will look back and feel great about myself! What’s more is that we will be going away for his birthday instead of having a party for him and I will be spending time in a cozzie again … how great I will feel to know that I look hot!!

I can vouch whole heartedly for Herbalife and this 90 Day Challenge that it is the best gift I could have ever given myself and the journey will not stop here!

Success

 

It’s a walk in the park …

No, I’m not blowing my own trumpet about how easy losing weight is! It’s all about being active though. A 20 minute walk or 10 minute run or 20 squats here and there is better than sitting on the couch! It’s my second week back at work after the delightfully long December break and one thing I discovered is that being busy is the key to losing weight!

I had my first weigh in this passed Saturday and even after not following my diet 100% and having perhaps one too many celebratory drinks here and there over the holidays, I am still 3 kilos down, have lost 1.5% body fat and 3 centimeters around my waste! That’s without really trying!

The best part about being well on my way in this weight loss journey is that people are beginning to notice the difference. I receive a comment just about every day that I’m looking amazing, looking younger, looking fresh … oh the joy! There is not much more satisfying than losing enough centimeters for other people to start noticing a difference.

I have a few pairs of jeans and denim shorts that I haven’t been able to wear since before I was pregnant with Caleb. Last week I turned my cupboard upside down pulling all these items of clothing on and trying them all on with all of them fitting me! What an achievement! I have one pencil skirt I bought for work shortly after I had Caleb and was still breastfeeding that fit me nicely then (breast feeding burnt loads of calories for me) and it is my goal to be able to put that skirt on and have it fit comfortably. I’m nearly there I’ll have you know. I can get it over my bum and thighs and zip it up but the fabric still stretches a little across the front. My goal is to have it fit perfectly … I’d say another 2 kilos!

Another one of my favourites about this journey is the friends I have made who are like minded. Being active and running and doing cool outdoorsy things has always been a favourite of mine but I can see that some quality friendships are being formed too. I’m part of a 90 Day Challenge Group with a few other ladies and am grateful to be  on this journey with them! The Whatsapp group we share helps me with tips, pointers and encouragement and I just love hearing about everyone else’s experiences on this journey. It’s great to see that I’m not alone and that we all have our challenges! They are a true inspiration!

It’s officially GAME ON!

Week 3, day 14. Last week was a great week! I didn’t put a foot out of line in terms of eating and consuming alcoholic beverages (haha) and I trained just about every day. On the days I didn’t train I was definitely exerting myself through manual labour. We’re currently moving home so I’ve been doing a lot of bending and stretching and lifting heavy boxes, etc. I’m still loving my two shakes a day and don’t feel hungry … although when I do feel hungry I down a glass or two of water and tend to come right!

The great thing about being in a support group is that when I find things getting tough I just reach out to the other girls in the group and I receive words of encouragement and guidance and I’m on the straight and narrow again.

Week 3 and I’m so ready to move forward and knock the socks off this challenge and everyone who comes into contact with my new physique! #watchthisspace

The below photos are of the change I’ve seen in a mere two weeks. The first photo I took on the morning I started using Herbalife. The second photo was taken yesterday. I don’t know how many centimeters I’ve lost (definitely a fair amount because my clothes are feeling a lot more comfortable but I’ve lost 2.2kgs already!) If this is only after 2 weeks, believe me, it’s game on. I’m in it to win it and I’m not going to stop until I achieve dream body status and I plan on keeping it that way! If anything, Herbalife has taught me how to eat clean and make small adjustments to what I thought was a healthy lifestyle. I feel great, I’m sleeping well, my digestive system is working better and I am an all round ball of health and happiness. The perfect footing to start the festive season when I will have lots of free time to be active and enjoy my new outlook on life!

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Day 1 vs. day 13

 

 

Week two – Day 8!

By now I will have usually gotten bored of a diet plan. Except this time around I’m feeling so great and I haven’t felt deprived of any yumminess at all (although to be completely and utterly honest – SORRY COACH!) I fell off the wagon a little yesterday as we went to a Champagne Sundays event at the Pirates Rugby Club … accompanied by copious amounts of oysters (I mean what is an oyster without a glass (or three) of bubbly?!) On our way home my family felt like Calistos so we ordered takeaways … I left the salad and ate the deep fried squid heads and chicken with skin on instead! Feeling very guilty when I climbed into bed last night I vowed to improve my will power, especially now over the festive season!

In saying this, I had an amazing week last week! I trained every day and ate very clean and followed everything according to the book. My body was sore but my mind was strong, my head was clear, I have been sleeping well and generally just functioning at optimum level. I had a fabulously active weekend … on Saturday morning I attended my first Parkrun and ran / walked  5kms. Finished feeling “pooped” but exhilarated. What a great way to start the weekend! I behaved myself at all the social functions I attended thereafter and woke up refreshed on Sunday morning, ready for a 10km charity walk. We took our two dogs and Caleb … what a work out! Can only imagine how many calories I burned (which is a reminder to myself to recharge my Nike sportswatch so that I can monitor these things!)

Apart from my little whoops yesterday, I woke up this morning feeling lighter, a little more toned and a little more comfortable in my clothes … I even received my first compliment that I’ve lost a bit of weight. You can keep those comments coming thank you very much!

I’m into week 2 full steam ahead. I’m really loving my shakes … my breakfast shake consists of the F1 (obviously), the protein powder, 250mls of either oat or rice milk, frozen blue berries and strawberries and some water … so delish! Like I’ve already mentioned, I do not feel hungry throughout the day. I snack on almonds, plain low fat yoghurt, boiled eggs (which I love) and I’ve even tried half a tin of tuna which I would usually eat with mayo but now spice it up with a bit of fresh herbs and lemon juice. So tasty and filling!

I am feeling so incredibly positive. If after a week I am feeling this good, I can only imagine how great I will be looking and feeling in a week from now, 2 weeks and so on!

I go on leave on the 15th of December and on the 22nd a bunch of us have planned to spend a day at Sun City … my short term goal is to be feeling a little more comfortable in a bikini as I tan my “on the way to be toned” bod at the Valley of the Waves … one thing is for sure and that is that I w

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Body goals!!

ill be looking and feeling 10 times better than what I would have without starting this journey!

 

REMINDER!

The reasons why I’m choosing to eat healthy and follow a daily exercise regime:

  • To look and feel good in a bikini, in my underwear … naked! :-)Because I want to look after myself and be fit and healthy for my kids while they grow up. 
  • To help my digestive issues.Love
  • To give me more energy and a clear mind to perform at my             best professional level (I work in the corporate finance industry).
  • To give me more confidence.
  • To have an overall feeling of well being.
  • To be able to comfortably fit into and stay a size 10.
  • To lead a good example for my children’s eating and activity habits.
  • Because I have always struggled with my weight and want to do something about it before I get too old and let myself go!
  • Because I care about myself but also want to look great for my hubby!Apples

Nothing tastes as good as thin feels!

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Day OneI’ve been at least 7 kilos overweight for the past 3 or 4 years. My weight fluctuates between 72kgs and 69kgs. When I was pregnant with Caleb I only gained 10 kilos (most of which was water, placenta, etc) and lost all my weight and then some when he was born and I was breastfeeding. When I stopped breastfeeding him I was obviously aware that I needed to watch what I eat and be more active but this didn’t really happen. I’ve always been a healthy eater but I’m also a bit of a socialite and find it very difficult to not jump in on the party when it comes to drinking copious amounts of alcohol! When I’m hungover and not feeling my best I’ll put any food in my mouth and any plans to follow a healthy lifestyle go out the window. Before I knew it I was back at my heaviest and my clothes were all tight … jeans, dresses, tops and the thought of putting a bikini on frightens me to no end (thank goodness we’re not heading to the beach this December!)

I’ve been pretty good at dressing wisely and hiding my flaws but I’m 34 … I may be a mom but there is no reason for me to be wearing long tops and flowy skirts! Being completely uncomfortable in my skin I tried to teach myself to eat clean and exercise at least 3 times a week. This never happened. Having an 8 month old baby keeps one busy, especially when you work full time and have to get home and prepare dinner, etc for a household and look after him. I’d try put him in his stroller and take him for walks and eat as clean as I could and my weight would budge maybe 300 to 500 grams but I have never ever seen the weight loss I so badly desire. It’s one thing that has been ingrained in me since I was a little girl, to not get fat and “let myself go!” Over all the years, nothing tastes as good to me as thin feels.

Today, Monday the 30th of November 2015 is day one of week one (I’m only going to be blogging weekly) of the 90 day challenge. Not only do I want to lose between 7 and 10 kilos and learn how to keep it off for the rest of my life but if I really put my head and heart into it and come out with top quality results, I stand a chance to win a trip to Mauritius for Mike and I. How amazing it would be to sport my new toned bod in a bikini on a beach in Mauritius and not want to cover up with a sarong or stay lying down, covered up in my towel!

Weighing 72 kilos (7 kilos over my goal weight and at my all-time heaviest), my clothes are tight and I’m having to wear all my loose clothes to feel comfortable and cover up. I’ve had to go and buy new bras because my size 34B bras are just way too tight and dig into my back. My size medium underwear is way too tight and I keep on having to pull out my wedgy. I refuse to wear my size large undies that I wore while I was pregnant! When I sit you can see my fat roll and my thighs touch when I walk. I don’t like looking at myself in the mirror. While I’m relatively happy with my small waist and toned tummy (probably due to clean eating), my bum and thighs are just ghastly and I’m not happy with the way I lookSuccess at all!

Time will tell but day one has been a good day. I’ve stuck to the eating plan and went out for a 15 minute walk during my lunch break. Something I want to do every day seeing as I won’t be sitting down to have a meal! After work today my plan is to either stick Caleb in the stroller and walk around the block (which will make up for my 30 minutes of cardio), otherwise I will run on the treadmill and then tackle Monday’s daily challenge (4 x 20 squats / 4 x 10 push ups / 2 x 20 second planks / 2 x 20 mountain climbers). Tomorrow morning I want to try begin the day by going for a 15 minute run and then walk again at lunch time which means that I will have gotten my cardio in for the day and when I get home all I need to do is the challenge exercises. If I find that I get to do more than this then that’s an added bonus and one I want to take every day. As it is I don’t remember when last I took the elevator at work. I climb 5 flights of stairs every time I arrive at work or go out and come back to the office.

A year in a life

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It was a year ago today when I received a message from my mom, saying that I shouldn’t worry but that my dad had been in a motorbike accident while on his way to work … she had just been called by the police and wasn’t sure how serious it was but that she would keep me posted. While I was naturally concerned I didn’t think much of it until a few hours later when I heard from my brother. He was concerned because my dad had been admitted into hospital and had been heavily sedated due to his pain and injuries. I still wasn’t sure about the severity of the accident as I hadn’t heard otherwise but stayed in touch with my mom who updated me as best as she could, obviously also shaken by the event and not quite sure what to do.

A few days later my brother told me that he had made arrangements to fly over to help my mom while my dad was on his back with multiple fractures and broken bones. My mom doesn’t drive and has been able to make use of the public transport system in Perth all these years so at a time like this it seemed like the best option (without question) for her kids to be with her. Working for the wonderful people I do, without blinking an eye, they put me on the next flight out of OR Tambo to meet my mom and brother at the airport in Perth a day or two later. Not knowing what to expect, and having been alerted to the severity of my dad’s condition, this was a bitter sweet trip for me, arriving into the arms of my brother and consoling my mom who understandably burst into tears.

My dad didn’t know I was coming to see him. The few days before, the doctors had him so heavily sedated on all kinds of medication that it gave my mom and brother such a fright because he wasn’t being himself at all. Luckily by the time I got there they had changed his meds and he was slowly returning to normality. When I walked into the ward he could not believe his eyes! I still strongly believe that to this day, having his family with him is what pulled him through.

I spent 2 weeks with my mom in Australia. While it was a horrible, trying time in our lives, it was so good to catch up with her, help her around the house, see a bit of their country and catch up with my cousins and family who I had not seen in years. My dad spent 3 weeks in hospital, in and out of surgery while the doctors tried to salvage his old and injured bones.

It was a year ago today that my father had a motorbike accident. A time in my life that I will never forget. A painful and frightening time when I thought my world may change forever but it wasn’t to be. Although my dad is still not back at work (he is a boilermaker by trade and therefore requires physical strength), he is healing slowly (very slowly) and my mom has been lucky enough to have work at a refugee camp in Perth (she works night shift) and they pay her well enough and the Worker’s Compensation and insurance in Australia has allowed my folks to get on and still enjoy their lives together.

Proof in my eyes that when life deals you a card you did not expect, we are given the spirit to survive, fight back and make do with what we have. We have much to be happy about and while life is so unexpectant, it’s important for us to make the most of every day we have. Live it to the fullest. Count your blessings and be grateful.

 

Did you know?

I’ve been reading a booked called “Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren which is a guide to a 40 day spiritual journey that will enable you to discover the answers to life’s most important question: What on earth am I here for? Its aimed to help you understand the big picture – how all the pieces of your life fit together. By the end of the 40 day journey its meant to assist you with stress levels, simplify decisions, increase your satisfaction and enthusiasm, etc.

I’m on day 32 and have been enjoying the ride. Yesterday’s chapter was about understanding your “shape” (who you are, including your skills and abilities). Extensive studies and research have taken place and scientists have discovered the following, amongst many other amazing things:

  • the average person possesses from 500 to 700 different skills and abilities;
  • for example your brain can store 100 trillion facts!
  • your mind can handle 15,000 decisions a second, as is the case when your digestive system is working;
  • your nose can smell up to 10,000 different odours (I didn’t know there were that many different odours!)
  • this one I love – your touch can detect an item 1/25,000th of an inch thick!
  • your tongue can taste 1 part of lime juice in 2 million parts of water

Such amazing and incredible facts that we take for granted and don’t even realise we have! Don’t even get me started on the universe and the amount of stars and planets out there that we can’t even ponder! Its a completely different world out there and the sheer size and existence of our planets is mind blowing!

We live in such an incredible place! We are such unique, intricate beings with abilities that we very often squash because we keep on telling ourselves “we can’t!” Every now and then I think we need a reminder to slow down, to take a deep, full breath – breathe deeply into those lungs of yours, feel the sun shine on your face, smile at a stranger, let someone in while sitting in the traffic and count each and every day you have as a blessing. It’s so very good to be alive – enjoy it while you can and make the most of every skill, ability and talent that you’ve been given – you’ll see how much easier and fulfilled things become! 🙂