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I am so glad to see the back of January. There hasn’t been anything specifically bad about the start of 2013, it’s just that the first month of the year doesn’t half seem to drag. It’s been a bit testing at times, what with the the snow and cold that we Brits are so ill-prepared for, but also with helping my other half recover from surgery. The procedure was planned, and relatively minor, but involved a general anaesthetic and a couple of weeks recovery time at home, which we’re not quite out of yet. The nature of his recovery has meant that I’ve had to take on more of a share of the domestic tasks than I’m used to, as well as helping poor Dan with the most basic of everyday tasks. Far from ideal, I’m sure you’ll agree, when trying to kick start a new, healthy, life.

Yet when I stood on the scales this morning, they showed a loss for the month that, although not life-changing, is most definitely a step in the right direction. When one considers that my exercise for the last week or so has mainly consisted of housework and running around after Dan picking up stuff he’s dropped during the day rather than evening runs through the town or a fitness DVD, it would appear that it has predominantly been my eating habits have been that have kept the number on the scales getting smaller.

I definitely haven’t starved. Oh no, I’m having none of that. My three square meals and a treat pattern has worked really well and I’ve kept my alcohol consumption to a minimum, especially during the week. Even my home-brewed sloe gin (which tastes amazing) has barely been touched, even on the coldest of evenings! The only type of drinking that I’ve taken up with gusto is squash. Robinsons No Added Sugar Orange, to be precise. Now, I don’t want to get into the debate here about squash over water, as far as I’m concerned I’m happy that a bit of cordial livens up my water and is much better for me than diet sodas, which I have seriously cut down my consumption of.

Less of this in January... *sad face*

Less of this in January… *sad face*

Upping my fluid intake has been a major tactic in my quest to become mindful and more in tune with my body, and it’s made a massive difference. That old chestnut about being thirsty when you think you are hungry is so, so true! I talk on the phone all day at work in an overheated office and I’m pretty sure that it was dehydrating me even further, so I have a glass that holds a pint, and a simple challenge: drink at least two whole glasses during my 7.5 hour shift. I have noticed that my 4pm hunger isn’t quite such a problem, and that I’m feeling less tired as I’m skipping out of the door and into the car on my way home. Coincidence? I think not.

As Dan returns to full fitness and the weather gets slightly less bleak, I hope that February sees me hitting the road a little bit more frequently, for a run or even a few more brisk walks on a weekend. I want to up my mileage this month, with the Bristol 10k in May never being too far from my mind I’m determined for the build-up to be as steady and stress-free as possible. Add into that a few more skipping sessions and I hope to be writing February’s summary in four weeks time with further exciting healthy developments to report!

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