Day 19: Friday Jive Night

Just done the MyCore workout in the MyBody challenge – can’t believe I’m at the end of week three already. The workouts are getting easier each time I do them and I did manage to do those killer gorillas in all three rounds today (result). I’m enjoying these workouts as they are short,varied and they fit neatly in before I have to start the business of my working (and juggling other stuff) day.

Just made myself a tasty snack of walnuts, sesame and sunflower seeds, need all my brain power today as I have to edit an article on lab automation and get a banner sorted out for a football club. As usual Sybil, the slightly mad Abyssinian is in my office with me snoring for support, while I tap away.

Tonight, I’m going to this jive night for a dance. I tried my favourite jive dress on yesterday and was delighted to find that I can get into it again (hoorah) so will be wearing that tonight with a new pair of red dance shoes (a birthday present from supportive hubby, which I have yet to wear). Then I have to pick feisty daughter up from a party. What a weird but wonderful world I live in!




Day 18: Morgan Freeman and bean spaghetti

It was a MyTime day today so technically a rest day on the MyBody workouts – just as well as I had to go to Spotlight in Leicester Square for a casting. Most of you probably don’t know but in my non-existent spare time I do film and TV extra work – which is a fun hobby, where I get to meet some great people. This year, I have been a hospital visitor in the film Angel has Fallen with Morgan Freeman and Gerard Butler (didn’t meet either) and had to do lots of running from an exploding building. I have also been a factory worker on Blinded by the Light where I did get to meet the fantastic director Gurinda Chadha, who made Bend it like Beckham. We were told she was pretty fearsome but she turned out to be totally lovely.

Had a great spag bol for dinner, replaced beef mince with turkey mince to make it lower fat and also used green beans from the allotment (the last pack from the freezer) shredded with this  handy gadget as spaghetti. Still tastes great but lower in fat and carbs, this heathy eating stuff is all about making small tweaks here and there! Then topped the day off with a walk. Perfect!180505_195853-1239814




Day 17: Just add caffeine

Today did the MyStrength workout in MyBody and am pleased to report I did all three rounds without collapsing in a heap. I wanted to do them early as I need to take my mind off smart son who sits his first A level paper today in Further Maths. I am praying for him! He needs 3 As to get into the university he wants to read Maths at, which is a tough ask when you’re doing Maths, Further Maths and Physics. He has worked so hard for these that I am hopeful he will get the grades he wants and may even get an A* in Maths. As Mark Twain said :”The harder I work the luckier I get.” This can be applied to A levels and getting fit I think!

My arms feel like they are on fire now and all the muscles in my body are beginning to ache which is good because it means my body is changing for the better. I noticed that I am getting stronger and my washer woman arms are getting a bit less wobbly. I am even able to wave people goodbye without an underarm swing back of flesh (result). I have also noticed that my joints are aching less (probably because they have to support half a stone less weight) and I’m able to climb up stairs without being out of breath. This makes the healthy eating changes and exercises all worthwhile. My sports bra also stayed shut today (bonus) – which made the workout much less stressful! Onwards and upwards – brochure to write on DNA and protein imaging systems today.


Day 15: Monday Motivation

Monday has started off really well, I have lost another 4 pounds and another inch off of my waist on the 12 week MyBody challenge, I was so inspired that I did the MyPower Workout at 7.30 am and then took feisty daughter to school. Today is a day to celebrate, because on Monday May 14th 1979, I had a spinal fusion (large rod attached to my spine) to treat my scoliosis. For those of you that don’t know scoliosis is a curvature of the spine and mine was a lovely backwards S shape. The fun doesn’t stop there as the spine curves side-ways but also rotates, which means your hips, ribs and shoulders come out of alignment. I used to have trouble breathing and walking and my shoulders hurt a lot.  I was told at the time that if I didn’t have the operation I would be in a wheelchair by the age of 21. I will be forever grateful to the brilliant Mike Edgar who operated on my back at Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore. Today my back feels great, I jive, I do zumba, go for long walks and now am doing the 12 week fitness challenge with Myleene Klass for the MailOnline…/Could-Myleene-Klass-body-12-we… . The RNOH has given me 39 years of health and movement – what a great hospital!

With that in mind it’s time to write something useful about science – today it’s a new way of using fluorescence and UV to check surgical instruments are free from prions, (nasty bits of protein that can cause Creutzfeldt Jakob disease [vCDJ] and also some say Alzheimer’s disease.) Feeling great today!


Day 14: Lazy Sunday

Today is a MyTime rest day on the MyBody 12 week challenge and I have made it through the first two weeks (hooray). Picked up feisty daughter from a sleepover and then dropped her off at school for her Duke of Edinburgh practise day. While in Hitchin I decided to go to the pool, I love swimming but am never usually motivated enough to go but since it was only 9.30 am and I felt full of energy I decided it was a good idea. 2018 is Herts Year of physical Activity (most of you probably didn’t know this). Essentially, the county is trying to get us all and especially the over 50s to get off our widening backsides to do something more active than press the remote button. They are even offering a Free activity pass for you and friend to do a class or a session. I got my voucher and used it for a free swim at  Hitchin Pool which was lovely as it wasn’t too busy at 9.45 when I got in. Managed to do 52 lengths, and was very pleased with myself. Went home, had my lovely tomato omelette and skinny cappuccino. Then spent the rest of the day relaxing in the garden with a good book while Sybil sunned herself and supportive hubby and smart son went to play Pickleball


Day 12: Gin and Tonic O’Clock

Well made it to the end of another week on the MyBody challenge (just another 10 to go – cripes!) Did the MyCore workout at 6am this morning (I can’t believe it either). I think the exercise and better diet is giving me more energy as I seem to be waking up naturally with loads of get up and go. Usually it takes two good slugs fo caffeine to get me going on my morning’s tasks. The plank, downward dog, side plank combo was just as hard today, but at least I managed two rounds of the killer gorillas, had to walk them in round two and then weirdly could do them again in round 3.

Finished my article and a whole bunch of other biotech work today so feeling pretty smug with myself. My email inbox is now down to 10, I always aim for 0 but never quite get there. I really wanted an end of the week G&T but have managed to give up alcohol for two weeks now so I made my glass of sparkling water look like a lovely G &T ( a good tip there from Julie Dennis – the menopause coach) and you know what I don’t feel like I missed out. Here’s to a nice relaxing weekend – well I do have to do a MyChoice of workout in the MyBody challenge on Saturday – last week I did all three because I have more time on a Saturday but we’ll see how the mood takes me in the morning.


Day 11: It’s all Greek

Today is another MyTime on the MyBody 12 week challenge so no workout with Myleene and Louis today (phew). Did the usual business of writing and tweeting about biotech instead. I have been eating Greek yoghurt and rhubarb as a snack in a vague attempt to change my microbiome. Hang onto your hats – here comes the science bit. For those unaware inside our lower guts live an army of microscopic helpers and basically if you shovel junk food at them all day it changes which of these little helpers are in there. So if you’ve not got lots of friendly bacteria in there but some of the unfriendly ones you’ll find you get fatter as these guys have trouble breaking everything down, making vitamins and getting rid of toxins. Also these little fellas tend to recognise natural molecules as nutrition – you know the stuff you get in fruit and veg (rather than synthetic long chain fatty acids in junk food) and can digest it. Plain yoghurt (not the stuff with all the sugar in) is one way of trying to add those good guys in there, (faecal transplant is another but we won’t go into that) those that survive being dipped in the acid bath of your stomach are the ones you want on your side. OK enough of the science for one day!

Did my walk circuit at the end of the day, the view from the top of the hill on the Icknield Way is truly wonderful and I never tire of it. 180505_104724-1325020