Monthly Archives: February 2015

High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure seems to affect people as they grow older – or so a nurse told me recently.  In my time in Corporate life I saw lots of people having high blood pressure, often demonstrated with a very red face.


I talk with people who are looking to lose weight.  They are concerned about developing Diabetes and high blood pressure.  They understand that carrying that extra weight brings other complications along the way – not just having to buy bigger clothes.

At the beginning of last year I was far too heavy for my height. If I’d been able to grow a little I’d have been fine.  The scales couldn’t be blamed any longer.  I made a decision to lose weight.  But how much?  Too much in one go and I knew I would fall at the first hurdle.  The little voice in my head telling me I couldn’t do it before I started!  Then there was the fear of losing it and putting it back on again, and some.

Decision time.

  • I decided how much I wanted to lose
  • I divided it into chunks for the year
  • I committed to a 9 day cleanse
  • I didn’t beat myself up if I strayed for a day
  • I took a photo of myself at the beginning and at intervals along the way
  • I kept my old wardrobe
  • I committed to a nutritional programme
  • I didn’t deny myself

Where am I just over a year later?  I didn’t lose the three stone I set myself.  I’ve since found if I did that then I would be underweight.  I have lost nearly two stone.  My clothes are a lot looser; some I’m going to have to give away or keep as a reminder of what I used to wear.  I don’t feel so tired; after all there’s not so much of me to carry around.  I’m getting lots of lovely compliments.  I almost feel as though there are too many positives I can’t write them all down.

The BEST thing though is that I know I have new eating habits which means I’m not denying myself anything.  This all makes for a happier, stress free and – oh nearly forgot to say.  My blood pressure was measured the other day 124/82 – near perfect.

George Bernard Shaw

George Bernard Shaw is renowned for his many quotes.  This is one that appeals to me because ……

Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

….. well, because, it smacks of possibilities and I can change who I am today, if I so wish.  I hear many people saying that they cannot change the way they are – shape; size; personality.  I agree there are some things that cannot be changed.  I cannot change how tall I am, for instance.  BUT, I can change my outlook on life; I can change whether I have a “can do” or “can’t do” approach.

Let me explain why I think I can affect the end result.  Those of you who see me regularly know I love playing sport.  More recently – golf.  Last Saturday I was playing in a match and I was losing by one hole when we approached the 17th.  We both drove off.  My playing opponent walked in front of me and I took this opportunity to give myself a good talking to. I told myself all I needed to do was win this next hole and then the next and I would win the match.  I emphasized that it could be done and I could do it.


So, guess what – that’s exactly what happened.  Was it easy – NO.  There were times when I thought I’d messed up but I focused on the next shot and I muttered to myself – “You can do this”.

Interesting to find out afterwards that my opponent was thinking the opposite to me.

So, for me, George Bernard Shaw was right when he said:-

Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

The Next Generation

The Next Generation is more associated with Star Trek, but not this time. The Next Generation I’m talking about is our son.

He’s always had a passion for food; more precisely – cooking.  He has an amazing palate; there really is nothing getting past him.  If it’s in the food, he tastes it.  I love it when we go out for a meal, or we’re away on holiday, and we all go – ‘What’s that?’ – wondering what ingredient we can taste, but can’t place.  Guess who comes up with the answer?  And it’s not things such as salt or pepper.  It’s Turmeric; Basil; Star Anise.  You know, every day ingredients you pop in your cooking pot!!

Where does he get his passion for his cooking?  I’ve often asked myself the self same question.  We believe it was because we had a Chinese restaurant in our local town and he loved going there.  In fact, he loved it so much we went there for his 7th birthday.

Then a local chef took an interest in him and encouraged him.  Although Ashley no longer cooks himself he kindled the flame for Patrick.  Patrick is now studying to became a chef at our local college and he loves it.

He’s also working; part-time locally.  His goal is to be running his own restaurant;  taking well known recipes and putting his own slant on them.  We’re being given a insight in to his cooking – having duck with peaches; apple with spinach and spicy sauteed potatoes the other night for tea.  We’re still working on who does the washing up!!!

Patrick Duck

However I do believe one of the reasons he’s been able to follow his dreams is because I’ve been able to follow mine in the work that I do.  As he says ‘If you love the work you do, you never do a days work in your life’.  I wonder how many people can say that?

So let’s celebrate peoples dreams and desires and encourage the young to follow and fulfill theirs. I love this saying – There are two lasting bequests we can give our children. One is roots. The other is wings. Hodding Carter Jr.