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Cheap Eats

Reducing our living costs is on my mind more than ever, as it’s a mere three months until D takes on his new role as a trainee minister.  We’ve managed just fine on one income as D’s current IT work pays well, but next year we have quite a drop in salary to wear as a family.

We’re cool with that.  Quite frankly, if you are making loads of money as a minister, there’s something very wrong going on!  But we know that making do on less will take some adjustment for us.

We had several options of where D could do his training, and we think we’ve got the place that is the best fit for D, the congregation and for our family.  I’m not revealing where we are going until everything is signed on the dotted line, but it’s somewhere very small in the South Island.  Two reasons we like the place are that it’s cheap to live there (compared to the other places we were offered), and is small enough to walk or cycle almost everywhere, so we hope to use the car much less.  I’d like to think that these two things alone will significantly help us adjust to life on D’s new income.

Our food budget is one area that I’m constantly trying to lower as much as possible, which at times feels like a losing battle due to the rising cost of food.  I’m not exaggerating: butter has increased in price by 62% (!), milk by 7.9% and vegetables are up 8.9% since last year.

The rise in grocery costs have made me examine the meal plans I create much more carefully.  Meal planning saves precious time wondering what on earth to cook for dinner, and stops needless food waste, but it won’t save you money if you choose recipes with expensive ingredients.  Meals with lots of meat, dairy or out-of-season vegetables will have you swooning in shock at the cash register (or it could be that your check-out operator is Mr Darcy…ahem, I digress).

By being very careful with the recipes I choose and incorporating at least 3-4 meatless dinners a week, I’ve been able to reduce our weekly shop by a 1/3rd, often more.  It’s not rocket science, vegetable-based meals are generally much cheaper.  If you are struggling to make ends meet and have avowed carnivores in the house, personally I’d give them two options: they can either make more money to pay for their food or they can get with the programme.  D and I like most vegetarian meals, which helps us, but there are plenty of delicious meatless meals out there that would please even the most devoted meat-eaters.

A modicum of research on the internet brings a plethora of frugal recipes to your browser, and you are sure to find some that get your mouth watering.  Here are some of our current favourites.

We absolutely love this slow cooker lentil and quinoa chili. In fact, I’d go as far to say as we prefer it to the beef version, am I right D?

Quinoa is pricey here in NZ so I just use more lentils.  Mmmm, this recipe is delicious, makes a boat-load of chili and is inexpensive.  It also takes maybe 5 minutes to prepare, and most of that is opening cans or measuring out stock.

 

This freezer bean and cheese burrito recipe is terrific.  I made 20 burritos which – once frozen – can be popped in the microwave for a quick and easy lunch, or for dinner when I just.cannot.be.arsed.cooking.one.more.thing.

I swap out a can of refried beans (more expensive in NZ than the USA, plus just my personal preference) for a can of chili beans, and use a can of plain tomatoes with some burrito spice instead of ‘Rotel’ (an American brand of tomatoes and chillies).  I also use a cup less cheese – America, you know I love you, but y’all are obsessed with cheese – and they still tasted great.

For my latest batch I used store-bought tortillas.  Normally I would make them myself but we had these left over from a weekend of visitors.  Even with the added extra of store-bought tortillas, I worked out that my 20 tortillas came in at .77c per tortilla.  That’s pretty good!

 

This Corn and Broccoli Rice Casserole needs a bit of tweaking (I use more seasonings and a small sprinkle of cheese) to give it more flavour, but otherwise it is a very frugal and perfectly nice meal.  Depending on the price of broccoli or if there’s some in my garden at the time, this dish can be made for $3-4.

Corn and Broccoli Rice Casserole - so simple and SO delicious! Everyone cleaned their plates - even our picky broccoli haters! Cooked rice, creamed corn, broccoli, onion and garlic topped with butter and crushed Ritz crackers. You might want to double the recipe for this quick side dish - this didn't last long in our house!

image and recipe via Plain Chicken

 

These potato pancakes are very filling with a salad.

 

So there you have it, folks.  Do a little research – search particularly for ‘cheap’, ‘frugal’ or ‘depression-era’ recipes, and you will be sure to find recipes that take your fancy.  Your bank balance will thank you.

 

Hit me up with links to your favourite frugal recipes!

 

 

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Thank heaven that’s over!

I know I am not alone in feeling like 2016 was like an awful, dastardly  cousin (twice-removed) who is never mentioned in polite company.  I am pleased to shed the year-that-was and feel somehow lighter now that I am faced with a blank slate new year.

2016 definitely had some great happenings, but I had a dreadful flare-up of my autoimmune disease which left me with little energy and a pile of unwanted weight. Yesterday, on New Year’s Eve I handed in my resignation at work.  I greatly enjoyed the job – and my colleagues – but my little family has 3 tricky years ahead and it felt like the right thing to do.

This year D will be taking two papers a semester to complete his theology degree, and working enough hours to support us financially.  It may seem counter-intuitive to quit a job, when our income will drop (more on that later) but it is a sensible decision for me.  D will swamped with assignments and exams, and won’t be able to be as hands-on with the children.  I am happy to pick up the slack, but being an HSP I need breaks, which my little job cut into.  Like many jobs in the non-profit sphere, I worked much more than my paid hours in order to deliver a first-class programme.  So this year I find myself instead with a few child-free mornings to myself as Chip is starting kindy, meaning it will be much easier for me to be ‘on’ the kids in the afternoons and evenings thanks to those breaks.

In 2018-19 D will begin an internship with a church and then be ordained as a minister.  Our income will drop significantly, but if you make mega-bucks as a church leader then there’s something wrong!  In anticipation of leaner times ahead we’ve decided to live off what D will make as an intern this year, and save the extra money he makes at his current IT job.  This will leave us with a good cushion.  In this spirit I will be resurrecting the Dollar Diet, so expect weekly updates on my frugal efforts.  These updates really do help to keep me accountable.

One thing I aim to stick to resolutely is throwing my hat in the No New Clothes for a Year ring.  As the main clothing buyer for our family, this means everyone.  I’m quite confident that my tots will have plenty of great clothes to see them through 2017, thanks to hand-me-downs and savvy bargains I nabbed last year.  I have a closet of great clothes I aim to fit back into, and I know I have plenty of outfits for any occasion.  And D?  He’s already got a hefty collection of novelty print t-shirts to keep him clothed until the next decade so he’ll be fine too.  If you want to use your resources more wisely or stop a shopping habit, the Facebook group you will find at the link above is a great source of support and encouragement.

Towards the end of the year I started to get a bit more vroom again, and I aim to stick to the Trim Healthy Mama plan to shed the weight I gained last year, and more hopefully!  I know the plan works.  I can’t really explain why I drifted off it last year other than my AI flare-up sapping my motivation, but I’m back in the saddle again.  I’ll also be using some of my free time to exercise by doing a mix of walking, running and HIIT.

We ended up ringing in 2017 with an impromptu, low-key BBQ.  It was lovely. Great weather, great food, superb company.  We had a toddler disco, complete with a countdown at the respectable time of 9pm.

backyard-tots-in-tawhero

All set to party (note D’s famous ginger beer on the deck)

toddler-table-tots-in-tawhero

Toddler chow (I can say with complete confidence that the wine did not belong to a toddler)

toddler-disco-tots-in-tawhero

J and Sausage invent a new type of lying down dance

I guess you could call my plans for 2017 resolutions, but to me it feels more like getting back into a good groove.  I’ve done all these things before.  I enjoy living this way.  2017 is going to be a great year!

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Going AIP

This post first appeared on my other blog Giving Up Sugar.

I haven’t posted in ages on Giving Up Sugar.  Mostly this is because once you’ve given up the white stuff there’s little left to say, and I am not one to hang out in my kitchen creating mouth-watering sugar-free treats.  (Which is a shame, because I suspect I could make a killing.)

However, some of you on your own sugar-free journey may be interested in my next foray into wellness.

I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease at the ripe old age of 27.  Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune disease and is the most common cause of hypothyroidism (which I have too).

I was not at all surprised when I received my diagnosis.  Most of the women in my family have hypothyroidism, so I knew what was up when I put on a huge amount of weight in 6 months, felt like a slug all the time, had a puffy face, thinning hair and had freezing cold hands.  The hands thing was the final piece in the puzzle for me, as I had previously been one of those ridiculously hardy folks who swan around in summer clothing in the middle of winter.  But now people would shake my hand and cry out ‘Flipping heck, have you been dipping your hands in ice water?’  Something was definitely wrong.

I had to beg my doctor to run the tests as she didn’t expect someone to have hypothyroidism at 27.  But to her credit, she was swayed by my family history and ran the tests (I now realise how fortunate I was that my doctor listened to me.  Many people with Hashimoto’s are misdiagnosed as having a mental illness).  I’m not kidding when I say it took me 6 more years to fully understand the implications of my condition and to accept the limitations of it.  I spent those years ignoring my body, being lackadaisical about taking my medication, pushing myself through the tiredness and brain fog, and generally trying to live as I had before until I gave myself a bad case of burnout.

It was the burnout that forced me to pay more attention to my body and my lifestyle.  My body was screaming at me to slow down because it could not take it any more.

So I slowed down and began to recover.  Giving up sugar helped my energy levels to increase, and I was able to reduce my thyroid medication a bit, plus I lost weight.  Then eating the Trim Healthy Mama way (which is refined sugar-free) helped me shed two more dress sizes and feel more energetic.  But it hasn’t quite been enough.

I have always had a tricky case of hypothyroidism.  My thyroid levels almost always require tweaking of my medication and I am closely monitored for this.  Sometimes I need more thyroxine, sometimes less.  Even when my thyroid levels are ‘normal’, I keep having bouts of unexplained tiredness, poor memory, brain fog, irritability and feeling so, so cold.  Some of these ‘thyroidy bouts’ as I call them, can last a few weeks or a few months.  At the moment I am a bout which has been going on for a couple of months now.  Fun times.

Trips to doctors have them treating me like I am a mental health patient, despite the fact that I am a patient with hypothyroidism, complaining of hypothyroidism symptoms.  But as my thyroid levels are ‘fine’, doctors don’t seem to know what else to do other than screen me for depression and look confused.  I have learned to take my husband with me to all such appointments for back up as I am never taken seriously without having him there to say ‘Yep, what she is saying is absolutely true.’

My thyroidy bouts are not fun, and are very hard on my husband as he has to pick up my slack.  I’m a stay-at-home parent to two toddlers, so that’s a lot of crazy slack to be picked up!  I’m sick of these bouts affecting me – and my family – despite the fact that my test results are ‘normal’.  There has to be more that can be done.

Our genes play a part in the development of autoimmune disease, but diet and lifestyle can reduce the effects once that switch is flicked on.  I’m pretty active in the Hashimoto’s online community and have seen many reports from fellow sufferers saying they’d seen a huge reduction in their symptoms by following the Autoimmune Protocol.  It’s like the Paleo diet, but harsher. The first phase is an elimination diet where you cut out the usual suspects like grains, eggs, soy, dairy and sugar.  But the Autoimmune Protocol goes further.  Developed by Dr Sarah Ballentyne – an expert on immunity and inflammation – the protocol also cuts out nuts, seeds, alternative sweeteners, nightshades and NSAIDS (ibuprofen etc).  The main focus of the protocol is to eliminate foods that contribute to leaky gut and bad gut flora from the diet.  You can read more about the science behind the protocol here.

People with autoimmune diseases can expect to see significant improvement within a few weeks or months, although some may take longer.  I feel confident about doing the first phase because it’s not forever.  Once a measurable improvement happens, then a slow reintroduction to other foods can begin.  Many people discover they react badly to nightshades (tomatoes/potatoes/eggplant/peppers) and have to avoid them for life, and I suspect this might be the case for me.  My father is deathly allergic to raw tomato, and my skin often reacts to nightshades when I  prepare them for cooking.  Other people can successfully reintroduce eggs, nuts and dairy, so I hope I’m one of those!

Food elimination diets are daunting.  But if you’ve eaten something all your life, you may be unaware of its impact on your health and well-being.  I never truly knew how addicted to sugar I was until I eliminated it and saw improvements in my energy and saiety levels.  People who’ve gone AIP report significantly negative reactions to many of the reintroduced foods (like two weeks of feeling yuck), and those reactions are enough to help them avoid that food for life.  I’m hopeful that getting to the bottom of any food intolerances will help me kick my thyroidy bouts for good.

I wondered what on earth there would be left for me to eat if I attempted AIP.  No eggs.  My staple breakfast.  No dairy.  But, but what’s life without cheese?  No curries?  I think I might cry.

Help was at hand thanks to my local library and The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook, by Mickey Trescott.  D and I were so impressed by this book, we immediately bought our own copy.  Besides being a beautifully designed and photographed cookbook, what had me going ‘okay, this lady is my new BFF’ was that Mickey acknowledges that sticking to AIP during the elimination phase is HARDER THAN HARD.  She acknowledges that having to make every single dish, sauce or dressing from scratch feels like a Herculean task if you work full time, have kids, or are sick. You know, from an autoimmune disease.  If that’s you, Mickey’s your gal.  She has meal plans and shopping lists to ease into the AIP way.  There are also many other great AIP books out there if you look online.

I haven’t started AIP yet, but I do have a starting date (28 July).  I’m approaching this like I did when I gave up sugar.  I’m not quitting until my social calendar is empty.  My birthday and a trip away are coming up soon, so I will go AIP after then.  I will be turning down dinner invitations and dining out while I’m on the elimination phase because I can’t be bothered with the hassle it would entail.  I have a wedding to go to in September and I think I will just tell the beautiful couple not to worry about a meal for me, and take my own food.  I want to cause zero hassle on their big day.  It will definitely be weird, but when you are on the elimination phase you absolutely cannot cheat.  If you have a reaction to something, you probably won’t be able to work out what caused it (Was it the dressing?  Were the veges sauted in butter? etc.).

So wish me luck.  I’ll keep you posted.

Have you ever gone AIP?  Did it work for you?

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Rebel with a cause

I put my back out doing the vacuuming.

(I know, right?!  I keep saying that I need to get a better story than that.  The truth is more boring than fiction in this case.)  

I spent the better part of a week, getting intimately acquainted with my bedroom ceiling as my injury meant I couldn’t sit or stand for long.  There were two unexpected bonuses to giving myself excruciating pain: I got a five day break from caring for my tots – but still got to see them and have unlimited cuddles; and I had a lot of time to think.

I’d been feeling rather down on myself because I’d lost my THM mojo and couldn’t seem to really get back into it.  I wanted to, especially considering my success with it, but I kept self-sabotaging.  I’d also been battling a virus for a couple of weeks that had left me really tired so I hadn’t done much exercise during that time.

I was frustrated at how flimsy many of my good habits are, and how difficult it was to create them in the first place.  Last year I’d devoured Gretchen Rubin’s book on habit formation, Better than Before, and discovered I was an obliger.  Gretchen’s research led her to the discovery that when it comes to habits, most of us fall into one of four categories, which she calls the ‘four tendencies’:

  • Upholders are rule-keepers.  They have no problem sticking to New Year’s resolutions, and are the sort of people who follow their doctor’s advice, to the letter.
  • Questioners –these people question any expectations placed on them by others, and will meet them only if they believe it’s justified.  Questioners tend to do research before embarking on anything like a new diet or form of exercise, and resist arbitrary rules.
  • Obligers are people-pleasers, who find it easy to meet the expectations of others, but not for themselves.
  • Rebels resist expectations from others, and from themselves.  Rebels like to do things their own way, and hate being told what to do.

(Discover your habit tendency on Gretchen’s site here.)

I was stoked to be an obliger, as the best strategy to help obligers stick with a habit is some sort of external accountability.  I’d inadvertently done this with my other blog, Giving Up Sugar.  I ‘d discovered that I couldn’t in good conscience blog about giving up the white stuff without actually doing it, so I knew this strategy worked.

Back in February I asked D to hold me accountable to sticking to THM, and signed up for roller derby.  Other than getting back into skating and making new friends, I hoped the pressure of making it to derby training each week would be all the incentive I needed.

As I lay there, pondering how badly the past couple of months had gone using the above strategies I had to admit that they hadn’t worked.

If you’d been a fly on the wall, I’m pretty sure you could have seen the cogs in my brain whirring and a little cartoon light bulb above my head.

Maybe I’m not an obliger?

Maybe I’m something else.

I decided to re-take the test.  I am the sort of person who takes multi-choice tests at the speed of light.  Unlike my darling D, I do not ponder all eventualities when answering questions about myself, I tend to go with whatever pops into my head.  The worst thing is that as I’ve studied psychology I am quick to spot categories and tend to answer in the manner of the particular category I think is desirable to be in!  (Not very helpful when you need an honest assessment.)

So as I took the test for the second time I paused and reflected on each question.  I tried to answer as the Angela-I-actually-am, not the Angela-I-want-to-be.

It turns out I’m a rebel.

I was like, whaaaaat?  Me, a rebel?  I’m one of the most goody two shoes people I know.  I’m a people pleaser, I follow rules, I do what others ask of me.

As I digested this information, I suddenly had the urge to laugh.  Because of course, I am a rebel.  The signs were there.  They’ve been there all my life.

I was the kid who hated ballet and art class because I hated being told what to do.  Sure, I loved to dance and be creative, but I wanted to do it MY way.  I was the kid who hated team sports because I liked to be the one calling the shots.  When asked to describe me as a kid, my Mum usually says ‘Oh, Angela marched to the beat of her own drum’.  And I did.  As a kid, I didn’t give a stuff what anyone thought of me.  Oh, how I wish for that sort of confidence these days!

As an adult I’ve lost count of all the money I’ve wasted on classes, gyms and workshops that I really, really wanted to do at the time I signed up – only to have any enthusiasm for it wane immediately and usually not complete what ever it was.  I’m a workshop flake.

I get a kick out of breaking rules, or flouting people’s expectations of who they think I am.  For instance, I am nice and kind and a goody two shoes, but I am usually the first one to bust a move on the dance floor at a party which raises many eyebrows from people who don’t know me well.

Most tellingly, any time someone asks me to do something my immediate gut reaction is to do the exact opposite.  I struggle against this of course – because you have to if you want to get along with others – but I particularly struggle if someone is telling me what I ‘should’ be doing.  On the outside I may say ‘oh yes, okay’, but on the inside I’m like ‘yeah, whatever, I’m going keep doing it my way.’  This is a common trait for rebels, and something that frustrates both them, and the people around them as we’re not always right!

After this a-ha! moment, my next thought was ‘oh no!’  Because of our self-sabotaging ways, according to Gretchen rebels have the hardest time creating new habits.  I have created habits that (mostly) stick in the past, but that’s because I’ve done them in a way that suits rebels.  A strategy that works for people like me is what Gretchen calls identity.  People identify with a habit; such as ‘I’m a runner’, or ‘I’m artistic’, or even ‘I’m lazy’.  In my case, I identify with things like being ‘sugar-free’, a daily exerciser’ and  an ‘op-shopper’ (the year I got married I’d vowed to only buy second-hand for the entire year.  I’m proud to say I completed this challenge.  I got married in a second-hand dress and second-hand shoes and was perfectly happy).

Take my exercise regime for example.  I’ve tried making rigid plans to exercise, mapping out what I’ll do each day for a month.  But I never, ever follow it.  Never.  Ever.  Now I know why!  Instead, I always do whatever I feel like.  Some days I run, some days I walk, some days I skate, some days I do a HIIT workout, some days I do yoga.  It doesn’t matter what it is, I still do something.  This is a perfect rebel strategy.  Because I am a ‘daily exerciser’ I’m okay with not choosing the ‘when’, but I do get to choose the ‘what’.  And it works for me.

Other rebel strategies are choosing habits that deviate from the mainstream (such as a man taking up ballet as a hobby), and setting themselves challenges.  A good way to get rebels to do anything is to tell them ‘I bet you can’t do such-and-such’, and off they’ll go to try and prove you wrong.

I’m going to try these strategies, like setting a Big Hairy Audacious Goal and see what happens.

If you are struggling to start or maintain a good habit, it may be that the strategy you are using to do it just isn’t you.  You might be an upholder, or a questioner or an obliger.  I highly recommend Better than Before if you want to make a change in your life.  I’ll keep you posted about mine.

 

Which of the ‘four tendencies are you?’  What habit strategies work for you?  And if you’re a rebel, hit me up with your ideas!

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Happy Trimaversary

totsintawherosidebyside1year

One year of Trim Healthy Mama

Yesterday was my one year ‘Trimaversary’.  One year of doing Trim Healthy Mama.  One year!

I’m really proud of getting to this point.  As you can see from the photos above, THM works.  It’s been very slow (I am what we call a turtle in the THM world), but I’ve lost 3 dress sizes and have enough energy (most days) to run after my kids and exercise daily.

THM is different to any ‘diet’ I’ve been on before.  I stopped weighing myself months ago because the scale would stay the same but my clothes would be noticeably looser.  On THM I’ve lost weight in places I never have before and have discovered my collarbones.

It took until December until I really started to get lots of comments on my weight loss – people are generally too polite!  But since then, more and more people have had the courage to say something.

I wanted to end my year on a high note, but I want to be real and say that since Christmas I have struggled to stick to the THM plan.  I have good days when each meal is on plan, but I have bad days when I get to lunch, make bad choices (carbs), and carry on making bad choices for the rest of the day.  I think it has something to do with having been on holidays and being out of routine.

Since playgroups and kindy started back I have been better, but am still easily steered off course by special events.  I feel as if I have put on some weight because of this and it’s been hard not to let my nasty inner voice have free rein.  But I look at the photos above and see how far I’ve come and it keeps me going forward.  Anyway, I will be doing some serious thinking about what I can do to keep myself on plan more.  And keep you posted.

I have been terrific at exercising, and rarely have a day off.  I run, skate (I’ve taken up roller derby, wahoo!), do a HIIT workout or some gentle yoga.  I have noticeably more energy eating the THM way, and my moods are more stable.

So, here’s to making my second trimaversary.  I’m going back to basics, by making sure I fill up before special events so I don’t go overboard, no sweet THM treats (I think they affect my appetite, such is the sugar-free life) and giving myself plenty of grace for not being perfect.  🙂

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Trim Healthy Thursday: 10 Months in

 

I can explain my lack of Trim Healthy Mama posts two ways.  One, I have been busy.  Two, I have not been a stellar example of the THM lifestyle this month.

This is not to say I have been spending my time like this:

cheesy dibbles.jpg

Oh man, I LOVE these guys!  Hilarious. (image credit)

Ok, so maybe a little bit of the time.

I’ve had too many treat meals recently.  December is a treaty time of year unfortunately, and I think I went too far with the whole ‘being kind’ to myself while I have not been feeling 100%.

I went on a retreat with my BFF, and basically ate two entire wheels of cheese with two packets of crackers, quaffed lots of red wine, and discovered a new brand of sugar-free chocolate, which I then proceeded to eat with great gusto.  My friend R and I were definitely in the ‘girl’s weekend’ mindset and just did whatever we wanted.  To be perfectly honest, I am only a teensy bit regretful about it all.  R lives overseas now and we only see each other once a year, so being together feels like it should be a rip-snorting, let-your-hair-down sort of time.

R and I had to abandon the idea of the Tongariro Crossing once it became clear that my calf muscle wasn’t going to be healed in time, and embarked on the Waihora Trail instead.  I’m glad we did, because my calf began to hurt a couple of hours into our hike, and R’s back was giving her a lot of pain (she has since discovered it was a slipped disc).  Despite gnashing our teeth at our geriatric bodies, we had a lovely walk and enjoyed some magnificent views of Lake Taupo.

We wisely stayed close to the Tokaanu hot pools and took a dip after our hike, which I’m quite sure helped us to feel rather sprightly the next day.

So I may not be perfect at sticking to Trim Healthy Mama, but I keep trying.  I am shrinking.  My double chin has gone and I have collarbones.  Collarbones!  I don’t think they’ve been sighted in years.  As you can see in the photos below, I have come a long way this year.  I plan to keep chugging along next year and look forward to shrinking some more.

sidebysideFeb-Dec2015

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Trim Healthy Thursday: Keep on movin’

I have been chugging along pretty well on the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, but my fitness hit a snag a couple of weeks ago.  I tore a calf muscle landing on some uneven ground while out running, and despite resting it for a few days, it continued to hurt whenever I tried to exercise.

image credit

I plan to do the Tongariro Crossing in a few short weeks, so not be able to exercise put quite a dampener on that plan.  After a week and a half of having to abort my exercise plan each time due to pain, I decided to see a physiotherapist as I need to keep moving.  He was brilliant, and I have strict instructions involving heat pads and stretching I must follow to the letter.  Until I am given the all-clear to carry on with my running/hiit/stair-climbing routine I have started swimming and cycling instead.  I hate spending money on exercise (gyms are not for me), and at $5 a pop my local pool isn’t cheap.  At least it’s only for a week or two as the prognosis for my injury is good.