Weight – Loss ‘Wonder’

The 'Wonder' Bench
The ‘Wonder’ Bench

So I was getting somewhat pudgy and feeling every minute of my existence when I decided to pop into my local thrift store for a little retail therapy. As I browsed the new and old, trying to find the best way to waste money, a light from heaven opened up before me! (True story – no exaggeration….really!) and there before me, bathed in ethereal warmth stood …….. ‘The exercise bench.

Before I knew what had happened I had ripped my credit card out, bought it and found myself catching the bus – bench in hand.

Now I know that there are many variations of this bench, most of them bulky and horribly expensive. This baby is neither. It is light enough to carry with ease, stable enough to feel safe when sweating off the bulk and affordable enough for even a ‘two job mommy’ to afford.

Now I have tried endlessly to attempt sit ups on the floor, but at my age, it’s really not a pleasant experience. Getting down on the floor is bad enough – getting up is worse, to say nothing of how painful it is to excercise on the ground in the first place.

Now my middle is the one area I have boldly neglected for decades and I was almost sure it would rebel vigorously when roused – but it didn’t. Only the smallest of movements is required. I discovered by trial and error and a little web surfing that it isn’t necessary to go all the way down and back again – unless of course you’re feeling particularly suicidal! Small movements are all that’s necessary.

It allows you to do long and short sit – ups (attached by ankles or bar over the knees) and can be adjusted for maximum comfort.

and now for the really fun stuff….

Not only did this baby pull my stomach in quickly, but it enabled me to burn calories too ……aaaand, wait for it……as I did the movements it also pulled my leg muscles, firming the whole damn lot from gut to ankles!!!!

Now the heading of this post has the word ‘wonder’ in inverted commas, quite simply because it works like a bomb, but it does take effort.

That said, it is a gentle and fun effort that can be done in front of a TV!

You don’t have to go crazy to see results, you don’t have to coddle your ‘don’t wanna’ inner brat to get going – it really is as easy as pie. I have had mine for about 2 months and have dropped about 8-10 kilo’s and have dropped a good few pants sizes.

I don’t set aside exercise time. When there’s something good on telly, I hop onto the bench and do about 4 sets. How many you do depends on your energy and fitness levels. When I started, I did 20 reps and had a break. Now I can comfortably manage 50. So start slow and build.

I don’t do all the sets at once either and it still worked. I do one, then go off and do whatever needs doing around the house, return and do another and so on. If that idea freaks your brain, then do it within a time period, but either way – it will still work.

The funny side of this is that in my last blog I wrote about the jelly belly, well I still have one – thanks middle age, but it’s tiny now, and lies delicately on top of damn hard muscle.

My neighbour has now also rushed off to get one after seeing my new gut. She’s had hers for 2 weeks and worships me as a Goddess! She’s fitting into dresses that haven’t been out of her cupboard for years. The interesting thing to note with her is that she is actually an excercise freak – but this machine has her flumoxed. Years of training haven’t had the same effect as this lil’ bench.

Once the stomach started to dissappeared I began to look at the rest of me, and noticed to my horror that my arms had sprouted wings…but that’s another story for another day.

For now, if you are interested not in becoming the next Miss Muscles, but simply wanting to be ‘gut light’ – get the bench, and enjoy.

When elastic wins through…


Mother never warned me about That!
Mother never warned me about That!

Over 40, great hair, a winning smile………..and a great big belly?

Yep, welcome to the club!!!!

I lead an excessively active lifestyle. Between the restaurant I work in and the the child I work on – I never stop! I should be gorgeous, people should stop and admire my middle-aged brilliance, shouldn’t they….

When 45 came and went, my body instantly, and without the slightest apology, loaded my middle with a floppy tire. My daughter took one look and exclaimed ‘Oh my God, you look like you’re melting!’

I felt wonderful.

So I excercised and drank water and relied on my past weight – burning ability to kick in and rid me of the dreaded ooze and……. Nada! I may as well have sat on my arse and eaten pizza all day for all the good it did me. To add insult to injury it’s also quite squishy, clearly a different breed of alien from that nice firm fat we’re accustomed to.

This afternoon, in utter desperation I found myself looking for elastisized denims, like my mother used to wear. As I wept in shame and covered myself with sack cloth and ashes in the changing rooms, I realised that I was one step away from looking like Homer Simpson for the rest of my life.

It was time to take action! It was time to Google.

Now I won’t bore you with silly details, I’m depressed enough without still explaining this horror in detail. The bottom line is that as we head to middle age, visceral fat begins to push out the abdominal wall and your middle begins to grow and grow and grow…..and worst of all – you don’t necessarily even put on weight!

Worse – because before you discover this delightful fact, you might quite possibly have driven yourself mental (as I did), trying to figure out how in heavens name you cannot even squeeze into your denims when the scale hasn’t moved so much as an inch.

And there’s better news ahead – sweating buckets doing sit ups probably won’t work!


God we’re screwed!

Basically targeting the stomach area with excercise will strengthen the muscles but in order to drastically reduce the stomach we HAVE TO do aerobic excercises to burn the sucker right off! (to say nothing of drinking gallons of water and eating better).

The good news however, is that after the shock of seeing your new muffin blob smile at you as it oozes out from under your favourite tank top, you do now know that what has attacked you is normal. It was always going to happen….

It is a peri-menopausal killmenow.com occurrance in your mid 40’s and even the skinny chicks are gonna get one – albeit a tad smaller.

So live with it or run it off, whatever you decide it’s here to stay – in one form or another – lovely neh?

For those just dying to punish themselves with the specifics there’s a few fun articles waiting for you on the links below:








Nature – The true Diva!

The top of Table Mountain this year - Cape Town
The top of Table Mountain this year – Cape Town

It’s been snowing in Africa, on distant mountains far, far that-away, not near to Cape Town……….

This is Africa for heavens sake! It doesn’t snow here…..

Today we had an earthquake in Johannesburg – 5.5 on the Richter scale, which is mild compared to the rest of the world, but again – this is Africa, we don’t have earthquakes….not really? Do we?

Over 400 homes destroyed
Over 400 homes destroyed

All the great and terrible plans we make, and nature comes along and dumps us on our asses!

Life is precious and truly unpredictable. These events remind me that anything is possible, both good and bad and halfway in – between.

We are guests and guardians on this planet we claim to own and order. So tread lightly and lovingly upon the earth – reach for every moment to create beauty and joy in your lives.

Nature will be bound to have the last say…and her voice cannot be ignored.




Are you suffering from ‘Cellphonealitis?’

My Life is Over!
My Life is Over!

We had just fed and watered a small bunch of top level bank execs. They had motored through a high paced business lunch and were heading off to save and/or cripple the world.

As the last of the invited guests left, the three hosts suddenly realised that all conversation had stopped and that they were alone in the room and required to communicate on some level.

All three simultaneously turned away from each other, picked up their cell phones and began sending random messages. They had been making decisions that could quite possibly affect millions of people, but when faced with an everyday thing like conversation, they ran scared!

We have become so euthanised to the sight of cell phones that we no longer question how far our social abilities have suffered because of them. Kids begin dissappearing in adult company, not engaging on any level, too pre-occupied with their latest gadgets. Young couples who should still by rights be happily mauling each other through dessert, barely talking because they’re too busy sending messages or trolling their facebook.

We are becoming hopelessly dependent on our technology.

What a sad substitute they are. Laughing, hugging, teasing, encouraging, teaching – all those good things, have been reduced to weird smileys and symbols and impossible word compounds that only make sense to 12 year olds.

Technology is there to smooth out our lives, not replace them.

Gadgets are still just machines and should be treated as such.

As people we need to touch and talk and listen and laugh and argue – in the flesh. Without those things we lose our humanity, we destroy our spirits, and if we’re not careful, we’ll become just like the machines we rely so heavily on.

What a sad, boring and colourless world that would be!



Fear, the unexpected Party Pooper

Finding The Pieces
Finding The Pieces

I have spent a lifetime looking for my mother.

In December last year I was finally able to make contact.

This blog started off documenting my adoption journey, so one would naturally assume that once I had found and contacted my mother that I should have shouted it from the rooftops, but I didn’t – couldn’t actually.

It went well, very well. My uncle told her that I had been found. Her reaction was everything a lost kid dreams of. She cried, she laughed, she was excited.

I on the other hand, was plain terrified.

My daughters and I sent letters, cards and a pressie. Our birthdays are in the same month so Mum reciprocated with cards for my birthday and my eldest daughters.

I promised to send more pics – I didn’t.

I decided to suprise her with a phone call, which was fantastic, and promised to write again – but I didn’t.

My mother broke the mold on everything I expected. She has a mental illness and I was told not to expect too positive a reaction. They were so wrong. Her card said everything I needed to hear. She was gentle and kind and totally mentally alert. It shocked me to my core.

It’s sad that the thing I have longed for all my life has scared me so completely that I am unable to enjoy it. I know she is waiting for me to write, as I waited for my father. Not writing is frankly cruel after all we’ve been through. I know how much the waiting hurts, but somehow I’m stuck.

I don’t know what to say or how. I am seldom speechless, but this unexpected grace has taken me so by suprise I have been rendered useless.

What has been given back to me is an enormous miracle, and certainly considering how many ‘impossible’ events took place for it to come into being – and yet here I sit – frozen.

I’m trying to understand what’s happening in my head, but it’s all mushy and twisted. I think it’s time to throw logic and order to the wind and follow my heart in all of this, after all that’s what kept me going all these years.

There was zero logic in the way things came together.

Zero order in the avalanche of love and care I received from people who were blood, but still strangers.

But there was heart – always heart.

My adoptive father used to say that heart was my main defining character. It dictated all the colours of all my passions and was fearless in it’s pursuit of truth and love.

I seem to have forgotten myself.

Perhaps it’s time to go back, so that I can finally go forwards again…..











Skipping along…

The 'Air Rope'
The ‘Air Rope’

This is my latest discovery. It’s called an Air Rope. For those of you that go to gym, you’re probably familiar with it, but for the rest of us it’s an epic discovery.

The simplicity of this piece of equipment blows my mind.

I wanted to skip to punch up my fitness levels and dump a few chunks of lard, but living in an apartment made that impossible. The Air Rope works exactly the same as a conventional rope – without the rope. It has easy to grip handles with a short cord and a lightly weighted ball at the end.

It feels just like a normal rope, it certainly works the same, and best of all – it doesn’t hook itself on lights and furniture if used indoors.

I’ve had mine for just over a week and the jeans are already loose. I have tired legs and crappy circulation so I started off very easily. Not only have I already lost weight but it has improved my circulation drastically. When my legs are stiff and sore, all it takes is a quick ’20’ with the rope and they loosen up immediately – Bloody Brilliant!

It’s cheap – R130, it’s fun, and it works like a bomb. If you want to fast track your fitness and lose a good few kilos’s then seriously folks – get one!!!!

I should be getting commission for this……..