Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Physician - Heal Thyself

It seems, in spite of me being against the idea of 'self-help' in general, that I am spending 2011 on a journey of self improvement.

I didn't realise it, and it came as a shock to me when I was preparing for knitting camp last weekend, that I had barely had an alcoholic drink since New Year's Eve. I remedied that at camp of course, it's a self-improvement journey, not a road to sainthood.

I'm regularly getting my 7 fruit and veg a day. I stopped eating cake every single time there was some on offer, I cut down on white carbs and I reduced my portion sizes. You won't beleive what happened next. I lost weight!

About a month ago a lightbulb went on in my head. For years I've been wanting to learn to run. 'I would love to learn to run' I used to say to my running friends; champagne in one hand, blue cheese on a rice cracker in the other. But it took me years to click that the link between wanting to learn to run and being able to run is - doing running.

So I set a goal - I'm going to run a half marathon in September - and I downloaded a program - touch wood I've stuck to it. And guess what? I can run a little! I ran 5km in the Mother's Day Classic on Sunday morning - I was out of bed and registering alone at 7:30 (I never knew there were two of those in a day), and I ran the 5km race. And I got on the news! (for a split second, so I was told at work yesterday)

I've even been improving my intellect. Before knitting, when I was in London and before the kids, I used to read voraciously - both Alan and I would repair to parks or pubs with our books and while away many an afternoon in the sun happily, (including one beautiful one in a park in Amsterdam the weekend he proposed). But since the children, and more so the knitting, I haven't kept up with the releases and now I find myself overwhelmed with choice.

So I asked my learned friend with the phd to help me improve - she chooses the book for me to read from her serious book collection - I read it, and then we email our opinions to each other in highbrow fashion. This sidesteps the problem with real bookclubs that always go tits up because of that one pain in the arse control freak who thinks they're smarter than everyone one else and railroads all conversations into monologues about What They Think About It and won't let the group read books with any decent sex in them.

Anyway I read a book. 'Never Let Me Go' by Kasuo Ishiguro. I liked it I guess, although I found so much of it lacking in depth, which I suspect was part of the point of the whole thing in the first place. Anyway, I've got another one lined up now, a crime fiction, so let's see how I go with that.

And now, for all you who have lasted this long with all this personal crap which I usually avoid on the blog but might be changing my mind about - let's have some knitting shall we?

The phildar book came - mailed in Paris on the 5th, arrivee in Wollongong on the 10th - how good is that? I ditched the yarn from the order in the end for economic reasons - and I love so many things in it.

Here is a shot of my new wip. I have decided to approach this new project with the discipline of my new improved self, in a modular fashion. I'm knitting the back and the fronts up to the armholes, and then I'll do them all together from then so I know the rows are correct and all the pieces will finish at once. Going pretty good so far - lots of bobbles!

And now, I'm off to make a virtuous soup of brocolli and beans.


drkknits said...

oh i didnt know you wanted the serious ones with lots of sex in them. that crime fiction will disappoint then. i enjoyed our email conversation the other day on the topic of NLMG. you know what i think so i shant bore you again. who knew about the running thing, i find that too, if i change things, things change. amazing. i am in love with everything in that phildar book too.

Rose Red said...

Who knew learning to run was as easy as just doing it!! go you!

I like that blue & white stripy cardigan thing from the Phildar book especially. I don't know what it is about stripes, but I like them very much. They make everything go faster, I suppose.

Yarna said...

I'm really impressed - it all sounds a very grown up approach to things!

Donna said...

I loved Never Let Me Go - I even made David drive me to Castle Hill to see the movie because it wasn't bogan enough to be played at any of the local cinemas!

Belinda said...

That is bloody awesome! Last year was like this for me. Everything just fell into place naturally and without force and it felt good! My attitude has sunken a litte since, but you running a 5k marathon might just be the awesomeness that kicks me back into the right mindset. Did I mention that's awesome? Glad I've covered my bases.


1funkyknitwit said...

Seriously cool that you ran in a marathon and seriously cool that your looking after your health mentally and physically :)

I think that yarn looks great in that pattern if your still wondering yes or no about it...ahahaha, so keep on knitting ;) x

love the book and patterns !

Bells said...

wow, you've been undergoing a metamorphosis.

I don't mind a bit of self help. I think it's only really boring when people go on about it and appear to not actually learn anything. I love to hear what people have learned that has really changed them and you sound like you're discovering heaps. Good for you.

Grandma Flea said...

Congratulations on your achievements - keep telling us how you're going - and keep us up-to-date with the reading list - I love a recommendation!

travellersyarn said...

You are an inspiration - I decided not to have a glass of wine with dinner last night after reading your post. Can't wait to see the transformed Ailsa on Sunday!

Ness said...

Good for you! I just started running too. My boyfriend runs marathons and makes it look pretty easy, so I thought, "I can do that!" And I did! After the 5k, though, I haven't run at all. I'm going to have to re-train. I won't attempt a half-marathon until next year, if at all, though, so kudos to you!

Ann said...

Sounds like you have a great plan for 2011. That pattern book looks really interesting.

Lawrence said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leeanne said...

oh wow your efforts are soo inspiring. you'll have to show us a pic of your new running body. I confess I read almost every night even if it is only 2 pages, it seems to calm me down. Bryce Courtenay books are usually always winners.