Tuesday, 7 May 2013

A post that very nearly isn't about diabetes

Metal ravens perched on a branch
Sculpture in Austrian monastery garden, October 2012
Anyone would think that the only things I get up to are work, reading and blogging. But there are a few other aspects to life, although I have to admit, they are mainly based around badminton and commuting.

I played in a one-off Ladies doubles handicapped competition, which means that there were teams of all standards playing one another with an attempt to even things up by giving one side lots of points to start with. We were given a head start of 12 (out of 21) and didn't do too badly, although we didn't win any prizes. Then there was the local badminton League dinner dance, which is a social evening that includes presentation of all the trophies for teams that have come first in their divisions and in competitions. Our club has won nothing this year, not even the plate for the friendliest club, but we occupied more than one table and more than our fair share of the dance floor. And just to follow up this enthusiastic participation, the club actually held an AGM this year (primarily because I am the club Secretary at the moment), and people were keen enough to attend, and even vote! And, even better, there are volunteers to attend the League AGM, which I would probably have had to do if nobody had volunteered, and which I hate.

Moving on to life that is not badminton, we have started to take steps towards resumption of house preservation and restoration. Not the most enthusiastic pair when it comes to DIY, Mr A and I have reviewed the battleground and made progress in attempting certain tasks ourselves while delegating others to the reliable Alf and a badminton-playing friend who has business cards calling herself 'Lady Decorator', which I find most amusing. Mr A is hoping to build a new door for the airing cupboard, while I will permanently shorten the curtains that I tacked up temporarily ten years ago, and attempt to descale all the bathroom fixtures and fittings. We have also performed some DIY support to Lola II and Mr M, who are similarly disinclined to do it themselves, and who also lack some essential skills. Mr A provided sawing, screwing and wood shaping support, while I made Lola II strip the wallpaper that was coming away from the wall rather than painting over it. Mr A made things look much better, and I made things look much worse, but I am confident they will be better in the long run.

In relation to work, I am finding the commute to be long but tolerable, especially when I have a good book to listen to, although the car is wheezing a little at the moment and will need some attention this week. I attended a talk given by our specialist obesity dietitian, which confirmed much of what I already know. The consensus of evidence seems to be that it doesn't much matter how one loses weight (as long as nutritional balance is not compromised), but the focus must always be how that weight loss can be maintained. And that it is almost impossible for most people to use exercise and activity alone to lose weight, because we simply don't have the time - but activity is highly effective in supporting weight loss that is achieved by eating fewer calories.

That's about it when it comes to stuff that isn't about diabetes. I can report that I attended another local Diabetes UK meeting, and Mr M has kindly donated some insulin pump supplies for me to stab into my fleshier parts as an experiment, because he is getting a new pump. I have commissioned a blog post from him and Lola II about the new pump, and some photos were taken at the weekend, but we'll have to wait and see whether they can find enough time to fulfil the commission.

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