Archive for the ‘RACE to HEALTHY’ Category

How you doing people? To my Nigerian readers, what did you get up to for the holidays?

I went to Lagos, spent some quality time with my best friend Wunmi, and her son (my godson, duh). Nothing like family!

Dodging the sun vs. basking in the awesome lighting! This is such a great and awful photo at the same time, lol.

I must also confess that my diet was abandoned (which is what good people do during holidays, lol) so I’m typing this from the treadmill, trying to redeem myself.

It was also a good opportunity for me to focus on myself, and the exhaustion I’ve been feeling lately. I’m grateful for the massages, the sleep, the absolute rest I was able to achieve. So thankful.

A bit about my best friend before I move on… She’s an amazing, real chic. Like, I know I’m going to contend with her swollen head later but she’s one of the strongest women I know, an amazing worker, even more supportive wife and mom, and I’m just thankful for her today. Get yourself a bestie like mine!

Okay, Wunmi worship done, here’s the reason I decided to write this. So, it’s still raining in Abuja for reasons I cannot fathom. It rained from 4pm yesterday till about 11pm when I fell asleep. Why? Sigh. Plus it was thundering like God was scolding us (anyone understand thunder-speak?) and totally defeated the ‘weather for two’ purpose of the rain. Just as well since Bobo is far away at the moment.

Anyway, so I was trying to get home when the rain subsided a little bit and there was traffic. Not the Lagos type of traffic that can last an entire pregnancy term but it was bumper to bumper on what should have been an express lane.

I trudged through it, and then around my area, I ran into some traffic as well. A little pissed off at the time I’d already spent navigating traffic, I decided to leave the inner (speed) lane I was on, and get ahead using the outer lane. Was quick for all of five minutes and then I realised I hadn’t factored in that I would have to contend with the ‘keke napep’ riders who use that lane.

I struggled in that lane a little bit, trying to avoid the keke riders who do not see the need to indicate but feel the need to stop abruptly wherever they please, or even the ones who tried to scrape my car in the name of driving rough getting ahead.

When I narrowly missed one of them rear-ending me, I asked myself why I was raising my blood pressure on a lane that ended up not giving me the speed I’d hoped for, and then quietly moved back to where I was earlier.

I thought about it before I slept last night and tried to relate it to everyday living and humans switching lanes thinking someone else has it better than we do. In truth, sometimes they do but we don’t know what else they have to deal with that we don’t. So before we jump into something we’re not ready for in the name of the grass being greener on the other side, maybe think through it a bit more carefully?

PS: I will blog more. It’s a super distraction while I’m jogging on the treadmill. Been using this app called Couch to 10k, I’m in the 7th week, and I did 2.5miles today (25 minutes non stop). Talk about progress, when I started I was barely doing 5 minutes without gasping like I was being strangled. Can’t wait to do a full 5k! Yeah, I’ve never done that before.

If you read my ‘I have a dream‘ post, beyond my hopes and dreams for this blessed country Nigeria you’d see that for most of my life I’ve wanted to be different things. Before I go on I must thank my parents for putting up with all of them, and supporting me every step of the way.

I’ve wanted to be a doctor (thank God for my unique JAMB score that convinced me medicine wasn’t for me), I’ve wanted to be a tailor (after getting frustrated severally by tailors), and yes, I’ve wanted to be a bead maker (I actually took classes for this). Let’s talk about the beads for a minute shall we?

It was early 2007 (the year of the famous driving lessons). I was in Port Harcourt, back from Ibadan, and desperately in need of activities to occupy myself with while I waited to serve (NYSC). By the way, I’d resigned my job as a banker Christmas of 2006. I woke up one morning and said I wanted to learn to make beads. I talked about it all night, all day, and by the next night my dad had found a lady who taught classes. I was under her tutelage for a month, and then I collected ‘capital’ from my dad to buy beads and start my business.

I sold a couple o, and then it was Mother’s Day. I made three beautiful sets (with the best of my beads) to give the older ladies I admired in church and I remember my dad asking, “with all these gifts you’re giving when am I going to start getting returns on my investment?” Suffice to say he’s still waiting on that return today because after a while I became content with making stuff only for myself. Bless you Daddy!

Back to the ‘letting go’ title of today, sometimes we find that things that used to excite us don’t excite us anymore. Quick example – I was hooked on Chicken Royale (with extra cheese) from Burger King and I lived for days when I’d just pop in and treat myself. I weighed myself in September though and what I saw on the scales all but killed that craving! I haven’t had one (or any other burger) since then. Not cos I don’t like them, but because there are ‘bigger’ things at stake. Ahh!

What is suffering because you’re putting up with something/someone you should let go off? Could be work, family, career development/growth or maybe your own happiness you’ve staked for something that doesn’t/shouldn’t rank as high?

Note that I’m not telling you to become a quitter – walk away once people/things don’t work out instead of trying to fix them – not at all. Of course you should try. Satisfy your conscience that you’ve put in your best, and then let it go. Simple. According to my mom, “there’s no need postponing the evil day, pull off the plaster already.”

letting go

So, if it’s not working, if it’s causing you more grief than it’s giving you happiness, if your safety is being compromised and you cannot fix it regardless of how hard you’ve tried, let it go.



Miss me? It’s been more than a week I was here, and more than apologising for being away, I’m appreciative of the gift of good health on a totally different level today. It’s great to be healthy, I’m excited at regaining my energy and doing all the things I normally would do.

I’m also looking forward to getting my hair done! I’ve had it in cornrows (plaited it myself a day before my head decided it wanted to secede – God forbid), and apart from dousing with water, and the evening I had a wet towel wrapped round it just to get some relief, I haven’t been able to do ANYTHING to it. Yep, that’s how bad it hurt, and the fact that it’s back to virgin didn’t make handling any easier.

Last week was fraught with blinding migraine headaches (you know the type of pain that literally closes your eyes), dizziness, a bit of nausea (no I’m not with child silly), and general body weakness. Oh yes, all these were crowned with a sore throat on Wednesday morning – I was just a sorry sight I tell you.

Did I see a doctor? Yep.. Even got sight tests done, nothing. They did say however that insomnia (which I’ve suffered in varying degrees in the last 7 weeks) wasn’t helping, and sent me off for some blood work. Did I go for that? Nope (and it wasn’t only because of my mortal fear of needles). I was placed on pretty intense pain meds anyway that somehow weren’t very effective with helping me sleep after the first two days, sigh.

And so from Monday I was literally confined to my bed, with dimmed lights and everything, unable to walk a few steps without feeling like I was standing upside down (with the corresponding pain of course). Wasn’t a joke at all. I had deadlines I couldn’t attend to, ideas I wanted to develop, couldn’t do jack. For an entire week!!!

But, just like John 4:52, I began to mend. And I’m here today, back on my feet, on the way back to the Fairy GodSister that I know, and looking forward to catching up to all the work I neglected in the past week. And boy am I grateful!! Grateful to God for His mercies, His grace, and for healing. I’m still wincing from the occasional ache, but trust me when I say I’ve come a very long way.

Shout out to my family for calling every single day, especially to Boo Boo (my 7-month old nephew), all the babbling over the phone lifted my spirits in more ways than one. Then to my darling aunty for cooking, cleaning, and looking after me in spite of her own health and schedule. God bless you guys plenty!

Now, where were we?

I love fish. Like I really love fish. And since these days I’m trying to eat healthy; I’m adding a lot of sea food to my diet. I’m really serious (this time).

So Precious and I were inside Waitrose one day, and I saw that there’s this corner where you can pick up recipes for simple dishes. Since I plan to prepare gourmet dishes for my #DearFutureHusband, I decided to pick one, and try. By the way, shout out to Waitrose for the bar with all sorts of olives; I absolutely love that!

Ok, so I picked up the recipe that was called ‘oat encrusted salmon‘. Now I’ve recently fallen head over heels with salmon and calamari (thank you Precious), and so I knew immediately this was my chance to learn to make it for myself! As an aside, I can’t stand mussels, oysters, or squid! Especially squid! For what na? Next you’ll be asking me to eat shark or whale!

*breathe FGS, breathe* Back to my story. One random day like that, I bought salmon and a lemon. The other ingredients for this dish I had at home, including thyme, random seasoning, and then quaker oats. That’s another reason it was an easy choice, your everyday ingredients work, you don’t need anything extra special!

Ok, so I skinned my fish myself first, note that salmon is very oily so be extremely careful when skinning so you don’t cut yourself. Alternatively, you can ask whoever you buy it from to skin it for you (after you’ve judged that they are in a good mood)!

In a small bowl I put the white of an egg (not a fan of the yolk plus cholesterol content is less without it), squeezed in a bit of lemon, a bit of maggi (like one-fifteenth of a cube), some pepper (I’m Nigerian after all), thyme, garlic powder, basil, and a sprinkling of salt. I whisked all of that very nicely and then mixed in my quaker oats. Note that you’re covering only one side of the fish so let that guide your quantities.

Spices I used: salt, thyme, basil, ground nutmeg, Maggi (just a wee bit), oregano, dry pepper, and an egg behind!

By this time I had heated my oven to 200C, and oiled my baking sheet; I forgot to buy baking sheets so I used a foil baking pan (reduced the things I’d have to wash too)!

I coated my salmon (note that preferably you should coat the side you skinned) with the oat mix, dropped it into my foil pan, and then used the oil from the pan to ‘caress’ the sides of the fish. Lol at caress….

I put it in the oven, brought it out after 25 minutes voila! Ready! And there’s no need to flip it!

You can have it cold with a salad but I planned to have mine with baked potatoes and parsnips so I washed both, and put them in my pan (same one I used for the fish so it had a bit of oil at the bottom). With the temperature set at 180 degrees, I let it bake for about 35 minutes.

Finally, I would have used gravy but I’ve had that a lot in the last two weeks and I am trying to replace most of my foods with veg so I searched the fridge for some leftover vegetable sauce, microwaved it, and voila!

Five baby potatoes, one average sized parsnip, my piece of salmon, and loads of veg; it was awesome!

There you go, the salmon story! Try it, feel free to play around with the seasoning for the salmon, and you’re welcome to substitute quaker oats for chunky bread crumbs or whatever else works for you. Thank me later, and let me know how you get on!

Next stop, reducing my portions……that plate just looked mounted abeg!

Sorry!!! I forgot to take a picture before I ate!!


Ok, quick update on how my race to healthy is going, how I’m puffing and panting as the days go by. Lol.. I started this ‘race’ on the 3rd of November, and the plan is to make a holistic change to the way I eat and my lifestyle as well; nothing drastic, just changes I’ll be able to live with. I also said I felt the need to be accountable and so I published all I ate in that first week. 

Another week’s here and so very quickly, let’s run through what I ate in the week running from the 11th (Sunday) to Saturday (17th). As always, I’ll thumbs up and down myself, and set a goal for the new week!

SUNDAY (11th)

Breakfast – Ham and Cheese panini. Mocha

Lunch – apple and pineapples

Dinner – apple and pineapples

MONDAY (12th)

Breakfast – Banana and two drumsticks

Lunch – Cereal

Dinner – Two drumsticks and banana

TUESDAY (13th)

Breakfast – Banana and tomatoes

Lunch – Rice and salmon (Exercise: Dance)

Dinner – Green and strawberry tea


Breakfast – Cereal

Lunch – Beans

Dinner – Bananas


Breakfast – Cereal

Lunch – Yam pottage

Dinner – Clementines

FRIDAY (16th)

Breakfast – Clementines

Lunch – Yam pottage and fish

Dinner – Rice and stew  with fish

* had a finger food portion of a cottage pie and less than half a flute of champagne in the evening at a function before I went home to my rice dinner*


Breakfast – Bananas

Lunch – Cereal

Dinner – Semovita and okro soup

Next stop? This week is the ‘skip 200’ week. Starting tomorrow (Sunday), I’ll try to skip at least 200 times every day. So help me God! Plus I need to find a jogging partner. Preferably a fine looking ‘someborry’, extra motivation *cough cough*

Thumbs Up: One week without fizzy drinks!!! Whoop!!

Thumbs Down: Didn’t get as much exercise as I hoped, didn’t even come close to the week before.

Can I have a burger sometime this week? I’d really really like one! Can’t believe I haven’t had one in close to a month!


When I was in Nigeria earlier this year, I went to visit my then preggers sister at work, and just for laughs, I weighed myself at her clinic; won’t tell you what the figure was. I will however tell you that my sister, who was eight months pregnant at the time (therefore having a living, breathing human being inside her) weighed at least 3kg LESS than I did! I was shocked, a little upset, all those emotions. Did I do anything about it? For a few days yes, and then it was back to my old habits of eating late, eating the wrong stuff, scrimping on exercise, you know, I was on board a rocket for obesity! Ok, maybe I’m being a tad dramatic but hey….

Fast forward to October. I was speaking to ‘the one who calls me Pebbles’ the other day and he said something about being the same weight in the last six or sixteen years, I don’t remember exactly now. What I remember is that I’ve seemed to add 2kg (or more) every six months. Still mega fabulous o, still a size 12 (at least since 2010)  but the speed with which I’m inching towards 14? Wake up call!

I decided I was going to give it one more shot, and then if this doesn’t work I’ll give up and get cosmetic surgery *insert a mighty wide grin here* I decided that apart from doing a 360 on my diet and lifestyle, I would be accountable to….YOU! Yep, you, my darling reader! So, every Sunday from today the 11th of November, I’ll be publishing what I ate every day, if I got in any exercise or not, and possible personal recommendations to myself. Your job is to tell me if I did well or not, and give me personal tips that have worked for you (no drugs or teas or anything like that please) and we’ll just see how it goes!

I’ so pumped!

I’m looking to not do anything drastic (so it’s as sustainable as possible) and I’m counting on your support and feedback, especially as Christmas is so close by!!! Introducing my new category, ‘THE RACE TO HEALTHY’, let’s get started with my week from the 4th – 10th of November!

SUNDAY (4th)

Breakfast – Bananas

Lunch (5pm) – Beans, plantain and chicken

Dinner – Clementines, Strawberry tea and honey

MONDAY (5th)

Breakfast – Clementines

Lunch – Fruit and fibre. Exercise!!!

Dinner – Oat crusted salmon, baby potatoes and veg. Pineapples


Breakfast – fruit (did a 5.2 kilometer power walk today)

Lunch – Rice, pasta, egusi soup and catfish

Dinner – fruit, strawberry tea and honey


Breakfast – Fruit and fibre, clementines

Lunch – Chicken curry, naan bread, basmati rice

Dinner – Apples/pineapples


Breakfast – Fruit and fibre (did a 1.67km power walk)

Lunch – Indomie with a chopped hot dog and salmon

Dinner – Apples and pineapples

FRIDAY (9th)

Breakfast – Beans and plantains (Exercised: danced for 30 minutes)

Lunch – Rice and chicken

Dinner – Chicken and prawn biriyani, cherry tomatoes


Breakfast – Hot chocolate, ham and cheese Panini, almond croissant

*Warning: the almond croissant from Costa Coffee‘s CRAP if you’ve ever had one from Cafe Nero*

Lunch – 2 slices of cake and strawberry tea

Dinner – Rice and Ayamase (Green pepper, black bean and meat stew)

Malt, and then Ribena. I know…. Saturday wasn’t a very good day, I kinda did all the wrong things, especially since I had two random chicken fillets, broke my ‘all/only water week’ and I didn’t exercise at all! *sigh*

Next stop? Getting in a lot more activity into my day, and reducing my portions!

Thumbs up: I’ve almost completely exchanged sugar for honey

Thumbs down: Saturday’s meal list looks atrocious!

P:S – You’re welcome to join me if you want, share what your day-to-day menu is becoming, let’s hear it!