I’ve talked before about my experiences at Fat Camp (where I lost nearly 15kg in a month). My feelings about the time are mixed. I know eating 700-900 calories a day and doing 5hrs of exercise is not even vaguely sustainable. Or healthy. But sometimes now – when I feel really desperate to do something about my weight and my health quickly… I wonder whether I’d return there. I hated much about the place, but it achieved results. Briefly.

Fortunately I don’t spend long pondering because I can’t afford it anymore anyway. But the other day I was doing that thing we all do from time to time….

“If I won a million dollars I would….” 

And of course the one thing I’d want to do would be to address my weight. Or at least have someone else address it for me. ;-)

In all seriousness I wouldn’t return to Fat Camp. The one I attended was based on The Biggest Loser. Most of the exercise was far from fun and involved burpees, moving large tyres and logs, running hills and climbing gazillions of steps. Hardly the stuff of dreams.

Source: southparkstudios.com

Source: southparkstudios.com

I would however, return to a health retreat. Many moons ago when I was more financially flush (and working overseas) I spent three weeks at the (former) Golden Door Health Retreat in the Gold Coast Hinterland. I was very stressed, unhealthy and overworked at the time and the experience was life-changing. I returned a couple of years later for a week (less financially flush obviously) and still found the experience beneficial – but not as much so as my longer time there.

The second time I was there I came across a long-termer. A stupendously wealthy person who was there for a few months.

So if I won a million dollars that’s what I’d do now. I couldn’t return to the Golden Door near the Gold Coast as it’s now a Biggest Loser style camp. Blech! But I know there are others there – Camp Eden and Gwinganna. I can’t even afford a week there now but a girl can dream and if when I will those millions, I’ll be there – with bells on. Checking in for a couple of months.

Gwinganna - pic from perthnow.com

Gwinganna – pic from perthnow.com

Unlike the Fat Camp / Biggest Loser style places, a health retreat is more nurturing in nature. It’s not about breaking you down and building you up again. Health retreats aren’t meant to be demoralising. There’s generally as much focus on pampering and nourishing as there is on healthy food and exercise. One can actually enjoy being at a health retreat. It’s a pleasure not a punishment.

And that’s where my mindset’s changed a lot over recent years.

I (mostly) no longer believe I deserve to be punished because of my weight. Sure I need to make some changes, but I need to be supported to do that: not yelled at; not made to run up a hill when I can’t; and not starved.

So… if when I win that one million dollars you’ll know where to find me!

What would you do with $1m? 

Flogging my blog With Some Grace.


Book review: No Safe House

31 July 2014 Books

Linwood Barclay’s latest release is a sequel to his 2008 novel No Time For Goodbye. Fortunately it doesn’t matter if you haven’t read the predecessor, or – if you’re like me – and have read it but are a little murky on the specifics. We pick up with the Archer family – Terry, Cynthia and Grace – […]

Keep reading…

Plus size, schmus size

30 July 2014 Diet Schmiet

Last week this photograph appeared on my Facebook feed. Firstly I thought to myself… that doesn’t look like Robyn Lawley. Secondly I hoped the magazine used the inverted commas because they were being facetious rather than actually defining the model (as she appears in that photo) as plus-sized. Fortunately many agreed and the comments underneath […]

Keep reading…

What we can learn from visiting other cultures

29 July 2014 Life in general

My niece is currently spending two weeks in the south of France at a ballet summer school. It’s been ages since I travelled and I really have no desire to do so – except when I see others’ photographs and a vague yearning inside of me is awakened. Having said that – if I’m honest […]

Keep reading…

Extreme massage*

28 July 2014 Life in general

Long time readers of this blog will know that I often have very excellent ideas (my talking Facebook App and Famous Person Bedtime Stories App are just two examples!). Why no one ever approaches me with a chequebook in hand to patent and copyright my brainwaves I do not know… Anyhoo… today’s stroke of genius […]

Keep reading…

Book review: The Girl in 6E

26 July 2014 Books

UPS delivery guy Jeremy is a little in love with the girl from apartment 6E. He’s never seen her and the other tenants in her building tell him she hasn’t left her apartment in the 3 years she’s been there, but… he’s heard her voice and is intrigued. Packages for 6E are addressed to both […]

Keep reading…

So far and yet… not

26 July 2014 Diet Schmiet

Someone asked me recently if I was still ‘dieting’ so I planned to share a post about my health and my eating behaviour this weekend. CliffsNotes version: I quit Weight Watchers nearly 2mths ago having lost 12.5kg over a six month period. After a frightening display of binge and overeating (and lack of movement) I gained over half of […]

Keep reading…

Commonwealth Games – still a thing?

23 July 2014 Life in general

US talk show host John Oliver’s “How is this still a thing?” segment recently dissed the Commonwealth Games. I know, I know…. gazillions of sports lovers all over the Commonwealth are livid. I assume. I have to admit, I’m kinda with the UK-born comedian on this one. In fact, I didn’t even know they were […]

Keep reading…

Girls who wear glasses

22 July 2014 Life in general

I thought about wearing my contact lenses the other day. But it all seemed too hard. I told a friend later and she commented that she’d never known me to wear contacts. That stopped me in my tracks and made me realise how different my life is now… compared to just two years ago. Obviously the […]

Keep reading…

Book review: Dear Daughter

21 July 2014 Books

As an aspiring writer (who doesn’t actually write), I occasionally come across an author who incites a bit of ‘writing envy’. Often there’s no rhyme or reason… and my tastes range from Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones, to Robert B Parker’s Spenser to Anita Brookner’s constantly magnificent and stylistic prose. And it’s happened again, via Elizabeth […]

Keep reading…

Suck it up sweetheart

18 July 2014 Life in general

Someone in the Aussie Bloggers Facebook Forum recently asked the group how to respond to a very negative comment they received on their blog. I watched for the responses with great interest. Fortunately on the whole I fly under the radar. I do – however – get the occasional unhappy reader or frustrated responder. And. […]

Keep reading…

About change

16 July 2014 Life in general

I’m dealing with a cold or sinus pain or something at the moment – puffy eyes I’m struggling to keep open, blocked nose, cheekbones threatening to explode…. you know, the usual. It’s been hanging around off and on for about a week now so it’s getting a bit old hat. So, cos I’m feeling a tad […]

Keep reading…

Where are they now: Pizza Hut

14 July 2014 Life in general

Although I no longer read my mother’s trashy magazines I *may* read one or two when at the hairdressers. Vogue Schmogue. Give me WHO Weekly. Or OK! magazine. Or similar. There’s nothing like bitching about the latest celebs and their dodgy fashion choices, too fat/thin (or both!) bodies or drunken exploits while I’m sitting in a […]

Keep reading…