Allotment

Polytunnel Complete

Polytunnel complete
Polytunnel complete

Today we managed to put the cover on the polytunnel with the help of James and David. First I built a bit of supporting framework on the inside out of 100mm x 100mm fence posts, we have three posts going vertically and then two going horizontally with a lap joint in the middle.

The timber will help give the polytunnel more stability in the wind and also will give us something to attach netting to and maybe some hanging baskets.

Next step will be to build some raised beds inside, but that will likely be done in the new year as there isn’t much point doing it now with winter rolling in.

 

Politics

Our money system guarantees inequality

Inequality
Inequality

I am a big follower of Positive Money and their article ‘Our money system guarantees that inequality will get worse – Here is the evidence‘ is absolutely spot on.

The problem is that the Government and the Bank of England actually have no power over how much money is created in this country, as outlined in the Bank of Englands paper ‘Money creation in the modern economy‘ and it’s amazing how many members of the public do not know these facts, and even worse how many of our MP’s do not know it!

How are we ever likely to have a fair and equal society when banks can effectively print as much digital money as they think is safe, which as we have already seen they are hardly fit to judge. It just absolutely reeks of corruption and the fact that none of the major political parties are even interested in contesting this absolute riles me, the only party that even remotely touches on this subject is the Green Party.

Still, as is becoming ever more clear the country is not run for the average citizen, it is effectively run by big business, banks and the wealthy elite. The majority of MP’s are but pawns in a complex game of chess where the rules are ever distorted, I’m sure many of them start out with grand ideals but are regularly whipped into shape by their party, this is why I am much more impressed by independent candidates and parties such as the Green Party that don’t believe in a ‘party whip’ which being perfectly honest I think goes against the whole point of democracy!

Allotment

Polytunnel Stage 1 Complete!

Ground cleared ready for frame
Ground cleared ready for frame
Polytunnel frame up
Polytunnel frame up

Today we finished digging the grass up to clear a space for the polytunnel, and then managed to put the frame up. That is stage 1 complete but it was a little too windy to attempt to put the cover on today so we will come back and attempt that in a week or so.

Allotment

Allotment veggies

Veggies
Veggies

So today we picked a really nice selection of veggies from our allotment, it’s really great to be able to eat all this freshly picked food and it always tastes fantastic in comparison to the stuff you get in the shops.

Today we’ve got various types of peppers, fennel, flat custard squash, crookneck squash, cucumbers, carrots, beetroot and radishes.

Allotment

Whopper Carrot

Big Carrot
Big Carrot

Been down digging up some veg today and dug up this whopper carrot, one of the bigger ones we’ve managed to grow so far. They don’t seem to have grown as well as the ones we grew last year at our old house, hopefully we will have better luck on the allotment next year.

Personally I think we just planted them a little too close together this time and didn’t thin them out enough, but we shall rectify that next time.

Allotment

Monster courgettes

Monster Courgette
Monster Courgettes

Today we went to the allotment and the courgettes which only a few days ago were tiny are now monstrously huge. It seems all it needs is a downpour of rain and courgettes can grow to 2kg in the space of a couple of days.

I have a feeling we are going to get very bored of eating courgette at some point!

DIY

New job, washing machine repair man

Washing machine in bits
Washing machine in bits

So after many MANY hours of hard work I managed to disassemble our washing machine, replace the bearings and put it all back together again. This made me immensely happy as for £30 and about 6 hours of my time I thought I had brought our washing machine back to life and saved us many pennies.

Unfortunately whilst everything seemed to work fine when it was doing its wash cycle, once it came to doing it’s spin it sounded VERY unhealthy and I ended up unplugging it.

Lesson learned that I am not a washing machine repair man and we ended up buying a new washing machine. On the plus side I found out a friend of my mum’s IS a washing repair man and so he is going to collect it and strip it down for any useful parts and recycle the rest, apparently replacing the bearings on an LG direct drive machine is not generally a DIY job and he was amazed I even attempted it.

Movies

Oblivion

Yesterday I went to see Oblivion starring Tom Cruise and Morgan Freeman. It’s hard to talk about this film without ruining it so I won’t say much other than I thought it was pretty good and the storyline really threw me as the twist wasn’t what I was expecting.

Was interesting to see Nikolaj Coster-Waldau in the film, really enjoying Game of Thrones at the moment and made a change to see him not playing a poncing rich boy with a sword!

Fitness

My 12 Week Physique Transformation

Before and after photo for 12 week transformation from Jan to April.
Before and after photo for 12 week transformation from Jan to April.

So whilst most people enter the new year with the claim that they are going to get in shape this year, crack out a few workouts in January and then tail off to nothing. I decided I was going to commit to the cause and actually get myself in the best shape I have ever been.

Sure, I have been working out consistently for several years now, but always with other goals in mind such as running 10k, lifting certain weights, lifting the dinnie stones and other assorted goals. But never have I really had transforming my physique as my main goal.

So in January I decided I was going to put all other goals aside and concentrate on getting in the best shape of my life, this would involve dropping some fat and packing on as much muscle as possible. I decided if I was going to do this I would enter in to the Adonis Index Transformation Contest that was being run from January to April for 12 weeks.

During the 12 weeks I cut my calories down and tracked them meticulously with MyFitnessPal, I started off averaging around 1450 calories per day and this tapered up to about 1750 calories a day towards the end, doing a reverse taper diet. For several years now I have been following the Eat Stop Eat principle of a once or twice weekly 24 hour fast which I have found a great way to stay cleansed and also allow me to bank some extra calories for another day as I only eat one meal during those days.

Exercise wise I followed the workout plans from Adonis Index, whilst adding in some additional movements that I have found useful as well as going on one 5kish run per week and a couple bouts on the cross trainer.

Overall my hard work paid off quite well and I managed to drop from 67.1kg to 60.2kg, waist from 72.5cm to 67cm and hips from 81cm to 75cm. My shoulder measurement of 113cm and most other measurements stayed roughly the same, so my losses due to fat were compensated by some additional mass gain.

The results are certainly excellent and it shows that sometimes you have to reassess your goals and concentrate on them enough and you can get some excellent results. Whilst I still have several strength and fitness goals I want to achieve this year I will be making a determined effort to continue transforming my physique for the better.

The overall results for the contest should be up in a few weeks, I am hoping I place well because I worked my damned ass off!