Slimming World Week Six

It’s been six weeks since I started at Slimming World and so far I have lost eight and a half pounds.  Not brilliant, but OK considering I had a holiday in Yorkshire where wine and cake was consumed!

The strategies that are working for me so far are:

  • Drinking on one day a week only
  • No snacking at all
  • No food between 6 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • lots of exercise: swimming, cycling, running, walking, yoga
  • Having Old Jamaica sugar free ginger beer instead of alcohol
  • Eating more green veg than I ever thought possible

I could do better if:

  • I cut out the bread I am having for lunch as laziness has overtaken me when it comes to preparing soups, plus nothing feels like lunch except bread.
  • I made more SW recipes instead of just adapting my normal day to day menu plan
  • Stopped eating lunch out and made more of an effort to prepare food to take with me on the go.

I’m still learning what works, but have to say I’m finding it much easier to order a black coffee when I’m out and not look at cakes.  I do feel my social life is slightly impeded but I guess it’s all in a good cause and I want to be healthier and happier after all!

 

 

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Half a Stone Under My Belt

 

 

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Three weigh ins and I have lost seven and a half pounds.

Although I have not been hungry, it hasn’t all been plain sailing.

My main issue is craving food which feels good – butter on my Jersey Royals or asparagus.  Butter on toast.  Honey in my yoghurt.  The added extras which make each meal a pleasure.

Oh and of course, no wine.  At all.  Not that difficult this week as we have not been out for dinner, but faced with a wine list in a nice restaurant next week I’m not sure I won’t cave.

Now, I can hear you saying ‘but you can have all these things on Slimming World if you count the syns’.  Yes, all well and good, but when just one glass of wine is maybe 10 syns and uses up all your daily allowance….well you get my drift.  As you can see in this picture, I’m on the mineral water and he’s on the Magners.

This last few weeks drinking has been limited to one night and having Bacardi and Diet Coke.

Drinking carbonated drinks containing sweetener goes against everything I’ve been led to believe about health.  I very rarely touch them and for most of my adult life, Diet Coke has been like the antichrist.  However, in the spirit of the plan, I tried it (and enjoyed it).  Not sure I will continue long term though because I just know it’s unhealthy.  On the flipside of course, being overweight is unhealthy too.  I figure I’ll just keep the diet drinks to a minimum and I should be OK.

I’m making it a mission to do at least 10,000 steps five days a week and cycling on the other two. I don’t have a Fitbit so I’m using the app on my phone to track it.  Once a week I’m swimming too and of course have my weekly yoga class.

Next week’s challenge is a birthday trip to Yorkshire, staying in a cottage next door to a pub.  Red alert!  I’m taking some basics with me, but not sure how the old willpower is going to cope when faced with the inevitable cream tea!

 

 

 

I May Not Be Skinny But I’m Strong

As regular readers of my blog will know, I struggle to lose those pounds or even maintain my weight.  Despite healthy eating and exercise, that needle on the scales will just not budge! Well, except in the wrong direction! However, I’ll say one thing.  I am strong! I’m sturdy as an ox and super flexible thanks to yoga, dance classes and walking. I also feel fantastically healthy, so you can’t knock that, can you. Periodically I just say ‘stuff it’ and think I’m going to have that cake, chocolate or glass of wine, but mostly I stick to loads of veg, fruit, protein and healthy carbs. At almost 55 I wonder whether this will ever change.  Will some miracle happen post menopause that kicks in my skinny gene? Will I suddenly learn not to be so hungry? Who knows.  I guess I just have to be accepting of the fact that I’m not only alive and kicking, but feeling great

Christine x

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Dry January

Halfway through Dry January and I’m feeling fantastic.  I’m not sure whether to attribute this to having no alcohol (because I wasn’t having that much to start with: I only drank on Tuesdays and Saturdays), or to the latest addition to my breakfast porridge, chia seeds.  Anyway, something is going on because I feel ridiculously healthy and serene.  Or is it that there have been no chocolate biscuits in the house? Who knows!  I’ve lost about four pounds which is good, but I’m not actually dieting.  In fact I’m eating loads, but just not rubbish (give or take the odd iced finger from Chatwins).  For the rest of this month, I’m going to stick to what I’m doing, then in February, I’m planning to deal with my bread and butter addiction by going cold turkey with it.  I know I could make faster progress by putting everything right all at once, but I don’t have that steely determination that’s needed, so I’m taking it one thing at a time.  How’s everyone else doing?

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I Threw Away The Scales And Guess What?

…..I put on half a stone.  Yes seriously ladies, do not try this method, it DOES NOT WORK.

I gave it a go after Steve berated me for jumping on the scales every morning and having my day governed by the result.  Lost a pound? Good day.  Gained a pound? I am a useless waste of space.  I’m sure many of you know how this works.

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So, if you’ve been following my blog this year, you’ll know I’ve tried all sorts of things with varying degrees of success.

Do I know how I’m going to tackle this? Not right now.  But you can be sure that it will be top of my agenda in 2016.  Watch this space to see if I can find the answer!

Time To Reboot

Well, summer is over an it’s time for a reboot.  We’ve had a great time sampling food in both the UK and Spain, but my waistline is feeling the pinch!

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Here I am stuffing my face with jamon in the Mercado at Mahon, Menorca.  Very nice it was too, but like all good things, it has come to an end.

So today I’m back to clean eating and feeling very positive about it.

Wish me luck guys!

Making The Right Food Choices

I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to fully understand why I constantly make the wrong food choices, or why I always seem to be hungry, but the penny seems to be dropping at last.

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Let’s take today for example.  I had a healthy breakfast of porridge made with almond milk, a tablespoon of seeds, a handful of blueberries and a teaspoon of honey.  So far so good.

This morning I was accompanying a relative to a hospital appointment and gave absolutely no thought to lunch.  As you would expect, the appointment was a good hour late, lunchtime came and went, and I was hungry with a capital H.  Normally this would signal a quick trip to the hospital café to buy a sandwich, but today, for some reason I fought against this quick fix impulse and waited.

Now, my heart doesn’t like me being hungry, and tends to jump about a bit as a reminder for me to eat, but no matter, I persevered until I got to a proper shop where I bought some pre-cooked beetroot, some smoked salmon and a banana.  Quick and tasty. So now I have a happy heart and hunger is abated.

So what’s the lesson here?  Planning!  Why didn’t I just take a banana in my handbag? So, using this lesson as a guide, I looked back at the rest of my dodgy food choices this week

  • a burger at Tatton park (excuse – couldn’t find anything healthy)
  • toast and jam (excuse – nothing in the fridge)
  • bread and Philadelphia cheese (excuse – had forgotten to get food in for lunch and the corner shop had  virtually nothing healthy)
  • a 99 from the ice cream man – (excuse – had nothing healthy in for pudding)
  • a scone and jam with clotted cream – (I was out and it was lunchtime and couldn’t see anything healthy in the café)

It seems to me that eating in the middle of the day is the biggest hurdle: -breakfast is always the same and planned for, dinner is planned each weekend for the following week, but lunch is left in the lap of the gods – which leads to all sorts of trouble.

So this week I’m going to plan my lunches as carefully as my other meals so that I avoid being hungry and choosing the wrong thing.  Quite often I’m out during the day so I need to find portable choices that don’t take too much prep. Better get those recipe books out.

Eating Clean Week Two Progress

Week two, another pound down (six pounds in total) so I’m very pleased, especially considering this fortnight has included a hen party and a wedding, with two indulgent overnight hotel stays.

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Seabass with roasted veg

I’m not going to say I’ve been cheating, but I have obviously adapted the KSFL plan to my lifestyle and going forward this is how I want my weight loss plan to continue:

  • I’m loving the variety of vegetables I’m eating and this is a keeper.
  • I aim to try a new vegetable dish each week.
  • Cooking from scratch? Love it.
  • Sugar – well, I’m not giving up honey, but happy to say goodbye to processed sugars.
  • Potatoes? Don’t miss ’em.
  • Bread? Surprisingly not missed it.
  • Porridge, seeds and nuts – no way am I cutting these out.  I love them.
  • Dairy.  A bit of a compromise here.  The only milk I want is with my morning (decaff) PG Tips – happy for all other drinks to be milk free.  Don’t miss cheese or cream.
  • Chocolate? Green and Black’s 85% will appear on my menu.
  • Alcohol? A couple of drinks a week as per usual will feature.  White or red wine and the occasional cognac.
  • Puddings, cakes, biscuits? Haven’t missed them.
  • Fruit – in week two, craving sweetness I’ve eaten strawberries and blueberries.  Fruit is coming back on the menu.
  • Holland & Barrett is my new friend – finding lots of foodie things there to experiment with.
  • Fish is appearing much more frequently on the menu.
  • I’m reading lots of clean eating blogs for inspiration.

I accept that this will slow my weight loss, but I’m actually now only two pounds away from being in the ‘normal’ weight category for my height.  As for exercise, I’ll continue with yoga, Zumba, Pilates, swimming and walking, but running and HIIT has to go as I’ve had to come to terms with my heart related limitations.  Palpitations and strenuous exercise don’t mix.

Let’s see what next week brings!

Kick Start Fat Loss: I’m Hungry!

Mid way through week one and I’m feeling very hungry!  Breakfast this morning was an egg, big pile of tomatoes and good quality sausage.  Lunch was a green juice.  Dinner will be this chicken curry with spinach.DSCF1220 - Copy

What I’m craving right now though is something sweet.  My mouth wants it.  My tongue feels flat.  I’m fidgety and wondering what I can do to take the edge off.

I realise that this is all part of the journey and that the results will be worth it, but I thought I’d have a bloggy whinge!

I’ve been upstairs and looked at the dress which prompted my action in the first place and I’m imagining how great it will look on my holidays.  It’s not making the hunger go away though!

What hasn’t helped is that I’ve been swimming this afternoon and that always makes me ravenous!  Oh well.  No-one said it would be easy!

Last night I took myself off to bed at 8 p.m. so that I could avoid any temptation and it worked a treat.  Is it too early to go to bed at 5 p.m. do you think?

Kick Start Fat Loss

So today, I started the ‘food’ part of the Kick Start Fat Loss programme at Bodywork Pilates in Chester.  This is a clean eating programme which eliminates processed foods, wheat, dairy, caffeine, sugar and alcohol.  Sounds a bit extreme when you say it out loud and only time will tell if I can actually do it, but some foods will be more difficult to kick than others.

  • Cooking from scratch – easy.  I do this anyway.
  • Wheat – I love bread, so anticipate this will be a challenge.  Not bothered about pasta, pizza and all that stuff.
  • Dairy – no milk, not an issue, but I use butter to flavour meals, so will need to find alternatives.
  • Caffeine – not a problem seeing as I ditched it a couple of years ago to help minimise palpitations.
  • Alcohol – I was only having a couple of glasses of wine a week, so no loss.
  • Sugar – the hardest ask for me.  Love honey in particular and expect I will crave good quality chocolate.

My ‘go to’ comfort foods are porridge with banana, seeds and honey, thickly buttered bread, rice cakes with almond butter and Green & Black’s chocolate.  I won’t be giving these up forever, but I do need a kick start so they have to go for now.

I started the exercise part yesterday and found it OK, so anticipating that I will be able to keep it up in addition to my weekly swim, zumba and yoga classes.

So, here’s what I ate for lunch and dinner today.

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Sirloin steak with roasted aubergine, tomatoes, peppers and asparagus.

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Lunch was asparagus and omelette.

It’s now 8:30 and am I hungry? Yes.  But I’m not sure if it’s real hunger or a craving for something sweet. Oh well, you can’t blog and eat at the same time!

Wish me luck guys!