Friday, 30 October 2009

Challenge 2 Day 3

Almost! 15 calories to spare, 4.9! portions of fruit & veg and 1.8L water.

B: Started with the usual Green Monster - homemade almond milk, banana, spinach and spirulina


S: Satsuma

L: Mulligatawny Soup with a slice of Swedish rye bread

S: Snacksize Malteasers and mini caramel shortcake - another birthday means more sweets and cakes! But we had a 'thing' at work that included coffee and Danish partries and I resisted! It was very hard, I was very close to cutting one in half but I wasn't hungry and had already had cake and chocolate - I'm amazed that I managed it!

D: I'm a bit embarrassed about dinner but I was curious to try the All Natural Amy's Enchilada's I found in the freezer at Sainsburys




Well the sauce was lovely actually! I didn't read the pack properly, I thought it was just black bean and veg but there was tofu as well, that was horrible and dry! Still, it gave me the idea of making my own withblack beans and veg and homemade sauce.

S: Apple and hazelnut butter and a fudge baby

30g walnuts

60g dates

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp cocoa powder

put everything in my mini chopper thing and blitzed for a few mins, rolled into balls and put in the fridge. About 60 cals each and I made about 5 or 6, only wanted a small batch to see if I liked them - I loved them! Highly recommended! Also apparently good broken up into a bowl of porridge


Drinks: Milky coffee, few green teas and some water

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Challenge 2 Day 2

Tuesday was a success, two days in a row - I'm getting good at this!

12.6 portions of fruit & veg, 2.2L of water, only 9 calories over and I went to the gym for an hour! I almost didn't go because it was dark, cold and pouring with rain and I wasn't really liking the idea of a soggy 20 min walk each way! But if I think like that I'll hardly ever get to the gym over the next few months! I was planning on going to the spin class but forgot to book and it was full :( so I just went up and did some weights and cardio and booked into next weeks class.

B: Green Monster - banana, spinach, homemade almond milk and 1/2 tsp spirulina

Monsterfollowed by 3 juiced carrots with 3 juiced apples

carapple juice

S: Satsuma

L: Wholemeal wrap with light Phili, spring onion and smoked salmon

S: Large Apple Pie Nakd bar and another Green Monster before the gym and a slice of Swedish Rye Bread with Light Phili after the gym

D: Skinny chicken chow mein with noodles


S: 10g organic dark chocolate with orange and rose and stuff

Drinks: Milky coffee, green tea, peppermint tea, lots of water

Exercise: 10 mins warm up on the cross trainer to charge my iPod, Leg Press, Leg Curl, Thigh Extension, Pull Downs, Chest Press, Seated Row and Shoulder Press - my shoulder press has become really pathetic again :( and I finished with 10 mins intervals on the treadmill listening to Pendulum which caused me to nearly kill myself! It's impossible to walk or jog with Pendulum!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Challenge 2 Day 1

Monday was a good day! I finished the day with 78 calories to spare, I drank 2.3L of water, ate 9.2 portions of fruit & veg, was chip/crisp free - I did have some Bertolli Baked crisp-like things though!

B: Green Monster with almond & hazelnut rice milk, spinach & banana - had to use up the end of the rice milk so not used the homemade almond milk yet!

L: Mulligatawny soup and a homemade Nakd/Larabar style fruit and nut shmoosh type thing

S: Small satsuma and an apple cut up and spread with hazelnut butter - love this!

D: Multigrain Ryvita with Philidelphia Light and a bowl of pork mince chilli
S: Sweet chilli Bertolli Baked Bites, fudge baby and a little bit of wholemeal wrap with Philidelphia and smoked salmon, the end fell of the wrap I was making for tuesdays lunch!

Drinks: Milky coffee, 4 cups of green tea, 2 cups peppermint tea and one of camomile tea (tastes like hay!) and water

No exercise, I was tired, it was raining.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Challenge 2

After failing Challenge 1 I decided for challenge 2 I would just add a little to my goals in Challenge 1.

I know since I failed it would make sense for me to eaither stick to the same targets or aim a little lower but really the aims in Challenge 1 are the minimum I'd like to aim for and I will keep trying until I get there!

Challenge 2:

5+ portions of F&V each day
2+L of water/juice each day
4 lots of exercise for 30+ minutes
Stay within calories each day
No crisps or chips all week!
Try one new healthy meal (planning on doing the cod dish from Before & Forever)

I still haven't weighed since I know I ate too much and it's that time of the month again and I'm feeling fat and bloated.

On target so far today, been nibbling on things this evening but still within calories and I think I'm done now!

Almond Milk

Since I've been reading a lot of American blogs I notice a lot of people seem to be drinking almond milk, being in a small town in the UK almond milk was something I had never come across but had been desparate to try. The closest I ever got was Rice Dream Almond & Hazelnut flavoured rice milk - I love it but only drink it on it's, in a smoothie, or in porridge to add flavour and sweetness, it's very weird in cereal or tea/coffee.

This weekend I came across a health food shop I never knew we had and saw that they stocked almond milk, but a carton was £3.15 and I was sure I remembered reading how easy it is to make your own almond milk, since I'd recently bought a huge sack of almonds for £4


I figured it made sense to give it a go! It really is easy! And a fraction of the cost - since you can get a couple of glasses out of just 1 cup of almonds and some water.


I used this recipe here from Choosing Raw, bought a big jar from Asda for £1 and a re-useable muslin cloth from John Lewis for £4.


I soaked 1 cup of almonds in 2 cups of water and left them over night.


In the morning I added 1/8 cup agave and 3 dates and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and blended it for a couple of minutes


Put the muslin cloth over tha jar, poured in the blended almond mixture  and left it to drain through for a couple of hours


And then had a taste!


And soaked some more almonds for later!

It's really nice, an unusual taste that will take a bit of getting used to but I like it! Looking forward to making a Green Monster using some! I just flavoured mine with a little vanilla but if you follow the link to Choosing Raw there are some more flavour suggestions there.

Challenge 1 Days 6 & 7

So the last two days were a bit of a disaster! Saturday started off well with the carrot and apple smoothie,

Then I had a look around a health food shop I only just discovered and bought some bits and pieces including a small carton of almond milk, I was going to go for the full sized one but at £3.15!! I decided I'd just make my own (see next post) the little carton I tried wasn't what I expected, it was nice but really odd tasting, I think that was mostly down to me being used to the almond & hazelnut Rice Dream which is really sweet.

Then I had lunch at KFC, mmmm healthy! But follwed it with a long walk to the park and Winter Gardens where I took loads of photos with my new camera lens, I'll post some later once I've had a chance to upload. Annoyingly when we were ready to leave it was absolutely pouring with rain, so we went to the grotty cafe and had tea and cake! Once we got home we cooked a very healthy chilli,

Served with a Morgans Spiced and coke (or two) and a huge bowl of Dorito's! Hey at least I got some exercise running in the rain!

Sunday was no better, I headed into town early after only a cup of tea, by the time I walked in I was starving and decided a Costa Coffee and croissant were necessary - I really must remember not to bother with their coffee, I really don't like it and ended up leaving half of it after realising there was no point forcing it down! The rest of the day wasn't much better, shop bought sandwiches and chocolate for lunch and cereal for dinner! But I did make some almond milk, attempt some home made Larabar type things and I made a skirt, it has darts and a zip and everyhing! Pretty good first attempt but I doubt I'll be wearing it, learned plenty so I know the next one will be much better! I would alter this one but my sewing maching is a little £8.99 thing from JML that needs re-threaded everytime I look at it and I really don't fancy trying the zip again!



Sunday, 25 October 2009

Challenge 1 Day 5

Whoops! It really went wrong from Friday! As I said below, the one glass of wine after work turned into a bit more! But, it went wrong from around 10am with the first mini flapjack of the day, quickly followed by a chocolate cispie cake and mini jam doughnut, repeated several times throughout the day!! I hate when people bring cakes into work, I'm part of a small team who work away from the rest of the company and people always buy a variety which means there's loads of cakes to go round a few people, combined with no willpower, this is a disaster!

My meals were fine during the day as well, lovely green monster smoothie (banana, spinach, flaxseed and almond rice milk) and the last of my salad with some tuna in Cajun spices and my homemade dressing. I even managed to make a pretty good choice at dinner, some sort of spiced chicken and veg kebabs with loads of salad on a flatbread (I wasn't going to eat), but after 2 glasses of wine I no longer cared about the extra bread calories! Oh and I had it with chunky chips! Then followed it up with a raspberry mojito!

I should have just gone home. But I stopped off at the pub where my boyfriend was celebrating a friends birthday, I ate party food and drank too much pear cider. Nevermind, it was fun and I beat the hangover in the morning!

Hangover Shmangover

My one glass of wine on Friday may have turned into dinner, two large glasses, a raspberry mojito and two pear ciders.... Since I'm no longer used to drinkng much and I was feeling really very drunk I was dreading the hangover in the morning! I lay in bed for ages yesterday not wanting to get up and discover how sick I was feeling, it didn't help that I'd been dreaming about rollercoasters!
But when I got up I didn't feel nearly as bad as expected, so I dragged my butt to the kitchen, pulled out my juicer, shoved in 2 carrots and 4 apples, which was delicious, and I felt great great after drinking it! I always try and get some vitamin C and plenty of fluids after a night out, but I'll definitely be going for the fresh squeezed juice next time!

Friday, 23 October 2009

Challenge 1 Day 4

Yesterday was another that started out well and ended badly! I'm getting too good at doing that!

I drank my 2L of water and I ate 6.9 portions of fruit & veg, I went waaaaaaay over calories for the day, probably going to be over for the week as well. I was 987 cals over my maintenance calorie level!! What a waste! I've got three days to gain back 924 calories to bring me to me 0.5lb per week loss. I don't think it's going to happen!


Food Diary Thursday 22nd October:

B: Protein shake at home then Green Monster when I got into work. I made too much Green Monster to fit in my little insulated cup so I mixed the extra with my chocolate protein shake - surprisingly it tasted really good!

Green Monster:

40g spinach

60g banana

200ml ALmond & Hazelnut Rice Dream

and it looked like this:

[caption id="attachment_346" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="Green Monster"]Green Monster[/caption]

S: 2 satsumas

L: Same salad as the day before, same dressing, tuna with chili - and far too much garlic!

S: 3 mini flapjacks, 3 mini chocolate crispies, 2 mini jam doughnut balls and because I went out before dinner I was hungry (how??) so I ate a Nakd chocolate orange bar

D: Slow cooker lamb with chickpeas and chunky veg

S: Wispa Gold and some Haribo *hangs head in shame*

Drinks: Milky coffee, double espresso with Pumpkin Spice Syrup, few green teas/fruit teas and 2L water


Not a good day food-wise but I did go and buy a new lens for my camera after work so had loads of fun playing with that! I also bought some sewing supplies so I can hopefully finish making my skirt this weekend - I'm so exciting about all the bits and pieces I can but if I get into making my own clothes!


Pumpkin Spice Syrup:

200ml water
200g light muscovado sugar
4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Boil and simmer water and sugar until sugar dissovles, add everything else and simmer for a few minutes then strain into a container - beautiful!

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Challenge 1 Day 3

Wow, this is much harder than I thought it would be! But compared to the last few weeks I'm doing a great job of sticking with healthy eating and exercising!

Yesterday I did manage to stay within my calories, 4 to spare! I managed 2.1L of water but only 4.3 portions of F&V. No exercise, but I'm still on track to meet the 3 times a week challenge. Food was good during the day but I lost it in the evening, I got home and felt really sick and miserable, all I could stomach was Marmite sandwiches!

I think the weather is getting me down, it rained all day yesterday, was very dark when I left home in the morning, dull and grey all day and dark when I left work, I felt like I hadn't seen any actual daylight for ages! Then I started getting all grumpy and miserable about our lack of summer, and having not been on holiday this year. I'm definitely going to save up for a cheapo last minute sunny break at Easter, I don't care if it's some all inclusive place, I just want to feel some sun on my skin!!

Food Diary Wednesday 21st October:

B: Protein shake with water then 3 juiced apples and some frozen blueberries put through the juicer

L: Salad with grated courgette, spring onion, orange pepper, rocket, Food Doctor Salad Boost nuts, seeds and herb mix, jalapeƱos, tuna in lemon and pepper and my first ever home made salad dressing!

1tsp balsamic vinegar
4tsps extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp coarse grain mustard
Teeny tiny pinch of sugar and salt
Fresh ground black pepper

All shook up in a wee container, should last me the week. I love it! Can't believe how simple it and tasty it is, why have I not made this before??

S: Greek yogurt, blueberries, cookies & cream whey and flaxseed

D: I don't want to talk about dinner!! Many marmite sandwiches were consumed and a small pack of rice cakes!

S: Peanut butter cup

Drinks: milky coffee, green teas and fruit teas, water

Mustget some pictures in my next post, this looks really dull!

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Challenge 1 Day 2

Day 2 has gone well! I am only 25 calories over, went to an hour long spin class, drank 3L water and ate 7.4 portions of fruit & veg! I still haven't weighed in though, I keep forgetting so I will just leave it until the weekend.

Lunch wasn't ideal this week but hasn't interfered with challenge 1 so I'm not going to get too upset over it! It was someones birthday so he treated us to lunch in the canteen. I didn't like the sound of the soups so I went for fajita's and a pile of veg, it was lovely but I make better fajita's!

Have a look at JAG and Jildo's blogs for their challenge posts - both girls are doing well and staying motivated - they are great for my motivation!

Quick re-cap of yesterdays food:

B: I juiced an orange, a grapefruit and some frozen raspberries, juiced the night before so they had melted in by morning - yummy but too bitter!

L: Huge pack of sushi

S: Greek yogurt with blueberries and half a scoop of cookies & cream whey and a Cashew Cookie Nakd bar

D: We were kind of scraping the bottom of the barrel with this one, please forgive me! Macaroni with bacon, Philidelphia Light, basil, garlic salt & black pepper - it was late, we were just back from the gym, starving and the shop we popped into on the way home didn't have linguine or any kind of hard cheese for the carbonara we had planned!

Drinks: 2 grean teas, 1 fruit tea, 1 coffee and water

Exercise: 10 mins intervals on the cross trainer, 3 sets of 8-12 reps on the leg press, thigh extension, leg curl, pull down, chest press, seated row and shoulder press, I finished off with 10 mins intervals on the tredmill.

Todays food:

B: A nuts, seeds and raisins Dorset cereal with skimmed milk - I bought a mini selection pack of these after falling in love with a sample of the mango and coconut one (I think!) but I've been really disappointed with 2 of the 3 I've tried so far, unless I can find a big box of the coconut sample I wont be bothering with these again.

S: 1 scoop of chocolate whey with almond & hazelnut rice milk and 2 satsumas

L: Work canteen fajita's and veg - cauliflower or brussel sprouts were all they had on offer, I found fajita with cauliflower a rather bizarre combo!

S: Chili chocolate Larabar - I frigging love these!! Why are they so hard to get hold of in the UK?? Not fair :( so I made myself feel better by eating greek yogurt with blueberries and whey - I really need a new afternoon snack! Oh, I  wasn't going to admit this because of how awful it turned out! I was really in the mood for a Green Monster but I didn't have any of the indregients. I'm not sure what was going on in my head when I decided to belnd up some rocket with half a lemon and a small banana.... it was bloody awful. Don't ever try it.


D: Higgidy mushroom and spinach pie

S: Frozen banana and some frozen blueberries put through the juicer to make "ice cream" - Oh. My. God. This is amazing! Whoever discovered this is a genius!! I can't believe I waited so long to try it! You don't need to use a juicer for it though - see Edna's post on Before & Forever to see how she made hers.

[caption id="attachment_339" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="Banana & a touch of blueberry 'ice cream'"]Banana & a touch of blueberry 'ice cream'[/caption]

Drinks: 1 cofffe, 1 double espresso, 3 green teas, 2 fruit teas, water

Exercise: 1 hour spin class - after class I came home, stuck the Higgidy pie in the oven a prepared my breakfast, lunch and snacks for tomorrow while it cooked - I cannot wait to eat it all, I'm pathetically excited!!

And just because I can, here is a picture of my Jeff attempting to sleep in an awkward space that is far too small for him

photo 4

Challenge 1 Day 1

Day 1 was almost a success! I thought I had made it but then realised I'd logged some banana 'ice cream' for supper that I ended up not having, my fruit and veg was only a piddly 4 portions for the day.

But never mind, I got plenty of water down me, ate well, stayed within calories and even had some to spare because I dragged my sorry ass to the gym for a full body weights workout plus 10 mins intervals on the cross trainer and 10 mins intervals on the treadmill. i felt so awful before going, I was dreading it and kept finding excuses to put it off but at the last minute I changed my mind and decided I was just going to do it! I haven't been at all for about 2 weeks so I really struggled but I'm so glad I did. I was full of energy afterwards and managed not to fall asleep on the sofa watching Masterchef for the first time in weeks.


Today is going better in terms of meeting the challenge goals but not so great in terms of the food I've eaten since we got taken to lunch at work. Anyway, I'll post a proper update when I get home from the gym tonight.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

A Challenge!

I've been slacking of a bit, well, a lot, lately and I just can't seem to get fully back on track - I'm doing ok but I'll maybe only manage it for the morning and afternoon and lose it in the evening, or my main meals remain healthy but my snacks are awful. So in order to provide a little motivational boost I suggested to the girls, JAG, Jildo and Ivana that we do a series of mini challenges each week. They are only going to be little challenges and the aim is not to meet the challenges but to use the challenges as something to aim for and as something to give a wee motivational kick, though of course I will treat them as though I am going to meet the goals we set, but I wont let myself get too bummed if I don't quite make it - as long as I've really tried!

We start on Monday, so the first one is tomorrow, we will keep it up for the week and weigh in each Sunday and report back amongst ourselves and on our blogs. I thought blogging about it would also be a good motivator to get us regularly updating our blogs.

I forgot to weight in today so will have my first challenge weigh in tomorrow morning. I'm a bit scared as I haven't weighed myself for AGES! I have no idea what it's going to be, I know I haven't put on a lot going by how my clothes fit but I'm still not looking forward to it - I'm not measuring myself for at least a week - maybe 2!

If anyone reading would like to join in at any time please do so, you can add comments, blog (feel free to leave a link in the comments) or email if you want.

Challenge 1:

5+ portions of fruit / veg every day
At least 2L water every day.
3 exercise sessions in the week each lasting at least 30 minutes
Stay within calories for the week  (focus on the week for now rather than each day, my loss rate is currently set to 0.5lb per week, I'll aim for this but may drop it to 1lb per week.)
Weigh in at the start and end of the week and report back on Sunday

Welcome To My New Home!

I hope you like it!

You may have noticed that I have a shiny new blog and a shiny new domain -

I have already forgotten why I moved... I've been thinking about it for a while and got as far as setting up a and decided I didn't know what to do and couldn't be bothered figuring out how to move the blog, domain and any subscribers. So I abandoned it. Then came back at the beginning of the month and had a look round, decided I liked it, copied over all my blog posts, and chickened out!

Then I saw Edna had moved to here from Blogger too and then JAG started talking about moving so I logged back in and had a look around last week, registered the new domain and started moving things over and playing around with layouts. Spent a day toying with the idea of going with - the self-hosted version, but hosting means a monthly payment so I'll wait a year and if I'm still going re-consider again - don't worry if you are reading me moving from to .org wont affect you at all, except it may work better and look prettier! So I came back to the .com and finished messing about with things.

Sorry Edna I picked the same template as you without realising, I couldn't find another that I liked as much, you have good taste!

Not much has changed other than the new sleeker look, but I have added some info tabs at the top - how I came to be here, what I eat, how I exercise and my progress - I have only updated the Why Am I Here? for now but will let you know when I update the others.

I have added a couple of re-directs to the code on the old blog and set up a Feed Burner account so if you are registered in a reader hopefully oyu are still with me. If not, please update your link to

Oh and I also added a contact me thing-a-my - - thank you to GoogleAps!

I'll be back later tonight for yet another post, but I'm off to make a skirt now!

Bad Banana Smoothie

I've been making delicious breakfast smoothies this week using banana and almond & hazelnut rice milk, sometimes with a scoop of whey. I love them, thick and creamy and a beautiful flavour, plus they keep me going for hours. Today I decided to get a bit more creative. I blended a banana with almond rice milk, 1 tsp dried coffee and 1tsp cacao nibs. It was disgusting! Really disgusting, I drank it all since it would be a waste not too but I will never be mixing coffee and rice milk ever again! The bitterness/sweetness balance is horrible! The milk is far too sweet for coffe! The taste also reminded me a bit of liquorice, which I also hate. Anyway, this is what it looked like.

Friday, 16 October 2009

Broccoli Boost

Last night I decided to be brave and attempt a broccoli juice! It smelled so gross and I had no intentions of drinking it alone so I found a recipe that mixed it with apples and lemon. Half a thing of broccoli, 3 apples and 1/3 lemon juiced up together.

Really quite nice actually! And it made me feel all healthy and virtuous! I definitely think it cancelled out the sea salt and malt vinegar Kettle chips I ate earlier...

Monday, 12 October 2009


Little juice post since I'm too lazy/tired to post anything proper!

I've still been using my juicer most days and I'm please to say I haven't felt like cleaning/assembling is a faff or offputting, but then it really is so simple anyway.

Here are this weeks juices

This one is just 3 green apples - I loooove the colour and it tasted so beautifully crisp and fresh, nice and sweet with a wee bit of green apple sourness to it. and free as I took a handful of apples home from work!

Two thirds of a pinapple! Delicious, but left my tounge all sore and stingy, definitely better mixed with things because of this!

Juiced pear blended with almond rice milk and a scoop of cookies & cream protein powder

Um..... think this one must be cucumber and pink grapefruit with an apple...

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Food Diary 30th September

Breakfast: 1 scoop protein shake with almond & hazelnut rice milk then some Dorset cereal with skimmed milk - I bought the variety pack to try them out, the packs are each 100g and I was planning on having half a pack at a time but forgot and poured the whole lot in - I was stuffed for hours!

Snack: Babybel Light

Lunch: Tuna mixed with grated courgette, spring onion, paprika, black pepper and Tabasco sauce, wrapped in lettuce leaves.

Snack: 0% Greek yogurt with frozen raspberries, half a scoop cookies & cream whey and som flaxseed

Dinner: Keema curry with homegrown potatoes

Snack: half a Ginger Snap Larabar and glorious Dark Mars bar and a tiny little shot glass of juice I made for breakfast in the morning - I got around 500ml juice from 3 apples, 2 pears and 1 pink grapefruit - it was beautiful! Lovely and fresh with a nice balance of sweetness and bitter grapefruit - it was hard to put it away and not drink the lot!

Drinks: Coffee, green tea, water, Juice

Exercise: None as had too much to do in the evening.

I seem to be averaging around 1800 - 2000 calories a day and I'm managing this quite comfortably. I have lost 1lb this week but I think the loss is from bloating having come down and the real weight loss is from the previous week when I was behaving! Or I've maybe lost a bit of muscle weight as I haven't managed to fit in many weights sessions - mostly I've been going to the gym 3 times a week - once for weights, once for spin class and once to play badminton with my boyfriend.
Need to make an effort to get those calories down - I think 1800 - 2000 could be my maintenance amount which I can easily live with! But for now I 'd still like to get rid of some more fat so it's got to come down!

Food Porn

These are all from the week before last, and the one before that! - I've not posted much food lately so thought I'd just show you instead! And also I can't get my photo's to upload to post yesterdays food...

I'll start with the bad! I started my weekend in Manchester the way I meant to carry on!

And then had some glorious cocktails - they're not all mine sadly :(

I ate a bit of porridge...

Coconut and Rice Milk with some seeds and dried berries

Coconut with Almond & Hazelnut rice milk and a chopped banana

Almond & Hazelnut rice milk with half a banana, seeds and dried berries

And my favourite! Rice Milk, cinnamon, mixed plain nuts, dark chocolate with fig

My last shop bought pina colada juice

Chili Chocolate and Banana Cookie Larabars - the chili one is amazing, has the perfect amount of spice for me

The first, and only successful veg to come from our garden - used in Keema curry

Some sushi - shop bought, I still really want to try making my own one day

And turkey stir fry

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