New home


Welcome to my new home I’ve been on WordPress since 2nd June 2012 and as I approach a new path in my journey to a healthier eating lifestyle then I thought I needed a new home.

Hopefully those that have followed me on WordPress will also follow me here and maybe I will be able to pick up a few more followers who are on a similar journey.

I’ve organised my recipes into albums for various categories, and although I haven’t added all of the ones from my time on WordPress, I have added the ones that I use the most. I will also be going through the rest of them and adding them too, so apologies if you follow me over there and get a lot of notifications over the next few days/weeks but I’m trying to make it easier for me (and you) to find new/favourite recipes.

So put your feet up, with a skinny latte and make yourself at home. 



Taking a break


I had a lovely tea tonight, however I’ve been struggling a little over the past week (damn you stocktaking and shortbread!). I had planned on not tracking Christmas Day and Boxing Day and New Years Day plus 1/2 day each on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve anyway but at the moment I’m fighting with myself and trying to stay on track is putting too much pressure on myself.

I haven’t gone massively off track (I had 2 thin toasties instead of the usual 1 today), but I feel that I could at any moment so I’ve taken the decision to have a time-out for the next two weeks.

I will take the gain and come the 4th January I will be straight back on it, ready to get rid of the gain and achieve goal.  I have already got the next 2 weeks meals planned anyway and I am not planning on changing those, it’s just if I feel that I want those “extras” then I will.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and here’s to a healthy and very Happy 2014 – may we all achieve our goals – whatever they may be! biggrin

I need a slap!

I was doing an update picture the other day as I hadn’t done one for a little while and after reaching 100lbs lost I thought it was a significant milestone and should be celebrated with a picture.

I took one and I wasn’t happy with it:



as I thought that I looked fat on it.  So I took another one:



which I felt slightly better about, but still wasn’t 100% happy with.

Yesterday I ordered a new phone and so I went through all the pictures that was on my phone and bluetoothed them to my laptop.  I discovered one that I didn’t know I had and I certainly don’t remember taking, it was taken 4 weeks after I had started WW and had already lost 13lb but it is as close to a “before” picture as I’m going to get. (Those who have followed my blog for a while will know that I wouldn’t have my picture taken pre WW).



It gave me the slap that I needed and has made me realise exactly how far I have come and I know that I will NEVER be that person again.

16 Month Comparison

16 Month Comparison

You can see the full range of comparison pictures here.

Pearls of Wisdom?

When we are no longer able to change a situation,
we are challenged to change ourselves.

~ Viktor Frankl – from Man’s Search For Meaning ~


Before I begin, this post is not aimed at any one person and definitely not at any of my online friends.

I’ve lost 100lbs following Weight Watchers (WW) online.  There were a few reasons for doing it online instead of going to class, the main ones being:

1)   Weighing in front of a class just never appealed to me.

2)   Finding a leader that you like and can connect to is a bit of a lottery.

So I decided that online was the way forward for me and if I needed some support then I would use the WW Community Boards. The main difference for me this time (as opposed to the numerous previous times I tried to lose weight) was my mindset.  Because I had been told that I needed Bariatric Surgery I didn’t feel that there was any pressure on me to lose the weight.  I knew that to be accepted for weight loss surgery I would have to prove that I could lose weight (they like you to lose between 5% and 10% on your own first), but I would only need to lose about 14lbs and I have been able to lose that in the past – it’s just that that was ALL I could lose in the past. I would come to a wall and wouldn’t lose anything else, get fed up thinking I was “starving” myself for nothing and decide that I was meant to be fat, give up and end up putting more weight on.  So instead of needing to lose 3 stone (42lb) 22 years ago, I ended up needing to lose 9 stone 2lb (128lb).

This time, as I have said, was different. Each week I would get on the scales and feel no pressure at all, I was a lot more relaxed about it.  Even after my 2nd weigh in when I gained 1lb!  I didn’t moan and whinge about how good I had been and how unfair it was.  I just carried on following the plan. As long as I didn’t gain I was happy – no matter if I stayed the same or “only” lost 0.25lb)

After a couple of months I discovered that there were also FB groups for extra support and I joined a few of them, as I figured the more support I had the better eh? 

I have to add that I have made some fabulous and inspirational online friends through those groups and I will always be grateful to them for that.

For those that are interested in my “Pearls of Wisdom” here they are (in no particular order).  These are just things that I have found that have helped me at the start of my journey and tips that I have picked up from those that have reached a plateaux and need help with that.  I don’t profess to be an expert – far from it but these have helped me and I thought I would pass it forward.


1)   When trying to lose weight, you have to be in the right place mentally, I truly believe that 90% of successful weight loss is mental.  Unfortunately there is no magic potion to enable you to reach this place.

2)   Don’t think of any weight loss programme as a diet, think of it as a lifestyle, if you can follow a programme and successfully lose weight, if it fits in with your lifestyle i.e. you can carry on eating that way permanently for the rest of your life, then you are more likely to succeed and most importantly KEEP THE WEIGHT OFF.

3)   If you can, increase your exercise/activity.  It’s not likely to increase your weight loss but it will tone you up – lose those inches.  If you can’t due to health problems then don’t despair, I am no longer able to do exercise (apart from walking) due to health problems and I have successfully lost weight, so it can be done..

4)   Plan and track!  Plan your meals in advance.  I plan my meals for the week ahead, this helps me to know what I’m eating each day without having to think about it. I just buy the food that I need for the week which means that I’m not tempted to buy extras which could lead me off track.  Track what you eat.  If you eat something write it down so if at the end of the week you haven’t lost you will be able to see a possible reason for that.

5)   Mix your meals up.  If you have reached a plateaux try mixing your meals up, if you have a larger pointed (caloried) meal for tea and a lighter dinner then swap them around for a couple of days.  If you tend to eat the same foods all the time, try some new foods – add some variety so your body doesn’t get used to the same things.

6)   Drink at least 2 litres of water each day.  If you feel hungry have some water first before reaching for food.

7)   If you eat a large amount of bread then try substituting it for melba toast, wraps, pitta bread or do without.

8)   Don’t let one bad meal/snack lead to another.  Draw the line and continue with your weight loss journey for the next meal.  Don’t think “Oh I may as well start tomorrow or next week”  How much weight could you gain in that time?  Think about how much closer you could be to goal by planning your next meal and making it healthy instead of waiting for another 1, 2 or 7 days to “start again”.

9)   There is no magic cure.  It took years to put the weight on and it could take a couple of years to get it off.  Be prepared for that – losing the weight is only the start of your journey,  keeping it off will be harder still!

10)   Don’t put any pressure on yourself.  If you have a lot of weight to lose then set mini goals if you think it will make it easier for you.  However don’t set a time limit for reaching those goals if you think that not reaching the goal will lead you to go off track because “it isn’t working”.  

11)   Don’t look at a STS (stay the same) or ANY loss (no matter how small) as a failure – you’re still a step closer to goal than you were a week ago!

12)   It doesn’t matter how much support you get from your meetings, groups, friends and family at the end of the day You control what you put in your mouth.

Daily Menu – Saturday

Weight loss

As you can see I lost 1.25lbs this week, which is the first time in 6 weeks that I’ve lost more than 1lb 🙂  Very happy with that.  It also got me thinking about other stats.  I got my mum to do my measurements this morning, which is only the second time that I’ve had them done.  Done them when I started and then got them done at the gym in October.  Anyway here are they are:

1)   I have lost 33.86% of my weight

2)  I have lost 68.97cm from all over

3)  My body fat is 27.03% which, according to this site is in the acceptable range

So I’m very happy with all of that  biggrin

Chorizo Prawns with Garlic & Herb Ciabatta

Breakfast – 2 x Warburtons Hot Cross Bun Loaf Slice, toasted (5), 20g Flora Lighter than Light (1) = 6pp

Dinner – 1 x Warburtons Thins (3), 3 x NuMe Bacon Rasher (3), 1 x Dry Fried Egg (2), 1 tbs Ketchup (0) = 8pp

Snack – 2 x Tiny Satsumas (0), WW Nacho Tortillas (2) = 2pp

Tea – Chorizo Prawns (5), 3 x NuMe Garlic Slice (8) = 13pp

WI Treat – WW Chocolate Brownie (4) = 4pp

26/26pp + 7/49wp (Total of 7/49wp used)

Weigh In

Weigh In

My Christmas present/weight loss reward came this week and I’ve been dying to use them!  So here they are 🙂

I’ve now got my 10th silver 7 and seeing it there permanently in black and white is a great motivator for me.

I still find it hard to believe that I have reached this stage.  Back in January when I first started my journey I would see loads of people writing in the WW Community Boards about how they had lost “50lb”, “70lb” etc and I was so jealous of them – I was very happy for them of course but I was jealous too as I didn’t really believe that I would ever be able to say “I’ve lost 70lb” going from my past experiences of trying to lose weight.

Well that day has come and I want to shout it from the roof tops biggrin

My weight loss so far

I have been doing WW for 26 weeks and I’ve lost a total of 44.5lbs.  I’ve still got a long way to go but I’m a lot further on now than I thought I would be at the beginning of my journey.  During that time I have lost a healthy average of 1.7lbs per week, I have only gained once (1lb in the second week) and a STS in the fifth week.

As mentioned in previous blogs, I have tried many ways of losing weight in the last 22 years, including WW (not the pp plan) and nothing has worked.  I’m not blaming the failure totally on the different plans as I believe you have to be in the right place mentally to succeed at losing weight too, and looking back I don’t think I was.  Yes I didn’t want to be fat, but I didn’t really want to change what I was eating either as I still loved eating junk food.  I didn’t want to put the effort in that losing weight takes.  I wanted a quick fix, someone to wave a magic wand and for my fat to disappear in a puff of smoke.  I was 56lbs over weight but it might as well have been 356lb – it seemed an impossible amount.

Looking at what I’ve lost now, I would be less than 1 stone to goal if I had managed to do what I’ve done now then!  Instead I continued to half-heartedly try to lose weight, lose 14lbs and then put on 28lbs until I got to the weight I was at the beginning of the year.

I have to say how much I am loving WW.  The pp plan is really working for me and what I like about it, is how versatile it is.  I’m 45 years old and I know my body.  For me, if I want to lose weight I can’t have a treat each day such as a chocolate bar – I tried that doing WW previously and failed.  I also can’t eat my weeklies either.  I guess it helps that I don’t have a social life and also that I don’t drink so for me there is no need to use my weeklies.  However, I also don’t weigh most things out, the exception to this is cheese, cream and pasta. I figure that with not using my weeklies then I have more than enough points to cover it, if I’m slight out and I’m sure as my daily points get reduced I’ll be “unofficially” using more of my weeklies. If I stop losing then I’ll go back to basics and start weighing things out.

I also don’t use all my dailies.  This isn’t a conscious decision.  I plan my meals in advance and at the moment I try not to spend too long cooking for a couple of reasons:

  1. I have a bad back and it hurts to stand for too long
  2. It’s summer and too hot to be cooking

So this means that most of my meals consist of salad, which in turn means that my meals are low in points.  I have a yoghurt for after my main meal and in between breakfast and lunch and lunch and dinner I have fruit and at the weekend I have a treat of WW Thick Cream and fruit.  Snacking doesn’t mean having to eat sweets, crisps and chocolates.  If you can eat those and still lose weight then great, but I can’t so I don’t.

WW means different things for different people. To me WW means:

  • changing your lifestyle,
  • it’s about eating healthy foods with healthy snacks,
  • it’s about making healthy choices when you go out,  and
  • if you haven’t used all your points but you’re satisfied then it’s about not feeling like you’ve got to eat chocolate etc just to use them

I guess you could say that I’m doing a combination of F & H and pp as although I pp things, the majority of my meals consist of filling and healthy foods and I am at the stage that I can recognise when I’m satisfied and I will leave food on my plate.

I had to make a decision on what was more important to me – eating chocolate or losing weight and improving my health problems – there was really no contest.  I’ve got a lot of support from family, real life friends and virtual friends on Facebook weight loss groups, which helps a lot but in the end it doesn’t matter how much support I have, I’m the one that is in control of what I eat and only I can decide on whether the chocolate, the MacDonalds or the Domino’s is worth the feeling of hopelessness, failure and despising myself that I would feel if I caved in and ate them and I can tell you that they’re not – no food is worth feeling like that.

We are all different and different things work for each of us, as long as what you are doing isn’t harmful and is sustainable does it really matter how you lose the weight?

My Journey – Part Four

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Over the course of the past 22 years, since I’ve had my son, I’ve tried many many diets, WW, Slimming World, Atkins, Cabbage Soup and as previously mentioned the most I would lose would be one stone before plateauing, feeling fed up and deprived, giving up and then putting back on that stone plus another two.

Most of that time I was very unhappy and things came to a head in 2006.  I went to my doctors at the time and told her how hard I was trying to lose weight but nothing was working and she put me on Orlistat.  She explained that I couldn’t eat anything that contained more than 5% fat otherwise it would affect me in a way that nobody would want to be affected!  That was fine, I was having Special K for breakfast and eating Chicken Salad for lunch and I bought myself a Rosemary Conley cookbook and chose meals to cook that contained 5% fat or less.  I felt great and didn’t cheat and when I went to see the practice nurse after 1 month to get weighed I had a good feeling.

That feeling lasted until the moment I stepped on the scales and discovered that I had actually PUT WEIGHT ON!

I had wrote down everything that I had ate for the past month and showed the nurse and she told me I had to stop having sauces on my meals – even though I was making them myself and they contained less than 5% fat and just have veg and chicken/fish.  She wouldn’t authorised a new prescription of Orlistat because I had gained weight and told me to come back in a month and see how I’d got on.  I walked out of the doctors and I have never cried so much or so hard in my life.  I was devastated and knew that there was no way that I could keep to what the nurse had told me – I don’t like dry, boring food and knew that I would cheat and so that was that.

I decided that I was “meant” to be fat and vowed to give up trying to lose weight for good and start to enjoy life instead.

Except I wasn’t really enjoying life, I was putting more and more weight on, I couldn’t walk very far because my back would be in agony, I couldn’t do housework for the same reason and in 2009 I developed Lymphoedema and Lipoedema in my lower legs which made it harder to walk and also even kneeling on the floor became impossible.

In November 2011 I got the kick up the backside I needed and in February this year I got a bigger wake up call that finally made me realise that this wasn’t a diet – it’s going to be my new lifestyle and while I am finding WW a lot easier than in the past (maybe because I’ve stopped thinking of it as a diet?), it is still hard work but then anything worth achieving isn’t easy and I know I will get there – no matter how long it takes.

I must polish my halo!

I have some strong willpower!

Won’t bore you with details, but part of my office is also the kitchen and as well as having to put up with the smells from the microwave as people zap their lunches, I also have to look at goodies that grateful customers bring to us. I can honestly say that I have not touched one of the roses, biscuits and tesco bite thingies :o)

Feeling Virtous!

Yesterday was a big test for me – it was the first meal out since I started WW.

My Head of Dept was leaving and we were going for a meal to say goodbye. The choices of restaurants were local ones (with no chance of getting to see menu before hand as they don’t have websites) or the Beefeater. Thankfully I managed to persuade them to go to the Beefeater as I knew I could find out the NV’s before hand!

So after looking at the NVs and checking with the board that my choice was the correct one, I felt in control. The question was though, would I stick to my plans once sat down in the restaurant? The answer is yes :o). I chose Paprika Chicken Skewers for the starter, while my colleagues chose breaded mushrooms or cheese and bacon potato skins and for the main, I chose Paprika Chicken Salad – NO SIDE ORDER and my colleagues chose the steaks or burger with spicy chips.

Thankfully none of them had a desert, although one did have a french coffee. I can honestly say though, that even if they had of had a desert it wouldn’t have bothered me as I truly wouldn’t have wanted anything else to eat.

I wasn’t even tempted to pinch a chip! It’s amazing how good I felt afterwards. I felt satisfied not bloated or stuffed and when I got home I didn’t raid the cupboards.

The best news is that it was all within my daily points!

I also chose a diet pepsi (they didn’t do coke) and I can’t believe how horrible and sickly sweet it tasted!

I feel like I’m becoming a “lifestyle” bore lol but I do feel better for it and that is what it’s all about isn’t it?