Eats of the Week: 1st March 2017

I’m culinary confused! It’s post-Brussels sprouts season but pre-asparagus, so for now, I’m sticking with courgettes!

Anyone else having serious green vegetable conundrums?

Anyway, I’ve been eating a real hodgepodge of meals lately, and I’ve snapped a few photos, so here we go…

strawberries and pb
Strawberries and pb as my mid-morning/post-workout snack at my desk
M&S salad
M&S salad of green salad with apple dressing and coconut chicken
Green veg
A mountain of green vegetables hidden under a lot of spiralized courgettes!
Homemade soup
Home made soup – carrots, Brussels, peppers and edamame with pasta
Breakfast
Breakfast bowl – The Collective passion fruit yoghurt topped with new Shreddies protein granola, dried cranberries and cacao nibs
Filo Parcels
Filo parcels stuffed with vegetables and Boursin
Fountain Inn
A vegetarian sharing platter from The Fountain Inn

What are you eating in-between Winter and Spring?
xoxo

Friday Round-Up: Bits and Bobs

This week hasn’t been out of the ordinary, and I don’t have any enlightened thinking like my post last week on Finding the much sought after work/life balance. So here’s a few bits and pieces from this week!

Cheat meal Extreme – Grilled chicken, pulled pork and smoked cheese in a brioche bun – called the Cluck Oink Burger from Oakleys in Skipton.

Cluck Oink Burger_2 Cluck Oink Burger_1

Another very sweaty Zumba session – and because the instructor is recovering from a cold, I led half of the routines #Proud !!!

Zumba Selfie_1 Zumba Selfie_2

Last Sunday’s tea looks sinful but is actually saintly! “Vegetable” pasta bake with courgette, asparagus, broccoli tips, broad beans and soy beans with fresh pesto and some smoked cheddar, topped with 2 slices of parma ham.

Vegetable Bake_1 Vegetable Bake_2

I ran a 10k on Sunday and then a 5k on Wednesday, and even though I’m no where near my time from last year’s Salford 10k, at least I’m feeling fitter than I was before Manchester earlier this year!

I’m very grateful to live in  my little part of the world, for many reasons, but they include the beautiful routes that I get to run around. This week I ran through Skipton Woods and along Skipton Castle walls. My pictures REALLY don’t do the views justice!

Skipton woods and castle_1 Skipton woods and castle_2 Skipton woods and castle_3

Homemade Turkey Burgers, y’all!
I forgot the courgette so these were straight up turkey breast mince with sesame seeds, fresh red chili and fresh thyme. I served them with sauteed vegetables (carrot, red pepper, asparagus and broccoli tips) and new potatoes.

vegetables_1 vegetables_2 Turkey Burgers_1 Turkey Burgers_2

This weekend is a bank holiday in the UK which means no work on Monday, whoop whoop! So, I’m taking advantage and will do a 10k on Sunday morning and then lots of active fun with the toddler!

Happy weekend folks! xoxo

Friday Round Up – Fighting Stress Eating

This week has just felt rubbish! A negative work environment is really affecting my mood, and whilst I’m in the process of looking for new jobs, my stress levels are creeping up.

Normally, this would lead to some serious cases of binge eating and using food to make me feel better. Not this week though! When I’ve felt myself about to spiral out of control, I’ve taken a step back, thought about why I’m about to eat the entire contents of my fridge, and made better decisions.

On Tuesday I’d had a particularly bad day, and the moment I got home I was in the kitchen, looking through the cupboards to find something, anything, to eat. I wasn’t particularly hungry, but I felt that desire to just eat until I didn’t feel sad about work anymore.

As I opened one door, I thought to myself, will I feel better if I eat a jar of fluff and peanut butter? Or will I be sacrificing my clean eating during the week to feel a moment of relief, and then guilt once the binge was over?

I left the kitchen, took a few deep breaths and focused all of my energy on the toddler, who is a far better distraction from work stress than chocolate!

I’ll be sharing my tips for a better work/life balance on Sunday!

For the most part this week, I have been eating clean, and have really packed in the veggies! I’ve also gotten back into the swing of things in terms of exercise.

Apple and Almonds
Apple slices and almonds – my new go to snack at my desk
veg stir fry
The makings of a delicious vegetable stir-fry with rice noodles earlier this week
10k Run
Getting back to my sub-1 hour 10k with a race in 2.5 weeks!

20160817_201042

Chicken goodness bowl
Chicken goodness bowl – baked chicken with chipotle jam, peppers, carrots, peas, broccoli and wholewheat cous cous
Zumba
Very sweaty after Zumba!
Breakfast Bowl
Breakfast Bowl – strawberries and melon, The Collective passion fruit and Fuel10k protein granola
Garden
Working on our yard – we only have a small outside space but I’m trying to make it a sanctuary!

And that’s it! make sure you check out my post on Sunday about life balance, especially if you’re not loving your job at the moment!

Happy Friday! xoxo

Yorkshire Dales Food and Drink Festival

So, the countdown to my holiday took an almighty break this weekend as I attended the Yorkshire Food Festival and indulged in all sorts of delicious food & drink, as well as getting a masterclass from some famous chefs!

We watched James Martin in a live cookery demo making mushroom pasta, mackerel with pickled vegetables and then an apple charlotte. The day before, The Hairy Bikers had done a live demo but I didn’t get to see them unfortunately.

James Martin

James Martin

There were so many food trucks and stalls giving away samples and selling their produce, and myself and a friend ended up spending too much money on various dips, spreads and sweet things! All washed down with far too many glasses of prosecco, I was tipsy by 3pm!

So here’s a rundown of what we enjoyed the most…

The Doughnut Guy

The Doughnut Guy

Freshly made doughnuts from Newcastle-based “The Doughnut Guy”. You could choose from a range of sauces and toppings. I went with slated caramel sauce and pecans – I wanted to marry these doughnuts!

Prosecco pop

A prosecco and peach Bellini ice pop – just what we needed to cleanse the palette between bites!

And yes – that’s a different glass of prosecco in each picture:-)

Taylor and Bennett Dark Chocolate

Coffee and cacao nib dark chocolate from Taylor and Bennett (Artisan chocolate and confectionery who use cacao husks and recycled coffee cups to make their packaging) – I was terribly British and having tasted the chocolate samples, bought this chocolate for £6 which is ridiculously expensive because I didn’t want to put it back! It is lovely chocolate though, so I’ll save it for a special night in with myself.

Salted Caramel Fudge

Salted caramel butter fudge – I can’t remember the name of the confectioner, it might be Sugar Rush. This fudge was delicious!

Shire Honey Chipotle Jam

Spring flower honey from Shire – really smooth and delicious.

Chipotle Jam – again I can’t remember who makes this but it really was sweet and smoky and packed a real punch. Delicious with tortilla chips!

Smokin BluesCrepes and Shakes

Two more of the food trucks at the festival.

Crepes and Shakes – their pancakes smelled divine!

Smokin Blues – Seriously good pulled pork – I had the loaded fries topped with pulled pork, BBQ sauce, cheese and chip spice! So good, but in my drunken state I dropped the last few on the walk home, womp womp!

I’ll definitely be booking tickets for 2017! If you want more information their official website is here: www.yorkshiredalesfoodanddrinkfestival.com

xoxo

Stir-fry to start the health kick!

So, the lack of exercise and unbalanced diet I’ve been eating has left me at 166lb! I haven’t been this heavy since early last year. I know that we shouldn’t let the scale define us, but the number is definitely a reflection of my lack of fitness.

So henceforth I’m putting myself on a health kick, re-focusing on what I’m eating, which will be mostly whole foods with the occasional goodie.

Here’s a picture of a homemade turkey stir-fry I made this week (turkey breast, vegetables and cauliflower rice with a sauce made from teriyaki sauce, soy sauce,  lime juice and fresh chili with a tablespoon of peanut butter)…so good!

Homemade turkey stir-fry (1) Homemade turkey stir-fry (2)

I’ll also be upping my exercise output to try and fit in at least 3 sweat sessions a week – 1 x zumba 2 x run and 1 x HIIT strength workout.

I’ll be running Salford 10k again in September and after last weekend’s slower than average race time I’m looking to shave off at least 5 minutes in the next 2 months. 4 workouts a week should be enough, though I’ll likely ad in an extra run later in August.

Holiday tone-up

I know, I know, I know that I shouldn’t need to tone up for my holiday because 1) our body doesn’t define us whether we’re wearing a bikini or not and 2) a healthy lifestyle should mean that you don’t need to make any drastic changes before you do away BUT… I’m still going to make an effort to feel more comfortable in my own skin by late September.  I also have an awesome new swimsuit and want to be able to feel confident playing with the toddler on the beach or by the pool all day!

Here’s a shot from this morning (July 15th) and I’ll post another every couple of weeks to track picture progress!

Figleaves Swimsuit1

Ignore the “just out of the shower” hair!

Happy Friday everyone!
xoxo

Progress Photos: February

Last month I started a new series of monthly progress photos. It’s never easy to post photos of yourself in semi-dress and opening yourself up to the judgement (positive or negative) of your friends, followers and general internet users, but it is a beneficial way to see the changes in your body rather than relying on the scale (although I use both).

Even though I’m a couple of pounds lighter than I was this time last month, there hasn’t been a great change in my body. Some items of clothing are still a bit snugger than I would like, but I’m getting there!

So without further ado, here’s my February progress pics!

Progress_Feb2016_Side Progress_Feb2016_Front

If you have any negative thoughts about these images, please don’t share them, we don’t need that kind of negativity here!

Does anyone else share their progress pics to help motivate them?
xoxo

163lb

That was the number on the scale this morning, and that’s OK.

3lb heavier than I was the Monday before Christmas, but with a whole lot of memories to show for it.

I didn’t stick to my plan to be active as I had hoped I would, but with so many friends and family visits, I’m glad that I spent my time with them, rather than slogging it out at the gym or going running.

I also ate rather mindlessly, and am guilty of saying “I’ll start again in the New Year” rather than taking responsibility for my eating then and there. A few bottles of prosecco and Gin & Tonics might also have been consumed!

One of the reasons why I don’t feel too bad about this weight gain and my behavior over the past two weeks is because of this quote…

“What matters isn’t what you eat between Christmas and New Year, what matters is what you eat between New Year and Christmas”

Next year, I won’t be worried about eating more and moving less during the festive period, as I’ll have committed to a consistently healthy approach to eating and exercise throughout the rest of the year!

I’m going to start a monthly photo progress diary, so here’s my January photos.

January Photo Face On_cropped January Photo Side On_cropped

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ll post photos at the beginning of each month to track how my body changes as I get back on track with eating a more balanced diet and exercising regularly.

Are you using photo diaries to track your progress?
xoxo