Monday, January 30, 2012

Worried as usual!

Its the night before WI and as usual I am a bag of nerves. Its my TOTM so I am seriously worried that I am retaining water or something. I can't remember how my body used to handle TOTM before. I know I can't do anything about it now but worry so I'm going to do that.

The week has been good, ate out twice but made healthy choices both times. The first I had a dressing free salad as a starter, and then haddock with chorizo and white bean stew and crab salsa. All very low and not creamy or oily at all. Stayed within my pp for the day so didn't have to dip into my weeklies. The second was slightly less saintly, but then what are the weeklies for. I had beef carpaccio to start which did have a bit of oil on it - though was def the best option on the menu. For main I had spaghetti with clams asparagus and chilli - again it was a little oily, but I didn't eat the whole portion of pasta and clams are pretty low so the oil was all I really had to worry about. Both nights I managed to avoid dessert by only having a teeny tiny taste each time. I also managed to avoid dessert at my book club with the same tact and by bringing along some strawberries and blueberries so I had something to eat. So the problem was when sunday hit and so did my TOTM and I was hungry all day long!

As it stands with WI tomorrow I have got 13 weeklies left and am very nervous. Did slightly less exercise than usual too which probably hasn't helped. But this is where is stands and I will be holding my breath as I step on those scales tomorrow :-)

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Flapjack Cookies - 2pp each

So I tried some baking and made some guilt free treats to bring to my book club. So here goes the recipe:

Calorie controlled spray oil
75g Low fat spread
1tbsp golden syrup
0.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tbsp boiling water
50g plain flour
100g porridge oats
40g sugar

Melt the spread and the golden syrup in a pan.
Mix the bicarbonate of soda with the water and add to pan causing it to foam slightly.
Mix in the flour oats and sugar and stir until mixed well.
Use a tablespoon measure and dollop spoonfulls of the mixture onto trays sprayed with spray oil. Flatten the cookies with the back of a spoon and make sure they have room to spread. Makes 16 cookies
Bake in a preheated over (gas mark4/180 degrees/fan 160 degrees) for 8 minutes until golden brown.
Cool the cookies on a tray for about 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack when they have firmed up slightly.

I was meant to take a photo fo the end result, but I forgot and they went down a treat at book club so have none left. I would definitely make them again, and next time I may add some fruit in for variation, some grated apple, or chopped blueberries or raspberries. They prob wouldn't keep very long, but would be good when you know you are going somewhere or having people over!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Weigh In 3

Had my WI last night and I'm down 1.5lbs. I was initially disappointed but in the last 24hours I have turned my attitude around. In total I have now lost 4.5lbs in 3 weeks, and at an average of 1.5lbs per week this is above my 1lb a week goal. So I am delighted and will keep on putting in the hard work!! 
I also got their new cookbook 'The Complete Kitchen' and I have to say it is amazing. There are so many nice recipes in there I don't know where to start. I have my book club on friday so I think I am going to make some cookies to bring with me so I can avoid any other treats that may be lurking there :-) Will post the results as I get them. 

So after my WI I was very determined but very unorganised as to what I could have for dinner so I stopped off in tesco to grab something and I found this:
Only 10 pp for the pack and def more nutritious than their healthy living range or the WW range and it was SUPER tasty! Loads of flavour, the chicken wasn't dry at all and I have to say I love cous cous, especially the giant cous cous. I had 15pp left for the day so I teamed this with a Multi Seed & Cereal Pitta (threw out the pack when I put them in a zip lock in the freezer but they were made by the Food Doctor, 4pp each and quite large and filling) with 1tps of garlic & herb philli! Was delicious for any night you're stuck for something! This seems to be a new range of meals tesco are doing, this was the only one they had in my local tesco but looked it up online and there are loads to choose from. Something to keep in mind!

So the start of the week and I have already been out for dinner tonight :-/ I was very good, I got a side salad with no dressing as a starter (just so I wouldn't pick at others starters, will def do that again as it was really great) and then Haddock with chorizo and white bean stew and crab salsa. The stew was in a tomato based sauce, only a couple of pieces of chorizo and the crab salsa was undressed. I had 18pp left for the day and I'm pretty sure that dinner came in under. Book Club is my next challenge - bring on the weekend!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Chorizo anyone?

So I had a bit of a craving for chorizo on thursday so decided to do a bit of an omelette/frittata thing after the gym and it was super tasty and very filling. Doesn't look the prettiest, but presentation has never been my strong point! So recipe is as goes:

200g potato cubed cooked - 4pp
60g chorizo chopped - 4pp
2 large eggs - 6pp
a quater of a leek chopped
handful of spinach

Fry the chorizo over a medium heat to release the oils and flavour, there is more than enough fat in the chorizo so you shouldn't need to add any more. Then add the cubed potatoes and cook for a further 2 minutes and add the leeks and cook again for 2 minutes. Finally add the spinach and when it is just wilted add the whisked, seasoned eggs. Cook until the bottom is set and then finish in the over and when the egg is set turn onto a plate.  

I was really hungry but you could add another egg and another 50g of potato and this would serve 2 easily with a side salad for 9pp instead of 14pp. 

My second recipe was slightly masterchef inspired. We were watching on thursday night and one of them cooked a roast red pepper sauce to go with chicken, so I went a bit further and made:
Monkfish with roast red pepper sauce and sweet potato and butternut squash chips

1 small butternut Squash
200g sweet potato - 6pp
paprika & cayenne pepper
2 pieces of monkfish (pointed like cod i think, 3pp per piece)
a little lemon juice
60g chorizo - 4pp
2 red peppers
1 can chopped tomatoes, excess juice drained
3 cloves of garlic
salt & pepper

First thing off roast the red peppers until the skins are blackened. Take them out of the oven and pop them in a bag to cool so the skin slides off easily.
Meanwhile slice your squash and sweet potato into chips, sprinkle with paprika and cayenne pepper and spray with low cal spray and place in the over for 40 minutes to turning once while cooking. 
Cut the chorizo into small chunks and fry over a medium heat to let all the oils out, then add the tomatoes and garlic and cook for 5 mins. Then add the peppers, skin and seeds removed and roughly chopped and cook for a further 5 minutes. Then blend and season well. 
When the chips are just cooked season the monkfish with pepper and lemon juice and roast in the oven for 5-10 mins depending on size at about 160 degrees. 
Place the fish on your plate and cover with the sauce - only used about a third of the sauce on each piece of fish but recipe is pointed to use half. Arrange half the chips on each plate and a veg of your choice - I used mange tout as it was all I had in the fridge. 

Works out at 8 pro points each but to be honest, once they were cooked with the spices I could not tell the difference between the squash and the sweet potato, so if you were looking to save some points you could omit the sweet potato and use more squash. 
Had started eating it in this photo so there was more on the plate when I started! This is great to eat before a night out because it is really filling but not heavy at all. And the sauce can be used on pasta or even any other type of fish. 

Enjoy and let me know if you try these :-)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Egg fried rice?

So I find the best way to spice up a stir fry is to make it egg fried. Gives the illusion of a take away but without all the extra points. The one I had tonight was beef stir fry but obviously can be made the same with any protein. I find it really handy to have a bag of frozen asian stir fry veg on standby (Green Isle do a great one with water chestnuts in it which are my favourite.) Then I can also throw in whatever veg I have in the fridge but bulk it up with the frozen veg. I find cooking for one buying veg the biggest problem, if i buy too much I waste it but I like the variety. Frozen veg in the stir fry is the way to go. 

Anyway so for the one I made earlier I have used:

150g lean beef - 6pp
Frozen Stir Fry Veg - 2 small handfuls
Mange Tout sliced
2 garlic cloves (i love garlic)
Chilli flakes to taste
1tsp sesame oil - 1pp
Soy sauce - 1tbs (or to taste if you like more)
1 medium egg - 2pp
Spray oil
60g (dry) rice - 6pp

Cook your rice according to pack instructions and leave drained ready to go. Put the sesame oil and garlic in your wok and wait for it to heat up. I find the garlic doesn't burn if its added when the oil is cold and heats with it. At this point you can also add ginger and fresh chillis if you have any. When this is hot add your beef (or other protein) and cook for 3-4mins. Then add the veg and cook for a further 3-4 mins. Add your chilli flakes and mix through and then push all of this to one half of the wok. Spray the exposed half with spray oil and crack your egg directly in. Scramble it with the wooden spoon quickly and when it is just cooked throw your rice on top and mix back through your veg and meat  and add your soy sauce. Wait til the rice is warm through and serve.

The egg definitely makes it more filling and satisfying, if you put in the rice at just the right point, before it is too cooked the egg will coat the rice just right too. So yeh just something to make a stir fry a little more fun! Let me know what you think :-)

Second Weigh In

I am not a happy camper at all! I STS this week. I mean I know it is not the worst result and my Friday night may have had a little to do with that. But even with my Friday night, everything I ate fitted exactly into my pro-points allowance and I did 3 days at the gym and 20 mins of walking each work day so I really thought I should have been down something, even half a pound and I would have been happy.

What I usually do when I have a disappointing week is go away and eat all the things that I shouldn't and as much of them as humanly possible but as I said before I have decided that this time is going to be different. And after the meeting it is still the same as always and counting everything in my pro-points. So I went home and cooked myself a delicious dinner, spiced salmon steak with potato mange tout and a big salad with tesco light choices honey mustard dressing (0pp for 15ml). I just combined cayenne pepper, chilli powder and paprika (total 1tsp of all 3) and rubbed it on the salmon and then fried it in spray oil. Looked like it was burnt but it really was delicious. Also the salad looks pretty small there but it def looked bigger while I was eating it!

Start of my third week and my resolve is still strong. Have 2 nights out and a lunch at my friends to contend with but I have a plan. Am only going to drink one of the 2 nights and still not go mad. And I have told the friends whose lunch I am going too that I will prob be eating smaller portions because of it. My friend has told me she will tell me as soon as she knows what they are making so I can plan for it. They are pretty healthy cooks anyway so I'm not too worried about that. It really makes the difference having the support of people who know how important this is to me.

I have felt quite bloated all week, which isn't a nice feeling. Trying to keep my water intake up and cut out as much processed foods as possible to see if that helps. Also want to do a Box-fit class tonight on top of my 3 days doing my program in the gym so really going to go for it and hope that I can do better next week!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Is the week ruined?

So Friday night I went out for dinner and I did all those things you are supposed to so I would be prepared. I checked out their online menu and picked out a fairly healthy 3 course dinner. I didn't touch a single of my weekly 49 and I had 19 pp left over from the day. Then I got there and they had a completely different menu. I'm gonna be honest I did panic a bit and tried my best to choose the best options.

Starter was parsnip and vanilla soup with scallop and black pudding ravioli. Was only one ravioli and I didn't eat all the soup, so I pointed this as 10pp. Then for main I had mallard with lyonnaise potato and Madeira sauce. I took the skin off the mallard and there was a very small portion of potato, 50g at most. And a really small amount of sauce. Pointed that at 12pp, counted the mallard as I would duck but have since been told mallard is much leaner than duck. Then dessert came an I got passion fruit sorbet with chantilly cream and some chocolate cream thing. Only ate half the chocolate and half the cream but pointed it at 12pp. Had some drinks and all of it wrote off all my leftover points and weeklies.

Then after the night out, 4:30 in the morning went and got a slice of pizza. I know I shouldn't have, 7pro points that I took from Saturdays allowance because well it was technically Saturday when I ate it. It's what I really have to learn to say no too, I always seem to want food when I'm drinking, so next time I'm out I have to stop myself. Friday was my first big test and I failed miserably.

So I have got back on track since then, and I really hope that Friday night won't ruin the rest of the week! Did a bit of time in the gym yesterday and will go again tomorrow!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Week 2 begins!

So its the first day of a new week and I've started well. Wednesdays always mean temptation from the food market beside where I work. Every stand has something delicious that is probably evil in propoints, and since I have a 3 course dinner out on friday night I have to be good this week. There is one stand, a Mediterranean one that does healthy stews, one in particular - chickpea and spinach. So i resisted all temptation and went for that, service with a small serving of cous cous. And it was delicious and so filling too. Will definitely be getting it again. They also do a chorizo and butterbean, which would be slightly higher in propoints, but prob worth it to have. Also feel good going for healthy choices, and it meant I had enough to treat myself to a mini twix this afternoon too.

Dinner tonight was creamy pasta with broccoli and ham. And I have to say it was delicious. Here goes for the reicpe :-) Made 2 portions so I have something easy to have after the gym tomorrow night.

120g pasta 12pp
4 thin slices or serrano or parma ham 4pp (pointed from the pack and the book)
25g parmesan cheese 5pp
3tbs ww cream 3pp
tenderstem broccoli
garlic crushed
salt & pepper
24 pp for recipe, 12 per portion

Cook your pasta in boiling water and add the broccoli for the last few minutes to cook. Drain when cooked and save some of the cooking water. Add back to the pot with a ladle of the water and add the garlic and ham (torn or cut to small pieces) and cook for 2 mins. Then stir in the cream, cheese and salt and pepper to taste and cook for a further 2-3 minutes until the creamy sauce thickens, stir trough the parsley and serve! 

Prob similar to a million other recipes out there, but its one of those things you could use any veg you have in the fridge and have it with or without the ham - or with chicken instead. Also  while it was nice with the ham still soft, you could also fry it up in some spray oil before adding to make it crispy too!

So tomorrow is another day, onwards and downwards shall we say! (I'm sure my enthusiasm for blogging will slow down and you won't be bored with a new post everyday for much longer, just on the interesting days!)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

First Weigh In

So today was the day, and I lost...3lbs! Am delighted though i would be lying if I said I wasn't hoping for a little more it being my first week and all. But 3lbs is still brilliant and its all in the right direction. My goal is only for 1lb a week so thats a good kickstart. Those few minutes queuing up waiting to be weighed, when you can see everyone else ahead who seems to have done brilliantly - they are so intense. Even though I knew I had put the work in

My way before with WW was after a weigh in you got a night off, and I'd get a takeaway or something very bad and ALWAYS dessert. So I have decided that this year I'm not gonna do that. I may use up any of the extra 49 weekly pro-points I have left (if any) but im gonna try to just stick to a normal dinner. I used to think I was entitled to this treat for doing well, or needed it to cheer me up for doing badly. I have a new outlook this time, my reward to myself for doing well will be a good start on another weeks weight loss. And on weeks when I haven't done well, then I need to start as I mean to go on to get back on track. So tonight I did have a bit of a special dinner, steak and sautéed potatoes and mushrooms with a garlic cream sauce but it came in at 12 pro-points, which left me with 2 over for a sweet treat. The weight watchers cream is brilliant for creamy sauces for meat or fish. Tastes really indulgent and creamy, but only 1 pro-point for a tablespoon. Also great for using with pasta too. Never really have it with desert though, definitely think it is more one for use in cooking.

So I am still deciding whether or not to keep this blog anonymous or to post a photo log to show my progress too. I have lots of fat pictures for a before shot that I can add at any point, but as of yet I am keeping it quiet! Will be back soon with more updates :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Week 1

So it was actually last Tuesday that I joined again, so I am nearly at the end of my first week. At the moment I get 31 pro points per day and then the extra 49 for the week.

So this week has been relatively easy going. I have the support of my boyfriend, friends and family which is really the biggest help really. I haven't really had to dip into the extra 49 too much, but then again 31 points is a lot when you are eating healthily.

The hardest was dinner at my parents house and that was when I did use the most of the 49. I also find it hard to log the food that my dad cooks - he is an ex chef and so measuring stuff is beyond him and he seems to sneak oil and fat into things without looking. I also always have a tendency to pick at things at my parents house. Something I don't really do at home, there is always leftovers in the fridge and the food is always so tasty there. Because I had so many of my extra 49 left (something like 47, on top of 13 dailies left). I did treat myself a little bit and logged what i thought was correct - not sure if i under or over logged but I still have 33 weekly propoints that I dont plan on using before tomorrow left - so it shouldn't be too bad. My mum is also planning on rejoining this week, so hopefully on the weeks that I have to be a little tighter with my points, me and her can cook ourselves a separate dinner.

Some things I have discovered this week that have been great.

  • Lidl Yellowfin Sole Fillets - 5 pro-points per fillet and quite filling.
  • Quorn Mince - was not aware that this was only 2 pro points for 100g - and that is a huge portion. Made a bolognese with 70g of pasta and i couldn't finish the sauce. You could almost bulk it up with a few more veg (i just put aubergine in it) and use it for 2 portions at only 1 pro-point (base sauce with no oil, only spray oil), and then add a side salad or a slice of low cal garlic bread. Also would be great over a baked potato with a little bit of grated cheddar.
  • Am a devil for snacking while I'm cooking, so I made up a tomato beetroot and onion salsa that kept in the fridge and was really refreshing to eat while cooking. I just cut up one tomato, one beetroot and half an onion into very small cubes and then seasoned and added 1 tbs of balsamic vinegar. Was delicious on top of the Sole fillet with a tiny bit of mayo also.
  • I also have nearly every weight watchers mag from last year. So i went through and cataloged all the recipes I would like to try. Marked them with a post it showing the amount of pro-points, and how many it served. It can be quite tiresome flicking through them every time I want a recipe so this helps.

Gonna try bake one sweet treat a week from the WW mags/cookbooks too. This week was chocolate marble cheesecake from an RTE guide weight watcher supplement. I went to a friends for dinner and brought the dessert with me so even though cheese cake isnt my favourite sweet, it goes down well in a group. I have decided that I am going to offer to bring dessert every time I'm invited for dinner. With the main dinner it is easier to just eat smaller portions - but I find it more difficult to resist dessert - so at least if I bring it I know how many pro-points are in it.

So my weigh in is tomorrow and I am both nervous and excited, I have put the work in and I really hope i get the results that will spur me on to stick with it! Will post again tomorrow as to how I've got on.

Starting Point

I'm using this blog to document what will hopefully be my last real weight loss journey. I want to lose the weight once and for all this time! I am not the best writer so hopefully you will bear with me!

I guess the best place to start is with my story. For as long as I can remember I have identified myself as overweight. Although up until I was about 10 this definitely was not the case. At 10 my mother put me on my first diet. Had started to get a little bit chubby and was going away for a week school trip and I guess she was trying to help. She was following weight watchers at the time so she had me loosely follow it too. This would happen multiple times in my teens until at 17 I was old enough to join for myself the first time.
Between the ages of 17 and 25 I followed weight watchers on and off (more on than off) and while I never got to my goal weight (10 stone) I did get very close on a few occasions and generally managed to maintain my weight at a healthy place, between 10 and 11 stone for the most part. Then at 25 I went travelling and all hell broke loose, and now here I am at 14 stone 3lbs. And I have decided that I will do it this time and keep it off with no excuses. And I suppose using this as a sort or diary to help me get down what I am feeling, document my weakest and strongest points and make sure I can actually stick to it this time.

Not sure if anyone will bother reading but sure I've put it out there now, so if you do read hope you find it interesting!