Month: May 2015

Mom’s Homemade Apple Pie – 42,598 syns!

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So another week has rolled around, weigh day tomorrow. Week 5 actually, the first week of my next ‘stone a month’ campaign. Am I confident?….Far from it if I’m honest. I mean, I’ve been on plan all week, optimised 100% even last Sunday when we went for dinner at my Mom’s. Yes I had a sneaky small slice of my Mom’s homemade apple pie, couldn’t resist, but I’m sure I over exaggerated the syns in my food diary, just to be sure. I’m still keeping a food diary, even though I don’t need to hand them in I think it’s an important task to keep me focused on the goal, document everything I eat, no cheating. I’ve made my own diary on Excel, very snazzy, even adds up your daily syns for you! I will get around to sharing the template should anyone be interested in using it. Anyway, 100% optimising week (including Mom’s apple pie) so why don’t I feel confident, why have I got that negative feeling about this week? I can’t explain it to be honest, I know everyone at some point gets that week where they’ve been totally on plan but maintained, or even worse gained, so I am kind of expecting it to happen to me and feel it might come sooner than I hoped. I would check on our scales at home but they need new batteries as you can lose 3lbs just stepping off and back on, then gain 6lbs doing it again! I am also trying not to get into that obsession of jumping onto the scales to check every time I have eaten something or gone to the toilet!

Well tomorrow evening will soon be here, we will all know then and whatever it will be will be, it won’t rock me as I am completely focused and as our leader said, “your body doesn’t know what day of the week it is so you can’t expect it to always show a big loss on a Thursday evening”. Wise words. It’s also that time of the year where each group apparently votes for Slimming Man of the Year. I have been asked to apply and have to say a few words about me, why I joined and my experiences so far, along with the other men and then the group vote for their favourite. How can I run for Slimming Man of the Year? I mean, I am only in my fifth week, not really a journey to shout about yet, maybe next year, when I’ve lost 7 stone then ok. Anyway, they have asked me so I will do my bit, stand up in front of group and embarrass myself with a tale or two! Perhaps I should just give them a card with my blog site address on and say “you wanna know, then read that” that would be far easier lol.

Anyway, I better get some sleep, back on the road again tomorrow, so it will be packets of ham and salad bowls from the supermarket to graze on whilst driving, though I might get up early and get a decent breakfast inside me, we’ll see.

Bye for now, wish me luck!! xx

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Week 4 – Reaching that 1st Stone!!

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Well what a start to my journey. Only 4 weeks have gone and already a stone lighter and boy does it feel good. I honestly thought I had left myself too much of a challenge to lose another 4.5lbs in a week but the sheer delight when I boarded those scales to be told I had lost 5lbs was amazing. It not only proves that this new way of eating (you really can’t call it a diet) works and further more has made me realise that my dream of being fit and thin again really is achievable. But enough of the excitement, I have a job to do and I have to stay focused and realistic to the fact that it will get harder and I will face times of weakness, but this excellent start has made me even more determined than I could ever imagine.

So a new 4 week plan begins, first stage is the half stone mark in two weeks, then repeat for the second 2 weeks, simple!! Rather than look at my distant dream target weight my plan is to focus on fortnightly challenges. Also, if I can achieve another stone in the next 4 weeks then that puts me ever so close to my Club 10 weight, my first major landmark to a healthier me. So, more of the same please. Here’s to an excellent week of food optimising and enjoying discovering and cooking up new and exciting healthy meals.

I would just like to thank everyone that has reached out to me and offered their kind support so far. From those of you who have subscribed here to my blog page, followed me on Twitter & Instagram, to my new found friends at my local Slimming World group. Your interest, however little you may think it is, gives me the strength and determination to continue my journey and lose those pounds! I would love to hear from you, so don’t be shy, when you stop by, please say hi. 🙂 xx

Salt ‘n Pepper Chicken

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Ok so I found the idea for this recipe on another blog page and thought I’d give it a try as I love salt ‘n pepper chicken from the Chinese takeaway but it has so many syns!!! This idea of using Smash is a revolution believe me and even better, its Syn Free!!

Serves 4 (as a side dish) or 2 (as a main course with rice or noodles)

Ingredients

  • 2 Chicken Breasts (sliced into small strips)
  • Smash (instant potato mash granules)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Red Pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 Green Pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 Small Onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 Small Red Chilli (deseeded & finely sliced)
  • 1 tsp Chinese Five Spice
  • 1 tbsp Light Soy Sauce
  • Sea Salt & Black Pepper

Method

  1. Add some Smash granules to a dish and season well with sea salt and black pepper.
  2. Crack the eggs into another dish and lightly whisk with a fork until mixed.
  3. Take a chicken strip at a time, dip it into the egg and then roll it around the Smash to cover, repeat again ensuring the chicken is completely coated.
  4. Place the coated chicken breast strips on a baking tray sprayed with Frylight and put in a preheated oven on 200 degrees for about 20 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
  5. Meanwhile spray a wok (or frying pan) with Frylight Spray, add the peppers, onions, chilli, Chinese five spice & soy sauce and stir fry on high heat for about 8 minutes until the peppers and onions are softened.
  6. When the chicken is cooked and crispy toss it into the wok with the vegetables and then serve immediately.

Feeling The Difference

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Hi, sorry I haven’t blogged for a whole week but I’ve been busy food optimising to the extreme. It’s my week 4 weigh day tomorrow and I must say I am feeling confident. I am hoping for at least 4.5lbs off to reach my first 1 stone goal. I know it’s a big ask but I have optimised every meal carefully, entered everything in my food diary accurately and made a conscious effort to increase my speed food to at least half with every meal so if I don’t get that first stone target, I know I will be very close having given it my all. More importantly, something else has happened this week, I have started to notice my weight loss in my clothes. Jeans are not tight to fasten anymore, polo shirts, that were usual a tight fit, are now fitting nicely and in some cases quite baggy! I took Woody (the dog) training over the Chase tonight and walked the long route around, doing some retrieve and whistle training along the way and didn’t get out of breath, actually didn’t even break into sweat, so I am already starting to feel the difference which I must admit, is an amazing feeling. So if I don’t quite make the stone mark tomorrow, as long as I’ve lost again, I will be happy and ever more determined to continue my journey.

I’ve had a fun week experimenting with some new recipe ideas too. Some I found on Slimming World online, some off other peoples blogs & Instagram and some that I have thought up myself. Last night was especially good as I treated the family to a Chinese Fakeaway Feast cooking up multiple dishes. Chicken Chow Mein, King Prawn with Vegetables, Salt n Pepper Chicken and I even oven baked some Kale that resembled the crispy seaweed you get from the takeaway. Well there wasn’t much left, the whole lot was devoured and it felt good as around 70% was vegetables, a speed food extravaganza! I am working on writing up a couple of the recipes to post on here, especially the Salt n Pepper Chicken as that truly is amazing so watch this space.

Right then, I will sign off now, got a busy day of shedding pounds!! Speak again tomorrow night.

Fingers crossed!! xx

Portobello Mushroom Burgers

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We all love our Slimming World burgers but for an extra speed food alternative try replacing your bread rolls with Portobello mushrooms for a tasty, healthy and extra speedy filling meal.

Serves 4 (Syn Free)

Ingredients

  • 500g Lean Beef Mince (5% fat or less)
  • 1 Small Onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (crushed)
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Handful of fresh flat-leaf Parsley (finely chopped)
  • 8 Large Portobello Mushrooms (peeled and stalks removed)
  • 4 Bacon Medallions (visible fat removed)
  • 120g Cheddar Cheese (30g of Healthy extra A allowance per burger)
  • 1 Large Tomato (sliced)
  • Baby Spinach Leaves

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Place the mince, onions, garlic, parsley and a generous dash of Worcestershire sauce into a bowl and blend until just mixed.
  3. Divide the meat mixture into 4 equal portions and shape into burgers (use a burger press for best results)
  4. Spray the burgers with Fry Light and grill on high heat for 7-8 minutes on each side or until cooked to your liking.
  5. Once the burgers are nearly cooked add the bacon medallions to the grill and cook for a few minutes on both sides.
  6. Meanwhile, spray both sides of the Portobello mushrooms and place on a baking tray and bake in the oven for around ten minutes until softened and cooked through.
  7. Once cooked, place a mushroom on the plate inside face up, add some spinach leaves and a 30g slice of cheese (you can melt this under the grill if required) then add a burger, a bacon rasher, a slice of tomato and top with another mushroom face down.
  8. Repeat for the other burgers and serve with a fresh salad and some SW chips of your choice.

Speedy Arrabbiata Pasta

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A delicious, quick pasta meal with a slight kick, that is full of speed food.

Serves 2 (SynFree)

Ingredients

  • 200g Dried Pasta (I normally use Penne)
  • 400g Tin Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 Red Pepper (chopped)
  • 1 Green Pepper (chopped)
  • 10-12 Cherry Tomatoes (whole or halved)
  • Handful of Fresh Spinach Leaf
  • 2 Cloves Garlic (crushed)
  • 1 Medium Red Chilli (halved, deseeded & finely sliced)
  • 1 tbsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 tbsp Dried Basil
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tsps Paprika
  • Fresh Flat Leaf Parsley

Method

  1. Set a deep pan of generously salted water on the hob to boil.
  2. Spray a frying pan (or wok) with Frylight Olive Spray, add the peppers, chilli and garlic and stir fry on medium heat until the peppers are softened and slightly roasted.
  3. Add the tinned tomatoes, oregano, basil, Worcestershire sauce and paprika, bring them up to a gentle simmer, then add the cherry tomatoes and spinach, season generously with sea salt and cracked black pepper.
  4. Meanwhile toss the pasta into the boiling water and cook until just ‘el dente’ firm to the bite, immediately drain and then add the pasta to the sauce and mix in well ensuring all of the pasta gets coated with the sauce.
  5. Once completed coated, serve immediately and garnish with a fresh parsley.

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