Thanks Michele. Appreciated! Particularly since I’m almost at the halfway point of my GPFIT London #121toFitMum fitness challenge and gone off the rails a bit!
I’d not seen Michele for three-four weeks and last week (which was Week Five of my challenge) I started drinking the odd glass of wine, had a piece of white bread because I ran out of granary and – shock horror – ordered a thai green tofu curry from my fave North London takeaway place, Gen Dan Fushia in Crouch End. (As ever, it was bl**dy delicous!)
So I felt like I’d let myself down. And while I could see positive changes to my body (slightly slimmer waist, less wobbly arms, reduction in back fat) my stomach is still rather large and pregnant-looking (although admittedly I now look about three months instead of six!) Quite frankly I was becoming concerned that this fitness malarkey wasn’t going to work and I’d fail spectacularly in front of you all. *Wail*
So Michele’s rather crude exclamation when I opened the door to her last Wednesday was just what the doctor ordered!
On Tuesday I’d had a fab workout with George, and then another great session – my fave, boxing – on Thursday. George reminded me that while I’d consumed some not so healthy things this week, I’d still done two intensive workouts, which is more than the pre-challenge me would have done. And I’d not eaten terribly every day. I’d just had moments of over-indulgence.
So all was not lost, it seemed!
And rather than thinking, I’ll start again tomorrow, George said I should just think, I’ll start again now. I’ll just eat more healthily next meal. And drink lots of water. And sleep well. So I did. And I felt much better about myself. Hurrah!
Due to heavy work and child-related commitments, however, I still wasn’t organised in the food and drink department and this meant another takeaway on the weekend.
#Sorrybutnotsorry because I came across a takeaway mobile app that sells only gluten and sugar free food. Seriously. And they deliver to your door within 25 minutes. How amazing is that? Gourmet, healthy food on demand! The business is local, Crouch End-based Rose & Mary and they’re open between 5:00pm and 9:30pm Monday through Saturday. Rose and Mary can also help you cater for parties of ten or more people, which is great to know because my birthday is coming up soon (well, August – fellow Leos know we like to start planning our big day months in advance!)
Rose & Mary‘s dishes use only the freshest ingredients – meat is grass fed and free range; seafood is caught and delivered from sea to plate within 24 hours. Important for me, there is a good range of vegetarian and vegan dishes on offer. I went for the Green Minestra with Millet, described by Rose and Mary as ‘a superfood lovers’ favourite’ because millet is rich in minerals and vitamins. Perfect food for my #121toFitMum journey! The only issue I had was that it was so delicious I could’ve eaten more; but it was that attitude that got me into fat-trouble in the first place, so it was probably a blessing! My husband eats meat and went for the Lamb, Piperade, Mint and Coriander salad and said it was so fresh and tasty. He’s a keen cyclist and participates in crazy events such as Tough Mudder, so he didn’t need much persuading to eat a healthy takeaway at all.
I should point out now that I’ve not been asked to promote Rose & Mary; neither have I received any product in exchange for a review here. I simply find the service delivers exactly what is needed when you’re wanting to eat clean. And bonus – I used a discount code from the Muswell Hill Flyer, a fab magazine edited by the equally awesome Becky Beach. The code gave us £10 off our first order, so not only was the food deliciously healthy, it was a bargain, too!
But of course most of us can’t afford a full price takeaway every night, so that’s why it’s important to be organised on the food and drink front. As I’ve progressed through this journey I’ve learned (the hard way) that planning ahead means you’ll be less tempted to eat and drink the wrong things. So I’ve done a bit of digging and come up with some top food tips and hacks, so you don’t have to:
1.Prepare a weekly menu plan for you and the family
I know, I know. You know this. But do you do it? Menu planning helps ensure you buy the correct amount of food each week, and nutritionally balance your meals. What’s more, if you know what you’re going to be eating that day you can start prepping and cooking dishes on time, preventing cheeky snacking while waiting for a delayed meal!
2. Don’t buy junk food
If it’s not in the house, you can’t eat it! Simple. Your family will benefit, too!
3. Throw out any edible kids’ party bag contents
I don’t know about your kids, but mine always leave the birthday cake and my eldest doesn’t like sweets other than chocolate. So guess what used to happen? Yup, I helped them out! Now I just give the sweets to a friend’s child (with the parent’s permission, of course) or simply get rid when I get home.
4. Don’t eat leftovers from your children’s plate!
I used to be so guilty of this; and many mums I know do this, too. Tempting though it is to nibble, and as much as I hate waste, I now recycle leftover food straight away. The afore-mentioned Michele also swears by squirting a bit of washing up liquid over the food immediately!
5. Always have a bottle of water handy
And in more than one room if you’re moving around a lot, tidying up etc. Sometimes when you think you’re hungry, you’re actually thirsty (or you’re bored, and drinking water will give you something to do).
6. Batch cook
By doing this you minimise the amount of time you spend in the kitchen. It also means you have a ready-made lunch for the next day, so no excuses for nibbling while trying to decide what to eat.
7. Eat more fat
Sounds odd, I know, but if you don’t eat enough fat – especially if you’re working out – you won’t feel full and you’ll crave quick carb and sugar fixes that won’t give you long-lasting energy. Foods I enjoy that are high fat but healthy include nuts and nut butters, and eggs. More often than not I start the day with soft boiled eggs (which contain more protein than hard boiled ones), granary toast with almond butter and spinach, tomatoes or asparagus. This really sets me up for the day. Avocados are also good but unfortunately I’m allergic to those, boo!
8. Have healthy snacks – and brekkies -pre-prepared in the fridge
This tip is good for the kids as well. Peel and chop into sticks carrots, apple and sweet red peppers and pop into pots or sandwich bag portions next to a pot of delicious, homemade hummus. Next time you or the kids have a hunger pang, the healthy snacks are ready and waiting. Popcorn, nuts, homemade oat-based bars and (small) portions of dried fruit also work. Hard boiled eggs and spinach leaves are good and M&S now sell these in pots in the sandwich section. I used to think this was pointless because you can cook eggs at home, but last weekend I was out and about with friends who bought some fish and chips. Totally stuck, I nipped into their local M&S and bought some chicory coated nuts and a pot of two boiled eggs and fresh spinach leaves. I was happy as Larry!
I’ve also heard lots about overnight oats and chia seed smoothie bowls, but not yet tried these. If you have and you like, do feel free to share some of your recipes here.
9.Make a smoothie
If you’ve not eaten your recommended 5-10 fruit and veg portions per day, don’t panic! Add some spinach or kale to almond milk, throw in a few berries and some banana slices, a couple of spoonfuls of raw cacao powder and voila – a quick, easy and perfect post-workout protein hit!
I hope you’ve found these food planning tips helpful and do please share yours with me. I feel the training sessions with GPFIT London are essential to helping me achieve my personal fitness goals; however, I also believe that without also watching what I eat and drink that it would take me a lot longer to achieve them.
So, I’m halfway through my #121toFitMum journey. Five weeks down; five more to go. I’m desperate to know if I’ve lost percentage body fat and inches; and weight too, although the latter isn’t a key goal. But George says I need to wait until next week for my next Bodymetrix consultation to check my progress to date, so patient I must be.
Until next week!
PS. I know one North London mum has recently read one of my #121toFitMum blog posts and signed up with GPFIT London for a ten week personalised training plan. The very best of luck to you and it really motivates me knowing that my weekly ramblings have motivated someone else to set their own fitness goals. If you too would like to take control of your health, don’t forget you can get 10% off GPFIT London block bookings if you quote either Mumsnet Barnet or Mumsnet Enfield.
PPS. To read the previous #121toFitMum blog post click here.