Gone: 101 lbs. No returns!

It’s been a busy few weeks again- I appear to have slipped into a fortnightly update with you all. Like before, I’ve been crazy with work- but this time I was prepared! I’ve been bimbling along, staying focused and reminding myself of my goal.

Weigh in was after two weeks this time. I swear, every weigh in holds some new excitement and achievement: this week I achieved my century!

IMG_67023lbs down, 101 lbs lost, 7 stone 3lbs gone, 45.8kg vanished!

I can’t even fathom how I was carrying all this weight- as I binged on junk where did I think it was all going?!

Also, because I can’t resist a good comparison pic:

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This wasn’t me at my biggest but the dress I’m wearing in the left is so big on me now (from an unflattering and too small size 22) I’ve had to pin it twice so it doesn’t fall open. I think it’s officially retired as of this week! Yes the right hand pic is recent- do excuse the hair!

So life is going well, and I’ve been cooking up some yumminess for you all. Updates on the site include a banging leftovers dish in the form of a chicken and egg hash, my new take on turkey lasagnehummus crusted chicken AND chicken and red lentil stew. Phew! Can you tell it’s getting colder?? If you had to choose one recipe to start with- I highly urge you to make the stew. Hot, filling, and full of smoky flavour- enjoy!

As ever, wishing you all a successful and enjoyable week- keep cooking, and keep on track!

C xx

 

Thirty Weeks on Cambridge Weight Plan

Greetings my sweets!

I was a little naughty and didn’t get round to posting an update last week so here’s a bumper blog for you all muhahahaaaa!

As you may have noticed, I have been a bit down lately and had been struggling to get in the zone. After my last entry I literally decided I was “restarting” and forced myself to make the time to get in the zone and to recommit to the plan. I acted as though I’d just started and was doing all the things I did at the start to keep myself occupied and to stay focussed.

I’m very excited to say that this approach totally worked! I found my buzz again and fell in love with Step2 all over (yes…I just wrote that phrase…). Over the past two weeks I’ve been feeling better and it has shown on the scales!

Today was my 30th weigh in.. and this happened!!

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I’m extremely proud to be able to say that I have now officially lost 7 stone and am in the “overweight” BMI range rather than obese!

My little funk also prompted me to look at what I’ve been up to recently- things that in no way would have happened prior to starting CWP!

  • THEME PARKS!!! Yes! I went to Alton Towers, went on all the rides, didn’t get stuck, didn’t have to do the walk of shame and had a fabulous time. I also walked everywhere without wanting to die. You can see me here with some fellow slimmers who are also looking rather fabulous. IMG_6306
  • BLACK TIE FORMAL! My best friend and I attended her company ball- between us we have lost 12 stones so far (OH MY GOD). I think we looked pretty good!

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  • DRESSES! It’s been lovely to finally fit into some old work dresses of mine, it’s always been one of my goals to get back into them- this one is a favourite and so nice and warm! IMG_6318-0It’s so important to remind yourself of how far you have come- we start doing things we never would have dreamt of doing before losing weight or adopting a new attitude. Reaching this milestone made me look back and celebrate things that most of us will take for granted – and it certainly felt ‘normal’ when doing it- but you know what- you should still tell yourself

“Bloody Well Done!”

While we are on the subject of doing new things- I must say a big thank you! As of right now I have 109 subscribers to my blog and many daily visitors- this is something I never even thought possible- the fact I have created a website, published content and have people who actively want to listen to me is something pretty cool!

I must sign off, but I know you know I’ve been holding out on you guys! The cherry on this weeks post – THREE new meals for your perusal and delight. Try my Indian style scrambled eggs for a speedy but tasty dinner, or for a portable lunch (or even some healthy party foods) have a mooch at the hummus and cottage cheese dips. For anyone fancying a meat free Monday, check out the bean burgers– so filling and packed with flavour- Step 2 heaven!

Wishing you all a fabulous week and lots of yummy cooking,

C xx

 

A Cambridge Weight Plan State Of Mind

Good evening my lovelies.

I appear to have had a little unplanned break from the website but fear not, I am still here! Weight wise, I lost 4lbs and then found 3lbs this week via water retention and the curse of the lady plague *die*. Conversely, my measurements still continued to go down which has kept me going.

The last two weeks have been tough. I won’t lie- I was so close to jacking in the plan and just spiralling back into the vicious cycle of futile thoughts and self sabotage. I was tired, distracted, not focussed and honestly not putting the effort in to cook my meals or make sure I was having my products properly.

There were several reasons for these feelings really. The main distracting thought was that I had found a worrying lump and change in my chest. Fortunately I got the all clear from my doctor and also a “Well done” for being vigilant. However, this being me, I had already written my last Will and Testament before my appointment even arrived.

The doctor also explained that after such a big weight loss, things are bound to feel a bit different but was still pleased that I was taking notice and said I had done the right thing. So my little plea for you all is to be aware of the changes in your body but also go get those changes checked if you are even the tiniest bit concerned (applies equally to us ladies and the gents)!

I have mentioned in my previous posts that I’ve been super busy with work, things seem to have gone crazy and my whole routine has been rocked. I have discovered that whilst keeping busy is good- it has come at the cost of my “motivation maintenance”. This has fed into the last niggle- the apparent seven month itch.

It took me a little while, but I finally figured what was happening. I have been doing CWP for so long, it’s just become part of my life and routine. However, what I didn’t realise was that the habits I had established to keep me motivated had lapsed. I had been on the program so long I just started to take my will power for granted. When I got busy with work, I coped initially but then started to struggle a lot after a while. I couldn’t understand why I was finding it so hard to focus and started to feel like I would be on Step 2 forever.

It took a little honesty on my part, and a massive boost of morale from my support network to get my mind focused on what needed to be done. In particular, my wonderful consultant Karen. She listened, and then reminded me of how far I had come (6 stone 8lbs people!!!) and also encouraged me to think of all the things I was doing now that would not have happened six months ago (I knew there was a reason she was my consultant!).

I came away from our last meeting refreshed, and determined to get my head back in the game. For me it means getting back to basics- reminding myself why I want to do this! Below is a pic of a list I made a long time ago. I forgot I had it and as I read it, I realised just how far I had come.

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I am so proud to say that I can tick most of these off the list already. How on earth did I let myself believe I wasn’t achieving anything?!

But here’s the rub. We put so much effort in at the start of our journeys. We make the lists, draw up the charts, collage motivational quotes and celebrate each weeks successes.  But when we are in this for the long haul, we need to remember to keep on doing this. The big lesson I have learnt over the past two weeks is that this is a constant discipline. Sticking to the plan is easy physically. But when you stop being your biggest cheerleader and take for granted that you’ll be fine- that’s when you need to have a word with yourself!

My favourite example is of brushing my teeth. You don’t brush your teeth once and then you’re done. You need to do it twice a day to maintain healthy teeth and gums (oh my dentist will be so proud)- why would maintaining the weightloss mindset be any different?

I’m back bitches!!!

C x

The single lb that nobody ever wants!

Greetings my lovelies,

It’s been a stupendously busy week again for me (I’m not a fan of this regular going to work malark!). It’s crazy how much a break in routine can make you go la-la. Mostly this week I’ve either relied on frozen meals I’d prepared earlier or I have been cooking two portions of protein at a time so that I can save time for food prep when I’m super tired at the end of the day.

It proved to me that preparation really is the key ingredient to be successful- thanks to my advance cooking and the emergency bar I keep in my bag, I stayed 100% on plan. I am sorry to say my water intake suffered slightly though, and this was possibly reinforced by this weeks weigh in.

I lost a grand total of One Pound. I’ll be honest, I lost my shit a little when my consultant Karen told me. I always say a loss is a loss, but for two minutes I was properly miffed. Until I was reminded that I have lost 6 stone 4lbs so far! That one pound has contributed to that! Poor little pound, no one ever seems to want to see it!

So I started to get over it, I had lost weight and inches from my waist and hip. Then Karen reminded me again why she is the best consultant ever! She showed me the tape measure around my thigh at the size it was at our first meeting. Oh. My. God. IMG_6144So yeah….about that one pound loss this week… didn’t seem so catastrophic all of a sudden! If you do ever start to feel like you’re in a rut and not progressing, I strongly urge you to do this exercise- I had forgotten just how BIG I was when I started. Be proud of every pound!!

In my re-inflated mood I decided that dinner would be something extra special! I’d bought a packet of aduki beans a few weeks ago, after searching in 4 other supermarkets for the bleeders! Thursday night was going to be….taco night! This was delicious and so filling! IMG_6155Please note that the salt rim around my sugar free lemonade was for presentation purposes only 😀

Wishing you all successful weeks and happy weigh ins- just keep reminding yourselves that every pound, half inch, quarter inch and ounce matters! Keep cooking and keep thinking positive.

C xx

 

Interview! 100 Days of Cambridge Weight Plan with Chrissie E!

Well hello there beautiful!

First of all- many thanks to all the new subscribers that have followed this blog. It’s really nice to know that people are actually interested in what I have to say and want to follow new recipes!

This week has seen me mostly at work, it’s been a busy one and I’ve kept it simple with my meals. The cheese omelette and fauxtato salad have both featured- and one night I did the worlds hottest chickpea curry with vegetables (I put a whole red chilli in it… it was obscenely hot for once! Let’s just say it’s a good job I had a decent amount of yoghurt left to eat!).

Before I knew it, weigh day was upon me and I have good news- 3lbs off bringing my grand total loss to 87lbs (or 6stone 3lbs). I celebrated with a Rosemary and Lavender bubble bath and a warm chocolate and fruits of the forest mixed shake (half and half). My life is so rock and roll right now!

I haven’t got any new recipes posted this week but I couldn’t leave you fine people without some yumminess. Today, for your viewing pleasure, I am very excited to introduce you to a fellow CWP-er who is magic in the kitchen and was challenged to create 100 Step 2 meals at the start of her journey with CWP.

The amazing Chrissie has kindly answered some questions and allowed me to share her Pinterest board which contains every meal she has made…

Who inspired you to do ‘100 days’?

When I got back from my initial meeting with my consultant I was prepared to spend the whole journey on nothing but tins of tuna or chicken salad. When I told my friends this, they looked at the food list and challenged me to make something different everyday for 40 days (fully expecting me to crack after the first week). Then when I reached 40 meals my lovely consultant Katie challenged me to continue up to 50. From there it became a long standing joke, at every 10th meal I would say “Just 10 more, ha ha ha!”. 100 meals seemed like a nice number to stop at.

How do you come up with meal ideas?

My meal ideas are usually reliant on what I have in the fridge at the time. I then take the ingredients and decide what I fancy. Sometimes I use recipes I have tried in the past, and amend them for step 2. Although I admit the height of my cooking before CWP consisted of microwave dinners or toast. Other times people have suggested ideas, and I have thrown stuff together and hoped for the best.

What are your top three star ingredients?

My 3 star ingredients:

  1. Chickpeas, these are so versatile, I had never tried them before CWP, but they can be used in so many ways they are a must.
  2. Celeriac, for similar reasons to the chickpeas. I miss chips, and mash so much, but celeriac makes a fairly decent substitute for both.
  3. Chives – I love, love, love chives, they give everything a sweet oniony taste (which helps to make up for the lack of salt in all the dishes) plus they make the plate look pretty!

Could you pick a top 5 of your meals?

5 – Harissa Baked Cod on a bed of Cambridge style colcannon

4 – Tandoori chicken sandwiches

3 – Chicken & Asparagus cheesy roll up

2 – Spinach, Broccoli & Chicken tartlet

1 – Moroccan Chicken Tagine

These were by far my favourites to eat, but I have to give a special thumbs up to my Cambridge style McDonalds which was the most fun to make!

[Ed: And we can see why!]

How has doing the 100 days of different meals helped you on your CWP journey?

I worried that I wouldn’t be able to stick to the plan, and I really thought everyday would be a horrendous struggle. However, knowing that I had to find something new to cook each day took my mind off everything else. Having that cooking goal each day helped to keep me focused and determined. Also by sharing them with the CWP  [Facebook support] groups and receiving some lovely feedback from people helped to keep me totally motivated.

How important is meal presentation to you?

I am self confessed OCD-ish, presentation is important (even when I am not sharing the recipes). I like keeping things neat and organised. I tell myself that I do it to make the limited amount of food we are allowed to have look interesting and appealing. (Though it may just be I need a therapist ha ha ha!)

Any words of wisdom/tips on making your recipes?

The biggest piece of advice I would pass on would be “Preparation Is The Key!”

Decide what you are going to make early in the day (before work etc) and have the vital fiddly stuff, like ground chickpeas, or grated cauliflower measured and ready before you go out. Saves so much time later on. Always have lentils and chickpeas in the cupboard, they come in so useful for coatings; make friends with your spice rack …… you are going to be needing it!

Advice from a non food perspective: get rid of your bathroom scales, the only ones that matter are the consultants (although I confess to the odd sneaky peek in the week). Also, if you have any questions ask on the Facebook groups, there are no such things as stupid questions and there is a huge chance that whatever problem you are having, someone on there has had the same at some point. It’s a vital support network!

Thank you so much Chrissie for taking the time to contribute to this weeks blog post. I really do urge you all to browse her Pinterest board and follow for any future updates- I am in actual awe of those meals!!

If you want more information about any of these recipes, feel free to leave a message on Chrissie’s Pinterest board. The Facebook support groups referred to are closed groups on Facebook that are there to help you with your CWP journey. There are many groups available; for those totally focused on the plan search in Facebook for Cambridge 100% Support Group and send a request to join.

That’s a wrap for this week folks, I hope you enjoyed this feature and as always- keep cooking!!

C xx

 

It’s been a good week

I have news! Great news! Fantastic news!

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Yes, your eyes do not deceive you-after 160 days of being on Step2 I received my 6 stone loss badge! 84 flipping lbs! That’s…. almost a person!

This week has been rather lovely in that I’ve also received many compliments about my weight loss. I have generally been feeling positive and just so bloody healthy!

After last weeks super post, I’m keeping it short and sweet for you all (hallelujah) but of course as always, the kitchen has been open and this week I tried two new recipes out. For the veggies and anyone wanting to experiment with new ingredients, why not try the chickpea and lentil burgers– my recipe page shows two ways to serve and both are as yummy as each other. I also realised I hadn’t done a meatballs meal….ever!

Obscenely filling!
Obscenely filling!

So check out the turkey meatballs recipe- herby and spicy and served with a paprika yoghurt sauce to mix it up a bit and keep it interesting.

That’s a wrap for this week folks, keep focussed, enjoy life and never give up!

Happy Cooking!

C xx

 

 

Life on Cambridge Weight Plan- when you’ve lost 6 raccoons

Well hello there!

Happy Friday to you all. I am writing whilst sipping my water and trying not to panic at the fact that there is no more coffee in the house apart from decaf (oh the humanity!).

Things have been ticking along this week. I lost 2lbs, bringing my grand total loss to 82lbs which is the equivalent of 6 raccoons. Also half an inch off my thigh- I’m more happy about this than the 2lbs!!

I was asked a very interesting question this week: “How do you keep going?“. Sometimes I ask myself this very same question. Unfortunately I don’t really have a simple answer. I have many reasons that keep me going and they change on a daily (even hourly!) basis.

When I first started, I made a list of what life would be like if I lost the weight and another list of what life would be like if I didn’t lose the weight. It really helped me think about my reasons for doing this (aside from looking amazing!). It also made me admit to my fears as I realised I was scared of the unknown and also that without having this comfort blanket of fat I would be exposed as a total failure and everyone would laugh at me and say I was actually useless and I would end up old and alone and living with 20 cats and one day I would die but no one would discover my body for a further 2 years after I’d been eaten by said cats and it would be very sad. Ok. Deep breath. I’m pretty sure that’s not going to happen (…).

I also take a LOT of photos. This isn’t (purely) about vanity before you wonder! I regularly compare my progress and check in with myself about how I’m feeling about the diet, life and things in general.

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When you feel disheartened after a weigh in, or just feel completely fed up- these pictures are an amazing tool. Above is my 10 week comparison and me after 21 weeks- wearing HEELS. For the first time since 2011. 2011!!!!! THIS is progress. Also note how nicely those CWP bars slip into ones purse 😉

However, just like staying on plan, even working on motivation takes some willpower and determination. I am lucky in a way that I have used things I’ve learnt in life to help me keep on track. Over the course of my weight loss I’ve found some brilliant blogs, people, books and articles that helped me think things through and build myself a little support network and mechanism. Although you know you’re going a bit insane when you need to motivate yourself to motivate yourself..

In the spirit of motivation, I am dying to share this particular blog with you that I have recently started following. Skinnie Annie is a fabulous blog by another fellow CWP-er and I highly recommend you take some time to have a browse. In particular, the 52 Day Motivation Challenge. Anne has kindly made up a document of 52 challenges to help anyone who is trying to get or stay motivated and trust me- they are good!! There is a Facebook group for anyone wanting to share their challenges and Anne is blogging about her own challenges too. It’s a fun read and anyone on CWP will definitely relate!!

I urge you to try it, or make your own list of motivations and motivators. Different days need different approaches and having a range of ways to stay on plan and maintaining that focus is invaluable. Sometimes it’s enough to say to yourself “You got this, you GOTTA do this, you are DOING this!”. But when that isn’t cutting it, how do you keep going?

My motivation mood board. I see it when I wake up and just before I go to bed.
My motivation mood board. I see it when I wake up and just before I go to bed.

So, now we have asked some heavy questions (to achieve our lighter selves… geddit?) why don’t I treat you all to a giggle? Another week and another online purchase. This week my weighted hula hoop arrived! Honestly, when the lovely Karen (worlds best consultant ;)) mentioned hula hooping as a way to tone my tummy I naively thought it meant get a lightweight hoop and delicately spin it around my waist.

Not quite. After many baffled searches and conversations about hooping, I bit the bullet and bought myself a rather spiffing 1.5kg weighted padded hoop. Then I proceeded to bruise myself and caught the humiliation on camera for you loyal readers. This is an exercise on how not to hula… and the end was a fluke!

If you are interested in hooping, please please please look up some beginner tutorials for tips! It’s hard at first, but once you actually know what you’re doing then it’s just a case of practice makes perfect! This particular video on Youtube was super helpful.


Now that I have motivated AND amused you, I shall let you go on to have fabulous weeks, and fabulous meals! Your reward for reaching the end of todays post is THREE new recipes! I was missing my mum’s curry, so I made a “pretty decent” (this came from Mummy’s own mouth!) turkey keema (still sad about no peas..) one evening. I also popped my ‘cloud bread’ cherry with a rosemary cloud bread Cajun chicken burger– definitely one to try! If you are looking for something yummy and not too spicy, I present to you my spring onion and chive crustless quiche with fauxtato salad.

I bid you adieu, keep going, keep cooking, eyes on the prize!

C xx