I’ve been offline for a few months. A lot of late nights, driving around, hospital visits and emotional times. Comfort eating, drinking and grabbing convenience food. My sleep patterns and diet have got in a bit of a mess and my health is starting to suffer too. It’s a vicious cycle of eating anything you can get your hands on when you actually feel hungry, then feeling worse because of eating junk. Despite my love of good food and knowing how I react to bad food choices, I also know that in times of crisis it’s more important to eat something than be precious about the options and go hungry. Cue sleepless nights, tiredness and irritability…. pass the Merlot…..
To get my arse in gear, and get interested in food again, I’m trying out a whole week of new recipes plucked from food magazines. Reason for this is they’re all new so I have to follow the instructions and ingredients list instead of just winging it and not preparing fully, and eating snacks.
This meant shopping for a ton of fresh ingredients; in part because they’re new dishes with fresh herbs and fruit but also because I’d run down my larder and freezer supplies to next-to-nothing and was only shopping meal to meal, with a lot of snacks and wine included 🙁
My plan is to trial these new menu items, which should be interesting, and also to come up with my own plan for the next week(s) which will make use of all the expensive leftovers:)
If I can get Flickr to play ball then there will be piccies too!
Quick update after my weekend class at Leiths.
After a light warm up (thinly slicing carrots and cucumber for a Thai salad) we moved straight on to filleting and skinning flat fish and round fish. As well as getting used to the different knives we were told to become familiar with our fish. This is Brian the Lemon Sole:
I named my Sea Bass Dave, but my hands were too icky to take a photo with my phone.
All neatly packed to take home then we got started on portioning the chicken:
I’m really lucky to be able to work from home once a week, if I need it. The rest of the time I’m in an office full of people, which is nice. Woke up early this morning with my mind racing so I logged in and got started. It was 11am before I realised I’d had no breakfast and no coffee. Oops.
Scheduled a strategic 15 minute break to knock up fried sweet potatoes and eggs and a big cup of coffee. Even managed to prep all my leftover veggies so they’re ready for dinner tonight and as snacks with dip 🙂
Took a late lunch break, grabbed the crudités and dip and some cheese and started slow cooking a mirepoix ready to make beef ragù later tonight. Not for dinner, just getting some had some sad looking carrots and celery in the fridge and this doesn’t require much attention. Even bunged on a load of laundry so my Friday night consists of eating and loafing in front of the TV. Domestic bliss!
I’ll admit it. Clean June was not 100% successful, but it wasn’t far off and I learned a lot. Firstly I hadn’t factored in how lazy I really am and secondly, unlike me, I really hadn’t planned enough. Fail to plan…… etc.
As I appear to have nowt better to do with my time, I’m taking on a Whole30 for August and I’m taking my long-suffering hubby with me.
“It’s only 30 Days. I can do anything for 30 Days.”
In simple terms, Whole30 is an ultra-strict version of Paleo which cuts out many of the foods known to produce blood sugar spikes, cause systemic inflammation, or otherwise have a negative impact on health . The basic structure is the same, just 100% compliant, not “80:20”. After the 30 days of “elimination diet” certain foods can be reintroduced to check how they effect you, if at all. Fingers crossed dairy and white potatoes have zero impact on me and I can continue to enjoy both. Occasionally, in moderation of course 🙂
Yes, I’m aware that some people might say “What’s the harm in one glass of wine?” “I’ve eaten cheese/ bread/ sugar cubes for years and I’m fine!” “Life is too short to deprive yourself by restricted eating”. But we are not talking about Life. We are talking about 30 days.
What stays the same:
Eat meat, seafood and eggs
Lots of veggies
Plenty of good fats
No processed foods
No SWYPO, Paleo-ized foods e.g. fake pizza, fake cake etc.
No grains or legumes
No added sugar
No vegetable oils, inc. corn, safflower, sunflower etc.
What changes, for us:
No alcohol (sob…)
No sugar of any kind, including honey
No soy (we’re quite minimal on this already – but coconut aminos is ridiculously expensive)
White potatoes (currently subject of hot debate in the Paleo community, but we’ll omit it to avoid temptation in the form of the chip)
Things I need to do:
Write up meal plan for 2 weeks
Make a plan for days 4-7 which, I’ve read, is the period I will want to KILL ALL THE THINGS!
Create shopping list
Schedule a prep day Saturday or Sunday to get as much as possible ready
We’ll officially start Saturday 2nd and end Sunday 31st August 🙂
Dairy intake reduced to <250ml – ACHIEVED. This wasn’t so hard in the end. It’s summer, so I don’t feel the need for a hot cuppa and fruit tea or water tastes just fine, but in winter I think I’d struggle with the cold and the dark making me hunt down caffeine.
Alcohol reduced to maximum 14 units per week – ACHIEVED. Didn’t manage this for all the weeks. I blame the sudden lovely weather but in reality I have cut out a lot just by being more aware of when I’m drinking, and when I really only want a glass of water.
Get out for a walk or cycle every day, including gym days – FAIL Think this may have been a bit ambitious, as I only went walking at the weekends before and hit the gym twice a week, but I will persevere 🙂
Decided to consolidate these check-ins to a weekly post instead of the daily ones.
Dairy intake reduced to <250ml – ACHIEVED.
Alcohol reduced to maximum 14 units per week – FAIL. Upside of not going out for a walk is not walking past pubs, but just tipped over Saturday night due to a last minute invite for drinks with friends.
Get out for a walk or cycle every day, including gym days – FAIL No walks and and no gym sessions, but did walk around IKEA for a couple of hours – does that count? Going to have to pull my socks up as my summer holiday is back on!
Dairy intake reduced to <250ml – ACHIEVED. Nice cup of tea in the morning and a lovely flat white from the independent coffee shop in town.
Alcohol reduced to maximum 14 units per week (in line with health guidelines not to exceed 2-3 units per day) – ACHIEVED. Half pint lager and 2 vodka and apple juice spritzers (3.3 units) Overall for week: FAIL (17 units)
Get out for a walk or cycle every day, including gym days – ACHIEVED 5km afternoon walk