Jamie Olivers book ” 30 minute meals”became my cooking bible, when somebody gave it to me as a present 18 month ago.
Trouble is his recipies are full of olive oil and cream and ment for four at least four and they are so delicious that, when there are two of us, instead of freezing half we tended to finish them off.

This plus a chronic undiagnised chest infection over the winter, which kept me off my bike, had resulted in my gaining nearly two stone (28lbs 12.7kg) Michael, who is always on the large side looked like the back of a bus.

So, pictures from my January Paris trip, and my daughters weight loss efforts,  made me finally get the motivation to DO something about it.

But of course, I have been here before. Naturally slim as a young woman, I only piled weight on at the menopause. I fell into the trap of being convinced by images of super slim, airbrushed young  models that skinny is how I should look.

Sporting minimal makeup and tousled hair Kate Moss oozes natural beauty (Yellow dress £22.99)
So over the past twelve years I have lost and then gained weight several times using various diets, usually motivated by a wedding. I have tried faddy crash dieting, (cabbage, egg, Atkins etc)…  made me feel ill.  daily excercise at the gym,…. couldn’t keep it up, takes too much time.. Weight watchers,( Obsessive counting) and  Slimming world  But now myself and all our children are (hopefully!) happily married, I have no wedding outfit.to spur me on.

Slimming world has been the most successful method of loosing weight.  But I didn’t want to trial along every week to pay my £3 or £4 to be weighed and then sit through boring tales of everybody else’s success or failure.  Also having an obsessive nature, I then become obsessed with food, and pile it all back on again.
So I have done my own thing, sort of following Slimming world extra easy principles, which basically mean half my food intake comes from fruit and vegetables a third from lean meat, fish, pulses eggs pasta rice and potatoes. and the rest are small amounts of fat, dairy and the occasional treat..  I have successfully lost a stone (16lbs 6.5 kg)  with another stone to go,  Really it is just a mindset, to eat healthily….. But this week I have fallen off the wagon!

I have eaten  twenty two chocolate snacks that I keep in the cupboard for the grandchildren.  I enjoyed afternoon tea with Janet at the Richmond tea room in Manchester, and we polished off the lot! SO worth the guilt! LOL!

 I have eaten crisps and a fry up!

Mondays weigh in at work will tell the tale!

BUT CONSIDER THIS...Twiggy was always my icon, she is the same age as me and was the supermodel of my youth.

….on the right is the airbrushed picture that appears in magazines and on the left is the real Twiggy, shopping in  her local Marks and Spencer.
Twiggy   Twiggy


Love from Bolton


6 thoughts on “

  1. Oh Denise, I can so relate! I have been battling my weight since I was a teenager. When I went away to university, I gained 20 months in a month from eating unhealthy dorm food that masqueraded as comfort for an 18 year old away from home for the first time. I have lost and gained back that twenty pounds (+ more over each decade) so many times I've lost count. 6 years ago, instead of following another diet, I decided to really change my eating habits, but to keep room for the things I loved, just in moderation. Anyone who knows me or follows my blogs knows that food (and wine) is a major part of our trips. So I compromise ~ I eat 3 well balanced meals a day, one snack (usually yogurt w/fruit), nothing after dinner and try to limit wine to 1 glass 3/4 times a week with dinner. But when we go away, I eat what I want and drink wine with almost every lunch and dinner. I still gravitate to the healthier foods and stay away from processed and deep fried stuff, just because I don't enjoy it anymore. Even with all the walking we do (especially in Paris), I still gain and lose the same 10 pounds a year. Last year was bad ~ more trips = more weight gain, so I have been struggling to lose about 20 pounds since January ~ I'm down 14, but Paris is coming up in 3 weeks, lolI do feel like the struggle has become harder over the last few years since I hit menopause. I wish I had your determination to do some activity such as biking (I really admire you for that).Most of my motivation to lose the weight every year is cheapness ~ I just don't want to buy a new wardrobe, so every year when the pants get just a little too tight, I cut back and get comfortable in them again, just in time for the next trip, and the cycle begins anew. It works for me since I am adamant that I will not give up the food I love when we travel ~ austerity begins at home, lolThank you for sharing these thoughts with us ~ as you can see, I had a lot (too much!) to say about it and I know probably every woman out there does to.And thanks for that picture of Twiggy ~ the actresses (and women) I admire the most are the ones who are not afraid to look their age, whatever that may be.Happy Sunday,Jo


  2. what I actually like about the Twiggy picture is that she obviously has not resorted to surgery, like so many women in her position, who make their living from their looks. Instead she relies on make-up and airbrushing.I laughed at you "cheapness" motivation, because I REFUSE to buy an new summer wardrobe! and that is one of my motivating factors.Last summer, although I had put on weight over the winter, I kept telling myself it would come off over the summer, as it usually does when I am more active. I guess I chose to ignore the evidence from the photos in June and continued to eat far too much. Really it is about getting into the right mindset. I have had a Paris trip and a London trip in this time and still lost weight.Only time will tell if the "mindset" stays. I have eaten "normally" ie. nothing too fattening , today . Tomorrows scales will tell me if I have done any damage.Yes I notice you like food on your blog! LOL! you have the knack of seeking out the best restaurants. but like you I have always avoided processed and fast foods.You have to enjoy some things in life! Love Denise


  3. I can't believe we ate all those sandwiches and scones and cakes! With the chocolate I ate over easter as well I feel as i've gained about half a stone (7 lbs, not sure how many kilos!). I was looking for a couple of new things for my holiday to Crete coming up in 4 weeks and was horrified at the size of my flabby stomach! I went ahead and bought a new dress but I'll either have to starve or wear my firmest bodyshaping underwear! As you say we have to enjoy some things in life, and I like to eat!Love Janet


  4. Denise, I wrote a really long comment about how it was helpful to see the side-by-side photos of Twiggy, how hard it is to feel my metabolism slowing down as menopause approaches and to be tempted by all of the delicious food in Paris, and how I agree with Jo that I don't want to buy a new wardrobe when my old one will fit me just fine if I slow down on the croissant consumption. Anyway, my comment disappeared into cyberspace. So, while this one isn't as long, you get the general gist of what I said in the missing one.But most importantly, don't chastise yourself for enjoying that lovely tea! Good food and good company are some of the things that feed our soul.


  5. Well the good news is my weight was stable yesterday at the weigh in….so I celebrated with a piece of birthday cake that somebody brought to work ….and three chocolate biscuits!Ah well, today is another day! LOL!Love Denise.


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