Tag Archives: berocca

My Top 10 Tips for Fitness and Weightloss

I’m no expert, or fitness/nutrition professional (so, clearly, these are just my opinions & observations of my own journey), but I have managed to shed over 4stone and drop almost 4 dress sizes, since January – and you know what, it really hasn’t been that difficult!

Here are my top 10 tips on how to get fit and lose/maintain weightloss:

  1. Get in the ‘zone’;

There is absolutely no point you reading any further if you are not 100% ready to do this. You need to look at your end goals and how you want to achieve them. If you want to starve yourself for 3 days and hope that it works, it won’t, you’re doing it wrong.

Look at yourself like a car – you need fuel to function, so starving or heavily restricting your diet is rubbish, you will just eat away at any muscle you have & store fat, so it’s a lose lose situation. Work out why you want to lose weight. For me, I was fed up of looking like a lard meatball, a flabby, unrecognisable heap of my former self (for the record, I have NEVER been ‘skinny, but I could at least shop in the high street stores before!).

You also need to move to keep working. Think of the last time you saw a car that has been parked up for an age – rusty, bits fallen off, won’t start – yup, you want to avoid that scenario where possible! My goal has never been to be ‘thin’ it is to be healthy, and that is where the difference lies.

2. Be time efficient;

“I don’t have time to exercise”

“I’m too busy”

“It’s too hot/too cold”

“I’m tired”

I definitely used to say these, there was always a good ‘reason’ as to why I was fat and why I didn’t do any exercise. Well, here is the answer to those ‘reasons’:

“Those that really want to do something find a way; those that don’t, find an excuse”

Occasionally, I find myself trying to think of excuses to get out of running, doing a workout or cycling, but you know what? Nothing is MAKING me do any of it, I CHOSE to do it, so I don’t have to get up and move my ass, but if I don’t, what would make me get up the next time? I find that excuses lead to excuses. Don’t get me wrong, it is good to have rest days, you don’t have to kill yourself every day, but think of even walking to the shops as a mini workout – just get moving a bit every day.

Get up half an hour earlier and do a workout. Do a mini workout whilst watching the TV in the evening. Do some weights or squats when you’ve got 5minutes spare (& yes, EVERYONE has at least 5 spare minutes in a day – even ‘very busy’ people). Ride a stationary bike whilst reading a book.

Find. The. Time.

3. Fuel yourself;

It is so important to eat right if you want to change & if you want to see any kind of results. I do do quite a bit of exercise now (you wouldn’t have read that from me last year!!), but if I was still drinking a bottle of wine a night and eating take out every day, I wouldn’t see much change. You need to take a holistic approach to it, so food and fitness go together.

Don’t restrict your foods or calories drastically, you will fail, or make yourself ill. The biggest annoyance for me is when people say, “oooh, which diet are you on?!” – well, I’m not on any diet. I can eat whatever I want, I just eat less & I try to make good food choices, for example:

WANT CRISPS – have some popcorn

WANT CHOCOLATE – have a cocoa nakd bar

WANT WINE – have sparkling water

WANT CHIPS – make carrot chips, or, just have a half portion of chips if you really really want them.

I also give myself ‘cheat days’ – typically at the weekend, because we usually see friends or family, so I can have wine, I can eat chips, I can have dessert, I can have cocktails and cheese, but you know what, I just eat less than I would have done when I was bigger and I try to offset it with exercise.

I also try to really focus on eating more protein – I’d rather have 2 helpings of protein and then either none or a half helping of carbs – I’m not on a low carb scheme or anything, but I KNOW that protein will help to keep me full and will help with building and retaining muscle tone, in combination with exercise. (I ADORE QUEST & CLIF BARS!!)

4. Gear yourself up;

If you are totally serious about getting fit, then there are a few things that I would totally recommend buying or downloading:

  • myfitnesspal app (free) – allows really easy tracking of foods and nutrition, tailored to your weight and goals
  • fitbit (£) – I have a flex, it is BRILLIANT – read my review here
  • 30 day shred DVD (£) – I CANNOT recommend this highly enough
  • freeletics app (free version) – for when you have been working out for a little while!!
  • a piece of gym equipment (£) – I have a stationary bike and a crosstrainer. I would totally recommend getting a little fold up exercise bike, not too costly (especially if you grab it in a sale, or secondhand)
  • get some hand weights (£) – you’ll need these for 30 day shred anyway, but you can use them independently, you know, for your 5minute workout.
  • enter a race (£) – set yourself a real challenge. Race for life is a good starting point. I completed my first last month – read about it here.

5. Hydrate;

Water. Just drink lots of water. You don’t need energy drinks, you need good food & lots of water (and sometimes a berocca tablet!).

6. Dump the Car and Move it;

Quit driving everywhere. Use your legs to walk. Walk to the shops, carry your shopping back in a rucksack!

My 3 year old can walk pretty far now as we traipse about everywhere, plus, we get to have silly chats on the way.

If you have to drive to work, park further from the building, use the stairs. Get off the bus a few stops early etc etc. See everything as a possible challenge. Do it. Move it.

7. Donate or sell your ‘fat clothes’;

Every time I try on some clothing that is too big, I put it in a charity shop pile. When I get a nice little stack of clothes together, I take them round to our local charity shop. This takes away my safety blanket, I can’t get bigger again, because I’ll have no clothes & I really really don’t want to have to buy bigger sizes again. Plus, it’s always good to give to charity, much better than chucking them out or hoarding them in the loft! 😉

If they are fancy or expensive clothes, you could also try your hand at selling them, then using the money you make to buy new, smaller clothes.

8. Involve your friends and family;

It is much easier to stay on track with your new lifestyle, if everyone around you is involved. I’m not suggestion that you get Grandma up and running a marathon with you, but she might like a stroll (or push, if she is in a wheelchair) around the park.

Feed your family whatever you were planning to eat – my hardened carnivore of a husband, now actually likes ‘meat-free meat’ and tofu, my 3 year old will eat fruit and vegetables till the cow comes home!

Get outside as much as you can. See if your sister or brother want to come with you to a race, even if it is just to spectate.

The more you all move about, the easier and more natural it becomes 🙂

9. Don’t Beat Yourself Up;

Remember, YOU are the one that is choosing to do this, NO ONE is forcing you. If you choose to have a day off, then do. If you choose to eat an entire chocolate bar, then fine – your choice. But try to look at things in the long-run. If having a rest, or eating something a bit naughty & delicious will stop you from reaching your end goal completely, then don’t do it, but, hey, we’re all allowed a day off here and there.

This is a lifestyle, NOT a temporary diet.

Which leads me on to…

10. Never, ever, ever quit;

Progress is progress, no matter how slow. But quitting will stop you from reaching your goals, always.

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New Series: In Your Cupboard

Welcome to the new series, all about the secrets that are hidden in everyone’s cupboards.

First, I’ll share what I have hiding behind the cupboard doors in my kitchen – letting you in on all my super buys, must haves, ‘can’t live withouts’ and recommendations – then, we’ll take a look through your cupboards… if you want to share, that is!

I’ve already got a few awesome people lined up to share what they stash in their kitchens. I can’t wait to show them to you. If you are someone that enjoys keeping fit or is trying to lose weight and you’d like to get involved, just drop me a message through the contact form on the ‘about‘ page & we’ll get you linked up!

In The Twisted Swede’s Cupboards…

Charlie's CupboardSo, I have cupboards that are rammed with stuff. Some normal, some not so normal. Some delicious, some not so delicious…

I really love cooking, it gives me headspace. The basis of my cupboard contents is trying to have a good selection of healthy foods, things that can be used as a basis or an addition to something bigger. I ALWAYS have berocca, chia seeds, a selection of nuts and seeds, crackers, flax seed, peanut butter, honey & dried mushrooms in the cupboard – these are what sit along side other cupboard staples such as decent olive oil, vinegars, salt and pepper, soy sauce etc. I’ve got powders such as sprirulina and wheatgrass to add to smoothies and yoghurts too (though, if I’m honest, I use these because I know they are good for me, not because of the way they taste!!). I try to buy lots of organic and raw items that are kept in the cupboard, these usually last pretty well, so won’t get chucked out straight away when I’ve forgotten to use them! Amongst other things to try, you should all get some virgin coconut oil, some crystallized coconut (awesome sugar sub) and a whole bunch of medjool dates *drool*.

cupboard4cupboardI have a heap of spices – too many to fit in the cupboard, possible spice buying problem… I just love spices. I have no idea how people can cook without them. These two pics, probably show half my spice collection, but I don’t want you to think I’m totally nuts! If you are a spice virgin, then you should definitely have cinnamon, cumin, corriander, smoked paprika, nutmeg and a few herbs kicking about – if you don’t have these, go buy them now, your tastebuds will LOVE you for it. Also, please go and invest in some sea salt & throw away the table salt – that stuff is only good for sprinkling on an icy footpath! If you are a seasoned (HA!) spice buyer and user, then you should definitely try to source dried mango powder (so sweet and delicious), furikake (a sesame and seaweed based seasoning), and DEFINITELY go and hit up ‘the spice shop’ in Brighton – honest to god, I had a real kid-in-a-sweet-shop- moment in this place. I have never seen so many amazing spices, I could have spent all day (and all my money) in there, but I reservedly bought 4 blends – with the cute yellow tins – and then dreamt about the rest of the shop all the way home!

cupboard3The other bit of my stock pile, though, not strictly a cupboard, more of a snack basket, is rammed with deliciousness. I have a heap of protein bars and balls. I’ve got seed bars, flapjacks, tonnes of nakd bars and quest bars. THIS basket is what stops me from reaching for crisps, sweets, wine, chocolate. There is nothing wrong with snacking, just make sure that the snack has some worth to it. Where I would once have reached for a bag of pick n mix when I felt like a snack and then hit the sugar crash later, I now look for something that will provide me with some nutrition, whilst being filling and a good source of energy.

So there you, go, those are my cupboards – or a snapshot of them at least. I do also have the usual stuff like baked beans, marmite, tinned tuna and dried pasta, but that is not quite as exciting!

So, do you have what it takes to throw open the cupboard doors and let us have a good rummage? Send me your pics, your staples, your must haves and your recommendations & show us all how you eat.

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