Wednesday, 6 June 2012

A few of my favourite products

This week I've been trying a few new products, which are pro-points friendly and full of yum.

First up is the Alpro Almond milk. I keep hearing good things about almond milk on Twitter, so I grabbed a carton of it from Morrisons. For those not familiar with it, it's a blend of spring water and roasted almonds that has a distinctly milky texture and look with a slightly sweet and nutty aftertaste. I've been having it in my tea and on its own. There seems to be a bit of confusion with Propoint values on the forum, but the general consensus is that it's 1 for up to 250ml. If you're a big tea or milk drinker, this is certainly worth a try, as that works out better than skimmed milk. Oh and it lasts much longer in the fridge!

Next up is the Weight Watchers Rose wine. This came along in my pack from a couple of weeks ago - and I'm never one to turn down a glass of wine on a hot summer day (remember those days?) It's pleasingly light and fresh, and works well as a spritzer too. It's 2 ProPoints per 125ml glass.

Finally, it's the Express porridge apple & cinnamon pot from Sainsbury's. They're usually on offer, and they're great for a quick breakfast on the go/at work. Just add hot water, stir and eat! This particular flavour is delicious as it has real chunks of apple in it. I know it's not the cheapest or healthiest way to make porridge (around 6 propoints for the whole pot), but it's filling and tasty. Plus, no washing up!

What food finds would you recommend this week?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Weight watchers Mocktail

Weight Watchers mocktail (red grape & pomegranate cordial & Sicilian lemonade) 0pp.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Staying for meetings and new food

New Food!

This morning, bleary eyed and embarrassingly dressed in my worst PJs, I answered the door and signed for a package from Weight Watchers.

In the package, was LOADSAFOOD!

You might have noticed recently that Weight Watchers have undergone a bit of a branding revamp on the packaging front, and it all looks quite uniform and blue now - much easier to spot in the aisles.

The package contains lots of new items, along with a few classics.

Weight Watchers Rose Wine (2PP per 125ml glass)
Weight Watchers Sicilian Lemonade (0PP per 250ml serving)
Weight Watchers Salt & Vinegar Crinkle Crisps (2PP per bag)
Weight Watchers Italian Red Grape & Pomegranate Cordial (0PP per 250ml serving- diluted)
Weight Watchers Hot Chocolate Drink (1PP per serving)
Weight Watchers Milk Chocolate Digestive Biscuits (1PP per biscuit)
Weight Watchers Ginger & Lemon Cookies (2PP per 2 cookies
Weight Watchers Individual Carrot Cakes (3PP per cake)
Weight Watchers Nacho Cheese Tortillas (2PP per bag)
Weight Watchers Mini Lemon Cupcake Mix (1PP per mini cupcake)
Weight Watchers Petits Pains (3PP per Petit pain)
Weight Watchers Bagels (4PP per bagel)
Garlic & Coriander Naan Bread (4PP per half naan)

I've tried the rose wine, carrot cakes and bagels before, and none of them tasted like 'diet food', so hopefully the same will be true for the rest. The cupcake mix will come in handy when I want to do some baking but don't want to lose all my weekly points. I'll be interested to see how easy it is to stick to their suggested portion size for each cake though.

I'll keep you updated with how I get on with the rest. I have a feeling the bagels and petits pains will be particular good for lunches

Staying for meetings
Onto meetings now. I've been going back to meetings for the last couple of weeks, and I'm really enjoying them.  So much so that yesterday I ended up turning up an hour early (serves me right for not checking my diary), and ended up helping out with weighing.

Y'know all that stuff they tell us about how people who stay on for the talk after weigh in do better? It's true. So far, the biggest lightbulb moment I've had at a meeting is that I often put other people's eating requirements before my own. For example, if I'm cooking dinner for me and the fiancé, I'll think about what he'll like before thinking about my points. Or if I go out with friends, I'll go in for whatever they want to do because I don't want to be the diet bore that's no fun to socialise with.

So last week I switched that. I'm cooking with points in mind, and Pete then either eats what I'm having, or makes something himself - which he's happy with! It seems to have worked, as I dropped another 1.5lbs and fitted back into a dress I haven't worn for 6 months. It feels like there are less challenges since adopting that approach too.

While those big bombshells are great, sometimes it's the little tips too you pick up from your leader or other members. For example: those pots of Weight Watchers fruit are long as you drain them. Otherwise they're 2PP. Oops!

Do you go to, and stay for, meetings? Has it helped you?

Disclaimer: While Weight Watchers do send me products to test, I do not get paid for this and all opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Going back to meetings

Last week, my mum and I dragged our (cake-filled) bottoms down to our local WeightWatchers meeting and joined up (again). As much as the online tools are helpful, I really do need the kick up the arse that a weekly weigh in gives me. It's not the first time we've joined meetings, but we usually skip the chats afterwards, so we're trying to stay for them all this time.

It seems to have worked so far this week, and this morning's weigh in showed a loss of 2lbs. Despite a badly judged meal on Friday.

The type of leader seems to make a big difference. Our leader in Bracknell, Vicky, is young and friendly - and sends out mid-week newsletters to give us all a little motivation. That said, in the past I've been to meetings with less-than-friendly leaders, who make you feel like you're going to get yelled at if you put on rather than giving you a bit of a motivating chat.

As May is Move More month, I'm trying to fit more exercise into my routine. I'm going back to freelancing full time from June, and only working in the office on Mondays this month, so it should be a little bit easier. In theory. Here's what I've tried in the last couple of weeks:

  • Body Combat: Fun and shouty, lots of kicking and punching. Lots of walking like John Wayne the next day.
  • Body Balance: Yoga/Pilates/Lycra-wearing-flawless-people class. Not for me. I prefer classes where it doesn't matter if I look a bit of a prat at the back with my mate. I certainly felt a bit of a prat when I fell over mid-praying mantis (praying mantis? swooning swan? Maybe I should have paid more attention). 
  • Lots of walking: Our WW leader gave us a list of little exercises you can fit in throughout your day, so I've been trying to park further and do little walks at lunch. She also pointed out that she lost weight twice, and lost it twice as fast exercising. Sounds obvious, but quite a motivator when there's a wedding dress deadline looming.
  • Doing the odd bit of dancing on the XBox 360 Kinnect. I actually do a pretty good job of convincing myself I'm badass...until the photos pop up at the end.  Ah the shame.
I want to do BodyJam next. Move over Beyonce.

Still a way to go, but after BodyPump I did get that feel good feeling which lasted a few days. Maybe there's something in this exercise malarky. I'm looking forward to the sunshine though, for some longer walks. 

Weight Watchers have done a little survey all about laziness in the UK that makes interesting reading, and they've made it into an infographic. 

Can't. Get. Enough. Of. Infographics. 

I've done everything on that list of symptoms of laziness at some point or other. 

They're running a little campaign this month too, where you can sign up for Move More, add a Twibbon to your Twitter pic and be in with a chance of a £100 spa trip. 

Have you got any good suggestions for exercise? I think I can safety say that, despite all the evangelists trying to persuade me, running is not for me. I'll leave that to my super-fit sister (who's doing Mount Kilimanjaro next year. I know, right?)

Also, does anyone have any good suggestions for lunches? Now that I'll be at home more I want to experiment with some new dishes that are filling AND low in points. 

Monday, 9 April 2012

Is taking a diet holiday worth it?

Last week, I took a week off the diet. I know, I know! It's a lifestyle, not a diet. But thanks to birthday celebrations, a strange week at work and Easter, it seemed to make more sense to give myself a break from stressing about food then adding pressure to the week.

I put on a couple of lbs last week thanks to that break, so I've probably postponed the stress rather than giving myself a rest. I'm not surprised, as there were several meals out, several glasses of wine (I rarely drink usually) and next to no exercise. But I actually think that taking a break sometimes is a good idea. It gives you time to rethink your goals, re-evaluate how bad some foods make you feel (a week-long headache would suggest that it really is best for me to keep the chocolate and fizzy drink consumption to a minimum) and look at how you can improve.

Diet and Fitness buddy

One of the other things to happen in the last couple of weeks, is that Pete's best friend (and Best Man) and his girlfriend have moved just round the corner. It means I've got a workout buddy three minutes walk away - so we're going to hit a dance class this week and squeeze in some walking. I've shamefully avoided exercise this year, aside from some Xbox dancing, so I'm looking forward to getting moving.

All four of us are trying to shift some weight, so it's a good opportunity to have some healthy dinner parties too. There's a new app on the Weight Watchers Facebook app that lets you plan a healthy supper and invite guests in one go. They've got 60 recipes so there's plenty to choose from.

There are some screen grabs below if you want to see how it works.

Lisa Faulkner is the face of the supper clubs, and she'll be involved in a Thai Green Curry ‘cook-a-long’ on Thursday 12th April at 7pm on the Weight Watchers’ Facebook page.

Do you like the idea of a supper club? Or would you rather organise one yourself? Let me know in the comments.

p.s I've also been busy saving my favourite recipes into an album on my iPad, to create a directory of my favourite meals and help me plan future weekly eating plans easier. Do you have any geeky ways to help with your weight loss?

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Weight Watchers Pinterest board

I've had the snuffles. Like half of you have I'd imagine. I wouldn't mind, but this is the third cold I've had so far in 2012, and I'm eating ALL THE FRUIT AND VEGETABLES. And a daily multi-vitamin. Last year however, when my diet was less than nutritious, I seemed to dodge every cold doing the rounds. Go figure.

Anyway, this is just a quick post to let you know about a Pinterest board I've created for Weight Watcher recipes, which you can find here.

It's a collaborative board, so if you want to add your finds to the board leave a comment on this post and I'll add you.

Are you a Pinterest addict?

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Weight Watchers Porridge/Breakfast Oats, and Weigh In

So, the dreaded weigh in.

Actually I wasn't particularly dreading weigh in this week. I'd stuck to my daily ProPoints this week, squeezed in some exercise and upped my fruit and veg intake. Saturday wasn't the healthiest as we had dinner with friends, but then I guess that's what those weekly ProPoints are for.

I've lost 1lb, which I'm pleased with. That basically means that in theory I'll hit my target weight by the end of the year. Slow and steady wins the race (and fits into the cute dress)

One of the things that I've been enjoying this week, and has helped with reducing my daily ProPoints, is the Weight Watchers Porridge. I tend to have porridge a lot, either the sachet ones at home or those microwave pots at work. They're filling, but usually around 5-6 ProPoints.

The Weight Watchers Porridge is just 3 ProPoints, and because it's sweet you don't need to add much on top. I used a banana, but blueberries work really well too. To prepare it, just fill a large bowl with 150ml of cold water (I fill the empty packet up to where 'Breakfast Oats' starts if I don't have a measuring jug) and the Breakfast Oats. Pop it in the microwave for around a minute and a half (depending on the power), stir, then microwave for another minute.

A word of warning though:  Keep an eye on it when it's in the microwave. I didn't, and was left scraping it off the microwave when I misjudged the timing. Porridge in general is like the concrete of the food world, once it dries it won't budge.

What are your favourite low ProPoint finds this week?