Lover of make-up, good food, fine wine, heavy weights and sleeping…

Tagged in: Diet

Slow carb dieting with Tim Ferriss and The Four Hour Body

If you’re a fan of Orange is the New Black on Netflix, you may have picked up the Four Hour Body references. You may also have wondered what they’re all about. If so, you’re about to have your mind officially blown.

The Four Hour Body is a book by the legend of time management Mr Tim Ferriss. The book contains everything from how to perfect your sex life, to the ins and outs of ice baths. Dang! But for the majority of people who read this book, they do so for the infamous Slow Carb Diet.

This style of eating is mind boggling. I’ve used this diet on several occasions. Usually when I have limited time to fit into a bikini. In a nutshell, the Slow Carb diet requires you to eat low carbohydrate vegetables, lean protein, eggs and legumes for six days. No sugar whatsoever! This is followed by the elusive and all important cheat day. A day where you can eat chocolate for lunch and cake for dinner. This is then followed by another six days of hardcore bean action. You get the idea.

But is it a diet which can be a lifestyle? Or is it another fad?


New Year, New You

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic festive period and didn’t overindulge too much like I did. Traditional Boxing Day trifle went down a treat this year, just like every other year before it, and the wine carafe was always full, just like every weekend before it since 2005.

I bet my right arm (and you can keep it, because I hate my bingo wings) that everyone is having a health kick this January. Are you weighing your Special K and counting the calories in your morning coffee? Yeah, you’re on a health kick. It’s either one of your New Years resolutions or you’re just trying to ease back into the way life was before buy one get one free mince pies in Asda. And I’m no different. I too am on a health kick, but a different kind of health kick than usual.

Pushing yourself too hard can reverse the desired outcome.

Studies have shown that most people break their healthy New Years resolutions by January 5th. Any diet resolution which forces you to eat peanut butter out the jar at 1am on a Thursday morning is not a great resolution, and the reason why most people are forced to break their resolutions is because they are unrealistic. If you set yourself a booze free January then you’re just going to end up sucking chocolate liquers and crying into your cranberry juice. A better way to ensure you are becoming healthier is to make it gradual. Instead of a booze free month, go for four booze free days a week, or only drink at weekends. Immediately the goal is achievable and it is still bringing you a little bit closer to good health.

Another resolution which is high on most people’s charts is the ‘I’m going to the gym every day after work and I’m gonna be so buff’. So you sign up on a £50 a month contract for a year and jog to the gym in your new lycra ready to sweat. But come the end of your second week, you’re exhausted, malnutritioned and you’ve gained 3lbs. Oh, did you hear that? It was the sound of a cork popping on a bottle of wine. Bang! Two resolutions broken in week two. Common knowledge with us humans is that if we over exert ourselves into something then we soon bore ourselves of it and lose interest completely. If you’re going to join a gym, then start by going three times a week for about an hour and eating a good diet to justify the gym. If you overdo it, you’ll quit. And the weight gain will be because you’ve gained muscle, your body thinks you’re starving because you’re over working it and not eating enough, you’re retaining water, you’re menstruating or you haven’t pooped since Christmas Eve. Three times a week, that’s all you need to do to make a difference to your physical health.

And the same goes for your diet. Don’t restrict your calories too much, because most likely you’ll be cutting your intake from the past two weeks by over two thirds which will instantly tell your body it’s starving and your body will instantly try to store everything you eat. Be sensible. Instead of eating cabbage soup for a month, which lets face it, will only last until Monday lunchtime, just cut the crap. Sweets, desserts, starchy carbs like bread and white pasta and fizzy drinks, or even one or two of these will make a difference to your health and you’re much more likely to stick to the plan.

So although I’m sitting here sipping on a small glass of Chianti, it’s all part of my eating plan for the month, which I have been sticking to. If you want to know about said eating plan then you’ll need to read my next post. Until then, stay healthy.

The Eureka Diet Moment

Fat Lissa

Pre Diet Jacket

Something we are all guilty of is keeping old clothes at the back of our wardrobes for years, even decades

Of course, everyone does it for different reasons. Some do it in case Burberry style printed skirts from Internacionale come back onto the catwalk. Others are terrified to part with silk shirts which house shoulder pads that would make Joan Collins cringe, just in case their ever longed invite to the Dynasty set comes through the letterbox postmarked 1985.

Then there are people like me. Whose wardrobe at my childhood home plays homage to my formerly fat self. Or just now, my formerly fatter self. Size 24 coats and my sixth year prom dress which now sits perfectly around my ankles. As I’ve put on a bit of weight in my new job, a trip home was a perfect excuse to remind myself of just how far I’ve come in my body makeover. Unfortunately I didn’t account for the fact that I might just come across my lovely Topshop size 12 red winter coat which I got for Christmas two years ago. Ohhh, I immediately wondered if I could squeeze it into my suitcase to take back to Leeds. Now, the last time I tried this coat on it was too big and I had to wear a really thick scarf to make it look normal on me. But nothing prepared me for how tiny it was when I eventually got it on. And that was my eureka moment. I can’t keep being this ‘comfortable’ with my life, because if I’m not careful I’m going to turn back into the lifeless girl I used to be and I don’t want to be her anymore. Tomorrow, on the train back to Leeds, I’m going to devise a training and diet plan for the run up to Christmas.

I’ll post details and keep you updated. But for now, stay healthy and don’t give into the smell of Greggs sausage rolls.


Mum’s Healthy Lentil Soup

As the dark nights draw in and the wilted, brown leaves fall from the trees (and get stuck in our windscreen wipers), I don’t know about you, but I find that dry tuna salads and shop bought sarnies don’t quite cut the mustard when it comes to lunch time. By the time I hang up my headset at 1pm on a Monday, I’m desperate for something comforting and warming.

A few weeks ago I was back home in Scotland and I asked my mum to teach me how to make her famously tasty lentil soup in time for the cold November days and I feel I should share it as it is low fat, high protein and incredibly easy to make. And the best thing about this soup is that it’s packed to the brim with slow carb lentils which fill you up until dinner and mean that you do not need any bread with it. D’yall hear that bread munchers? Put down the Hovis…

Make a big batch of it on a Sunday evening and your lunches are sorted for the week. And, best of all, it’s well cheap to make. Bargain!


Lunches sorted for the week!

Lean, smoked ham joint / ham hough (optional)

4 large carrots

2 large potatoes

1 large onion

300g lentils

chopped parsley

vegetable stock powder

salt and pepper

2 litres boiling water approx

Cooking Instructions

1. Place your ham hough or joint into a soup pot and cover with boiling water and a few whole peppercorns. Simmer the ham for 1.5 hours or until the ham is cooked. Once cooked, remove  and wrap in foil to rest whilst you prepare the rest of the soup. If you’re a vegetarian, just make up 2 litres of vegetable stock.

2. Grate your carrots, potato and onion and add to the stock, along with your lentils and a tablespoon of vegetable stock (if you’re making the vegetarian version you don’t need extra stock). Cook the soup for about 30 minutes, or a bit longer if you like it mushy like me, and take it off the heat.

3. If you’re making the meaty version, shred and cut up the ham, taking care to cut off any fat, and add to the soup.

4. Finally chop your parsley and add to the soup.

5. Season and enjoy!