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Guilt ...

'Food, love, career, and mothers, the four major guilt groups.'
Cathy Guisewite

'oh I shouldn't have eaten that' ... moaning as I lick the last crumbs of Hob Nob off my lips... 'well its done now.. no point in worrying about it...' comes the advice from a skinny pal ... but its not that easy... Already the pangs of guilt, not hunger are in the pit of my stomach...

Lately I've find myself feeling guilty about lots of things... my career, failing to keep in touch with old friends, from not doing the housework, to not exercising, to losing weight..and also with food... that uncontrollable, miserable, ricocheting guilt about what I've eaten..

But what's the point of feeling bad? It doesn't appear to make me a better person, in fact it makes me more a fretful, unhappy one. So its time for a guilt detox!

Everyday we're bombarded with information about how to have the perfect body, lose 10lbs to that bikini body in 5 minutes, how to find your ideal man, maintain relationships and have a great career... and we think we can do it all... when we can't, it hits us.. I'm a failure, pass the biscuit tin! What's the point anyway....

The purpose of guilt is that we can fix things, that's HEALTHY guilt, but its pointless when there's nothing that can be fixed by it!

So how do we ease up on ourselves...

Firstly... ask yourself.. are you trying to live up to someone else's values? You might feel guilty about something you THINK you should do, rather than something you truely believe in! Its your life.. live by your rules..

Secondly - show yourself a little compassion... imagine a friend had just eaten that hob nob .... how would you react? You'd show a little empathy... 'its only a biscuit' ... no one put on a stone eating one Hob Nob! Guilt is a conceited emotion, because you think you should behave better than other people.. if you set your standards so high, you can only expect to fail and feel bad about yourself. How would you react if you went round to a friends house and they apologised for the mess? You'd realise they have a busy life with the hoovering and dusting coming last! You'd understand.. anyway you went to see THEM, so give yourself a break!

Lastly - remember we're all only human! No one is perfect! We make mistakes, we're fallible.. move along.. you can't change the past .. just focus on the here and now..

So stick that Hob Nob on the tracker... and here's to a guilt free week!

This week - 20 minutes

The food here is terrible, and the portions are too small.
Woody Allen

20 minutes... that's how long it takes for your brain to realise you're full! 20 minutes... Being a human hoover and loving my grub I can honestly say there have been many times when the button on my jeans have been in danger of taking someones eye out! Tonight's class was all about portion control...

It's all well and good polishing your halo and giving yourself a pat on the back when you've had the healthiest dinner ever.. but when you hop on the scales and you don't get the loss you thought you would .. hand on heart.. did you really have 3 PP worth of mash or was it more like 5 at a glance...

Sadly its really simple... over eat and you're overweight... and knowing you're portion sizes is the key. Sometimes it's best to go back to basics and weigh everything out, both cooked and raw .... When I feel like I'm being heavy handed I weigh out individual portions of rice and pasta and put them in freezer bags so I know exactly what I'm eating... and once you've done this a few times you will be able to measure by eye... but its an exercise that you need to do if you feel like you're eating correctly but not getting the results you deserve.

And remember you're only fooling yourself! If you want results then you'll do what's best for your body!

Remember we eat with our eyes so here's some of our leaders top tips!

1. Eat slowly
Enjoy your meal. Its not a race. Give your body time to give you the signal that you are satisfied.

2. Forget what your mother said!

You don’t have to clean your plate and always try to have some room in your appetite at the end of a meal. Just because the restaurant gave you that portion size doesn't mean you HAVE to eat it all!

3. Use a smaller plate
Most people use a large dinner plate, which means usually too much food. To encourage smaller portions, try using a smaller dinner plate instead of a large plate and remember this applies to men, women and children.

4. Fill half of your dinner plate with vegetables or salad
Try not to fill your plate with potatoes, rice or pasta - these should only make up about one quarter of the food on your plate. For example, one serving of pasta = 3 dessertspoons/2 tablespoons.

5. Eat a piece of raw fruit before lunch and dinner
This will help you to eat a little less, as well as helping you on your way to having 5-a-day of fruit and vegetables. If you have a small bowl of fat-free vegetable soup before meals, you can achieve the same thing.

6. Never eat until you feel full
You will stop feeling hungry long before you feel full - it takes 20 minutes for your brain to register it is full. ‘Filling’ your stomach means you are eating too much. Always leave some room in your stomach at the end of a meal. If you are forcing yourself to finish, you are eating too much.

7. Choose snacks that are packaged in individual portions
These can stop you from eating large portions from bigger packs. These are also great for lunches. You know exactly how many ProPoints you've had throughout the day.

8. Eat just one large meal every day
If you’re having a large meal at lunch then think of it as your main meal and have a smaller portion in the evening. Likewise, if you know you’re going out for a meal in the evening choose something smaller at lunch. Try to balance your portion sizes throughout the day

9. Know when to miniaturize it!
Go for ‘small’ food portions at the cinema or in a fast-food restaurant. These are normally still generous portions.

WEIGH IN 3 - 2012

Clearly when you do it ... it works!!! First silver 7 of 2012!

onwards and downwards
Doll x

PPPOTD: Ready to go soup!

I think of New York as a puree and the rest of the United States as vegetable soup.
Spalding Gray

Not all soups are created equal!

You know that moment.. on a Sunday evening when you realise.. work tomorrow.. what have I got for my lunch? That whole 'planning' thing didn't quite work out the way you had hoped and the last thing you want to do is start peeling and chopping, and you've just about had your fill of zero point soup ... so here's the latest in take away soups you can pick up that won't break the ProPoints Bank! Plus they all come in microwavable tubs so one will last you two days in the office!

GLORIOUS Skinny Goan Spiced Tomato and Lentil Soup 1PP per 100g (600g per tub)

GLORIOUS Skinny New England Butternut Squash 1PP per 100g (600g per tub)

GLORIOUS Skinny Azteca Mexican Soup 1PP per 100g (600g per tub)

GLORIOUS Tuscan Chicken & Chirozo 1PP per 100g (600g per tub)

GLORIOUS Thai Chicken 2PP per 100g (600g per tub)

DUNNES STORES Chicken & Veg Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

DUNNES STORES Prawn & Salmon Chowder 2PP per 100g (400g per tub)

CULLY & SULLY Winter Veg Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

CULLY & SULLY Pea & Mint Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

CULLY & SULLY Veg Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

CULLY & SULLY Creamy Tomato & Basil Soup 2PP per 100g (400g per tub)

CULLY & SULLY Honey, Carrot & Coriander Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

Larragh Carrot, Lemongrass and Creme Fraiche Soup 1PP per 100g (400g per tub)

EDIT - These are ProPointed per 100g which would be a small serving. The PP for whole 400g/600g can be more than 4/6 PP so be sure to PP as per the packs if you're having more that this ... Thanks Dee!

WEIGH IN 2 - 2012

Week 2 .. and down half a pound... yes I did the 'eye roll' and tutted muchly but I was then made hold a half pound of fat for the class (I NEVER learn!) and I was more than delighted to hand it up when class was over! Down is down and still in the right direction .. and paw up.. I didn't exercise as much as I normally do .. onwards and downwards... Doll x

Love letters....

"There must be millions of people all over the world who never get any love letters... I could be their leader." Charlie Brown

There comes a moment doesn't there.. you get all deep and meaningful... all touchy feely... all sorry for yourself.. you need a little belief... you need to physically see that you can make it... the journey is worth it... and life is to be lived day to day... recently I was chatting to a fellow weight loss pal and when she wants to get things out of her head.. she writes a letter.. to herself... now you might think this the first step to crazy town... but trust me I'm on my second and it kinda works...

Now there are different kinds of letters, some just soul searching, some talking to your 'future' self, and whilst some may think its a lot of mumbo jumbo, it can take all the nonsense floating in your head and get it out of there, and you can be surprised at how you really feel about things, its a good way to vent... all the blogs in the world are testament to that!

Many people write a letter to their 'future' selves... you know.. To Doll 17th January 2013.... what would she say ... 'congrats Doll... you lost 20lbs and finished that online course finally!' which once you write it down... its out there! The experts say its more likely to happen and none of your digital stuff either.. get the pen and paper out, as they say, you're worth it .. seal the envelope and write the opening date on the front! Try it ... who doesn't love a bit of post....

Dear Me,

Try and love yourself for the right reasons, not to fuel your ego but to feed your soul. Trust your family, and set firm boundaries with your friends, always be kind to those who truly love you.

I believe in you, your uniqueness. Things are not as bad as you think they are... embrace how you look... I love the way you dye your hair crazy colours and lip synch every single memorised lyric. How you dance around the kitchen to songs you'd never admit to knowing! Your sense of humour... Its what makes you.. YOU! It's why your friends love you...

Everyone wants a piece of you... they have their own ideas of who you should be... you are an emotional creature, don't fall into that trap... you can't please everyone and more importantly don't put yourself under any pressure to keep them happy! You're in control of your life, satisfy your own imagination, take responsibility for who you are. Learn the difference between pleasing and loving, obeying and respecting.

Believe in your abilities - don't be too hard on yourself. There's more to you than weight loss... Don't allow fear and insecurity to take over. try not to fall so deeply in love. You have so much to do in life, so learn how to be happy in your own company, without relying on someone else to fill the void in your heart.

Remember, if you live life well in the present, you will have a beautiful past to look back on.

Love ... Me xxx

This week - Why are you here?

Many of us spend half our time wishing for things we could have if we didn't spend half our time wishing - Alexander Woollcott

This weeks meeting was packed.. jammers.. full till the lads had to all stand down the back as we ran out of seats.. and, appropriately, it was all about motivation.. you could smell it in the room! The class weigh loss was over 7 stone!!!! That's a whole person! and after all the rewards were dished out.. we were asked one question... Why are you here? Why did you leave your cosy homes on a dark cold January night to sit in a cold school hall and confess your weakness to food?

There are many reasons why people follow weight watchers... some of the members had had the 'talk' with a doctor which gave them the kick up the pants they needed.. there are 4 brides in the class who have fittings and dresses to get into... their entourage all want to look lovely on the big day... some are aiming at summer holidays, some want to get pregnant and want to be healthier mums... some just need the weekly check in to stay on track... some want to look amazing for the summer and are just sick of feeling lethargic and bblllaaahhhhh!

but what happens when the motivation wanes... week 4.. 5... motivation can evaporate so easily unless you have your goals set out... so allow me to refer you to this...


Even doing one of these .. can keep you on the straight an narrow...

It's not a race.. its a journey.. and everyone is going at a different pace.. and on their own path... we're all going in the same direction but the trick is to keep going and not lose momentum! We're all in it this lardy boat together! Doll x

WEIGH IN 1 - 2012

First weigh in for 2012... starting back after a VERY good Christmas thank you very much... too good! ...So, what did I do? Simple.. I followed the program... ate healthily... and got my bottom in gear ... finally! A happy result... if I could lose the same amount every week I'd be at goal in no time! Doll x

New Year.... Old tips...

People are so worried about what they eat between Christmas and the New Year, but they really should be worried about what they eat between the New Year and Christmas. ~Author Unknown

So its all over... spring in on the way and we're all focused on our goals again and WILL NOT be distracted by tins of roses or "just one" drinkie! This weight loss lark isn't easy we tell ourselves.. but you know what ... for most of us it is! We just lose sight of our goals, allow ourselves to be lead down a 'merry' path... but for those of us who have lost weight, the same weight.. over and over again... its just a matter of not losing the run of ourselves and remembering how we got here in the first place... grab a cuppa and see if any of these strike a cord!

1. First, start with the big picture.
Write down your goals and be specific. What do you want to change?
Where do you want to be a year from now? Get it on paper!

2. Next, focus on the details.
Every day we make dozens of tiny decisions that can spell the
difference between whether we lose weight or gain.
Do you pick the muesli for breakfast or the chocolate muffin?
Do you spend 20 minutes on the couch or 20 minutes on a brisk walk?
Small changes can add up to huge results.

3. Start exercising - no matter what your fitness level.
Even if you can only shuffle to the end of the street,
you will gradually build up the distance and speed...
Don't compare yourself to others, just work within your limits
and take it slow and steady...

4. Eat breakfast.
A wholesome breakfast makes you feel smug, satisfied and
determined to stay on track all day... trust me!
My favourite is porridge/oatmeal, livened up with grated apple and cinnamon,
or chopped banana, nom, nom, nom!

5. Be kind to yourself and your body.
You don’t have to look in the mirror and chant, “I love me! I am beautiful!”
but at the same time yelling at your thighs won’t encourage
your weight loss efforts...

6. Make your treats miniature.
Instead of banning dessert, choose smaller portions –
like an apple crumble baked in a ramekin dish or a small bar of
Green and Blacks chocolate... Get your sugar hit without dangerous leftovers!

7. Lift weights.
It won’t make you bigger – it’ll make you svelte and strong!
If you’re worried about loose skin, resistance training is the best
thing you can do to tone your body as you lose weight...

8. Planning is crucial.
Once a week, take ten minutes to plan your meals for the coming week.
I choose from a list of easy, tried-and-true recipes,
so it’s quicker to cook than phone for a takeaway!

9. Buy your groceries online.
It saves time and you’re not tempted by all the sights and
smells of the supermarket... Or being tortured by screaming children.

10. Feel your emotions, don’t feed them.
In times of stress it’s tempting to bury your feelings in cake –
better to feel bad about binging than tackle the real issue!
But try to find non-edible ways of coping – walk out your front door
for 10 mins... that way you have to walk home... 20 mins of walking done,
plus if you can't see the cake.. you won't eat the cake...

11. Go Greek.
If you’re a cream or sour cream fiend, 0% or 2% Greek yogurt is an
excellent substitute. It's low in fat, protein-rich and incredibly creamy.
Dollop into meringue nests and top with fresh fruit. Splodge onto a bowl
of chilli... or swirl into butternut squash soup...

12. The best exercise is the one you enjoy.
So what if your best friend swears by aerobics at dawn?
If you’re a shift worker or just plain grumpy in the morning,
this will never suit you. Choose an exercise you like and do it
when it’s most convenient for you – this way you’ll stick with it
and more importantly ENJOY it!

13. Stock your office pantry.
It's much easier to ignore the vending machine when you've got half an
orchard sitting on your desk and a drawer full of oatcakes, nuts and seeds...

14. Have a cuppa.
When hunger strikes and it’s not meal time, I make a cup of tea.
This gives me time to figure out if I’m really hungry or if I’m just
bored or cranky or upset. Herbal tea is great – experiment until you
find one that doesn’t taste like grass clippings!

15. Have a moan.
Losing weight isn’t easy, but you don’t have to feel alone in the struggle.
Start your own blog, sign up for a message board, or join in the
conversation on a weightloss forum...
Remember, we’re all in this lardy boat together!

16. Put the scales in perspective.
Don’t fret over small fluctuations – focus on all the healthy things
you’ve been doing for your body. Get out the tape measure or have a
pair of “measurement jeans”, so you’re not dependent on the scales
for feedback...

17. Be adaptable.
Make your weight loss plans fit around your life, not the other way around.
Sometimes circumstances will change – a new job, a family crisis,
moving house – and suddenly your usual routine doesn’t work...
The trick is to be flexible and know when it’s time to tweak your methods...

18. Set a non-scale goal.
Why not train for a charity 5k race or challenge yourself to do ten push-ups?
Focusing on fitness means I don’t fret about the numbers so much.
And those endorphins make me feel less inclined to go on a chocolate bender.

19. Accept that sometimes it’s going to suck.
Despite your best intentions, there will be days when you fall into a
bag of crisps. But long-term success is about persistence, not perfection.
It’s picking yourself up when you fall, over and over again...

20. Don’t wait to be “skinny” to start living your life.
If you have dreams of traveling or writing a book or learning to scuba dive,
don’t think you need a smaller bum before you deserve them. Something I have
only recently come to terms with is, life is happening right now
– so forget about your wobbly bits and jump right in!

And remember, its all about support so tell a friend or get a buddy on board and we'll all get there! I promise! Doll x

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