After 6 weeks on my diet there’s a few things I can’t live without so I thought I’d pop them all together in a post incase they’re of help to someone who’s also trying to lose a few pounds (or lots in my case). These little weight loss essentials have helped me stick to my diet over the last 6 weeks, losing 10.4lb and 27.5 inches along the way. I still have a long old way to go, but I’m feeling good and even (almost) enjoying my new healthier lifestyle.
So without further rambling, here’s what makes it onto my list of weight loss essentials:
Yes I know they always tell you to drink lots of water when you’re on a diet, but they kind of have a point. It keeps you fuller for longer and you really do often mistake thirst for hunger, I know I do. If you’re anything like me you’ll also be retaining a lot of water and during the first few weeks of drinking more you’ll end up peeing almost constantly. It’s like being pregnant all over again.
I find having a water bottle on hand useful as it reminds me to keep drinking throughout the day. And it comes in handy when I exercise too. I have a couple from Hydratem8, but any bottle will do.
Hate water? Flavour it in an infuser or treat yourself to some flavoured water when you next go shopping. I couldn’t drink plain water at first but now I don’t stop.
I eat chocolate every day. Without fail. Whether it’s nutella on my banana pancakes, a fibre one brownie (I’m obsessed with these bad boys and the new caramel ones are A-MAZ-ING! Quick tip, heat them up for a few seconds in the microwave, they’re 100% nicer than when they’re cold) or even a chocolate bar or dessert. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t have a treat, however small.
I’ve tried dieting so many times before, often depriving myself or eating things I don’t really like just to eat something ‘healthy’. I’ve never kept the weight off. This time around I’m determined it will be both sustainable and enjoyable. So chocolate it is.
One thing I will say is don’t waste your time (and calories) trying to substitute chocolate with fruit or quark mixed with hot chocolate powder. All you’ll do is waste calories you could be spending on getting your fix and probably still ending up eating the chocolate anyway. A little of what you fancy does you good as they say.
Do you have a love hate relationship with your scales? I certainly do! Jumping on and off practically every day and more often than not they don’t show me the ‘magic’ number I’m looking for. I can guarantee if I don’t lose weight one week, or if I only lose a small amount, my first thought is stuffing my face with everything in sight. That’s where my tape measure comes in.
2 weeks ago I was seriously fed up with not losing what I thought was ‘enough’ weight. So I pulled out my tape measure and was shocked to discover I’d lost over 20 inches in a month. A week later it was up to 27.5 inches. I may have only lost a few pounds in that time, but I am most definitely shrinking. And trust me when I say it really helps when you feel like throwing in the towel.
I measure the tops of my arms, my bust, waist, ‘muffin top’, hips, the tops of my legs and my calves.
I have a weight loss instagram account over at @goodbyebingowings and I use it to get some much needed diet inspiration. There are so many amazing transformation photos on there, you can’t help but feel motivated. And of course it’s great for recipe ideas and that bit of camaraderie when you don’t have a weight loss group to go to.
Weight Watchers Mobile
I’m also always on the Weight Watchers Mobile App on my phone. I joined Weight Watchers online 2 weeks ago, after doing my own thing for a month. It’s not any different to what I was already doing really, but the app is handy for recording everything and I love the Connect feature on there. It’s not quite a forum but more a sort of instagram where people share their photos, transformation pics and can write mini blog posts about how they are doing and ask questions. If you’re a member, look me up at ‘shrinkingmuffintop’.
I hate fruit so one way to get some into my diet is to add it to smoothies. My favourite at the moment is a recreation of this bad boy I had when the teen and I went for freakshakes recently. And it’s so simple to make. Just chocolate protein powder, banana, peanut butter and ice. Seriously tasty!
I use My Protein, quite simply because Joe Wicks aka The Body Coach uses it and I didn’t know what else to buy. But it seems good to me and I have both the vanilla and chocolate ones. I also nibble on protein bars occasionally (although watch out for them as they can be quite high in calories), or add my protein powder to my banana pancakes.
I didn’t start exercising until I’d got a month into my diet. But now I love it. It takes so long for me to build myself up to do it though. What makes it that little bit better is having something comfortable to exercise in. Not to mention a sports bra that fits and quite possibly stops an earthquake at the same time.
I got my workout gear from New Look and Asda. All relatively in expensive and nice enough to want to put it on in the morning. Even if I am just wearing it to prance around the living room to the latest Davina DVD.
I can’t live without my recipe books. Even when I’m trying to lose weight I’ll adapt my favourite recipes so I can continue eating them. My favourites are The Hairy Dieters, Nadia Sawalha’s Greedy Girl’s Diet, but equally her ‘non diet’ Stuffed Vineleaves Saved my Life is brilliant. As is Eat Greek for a Week by Tonia Buxton and the Lean in 15 books by the delectable Joe Wicks. If you like curry Slimming World’s curry recipe books are amazing and are easily adapted to suit different diets.
I could go on and on here, there are so many great recipe books full of delicious recipes to choose from.
Another fantastic source of dieting and recipe inspiration is of course good old Pinterest. You can find me over on my blog account where I have several weight loss related boards.
I find so many great weight loss and recipe blogs to follow through Pinterest. Not to mention the inspiration, motivation and diet friendly recipes they provide. It’s so easy to find weight loss inspiration on there. Simply type in Weight Watchers, Slimming World or Lean in 15 for example and you’ll find a whole host of recipe ideas and tips for the diet you’re following. If you aren’t already on Pinterest, give it a go. It’s free after all.
So there you have it – my weight loss essentials. They really do help me stay on track each week. Is there anything you can’t live without when you’re on a health kick?