this week’s meal plan

Going back to Weight Watchers last week was just what I needed to set me back on track.  Hubs and I did have a night away in a hotel, and a day doing the Christmas shopping.  That meant alcohol, a three course meal, a buffet breakfast, lunch out and a trip to Starbucks for an eggnog latte (it had to be done).  So whilst I’m not totally in the zone I do feel a lot better about my eating compared to last week.

I’m loving the new Flex plan from Weight Watchers (you can read my reaction to the new plan here).  I’ve been mindful of the changes when picking my meals this week to really get the most out of it.  I’m keen to see what a full week on track will do for my weight loss.

I’ve been sharing my meal plans each week, and they’ve been getting a good reception on social media.  It can be hard to think of healthy meals every week, especially if you’re just starting out on a weight loss journey, or feel stuck in a food rut.  I’m going to make a point of sharing my plans each week – if you see something you like the sound of please let me know.  I’d love to share the recipes for the most popular dishes!

 

our meal plan this week

 

This week’s meal plan

 

Monday – fish stew

I made this last week and froze extra portions.  It was a new dish, and was meant to be a chicken stew but I switched it for fish. I changed a couple of other things too.  It was delicious!

I’ll serve it with green beans again.

 

Tuesday – green veg risotto

This is a new recipe, but I don’t see how you can go wrong with risotto and lovely fresh greens and peas.  I think I’ll add some zero point beans too, to add some protein.

 

Wednesday – Caribbean chicken

This is such a simple dish, but is a nice stew-like dish which is perfect for this time of year.

It has potatoes in it, so I’ll serve it up with the red cabbage I have sitting in the veg drawer.  And I’ll have enough left for lunch the next day too.

 

Thursday – zingy mince

This is a batch cook from last week, and it is such a delicious combination of light and zesty vegetable flavours with the pork mince.  But with Weight Watchers Flex making turkey breast mince zero SmartPoints, I’ll be switching up the meat I use!

 

Friday – cod bake

I meant to make this last week, but I couldn’t be bothered cooking and instead had a batch meal out of the freezer.   But I’ve still got the cod, so I’ll make it this week instead.

 

Saturday – fish cakes

I’ve not made this recipe before, but with cannellini beans rather than potato it means the only SmartPoints in them will come from the very light coating of breadcrumbs.  That means I can spend my allowance on a treat for pudding!

 

Sunday – BBQ pork

It’s our turn to host Sunday dinner with my in-laws!  This is a nice bit of a twist on a roast, I’ll serve it with family favourites corn on the cob and mash potato.

 

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this week’s meal plan

I confessed last week that after some bad health news I’d been comfort eating.  That is still going on, and I feel like it’s gone beyond comfort to binging. I’m too scared to stand on the scales, but I’ll be facing the music at Weight Watchers tomorrow.  I hope I’ve not undone all the good work and progress I’d achieved.  It’s that fear that is making me draw a line under it.  I think my body is craving routine and nutrients!At least I wont need to worry about my meals as I try to get back on track.  No matter what, I always sit down and make a meal plan.

I’ve been sharing my plans each week, and they’ve been getting a good reception on social media.  It can be hard to think of healthy meals every week, especially if you’re just starting out on a weight loss journey, or feel stuck in a food rut.  I’m going to make a point of sharing my plans each week – if you see something you like the sound of please let me know.  I’d love to share the recipes for the most popular dishes!

 

our meal plan this week

 

This week’s meal plan

 

Monday – steak chilli

I made this last week and froze extra portions.  It’s delicious – slow cooked beef with kidney beans and butternut squash.  I served it with brown rice and kale.

 

Tuesday – zingy mince

This is pork mince, but it has grated courgette through it and some light flavours like lemon in it.  It’s a good way of sneaking vegetables into kids!

I’ll serve it up with mash potato, and have enough leftover for lunch.

 

Wednesday – fish stew

As we are trying to eat less meat, we eat a couple of fish meals a week.  This is actually a chicken stew that I’ve switched up to have fish instead of meat.

It has potatoes in it, so I’ll serve it up with green beans.  And I’ll have enough left for lunch the next day too.

 

Thursday – falafel burgers

I made these last week and they went down a treat – I’ve finally found a veggie burger that doesn’t fall apart!  I froze extras, so I just need to thaw these and heat them up.

I’ll serve them with salad and potato wedges made in the Actifry.

 

Friday – cod bake

This is packed with Mediterranean vegetables so it’s really juicy and delicious.  We hardly ever have pasta, but I think I’ll mix some through this and do it like a pasta bake.

 

Saturday – meal out

Hubs and I are having a date night!  That means a restaurant, some nice wine…and of course, pudding!

 

Sunday – dinner with the in-laws

I’m not sure what I love most about this – my father-in-law’s cooking, or the fact that it means I don’t need to cook.  But it’s always a lovely meal.

 

 

 


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our meal plan for this week

I’ll start this with a confession – I’ve spent the best part of the last week comfort eating.  I had to have an investigation in to some pain I’ve been having, and something was found on the scan.  I wont know the implications of that until tomorrow, but having been down this road before I’m quite worried.  What do I do when I’m worried?  I turn to food.  I’m trying to keep my meals as nutritious as possible, to counter the very unhealthy decisions I’m making in between them.

I’ve written before about the fact that I’m a meal planning addict.  I’ve been sharing our plans each week, and they’ve been getting a good reception on social media.  It can be hard to think of healthy meals every week, especially if you’re just starting out on a weight loss journey, or feel stuck in a food rut.  I’m going to make a point of sharing my plans each week – if you see something you like the sound of please let me know.  I’d love to share the recipes for the most popular dishes!

 

our meal plan this week

 

This week’s meal plan

 

Monday – dinner at my parents’ house

My parents are just home from an epic holiday, and so we went to theirs for dinner last night.  I think we might try to make this a regular thing, as Middle Son’s new swimming lesson time means we’re walking home past their house right at dinner time!  For the record, it was good old mince and tatties.  They’d obviously been missing some Scottish stodge after enjoying exotic food for the past four weeks!

 

Tuesday – jacket potatoes with bean chilli

We were meant to have this last week, but with trick or treating ended up just getting an Indian meal from Waitrose on the way home!

I’ll serve it up with salad and save some leftovers for lunch.

 

Wednesday – fish tagine

I try to make sure we have fish at least twice a week, and this is a good way to tart up some basic frozen white fish.  There’s tons of flavour from the spices.

I’ll serve it up with green beans.  And I’ll have enough left for lunch the next day too.

 

Thursday – steak chilli

And by steak, I mean cheaper casserole steak!  As much as I’d love a proper sirloin, the maternity pay doesn’t stretch that far. But slow cooked in a chilli sauce, it gets really tender and delicious.

I’ll serve it with rice and some extra veggies.

 

Friday – falafel burgers

I love falafel.  Anything with chick peas really!  I don’t have a good track record with veggie burgers though, so I’m a bit worried these will be another fail.  But I’m trying to reduce the amount of times we eat meat in a week, so I need to expand my vegetarian options.

I’ll serve them with potato wedges and salad.

 

Saturday – homemade pizzas

Middle Son has a pizza kit that he’s excited to use.  Much like veggie burgers, my attempts at homemade pizza in the past haven’t been very impressive so we’ll see how these turn out!  I think in the past I’ve followed “diet” pizza base recipes, which may have been the problem.  This time I’m just going to embrace the traditional way and hopefully they’ll turn out better.  I’m thinking goats cheese and red onion for the adults, cheese and ham for the kids.

 

Sunday – gammon roast, followed by blueberry brulees

I’m attempting to make the brulees myself, so I’m going to keep dinner really simple.  Gammon with roasties (done in the Actifry), yorkshires, gravy and lots of veg.  I’m making lentil soup for lunch over the weekend, so we might have some of that as a starter too.  The brulees are a Weight Watchers recipe, and diet puddings can be a bit hit or miss, so I’m curious to see what these are like.

 

 

 


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our meal plan for this week

It’s so important to me to make sure I’m putting good food on the table every night.  Not just from a weight loss angle, although obviously that’s a big motivation.  But I also pride myself in feeding my kids healthy, balanced meals.  I can’t always be sure they’re making the best food choices at school, so I like to know that when they’re at home they’re eating well.  When I grew up there was always home cooked food on the table, and I learned from that.  I hope by doing the same for my boys, it means they’ll grow up to have an interest in cooking for themselves.

I’ve written before about the fact that I’m a meal planning addict.  I shared our plan last week, and it got a good reception on social media.  It can be hard to think of healthy meals every week, especially if you’re just starting out on a weight loss journey, or feel stuck in a food rut.  I’m going to make a point of sharing my plans each week – if you see something you like the sound of please let me know.  I’d love to share the recipes for the most popular dishes!

 

our meal plan this week

 

This week’s meal plan

 

Monday – beef goulash

This is a freezer meal from one I made last week.  I love this recipe (you can find it here), and it didn’t let me down.  I made it in the slow cooker this time, such an easy meal.

I’ll serve it with brown rice and green beans.

 

Tuesday – trout with a Mediterranean vegetable bake

We’re having trout because Hubs got a bargain in the supermarket.  I actually just tend to just buy frozen fish, so a nice veggie dish is ideal to dress it up.  This one has mozzarella in it, so jazz it up even more.

I’ll save some leftovers for lunch.

 

Wednesday – jacket potatoes with bean chilli

I love a baked potato, especially on a cold day (which we’re meant to have a lot of this week).  I made the chilli when I was pregnant, stuffing the freezer full of meals so I didn’t have to cook in the early newborn days.  I’ve still got loads of dishes left in there!

I’ll serve it up with salad.  And I’ll have enough left for lunch the next day too.

 

Thursday – chicken chow mein

This was a new recipe I tried last week – a healthy fakeaway!  I made double and froze the extras for this week.  It’s packed with veggies, so I don’t need to add a side.

 

Friday – salmon in a tomato sauce

I try to have at least two fish dishes a week, and this is a new one for us.  But I doubt you can go wrong with those flavours.

I’ll serve it up with brown rice and veg.

 

Saturday – sausage, mash and beans

A request by my middle son, and I never say no to a lazy dinner on a Saturday!  Plus, we’ll be going out to watch the fireworks, so a nice bit of stodge will keep us cosy.

 

Sunday – dinner at the in-laws

My favourite way to spend a Sunday evening, I love to see what my father-in-law has cooked up.  And it’s always finished with his lush homemade ice cream…naughty, but far too nice to say no!

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our meal plan for this week

It’s been a while since I posted a weekly meal plan.  That doesn’t mean I haven’t been making and following them though.  Meal planning is second nature to me now, I can’t function without one.  If I didn’t have my trusty list stuck to the fridge, we’d literally have cereal for dinner every night.

It can be hard to think of healthy meals every week.  Especially if you’re just starting out on a weight loss journey, or feel stuck in a food rut.  I’m going to make a point of sharing my plans each week – if you see something you like the sound of please let me know.  I’d love to share the recipes for the most popular dishes!

 

our meal plan this week

 

This week’s meal plan

 

Monday – curried fish bake

This is a freezer meal from one I made last week.  I’d never made this before, and although I need to tweak the recipe a little I was quite surprised by it.  Curry flavours with fish is a new thing for me this year, and I’m liking it.

I’ll serve it with brown rice and green beans.

 

Tuesday – tuna steaks with ratatouille

I love ratatouille at this time of year, it’s a great alternative when it’s too cold for salad.  Because it’s so full of flavour, I don’t mess about with the tuna – just grill and serve.

I’ll save some leftovers for lunch.

 

Wednesday – beef goulash

Speaking of awesome cold-weather dishes, this is such comfort food!  Tender beef in a smokey, rich sauce…*drool* You can find my recipe here.

I’ll serve it with mash potato and some mixed veggies, and save some leftovers for lunch.

 

Thursday – pizza burgers

This was a new recipe I tried last week – turkey burgers topped with pizza sauce, olives and mozarella.  They were lush!  I made double and froze the extras for this week.

I’ll serve them up without buns, but with a nice big salad.

 

Friday – chicken chow mein

Fakeaway Friday!  I have a love/hate with Chinese food, in that I think I want it and then regret it when I overindulge…MSG is not my friend.  Thankfully, when I make my own I always love it!

I’ll add in lot of stir fry friendly veg.

 

Saturday – burger and chips

Burgers twice in one week!  But these are homemade too, so I don’t feel guilty.  A nice, lazy dinner made even lazier by the fact that I made these weeks ago. All I need to do is defrost them.  I’ll make the chips in the Actifry, and use up any leftover salad.

 

Sunday – butternut squash and apple soup / chicken tikka masala / fruit crumble and ice cream

It’s our turn to do Sunday dinner!  The soup is a new one, but the flavours sound lush and my soup maker never lets me down.  I’m a bit nervous doing a curry, as my father-in-law has made some incredible ones over the years, but this is delicious.  And the crumble will be apple, pear and plum with an oaty topping, served with light ice cream.

 


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why i meal plan + our weekly menu

 

I’m not doing a health update this week, as I’ve basically just eaten cake from Wednesday onwards.  I am so pregnant right now that I’m eating first and thinking second.  I’ve only managed one and a half workouts this week too, as the heat that kicked in towards the end of the week meant I had to abandon my efforts in a sweaty puddle.  Luckily, the sheer amount of calories I must be burning dragging my big ol’ bump around seems to be balancing things out and my weight has stayed fairly stable.

But I think another thing that has helped me is that although I’ve had more goodies than I should have had, my meal plan means that most of my lunches and dinners are consistently healthy.  Meal planning is like my anchor, my stabilisers, my compass.  Whilst I have the ability to go seriously off the rails when it comes to snacks and treats, because I’ve been using meal planning for longer than I can even remember it’s become an ingrained part of my life to have healthy meals built in.  It’s so ingrained that I’m actually surprised when I meet people who don’t meal plan.

 

Why I meal plan

I can’t sing the praises of meal planning enough, I try to convert everyone I meet.  It’s essential if you’re trying to lose or watch your weight, but even if you’re lucky enough to not need to focus on that there are still so many benefits to meal planning.

  • If you’re watching your weight, meal planning..
    • …helps you to think in advance of the healthy choices you will make that week
    • …means you are organised and prepared, and so less likely to reach for quick fixes like takeaways
    • …helps you identify what your syns/calories/points are being spent on, to help you make all the other choices around food you need to make
  • And even if your weight isn’t something you’re focused on, meal planning still…
    • …stops that “what’s for dinner” hassle at the end of each day
    • …helps you draw up a shopping list so you aren’t wandering aimlessly around the supermarket
    • …helps you stick to a food budget (if you stick to that shopping list!)
    • …reduces waste because you know exactly what you’re going to use
    • …encourages you to think about your meals, and maybe even try new things

 

This week…

Unlike last week this should be fairly quiet and a good chance to get my nutrition on track in the lead up to birth!  I’m taking the four year old (and maybe the teen, if he’s willing) to a local farm tomorrow so we may have lunch in the shop there.  I’ll try to go for something fairly wholesome…though I don’t know if I can resist the home baking!  We also have friends coming to help Hubs lay turf in the garden on Wednesday so there’s been talk of a takeaway – I’ll try to sway it towards a kebab so I can go for grilled chicken and lots of salad.  Other than that, I should be fairly on track, so what’s on the rest of our dinner menu this week…?

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weekly menu + health update

 

Last week…

I’m feeling pretty good this week, as after struggling for a while I found it very easy to get back on track.  I’ve had a week where moderation has been the name of the game.  Having said that, I’m 37 weeks pregnant and not on an out-&-out weight loss mission, so the form of moderation I’m taking right now is just to minimise the number of indulgences but not exactly the content of them!  So I went out on a lunch date with some of my friends on Friday where I temporarily appeased my one and only pregnancy craving (burgers…*drool*), and Hubs talked me into a curry last night (he’d been breaking his back in the garden all weekend and my SlimmingWorld-friendly syn-free lasagna just wasn’t going to cut it).  At the moment I’m ok with one or two little discrepancies!

I got good results too – a 1lb loss at SlimmingWorld on Thursday which it looks like I’ve maintained over the weekend so I don’t feel too shabby.  Ideally I’d like to avoid any massive gains from here on out, but I’m keeping an open mind as I’ve never watched my weight during pregnancy before and have no idea what the next few weeks could bring!

I did make the SlimmingWorld oat cookies (recipe by Kate @ WitWitWoo) as my evening snack, and I’ll have to be honest about them – Millies Cookies they ain’t.  But of course they aren’t.  They simply fill a hole, that hole being my need to nibble something whilst I watch the telly at night.  We have some sugar-free syrups for coffee and I’m tempted to try adding a few teaspoons of that to the mix to see if that makes them a bit more interesting.

 

This week…

It’s my birthday on Thursday, so I’m hoping to get out for a meal to celebrate.  We’re very lucky that the town we live in is a bit of a foodie haven.  I’m torn between the tiny artisan place where the chef is so passionate and creates his menus based on what he has in that day, the tapas restaurant with the huge selection, or the lush bistro restaurant which was the catalyst for all the other high-end restaurants to open up in our town.  Decisions, decisions.

Other eating-out-of-the-norm situations this week are lunch in a primary school canteen, and a buffet at a christening.   The school lunch is part of our youngest’s primary school induction and we’re basically at the mercy of the dinner ladies, and buffets (or any sort of free-for-all eating) are my kryponite.  Oh, and then there is a cake-based send off planned on Wednesday at work to see me off on maternity leave!  What did I say about wanting to avoid massive gains?!

I just need to make sure the meals in between keep me on plan, so what’s on the rest of our dinner menu this week…?

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thai salmon with jasmine rice [ recipe ]

 

Meal Plan

For the first week in forever, I don’t have a meal plan this week.  I don’t cook for the kids when I’m working – it would be too late for them by the time I get dinner on the table, and the grandparents like to feed them – so I usually just cook for Hubs and I during the week.  But Hubs is working away, and when it’s just me I really can’t be bothered making the effort.  I have leftovers in the freezer, eggs in the fridge and a mum who is always desperate to feed me, so I’m not doing much worth mentioning this week.  I also never made the shepherds pie I had planned for this weekend, so that covers Saturday, and my in-laws can’t make it for Sunday dinner so I’ll probably just decide on the day what to make.  Lunches will be salads as I wont have leftovers to take, and I’ve scored some peanut Nakd bars for my evening treats.

Recipe

When I linked up to #MealPlanningMonday last week, there was some interest in the Thai salmon I’d picked as one of our dishes. I thought I would share the recipe here, as it’s a real favourite with us.  It’s really delicious and sounds quite impressive, but it’s quick and simple and can be done in one pot in less than half an hour!

I’ve been making this one for years, so I don’t even know where it came from and I’ve tweaked it a bit over time.  The flavour really comes from the spice, so you can judge for yourself how much you want to add.  If you can’t find Thai 7 Spice, I would guess Chinese 5 Spice would work well (although it would totally change the dish).

So, on with the recipe…

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meal planning monday

I’m pleased to report that after facing up to falling off the wagon last week, I had a really good week.  Apart from missing Clubbercise on Tuesday because I was knackered, I managed to achieve all my other fitness commitments.  And my eating was on point right up until yesterday where Easter did get the better of me.  I still managed to lose all the weight I’d put on during my indulgent previous week, and I now feel like I’m back on an even keel.

Our favourite dish last week was the Thai salmon with jasmine rice, which I’m not surprised about as we’ve loved that one for years.  I got a few comments on the blog about it too so I’ll be sharing the recipe later in the week.  The Jamaican chicken was lush too.  I was disappointed with the Spanish chicken, it must have been a different recipe to one I’ve used in the past and so there wasn’t much sauce to speak of.  It was still nice, but not as I’d hoped.

I’d said I was going to shake up my snacking too, after realising I’d fallen for the SlimmingWorld Muller Light brainwash.  So I cut them out this week and made sweet potato hummus instead…what a game changer!  Check out the recipe over at Slimming Eats.  I’ve also had frozen grapes and used my healthy extras for Grape Nuts with almond milk, which I am now addicted to!

So I’m sticking to my new snacking, keeping my focus now I’m back on track so all that remains to be asked is…what are we eating this week?

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why does the diet always start on monday?


Honesty is something I need this blog to have at it’s core.  It’s important to be honest with yourself when you’re on a health journey, and it’s important to the ethos of this blog that I don’t pretend to have it all sussed out.  I’m trying to find health on my own terms, and with that comes some wrong turns.  Those slip ups are as much a part of my journey and my blog as the successes.

 

I have to ‘fess up – I’ve been off the wagon/plan/radar this past week.

Whether it’s because I don’t deal well with being out of my routine or whether I just used being on holiday as an excuse, I’ve eaten like a crap…and eaten a lot of crap.  I can’t even lie – McDonald’s, Greggs, cakes, chocolate, a big dirty fry-up, pizza, macaroni cheese, doughnuts…all that shit and more has graced my palate in the last seven days.  It was like the healthy switch in my head was flicked to off, and I used that downtime to make bad food choice after bad food choice.

To top it off, I also ignored two of my own mantras – don’t skip weigh-in just because you’ve had a bad week, and don’t wait until Monday, get back on track with your very next meal.  I skipped SlimmingWorld on Thursday, and it’s only now that I’m drawing a line under my gluttony.

I’m trying not to beat myself up about it.  After all, I could have been spending my whole pregnancy eating like that and piled on weight like I have in the past, so one bad week isn’t the end of the world.  But I am angry at myself for undoing some of my good work – I stepped on the scales and it looks as if I’ve gained about 4lbs this week.

 

I can’t turn back time so I just need to look forward.

And that begins with a meal plan and some exercise commitments.  Exercise-wise I’ve done a body weight and stretch session today. If I’m not too knackered after work tomorrow I’ll do a (gentle!) Clubbercise class, and then try to fit in another body weight session when I’m working at home on Thursday.  Hopefully I’ll fit in a session with weights and a yoga dvd over the weekend too, but we’re going to Stirling on Saturday and our youngest is having a friend round on Sunday so I wont hold my breath.

 

You can read on to see our meal plan…

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