STRUGGLING TO LOSE WEIGHT? 10 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF

Are you struggling to lose weight? Has your weight loss slowed down? Are the scales not budging? Speak to anyone who’s been on a health and weight loss transformation, and they’ll tell you that at some point things slow down, maybe even stop or go backwards.

What I’d like to do is give you some tips/ideas on how to optimise your weight/fat loss results so you can reach your goals.

In the quest to leave no stone unturned, here are 10 key questions I want you to ask yourself:

Are you drinking enough water?

We all know the importance and benefits of being properly hydrated. But are you actually doing it?

It’s extremely important to drink at least 2-3 litres of pure filtered water each day. And on hot days or when exercising drink more!

Also, if your following the B-Fit 21 Day Weight Loss/Cleanse Plan … the plan itself which includes the Healthy Starter Pack both do an amazing job at helping your body cleanse away toxins, but it’s your job to flush those impurities out by drinking adequate water.

Are you pooping every day?

Constipation can hinder weight loss results. Rather than carrying around extra pounds that build up in the colon, regular and complete bowl movements are important in managing your weight.

In a future blog, I’ll cover the importance of healthy pooping but for now make sure you get sufficient fibre from your diet and drink plenty of water.

For added gastrointestinal support and regularity use Fibre Plus.

Are you consuming too little or too many calories?

I am not an advocator at all of calorie counting but rather that you pursue good health as your primary goal through consuming whole, natural foods. Weight loss will naturally follow as a by-product of this.

However, extremes of too little food or too much food is equally not good for your health, metabolism or waist line. So be honest with yourself and exercise moderation.

Are you leaving too much time between meals/snacks?

I’m very pro eating little and often – approximately every 3-4 hours. This will keep your blood sugar stable and prevent your body from slowing your metabolism down to conserve energy which in turn hinders your weight loss goals.

If you do happen to leave it too long at least choose a healthy, balanced snack rather than dive into the cookie jar.

Are you making healthy food choices?

Obvious question, but are you?!

Many of us may be absent-mindedly hindering results by consuming excess sugars and starches. Snacking on sugar spiking, low fibre foods, or having a handful of this and that throughout the day which will slow things down. Be mindful and pay attention to what you put in your mouth.

Are you sleep deprived and stressed?

Either of these issues can cause your stress hormones to be out of whack leading to increased fat storage especially around the tummy.

Make sure you check out my 2-part mini-series on sleep here for great tips and advice.

If you are under a lot of stress and/or not sleeping, I recommend you also check out one of my favourite supplements called Nutricalm. It contains vitamin B complex and vitamin C. Both these nutrients become very depleted when the body is under stress and there’s a lack of sleep. Nutricalm also contains chamomile which is known for it’s soothing and calm properties.

How often are you cleansing?

For some of you, you may be cleansing too often and for others, you may not be cleansing enough. The goal is to keep your body guessing.

I recommend you cleanse every 3 months using the B-Fit 21 Day Weight Loss/Cleanse Plan. This is perfect for a deep cleanse and to really shift excess fat.

The plan includes 21 days of delicious meal plans, recipes, weekly shopping lists, fat burning exercise videos, nutrition, lifestyle coaching videos and the Healthy Starter Pack.

Are your foods agreeing with you?

Food allergies and sensitivities may be playing a role in slowing weight loss results. Pay attention to what foods you are eating and whether or not they are agreeing with your body.

Are you maximising your meals?

If not, consider adding a scoop of Pea Protein to your shakes to help boost your metabolism. Extra protein also keeps your appetite satisfied longer and promotes maintenance of muscle, a key element for busting through those plateaus.

Are you exercising enough?

If not, get moving. Exercise is so important for our general health and makes a huge difference to weight/fat loss. Daily exercise will build lean muscle and this in turn revs up your metabolism. Incorporate strength and cardio training for optimal results.

After reading all this are you truly committed, disciplined and consistent in following your plan? Are you doing all you can? Be honest with yourself.

Discipline can make a huge difference and together with patience, strength and self-belief you will get there. I promise.

If you need a little help figuring this all out, you know where I am. I’m rooting for you.

Love Gaynor x

COCONUT LENTIL SOUP

A delicious warming bowl of lentils seasoned with smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, hot pepper flakes, then mellowed out with creamy coconut milk.

Hearty wholesomeness in a bowl with easy to find ingredients and minimal effort.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • ½ onion finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 1½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp coriander
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 cups red lentils
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup full-fat coconut milk
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • Fresh coriander to garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Melt coconut oil in a large saucepan
  • Add onion and sauté until soft
  • Add garlic and sauté until soft
  • Add celery, carrots, paprika, cumin, and coriander
  • Sauté 5 mins
  • Add stock, water, lentils and tomato paste
  • Bring to boil, reduce heat, simmer for approx. 30-45 mins
  • Stir in lemon juice and coconut milk
  • Season with sea salt and pepper
  • Top with red pepper flakes and coriander
  • Serve and enjoy

6 BENEFITS OF STRENGTH TRAINING

For a lot of women the term “strength training” conjures up images of bulky veiny bodybuilders, manly looking women, intimidating gym environments, and heavy weights.

Now I get it, and I do understand how this has come about

BUT

The reality is that strength training can be defined as any movement/exercise that places an increased demand on your muscles. This could be using weights or using your body weight as resistance.

Today, it’s widely accepted that strength training is an essential part of any well-balanced exercise program not just for bodybuilders, but the everyday male and female, the young and more mature as well as those with injuries.

Historically, females have been deterred from lifting weights because they believed that it would make them bulky. Thankfully with education times are changing and women are now using strength training to achieve the body and health they want.

If you incorporate strength training into your exercise routine, there are many benefits as outlined below.

If you’re unsure what to do and how to include strength training, get in touch. Here at B-Fit HQ we can guide you through bespoke workouts to ensure you make the most of all the benefits strength training has to offer.

Simply text/call me on 07748298728 plus book your FREE SESSION HERE.

Aids Weight Loss & Improves Muscle Tone

Strength training is a proven way to achieve sustainable fat loss.

As well as burning calories during actual exercise, it also helps increase your overall metabolic rate enabling your body to burn more calories around the clock. How does it do this? By maintaining existing muscle, and building new. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn. Simple as that. Also, you’ll be tighter, more toned, stronger, and fitter!

Improves Posture

Proper strength training can help with postural issues and pelvic floor strength which are important considerations before, during and after pregnancy.

Boosts Energy & Mood

One thing I notice all the time is that after exercise all my clients feel mentally better.

There are huge psychological benefits with exercising such as feeling stronger, increased energy, improved self-esteem and confidence. Strength training is one of the best anti-depressants around due to the mood-boosting endorphins released through exercise.

Our bodies are skeletons which are designed to move not sit around. If you want help activating your bodies natural opiates through exercise get in touch with me HERE to book your FREE SESSION.

Improves Bone Density

As we get older, our bone density gradually decreases, especially in women. This in turn makes us more prone to fractures, and osteoporosis. Strength training has been shown to increase bone density/mass.

Retains Muscle

With age comes muscle wastage. After the age of 30, the average person loses 2½ kg of muscle every 10 years. This reduces our ability to burn calories and if not managed appropriately leads to weight gain hence the coined phrase “middle age spread”.

Strength training is proven to preserve existing muscle and build new. It’s important for all of us to lift, but it becomes even more important the older we get as it not only effects our weight/how we look but also our strength, balance, and coordination!

Prevent Injuries & Disease

As you build quality lean muscle your strength will increase, and so will your ligaments and tendons. This will improve your flexibility, and you’ll be less susceptible to muscle damage, aches, and pains.

Other health benefits include an increase in insulin sensitivity which can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, and it can also help to keep blood pressure within a healthy range.

I hope by now I’ve convinced you of the importance of strength training. It’s a no-brainer.

No matter what life stage your at, no matter what your goal is this is something you seriously need to incorporate. It plays a major role in our overall health and wellbeing.

Love Gaynor x

HEALTHY LAMB CURRY

Did you know last week was National Curry Week?

I wanted to share with you a healthy lamb curry for a belated celebration. Better late than never huh?!

The great thing about making a homemade curry is you know exactly what goes into it. You can make a healthier and tastier version too, and sneak a load of veggies in.

Now I know they’re tempting, but try to stay away from the naan bread and poppadums!

This recipe serves 4, and from start to finish will take around 75 mins.

Enjoy 🙂

INGREDIENTS

  • 500 grams diced lamb shoulder
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1” chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 chopped green chilli
  • 400 grams chopped tomatoes
  • 400 ml fresh lamb stock
  • ½ tsp crushed black peppercorns
  • 4 crushed cardamom pods
  • 1 dried cinnamon stick
  • 2 tbsp coconut cream
  • Fresh chopped coriander
  • Coconut oil

METHOD

  • Heat 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • Fry onions, garlic, and ginger until brown
  • Remove to a bowl
  • Heat another tbsp coconut oil
  • Fry the lamb until browned
  • Remove to a bowl
  • Add the spices/chilli and cook 5 mins
  • Add the lamb back to the pan, plus tomatoes/stock
  • Mix well to remove any bits stuck to the bottom
  • Add the peppercorns, cardamom and cinnamon
  • Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 1 hr
  • If the liquid is thin after this time, rapidly boil to reduce down
  • When ready to serve, stir in the coconut cream and coriander
  • Serve with green vegetables, cauli rice or brown/basmati rice

9 WAYS TO SNEAK MORE VEGGIES INTO YOUR DIET

The other week I was visiting a friend, and she was throwing together this delicious minestrone (today’s recipe). I realised I’d totally forgotten about soups in my repertoire of recipes. If you’re anything like me, you’ll know how easy it is to get into a rut, cooking the same dishes week in and week out.

So the next day, I got to it. I went and bought all my ingredients, threw on my pinnie on and got cooking. The result was yummy and healthy and at the same time made a serious dent in my daily veg target.

It reminded me just how easy it can be to increase my vegetable intake. So I got researching and wanted to share with you 9 ways to sneak more veggies into your daily diet in an easy, stress-free, and fun way. Is this do-able? Absolutely.

Let’s dive straight in …

1. Juices & Smoothies

I’m a huge advocate of a daily greens drink as a quick way to up your veg intake in one single shot.

If you’re short on time, remember you’ve got your Pea Protein. So no excuses.

Now I do get that some folks don’t relish the taste of 100% fresh greens. So if you need a little extra sweetness and something to cut through that earthy grassy taste try the following:

  • Use coconut water instead of water
  • Add a dash of freshly squeezed lemon and/or lime
  • Add sweeter vegetables such as carrots and beetroot
  • Add freshly chopped mint
  • Water it down more
  • Use ice to make it extra cold

2. Lettuce Wraps

It sounds weird I know, but trust me it’s delicious and again another easy way to get extra greens.

It’s so much better for you than processed wraps, pitas, and bread. I also love the contrast of the soft filling and the crunchiness of the lettuce. And if the filling is warm then you get that delightful contrast of warm and cold.

Simply add your filling to a big lettuce leaf, wrap up and get munching.

3. Wilted Spinach

If you’re like me and find cooked spinach mushy and slimy then, you’ll love this tip.

We all know when we cook spinach it disintegrates right? And because it wilts so much that means you get a serious portion size in too.

If you’re making say a soup, casserole or sauce what’s to stop you chucking in a handful of spinach and letting it wilt down in the pot? Can’t get any easier than that.

The dish you’ve added it to will mask it, and you get your alkaline spinach in as well. It’s a win-win.

4. Soups

You can pack loads of veg into soup with zero effort. Even less effort if you use one of those prepared soup pulse mixes.

The other great thing about soup is you can make a batch, so it’s super for getting ahead and saving time.

Make sure you check out today’s recipe for Minestrone. Click here.

5. Grated Broccoli

Ok I know, another slightly odd one, but hear me out. I love this idea as it’s dead simple. Who can’t grate broccoli over a dish? You don’t need to be exactly Raymond Blanc here.

Seriously, that’s all you do i.e. grate the little midget tree pieces over curries, soups, casseroles, and salads. Voila!

6. Omelettes & Scrambles

I love my eggs first thing in the morning. Scrambled, omelettes, poached, shallow fried, and boiled with soldiers. I love them all.

Another way to increase the nutritional value of eggs is to add vegetables especially to the scrambled and omelette versions such as spinach, peppers and kale. The choices are endless.

7. Cauli Rice

Ever heard of cauli rice? I didn’t until quite recently when I was wandering through the aisles of my local supermarket. What a gem of a find 🙂

It’s a great way to replace gluten laden, processed grains, but also a great way to get the often overlooked, and over cooked poor Mr Cauli into our diets.

It’s super easy to make at home too. Simply break a cauliflower into smaller pieces and pulse it in a food processor to your desired size.

8. Side Salad

This is a classic and more obvious way to add more greens alongside your main meals. It’s simple, quick and nutritious.

You can do fancy if you want, but it doesn’t have to be that way. A wonderful rocket salad dressed with a lemon and olive oil dressing tastes wonderful.

9. Stir Frys

The choice is endless – mushroom medley, mixed peppers and Chinese-style vegetables. A cautionary note though – stay away from the sauces. Too many nasties and often full of sugar and soy. Instead, try spices, herbs, coconut oil and so on.

Stir frys have been a real lifesaver for me in my personal quest to increase my veg intake. I hope it is for you too.

So there you have it – 9 easy ways to sneak more vegetables into your diet.

If you’ve got questions or suggestions of your own, ping me an email to gaynor@b-fit.uk.com

I hope you’ve found this blog useful and it makes a huge difference in your health.

Love Gaynor x

MINESTRONE SOUP

What’s better than a hearty bowl of vegetable soup to welcome in the Autumn and Winter months?

Especially a good ole minestrone jam packed with kidney beans and veggies like kale and courgette to butternut squash and potatoes.

Load up a bowl with this nutrient rich, veggie dense stew, and you’ll be super powered up to fight off any colds and flus lurking around.

It’s a very hearty and filling recipe. And to be honest, it’s more of a stew than a soup.

Eitherway, I know you’ll love it.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 medium carrots diced
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 2½ cups diced potatoes
  • 2½ cups diced butternut squash
  • 1 courgette chopped
  • 14.5 oz tin diced tomatoes
  • 2½ tsp fresh rosemary or oregano chopped (or 1 tsp dried)
  • 2½ tsp fresh thyme chopped (or 1 tsp dried)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt & black pepper
  • 2/3 cups dry buckwheat or brown rice pasta
  • 2 cups kale chopped
  • 14.5 oz tin red or white kidney beans drained/rinsed
  • Shredded parmesan cheese to garnish (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat
  • Add onions and carrots, saute 3 mins
  • Add garlic, saute 1 min
  • Add stock, potatoes, squash, courgette, tomatoes, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves
  • Season with salt and pepper
  • Bring to the boil
  • Stir in the pasta
  • Cover, reduce heat to medium low
  • Simmer until veggies nearly tender (approx 15 mins)
  • Stir in kale and kidney beans
  • Cook until kale is tender (approx 5 mins)
  • Remove bay leaves
  • Serve warm with parmesan cheese

THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF THE HUMBLE AVOCADO

Did you know avocado is a fruit? I didn’t until quite recently. But what I do know is how amazing this wonder fruit is, and that’s the topic of today’s blog.

I don’t know about you, but my avocado memories aren’t too great – bruised, brown bits, too soft and I hadn’t a darn clue how to prep/use it. Oh my the daily dilemma 🙂

It’s also become a bit of a social media megastar. IG’ers are loving it. From whizzing it up in a smoothie to slathering it on toast.

So what’s the big deal with this fruit? And why am I obsessed with it? Well, there’s numerous health benefits like …

Source of good fats – avocado is rich in monounsaturated fat which is thought to help lower bad cholesterol.

Improved nutrient absorption – the fat content in avocado helps to absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, D, E, and K.

Improved vision – avocado contains two carotenoids called zeaxanthin and lutein which can reduce the development of macular degeneration in the eyes.

Better digestion – did you know half an avocado contains around 6-7 grams of fibre? Pretty dense for such a small portion huh? This is really good for your digestion and can help prevent constipation. Also, fibre keeps you fuller for longer and so will stave off hunger helping with weight loss.

We’re pretty avocado crazy here at B-Fit HQ. Every morning without fail, there will be someone smothering avocado on their bread in the kitch.

And I’ve found some cracking ways to pimp up the old avo and make it, even more, delicious. Check out these tasty, bad boy ideas that will get your taste buds tingling …

Avo Toast

There’s nothing more heavenly than simply mashed avocado spread on toast, a squeeze of lime, sprinkled with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Voila!

Guacamole

How could we not pay homage to this golden oldie and classic use for avocado?! And to stop the dip from going that awful brown and discolouring, leave the stone in the dish, right up until you’re ready to serve it.

Smoothies

If you want, extra creaminess and nutrition in your smoothie add half an avocado.

Face mask

We’ve all heard of avocado face masks. It’s such a great way to use up avocado that’s a little past its best rather than chucking it away. It’s nourishing for the skin due to the vitamin E and antioxidant properties, and of course, a good excuse to lie down and relax for 15 mins.

Lastly, check out this short, fun little video here on the avocado from Dr. Mercola.

Did you like this blog? If so, make sure you share the health love bug by emailing it to your friends and posting on socials.

Love Gaynor x

HOMEMADE HUMMUS

I am seriously into my hummus. I can’t get enough of the stuff. On corn cakes, rice cakes, with crudités and salads. You name it, it’s got hummus on it.

I’ve used the Duchy Originals organic version a lot but I decided I needed to trial and test some recipe and I think I’ve found the one by Deliciously Ella.

It’s a blend of blend of spicy cumin, tangy lemon, sweet basil leaves and creamy tahini blended with chickpeas, olive oil, and water until perfectly smooth.

Not only is it delicious, versatile, easy to make it’s very healthy too being a solid source of plant protein and fibre.

INGREDIENTS

  • 480 grams tinned chickpeas drained
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 4-6 tbsp of water
  • 10 basil leaves
  • Juice 1 ½ lemons
  • 2 tsp tahini
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • Pinch salt

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Place ingredients into processor
  • Blend until smooth