My weight loss journey series: vol 1 – The introduction

In my weight loss journey series I’ll be writing about my progress with my attempt to lose a lot of weight. I will also still be posting my usual food posts, this is just an additional series. I will be sharing what is working for me, and if anyone else finds inspiration from how I’m doing it, I’m glad. The two pictures are about two and half months apart, and the weight difference is about 7kg / 15lbs.

Like probably for most, my weight over the years has quietly crept up. There have been a few attempts to get it down, but after a while I’ve found myself back to where I started from. I’m not exactly sure what has been my ‘wake-up’ call, but I feel I’m on a very good, successful path at the moment. It might have been because I bought clothes that were a size bigger than ever before, who knows. My initial target is to lose 30kg / 66lbs, with another 10kg / 22lbs depending on how I feel once at that stage. So far I’ve lost around 9kg / 19.8lbs in the last few months. I’m not looking for a quick fix, which has far greater danger of everything bouncing back really quickly too. I’m expecting it to take over a year to reach my target. My weekly target is 0.5 kg / 1.1lbs, which is a very healthy amount. During my diet weeks, I sometimes may lose a lot more, but during break weeks I won’t lose anything, still keeping the total weight loss to target.

Personally, I don’t like diets. I find various diet programmes too restricting to my lifestyle. I like cooking and eating nice food, and my husband and I also do a lot of fine dining as a hobby. Throw in occasional dinners with customers, and you’re in a hamster’s wheel that’s difficult to get out of.

This is why my past weight loss attempts focused on exercise rather than diet. Don’t get me wrong, I’m one of those who would actually like to go and do some exercise, however due to busy and long working hours I’ve finally admitted to myself that this is not a sustainable option, and the reason I have failed in the past.

When I finally made my very determined decision to finally lose my extra weight, one of the first things I did was to actually cancel my gym membership! Having the membership, with very little time to go, has for a long time been ‘an excuse’ for not being able to lose weight.

Second step for me was some soul searching. I considered what I wanted to achieve, and my relationship to food. Once I’d had an honest look at myself, I was ready to start. I feel this is very important. At the beginning of my diet I was constantly feeling hungry, and had I not done the soul searching I think this could’ve been a first stumbling block that makes people quit. I accepted the fact I was hungry, with a realisation that it’s actually not going to kill me! I also couldn’t remember when the last time had been when I had properly been hungry. I’m first to put my hands up and admit that my eating habits have been luxurious and decadent, and it has been a very comfortable place to be in. Now, this is something I will never give up completely, and so far I’ve been able to lose weight and still eat nice things occasionally too.

I’ve completely created my own diet. I still go out to eat with my husband, or with work, and yet have still had a great start. This first post is an introduction to my journey, and as it’s already turning to be long enough, I won’t be adding samples of foods / recipes I eat on this particular post. I will, however, be including these in my future posts.

What works for me, might not work for someone else, or it could indeed be a great option, because it does give the freedom to occasionally forget that you’re on a diet. I count calories, and do a very strict 1000-1200 kcal on most days. I do restrict bread, potato, rice and pasta on most days, however if eating out, or I have lost so much weight in a week that I want to slow it down I might add some.

Sea bass with Greek salad

This simple, healthy meal is perfect for those evenings when you get home from work very late, and don’t really have that much energy for cooking, as it requires minimum amount of effort and cooking. Greek salad itself is very simple, with only a few ingredients, and there are many variations of this basic salad. You can always adjust it with additional ingredients to suit your taste. I served my dish with boiled baby potatoes and samphire. The below Greek salad recipe may be salty to some tastes, you can reduce the amount of feta and olives, or increase the amount of other ingredients to change the ratio of ingredients.

serves 2
2 sea bass fillets
splash of olive oil
salt
black pepper
~~~~~
2 leaves of romaine heart lettuce
few handfuls of cherry tomatoes
half a cucumber
red onion
200g feta cheese
200g olives
2 tbsp capers
1/2 dl olive oil
1-2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp white wine vinegar
2 tsp dried oregano

1. Cut the tomatoes, salad leaves, cucumber, feta, and onion, and add the olives and capers.

2. Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar and oregano together, and pour over the salad. Mix well, turning the ingredients so that all are coated with the oil mixture. Rest in the fridge whilst cooking the fish.

3. Heat a splash of olive oil in a pan, and place the fish in the pan, skin side down. Season the flesh with salt and pepper, and cook for 3-5 minutes, to crisp the skin up.

4. Place in a preheated oven 180°C / 355°F for about 7 minutes.