Tag Archives: weight loss

Aspire – The Calorie Burning Soft Drink!

Aspire – The Calorie Burning Soft Drink!

No I’ve not gone dieting mad, I shall not be blowing away in the wind or falling down storm drains any time soon.  I am a healthy, slightly hefty, 10 stone farmer’s daughter-esque pear shaped Lancashire lass.  I’m not a diet obsessed waif of a model desperately trying to fit into a size 6 dress.  If anything, I’m an apple crumble fixated mum in search of a bigger bowl.  That’d be me.

This review has come about because a friend of mine mentioned that she had a can of some strange diet drink that claimed to burn 200 calories once drunk.  I laughed, I made jokes about it being an early April Fool, I didn’t believe a word of it.  And then I saw their webpage, their Twitter account and a little of the science behind their dietary claims. When they said they’d let me have a few cans to sample, I couldn’t resist it.  Not because I wanted to lose any more weight particularly, just out of plain curiosity.

So!  What do I think?  First things first, it looks pretty and feminine.  I like the colour scheme and the flowery pattern.  So that’s an ‘A’ for ‘Ace’ presentation.   Secondly it has a lovely, not overpowering fizz which I’ll give it a ‘B’ for ‘Bubbly’.  Moving onto my third observation, it tasted rather ‘Cueer’ (‘queer’, spelt wrong, but I couldn’t fit it in otherwise) – so I give that a ‘C’.  The drink tasted somehow slightly dry, like a dry white wine might, very strongly of cranberries and slightly of green tea.  I loved it, but my husband wasn’t keen.  I think it might be the drink version of Marmite, you either love it or you hate it.

The calorie burning, good for you ingredients are: Guarana extract, green tea extract and L Carnitine.  The calorie burning science sounds a little unusual and I can’t say much on the subject as I was rubbish at the subject at school, and could barely work a bunsen burner.  All I shall say is that I couldn’t feel any kind of internal combustion going on in my tummy so I don’t know if the calories were being burnt or not.   Mind you, the drink itself is only 5 calories per 100ml on its own, so that sells itself really as a light, low calorie drink regardless of scientific waffle that I can’t get my head around.  You’d certainly be doing yourself a favour if you chose this drink over some of the sugary, highly calorific other options you can find on shop shelves.

There is a Wikipedia entry on the subject of L Carnitine and how it might work in conjunction with a diet product if you’re curious.  Link HERE!  I can’t understand how a drink can say it burns calories if it doesn’t, but I still can’t quite get my head around how it can actually be possible.  I think you might have to make your own mind up.  Here’s another link to the ASPIRE website, so you can find out more if you’re as baffled as I am.

Cheers! *shakes can behind back, and passes it to OH with a wicked grin*


For the Love of an iPad!

For the Love of an iPad!

(and a bit of a dieting update)

Both kids love Horace’s iPad and spend ages playing games on it given half a chance.  Sometimes they play nicely and share, other times they bicker like cat and dog.  The main problem is that Sausage can’t always get his head around the rules of these apps, and Darlek takes the rules very seriously.  Sometimes there are squeals and sharp words exchanged, usually along the lines of ‘Poopy-Pants!  You’re ruining the game!’ or ‘Gerroffit, it’s my turn’.  Or the worst line ever which is ‘MuuuuUUuum, tell him to stop it!’ and I have to play mediator, which I’m rubbish at because I can’t ever work out who’s being the biggest iPad hog as they’re as bad as each other to be honest.

Sausage in particular really loves the iPad.  The other day his dad asked him in the way parents do, ‘Who do you love then?’ and he replied ‘Daddy and his iPad’.  He followed that with ‘Mummy doesn’t have an iPad, but I love her anyway.’  Which is reassuring, I think?

The other day he begged me to let him stay at home instead of going to nursery.  Me being the needy Kay that I am, said ‘Why?  Do you want to stay home with mummy?’  The reply was ‘I want to play Lego Batman all day!’  I was quietly miffed and wondered at the time if he’d love me more if I wore a Batman costume.  I used to worry when the kids would talk back to the presenters on kids telly, now I worry that Horace and I are in direct competition with the electronic babysitter gadgets too.

In other news, I’m losing the will to diet.  Help me!  I’ve gone from 11 stone to 10.2lb, and then back up to 10 stone 3lb.  I know I’ve gone on about being ‘hungry’ but honestly, this diet does give you more than enough to survive on.  I just want sweet things.  I lust after puddings terribly!

The first two weeks I literally didn’t touch chocolate or biscuits or crisps or anything at all that wasn’t part of the diet.  My will power was excellent for a while, but no-one can keep that up for very long and I slipped.  In fact I slipped into, this last week, 3 pieces of apple & blueberry pie, a whole massive packet of marshmallows, peanuts and an illicit after 10pm salami sandwich with loads of butter.

I confessed all to Claire my consultant and she was very understanding.  In fact she pigeonholed me perfectly, so much so that I was actually taken aback.  I am apparently a ‘diet extremist’ despite never having dieted properly in my life before this diet review.  In a nutshell I have taken this Jenny Craig diet as a set of rules I cannot break and I have followed them to the letter – so much so that I didn’t even sniff a bar of chocolate.  Now I’ve pushed myself so hard, I’ve swung the other way and have begun bingeing again.  Not one biscuit, but the whole packet kind of thing.   I think it’s something to do with being an extremist in general.  I’m an all or nothing kinda gal.

The trick apparently, is to treat the diet like a lifestyle change rather than a diet.  I can’t possibly carry on devouring whole ‘nice to share’ packets of crisps all to myself in half an hour – I’ll eventually end up the size of a house.  I need to stop being so extreme and let myself have small treats, whilst not depriving myself.  That way I won’t find myself going nuts and eating four cadbury creme eggs in a row, as I have done in the past.  It’s about finding a balance.  I’m not sure I can do that, but I’ll try for the next week and a bit.   (she says with a scraped clean empty bowl of apple and blueberry pie sat in front of her).  It’s not easy.  I feel like I’m trying to give up smoking or binge drinking or something.

So that’s me and my thoughts for the day. I’m going to shuffle into the kitchen now with my empty bowl and try and hide it from Horace’s line of sight.  He looks  at me and smirks every time he catches me eating anything remotely out of diet bounds.  Well, I’m only human!  And I really like puddings.  So bite me! *looks insolent*

The Jenny Craig Diet – End of Week 2

The Jenny Craig Diet –

End of Week 2

I’ve just started week 3 of the Jenny Craig diet, and the above is my half way video blog.  I have lost half a stone!!!  Not bad eh?

It has not been easy though and I have missed my bars of chocolate and my stodgy puddings and cake and sweets …….*Kay drifts off into a food reverie*

Anyway, if you’re reading this I suppose you might be a little curious as to how this all works.  It’s basically a fairly strict calorie controlled diet.  Your Jenny Craig consultant calculates how many calories you need to function in your daily life, and you stick to that as far as you can – without the added extras which led to your weight gain in the first place.  This is how I understand it to be anyway!

This looks a lot until you think it has to last for 2 weeks...

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks are all sent in one big cardboard box every fortnight and you are also supplied with a meal plan and literature that helps you learn about portion control, how to understand your eating habits, how to monitor your own weight loss programme through graphs and goals.  It’s almost as simple as that.  In addition to this they recommend supplementary food you can buy yourself to complement the diet so you get your fresh foods too.  They do not supply will power in packets though, which is a great shame.

The enclosed Jenny Craig folder has a load of useful, supportive information about your diet and your food habits.

I'm definitely an 'emotional eater'. Cake is my solace when all else fails!

So, you may be wondering if the stuff tastes ok or not.  Is it all rice cakes and gloop?  Here’s a few pictures of the diet food delivered that Jenny Craig provides. None of the packaging is recyclable which is disappointing.  Sort it out Jenny!

Snacks for weak moments, and there have been many!

Soup with noodles, mashed potato with veg - you simply add boiling water to these. Posh Pot Noodles?

A selection of the meals. All of these simply need reheating. Very quick, but very processed food. 95% of the meals I've had have been really nice. It all comes down to your personal taste preferences really.

There is a vegetarian menu which I tried for the first two weeks, and a menu for people who eat meat too – so far I’ve enjoyed both menu choices.  The only thing I’m not keen on is that many of these include rice or pasta, which is  pre-cooked so just needs heating – this means it tends to lack texture sometimes.  It’s a shame these side elements to a meal don’t come separately.  I’d happily reheat a bag of rice alongside a main dish, it’s more of a hassle and probably more expensive, but I think it would taste a little nicer.  The meals are incredibly easy to prepare though, you just can’t get more convenient than one squeezy packet!

You are encouraged to add your own cooked vegetables or salad to their meals so that does counteract the processed food feel, so that helps at least.

I’ve found the consultations really helpful too.  As I’ve said in the video, a lady called Claire rings me every week and we discuss how the diet is working for me.  Honestly she’s an absolute sweetie!  I know it’s her job to be nice, but she does seem genuinely keen to help me, and others of course, to lose weight.  It must get tedious talking to people about calories and diets all day every day, but you’d never know it from speaking to her.  Claire’s positive attitude to weight loss, her helpful tips, her efficient but friendly manner is exemplary.  If they train all their staff like they seem to have trained Claire (although I’m sure it must come naturally to a great extent) then you are very likely to be chatting with your consultant like a friend before you know it.  I look forward to speaking to her, because it’s so nice to hear someone praising me for all my efforts.  It’s almost a shared victory.  A couple of pounds less, someone to share the success!  I think the consultations are a very important part of the healthy eating process.

Here’s a photo of the Jenny Craig Chicken Curry with vegetables I cooked and added myself.  It was a lovely meal and I didn’t feel cheated, even though the rest of my family were on ‘Bangers, Mash & Beans’, a meal I love.  That’s the hardest bit, cooking food for the family, but eating something different yourself.


I’ll blog a few more of the dishes with my final post, so you can see what you’d be eating. Speaking of which, I’m hoping to lose another half stone by the end of my ‘Adventures in Dieting’, so I’ll be back down to 10 stone.  I’m even considering trying to work my way back to 9 1/2 stone which was my pre-pregnancy weight once I’ve finished my month trial and have learnt some healthy eating strategies.

On the other hand I might just sit and eat a whole chocolate cake to myself and pile it all back on.   Hmmm…. decisions, decisions!

If you are considering this diet Jenny Craig have just announced an exciting offer for new clients – a 50% discount on a two week programme, which works out at just £38.50 a week/£5.50 a day for all your food AND consultations.

Anyone who’s interested should just call 0800 088 2048.

Right, I’ve finished this blog, I’m off to drink a low calorie hot chocolate, and stare longingly at the Hotel Chocolat brochure that dropped through my letterbox this morning.  *sighs*

The Jenny Craig Diet! Day 1

The Jenny Craig Diet!  Day 1.

A Waffle and a Vlog

It’s such a typically girly thing to say – ‘I’m on a diet!’ I can barely even believe I’m writing this to be honest. The one I am trying is the Jenny Craig diet which you can find out more about if you click the above link.

(See if you can spot my usual catchphrase!)

If you want to keep up with my dieting and my cravings for steak, red wine and chocolate, please do feel free to subscribe to my YouTube channel.

I will admit I have never, in all my life, been on any  kind of diet regime and have simply tried to eat healthily where possible and exercise isn’t really an issue for me as I spent vast amounts of time trogging up and down hills.  Despite my efforts my weight has gone up from 9 1/2 stone when I was approx 25 years old, to the slightly podgier 11 stone that I am now.  I’m 5 ft 7, so I’m reasonably tall, but I know that this isn’t my ideal weight, and my clothes don’t fit as well as they should.  I blame having kids, grabbing food as and when I can instead of eating in an orderly manner, binging on chocolate, and takeaways……oh and being incredibly greedy.

So, when I was given the chance to review the Jenny Craig diet, I thought, ‘Well, why not! What is there to lose apart from weight?’  So I signed up, had my initial consulatation and I was off.  I’ve also decided to go vegetarian over the next two weeks, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for years, but frankly I love the taste of meat, I just don’t feel happy about the treatment of many of the animals that we find on our dining tables.   I know I could buy free range, raised in a lush green field  in Oxfordshire, fed on the finest organic grain, meat – but it is expensive!  Anyway, this is just an experiment for me to see if I can manage without bacon butties  and achieve some weight loss in the process really.  We shall see!

It’s fairly easy during the day, but I always eat in the evenings to reward myself for surviving a usually hectic day.  That’s when I really struggle.  Last night I had a glass of damson gin and a quarter of a packet of crisps because it was a Saturday night and I told myself it’s ‘cos I’m worth it!’ which was cheating really.  I shall be updating as I go along, and wish me luck!  I’d love to know if anyone has tried any other diets that have worked for them, a lot of people struggle with weight loss at this time of year and helpful advice never goes amiss!