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Monday, 26 August 2013

My weightloss week

Hi, apologies for the delayed post this week. It has been, as ever, crazy busy. Also, as it has been bank holiday I wanted to spend some quality time with Scarlett. I feel guilty constantly working and now as she approaches the age of two, she needs more and more stimulus and needs alot of attention. We enjoyed lots of playtime in the sun!
At this week's weigh in I lost 1.5 pounds. Not bad. Claire told me that this was perfect weight loss, healthy and steady. I have been sticking to the program and running, so I don't think I could have actually lost any more unless I started to go below my Pro Points and in past experience that is the road to failure, as you just can't keep it off. So steady weight loss and not depriving myself works best. Also, I want to this to be part of my lifestyle. It would be pointless to reach my goal weight and pile it all back on.

I have upped my running this week and have done about 30K and an hour training session with Simone Sirmon. We did 30 mins of resistance training and 30 minutes with "the roller". I  asked her to do this as I seem to be hitting a bit of a wall when I run. I have extreme tension in my bum and thighs and it is resulting a bit of a sore knee. My mum bought me a roller as it is meant to "roll" out the pressure points. Simone showed me how to use it and when rolling on my thigh it was clear that something was not right. She explained that it was my it band. What is your it band I hear you say...

The iliotibial band is a  band of fascia on the outside of the knee, stretching all the way down the pelvis and thigh down to the knee. The constant rubbing of the band and the movement during running means that it can become inflamed and cause a sense of cramping in the buttocks/thigh and pain in the knee. I think that alot of this is caused by my poor stretching and maybe my style of running, but the roller literally can roll this band out. I am not an expert, but after just 30 minutes I could feel the difference. If you're interested I found a You Tube video which can show you a few exercises.

I managed a few 10k runs this weekend and just completed a great run tonight over Beacon Fell.
It was a beautiful evening, the sun had gone down and it was very quiet.This was my view this evening;
Beacon Fell

Yesterday we enjoyed a day at Stoney Hurst College. It was a bank holiday food festival. Oh no! what a place to go when you are on a diet! It was a hot day and the beer tents and food stalls were heaving and the smell of delicious food surrounded me. I tried my best to find a healthy choice. Ian and my mum and dad munched on burgers and steak sandwiches. I was sure that they would have some healthy option, but I really struggled. I ended up choosing a Pad Thai dish from a Thai stall. It looked healthy, a mixture of bean shoots, chicken and vegetables. To my horror when I looked it up in my "eating out guide" it said that it was 22 points! To be honest, I am not convinced, I cannot see where this would come from. I am sure that it was cooked in alot of oil, but 22 points? ...I really hope not! I steered clear of the beer tent and decided on a glass of Pimms with diet lemonade, 3 PP. I am a big wine lover, but know that it is heavy on the calories, so it made me think I will take a look for some low calorie alcoholic drinks and cocktails and maybe base my post on that next week.

A lovely sunny weekend had by all. I managed to enjoy myself and not go too crazy and get a few runs in too. Let's see what the scales say on Wednesday!

Monday, 19 August 2013

Dress to impress-my top tips to looking good at work

I am convinced everything is more difficult for a woman. Men just do the task in hand and that is all they have to think about. Women have think about the task in hand and a million and one other things. At my Weight Watchers meeting a couple of weeks ago, the stand in leader was male. He made a good point that I thought was really true. He said that it is easier for men to loose weight. They don't consider other factors, just the fact that they want to loose weight. Whereas women have to think about everything else, like what shall I feed the kids, husband etc. Men are generally more selfish. I don't mean all men, my husband isn't selfish at all, but if he is determined to do something he will do it no matter what. Whereas women tend to put other things first. Anyway, I digress! My point was that women nowadays feel a pressure to be good at everything. Work, family, cooking etc. They are also expected to look good whilst doing everything!
At work is no exception. In fact quite the opposite. Women want to give an image of being successful. Dressing well and being groomed give women more self confidence in the work place.
We see this in programs like The Apprentice. The "business women" on there are immaculate. All styled in Leboutins and Mulberry. I work in an office and have regular meetings with clients, so most of my wardrobe is work wear. I always struggle a bit as I like my clothes and sometimes feel that I am "over dressed" and a bit too groomed. I like to wear heels, but again, worry that I come across a bit of a bimbo! I generally wear dresses as I'm just not a trouser person. I  like dresses which go down to my knee. There is nothing worse than having a dress that rides up and feeling self conscious.
So here are my top tips for feeling confident and looking good when dressing for work:
  • Feel comfortable! You do not want to be distracted from your work or meeting because you are conscious that you skirt is too short or your tummy is sticking out. Wear an outfit that fits well and don't have to think that there is any part of you that you don't like popping out.
  • Cover boobs up! It is not a good look! How can anyone expect to be taken seriously if you have your boobs hanging out of your clothes? Would you be distracted if a man you were meeting with had his penis out? I know I would! Also, what is that saying about you? Maybe that you aren't that great at your job that you have to use sex to get you what you want? Boobs are to be left out of the board room!
  • Simple and elegant is always best. You want people to take you seriously, if you have a fluffy, feather, fou fou top on it is going to take the attention away from what you are saying and all attention will be on what you are wearing.
  • I am going to slightly contradict myself here, but wear something that is you. Tone it down if you generally feel comfortable to short Lycra neon, but at the same time if you do not like wearing dresses, don't wear one.
  • Shoes are important. Epic heels can look nice, but you have to be able to walk in them. Otherwise you are going to just look clumsy and draw attention to yourself for the wrong reasons.
Here are a few of my favourite work dresses:

Paper Doll Dress-(coming soon to stock)
Little Mistress Black and White Bodycon dress

FCUK Black Dress

What do you like to wear for work? I'd love to see your favourite work outfits:-)

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

From Heff to Hottie-week 3

I had small panic last night as I had a cheeky pre weigh in the night before my official weigh in. I shouldn't do it, but I can't help myself. I am the type of person who has to see her presents before Christmas and struggles keeping any news quiet. I was beyond disappointed when the scales said that I had actually put weight on! HOW??? I have been sooooo good this week. With Ian being away, I hadn't been tempted by his meals and could please myself. I had managed a couple of runs and had a training session with Simone. How could I have put weight on? I quickly sent a FB message to Claire needing an answer to why this had happened. Claire re-assured me and put it down to water retention. I wasn't totally convinced and was very dis-hearted.
I have done Weight Watchers many times and know when I had a weight gain secretly why, even if I didn't want to admit to anyone, I knew that I hadn't counted everything or maybe had a few too many drinks, but this week I didn't get it. So, I decided to look at natural reasons your body may temporarily put weight on through no fault of your own.
  1. STRESS-if you are highly stressed you body goes into survival mode and store food and your metabolism slows down.Also, the body has certain foods which self calm the body. Naturally we will be drawn to these and over eat when we are stressed.
  2. MEDICATION-Certain medicines can cause you to add the pounds on. The reasons can vary dependant on the drug, it can vary from simply increasing your appetite to altering your insulin levels.
  3. EATING TOO LITTLE-If you eat too late over a period of time your metabolism will slow down, your body will go into starvation mode causing you to store food.
  4. LACK OF SLEEP-The less sleep you have the more your body craves food to give you energy.
  5. YOUR MONTHLY CYCLE-Your body can hold up to 7lbs of water the week before your period.
Scarlett was tired and a bit fed up during my weekly Weight Watchers meeting. There was a distinct lack of attendees, perhaps it was holiday season, or post holiday season and everyone was feeling guilty. My partner in crime, Jo, wasn't there either as it was her little boy's 4th birthday. I was very pleased when I was told that I had actually lost 1/2 pound. I still didn't understand why it wasn't more after my efforts, but better than a gain. I can't work out if my scales or wrong or my weight changed drastically over night. I am guessing it's the scales...

I am hoping that I will see the results of my good work in next week's weight in.

Monday, 12 August 2013

My Trafford Centre shopping day out

My shopping partner, Scarlett
My breakfast
My lovely husband left this morning for an early morning flight to Taiwan. I know it's a bit soppy, but I hate being away from him. We try to travel for our work together as much as possible (did I mention he's my boss?), but once every year he has to meet the chairman of the company in Taiwan. Now was the time. It would be extra hard this time as Scarlett is at a difficult age and needs constant attention and I need to work. I decided to take one day off and go shopping with my girl.
I stayed at Manchester airport last night with Ian so that I could see him off first thing, Scarlett stayed with my parents, they then met me with her at the Trafford Centre.
I did manage to steal a couple of hours on my own before they arrived which was strange, but nice. I sat in Pret and enjoyed a coffee and fruit for breakfast and actually read a book. Anyone who has a little one will know that reading a book is a real luxury. I enjoyed my few moments.
My shopping buddy soon arrived, armed with energy. We browsed from shop to shop, some parts were relaxing as she sat in her buggy and touched every item of clothing as she passed by, some times with sticky ice-cream hands which was slightly embarrassing and we had to move quickly on...other times were slightly more stressful as she insisted on running and screaming at the top of her voice through the busy crowds and I ran after her with beans of sweat on my brow.
We both managed to leave 7 hours later with plenty of treats. She insisted on a princess suitcase from the Disney Store, a pair of shiny red Next shoes and a cute pink jumper from Next with a fluffy bunny on the front. I also treated myself
Yellow clutch from Banana Republic
This beautiful yellow clutch from Banana Republic. This is a shop I have never really entertained, but as I had a bit of time I decided to browse and was happy with my findings! I just loved this clutch. I have no reason to buy it, I rarely go out anymore and I already have a huge collection, but I loved it, so it was bought!
My blue skirt

At the same time, I picked up this bright blue mini. I think it will be great for work, with a simple black shirt.
Hope earrings

My final purchase from Banana Republic were these cute hoop earrings. I just liked them and thought I would get alot of wear out of them.
Mango spotty dress
I fell in love with this Mango brown spotty dress. I like Mango, I think the style of Scarlett Fashion is similar to Mango. I think it attracts the same audience, yummy mummy's with style. This dress reminded me of the dress worn by Pretty Woman at the races. Very classy and timeless.

My dad bought me a mini bottle of Moet and told me to have a treat whilst Ian was away, which I thought was very sweet.

Despite missing Ian, I had a lovely day. I just hope the next week passes as quickly!

Thursday, 8 August 2013

From Heff to Hottie-Under Pressure!

Jo and I turned up nice and early for our first official weight in to see how our first week went.
Normally before a weigh in I feel either nervous or excited, dependant on how "good" I had been during the week. I had a mixture of the two. I knew that I had been very disciplined, but I had been travelling half the week and therefore been eating out. So even though I thought I had been making healthy choices and counting my points correctly, you never really know what extra little calories may be hiding in there. I knew if I hadn't lost anything I would be really dis-heartened. Scarlett came along with me to the meeting as Ian had to work. I'm not sure if it's the fact that the meeting is set in a church and Scarlett already has strong opinions about religion or if she just finds a group of women chatting about weight loss and food dull, but she always mis-behaves as soon as we arrive. Tonight was no exception. She refused to walk, so I had to carry her (2stone 1lb, she insisted on getting weighed too) and do the usual sign in and buy weightwatchers treats. I had already got a sweat on and I hadn't even been weighed yet! I cautiously manuovered myself onto the scales, stepping very lightly as that may affect the weight loss. 2 and 1/2 lbs off, YEY! Fab, good news. Jo had lost an amazing 4lbs. So the first week a success!

I am already planning the coming week. I shouldn't need to travel anywhere, so can plan my meals a bit better. My top tip is stir fry, they fill you up and you get all your healthy veg, then you can spice it up a bit and add some meat or tuna, it is still a really filling low point meal.
I have the lovely Simone Sirmon  coming this weekend, she is my personal trainer. We train once a week in my front garden, which is great entertainment for the neighbours. She is working on getting my core tighter post baby and then my running is my cardio.

My goal is 2lb weight loss next week. I will keep you posted!

Tuesday, 6 August 2013


Pure London has just taken place again. Anyone who is in the retail industry knows that this is one of, if not, the most important show for retailers to check out the next seasons looks.
The show seemed a little quiet this year, not quite the same buzz I have once seen. Is it because of the ever suffering retail industry, the blistering heat or perhaps the fact that most exhibitors were quite annoyed at the high prices that were being charged to exhibit. I'm not sure. However, a few were missing.
My favourites:
My ultimate had to be the Sugarhill stand. It was light and airy and not too cramped. So many of the exhibitors try to fit every single item onto their stand and the result is that it looks more like a market stall and a real turn off. On the opposite end of the spectrum, many brands did their best to just have 3 items hanging on a rail to give the impression that they were an exclusive brand. Again, to me, a turn off. Sugarhill Boutique had the balance just right. The colours for next season were bold, but fresh with alot of navy and aqua. Some new styles, such as the introduction of the midi dress, along with many old favourites and of course the famous cute animal print. I was a little spoilt for choice, but think that I choose well. Only another 6 months to wait to see them again!
Another favourite was Missco Girl bags. Their stand, again was clean and not cramped. Enough pieces to have a good noisy around without being swamped. They had kept the traditional satchel which is so,so popular, but they had also had some new ingenious new designs, very quirky. I really loved the fold over clutch:-) Again, the colours were bold, Orange and navy featured strongly. I happily placed my next order and am very pleased to say that these will be here by the end of September, yey!
Missco girl stand
I spotted a new brand that I quite fancy introducing. It is called Fever. I have seen it before, it is already quite established. I liked the designs of the dresses, they seemed cut well and quite flirty and feminine. I think that the style would really suit the shop, very "Yummy Mummy".
I brought the look book home and will spend a few hours pouring through it and choosing what to buy for next season.

The show, as a whole, was "OK". There were only a few brands which excited me, many same to be stocking very "safe" clothing for next season. Perhaps it is the case that thew new inspiring new brands simply couldn't afford to exhibit, which seems a real shame for them and also retailers. We need something new and refreshing, not the same old, same old...
The atmosphere was as ever quite pretentious, with a lot of insincere kisses on cheeks and hugs. However, it is always fun and nice to be in an industry where people clearly enjoy what they do.

Friday, 2 August 2013

From Heff to Hottie-The weigh in

Our weight watchers meeting

Jo and I made the first and most brave move. The first meeting and the first weigh in. ARRRRHHH! I had prepared myself by having a sneaky weigh in of my own that day. I had put on a few more pounds since my last Weight Watchers experience, but nothing horrendous. Still, it was always nasty to see those numbers pop up. I, ofcourse went for 3 wees before the weigh in, took my shoes off and any other item including heavy jewellery which may add that extra pound.
I was caught slightly off guard when Claire, my usual leader wasn't there, instead a man called Alan. It did feel slightly odd to be weighed by a man, but he was very kind and supportive. It was the first time Jo had ever attended anything like this, I think she expected a scene from the Fat Club in Little Britain. Although, I have to say, they do have some similarities:-) I think she enjoyed it all in all and seemed keen to start on her weigh loss journey. I think all of the points were a bit confusing to her, but I remember the first time I attended, it does take you a while to get your around it, now I am a pro and know the points of everything as soon as I look at it.  Now, all I need to do is stick to it!
I have stocked up on Weight Watchers crisps and choccy bars, which I love. They are great when I feel like I need something naughty. Now, I just need to get tracking!
My goal is 1 stone by 6th October which is 9 weeks away. All good so far, I have realised my weakness is picking at Scarlett's food! Saving my extra points for a few cheeky wines this weekend.
Let's see how we get on next week, will keep you posted!
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