(V)(C) Mediterranean Mix with Sweet Potato

As you know, I am not one to stick to a strict recipe, so tonight when I got in I thought I would just throw whatever I could think of together and see how it went…

It was good enough that I had to share it immediately, with Oliver’s review a simple “YUP”.

What you need:

  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • A can of Cannellini Beans
  • 1/2 cup dried split peas
  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • Some sea salt
  • Some proper peppercorn pepper (the ground stuff just doesn’t cut it)
  • 2 shallots (finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • Dried coriander leaves
  • Italian herbs mix
  • Dill
  • Coconut Oil

For the bean mix:

Drain, wash and pat dry the beans. Put the beans, lentils, split peas, shallots and garlic in to a pan and cover with water. Then add in the coriander leaf and italian herbs, be generous because the flavours really need to soak in to the water to taste! Put on a low-medium heat until it boils (I put it on for about 25-30mins before taking it off to reheat once the potatoes were done… I wasn’t planning on making a recipe for this so didn’t take exact notes).

For the sweet potato:

Chop the potatoes in to quarters lengthways, place in to a shallow dish (the pyrex kind) and sprinkle loads of dried dill to cover the potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Melt some coconut oil and pour over (about 1 tbsp worth). Put on a high heat (I did it at 225C on my fan oven) and turn so all 3 sides spend time facing down. Just before they’re done, sprinkle some more salt on the skins to crisp them up. It took 45 mins for the sweet potatoes to cook for me but just keep an eye until you’re happy they’re crispy enough!

MedMix
SO. GOOD.

You can tell how good this was by the fact I was so excited about it that I had to share it immediately!
Enjoy and leave a comment/review below if you try it out!

(C) Crème Fraîche on Ryvita

What you need:

  • Fruit Crunch Ryvita (the deep red packet)
  • Crème Fraîche (300ml pot, don’t buy the fat free kind – it’s packed with sugar)
  • Chia Seeds (3 tbsp)
  • Ground Almonds (1/2 cup/around 4-5 tbsp)
  • Rose Water (a glug – you’ll need to taste it to see how much you want. I got a 190ml bottle for approx £1.50 from ASDA)
  • Sunflower Seeds (to top with)
  • Berries (I used dried cranberries and fresh blueberries and again these are to top with)

This is so super easy and should make enough to last a full work week (5 days) and will take about 5 minutes if you’re super slow at mixing.

Method:

Empty the crème fraîche in to a mixing bowl, add in the chia seeds and ground almonds, mix this all together. Add a teaspoon at a time of rose water, stir and taste as you go, once it’s to your taste it’s pretty much ready to eat!

Spread the mixture on top of the Fruit Crunch Ryvita as thick as you want, top with sunflower seeds and berries and that’s it! A delicious breakfast that will last days! (Store just the additional crème fraîche mixture in the fridge to keep it fresh).

Crème fraîche goodness
The finished product

Give it a go and don’t forget to leave a comment below!

 

(C) Fresh Salmon Fillets

Hi All,

If you haven’t guessed already, i love seafood. Especially salmon.

As i have preached about in previous posts, i shop with Muscle Food and oh sailor do they deliver with their seafood! So after receiving my latest delivery from my favourite meat team, i was desperate to cook the fresh salmon fillets.

Fresh Salmon Fillets:

– 2 x Fresh Salmon Fillets (Muscle Food)

– 1 x Lemon (for juice and slices)

– A handful of Dill

– Coconut Oil

Oil up the baking tray with coconut oil and place both fillets in it, scatter dill over the top of the salmon, cut two slices of lemon and place over the dill. Squeeze the rest of the lemon over both fillets and place under the grill.

IMG_2006

 

Once grilled to your liking, place salmon on plate with your side servings (I served with Asparagus and sweet potato)

Happy Cooking!

Jo x

My Progress So Far – Jo

my new life

 

Hi All,

When we created this blog, we wanted to help, inspire and motivate girls and guys as far as we could reach that changing your lifestyle is affordable and easier that you think, with a little will power and encouragement, anyone can do this.

Both Tilly and I have been in the “slump” position, where going to the gym or doing any kind of exercise isn’t appealing and we would procrastinate to the moon and back.

I do not want to go back to what i was and i think i speak for Tilly as well following her “summer struggle” blog.

When i decided to change the lifestyle i lead and get fitter and most definitely lose some weight, about this time last year,  i was extremely naive about what was labelled as “healthy” so when i was busting my ass at the gym and then tucking into a “healthy” chicken caesar salad drenched in the dressing, i was wondering why my body wasn’t changing and why i wasn’t feeling any better in myself.

Once i ditched the “fad” diets and started focussing more on a healthier lifestyle change, the penny dropped. I hadn’t been eating anything nutritious and i had been dedicated to the gym for what seemed like nothing.

You-cant-out-exercise-a-bad-diet170/30

 

Eat. Nourish. Glow by Amelia Freer saved me from this black hole of fad and unrealistic “diets” I would recommend this book to anyone. It’s a fantastic read. I learnt so much about food from Amelia.

eat nourish glow

Both Tilly and I walked the 5K colour run last year in October and we both decided that the following year we wanted to be able to run 5k if not more and come back next year and smash it out of the park

Tilly, Jo, Kerrie
BEFORE: Tilly, Jo, Kerrie
After
AFTER: Tilly, Kerrie, Lynn, Jo, Guy

I started running in January as well as going to the gym, i started with interval training to help build my stamina up, it was a 12/14 week long process to get me up to 5k – which was a massive achievement when i first started.

My advice to anyone who has started running or looking to start, do interval training, you can download apps for free on android and app store.

I ran my first 5k run in March this year. Blacklight Portsmouth. 7pm start – pretty much a colour run but in the dark! Whats not to love?!

Pre – run we were getting pretty cold waiting for the race to start, so we thought selfies would pass the time and keep us warm!

PRE RUN: Travis, Jo, Tilly
PRE RUN: Travis, Jo, Tilly

We ran 5k in 30 minutes, what an achievement for all of us, our first 5K!

POST RUN: Amelia, Jo, Tilly, Travis
POST RUN: Amelia, Jo, Tilly, Travis

Without interval training, i don’t think i would have kept up with running, i looked forward to every run to push myself each time, to run a little longer every time.

So once i knew i could run 5k, without collapsing! I decided to then set myself the next challenge, 10k double what i had just ran that night. That meant a new interval training app to motivate me and keep me going. I was so excited and proud that i hadn’t given up and kept pushing myself.

On 22nd May, i did it. I ran my first 10k. In two months i had achieved another goal i had set myself! So i think you can guess what next challenge i was setting myself…

My first 10k completed
My first 10k completed

 

Do NOT give up with interval training, you will feel like you are hitting a wall, but this is a temporary wall that you can smash through, think of the finish line.

This was then around the time that both Tilly and I decided to set up Clean and Green Girls, we were both setting ourselves goals for the short and long term and i can’t believe that we have both hit so many of them before our own “ideal target time”

Aswell as running and the gym, i still wanted a challenge and started “insanity” – which totally lives up to its name! I wasn’t strictly following insanity like the guide tells you, i was fitting this workout around me as an additional extra.

I have recently completed a 22k run, funny story really.

I had a hair appointment with Harry’s mum at her salon in Fernhurst. I wanted a fresh barnet for my cousins wedding (25th July) – this has been my deadline for weight loss.

It was a Saturday appointment so naturally Harry had a cricket game and needed the cargo get himself there, now for people that don’t know where Fernhurst or Petersfield are, i have mapped them on google maps below:

petersfield - fernhurst

So about a week before my appointment, i had an ideal to run home from Fernhurst after getting my hair done. When i get an idea in my head, I’m pretty much set on it. I mapped out my route carefully with Harry and was ready to push my mind and body to double the running capacity i am used to.

Saturday is here, Harry’s mum greets me and then says “Oh been to the gym this morning Jo?!” Jo: ” Not exactly” Glynis:”What do you mean?” Jo:”I’m going for a run later” (Harry has to leave and says his goodbyes) Glynis: ” How are you getting home after this then if Harry has just taken the c…”

Needless to say her face was a picture when she realised my plan and told me to make sure i condition my hair when i got home!

Pre 20/22k Run Selfie.
Pre 20/22k Run Selfie.

 

So where am i now…

The wedding was last weekend and what a blast it was to see family after such a long time! Too Long.

Jo, Harry, Tom, Sophie, Chloe
Jo, Harry, Tom, Sophie, Chloe

No one appreciated our selfie stick except these guys… 

A couple of weeks Harry and i booked a week away to Marrakech in October

Not long before a well deserved week away
Not long before a well deserved week away

and today i have signed myself up to a 10 Mile run at the end of October. So i definitely still have some motivation to push myself to maintain this amazing lifestyle.

I feel great about myself now, more energy, motivation and I’m much happier as a person.

When i started this process i was 12st 5lbs, overweight and over indulging. Now.. 10st on the dot. Healthier, happier and certainly still indulging, but on the right things!

If you have read this all the way through, Thank you and please do not give up if you are following a similar journey.

Jo x

 

Bikini Blend

Hi All,

Its been a while!

I am here to kick start this blog back into action by talking about my latest purchase towards my fitter and healthier lifestyle.

Bikini Blend protein.

 I was looking for an all natural protein blend to compliment my lifestyle and work outs and most importantly, didn’t make me bloat out to the size of a balloon! I actually found Bikini Blend on Instagram, i followed them because i loved their quirky photos they posted, so when i had a little free time i started to look into them a little more, they only offer the one product, but in two flavours, Cacao and Vanilla.

After reading reviews and researching, i decided to bite the bullet and go for it. A little dubious about the price (£39.99 for 1KG, £24.95 for 500g) i opted for the Cacao, chocolate is my kryptonite!

I was instantly impressed with their packaging:

How sweet are their notes to customers!
How sweet are their notes to customers!

What i also learnt is that guys aswell as us gals can use it too(sourced from Bikini Blend website) :

“We can’t guarantee him ever looking great in a bikini, but The Bikini Blend is known in some circles as the “Beer Belly Buster””

Both Harry (my boyfriend) and i have been using Bikini Blend for just over a month now, we have ours every morning straight after breakfast and WE LOVE IT! I would say we have enough left for at least another 2 weeks.

I believe that Bikini Blend has been the helping hand towards my fitter, healthier lifestyle and i will certainly be purchasing again. Bikini Blend Protein Supplement has done exactly what i was hoping from a shake. No Bloating, No lumpy texture, great taste, keeps my sweet tooth and tummy satisfied and ALL NATURAL! 

Here is some nutritional information (sourced from packaging and website):

bikini blend nutrition

Bikini blend nutrition
Bikini blend nutrition

 

I’d love to hear what you all think too, please leave comments below!

Jo x

Sources: http://thebikiniblend.com 

An Open Letter: To My Friends Finishing Uni

We’ve made it through! Three long years apart, you’ve been away having the time of your lives and our journeys have taken very different paths but we made it, we’re still friends and the love never left.

You have no idea how happy this makes me; it’s been hard without you, it’s been hard going through different jobs and moving out on my own without other people going through the same struggles to talk about these things. There are some things I’ve learned in the past 3 years that I want to share with you that (I hope) will help you through the next few months (or maybe year)…

I’ll start at the first next-stage of your lives…

Finding A Job.

Job hunting isn’t easy, it isn’t fun and it certainly isn’t glamorous. My advice? Keep going and use who you know. You might apply for 10, 20, maybe even 50 jobs before you get called in for an interview and you might not even get that job. Don’t be disheartened, the jobs you don’t get weren’t meant for you. I truly believe that you’ll fall in to the perfect job for you at the time you take it. This doesn’t mean you’ll enjoy it – far from it, but you will definitely learn things that you never knew before. I now know how NOT to be a manager, how making friends at work can be dangerous but can also create some of the strongest friendships you’ll ever have and how office/workplace gossip is the most annoying thing about work and how difficult it is to stay out of. Another top tip: sign up to recruitment agencies but don’t rely on them. A lot of companies don’t accept applications from recruitment agencies as it costs them a lot of money, you could miss out on the greatest opportunity of your life by relying on someone else to find a job for you!

Your First 6 Months

So you’ve found a new job? I am so happy for you! But here’s the kicker… you are going to be tired. You’ll be physically and emotionally exhausted and you’re going to wonder how it’s even possible to be this tired and surely you’ll get used to the hours and the work and once you’ve learned the ropes your brain won’t be so overloaded so you won’t be so tired any more. The weariness doesn’t go away, but you do get used to it. I understand that you’ll be tired for the first 6 months or so and you won’t be out as much as you thought because you ‘need to sort my sleeping pattern’ or ‘had a long day and I’m exhausted’. I understand this because I’ve been through it and I know one day you’ll think, just like I did, ‘I can’t let being tired keep me from my personal and social life, suck it up and get out and see people’. Take the time you need to settle in to your new routine but don’t let work take over your personal or social life because you deserve a life outside your job. I’ll be waiting for you whenever you’re ready.

Work Is To Make Money, Not Friends

Likewise with being tired all the time, one of the biggest mistakes I have made in the workplace is entering it with the wrong attitude. I tried to get everyone to like me, I wanted everyone to be my friend and I never wanted anyone in the office/shop/branch to have a reason to b*tch about me behind my back. Now I realise how impossible this is and I go in to work to make money, not friends. I have you guys for friendship – I don’t need any more friends!

Strangely enough, this new attitude has honestly created some great unintended friendships and sometimes those are the best kind. I haven’t heard any office whispers about someone saying something behind my back and people always seem perfectly happy to say anything they have an issue with to my face because they know I’m not going to take it the wrong way. Go to work, be yourself, establish boundaries but don’t try to make friends – you’re all fantastic people and you’ll make genuine friends anyway.

The Workplace Is Not As Accepting As University

One of the things I think I really missed out on by not going to University is the social movements. Feminism, equal rights for the LGBTQA community, tuition fee protests etc are all amazing social movements headed up by University students. The truth is though, in the workplace you’re going to face some pretty bad comments and judgement… and there isn’t much you can do about it. Although I try to call people out where I can, sexism is a real issue in the workplace and for some people it’s so ingrained that they don’t even realise they are doing it. Social movements are great at University but don’t place your job under threat over someone else’s misplaced comment.

Sexism isn’t the only issue in today’s workplace. Ageism is a real issue that every single one of you will face. A lot of people in managerial positions have spent years climbing the ladder and they aren’t going to offer high paying jobs to someone fresh from the clutches of Uni. Sometimes you have to sit it out and watch the bloke who can’t even send an email get a promotion over you just because he’s been there the longest. Get over it, your time will come and if it bothers you then speak to whoever represents your HR department… or you can vent to me!

Speak to HR (or your union rep)

Whether it’s a small company or a large company there should be a HR(or union) representative available for you to speak to if you have any issues. These people are literally company geniuses; they will know almost every (if not all) policies the company has or where to find them and they also will know the rest of the staff and how they will react to certain circumstances. If you aren’t sure of something or someone has made you uncomfortable in the workplace speak to HR or your union rep. Never be afraid to speak to the people representing you, they are there to help and I have never met a union rep or anyone from HR who didn’t have my best interests at heart and who wasn’t sincere and willing to say something bluntly to me or to any offenders.  I’ve quit jobs because I was unhappy but I never went through the right channels to resolve the issues before they reached a point I couldn’t deal with them any more. Don’t make the same mistakes I have, when you join your new company, take note of who’s in charge of your welfare and talk to them when the issues arise, don’t let them build to a point you can no longer cope with them.

Don’t Let Anyone Make You Do Something You’re Uncomfortable With

Take this one with a pinch of salt because, ocassionally, you’ll have to do things you don’t want to do to get the job done. There will always be aspects of your job that you don’t like, whether it’s paperwork, call outs or whatever is relevant to your field. However, if someone asks you to do something that you morally do not agree with, do not do it. If you feel under threat of your job, speak to HR/your union rep. If you’re in a tiny company and you don’t have anyone to speak to or are worried you’ll get in trouble if you speak to anyone then PLEASE let me know what’s going on. There are external sources that can help you such as the Citizens Advice Bureau but there might be much easier ways to deal with things that you haven’t thought of. Just as I use your knowledge of the best clubs to hit up in your Uni towns, feel free to use my knowledge and experiences in the workplace.

Some of this might sound like common sense, but you’ll be surprised how the work place can change your attitude towards a lot of things and how difficult it can be to speak up at work. You’re all lovely, strong, incredible, intelligent, beautiful people and I am so proud of you all for the hard work and dedication you’ve put in to your degrees. Your results are testament to the work you’ve put in but I also know you’ve had the chance to party and have fun too! Things are going to change now and I want you to feel comfortable asking me anything you want to with no judgement and complete understanding along with the sometimes very blunt truths I can offer.

This letter comes with a multitude of love and affection and hope for the future and I’m excited for us to grow, learn, love and live together.

Mostly though, I’m just really glad to have you all home again.

So much love you don’t even understand,

Tilly xo

The Summer Struggle

I find that normally people talk about the ‘Winter Slump’. The time over winter when Christmas hits and you eat loads and exercise less. For me though, the real struggle is summer. Friends are around, the sun is shining and the gym is absolutely sweltering.

I haven’t been to the gym for approx 3 weeks… this is why I don’t feel guilty:

  • I’ve walked along the beach
  • I’ve had a long kick about at the heath
  • I’ve been surfing and swimming in the sea
  • I’ve continued training Taekwondo
  • I’ve done boxing practice down the field near my flat
  • I’ve done some of the most fun, social exercises and been so much happier for it

Hitting the gym in winter is easy for me, I get to use a wide variety of exercise equipment where it’s light and quiet because few people are trying to get their ‘beach ready bodies’ (what does that even mean?!).

Fitness and exercise doesn’t have to be a chore, you should enjoy it! The This Girl Can campaign has been advertising this a lot lately and it’s so relevant to everyone – the gym is not for everyone, neither is running or basketball or football or any particular sport. Trying different activities is the only way to find the one for you and I promise there’s an activity or exercise out there that you’ll fall in love with!

My favourite thing about the exercise and fitness I’ve been doing for the past three weeks is that it’s the most social I’ve been for ages and I still get to have the endorphins flowing! If I asked most of my friends to hit the gym with me I would get nowhere, if I ask them to join me for a walk on the beach or a kick about they are much happier to join me and (apart from travel costs) most of these activities are FREE too.

FREE EXERCISE, SUN AND HAPPINESS – what more could you want? The summer slump is a thing of the past for me now… A walk in the countryside or at the beach or any number of other activities is the way forward for anyone who suffers from the ‘Summer Struggle’.

Get social, get active, get motivated. (I’ve even managed to get a tan which is really quite shocking to anyone who knows me and I’m not quite sure how no one tried to send me back to wherever it is ghosts come from).

I’m also really excited to meet some new people at Fitness Academy, the new fitness class I’m heading up on a Monday night in Petersfield. It’s a whole new venture for me, unlike anything I’ve done before, and I can’t wait to help people achieve their fitness goals!

This summer is gonna be my favourite summer yet; I’d love to hear your stories about fitness and if you’ve found what works for you so please comment below to get in touch.

Mighty Mackerel

IMG_2020

This is a recipe steal from Eat Nourish Glow by Amelia Freer. One of my favorites, especially when i am in a rush or the cupboards are looking bare!

This makes a fantastic lunch or starter.

The recipe below serves 2:

– 225g (8oz) smoked mackerel, broken into pieces

– Juice and zest of 1 lemon

– Handful fresh dill

 – ½ avocado

– Sea salt and ground black pepper

Blend all the ingredients together in a mixer until combined. Add a little water or extra lemon juice to taste.

Serve chilled with non-wheat crackers or crudites. I often use rye bread.

(might be worth having a mint handy afterwards!)

Happy Eating!

Jo x

Eat Nourish Glow

IMG_1663

 

This book is the most honest and helpful cook book i have ever read and yes it is a read. Unlike normal “healthy eating” recipe/cook books, Amelia tells you what foods you should swap and WHY you should. The recipes do not contain foods you have never heard of and are easy to add into your everyday lifestyle.

Within the first week of purchasing this book, i  was 8lbs lighter! That was a bonus on top of what i have learnt about food and what food can be deceived as “healthy”

If you are dedicated to changing your lifestyle and shedding weight, you need to Eat Nourish Glow

No excuses, payday is just around the corner!

Here is a direct link to Amazon to get your copy and at only £7, all you have to lose is your post holiday weight and bad eating habits!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Eat-Nourish-Glow-looking-healthier/dp/000757990X

Happy Buying!

Jo x

(C) Dinner Parties – the clean way! (Part III)

I hope by now you’ve had a chance to try the starter and main course in this thread of recipes and enjoyed them as much as I do!

This is, by far, the simplest of all of the courses and is so ridiculously tasty. If I’m honest, I thought this would be the most disgusting thing I have ever eaten in my life and was very pleasantly surprised when I took my first spoonful and found the texture and taste to be incredible. This recipe should serve 4 people (but if you enjoy it as much as me, it may disappear before you get a chance to put it on the table…).

Dessert – Banana, Almond and Chia Seed Pudding

What you will need:

  • 1 cup chia seeds
  • 4 bananas
  • 1 carton almond milk (if anyone has nut allergies you can use soya, coconut or oat milk)

Method:

Chop up the banana and put the almond milk and banana in to a blender/smoothie maker and blend until smooth.

Split in to 4 serving dishes – I used a fancy latte glass I had hanging around. Make sure there is some room in whatever you’re using… you’ll see why.

Put 1/4 cup of chia seeds in to each dish, mix, and place in the fridge to cool. The chia seeds will absorb the liquid and become soft, they will also grow. The longer you leave it, the softer they become. I left it about 30 mins and the texture was like mousse however you can eat it straight away, the seeds will just be crunchy.

Chia, banana and almond milk pudding
Looks weird, tastes great!

Serve and enjoy!

As usual, please leave your comments below.