Earlier this year, lockdown was cruel to us all for many reasons... But what I'd say I've struggled with the most is my diet and urge to snack on literally everything. This is a problem anyway because I'm just a foodie. However, for the past month or so I've been on a calorie deficit to try and lose some weight. I had a really great, wholesome day of eating today, so I thought I'd share my meals with you for some inspiration (or something like that).
I’ve been using MyFitnessPal to set my goals and calorie deficit, as well as to log my food intake and exercise achieved every day. It’s a great app – easy to use, gives you reminders to log if you haven’t, and really conveniently allows you to scan food barcodes to make sure you’re tracking every last calorie accurately. My calorie deficit is currently set at 1,390, however I aim for somewhere between that and 1,500 calories because I’m now exercising three times a week and this girl is HUNGRY.
I very recently bought the well-known recipe book ‘Pinch of Nom’ after hearing so much about it last year. It’s brimming with 100 slimming recipes to help you stay on track while still enjoying your food. I decided to make my first recipe from it today (after finally narrowing it down), so you can see how that turned out if you care to read on.
But first, let’s start with what I had for breakfast…
Oats are brilliant. They’re cheap, tasty, and incredibly filling. I hadn’t had porridge for ages, so I thought I’d make myself some this morning.
I measured out 50g of Scottish oats, 200ml of semi-skimmed milk (I like my porridge thick), and whacked it on the hob over a medium heat. Once it had thickened to my liking, I simply put it in a bowl, decorated it with some blueberries and sliced apple, and sprinkled over some cinnamon. I don’t like to add sugar because it’s just extra calories and the fruit is sweet enough.
Wa-la! A hearty breakfast at just 335 calories.
What’s for lunch?
The first three weeks into my calorie deficit, I was making the mistake of still eating too many carbs like bread and pasta. Sadly, carbs don’t help you lose weight so I’ve been really trying to eat more protein (an essential nutrient for weight loss) and more vegetables.
This sort of meal is one of my favourites because it just packs everything into one. I seasoned a chicken breast with a Maggi garlic paper and set it away on a medium heat to cook. I also had half a tray of Mediterranean vegetables in the oven sprayed with low-fat cooking spray and then zapped some golden vegetable rice in the microwave in the last two minutes. Easy as that! Of course, no chicken and rice dish is complete without a drizzle of Nandos medium sauce. This meal came to a total of 499 calories (with the sauce) and kept me really full for exercising later.
I was overwhelmed by the amount of recipes I immediately wanted to try out from the ‘Pinch of Nom’ book. However, with only around 500 calories left for my evening meal I decided to make something light.
Fish is so delicious and sometimes I don’t eat enough of it. It’s so, so good for you and also really versatile. These soft fish tacos only take five minutes to prepare and then ten minutes cooking time, which is about all I wanted to spend making my tea after exercising.
The recipe says you can use normal tortillas and half them but I bought some mini ones because I wanted to be awkward and have just three tacos. I chopped up one spring onion and some water cress and decorated my tortillas ready for the rest of the filling.
Once these were prepared, I placed two cod fillets on a chopping board and sliced them each into three strips. I sprinkled the strips with chilli powder, garlic granules, salt, and pepper and then sprayed a pan with low calorie cooking spray and placed the fish on a high heat. I cooked the first side for around 4 minutes and then flipped them over for another 4 minutes.
After cooking the fish I placed two strips in each taco, squeezed over a little lime juice, and put a teaspoon of fat-free Greek yoghurt on the side to go with each.
These were AMAZING. So light, so easy to make, and most importantly so tasty. Since I was eating quite late it was the perfect meal to have so I didn’t feel overindulged or bloated. It also only came to 497 calories.
Put it this way, I’m incredibly excited to try more recipes from the book. When I do, I’ll be sure to share them in another ‘What I Eat in a Day’ post.