Banocolate Cookies Recipe

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Lots of you requested this recipe when I mentioned it on my Snapchat – so thought it would be nice to share 😊

This is a great one to make with kids over the holidays as there really is no finesse required.

Best to eat them on the day you make them – trust me, they won’t last longer anyway!

Ingredients
1 large ripe banana
100g unsalted butter
100g soft brown sugar
1 medium sized egg
100g of plain flour
1/2 Tsp of baking powder
50g of whole porridge oats
100g of plain chocolate chunks

Method
1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and grease two baking sheets with butter.
2. Grab your food processor, add your chopped banana and chuck it in
3. Next add your butter, sugar and the egg and blend until smooth.
4. Add the flour, baking powder and oats and blend again until combined.
5. Transfer it to a bowl, then add your chocolate chips and mix together.
6. Drop spoonfuls of your mixture on to your baking sheets and flatten them down.

Bake at 180 for about 15 to 20 mins. Remove from oven and allow to cool….before sneaking some yourself and then offering to the kids. 😂

Trish xx

#breakthemould

I have never been good at accepting a compliment. I don’t know why, but when a person says ‘oh, you look well’ I immediately feel awkward and usually disagree with them. I find compliments embarrassing, and that’s just who I am. Maybe it’s an innate lack of confidence I have always battled with. I guess true confidence has to come from within.

I recently met someone who I hadn’t seen in a while. They congratulated me on the lastest baby, etc and then said ‘you look stunning girl!’ Queue me and my awkward reaction so I side stepped having to take the compliment by mentioning that I was going to Slimming World and still had a few pounds to go.

“But sure what do you need to be going to Slimming World for? There’s not a tack of you there! I wouldn’t go losing anymore weight if I were you, it will age you.”

Now, maybe most of you read that as a compliment. Perhaps it was intended as such. But the tone with which it was delivered, to me, said otherwise.

To paint the picture, I am not hugely overweight. I have an athletic build, can fit into my jeans, and can wear a bodycon dress with Spanx. (Without Spanx it’s like a marshmallow wearing a thong). But I have had to work HARD to get to this, and yes I still have a few pounds to go until I reach my goal.

To say that there is not a “tack of me there” is a bit ridiculous. I have never been and never will be underweight. And to warn me about aging? Protect and Perfect all you want honey but wrinkles gonna get ya. (Eventually).

Lets reverse this little social scenario on its head. I bump into a friend of mine who has had her second baby. I compliment her and her little bundle etc and she mentions that’s she has joined a slimming group.

“Yeah, you need to be going to a slimming group alright, well done you. There’s a fair bit of you to go around. Try lose a bit of weight now, it will make you look much younger.”

I’m thinking that would be when she would pick up her Bugaboo and swing it at me (bundle of joy hanging on for dear life).

So what makes one comment ok and the other one a cause for grievous bodily harm?

I don’t have the answer I’m afraid, so it’s one I’d ask you to think about.

Maybe I really can’t accept a”compliment”?

Maybe I was “skinny shamed?”?

Whatever it was, there is one thing I definitely cannot accept – labelling.

Stop categorising body types. Stop trying to fit into one. Fat, thin, chubby, skinny or my personal favourite that has been graciously (with a subtle hint of bitch) extended to me – well built.

I can’t understand how we have only 3 types of bodies really – fat, thin and in between. Bullshit. There are so many variations on the human body so that makes zero sense.

Kim Kardashian wrecks my head. But I wil give her this. She used that arse to break the Internet and the stereotype of what is beautiful. I see nothing skinny about her, curves galore!

I also love Rhonda Rousey. She has been blasted all over the cover of FHM  – she’s fit, fierce, “well built” and stunning.

And then there is Taylor Swift – tall and thin and beautiful. Style Queen.

Get my point?

There is no one size fits all.

Variety is the spice of life.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

My well built arms and legs are fabulous.

Now I’ll take that compliment. From me, to me.

Lean in 15 – 2 weeks done

Well, I have completed 2 weeks of eating in the Lean in 15 way so its time for the lowdown.

Does it work – yes.

Did it work for me? No.

This program is a sound way of eating IF you stick religiously to it. And you will see changes if you exercise as instructed 5 days of the week using HIIT.

So where did I go wrong?

  • I didn’t prep my meals. Sorry, but I spend the whole week running around after two children, keeping to their schedules. The last thing I feel like doing on the weekend is a massive amount of batch cooking. Its just not for me unless it is for the whole family.
  • HIIT workouts – I found it very hard to fit these in. My mornings are spent getting toddler to preschool and then getting a few things done while I have just the one with me. Afternoons are hectic, evenings are the same and then it is bed. I train in Karate twice a week but I don’t think that counts.
  • Food restriction – I understand cutting out the rubbish a.k.a choccie biscuits, crisps and highly processed junk. But cutting out porridge, multi grain bread, wholegrain rice is not sustainable for me. You can have these foods post workout yes, but 3 times a week is not enough for me.

I felt deprived at times and restriction lead to grab and go incidents that didn’t end well. I find any diet that restricts something throws me off the wagon.

I think Lean in 15 will work for someone with a little bit more time on their hands and someone who is willing to sign up to the program to get the individualized plan.

I have learned a multitude from it and will keep using some of the recipes, but I think I will adjust it slightly to allow an “all round” diet for me.

My planned approach:

  • Water – and lots of it, everyday.
  • Cut out processed food. If there are ingredients that I do not recognize, then I don’t eat it. Make my own sauces, no sugar loaded jars!
  • Fruit and veg until it is coming out my ears!!!!
  • Protein with every meal, and make it lean.
  • Wholegrain carbohydrates in moderation – will try to keep these to heavy training days.
  • Walking, as much as possible, aiming for everyday.

I didn’t weight myself on the Lean in 15. I felt an initial slimming down in the first few days but this then tapered off. I will be very interested to see how my “middle of the road” approach works.

The last thing I want to do is turn my blog into a diet and fitness site – I neither have the desire to do so nor the qualifications! So the next update on my fitness journey will be in a few weeks to see if the above approach works.

Has anyone else tried Lean in 15? I would love to know how others find it.

4 days down – Lean in 15 update

I have completed 4 days of eating non processed, low carb food and I must say I am pretty happy! The HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) sessions had to be skipped though due to injury which is a pity as I think they would yield some great results. I’m looking forward to seeing the back of this injury as it is really holding me back at the moment, but at least I know that I am eating right while I recover.

An overview of what I have been eating for the last few days

I have primarily been eating reduced carb meals as I have not been training much, except for Wednesday night when I did a light Karate session. I scoffed a bowl of Kelkin Museli afterwards! Breakfasts are definitely my favourite as I love turkey rashers and sausages; it really feels like a substantial start to the day.

I haven’t made a huge amount from the cookbook; I have been improvising but following the basic principles.

  

    
   
 

 

How do I feel?

This is the biggest bonus for me. I have zero cravings for sweet things which is amazing for me. I am sleeping better and I find it easier to get going in the morning. My energy levels are definitely on the up as I am eating more vegetables than before. I was worried about low carb and training and I didn’t find I was lacking in energy which is good.

How do I look?

It has only been 4 days so no different – let’s be realistic here. However I am definitely less bloated and my tummy feels a lot flatter. My jeans are more comfortable.

What has been most challenging?

I think it is hard when other people offer you a biscuit with your tea, or the hubby says lets get a Chinese – people look at you stupid when you decline. Joe Wicks also recommends that you prep all of your meals for the week and I understand why. I have been caught on the hop once or twice with nothing ready and almost reached for the rubbish. Having eggs handy saved me as I just threw together a quick omlette to tide me over.

Not being able to exercise is killing me. I am walking each day and moderately training at karate but I know I need to do so much more. Injuries suck!

What do I like the most about this?

I like that I am not writing down what I eat, not adding up points and that I am eating according to hunger. I love the recipes and I am delighted with the amount of veg that I am eating.

I am really delighted that my cravings are gone as I am a devil for comfort eating. If I am happy, I celebrate with food. If I am down, I make myself feel better with food. I am more aware of this now and feel like it is under control a bit better.

Lean in 15 Day 1 – Enthusiasm alert!

You know that first day of the diet when you are determined to make a change and stick to it this time? The day where you are bursting with enthusiasm and energy, ready to take the bull by the horns? Eh, that was not today.

Firstly, we all slept in so it was pandemonium trying to get everyone where they needed to be. All I could manage to grab was a coffee as I changed nappies and pleaded with my son to put his shoes on. You all know how it is…..

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Finally, it was just me and my 4 month old little girl so I was able to get cracking. I did the HIIT session as she watched from the bouncy chair! It is harder than it looks but I have a very slight hip injury at the moment which is slowing me down (ahem, excuse). I felt great after it, guzzled some water and started cooking my breakfast.

After a workout, you are allowed some carbs. Otherwise this is a reduced carb plan. So post HIIT session I made my version of the Build Up Bagel for breakfast:

  • Slice of wholegrain toast (had no bagels as they are too tempting for me)
  • Topped with tablespoon of cottage cheese
  • Drizzle of peri peri sauce
  • Two smoked turkey rashers
  • Tomatoes
  • Topped with a runny egg
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Visualize this on toast…

 

Oh sweet lord, it was divine!! Would never have thought of such a combo! Washed down with a coffee and it kept me going well past lunch.

Snack time – At about 2ish, toddler was back from school and baby was due a nap and a bottle and a nappy change and I was due some food. I had nothing prepped as such (Joe advocates prepping like a “boss”) so had to reach for a snack. I grabbed some cashews but grabbed way too many. You should really only have 20/30g as they are high calorie food. I ate 145g!!!! Lesson learned.

Dinner – I made a yummy Thai green chicken curry. This is my own recipe but based on the principles of the book.

  • Heated a tablespoon of coconut oil in the pan and added my chicken pieces to stir fry
  • Chucked in some veggies – courgette and mixed peppers on this occasion.
  • I pre cooked some butternut squash in the microwave and then put that in too.
  • Tablespoon of thai green curry paste (from a jar)
  • Then added a tin of full fat coconut milk.
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Ok so this is not mine and mine did not look as good and I will start taking pics of my food from tomorrow on, promise!

 

I batched some of this away for the coming days. Hubby likes it too and has it with a microwave pack of rice.

Evening time then brought the munchies, probably because I skipped lunch. So I made Joe’s reduced carb oatmeal. Basically I took some chia seeds, ground flaxseed, oatmeal, pinch of cinnamon and added almond milk. Microwaved this, then topped with greek yoghurt and some raspberries. I also drizzled with honey which is probably not allowed but oh well.

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And I’m done for day 1! I also drank 2.5 litres of water today. In fairness, I’m happy enough except for the cashew nut incident. It feels weird eating food that I would have ran a mile from on a low fat, low calorie diet but I will stick it out to see if it works.

Joe Wicks – Lean in 15

Everyone is talking about Joe Wicks, the Lean in 15 guy and the kind of incredibly hot looking guy! I have been following Joe on Instagram for quite a while now and was going to sign up to his plan (90 day SSS) a while ago but found out I was pregnant soon after. (Saved by the bump!)

Not only are his recipes yummy…..

JW

I have always been keen to give it a try and was toying again with the idea recently. Joe has released his own cookbook – I had a sneaky flick through it in Eason’s (free loader I know!) and realized that I could actually give it a try myself before forking out a couple of hundred on the tailored plan. And here I am! I have decided to document this on the blog for anyone who is interested in the plan and thinking of trying it out. This will be a very honest account of things, including when and how I fall off the wagon (and I will given that I am human!), what I eat, how I exercise and how I feel.

Why am I doing this?

Well, first here is a little about me. I have two kids, one toddler and one 4 month old. I have always been sporty but naturally this declined as I had my kids. I don’t have a huge amount of weight to lose to be very honest, so my goals are

  • Fitness
  • Strength
  • Toning (I have many a wobbly bit)
  • Energy

I do karate and would like a healthy diet to compliment my training here as it can be quite intense. I would also like to have the energy to run around after my little ones every day!

I will not be using the scales to track my progress – we have a love hate relationship and the scales tend to piss me off more than make me happy. So I am going to use the mirror and my clothes for any visible results.

Note: I absolute will not be posting pics of me in unflattering undies doing before and after!

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I have tried low calorie, low fat diets before (pro points anyone?) and they most definitely did work but left my hungry and grumpy. I also found it very hard to train when on them and found I was losing shape. I was more inclined to eat ready meals and bars – basically my diet had a lot of sugar in it.

I may not post every single day as I have no intention of killing you all with boredom and I may also not have the time but I will give a summary of the days prior.

If anyone is trying this at the moment I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences and of course shout with any questions you might have.

Jesus – I feel under pressure now, I’ll have to make a go of this!!

Pip & Pear – all of the goodness, none of the guilt!

I am all for buying Irish, so was so excited to hear about Pip & Pear chilled baby food. Irene Quealy is a restaurantuer from Co. Waterford who has combined her passion for food and motherly know how to create the Pip & Pear range. The business has gone from strength to strength and after sampling some of the range I can see why they have won so many awards!

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We are not weaning in my house just yet, so I tried things out on myself and the fuss pot of a toddler I have. He is going through this phase of not really eating his porridge so I grabbed some of the Stage 1 pots to add to breakfast. I got involved too!

First up – Banana Blue (apples, blueberry and banana).

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This is delish! Really sweet and gorgeous with porridge. The fuss pot cleaned his bowl that morning! He also had some that afternoon on the spoon and he devoured it. I will definitely be getting this again when I am weaning my little girl.

Next – Spiced Apple & Pear

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This one is actually my favourite 🙂 I gave some to my toddler with some yoghurt and he loved it. So then I added it to yoghurt and museli for me – unreal! I think it’s the light hint of cinnamon that makes this one.

Finally – Lamb Tagine

The reason I tried this one is that I wanted to see if it would help me to get my toddler to eat some rice. I added it to some pilau rice, which he has been having issues with of late and it did the trick. There are lots of hidden veggies in this so it was great to sneak the goodness into him.

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I will definitely be using these as a back up to my own home made stuff when weaning the little one – everything in these packs is natural, gluten free and dairy free which is so important, but also they taste amazing; so much nicer than other brands. I like the fact that anything not eaten by the weaning baby can be used up by toddler or mum as well.

Pip & Pear are available in Supervalue stores nationwide. If your local store does not have them in stock, they will happily order them in for you if you ask nicely 😊

http://www.pipandpear.ie