Summer Ahoy – The perfect time to start

I sit staring at my phone. With a feeling of mild trepidation, fear and worry. No I’m not willing it to ring……sitting solemnly waiting for that call that will deliver some life altering news and send me in a trajectory unheard of and unknown to the likes of ordinary me.

No I worry because it’s sitting in a pool of melting ice-cream. An ice-cream momentarily forgotten by 3rd born, mostly likely because he has received a call regarding a fire that needs to be extinguished at the other side of the garden or maybe even a cat stuck up a tree. Who knows? These plastic €2 mobiles have great signal though and a battery that never ceases to amaze.

A deft hand movement sees my phone (the real one!) rescued but it takes a huge amount of self-restraint not to lick it – catlike in my cleaning methods. It also sees the return of Fireman 3rd born to ensure that I have not helped myself to the sticky mess that has formed pool-like on the table top.

“Don’t worry Pal, you’re safe enough with that. I’m cleaning things up for a few weeks prior to the summer holliers – it’s like cracking a seal… taste and it could be game over”

ice cream phone disaster

“Dear Otterbox, I owe you one”, love me.

Don’t panic. You are probably feeling lost and haven’t a clue where to start. And tempted to not bother trying as it all seems so overwhelming. This isn’t a bad place to be! I’ve been there – everyone has at some point. With a bit of direction you can get going, set yourself up for feeling healthier, increase your energy levels, allow yourself to enjoy those summer treats without guilt & all this with the added bonus of feeling better in those flesh baring summer clothes.

Let’s keep it simple – here are my 5 Top Tips for getting starting for the summer:

  • Eat less sugar – I could write pages on sugar as there is so much to say but for here we want easy. Nothing will put fat on your belly, sap your energy, ruin you skin like sugar will. You don’t need to cut the whole lot out as it’s difficult & you need lots of time to dedicate to prepping a diet like that. But how about just tackling the refined sugar? Add honey to your oats, have your coffee without it, make granola bars/cereal with dates and maple syrup instead (you can see my recipe here),  have a piece of melon for dessert instead of a digestive biscuit, make nut balls to snack on (you can see my recipe here)
  • Eat more…..of the RIGHT stuff – 3 years ago my plate was typically Irish…… meat, 1 or 2 veg (tiny, over boiled, awful excuses for veg portions) & laden with white pasta, rice or potato. Nowadays I eat as much, if not more, but the vegetables have taken centre stage. The carbohydrate is always brown, complex or wholemeal. On a normal weeknight it’s roast sweet potato, brown rice pasta, brown rice or Quinoa typically.


Salmon Quinoa bowl – see recipes here.

  • Drink more water – like everything start small and work up. I don’t drink soda’s anymore – I did for years and I loved them. And then I saw the sugar content and I nearly got sick! I switched to carbonated water (San Pellegrino is my favourite) so if you drink a soda daily try replacing that with water. Fruit infused waters are a great way to get water into you. You can see my post on them here.

Strawberry basil water

  • Cook at home – this will save your pocket too! Fast food Take-aways and ready dinners from supermarkets are generally made from highly processed food. You cannot have any idea of how much salt, sugar, fats etc are in your dish nor how nutritious it is either. Remember this is about feeling good primarily – looking good is a very welcome, happy side effect. But if you cook rather than buy in you will see the benefits.
  • Shop online – you could be forgiven for looking at this and wondering WHY & HOW this made the cut. But having switched to shopping online when I was pregnant with no 4 and slowly losing the will to live lugging 3 kids and a bump in and out of the supermarket I decided to cave in and give this a go. Of course for the 1st few shops it is tedious but then you end up with your list of regular items & then you add what you need. I have found that you figure out how much fruit/veg/meat you need fairly quickly and if it’s there you eat it. You also avoid impulse buying any  rubbish that is tempting you as you walk around. And it’s ends up being less expensive that you initially think it will as you really only get what you need.

coffee at home

See shopping at home is easy really!!!!

Your’s sipping hot coffee, shopping & dreaming of the summer,

Cli xx




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