Inspire News January 2018 - Healthy Inspirations

Inspire News January 2018


Happy New Year! If you were lucky enough to have a break, we hope it was relaxing and will enable you to tackle the year full of energy and enthusiasm. If you didn’t get such a break, it might feel like the year is weeks, not just days old. However you’ve spent the past few weeks, it is what it is and we have the choice to make the best of our circumstances.

As people gradually return to their regular routines, there’s a lot of lamenting the food and drink choices that were made in recent weeks. What good comes from beating yourself up over your choices? None at all. They can’t be undone, and you almost certainly enjoyed it, so just remember the good times and move on. Of course, if you’re having trouble getting back to your regular routines, or if you think it’s time for new, healthier routines, then we’re here to help.

Health Story of the Year 2017

Diane L, Blackwood, SA

Lost 15 kilos

I underwent an Arthroscopy on my painful arthritic knee and needed partial knee replacement on both knees and was strongly encouraged to lose weight by the surgeon. At the age of 52 I was determined to put off this surgery.

I started a new role coordinating an Aged Care program and was supporting women as young as 65 who were overweight, requiring knee and hip surgery, lacking mobility and energy who were reliant on home support to live independently. I realised, this could be me unless I made a change! January 2014 my sister invited me to Healthy Inspirations with her: I was reluctant at first but after 12 months of going it alone with no improvement, thankfully I joined Blackwood.

I work fulltime and prioritise going to Blackwood on my way home from work 4 nights a week and Saturday morning. It is part of my routine and I can’t imagine my life without it!

My eating habits have also changed, I no longer eat bread and have continued to reduce carbs, and have cut out sugar. My husband and I used to indulge in a 250g block of Cadbury milk most nights, now we have a few squares of 90% cocoa chocolate instead.

I always wanted to play golf. My father was an avid golfer until his stroke and I wanted to make him proud, but the prospect of walking 5 hours on a hilly golf course was out of the question. After 6 months at H.I. Blackwood, I started golf lessons. My weight loss and improved muscle strength in not just my legs, but my arms and back have made a round of golf easy and pleasurable.

My life has been transformed, I am happy and confident in myself, the way I look and feel, and I encourage others to undertake the same journey for overall well-being.


  1. Choose as many classes for the week as you can which fit in with your work/family and commit to attending them every week until they too become part of your new regime.

  2. Get chatting with the other women on the machines doing circuit, you will see them regularly and you can say ‘see you tomorrow night’ etc keeping you accountable.

  3. Don’t feel guilty if you slip up or have a set back on the program, it happens to everyone, just get back into it and look forward not back.

~ Diane L ~

Making Your New Year’s Resolution Stick

Self-control is a major problem for many of us, so failure to maintain New Year’s resolutions isn’t surprising.

It’s unfortunate that New Year’s Resolutions are virtually made to be broken. We ask each other if we have a resolution, we laugh about not following through, and we accept that they are doomed despite wanting the results. How can we make it different this year?

If we rely on self-control or willpower, we’re doomed. As soon as we get tired, stressed, angry, hungry, or frustrated our good intentions go out the window.

Luckily, there are strategies that we can implement that make a real difference. Here are four mind-tricks that will help your resolutions become realities.

  1. Create intentions

Studies show that people are more likely to follow through on an intention if they attach it to a cue. Examples might be:

  • “When I sit down at the restaurant, I will ask the waiter to remove my bread plate.”
  • “When my alarm goes off, I will get dressed and go for a walk.”
  • “After dinner, I will brush my teeth before cleaning up the kitchen.”
  1. Focus on abstract properties and bundle choices

Developing a focus on abstract, rather than concrete, properties is helpful. Imagine wanting to eat a donut: you focus on the remembered taste, the sweet stickiness, and the indulgence of eating a donut. These are the concrete properties. Instead, it’s helpful to focus on the properties it shares with other donuts and also on the broader set of foods that you also find tempting.

Instead of weighing up whether or not to eat that donut, you can think about whether or not you’ll eat unhealthy foods. Thinking in the abstract facilitates more rational thoughts and behaviours, making us think about our overall pattern of eating rather than just eating one donut. You’re bundling choices by choosing how to act now and in each subsequent temptation.

  1. Restore your self-control as quickly as possible

Self-control is a limited resource, so restoring it quickly is important. There are a few ways to do this:

  • Boost your mood by watching a funny video or doing something you find positive.
  • Exposure to nature – go out into the garden and look at the plants, the sky and feel the breeze.
  1. Avoid temptations

It sounds obvious, but avoiding temptations helps preserve self-control, saving it until we need it. We tend to think that will-power and self-control are a somewhat simple decision, but everyday events and becoming tired deplete our ability to exert our will.

A challenging task at work which requires concentration can affect our self-control, as can an argument, or becoming tired or stressed.

Keep your desk drawer sweet-free. Buy strawberries for the children’s dessert instead of ice-cream. Ask for sparkling water instead of wine at a restaurant. Choose the lolly-free supermarket aisle, strategically plan your drive home so you don’t go past the take-away drive through, avoid the food court at the shopping centre.

It takes planning along with self-control to keep your resolution, but it it’s important to you the planning will be worth the effort.


Road Tripping

The Christmas New Year break, and indeed any school holiday period, see countless families pack up the car and head off to destinations far and wide. It’s all very exciting, but if it’s a long drive there are going to be issues to overcome.

Toilet stops, bored children (and parents), whether to listen to The Wiggles or Led Zeppelin, and swapping drivers every two hours are all important considerations. So, too, is what to feed everyone whilst driving.

Fuel stops double as coffee and toilet stops, but they don’t also have to be meal or snack breaks. With a little forethought, planning, and preparation in the days (or weekend) before the drive, you can eat well and maintain your healthy eating pattern during the drive.

What you need:

  • Cooler bag or portable ice-box
  • Ice-bricks
  • Containers or zip-lock bags
  • Water bottles
  • Paper napkins or wet wipes
  • Bag or bin for rubbish
  • Thermos for coffee or hot water and tea bags

The next step is determining the drive-time menu. Think of food that’s easy to eat without cutlery. There are many options depending on your family’s taste preferences, and the length of the trip.

One family drove 1,800 km each way to be with family for the festive season. With four drivers and a large vehicle, it was decided that the drive would happen without an overnight stop, so food was prepared and taken. The outbound menu consisted of:

Bacon and egg tarts with Zucchini and broccoli fritters.

  • Bacon and egg ‘tarts’
  • Broccoli and zucchini fritters
  • Banana and coconut protein muffins
  • Vegie sticks and pesto
  • Camembert and seed crackers
  • Nuts
  • Cherries and strawberries
  • Water

For the return trip:

Vegie sticks with dip and Sliced Swiss cheese – eaten while driving.


  • Ham and haloumi frittata
  • Vegie sticks and dip
  • ProCrunch or Go Slim bars
  • Sliced ham
  • Sliced Swiss cheese
  • Roast chicken
  • Nuts
  • Raspberries and strawberries

We’d love your ideas for road trip food. Let us know at and we’ll share them on our Facebook page.


Salmon salad wraps

 Serves 4 

  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 x 250g boneless, skinless wild salmon fillets
  • 1 large yellow capsicum, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp finely chopped red onion
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped chilli
  • 1 Tbsp rinsed capers, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander
  • 12 butter lettuce leaves
  • 2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced
  1. In a large fry pan, bring 6 cups of water and 1⁄2 teaspoon salt to a boil. Add the lemon juice and gently slide the salmon into the boiling water. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and poach until the salmon is cooked through and opaque, about 5 minutes.
  2. Remove from the water and set aside to cool to room temperature, 5 to 10 minutes. When cooled, flake into small pieces.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the capsicum, onion, chilli, capers, lime juice, oil, and 1⁄2 teaspoon salt and mix well.
  4. Gently fold the cool flaked salmon and coriander into the salad.
  5. Divide the lettuce leaves between four serving plates. Spoon a portion of the salmon salad onto each leaf. Top with the sliced avocado, fold the lettuce around the salmon and avocado to form a wrap, and then serve seam-side down.


How many minutes?

Popular fast foods, snacks and drinks may be very tempting but give some thought to the number of minutes of exercise you will need to set aside, on top of your normal exercise, to burn off the extra energy they provide. Even a very small ‘treat’ can have a negative impact on your weight loss success.

Question: How many extra hours/minutes of activity does it take to burn off a Raspberry Pineapple Calippo?

This one ice-confection contains over 5 teaspoons of sugar. Think about it: you eat the icy treat because it’s refreshing on a hot day, so do you really want to add extra exercise in the heat?

Strenuous Aerobics: 10 minutes
Social Golf: 15 minutes
Energetic Dancing: 10 minutes
Jogging 8 kph: 15 minutes
Swimming: 20 minutes
Walking: 20 minutes

Latest Articles

How did the experts get weight loss so wrong?
4 January 2018 
Around the world, scientists are starting to question everything we’ve been told about weight loss. The old simplistic message – it’s just about balancing the intake of calories in our diet with the output in exercise – is obviously not working for the majority of overweight people. Simply: eating less and exercising more doesn’t work for most.To read more, CLICK HERE.

Food celebrations – they don’t have to be a problem
21 December 2017
With Christmas upon us, the chances are that we’ve all had times in the past few weeks where our dietary restraint and good intentions have come under attack. Even if you’ve had difficulty with this, it’s not too late. To read more, CLICK HERE. 

Tips to avoid holiday weight gain
7 December 2017
When we think of Christmas we often think of spending time with family and friends and indulging in delicious food, but for those who struggle with weight this could also be one of the most stressful times of year.  However, there are simple ways to avoid gaining extra kilos over Christmas and having realistic expectations about your weight is important.To read more, CLICK HERE. 


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