‘Challenge accepted’

Is it really that time of year? The silly season is upon us, the kids are heading off to their final few weeks of school, just managing to squeeze into their not once ‘too big’ school shoes, Mum and Dad are tired and everyone is ready for a break… sound about right?

This year I’ve set myself a challenge; let me tell you about it. It’s come about after some undeniable inspiration from my fellow newsletter writers, and our boss 😉 (If I can call you that Kel). I’d like to invite you all to come on board my mission.

Many of us seem to get confused between the last supper and Christmas day. You know the scene, you’ve had a champers or three, you’re already full of nibbles, the main meal is yet to be served, and you’re wondering whether to have brandy butter or custard with your pudding. So many of us live for this opportunity to ‘relish’ in the indulgences with an excuse to do so. That’s all it really is; an excuse, to reassure ourselves we are not being ‘naughty’. We repeatedly tell ourselves ‘it’s okay, it’s Christmas’, sound familiar? I’m sure you’ll agree when I say that Chris and Laura have left no stone unturned in providing us with the compelling evidence that this is not the only way to operate on the 25th December, so I’m determined to test their theories.

Firstly, I want to let you in on a little secret about the brains behind those big white buckets…Kelly! You see, Kel’s got a ‘unique’ Christmas morning breakfast tradition. Wait for it, “ham off the bone, on fresh white toast, smothered in butter and salt”…it’s her way of celebrating the big guys arrival and nothing’s going to stop her savoring its goodness! Nor should she give away this yearly pleasure, because as Chris and Laura have explained it’s about balance, it’s about Kelly not having this for breakfast for the next 364 mornings and not feeling guilty on the one day she does. I must say, I still wonder if it’s repeated on boxing day, Kel ?

Now, back to the challenge I’ve set myself. We are staying home this Christmas. This means I’m in charge of then menu. With a lot of help from Laura, her recipes and the produces’ endless supply of goodness I’m determined to design a menu that allows guilt free indulgence! I’m going to rewrite tradition (at what cost I’m not yet sure).

Many may say, why bother? Just enjoy the day and deal with the consequences later. That’s the problem, in the past I have. While a couple of festive kilos isn’t itself a disaster, the double serve of self loathing many of us will feel for the ‘guilty’ pleasure can spell the end of festive cheer, or at least a decent misery interval while the scale reading makes its way back to neutral. Couple this with the sedentary pace likely at this time of year and the odds are heavily stacked against us successfully reversing this spiral!

But it doesn’t have to be this way. You can have your cake and eat it too, and you can certainly bounce back fitter and healthier than ever, without ruining all your fun in the process.

So, if you haven’t already started planning your menu let’s try and make it as guilt free as possible. Schedule in your one ‘non negotiable indulgence’ (I might try your ham on toast Kel – but what I am still trying to figure out, is how you have ham ready to eat at breakfast?) and keep the rest within limits! Get creative with Chris and Laura’s ideas, and let’s make this a festive season with a difference!


Name: Laura Skirrow

From: EmpowerMums

Occupation: Clinical Nurse, Wife, Mum, writer and motivator

Facebook: Laura Skirrow/empowerMums

Instagram: em.empowermums

I’m Laura Skirrow and I am a Clinical Nurse, Transplant Coordinator, wife, ‘writer’ and ‘words’ enthusiast and a ‘Mum’ to a beautiful little boy. I have a reasonably newfound passion to empower women to maintain their self-identity, physical and mental health, and overall lifestyle balance during the motherhood journey. Like many, progressing through the transition from independent career woman, to ‘Mum’ presented its challenges to say the least. For me, balance with a baby came by coupling my existing passions of self-growth, words, people and my career with my newfound love of health and fitness. It’s beautiful, and as a result I seek to share it with the masses of other women sharing this path.