Snack Monster

The heating is on. The big fluffy socks are out. The winter coat is being embraced. My early morning walks with Alfie are becoming very chilly. And when I say chilly, I mean COLD. I don’t understand dogs really. Alfie never looks cold. He never grumbles about going out in the cold or rain. He gets so excited regardless of what outside is like. I think we all need a bit of that relentless joy in our lives.

So I’m joining the fun with What I Ate Wednesday today:

Hosted by the lovely Jenn (check her blog for more info)

Honestly, I have become a hungry beast. Runger is going crazy in these parts. I am a snack MACHINE. At work my drawer is full of different snacks.

Snack drawer

Yes that is a salt shaker there; it’s for my popcorn Winking smile

Some relatively healthy (dried fruit, olives, pumpkin seeds) and some not so healthy (cranberry cookie, chocolates and sweets). This isn’t one day’s worth of snacks though! Usually in the day I’ll have my first snack about an hour or so after lunch, then another snack an hour before going home. Then I’ll have an evening snack after dinner.

There are lots of opinions as to whether snacking is healthy or not. For me at the moment, snacking is what I need. I haven’t vastly changed what I’ve been eating for my actual meals since training for the marathon but I have bumped up my snacks. I hate feeling so full and bloated after lunch or diner so I make sure my extra calories come from snacks around those meals. Plus I love food, so more time eating different food is a win in my eyes.

I recently got a Groupon voucher for Flavourly which is kind of a more elaborate foodie Graze. They send a box of assorted treats to you every month. So I tried it out.

**I have not been compensated for this review or been contacted by Flavourly, these are just my opinions**


I got loads of different items, such a curry kit, salad dressing, aubergine and basil paste (you should have seen Ben’s face with this one)… I’m not sure I’ll carry on my subscription only because it’s quite expensive but I enjoyed it as a once off. So many different things I’d never tried before.

I especially enjoyed these:

Bacon popcorn

Maple syrup and bacon popcorn. You know I love my popcorn but this rocked my world. SO tasty. Kind of salty and sweet. Don’t be scared of the bacon!!

I also enjoyed these dried apple crisps:

Apple crisps

Because I don’t eat enough apples I thought I better have these to up my intake Winking smile I was impressed that they were literally just apple slices. Nothing else in there.

And yes, I have been very much indulging in less than stellar snacks as well. You need a balance.


These were the special chocolates I paid a fortune for bought the other week. Unfortunately I’d forgotten what they all were, so it was a magical mystery tour of chocolates. I’m one of those people who spend ages looking at the chocolate flavours before trying one – no Russian roulette for me in the chocolate world.

And, for evening meals, I’m still loving my slow cooker.

Bean, squash and lentil stew

Bean, lentil and butternut squash stew

I used THIS recipe. I had to switch the chickpeas with cannellini beans though as I’d run out. This was so filling, hearty and tasty. Ben didn’t like it as much…apparently there were “a lot of vegetables”. Pft! He’s not on-board with the obsession with squash or lentils…

So after my first ever 17 mile run on Sunday I decided it would be sensible to not go to spin Monday morning. I definitely needed that day off! I slept for like 10 hours straight Sunday night. On reflection I’m changing my marathon training plan so that Mondays are my day off instead of Wednesday. Seems wise. My body thanked me for it. My hamstrings were so tight!

What’s your opinion on snacking? As much as I can Winking smile

What are your favourite snacks? Apples.

How many rest days do you take in a week? I have at least one rest day a week where I do nothing except walk Alfie.

Call me goldilocks

Zoom zoom how the days are flying! Thanks for your lovely comments on my baking fail in my last post. It’s the equivalent of an ugly kid I think – you tell them it’s what’s on the inside that matters (i.e. the taste), not the appearance Winking smile And the cake tasted amazing so that’s all that mattered.

I’m currently feeling a bit achy and tired from my interval session with the running club last night. Ack, it was painful. I literally hate those sessions. I much prefer a lovely nice run. Not this “run to that lamppost at top speed” nonsense. But it must be done. And you do feel great afterwards (after the nausea and pain has disappeared…).


This is a snapshot of the training (a graphical representation if you will…oooh er). I’m amazed that one of my last intervals was my fastest! The intervals increased in distance (as we went to the next lamppost along and back) but none really went on longer than a minute I guess. No way I could sustain this for a long time!

So it’s What I Ate Wednesday today (check out Jenn’s blog for more information).

I thought I’d show you my eats recently. Because I’m running around 30 miles a week (and two of those sessions focused on speed – Tuesday night’s session and Saturday’s Parkrun) and doing two spinning classes a week (and 30 minutes of pump at the weekend) I’m finding myself quite hungry quite frequently (surprise surprise eh). Sometimes ‘hangry’ (angry with hunger – or food rage as Ben describes it).

To combat this I’ve been trying to ramp up my between meal snacking to more filling options. Also I’m a voluminous eater (i.e. I like a big plate of food and regular snacks otherwise I feel cheated with life) so this works out nicely for me.

Breakfast: same old same old but with a slight change.


Oatmeal (a good half a cup) and a tablespoon of chia seeds with enough almond milk to give it a good thick consistency. Zapped in the microwave (I’m sorry, cold over-night oats don’t float my boat. It’s gotta be steamy and stodgy for my liking – call me goldilocks). I haven’t really caught on to the chia seed bandwagon that always seems so hot in the blogging world. However, I’ve recently been reading Born to Run by Christopher McDougall and he mentions chia seeds (briefly really) in one of the things that seem to help the amazing tribe runners run. Well I am sold. Jeeze I am such a sucker for books and what they tell me. Honestly I believe anything if it’s written in a book by a supposed credible source.

Lunch: I’ve mentioned this before, but I don’t snack between breakfast and lunch. I never need to I find. I’m an afternoon and evening snacker.


This might just look like vegetables and salad but I assure you within this vast Tupperware box there is also a whole load of tuna. Like I said, I’m a voluminous eater. I love eating a monster salad that takes me a year to get through.

After this I have a box of popcorn. I’ve been added salt to my popcorn as I don’t think I eat enough salt and with all that running and sweating it can’t be a bad thing to add!IMG_4223

I probably have a couple of cups worth of popcorn. I’ve actually started a wave of popcorn eaters in the office. Everyone’s gone popcorn mad now! I’m proud.

Then I have low-fat (but not 0%) Greek yogurt. I like it a bit creamy but not overly so.


In the morning before work I pop in a load of frozen fruit and by the time lunch comes round it’s all defrosted and the yogurt is still lovely and chilled with lovely added flavour from the fruit.

First snack: usually this is something from my Graze box:


My favourites being the dip ones… ahh I love those sweet jammy dips.

Healthy snacks

Or other bits and pieces, like dried fruit and nuts.

Then later I’ll have an apple and a banana and lots of peppermint tea. If I’m still feeling peckish I’ll probably dive back into the graze box again (I love them!)

When it comes to dinner the only problem I’m having is that when I’m at running club I find it hard to have a large meal straight away. But this the other night was perfect. I had prepared the tomato sauce and got everything ready to go in the oven before I left for running club and then it was just a case of leaving it to cook while I showered, which allowed my stomach to chill out a bit before chucking food into it straight away.


This was chicken, stuffed with goat’s cheese and wrapped in two pieces of lean bacon. I’m not a fan of stringy bacon but I like the lean stuff. Then I coated it with a herby tomato sauce and served it with broccoli. Perfect.

Post-dinner snacks: In the evening I always need snacks.Healthy snacks 2

After my post-dinner apples (never changes) a bit later on I’ll snack on a cheese string and a yogurt. Lately I’ve been loving the Activia yogurts especially the thick and creamy ones. Lots of protein so nice and filling before bed!

And that’s me. After running club and my stomach has settled a bit it’s a case of trying to eat as much food as I can within a shortened period of time. I’m not necessarily hungry in the evening but I hate waking up famished and if I’ve got spinning the next day (like I do Fridays after running club Thursday evening) I want to know I’ve got fuel in the tank so I’m good to go.

What do you snack on between meals? I used to only go for fruit (love it) but it wasn’t very sustaining. So now it’s all about nuts and protein-based things like yogurt and cheese (the strings and Babybels).

How do you make sure you’re eating enough for the exercise you’re doing? I don’t want to lose any weight. I want to be strong and healthy and damn fast at running so this is really important for me.

What workouts do you do that you just hate but know you should do them?