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In 1972 I launched my very first slimming class. Click here to read how it all began.


Well, would you believe it! This week is our One Year Anniversary of publishing our Newsletter! Little did Mary and I know quite how popular our weekly message would prove to be. A big thank you to everyone who messages us with feedback, kind comments and appreciation. It is always a real encouragement to us.

Looking back to April 2021, no one could have anticipated how life-changing the following 12 months would have been. During that time, I think we have appreciated more than ever how critical it is for us to look after our health and wellbeing. Hopefully, you will have learned and been encouraged by the information we have shared with you, and managed to develop lots of healthy habits.

My single most important healthy habit that I have developed has, without question, been going for a 30-minute walk every morning. Now, 12 months later, my legs are stronger because, thankfully, I can now cope much better on the exercise bike at the gym - something I used to loathe because my legs were so weak and I felt pathetic!

Not only does my walk put 3-4000 steps on my FitBit, but it wakes up my arthritic feel and keeps my knees and hips mobile. Interestingly, BB and Sky, our elderly black Labs, look better for it too. They are trim and really agile for their 12 years.

I am often asked to do interviews for radio or magazines (usually for publications for readers of a certain age!) and radio presenters and journalists regularly ask me for my Top Five Tips to stay fit and healthy. Without hesitation, I always say:

  • Go for a 30-minute walk every day
  • Lose any excess weight
  • Eat healthy foods and drink in moderation
  • Stop snacking between meals
  • Do strength exercises three times a week

If we follow these simple rules the chances are we will live a longer, healthier and happier life.

It is important for us to acknowledge that we now live in a very different world from what it was a year ago – domestically and globally. Whilst there are many things over which we have no control, there is much that we are able to control. We are in control of the amount of exercise we choose to take and we are in control of what we eat and how often we eat it. So, let’s give ourselves a pat on the back if we have managed to make some progress over the last 12 months – and let’s keep it up!

Look out for next week’s issue of the Newsletter when we will launch the first of our brand-new Ballet sessions. In the coming weeks, Ballet Teacher Rosie Cambridge will be leading me through three different workouts – elementary, intermediate and advanced – so, hopefully there will be a one that’s suitable for you!

Recipe of the Week

This is a delicious plant-based recipe with a taste of The Orient taken from The 28-Day Immunity Plan

Serves 1
Per serving: 423 calories, 3% fat
Prep time 5 mins
Cook time 25 mins

70g tempeh
50g (dry weight) basmati rice
1 vegetable stock cube
90g broccoli florets
¼ tsp flaxseeds
1½ tbsp teriyaki sauce
¼ tsp mixed sesame seeds
Rapeseed oil spray

  1. Cut the tempeh into small chunks and steam for 6 - 8 minutes with the broccoli florets.
  2. In the meantime, bring a pan of water to the boil with the vegetable stock cube. Add the rice and cook according to instructions.
  3. Remove the tempeh and broccoli from the steamer and transfer the broccoli to a bowl and keep warm.
  4. Heat a small frying pan and spray with rapeseed oil. Add the steamed tempeh chunks and gently stir-fry for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the teriyaki sauce and flaxseeds to the tempeh, with 1 tablespoon of water. Reduce the heat and cook for a further 2 - 3 minutes stirring gently then add the broccoli and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  6. Drain the rice and transfer to a warmed bowl.
  7. Top the rice with the teriyaki tempeh and broccoli.
  8. Garnish with the sesame seeds and serve immediately.
For more recipes click here to visit the website

Fun, Facts & Fitness from Mary Morris MSc.

When I set my class members a ‘3-month New Year Challenge’ to complete 10,000 steps a day, I signed up for it myself too!

However, I am sure I have told you before that I found it impossible to achieve, and that it caused me lots of unnecessary stress. Therefore, I changed the challenge to ‘70,000 steps in a week’ which I found very doable.  Then along came the Cancer Research Challenge 'Walk All Over Cancer' which, for the month of March, you had to do 10,000 steps a day, every day.  Just one month felt like a short-term Challenge that I could achieve, so I signed up.  That meant that quite simply, it had to be done!

So, what changes did I make to ensure that I managed this daunting Challenge?

  • I stopped taking the car into town – about 1½ miles and a significant 3000 steps.
  • I have recently added a dog to the family (a lovely black Lab called Bobby) that needs plenty of walks. Bobby frequently got dragged out late at night as I found myself a couple of thousand steps short for that day!
  • A holiday in France coincided with this Challenge so I had to be creative. I found a walk up to the church and back to the hotel was 8 minutes and 1000 steps. So, I walked that circuit five times and clocked up an impressive 5000 steps and all before 10am!  (Hubby takes a long time to get ready in the mornings!)
  • I never used the lift in the hotel except when encumbered with luggage of course.  A climb up to the 3rd floor certainly got the heart pumping. By the end of the week I found it much easier so my stair-climbing fitness had clearly improved.

Now this must all sound a bit smug and I don't mean it to, it's just that when you start something you have committed to, and only for a limited period of time, then in a sense it becomes easier than you might think.  It makes me think of The 28-Day Immunity Plan encouraging you to lose weight and get fitter over a short time period.  Almost before you start you can see the end, and in that time you can start to make new healthier lifestyle habits that you will hopefully stick with in the long term.

One amazing thing happened for me over that holiday. I normally gain a good 5lbs in a week through having far too many G&T's and over-indulging on the food front. But this year that reduced to only a 1½ lb gain so all those steps were worth it!  A big thank you to Cancer Research UK for encouraging us all to stay fit and healthy.  Maybe look for your local event for the 'Race for Life' in your area and get signing up now!

This Week's Fitness Challenge

  1. Go up and down stairs at every opportunity this week both at home and when out and about.
  2. Aim for a minimum of 7000 steps every day this week as the research tells us that is the minimum necessary to achieve a good level of fitness and long-term health.
  3. Complement your daily 30-minute walking cardio exercise with either some Pilates or why not try the progressive strength workouts from The 28-Day Immunity Plan:

Alternatively, go straight to the Advanced Whole Body Strength Programme

Did you know...

This week's recipe has a distinctly Asian heritage.

Tempeh (originally from Indonesia) is very similar to tofu but has a higher protein content. It is made from whole soybeans, which are softened by soaking, and dehulled, then partly cooked in a fermentation process into a firm compact cake. It has a light smell which is subtly sweet and resembles the aroma of mushrooms.

Teriyaki is a technique used in Japanese cuisine in which foods are cooked with a glaze of soy sauce, mirin, and sugar.

And finally...

Try to make the coming week the one where you really do achieve your 70,000 steps in seven days – one way or another – and if you do, you will have given your health and your body a real boost! If that is too tall an order, then just go for your 30-minute walk every day – no exceptions! The health benefits are enormous.

Have a great week!

With love and best wishes,

Rosemary Conley CBE DL


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