Trisha Lewis: I haven’t woken up yet to half my dreams

EMMA CONNOLLY catches up with the inspiring Cork woman, Trisha Lewis, as she launches her latest book
Trisha Lewis: I haven’t woken up yet to half my dreams

Trisha Lewis, who has launched her new book, Trisha's 21-Day Reset.

SOME days, Trisha Lewis feels like having a plate of chips, so she has them. Because it’s not the chips that are the issue, says the woman who has shared her incredible weight loss journey with tens of thousands of people on social media, it’s how she reacts to having them.

“It’s only a problem if I wake up the next morning and then have a Mars bar for breakfast and throw the baby out with the bath water,” says the 33-year-old, who wants to spread the message that weight loss isn’t about deprivation or self-punishment.

And that’s the theme of her second book, Trisha’s 21-Day Reset,which has just hit shelves.

Her first book, Trisha’s Transformation, told her story, which saw her weigh in at 25 stone and start an Instagram page to chart her journey to lose 13 stone. She’s now halfway there, with an incredible 199,000 followers.

Trisha Lewis, who has launched her new book, Trisha's 21-Day Reset.
Trisha Lewis, who has launched her new book, Trisha's 21-Day Reset.

Trisha always planned the second book, which is to help people realise that just because you fall off the wagon, you don’t have to beat yourself up and abandon the plan — you simply accept failure is part of the journey and reset.

She wrote it in the middle of the pandemic, where she fell off the wagon herself, and struggling with loneliness gained two stone. She admits there were plenty of times she had to park the project, until it felt less of a struggle.

But in her true resilient style, she got back on track using her four pillars for weight loss — sleep, hydration, exercise and nutrition.

And in the book, she shows how using these tools, and committing to a short-term goal of three weeks, is a way of getting to an end goal.

“So, for example, if that goal was to lose four stone, your short term 21-day goal would be to lose 3lbs in three weeks. If you do this consistently for 17 resets, you will have gotten rid of 51lbs. 

"The goal of losing four stone becomes a lot less scary when you break it down,” she writes.

Trisha, who was head chef at Jacobs on the Mall for 13 years, decided to leave her job at the end of lockdown one.

“It was one of the hardest decisions in my life, but also one of my best,” she says.

She describes her colleagues as being like her family who minded her, and never treated her any differently, regardless of her weight. At her heaviest, in 2017, she weighed 27 stone.

But Trisha says routine has now become an important tool in her journey and she can’t now risk not having it in her life.

As a chef she’d work late nights, whereas she now routinely gets up at 5.30am and goes to bed at 9.30pm.

“I’ve changed my whole lifestyle and I thought I’d chance trying something new. 

"Sometimes you have to chase the dreams that scare you.”

That has seen her launch her online cooking courses and take on corporate speaking work, and she describes the move as ‘exhilarating’.

Another massively positive move she made was to go to therapy for an eating disorder called Binge Eating Disorder (BED).

 Trisha talks about her four pillars for weight loss - sleep, hydration, exercise and nutrition.
 Trisha talks about her four pillars for weight loss - sleep, hydration, exercise and nutrition.

“I started going last August, so it’s coming up to nearly a year and it’s one of the best investments I’ve ever made. I thought I had everything sorted but lockdown showed me that my weakness was actually my mind. I’ve now learned the tools to be OK, and to recognise what to do and not to self-sabotage or self-destruct,” she said.

Trisha said therapy showed that her personal downfall was loneliness. As the seventh of nine girls, and spending years working in a busy kitchen, she was used to having people around her and when alone she turned to emotional eating

“But I’ve also learned that the scales can’t determine your self-worth, or you’ll be a slave to it. I’d never promote being overweight but you have to love yourself in the moment. I’m chipping away at my weight, but enjoying every day I’m alive is my goal.”

Trisha also speaks about exercising the muscle of self-discipline, and how she manages her lifestyle like she would a business.

That sees her ‘do things I don’t want to do to get to where I want to go.’ During lockdowns, outside of people, it was the gym and the hairdressers she missed the most.

“That might sound superficial, but when my hair is wrong, grey and greasy, it’s a sign things are going wrong in my life,” she says.

“I’ve got all my gym sessions booked in for June and July,” she added, admitting she has lost some ground on that front, but is confident she’ll get back to where she was.

Life now is ‘surreal’, she says. Outside of her courses and corporate speaking work, she’s also a brand ambassador for Aldi Ireland.

There’s busy times ahead for her family too, who all live, as she jokes, beside each other in a ‘weird commune’!

Her twin sisters are both due babies in November and she’s looking forward to hopefully seeing her baby sister Juliette, who has been in Australia for the past two years and unable to get home due to the pandemic.

“And I haven’t even woken up yet to half of my dreams,” she said.

Trisha’s 21-Day Reset, published by Gill Books (€19.99) features 60 new recipes with all the macros and calories counted. Trish shares some recipes here...

SALTED PEANUT BUTTER FROZEN YOGHURT

Ingredients (Serves 8)

181kcal per serving

800g low-fat natural yoghurt

100g peanut butter

40g stevia or Canderel sweetener

1 tsp flaky sea salt espresso shots to serve (optional)

Method:

WHIPPED FETA WITH HONEY & THYME

This dip is perfect with toasted pitta bread or raw vegetables 10 portions: 95kcal per serving

200g feta cheese drained

60g 0% fat Greek yoghurt

1 garlic clove chopped

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme, plus extra to garnish

flaky sea salt and black pepper

honey, for drizzling

pinch of paprika to garnish

Method:

  • In a food processor blend the feta, yoghurt, garlic, olive oil, thyme.
  • Season with black pepper. Spoon into a bowl and drizzle with honey, garnish with thyme, sea salt and a light dusting of paprika.

This will keep in the fridge for up to three days.

Black Pudding Blue Cheese, Walnut and Apple Salad by Trisha Lewis
Black Pudding Blue Cheese, Walnut and Apple Salad by Trisha Lewis

BLACK PUDDING, BLUE CHEESE,

WALNUT AND APPLE SALAD

Ingredients (Serves 4)

355kcal per serving)

Olive oil

175g black pudding, sliced

60g blue cheese

70g walnuts

1 Granny Smith apple

300g mixed leaves

Dressing:

4 tsp low fat natural yoghurt

2 tsp wholegrain mustard

2 tsp white wine vinegar

1tsp honey salt and black pepper

Method:

  • To make the dressing, put the yoghurt, mustard, vinegar, honey and salt and pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  • Heat a pan and add a little olive oil. Add the black pudding and cook on each side for one minute, just to seal and heat through.
  • Run your knife under the hot tap, dice the blue cheese. Set aside Toast the walnuts in a hot dry pan, then tip onto a cutting board and crus.
  • Grate the apple including the skin, just before serving to prevent it from turning brown.
  • Place the salad leaves, black pudding, blue cheese, walnuts and apple in the bowl with the dressing and gently toss until leaves are lightly coated.
  • Divide between four bowls, and serve straight away.


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