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It’s January, everyone is busting their asses in the gym and eating salad on repeat – and this year I have to admit I am one of them. I’ll admit 2016 wasn’t really my year, I fell out of love with training, I fell back in love with pizza, and I kind of lost my way a little.

But to help kick-start myself back into a healthy, balanced lifestyle, I decided to join in the Reform Training Nutrition Health  8 Week Challenge and throw myself back into the world of training, gluten free meal prepping and tracking macros.

Feeling fresh, out and about and getting active!
Feeling fresh, out and about and getting active!

I honestly thought I would struggle – my mindset was in completely the wrong place – but it was literally like a switch flipped inside of me and I remembered why I love this lifestyle so much. How I love that post-workout empowerment and seeing changes in my body and just feeling so damn awesome after every meal – not like I was to fall into a food coma.

For the last two weeks I’ve been training four times a week (mostly interval classes, weights and body-weight based) at Reform and eating to the calories and macro plan I have been given. This is personal to everyone and worked out from your current body composition.

Prepping all my food.
Prepping all my food.

And it’s worked! In two weeks I have lost 4.4lbs, and a total of 7cm (2cm each off waist, hips and belly, 1cm off boobs – trying to hang onto those) and I already have noticed a huge change. My skin is clearer, I am so much less bloated and I feel a bit more alive!

Meal prep

One of the things that has really helped me is to prep all my meals in advance. I have filmed a little video for you here – expect plenty more of these! The recipe for the chilli is below…

Gluten free lean and bean chilli con carne
Yield: 6

Gluten free lean and bean chilli con carne

Macros per portion: 246 cals; 28.9g protein; 13.6g carbs; 5.4g fat.


  • 800 g Lean and Bean mince
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 tube tomato puree
  • 1 red onion
  • Large handful mushrooms
  • 1 Knorr rich beef stock pot
  • 1 tin kidney beans, drained
  • 1 tsp hot chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp garlic paste, or 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • Pinch pink Himalayan salt
  • 2 tsp Creative Nature cacao powder
  • 1 tsp coconut oil


  1. Finely chop the red onion and the mushrooms. Melt the coconut oil in a large pan and add them to it along with the garlic paste.
  2. Fry gently for a minute or two, and then add the mince. Stir and break up the mince and cook on a high heat for 3-4 minutes until it browns.
  3. Add the chilli, cumin, chilli flakes, oregano and salt to the pan. Stir well and continue to try for a minute or two. Add the cacao powder and the stock pot and mix well.
  4. Add the tomatoes and tomato puree to the pan. Stir well and leave to simmer for 15-20 minutes very gently.
  5. Add the drained kidney beans and stir well. Simmer for a further five minutes. Serve with rice, veg, sweet potatoes, or whatever you choose! Can be frozen as well.

Have you got back into training for 2017? What’s your staple meal-prep meal? Comment below with your favourite ideas or share your photos on my  FacebookTwitter or Instagram pages. I love hearing your feedback and suggestions!

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About Sarah Howells

Hi, I'm Sarah! Diagnosed with coeliac disease 20 years ago, I'm on a mission to create the best gluten free recipes since sliced bread. No fruit salads or dry brownies here.

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  1. I am gluten-intolerant so this will help a lot for ideas. Also, I followed you in Twitter. Thanks for posting!