The Jewish Chronicle - JC Magazine - - Healthy Life -

T’S THAT time of the year again. The time when

start count­ing ex­actly how many days are left un­til I have to ap­pear in pub­lic in my un­der­wear. And no, I have not had a ca­reer change of heart and de­cided to au­di­tion as a pole dancer. My cal­en­dar ob­ses­sion is due to the fact that in 68 days I will step out in for­eign climes clad only in a swim­suit, which is es­sen­tially un­der­wear with more elas­tane and only marginally less ter­ri­fy­ing than ap­pear­ing in one’s birth­day suit.

In a sur­vey for Rose­mary Con­ley Diet and Fit­ness Clubs, six out of 10 women re­vealed they were un­com­fort­able look­ing at them­selves naked, but I’m sure that just as many are un­set­tled at see­ing them­selves in a Gideon Ober­son two-piece with­out the cov­er­age of a heav­ily-lined sarong or a Demis Rous­sos-sized kaf­tan. On my daily dog walk in a north west Lon­don park, al­most ev­ery woman who marches be­side me, ir­re­spec­tive of age, is also on a count­down-to-ex­po­sure diet.

Take Amanda. She is do­ing Slim­ming World and had fared well un­til she went to a party and her red (carbs) and green (pro­tein) days merged into a brown haze. Then there’s Belinda, “big as a minute”, yet she in­sists there are pounds to be shed. Like me, Amanda, Belinda — and oth­ers whom I know only by the names of their dogs — are des­per­ate to slim for that sliver of UK sum­mer or fort­night in Marbs. So, as I can­not wear Spanx to the beach and don’t fancy a “burkini” à la Nigella Law­son, I’m ditch­ing muffins and fo­cus­ing on muf­fin tops.

I’ve also ac­quired a pair of Proskin­sSlim (leg­gings or shorts), made from a yarn con­tain­ing caf­feine, retinol ce­ramides, aloe vera and vi­ta­mins, de­signed to im­prove skin con­di­tion, re­duce cel­lulite and com­press the limbs, while you work out or go about your ev­ery­day ac­tiv­i­ties. If the torso of the model on the box is any­thing to go by, I’ll be gor­geous in no time, though in­ter­est­ingly there is no men­tion of wear­ing them while eat­ing a bagel and watch­ing Real House­wives of Mi­ami. Still, they look nice — and slightly less clingy since I started the Jane Plan diet. This healthy, calo­rie-con­trolled diet is de­liv­ered

SUM­MER 2013 to your door in a box, for £75 per week. The box is so big that I half-ex­pected a small di­eti­cian to emerge and head for the cooker. It was, in fact, filled with small pack­ets of muesli and por­ridge, plus pre­pared lunches and din­ners. Just add milk, fresh fruit and veg.

“Many Jewish clients opt for the six-day-week pack­age, as they like to eat on Fri­days,” says Jane com­fort­ingly. “But try not to stray from the con­tain­ers and avoid din­ing-out.” For a week, my hus­band and I stuck with it. Our hunger was tol­er­a­ble and the re­ward (apart from los­ing 4lb) was not hav­ing to plan din­ner ev­ery night. The dishes (we chose veg­e­tar­ian) were a tasty mix of pasta, bean and veg­eta­bles, of restau­rant stan­dard. My hus­band moaned about the fru­gal ce­real: “It’s the size of my usual top­ping,” he whinged, but this is the point, for as Jewish eaters we are pre­con­di­tioned to clear our loaded plates and head for the buffet in­stead of the bar. There is truth in that old joke: Jewish Woman One: “The food is ter­ri­ble”. Jewish Woman Two: “Yes and such small por­tions”. My aim now is to halve the amount of food I serve, then halve it again, while wear­ing Proskins and do­ing Zumba. Only then will I be able to strut the sands with­out a sarong shield and large um­brella. See you on the beach. Proskins Slim: proskins.co.uk, 01623 654242 (£50 for leg­gings) jane­plan.com, 0208 127 4543

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