#MyBlogLife: Meet Food Blogger Nicola Halloran From The Wonky Spatula
Paleo foodie Nicola Halloran tells all on her daily eats and dishes her top tips for sticking to a healthy eating plan.
Name: Nicola Halloran
Why healthy eating?
I had been planning on going paleo for a while before I took the plunge. One of my friends suggested we try out Crossfit 353. I’d read that Crossfit and paleo went hand in hand, so I decided to give them both a go.
When did you start?
I started Crossfit and paleo together in January 2014 as a challenge to myself after Christmas and it very quickly became a permanent lifestyle change. I found that it was hard for my family to grasp what I was doing, so I set up the blog as a reference list.
Over time I started to add recipes, but only a handful of people knew it even existed and I didn’t update it very often. I gradually started to tell people about it and started regularly posting; it grew from there.
Was there anything you found difficult to give up?
In the beginning I was extremely strict with my diet and I think that helped as I barely had any cravings. Soon I had tonnes more energy – and just felt generally healthier.
Are you 100% paleo?
Yes – I recently took some time off to complete a professional cookery course, but once I finished I went back to being fully paleo again.
Is it an expensive habit?
A lot of people hear clean eating and think empty purse, but if you’re savvy about it, it doesn’t have to cost the earth. Eating local produce that’s in season really helps.
Do you ever have cheat days?
I’m not really into cheat days. If I really want to try something I will, but I definitely don’t assign specific days to cheating. Sometimes I’ve days were I don’t feel like cooking and I just eat leftovers, which to me is almost like having a cheat day because I don’t have to cook.
What are the worst things to eat?
I definitely recommend staying away from any foods that contain refined sugar and are highly processed. If you’re someone who drinks a lot of fizzy drinks I would definitely recommend giving them up; they’re so addictive and packed with sugar. Eat real food; plenty of vegetables, protein and good fats.
Give us an example of your daily diet?
I start off my day with either a black coffee or a green tea. Then for breakfast I’ve smoked salmon or bacon with scrambled eggs and sweet potato. If I’m in a rush, I put it into a lettuce cup so I can eat on the go.
My lunch is always some sort of a salad with chicken or turkey and lots of veggies – roasted peppers, carrots, avocado – whatever I can get my hands on. I top it with nuts and seeds, then a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. I change it up almost every day so I never get bored.
I normally have a snack in the afternoon depending on what I’m up to. One of my favourites is parma ham wrapped in iceberg lettuce – it’s delicious!
I do most of my recipe testing in the evening so dinner is usually whatever’s about to go up on the blog. If I’m looking for something, quick salmon and zoodles [spiralized vegetable noodles] are my go to.
Where do you get inspiration for your recipes?
I’m constantly thinking of new dishes – I’ve a little notebook that I keep in my handbag, and my phone’s full of different things that I see and want to try out. Most of them aren’t paleo or remotely good for you; I love the challenge of making things healthy!
We’re hungover and need a fix – help!
I definitely recommend my sweet potato disc stack. It’s delicious with some eggs or sautéed kale.
What’s next for you and The Wonky Spatula?
I’m still trying to get my head around the fact that so many people are enjoying following me and making my recipes. So in the short-term I plan to keep doing what I’m doing, and in a few months time explore what the next step may be.
I’d love to work with some restaurants and food producers to find a way of bringing my food directly to my followers. In the meantime, I’m working on perfecting a guilt-free chocolate moose, that will definitely be to-die-for – so keep an eye out!