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Feeling Simply Great – the challenge

I’ve spoken numerous times about trying to get motivated to lose my baby weight plus some, and to be honest it’s a bit hit and miss.  It seems to go really well for a bit, then I see something nice to eat and eat it and more.  I’ve tried slim fast type of things, getting back to my exercise in the early mornings (until I then get a sore throat that lasts for ages so I struggle to breath), thinking slimmer cds (think hypnotherapy changing the way you eat subliminally), and just general healthy eating/calorie counting.

So when I was invited to the launch of Simply Great Drinks Company’s summer campaign launch with former Olympic gold medallist Victoria Pendleton, I was excited to hear more.  Unfortunately I couldn’t attend (damn that work that gets in the way!), but I was sent some of the Pomegreat pomegranate juice drink to try, and decided I’d give the summer challenge a go.

pomegreat drink

The challenge is all about upping wellness and fitness, creating a healthy balance and life to take time out for yourself; setting and achieving physical and emotional goals in order to make you feel better over the summer and into the long term. 

When I looked at week 1 and 2 of the 8 week challenge, I was smug.  I do lots of that already, I thought – eating wholemeal, generally sit and walk well due to dancing since I was a child, doing strength exercises etc.    Now I’m moving on further through the challenge, and it’s definitely harder to find the time and also the exercise suggestions don’t necessarily suit me.

The challenge is split into 6 sections: cardio, strength, core, diet, motivation and simply great feeling, and build up each week.

Although I try and walk most lunchtimes, and wear a pedometer every day, I still struggle to get anywhere near the steps I need to do on a daily basis, unless I’m out and about at a weekend.  Walking in this heat is also horrendous to go back into the office after.  Thankfully at weekends, N will walk some way, and we do get out and about.  However, everyone knows that a toddler’s speed, and stopping and starting, really isn’t getting the heart pumping. 

The challenge incorporates running, but it’s something I just don’t do.  Apart from at school where I hated it, but was ok at it, I just haven’t and don’t run.  I’ve got a dodgy knee and I just believe that some people aren’t made for running. 

But I’ve replaced that with swimming which I try and do twice a week with a colleague at the outdoor pool.  It’s bliss to swim outdoors, although we’re going to be doing less while we’re there as they’ve stopped lane swimming at lunchtimes now it’s the summer holidays.  Oh, and you get a great tan, gently built up, so that makes you feel great as well as being aerobic exercise (if you swim properly and not with your head out of the water!).

Strength and core is about lots of planks, and push ups, and learning to hold a good posture.  These are exercises I do fairly regularly – I had been doing the 30 day plank challenge and it definitely makes you feel stronger over time.


For diet, the challenge works through different areas.  Most are obvious, but people still struggle.  I generally have something for breakfast every day, so week 1 was easy.  I drink lots of water and I eat lots of fruit and a bit of veg.  I do find it harder to eat veg, as well as not being able to eat loads of leafy green veg due to being on warfarin.  But I want to up the veg intake (and reduce our food waste), so I’ve ordered a Nutribullet and will be working my way through drinks ideas so that’ll help with my challenge success.

Motivation is definitely the hardest area for me.  Yes I want to lose weight and get healthier again, but I get distracted.  It’s strange as before having N and before blogging I never had the problem with focusing on diet and exercise.  It’s really a challenge keeping the focus, and I really need a boost to get going.  Nothing like having a wardrobe of clothes that don’t fit either.  I need to set smaller goals, and look at how to achieve those, even if I’ve fallen off the wagon and need to get back on again.  And definitely get back to keeping a food diary, as that keeps me on track…I just find it takes time to do.  Maybe I need to reduce my blogging and social media time in the evenings, get to bed earlier and therefore be raring to go in the morning to exercise?

So all in all, still some work to be done, predominantly on the portion size/snacking side of diet, and getting back to my daily exercise slots where I know 15-20 minutes a day will see results.

pomegreat simply great drinks

As for the Simply Great Pomegreat, it’s been a big success here.  I love pomegranate juice anyway, but I find this one nicer.  In the past I’ve found other brands have a funny aftertaste or they’ve not got the mix with another flavour quite right.  But this one goes down really easily.  I like that it’s a ‘light’ juice compared with something like orange juice which can feel a bit ‘heavy’ after drinking it.

N seems to like it too – he rarely has juice, or at least if we’re at home it’s diluted so it’s really weak.  But one morning I turned my back, turned back again and found he’d finished off my glass.  I’ve had to tell him the cartons aren’t open, otherwise he’d be in the fridge pouring out his own cup!

You can buy Pomegreat from supermarkets, and if you sign up on the Simply Great website, you can get 8 free when you buy 8 cartons.

Do you have a healthy regime, or could yours do with a bit of a boost?  Let me know how you get on.


Disclosure: I received some Pomegreat juice to try.  All words and opinions are my own.

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  1. I really like the juice and I’m not really a juice fan. I’m not running either – two dodgy knees and I don’t want to risk doing more damage to them. I’m not doing brilliantly on remembering to do the exercises, especially now Monkey is off school – need to assess where I am actually.

    1. Me either really. I was doing a plank and squat challenge, then threw in some push ups etc, but that’s kind of lapsed, or is more sporadic. I guess you’d be doing more walking and exercise naturally, given being out and about for holidays though.

  2. I was sent some of this as well and I sadly none of us liked it. My kids wouldn’t even try it! I did like the sound of the 8 weeks of fitness but I’m loathe to give myself any major challenges over the summer holidays just coming out the other side unscathed would be good! Good luck to you though, sounds like you’ve got it all worked out.

    1. Summer holidays are just the same for me, work and nursery for N, so hopefully I can get a bit healthier in that time. Enjoy your summer

  3. Sounds like you’re on the ball! My son is a swimmer and I’m amazed at what a workout it is, it keeps him in great shape! Keep up the good work!

    1. Just need to stick at the swimming. Can’t wait until N can properly swim so I can actually do some swimming when I take him.

  4. I am terrible for sticking to a fitness regime. I start something but then the rest of my life gets in the way and I end up going back to my bad ways. I love the small challenges like the 30 day ones, perhaps I need to revisit them.

    1. Same here. Never used to be like that, one I’d got into the habit, I’d keep it up for ages, but now it always seems like there’s other more important things. But actually there aren’t, and I seriously need to get healthy and lose weight as it’s not going to be good for me.

  5. I kicked my butt into dieting gear at new year and joined slimming world, I dropped just short of 2 stone by may, then had a bit of a blip but have pushed myself to refocus again this week and dropped another 2lbs! Good luck with your challenge

    1. That’s great. If I was cooking for myself only I’d do better, but having to do food for OH and N, as well as healthy stuff for me, is just too much work. I know what’s worked for me in the past, I just need to get back in the habit. It just astonishes me that the thinking slimmer stuff hasn’t worked for me on any of the 4 times I’ve tried it – it makes me hungrier instead of not needing to eat.

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