The fit foodie: Lamb Curry and Greens Soup

It’s February now and lots of you may have fallen off the fitness wagon but that is OK! There is no need to panic, says Derval O’Rourke.

The fit foodie: Lamb Curry and Greens Soup

When I find myself a little lost (and, if I’m honest, lazy) with my fitness I look at my goals and I reset them.

Like lifting a heavier weight, running a faster time or a longer distance. These goals are a lot more motivating for me than dropping a dress size.

The way I reset my goals is really simple. I use the SMART system which is something lots of you may have heard of.

Here is how I do it:

1) Specific: I change my goals regularly to keep it interesting. Sometimes it’s more strength and other times its more cardio based. I make it as specific as I can to make sure I know what I am aiming towards.

My goal now is to complete a Zumba block of training and be more capable of it at the end of the block.

2) Measurable: You must be able to measure your progress. Set yourself little tests and see if you are on the right track towards your goal.

Goals might have to be readjusted slightly depending on how everything is working out. At the moment I will look at my schedule and make sure that I have no timetable clash with my planned Zumba training.

3) Achievable: I used to set massive goals; this was when I was a professional athlete and those goals were very achievable. Now my fitness goals are far more modest but they are important nonetheless.

Rather than trying to be one of the best athletes in the world my goals now are far more normal and thus far more achievable for where I am in life.

4) Realistic: I like to set realistic goals. There is no point putting yourself under crazy pressure just to achieve a goal you set. Evaluate your situation and make sure that everything is balanced between work, exercise and family life.

When I do work in the corporate space one of the biggest issues I see is people being unrealistic. They make their lives really hard trying to do everything at a really high standard; being realistic is essential.

5) Time Measured: When, when, when! Put an expiry date on your goals to help you stay on track. This is not to pressure you, it is simply to make you more likely to succeed.


The indoor athletics season is in full swing. The European athletics is on at the start of March so it’s worth giving @EuroAthletics a follow to keep up to date with all the results around Europe.

Lamb Curry

This recipe takes a little bit of preparation because I like to marinade the lamb. I love curry recipes.

This is a mild curry so those of you that don’t like heat will happily eat it.

It’s the type of dish that tastes even better the next day so it’s well worth making enough for a couple of dinners.

Serves 4

  • 1 lime, zest and juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 800g diced lamb
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp medium curry powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tin of coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp tabasco (optional for those that like heat)
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • chopped fresh coriander to garnish
  • brown rice or cous-cous to serve


Mix the lime zest, juice and garlic in a large bowl.

Add the lamb and use your hands to massage the marinade into the meat.

Cover and leave in the fridge for 2 hours.

Heat the coconut oil in a large casserole over a medium heat.

Add the onion and cook for about five minutes.

Cook the lamb in batches in the casserole, until browned on each side.

Stir in the curry powder and cumin and cook for 1 minute.

Stir in the coconut milk, tomato puree, tabasco and honey and cook for another 5 minutes.

Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for at least 1 hour.

Stir occasionally and add a little water if the curry seems dry.

Ladle the curry into warmed serving bowls and sprinkle over the coriander.

Serve with brown rice or cous cous.

Greens Soup

This is definitely the time of year for bowls of soup. They are such a comforting food.

I’m always looking for ways to get my greens into me, and this is an easy, tasty way to get your greens.

If you are training hard it’s important to get a lot of colour in your diet so making a big batch of this soup is a great way to help your training recovery.

Fast recipe

Serves 3

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 leeks, finely sliced
  • 250g broccoli, broken into florets
  • 200g kale, cut out the hard stalks
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper


Melt the butter in a large pan over a low heat.

Add the onion and leeks and cook for five minutes, until softened. Add the broccoli and kale, stir well and cover.

Cook for five minutes, stir occasionally. Add the stock and bring to the boil.

Reduce the heat and simmer, covered for 8-10 minutes until the vegetables are tender.

Take the pan off the heat. Puree the soup with a hand blender until smooth.

Season to taste and ladle into warmed serving bowls.

Serve with brown bread.

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