Denise Elphick’s Fitness Journey: Week Four

Now in my fourth week and I’m really into the swing of things – creating avocado and berry smoothies in the morning and experimenting with new recipes in the evening.

A new favourite is Madeleine Shaw’s vegetable chilli, which I serve up when a friend comes over to dinner. I offer her wine and I have a glass of vodka lime soda for myself.


Madeline Shaw’s Vegetable Chilli

My daughter is so impressed with Grace and my new found enthusiasm for exercise that she has joined the club for the summer. My husband has caught the exercise bug too – getting up at 6.15am
to go to the Hurlingham club before work.

Even the dogs are getting more exercise as we have started running round the park with them. Rufus in particular could definitely do with shedding a few pounds – he is a bit reluctant at first but soon gets into the spirit of things!


Denise’s dogs, Rufus and Heidi

This week I have a training session with the manager of the gym – Duncan – and this time we include some boxing into my exercise routine. It is so much fun and I think that I would definitely like to join a boxing class. We have another weigh in and discover that I’ve lost another half kilo and again my fat levels are down. It’s a gradual progress but it’s definitely all heading in the right direction.
The weekend poses a particular challenge as I have two parties to go to on the Saturday. One is in London and the other in Hampshire. Luckily the one in London starts at 4pm and I opt for tea and manage to resist the nibbles by getting into a few animated conversations. By 5.30 we have to leave to get ready for the next party. I decide to drive – at least I can be sure that I won’t be drinking.

Breakfast at Grace

Breakfast at Grace

We arrive at 7.30 and I allow myself one glass of champagne as its a very special party (it’s a joint 60th, 21st and 25th party). It’s a gorgeous garden party with lots of marquees – a bit like the British bake off.

Dinner is home-made hummus and hog roast with load of salads. My daughter and I queue up for the next course – we look at the cream filled desserts and she says ‘let’s not!’ Instead, we head for the DJ tent for a spot of dancing.

The music is brilliant and the four of us start dancing. It really is unusual for me to hit the dance floor at all but think it must be the course that has suddenly given me the energy and enthusiasm to do so. We are having so much fun, and suddenly its 1 o’clock and we head off home. 

I’m in the driving seat still feeling full of beans whilst my husband snoozes in the front and my daughter plays all my favourite music in the back. Next day I wake up bright and early to take the dogs out whilst everyone else slumbers on. Best of all – feeling great and no hangover!


Rufus and Heidi

For part three of Denise Elphick’s journey, click here

Find out why Grace Belgravia have been awarded the Butterfly Mark here.

Denise Elphick

Denise Elphick is a lifestyle journalist whose work has appeared in the Sunday Times Style magazine, the Telegraph, the Times, the London Evening Standard, Grazia, Homes & Gardens, Living Etc and Easy Living as well as the New York Times and Boston Globe. She is the co-writer of a travel book, Weekend Breaks, published by Simon & Schuster, and was a co-founder of the restaurant booking site Toptable.