28 mins

Lose Weight and Get Fit with Tom Kerridge

Series 1: 5. Episode 5

Tom Kerridge and a group of volunteers are on a weight loss and fitness mission. They are spending two months following NHS diet and exercise advice, using Tom’s delicious lower-calorie recipes to fuel them. A month into the challenge, and the gang has been working hard to ditch bad habits and form new, healthier ones. But sticking to them for life is a huge ask.

Tom knows that a succession of flavourless, beige dishes is a recipe for failure. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Take his Spanish-style squid, chickpea and chorizo stew. It is full of exciting flavours and textures – and is designed to fill you up. Tom’s message is clear - be smart with recipe choices and you won’t feel like you are on a diet at all.

Over the last month, Adam has been encouraging Tom and the gang to try different sports and fitness classes to find something they enjoy and will do again and again. This week, Luke invites the gang to one of his martial arts sessions. Dan is a convert, but Maxine is not convinced. And Bev persuades the gang to try her favourite workout, clubbercise. It is a vigorous dance class 'to let your bonkers out', as Bev explains. Everyone shakes off their inhibitions, especially Adam.

A cooked breakfast is normally off the menu when you are dieting, but Tom has come up with a recipe which is up there with the best breakfasts. His take on American-style pancakes includes chai teabags, spices and tahini paste – hardly your average pancake batter. And you don’t have to be calorie counting to enjoy these - with fresh fruit and yogurt, they are crowd pleasers you can share with the whole family.

Before taking on Tom’s challenge, community policeman Chris never cooked at home and ate only plain, simple food. But he has really embraced Tom’s recipes and has surprised himself with the dishes he has cooked and the new flavours he has discovered. Today, he is making his most ambitious meal yet – a birthday lunch for his mum. Tom pops in to lend a hand, but Chris has got this one covered - and his mum is pleased as punch.

Tom loves a pub snack, and one of his absolute favourites is scotch egg. Normally, they come with a high fat content, so Tom invents his own version. This will require next-level cooking skills from the gang, but he thinks they are ready to up their game. His veggie version turns out beautifully and is the perfect portable snack for dieters on the go.

So far, Mumtaz has lost the least amount of weight in the group. Tom drops round to give her some encouragement, and it soon becomes apparent why she is finding it tough. On top of her high-pressure job, Mumtaz looks after her family’s needs at home and is always surrounded by temptation. She has little time left to focus on herself. Tom urges her to dig deep and not give up.

Tom invites the whole gang over for lunch – an easy chicken tray-bake, full of aromatic Moroccan flavours. He wants them to celebrate all the positive changes they have made in their lives so far. Everyone has lost weight and is feeling fitter and healthier. But Tom also has some news he wants to share. He explains that he is taking a step back for a while - to test their resolve and prepare them for the future. Everyone will meet up again in four weeks' time to be weighed and have their fitness tested. Tom hopes they will prove to themselves that they can make lasting changes to their lives without needing his help.

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