Successful Secrets of Slim People by Cathleen Ross

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Just in time for the post-holidays, guest author Cathleen Ross is here to talk about secrets of the slim…and her latest release, Highlander!

My New Year’s resolution is the same each year: To lose weight not to put it on.

The older I become, the more I write and the bigger I grow – out not up. Last year I decided I needed to do something about it, so I went away with two slim friends instead of my chocolate-loving writer buddies and observed the differences in their living habits.

How did my non-writer girlfriends stay slim year after year? What did they live on? Could I develop some of their successful habits?

Breakfast consisted of one piece of toast or yoghurt and berries

Morning tea –  a coffee with skinny milk and no sugar

Lunch – a salad and a serving of protein, one piece of fruit. Sometimes my friends used wrap bread and stuffed it with salad and a protein.

Dinner – steamed vegetables and a serving of protein

One thing I noticed is that my thin friends didn’t snack. Except for the coffee, I never saw them put anything else in their mouths between meals. So I thought I would try this to see if I could lose weight. The most difficult thing for me was cutting down the carbs, especially my midday sandwich. I had to be prepared to make a salad everyday and it had to different enough so that I didn’t get bored.

For the first three weeks I didn’t lose a thing even though I stuck to the diet religiously, then slowly I started to see change. It wasn’t much change – only a pound a week. For the first month I was so hungry, I needed to eat a cup of good quality yogurt before my lunch, otherwise I couldn’t concentrate on my writing the rest of the afternoon. After several months, I didn’t get hungry anymore between meals and could manage not to snack.

The amount of food consumption wasn’t the only difference I noticed between my slim non-writer friends and my chocolate-loving writer buddies.

My slim friends moved at every opportunity. I’m no slouch, I like exercise and walk several times a week, but these women walked every morning and every afternoon. They sought opportunities to move in the way I sought opportunities to write.

What is the one thing we writers have in common? Persistence. It takes hours to write a novel and writers can’t do it moving, consequently we’re not burning calories. However, if I was going to emulate my slim buddies, I needed to channel that persistence and book myself into some no-excuses exercise. I lined up several girlfriends to walk with me every week so I couldn’t bury myself in emails and not bother with the walk, plus I booked and prepaid for a semester of exercise classes.

It took me six months to lose twelve pounds but I did achieve my resolution.

What is your New Year’s resolution?

About the Author:

Cathleen Ross is a writer of erotic romance. She is published with Harlequin and Random House. She is also self-publishing a series of Forbidden Fantasies. Visit her at

More About Cathleen’s Books:

Highlander (Forbidden Fantasy)

Highlander is the second of the Forbidden Fantasy stories by best-selling erotic writer, Cathleen Ross. It is a 10,000 word erotic romance set in Scotland. When Sir James Bruce conquers enemy territory, his reward is the hand of beautiful virgin, Lady Isobel McLaird. Although Isobel has no intention of marrying Sir James, he is determined to change her mind by taming her to his touch. Only James has the power to save her imprisoned brother and the stubborn tenacity to win her heart.


Lady Isobel McLaird spun on her heels at the thunderous noise of metal and hooves approaching the marketplace. Her maid, peasants and livestock scattered as the phalanx of knights drew to a halt, but Isobel stood her ground. At their head was Sir James Bruce, the man who’d once held her and made her yearn for his caresses. Now she hated him. With her heart in her throat, she gathered her skirts to confront him.

“Murderer!” she shouted.

Sir James’s enormous black steed reared at the sound of her sharp cry. Hooves flailed near her head as the fearsome knight fought to keep in his horse in check.

Fear chilled her blood and she stepped back.

After climbing down from his horse and throwing the reins to his page, Sir James took off his helm revealing dark blue eyes, which fixed upon her.

“You’re as beautiful and foolish as you were on the riverbank three years ago, Isobel McLaird.”

When he pushed back his chain mail, she saw his raven hair was cropped shoulder length and his lips were as sensual as ever under his noble nose.

Wet from the river, her shift sticking to her skin, he’d held her. She’d turned her lips up to his to be kissed.

“I was foolish not to have reported your trespass on my father’s lands three years ago. You’re a traitor to King John Balliol and my brother’s murderer.”

He strode towards her, his hand on the hilt of his sword.

Fear rooted her feet to the damp earth of the marketplace. Though the rain had passed and the sun shone, for her, everyday was gloomy because of this knight.

“Have you not noticed that you’ve not an army to defend you now?” A half smile formed on his lips.

“You jest about my people’s destruction, brave men all, led by my brother. Your cruelty does you no merit, Sir.” Tears pricked the corners of her eyes. David and his men would have gone down fighting the stronger Bruce army until the end, determined to give everything for the cause of John Balliol, the true king.

At her accusation, the smile slipped from his face and his eyes held sympathy. “It is a bad day for Scotland when Scotsmen spill the blood of their own. I’ve news for you, my lady, but it comes at a cost. Your brother lives.”

“What?” For a moment, Isobel thought the ground had shifted under her feet. Owen, David’s best friend had seen her brother killed by this knight’s very hand.

“You play with me, Sir.”

“Nay, my lady. I do not jest about a cause so dear to your heart. Take this proof of my words.” He took a piece of parchment from his page and handed it to her.

A buzz of voices swarmed as the villagers gathered around her but Isobel paid them no heed. With trembling fingers she saw the parchment contained her brother’s fine hand.

Her gaze flicked up to meet Sir James’s. “David says the Bruce will no accept ransom.”

“Aye, my cousin, the king will brook no opposition to his claim and your brother is a formidable knight. I warrant my cousin will keep him prisoner. And now I’ll take my price for giving the message.”

Isobel reached for the purse that hung at her waist.

Sir James stepped forward, wrapped his arms around her and lifted her off the ground. “Would that I had done this those three years ago by the river. I can’t get you out of my mind.”

She opened her lips to protest, but he planted his mouth hard on hers.

Surprise, hotly followed by indignation rose within her. She slapped her hands on his chest and kicked with her feet, but her toes met body armor. A sharp pain zinged through her foot and she opened her lips further to cry out. The knight taking full advantage, put his lips to hers, moving them in a rhythm. His action was bold.  Her blood pumped wildly and sensations she had no name for, rushed through her.

Though she dug her nails into his clothing, the mail he wore under his surcoat resisted her damage. Soon though, her hands stilled as sparks of pleasure shot through her. A sigh left her lips, soft with need.

The knight, perhaps sensing her acquiescence, touched her tongue with his. Isobel jerked back, but he followed the movement of her head, refusing to break his kiss. The impropriety shocked her to the core and yet the repeated gliding sensation of his tongue sent tingles down her spine and the feel of his hot lips on hers drugged her to his wishes.

Pinned to his body by his powerful arms, she was helpless, lost as excitement raced throughout her that was better than riding her horse unbridled and wild.

One of his hands slid under her veil and fisted her hair. The sharp pull of it along with his lips, hot and sensuous, demanded more from her. Seized with an unquenchable fire, she let go, closed her eyes, lost in the new sensations.

Tentatively, she followed the movement of his tongue taking pleasure in the most intimate sensation she’d ever savored. He tasted of ale and virile male. Her nipples tightened under her gown and though the weather was inclement, she thought she was melting.

She’d never experienced anything like this. No man had ever kissed her. His face, though shaven, was still in need of a razor. The barbs on his jaw grazed her cheek and though the soft skin surrounding her lips chaffed, the sensation sent heady bubbles through her blood as if she had sipped on too much of her father’s wine.

“My lady!” her maid screamed.

Aware of her maid’s high-pitched voice and the hum of the villagers witnessing this improper act, Isobel twisted and turned though she thought her hair would rip from her scalp.

“Release me, Sir.”

When he released her hair, she pushed back on his chest with the flat of her hands, aware of his glittering eyes. He did as she asked however, slowly lowering her, but after he placed her on her feet, she noticed his chest rose and fell. The skin on his neck had darkened with blood and she sensed he barely held himself in check.

“What manner of payment is this?” she asked.

“I have no use for your coin, Isobel, but this,” he touched his finger to her lips, “is worth more than any gold.”

Also by Cathleen:

The Lover (Forbidden Fantasy)

The Ice Princess (Forbidden Fantasy)


15 thoughts on “Successful Secrets of Slim People by Cathleen Ross

    Rachael Johns said:
    January 4, 2012 at 7:21 am

    Great article. You’ve inspired me. I’m trying to exercise more and snack less too. Chocolate is my killer – must be cos I’m a writer 🙂

    Kandy Shepherd said:
    January 4, 2012 at 7:47 am

    Excellent post, Cathleen. I really like the way you observed the stay-slim secrets of your friends–both the eating (or lack of!) and the moving. Reading your words, I realized that’s what I used to do in the days when I worried about being too thin! That was before becoming a chocolate-munching writer!

    Rosalie Lario responded:
    January 4, 2012 at 8:20 am

    Great, timely post Cathleen. The truth is that the slimmer people are, the more active they generally are. I know that was the case in my youth, when I never stood still. 🙂

    Rebecca Zanetti said:
    January 4, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    You had me with the interesting blog about slimming down – because I totally need to. But I LOVED the excerpt! I am so buying that book when I get to my home computer.

    Have a great one. 🙂

    vondasinclair said:
    January 4, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    Fantastic post and excerpt! Loved it! I wanted to add a further tip for writers. Some people may not be able to do this, but I have a treadmill with a custom made desk on it. I set my laptop on that and I can write and walk at the same time. I just need to do it more often. Once or twice a day maybe. So far I do it a few times a week.

    Rebecca J. Clark said:
    January 4, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Great post. Congrats on your weight loss. You should be proud of yourself. 🙂

    I’m a personal trainer as well as writer, and I’m always telling my clients it’s not just about the workouts they do with me. They can’t just go home and sit around the rest of the day. They need to get up and move whenever they can. Keep that metabolic fire burning.

    One way I mix exercise with my writing is I try to take a 20-minute walk before my main writing session of the day. I don’t listen to music or read (if I’m on the treadmill), I just think about my upcoming writing session and try to work out some plot or character issues.

    Thanks again. I’ll share this on my FB page.

    ROB HAMOND said:
    January 4, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Thanks for your recomendations for losing weight, I am completely bamboozled with this losing weight.
    I walk for an hour each morning 5am – 6am, I have breakfast ceral, sandwich for lunch and main meal at night no snacks during day piece fruit nightly and drink 2litres water daily. But cannot lose a skerritt?????

    cathleen ross (@cathleenross) said:
    January 4, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    Thanks for dropping in. Rob – for me – I cut the sandwich at lunch and swapped it to a salad with one serving of protein. For some reason that helped me lose weight. If you looked at the calorie content, I don’t think there would be much of a difference but it did work. I do have to stress that real weight loss only started after three weeks, so it was frustrating.

    Vonna – the treadmill idea is brilliant.

    Rebecca if I learned anything, it was the keep moving mind set.

    Thanks Kandy, Rosalie for hosting me, both Rebeccas and Rachael for dropping in.

    Jodie said:
    January 4, 2012 at 11:41 pm

    Hi ya, I thought I would add my two cents.

    I am a relatively small person. I’ve weighed 50 kilos for over ten years and have only ever fluctuated a kilo or two, not including the weight gain when I had my two kids.

    I don’t exercise, but my kids keep me relatively active.

    What is my secret??? I don’t think there is one. I think a lot of it comes down to genetics. I have a super awesome metabolism – although it is starting to wear off, I have always been able to eat whatever I want. And yes, I know it is unfair, but I am just lucky.

    However I don’t eat overly that much. Breakfast – cereal or two pieces of toast, morning tea is a coffee, lunch – 1.5 sandwiches, afternoon tea – a snack, maybe fruit or another coffee, then a big meal for dinner.

    I was always told that snacking increased your metabolism. It kept your body continuously breaking down food at a slower pace instead of having a huge amount of food dumping into it with three big meals.

    Another thing I always do is that if I am hungry I only eat enough to kill the annoying grumbling of my belly. A piece of cheese, a biscuit.

    Ok, I’ve rambled….sorry.

    Loved your post.

    Cathleen Ross said:
    January 5, 2012 at 12:47 am

    No, it was great Jodie, sharing what works for you. Eating just enough to kill the hunger is a good idea. My slim friends said they never let themselves go in the first place, but I found my metabolism changed completely after I had my daughter. I can’t eat much now. That’s the way it is.

    Jamie Lee Scott said:
    January 5, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Loved your weight loss post. Good for you for keeping with it even though the weight didn’t come off immediately. I’m an instant gratification girl, but this still sounds like a fantastic plan. Eat like a skinny person, to be a skinny person.

      Cathleen Ross said:
      January 5, 2012 at 7:25 pm

      Thanks for stopping by, Jamie. I have to put myself in the skinny person mind set and force myself out to walk if I don’t feel like it. It does work but it’s very slow. I’ve come to accept that now but I totally relate to the instant gratification thing.

    KC Klein said:
    January 5, 2012 at 8:03 pm

    Cathleen what a great post. One of my main interests, besides writing, is exercise and loosing weight. I have always maintained my weight, but was never thin. Never in single digit sizes. I went away with a girlfriend of mine. When we went to the pool she came out ‘rockin’ the hot pants. I, on the other hand, had an old lady bathing suit on. I stopped and looked at her. We are the same age, height, and same number of kids, and both doing the same workout, but I didn’t look like her. Finally, I was like girl, I am ready to listen. What is your secret. She told me the same thing she has told me for years. She is a weight watchers member for over 8 yrs. It all came down to the eating. I joined weight watchers, lost 10 lbs, and finally got into that size 8. It is true, skinny people have different habits. It is good to watch how they live. I’m glad you had success with your new life style change. Now the hard part is not to slip back into old habits.

    Congrats on your book. It looks like an exciting one to read. 🙂

    Cathleen Ross said:
    January 5, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Hi KC
    Nice to hear from you:) Some people lose weight easier than others or can eat more and it’s frustrating when you are the one with the slower metabolism, but it all comes down to moving and how much we eat. Dropping a size means eating less. For some reason, for me, the not eating between meals and the no more than one carb, works better than anything else I’ve tried. Forcing myself to walk when I don’t want to also helps. My slim friends didn’t eat sweet things, wouldn’t even be tempted, unlike my chocolate loving writer friends.

    Kandi Lee said:
    April 9, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    I’m new to your site and just put in about An hour and Thirty minutes reading.

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