Thursday, 29 March 2012

Wednesday - another visitor salad!

Wednesday WOD (Legs Day)
5mins on rower as a warm up

Goblet lunges
lying leg curls
leg extensions
Seated calf raises
Leg press

For dinner I invited my work buddy Janine over.  It was a great evening and we had the biggest and best salad for dinner.  Man, we are really making good use of the George Foreman grill I scored on Groupon a few weeks ago.

Mixed leafs
Red Onion
Green Onion
Button mushrooms
Red Pepper (Capsicum)
Feta Cheese

Homemade dressing with low fat greek yogurt, wholegrain mustard, paprika, cayenne pepper and a small dash of agave nectar.

All in all the bill for dinner was around £15 from Tesco and it fed all three of us, pretty much to the brim.  We had some Vodka, carbonated water and fresh lime as drinks so overall - this was a pretty healthy meal.

Turns out that salad is my go to meal for when I cook dinner for friends.  I haven't had one complaint yet! 

What is your favorite meal to cook?  My mum always used to cook Lasagne and it is something that I crave from my mum every time I see her.  I could never recreate the magic myself though.... It will never taste as good!

Back in Australia, I used to throw an awesome BBQ when mates came around.
What is your go to meal for entertaining? 

Tuesday's WOD

Tuesday morning I was able to get Michelle out of bed to join me for a run! She rode her bike next to me, which was a great way for me to keep a faster pace.  I am still feeling really unfit and my shins have been giving me a bit of grief (still!) - so overall I was pretty happy that I put away over 5km in 30mins.

Tuesday WOD
20mins on cross trainer
DB flys + bench press
Lateral raises + tricep dips

I love the DB flys and for today I used 6kg each hand and completed 3 lots of 10 reps.  I really miss lifting the heavier weights and I look forward to getting stuck into it when I return from Cape Town.

Dinner was a heated up veggie patty, scrambled egg whites (one whole egg and 3 egg whites), steamed veggies and some chutney on the side.  Yummo!

You better believe I did some foam rolling when I got home.  Ahhhh It feels so good on your glutes and hamstrings.... Sometimes I don't want to stop rolling.

Do you find that you run faster with someone else?  Or are you a lone wolf?

Thursday, 22 March 2012

6 more days of work left... until I am on HOLIDAY!

On Tuesday this week I was lucky enough to have a visitor for lunch.  Since Michelle wasn't at work she decided to swing past on her way home from cleaning her old house.  It was so nice to show her around my work building so then when I talk about things at home - she knows exactly what I am referring to!

I had a jacket potato with tuna and cheese for lunch and it was probably one of the best things that I have had from that canteen..... Kidding.  No, actually totally serious. It wasn't covered in oil or some other mysterious substance and the tuna was quite fresh as well.  I will definitely be going back for more of those.... when I am desperate!

Tuesday's WOD
10min on cross trainer warm up

Today was a bit of a circuit style workout since I was in a rush to meet my sister for dinner.  I completed a few rounds of each of the following exercises:

Arnold punch, goblet lunges, single leg hip raises, walk out push ups,
Bulgarian split jumps, bicep curls, lying chest press

After my workout I rushed down to Kings Cross to meet my sister for dinner at Pizza Express.  We both had one of their "under 500 calorie" pizzas and then a coffee for dessert.  I am not usually one for an after dinner coffee, but because it came with a small treat and baileys, I was bang up for it.

I didn't take a picture of the pizza because I was so hungry and by the time I remembered, I had eaten half of it.  Oops.

It kinda looked something like this though.

On Wednesday I woke up feeling the itch to go for a run again.  I ran on Monday so I thought; my legs have had a rest, why not head out again today. 

I felt like going for a pretty easy run so instead of doing my usual park loop with hils so I ran up to Barnett and back again.
 To be honest, even with this small distance I had to stop a few times.  My fitness desperately needs to be worked on after not running with my injury.  It is so frustrating, but also exciting because with each and every run I feel myself getting better again.  It is a slow process, but I will get there.

Wednesday WOD
10mins on cross trainer warm up (legs felt a little tight from my earlier run)

Dead lifts, upright row, single leg raises, rotational push ups,  BB front squats,
reverse lunges

Man, I really need to work on my technique.  I am lucky enough to have one of the guys at the gym help me out here and there, but I just feel so stupid sometimes with regard to these new exercises.  I think I should probably book in to spend some time with a trainer so then I can focus on good form and start changing my weights around more..

Usually I am quite confident when lifting, but today for some reason I felt like someone who has no idea.  I need to fix this ASAP!  Might do some research on YouTube as well just to give myself a bit of an edge.

For dinner we cooked some steamed veggies (using our colander and a big pot of boiled water) and super easy chicken on our George Foreman grill.

So nice to have a "home style cooked meal" again.  After enjoying Pizza Express on Tuesday night my body was craving veggies.  I am glad we utilised a "steamer" as I felt microwaving the veggies would get rid of all the goodness I was craving.

This chicken is so easy and I really recommend giving it a go at home if you can.  Michelle thought that it was a winner and we both cleared our plates. 

Do you guys research technique on YouTube before you head to the gym? How are you learning to improve your technique, if not with a personal trainer?

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Moving Weekend Roundup

Happy Tuesday morning!  I hope you all had a lovely weekend.  As you might know, my weekend was mostly all about moving.  Saturday morning I woke up to these little guys licking my face.  Not very hygienic, I am aware of this, but totally and utterly cute - therefore acceptable.

I have to admit, when I was packing up my things I shed a few tears when thinking about how my life was going to change, without my new family around me.

Sure I am very excited to be moving in with Michelle.  It is going to be AWESOME.  It is just that Oscar, Riley, Ryan and Robbie have all become such a massive part of my life over the last 3months.  I believe that in the time I have spent with them, I have learnt so much about what my priorities are, who I am at this time in my life and it has made me want to be a better person.  For that time, I am so grateful.

Look at that face?  Could you get mad if you woke up to this?  If you could, you must have a heart of stone... 

I didn't book any time to exercise on Saturday.  Lugging my stuff up and down stairs was going to be enough for me.  Thankfully the whole ordeal wasn't too painful and we managed to get it over and done with fairly quickly. 

What's that noise?  It's the sound of DIY!  Yep.  Michelle and I are so awesome we even put IKEA furniture together.  Without instructions.  With only 1 small slip up, which I could probably blame myself for.  Overall, not a bad job was done.

Excuse my room while my things are vomited up everywhere.  I am not sure if any of you are my friends on FB but this was my status over the weekend:

Things I have learnt from the move:
80% of my clothes are black. 10% of my clothes are leopard print. The other 10% I don't wear. I own 1 bra. Some of my shoes are too small to fit on the racks properly.... And when I packed up my things in December, I must have been intoxicated. Which would explain why I thought it was a good idea to pack all my winter clothes away "for the winter".

All of the above is true.

Saturday night Michelle and I had a frozen pizza from Sainsbury's and a bottle of Rose.  Neither of us were in the mood to handle anything more than that.  Nor did we have the money for take out.  Sunday however, we were both craving something healthy so we whipped up some hummus and ate with carrots, cucumber and toasted wholewheat pitta bread.

Now - onto the best part of this post.  Monday's workouts!

I woke up at 6am on Monday morning, having had a decent night sleep in my new bed.  I checked my emails and FB quickly on my phone and then headed out for a quick run.  It was really strange, but kinda cool to be exploring my old neighborhood again.  Memories! Good ones of course :)

Pace was a little slower but I put that down to a load more hills around this area and my head cold.  I ran around a little park twice and tried to sprint up the hills where I could.  Overall, I was pretty happy with this run and it was a great way to start the week.

At lunch time I was still feeling a little under the weather from a head cold I have been ignoring for the last week.  I completed 20mins on the cross trainer and then some weights as per below.

Wide grip lateral pull down & underhand pull down
DB bench press & DB flys
DB bicep curl & tricep overhead & dips

I felt pretty good afterwards and was glad that I pushed myself to get strength training in as well as the run earlier.
Work was a killer in the afternoon.  I didn't look at the clock for a little while and before I knew it, people were packing up around me.  5:30pm had crept up pretty quickly and I was incredibly happy about that.
It's funny - at 5:30pm every day, it is a mad scramble to get out the door here.  It is pretty funny to watch and never before have I worked somewhere, where this happens.  Even my boss knicks off on time!  I love it!

Right, I am off to start my work day and get on with things.  I only have 2 weeks left until I leave for Cape Town.... Busy busy busy!  Oh, and I get to see my sister tonight.... Woohoo!!

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Feeling a bit foggy?

Why hello there!  What day is it today?  Oh, that's right.  Thursday isn't it?!!  Somewhere along the line I have missed yet another day.  This is just another one of those weeks that is flying by.

The lead up to this week has included:
My 29th Birthday
A surprise trip to Paris

Now this weekend I am moving into a little flat with my mate Michelle.
Then next weekend I have my sister's hens night.
Then the following weekend I am off to Cape Town.
Then the weekend after that I am off to Germany.

Is it any wonder the time is flying past so quickly?  I seem to not have a second to scratch myself these days - but there could be worse problems to have, right? ;)

So, lets just go back a a day to Wednesday.  Right.  Well, from the new workout I started on Tuesday, my body felt very sore.  It was a good sore though and I really felt like I could get stuck into the new workout of the day.  Which looked a little something like this:

Arnold punch
Goblet stationary lunges
Lying hip raises
Travelling hand walkouts
Bicep curls
Single weight DB squats
Lying chest presses

I completed the above circuit 3 times.  Next time I will try to complete 4 times, but as I was making sure my form was good and checking the weights to use, it took me a little bit longer than usual.  
I really loved the travelling hand walkouts.  I feel stronger already!

A bit of stretching to finish off and then back to work.  For lunch I had a salad from the canteen along with a PHD Diet Whey protein shake.  They are so tasty and I usually just have one scoop with water.  It is almost like a desert for me as the flavor I have (Chocolate Orange) is nice and sweet and makes me think I am drinking a "not so good for you" milk shake.

When I finished work, I went for a quick 2mile loop around the block as my body was craving a bit of a stretch/a little something something.  Nothing special here except for my two tone legs.

Attractive? NO
Feeling strong? YES

I owned that hill and even raced a cyclist the last third.  I totally won.  As if they knew we were racing and all....  Come on.  You know how it is!

Now, this morning I woke up and my body felt slightly like how London looked.  Foggy.  My glutes and hamstrings were soooo sore from the dead lifts on Tuesday and Wednesday's squats.  Man, talk about walking slightly off.  

It took me twice as long to get down the hill to the station, yet, funnily enough, I still managed to scale the stairs two at a time on the way up to the platform.  Weird huh? 

My workout for today was 20mins on the cross trainer.  Honestly, sitting down allll day really makes my legs feel like cr*p.  They were sore to start with, but after a few hours of sitting down in the same position, they felt like they were frozen in place.  I had a horrible thought that it was just me getting old.... But no.  It was my killer workouts for the week so far.

I managed to get around 10mins of stretching in before heading back to work for the afternoon.  I think my body felt normal for around 1hour, ha!

So tonight I am at home packing my things into a suitcase and getting ready for the move on Saturday.  This little guy is helping me.  Well, when I say helping, I mean laying there yawning and rolling around on every single thing I put onto the bed.  Cheers Oscar.  Just what I needed ;)

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

2 workouts today - BOOM!

Today was amazing.  I felt fantastic when I woke up so I made the most of it and headed off to the gym for a quick run before work.  Although it was an early start, I was a little late from the tube up North and could only fit in around 20mins on the treadmill.

 The usual.  On an incline and a bit of a sweat on.  Actually, that's a lie.  Either the air con was broken or there is something very wrong with me.  I was dripping in sweat.  It doesn't look like much, but it was an awesome workout.

I know it isn't really accurate, but I do enjoy seeing how many calories the treadmill thinks I have burnt in the time I was on there.  It makes me happy thinking I am starting the day off on the right note, and encouraging my body to be productive, while I sit at my computer allll day.

At lunch time I decided to start a new program that was given to me at the gym by the new trainer.  I had to get some guidance as to how to get the ball rolling on day one, so that took up some of the hour long lunch break I have.

Some of the exercises I was completing today were:
Push ups
Squat jumps
Backwards lunges
Upright bent over row
Romanian push ups (or dive bombers as Zuzana would call them)
Front BB squats
Legs elevated walk outs
Planks and a few other things.

I made sure to stretch well after this workout.  I am supposed to complete 6 sets of each of the exercises, so once I have my head around it I will make sure I post it online. I was knackered, to say the least! Towards the end, I had sweat beading and dripping off my face.  Lovely and so attractive.

Now I would like to say a bit of a shout out to my beautiful friend Jess.  This girl is one of the nicest, caring, strongest, most beautiful and sincere people I have never met.  We connected over Tumblr quite some time ago and I am so glad that we can now call each other friends :)

For my birthday she sent me the best present ever from Australia.  The below Lorna Jane tank top and some Lucas Paw Paw ointment.  Jess, from the bottom of my heart - THANK YOU!!

I have to say, when I was keeled over and struggling to get some more push ups under my belt today - I looked in the mirror and saw the GO FOR IT slogan across my chest.
Man, I sucked it up and went for it.  Now that is motivation.

 After work I came home and cooked some dinner with Robbie.  We had some left over salmon in the fridge along with some frozen veggies.  So we whipped up a honey soy glaze for the salmon and steamed the veggies.  To be honest, the portion was quite large for me, but it was good tucker and I didn't mind feeling full from it when I was done.  I haven't had salmon in a while so it was nice to enjoy it while watching the latest New Girl and Threesome episodes on TV.

Now, it's off to bed to rub my legs a little and see what crappy TV is on for me to get lazy to.   Have you guys seen My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding?  Wow.

That show makes me want to ..... (finish this sentence with your thoughts..)?

Monday, 12 March 2012

Spring is in the air

Well wasn't the weather just amazing yesterday in London? I hope you guys managed to make the most of it, just like I did.

After getting up early, going for a run and doing some admin type things on my computer - I decided to chill out at home until it was time to go and meet up with Robbie and Alison for a meal at Ben's Canteen.

I got Oscar and Riley ready for the walk to Clapham and we set off around 3:30pm to get there at 4pm ish.  The walk there is around just under a mile so by the time we got there, we were all itching for a drink.  Water for the boys and a London Meantime for me!

We got a lovely table out on the sidewalk where we could enjoy the warmer weather and sunshine while it lasted.

For dinner I opted for the Super Food Salad, over a roast.  Since I had such a nice healthy start to the day, I didn't feel like loading up for the evening with a nut roast, which is usually what I go for over lamb, pork or chicken.

The super food salad was amazing as per usual and of course, I ordered with some grilled chicken on top for that extra protein kick.

When it was time to head home, we tried to call a taxi to take us back as there was a definite chill in the air and we were all knackered.  Unfortunately, taxi's don't appear to take puppies so we ended up walking back home as well.  Such a lovely way to let the meal go down and also, stretch the legs again after this mornings run.

 This morning I got up and decided to hit the gym early for a bit of a canter before work.  I completed the above distance and climbed around 137 meters.
I am still running on a slight incline because I
a) love the burn in my legs and
b) it is just easier on my shins right now.  Winning twice, right?

I think the pace is a little off, using the Nike + application inside - but it is still nice to see a few more miles under my belt.  Not long now until I reach 200miles on this app!  Very exciting. I know I have run more than that, since I started running, but it is still nice to have a little mile stone to look forward to hitting.

Lunch today was yet another salad (seems like spring is in the air, even at work in the air conditioned office!) so after a trip to Tesco, I threw together a bistro salad, some avocado, light dressing and some cold ready to eat light chicken.  Man, it was so tasty and filled me up for a few hours.  

I put the information through MyFitnessPal and it said that the whole meal was less than 300 calories.  It still blows me away how much you can eat in a day, that is GOOD food, and be under your calorie goal - whatever that might be.

Honestly, why would you want to go to MacDonalds or KFC and eat your whole calorie allowance in one sitting?  That does not sound appealing to me at all!

Oh and by the way, it hurts to laugh after my ab exercises yesterday.  Man.... I LOVE THE BURN!!

Do you love the burn?  What did you do in the glorious weather in London yesterday?

Sunday, 11 March 2012

I'm back!

Well, after what feels like forever - I am finally back at home!  The last few weeks have been manic, to say the least and I have not been able to get into any kind of routine at all.

If you remember, last weekend I was in Paris for my good friend Robbie's Birthday.
The weekend before that I pretty much moved into my best friend Michelle's house for MY Birthday.

The week nights have been filled with gigs, running errands and catching up with people.  Also, the big news is that Michelle and I found a cute little flat to move into!!  This means that I will no longer be living with Robbie, Ryan and the boys but, I will be so much closer to work and I wont have to spend so much time away from home catching up with Michelle as we will be living together!

We are moving on Saturday and I am very excited about having a routine back again - not to mention, having all my things around me and not living out of a suitcase.  I will have loads more time in the morning and after work to exercise and also, more time to put into this blog.  This blog is such a passion of mine - so I hope you all still like reading it!

I spent last night at home with the boys.  Ryan is away right now and Robbie was at work, so we just chilled on the couch and then went to bed.
P.s thanks to you both for keeping me up all night.  It's a good thing you are cute!

This morning I laced up my running shoes in the hopes of putting away a few miles before starting the day.  I was a bit worried as although I have been taking a break from running to rest my shin splints, I spent all of last weekend walking around in Paris with shoes that were probably not the most appropriate.  

Also, check out my bruise?!  This is from the band that Michelle and I went to see on Wednesday night.  I swear, I am way too old for that...

My run felt good.  The pace I managed to hold felt steady however I did have to have a 10second rest break while running up the hill near my house.  When I completed my "lap" I used a nice flat street to finish off with some sprints.  I didn't want to push myself too hard - but I still wanted to get my sweat on.  

It is such a tough call sometimes; knowing when enough is enough.  I didn't want to hurt my shins, and I know that I am not as fit as I used to be (due to a number of reasons and also my forced rest from running to allow myself to get better).
It took all I had, not to really kill myself today.  Hopefully it pays off!

 When I returned home I completed the above two ab workouts and some push ups.  You can download the Ab Workout from the App Store and also see more information about it here.  I always feel like I have had a good workout when I feel the burn!

So I am off to eat some oats, ice my shins and catch up on a LOAD of blog stuff that is long overdue.  Australia's Next Top Model is on... to be honest, its making me homesick!
Any time I hear Aussie accents, it makes me miss home.... so yes, if you are wondering, I get homesick watching Bondi Rescue, Bondi Vet and Aussie Border Patrol.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Paris Weekend Away

This weekend just gone, I was lucky enough to visit Paris to help celebrate my good friend Robbie's Birthday.  It was a surprise that had been planned for quite some time and to be honest, it worked brilliantly and my goodness, was Robbie surprised.

Below is a collection of some of my favourite pics taken over the weekend.

Myself and the Eiffel Tower.  We walked up the stairs to the second viewing floor.  Man, what a workout!  It was brilliant and my thighs were loving every minute of it.
 Celebrating Robbie's actual Birthday night at a wonderful Moroccan restaurant near our hotel in the Marais District in Paris.

A photo taken on the walk down to the Eiffel Tower, from the metro.

Myself and the Louvre.  I felt quite happy to visit the Louvre, without actually going inside - but once we were there and we made it inside, it was totally worthwhile.  I am glad that we got to see the Mona Lisa, Cupid and many other things.  It was a great day.

Notre Dame.  When we walked inside, it pretty much took my breath away.  It was just beautiful and huge on the inside.  I was blown away and felt very humbled to be in there.

Here we have the faces of boredom, too hot, claustrophobia, tiredness and just generally over it.  On the way home we were stuck on the EuroStar for over 6.5 hours.  Yes, we were all given complimentary return trips back to Paris.... but to be honest, after being on the train for the length of time we were - I don't want to go on it again for a while.

Have you ever visited a tourist attraction (like the Louvre), just to take pictures of the outside?
Have you been to Paris?  If so, what is your favourite thing to do there?

Fashion Post - new jeans

New outfit post as there hasn't been one for a while!
  • Asos Blazer (similar can be found here)
  • New Look blue tank
  • Urban Outfitters pendant necklace
  • Urban Outfitters jeans
  • New Look boots
  • Ray Ban optical
  • Toilet seat from work... classy right?

I don't have a full length mirror at home right now, so unfortunately, I have to take pics in the bathroom at work.  I tend to not actually know what I look like until I get to work these days.... A bit hit or miss really!

Thursday, 1 March 2012

29th Birthday Weekend

Hi everyone! Sorry for the absence.  It was my birthday on Monday so as per traditional form, I started celebrations on Saturday ;)

The girls at work decorated my desk on Friday while I was getting a morning coffee.  So sweet, yet so annoying at the same time.  I still have glitter all over my desk and it is almost one full week later... I can't wait to get you back on your own Birthdays!

I will start this post with details from Friday's workout.  I had the opportunity to receive a sports massage on Friday during lunch time from our therapist here at work.  I had been told that the therapist we have here at work is amazing and only charges £20 for 30mins.  As soon as the free appointment was announced; I jumped at the chance to take the place. 

I spent my 30mins with her, going over the pains in my shins and also now, in my calf muscles.  She helped to massage the soreness away and recommended that I ice my shins around 3-4 times per day.  Knowing this isn't really possible at work (we have the smallest fridge ever, so there is no chance of me being able to put an ice pack in a freezer!) she recommended I buy some freeze gel from the drugstore to rub in when I have the chance.

I felt amazing afterwards and will go back for more sports massage in the future.

Friday WOD
20mins elliptical trainer, level 14, random
**I really pushed on the second 10mins for this cardio.  I was soo sweaty when I hopped off!
3 x 10 assisted dips
3 x 10 preacher curls + mountain climbers + weighted sit ups
3 x 20 seated calf raise + leg press
Planks and stretches to finish off

As I was busy getting a massage at lunch time, I had to complete this workout after work.  I didn't feel like hanging around too much, but did just want to get something in as I knew I would be off for the next few days.

Now I wont lie - the only exercise I did on Saturday was a LOAD of dancing in heels at The Book Club in Shoreditch!!

We had such a great night.  Everyone was in a great mood, the drinks were flowing, the music was fantastic and overall - It was a great success!
This is me and my amazing friend Dee, who I haven't seen in quite a while.  I was so happy that he could come out with Paul and some other friends for the occasion.  It made me feel super special.

However, not as special as Michelle and I look in this photo ;)  I believe that most of the photos captured of Michelle and I, really depict our BFF relationship well!  This one cracks me up and I love it.

Ahhhh a great night of 5 in the bed, cake and the morning after.  Wow.

I am very lucky to have acquired such great friends during my time here in London.  I really miss my mates back home however the new friends I have made here make my time away so much more bearable.

Thank you to everyone who made my weekend special.  29 is going to be a great year for me.  I can feel it!