30 July 2013

Posting my before picture live today on social media...

I have been very comfortable lately, as you can tell from the piccie below.  It is fine, life changes, people change, we loose focus and determination and then we pick it back up again and move forwards. Life is never perfect, easy, we have to strive hard and as my Dad used to say if you don't put in 100% why are you expecting to get it in return, smart man my Dad!

So yes, I was exercising, training at the gym and probably following the 80/20 rule.  Which meant I got a bit relaxed and the ratio was probably 70/30.  That means 30% of the time I wasn't concentrating on eating proper healthy foods, allowing snacks to creep back in, wine to flow and our new cheeseboards we got used very well.  I don't see that I have failed, I have just taken a little detour.  For me putting on 8kgs is a big (pun intended) thing.  I have always been actions speak louder than words kinda gal and feel like I haven't been walking my walk lately.  So no more ratios just honest hard work, healthy nutrition and keeping up with the no sugar challenge to get to my goal, to look even MORE fabulous than I do now and to not worry about wearing supportive undergarments on my wedding day... you get my drift.

So haters will hate, let them be, are they doing anything remotely interesting, ask them.  I have amazing support with my fiance and awesome friends who have more faith in me than I do at the moment, the confidence is building back up and the fitness mojo is coming back with a vengeance.

I posted my before photo on my challenge blog, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter because folks that is how I look.  No point trying to hide it (I should purchase some better matching pj's).  I have spread a little around the girlie area (hips, bum, thighs and belly) and look forward to going in to 2014, the year I turn 40 with a better body than I did coming into my 30's.

This is me. Watch out for the after photo.

 Oh and this was me about 2.5 - 3 years ago

28 July 2013

So cannot wait to wear this!!

So, it is one more sleep until Maxine's Challenge commences.  This challenge appeared on my Facebook wall on a day where I was thinking to myself, "I really need to plan out my training to achieve the goals I have set!  I had started a couple months ago but got a little side tracked when I tore the meniscus in my left knee, lost my fitness mojo and my fitness goals went to the back of my mind... you know the usual Excuses: it is winter, red wine is best consumed under a nice warm blanket... with cheese. haha. Gotta love life. In saying that I have also quit sugar for the past five weeks. Doing well there, so awesome being in control, no fructose for me!

I have been checking out Ryderwear for a while now and love love love this outfit, so cute and would be great for hanging out down the beach/walks in summer ....... gotta love SUMMER shorts.


So feeling good about this challenge, have some friends who are keen to kick ass too which just makes the challenge more fun & interesting plus get to meet new people to train with. Bonus.  Time to get back on the horse and have a plan instead of just training.  Love a new sense of focus and direction, brings excitement into the training, nutrition.

20 August is official end of 58days NO sugar.  I started a week earlier.  Will reward myself with donating blood and then having the best malt smoothie ever.  Will still be continuing to cut fructose out of my nutrition.

Then 12 week challenge ends 21 October. 

26 July 2013

Stress Down Friday!

Today is Stress Down Day.

Hopefully most of you who read this won't need to call Lifeline, but I hope that you can recognise the signs of stress and just how much stress we are under these days is increasing.  

We are getting more stressed and really do need to stop and talk to our family and friends more to find out what is happening in people's lives.  Putting your head in the sand and hoping problems go away is NOT healthy and talking to someone is the smart thing to do, it is always hard to admit you need help, some struggle with asking others for help.

A big part of my passion for health and fitness is TOTAL well-being.  I am a big believer of homeostasis, being balanced, well and complete.  We all have our issues and some might seem smaller than what others are going through but I believe it is still YOUR well-being that needs to be looked after. 

Lifeline do a newspoll and the facts are very interesting (full report here) and it show's that many of us are stressed regularly.  Now this isn't JUST HOW LIFE is.  Of course there will be situations in life that will stress us out, but being stressed all the time about work, finances, health or family isn't healthy, it means changes need to happen and steps put into place to help get to a less stressed environment.

Stress has a big impact on the body. You sleep less, you make poor food choices, it affects your work, you get tired, sick, run-down and it affects your relationships and can spiral out of control quicker than you think.  

Do you take time out to relax, and get your thoughts together? Do you have friends and family you can talk to about issues? If not there is nothing bad about talking to a counsellor, in fact I can highly recommend it.

So wear slippers or comfy shoes today and chill in your pj's this weekend (if you missed today) and just stress down. Think about what is great in your life, where you need to adjust things that are stressing you, you won't change this overnight but being in control and understanding what is stressing you will help you move forward and deal with these stresses, don't keep them bottled up.

If you would like to help, raise funds and awareness then please do so, help provide crisis support and suicide prevention services for those who need.  You can donate or buy a pair of slippers here!

24 July 2013

Time to update our brains!!!

Some of us have seriously forgotten how to think, or research information that we need to and come to our own conclusions, we seemed to do it well at school and uni (some of us better than others).  We seem to rely on Internet, media tabloids and people who claim to be health/fitness experts instead of our guts to tell us to eat this, not that and do this, not that... some guidance is always helpful but does it make sense to you? Or do you just nod along like those dogs you get in the taxi cabs in Britain? Why do we STILL follow the "healthy food" pyramid and have high rates of diseases, especially for those who actually follow the pyramid closer than others? What do you truly believe we need to do to make our nation/world healthier?

Yes there is SO much information out there but if you really stop and think about it, the answer is always simple. KISS. Keep It Simple Silly or Stupid.  I do not believe in coincidences.  We have problems with mental illness, disease, we worry SO SO much about what other people think about us.  WHY? how have we become this way?  Conditioning.  Especially when it comes to what to eat and not to eat.

We are conditioned. Yes conditioned. Conditioning is a behavioural process. We continuously feed signals to the brain and they store them like a library for quick reference.  We have been continuously fed that carbs are bad for you, they make you fat and saturated fat gives you heart disease.  Obviously this very important (not) information has come from the Health Department and Doctors, so it must be true. 

I ask you a question.  Why is it that since we have been told that saturated fat is bad for us and kills us we have managed to reduce saturated fat intake and still we see obesity rise, heart disease still be the biggest killer of women and type II diabetes take over?  We need to re-condition.  Stop and think exactly about how our bodies function today in comparison to our ancestors.    

Take it back to basics.  What foods go off in the fridge or cupboard if you leave them? They are the foods we should be eating,before they go off that is.  Raw ingredients, wholesome foods, eaten fresh or cooked in oils that don't go unstable when heated, those saturated fats we have been told to ignore actually are stable and good for us. Obviously if you guzzle olive oil and butter all day everyday.... you get the drift.

Our bodies are not designed to digest processed foods and we haven't evolved .... but we have started to set a pattern of bad health and disease to become a normal part of society.  The thing I have learnt since doing my no sugar challenge is how easy it is to bring healthy eating back to basics. We are all very busy and important but you want you & your family to be healthy right? Have long healthy life with minimal risks to disease?  Research what foods your body truly function better with.  Work out what treats you can make that don't involve cups of caster sugar or white squeaky flour. Common sense.  Just because that is what others do is not a good reason. Actions speak louder than words. Be someone people admire and respect.  Don't preach just do.  This goes with anything in life.

When I was growing up I used to get healthier foods than my other school buddies.  Some days I was jealous of the fairy bread sandwich for lunch a friend had (yes for lunch, think it was like Year 5).  This was a mining town, where people made good money.  Because fairy bread was something I only ever had rarely at a birthday party I jumped at the chance when, wait for it, the girl wanted to SWAP sandwiches with me. SWAP my ham/salad sambo for her fairy bread.  Of course that was the day my mum came to the school for whatever reason and thought she would come and say hi! ahah. Busted.

I never had the good or bad for you speech growing up it was more the "look after your health and well being" message I got from my mum.  We had ice cream, we had biscuits in the house but we also had lots of veggies, fruits, cheese, dairy and lots of being told "to get outside and play".  The best dishes growing up was food cooked in lard. Oh gosh Sunday roast pumpkin cooked in lard. DELICIOUS.  We ate the skin on the meat, we enjoyed it too!  Crackling anyone?  The bizarre thing about this is my mum eats healthy, like a bird, she needs to eat more fat and protein and lives off a banana and a yoghurt most days and has high cholesterol.  My dad now is an Irish lad, so loves his bacon, eggs and butter, he has lower cholesterol.  He does have high blood pressure though, but that could be from the two packs a day he smoked when I was growing up perhaps?
So where was I going with this story....

I had my cholesterol tested over a year ago when I had started following a similar eating plan to that of paleo, back to the caveman ways.  My results were outstanding.  My cholesterol overall score went UP, but my good cholesterol (HDL) was the one that went high, my bad cholesterol (LDL) went down and my overall health risks went down also. BOOM. I was so excited. I had lost weight, gained muscle, reduced my risk of heart disease by eating fats.  I did cut out sugar a little, not entirely.  Imagine what my next results are going to show in a year after giving up sugar. 

What I would love us all to do is realise that the so called warnings the health department gave us are wrong, are OLD, they have NOT done any new research to update any healthy eating pyramid.  They only used partial studies and really we should be eating a much different diet. We have been conditioned, we have habits, we have our ways. I get that. But you know what, who wants to be a sheep and follow others, I want everyone to stand for what choices feels good for them but also to realise that by eating how we are now we aren't going to reduce health issues, you can change GENETICS for LIFESTYLE diseases and more! Seriously. Our habits are slowly making us sicker & sicker.  I look forward to a day when more doctors are spreading this message too, some are, some are fantastic like my doctor at the Hyde Park Medical centre, love her honesty!  So refreshing.  Check out primalmeded.com blog below. Some great reading to make you think more about how we eat, why we eat and why we feel it MUCH easier to just be a sheep in society, or have we not really thought about it in that much detail?

Have a wee read of these links:

Just spreading the seed, it is up to you how you water, nurture and let your mind grow.  Day 32 today of quitting sugar, just about to have some chocolate, love my choices. So simple.  I just mixed a heaped tablespoon of coconut oil melted with cacao powder, coconut and some stevia. Put in the freezer ..... homemade chocolate. Good healthy fats that is totally curbing ALL my cravings, making my skin clearer and making me feel amazing.  MMMM goodnight.  

22 July 2013

Thirty days no sugar.....

So for me it has been #thirtydays no sugar so far.  I will not lie and say I have been 100% refined sugar free because that would be a big fat lie.  I have had a couple pieces of licorice, ate a highly over processed hot dog at the Man United game Saturday night and used *Dolmio’s pasta sauce last night to cook spag bog (gasps).   I have NOT however had soft drink, lollies, ice-cream, cake, chocolate of any kind (80% free, still has 20% sugar in it... DOH), light milk or light/sugar/fat free products.

Life isn’t meant to be perfect and either is this challenge. Yes I eat fruit, love my fruit and try and have 1-2 pieces a day, I love the taste of fresh strawberries, blueberries, mandarins, melons etc and if that is my only  intake of fructose then I am pretty happy!!  This challenge is about being in control of the food that goes into my mouth and learning from the trials and error of changing the foods I eat.  So no I don’t see that I have “failed” because I ate a piece of licorice, I didn’t enjoy it either, it wasn’t the good stuff, it was Coles brand, over processed and tasted like plastic.  I see this as a step forward. I tried, didn’t like, wasn’t particularly fussed, not missing out on anything. To be honest I don't even know why I grabbed it, curiosity I suppose?

I love the feeling of being in control without being obsessed about every bit of food I put in my mouth. I don’t feel like “I cannot have” something. I just don’t want to.   I am being relaxed with the other food elements for now (wedges, red wine, hotdogs) because I don’t feel like I should stress myself out too much just yet with other foods I am eating.  I feel happy with choices I make, my tummy didn’t like me much after the hotdog, but I didn’t have huge cramps or back aches associated with high levels of sugar (if I used to have a binge on lollies or chocolate etc).   Cutting out “light/lite/lowfat” products has also helped the bloat go away and associated pain. 

I have always known my body and how it functions, it has never processed sugars well, starting to believe that is because it isn’t supposed to – and yes I am talking about fructose.  I like the response Sarah Wilson gave after being asked why sugar isn’t good for us as it is naturally grown - "Yep, sure sugar is natural. Fruit is natural. But so is arsenic and petroleum". BOOM.  We have forgotten how to think and be in control. Trust your gut. I know I am trusting mine and reaping the benefits.

So for ME this is challenge has turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever MADE for MYSELF. It has made me re-think the foods that I eat, buy, and choose. I have always been curious about life and feel that sometimes we just ponder around like sheep eating this and that because that is what we have always done.  I like being different, I like being quirky and this challenge has just reminded me of how strong I am, how powerful I can be and my body will SO thank me for it (when I stop eating wedges at the pub all weekend)!

My next challenge is to start the muscle up challenge which starts next week. Bring it on – anything that challenges me, makes me progress and get back to doing pull-ups is going to be FUN! I look forward to sharing that with you!

*Think the entire jar had 2-3tsps sugar (8g) which would be split over into four portions.

19 July 2013

Pet Peeve Friday......Over training!

We have all been there, training mad like 6 days a week and sometimes two training sessions a day. WTF?!
Wondering why we don't make any progress, why our bodies are so sore and just cannot seem to get the energy to function. 

How on earth do you expect your body to recover, repair and get stronger/leaner/awesomeness if you keep on stressing it (that is what exercise does) day in and out... your body will keep adding to your fat stores and you won't make any progress because it has NO idea what you are trying to do. Simple, less is more.
You cannot out train a bad diet. If you have been BAD this week with food, doing a hundred classes won't fix it.  You need to get back into eating properly. Fuel your body with the right foods that will get you back on track. Then add some exercise.
Food first
Exercise second
Rest days should be happening regularly
Do you plan your training schedule against your goals or just wing it?
This was sparked by yet another overheard conversation, this time a young, quite small built girl at Hard Candy talking about her cough & cold that won't go away, it has been like three weeks no..... But she continues to do classes everyday, and had done two that day.... both cardio.  I honestly had to walk away..... I bet she wasn't eating much either, because generally anyone doing two classes a day that aren't instructors are trying to lose weight. UGH!
Now I am not saying I am perfect, and I did have the same mentality once upon a time years ago,  but one thing I have learnt is that no matter how hard I train, if my nutrition is crap, nothing changes.  I can make changes to my body with only a couple gym sessions a week when my nutrition is spot on. 
No energy? So some signs you are over training....
  • You cannot sleep properly, but are probably very tired
  • Your body hurts, feeling sluggish
  • You are not making changes to your body - whether you are building or trying to get leaner
  • You cannot lift the weight you used to or have the power/energy to complete a class
  • You are sick, cannot get better
  • Irritability, defensive, depressed
  • Unable to concentrate 
Your body gets stressed, you have way too much cortisol in your system that increases insulin resistance and fat deposition!!

So mix over training with not eating good nutritious healthy foods, drinking copious amounts of coffee or alcohol mixed again with late nights is going to get you absolutely nowhere!  I would SO choose another 2-3hrs sleep after a big night out than get up and do a morning double class to "get back on track". Sleep in, drink water, eat healthy foods and go for a long walk in the afternoon.

So if you really really want results, you want to run faster, swim faster, walk further, increase your strength or fit into your slim jeans better, the key is to eat a healthy nutritious diet, reducing processed foods, increasing vegetables (big green leafy ones too), good proteins, mixed nuts, some full fat dairy, fruit and fats together with a couple training sessions a week is the way to go. Start slowly and increase when you need your training to move up a notch. 

Get your diet sorted first, then work on the exercise part.  Have a plan, schedule your shopping, cooking and exercise sessions, flag those days you know will be big ones and plan your food and training around them. Plan your REST days, plan your massages and relaxing treatments! 

Listen to your body.  You have to learn when you can push yourself and when you should rest.  This takes time.  If you have hardly slept or eaten much because you have a cold or flu, going to the gym to smash out a session really is not a good idea.  You need to have adequate fuel/energy to train. That is the key.

17 July 2013

I quit sugar talk by Sarah Wilson...

Tonight I attended a talk by Sarah Wilson at Flow Athletica in Paddington.  Awesome gym you should check it out if you live that way :) I am looking forward to my free class as there wasn't enough SW books to go around. 

So I am still buzzing from the talk, not because I learnt anything new as such it was more about the clarification of reading and research I have been doing over the last year or so on fats, sugars and how they work in the body and what the BODY actually needs and what it definitely doesn't.  

So whilst the boy screams at the TV hoping the Blues will win (they seem to be dropping the ball and lots of mistakes, especially at a certain crap player called Pearce - insert expletives here...) I thought I would get on here and bash out some information on quitting sugar and how this talk has made me feel very content and happy about my decision to quit sugar. YES peoples quitting fructose.  Some of you might know that I haven't had sugar for about 25 days and feeling FANTASTIC. NO cravings, no tiredness, no feeling those insulin spikes from sugar sugar sugar.  

In a nutshell, no sugar coating (ha ha ha oh dear) not necessarily NEWSFLASH, but yes fructose is bad, our bodies don't know how to process and store as fat (ta da), hence causing lots of diseases and decreasing our quality of life but we are so addicted (like heroin) to this white substance, we think we must have that chocolate or lolly jar (packet anyone).  We don't need ALL the fructose we consume daily, do you know how much you consume in an average day? I know I have tried to  reduce my intake in the last year or two (with the odd sugar, lolly, ice-cream binge of course).  This where Sarah Wilson started her journey, yes she had an autoimmune disease but in someways that was just a small part of this whole topic, it was because of that she gave up sugar and realised the increase in her health and well-being.  Her diet daily would of seemed "normal" to an average person (honey in chai tea, fruit on porridge etc but even in a healthy person without autoimmune disease the amount of fructose would still have an effect on the body.

If we could all cut out fructose (small amounts in some fruit ok, small limits daily are fine) but giving up the super processed refined sugars, realise that most products that are processed have sugar in them, fructose they are disguised with different names.   Cut out all the processed sauces, packet foods, healthy so called skinny smoothies and juices from cafes, skim dairy, margarine and eat wholesome foods and up eating more healthy fat and protein to keep our bodies satiated and reduce inflammation in our bodies.  We so rely on these processed foods - and we think of  desserts as rewards and treats to cope with our hard life, busy week etc.  What we really are doing is increasing the chances of disease and also setting up the genes for further generations to have diseases also.  Now I am not saying that this will just change overnight it is just so great to see so many people moving towards making healthier choices for themselves and families and I am so excited to be on this journey, better late than never I say.

So, what causes cholesterol? If you believed the old Food Pyramid chart you would think saturated fats, but, finally we are realising that the studies undertaken that showed saturated fats were the cause of high cholesterol, heart disease were in fact incorrect (hurrah) no shit Sherlock.... 

No such thing as a "vegetable oil" not a darn veggie in that stuff, I haven't eaten vegetable oil or canola for years, first hated the taste, and my tummy did not like it, it causes more havoc than anything else and certainly ain't healthy.  Sugar causes heart disease NOT saturated fats.  Get rid of all the crappy oils, replace with the big blocks of fatty acids, not the small chains that don't digest in the body.   Choosing olive oils, coconut oils, fish oils, macadamia oils etc. 

So no sugar, eat more fat! Happy with that, exactly what I intend to do! Bring it on.  I just had two tablespoons of coconut oil mixed with cacao! Oh so so good, reminds me of chocolate crackles without the sickly sweet feeling you get after you gorge yourself.

So head over to Sarah Wilson's page, or her I Quit Sugar page, she has some great books out too which have delicious recipes in them and really easy to make with products that are easily available and don't have to cost the earth, I mean can you put a price on your health? 

So glad I booked this talk, was just the pep up I needed to continue this journey and not question anything or second guess myself.  Day 26 coming up. 

16 July 2013

Mind your own business….

Noisy people need to mind their own business.

I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. Michael Jordan

When you are setting out to achieve your own goals you really have to shut out all the white noise that surrounds you.  Now I have never been one of the quiet achievers, I am a huge extrovert (noo way I hear you say) who likes to share my stories with anyone that will listen (“hi lamp post, how you going”?).  What I have learnt from doing many “challenges” in my time is that people will always want you to fail or f*ck up to make them feel better about themselves. Obviously not ALL people are like that, and many of your friends, family and work buddies will be supportive, but there are the haters, the ones who will fight you nail and tooth about the challenge you are doing and you need to shut them out and the noise.  Just smile and say thanks and move on.

Everyone has an opinion, which is fabulous, so they should, doesn't mean you have to listen to everyone's ideas.  The opinion  you need to listen to the most is your own thoughts, gut feelings. I have come to trust my inner voice (not the skinny one who wants cookies we don’t talk to her anymore, the other smart & sensible one).   Take everything you read/hear/see with a pinch of salt (I like pink Himalayan personally), you need to learn new things your way, you need to work out what challenges are meant to be succeeded, falling on your backside is a part of life, something’s you will achieve and others you will fall on your backside, who cares, simple.  Giving it a crack and not worrying about what other people think is the key. Quite frankly who gives a #%$* what they think, it is your life and challenge right?  You have to learn from the bruised butt. (trust me I actually bruised my butt doing huge box jumps a few years back, I was scared I would fall, I did, but then got up and nailed that sucker).

I don't like going quietly about my challenges, my passions, my ideas, creations & failures, I put them out there, as I know it self-motivates myself to strive further to  achieve them and also gives others the confidence to also try something new, sometimes you want to know that someone has tried and failed and tried again and succeeded (that is why I love the Michael Jordan quote).  I  am human and have tried so many different challenges in my 39years and by continuing to strive with these “challenges” could be perceived as failures, which amazes me when people suggest that (oh you are doing another 12 week challenge) ahh yes because I can, I will and love a new challenge whether it be fitness, study, healthy living (no sugar is a prime example, day 24 going so strong) I believe in timing and paths, sometimes you are meant to achieve greatness, other times you are just to  observe, learn and absorb the knowledge life presents to you. And yes I love falling on my ass with life because I don't stay down there, I jump up and shake myself off and think holy crap that was awesome, lets go again. Failing, falling on my arse makes me more determined; I just shrug my sexy shoulders and go, right, onwards and upwards we go!

Yes there is fear, doubt and that voice of “am I good enough”? Those voices I know I can silence by giving things my best shot and NOT giving in to falling on my ass & not listening to the white negative noise around me.  I prefer to listen to others who are achieving great things to boost my confidence, don’t we all?



15 July 2013

Trying out some sugar free recipes....

Gave a chocolate mousse with avocado recipe a go on the weekend... oh my god it tasted awful.  I think I needed more avocado and less cacao, it was so so bitter, plus I didn't have a proper beater to use, the hand held beater just made the ingredients fly everywhere, so smashed it with a fork. It tasted creamy and couldn't taste the avocado, getting used to the strength of cacao v cocoa powder!
Followed this link but only used 1/2 the ingredients and no sweetner.  You should of seen the look on my face, Drew pissed himself laughing at my reaction to my proud creation (as he ate apple pie and ice cream)! Classic... So a glass of red for dessert it was. 
I haven't used Stevia before and wondering if this would make the mousse taste a little better. Will have to keep trying until I find a mix that suits me.  It just need a little something.  I went to Dr Earth on Friday night and purchased the cacao and also some coconut flour (pancakes anyone) and some other spices/bits and pieces to play with.  Cannot wait to try pancakes this weekend.
Brought some new cupcake tins yesterday and a hand held whizzy thing, so this will come in handy for making more sugar free recipes.  We have a charity bake off at work soon and am excited to make some red velvet cupcakes.  wonder who will make the most money? I hear chocolate crackles are being made....
The red velvets will be sugar free of course, with beetroot.  I haven't cooked with rice malt syrup, might have to do a practice run.. any guinea pigs?  

Exploring so many new ideas and it isn't hard at all. Simple foods, mixed together, some work, some haha don't.  Looking forward to attending Sarah Wilson's talk on Wednesday night - she created the I Quit Sugar empire otherwise known as #iqsugar - to get her book and some great tips!  I look forward to future experimenting in the kitchen with my new whizz bang tools.

12 July 2013

Day 20 with NO sugar.....

So I cannot count... today is actually Day 20 without sugar (not 19 like my head thought). I am amazed at how well I have done. I must admit after talking to a few people and reading comments seems I didn't consume that much sugar in my daily intake as some people do (except those days when I could easily do my weekly intake in an hour, gulp, natural confectionery anyone?).

How am I feeling? Good, because I have eliminated something that wasn't a big part of my daily nutrition, I only had lollies or chocolate here and there as opposed to having lattes, soft drinks, sugars in tea/coffee, white bread and diet products (FULL of sugar) like some people are in the habit of doing I am sure I would be feeling much worse.   I did have a headache for a few days and a bit grumpy in the first week but since then I haven't had any cravings, I have probably eaten more rye bread than I normally do but feeling in control and starting to see the benefits - a couple kgs down on the scale, measurements down, jeans are loose, skin is clearing up and my eyes aren't as red and blotch as they normally are.
I made a lazy dinner last night of bacon and eggs, with a  pot of tea (yummy much) and had my leftover chocolate custard for dessert that I had made the night before, see previous post of I eat cream.  I brought my gorgeous boy some chocolate and I didn't even smell the packet or anything, I honestly don't want it, I know it will taste too sweet and over processed. That is how much the taste buds and mind changes in 20 days, obviously habits take longer to form but so far this is awesome.  My next recipe is chilli chocolate! hello lover. Check it out on Nat's blog.

I saw an ad last night for Vaalia yoghurt, apparently we intake 27g per day of sugar - that is madness... how much processed foods are we consuming people? We are so concerned with low fat we are ingesting TRIPLE the sugar that we normally do because we are all so scared that if we eat a full fat yoghurt we are going to get fat..... ahhhhhhhhhrghhhhh. 
As I posted on my Fitbydons Health & Fitness Challenge page on Facebook a few days ago cutting out ALL low-fat, low-sugar, sugar-free, fat-free labelled products is the best thing you can do. I have said this before in other posts you have to ask WHAT on earth do they put in it to make it "sugar/fat-free" to make it taste good, surely this is the stuff that makes your health issues INCREASE. Type II diabetes much?
So I am good, great, awesome, in control, not giving into society and feeling super in control! This feeling rocks.  Love it.  I can see how people stick to this no sugar all the time, makes sense. No moods, no cravings, no weight gain, no feeling lethargic.
So do you feel like you need to get healthier, be responsible for YOUR health, then I challenge you, if you haven't given up the sugar because you think you cannot, or are a victim of society, I urge you to start right now, today, who cares if you had a packet of Tim Tams for breakfast (shudders at the thought), right this second, start. Most people cannot do it because they don't have the confidence in themselves, I have confidence in YOU, so does Nat and her fantastic 50days challengers.... people have done it and seen great changes. You have nothing to loose except cms and gain healthy body and most importantly MIND. The power of the mind is amazing.
Check out www.50daysnosugar.com.au, get yourself some of the recipes that Nat Carter has created, some of them are delicious and include chocolate chilli cups, custard and ice cream. Your taste buds WILL change and you WILL wonder why you didn't start earlier.   

11 July 2013

I had FULL FAT cream for dessert last night........

Last night I made Chocolate Custard. Sugar Free. It was so creamy, silky smooth and had no sugar in it.

I love cream, fresh cream, always have. Dash in my coffee now and then or with a chocolate tart or apple pie back in the day before #50daysnosugar (I know only Day 18...).

So I hear most of you FREAK about CREAM and the FAT... I would prefer to eat fat then fat free or sugar free crapola foods., because it is a less processed food rich in goodness. Read the stats below if you dare.  Organic cream is also good if you can purchase it (fancy pants stores mainly, sometimes Coles/Woolies). 

I used 150g cream last night (150mls).  This made enough for two desserts.. so for those calorie conscious peoples it wasn't that high really - add two egg yolks. Scrumptious.  The breakdown was 288calories, 3g carbs, 27g fat, 8g protein, 7g calcium, 2g sugar. Yummmmy.  I felt so full (fat/protein) and was very content.  Was within my daily fat allowance too (yipppeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee).

STATS - 242 grams of cream contains about 315 calories, out of which 250 calories come from fat content. The total fat content in cream is 27.8 grams, and this accounts for 43 percent of the recommended daily value. About 17.3 grams of the fat content is saturated fat, which is equal to 87 percent daily value. There are also 8 grams of monounsaturated fat and 1 gram of polyunsaturated fat in cream. Cream also has 99 milligrams of sodium which is 4 percent daily value, 4 grams of carbohydrates (3 percent daily value) and 7.2 grams of protein. The amount of cholesterol that is present is 90 milligrams, which is equal to 30 percent daily value, and sugar content is 0.4 gram. Cream also provides vitamins A and C, which amount to 13 percent and 1 percent respectively, as well as 1 percent daily value of iron. The calcium content in cream represents 25 percent of the recommended daily intake.

So as long as you don't guzzle it daily it is better for you than milk products & better for my tummy without the high lactose. The End.

10 July 2013

Don't like, want to or have time for exercise??

Moving your body is good for you. The key is to finding exercise fun is to make it something that YOU enjoy.  You don’t have to do marathons, hot yoga or lift huge weights if you DON’T enjoy it.  I always say give something a crack and see how you go, but that is just me.

Do you like dancing, walking, swimming, rock climbing, and handstands? Maybe you prefer to take the dog for a walk and swim on the beach a few mornings a week.  As long as your heart & lungs get a workout and your muscles/tendons pulling against the bone (resistance) type movements a couple times a week you are doing pretty darn good & your body, mind will thank you.  Getting the blood pumping and a bit of sweat on your brow will make you feel alive, so find the time to do it and don’t make it a chore, because it is something YOU enjoy.

The key to being healthy and fit is a healthy mindset and lifestyle.  Eat healthy wholesome foods majority of the time and get some fresh air and body movement going and you will notice the difference in your alertness during the day, you will sleep better at night, the mood swings might disappear if you have them and who knows your belt buckle might be looser.

I do believe you have to put a little effort into anything you want to achieve, health & fitness isn’t going to come and just slap you and say hello, you do have to consciously make the effort.  The first step to doing any new habit will take a bit of time to get used to, but once it is in your memory & a habit you form it will just be like brushing your teeth or getting dressed, something you do.

So get out there and do what YOU want to do, find some like minded friends to join you and have fun, join that training group you see driving to work or the pool you walk past… try something new, different and fun and stop comparing yourself to what other people do, they do it because they want to and enjoy it. 

So move your body!

8 July 2013

No Sugar - Day 17

Feeling great - sleeping well, eating delicious foods & training well. My only gripe is my skin is breaking out/pimples around my mouth .... hormonal change in response to no sugar perhaps?
Breakfast today is chocolate & strawberry protein pancakes! Yum.
Blend oats, water, two eggs, choc protein powder & dash full cream milk - fry up in coconut oil & slice strawberries on top.
So so good. After a big boxing session this morning I needed a good solid breakfast.  Bring on a great week!

2 July 2013

First week of Sugar Free results.....

As you know I started the #50daysnosugar a week early, to get on top of it and be prepared for this week, 1 July commencement date - you can still start now!
So after a week of NOT eating any sugar as per the guidelines I have lost 1.1kg and 3cm (2cm off waist and 1cm off hips).    Very happy with those results as last week I managed to kind of swap sugar for high carb bread/pasta and did have a mini cheese marathon on Sunday prior to the official start date on Monday (cutting out all high processed carbs such as white bread, pasta and limiting to cheese to now and then with the crackers).
Read this on the web this morning and it rang true to me.  So I thought I would share on my blog post today:
“A winner never quits and a quitter never wins” think about the times in your life you have really succeeded at a personal goal. Changes are you focused on it with intent, shutting out distractions and doubt. Focus is knowing what matters to you and committing to it. It is choosing to ignore the white noise in your head. When you truly target your mind, your actions will follow – and that is the surest way to write your win in the future. Learning how to relax and have a positive attitude will increase your ability to cope. Often we focus on outside factors rather than on our own talents for coping.
Changing a lifestyle of eating and exercise requires commitment and hard work. It is really worth it in the long term, as not only your health will benefit, but you will feel a zest for life and enjoy the feeling of well being!

1 July 2013

I'm sugar free .......

Showing my age now but everytime I say sugar free, the song from 1987 -  Wa Wa Nee pops into my head.  I actually saw them last year at the Enmore, pretty good for an 80's pop band.. oh Rick Astley was there too. Took me back to being a teenager where I consumed lots of sugar. haha. So am listening to the song now on You Tube as I type this. Classic. I crack myself up.

So what does sugar free mean to me?  Not the over-processed products out in the supermarket that claim to be "sugar-free" which are full chemicals to say they are "sugar free".... (oh my love and me....flashbacks to mullets).  Sugar free to me is choosing food that has been less processed, the food we consume daily that hasn't been overly processed or had refined sugar added to get to your table.  Unless you grow it or kill it yourself, your food has been processed in some way to get your friendly grocer.  Eating sugar free is choosing products that have had minimal to no processing so they are consumed in natural-ish form.  Yes fruit has sugar, but it wasn't put there as part of a manufacturer process to feed you. It grew.

Eating sugar free shouldn't be HARD, it is all about making the right choices and as a society we unfortunately have more choices than we ever used to have. So many "quick" options which we think we need, you know because we are all so busy and important.   Sugar really is a nasty substance, yes a substance. You get addicted and your body adapts to use this "fuel" that so many people think they need (normally when sugar levels are low).

So what can I eat I am being asked - really? There are SO many great foods I can eat.  I eat pretty healthy majority of the time, this is really just fine tuning my nutrition (I have a once you pop, cannot stop mentality). Stop snacking on crap and eat well.  

Biggest thing that I won't be eating besides lollies, chocolate are packaged foods that have sugar added to them (refined sugar) so the sauces, packaged quick meal stir fry pouches, white bread, white pastas, cereals (except my oats and maybe a homemade muesli if I feel like it), ALL diet products, all low-no sugar products.  The cupcakes I just got offered at work, I honestly don't want one, because I know that I am looking after myself, my health and in the future the health of my family. 

Breaking habits, breaking patterns and you know what breaking what society thinks we "should" be eating/doing to make THEM feel more comfortable... feck that, I look after Numero Uno.  

What I eat/will be eating - fresh fruits and vegetables, natures sugar - five servings a day of fruits/veggies including sweet potato, brown rice, quinoa, rye bread, full fat dairy (milk for coffee, Greek yoghurt for snacks & dressings), meats, eggs, nuts, chia/lsa mixes, pea protein whey powder (drinks/snacks, protein balls) & oils, natural butter, avocado!. 

Snacks are so easy with unsalted nuts, eggs, berries, avocado, hummus/celery etc.  

All the power of the mind. You are what you think. Planning is key for me, food shopping & knowing when you are going out and about - practice just saying no - people will just go with it.  

Today so far I have eaten well - breakfast was oats cooked with light coconut milk with cinnamon and sliced apple (yum), snack was almonds and a long black coffee with a dash full cream milk, lunch was quinoa with tuna and green beans, my afternoon snack is eggs/strawberries or protein shake, depends on what I fancy, dinner is a beef stir fry :)

The key is to have food prepared. Looking forward to trying new recipes with coconut water, coconut milk/cream, cacao powder, organic cream (hello dessert treats), vanilla beans!  

Obviously won't be eating cream everyday!  Good wholesome foods, protein at each meal with veggies and water, black coffee, tea and a couple treats a week.  Loving it. The power of choosing a healthier lifestyle. Wonder what the first REAL week will bring?!