Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Hope you all had/are having a great day.

I managed to go for a jog this morning. It's the first high-impact exercise I've done since injuring my calf just over two weeks ago - woot!

It was great spending the day with my family - I think the last time we all had Christmas day together was in 2006! I especially enjoyed playing games with my nephews and catching up with my sister.

What was the favourite part of your Christmas day?

Monday, December 20, 2010

New Zealand bound

We are flying out to New Zealand late tonight. Have decided that when we get back I'm going to join the gym across the road. I'll continue to do my workouts at home, but just want a wider variety of cardio options.

Preworkout: scoop of rice protein in water

- foam rolling and warm-up
- push-ups on the minute for 20 minutes
- stair stepping for 15 minutes

Breakfast: oats, almond milk, cinnamon, psyllium, rice protein, cherries

Lunch: tuna in olive oil, kidney beans, cos lettuce, tomato, capsicum, cucumber, red onion

Snack: mixed nuts

Dinner: tempeh stir-fry (in Flora Pro-Active)

Snack: Vega protein powder, cacao powder, stevia


- scoop of rice protein in water

walk with Rob and TJ

- oats, almond milk, rice protein, psyllium husks, cinnamon; mandarin

- turkey, cranberry sauce, salad (lettuce, tomato, cucumber), mixed bean salad

- kangaroo sausage, cherries

- smoked tofu, Sichuan slaw

- Vega protein powder, cacao powder, stevia, almond meal

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Did a bit more work in the garden today, moving some gravel that had been sitting in the middle of the back yard from when we laid drains in August. Am pretty happy with how the back yard is looking now. Still a few things I'd like to do but they can wait until January, when we're back from our holiday.

Exercise: powerwalk hill repeats for 32 minutes

Breakfast: oats, almond milk, cinnamon, rice protein, psyllium husks, cherries (from our tree!)

landscaping (moving gravel)

Lunch: salad with cos lettuce, tomato, cucumber, red pepper, red onion, chickpeas, leftover cooked salmon and balsamic vinegar


Snack: Soyco Thai tofu, carrots

Dinner: corn chips, lean beef and bean chilli, hot sauce, lite pizza cheese, tomatoes, olives, jalapenos

Snack: Vega protein powder, cacao powder, stevia, almond meal

Friday, December 17, 2010

We Haz Cherries!

I was planning to do some cleaning today but it was too nice this morning to be inside so I did more gardening instead. The garden is beginning to resemble the one we looked at in May when we put in an offer on the house, instead an overgrown jungle (all the rain we've had lately has really made things grow!). Wish I'd done a 'before' and 'after' of the garden, but only thought about it when I was nearly finished. Instead, here's a pic of all the stuff I've pulled out of the garden over the last couple of days.

Most of the trees in our back yard have started to fruit, and I'm really pleased that we have a cherry tree - cherries are one of my favourite fruits!


- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: chin-up and push-up pyramids
- stair stepping 12 minutes
- stretching

Breakfasts: oats, almond milk, cinnamon, rice protein, walnuts, mixed berries


Lunch: salad with chickpeas, fresh mixed herbs, garlic, cumin, roasted red pepper and eggplant, red onion, baby spinach leaves, leftover cooked salmon, lemon juice; nectarine


Dinner: Soyco Thai tofu, Lebanese cucumber

Snack: mix of Vega protein powder, cacao powder, stevia and almond meal

***edited to add the following***
4 slices gluten free bread, 4 slices Kraft Live Active cheese

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Short Cycle

Had almost 12 hours sleep last night and still woke up feeling tired (thanks to TOM*) so decided to take it easy in the exercise department today. Did lots of gardening though so was still reasonably active.

- walking hill repeats for 25 minutes
- walk with Rob and TJ for 45 minutes

Breakfast: oats, almond milk, cinnamon, rice protein, mixed berries, walnuts


Lunch: Mediterranean Salmon Salad (I had the entire ingredients list from this Biggest Loser sandwich recipe but nixed the bread in favour of a head of baby cos lettuce.


Dinner: kangaroo patties topped with garlic and herb butter (made with Flora Pro-active), grilled eggplant and red pepper

Snack: Vega protein powder mixed with water, cacao powder, stevia and almond meal

*I have something screwy going on with my monthly cycle at the moment and suspect it's to do with the regular amount of soy I've been eating lately (a similar thing happened when I ate soy regularly about a year ago). Think I'll finish off what I've got in the fridge then take a break from it while we're away.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Almost Grill'd

A tired and hungry day today. Had 7.5 hours sleep last night, but by the time I did my exercise, had breakfast, had a shower and checked my email I felt exhausted, so went back to bed for another three hours.

- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: push-up + abs supersets
- stair stepping for 12 minutes
- stretching

Breakfast: oats, cinnamon, almond milk, rice protein, berries, walnuts; mandarin


Snack: Vega protein shake

walk with Rob and TJ

Lunch: salad with cos lettuce, kidney beans, red pepper, red onion, tomato, avocado and hot sauce

Snack: tofu feta with tomato and cucumber

Snack: decaf skinny flat white

Dinner: burger made with grilled portobello mushroom 'buns', tomato sauce, kangaroo patty, Kraft Live Active cheese, tomato, and grilled red onion, zucchini, red pepper and eggplant

lid off

lid on

snack: mix of rice protein, cacao powder, stevia and almond meal

edited to add:
snack: 2 kangaroo patties with tomato sauce, mustard, Kraft Live Active cheese and gherkins

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Can't manage a lot in the way of cardio at the moment, but DB swings certainly got my heart rate up, and my calf was OK with a little bit of stair stepping.

- foam rolling and warm-up
- cardio: DB swings on the minute (30s on, 30s off) for 20 minutes, stair stepping for 12 minutes
- stretching

Breakfast: see sidebar

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: tofu feta with romaine lettuce, tomato, red onion; grilled eggplant


Dinner: grilled dory with vegetable citrus salad

Snack: mix of rice protein, almond meal, cacao powder and stevia

Pork, eggplant and pea curry

Adapted from Coles Christmas Magazine 2009

Serves 3-4 / Preparation 10 mins / Cooking 10 mins

600g diced heart smart pork
1 Tbsp Thai red curry paste
400mL can lite coconut milk
half a medium eggplant, chopped
1 Tbsp palm sugar (or you could use brown sugar)
1 tsp fish sauce
1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, sliced thinly
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup coriander leaves
1 medium tomato, diced
steamed rice to serve (optional)

1 Spray a large pan or wok with cooking spray, and lightly brown diced pork on high heat. Remove from pan and set aside.
2 Reduce heat to medium, respray pan and heat curry paste for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add coconut milk. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Add eggplant and simmer, covered, for 5 mins, until tender.
3 Add sugar, fish sauce and lemongrass. Simmer for 1 min. Add cooked pork and peas. Cover and cook for 3 mins, until peas are tender. Stir through coriander, reserving a few leaves to garnish. Spoon curry into serving bowls, top each with diced tomato and coriander leaves.

Serve with steamed rice, if desired.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Calf Update

Rob did some myofascial taping on my calf after I injured it on Thursday, which made a huge difference in reducing the pain and increasing my mobility. I took the tape off this morning and managed a slow walk around the park with Rob and TJ. Next step is to start some gentle stretching.

- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: chin-ups on the minute for 20 minutes
- stretching

Breakfast: see sidebar

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: wheat-free tabbouleh (cucumber, tomatoes, spring onions, parsley, mint, garlic) with chickpeas, hemp seeds, olive oil and lemon juice

Snack: tofu feta, cos lettuce, tomato, red onion; almonds

Dinner: pork, eggplant and pea curry

Snack: mix of Vega protein powder, cacao powder, stevia and almond meal

Almond Milk recipe

Makes 4 cups

Soak 1 cup of almonds in 1 cup of boiling water overnight, or for 8-12 hours.

Drain and rinse the almonds. Place in a blender with 4 cups water

Blend well

Strain the almond milk through a nut mylk bag or similar into a 1L container.

The finished product

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Glad it's a rest day today. I have DOMs in my hammies from doing DB swings yesterday (for some reason I stretched every part of my legs afterwards except my hammies???). My chest is also still a bit sore from Friday's press-ups.

I tried to do a meal plan and shopping list today for the rest of the week but it just ended up making me feel overwhelmed. I've been happy just grabbing a few things each day from the shops as I need them and/or if they're on sale, so will continue to do that (luckily we're only a few minutes' walk from the shops so it's easy to do that).

Breakfast: small serve of the usual

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: wheat-free tabbouleh (cucumber, tomatoes, spring onions, parsley, mint, garlic) with chickpeas, hemp seeds, olive oil and lemon juice

Snack: Lotus Braised Tofu Cutlets, almonds, broccolini

Dinner: Mexi pizza on gluten-free wrap, peach

Snack: cocoa with almond milk

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Am in a good place mentally right now. Am enjoying with how I'm training (even with the calf problem), am enjoying how I'm eating, and am enjoying being on holiday!

- foam rolling and warm-up
- cardio: DB swings on the minute (30 seconds work, 30 seconds rest) for 20 minutes
- stretching

Breakfast: see sidebar (plus mandarin)

Snack: see sidebar

Lunch: Lotus Braised Tofu Cutlets, Mediterranean vegetable and rocket salad

Snack: almonds, edamame, hummus with red pepper

Dinner: lean beef chilli, small packet corn chips, basmati rice

Friday, December 10, 2010


Sorry for shouting, LOL. I've had a really busy year, and am glad to have a break. I've worked on just under 20 books in the last 12 months, including travel guides to Germany, Cancun (Mexico), France, Zion National Park (USA), Scotland, LA & Southern California, and Taiwan, as well as a book of fairytales, a book on drawing fantasy art, a first-aid book, a book on TV-free activities for kids, a book of games, a book of Christmas carols and stories, a cookbook for kids, and a cupcake recipe book. We also bought a house and moved into it mid-year.

I was planning to spend the next 10 days doing stuff around the house, but will have to see how things go with my calf. After that we are going to New Zealand for two weeks to have Christmas and New Year with our families. Can't wait!

- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: push-ups on the minute
- stretching

Breakfast: see sidebar (small serve, plus mandarin)

Snack: see sidebar (half serve)

Lunch: sweet chilli tofu nuggets, dry coleslaw mix, coriander

Snack: mix of chocolate Vega (half serve), tofu and almond meal

Dinner: salmon, asparagus, broccolini, hoisin sauce

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Thursday recap

My first thought on tearing my calf was 'now what am I going to do - I can't exercise and I'm going to put on weight'.

But while I was icing my calf I started to think differently. I can still do upper-body exercises, and some cardio (although I'll have to use my imagination a bit). I've gotten into a good routine over the last month or so and I'm not willing to let it slip away.

We had a function to go to in the evening (I'd already paid for tickets for both of us). Rob taped up my calf (very handy having a myotherapist for a husband!) and it held up pretty well. I ended up drinking more than I planned to, but avoided all of the (unhealthy) finger food. Went out for a nice dinner afterwards instead.

- foam rolling and warm-up
- was planning to do sprint intervals but decided at the last minute to do switch foot box drills off our back step instead and on the second or third set I tore my calf.

breakfast: small version of 'usual' (see sidebar)

snack: see sidebar

lunch: sweet chilli tofu with dry coleslaw mix and coriander

snack: mix of cottage cheese, tofu, stevia and vanilla

pre-dinner: sparkling wine, chardonnay

dinner: three of us shared jungle duck curry with eggplant and bamboo shoots, grilled baby snapper with lemongrass and ginger in a banana leaf, a chicken and veggie stir-fry, steamed rice and roti bread; sauvignon blanc


Tore my right calf this morning (my own silly fault). Not. Happy.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Conquering the Chin-up

I've found this video by Mike Robertson really helpful when doing my chin-ups lately. I find myself saying 'pull through the elbows...chest touches the bar' with each rep. I also like the cue to 'tuck your shoulders into your back pockets'.

- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: dips and chin-ups supersets
- 10 minutes stair stepping
- walk TJ

Breakfast: see sidebar (plus mandarin)

Snack: see sidebar

Lunch: lentil and eggplant soup (olive oil), loquats

'cheesecake' (almond meal, stevia and Flora Pro-active 'base', blended tofu, cottage cheese, stevia and vanilla 'topping'), head of baby cos lettuce with fat-free dressing

Dinner: salmon, carrots, broccoli, beans, water chestnuts, hoisin sauce, veggie patties

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Favourite Protein?

What's your favourite protein to eat for dinner? Do you like to eat a particular meal on a particular day (eg fish on Friday, or a Sunday roast)?

Last night was very sticky. I couldn't sleep and was hungry so got up and had a mug of warm (lactose-free) milk. That was about 1am and it still took me a while to get to sleep once I went back to bed. Then I woke up at 6.30am (before my alarm) - not quite sure what's going on with my body clock!

- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: conditioning intervals (skipping 30s on, 30 off for 10 minutes; squat thrusts 30s on, 30 off for 10 minutes)
- 10 minutes stair stepping
- walk TJ

Breakfast: see sidebar (plus mandarin)

Snack: see sidebar

Lunch: lentil and eggplant soup (olive oil), cauliflower, carrot, loquats

Snack: 'tofu feta' with tomato and cucumber; almonds

Dinner: taco meatloaf (I used kangaroo mince and less cheese), green beans, Flora Pro-active

Monday, December 6, 2010

Getting into a Groove

I've been eating the same brekkie and morning snack every day lately (I've really been enjoying breakfast, and I find the Vega shake is re-energising and a good way of keeping hydrated), so I've listed them in my sidebar rather than recording the same thing every day. I'll post here if I make any changes.

Today's exercise:
- foam rolling and warm-up
- WOD: physical fitness test (chin-ups, crunches, press-ups, run for distance)
- 10 minutes stair stepping
- walk TJ

Breakfast: see sidebar (plus mandarin)

Snack: see sidebar

Lunch: eggplant and lentil soup, olive oil


Snack: 'tofu feta' with tomato and cucumber, almonds

Dinner: kangaroo sausages, carrots, cauliflower (Flora pro-active)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

(not a) Rest Day

Was planning to have a rest day today but woke up early full of beans so thought I'd go for a walk up Mt Ridley. I decided to take TJ with me as he'd been up 'partying' for most of the night with the boys so thought he'd be tired and pretty easy to handle, which he was. I was happy to go at TJ pace: walk fast until something smells good then come to a dead stop to have a sniff and pee (TJ, not me). It was overcast this morning so no views from Mt Ridley, but still a nice walk all the same. We came across a man walking the biggest dog I've ever seen - it was only 10 months old and made TJ look like a puppy! At first I thought it was an Irish Wolfhound, but the owner told me it was a Turkish breed.

I felt like having a lazy breakfast with the paper, so when I got home TJ and I had both had a drink then I grabbed my purse and we popped down to the shops to get the paper. By the time we got home we'd been out walking for about two hours! Also did some gardening before and after lunch, so was feeling pretty pooped by the end of the day!

Breakfast: oats, flaxmeal and cinnamon soaked overnight in almond milk, with rice protein, walnuts and berries mixed in before eating

Snack: Vega protein shake

Greek salad with tofu 'feta cheese', loquats

Snack: rice protein shake with pomegranate juice and spinach; almonds, carrots

Dinner: roast lamb, mint sauce, peas, cauliflower (Flora pro-active), glass of cab shiraz

Saturday, December 4, 2010

I'll Be Lightning

Currently enjoying listening to this...

Beautiful day here today, but I had so much extra sleep this week just gone due to TOM that I'm behind with my work, so spent some of the day at my desk. I also spent part of the day reorganising our upstairs area as we are having an extra guest to stay for a while.

Today's exercise:
- foam rolling and warm-up
- Squat Thrusts (20 seconds on, 40 seconds off for 20 minutes)
- walk TJ

Breakfast: oats, flaxmeal and cinnamon soaked overnight in almond milk, with rice protein and berries mixed in before eating

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: lentil and roasted eggplant soup (cold), loquats

Snack: Soyco Japanese tofu, carrot, celery, almonds

Dinner: snapper skewers with periperi sauce (Flora pro-active), broccoli

Friday, December 3, 2010

Difficult De-cember

I liked the idea of Liz' De-cember goals, so thought I'd throw one out there of my own. I'm going to be focusing on adding more difficult exercise to my training. I'm pretty happy with my food intake at the moment but need to bump things up on the exercise front. I worked out that I'm only doing about two hours per week of 'difficult' exercise at the moment (I don't count foam rolling, dynamic warm-ups or walking TJ as 'difficult'). I'd like to get that up to about six hours per week. I won't be doing it all at once (as I'm likely to fall apart - plus I find it's easier to be consistent with my exercise if I only add a small blocks at a time) but from Monday onwards I'll start adding a bit more 'difficult' exercise each training day.

Friday's log

- foam rolling and warm-up
- 20-minute jog
- walk TJ

Breakfast: rice protein, oats, almond milk, flaxmeal, walnuts, mixed berries

Snack: vega protein shake

Lunch: black beans, spinach, tomato, cucumber, spring onion, alfalfa sprouts, olive-oil dressing

Snack: Soyco Japansese tofu, hummus, celery, carrots

Dinner: salmon skewers, spinach, tomato, cucumber, red onion, alfalfa sprouts, leftover okra, carrot

Snack: mix of rice protein, cacao powder and almond butter

Thursday, December 2, 2010


- foam rolling and dynamic warm-up
- Three Powerful Calisthenics
- 10 minutes stair stepping
- walk TJ

Breakfast: rice protein, oats, almond milk (homemade), flaxmeal, walnuts and mixed berries

Snack: Vega protein shake, mandarin

Lunch: black beans, grilled portobello mushrooms, red pepper, zucchini and red onion, olive-oil dressing

Snack: tofu, hummus, carrot, celery

Dinner: tandoori chicken, okra with Flora Pro-active

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Lately when I exercise in the mornings, I need a nap in the afternoon, even if I've been sleeping well. Does this happen to anyone else?

I'm pretty happy with how my November goals turned out. I did foam rolling before almost every exercise session in November. My upper back/shoulder area is feeling better for it, and it's much less painful foam rolling my lower-body muscles now. I'm planning to continue foam rolling, but reduce the time spent on each exercise from 60 seconds to 30 seconds and add back in some dynamic warm-up and activation exercises, particularly for my glutes.

I also made the effort to shower and get dressed almost every day after exercising (so I wasn't working in my exercise gear), and felt much better for it, so will continue with this.

I limited my alcohol consumption to two drinks on every occasion except the wedding I went to last weekend. I'll aim to continue this throughout the December 'silly season' (no promises for Christmas day though!).

My main aim for December is to continue exercising consistently, even while we are away for two weeks (as it will be during the Christmas/New Year period, when I tend to eat and drink more than usual).


Wednesday's log

- foam rolling and dynamic warm-up
- 20-minute jog
- walk TJ

Breakfast: mix of oats, water, flaxmeal, cinnamon, Sunwarrior rice protein, walnuts, almonds and mixed berries

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: broccoli, black bean soup, avocado

Snack: tofu; tomato, olives, gherkins


Snack: Vega protein shake (half serve) with cacao powder

Dinner: dory with caper 'butter' (Flora pro-active), grilled portobello mushrooms, red pepper, zucchini and red onion

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Down, down, down

Blood test results are in! My cholesterol has dropped from 6.0 (measured mid-August) to 5.4 (measured at the end of November). My doctor is pleased with my results and said to continue what I am doing (as it still needs to come down a bit more). I have been following the principles outlined in the Portfolio Diet since mid-October, but have added more plant-based sources of protein in the last couple of weeks to support my training. My doctor thinks that doing regular exercise is helping too.

Today's exercise:
- foam rolling
- High Tension, Slow-Mo: Push-ups & Pull-ups
- 10 minutes stair stepping
- walk TJ

I got freaked out while walking TJ this morning as a staffy came running up to us (TJ has been bitten by a similar dog in the past). All good though - turns out it was only a (big) puppy and wanted to play. He and TJ had a great time playing in the water and TJ was still super-excited when we got home. He didn't want to have his lead taken off...

He eventually slowed down for a towel-dry...

Then decided he still wanted to play

He's still just a puppy at heart!


Breakfast: mix of oats, water, Sunwarrior rice protein, cinnamon, flax meal, walnuts, almonds and mixed berries; mandarin

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: lentil salad with olive-oil dressing

Snack: warm tofu and vege salad with olive-oil dressing

Dinner: porterhouse steak, mashed garlic cauliflower with Flora pro-active; glass of cab merlot

Snack: Vega protein shake (half serve) with cacao powder

Monday, November 29, 2010


Have been feeling wrecked the last couple of days due to TOM, plus Saturday's indulgences.

I planned to go for a 20-minute jog this morning but ended up doing an hour walk with Rob and TJ, plus Rob's friend Luke and his lab Harvey. It was a nice alternative.

Breakfast: mix of oats, soy milk, flax meal, mixed spice, Sunwarrior rice protein, walnuts and mixed berries; mandarin

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: warm tofu and roast vege salad (eggplant, zucchini, red pepper, red onion) with olive-oil dressing; cherries

Snack: leftover shake

Dinner: salmon kebabs, broccoli

Snack: soy hot chocolate

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Rest day

breakfast: smoothie with Vega protein powder, soy milk, pomegranate juice, strawberries, kiwifruit, avocado, spinach

lunch: felafel patty, salad, boiled egg

snack: soy hot chocolate

dinner: polenta-crumbed veal schnitzel topped with a little lite cheese; broccoli

snack: gluten-free biscuits

Saturday, November 27, 2010


This morning I did foam rolling, Power circuits and walked TJ.

Breakfast and morning snack were the same as what I've been having the last few days, but after that things were definitely not the same as usual.

Lunch was a felafel patty and a few mouthfuls of salad while getting ready to go to the wedding of our friends, Amanda and Vic

After the wedding we had about three hours' down time before the reception, so we went to a pub. Rob and I shared a vegetable pizza

I had a couple of glasses of sparkling wine and Rob had a tasting paddle of beers

Here we are at the reception with the bride

My place tag

Entree (tomato, basil and mozarella salad; risotto balls; gnocchi in napolitana sauce)

Main (beef fillet - I didn't eat the bernaise sauce), with a glass of shiraz (unpictured)

Cutting the cake (it was chocolate - I took a small piece home but TJ snaffled it out of my handbag!)

First dance

Dessert (limoncello meringue tart; creme brulee; lemon sorbet)

I also had three glasses of sparkling wine over the course of the night.

Rob and I enjoyed our meals, and dancing to the live band. We had a great night!

Friday, November 26, 2010


No foam rolling this morning - I did a fasted blood test (to check my cholesterol) at 8am and when I got home I just wanted to get into my exercise. I had half a scoop of protein powder then headed out to do sprints then walk TJ. By the time I was done I was pretty hungry.

Breakfast: mix of oats, strawberries flaxmeal, cinnamon, soy milk, rice protein powder and walnuts, plus a mandarin

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: veggie patties, gherkin, mustard, tomato sauce, mixed beans and cabbage

Snack: Soyco Japanese tofu; cabbage wedges dipped in salsa

There was a flash flood here this afternoon. We had lightning and thunder directly over the house, then it hailed and poured with rain.

Here's some of the hail on our back doorstep

This 'river' is actually the street that we live on

snack: soy hot chocolate

Dinner: dory, silverbeet, onion and garlic sauteed in olive oil, sweet potato chips

Snack: ultimate chocolate mousse

Thursday, November 25, 2010


- foam rolling
- Push-ups on the minute
- walk TJ

Breakfast: mix of oats, strawberries flaxmeal, cinnamon, soy milk, rice protein powder and walnuts, plus a mandarin

Snack: Vega protein shake

Lunch: lentil, tomato and basil salad; leftover asparagus and broccolini

Snack: Soyco Japanese tofu, hummus, celery, capsicum, sugarsnap peas

Dinner: chicken and vege stir-fry with almond butter and tamari

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Productive Wednesday

I woke up before my alarm again this morning, which was nice. Got up and did my foam rolling, a B-circuit, and walked TJ for 20 minutes.

Breakfast was a mix of oats, cinnamon, flax meal, soy milk, Vega protein powder and walnuts, plus a mandarin.

After showering and getting dressed I headed into town to drop off my work. Disaster struck on the train - my drink bottle leaked all over my work! When I got into the office I went to the ladies' and dried it off as much as I could under the hand drier. Luckily it was all still legible!

Then it was shopping time! My mission was underwear shopping. To say I hate shopping for underwear is an understatement. I am an odd size - I have a small ribcage but am otherwise 'well-endowed' - so often have trouble finding something to fit. I usually come home from underwear shopping empty-handed and in a foul mood.

After fueling up with an Organic Protein Bar, I headed up Bourke St to Lululemon Athletica to try on Ta Ta Tamer. They were as good as the Fitnessista said they were. The store had two in my size, a black one and a blue one, but blue one didn't sit quite right so I only came away with the black one.

Then it was back down to Bourke St mall and into the David Jones food hall for some chickpea and pumpkin salad, and Morrocan vegetable salad. After lunch I went to the women's underwear section of David Jones to check out their 30% off sale.

First of all I wanted to find a skin-toned strapless bra to go under the dress I'm wearing to a wedding this weekend. I tried on about six and settled on a Calvin Klein one.

That mission accomplished, I then wanted to find some new T-shirt bras. I wanted something without lace (too scratchy) but that didn't look like something your grandma would wear. I tried on a Berlei Barely There bra, which was really comfortable. I could have done with an 8DD but they don't make them in that size, so 10DD it was - three please!

It was a very successful underwear shopping day! I stopped in at Evelyn Faye afterwards to grab a couple of things, then had a cajun tofu salad from Habib Wholefoods on Flinders St before heading home.

Rob had cooked some pork loin chops for dinner, so I had one with some broccolini and asparagus tossed in Flora pro-active.

I'd been craving a Magnum for a couple of days so had one for dessert tonight. I reckon I did about six hours' of walking while shopping today, so enjoyed sitting on the recliner with my feet up eating my Magnum.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The rest of Tuesday

Short and sweet - it's been a long day.

snack: Vega protein powder blended with water and silverbeet

lunch: warm roasted vege salad with eggplant, zucchini, red onion, black beans and olive-oil dressing; leftover cabbage salad

snack: Soyco tofu (Japanese flavour), hummus, celery, cucumber, carrot, sugarsnap peas

nap: I think the maca is helping to give me more energy - my nap was much shorter today (30 minutes instead of 2-4 hours).

dinner: salmon kebabs, mashed garlic cauliflower

No time for a walk this evening (I have a Wednesday-morning deadline to meet for work) - just as well I walked for a bit longer this morning. Have got the next week or so free, so am looking forward to spending a bit more time on my exercise.

Roll on the sunshine!

I'm feeling much better today - even woke up before my alarm this morning! It was a hot night last night though - we didn't think about closing the curtains/shutters upstairs yesterday and it was unbearable up there when I went to bed. I ended up testing out the air-conditiong for the first time - it did such a good job I had to get up and turn it off because I was getting cold.

This morning I did foam rolling, a Spartan Run and walked TJ for 30 minutes (I had only planned to do a 20-minute walk but TJ spotted his 'girlfriend' Mia in the distance and so we walked with them for a while).

Last night before going to bed I soaked some oats, cinnamon and flax meal in soy milk. When I got home this morning I mixed in some rice protein and walnuts, and topped it all with some strawberries. I followed it up with one of our mandarins

It looks like it's going to be another hot, sunny day - I'm blogging from my office with my sunglasses on!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday 22 November

My glands aren't up any more, but am still feeling a bit low in energy - just doing foam rolling this morning tired me out! I substituted my planned 20-minute walk/jog with a powerwalk.

For breakfast I had a Bfast Cookie. I used a tablespoon each of maca powder and hemp seeds as my mix-ins.

About mid-morning I had this really pressing need to urinate. I was on my way to drop off some work at the time but was very relieved to get there and use the bathroom!

When I got home I did a bit of Googling and confirmed my suspicion that maca is also a diuretic. The last time I felt like that was when I was taking dandelion root as a natural diuretic to dry me out before competing. So looks like I'll have to start with a smaller amount and work upwards!

For morning tea I had a protein shake (Vega).

Lunch was the same as yesterday (a warm roast veggie salad with eggplant, zucchini, red capsicum, red pepper, chickpeas, and olive-oil based dressing)

For afternoon tea I had Soyco tofu (Japanese flavour), cucumber, celery, carrot, sugarsnap peas, hummus

Before dinner I headed out on another (longer) walk. It was over 30 degrees today, so I opted for a walk along the Craigieburn Wetlands, where it was nice and shady. This time I took my camera! There are big river gums like this all along the walking track

Lately I've been finding Sunday afternoons are a great time to pick up marked-down protein at our supermarket. I scored some snapper skewers reduced to half-price, so we had them for dinner tonight, with periperi butter (made with Flora pro-active and Nando's periperi sauce), plus some cabbage salad

I've been reading a bit of stuff by Brendan Brazier recently (via his Thrive in 30 emails), and liked this suggestion of his:

"Find an activity you truly love, one that genuinely fits with who you are and what you’re about, and you’ll look forward to doing it so much, you won’t waste your creativity coming up with another excuse not to do it—instead, you’ll find creative ways to work it into your busiest schedule!" (Brendan Brazier)

I love walking (and weight training, of course). What's your favourite activity?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Lazy Sunday

Today's exercise consisted of a 60-minute walk with TJ, plus a bit of gardening (weeding, moving a water tank and setting up a compost bin).

Thought I'd do something a bit different with my food log today. Here's what I ate, in pictures:

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Saturday 20 November

Glands still up a bit this morning but energy levels better.

On rising: lemon water with BCAAs

60-minute walk with TJ

Breakfast: smoothie with pomegranate juice, soy milk, kiwifruit, mixed berries, lime, avocado, spinach, Vanilla Chai Vega and water

Snack: mandarin; scrambled eggs, tomato, asparagus

Lunch: gluten-free bread with Flora pro-active; tofu stir-fry with ginger, chilli, red cabbage, bok choy and red onions

Gardening: dug out a few unwanted shrubs in an overcrowded section of the garden - hard work! We have a loquat tree in our front yard that has lots of ripe fruit on it at the moment. I decided to make a smoothie to have after gardening (along with some gluten-free fruit bread).

Loquat & Banana Smoothie
- 200g loquats (about five - there's not that much flesh once you take the stones out!)
- 50g over-ripe banana
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I used Sun Warrior)
- ice and water to taste

This was so nice - a tangy (loquat), sweet (banana) combination, a bit like drinking yogurt.

Snack: more stir-fry

Snack: 1.5 glasses sparkling shiraz, cashews

Late dinner: grilled pork loin chop, corn on cob, veggie patty
Thought it would be fun to show you a 'his and hers' shot (mine's the one at the back). Rob was salivating over my shoulder while I was taking the photo...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday 19 November

Great start to the day (not) - woke up with DOMS, swollen glands and low energy. Decided to take it easy today and get in lots of antioxidants.

7.00: slow walk with TJ and Rob around the football oval.

7.30: smoothie with pomegranate juice, soy milk, kiwifruit, mixed berries, lime, avocado, spinach, Vanilla Chai Vega and water

11.00: mandarin; scrambled eggs, tomato, asparagus, spinach, mushrooms

2.00: gluten-free bread with Flora pro-active; tofu stir-fry with ginger, chilli, red cabbage, bok choy and red onions

3.30: more stir-fry

7.30: chilli beans, zucchini, mushrooms, silverbeet, avocado, salsa, alfalfa sprouts

9.30: ultimate chocolate mousse (avocado, banana, cocoa, stevia)

Also took some zinc, echinacea and Vitamin C tablets. Hope that does it!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thursday 18 November

Poor TJ cut his pad on some glass at the park yesterday. He didn't even get off the bed this morning when I got up - he knew he wasn't up for a walk.

Today's workout wiped me out (had a big nap this afternoon) and made me hungry all day.

6.15: lemon water with Combust and BCAAs

Foam rolling, then
- Push-up drop sets for 20 minutes
- powerwalk for 40 minutes

8.00: shake with protein powder, soy milk, spinach, banana, BCAAs

8.15: shower and get dressed

9.00: protein powder, oats, cinnamon, cherries, flax meal, walnuts and almonds

11.00: leftover cucumber salad; barley, refried beans, broccoli, salsa, avocado


3.00: almond butter, mandarins

4.00: hummus, raw veggies (carrot, celery, cucumber, sugarsnap peas)

5.00: leftover spiced tofu

8.30: mashed garlic cauliflower with Flora pro-active

I can feel DOMs setting in already...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wednesday 17 November

Forgot to set my alarm so had a bit of a sleep-in this morning. Didn't shower/dress after morning exercise so I could start/finish work on time and get out and enjoy another walk after work. It's supposed to be wet again tomorrow, so wanted to make the most of the nice weather.

7.00: lemon water with Combust and BCAAs

Foam rolling, then
- Basic WOD for 20 minutes
- fast walk with TJ for 40 minutes

8.30: protein shake, banana

11.00: sunflower seeds, walnuts, mandarin

1.00: barley, refried beans, broccoli, salsa, avocado

3.00: protein shake

5.45: 75-minute walk along Cragieburn Wetlands - it was lovely looking at the big river gums growing up out of the water.

7.45: spiced tofu, steamed baby bok choy, cucumber salad

8.30: carrot, pear

Your Perfect Body

'Creating your perfect body for life is not about choosing the best program or diet, it's about arriving at a point emotionally and psychologically where you are genuinely ready to turn your life, your thinking and your body around.' Craig Harper

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tuesday 16 November

6.00 lemon water with Combust and BCAAs

foam rolling then
- 30/30 calisthenics circuit for 20 minutes
- power walk for 20 minutes (explored the neighbourhood a bit more)
- walk TJ for 20 minutes (went to the park)

8.00: protein shake, oats with soy milk, banana, cinnamon and flax meal

shower and get dressed

10.30: (a bit too much) almond butter, pear

3.30: protein shake

5.00: fruit and rice chia bread

6.20: 90-minute walk up to Mt Ridley and back. It was flat most of the walk, with a nice steep bit near the end (I like hill walks). Wish I'd taken my camera - some beautiful views of Melbourne city in the distance.

8.30: mandarin, roast chicken breast, Sichuan slaw: bean sprouts, shredded carrots and celery, minced fresh chili, soy sauce, sesame oil and a bit of palm sugar. Topped with chopped nuts and chopped basil, mint and coriander. Yum!

Consistency Wins

'Before you go psycho trying to figure out your post workout meal or order the latest supplements, realize that if you can just consistently exercise and eat clean then the rest of this stuff just does not matter. ' (Jodi Jones, Cathy Savage Fitness)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday 15 November

6.00: lemon water with Combust and BCAAs

foam rolling then
- walk/run for 20 minutes
- power walk for 20 minutes
- walk TJ for 20 minutes

8.00: protein shake with spinach and banana; oat-bran porridge with soy milk, cinnamon, flax meal and sugar

shower and get dressed

12.00: refried beans, salsa, rice, broccoli, avocado

3.00: eggplant and bean dip in red pepper 'boat', carrot, pear, pistachios and cashews

7.30: pork loin cutlet, peach and tomato salad, veggie patties

9.30: extra lean chicken sausage with fresh lime and spices


In my Why post I asked 'Why do you want to look the way you do?'

Leading on from that, WHAT are you going to do to get there?

In order to maximize their fat loss a lot of people (especially in the bodybuilding world) will cut out a lot of foods - things like wheat, dairy, fruit and even coloured vegetables.

I don't tend to eat a lot of wheat anyway (apart from if I'm on the rebound from a low-carb diet, when I'll eat pretty much anything), as once I start eating it I find it very difficult to stop, and it gives me a rash.

I once would have been horrified at the thought of giving up dairy, but now it usually gives me wind, and I've had some really nasty experiences (including vomitting) with whey protein, so it's no great loss.

I won't give up fruit though - I've gotten the leanest I've ever been eating two serves of fruit a day, so I don't see any reason to give that up.

Likewise with coloured vegetables - no 'lean and green' for me.

I won't do Calorie King either: I'm an obsessive, detail-oriented person - it makes me good at my job - but it means that I input everything I eat down to the nth detail, which isn't fun.

I'm happy to play a bit with nutrient timing (eating most of my starchy carbs around training, which is usually in the morning), as long as I still have energy during the day and can fill up on other things (protein, veges and fat) at night. If my mood and sleep start to go out the window, in come the carbs.

I won't 'deprive' myself of anything - that just makes me grumpy and likely to lose the plot. If I want fruit before bed, I'll have it.

I know that I lose body fat best through cardio, and given that I have a big appetite, and like to eat starchy carbs, fruit etc, that means I'm going to have to move more.

WHAT are you going to do to look the way you want to?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday 14 November

Spent some time today looking through photos of when I was leaner. Thought I'd pop one on my blog each day for a bit of inspiration. This one is from 2006, four weeks before my first competition. I love how my back looks here.

Today's food was pretty simple, just the way I like it.

Brunch: protein shake with banana and spinach; gluten-free toast with almond butter

Snack: eggplant and bean dip in a red pepper 'boat', carrot, pistachios, pear

Dinner: pork loin cutlet, peach and tomato salad, cos lettuce, veggie patty


When I was out last night I was talking to a friend who often does boot camps in the mornings. When I asked her how it was going, she said she'd stopped going because the instructor put too much emphasis on food, always talking about 'good' and 'naughty' foods, and saying that they should only eat one 'treat' meal a week. She said that she didn't want to live that way, and besides, she got enough pressure from her partner to look a certain way.

My question is, WHY do you want to look the way you do?
- Is it because someone places pressure on you to look a certain way?
- Is it because of the images you see in magazines, on TV etc?
- Is it for health reasons?

I said to my friend that no-one has ever put pressure on me to look a certain way - I do it to myself.

I don't have the goal that many do to be 'skinny'. My goal has always been to be lean. And yes, there is a difference. To me, being skinny means you are thin, but have no visible muscle (the way most models look), whereas being lean means you are muscular with low enough body fat to see those muscles.

Several things inspired me. When I was young one of my friend's mothers did bodybuilding (there was no 'figure' class then) - she was fit and strong (she later became a cop).

I saw Terminator II in my first year at university and wanted Linda Hamilton's shoulders and arms.

During university I spent a lot of time at the gym around bodybuilders, and went to watch a lot of bodybuilding competitions. I wanted to compete in one myself one day.

When we moved to Australia I started working in hospitality and my training became sporadic. I put on a bit of weight, but once I got out of that industry I began eating better and exercising regularly again. A couple of years later I started working for myself and had the flexibility to put more time into my training. I still wanted to do a figure competition but at that stage I was way too small - you could see my abs but I had no other muscle to speak of

I did my first competition 12 months later (and in retrospect that was way too soon) and have since done four more. My last competition was in 2008 and my life since has been a rollercoaster of weight on, weight off. Sometimes I think about doing another competition, but there's no sense in doing that when I'm not stable enough in my day-to-day life. So at the moment I just need to train consistently and eat well. To slowly increase my exercise until I'm lean again. Why? Because it's what I've always wanted.

WHY do you want to look the way you do?

Saturday 13 November

Am trying something a bit different with my meal timing: four bigger meals instead of five or six smaller ones. Am sick of getting hungry every couple of hours.

6.00: lemon water with Combust and BCAAs

- foam rolling
- Pulling, pushing and crawling
- walk TJ

7.45: protein shake with banana; oat bran cooked with soy milk, banana and cinnamon, and topped with almond butter and fig jam

12.00: gluten-free wrap with refried beans, capsicum, mushrooms, alfalfa, salsa, avocado and cos lettuce; leftover mashed garlic cauliflower


5.00: hummus, vege sticks (cucumber, carrot, sugarsnap peas), pistachios, pear

9.00: (at Hens Party) 2 glasses sparkling wine, 1 slice pizza, 1 slice bread with eggplant dip, a few hot chips

1.00: pear

Friday, November 12, 2010

Friday 12 November

It's been almost three weeks now since I've had any coffee. Woot!

I've also exercised consistently for almost three weeks, and Rob commented that I haven't been sick yet. Usually when I start exercising consistently I start feeling sick (scratchy throat etc). I now know that I need to consume plenty of antioxidants to compensate for free radical build-up caused by intense exercise (I have a negative variation in the MnSOD gene that results in a 30-40% reduction in antioxidation). I take GliSODin daily, and that helps make that 'scratchy throat' feeling go away. I also take a B-vitamin that contains folate, which can help reduce the effects of free radical damage. My diet is rich in fruits and vegetables, soy and garlic, which are all natural sources of antioxidants.

Over-accumulation of toxic substances called xenobiotics (which include caffeine and alcohol) can also cause flu-like symptoms and low exercise tolerance if the body isn't able to efficiently remove them (and mine isn't), so I think that reducing my coffee and alcohol consumption has really helped too!

6.00: lemon water, Combust, BCAAs

- foam rolling
- Sprint 8
- walk with Rob and TJ

7.30: mix of soy milk, sliced banana, raw oats, cherries, walnuts and diced choc-nut caramel protein bar

7.45: shower and get dressed

10.30: eggplant and bean dip with veggies (sugar snap peas, cucumber, carrot, celery)

12.30 gluten-free wrap with refried beans, avocado, coriander, tomato, alfalfa sprouts

3.00: cashews, pistachios, pear

6.00: 2 glasses sparkling wine

7.00: spiced tofu (tofu simmered with hoisin sauce, ginger, chillies and vegetable stock), mashed garlic cauliflower with Flora pro-active

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thursday 11 November

Was really productive with work today. I think substituting the fibre drinks for real food is working in my favour.

6.45: lemon water, Combust, BCAAs

- foam rolling (Leg DOMs made foam rolling quite painful this morning!)
- push up drop sets
- walk TJ

8.00: mix of soy milk, sliced banana, raw oats, cherries, walnuts and diced choc-nut caramel protein bar

closer view

8.30 shower and get dressed

11.00: hummus, veggies (sugar snap peas, yellow pepper, cucumber, tomato)

12.30: gluten-free wrap with refried beans, red and green capsicum, onions, mushrooms and spinach, salsa and avocado

3.00: mandarins, cashews

5.00: leftover garlic mashed cauliflower with Flora pro-active

6.00: BBQ: 2 salmon kebabs, 1 lamb rib, salad

6.30: ultimate chocolate mousse (made with stevia instead of maple syrup)

9.15: apple