Week on Wednesday (because I missed my round-up and summary from the weekend)

Blogger fail, I didn’t post a Friday Round-Up this week or a Saturday Summary, womp womp! Why, you ask? Because I was accepting a new job and handing in my notice, yipee!

If you’ve read any of my recent Friday Round-Ups, you’ll know that I have been growing increasingly dissatisfied with my current role. I’ll now be moving to a part time marketing manager role and setting up as a freelance marketing consultant! Exciting stuff!

What does that mean for my health? Well…
1) I’ll no longer be eating my feelings (mainly boredom & anger)
2) My mind will be clearer and I’ll have less stress and anxiety – remember folks, mental health is as important as physical health (if not more so)
3)I’ll be eating at home a lot more, so I’ll need to be really careful not to snack, and make sure I have lot’s of quick healthy lunch options

Since it has been a while since my last post, I’ve got loads to share!

Exercise
I’ve been getting back into my running and did a 9.8km run last Thursday and then did hill sprints on Monday. I also squeezed in a couple of at-home body-weight circuits.

Garmin 10
When your Garmin battery dies 1km from home:-(
Running essentials
Water, Garmin, Head-torch
Hill Sprints
You can’t tell, but this is one hell of a steep hill! And it was only 2 degrees!
Hill Sprints
Motivational music was necessary with the hill sprints!

It is well and truly winter in Yorkshire – we’ve got snow today! I can’t remember snow this early for years!

Snow in November!
Snow in November!

This is going to make outdoor runs a bit trickier, but I’m prepared with a new head torch and I’ve brought the thermals back out of storage!

Running Safety
Safety first! Head torch and reflective vest for night running!
Winter running
Reflective trainers, thermal tights, reflective vest

Eating
Last week was total gluttony as we had two parties at work which involved sweets, junk food and krispy kremes!
I tried to balance it out with healthier main meals, but I’ll chalk it down as a bad week for balanced eating!

Chocolate Cake
Chocolate loaf cake with a slated caramel middle – OMG!
Cheesy Fries
Homemade cheesy fries with whote and sweet potatoes, Boursin and smoked bacon – all baked and no added salt or oil!
Cheesy Fries
Close-Up!

Friday Round-Up: Where’s the week gone?

Phew, that week sped by! In the run up to Christmas I find that the time goes really quickly and the days blur together! To break up the weeks I’ve booked a couple of events/getaways.

Exercise has been non-existent so far this week, but I’ll be at Zumba tonight, whoop whoop! I’m really looking forward to some evening runs in the dark, but I do need a head torch. If you have any recommendations let me know in the comments section! I’ve also brought my thermal running gear out of storage to make sure I’m warm as the nights are getting so chilly!

I’ve been more balanced than usual this week in terms of diet, and I’ve really upped my intake of fresh fruits and vegetables. But I did say balanced, so I’ve also enjoyed several baked goods and the odd alcoholic tipple.

Let’s start healthy…

Courgetti
Spiralized courgettes with leeks, Brussels, cabbage and pancetta. And Boursin of course!

 

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Stir-Fry
Vegetable stir-fry with rice noodles (peppers, carrots, courgette with a satay sauce)

 

Steak Dinner
Fillet steak with sauteed savoy cabbage, roast potatoes and roast sweetcorn

 

Now onto the not so virtuous…

Dinner Party
The aftermath of a mid-week dinner party.

^^ Yes, that is an empty packet of Boursin, but there were 6 of us!

Greggsnut
Greggsnut – Greggs’ take on the cronut with pecans and caramel – omgomgomgomgomg

 

Pancakes
Pancakes from Billy Bob’s in Halton East (Yorkshire) with blueberries and bacon!

^^Billy Bob’s is an American style diner set in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales. There’s fantastic play facilities for the kids and the food is AMAZING!

Billy Bobs

Have a lovely weekend everyone!
xoxo

 

Friday Round-Up: Winter Goals

Every mile is two in winter

Now that Autumn has well and truly kicked in, I find myself looking to these last months of 2016 with a renewed sense of excitement about exercise. I’ve been well and truly useless at following any consistent exercise plan during the summer, and I’m feeling sluggish because of it.

I actually really like running outside during the darker evenings and when it’s a bit colder. So long as you have the right gear, it’s a really peaceful time to get your miles in.

Running tights and asics
My Gap thermal running tights with reflective details!
  • I’ve signed up to run in the Longridge xMas Pudding Run – a 7 Mile race in Lancashire that features an incline up to mile 4 and then a downhill the rest of the way. The race is on December 11th so I’ll be putting a training plan together which I’ll share here.

My goal is to run the race in under 66 minutes – a totally arbitrary goal time, but I figured 7 miles is around 11km and I don’t want to run slower than 6 minute kilometres. I’ve got 8 weeks to kick my butt back into running shape!

  • I did clubbercise and zumba this week. #HipsDon’tLie
  • I made the lemon pasta from The Londoner’s recipe but made a rookie mistake by using a waxed lemon – it was a bit bitter, but I could get over it to enjoy the meal!
Lemon Pasta
Lemon Pasta with courgette
Lemon Pasta
Next time – get an un-waxed lemon!
  • Girl’s night with some other mums tonight and we’re heading to Pizza Express for carbs and wine!
  • I’m going to make an effort to not binge Friday, Saturday and Sunday so that I can see better results come Monday! Ali from @Inspiralized has some great advice in one of her recent blog posts about her inspiralized healthy journey.

Happy weekend everyone! TGIF xoxo

Friday Round-Up: Recharged

Hello internet family! After a week in sunny Ibiza I’m feeling recharged with renewed energy and ready to tackle life’s challenges, big and small!

There’s a lot to catch-up on, so grab a brew (or a glass of wine) and settle in!

The Holiday

Ahhhh, so relaxing! The three of us headed to Es Figueral in Ibiza for a week of family time in the sun. We spent most of our time in the water (either the pool or the lovely Playa Es Figueral) and the rest of the time eating! Just what a holiday should be:-)

Given the amount of ice cream, local cuisine and the occasional glass of cava and beer, I came home the same weight as I left, so wahoo! I’m doing a full holiday recap with photos this weekend, so keep an eye out!

Es Figueral
Sunset view over the beach
Es Figueral
The view from the children’s playground

Anxiety

During my second session of hypnotherapy, we delved deeper into stress release and I actually ended the session by bursting into tears. My therapist assured me this was common, and that it is a physical release of the stress you’re letting go of. Since then, I have been feeling much calmer in my mind. Firstly, my flying anxiety reduced significantly, and I even enjoyed the flight home (the prosecco helped, of course) and am now looking forward to more holidays abroad. I’m hoping to book Nerja in Spain next.

Generally, I felt my anxiety spike again when I returned to work, which signals that I need to stop talking about doing something and actually take some actions to reduce this stress. First, I’m going to arrange a 1-2-1 with my boss to discuss my unhappiness at work. I’m going to out more effort into creating my own business (marketing and business consulting for local SMBs – check out my website with the link below) and I’m going to keep my eye out for other jobs. Knowing that I’m taking these actions is helping me to avoid any high levels of anxiety.

SBC Marketing

Eating

My eating habits have been all over the place, partly because we didn’t do a ‘big shop’ after the holiday and partly because I’m still in holiday spirit! Whilst we were away I ate a mixture of fresh foods (lots of fruit and veg) and some naughty treats (think fresh Churros with chocolate sauce at EVERY breakfast) and I’m still craving the Mediterranean diet. I’ll do an ‘eats of the week’ post next week as I’ve taken loads of pictures recently, but here’s a slaad I made this week. Baked chicken with herbs, potatoes roasted with the chiken, lambs lettuce, carrots, cucumber, celery and peppers with EVOO and lemon juice, ground black pepper and sesame seeds!

Chicken Salad
Chicken Salad

ON the flip side, because life is all about balance, I ate 2/3 of a family size bag of chili heatwave Doritos after Zumba last night. #BALANCE

Exercise

I was definitely much more active whilst on holiday and that undoubtedly helped me maintin my weight rather than add on the pounds. Since returning I’ve been for a short run (3.2 km, 19 mins) to ease myself back into running, and Zumba.

Colourful Activewear
Colourful Activewear – M7S leggings, Asics trainers

I’m now looking for a 10k race later this year or early in 2017 to aim towards. I think my lack of running has added to my anxiety, and I feel much less fit, so I’m keen to get back to it.

How have you all been? Any late Summer holidays?
xoxo

Friday Round-Up: Has it been a week?

Hey Guys! It doesn’t seem like 5 minutes since last week’s Friday Round-Up. I feel like I haven’t done anything meaningful this week, but maybe I’m just waiting until next Saturday and our holiday!

Ice cream
At Fountains Abbey in Yorkshire a few weeks ago

It’s been 2 years since we last went on a holiday of more than 3 days, so I’m really looking forward to just spending time on the beach and by the pool with my family. Unplugging, ignoring emails, eating LOADS of ice cream and soaking up the Vitamin D!

I’ve been to both Clubbercise and Zumba this week, and they helped somewhat in easing up my work-related anxiety. I’m so unhappy at work at the moment, so I’ve put in a flexible working request and if that doesn’t pan out, I guess I’ll move onto plan B.

I wore my fancy new Marks and Spencer tights and still love them! They are thick without being hot, have a great pattern and a drawstring – 10/10!

M&S Tights
Marks and Spencer Tights!
Cauli Rice
Cauli Rice – good grain size, long shelf life and no nasty ingredients!
Sauteed Veg
Sauteed vegetables (pepper, courgette % carrot) with cauli rice, later topped with baked chicken in a spicy marinade.
selfie
Tiny pigtails as my hair is just too short for a pony tail but it’s too hot to leave down during Zumba!
Pop Works popcorn
POP Works & Co Peanut Butter and Caramel popcorn. I wanted to love it, but it wasn’t sweet enough for me!

Happy Friday Everyone!
xoxo

Friday Round-Up: Let’s get real honest

This blog was created as a way for me to track losing weight. Since realising that losing weight isn’t a linear process, especially when big life changes happen, it’s evolved into a blog focusing on my personal attempt to find balance, health and fitness.

A big part of that involves mental health as well as physical health, and for the past few months I’ve been experiencing anxiety, that erupted in the past couple of weeks to make me physically sick and exhausted.

There’s a few factors behind this episode, including work stress, fear of flying and an upcoming holiday, and increasing guilt that I’m not there enough for my little girl (she’s just started ‘big nursery’).

Now I’m a positive person most of the time, and I like to see the silver lining in every situation, but I realised that I wasn’t getting better no matter how optimistic I was.

So this week I went to see a therapist who speacialises in all sorts of therapies, and she recommended hypnotherapy. After my first session I already feel so much better, and I’ve booked a follow-up next Friday. I won’t go into details about the session as everyone requires unique treatment, but I’ve felt calmer and less stressed since.

I’ve made the decision to stay in my current role and take the opportunity available to do further career development. Hopefully this will put me in a better position to go it alone in a couple of years as a marketing and business consultant. Stopping the constant job searches and cycle of negative feelings towards my current job has helped to alleviate some of the stress.

As for family life, I’m just trying to give myself a break on the mum guilt. Yes, I work a 9-5, but I also try to make the most of my time at home with morning cuddles, evening adventures and plenty of fun at the weekends. Getting to spend a week of uninterrupted time together in a couple of weeks will be great!

And let’s not forget that physical health = better mental health with endorphins and happy chemicals being released when we move. I didn’t do the Salford 10k on Sunday, I felt to sick, but I’ve let it go. This week I got back to Zumba (I’d missed it last week) and also did a new class called Clubbercise! I’ll do a post dedicated to clubbercise soon, but it was awesome!

Instead of putting pressure on myself to reach a goal or compete in a race, I’m going to spend the next few weeks just enjoying being active, whether that’s a run through the woods as the leaves turn to autumn, bopping it out at Zumba or Clubbercise, or getting my stretch on with some yoga.

So here’s to getting help when you need it. Give yourself a break, do something you love, and if in doubt, ask you doctor or a health professional. Trust me, there’s no shame in admitting that you don’t feel great mentally, and you’ll feel so much better when you start to workout why and how you can feel better!

Pics from the week…

M&S tights
Fancy new workout tights from Marks and Spencer – fit great, no see-through bum and perfect length!

 

courgetti2

courgetti
Oooh courgetti

 

Green Veg
A mountain of green veg (brocolli, asparagus, frozen broad beans, soy beans and leeks)
Green veg2
Vegetable mountain and my oils from Carluccios

 

Grown Up Chocolate
An AMAZING new chocolate discovery – The Grown Up Chocolate Company. Get in my belly!

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^^^Food porn right there!

Adidas SuperCloud
Putting my feet up after Zumba!
Anxiety
When you’re not feeling happy and then you Zumba and the endorphins kick-in!

Have a happy weekend everyone!
xoxo

Friday Round-Up: Body Blues

Happy Friday Everyone!
This week I’ve been feeling some mild ‘body blues’ due in large part, to the fact that I’ve totally pigged out for most of the bank holiday weekend and haven’t kept up with my training.

My clothes feel tighter, I’m feeling sluggish and unfit and I have very little motivation. The worst part is that I can’t blame this on anything apart from my total lack of willpower and dedication.

I have the Salford 10k this Sunday, which I entered as a way to keep working towards my goal of running throughout the year and getting faster, but I’ve let that go out the window! I’ll still run Salford, but there’s no way I’ll be near my time last year (54 minutes).

So, where do I go from here? I can either keep eating and keep being inactive, or I can try and find that motivation again to reach the 80/20 balance. And I’m going to do the latter!

I’m hoping to stay accountable by posting more regularly, whether that’s a quick update on my workouts, favourite gear, inspiration or a picture diary.

I’m going to bulk buy healthy foods that inspire me to cook interesting meals, like grilled satay and vegetables, cauliflower rice paella and courgetti!

Also, winter is coming (hello GoT reference) and whilst I’m still waiting for English Summer (it never really happened this year) I’m also really looking forward to Autumn/Winter fashion, and I don’t want to have to wear baggy jumpers and leggings because I’m not happy with my body!

In the meantime, here’s some pictures from my week!

Chinese Take Away
Chinese Take Away – lemon chicken, beansprouts and seaweed
Digestion Tea
Drinking tea to help with digestion before bed
Pasta courgette and pulled pork
Fresh Penne Pasta with sliced courgettes, pulled pork and smoked cheddar
Vegetables and Pancetta 2
Crusty bread with balsamic oil to sip, brussels with pancetta and an egg, grilled asparagus with pancetta, alioli
Vegetables and Pancetta
Brussels, asparagus and pancetta
Workout Selfie
A random post-workout selfie

How do you get out of a mental funk?
xoxo