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Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Life #5

lifestyle blog 5-tile

What a busy few weeks! I bet you are all sick of me saying that… I know I am. I have made a decision today that I may take a break from Monday’s Meals, Wednesday’s Workout and Fitness Friday posts and rather post material when I have it. When I first started the posts they were a was of helping me stay active on my blog however now I find it more restricting as feel I have to post stuff on those days and if I miss it I have to wait until the next week to post it. Don’t worry I will still be posting health and fitness blog posts, but they could now be on a Tuesday or Thursday… you will have to check in more often to see when I am posting!

Anyways onto my “Life #5” post.

Friday, 8 November 2013

Fitness Friday | How I prepare my meals

preparing meals for the week1
This week my diet has not been good.. at all! And I know exactly why… because I did not prepare my meals for the week. Instead I have skipped breakfast a couple of days, ate too many sandwiches for my lunches and made poor decisions for my dinner; as I result I feel pretty rubbish this week. It’s amazing that filling yourself with rubbish food actually makes you feel rubbish!
I have written a post previously about the importance of preparing your meals to aid in weight-loss and health gain, so I won’t lecture you as I already have. However this post’s purpose is to share with you how I prepare my meals. It’s kind of a step by step guide to show you how easy it is to find healthy recipes and use them in your everyday diet.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Fitness Friday | It takes 21 days to create a habit

21 days to create a habit 1

Yesterday was a big day for me; yes it was Halloween, but it was also the first time I ate chocolate in 30 days! I took a mini challenge at the beginning on October to give up chocolate for the month, my only day to eat chocolate in October was Halloween. So last night I bought my stash of chocolate with the intention of having a big night of chocolate indulgence. I eagerly opened the bar of Dairy Milk and took my first bite, and found not a feeling of overwhelming chocolate bliss, but a tasty yet underwhelming feeling.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Share the love| Meet my October Sponsors


What a strange month it has been. I have been busy with my job and life, however unlike usual, blogging was put on the back burner. I wasn’t really feeling inspired to blog and never like to force myself to write as that’s not what blogging is about for me. So I took a step back and had a little break. I am back now, however I don’t think I will be posting 4 times a week like I was, but still expect it at least twice!  Anyways enough about me and my troubles. I may not have blogged much this month, but my lovely sponsors have! They all have blogs rammed full of interesting blog posts on fitness, health, beauty, fashion, food and life… so grab a cup of tea and take a look through each of them… I would definitely recommend it!



"Hello beauties! I'm Natalie from The Blonde Ethos. Like Cat, I share my honest thoughts on fitness, health and beauty, as I love finding something that does a really great job, be it supplements, skincare, an amazing app or a sweaty new workout. However, I will never post about fad diets or quick fixes as I believe that being healthy is about your whole lifestyle and is a continuous journey, not just a destination. I blog to share what I have learned as well as to track my own progress (I can be quite competitive with myself!) as I strive for a better body, inside and out. My ethos is to make the best of things. And that includes yourself!

I love hearing what my readers think too, so if you've tried a great new fitness class that you think I'd enjoy, or know how I could tweak my diet to see better results, I'm always excited to hear from you. Even if you're just dropping by, be sure to say hello!"”


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“Hello. I am Jemma, the blogger behind Beauty In Things. I am no stranger to beauty blogging - in 2010 I started my first blog The Beautiful News, before stopping in 2012.

I love beauty products, particularly eyeshadows & mascaras, skincare products, and hair care, and loved blogging about products and sharing reviews with the beauty blogging community.

I returned to blogging, and started Beauty In Things, which is a slightly different blog to The Beautiful News - it feels more mature and I feel I can post more personal posts than I did previously.

My blog not only features reviews of products I have tried and tested, but also is a place where I post my daily ramblings, and share my photos - I am a bit of a keen photographer and love posting my Silent Sunday photo posts each week (one photo, no words).

I also share recipes that I love, and lifestyle related posts, as well as book reviews. I also moved into my first home (without parents!) in 2012, so love posting home & garden inspiration posts as well.

I do hope you will hop over and check out my blog, and follow along if you enjoy it!”



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"Hey everyone! I am Gaby from a little beauty and lifestyle blog where I post every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. On my blog you will find honest product reviews (the good, the bad and the ugly), plenty of cheeky hauls, makeup tutorials and some random general life stuff mixed in.

I started my blog after spending hours reading blogs and watching youtube videos and I really love writing posts and seeing your reactions to my posts. I am still not really sure what I'm doing most of the time but I would really love you to visit! You can also find me on twitter and Instagram @anothergirlyblg"



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“Celebrity Smiles LED Teeth Whitening are specialists in instant teeth whitening procedures. Their treatments are revolutionary and have been tried and tested across the globe. They are proud to have a long line of happy customers who have recommended us to their friends and families. Treatment only takes 1 hour and results are instant!
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Be sure to give them all a read, I guarantee that you won’t regret it! If you are interested in being featured on my side bar then visit my advertising page for all the details.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Monday’s Meal| Low Fat Peanut Butter Bars

low fat peanut butter bar
As you may or may not know (I do talk about it a lot) I have a big sweet tooth! My biggest weakness is chocolate; which is not only full of calories but full of saturated fat! So when I found the simple recipe above in my beloved Women’s Health Magazine I knew I had to try it!

The recipe is for a “Low-Fat Peanut Butter Bar” and tastes like a snickers bar. What drew me to the recipe was that it would satisfy my sweet tooth, but mainly because it is home-made so I know there a no hidden nastys in it, plus it can be eaten in a number of ways.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Wednesday’s Workout| How to workout when you don’t want to!

how to workout when you dont want to

We’ve all been there, sitting on the couch in the morning in your pjs thinking you would rather stay put and watch Saturday Kitchen than put on your gym gear and workout, or sat in the car on the way home having the argument in your head about whether you are going to workout when you get home…. recently I’ve been doing it more often thanks to the dark mornings and evenings!

So how do you workout when it is the last thing you want to do?

Well firstly, if you have exercised hard and a lot recently then you probably deserve a break, so don’t pressure yourself and take that break. However for everyone else who hasn’t worked out recently, and this is perhaps the second day of skipping your workout you need to really get back on the band wagon otherwise it will leave you behind and you won’t be reaching your personal goals anytime soon. To encourage yourself is possibly one of the hardest things to do, so I thought I would share my tips with you.

Build a community

When my alarm goes off at 6.00am in the morning and I can hear the rain hitting the bedroom window, I grab my phone switch off my alarm and head straight to Instagram or Tumblr. On Instagram I search for #FriskyFall #Toneitup #Fitspo for photos and posts of everyone else working out, eating healthy, posting their results. My tumblr dashboard is full of over 600 “fitspo” blogd that post tips, motivation, recipes and workouts. I then spend a maximum of ten minutes reading through these inspirational blog posts or photos to really gage my mind into WHY I am going to get out of bed and workout. This community is really one of the only things that helps me wake up before (what feels like) the rest of the world and workout.

Set Realistic Goals

Set goals but make them realistic!  Yes everyone will have an ulitmate goal, but by setting your bar too high to start with you can demotivate yourself. Set mini goals that will help you towards your ulitmate goal; be that “do 4 morning workouts this week”, “eat clean on weekdays”, or “get 8 solid hours sleep 4 nights out of 7” all these goals will ultimately become habit after time, and once its habit your ulitmate goal will be within reach!

Have a “Cheat” workout

I have a “Cheat” workout; this is what I call a workout which isn’t massively demanding, one I enjoy, and one I can do anywhere as long as I have YouTube. On days when I REALLY don’t want to workout but know I should I begrudgingly put on my workout gear switch on YouTube and do the workouts below. The workout isn’t very long, it’s not massively demanding BUT it’s better than no workout at all! Doing a mini workout will help me towards my goal more than sitting on the couch thinking about it!

Reward yourself

This is the best part! Reward yourself… NOT with food… you are not a dog! Only dogs are rewarded for good behaviour with food. Celebrate your mini wins with mini rewards; if you’ve done 5 morning workouts that week, give yourself a lazy Sunday morning in bed. If you have eaten clean for all the weekdays give yourself a glass of fizz on the Friday night, if you loose a few inches buy yourself a new top. Every achievement deserves recognition!

I hope my tips help some of you keep on track through the dark and wet winter that is coming! I would love to know what you do to ensure you do a workout even when you don’t want to!

Go check out Jemma’s  wonder blog; Beauty In Things, filled with beauty, fashion and life. A beautiful beauty blog!

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Life #4


lifestyle blog 4-tile

I am currently sat on my couch, watching XFactor, surrounded by tissues; no it’s not upsetting me, I have a horrendous cold and I am unfortunately one of those people who are very pathetic when they are ill. I am hoping that I will wake up tomorrow and it will have disappeared so I can get on with my workouts and (what seems like) none stop day-to-day life.

The past two weeks have actually been a little less hectic than the previous month, which is great as I am starting to feel more settled. It has also allowed me to really get back into my fitness and health. I have been joining in with the Tone It Up Frisky Fall Challenge, so have been preparing all my meals, eating as clean as possible, and working out twice a day. One of my workouts is always a run and I am starting to enjoy them even more so thanks to my new wireless headphones from Jabra; literally one of my favourite workout gadgets along with my Polar HRM. As a result of the challenge I am already feeling a difference so am looking forward to seeing results on Halloween! I have also added the extra challenge of “October-Fast” which means I won’t be eating any sweets or chocolate until Halloween…. a massive challenge for my sweet tooth!

The other week I went on a brewery tour at my new place of work, which was a great night; I even managed a pint of ale which is a biggy for champagne loving me! Speaking of work; my colleagues found the little kitten above running around near the main road. They rescued him, but the vets have been unable to find out who owns it, so at the moment it’s homeless, so if you are in the Lancashire area and fancy a little feline friend, let me know! We’re desperate to give it a home!

There are a few pictures of my gorgeous puppy George above as I spent last weekend dog sitting at my mums. It was lovely to get back up to Cumbria and to spend some time with my two four-legged friends. I also started my Christmas shopping last weekend. Yes, September is early to get it done, but I get so excited about it and have so many presents to buy I like to start early! I also received a little present from work; an iPad mini. It’s not exclusively mine, but it’s still exciting to get a new toy that I can play with and take on meetings and workshops.

Finally mine and Matt’s new home is having its many benefits; we’ve been spending a few evenings in Manchester seems it’s only 50 minutes on the train. We can jump on the 5 o’clock train and be in a bar sipping on cocktails come 6. It’s great to be in the (kind of) countryside, but still be so close to so many restaurants and bars. We actually spent yesterday in Manchester as Matt had some rather posh executive tickets for the Rugby League Final at Old Trafford; so I managed to battle my cold for the day to enjoy a few glasses of fizz.

Be sure to check out Natalie’s wonderful blog; The Blonde Ethos -  full of beauty, fitness and fashion. If you enjoy my blog you will LOVE hers!

Friday, 4 October 2013

Fitness Friday| Jabra Sport Wireless Plus Headphones Review


jabra sport wireless plus headphones reviewjabra sport wireless plus headphones review 2-horzjabra sport wireless plus headphones review 1jabra sport wireless plus headphones review 8-horz

Any runners will probably have experienced the following; earphones refusing to stay in your ears, having to swiftly turn your head to cross the road resulting in them being painfully ripped out of your ear, struggling with tangled wires, trying to decided whether to tuck them into your top and be uncomfortable or leave them flying around on front of you and be irritated by them etc. etc. Surprisingly I never really thought there was an alternative and had resulted to a life of being irritated by them flying around in front of me. That is until Jabra contacted me and asked whether I would be interested in trying their Sport Wireless Plus Headphones as part of their #SetSoudFree campaign; obviously I jumped at the chance.

I waited in anticipation for them, as they took a little while to be shipped over from the US, however they were definitely worth the wait. Firstly I’m a sucker for great packaging, and the Jabra Sport Wireless Plus Headphones* packaging is sleek and very much reminds me of Apple packaging; its all part of the product. It also remind me of Apple as they let the product do the talking. There is not much sale spiel, just a simple get started guide.

After reading the simple guide I was ready to try the headphones out within a few minutes… which is pretty good for me as I am not very savvy with technology! The headphones work via bluetooth, so you simply turn on your bluetooth on your phone and connect it to the headphones. The headphones are now ready to play music, take calls, or as mine do, tell me how slow I’m running and how much further I have to run!

The Jabra Sport Wireless Plus Headphones did come with a wide variety of ear-gels so you can choose the one which is most comfortable for you, from ones that fit right in your ear, or ones that don’t… they came in all shapes and sizes!

So after connecting the headphones up to my phone, choosing the correct ear-gel for me, and tightening the fit clip around the back of my head I took off on my run. At first the headphones didn’t feel very secure, and one slipped off my ear, however I realised that you can sort of mold the headphone around your ear making it tighter and definitely secure. I ran for 30 minutes and after securing the headphones I didn't have to touch or rearrange them once. I’ve worn them in the rain and they work perfectly, which they should as they are sold as being weather and shock proof.

Thy headphones are endorsed by Craig Alexander; a 5 times Ironman world champion and they are sold as being US military shock proof, and after wearing them everyday for the week I am pretty certain that they are tough and longwearing.

Overall I am very impressed. They are very comfortable,  very secure, can withstand the heavy Lancashire rain, and the sound quality is great! I’ve been enjoying my runs a lot more, as I no longer have to battle with annoying wires. I am definitely a convert, and much like I couldn’t imagine a run without my Polar HRM Monitor Watch, I now could not imagine a run without my Jabra Sport Wireless Plus Headphones… so long crappy apple headphones!

Do you have the same headphone problems as I did when running? Have you every tried the Jabra Sport Wireless Plus Headphones, or any other wireless headphones?

Be sure to check out Natalie’s wonderful blog; The Blonde Ethos -  full of beauty, fitness and fashion. If you enjoy my blog you will LOVE hers!

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Wednesday’s Workout| The Podium Effect Workout


The podium effect louise hazel

I’m sure you have all heard of Lucy Mecklenburgh’s health and fitness plan; Results With Lucy, however there is a new girl on the block… Louise Hazel. You may or may not of heard of Louise, but I’m sure you will have seen her. Louise is an Olympic Hepthathlete turned personal trainer.

Much like Lucy’s Health and Fitness plan, Louise has created her own workouts and nutrition guide for those who need the extra push or support to live a healthier life or to get fitter. Her programme; The Podium Effect is a continuous 60 day fitness and nutritional plan based online, that allows you to stream workout videos and download nutritional plans in order to achieve dramatic weight-loss results in the comfort of your own home.

Now much like Results with Lucy, The Podium Effect is not free and costs £9.99 a month; which is in fact cheaper than Results with Lucy, and not too pricey at all compared to a gym membership. However Louise has uploaded three short workouts to her Youtube channel to give you an idea of the type of workouts you receive in her programme and the effort she expects from you to gain the results she promises. The Workouts are the 2 Minute Abs Workout, The 1 Minute Arm Workout and the 2 Minute Glute Workout. Now I thought about just sharing the videos with you so you can gain a free workout, however I found that they moved far too quickly to be able to get a effective workout, so I have created some mini circuits based on the moves shown in the video. This way to can gain a good, effective, short workout and have the video to show you how to do the move.

The Podium Effect 2 Minute Abs Workout – VideoThe podium effect ab workout

The Podium Effect 1 Minute Arm Workout – Video

the podium effect arm workout

The Podium Effect 2 Minute Glute Workout – Video

the podium effect leg workout

I love circuits like this, as they as fast and effective! How about you? Do you enjoy short circuits you can do at home? Would you give Louise’s workout ago? Let me know if you try these workouts.

Be sure to check out Natalie’s wonderful blog; The Blonde Ethos -  full of beauty, fitness and fashion. If you enjoy my blog you will LOVE hers!

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Wednesdays Workout| Tone It Up Frisky Fall Challenge


tone it up frisky falStrive-for-progress-not-perfection-554x433

It’s the start of a new season, my favourite one… Autumn! I love the change in weather, the crisp cool mornings, the changing colours of the leaves, the cosy evenings in front of a fire, and all the cute accessories… hello gloves, hats, scarves and boots!

Anyways, although this post isn’t a single workout as it normally is, it’s a whole workout plan and schedule free for you for the next 6 weeks! The Tone It Up girls have embraced the change of season and created a new Frisky Fall Challenge for their followers. Their challenges are basically a workout plan and schedule to follow with free workouts and tips, and the option of paying for their nutritional guide. I haven’t bought the guide but do love their workouts. But what I love most is the community they create. Those who participate in Tone It Up very often have Instagram and Twitter accounts solely for Tone It Up purposes, they “check in” each time they do a workout; so take pictures of their run or calories burnt, and share the meals they’ve eaten for that day. By searching the official hashtag on either Instagram or Twitter you can meet thousands of girls who are all supporting each other; it’s very motivating!

I attempted their Bikini Series Challenge during the summer, but didn’t do fantastically, which is why I’m going to give it my all during the #FriskyFall Challenge. The challenge is for 6 weeks and runs from Monday just passed to Halloween… so we’ll all look great in our fancy dress costumes!

To follow the challenge Tone It Up say you are to complete each workout challenge they give- everyday; check-in once you have completed it; journal your nutrition; and workout in the morning at least 4 times a week.  To keep us motivated the Tone It Up girls also hand out prizes to those who continually check-in.

I’m very much aiming for progress not perfection. It’s always about taking baby steps for me, as if I tackle too much I become overwhelmed and unmotivated when I fail. So I have set my goals for the next 6 weeks with this in mind. My goals are;

  • BootyCall Morning Workout at least 5 times a week
  • Complete the #100ByHalloween Challenge- Run 100 miles by Halloween.
  • Meal Prep every Sunday
  • Each completely clean 5 days out of 7 (Massive goal for me, who very often grazes on snacks/ treats I shouldn’t)

I’m joining in on the challenge and I imagine loyal Tone It Up girl Jayne Becca will be also. If you fancy it please let me know and we can support each other! If you’re unsure, give the hashtags #FriskyFall #100ByHalloween #ToneItUp #TIU a search on Instagram or Twitter and see how motivating challenges and communities such as these can be!

I hope you take up the challenge. It’s only for 6 weeks… imagine how good you will feel and how amazing you will look after 6 weeks commitment to a new workout schedule!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake Review


illmasaqua eyebrow cake review055illmasqua eyebrow cakeillmasqua eyebrow cake reviewillmasqua eyebrow liner review

I’ve had this post lined up for some time now and have never actually got round to posting it! the photos are that old that I have actually moved house since! Anyways it’s always better than never!

So back in May Illamasqua had a special 50% off sale for one day only as a celebration for reaching 50,000 followers. As a result us beauty bloggers went a little mad and bought everything it seems! I bought the Illamasqua Eurydice Lipstick and this Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake.

As many of you will know I am loyal to my Soap and Glory Archery Eyebrow Pencil, in fact I loved it so much it was my first ever YouTube video. So I took a risk and decided to try out what Illamasqua had to offer in the way of eyebrow options as my Soap and Glory pencil was finally running out.

I went for the eyebrow pallete in a dark grey colour, no I do not have grey eyebrows but I do have black ones and thought that if I bought the black shade it may look too dramatic and I would be in danger of being in Scouse-Brow territory.

The formula of the Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake is very pigmented and has a good staying power. So much so that I have to be extra careful when applying it as it can be difficult to get off if I accidently go over my natural eyebrow. I apply it first thing in the morning and am pleased to say that it doesn’t fade or slip off my face throughout the day. It blends well into my black eyebrows and even Matt had commented saying that the Illamasqua Eyebrow Cakes looks more natural than my trusty Soap and Glory Archery Eyebrow Pencil. I am yet to decide which is my favourite, as I do love the Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake, however it is a little more pricey than the Soap and Glory Eyebrow Pencil. However I have had the Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake for over 5 months now and I’ve barely made a dint in it, so it is very long lasting!

Have you ever tried the Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake? Or are you also loyal to the Soap and Glory Archery Pencil? What other eyebrow products would you recommend?

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Life #3


lifestyle blog 3-tile

What a busy two weeks I have had! As you will all know by now I have recently changed jobs and moved to a whole new area. So as with all change, life always feel a little up in the air for some time, however now that Matt and I have been in our house for a week tomorrow, we are starting to feel a bit more settled.

Last week was an exciting week for me as it was my first little business trip with my new job. I had the wonderful opportunity to travel to southern England and visit a number of hotels the company I work for own. I feel very much like I have had a crash course in the business I work for, as my first month has been very busy. It was great to get out of Head Office and get to know the hotels and staff that I will be working for.   The top four photos detail my trip; hotels rooms, conference rooms and incredible food (not great for the waistline)!

I had a very rare free day last weekend so had a great BootCamp session in the morning and took the train up to Carlisle to visit my family. It was great to spend even a little time with them and get up to date with them and the dog.

This past Monday was moving day. We managed to cram all our belongings into a van and our car and travelled the 50 miles south to our new home. Moving didn’t go without a few mishaps; we did buy a brand new three piece suit which wouldn’t fit into our Living Room which resulted in me having a mini breakdown. However after some gentle persuasion from my mum we decided to make the Living Room the Dining Room and the Dining Room the Living Room, which meant the three piece suite could stay. After moving in I have spent the past few days pinning everything and anything I want for my house. I don’t think my Pinterest has ever been so active!

I am also glad to be back in some kind of routine. With no commuting and no business trips this week, I have been able to get back on board with my meal planning. I have still been exercising but diet is more hard to control when you are on the move and not able to prepare all your meals. So now I am back in a routine I am spending today planning all my meals for the week ahead and making a fresh go at my health and fitness to get back on track for my Christmas Countdown.

Photo 11 of the t-shirt had to be included as I love it! this very much signifies my running technique… I’m not the quickest but at least I’m running. Some days I can run forever, others I struggle with even 200 metres. However now I am in a new area I have been lacing up my trainers and exploring my new town the best way you can; by pounding the pavement. I am a strange runner as I much prefer to run on a cooler evening than a warm day…. the cool breeze on my face and crisp air means I don’t over heat and perform better… anyone else agree with me?

Friday, 20 September 2013

Fitness Friday| 100 Days Until Christmas


100 days till christmas countdown exercise and workout plan

The title of this blog post is 100 days until Christmas, however it is in fact 97 days till Christmas, but with such a big mile stone it really is the perfect time to reassess where you are and make plans so that you are where you want to be come the big day!

For me Christmas 2013 is my big goal for my health and fitness, it has come around a lot quicker than I thought it would, however this gives me the perfect excuse to kick it up a notch! I want to feel (and look) the best I can for Christmas, so starting this week I have been making a more conscious effort to eat healthier and workout more smartly. A few of you have asked what exactly are my plans, so I thought I would share them with you.

Fitness Plan

Workout twice a day 5-6 times a week; Cardio in the morning and toning/strength in the evening.

For cardio I aim to run for at least 30 minutes or skip for 15. Cardio is perfect for the morning as it not only wakes you up but it also kick starts your metabolism meaning you burn more calories throughout the day compared to if you haven’t worked out… who doesn’t love burning calories while sitting on your bum!

For strength and toning I use trusty YouTube and DVD’s since I’m a none gym goer. I spend quite a bit of time searching YouTube for workouts to do during the week. This next week I plan attempting to complete at least 2 of the workouts below, if not all three each day. However make sure you listen to your body and don’t strain yourself!

Sunday- LEGS-

The Podium Effect 2 Min Glute Workout  &    Tone Up-30Day Butt Lift   Love Your Legs Workout

Monday- ARMS-

 The Podium Effect 1 Min Arm Workout   &   Bridal Babe Workout    Toned Arms Workout

Tuesday- ABS-

The Ultimate Fashion Blogger Workout   &  The Podium Effect 2 Min Abs Workout   Jessica Alba Ab Workout

Wednesday- LEGS-

MaliBooty Workout    Tabata Butt 10 Min Workout    How To Get Legs Like Jennifer Lawrence

Thursday- REST

Friday- ABS & ARMS-

Rapid Abs Workout     Strong & Sexy Upper Body 20min Circuit Workout

Eating Plan

Eating is always where I struggle, sometimes my willpower isn’t strong enough to battle my cravings, so I always eat every couple of hours to ensure I am never hungry. I find that if I am hungry I tend to binge on unhealthy food. So everyday I have three small meals and two snacks. A typical day will look as below;

Breakfast- Greek Yoghurt with banana, chia seeds, coconut & honey or Overnight Oats or Two Ingredient Pancakes

Snack- Nuts or Nakd Bar or Green Smoothie

Lunch- Tomato & Mozzarella Salad or Tuna/Chicken Salad or Sweet Potato with Tuna or Humous and Carrot Sticks

Snacks- Protein Milk or Nuts or Fruit

Dinner- Chicken and Vegetables or Fish and Vegetables

Occasional Extra Snack- Greek yoghurt with honey or Meringue Cookies or Banana and Nutella

I hope this post gives you some idea of my routine over the next few months. It is by no means a suggestion that this would work for you, I am not an expert so cannot advice you personally, only give you an example of what works for me.

How are you planning to meet your goals in 100 days times? If you want to feel your best for Christmas and New Year you need to start now!

Be sure to check out Becci’s gorgeous blog; Only Becci- full of yummy food, amazing recipes, beauty and life.

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Wednesday’s Workout| Killer Bum and Leg Workout


bum and leg day workout

After what seems like a millions years (it was only a week) I am back to blogging, and back with a bang. If you follow me on instagram or Twitter you will of seen me talking about my little business trip last week. As exciting and fun as it was, it isn’t ideal for those who plan their workouts and food as religiously as I normally do, so it was a struggle to ensure I kept on track. I admit that my nutrition went out of the window… I ate well for breakfast and lunch, however dinner was the works… I’m talking two to three courses of prawns, chicken, chips, onion rings, pasta, and even a burger! But oh my word the food was amazing (take a peek at the menus), and seems I’m in charge of content for my company, I need to ensure I know what I’m talking about (that’s my excuse!)

Anyways while away I worked out in the gym one morning, however tiredness and a mini hangover meant that a 6am wakeup call before giving a 4 hour long workshop didn't happen the other mornings, so I resorted to working out in my hotel room. This may seem weird when there was a fully equipped gym downstairs, however I knew that it would be very busy and I wanted to spend my workout time concentrating on me, not trying to find free exercise machines. So I used trusty YouTube for workout videos and came up with the following leg and bum workout.

This leg and bum workout it short, but effective! I really felt it the next day! I don’t know about you but I love leg day, as I can really feel and see the difference in my legs when I work on them, plus its quite humorous not being able to sit down properly the next day! I did each video once through. Give it a go and let me know if you enjoy them!

Aside from squats what are your favourite leg and bum toning moves? What are your favourite Youtube leg and bum workouts… link me up!

Be sure to check out Becci’s gorgeous blog; Only Becci- full of yummy food, amazing recipes, beauty and life.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Monday’s Meals| Healthy Meringues| Healthy Sweet Snacks


healthy meringues healthy sweet snacks 1healthy meringues-tilehealthy meringues healthy sweet snacks

I don’t know about you but I have a massive sweet tooth and am always on the look our for healthy sweet snacks. I don’t really mind what it is, but a I do prefer a chocolate flavoured sweet snack over any other. So when I came across a picture of little healthy meringue cookies on tumblr, I realised that healthy meringues could be something that would satisfy my sweet tooth.

Now I have fond memories of meringue from my Granddad’s famous Pavlova, however the mound of cream involved with them does not make it the healthiest dessert. So unfortunately these healthy meringues do not include cream, but I assure you they are a great healthy sweet snack, and very easy to make with only three  ingredients.

All you need are two egg whites, 1/2 cup of caster sugar and 1 tablespoon of Nutella. Simply beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, then mix in the caster sugar a little at a time until it forms glossy stiff peaks. Finally add the Nutella and mix it all together. Next pipe out your meringues onto baking parchment, I managed to make 24 with my mixture, then place them in a preheated oven of around 100-110 degrees and cook for around 30 minutes. Take them out of the oven when they are done and leave them too cool.

Et voila! You have 24 little healthy meringue cookies that will satisfy your sweet tooth. You could try different flavours by swapping Nutella for jam, or try adding your meringues to Greek Yoghurt for an extra yummy healthy dessert!

Nutritional content per cookie- 21 calories, 4.6g carbs, 0.25g fat, 0.3g protein

Have you ever tired meringue cookies as an alternative to the real thing? Do you have any other heather sweet snacks that you make regularly to keep you from nibbling on cake and chocolate?

Visit Megan’s blog Emmiegee for fashion, beauty and lifestyle posts. Full of reviews, outfits and recipes.

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Life #2

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What a two weeks I have had! If you read my blog regularly, follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you will know I have started a new job. As exciting as this job is, the hour commute morning and night is very tiring and obviously takes up a lot of time in your day! Thankfully Matt and I have secured a house in the area, and will be moving a week tomorrow! This is very quick and not the best timing as I am away on a business trip for the majority of this next week, so we have been quickly packing this past weekend, and poor Matt is being left to do the rest himself until I come back on Friday.

Aside from being busy in my new job the past two weeks have also been filled with family and friends. Two weekends ago Matts parents came and visited us and we spent the Bank Holiday weekend wandering around Lake Windermere and drinking in the pubs in Kendal… the way a bank holiday should be spent!

Last weekend was a girly weekend. I visited Manchester for my boyfriends mum’s 50th Birthday, along with a group of her friends and my best friend (who conveniently goes out with my boyfriends brother.) We went on the Friday, and spent the day drinking in bars before a gorgeous dinner at The Alchemist. We then came back to the hotel, changed into our glad rags and spent the night drinking too many cocktails… hello Porn Star Martinis and dancing. A few sore heads were present the next day, so we headed to Leeds and spent the evening eating takeaway and watching X Factor.

After an over indulgent few days, Sunday morning Matt and I were up early and out running. We had a great 4 mile run in the park and I finished it off with some of my favourite YouTube workouts. I have actually been struggling to get my workouts in as I have been so exhausted thanks to the long commute, but thankfully this next week I’m staying in hotels so will get a small lie in, then the week after I will of moved so will be able to get into more of a routine and explore my new area with some long runs around the park and streets.

I don’t know about you but I’m enjoying the change of seasons. The misty morning picture above makes me excited about crisp mornings, colourful trees, boots, scarves and hats! I have actually started my Christmas shopping, so Autumn is definitely underway in my house!

So after a busy few weeks, and a busy week ahead. Matt and I have spent today cuddled up on the sofa after a few too many drinks last night. Matt’s been nursing a sore head and I’ve been busy packing for my week of workshops and presentations down south, and blogging!

Visit Megan’s blog Emmiegee for fashion, beauty and lifestyle posts. Full of reviews, outfits and recipes.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Fitness Friday| Maxinutrition Protein Milk Review


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You may or may not know I am a massive fan of protein. No I am not a body builder, nor am I looking to bulk up… in fact I am after the opposite… I want to lose weight and gain toned muscles. However I know that protein is perfect for those wanting to do this also, it’s not just for body builders…. protein is important for not only muscles but your bones, skin and hair! Protein should be one of the most important food groups in your diet, like carbs they are great for filling you up, however they don’t have the negatives, it has less sugar and doesn’t make you bloat like carbs do for some people like me.

I try to get protein in every single meal of mine, I don’t over do it, as there is no benefit in over eating protein, but I find that little and often is best for me. On a typical day I will have spinach in my breakfast smoothie, nuts for snacks, eggs in my salad, peanut butter on everything and anything and I eat chicken pretty much every day.

The biggest issue of mine was my desire to find a suitable protein drink or shake. I had previously tried the Maxitone Sculptress Powder but wasn’t happy with the huge list of ingredients in it as I like to eat as clean as possible, so when Maxinutrition got in contact and ask if I would like to try their Maxinutrition Protein Milk* I jumped at the chance. This pre-packed, premade protein drink was exactly what I was after; something I can grab on the go, have as a snack and use to refuel after my evening workouts.

Maxinutrition says that “Protein Milk is packed full of protein to keep your muscles in tip top shape. It contains a blend of skimmed milk proteins and is virtually fat free with no added sugar. It’s a great option for an on the go refreshing drink. Perfect for anyone looking to meet their general protein needs.”

I absolutely love Maxinutrition’s Protein Milk! I have been having it at different times during the day as it really is a great go to snack. I have one in my bag at all times and a couple in my desk drawer. As you don’t need to refrigerate them they really are very versatile and the perfect go to drink. I usually have mine after my workout to repair my muscles and with only 135 calories per drink it is completely guilt free! However they are ideally suited for a quick breakfast paired with a banana or a snack during the day. I could not recommend these enough!

Have you ever tried Maxinutrition Protein Milk? What other quick and easy protein drinks would you recommend?

Visit Megan’s blog Emmiegee for fashion, beauty and lifestyle posts. Full of reviews, outfits and recipes.

Monday, 2 September 2013

The importance of preparing your meals for weight loss


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If you follow me on Instagram you will of seen my excitement last week about my new lunch box. To many, new lunch box excitement is something you left behind when you left school, however for myself and others who still prepare our meals each day the humble lunch box is still important, so when you find one as cute as the one above, it’s exciting!

I decided to create this blog post to help those who have no idea about the importance of preparing your meals. For those with will power preparing your meals may not be as important, but for those of you who are like me, I cannot stress enough the importance of preparing your meals in advance. I am very organised and actually have a recipe book full of magazine clippings of recipes that I use regularly, and every weekend Matt and I chose which meals we will be having for the week, so that when we do our weekly shop we buy only the ingredients needed for the healthy meals we have planned. This help me as it save walking aimlessly around the supermarket picking up naughty nibbles that I really don't need. As a result I always have a fridge full of healthy food that won’t go to waste as it is all allocated for specific days.

The first image on the left is one taken from tumblr that shows preparation in the extreme. I very rarely prepare more than one day in advance as I like to make sure my food is as fresh as possible, and I think preparing salads for the entire week would cause them to go a bit limp. So personally I set aside 20 minutes each evening to prepare my breakfast, snacks and lunch for the next day.  This is why my lunchbox excites me as it has numerous compartments; my lunch goes in the large bottom compartment then I fill the three smaller top compartments with snacks such as carrots and humous, nuts, raisons, fruit etc. I bought my lunchbox from Asda for only £4 and am very impressed with it. It does come in various other colour for those who don’t fancy the bright pink!

So why is preparing your meals important for weight loss? Well it saves you from grabbing the nearest thing when you are hungry! How many times have you prepared only your lunch, but become hungry at 3/4 o clock in the afternoon and grabbed a bag of crisps, or given into the temptation of the office cakes and biscuits? These sly snacks can completely sabotage your efforts at healthy eating. So if you prepare each of your meals in advance and always have healthy snacks to hand there is NO EXCUSE to not eat healthily! Plus by preparing your lunch each day you will save yourself so much money! Yes the salads from Marks and Spencer or Pret A Manger are very yummy, but they not only come at a cost but you don’t really know the contents unless you study the ingredients list religiously. If you make your own meals you know exactly what you are eating!

Below is an idea of simple snacks you could prepare for your lunchbox;

Do you prepare your lunches each day? Or do you struggle to know what to prepare? What are your favourite healthy snacks?

Visit Megan’s blog Emmiegee for fashion, beauty and lifestyle posts. Full of reviews, outfits and recipes.

Saturday, 31 August 2013

Share the love| Meet my August Sponsors

It’s the end of another month! How time flies! This month has been very busy for me and full of changes, you can read why in my previous blog post. This month my sponsors have been amazing! Well they always are, but this months have been very varied, from fitness, lifestyle, personal, food and mental health. All are special in their own ways so read below on why you should go and take a read at their blogs.
blog button english rose
“Hi, I’m Jen, and my blog English Rose from Manchester is my little corner of the world where I talk about all the things that matter to me…. I love all things fashion, theatre and crafts-related, take pleasure in pretty, whimsical things and spend my time baking, singing, crafting, drinking tea and enjoying everything that the wonderful city of Manchester has to offer!”

Miss Jayne Becca Ad
“Hi all! My name is Jayne I'm a fitness and beauty fanatic, which is why I write about beauty, fitness with a bit of lifestyle thrown in over on my blog Miss Jayne Becca. I write my blog to document my life and my fitness journey. I also love to share my favourite beauty products. I pride myself on not looking my age (I'm 31, shussh) so if you want to know my views and how I keep myself fit and healthy ~ hop on over and say hello! 
I write a mixture of posts from my current workout routine, to clean eating recipes and beauty posts. I also love to share my favourite beauty products with you all through reviews. I love to chat and hear other people views on beauty and fitness ~ I'm always up for trying and learning new things and I would love to hear from you!”
blog button red head said
"Hello! I'm Sami and I write 'That Redhead Said'. It's a lifestyle blog which discusses everything from mental health, to the exciting and intriguing world of food and beauty. You will also be able to follow my life at Sussex University as of next month when I will start my degree in Medical Neuroscience, yikes!
In a nutshell, That Redhead Said tries to fight against the stigma of mental illness by explaining to readers about various conditions and also showing that I'm a normal person like everyone else; help sufferers seek help by explaining the mental health system and also sharing therapeutic information and exercises whenever possible. I love to share recipes and reviews on food and beauty products as I discover them.
I hope you will join me on this journey into recovery and geek-ish-ness; there's a lot of exciting adventures to be had and stories to tell! Oh, and I have a crazy cat called Lily so if you ever need an internet kitteh fix I've got you covered!" 
teeth whitening leeds
“Celebrity Smiles LED Teeth Whitening are specialitists in instant teeth whitening procedures. Their treatments are revolutionary and have been tried and tested across the globe. They are proud to have a long line of happy customers who have recommended us to their friends and families. Treatment only takes 1 hour and results are instant!
Special Offer!! Book now for only £99 Normally £249”
Be sure to give them all a read, I guarantee that you won’t regret it! If you are interested in featuring on my side bar then visit my advertising page for all the details.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Fitness Friday| Zaggora Viva Capri Hot Pants Review


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I have always been intrigued by Zaggoras Hot Pants, but just could not justify spending £70 on a pair of pants that may just be a gimmick... I'm not one to buy into things easily seems I work in marketing myself. However I was lucky enough to win a pair of Zaggora Viva Capri Hot-Pants* on my birthday in May.

My first experience with Zaggora weren't great as I had to wait for a month for my prize to arrive but when they did finally arrive I tried them on straight away as I was worried about the sizing. I had ordered a size S, as I was in-between a S-M size, and seems Zaggora claim you lose weight and inches in two weeks of wearing the pants then I thought I'd best get the small and slim into them. I was pleased to see that they did fit after a lot of squeezing, pulling and sweating! So armed with my new bright purple pants I took them out for a run.

The first thing you notice is the noise! Oh my word they are noisy! If you are a shy person then you probably don't want to be wearing bright purple noisy pants. However if you have thighs that don't touch then this won't effect you. So to put me off the noise I turned up my music and set off for a run. I actually felt quite confident when wearing the pants because they are like running in a pair of spanx... they pull in your tummy, legs and bum and are very flattering! It took me a little while to get used to the tightness of the pants, as they are obviously a bit more restricting than regular running leggings, however I could still run at my normal pace.

I really put my pants to the test when I attended bootcamp, as there is a lot of running, jumping and crawling. My fellow bootcampers thought it was very funny seems they could hear me before they could see me with my swishy pants. At bootcamp was when I first noticed the "Hot Pants" work. I was about half way through the class when I felt a trickling down my calf and found that my legs were sweaty so much because of the Zaggora pants that sweat was dripping down my thighs and seeping through the bottom of the pants and at parts through the seems. So the technology behind the pants definitely works, I sweat a hell of a lot more while wearing them. A little embarrassing walking home with a sweaty bum!

So do they work? Well Zaggora claim that their "Hot Pants technology" help you lose weight and inches quickly. I put my Zaggora pants to test for 6 weeks, wearing them 6 days a week for at least half an hour, and although I can’t say if I lost weight (I don’t weigh myself) I can say that I did lose inches. I lost 1.5 inches from my bum and hips and feel a hell of a lot more toned. I still have cellulite so it didn’t get rid of that, but the pants leave your skin very smooth and do help with the tone in your legs and bum… but then again so does exercise!

So what's my final opinion? I think that the Zaggora pants are a good workout pants once you get over the noise as that is a little embarrassing and hard to explain. I like that they are colourful and tight fitting as it makes me feel more confident when I'm working out. They are very flattering, look good and help improve your skin tone. However I don't think I would buy them myself as they are a little out of my price range as I buy and wear a lot of workout clothes so need them to be affordable.

Have you ever tried the Zaggora Workout Pants? What did you think about the noise? Have you been tempted to give them ago?

Check out Sami’s gorgeous lifestyle blog; That Red Head Said; full of food, life, mental health and beauty.  I love how her blog is honest down to earth, a mix of topics  and regularly updated.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Monday’s Meal| Dr Zak’s High Protein Bread


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For many people eating carbs regularly is a no no. It’s not bad for your diet, a healthy diet is a balanced one, but many people, myself included choose to not eat certain carbs as their body doesn’t react well to them. I personally tend to avoid simple carbs such as bread as it makes me bloat and feel terrible. I prefer to eat complex carbs found in rice, sweet potato and vegetable alongside a lot of protein… hello Spinach, chicken and Greek Yoghurt! So when I was told about High Protein Bread I was very excited! Bread that I could possibly include in my diet… an interesting idea!

Dr Zak’s Protein Bread* is made from natural ingredients that are formulated to deliver the perfect balance between protein and carbohydrates. So although the bread does contain some carbs it isn’t as carb heavy as the other breads on the market.

There are over 30g of protein in just two slices which is a similar amount to the 36g you find in a typical chicken breast. As well as being full  of protein the bread is packed full of 8 essential amino acids for muscle growth and energy, fibre and Omega 3’s.

Dr Zak’s say that their High Protein Bread is not only perfect for maintaining or building those sexy sculpted muscles we want, especially in our arms, abs and bum! But it is ideal for people who want to lose weight as it helps you stay fuller for longer than what your usual slice of bread does. I can completely confirm this as when I first tried the bread I went for my usual 2 slices but found after a slice and a half I could not eat another bite. The bread isn’t heavy it just really does fill you up!

I have been having my Dr Zak’s High Protein Bread after my workouts with peanut butter spread on top or for breakfast when I’m in a rush! I could not recommend it more to those who don’t usually eat carbs, but are craving a little bit of bread.

Have you ever tried of even heard of High Protein Bread such as this? Would you give it a try?

Check out Sami’s gorgeous lifestyle blog; That Red Head Said; full of food, life, mental health and beauty.  I love how her blog is honest down to earth, a mix of topics  and regularly updated.