Tuesday, 30 June 2009

new maximuscle goodies on order

just placed an order with a fab cheap site called Dolphin Fitness for some Maximuscle goodies :-D

I've bought some more Promax Diet Bars in chocolate orange flavour, can't get enough of those and they're so good to just chuck in my bag when I'm out for the day, like at rehearsals etc, as they don't melt like other chocolate bars I can keep them out in the sun - unlike me, which did melt on Sunday!!

also ordered some Promax Diet shake powder as just discovered that you can buy it in vanilla flavour, hurrah! You can only get that flavour if you buy the big tubs but I figure that I get through enough of this powder it's probably more economical to buy it in bulk! Just hope the flavour's not minging, as I'll be stuck with a lot if so! ha! mind you, if it's not as tasty as I hope then I can always mix and match. My favourite flavour is "BananaBerry", aka 1 scoop of Promax Diet in Banana and 1 scoop Strawberry, it's a max yum combination!

lastly I've ordered two lots of their new Maxi-Milk... have ordered the chocolate as well as the strawberry which I've already tried and used up! it's seriously tasty and, again, can just throw it in my bag and it's ready to drink when I need it :-D

so yeah, Dolphin Fitness, super site, all the above actually cost over £6 less than from the Maximuscle site, even with their 4-for-the-price-of-3 offer, word to the wise - quality products at more affordable prices!

It's a pity Maximuscle goods are just that much more expensive than just about everything else out there! Yes they are fantastic, tasty and good quality, which is why I keep re-ordering my faves... but I seriously think they'd win more customers if they just re-thought their pricing structure a little, perhaps offered more incentives, like 3-for-2 instead of 4-for-3 etc... I think that once they've got fans and customers that they'll keep them because they realise how good the products are... but it's the initial attraction where they probably fall short as there are a lot of price-savvy people out there who'll shop around extensively for a bargain. I've read loads of reviews on the various Maximuscle protein powders and supplements and none of them have questioned their efficacy... the No.1 criticism is always the price!

oh and I also wish Maximuscle would rethink their free gift with orders over a certain price - I have SO many unused shakers now it's unbelievable, haha!! anyone want one?!

My strength building workouts (for now!)

Right, now that I am recovered more or less 100% from my horrid flu and having realised that I don't have a chance in hell of winning the Maximuscle Body of 2009 unless I start taking my training much more seriously, I've finally put together 4 strength-training workouts based on the exercises I currently do.

There are two upper routines and two lower. The No. 1s can only be done at my local gym as they're machine based and my work gym is a bit pants!

I haven't yet decided yet how often I'll do them, I think one of each a week, intersperced with cardio (walking, running, biking and rowing) will do for now as I'm going to be super busy between now and August! This week and next ridiculously so as I've got rehearsals tonight, a British Military Fitness class tomorrow (woo hoo!), venue reccee with a friend on friday (I'm helping out with a new themed club night in London coming in August, it's going to be awesome!), BBQ/picnic saturday, dress rehearsals sunday... and then all of next week is basically rehearsals then performances from thursday to sunday... scary!

anyway, enough blabbering, here are my routines:

UPPER BODY WORKOUT NO. 1
(Machine and Stability Ball)


* Chest Press
* Lat Pulldown
* Triceps Pressdown
* Pec Deck fly
* Low Row
* Shoulder External Rotation
* Shoulder Internal Rotation
* Back Extension - Arms Folded
* Back Extension - Arms Out


UPPER BODY WORKOUT NO. 2
(Dumbbells)


* Shoulder Press
* Biceps Curl
* Upright Row
* Triceps Kickback
* Lateral Shoulder Raises
* Side Row


LOWER BODY WORKOUT NO. 1
(Machine and Stability Ball)


* Double Leg Press
* Single Leg Press
* Leg Curl
* Leg Extension
* Hip Adductor
* Hip Abductor


LOWER BODY WORKOUT NO. 2
(Dumbbells)


* Step-up
* Forward Lunge
* Squat
* Stiff Leg Dead Lift
* Single Leg Split Squat
* Single Leg Calf Raise
* Reverse Lunge

I'm also doing some various abdominal exercises but haven't decided which one I like enough to do regularly... none of them make me hurt enough the next day!!

Monday, 29 June 2009

Sheepish of Sheepsville

so I screwed up a bit this weekend... Joe and I went round to friends' place for dinner on Friday... we had a BBQ and, while I considered myself close to saintly for my ability to resist the doughy burger bun... I conveniently neglected to remember the kettle chips I'd scoffed beforehand. The whole exercise in sin was polished off by drinking copious amounts of pink fizz.

I felt like utter shit on Saturday! I basically spent the entirety of it on the sofa watching meaningless TV - son and I watched the first Transformers movie... it was agreeably forgettable... needless to say I won't be venturing to our local cinema to see its sequel!

I've not been drinking alcohol for a while so my tolerance is stupidly low... I thought myself well-behaved to have avoided the absinthe we'd discovered the last time we popped round for dinner... didn't quite realise how much bubbly I'd drank until I woke up the next day and realised I didn't remember much of the journey home! Good old rosé scooter eh?!

anyway, consequently I didn't take pictures, was feeling bleary blotchy and bloated having had a dicky tummy for most of the week - I think I might be sensitive to strawberries, or some other red/pink fruit... hmm, will have to investigate that!

yesterday was the final rehearsal before the big dress and tech rehearsal next week - ARGHH - the whole run of performances has sold out - ARGHH ARGHH ARGHHH!! Soooo scary, though I'm super cool with my lines now and very pleased I don't have to put on a welsh accent again for this part - my own brand of RP will suit me just fine in my role as a georgian laydee. Can't wait to get into my dresses, I have 3! And a lovely long evening coat, sooo sumptious :-D

I'm really looking forward to having some time to myself now, especially since my OU course has finished too. We rehearsed Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday last week and will do the same this week... not in London either, only one in London, the others in Bracknell and Cookham!

Anyway... yesterday I was a bit less than generous with the sun cream and, despite spending *almost* the entire day in the shade... my rare ventures out have resulted in a most splendid rosy red glow to my chest and shoulders. Thank God my awesome Boots No.7 face cream has SPF15 in it or I'd be resembling an out of season reindeer too!

I'm gonna nip off now as I'm walking home, but I've planned my workout for this week. I've split the exercises I mentioned in my current strength training list into four sections, 2 lots of upper and 2 of lower, split by where I can carry them out (i.e. work or local gym). I'll post more soon but off now to walk home in the sooon-sheee-iiiiiine :-D

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Strength Training Exercise List

I thought I'd compile all the strength exercises I currently do so that I can use it as a reference for my plan and future posts.

I might add to/take away from the list as there are some exercises with kettle bells that I'd like to try.

Hugely grateful to http://www.physicalfitnet.com/ for their amazingly extensive free library of instruction video clips, it's a fab site! Try the search facility for yourself! http://www.physicalfitnet.com/exercise_video_library/exercise_search.aspx

so, here we go:

UPPER BODY EXERCISES

Shoulders

* Dumbbell Shoulder Press
* Dumbbell Shoulder Lateral Raise
* Cable Shoulder External Rotation
* Cable Shoulder Internal Rotation
* Dumbbell Upright Row

Back

* Low Row
* Lat Pulldown
* Dumbbell Side Row
* Back Extension On Stability Ball - Arms Folded
* Back Extension On Stability Ball - Arms Out

Arms

* Dumbbell Bicep Curl
* Dumbbell Triceps Extension
* Cable Triceps Pressdown With Rope

Chest

* Chest Press
* Pec Deck Fly


LOWER BODY EXERCISES

* Reciprocal Dumbbell Step Up On Bench
* Alternating Dumbbell Lunge
* Alternating Backward Dumbbell Lunge
* Dumbbell Squat
* Dumbbell Split Squat With Back Leg On Bench
* 1 Leg Standing Calf Raise With Dumbbell
* Stiff Leg Dumbbell Deadlift
* Double Leg Press
* Single Leg Press
* Leg Curl
* Leg Extension
* Hip Adductor
* Hip Abductor


I think that's it for now, I'm sure I've missed some stuff off, mind! Ahh well, a work in progress, just like me :-)

Friday, 26 June 2009

an interesting class indeed...

so, on wednesday evening I trotted along to my gym, all psyched up to do body attack and body combat...

when I got there the class before was still piling out, but the new class occupants were sparse indeed. Then I overheard a couple of people saying that it was because the usual instructor wasn't there... alarm bells started ringing but I thought: "well, can still give it a try, this new instructor might be just as good... despite the fact that the studio isn't rammed!" I have to explain - the fitness studios' window face out into the park and you can see the people in the class (this does tend to have a blinding effect on the poor instructor as she's then facing westwards straight out into the glaring sun!), when I've run/cycled past the windows on a Wednesday evening I've seen the studio literally heaving with people... so the fact that there were only five, including myself, who turned up to this lesson, was concerning.

More concerning was the fact that the instructor didn't actually know how to take a Body Attack class, which was revealed just as the music started. My instinct was to think "bugger this" and escape to the weights room, but I thought a) that would be a bit rude and b) I should probably just be a game bird and give it a bash anyway.

The instructor, whose name I've just managed to find out by a bit of internet stalking research, is Mishka Pogoda, was completely nuts... and I don't mean slightly loopy, this lady is totally unhinged... BUT, in the best possible way!! haha I spent the first 10/15 minutes in hysterics as she had us leaping around waving our arms about, shaking our arses, and yelling out various noises. She was relentless, she didn't let us stop moving until the end of the aerobics section!

At first I was bemused, then a little annoyed at the ostensible lack of structure (can you tell I'm used to running for set times/distances and working statically with weights?!), then I started to really enjoy it. The first section just literally flew by and I was hugely red-faced and sweaty and had drunk half a litre of water! After all the arm-waving, hand-clapping and bottom-shaking had finished (all performed while leaping around, our feet were never still for one second!), we then moved onto more of a 'combat' section where we performed boxing/kicking moves, before grabbing some weights and moving through a range of exercises starting with shoulder presses and ending with squats... all performed in a fluid fashion... it was actually good fun!

We finished with stomach work and some good stretches and I felt great at the end of it and I couldn't take the smile off my face!!

I didn't see the point in staying til the next class though as it wouldn't be Body Pump so I went home and some skipping with my new weighted rope, I was rubbish, could only manage 3 sets of 100 and then thought I'd call it a day!


I'd love to do another class with Mishka, the only one I can see at my gym is on the weekend and is called Cardio Bhangra, sounds cool and goes a long way to explain how she's such a great mover, hip action that would put Shakira to shame!

Here are some more pics of her in action during a Bhangrathon!. Looks like soooo much fun!

Looking at this site: http://www.agentbhangra.com/ there appear to be many different classes of this ilk, I LOVE the sound of Turbo Belly Rave!! hee hee that made me chuckle :-D

anyhoo, I'm guessing I'm going to have to wait until the usual instructor's back at my gym to see what Body Attack and Pump are all about, but in the meantime, I think I might have a look at taking part in some aerobics classes, if I have time to fit them in...!

TJx

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

stairs = a little challenging, but not impossible, phew!

So, the good news is that I can walk today - hurrah! I am pretty damn stiff and my legs are definitely feeling the effects of the last two day's weight and spin sessions, but hopefully that'll lessen by the end of the day...

my first lesson is Body Attack (see pic), followed by Body Pump... if what I'm led to believe is true and BA is much harder than BP then I might be grateful of the comparative ease provided by BP's class being second! we shall see!

As you'll see from the screen print I have also booked on a beginner's pilates lesson on Saturday morning. My pride/ego screams that I shouldn't be doing a 'beginner's class', that I'm *way* more advanced and should at least be attending the intermediate one.... but I am quieting it by pointing out that there is no intermediate class, and that the advanced class starts at 09:45 (me and mornings don't get on, especially at the weekend!), and that I'm sure after this week's class I shall realise just how much of an advanced person I am (ahem, cough cough) and progress to the advanced class the following week.

reality will probably dictate that I realise just *how* weak my unworked core actually is, and happily participate in the beginner's class until further notice ;-)

although my comment about mornings is indeed accurate, these last two days (hardly a lifetime I realise) I've endeavoured to get up earlier. yesterday I was up at 6 to take the bread out of the breadmaker and let it cool sufficiently so I could make my son a sarnie before heading to spin class at the eye-watering time of 06:45! Today I was up at 07:00 to make son's sandwich again as didn't have time last night and he has to leave by 07:25 to get the train to school (it's quite far away, but I don't want him going to school in central london, nuh uh!).

Instead of doing my usual trick this morning of leaping back into my warm inviting bed and snuggling back up to my also-useless-at-getting-up-early, I made a cup of coffee, jumped in the shower and then headed to work. Was at my desk by 08:20, my boss nearly fell off his chair!

it meant that I was able to promote a shipment into the live environment before anyone from the admin team was in, bonus!

also means that I'll be able to leave here early (like at 5!) which'll be strange to say the least. I usually rock up to my desk at 10am and then leave after 6... sometimes way after, like at 8pm the other day! I think it's down to my lack of productivity in the morning, probably due to not getting up early enough and then spending the rest of the morning in a daze. Yup, that's it.

this morning I feel bright, albeit starving, haha. that's the problem with getting up early, more hours to get hungry in, hmm. I had a big breakfast of scrambled eggs and beans so not going to eat until lunch time now, then I'll have a chicken breast/portion of fish (depends what's downstairs in the canteen) and salady stuff, and then have wholewheat pasta with tomato and sausage sauce (that Joe made last night, he cooked - whoa!) before heading to my first class at 19:30. After my class I'll have a banana and a Promax Diet shake... or a Maxi-Milk - OMG they're soooo good!!! They're even tastier than the Promax Diet shakes, which are lovely enough as it is - to give you an idea, maxi-milk tastes like Nesquik, yummm :-D

-------------------------------------------------------

I wrote all the above hours ago, but then work got in the way ;-)

have just had a packet of Jack Links Beef Jerky, it's quite hard to get hold of... I managed to get Joe to get me a couple of packets from the Threshers off licence near his parent's place in Essex - complicated! They're just the original flavour, which, although nice, is not a patch on the hot and sweet flavour, yummm

I do worry about the amount of salt in those snacks but they're very high protein and high on yum too!

The rest of my supplements order from ZipVit arrived yesterday, I've now got 7 little packets of pills wrapped up in clingfilm, looks very dodgy, but will have to do until my pill organiser arrives! I brought a pack of the Spirulina with me to work as it's recommended to be taken 3 times a day... and I spend most of my life at work, ho hum... ;-)

Still trying to work out what sort of fitness routine I will follow

One thing's for certain, I definitely need to do something about my stomach, it's by far the least toned part of me, which is terrible as I've always prided myself on having a reasonably small stomach! I bought Fab Abs (Six-week Workouts) by the legend that is Anita Bean... and I really want to start it, but then I looked through the book and it all looked a little easy! So what does that say about me? That I won't attempt anything if it doesn't look ridiculously tough?!

I think that's been my main problem in recent years, especially when it comes to gym workouts. I know that if I just got to the gym for a mere half an hour every morning and did something it would make a huge difference to my physique... but then there's the voice in my head who says that 30 mins in a gym is pitiful and what's the point in going for that long as I like to spend hours in there! It's silly really though, because it all adds up, but that's me I guess!

This whole healthy change has been as much about challenging my own daft food and exercise ideas as it has been about eating less and doing more. In some ways I'm my own worse enemy and have to convince myself that what I'm doing is worthwhile and effective! It's all a bit of a mental battle really.

Anyway, enough wittering on, I must go and do some shopping now, need to get some more yummy allinson's malt flour for the breadmaker, plus other good (yet heavy!) items!

might report back later on how BA and BP classes went, if my arms have enough strength to type!!!

TJ x

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Lesson learned (...although probably not for long, I give it a day, tops!)

so whose stupid idea was it to put me through a sweat(and almost tear)-inducing lower body workout yesterday and then sign up for spin class at 6.45am?!




oh yeah, it was mine

that was daft, spin was a killer, not least because our ever-smiling friendly-faced sadomasochist instructor was on particularly fine form despite having a stinky cold!

I coughed and gasped for air, sweat so much I had to take my top off (I didhave a sports bra on, mind!) and pretty much hated the whole experience... my lungs burned during the sprints, my quads burned during the hills

torturous!

whinging aside though it was a bloody good workout and I've felt great all day as a result! and I must say that I'm liking the get-up-early-have-more-of-the-day-ahead-of-you thing. I've been super productive at work today and full of zest and energy and stuff! hurrah!

so yeah, basically

YAY! to getting up early and doing exercise (despite my being ravenous all day!)

BOO! to doing lower body weighted workouts the day before psycho spin class

that being said, I've signed myself up to both Body Combat and Body Attack classes tomorrow night! I know that sounds absurd and ordinarily I wouldn't dream of doing two back-to-back classes and would *much* prefer to take them over different days but unfortunately the evening classes of these are only every Wednesday.

Will try them both out and see which I prefer (and obviously report back :-) )... which means I'll not do any other form of exercise tomorrow day time otherwise I'll be too knackered!

following my post on supplements the other day, I had my first delivery from Just Vitamins. Quite impressed by the packaging - neat little shallow cardboard boxes that go through your letterbox all fine and dandy! the zipped packets are great too. Although I prefer ZipVit's as you can see how many pills you've got left, and the seal is an actual zip across instead of a press-down one, they do look the part! It was very nice to receive my two free packets of CLA, I'd recommend you visit them soon before the BOGOF offer runs out!

Looking forward to getting the rest of my stuff from ZipVit, especially all the free stuff... I do realise you have to buy stuff to get free stuff, but that's what makes buying in bulk such a worthy exercise ;-)

------

So yesterday I had the misfortune of realising my grip was pathetically weak when it came to holding the 12.5kg dumbbells I use for my lower body workout. I was okay for the first two sets but when it came to the third my grip was failing and the weights were literally slipping out of my hands! Also my forearms were completely rock hard and very sore when I tried to stretch them :-(

I've invested in some wrist straps from the accessory part of Maximuscle's online shop (not just protein shakes, bars and supplements!), as well as some new weight gloves for work (I had to use my cycle gloves yesterday, *not* a good idea, padding in all the wrong places!!) and a nifty looking pill organiser too :-) looking forward to when the delivery boy my boyfriend brings them home from his work (it's a good job he never reads my blog!!)

anyway, I've got to get off now to play rehearsals... only a few weeks to go now, nervous!! especially as all days/nights are sold out!!

I'll be posting again soon with

a) my workout plan - I'm aiming for a 2 week rolling schedule to factor in climbing one week versus club runs the next... it's proving quite challenging to devise!

b) new progress pics (in bikini, quite scary, you'll have to wait til the weekend though, can't be arsed to do my bikini line just yet!!)

laters

TJ x

Sunday, 21 June 2009

New fitness goals!

Well, if you've read my blog from the beginning, or, if not, had the patience to go back that far ;-) (or actually just bothered to read my 'about me' section!!) you'll have seen that I've had the same goal of entering and hopefully winning the Maximuscle Body of 2009 competition, all along... however, I've not really begun to see results until recently, which I can almost entirely attribute to my lack of serious dedication, thinking I'd just be able to muddle along and the weight would miraculously melt off me.

Foolish girl.

So now that I've started to see real results and feel happy about my achievements, I thought it might be a good idea to look at some sporting goals to complement my diet ones.

Following my withdrawal from this year's London Marathon due to injury, I've returned my form and payment so have a guaranteed place for next year's race - hurrah! So that will require some pretty clever and well planned-training. However, although I will be steadily building up my mileage this year, I don't count it as a challenge for 2009 as I won't begin training in earnest until early next year.

So, to tide me over for this year, I shall be looking to enter shorter road races , but also I'm thinking of entering the Fitness First Fit Brit 2009 Challenge. It runs from June to August and looks like a lot of fun! You don't need to be a Fitness First member (which is useful as I'm not!), all you do is sign up for a free 3 day pass and, while you're there during this time, take the challenge!

So, as I'm a girlie, the challenge would consist of:

1) Rowing - 400 metres rowing on Level 10
2) Dumbbell to Curl Press - 20 reps, 2 x 3kg
3) Burpees - 15 reps
4) Stationary Bike - 3 km
5) Dumbbell Chest Press - 30 reps 2 x 5kg
6) Box Jumps - 20 reps
7) Dumbbell Squats - 30 reps 2x 5kg
8) Run (treadmill) - 800m

This all looks fairly easy, but I definitely wouldn't be able to beat the woman at the top of the leaderboard right now as she's done all the above in 13:17!!

I don't think that's unbeatable, just not right now by me! haha :-D

according to the attractive Rotary Aquaspeed countdown timer on the page, I've got 70 days to better that rather excellent time, so better get training!!

After that, I have a couple of ideas following a rather interesting chat with a sub 3hr marathon running personal trainer at the wedding I was at over the weekend... I won't tell you too much but might tease you slightly with this link ;-)

Thursday, 18 June 2009

comparison pics - woo hoo - progress! :-)

We're off to a wedding in Southampton this weekend, I'm looking forward to it a lot, not least because I'll finally be able to cut my nails! They're ridiculously long right now, well, for me, I normally have them quite short for typing and climbing (though not at the same time ;-) )

had a bit of a panic as I don't really wear dresses very often, I tend to live in jeans, and most of the dresses I do posses are rather on the small side now!

anyway, as I've been off still convalescing I thought I'd have a rummage through my frock wardrobe (despite not wearing them very often, I have a few nice dresses from my time at House of Fraser, their sample sales were fantastic!!)

I was concerned that nothing would fit but was actually pleasantly surprised to be able to fit into a couple of dresses! I'm going to wear one that I wore to my birthday last year. I'm chuffed I can get into it... okay so it's got lycra, but still, I was about half a stone lighter the last time I wore it.

Anyway, get to the point... right, so I took a pic to show Joe and ask for his opinion and I thought "ooh, actually look quite good in this!" and thought about when was the last time I had a pic of me in a dress. It was in April when I went to a 'back to the 80's' fancy dress party as Princess Di. I'd bought a genuine 1980's Frank Usher frock and was keen to wear it. I tried it on and I thought I looked great. After the pic was taken (pre-party fuelling at a pub), I was horrified at how I looked!!

I've put the two pics side by side for you to see, I hope you'll agree that some progress has definitely been made!



please forgive the messy room, it's my 13 year old's bedroom (he's the only one with a full length mirror) and I was really only taking the pic to show Joe! :-D

GSD - Part 1 - Supplements

Okay, so have been busy doing some research on supplements, vits, minerals, weird stuff etc and have narrowed the ball park down to what I think it useful to me... right now.

After that I had to look for the best deal so I have a quite comprehensive spreadsheet with a breakdown of each supplement, where you can buy it, price per pill, per daily dose etc


Cunjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
About: Studies show that Conjugated Linoleic Acid may encourage the reduction of body fat and promote lean body tissue.

I did want to get Maximuscle's CLA 1000 as it's a super high strength and has got some good reviews... but I just can't afford it as well as everything else!

So, after looking around I decided to get my CLA from a new site I found called Just Vitamins. Although they don't have the same amount of choice as ZipVit does, they have some pretty good deals which appeal to the savvy shopper ;-) best still, they've got a buy-one-get-one-free deal on CLA at the mo so the price per daily dose is only 29p :-)

The next best deal was MyProtein which worked out as 40p per daily dose... I'd have gone for them if the 2-for-1 deal wasn't on at Just Vitamins as they also offer a high percentage of CLA, ZipVit only unfortunately has 60% CLA

These should last me quite a while actually as I won't need to take the full dose. Maximuscle Promax Diet Bars already have 1500mg of quality CLA and the Promax Diet Milkshake has 1700mg!!!


Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA)
About: This antioxidant's main function is of major importance since antioxidant nutrients help protect the body against damage caused by free radicals.

A friend of mine who's so into body building that he built his own gym in his garden because his local gym was inadequate, recommended these as part of the antioxidant supplements that he takes. I've done a little research and they sound like pretty good things to take! I'm getting these from ZipVit.

Actually, looking at the info on the link I posted: http://altmedicine.about.com/od/alphalipoicacid/a/alphalipoicacid.htm, apparently it can help with Peripheral neuropathy which is something that Joe's Dad suffers from. I'll ask him if he's heard of ALA and, if not, will give him some to try.


Lycopene
About: Lycopene, found primarily in tomatoes, is a member of the carotenoid family which includes beta-carotene, and a similar compound found naturally in food and is believed to have potent anti-oxidant capabilities.

I've read lots of good stuff about this compound so thought it about time I purchased some. Although more expensive than Just Vitamins, ZipVit's Lycopene is more than twice as potent so have ordered some from there.


Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10)
About: CoQ10 plays a key role in producing energy in the mitochondria, the part of a cell responsible for the production of energy in the form of ATP.

I've got 2 packs of 60 of these on the way from ZipVit, I didn't pay for them, got them as part of my free gifts for spending over £50


Omega 3 fish oils
About: Omega-3 fatty acids are thought to protect against heart disease, inflammation, certain types of cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and macular degeneration (a leading cause of vision loss). Omega-3 fatty acids are critical for proper brain development and neurological function in developing babies, too.

I'm sure we've all heard of the benefits of eating a diet rich in Omega 3. Well I've got some already at home that I need to start taking, and have also been sent a free bag from ZipVit with my order.


Lutein
About: Lutein is concentrated in the retinas of your eyes and is necessary for good vision. A diet rich in lutein may lower your risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration.
Lutein may also help prevent or slow down atherosclerosis, the thickening of arteries, which is a major risk for cardiovascular disease.


This is something else I've known of for a while and always wanted to try. I had my vision corrected by laser surgery in 2004 as I saw short-sightedness as a disability which prevented me from competing in sporting events. I'm keen to keep my eyes in the best help possible :-) ZipVit do a really great supplement called Practitioner's Lutein Plus which also contains Zeaxanthin.


Spirulina
About: Spirulina is, essentially, blue-green algae that is associated with a wide range of nutritional and health benefits.
Spirulina contains high amounts of protein, essential amino acids, essential fatty acids and vitamins and minerals. In short, the nutritional benefits of spirulina are pretty high.


This is a bit of a flier for me as I've not read much about it. But what I have read so far has been very positive so have ordered some from ZipVit

as Spirulina is incredibly high in protein I shall be taking it to boost my levels :-)


Calcium and Vitamin D and K
About: Helps maintain healthy bones, teeth and nails.

I've been taking this effervescent form from Boots for a while now, it's very convenient, have a few tubes at work :-)


Multi-Vitamins, Minerals and Probiotics
About: all the nutrients you would expect from a dedicated Multivitamin & Mineral formula, but with added probiotic cultures to assist your digestive system and help provide a healthy balance of bacteria in your gut.

I already take Berocca every day, but I think I might stop as I think the dosages are too high to be effective or beneficial.

and finally:

Amino Acids
About: Specially formulated for athletes and body builders, this formula contains a blend of free form and peptide bond Amino acids to give you optimum utilization. Each capsule provides L-Ornithine 250mg, L-Arginine 250mg and L-Carnitine 25mg.

another flier, we'll see how I fare with these!

Right, that's enough from me for now! GSD Part 2 will either be on my eating plan, or my strength and cardio training plan for the next 12 weeks.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

GSD (Getting Stuff Done) Day

So I still have the lurgy.

I finally went to see my GP yesterday after umming and erring over the weekend, waiting to see if I'd get better. I didn't. So yesterday I toddled along to my local group GP practice. Despite my 'fruity cough' (I like that description :-D) my chest is apparently relatively clear, my throat is very red though and I have liquid behind my left ear-drum... which explains the constant ringing and inability to hear properly. That is somewhat of a relief as I thought that perhaps my fondness of live music at loud gigs might have finally caught up with me! aside from that, the hot and cold sweats and the fact that I've been ill so damn long, the doc was also worried about my headaches and so sent me for blood tests... results of which should take 3 working days (read that as 'a week') and I'm now on Erythromycin which is an interesting shade of super-bright red and therefore goes against all my healthy eating principles given that the coating is choc-full of E nummbers, bah. However, I might make an exception just this once ;-)

so, anyway, I've decided to do what I should have done weeks ago and take some time off work to recover. It's really tough as I have a huge guilt complex as we're horrendously busy in our small systems team, but I think if I don't rest I'm never going to get better!!

So, I thought I'd use this opportunity to do something productive, like sort out some sort of plan for the next 12 weeks (and not sit on facebook all day!! :-D ) It's like 13 weeks to when entries for the Maximuscle Body of 2009 have to go in so I reckon that's a good round target.

I was going to sort this out yesterday but my eyes hurt so much I had to lie down with an eye mask on to block out the light. I've got some pretty powerful co-codamol from my doc though which seem to be helping, hurrah!

I think I'm going to break it into 3 blocks, I've not really made any solid decisions yet so all this could be totally changeable, indeed I might just do two blocks of 6 weeks... who knows?!

I think 3 stages would be good though, perhaps an initial 4 week fat-loss blast, whilst building up my strength again as haven't lifted properly in about 2 weeks. Followed by 4 weeks of strength-building, then 4 weeks of sculpting (i.e. shaping up the bits that still wobble)

I'm very much convinced that I can succeed as I've done well already.


This hasn't just been about losing weight, it has also been about doing it in a healthy manner whilst overcoming my food demons.

I have been very slim in the past, as you can see in this pic which was taken over 2 years ago when I was 8st 12/13lbs - that's more than 2 stone lighter than I am now!

my weight-loss methods were hugely detrimental to my health and truly unsustainable.

I'm really glad to be out of that cycle now, it was a very dark and lonely place to be :-(

So, anyway, I'm now at the lightest I've been since October last year. I'm just hovering over the 11st mark but I'm afraid that the weight loss might be down to muscle loss so I'm not going to count that against my log.

Here are my goals that I have set myself for my weightloss journey, some of them have been attained already - woo hoo!:

Goals

Overcome eating disorders
Complete - 16/17 years of destructive slimming tactics have been overcome, my bones and teeth have suffered but I'm still here - hurrah!

Lose weight naturally by developing a more healthy relationship with food
This has been a by-product of the first and most important goal. I'm pleased to report that food is no longer the enemy and I've started eating breakfast again for the first time since primary school!!!

Get into my 30th birthday party dress
done

Look good in a bikini for secret garden party
One month to go for this, I have to explain: I went to SGP (the most amazing wonderful little festival around) last year and was astounded by how many amazingly toned looking people were walking around... while I covered up. This year I hope it to be different.

Get back into size 10 clothes
I am please to not be a size 14-16 anymore, more like a 12-14. It would be nice to be able to get into some of my old clothes!

Win the Maximuscle Body of 2009 Competition!!
It would be a dream come true :-)

To stay at a healthy weight and be strong and lean for the rest of my life
Obviously (hopefully!!!), it'll be a while before I realise this goal ;-) but I really want to permanently instil in myself these good habits and avoid so many of the lifestyle-related ailments that afflict the older generation


anyway, I realise that I've been typing for bloody ages and it's about time I actually put my money where my mouth is and got on with my plan!!

I'll post later/tomorrow with an update on what I've decided.

I'm going to be overhauling my supplements too to ensure that I'm getting the right amount of everything I need.

A bodybuilding friend recommended Alpha Lipoic Acid so I'm gonna read up a bit more about that...

more later

excited!

TJ x

Thursday, 11 June 2009

bored with being sick so posting a stream of consciousness, hope you don't mind!


okay, this is getting tiring, and not just in the physical sense!

I've been ill for over a week now, as has my friend featured in the pic the other day. We've decided it's swine flu, but are yet to convince anyone else! Basically, I started noticing I had an awful sore throat on Tuesday... then woke up Wednesday realising I couldn't go to work and slept the whole day! I woke at 5.30pm and then went to bed around midnight and slept the whole night again (so obviously needed the sleep!). Since then, my sore throat has dissipated but I've just turned into a huge snot monster from planet phlegm!

my tickly cough is now a full blown chesty rattling one and my voice is several octaves lower, true story

all in all, I'm an attractive sight to behold!

hmm


okay so I will console myself by showing you a few pics of my party, telling you about my new toys and my great lower body workout yesterday in my paltry work gym... it's amazing the results you can get with the minimum of equipment... and trust me, my gym has the absolute minimum of equipment!!

Party Party Party!!

It was amazing!

Of course there were the usual flaky people who didn't show despite promising they would, and there were about 10 people I really wanted to come who were out of the country, but all things considered I actually had quite a few people turn up in the end (which was a relief as a) would have been a pretty shit party if no-one did and b) there was a minimum spend of £600 - which incidentally was decimated given the high prices at the bar, but hey ho!)

so, to start you off, here's me blowing out the candles on my cake, what a star my boyfriend is, not only did he go all out with the cheesy balloons (even bought an entire helium canister, which we had great fun with later... probably didn't help the sore throat thing, hmm) he got me the most awesome birthday cake I've ever seen - go Joe! If you look closely you'll see that it's a picture of me in a mask from Secret Garden Party 2008 on it :-)



and, here's a collection of a few of the best pics from the night, lots of people made the effort to bring a mask so was uber chuffed at that. Some were beautiful, some eerie, some just a bit odd! And everyone that didn't have one was able to wear some from the collection I brought.



as you can see, Joe didn't wear the mask I bought him which was a good decision in the end... I liked the camp pirate look ;-)



New Toys

I'm going to have to rein my spending in a little I think... need to start saving for a bigger house. Our place is a really nice size, but Joe won't let me convert the dining room into a gym/study/music or games room >:-( I'm thinking our breakfast room could probably serve a better use than being a 'stuff' room where bikes are put as are items that don't fit in the kitchen!

I'd *love* a big house, arranged over at least 3 floors with a big garden for my son and the cats, separate room for a study, gym etc, en suite bathroom, walk in wardrobe (I have a lot of clothes), wine cellar... ahhh

still, reality prevails, and if we want to continue living in our rather lovely area and not move into the more edgy parts of south london like our neighbours, Brixton and Camberwell, then I might have to rethink my plans a little.

in any case, we need more rooms! So I need to start doing something totally alien to me - save!

enough of that boring stuff though, here's my latest purchase/project:



isn't it awesome! this bread was ready this morning when I woke up, I added the flour, water, yeast etc, punched in a wholewheat setting, fed the linseeds and sesame and sunflower seeds, as well as mixed chopped nuts, into the top dispenser which automatically tips it into the mix when required, and left it to it!

the house smelled fantastic when I woke, apparently, I can't smell anything at the mo, grumble grumble :-(

I'm very pleased actually as I decided to be healthy (well, healthier) and substituted the sugar and butter from the bread recipe I had with honey and olive oil and it turned out okay! My son is loving the fresh bread in his sandwiches every day (yes, at 13, his mother still makes him a packed lunch every day!)

my other new purchase for the house is a Tefal Ultra Compact Steamer



Joe's not as enamoured with this as the bread-maker, understandably I guess... but then he hasn't tried anything steamed in it yet (he was busy cycling up mountains when me and my son had steamed cod and puy lentils last week - yum!)


And my last big purchase was what I've been aiming to get for a while... a pair of MBTs. I've always been keen to try a pair, despite the ridiculously large sole on them that make them look more like a correctional device than a pair of normal shoes! I tried on a pair of my friend's the other day and found them really comfy so I did some research into the latest models and found my ideal pair. They're a nice brown colour and have a gore-tex lining so are 100% waterproof... typically, they're the most expensive shoe they produce!

I have bought the Chapa GTX in Coffee. They look quite similar to the off-road Nike ACGs I wear every day, though without so much of a rugged sole.

I can't wait to try them out! I'm walking into work tomorrow as I'm leaving my bike overnight so will test them out :-)

Training

well, cardio wise it's a big fat zero, unless you count biking to work and back which has really only been out of necessity especially given the bloody tube strike, russen fussen russen >:-(

I did manage to get down to do some lower body work yesterday lunch time and was quite pleased at my efforts... although it's hard to sit down or stand up today - which is good in a sick way as if I don't ache after weights I feel inadequate!

I did 5 exercises in total, in sequence:


1)
Exercise: Dumbbell Step-up
Weight: 2 x 12.5 kg
Reps: 10
Sets: 3

2)
Exercise: Dumbbell Forward Lunge
Weight: 2 x 12.5 kg
Reps: 10
Sets: 3

3)
Exercise: Dumbbell Squat
Weight: 2 x 12.5 kg
Reps: 10
Sets: 3

4)
Exercise: Dumbbell Straight Leg Deadlift
Weight: 2 x 12.5 kg
Reps: 10
Sets: 3

5)
Exercise: Dumbbell Split Squat
Weight: 2 x 12.5 kg
Reps: 10
Sets: 3


by the end of all the sets my heart was pounding away! felt good though. I do the step-ups on a reebok bench which I place on one of our treadmills... the one that's been broken for months (told you my work gym was poo!)

my butt is looking so much better, as are my arms - much better than in my birthday party pics! they're back to looking slim again which is fab and the definition in my triceps is starting to show through, just need to strip through more fat and it'll all be more obvious!

I had a bloke say to me "hello beautiful" while I was card shopping earlier... I didn't hear him as I was plugged into my iPod as per... so he made a point of stopping me and repeating it so I heard, very funny, especially given that I have zero makeup on and a big red nose from all the blowing! maybe he was just referring to my arse ;-)

better get on now, I hope you're all well, looking forward to a good upper body session either tomorrow or Saturday. I had a great one last Sunday, 2 hours of upper body weights! I'm upping my machine weights (lat pulldown, low row, vertical traction etc) to 40kg on the weekend... will keep my free weights at 8kg dumbbells for the seated shoulder press, biceps curl, upright rows etc though

more about that another time though, don't get me started!!

Bye for now :-)

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Formulated for Success... the most AMAZING offer!

I've been really ill for the last few days which is why I've not posted, haven't exercised since Saturday!!! :-(

I thought I'd come on though just to share with you this amazing deal

My favourite online vitamin shop, ZipVit, who I have used for at least 7 years, have finally received some recognition in the sporting world!

They're sponsoring the Cervélo test team during the whole of 2009!

I cannot recommend this site enough, not only are their products dirt cheap, and available in bottles or zipped clear bags (hence the company name) which pop through your letter box *far* more easily, but they also are first with innovative new products... like 'melt in the mouth' glucosamine tablets - neat! I think that's a bloody brilliant idea if you're like me and can't be arsed to take so many pills (which I need to, but don't, but will start!!)

anyway, so here's the offer

http://www.zipvit.com/success/

for the princely (ahem) sum of £3.99 (which includes postage!), in your Energy and Recovery Box you get, wait for it...


ZV1 Energy Drink Elite - Fruit Punch Flavour
The ultimate energy drink for improving performance during exercise.
The choice for endurance athletes
Formulated using a scientifically proven carbohydrate blend
Provides a range of key electrolytes to help replace those lost in sweat

ZV1 Energy Drink Elite - Lemon Flavour
The ultimate energy drink for improving performance during exercise.
The choice for endurance athletes
Formulated using a scientifically proven carbohydrate blend
Provides a range of key electrolytes to help replace those lost in sweat

ZV3 Recovery Drink Rapide - Chocolate Flavour
Can dramatically improve your performance and recovery without
increasing body weight
The perfect choice for endurance athletes
Formulated using the latest scientific research

ZV7 Energy+ Gel
Great tasting energy gel. Each 60g serving sachet contains
a huge 38.1 carbohydrate energy. That's enough energy
for 30-40 minutes of exercise.

ZV8 Energy+ Bar
Delicious tasting, low fat, nutritious bar
Contains an unique, easily digestible blend of ingredients
specifically for the nutritional demands of endurance athletes
Scientifically proven carbohydrate formula for easy digestion

ZV9 Protein+ Bar
Promotes muscle strength and strengthens the immune system
Popular before and after training as each bar provides a full
19.7 grams of protein

ZipVit Omega Fish Oils
Helps maintain a healthy cardiovascular system
Helps maintain healthy joints

ZipVit 1-a-day Multi-Vitamins
One a day formula
Comprehensive blend of A-Z vitamins

Official Cervélo Test Team Water Bottle
Manufactured by Italian company Elite,
be one of the first people to recieve this
750ml genuine Cervélo Test Team water bottle



All that for £3.99!!! You would, quite simply, be a fool to miss out on this!

I'd be interested to hear from anyone who does order the pack, with regards to what they think of the products :-) supersonicsenses@googlemail.com

Monday, 1 June 2009

BEST. NIGHT. EVER. !



More pics later, but have to work now

ahh, the most amazing night!

P.S.

The girl on the left is my friend Rachel, I met her at my running club nearly 5 years ago, we were both new to the whole triathlon thing. I've gone on to do just one sprint tri and she's now doing Ironman UK in 9 weeks time!!

it's funny as we went to watch the inaugural IMUK a few years ago, to support our running club, I never thought she'd have the guts to do it herself!!

She also runs 3.20 marathons, I am not worthy

I know some *seriously* good athletes, need to take inspiration from them I think :-)