Tag Archives: chocolate

My nemesis

21 Jul

Now I know why I don’t keep chocolate in the house. Never.Not.at.all.Prohibited.Forbidden.

Why?

Because I don’t have an off switch when it comes to chocolate. If its there I have to eat it. I try to distract myself and not think about that block of chocolate hidden in the pantry but always my mind drifts back to that block of chocolate.

The reason for chocolate being in the house was because we had sons #1 and #2 around for dinner last night for their birthday. There is a tradition in our family of cooking favourite meals for birthdays which is why we had roast pork belly (delicious) and then chocolate self saucing pudding (awesome) for dessert. There was left over dark chocolate and premium vanilla ice cream. So tonight we had some more ice cream and then I also finished off the chocolate. Not because I was hungry but because it was there. Because I had been thinking about it all day.

So not the best day food wise. Ice cream. Chocolate. Too much snacking. Feeling very blegh.

Oh well back on track tomorrow. With one change. I’m moving to the maintenance program. I’m finding I’m getting hungry on the weight loss program which is resulting in extra snacking. I’m not too far off goal weight and I think the increase in calories will help. Lets see if it makes a difference.

Week 11 starts tomorrow!

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Only 39.2km to go!

28 Jun

This morning I managed a 3km jog without stopping or walking. Yay! So, in marathon terms I only have another 39.2km to run!

I dressed more appropriately for a run today – tights plus singlet and long sleeved lightweight running top. I looked more like a runner than the Michelin woman.

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Fortunately it wasn’t a frosty morning and it was quite pleasant to be out, even though it was still under the cover of darkness. At one point, early in my run, two dogs came rushing out from a yard, growling as they went. Ok, so they were only cocker spaniels but even so, they were growling. Do I stop, run faster or what? I can’t really afford to run any faster because I don’t want to aggravate the injury. Fortunately the owner came rushing out behind them, calling them back and apologising to me all in the same breath. Crisis averted!

The rest of the run was uneventful, thank goodness; I can’t handle too much excitement at 6am! Back home and it was on with a core strengthening session that mostly involved the swiss ball. But first the wall sit – I haven’t been able to do this since my injury. However today I managed 3 sets of 45 secs. Then there was a series of back extensions, superman, twisting crunches, squats, hamstring curls and hip raises – all with the swiss ball. And finishing with push ups and crunches with a medicine ball. A good workout all in all.

I’m having a hungry day. I’m not sure why – maybe the 3km jog?!!!!! If that’s the case, what will I be like once my distances increase?!!!

For breakfast this morning I had the banana quinoa porridge, topping it off with some raspberries. Lunch was a tuna and coleslaw pita pocket. Well this was a huge fail in the pocket department – it totally disintegrated in my hands today while I was trying to eat it. It was not a pretty sight! I had coleslaw and tune and pita pocket going in all directions, and not in the general direction of my mouth!

I went over to the Canberra Centre at lunchtime to buy some more Nespresso pods (and also to get a free cup of coffee). :) Today I tried one of the flavoured pods – the ciocattino. I’m not usually one for flavoured coffee but oh my, this tasted divine. Maybe it’s the chocolate deprivation I’ve been feeling since I started the 12 week program! Whatever, I bought 2 sleeves of the chocolate pods! It’s not sweet but instead tastes like a square of dark chocolate has been added to the coffee. Mmm mmm! I must try the caramel and vanilla ones at some stage.

And while shopping at Coles tonight I discovered their own brand of quinoa cups and quinoa and brown rice cups. Both are gluten free and will be so handy for adding to salads etc.

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Flags

23 May

This morning was potentially a red flag day.

And what is a red flag day you might ask?

These are days where you know you are going to be challenged nutrition wise. This morning our work area had organised a Biggest Morning Tea event so there were going to be lots of baked goodies. Ok normally this isn’t an issue for me because I can’t eat most baked items but some people had very graciously baked gluten free items and then informed me of this. That’s right, they were putting the guilts on me because they had spent time and effort baking food with ingredients they don’t normally use so that I could eat them.

There were brownies and Florentines on offer – omg, lots of delicious gooey chocolatey goodness. I love Florentines. And brownies aren’t so bad either. And you should’ve seen the range of other baked goodies set out on the table for morning tea – cup cakes, mini cheesecakes, sausage rolls, croissants, cookies, cake, etc. Actually come to think of it, there were no macarons. Obviously either cup cakes are easier to make than macarons, or macarons are not in favour in our branch.

However, I am happy to report that there was no waving the white flag and surrendering to these calorie-laden, artery clogging, oh so chocolatey, delicious looking delights. In fact, I wasn’t even tempted. As I said, if it’s not on my program I aint eating it. I’ll donate money (which I did given it was a fundraising venture) but I didn’t have any brownies or Florentines. Not a crumb. I have to say, letting people know that I’m following the program has made it easier for me to stick to it because I have made the commitment out loud. Everyone knows about it, not just me. I can’t sneak in non-Mish-approved snacks because people know what I’m doing.

Instead I had my natural yoghurt with mixed berries, which is one of my favourite snacks. Chobani natural yoghurt is delicious. I love a thick, dollopy yoghurt and this yoghurt ticks all of the boxes for thickness and dollopiness. However, I don’t like their fruit flavours – these are much too sweet and the yoghurt is not as thick so I prefer to have the no fat natural yoghurt and add my own fruit or flavourings. At least then I know what’s in it and I’m not adding more sugar than I need.

And there was no flagging at the gym this morning either, even though I’m really only doing half a workout.

There was the warm up on the treadmill before doing assisted chin ups. I thought I had selected the correct weight but when I got up and grabbed the handles I damn near killed myself. Waaaay too heavy. Get off, add some more weight (the more weight added, the easier it becomes – the reverse of most machines), get back up and damn, still too heavy. I know it’s been a while since I’ve used this machine but surely I haven’t lost that much strength. And I’m not that heavy. Really. So get off, add more weight…and then I looked more closely at which weight I had selected. No wonder I was struggling – I had gone a lot lighter than I thought which meant I was pulling up more of my own body weight – I really must wear my glasses! Once that was sorted I managed to complete the exercise.

There were more exercises but no dramas. Then another 5 mins on the treadmill followed by 5 min on the arm crank thingo. I’m so not rapt in this cardio machine – it is boring, boring, boring. But I have very few cardio options at the moment so I have to suck it up and use it. BUT only 5mins at a time – I cannot do more than this without screaming from sheer boredom.

The push up challenge continues. 200 down, 100 to go :)

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Run for chocolate

31 Mar

easter eggs
3.24pm session: easy run
Distance: 11km
Time: 64.14min
Pace: 5.48min/km
Cals: 653
Weather: 20*c, wind – S, 11kph

Sleeps till marathon: 14 (yikes!)

There was not the blue skies and sunshine like we’ve had the last couple of days. In fact, this morning it looked quite bleak, as if it would rain. However, the sun did make an appearance eventually, but the clouds never really went away.

It was the exchange of easter eggs and chocolates today. All I can say is thank goodness I run – it does lessen the guilt of eating chocolate a teensy bit!

We also ventured out to the Kingston old bus depot markets this morning for a browse, and so it seemed did most of Canberra. There was chaos in the parking lot but eventually we made it inside to check out the wares. Not that we bought anything but still it was lovely to wander around having a look at what people had on offer.

Later this afternoon I managed an easy 11km run along the cycle paths down to Lake Ginninderra, before returning home. That makes it 73km for the week, with only 2 weeks left before the marathon. Am I ready? Not sure but will give it my best shot.

“What you see before you, my friend, is the result of a lifetime of chocolate.” ― Katharine Hepburn

A case of the bah, humbugs

16 Dec

16 Dec 2012_its looking a bit like ChristmasThe tree is up. It’s partly decorated – we’re doing it in stages, when we’re inspired. We, in this case, really means The Fisherman because I’m still waiting for inspiration and motivation to move me. Blame it on the gastro virus still lingering. The last thing I feel is Christmas cheer. Yes, I’m feeling a bit ‘bah humbug’, or a case of the bah, humbugs, which is tantamount to treason at this time of year in some people’s eyes. In my defence, I have to say that I’m not normally like this so I’m a little nonplussed at the way I’m feeling.

So today I tried to instill some of that “deck-the-halls, jingle bells, santa is coming, fa-la-la” festive feeling by writing out the Christmas cards (the fact that some of the recipients may not receive them until after the big event is neither here not there, it’s the thought that counts!) The radio station has obliged by playing christmas-themed songs throughout the day. We went to the Kingston markets this mornings and bought fudge (as gifts) and tried to soak up the christmassy atmosphere (and then of course later today we just had to sample one of the fudge blocks to ensure that it was of high quality and worthy to give as presents! ;) – Grand Marnier chocolate fudge anyone?!).

So the countdown is on – the last week of shopping this week. I have made my list after consulting with recipients. Everyone has obliged except The Fisherman (aka he-who-is-impossible-to-buy-for) so I have no excuses. Interstate presents have already been ordered and sent.

There was no exercise today.Yesterday’s little run took more out of me than I expected and I’m still not 100%.

Frustrating, yes. The worse thing that could happen, no.

After yesterday’s events in the US, my problems pale into insignificance. My heart goes out to the grieving parents – never in your wildest dreams do you ever think you’ll never see your child alive again when you send them off to school in the morning.

When late morning rolls around and you’re feeling a bit out of sorts, don’t worry; you’re probably just a little eleven o’clockish.” – Winnie the Pooh

Blueberry brownie bliss

3 Dec
3 Dec 2012_Blueberry brownies

3 Dec 2012_Blueberry brownies

Among the top 10 brain foods, that is, foods that improve memory, mood, concentration, and overall clarity, are blueberries and dark chocolate. So when I saw Frugalfeeding’s  recipe for Blueberry Brownies I knew I was on to a winner! Blueberries and dark chocolate – these brownies are positively brimming with antioxidants ;) And I needed to bake something for tomorrow’s afternoon tea so this was my opportunity. It’s a really easy recipe and most of the ingredients can be found in the pantry and fridge. I only needed to buy some more blueberries and a block of dark chocolate. I know, as hard as it is to believe, I didn’t have any dark chocolate in the house! And even better, it’s a really quick and easy recipe that doesn’t require lots of time or bowls or utensils – so a perfect weekday recipe. The only part that did cause me some angst was the length of time for baking – the instructions explicitly stated that it was to be cooked in a 180 degrees celsius oven for no more than 25 minutes – there is nothing worse than overcooked brownies – dry and crumbly is the death of a good brownie. I prefer the fudgy type of brownie so for the last 5-10 minutes I was constantly checking to ensure it wasn’t becoming too firm.

The verdict – a deliciously moist, fudgy brownie chock full of blueberries. I can feel it doing me good already!

And for more great recipes, go check out Frugalfeeding’s blog – not only are they delicious but they’re also inexpensive.

Luckily I had also cycled early this morning so had got my exercise quota in for the day!

Tomorrow: the plan is a weights session in the morning and a bike intervals session after work, on the wind trainer. And some more chocolatey antioxidants for afternoon tea :)

“Be positive, ignore the critic, follow your heart, invest in your passions, believe in your dreams & get busy making them reality.” – Josh Cox

3 Dec 2012_Blueberry brownie slice

One week to go

21 Oct

Definitely into countdown mode now. Lists are being written and last minute changes are being made. Such as a new helmet – bought today. Its lighter and has more air vents and more importantly, fits better. I’ve also changed the shoes that I will be wearing for the run as the Asics DS trainers were just too hard to get into, even with elastic laces. So I’m using my GT 2170s instead – a much more comfortable fit and easier to get on.

This afternoon I did another wet suit swim, this time also wearing my tri suit underneath. No problems and I am getting used to the compressed feeling across the chest and neck. There was some slight chafing under one arm but nothing to worry about. The pool was quite busy – the warmer weather definitely brings a lot more people out.

Had the remaining chocolate tart tonight. We’d also bought a small carton of salted caramel ice-cream with hazelnuts to have with it. Delicious!

Tomorrow: the plan is to do a 40 minute bike intervals session after work

“When you see someone putting on his Big Boots, you can be pretty sure that an Adventure is going to happen.” ― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

Training, massage, voting & chocolate tart

20 Oct

The morning seemed to come around really quickly and I was up again getting ready for my cycle/run session. It was a pleasant morning so I could ride minus my head band, cycle jacket, thermal socks and shoe booties. Made for a nice change. It was only an hour cycle this morning and then I was home getting ready to run 30 minutes (approx 6km). People were already up and about setting up polling booths, planting those candidate placards that have infested road verges for the past couple of weeks, and hanging about 100m from the polling booths with how to vote cards (by law they’re not allowed any closer).

The run went well – it’s so much easier when I’ve only cycled for an hour opposed to three hours!

I really appreciated my massage this morning and surprisingly there were no stand out sore points. There were some areas of tightness but all things considered I seem to be in good shape. And fortunately yesterday’s incident when someone ran into the back of our car hasn’t caused any problems.

Originally the plan was to swim this afternoon but I decided to do my long run instead in the heat. Given that Port Macquarie is a lot warmer than here (and it got to 39 degrees there today) I thought a run in the heat was required to get myself used to how it feels (bloody awful I might add). So I ran 12km with the return trip into a head wind. I was glad to finish and must’ve drunk at least a litre of water once I got inside. After a shower, we wandered down to the local polling booth and voted.

Made a chocolate tart with a difference for dessert tonight. The crust consisted of almond meal, fresh dates and a tiny bit of coconut oil blended together and pressed into 2 small tart tins. This went into the freezer initially to set and then into the fridge later. The filling consisted of avocado, coconut oil, cacao powder, stevia, vanilla and some chocolate liqueur which was blended together until smooth and then spooned into the tart shells and refrigerated. Before the filling went into the shells I spread some strawberry jam on the bottom and then spooned the filling over the top. The verdict? Very rich so we shared one tart and will have the other one tomorrow night. Very smooth and delicious. And Mr N has no idea that he has consumed avocado! :)

Tomorrow: the plan is to sleep in! I have no plans of getting up early and doing any training. Later in the day I will do my wet suit swim. I also need to start to think about packing. And I want to buy a new bike helmet – not happy with mine.

“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” ― A.A. Milne

Hump day

17 Oct

It feels like it should be Thursday today not Wednesday. I think this is because we’ve had 2 long weekends in a row here in the ACT and so we have become used to starting work on Tuesdays, instead of Mondays.

Despite another early night last night (well maybe not as early as Monday night but what I would still consider earlyish) I was tired when I woke this morning. Knowing that I had a 2.6km swim session ahead wasn’t helping either! The session was broken up into blocks so again I concentrated on each block. I also had problems with the pull buoy this morning – it wouldn’t stay put between my legs but kept popping out at the most inconvenient of times so I seemed to be forever chasing it around the lane. But on the other hand if it wasn’t for the pull buoy I think there were times I was in mortal danger of sinking! I was also in a bit of a quandary when it came to the actual distance I was meant to swim. The program said 2.5km but when I added up the blocks it actually came to 2.6km. What to do? Yes, I admit I was so tempted when I hit the 2.5km mark to just say that’s it, session done…..but……bugger it, I couldn’t do it! I swam that extra 100m to make it a 2.6km session.

Since this morning’s swim I have been starving, ravenous, hungry enough to eat a horse and chase its rider. As soon as I have eaten one meal I am thinking about the next. I gave into my hunger cravings this afternoon and had a snack size cherry ripe and a freddo frog but to be honest they weren’t that satisfying.

The bike session tonight went ok given my legs are tired. I gradually improved over time and seeing that I had 20 x 1 minute intervals to do, I had ample opportunity to improve. The service has made a huge difference – changing gears isn’t clunky now. The bike also has brand spanking new tyres and a wireless bike computer.

So that’s it. Tomorrow marks the start of the taper. Yay! (says she tiredly!)

Tomorrow: the plan is to go for a steady state 10km run in the morning and then follow up with another bike intervals session after work.

“If you can’t run, then walk. And if you can’t walk, then crawl. Do what you have to do. Just keep moving forward and never, ever give up.” ― Dean Karnazes, Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner

My favourite day

14 Sep

The following is so true, and I have to remember this especially when I’m doing one of my more challenging work outs or heavy training weeks. Persistence does pay off in the end.

Practice persistence

“The most valuable experiences are often the most difficult
experiences. The biggest challenges bring out the best in
you, and compel you to make your best even better.

Difficult situations are not much fun. Yet by working your
way through them, you create great strength and value.

Even when your hard work is not fully appreciated or
immediately rewarded, it still brings important value to
your life. The experience of dealing with challenge can
produce a lifetime of beneficial dividends.

When you know you have done it in the past, you also know
you can do it again. That is the essence of true confidence.

The difficult experiences give you the opportunity to
practice persistence. And persistence is a quality that is
always in demand.

Though your efforts may not pay off immediately, they will
pay off. Persist, and know that you are growing stronger and
stronger. “ – Ralph Marston, 2012

Today was a great day. A rest day (yay!) which included a sleep in, work until lunchtime, lunch with a friend who had baked a delicious chocolate flourless cake (it was so moreish that I had to resist taking extra home because honestly I could’ve eaten the entire cake it was that good), and then the hairdressers.

What is your favourite day?

Tomorrow: the plan is to rise and shine early and ride for 3.5 hours followed by a 20 minute interval run. Following this I have a well-earned and much-anticipated massage. :)

“I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can’t see from the centre.”- Kurt Vonnegut, American novelist

 

 

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