Archive | August, 2013

Short & sweet

31 Aug

Sort of describes me! 🙂 Hehehe!

However I’m referring to today’s entry.

Up early for a 10km walk before breakfast. I couldn’t manage more than one lot of 30secs of jogging every kilometre today. Some days are better than others. It was very chilly this morning so I was wearing several layers. An amazing sunrise greeted me but I didn’t see the sun again until later in the morning.

Morning tea and lunch at the War Memorial cafe with wonderful friends. Truly I am blessed with great friends. I heard about the awesome run along the Birdsville Track by the amazing Steve. Over 500km in 8-9 days. Imagine that…getting up and running between 60-70km every day for just over a week. Mind boggling.

Weather-wise, it ended up being a beautiful day. I’m hoping tomorrow is the same as I have a 23km walk to do in the afternoon.



Tequila sunrise

28 Aug

“It’s another tequila sunrise…”

I’m not referring to the Eagles’ song, a 1973 song written by Don Henley and Glenn Frey, and recorded by the Eagles. It was the first single from the band’s second album Desperado. My dad loved the Eagles and so I heard this song a lot the year it was released. However don’t get me started on Neil Diamond’s Hot August Night album released in 1972 – my mum’s favourite. This was on high rotation on the stereo and to this day I can’t listen to a Neil Diamond song from that album without gagging. I am definitely not a Neil Diamond fan.

Tequila sunrise….it’s an indirect reference to the cocktail made with tequila, orange juice and grenadine and which it gets its name from the way the grenadine settles in the bottom of the glass, giving the impression of a sunrise. It was the drink of choice for a period of time during my misspent youth and to be honest, I don’t think I could even face one now, let alone drink it! Too many memories and not all of them good! Besides its so sickly sweet.

It was the sunrise this morning that reminded me of the Tequila Sunrise cocktail – funny how little things like that can bring back all sorts of memories. It was a gorgeous sky, just before the sun popped over the horizon. It was a bit chilly but my random 30 sec jogs soon warmed me up. I think I am improving on these short jogs though I still can’t do more than 30 secs. However I can string a couple relatively close together, with only short walking breaks between, as long as it’s done on the flat. I’m finding that jogging up or down hill still doesn’t work for me.

Had a lovely lunch with Ruth at Shorty’s – a new bar/cafe in Civic where Milk & Honey used to be. Had a great cappuccino even it it did have chocolate on the top 🙂 Both of us had the chicken skewers on corn tortillas with avocado, lettuce, tomato and mayo. Wasn’t the most elegant dish to eat as my tortillas disintegrated when I tried wrapping the filling to eat them.


Sunny Sunday

25 Aug

I can almost smell spring time…it’s on it’s way!!! The blossoms are just starting to open and soon there’ll be an explosion of colour and wonderful scents once spring kicks into high gear. Spring in the capital also means variable weather – one day gorgeous, the next day abysmal. And the wind – cold, gusty, straight off the alps. But when the sky is blue, the wind is calm, it’s a lovely time to be outdoors.
Sunday walk
I decided a change of scenery was in order so I decided to walk one of my old running routes which takes my up the back of Hawker, a suburb in Belconnen. It’s a bush walk and there were a few hills which I managed to hobble up. The view over to the ranges is spectacular and I never tire of it. There were quite a few mountain bike cyclists out on the trails, one that flew by me without warning. There were also mobs of kangaroos out, always alert for the slightest hint of danger.

Sunday breakfast
We went out to Braddon, an inner city suburb, for breakfast this morning. This was payment for doing Mr CJs tax return (I had already been taken out for breakfast by sons #1 and #2 respectively in previous weeks). We decided to have breakfast at Delissio’s mainly because it was the quietest and we were guaranteed of getting a table. Elk & Pea, our first choice, was packed and meant waiting around for a table. I had hash browns with avocado, bacon and roasted tomato with sour cream and sweet chilli sauce. Unfortunately the hash browns were the pre-packaged, McDonald’s type of hash browns whereas I had been hoping for the handmade sort. The rest of the dish was delicious and the coffee was great.

Sunday cooking
This afternoon was spent food prepping for the week: roasting sweet potatoes, pumpkin and beetroot. Par steaming broccoli. The roasted sweet potato and pumpkin were then puréed, portioned into glad bags and frozen. Beetroot was quartered and also frozen. Same with the broccoli.

Made an awesome 45sec chocolate and salted caramel pudding tonight for dessert using this recipe from the Drizzle & Dip blog. However the caramel disappeared into the pudding as it cooked. So next time (and there will be a next time!) I’ll add more caramels.

(Photograph – Samantha Linsell,

Happy feet

24 Aug

My feet are feeling the love. I have found a pair of shoes that are really comfortable for walking, they’re light, and there’s more room around my forefoot.

And the best thing is I didn’t have to buy a new pair of shoes.

I was originally wearing my Asics GT 2170s but these gave me lots of grief, especially during last week’s long walk. My right big toe nail is still recovering from the bruising walk. There were a few nights in the past week when I was woken by the throbbing underneath my toe nail. Oh so painful.

So anyway this week I’ve been wearing my Asics Gel DS Trainers. Bliss I tell you, utter bliss. They are so comfortable and cushiony. And my toes aren’t getting a battering. 🙂

During the week I’ve been walking around 7km most days but this afternoon I did a 12km walk. I didn’t experience any problems with my feet. So fingers crossed I’ve found the perfect shoe for endurance walking. And I managed a 30sec jog every kilometre – total of 12 x 30sec jogs today. 🙂

This morning I did my weights session at the gym. I enjoy going to the gym on a Saturday morning because its so quiet, compared to the peak hour traffic on week days. I have the choice of machines and weights. And benches. During the week guys hog the benches and don’t willingly give them up.

I increased the weights today so I had to reduce the reps on some of the exercises. The goal is to gradually increase the reps as I get stronger.


Sometimes I don’t JFDI

23 Aug

Normally I bang on about how I JFDI, no excuses, get up and out there, and how great I feel once I’ve started.

However there are days when I know deep down, intuitively, that getting up and getting out there is not the best thing for my body.

It’s a different feeling – a heaviness, a fatigue fog that descends, and I have absolutely no energy.

Interestingly when I feel like this there is no internal battle between good and evil ie “I don’t want to get up and exercise” vs “I’ll feel so guilty if I don’t get up and go for a walk, the gym or whatever”.

It’s like my body knows that I need a rest and my mind knows better than to argue with it.

This morning was one of those mornings.

I felt so tired and definitely feeling the fatigue fog.

Even the thought of getting up, dressed and out the door for a walk was tiring.

And I didn’t fight the feeling.

I need to rest.

So be it.

There is always another day.

Today I rest.


Why do I exercise early in the day?

22 Aug

I admit, I have not always been a morning person – it’s a habit that I have had to develop over many years. But usually it’s the only time of day I can guarantee that I won’t be interrupted or have other commitments that get in the way.

It’s also the best time of day, once I drag myself out of my warm snuggly bed (this is especially hard in winter). There is not a lot of traffic, it’s quiet, and sometimes I get to see the most awesome sunrises.

Like this morning. The sunrise was absolutely beautiful. And when I saw the amazing pinks, and golds, and reds, I thought of Hawaii. Not that I’ve been there…yet. And not because Canberra is so much like Hawaii – I’m thinking not! But I’ve seen photos of Hawaii’s sunrises and sunsets and this morning’s sunrise looked like one of those photos. So I’m really glad that I was up to see it.

There there are the other mornings when its frosty with sub zero temperatures. It can look like a winter wonderland – the frost sparkling on the lawns, the gardens, even the weeds. When my breath hangs suspended in the still crisp air.

Or when the fog creeps in, weaving its wispy tendrils through the trees, around the shrubs, slowly enveloping everything in its path.

There are other reasons. I get my exercise over and done with first thing in the day so it doesn’t matter what else happens during the day, it’s done. No excuses. No continuously justifying why I don’t want to exercise at the end of the day, when all I feel like doing is go home.

I always feel great after going to the gym or getting outside for a brisk walk.

I really appreciate my breakfast after an early morning session 🙂

How about you? What time of day suits you?



20 Aug

Is it just me but the day after a rest day I find it really hard to get motivated to get up early and to the gym, or out for a walk, or whatever other physical activity I had planned. It’s like give me an inch and I’ll take a mile. In other words, give me a rest day and I’ll find any excuse to extend it. Blame it on the inner sloth!

So if you hadn’t caught on by now, this was my usual early morning inner psychological warfare waging again. Get up, no stay in bed, get up, no stay in bed, GET UP, !@#$%^ Ceasefire!

Hmm, guess what won out! Yes it was a case of JFDI (just freakin’ do it) this morning. Get up, dress up, show up and get active. Once I was at the gym I decided to make the most of the hour I give myself to get through my workout, so it was heavier weights, faster reps, longer intervals, fewer rests.

And as usual, by the time I left the gym, I was glad I’d made the effort. Sound familiar?!


Bruised toenails

18 Aug

I have a problem. A very painful problem. The toenail on my big toe is so sore. Looking at it, it’s looking quite red in the upper half of the nail so I’m guessing there’s a bruise underneath. It hurts to walk because of the pressure exerted on the toe when I take a step.


I never really anticipated problems with walking. I have a long history of running injuries but walking?! I mean, come on, it’s walking for crying out loud! Hmmm, I think I’m going to have to review my thinking regarding walking – it’s a bloody tough gig. 🙂

So what do I do with a very painful bruised toenail? Suggestions gratefully accepted as I have another training walk to do on Tuesday.

This afternoon I walked 22.6km – my longest walk to date. It took almost 3 1/2 hours, with an average pace of 9.11min/km. Ruth walked with me around Lake Ginninderra, which is where we saw Kathy out on her bike. We had a chat for a bit before Kathy headed off and we continued on. There was a really strong wind blowing which sometimes made it tough going, but gee it really helps having company. That, and the lure of coffee! Which we had at Black Pepper, before I headed off home and Ruth to the mall.

Now to hobble off to bed 🙂

20130818-202431.jpgTomorrow 🙂

Baby steps

17 Aug

Running attempt #52 (or so it feels like it) this afternoon. The plan was to try some 60sec jogs with walking inbetween.

Sounds easy.

It wasn’t.

I ended up doing 10 x 10sec shuffles (I’m being generous with this description) spread out during a 10km walk. I can’t lift my left leg very well when attempting to jog. It tends to drag a bit. So not a lot of progress to speak of in 14 weeks. For a runner I’m making a great walker 🙂

Earlier today I did a weights session at the gym. Again I was to start incorporating some leg exercises into my routine. So I did leg presses with an extremely light weight, static lunges, hamstring curls using a Swiss ball, and one leg bridges. No problems while doing them but it will be interesting to see how I feel tomorrow. Hopefully not too sore as I have a 19km walk to do. But…I will have company for part of the walk. Ruth is going to join me! And of course, seeing we are the Caffeinista Sistas, coffee will be on the cards! 🙂



15 Aug

“Fitness, Education, Energy, Diet”

FEEDinc is the name of a nutrition service provide by Accredited Practising Dieticians Lisa Donaldson and Jenelle Croatto in Kingston. They describe their business as follows:

“These 4 key elements drive our wellness and give us sustained vitality. At FEEDinc. we will help you regain your vitality through thorough assessment and guidance towards a more nourished and energised you.

It is our mission to help all our clients achieve total wellness. We have expertise in all areas of nutrition – diabetes, heart disease, gastrointestinal upsets, weightloss, pregnancy, enteral feeding, sports nutrition, IBS, Low FODMAP, Coeliac Disease, high cholesterol, allergies, intolerance, eating disorders, healthy eating for children and everything in between. You will not be alone in your journey to better health.

We believe in eating minimally processed foods and will encourage you to become an active participant in life. This doesn’t mean becoming a Master Chef or an elite athlete, it simply means becoming a healthier and happier YOU.”

Jenelle goes on to say “I believe we should reconnect with food on a level that is not just about the calorie, carbohydrate and fat content that seems to be ever entrenched in the mind of today’s dieter. For millennia food has been used for more than sustenance. We use food in times of celebration, comfort and joy. With a balanced, non-restrictive attitude towards eating, food can be used in a way that is both nutritious and pleasurable.” Hear, hear.

Last night I attended a two hour interactive nutrition workshop Get Lean, Stay Lean in Kingston. I love their thinking regarding diet, in that, they don’t believe in diet plans as such. Rather the focus should be on good nutrition, quick and easy meals, enjoyment of food and to be more aware of and attuned to hunger signals and feelings of satiety when eating.

There were 10 of us who attended the interactive workshop where they had pre-prepared tasty food but also cooked up a couple of dishes for us on the night. So it was not only an informative couple of hours but it was also delicious!

We started with banana smoothie shots, followed by pumpkin, sweet potato and carrot soup, then frittata, a quick risotto that was prepared in a rice cooker, turkey meatloaf, a quinoa salad, san choy bow, stuffed capsicums (these weren’t gluten free so none for me), date and coconut balls rolled in cocoa, and we finished with chocolate mousse topped with natural yoghurt and strawberries.

Lisa is also coeliac so it was great to get some ideas regarding gluten free products (so many gluten free products are highly processed and high GI so it’s hard sometimes picking the products that are better for you) and meals. Lisa was originally a school teacher but when she was diagnosed with coeliac disease, she decided to go back to university, study nutrition and become a dietician.

This morning I managed a 7km walk before heading off to a work breakfast at Remi’s where I had a bowl of delicious gluten free muesli with natural yoghurt and banana. 🙂