Thinking Out Loud!

Hi all,

Hope you are fine and dandy this Thursday! The week is going by fast – but I think that’s what happens when you have Monday off work… still can’t wait for Friday though!

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Today it’s time for some more random blogger-ness with ‘Thinking Out Loud’ – linking up with the awesome Amanda over @Runningwithspoons!

Let’s get the party started!

1)      Rope

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This was one of my birthday presents from David – a jump rope, specific for CrossFit and doing double unders (and made for tall people!). Double unders are not my friend – still yet to master one and I get so frustrated (especially seen as I can skip so well)! But with having my own ropes that I can alter to be the perfect size etc should help me, also it means I can practice… not easy when you don’t have a garden but I will find somewhere! Love that David did so much research into finding me the perfect pair – bring on the DU’s!

2)      Comfort Watching

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Sometimes we are tired. Sometimes we want to ‘flop’ on the sofa and watch some TV that doesn’t require our brains being in gear. When we are like this, what do we turn to? Comfort programming – by that I mean the classics, something that fills us with nostalgia, something that makes us feel at home, makes us smile and laugh.

I needed some comfort watching last night – and what did I put on… The Simpsons, followed by Sabrina the Teenage Witch! Both remind me of my teen years – being at home and watching them with my brother. Neither disappointed, both were fantastic. Everyone needs a bit of comfort watching now and again!

3)      Pugs

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This book should be re-titled ‘Reasons that Jen would like a pug’! I love it!

I would love a pug so much, they just have their own wee personality traits that make them so special!

Let me quote from the book (another birthday present from David <3 ) … “ Never play ‘fetch’ – this evinces lack of proper manners and is better left to creatures of a lower social standing such as Labradors and humans”. Seems fair to me!

4)      Oh my goodness…

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Apparently, Lisa Kudrow and Mira Sorvino are really keen do reunite to do ‘Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion 2’ – oh I hope they do! Does anyone else remember how amazing that film was! I used to watch it over and over, I loved it! Although it makes me feel old when I heard the original was released 17 YEARS AGO!!! Geez!

5)      Let’s not get political…

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Should bloggers talk about politics? I mean here in the HLB sector, you read people commenting on all aspects of their lives but rarely about anything political. I’m not talking about going as far as detailing your political allegiances but simply on political matters – should we comment?  The government’s stance on daily food recommendations or the laws on farming practices for example are issues that I know some of us out there feel so passionate about but is it too in depth for a personal blog? Would anyone want to read opinions? Just putting it out there – I am undecided…

6)      Commonwealth Games

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As you guys know, the Commonwealth Games are currently in full flow here in Glasgow, but alas it comes to an end on Sunday! However, the past week and a half have been incredible and the city has put on such a good show! Everyone is talking about how amazing it has been, visitors love the city and the sun has shone, showing the city in all its glory! I feel so lucky to be living amongst it all, feeling all the good vibes it has brought.

Let’s hope the legacy it leaves means that more kids and adults get into sport and find out how amazing it can be. You don’t have to be a professional, you just have to have the desire to try your best and have fun!

7)      Tomorrow…

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Tomorrow is David and I’s wedding anniversary – 5 years!!

So many amazing and incredible things have happened in the past 5 years and I feel so lucky to be married to my best friend. To celebrate we are going out to a restaurant for dinner that we have wanted to try for a while that highlights local seasonal produce – with maybe a wee glass of bubbles before we head out. Photos will follow I promise :-)

Ending there on a rather special one I think!

Head on over to RunningwithSpoons for some more random thoughts!

What’s your comfort TV programme?

Would you talk about political matters on your blog?

Do you celebrate anniversaries?

What I Ate – Birthday Treats!

Hi all,

Time for a bit of ‘What I ate Wednesday’ action! Linking up with Jen over @PeasandCrayons!

As promised, here are some of the delights I had over my birthday weekend – tastiness all round!

Friday

Travelling on the train up north I had such a tasty dinner – a salad bowl, poached salmon and some antipasti – all picked up from a local supermarket and assembled on the train.

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Also had some tasty coconut water – it was sooo hot and warm that day and nothing is more refreshing. It was my first experience of coconut water from a can and I liked it!

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Saturday

The one you have all been waiting to see… the BBQ!

OMG these steaks were incredible – extra matured, Scottish Aberdeen Angus beef from Costco – cooked RARE as I like it!

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The final plate – steak, grilled veggies, salad, grilled halloumi and a grilled Portobello mushroom (the icing on the cake!) – It really was the PERFECT meal!

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For desert my Mum brought out a birthday treat – she had made coconut and vanilla dairy free ice cream for me! And paleo chocolate sauce to top it! Oh my goodness it was amazing – and totally what I would have wanted as a birthday treat (much better than cake!). Mum found the recipe on one of my ‘Recipe List’ posts as something I really wanted to make – so she made it for me –what a star! I was in a total food coma afterwards!

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She also gave me this biltong which I cant wait to crack open and try – love my paleo mum!

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Sunday I didnt have anything special – apart from an amazing spinach and artichoke dip that my friend Ann made for our box party – so much cheese… so good….! (sorry no pic!)

Monday birthday day!

I had post WOD protein pancakes with dark choc chips – banana/ chocolate tasties! Was so ravenous after the WOD I forgot to take a picture! Will do it next time, promise!

Lunch – a picnic at the botanic gardens

Sunshine, the man you love and some amazing food – what more could you want!

Our feast included…

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Prawn rice paper rolls, chilli and lemon prawns, stuffed vine leaves, antipasto meats, carrots, sugar snap peas, salsa, dark chocolate and nectarines. It was a feast fit for a king and queen! No we did not eat it all!

Oh and that chocolate – oh my…. I have found my heaven, my favourite chocolate – this was insane –dark chocolate and hazelnuts are just a match made in heaven! I limited myself to two squares – and it takes all my willpower to not go back for more. I have to laugh though – it was so hot on Monday that by the time we got home from our picnic the chocolate was liquid! It solidified back up in the fridge but now has no trace of ‘squares’! HaHa!

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We came home for some dairy free ice cream – I finally decided on my Booja Booja flavour…Maple Pecan! It was tasty but not as good as the vanilla one I had a few weeks earlier…

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Dinner was leftovers from lunch with a hard boiled egg and some salad – I wasn’t too hungry but had to eat something before we left for the games!

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Oh and I forgot to show you this yesterday… when we were at the Weightlifting, my tweet got shown on the big screen!

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And that’s it over for another year – one thing is for certain, best birthday food ever!

What do you like to eat on your birthday?

Cake or ice cream?

Birthday Weekend Recap!

Hi all,

Hope you are well and had a good weekend!

I’m back and ready to rock for the week – had such a wonderful birthday weekend though so I wanted to do a wee recap and share it with you all – ‘What I did’ today and ‘What I ate’ tomorrow!

But before I get into that, I just wanted to announce the winner of my Reebok Spartan Race giveaway! Well done JACOB!!! Please check your email inbox for details on your win!

Hope you enjoy the race!

Time for some weekend recappin’!

Thursday Evening

Well, I think the weekend began here for me – sun was shining and David and I decided to go to a local bar for some drinks after work – well one drink turned to two! So much fun!

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Friday – Sat – Sun

We headed off on the train to my parents up in my hometown of Inverurie. Always a nice journey but off to bed as soon as we got in!

On Saturday I got my hair cut and then we headed off to Costco to pick up some bits for a BBQ! Always love to grill!

We had some lunch and then decided to go for a wonder into Inverurie for a drink – David had a Tequila Sunrise, Mum a strawberry Bellini and Dad, well he had a Cappuccino but was still waiting for it at this point! Ha!  I had a nice crisp white Chardonnay!

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Grillin’ time! More details on that tomorrow… sorry to keep you in suspense!

Sunday we headed to the train station mid morning to go back to Glasgow –had a fab time at home though with mum and dad! We were in then out again when we got to Glasgow, our CrossFit box has moved so the next few hours were spent celebrating with our friends and then watching some of the CrossFit games on the projector (yes the games were also watched on Friday and Saturday…).

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Monday – Birthday!

How do I want to start my birthday? With CrossFit of course!

We headed down to the new box for a great WOD – included Grace – 30 Clean and Jerks for time – really enjoyed it!

David had taken the day off work so we could celebrate to the max! Picnic lunch at the botanic gardens in the sunshine…bliss!

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In the evening we went to the 85kg Men’s Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games! It was incredible and I had so much fun. Check out these guys!

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Overall a fab fun few days with all the people I love – perfect! :-)

Back with all the foodie details tomorrow….!

How do you like to spend your birthday?

Vlog Blog!

Hi all,

Told you I would bring you something special today… my first vlog!

All because it is my 1st Blog Birthday!!

Hope you enjoy – sorry about the rambling! :-D

Back on Tuesday folks! It’s my birthday on Monday so going to have a day out with David!

Oh and dont forget that the Reebok Spartan Race Giveaway is still open – Check out HERE for more details and to enter!

CrossFit – A first and a last!

Hi all,

Time for a bit of CrossFit recappin’ action on this sunny beautiful scorchio day!

Hope you all have the sunshine too!

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Brining this post to you a day early as I have something special tomorrow…!

Wednesday Morning (23rd)

My first

Rewind back to early 2008. I was having major problems with my left knee and so I went to the doctor. My doc informed me that I had barely any muscle growth on my left knee and as a result had to undergo physiotherapy to recover from the injury I had at the time  – and note that I would always be prone to injury on that knee. He told me in no uncertain terms, NEVER run.

I took this advice and throughout my gym days either went on the cross trainer machine or the rower and was able to avoid running. But then came CrossFit.

For the first 6 months of CrossFit, I went on the rower while the others ran. Then at the beginning of this year Coach asked me to start running. He believed if we took each run as we went, saw how my knee went and strengthen it up, then there was no reason I couldn’t run.

He was right.

And today I arrived at the box and read the board – 5K RUN!

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I was scared – I had never run any sort of distance, I still didn’t even know if my knee would cope. I haven’t run more than a few block runs in a WOD. But I went for it.

I kept on running, just kept on going, kept strong, kept positive. And I did it. I did my first 5K in 28 minutes 28 seconds. SO PROUD!

Proud of my body, proud of how far I have come and proud of my gained strength. Maybe next time rethink if someone tells you that you CANT do something…!

(Oh and no pain in knee, during or after…!)

Thursday Morning (24th)

My Last

My CrossFit box is moving to a new location – similar distance away, just in the opposite direction!

This is such an amazing achievement for Coach and his wife – this amazing business and community they created from a seed has grown and as a result can expand to bigger premises  – total proof that if you work hard and are passionate then this will lead to results. So happy for you both! #OCFforever

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So today, was my last WOD in the old box. How do I feel?

Well, to be honest I am a bit sad about it. Don’t get me wrong, I am super excited about going to the new box next week and WOD’ing in our new, bigger and better home! So why am I a bit sad?

When I joined CrossFit in August last year I was still pretty ill and at the beginning of my recovery. But CrossFit helped me find me. It grew a stronger Jen, a happier Jen, a healthy Jen, a confident Jen. And right now I feel so happy, lucky, healthy and blessed.

So the box is my home and my comfort. But you know what? What makes a home is its people – and they aren’t disappearing! The boxes spirit will come to our new home and together we can be bigger, better and stronger. It’s going to be brilliant!

Here are the details of my WOD and my results. No details but I think I have said enough today! Ha!

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Where are you most comfortable?

Is there anything or anyone that has helped make you the person you are today?

A Picture An Hour!

Hi all,

Well today is finally here – the first day of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games! And everyone is super excited!

Tonight the opening ceremony is shown on TV (I was lucky enough to attend the rehearsal and it was amazing!) and 10 days of sport follows! Going to the weightlifting (shock I know!) on Monday as my birthday treat! And then we plan on heading down to Glasgow Green (the big park in the centre of town) after work when we can to watch the games on the big screen! #bringiton 

It’s on non-stop on the television too AND it’s the CrossFit games this weekend! Sport is awesome!

Anyhoo! On to today’s blog shenanigans – a post with a bit of a twist!

I have spotted a few bloggers doing the ‘one photo per hour for a whole day’ challenge and thought it sounded like fun! (It was fun but honestly really hard to remember!).

So for all you out there – here was my Monday – photo per hour!

5.30am – Up for CrossFit – I may have been ready to rock, not necessarily roll…

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6-7am – On our way to CrossFit, sun coming up – very pretty

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7-8am – Post WOD chat!

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8-9am – Just finished making David his breakfast, sitting down with a coffee and the news before he heads.

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9-10am – Making breakfast for me! Banana scramble in the pan, almond butter to add! Mmmm 1kg pots!

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10-11am – How I feel right now…

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11-12 noon – Finished my blog catch up, now on to writing today’s post!

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12-1pm – Fail… overspill on my pineapple juice and sparkling water – very tasty and refreshing though! (sorry if you cant see it very well, my phone camera is poor in the dark!)

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1-2pm – Reebok Spartan Race post done! (Enter GIVEAWAY here)

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2-3pm – Time for some lunch – sweet potato, cottage cheese and furikake! #dabomb

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3-4pm – Watching, via the live stream, our friend Colin carrying the Queens Commonwealth Baton through Glasgow! Very proud!

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4-5pm – Time for a chat with my Mum!

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5-6pm – Dinner – although major blogger fail, was so hungry I only remembered to take a picture half way through! But it was pork meatballs with homemade marinara sauce and salad! Tasty!

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6-7pm – On our way to Celtic Park for the Opening Ceremony dress rehearsal! Everyone loves a bus selfie, especially when someone photo bombs it in the background!

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7-8pm – Me outside Celtic Park! Very excited!

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8-9pm – Don’t want to spoil the surprise of the ceremony, so here is the crowd!

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9-10pm – Sky line view from my seat – beautiful!

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10-11pm – Snack when we got home – apple chips, natural yoghurt and raisins – was starving! (yes David is wearing Turtles PJ’s!)

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11-12pm – Bed… sweet bed… well more like 1pm… 

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And there we have it! My day in pictures! Sorry for the pic quality #wishIhadaniphone

Linking up with Jen @PeasandCrayons for a bit of ‘What I ate Wednesday’ action!

Have you been to any major sporting events?

What time do you get up in the morning?

CrossFit – Cindy!

Hi all,

Hope you are fine and dandy this Tuesday!

Before I began to write this post, I went for a walk in the sunshine. And loved everything that I saw.

In case you aren’t aware, my city Glasgow is hosting the 2014 Commonwealth Games and it all begins tomorrow! The city is buzzing! Reminds me of London during the Olympics – everyone is full of cheer, the place is full of visitors and everyone is so excited about the next few days! It was a pleasure to be amongst it all!

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David and I were so lucky to have the opportunity to attend the Opening Ceremony dress rehearsal last night, it was amazing! We can’t reveal anything but I will say to my readers in the UK and throughout the Commonwealth who have the opportunity to watch the ceremony, please do, you are in for a treat!

Don’t know what the Commonwealth Games are? Check out the link to the games site here.

And now on to some CrossFit recappin’

Monday Morning (21st)

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10 minute squat hold – yep, going below parallel in your squat and holding it for as long as you can, for 10 minutes. Oh holy hip flexors!

Anyone who squats or has squatted will feel our pain!

But some good mobility for working on our 20 rep max back squat!

20 rep back squat is such a tough one – you think you are going ‘too light’ with the weight, but half way through you wonder if you went too heavy!

I went for 25kg (my 1RM is 40) so approx 60% of my 1RM. It was tough but good to see improvements. According to my WOD diary, I upped my weight on the bar and this time I went to below parallel with all my squats – couldn’t do that last time. Result!

Then came ‘Cindy’, another joyous girl WOD – first time for me on this one.

I did the pull ups via the barbell/ box method which I feel like I am getting stronger at every time. The push ups are always a toughie but a combination of working on technique and strength on them should get me there one day.

And the air squats, well after doing the above my body had woken up to the fact that it was squat day! I managed 10 rounds dead in the 20 minutes. The time actually flew by!

Oh and in case you missed it, check out my giveaway post from yesterday – free entry to a US Reebok Spartan Race!

Reebok Spartan Race GIVEAWAY!

Hi all,

Hope you are well and had a fun weekend!

Today, as promised I bring you a giveaway! Specifically for my friends across the pond – but do not fear Brit/ worldwide friends, I will have something special for you soon!

REEBOK SPARTAN RACE!

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When Reebok contacted me about helping to promote their Spartan Race over in the States, I knew I had to do it. Alas, I know it’s not for the UK, but just to work with such a great company on an event which promotes health and fitness on such a wide scale was very important to me!

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I know how much of an impact these types of events can have on the competitors lives – remember back in June when David did a very similar event, The Tough Mudder? Teamwork, determination, mental and physical skill and hardwork need to be in abundance – and all amazing qualities to have. These events find these traits within you, whether you like it or not! Haha!

What is the Reebok Spartan Race?

Check out the video to see it in all its glory!

Looks great doesn’t it!?

Where do they take place?

Spartan Race events are happening all over the US this year – including for the first time one in Ohio on the 4th of October! It will feature a Spartan Sprint (15 obstacles plus 3 miles), Super (20 obstacles plus 8 miles) and a Beast! (25 obstacles plus 12 miles) – or if you fancy, do all three!

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So why not try a non traditional race this year? Or just do something different to get fit and healthy in both body and mind!

The folks over at Reebok Spartan Race have been super kind and I am able to offer one lucky reader FREE ENTRY to a race of their choice! (Valid for one open heat in any 2014 Spartan Race in the continental US). How awesome is that!

Simply post a comment below on why you would like to do this race and I will pick a winner at random! Giveaway closes on Tuesday 29th July at 11am GMT.

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You can also use the code SPARTANBLOGGER to gain 10% off any race! (In case you still want to race but don’t win the giveaway!)

Want more info? Check out www.spartan.com for everything you need to know.

Also Reebok are collaborating with Runners World this year to give you all more information on training, nutrition and race day prep to make sure you are ready to Spartan Up! Check them out on www.runnersworld.com

Enter below with a comment and good luck!

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Linking up with Katie over @HealthyDivaEats making this Monday a Marvellous one!

Disclaimer – The thoughts and view within this post are my own and I have not been compensated by Reebok Spartan Race – The FREE RACE has been given as a gesture of goodwill as a prize to one of my readers.

CrossFit – Taxes with DOMS!

Hi all,

Welcome to the Friday train! Next stop… the weekend!

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Can you tell I’m excited!??

But we have some more pertinent matters to attend to before that – a bit of CrossFit recappin’ action!

Thursday Morning (17th)

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It was a gymnastic start to the WOD – something I will admit I struggle greatly with. But as I always say, if you don’t practice you will never get better at it!

I did the pull ups with the barbell on a rack and my feet on a box. Each time I do this I get higher and higher up. Strength is getting there.

The handstands were tough (I did them band assisted) – it’s not really the ‘being upside down’ aspect of them that gets me (as is the problem with most folk) – for me it’s kicking up my legs – I just can’t seem to find the strength to do it. And I get frustrated – not good.

The L sit holds were fine – my 20 seconds of relief in between the other two!

Was so glad to end – even if it meant moving on to some mobility! Ha!

Good to stretch, especially seen as every single one of us was still suffering DOMS, and the WOD ahead was not going to be easy.

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The WOD was to be done as close to body weight as possible. Geez!  I went with 20kg, 33% of my body weight. Heaviest I have done for a squat clean and a thruster in a WOD.

I got as far as 30 reps within the time cap. No one completed it (as you can imagine!). Yes I probably could have gone heavier – maybe 25kg.

Reason I only got 30 reps?? When the clock hut 14.18, I got to 30. Then I stopped. My zombie brain thought it was only 30 reps! Who knows why I thought that, it clearly said 40 on the board!

On talking to David on the way home I realised what I had done… and felt like such an idiot! What I had done was take my rep amount at the half way mark (15) and attempted to double it – so kept on saying to myself ‘c’mon, get to 30, you can do it!’ – so when I got to 30 my head told me ‘yay you did it, well done’….

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I facebooked Coach as soon as I got home to amend the board – I felt so guilty that other people would think I completed the WOD when I didn’t! All fixed now… panic over! Luckily he saw the funny side of it!

Note to self for the future – wake up brain as well as body before a WOD… how you do that I don’t know, maybe do some mental arithmetic or something… ha!

And there we have it folks!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Oh and I have an amazing opportunity for my readers over the pond on Monday – make sure you pop by to check it out!

Thinking Out Loud!

Hi all,

Thursday is upon us, not going to lie, wish it was Friday… and doesn’t it feel like a Friday??

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However, the best part of a Thursday is here right now! Linking up with the gorgeous Amanda over @RunningwithSpoons for Thinking Out Loud!

1)      I need this so bad!

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Iced coffee with almond milk. There are a variety of reasons why I need this so bad.

-          I am so tired, caffeine is needed! Killer WOD this morning…

-          The coffee is also needed for its muscle repairing properties, not only do I still have DOMS from Tuesday but I have new muscle soreness from today!

-          It’s warm here today! Yay! No complaints about that one!

-          And last but not least, iced coffee is the bomb!

2)      I want one of these!

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-          Any avocado lover will realise how difficult it is to keep half an avocado fresh in the fridge – this is the perfect answer! And besides, everyone loves a kitchen gadget!

3)      Kitchen time!

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-          Looking forward to getting into the kitchen later to make a new recipe for dinner – Gazpacho!

Found a fab recipe by Davida over @TheHealthyMaven which looks super easy to make and delicious! Perfect dinner for a hot summers day!

4)      ‘The War on fat is over’

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-          Funny article by one of my favourite food writers Jay Rayner – he said all along that fat wasn’t our enemy – he can now stand up and go ‘See, I was right all along!’. Thank goodness the world is now seeing sense, if only it didn’t take ‘Time Magazine’ for people to believe the facts!

Check out the article here.

5)      Which BBQ food are you?

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-          Damn buzzfeed sucking me in again – but I knew I had to do this quiz!

Turns out I am Smoked BBQ ribs (mmmm ribs…). The results read – ‘You’re a foodie through and through who isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty. If we had to hazard a guess, we’d say you’d be the one behind the grill, wearing a Texan cowboy hat and comedy apron. Some people say that you’re a little saucy for their tastes, but behind your ribald humour there beats a heart of gold. Just behind your slightly sticky ribs’. Mmmmm ribs….

Ok maybe slightly accurate!

6)      5 Myths about DOMS

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-          As mentioned above, I am currently suffering from DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). Daily Burn have released a fantastic article breaking down the myths about DOMS and stating the facts. Really interesting!

Check the article out here.

7)      A message to live by…

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-          I received this as part of my birthday present from my in-laws (birthday not until the 28th but I opened their pressie early as I was with them last weekend). Isn’t it lovely! What a powerful message to send out into the world and live your life by. In writing this blog and trying to inspire, promote healthy living and fitness, I really am doing what makes my heart smile.

Did you do the buzzfeed quiz? What BBQ food are you?

What makes your heart smile?