Sunday, January 29, 2012

Good morning World!


Okay, so that picture is wildly inappropriate for this post.  This morning, this week in fact, involved little sunshine and a lot a of rain.  Perhaps this picture would be better…


Yes, that is right.  The world is raining on my parade!  I was going to start my half marathon training this week and the rain became my excuse.  Yes, I could have run anyway, but it was raining.. kind of.  The rain was a convenient excuse although most of the time, it had slowed to a stop by the time I was out for a run.  I may have overcome this excuse, but I also had a major case of DOMS in my legs from Tuesdays workout – Yes, I did get to the gym twice this week! 

And comes forth my dilemma.  I have so much trouble finding the motivation to go out and run.  I love it when I do, but, this week anyway, getting to the gym is so much easier then getting out to run.  It also comes down to the timing though.  I can get to the gym at 9am, after I drop off the kids at school.  The only problem is that it cuts into my study time.  The running, however, I do in the evening – I have to make sure I time my meals, organise dinner for everyone else, make sure I am hydrated, etc., etc.  It is a lot harder to make it out with so many more excuses.  Morning running is an option but would require leaving the boys to wake up by themselves, and much more motivation and energy then I have!  I have done it for a week and found that I burnt less calories as I hadn’t eaten, tended to do shorter runs as I was time constrained, and ended up yawning all day long!

This is how the temptation of lean and strong has once again reared its head.  I am now thinking that maybe I should ditch the marathon training, do lean and strong with a couple of extra shorter (5k) cardio runs in the afternoons.  I could do the training after I drop off the kids to school, head straight into university and then do a run when I get home in the afternoon.  I will have to do my best to speed through the workouts, do my abdominal work at home to save time, and maybe look at setting up a home gym as I go along.

Thing is, I don’t need to decide now.  I am using my indecision as an excuse in itself.  I need to work out what I am doing this week.  So here goes for my exercise planning, the meal planning will happen tonight!


  • Measurements appointment for 10wk challenge at gym at 9am
  • Legs


  • Arms
  • 40min run


  • Zumba or boxing


  • Legs


  • Arms
  • 40min run


  • Rest Day


  • 40min Run (morning)

Plus Abdominal work after each run!


That is the plan, lets see how we go!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Feeling Good!!

The Gun Shop
The Gun Shop

So here is my starting guns picture for 2012! I was back in the gym this morning for an upper body workout and loved it!!

Not as good as they were at the end of last year but they will be back!

Friday, January 20, 2012

You can do everything…

Just not all at once!  And deciding what I should be doing at any one moment is HARD!  You see, I have three kids, a house to run and clean, a budget to manage, things to save for, a marriage to plan, a relationship to maintain, an extended family, my health and fitness, my kids health and fitness.. so many things.  So little time.

Time which I am currently wasting doing this!

But (which is another way of saying ‘ignore the last thing I just said because I am about to), I need to plan!

So far today I have cleaned up the kitchen, even clearing out the pantry and throwing out a old things in the fridge.

I still need to:

  • plan dinner
  • do a load of washing, and hang out, bring in and fold yesterdays stuff too
  • check the budget and plan weekend activities
  • pick up the last things on the book list
  • prepare lunch
  • spend an hour just playing with kids
  • get into uni and do the clean up, send for sequencing

Monday, January 16, 2012

Now I lay me down to sleep..


and I hope I fall asleep.  Quickly and easily and heavily!  I want to sleep until 6:30am and I want to wake up refreshed.  I was thinking I would run in the morning but I need to sleep first!

I will wake up and have a glass of water instead of tea, put on my gym clothes and go for walk.

I am now setting my alarm, and then listening to my hypnosis on the iPhone.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Food Log: 11th–17th January

I’ve decided it will be a lot less ‘blog clutter’ if I just post a weekly summary of my food log!  I am fairly sure it will be a lot easier for anyone who visits if you don’t have to wade through too many food log posts to get to the interesting stuff!

Start Weight: 57.7kg:


Calories In: 1500

Calories Out: 1500+ 400 (boxing)

Deficit = 400


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Calories In:

Calories Out: 1500+

Deficit =


Total Deficit =

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Food Log: 10 January 2012


I feel happy and alive now that I am living a healthy lifestyle and have my weight down below 50kg.  I love running and I love the days I get to spend building my strength in the gym.  Eating healthy food comes  naturally to me, my first choice is always some fruit or vegies and I always make sure I get enough protein and good carbs to fuel my body.  The best thing is, I feel like I have balance now that I also commit to the hours required for my PhD and ensure the time I spend with my children is quality time!  Just by spending 20mins a day on the housework and establishing basic routines, my house is also clean and fresh, and my budget under control so I feel really good about shopping for new home that will suit our needs better.  It feels so good to be in control of my life and steering myself toward my goals!

Food: logged on Calorie King..


Exercise: 5km run planned for tonight – too smokey and got home from uni too late.

Sleep last night: I ended up being really late home last night and decided to spend a bit of time tv watching before bed as well.. result = midnight bedtime!  Woke at 7:30am this morning so probably 7hrs sleep.

Business:  On computer until 9am, housework, then off to uni at 2pm to work in the lab until 6pm!

TDEE =1500 + ? exercise =  1500 calories used up =  100 deficit!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Food Log: 9 January 2012

This year seems to be going so fast already!  Here I am at 7.30am in the morning, sipping my tea and planning out my day, honestly feeling the best I have in quite some time!  I actually got some sleep last night!  It also feels good knowing that I put in a good afternoon’s work at university yesterday!  So here are today’s stat’s:

Weigh-in: 56.45kg; 27.7% fat

Food Diary: as logged in Calorie King

  • Sultana Bran w/Milk
  • 2x cuppa tea
  • handful of grapes
  • regular kfc popcorn
  • 1pc of pizza (mcCain supreme)
  • 2 large wedges
  • 1 glass of coke
  • 3/4 box of Favourites chocolate
  • Fish cake

Exercise Cals:

TDDE = 1500 + x =

Deficit =

Sleep:  I was in bed at 10.30pm and woke around 7.30am so that is 9hrs!  I did wake a couple of time during the night, once to swap beds and also JD came in for cuddles around 6am.  Still, my best sleep in a long time!

Business:  The plan is to get up and dressed, get some housework done, take kids to the park, pop into the shops, and bring kids home for lunch.  I’ll do a bit more housework before heading into university and skyping with the kids while I do some lab work!  I will finish up around 6ish and come home to do a bodyweight circuit and TKD practice with the kids!

So the plan went wonderfully until I got to university and got side-tracked in the lab!  I didn’t get a chance to eat and was given a big box of favourites chocolates as well which became my dinner!  I will have a go counting the calories tomorrow – I am so not looking at it right now!

The Plan:

  • 8am:  Shower and Dress
  • 8:30am:  Housework
    • Put on load of laundry
    • Empty dishwasher
    • Breakfast
    • Pack morning tea for park
    • Get kids dressed and teeth brushed
    • Wash dishes
    • Hang out a load of laundry
  • 9:30am:  Go to park
  • 11:30am  Pop into shops for:
    • worming tablets; dog food
    • night pants; bin liners
  • 12 noon: Home for lunch (at the table)
  • 12:30 pm:  Housework
    • Dinner prep (fish cakes)
    • Get all the clean laundry folded in the cupboards
  • 2pm:  Head into uni – clean up of Mala IL6 for direct sequencing
  • 5pm:  Home – bring in load from washing line, fold and put-away
  • 6pm: Dinner (at the table)
    • Clean-up after dinner; shine sink!
    • 7:00pm: circuit/tkd practice
  • 8.00pm: Finish up the Day
    • Kids washed and teeth brushed (screens off at 7pm)
    • Food diary, blog, emails and budget checks!
  • 11:30pm: Get ready for tomorrow
    • Brush teeth
    • Pick an outfit
    • Plan the day
    • Get to bed!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Food Log: 8 January 2012

This food log thing is going quite well!  I’m beginning to think about what I eat and my energy in vs energy out!  My scales rewarded me this morning.. 56.6kg and 27.9% fat – a good kilo down from yesterday.  It just goes to show how much of that was just water weight and a backed up digestive system.


I feel happy and alive now that I am living a healthy lifestyle and have my weight down below 50kg.  I love running and I love the days I get to spend building my strength in the gym.  Eating healthy food comes  naturally to me, my first choice is always some fruit or vegies and I always make sure I get enough protein and good carbs to fuel my body.  The best thing is, I feel like I have balance now that I also commit to the hours required for my PhD and ensure the time I spend with my children is quality time!  Just by spending 20mins a day on the housework and establishing basic routines, my house is also clean and fresh, and my budget under control so I feel really good about shopping for new home that will suit our needs better.  It feels so good to be in control of my life and steering myself toward my goals!

Food: logged on Calorie King.. 1300
Exercise: Rest Day

Sleep last night: I went to bed around 11pm last night, woke up at around 9am, so about 10 hours sleep. It was not good quality sleep though, I woke up a few times during the night and didn’t drift off easily. I get frustrated with my nose getting blocked up!

Business:  On computer until 10am then off to uni to sit at a desk at a computer until 6pm!

TDEE =1500 + ? exercise = 1500 calories used up = 200 deficit!

Saturday, January 7, 2012


strawberryWe all know we need to eat ‘Healthy’ foods and it seems like we are expected to intuitively just ‘KNOW’ what is healthy.  For some of us, and honestly, I think most of us, we’ve been raised in a society with a very skewed version of healthy.  We have fast food outlets and convenience foods telling us everyday what is healthy about them.. coco pops have fibre so they are healthy!

I have decided to start from the beginning.  I know that I didn’t eat well as a child, not too bad and probably better then a lot of people, but mum was a working mum and living in town meant easy access to the lolly shop and convenience foods.  Often money was an issue as well so cheap came ahead of nutritious.  Back to basics though.. I am starting at the very beginning and working out just how many calories I need and what ratio of macronutrients I need.  From there, the healthy part will be about choosing fresh food as close to nature as possible!

Lets begin with the calorie decision.. We know that the minimum we should drop our calories to is 1200 for women.  Below that and you risk upsetting your biochemical homeostasis and triggering the ‘fat saving’ genes into play.  Not a good thing long term.  You might lose weight, but it will be muscle mass – and this will reduce the amount of calories you need and increase the amount sent into storage!  When you  hit your goal, you will have to eat less to maintain.  What we want is to turn our bodies into a metobolic machine that burns calories so we can eat a full and healthy diet with a few slip ups here and there as well (we are human afterall!).

So lets start.. I will take you through my calculations, but you can easily substitute your numbers to work it out for yourself!  Basically what I am doing is working out my maintenance calories and dropping them by 15-20%.  The maximum deficit for calories from food in any one day is 1000cals. This is a pretty safe method to allow for fat loss without the loss of lean muscle mass.

We start with Basal Metabolic Rate – this is how many calories our body needs to just ‘survive’ the day.  There are two main methods.  One just uses your overall weight (what you get when you use an online calculator), the other, your lean body mass (so you need body fat scales).

Harris-Benedict Formula: constant + weight factor + height factor – age factor

Men: 66 + (13.7 x kg) + (5 x cm) – (6.8 x yrs)

Women: 655+ (9.6 x kg) + (1.8 x cm) – (4.7 x yrs)

So for me that’s 655 + 547.2 + 279 – 173.9 = 1307.3 (1220.9 at goal weight)

Katch- McArdle Method

370 + (21.6 x kg) using lean body mass.

Lean body mass can be taken directly from body composition scales are worked out from body fat % and your weight.

For me.. 1265

These are very consistent for me, but if you are not average and have a greater lean body mass, the later will work better for you.

I’m going to use the 1265 number as it is more accurate in general.

The BMR we just calculated does not take into account our activity levels, but I want to calculate my TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure).   I am going to two calculations based on no exercise and moderate exercise.  This is because I calculate my exercise calories using a HRM so by taking the ‘no exercise’ number as my base, I can add on my exercise and be able to get a more accurate figure.  The moderate exercise number will give me a base for my meal plan and my average target.

Activity Factors:

  • x1.2 no exercise
  • x 1.375 for light exercise (1-2 days a week)
  • x 1.55 moderate exercise (3-5 days a week)
  • x 1.725 for heavy exercise (6-7 days a week)
  • x 1.9 for athletes (more then once a day training)

1518 for no exercise

1960 - 2182 for moderate to heavy exercise

Wow, no wonder I have been gaining weight over Christmas!  It looks like if I want to eat ‘normally.. I need to be a heavy exerciser!  Ahhh!

So what do I now know?  I know that if I sick or can’t exercise, 1500 is my maintenance.  If I am doing my exercise then I can creep it up to 2000 a day.  Realistically, somewhere in the middle is probably my maintenance goal.. around 1800 calories a day.

But what about losing weight?

I am going to use my ‘no exercise’ number so I can add on my exercise calories as I burn them.  And I am using the 15-20% guide.  This gives me a range of about:

 1220-1290 cals as my goal for losing weight without exercise, or

1550-1650 cals as my goal for losing weight with moderate exercise.

From that information I will now set my meal plan goal calorie level to 1500, knowing that if I don’t exercise I need to drop that to 1200-1300.


I will work out Macronutrient ratios on another day!

Food Log: 7 Jan 2012

I am starting this log at 10am, I’ve just finished breakfast and really not happy with myself.  I feel like my ass is indented into the bed where I sit with my lappy.  Heck, my husband even cooked my breakfast and made my tea (two already).  The kids don’t want to hit the beach so there goes my plan for a family morning trip.  I just need to break this cycle!

Breakfast: Egg on toast (no butter) – 250 cals

Snack: 3/4 Mango - 100 cals

Lunch: Salad and about a cup of chopped left over chicken with salsa, in a wrap – 350 cals

Snack: yogurt – 70 cals

grapes plus a bit of watermelon – 100 cals

multigrain crackers – 80 cals

Dinner: cujan couscous! – 150 cals

Supper: hot chocolate – 70 cals

Drinks: cups of tea x 2 (cals included in breakfast);

water 1-2 500mL bottles

Exercise: 7k run in pm = 450cals

Sleep last night: I went to bed around 2am last night, woke up at around 9am, so about 7 hours sleep.  I was quite hyped up on tea so needed a valium to sleep.

Business:  On computer until 2pm then off to uni to sit at a desk at a computer for a few hours!


Total: 1200 cals eaten…

TDEE =1500 + 450 exercise = 1950 calories used up = 750 deficit!


Happy Smile

Friday, January 6, 2012

Food Log: January 6

food-diaryThis week’s challenge is to keep a food log for the week. I’m starting a bit late with it being Friday but seven days should be enough for me to see any trends!  I will post each day as we go for the next seven weeks with a general log of what I have eaten, the exercise I have done, an account of my sleep the night before, and my general mood and business.
Breakfast: Sultana Bran with Skinny Milk
Snack: Handful of grapes
Lunch: Meat Pie (Angus style!)
Snack: beetroot (6 slices)
Dinner: Chicken salsa with green vegies and corn, Turkish Delight and 1/4 jelly for dessert
Supper: multigrain crackers (12), tiny tin of baked beans, peice of bread, glass of milk
Drinks: cups of tea x 5 (natvia sugar plus milk in small coffee cups)
Exercise: 5k run in pm = 300cals
Sleep last night: I went to bed around 3am last night, woke up past nine am, so about 6ish hours sleep
Business:  I’ve mostly spent the morning on the computer with just a couple of cleaning tasks done. I hosed out the back verandah too.  But yeah, pretty much on my ass all day! 
The things marked in Purple are already done, the black titles are ‘projected’ and need to be updated tonight!

Goal Setting: Being SMART

smartToday I will be getting my goals for the whole of 2012 organised and on paper!  Although there are a few variations of SMART goals, Mish uses the one in the picture.  The only difference I would make is to ‘Achievable’ – I think that setting goals is not a place to put limits on people.   My ultimate goal is not tempered by anything except what is physically possible, even then I think we should push the limits!  Why can’t I make my goal to win a marathon?  If I really want it, then I will find a way!  I get so frustrated when I see people setting ‘mild’ goals like “I just want to be healthy’ like they really don’t expect to achieve to much and don’t want to get their hopes up.  My message to the world.. reach for the stars!  Push the limits of what is possible and believe in yourself!

My Smart Goals

48kg or 20% body fat by the end of the Michelle Bridges 12 week challenge.  That is nearly 17 weeks away.  Maintaining muscle mass is important to me so I will aim for a max of 1kg a week for the 5 weeks, and then half a kilo a week during the 12 week challenge itself.  I do need to check my scales and make sure my weight is accurate on the scales I am using (they are up to 2kg heavier then my old scales) so I may need to adjust this number, but I am currently 58kg so that is 10kg to lose.  I will re-evaluate at the start of the challenge but if I drop under 1kg a week for 5wks I will aim to enter the challenge with 6kg to lose which then leaves .5kg a week on average for the 12 weeks.

Run a half marathon on June 3 to finish.

By the end of year (lets make it my b’day in early December!) I want to be able to bench-press 45kg, do 5 chin-ups, 40 push-ups on toes in a minute, 1km in 4.30mins, and squatting 45kg.  I will also be doing level 5 sit-ups.

My ultimate goal: health - to me that is 48-50kg maintenance weight and regular exercise with a good clean diet!

12 month goal: fitness test results listed above.

3mth goal: 8-10kg weight loss, training for 1/2 marathon up to 20km for big run

1wk goal: 0.5-1kg weight loss per week (for next 5 weeks)

Daily goal: eat clean and train!


(disclaimer.. this is adapted from “burn the muscle, feed the fat” by Tom Venetto.  I’ve read the odd page here and there and I remember him having this breakdown of goals!)

Important Note:

  It took a little bit of time to get here because within my ‘lose weight and get healthy mindset’, I have two goals.. to run and to get strong.  There is a basic premise that you cannot grow and shrink at the same time.  I cannot expect to lose a lot of weight and gain a lot of muscle – I could gain some muscle and lose a bit of weight, or I could lose weight and maintain my muscle. 

Goals should not conflict with each other!

I will be splitting these up over the year.  The first half of the year I will be training for a half marathon and concentrating on losing weight while maintaining my muscle.  Once that is done, I will be working on gaining muscle and getting myself to where I want to be shape wise!  This should work in well with the Michelle Bridges rounds – Round 1 for Lean and Fit, and Round 2 and 3 for Lean and Strong.

Kitchen Makeover: Progress not perfection

December 034At this stage, I think it is important to step back and remember that perfection is well, slightly annoying!  Perfection is not the goal here, but progress is.  So long as we are taking steps, even little baby steps, everyday.. we are getting closer to our goals.  So on that note, my challenge for the last week or two was to slowly progress through my kitchen, getting it a little better everyday.

So for 15-20mins on most days, I picked a cupboard or a drawer and tidied it.  I still have five drawers and 4 cupboards to go, but I have got through the biggest ones.. the two large drawers for pots and plastics, the two big corner cupboards for tupperware and baking stuff, the ‘under the sink’ cupboard and the five smaller drawers with cutlery and place sets and the tea-towels.  Then there was the ‘drop-zone’ which is now a tidy basket where we put our keys and everyday stuff, the cupboard for tea and coffee stuff, the cupboard for cups and the cupboard where I was just shoving all the plastic bags, and lastly (the one in the pic) was the appliance cupboard.

Habit: 15mins to do a  Deep Clean Task

So the Deep Clean Tasks include:

Pick a drawer or cupboard or shelf – empty, declutter, wipe out and put it all back.  The more often you do this, the quicker it will be so that you will eventually be able to do a few cupboards in one go or only need a quick wipe around rather then the whole empty and declutter effort.

Clean a section of the stove – the top, the grill, the outside (including sides), the inside, or even pull it out and behind it.  Again, this one will get easier with time with only the ‘pull it out and clean behind it’ being a bigger job.

Clean the window!

Scrub the rubbish Bin!

Clean out the fridge.

Clean out the pantry (or a shelf depending on how bad it is!)

Clean the ‘hotspot’ – for me this is near the door, where everything gets ‘dumped’ as we walked in or put to deal with ‘later’.

Clean your microwave or other appliances.

Clean under the top cupboards – the bits where the oil and grease stick!

Wipe down the cupboard doors (inside and out)

Clean the dining room chairs and the whole of the dining table

Clean the back splash (depending on how bad you might need to do that in sections)

The extra Deep Clean Stuff to be done once or twice a year:

Clean the walls and ceilings in kitchen and dining room

Scrub the floors

Clean blinds and curtains


Now all of these jobs will get smaller and easier the more they are done and once I get to that point, I will-assign the tasks into a ‘routine’.

My plan is to have tasks that are weekly and add one to the daily cleaning jobs, eg.

Monday – wipe down and clean the stove

Tuesday – Clean out the rubbish bin

Wednesday – wipe down the cupboard doors and chairs in dining room

Thursday – wipe down back-splash and the whole bench top

Friday – empty Dishwasher filter and wipe down

If I do these every week (missing the odd day won’t be a drama) then they only take about 5-10mins and since I am up washing the dishes anyway it really is no trouble.

On top of that, I want to pick out one week of each month to focus on the kitchen.  This is when the next level of cleaning occurs.. cleaning the windows, the pantry and fridge, wiping out the cupboards and anything that needs doing really!  But, progress not perfection is the aim here so I will deal with that when I get there!  Now I will pick out a couple of those tasks and get them done!