Sunday, April 29, 2012

Creamy Tuna Pasta for Lunch?

Do you think “Creamy” and weight-loss don’t mix?  Think again my friend!  This yummy recipe is a great mix of carbs of protein, in a delicious creamy sauce which can be easily adapted for any taste!

  • 1/2 cup of uncooked wholemeal spiral pasta (35g) 120cals
  • 1 95g tin of tuna light (John West) (drained) 55cals
  • 2 tablespoons (50g) of Easi-yo natural unsweetened yogurt 35cals
  • spices eg. dijon mustard, chilli flakes or lemon and dill

Cook your pasta (add in double the volume of water and microwave for 8mins), drain, and simply stir in the tuna and yogurt. 

205 cals

18.2g protein; 24.4g carbohydrates; 3g Fat (40:54:6)

You can easily make this even more nutritious by added some frozen veg into the pasta as it is cooking (100g of a peas, corn and carrot mix is an extra 80cals for example). It is also very low fat so if you like you can add in some higher fat options to add flavour in place of some of the pasta!

Another option is to use salmon in place of tuna or to use either in one of the many flavoured single serve portions now available!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Adventures in… Cross-fit!

I’ve heard so much about Cross-fit in recent years, particularly since the appearance of Commando Steve on The Biggest Loser.  He has been a great ambassador for the program in that he epitomises the philosophies behind it.  Functional fitness and strength, a strong mental attitude, and well-rounded physique.
For anyone who has no idea of what Cross-fit is.. check out this u-tube video!
A new cross-fit group has started up in the Rockhampton Fitness Centre so I took the opportunity to go check it out and see what it is all about.
Costs:  First class is free, and after that it depends on if you are a member of the gym or not.  For each class, $7.50 for members, $20 for non-members, or for a 10 session pass it is $150.  There are also fortnightly and monthly unlimited passes for $75 and $170 respectively.  Remember to contact them directly for updated costs, discounts for emergency services personnel, or any specials that might be running!
When:  Classes run for an hour which include a walkthrough of the WOD and what progressions are available so you can work at your own level.  There are morning classes, Monday to Friday at 6am, and evenings at 5.45pm.  Also a Saturday class runs at 9.30am. 
Contact: I contacted them through their face-book page and they were prompt at returning my message.  You can also contact the Rockhampton Fitness Centre (aka Norm’s Gym) directly by phone.
I went along on a Friday night to be blessed with only one other person in the class.  Friday night generally has a low attendance due to it being.. well, Friday night!  I would recommend going along on a Friday for your first class if you want a more personal introduction! 
I was also assured that there is generally a good representation of women in the class.  The skill level is generally at a beginner to intermediate level as the program has only started recently in the area, so if you want to start, now is a great time to do it!
On a personal note, I am very impressed with my first workout. It was a 20min AMRAP of what looked like a fairly easy workout, once my progression modifications were made anyway!).
Warm-up: 3x (200m + 10 long jumps) then stretching
  • 2 Muscle-ups (1 = 3 jumping chins, 3 tri-cep dips)
  • 4 Headstand Push-ups (1 = 1 Pike Push-up with Feet Elevated)
  • 8 Kettlebell swings (12kg)
And of course we ended with some stretching.
I managed 7 and a bit rounds.. my goal was 10 so I will be repeating this again to beat myself! 
And therein lies the attraction of Cross-fit.  You not only get to challenge yourself every single workout, but you also get to really see your progress by recording your personal bests for any workout that you do!
Even though I am not a member I am seriously considering buying that 10 session pass so I can do a couple of more classes and see how that fits in with my training.  I really enjoyed the session itself, I enjoyed the feeling of motivation that comes from trying to beat the clock and the encouragement from the instructor and other participants.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Learning to Love… Yogurt!

easiyoI’ve made no secret of the fact that I suffer from food aversions.  I struggle to eat some foods and am very wary of use-by dates or any sign that a food may make me feel ill.  Yogurt is one of those foods.

As a child I remember thinking yogurt was just kind of gross!  There was always runny bits on top, it wasn’t sweetened, and it never really sat well in my stomach.  It was on the ‘yucky’ food list and wasn’t eaten. 

Your parents dietary habits and tastes are passed on to you through exposure, and by your parents reactions to certain food.  I can remember thinking of yogurt as something that was foreign and something that went ‘off’ quickly.  I also remember my mum recently describing yogurt to me as just that!

I don’t want to pass this on my kids so I have made a commitment to battle this issue head on – with an Easi-yo Yogurt maker!  I’ve tried it this week and it has been great!  It is simple to use, and just using the standard, unsweetened version gives you a whopping 68cals per 100g!

Our 12wbt snack recommendation is 100-150cals, with two snacks per day.  Because I tend to get hungry at night I try to keep my snacks close to 100cals so I can save a nice 100cal protein based snack for just before bed to help me sleep.  The yogurt really does this nicely as it provides a nice mix of both carbohydrates and protein.

As 100g is only 68cals, this gives plenty of room to add flavour to the yogurt by adding fruit, spices, honey, or to use it in other recipes in place of higher fat options such as sour cream!  Today I tried cinnamon and honey at a whopping 92cals – perfect!

Cinnamon and Honey Yogurt

  • 100g of natural unsweetened Easi-yo (prep as directed) – 68cals
  • 1 teaspoon of honey – 20cals
  • cinnamon – 2cals
Just stir the honey and cinnamon through the yogurt and enjoy!
3.9g Protein; 11.3g Carbs; 3.6g Fat (20:60:20)
If you want a higher protein ratio, just add some plain protein powder to the mix.  Just remember this adds calories, but for those of us doing lean and strong, protein calories are adventageous to building muscle so, in my mind, are considered 'freebies'.

This is extremely cost effective! The prepared yogurt lasts for 2 weeks in the fridge and makes 10 x 100g servings.  The satchets cost about $4 each if I remember, even less if you buy them in packs: that is .40c per serve!  And at only $25 for the kit, you will easily save money over the long term!

Monday, April 23, 2012

What have you done today…

To make yourself proud?

Well yesterday I went for a run (5km including the warm up and cool down walk) and avoided excessive eating of chocolate.  Today I have avoided crap food, chose not to eat take-out, and laid down the law with my son!
And I rocked it at the gym!

Jeni  <-- one workout closer to Awesome!

Saturday, April 21, 2012


I have 5kg to lose, I’m in a healthy weight range and even my waist is within the healthy guidelines.  Is my lifestyle healthy?  No way!  I so easily fall back into the bad habits of take-out of laziness as soon as the pressure is turned up a little bit.

I don’t know what to do about it, except to just keep on improving one step at a time.  And each time I slip back a little less.

I have decided not to do the Michelle Bridges 12wbt program this round.  I have the program and recipes, I have the skills I need to do it.  I just need to make it a priority and right now, I have too many other things going on to really justify making a 12 week program a priority.  My health, yes, it is a priority and I will focus on health and well-being.  But the program itself is too time-consuming as a whole, when you take into account new recipes, new meal plans, learning new exercise programs and schedules, watching the videos (which I’ve seen before anyway) and mindset lessons, participating in mindset lessons, fitness tests, milestones, and then jumping on the forums, blogs, facebook, and twitter!  Phew!  Yes, it is a lot to do the program as a whole but for those who desperately need to turn their lives around – it is important enough, and necessary enough to commit that time.  But not for me!  I’m doing okay and I am here because I want to get healthier, not because I am slowly killing myself!

So the last few weeks of April will be about finding balance.  Finding a way to make my goals fit my life.  I want to have happy kids, a clean house, my PhD, and a fit and healthy lifestyle for my whole family!

Saturday mornings are for cleaning up and shopping so that is what I am doing this morning!  Currently cleaning, then doing a meal plan, and then shopping and planning for a big cook up tomorrow!