So your partner has kids/you’re a stepmom….

So your partner has kids/you’re a stepmom

Sorry for change of plans- I was going to post another DVD review but will now do it on Tuesday.

Instead, a more personal topic:

What do you do/how do you cope with your partner’s kid/kids?

I’ve gottta say it has been a steep learning curve with me and Mr A. He has got 3 little monsters:

2 girls A (who is 6), C (who is 7) and a boy E (who is almost 10).

Depending on his work pattern we either get them Saturday midday till Sunday evening or if he’s working on Sat his parents will pick them up and drop them off at ours round 6ish. On the odd occasion that Mr A is working for the whole weekend his parents keep them kids and he goes over straight after work till 11pm to spend the evening with them.

For the most part that works for me, but there are some weekends when I wish we would get to do the stuff that I want to do. I don’t think that it helps that I don’t have kids of my own and no intention of having any either. Lately, a lot of my favourite bloggers are either pregnant or have babies and at times (I may get flamed for it) I find it hard to relate to their posts. I do still read them trying to find tips on how to handle three kids all wanting to do different stuff, all making noise and messing up my little house. I know it is completely normal, but if I am to be honest it doesn’t make it any better.

I have been having short meldowns most weekends for the past month or so (tears, lip pulling and all that jazz) over at times not the most significant things.

Like this morning the girls were jumping up and down the bed and haven’t sorted their toys. I think part of the problem is I am not their parent and therefore don’t feel like I can discipline them. Also, I feel that I would do certain things differently from Mr A when it comes to dealing with their behaviour. At times, I feel like a prisoner in my own house..kids and Mr A downstairs watching some kids programme and me upstairs in our bedroom on my laptop.

I don’t think it is an ideal situation for anyone and I know it’s still early days (we’ve only been living together since October) but if anyone has got any experience of handling kids that are not your own and not being reduced to tears I would really appreciate that. Maybe you can point me in the direction of some bloggers who touch on that topic?

Now onto food and exercise bit:

Yesterday was my rest day and my cheat meal as well. For some reason I have been dying to have some trifle but alas can’t as the sponge contains wheat. I managed to persuade (read whine over and over) Mr A to bake me a sponge, I fixed Hartley’s sugarfree jelly and used a tin of low fat custard plus squirty cream and voila–>

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all ready to be devoured

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Fear not it was not the only thing I have eaten all day. As we are trying to empty our freezer (AND I was feeling lazy) I reheated one of turkey and lentil stews
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Minimum cleanup is the best (yes I do have more plastic containers but this one is my favourite and the biggest one)

Today I was hoping to start my day with coconut flour waffles but they turned out absolutely crap so being starved by then I settled for 2nd best thing porridge with peaches, protein powder, chia seeds, cinammon and coconut oil

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Once more my lunch was curtousy of the freezer (carrot and swede soup with chicken breast and spelt pasta)

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I more than likely will consume some frozen yoghurt after my yoga session with Mr A (yay) while I’m watching Dancing on Ice finale. Now onto finishing reorganising my wardrobe (bye bye winter, hello spring/summer)

 

How was your weekend?

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My back and figure skating story

Hiya,

So because I didn’t quite get round to photographing my food today (bad blogger me) I thought I’d do a full post on my back injury.

So…once upon a time in a land far, far away where polar bears walked the streets (aka Poland) a 4 year old girl started figure skating. It was something that her granddad and dad have done and her auntie trained top dance figure skating pairs for this magical land.

The girl cried the 1sdt time she got on the ice and when she met her coach but soon she was spending 6 days a week, normally twice a day at the ice rink. It soon became her second home.

If you’re still following that girl was me. I was a competetive solo skater till the age of 14 when I tore my ligament. Plus my body changing (with the hips and boobs didn’t help either as it throws most teenage female skaters pretty off for a bit). I spent Mon-Sat at the ice rink couple of hours before school and couple of hours after (not to mention extra dance, gymnastics or swimming sessions). I adored it and even placed 3rd in the country at the age of 8 (my claim to fame). Which doens’t say that much considering Poland has not produced a single decent male or female skater in the last 15 years, but I loved having the whole of the ice rink to myself, I loved the speed and I loved the attention.

However, as any competative sportsperson I did pick up an injury here or there even before my grand finale of the injury. After I was done at 14 I went back to being a reguklar teenager and for a number of years (first out of anger, then out of laziness) I did not do anyting exercisey at all.

It changed couple of years ago when I got really really unhappy with how I looked. Granted,  my expectations were a lot higher than a *regular* persons due to my figure skating past but I felt fat nonetheless and changed it.

All was great for a while but then I picked up a right calf strain, then another, thenmy left cal was complaining, then my hip flexors were extremely tight, then my shins wre getting worse. And in the background I had a dull back pain as well. For over a year, just to keep myself moving and able to do ridiculous amount of exercise (we are talking between 10-15 hrs every week with 3 classes back to back), I was getting sports massage every two weeks. I got new trainers, I got knee and calf supports, I lowered the impact, I dropped the amount of hours at the gym and I was still complaining of lower body strains. That’s when my lovely sports therapist suggested I go and see her colleague in the practice who was a physiotherapist.

Don’t get me wrong I have seen physios before when I was competing and yes they would get me out of pain (hello cortison injections) but it would come back sooner or later.

This time it was different- during the first appointment after looking at my spine my physiotherapist told me that I must have either been a ballerina, a gymnast or a figure skater- all that from looking at my spine!!!

 

It turns out that my back problem is a typical one of the competetive world. Those 3 sports have a lot in common- the need for elongaged, feminine figure which is achieve by pushing your upper body forward

 

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Yes, it does look fabulous but as I have done this for 10 years that’s what my body was doing now skates or no skates!!!

And this resulted in my bottom vertabreas being crunched together (hence the pain) and my ahmstrings doing 80% of the work! For everyone else they should be doing about 10-20% ? My glutes have been taking a nap for the past 15-20 years and that was why I was constantly picking up injuries so now for the past 10 weeks I have been doing physiotherapy exercises religiously to get myself back into a better place.

 

So that’s my story in a nuthsell 🙂

 

What injuries have you picked up along the way?

Oops I overdid it again…

Hiya,

So I went to a yoga class on Thursday night..all excited, all ready expecting to feel instantly zen, flexible and to stretch out all my kinks

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On the pic I’m looking confident, ready to conquer my yoga mat and in the zone..BUT..

when I got to the gym  different instructor was taking a class and instead of doing the regular yoga for relaxation/flexibility she did yoga for strenght. And yes she warned us before hand so I could have left at that stage. Did I? Of course not I was determined to do a yoga class no matter what after 4 months of being told I can not risk it. Being a good competetive girl I placed my mind directly in front of the instructor’s–> clearly so I can see her better not that she can see what an amazing yogini I am *cue sarcasm*

I’m sure you can see where this is going- I did get through the 60 mins of yoga, but in hindsight I should have left probably if not before it started than maybe 15 mins in as my back was not happy camper. I found out there is no way in hell I can even do Cobra properly at this stage and was stuck with sphinx
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(which I know is absolutely fine blah blah blah but being rather competetive I felt like a failure for taking the easier option). The only thing that I have done really well that caused me no pain was a tree pose:
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So the next morning after yoga my muscles were not happy one bit so I had to make a decision to skip a workout out I did still my physio exercises to pacify my back and I *think* I learnt my lesson.

Onto a bit nicer topic of food here are some of my eats over the last two days:
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Friday night is fast becoming a pizza and a movie night. Once I find a topping that I like I will do it till death so once again we have goats cheese, cherry tomaotes, rocket with the guest performance from red onions (hate cutting them but scored a bag of them already precut that was reduced to 25p so seemed like too much of a bargain to pass haha). This time we tried Caitlin’s recipe for pizza dough and it was better than last weeks from Oh She Glows but it’s still missing something as it’s rather tricky to transfer onto a pizza stone (so it’s just a bit too runny without actually being runny IYSWIM?)

Next morning , just because I could I had this:

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so at this rate I will not want to see red onions in  about a month time lol

Team effort cooking (as in I said I wanted a stew with these ingredients and I switched the slow cooker on in the morning whereas Mr A chopped and prepped everything lol) Pork stew with lentils, carrots, swede and an apple for flavour. Had this for Sat lunch and I still got 3 more portions in the freezer:
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and I will leave you with the pic of the bestest breakfast (at least in my humble opinion)

Oats with peaches, chia seeds, protein powder and coconut oil:

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They were truly glorious and just as goats cheese and cherry tomatoes they are one of my staple flavour combos

Do you ever get fixated on any food combos?

Valentine’s Day Bitter Sweet Moments

So yesterday was Valentines Day and for the 1st time in 3 years I actually had someone to spend it with. So there were good and bad bits of the day.

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Starting with the good Mister A got me lush flowers and a card

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and then we went to a posh steak house where I was treated to a lovely well done steak, with jacket potato, roasted vine tomatoes and beans (after sending it back as there were peas which I absolutely detest on it and the waitress did not mention it to me at the time of ordering.

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We also had a naughty starter of potato skins with cheese and bacon

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(hello carb coma but it was a treat). I really enjoyed the meal (and the company) but it started to turn into the not so great night when I had  a look at the dessert menu. All I wanted was the death by chocolate sundae (consisting of vanilla and chocolate ice cream, chocolate brownie pieces, chocolate shaving, whipped cream, chocolate sauce and chocolate flakes).

The tiny bit of the problem with this dessert is

a)I’m wheat intolerant

b) I’m allergic to cocoa beans

c) last time I did have it against my better sense I was doubled in pain for hours

so really I knew logically  I should not be having or even think about having it. That however did not stop me from being miserable and pouting like a 5 year old. Good thing that Mr A has got 3 kids as he handled it very well leaving the final decision to me. In the end we went home sans any desserts. I knew I could have had some ice cream but all I wanted was Death by chocolate (which in my case could  have been quite literal 😉 ).

I haven’t felt so bad about not being able to have something I wanted in a long time. I think I just wanted to fit it and not be ‘the awkward one’ when eating out. I am aware that of course I can bake myself some goodies but I wanted something cakey right there and then and I couldn’t have it. Also, UK is still far behind US when it comes to having gluten free bakeries etc (or at least they are nowhere to be found in the Midlands). I thought it was such a shame that I spoilt a lovely evening with my sulking (albeit only temporarily) but it honestly felt like my life depended on eating that dessert and that I was somehow missing out on the ‘normal dining experience’.

The silver lining of this is that Mr A is off this weekend and promised to try to make my some ‘chocolate brownies’ using gluten free flour and carob powder so we shall see how this turns out. And now I know to try to keep something in the freezer for the times when I become completely consumed by the idea of having something really really bad for me.

Question time: What are you allergic to/intolerant to food wise?

My weight loss story

So it seems to be the ‘it’ thing on the blogs so I thought I’d follow suit and write down how I mnaged to lose almost stone and a half (17 pounds) in 3 months or so. Before I go any further I appreciate this may be triggering for someone for ED so proceed with caution. I also wanted to aknowledge that I do realise I was never ‘obese’ and my BMI was never over 25 but I was simply not happy with how I looked and decided to change it.

It was May 2009, I was 23, doing full time masters and holding down full time and a part time job. I was working shifts in the community so always on the run, some days I was out from 6am till midnight so healthy eating, never mind exercise was rather tricky. I was at my heaviest at 10 stone 2 (142 pounds) at 5f 7 (173cm) and got really fed up of it. Some pics for comparison purposes

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I have been passing a ladies only gym on my way into town daily and finally plucked up the courage to go in one Saturday afternoon. The gym offered a quick 30 mins workout compromising of doing 10 different stations (8 machine and 2 free weights stations) for 3 mins each 4 times a week. Seeing as up until this point I was only swimming at uni my weight started to fall off speedily but completely stalled at 9stone 2.

Sround the same time I moved to my current office based job and with working 9-4.30pm joining a ‘normal gym’ was a possibility. After doing my research I joined Esporta and stayed there until it wasclosed down and replaced by M club gym in September 2010. I threw myself into doing at least 5-6 classes every week (Body Combat, Body Pump, Body Balance, Yoga you name it), swimming at least 2 a week and doing at least 10 hours of solid gym workouts. My weight dropped to 8 stone 8 and even I could see I was starting to look ill, not to mention I was constantly getting injured ( plus there was this one time I fainted on the gym floor after doing a Body Combat class and trying to do a strenght training workout straight after).

It was when I was at Esporta that I realised exercising alone won’t make me as healthy as I would like to be and that better eating habits would need to follow (this may be a topic for another post in itself really) but at the moment I am trying to eat protein rich diet and avoid carbs in the evening with plenty of fresh veg and fruit. I am not vegetarian/ vegan but try to have at least 2 days per week without meat, I don’t consume wheat, don’t eat too much diary and try to get the least processed foods that my budget will allow for.

At present moment I am with puregym though due to back problems my exercise regime consists mostly of physio exercises. I now fluctuate between 8 stone 9 and 8 stone 12 and I am a lot happier with my body. My body fat stands at ok 20% (got it checked out for free during B-fit expo) and this is definitely something I will want to address when I can get back to normal exercising.

Here’s some pics for comparison:

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So are you happy with your body now?

I lurve shopping :)

It’s been such a good day so far..mostly coz I’ve been off and could have a lie in..This meant I caught up with some TV shows (namely Grey’s Anatomy, Fringe and Bones).

I was going to go swimming today but as I still  have an allergic reaction I didn’t want to irritate my skin with chlorine. Instead I did Jillian Micheals’ No more trouble zones and really enjoyed it and then hit the gym for my normal one hour workout (calories burnt 860 in 1h45 mins not too shabby eh?)

But what made my workout so much better was the fact that these got delivered

Reebok Traintones!!!!! They feel so comfy and are very well cushioned..they also made my workouts harder by making it slightly more difficult to keep my balance. They are £75 at reebok website but as I signed up for their newsletter I got £15 off a purchase over £50 so at £60 they were bargainlicious

Do they not look pretty?

No food pics as I was mostly grazing but I had porridge duh, plenty of fruit, eat natural bar, some Cheerios and I am about to head out for a meal with my friend and I shall be having Steak, jacket potato, grilled tomato and onions, will see about the dessert 😉

Have you bought anything recently that you had been excited about?

It’s no fun being allergic to almost everything

Ok, so I may have exaggerated in my title..I am not allergic to absolutely everything  but every so often a new allergy pops up and makes me miserable.. Today’s winner is lovely face and neck bright red rash compliments of Amber Solaire no streaks bronzer…believe me when I tell you guys at Amber will be getting a very angry email as soon as I’ve got more time.

Other than that though my day has been rather enjoyable..been out of the office for half a day attending meetings and so on

Breakfast once more consisted of lovely porridge with skimmed milk, summer fruit and half a banana

Brought half mixed berry Trek bar that I have seen on various blogs recently, but only had a tiny bit as I found it absolutely revolting..shame but good on the other hand as they are quite price. As it was so blah I had Lemon Special K bites instead.

Thankfully my lunch was very yummy (3x fishfingers, some potato wedges and heaps of green beans)

This was followed by something that I genuinly can not remember and then before gym I inhaled 1 1/2 buttered oats and seeds toast and 150grams of cottage cheese

The workout itself was really good and I burned over 440 calories in 55 minutes. I also gave in and ordered proper DVD sets of both Turbofire and Chalean Extreme, coz frankly I love buying anything fitness related and convinced myself they’d be an investment in myself really 😉

Are there any exercise DVDs that you swear by?

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