Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Workout Wednesday: Full Body Workout Featuring The Loxley Sports Suspension Trainer

Hello and happy hump day! Being Wednesday it can only mean one thing....Workout Wednesday time! I have a special edition today featuring some new kit from the new up and coming sports brand Loxley Sports


A few weeks ago I was contacted by the lovely peeps at Loxley Sports and asked if I would be interested in trying out their suspension trainer....um YES!!! 

The Loxley suspension trainer is used for a total body workout pretty much anywhere! It can be used to strengthen your entire body plus every exercise performed on it strengthens your core at the same time bonus!! The suspensions trainer can be used to gain muscle, firm up your entire body plus its heat for fat burning...basically you need one in your life ok? 


The suspension trainer has a door anchor so you can use it at home or on holiday inside but its just as easy to use outside like me and Dale did last night on the seafront clipped to some workout bars. It comes in a mesh carry bag perfect for keeping it safe as well as a mini guide including 5 foundation exercise to help you get started.

I actually have a TRX which is the same but another brand so I know how to use this fab piece of kit already and I have to say for £44.95 its a total bargain! There are loads of exercises on You Tube if your stuck for ideas on how to use one plus I think its good to watch someone using the trainer so you get the right form if your not lucky enough to  have a personal trainer to help. 

Below is a full body workout using the suspension trainer, all of the exercises can be found on You Tube, Google or Pinterest if your unsure how to do them. When performing any exercise on a suspension trainer you need to remember to keep your core tight and back straight. Ok lets get sweaty!!


Loxley Suspension Trainer Full Body Workout

Warm Up

Star Jumps - 30s 
Mountain Climbers - 30s
Pulse Squats - 30s

x3

Legs

Squat x 15
Pistol Squat x 15 e/s
Twist and Lunge x 15 e/s
Jump Squat x 15

x 2

Arms

Bicep Curl x 15
Tricep Press x 15
Back Row x 15
Chest Press x 15

Bum/Abs

Plank x 1 min
Hip Raise x 15
Crunch x 15
Mountain Climbers x 15 e/s

x 2

And there we have it a full body blast which will challenge anyone!! I really can't big this piece of kit up enough if you love exercise and love a challenge you should invest in one of these you won't regret it. 

Question:

Have you tried using a suspension trainer before, what did you think?

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Recipe: Vegan/Paleo Banana, Blueberry and Black Currant Loaf

Hey Tuesday readers how's it going? My day has been pretty busy so far but I did have time to bake which has made me very happy. I mentioned yesterday I would be back today to share a new recipe with you and here I am as promised. This recipe also features some yummy Urban Fruit blueberries and black currents which have worked so well in this recipe, if you like banana bread then this is for you especially if you follow a Vegan or Paleo diet : )

Vegan/Paleo Banana, Blueberry and Black Currant Loaf


Ingredients:

1 cup coconut flour
3 over ripe bananas
4 medium eggs - replace with chia eggs to make vegan
5 Tbsp coconut nectar
6 Tbsp coconut oil
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 pack Urban Fruit Blueberry + Black Currants
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp mixed seeds


Method:

Preheat your oven to 180, line a loaf tin with parchment paper, I spray mine first so the paper sticks. 

In a large mixing bowl add the bananas and mash them up.

Add the eggs, vanilla, coconut nectar, coconut oil, blueberries and black currants and mix again.

Using a sieve add the coconut flour, salt and baking soda.

Stir the mixture until completely combined, pour into loaf tin.

Smooth the top then sprinkle with chosen seeds, gently push the seeds into the top of the loaf.

Bake for 45-1hr.

I took my loaf out after 49 minutes so I would check after 45 minutes. A skewer should come out clean when you test the loaf. 

Cool and enjoy!


Well what can I say this has turned out perfectly, its moist and fruity just what I wanted. I'm pretty sure Dale is gonna love this too, I hope anyway! I do love using coconut flour, the cakes always come out quite dense but I like that, you just have to make sure there is enough liquid in the mix as the coconut flour soaks it up! Luckily this cake has lots so works perfectly : )

Don't forget to enter my Urban Fruit Giveaway you could get your hands on some of these delicious blueberry and black currents!

Question:

Favourite Banana Bread add ins?

I love fruit but I'm pretty sure this loaf would work very well with chocolate! Next on the make list me thinks! 

Monday, 21 July 2014

Urban Fruit Giveaway!!

Hello and Happy Monday! 
Did you all have a good weekend? I worked Saturday and then had a quiet night in due to being out all day yesterday, it was Pirate Day in Hastings so we met up with some friends, dressed as pirates and hung out on the beach for most of Sunday! A little random I know but kind of normal for Hastings! 

Before I get to how you can get you hands on some very tasty Urban Fruit I have to say a big thank you to the guys that sent over this fab package for me to try! I received this a little while ago now but have been slowly making my way through these delicious packs of goodness : )


I have tried some of the packs before and loved them so was more then happy to try the new fruits they have packaged up for us to enjoy. The great thing about Urban Fruit is they don't add any unnecessary ingredients to their fruit its literally just fruit baked on a low heat to make sure it hangs on to all the goodness and in some of the packs a dash of apple juice and thats it, fabulous! 

These bags are perfect for taking out with you just in case a hunger pang strikes or for using in recipes, I will be sharing a yummy recipe with you tomorrow so keep your eyes peeled for that! 


Right if you have not yet tried Urban Fruit and would like to get the chance for free or if you already know how good it is and just want to get your hands on some then this giveaway is for you!!

Even better there are 5 tote bags filled with Urban Fruit goodies on offer here so 5 chances of winning!! All you have to do is complete the required entires below and I will announce the winner next Monday.....Good Luck!!!
(this is for UK residents only)

Urban Fruit Tote Bag Giveaway

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Coffee, Cacao and Banana Shake

Happy Sunny Saturday Everybody!! 
Well I hope its sunny for you, after the storms last night its a pleasant surprise, they were insane! 

Today I have a recipe to share with you, one of my favourite ways to drink coffee at the moment due to the glorious weather I am not really keen on hot drinks during the day but favouring the iced variety especially this one for a weekend treat! If your looking for some coffee inspiration look no further because this is bloody tasty and could easily be drank as a meal or snack during the day when your looking for a healthy treat.

Coffee, Cacao and Banana Shake
(serves 2)


Ingredients:

2 large frozen bananas
1 heaped tsp instant coffee
1/2 avocado
1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp cacao
1 Tbsp maple syrup 


Add all the above ingredients to your blender and whizz it up until smooth, you can add more milk/water if the shake is too thick. I have to admit I love a really thick shake but they're not to everyones liking. 

Question:

Whats your favourite way to drink coffee?

I am still loving my blended Americano's too when I'm out and about and fancy a bought coffee 

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Workout Wednesday on a Thursday: The Importance Of Rest Days

Hi everybody as I explained yesterday I am posting my usual Workout Wednesday post on a Thursday due to it being national cherry day yesterday and wanting to share a wonderful recipe with you which you can check out here.  


 I am here today with a workout inspired post but no actual workout, I want to talk about the importance of rest days something I have learned the hard way in the past and sometimes these days too! Everybody should include rest days into their weekly workout routine simply to let the body heal and recover from whatever you've been putting it through, rest days don't have to be sat on the sofa all day though you can still go for a walk or do some yoga and call it a rest day, well I think you can! 

Here are some reasons why rest days are so important: 

To help your body recover and repair muscles - when exercising the body can take quite a beating for example when you lift weights the muscles tear and be giving them time to recover and repair they will rebuild and strengthen. 

Hitting the pavement day in and day out, lifting heavy weights or whatever your favourite way to burn the calories is can take its toll on your energy levels, having a day to replenish means more energy for you to then get back to your favourite sport with heaps of energy to keep you going and performing at your best. I don't know about you but when I'm tired my workouts can be a little half hearted thats for sure! 

Injury prevention - over training can leave you prone to injuries and thats something I know from experience, I definitely over did it with the running when I was younger and now my shins will only take so much before screaming at me! 

********

It took me a long time to feel comfortable having rest days, I used to feel guilty if I didn't exercise everyday but after having a few injuries they became a necessity and then after doing my PT training I learnt all about how important they are for your training so I have at least 2 rest days a week these days. I think having a long term boyfriend helped me too purely because having a social life and excising everyday doesn't always work especially if you have a boyfriend that would rather sit and drink tea then go running! 

Right now I am doing a lot of walking as my recurring back problem has decided to come say hi so no heavy weights or crazy workouts for me at the moment which is very frustrating to say the least but I am aware that if I want to be back to my best I need to rest up and get my back strong again so walking it is. Not that I mind as I am loving my summer walks at the mo : )

Basically what I am getting at here is if you don't include rest days into your routine you should definitely start to and reap some of the benefits they will give you! 

Question:

Rest days, do you make sure to fit them into your workout routine? 

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Celebrating National Cherry Day with Oxo Uk

Hello,  I will be posting a delicious recipe today instead of my usual Wednesday workout but have no fear I shall be back tomorrow to share a workout with you, if you can't wait till then check out my Workout Wednesday page for lots of free workouts!! 

The reason for me posting this delicious recipe is because today is UK's National Cherry Day and I was lucky enough to be given an Oxo's Good Grips Cherry Pitter to try out and make something for today. Well I am, as you know, a lover of Oxo and if you weren't aware I love cherries too so I couldn't wait to get recipe hunting for today.


Recipe decided on I got all my ingredients together and got my gadgets ready.....


This cherry/olive pitter could not be more easy to use, every cherry was easy to de-stone and as with all of Oxo's tools it felt nice and sturdy when being used. The handle is comfortable and made to be non-slip plus its easy to clean which always gains brownie points from me! 

What did I make I hear you say!! I made a delicious cherry and almond cake which I wish I could take the credit for but alas I can't. This awesome recipe is from Maria Meridith who writes the blog Family Fresh Cooking definitely one to check out if you've not had a look yet. I didn't change the recipe at all as it was perfect as is, if you like cherries and almonds you need to make these....

Cherry Blondies
(Paleo)


Ingredients: 

1 1/2 cups (200 g) Blanched Almond Flour
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/4 teaspoon fine Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/4 cup (45 g) Coconut Oil, melted
2 larger Eggs, whisked
1/4 cup pure Maple Syrup
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
2 cups Cherries, pitted & cut in half


Method:

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F with the rack in the middle.

Spray & line an 8X8 baking pan with parchment paper.

In a bowl whisk together dry ingredients.

In another bowl combine wet ingredients.

Combine all ingredients in one bowl & mix together to form a batter.

Fold in the cherries last.

Bake about 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out of the center virtually crumb free.


I made these cherry blondies for Dale's birthday and took them with me Monday when I went to stay the night with him fishing. Dale and his friend absolutely loved these and I did too, so good! The fresh cherries really make these pack a punch of flavour and keep the blondes nice and moist. I definitely be making these again, well done Maria for coming up with such a yummy recipe! 

I would like to say a massive thank you to Oxo for sending me yet another fabulous kitchen gadget its much appreciated, I feel very lucky to get so many goodies from them : )

Question:

Whats your favourite cherry recipe?

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Udo's Choice Essential Challenge

Hey everybody! Happy Tuesday, I hope you all had a fab weekend, I was having a great time which is why I was rather quiet round here. It was Dale's birthday weekend, his birthday is actually today so we are still celebrating! We have a little down time right now though so I thought it was high time to come say hi and tell you about this great challenge I have been asked to take part in.........

The Udo's Choice Challenge


I was contacted a little while ago and asked if I would like to take part in the Udo's Choice Essential Challenge which is a 12 week journey to better health. Its not all about losing weight either which is what appealed to me its about making small changes to better your health in every way whilst using some fab Udo's supplements. You do need to provide progress shots which is why I have put mine up here....SCARY!! The challenge asks you to follow some great workouts and also gives you some food advice which can be found on their Facebook page. 


Ok peeps here is my first week progress shot!! I have actually lost 12 pounds since Christmas doing my own plan so I don't feel horrendously self conscious putting this picture up (I would have in January!) as I have worked bloody hard to get here whilst trying to live a normal not to restricted life...having boyfriend that loves to eat can be a challenge! 

I plan to take my supplements from Udo's which include:


I will also be doing some of the workouts and try out some of the yummy recipes, I will be telling you all about them on here so look out for that! The other small changes I plan to make are:

No more then 1 take away a month 
(Dale loves them but I am putting my foot down!)
Chocolate once a week
At least 4-5 workouts a week
Eating more veggies -  this has slipped of late!


This challenge actually came at the perfect time as Sunday me and Dale booked our September holiday to Spain, I will be wanting to firm up and lose a couple more pounds before having to wear a bikini so fingers crossed this is going to help! I will try and do an update every four weeks to let you know how I'm doing, you can also check out others progress by following Udo's on Twitter 

Right time to get back to Dale's birthday, have a great Tuesday x x

Question:

Have you ever done a challenge like this?