Monthly Archives: February 2015

Me & My Misfit Flash

When smart watches first became a thing I said they’d probably be a gimmick & I didn’t really see the point.  Well, I’ll eat my hat (as long as it’s made of chocolate or carrot cake!) because smart wearables are my All-Time favourite thing & have been since my curiosity and epic bargain hunting managed to snag a highly discounted Sony Smartband.  It knew when I was walking, running, procrastinating and would wake me up close to my alarm time – it was incredible!  This was before I became a fitness “junkie” & it worked, it’s very much a life keeping wearable, as it’ll track more or less anything & will even show you what photos you’d taken that day & how much time you spend on YouTube.  I lost it.  I hunted high & low for it & genuinely pined for my little wearable.

I needed to replace it, but with what? I didn’t want another one as feared the closing mechanism was it’s downfall.  I needed a decent closure on it, so I spent a few months researching & finally decided the Misfit Flash was the one for me.  Why??  Well, the website spoke VOLUMES to me.  By the time I found this wearable I was cycling to & from work, and having a way to track my progress without having to remember to open an app or buying an expensive cadence sensor was perfect.

It’s also waterproof & doesn’t need charging!

I struggled to pair it with my phone initially, however after an email or two to the support desk they’d managed to help me out & me and my flash have been inseparable ever since.  No really.  I NEVER take it off.  Well, only to move it from my wrist to my ankle when I’m cycling.  I also learned more recently it will pair with My Fitness Pal – I was briefly monitoring my calorie intake (remember I mentioned catabolic paranoid a post of two ago?) so having that pair up was good, as MFP automatically deducted calories from my exercise to show how much I needed to eat.  Awesome.

However, I could give Misfit some pointers on how to improve their wearable.  I miss my alarm function, the wake option on other wearables is a nice feature, as it wakes you when you’re in a light sleep so you’re not thrust awake by your high pitched NEEER-NEEER alarm.  Also, the more expensive version of this, the Shine has more accessories, different straps and some beautiful necklaces that I’d love.  All the Flash has is socks & a tee-shirt.  Yeaaaah.  I don’t need those.  I want a necklace, damnit 😛  There are some accessories for them, made by Garmin, but they’re only available in the US and as much as I love them, the shipping & possible duty on it would make them more expensive than the wearable itself.

An example image of the app on Android

I’m quite excited about the future of my wearable however, as Misfit are looking to turn it into a connected remote of sorts, meaning you’ll be able to turn your lights off, or your thermostat (as long as your lights / thermostat are compatible) and open Spotify and other apps just by tapping the “face” of your Flash. It’s gonna be an awesome update, even if I only ever use the function to turn Spotify off and on…..teamed with my wireless headphones I won’t have to touch my phone!

**I have not been asked by Misfit to create this review, nor have I by apps mentioned within

***All opinions are my own & are not affiliated with Misfit or its devices

Mmmmmm Protein!

I keep posting images of what I’m eating to Instagram & Facebook, but not adding them here in such a routinely manner. However, I’ll only add here if I feel I can explain what I did in a way that makes cohesive sense.

Anyway. Tonight for dinner I made roast chicken breast, with roast peppers & quinoa.  Allow me to show you:

2015-02-23 21.55.44Mmmmmm.  So, quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is a new thing for me-I’ve only been eating it since the start of the year & it’s an ideal alternative to pasta (in my opinion) I still don’t really eat a lot of carbs, some days it feels like that’s all I eat but then I don’t really touch them for days.  I can easily live without bread & pasta, so it doesn’t bother me.  Ahem, swift digression.

This is raw quinoa:

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It’s a grain, wiki informs me it’s grown mainly for its edible seeds.  You take one part quinoa to 5 parts water & let it boil for 20 minutes.  I’m terrible with weights & measurements, so my measuring doll cups were out….I used half a cup to 2 & a half cups water.  I also added a vegetable stock cube to my water.

Then (because it’s easier) I use frozen, pre cut mixed peppers, apply oilve oil & garlic then in to the oven…, about 160 degrees & cut up chicken breast on another tray in the oven for about the same length of time.  I mixed them together once they were out the oven:

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I love how much colour can go in to food!

Then dish it out 🙂

One thing I have noticed is that as I’ve gotten older my food has become a lot more varied.  For example, a few years ago I would not have entertained even looking at peppers, but now I love them… being my favourite!

Why Do We Fall?

So we can learn how to get back up……..

Well, 2015 has been a bumpy ride for me & it’s only February! January saw me break my nose then about 2 weeks ago I came off my bike again & split my eyebrow & got a pretty nasty looking gash on my cheek, along with a bruise on my hip that has still to heal.  The second knock, although not as damaging to my face, I did some pretty serious damage to my bike & it was out of action until this week when I finally got time to fix it & calibrate the breaks and gears.

I felt sorry for myself. I wondered the point of the gym or trying to become fitter as I seem to hit obstacles that prevent me from progressing in a manner I feel is good progress. I questioned if it was worth it or not.  Getting a lift to work meant I didn’t have to take a change of clothes with me, and I could stay in bed for another hour…..who doesn’t want that?!


The reason my sub title on here is “Overcoming mental barriers, one lift at a time” is because I know my mind is my distractor. (I know that’s not a real word) My PT know how much I procrastinate; I’ve lost count how many times he’s asked me recently if I’ve been to the gym without him, the answer is I haven’t. I haven’t wanted to go. I haven’t wanted to get up while it’s still dark & train for an hour before work. I’ve stopped feeling bad for not going too, however.  My wheels are fixed, I’ve been out on the bike & feel a lot better for it.  I’m not giving up, I’m not giving in.  Two knocks in as many months have caused a crisis in confidence – I’ve identified it & know I’ll get over it.  It’s taken a few weeks but tomorrow is the start of a new week.  I’m rested, I feel the need to get back to gym now.  I’m not willing to lose my progress, I know where I want to be by the end of the year & taking time off away from the gym isn’t going to help me get to where I want to be.

I’ve promised those who care about me that I won’t fall again, in all honesty I can’t fall again, I don’t know how I’d cope with that mentally.


Comments From Strangers….

Hrm, so maybe an odd title especially considering how long it has been since I blogged. However, stay with me and I’ll see if my rambling turns in to a cohesive post……

Let’s begin:

Last week I was introduced to a man who is now a client of my trainer – he contacted him after he’d seen my “transformation” images online; as shown in a previous blog post. It got my thinking; after all I had said before if my blogging and image posting helped someone to better their lifestyle then it’s been worth it.  I know I have absolutely nothing to do with this man’s journey to fitness & his story may differ from my own but that didn’t stop me from feeling a little er….overwhelmed? maybe, with a little pleasure.  It was my photo that prompted him to contact Andy, so yeah. I’m gonna be pleased with myself.  My progress helped someone choose to become a fitter person. Everyone’s seen that post online, endorsed usually by some getfit thingamajig; XYZ changed my life & it could yours too.  Whatever……

Turns out it CAN be true.

Then! In the changing rooms I weighed myself & a woman who I regularly see (but have never spoken to) told me not to, she’d seen my progress images too!!! She told me I didn’t need to weigh myself because my results spoke for themselves.  I told her the reason I weigh myself in the gym IS to check for weightloss – I’m not trying to lose weight so I check every so often (paranoid about going catabolic, so sue me!) to ensure I’m staying at the same weight, then every 6 weeks of so I measure myself – as that is what I’m tracking, not my weight however it’s good to know where I am weight wise…..I seem to be anywhere from 71 to 73kg, the small fluctuation isn’t something I’m gonna concern myself with.

In closing; two people I’ve never spoken to before told me they’d seen my images on line & were really impressed with the changes in a relatively short space of time 😀

Banana & Cherry Protein Muffins

I’ve been perusing the internet recently looking for recipes that can still taste amazing, but not be as bad for you as their usual counterparts.  I stumbled across a recipe for oatbran muffins that intrigued me.  I was on Dukan for a while & oatbran was a staple food, but the recipes for cooking with it were heinous.  Anyhoo, Sunday = Extreme rest day so I baked.

The original recipe is from Ambitious Kitchen, I didn’t add applesauce & used whole eggs instead of the whites only.  Here is my version:

  • 1 2/3 cup oat bran
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 small or medium very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yoghurt
  • 2 medium eggs
  • ground vanilla pods
  • tablespoon of agave
  • 1 bag of dried, pitted cherries

I put it all in one bowl & mixed it together, I prefer paper cases to their silicone friends, so opted for those too.  Oven went on 200 degrees & the muffins were baked for around 18 minutes, tada!

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They’re a lot more moist than I was expecting – as I mentioned earlier I’ve trialled Oatbran before & it wasn’t overly appetising…..more like eating little bits of grit.  I’ll have to remember this one & make them again some time!

A Detailed Progress Post – Number 1

So. 5 months in from when I vowed to stop being a lazy/easy option out/take all the painkillers kinda person. Let’s see where we are….


Me. August 2014 First day back at the gym. So happy!

Wow.  I’ve not looked at my “starting” images for a long, long time.  I’ve mostly used the “month 1 progress” image, I’ve just looked.  Wow.  Er, wow.  I know I’ve progressed, but wow.

I’m gonna attempt some detail about my progress, but I’m not sure what I’m going to add, so I may ramble.  Anyhoo, first up I thought it’d be good (read: heinous) to have a starter image with a recent one, so here you go:

Holy Shit! I mean, I know I’m smaller than I was, but O_o  I’m kind of appalled with myself for accepting how I was for as long as I did.

*A quick calculation gives me around 13″ total loss – but I’ve gone up in certain places due to muscle growth*

I’ve been told to be more accepting of praise, positive comments & to accept that I am actually an inspiration.  I’m gonna try to accept it, my before & during snap shot is probably gonna help me to take the encouragement head on instead of shirting around it.

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Possibly the most surprising about my “fitness” journey is how much has gone from my hips; around 5″ so far.  The trousers I’m wearing in the above images I bought in April 2014 & when I did they fit just below the natural waist line.

I never actively sought weight-loss, but it is a pretty big side effect of lifting weights & cycling over 100 miles a week, most weeks.  However, I guess it’s kinda contradictory in terms as I *did* change my eating habits, which then has helped the weight loss.  Although that might be a little weird as I eat more now than I have in years! Don’t get me wrong; there are days where I won’t have prepped food, or I’ll give in to a craving. However I can reign it back in….I’ve never really been “overweight” not in the morbidly obese sense anyway.

Part of my desire to change my eating habits was down to being told that under eating can have a worse effect on your muscles and can in-turn make you flabbier than you were.  That was new information to me, I’m not sure how I thought it worked, but I never thought of working out could lead to less definition – but this is why there are trained professionals out there to be able to guide the clueless………..

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Perfect examples of what I eat, steak with grilled courgette & Teriyake Chicken with cauliflower “rice”. Most of our food is prepared on the day, but I will make things in advance – especially for work as rushing out to find something to eat can be disastrous, even if you think you’re choosing the healthier option, you might not be.

*I think I’m losing my point….hang on*

Oh, yes.  Here we are:

IMAG0838One of my favourite images of me, I use it as my profile pic on Fitocracy & The Neila Ray Forum – both insightful, and both extremely different websites; worthy of a look though.  I’m not overly active on them, but they’re there, as well as xxfitness on Reddit.

What I adore about that image is the way the lighting in my bathroom seems to capture the new definition in my back.  It’s pictures like this that help me to get up at 05:30 every morning & cycle to the gym….I say every morning; 3…sometimes 4 mornings a week.  Mostly three, but it’ll get to 4 more regularly.


My PT commented the other day that my progress pics are usually of my back, but I do sometimes take pics from other angle, however I hate them.  This post is supposed to detail my progress though, so I’ve added them. Er, Images with grey leggings are from about September, black leggings images are November.

Today (February 2nd) I whacked the leg press on 93KG & managed a decent amount of reps, I remember it wasn’t too long ago that I struggled to do 50KG….I *did* try to go over 100KG, but I didn’t move! Then there’s also the fact when I started cycling I could just to say cycle stood up – cycling today was predominantly stood up.  I have to keep stopping to blow my nose though cos me & cold weather don’t get on.

I *think* that is it for this post……………..

Fitspo. Fitfam. Inkfit. CleanEating. Revenge Of The Hashtag

I hate hashtags. I detest how in order for people to see your post you have to “tag” it, making us all on-line graffiti attention* seekers. It drives me wild…..I like attention, sort of.  I don’t deliberately go out of my way for people to look at me, but I’m heavily tattooed, I have a mohawk & I’m pretty tall, so yeah….I don’t blend in.  However, on-line I don’t add all those tags to my posts (I just wanna add, I DO use hashtags, but not the crazy madeup internet speak, I tried it & hated it)

One of the reasons I had actually delayed my going back to the gym was because I didn’t want to become everything I hated about the beautiful people** I imagined that everyone was the way I’d made them in my head.  Self-righteous, sanctimonious, holier-than-thou stuck up muscle clad humans that looked through their noses at anyone with more than 2% body fat.

I know this isn’t true, but it will never stop me hating the hashtags. Why do I need “Fitfam” on a progress picture? These people are not family & if they were, the tag would be family, surely?  I know they’re there as a social media tool, I guess they’re helpful for those who use social media to drum up business.  Maybe it’s because I don’t feel the need to increase my likes, I love it when someone whom I look up to likes a post or a picture – Hell, I got a like from Samantha Wright (AKA PixieStrength) & it made me happy.  However, I’m not gonna tag the hell out of a picture in gibberish in the hope strangers from far & wide like it & that gives me fake internet points.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t post tags like that, if it’s what you want to do. I’ll never search for those kinds of tags on line – If I ever do, I’ll give someone permission to rub it in my face.

I don’t like them.  I am not overly enthralled by motivation pictures either…..

This one, I like.

*Real life Graffiti taggers are artists, not attention seekers.
**Beautiful people: those who are sculpted & defined the way you’d imagine a God to look.