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Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Eugh November, a time of Ill health but (some!) healthy comfort eating!

I have been battling a cold for two weeks now, as well as suffering earache-related headaches. I think I can blame my schizo lifestyle. From Monday to Thursday I tend to eat well (lots of healthy recipes and plenty of water) but come Thursday night it all goes out the window and the hard-partying Claire comes out to play. Cue lots of bacon, chocolate and beer! I'd say if I stuck to the unhealthiness I'd be better off to be honest! I think I'm shocking my body by suddenly changing from Cheetos and cheap cerveza to spinach, lentils and water on a regular basis!! But maybe my body will get used to the food aspect. I definitely need to cut down on the booze though. I have big plans in Barcelona this weekend but after that I'm gonna chill out a little and start focussing on my pre-Xmas healthiness (except for Saturdays obviously!).
Here are three recipes I've been enjoying recently. Personal fave is defo the chilli- shockingly low cal while being both filling and delicious. Also, a tip for the omlette- add bacon, pre-cooked and chopped up, at the end....yummm!! In fact I dont follow this recipe, more just use the ingredients and measurements as a guideline. I dont let the omlette set but, because I have a fear of gooey eggs, rather stir everything to make sure every piece gets equally well cooked. I also substitute cheddar for the parmesan, simply because I'm trying to finish up a block without resorting to cheese toasties!

Lentil and spinach soup:

White chilli

Potato and spinach omlette

What are your Winter warmer recipes

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Hellooooo! So I thought I'd recommence with some photos. This is what I've been up to for the last year...
Black widow and Dorothy at my sister's Halloween party.

I took part in a Christmas pantomime in our town. It was fun to get involved in something frivolous and meet some new people. A bitta craic anyway!
Panto cast ready for our secret agents scene
Edel and I as Goldilocks and Red Riding Hood

 I moved back to Northern Spain in January. I'm back at my old school with new faces and I love it.
Co-teachers and mates before a crazy Spain night out!
Can you guess which are the teachers?! Ha!
It's not like this every night, I swear!
My sister came to visit me in June! :)

I'm just back after a Summer spent at home in Ireland as a lady of leisure where I got up to plenty of mischief!

Spent five days in Budapest with my sis in July!! Fantastico! I'll blog in more detail later.

 My Aussie friend Natalie who I met in Spain popped over from London for a few days and we hit the town.
 My cousin got married over August bank holiday weekend. It was so lovely to get all the relatives together!
My cousin Brendan on his wedding day with his Mum's side of the family (that's us!).
My lovely family and I.

 I turned 27 and made quite the weekend of it! I visited mates in Galway to eat, drink and watch amazing movies like Spiceworld...yes really!!- on Friday and then out on the town on the Saturday. We got a rickshaw ride to the pizza place for post-club eating...white jacket and drunk pizza eating=bad combo f.yi!
(Before the pizza!)
Then we all got the bus to my home town for Chinese food,wine and many many shots... and some dancing!

And then, before I knew it, Summer was over and I was back in Spain and back to work...oh and play ;)

Monday, 23 July 2012

I'm back

I've been on a bit of a blogging break, sparked mainly by not having internet for a while but also the fact I had feck all to write about. So after 8 months of neglect I'm gonna try and reclaim my blog. I'm hoping to get a half decent camera soon, at which point I'm sure I'll go blog-crazy. For now, though, here's a quick update!
I'm weighing in at under 11 stone. Though I'm not sure of the exact figure, I do know that I've been fluctuating in and around the 11 mark since January. The main reason for that has been lack of exercise. I moved back to Spain at the end of January and didn't join the gym there- I intended to but was putting it off again and again til it was kinda pointless. So between Christmas and Easter, I lost a couple of lbs, not fat mind you but muscle. However, between April and now I gained a couple and that was definitely not muscle!! I look the same but am really conscious of my arse- the lack of exercise has resulted in it virtually disappearing!
So now I'm home for the Summer and I joined the gym last week. I went four times and am feeling the difference already. Regaining my cardio fitness isn't as hard as I thought it'd be. Don't get me wrong, it's horrible but there's not much difference in my times and stuff.
A big motivation for getting back to the gym, saggy arse aside, is my cousin's upcoming wedding in...12 DAYS!! Healthy food and drink galore as well as 5/6 gym visits per week. I started today with an omlette (with ham, mushroom, pepper, potato and chilli) and juice and will be indulging in some mixed seed ricecakes with peanut butter and a chicken stirfry with brown rice, as well as 2+ litres of water and 40+ minutes of cardio along with some fitness ball and free-weight exercises.
As I said, I returned to Spain in January to my old job but with new people. I couldnt be happier. I have the Summer off but am looking forward to going back in September. I love the job, get along well with my bosses and two of my co-teachers are returning in September so that's nice. My main goal there is to learn some more Spanish. I'm quite rubbish- I have a good ear but I'm lazy as hell and get really embarassed, so that's something I need to work on.
Hmmm what else have I been up to?! Well I visited Amsterdam in November and Budapest earlier this month. In Spain, I visted Barcelona, Logrono and Haro as well as returning to Bilbao, Madrid and San Sebastian. I also finally visited the closest city to me, Vitoria- people were always shocked when I told them I'd only ever passed through, especially as it's like 20minutes away! Oops! :D When I go back I want to visit the North-West as well as revisiting the South.
In the meantime, it's Dark Knight Rises on Saturday, wedding the following Saturday, my birthday the week of the 18th, then a weekend in Galway, a night in Sligo and then back to Spain to apartment hunt and enjoy a local fiesta before returning to work!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Christmas countdown begins and my diet is ever-improving!

So 9 weeks to Christmas eh?! Cue hysteria! I'm still unemployed so Christmas is total panic-stations with money! Luckily I don't have many presents to buy but the social aspect doesn't come cheap. It really doesn't help that two weeks beforehand I'm going to Holland for 5 days to visit my sister who's studying there! Do NOT have a clue how I'll do this. I've a grand total of €60 saved! Oh well- I'll do it somehow, I'm sure!
I've also got a Christmas panto to look forward to (in January for some reason)! I was badgered into auditioning for a singing part but really nervous about the thought of singing solo, though I love singing at home and when I'm drunk! I think it's a little different to the karaoke I'm used to from my Korea days! So while it'll be exciting if I get the part, it'll also reduce me to a nervous wreck! I'm enjoying being involved regardless!
As far as health goes, I have another cold this week! >:( I've a huge appetite when I'm sick and I comfort-eat like a mo-fo! I was under the illusion that exercising while ill was, ahem, ill-advised! :P However, a spot of googling has informed me this is not strictly true so I'll be hitting up the gym later and then making Jamie Oliver's Chicken Madras (with a few adaptions, such as adding potatoes- LOVE a spicy curry with potatoes)! This will probably be followed by an Aero mousse (new addiction and around 100calories each) or two!!
9 weeks to my deadline for the 10stone mark. I doubt I'll be there but just gonna keep plodding on. The goal-setting is really just to keep myself in the mindset. End goal is still 9stone 12 or maybe 10 but once I'm around 10 stone I'll be chuffed to bits. As it is I'm doing well. I'm getting into size 10s (sometimes).
The pictures are from a HILARIOUS Friday night out a couple of weeks back. I'm wearing a size 10 dress from ASOS with an ASOS belt that in hindsight did not fit right! Such a fun night- they were playing 'back in the day' tracks. The highlight was undoubtedly Eiffell 65 'Blue Dabadee'! Hilarity!
Also, hit up Hop House, Parnell St, Dublin last week and had some mad good Korean food and booze with a friend from my Korea days! Soju and Hite! Eating Korean again after making MAJOR diet changes was such a revelation. I was at the height of my unhealthiness back in Korea and I missed out on so much yummy food because I was ridiculously picky. That was why my weight just ballooned- 90% of the time I ate the Western food that was available which was mainly fried or cheesy or both!
I'm still a fussy eater but I've come so far- I'm much more adventurous with food now and I'm really pleased with myself for that. I spent a year in Korea and the smell alone of kimchi put me off. Last week I ignored that and tried it. I can't say I loved it but it was ok and I ate bits of it throughout the meal just because! Major progress!
I'm now at a stage where I'm introducing new foods to my diet all the time. For example, a year ago I hated onions in any shape or form and now I use onion in my cooking almost daily! I've a long way to go to being a true foodie but I cook more and am waaay more open to trying things. I'm not always overly concerned with the calorie content of foods because, I think, the true path to healthy-eating lies in variety and openness and that's what I'm striving for! Onwards and upwards! I know I'm a healthy weight now and goal is inevitable whether it be sooner or later. For now I'm embracing new, ever-expanding varied diet!

Friday, 14 October 2011

Diet Myths debunked

 I found an interesting piece on diet/fitness myths on Livestrong. To read it click here.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

A to Z

A. Age: 26
B. Bed size: double
C. Chore you dislike: anything involving grease
D. Dogs: nope
E. Essential start to your day: something healthy
F. Favorite color: Purple
G. Gold or silver: both
H. Height: just a little under 5'6
I. Instruments you play(ed): I learned bits and pieces but never got any good at them and lost patience
J. Job title: currently none!
K. Kids: None
L. Live: West of Ireland
M. Mothers name: Helen
N. Nicknames: none that have stuck long term
O. Overnight hospital stays: Yeah- twice- when I'd my tonsils out and when the stitches burst a week later (was horrible)
P. Pet peeves: People who don't say please thank you or excuse me- simple words that are just common courtesy!
Q. Quote from a movie: none spring to mind.
R. Righty or lefty: Right
S. Siblings: 5 sisters
T. Time you wake up: usually 11pm-ish- gotta love not workin!
U. Underwear: I love french knickers and boy shorts. t-shirt/ plunge/ lace bras
V. Vegetables you don’t like: lettuce, turnip, parsnip and some other ones. I tend to like veg people like to cook eaten raw- eg raw carrots, raw mushrooms, raw broccoli. Think that's why I eat most my veg stirfried so it's just barely cooked.
W.What makes you run late: my total lack of organisation!
X. X-rays you’ve had: my broken front tooth and my busted ankle
Y. Yummy food you make: salt/chilli chicken, spag bol, butter chicken, chicken madras- yeah I like chicken-ha
Z. Zoo animal favorites: meh, dunno. elephants and monkeys are quite cool. havent been to a zoo in yeeeeeeears!

Moving the right way :)

Last weigh-in, on Thursday, I weighed 10stone11lbs! Woooo!!! Since then, however, I've been fairly relaxed about my healthy-eating and I'm away all week minding Finn which means I can't hit the gym and also means I will inevitably eat badly! Case in point= the last two nights I've had really bad indigestion which I attribute to white bread- which I dont even particulary like! So lets just see what the next weigh-in brings. Ten stone by Christmas- gonna aim for 9stone 12 but 2lbs out is acceptable! Ha! You always hear that the last stone is the hardest but think I've been doing really well of late (excluding the last couple of days obviously). Think I can do it?!!