Monthly Archives: September 2012

this body of mine

It is my new mission to become re-obsessed with getting my body in shape. Trimming the fat. Cutting out the shit. Kicking myself up the arse. Why? Because I let myself go – I am a “before” picture. I weighed myself in New York in September of 2010 and then again in NZ back in January this year and I’d put on 12kgs. I was not happy. I knew I’d put on weight and I knew it wasn’t even gradual over that time, it was more like the last six or seven months of that, after husband (then boyfriend) and I moved in together. Winter set in and I didn’t feel like exercising because our apartment was a nice little dark and cosy cave I found solitude in. And the cupboards had snacks in them. Those naughty cupboards.

A few months ago (before husband arrived in NZ and I was dirt poor) I was starting to swim in my jeans (not actual swimming), my tummy was flattening and clothes were generally getting a bit looser – I could even buckle my belt a notch in, this same belt I used to buckle at the first notch when I first bought it. The reason this was happening was due to biking every day after work because I had no TV to watch and nothing better to do to kill the time before sleep. I also didn’t have a lot in the house to eat so I was surviving on pumpkin soup, smoothies, rice and curries. No meat, hardly any dairy and certainly no treats.

Then I started to get paid after a few months of not working, husband arrived bringing a little bit of money with him, then he started working so money was a little more abundant and we could have things in our groceries like cheese and meat and the odd bag of chips, wine, candy and the rest. And a meal out! Usually Indian with rich curries, rice and naan bread AND onion bhajis…creamy, carby foods on a regular basis.

So, even though I was doing my best to keep biking every day after work, there was more food to be eating and the good tv (sky/cable) had been installed; there were less and less reasons to go outside to kill time. I had TV for that now. The biking went down from four to five times a week of 40mins to two or three times, to once and sometimes not at all. I did get sick for a couple of weeks as well as realising I was probably iron deficient which made me tired easily and, in general, I wasn’t feeling up to doing much. Since then I have really become too lazy for my own good.

I started back up with my yoga practice a couple of weeks ago as mentioned in this post. It agitates my ribs a little bit but I can feel the improvement in my strength in my arms and am seeing some muscle definition. Now to lose the layer of chub that surrounds it and prevents me from looking like a goddess.

Summer is looming (as well as the NZ version of our wedding) and this body of mine is not in any condition to be seeing the sun in all it’s glory, let alone being photographed a thousand times on the happiest day of my life. I was a chubby bride in Canada and I only like one photo because, to me, I looked like a sausage stuffed into a dress at the last minute in the rest of them. I am currently pasty, wobbly and a bit squishy. I am trying to train my brain to eat well, exercise more and to in-still good habits into my day. It’s not even so much the junk that I eat, I don’t eat a lot of junk. I just eat…a lot. And being gluten intolerant and non dairy friendly, I sometimes can’t help myself when it comes to bread and cheese. Scott isn’t intolerant of either of those things (just intolerant of me ;)…) so we still have bread and dairy in the house for his lunches.

I used to have the BEST self discipline! I’d say no to any kind of bad food offered to me at a friends house, I’d carry water eeeeverywhere (I still do) and I didn’t eat out as often. I also wasn’t that into cooking elaborate banquets for my dinner every night like I tend to want to do now. Now that I have a little bit more disposable income, all I want to do is eat out! I love food; I would consider myself an amateur foodie and one of my all time fave things to do is go out and eat. Or stay home and cook. Hang out with friends and cook and eat. And I’m mad at myself. Mad that I used to have a really nice body and I took it for granted and STILL wasn’t happy with it. Mad that I’ve let myself get to this stage when I know what/how to keep the weight off yet I don’t do it.

SO I’ve had enough. I’m at my wicks end. The camel’s back hath been broken. I’m starting to take action and hopefully by writing this post, I’ll be encouraged to continue with my new good habits. To help me, I’ve printed out some phrases to stick on the cupboards, fridge and doors of the apartment  reminding me why I want to be good. They aren’t the nicest phrases and are quite self deprecating but they need to be. I don’t loathe myself, I am just disappointed, I WANT to get mad! Personal trainers don’t help you lose weight by wrapping their clients in cotton wool and saying “ok, just two press ups and then let’s go get ice-cream”. No, they yell and they push and they push until the client gets mad and reaches breaking point. There is sweat and there is tears but, ultimately, there is action.

I can’t afford a personal trainer and I don’t like to be yelled at, so I am the motivator. I am moving in a couple of months so joining a gym is out of the question. The only thing standing in my way is me and maybe torrential rain. It’s up to me to get myself on my bike and go for a ride everyday. Not every second day because I feel I deserve a rest – no, every day. With maybe a rest on Sunday – I’ll have earned it by then anyway 🙂

As for the treats? Just say no. Just say no. Just say no….

Friday: 21st September, 2012. Temp: 6 degress C and climbing. Weather: fine.

Today’s three beverages: Cold water, hot water, coffee. I like to alternate depending on what my taste buds tell me to do. All three on the go at once. It’s a strange habit I’ve picked up over the last year or so. I like it.

I had a pretty tasty night’s sleep last night but still remain tired. So I’ve made a coffee; a large one. With a smidgen of sugar (even though I was cutting it out). And, since inactivity can be a contributor to tiredness, I just did 50 star jumps. Sure, I was looked at funny by my colleagues, but do they want a tired grumpy Jenna or an energised, slightly nutty Jenna?

And and AND…It’s FRIDAY!!! God, how I LOVE Friday. Even though I still have to work, I know that at the end of the day I have two days of sleep in’s, relaxation and ME time. Or us time… I should take Scott into consideration. We don’t have a whole lot planned for the weekend – some shoe shopping (for him), car hunting, catching up with Scott’s dad in Canada via Skype and maybe a cheap lunch at a pub in town on Sunday. I’ll consider some yoga and a cleaning blitz of the apartment before looking after my favourite two year old: master Jack, while his mummy works on her tan ready for her wedding in Samoa next month.

The weather is meant to be stunning so I’ll enjoy a bike ride as well at some point.

Oh weekends…I wish you were much, much longer.

Happy Friday everyone!

I’m sharing this picture because it makes me smile every time I look at it.


Do potatoes make you sleepy?

I just googled this question as I ate a whole potato for breakfast (with some fried portabelllo mushroom and some baked beans…mmm carbs) and now I feel SUPER tired. Like I could literally fall asleep at my desk. It could be my booooring job. But I’ll blame the spud.

Usually, food is what causes my ill feelings and it occurred to me that I’d been eating potato most mornings since I can’t eat dairy or gluten to help fill the gap. And I’ve noticed an increase in yawning in the morning after breakfast. Odd. I’ve been sleeping OK and started taking an iron supplement so how is it that I’m SO tired, but not all the time?

The possible culprit: Evil Mr Potato.

Beware!! The following is not scientifically correct and more for the laymen: Potatoes are mega high in carbs which is essentially a sugar and so my body had a huge spike of potato sugars and now I’m crashing causing me to be veeeeerrrryyyyy sleeeeeeepyyyyyyy.

Look at him…plotting his next sugary spike.


Evil Mr Potato typically strikes at dinner time and can be found lurking in the deep friers of most fast food restaurants. Small in stature and varying in size and colour, his eyes are many and his skin is thick. Should you wish to avoid the curse of Evil Mr Potato, carry a hessian sack with you at all times to trap him – once his eyes are covered, his almighty sleep inducing powers are zapped! Pow! Pow!

Dirty little secrets

Does anyone else enjoy the rings the coffee cup leaves on their desk? Or the way it drips down the side of the cup and leaves a little trail? I do. I really do. I know it’s a little bit grubby but it adds character to my rain cloud coloured desk and the stark white “run of the mill” coffee mug that work provides. It adds something uncaring to my workspace. As it is, I don’t really give two hoots about my job – I’m purely here for the money until my imminent escape – and therefore, I don’t really care about my work space all that much.

But I think, even if I did love my job, I would still enjoy the coffee rings that form a contemporary version of the Olympic rings in the bottom left corner of my desk. Drinking a coffee in the morning is a habit I’ve only just picked up in the last few months. I don’t do very well on caffeine as it is but I enjoy the kick it gives on the odd day. In turn, this kick, makes me a bit frantic and it’s like the dribbles and the rings are reflections of my frantic-ness. Like I don’t have time to be bothered with that little drip that my lip leaves on the cup, or the rings that form on the desk as a result of my frantic, carefree coffee induced attitude. It makes me appear busier. To who? Well, really only just me. It’s a character I like to imagine myself being: busy and important rather than a human computer and all round pleb.

These dirty little rings have become my friend. They comfort me and there is something rebellious and cheeky about their presence. Oh yes, I am living life on the edge, my friend.

We all have little habits, or better: “isms” like this. So, what’s your “ism”? What’s your dirty little secret?


A toast to summer – may you come quicker than you did last year

The weekend saw me catching up with some very good friends and sampling some alcoholic delights over laughs and shared memories.

I enjoy being well hydrated so I usually have about three different beverages close to me if I’m at home doing nothing, or at work (writing my blog). Those beverages usually consist of: water, herbal tea and a coffee that’s gone a little cold. Or if I’m drinking wine it’s: water, wine and herbal tea.

This weekend I actually slacked on the water drinking as it was taken over by the next three yummy, “I wish it was summer” beverages (in no particular order):

First: Mt Difficulty Pinot Gris (I feel like I’ve talked about this before?)

It’s fresh and fruity but not too sweet like my usual choice, Sauvignon Blanc’s, tend to be. I find them sharp and punchy compared to the quiet, understated characteristics of the Pinot Gris’ I’ve been sampling of late.

Second: Crabbies Alcoholic Ginger Beer

As a kid my dad brewed ginger beer in the garage and we got “disciplined” with the long plastic spoon he’d stir his brews with. You’d think this would’ve scarred me but it didn’t. Thank god! Because I LOVE ginger beer. The favourite has to be Pheonix Organics Ginger Beer as it tastes the closest to dad’s brew. So you can only imagine my delight at the discovery of an adult version of a ginger beer! oooohhhh….aahhhhhhh….


Third: Rekorderlig Strawberry and Lime Cider

I first sampled this “party in your mouth” beverage in London’s 2010 summer. It was served over a mountain of ice, in a tall glass with muddled mint, a couple of slices of strawberry and a wedge of lime squeezed in. It’s amazingly refreshing, not overly sweet or sickening. Right now in NZ, cider is making a surge in popularity thanks to the likes of the apple and pear ciders that have become readily available from old faithful’s: Mac’s and Monteith’s as well as Old Mout Cider. I predict this’ll be summers next hottest thing; cider is the new body-con cut out swimsuit.

It’s as cool as cider on a hot day (yeah, I went there):
STOP THE PRESS!!! This just in: as I was looking for the above picture, I discovered you can make strawberry and lime cider CUPCAKES!!! *drool*

Recipe HERE

Here’s to the countdown to summer, weekends with good friends and trying new things to drink during both – cheers, good health, salute, prost!