Daily Blog: Detox Smoothie & New Favorite Snack!

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Good Morning!

Sorry it's been a while since my last daily blog, I've just been needing to get back to my normal posts lately. I will still be doing a couple per week and keeping you updated on what I'm up to. I added some grated apple to my porridge this morning for an extra bit of texture and it was really nice! Will definitely do it more often. 

I've got another session with my trainer today. Not sure if he will let me do boxing with my shoulders still healing, but we will see. Got my thermogenic and pre-workout drink going! Just not both at the same time, too much caffeine for my little heart.

I was totally right, he didn't want to let me box until next week ( damnit!) so I asked him to take me through a new leg day program. My last one was from April! I think I just got comfortable making new circuits up and working on my squats. I enjoyed some of the stuff he showed me today, although I refused to do the jumps that he wanted because it just brings up bad memories from high school (we all know how that goes, right?) That kind put me in a weird mood, but I used that fierceness as energy to get me through a couple of circuits. Here's what I did:

Hip Thrusts 85kg max reps
Weighted Lunges 7kg 
Ab work

 Box step-ups x15 per leg
Reverse Lunges 5kg x16
Leg Pull-Backs 27kg x10
Crunches x 15

I made sure to stretch out properly and I also got the roller out to get my muscles to relax again. 
I treated myself to a protein smoothie from the cafe, which had extra nut butter in it so it was extra-delicious! 

We're at the mall for lunch today and I went for the vegan sandwich and an almond milk flat-white. Pretty basic, but there was some avocado in my sandwich so I was a happy girl.

Food shopping done for another week and I'm mostly excited about my snack options. I had a craving for corn cakes, so I bought these wholegrain ones for an afternoon pick-me-up. So many delicious topping ideas!
I also got my little sanity snack of mini salted caramel protein bars. These are incredible! I find sometimes after work, or even on my break, I can get super-hungry. To avoid me pigging out when I get home, I keep some of these mini bars in my bag ready for me to devour if I need to. Girls gotta eat!

I also picked up some fake tan, so that I can get rid of some of my horrible tan marks before a photo-shoot I'm going to for my blog next week. Because I run outside all the time, I have a really strange tan from what tank top I was wearing and only half of my legs. It's definitely time to even it out.

I decided that I wanted to start drinking detox smoothies more often, so I made one with apple, pear, cucumber, lemon, kale, spinach, ginger and topped with coconut water. Really good! I'm having half now and the other half tomorrow. 

R.I.P to my first ever gym bag. The last handle broke today when I went to pick it up and take it into the changing rooms. Kinda sad because it's such a good bag, but it had been hanging on for a while. Luckily I have a Peter Alexander one to swap it for!

Healthy afternoon snack! I'm just having some rice crackers with hummus, tuna, and avocado on top. Lots of protein and good fats to keep me going. Tastes amazing too!
I'm also catching up on the latest Mr Ben Brown vlog, because I can't miss a day. He's in New York at the moment which is pretty cool. Miss that place :(

Home from work and it's time for dinner. I did eat one of those salted caramel bars, but I'm still hungry. I just having one of my meal prep boxes with satay tofu, sweet-potato, brown rice/quinoa, and vegetables. I also heated up the last of my flat-breads that I made on Sunday with some hummus on top. So yummy!

 Still drinking lots of water! Because I've been upping my cardio, it's more important than ever for me to have good hydration habits.

What do I always watch when I don't feel like anything else? Chuck! I think this will always be my favorite TV series. Cheers me up every single time I've had a rough day.

Finishing off my night with a little healthy dessert. We had some leftover stewed tamarillos that I put with mango & turmeric coconut yogurt, chia seeds and some walnuts. You can't tell me that healthy foods aren't delicious, because this was so good!

Can't believe how close we are to the weekend! It's got quite cold here recently, but that just means I'm gonna have to spend more time in the kitchen cooking and baking this weekend :)

What's your favorite TV series that cheers you up?
Steph x.

Health & Fitness Update - June

It's been a bit of a roller-coaster month, but that's all in the nature of fitness journeys. I've found new ways to challenge myself this month and ways to make my gym time more fun. I've also had a big lesson in listening to what my body is trying to tell me. I'm really bad for not stretching enough or rolling out my muscles properly. Lesson learned!

Circuit Training

I've discovered a new favorite way to train this month! It's something that my trainer got me doing at our weekly boxing session and I started to apply it to my everyday training routine. I basically set up a circuit of three exercises and I have to go straight from one to the other without stopping. It's kinda like combining cardio and strength training, so you're toning while working up a sweat too! I've been trying to test my breathing a lot more and this is perfect training for it. I ended a few circuits by collapsing on the floor in exhaustion, but that's how I know I've worked hard!

Challenge: Muscle-ups!

During the month, my trainer took me through a new chest/back program which involved pull-ups. I've always struggled to master them, but now I'm more determined than ever to work on my upper-body strength and get really good at them. He mentioned that when I can do 10 in a row, he's going to help me learn how to do muscle-ups (pulling yourself up and over the bar) which looks so cool! Not many people at our gym can do it, so of course I took that as a challenge. I think I got a little too excited because I now have a problem with my shoulders (I'll explain below) but before I go away on holiday I want to master those muscle-ups!

Shoulder Injury / Sports Massage

This has definitely been my biggest lesson from June, and it's been hard. In about the middle of the month, I was working on my chest and back program when I discovered my shoulders were so tight and sore that I couldn't finish my sets without doing damage. My trainer told me that I had probably pulled something and had to lay off the upper body work for a little while. Which has killed me! You guys know that I love lifting and not being able to do it has called for a lot of restraint. I did an arm program a week later, but my shoulders got bad again. Since it wasn't healing, we figured it was because I had really bad knots in both of my shoulders. I booked in for my first ever sports massage and walked away feeling more relaxed than I had in a long time! I would definitely recommend one if you ever feel like your muscles are constantly tight.

Gym Confidence 

A couple months back I wrote another update where wearing shorts to gym was a big push for my confidence. It must have worked because I've been choosing shorts over leggings most days now! I feel pretty great about it. I even got told that I've been distracting some of the men when my trainer is working with them, which I find hilarious! Am I actually that girl at the gym now? The only kind of gym confidence I'm currently working on is believing in myself that I can do new exercises. I can be quick to doubt myself sometimes, so I need to cut that out and be confident in what my body can do. It's going to be a goal of mine for July!

Fitspo: Lucy from It's Sweet is always in style Blog

Even though she lives thousands of miles away from me, I've finally found myself the perfect gym buddy! If you guys don't know Lucy yet, she is one of my favorite bloggers (along with her twin sister Kelly!) and we did a collab a while back. We've been cheering each other along as we both work hard on our fitness. And this girl is smashing it! She is looking amazing (ab goals!) and just keeps inspiring me to grow my confidence and keep becoming a better version of myself. One day I will visit her and Kelly in Florida and we can be proper gym buddies, but for now Lucy is one of my biggest fitness inspirations. 

Only eight weeks until I go on holiday, so I gotta keep working extra-hard until then!

How's your fitness been this June?
Steph x.

My Blogging Must-Haves!

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

I still can't believe I've been blogging for a whole year, and I still feel like such a newbie. I don't think people realize how hard it is to run a blog, or how fun it can be too. Over time I've found ways of keeping organized and getting my blog to run how I want it to. It's taken time to discover what works best for me and having good blogging tools can make it so much easier!

White Board

For me, visualization is key! I bought this a while ago and it has helped me stay super blog-organized. I basically write up what posts are going up in the current week and the next, which helps remind me which ones I need to work on. Throughout the day when I'm working, I can just look up from my laptop and keep moving on to the next post. I also write up Twitter chats and any goals or reminders I need to work on for that month. This board has made such a difference to my productivity, I can't blog without it now. 

A Design and Layout I love! 

I've found this to be really important from the beginning and I can definitely make a huge difference. Your design is the first impression that people get, so you have to be happy with how it represents you and your writing. If I'm not visually pleased, no one else will be either. Since I'm no good at HTML or anything like that, I've always been happy to purchase designs from others and spend the money making my blog look how I want. Worth every penny!


I think the biggest factor that stops me from hitting the publish button is if I'm unhappy with my photos. Photography is one of my biggest loves in life and so I have to be proud of each and every picture I post. Last year I took the plunge and bought my first ever digital SLR and I've been so happy with it. of course you can still take great pics with your phone, but I love the fun of working with an actual camera. Definitely worth the investment if you're looking into getting one.

Diary Planner

This is something I've really been making an effort to stick with in 2016, and it's really helped me stay productive. I wrote a post at the start of January showing you guys how I organize my planner, if you want to see how I keep on track. I use it map out my whole month of posts and write a to-do list for each day that I can tick off. They don't always get done, but at least I have good intentions!

Photo-Editing Apps

There are two apps that I always use to make my photos look nice and bright. The first one I open is Afterlight, which has everything I need. I use it to edit my Instagrams too! Then if I'm still not happy with the brightness, I use Photogene4 that has an amazing exposure tool that makes a white background look perfect. It's not as good as Afterlight for general editing purposes, because the tools can be kinda overpowering, but I still use it for most of my photos. Both of them were free too!


A while back I finally got into the habit of scheduling my tweets and it's made a real difference. Living in New Zealand can make posting times a little difficult since we are roughly twelve hours or so ahead of the Northern Hemisphere. I heard other bloggers talking about how good Buffer is, so I took the plunge and have been using it ever since! It's super-easy to use and it takes away the stress of not posting when you're too busy/asleep.

What are some of your blogging must-haves? 
Steph x.

My Top 5 Superhero Movies!

Sunday, 26 June 2016

You guys know how much I love my superheroes. I grew up with them and I still run off to the movies as soon as the come out to watch them be awesome. I was thinking the other day about which ones were my favorites and thought it would be fun to share. It was quite a tough list to make, no gonna lie. And some films like Ant Man and Civil War were very close to making the cut. But if I had to choose a top five, these would be it:

Avengers: Age of Ultron

I know this one isn't a massive favorite for everyone, but I loved it! I don't know how Joss Whedon was able to give each character great moments that showcases how awesome they are, or what insecurities they hide. I LOVE the additions of Scarlett Witch and Quicksilver to the team.They have become some of my favorite Marvel characters out of everyone so far. The action scenes were just plain awesome and Ultron as a villain was pretty intimidating. They could not have picked anyone better than James Spader to voice him, because it was pretty chilling. The right amount of humor was there too. It just has everything I want out of a superhero movie.


I mean, we all know why this one is awesome. I don't think I've laughed more in a movie that's also incredibly violent and bad-ass. The way that Deadpool interacts with the audience and breaks the forth wall isn't something we have in any other Marvel/DC movie. Bless Ryan Reynolds for bringing this character to life in such an epic way. If they could somehow bring him into a team-up with the Avengers, or even just Spider-Man, I would be such a happy fangirl.

Iron Man 

 I think that like a lot of people, my love of superheroes was renewed with this movie. It was certainly the best project that Marvel Studios could have gotten behind. There's just something so good about origin movies and this one is gold. Robert Downey Jr is just effortlessly cool and I think his talent lies in where he gives us two different sides to Tony Stark. His confident side and his more vulnerable one only Pepper gets to see. Plus, the rock-inspired soundtrack for this movie is so good and such a perfect fit.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

This was definitely the movie than changed the MCU forever, and I love it! It finally steps away from the typical heroes saving the world storyline and changing into something darker. I love the grittiness of the fight scenes and they definitely pack more of a punch. It's really interesting to see heroes left with absolutely nothing and to watch how they come back from it. Bringing in Falcon was such a great choice as well, his humor is perfect for Cap. I really like the Winter Soldier story as well, especially because it ties back to Steve's past and makes him less of a 24/7 hero, and more human.

The Dark Knight Rises 

Because DC can make great superhero movies too! The Dark Knight series is one of my favorites of all time and for some reason this third one is the best of them all for me.The amount of plot-twists and character developments makes this movie so interesting to watch. And just like CA: The Winter Soldier, it's really cool to see how a hero comes back from being absolutely defeated and still saving the day. I loved how it proves that Batman doesn't even need to be in the city to have an impact and just his influence can bring out the hero in other people. It also has some of my favorite actors all working together, so it couldn't get much better than that!

Now it's your turn! Let me know in the comments what you favorites are and we can geek out together : )

Steph x.

Daily Blog: Tumeric Smoothie & Independance Day 2!

Happy Saturday! 

Nothing better than breakfast in bed with the Sacconejolys to start the weekend! After having a bit of a catch up on Twitter, I got stuck into a bit of blog work. 

Time to head out for a run and I decided to strap my shoulder for a bit of support. Kinesio tape is amazing because you still have full movement, but it just keeps your muscles supported. My Mum uses it to strap her knee before every run, so I just used some of her tape. 

The view over the city was pretty cloudy today. So great being out in the fresh air.
My shoulder held up well, still trying to figure out how to best move my arm when I run at the moment. 

There is not another single cafe in my city that can make me a flat white like the guys at Pure Cafe co. can. They have set my coffee standards high! 

For brunch, I went for my usual avo smash with the vegetable hash brown. I also ate some of my Mum's oat cakes for her since she couldn't finish them. I could seriously live off the food from this place. 

Surprise, surprise, we also got some treats to go. The first was a DF/GF orange cake that was so delicious that I couldn't resist eating it before taking a picture. Just trust me when I say it was divine! 
I also got a turmeric lassi smoothie that is a work of genius. I don't know how they manage to get the right balance of spice and lemon in there, but it's perfect. Turmeric is awesome for sore muscles, it just tastes terrible if there's too much of it.

I've gone back to using this Rimmel foundation and I forgot how much I love the finish of it. The coverage is so good and I even use a little bit under my eyes as concealer. 

My hair is not working with me today, but it will have to do!

We came to the mall to buy movie tickets and have a quick coffee. It seems everyone was here today! I walked passed my trainer who was having lunch and my barista was there too. 

Time to head off to work and I'm going to quickly have one of these nutty protein bars as a snack. I'm not usually a granola bar fan, but these are low in sugar so I don't mind them.

Saturday night sanity meal! It's just tradition in our house to have fish and chips at the weekend, and I think I've earned it after all the cardio I forced myself to do this week. 

Also having another dessert of stewed tamarillos and coconut yogurt. Yum!

After work we went off to watch Independence Day: Resurgence. I honestly couldn't remember much of the first one (I was five when it came out.) But I still really enjoyed this sequel! It was funny and the action scenes were really cool. They didn't go overboard with the CGI, which I was grateful for. The story seemed to flow on well from the original too. It was just really enjoyable and I would definitely recommend it if you liked the first one, or you just want a good action movie.

That was such a great Saturday! I had barely any time to do some blog work, but it was still full of some unexpected moments.

Have you guys seen any good movies lately?
Steph x.