Posts Tagged ‘Epic Monster’

Erro erro!

I fear this post may be somewhat all over the place – I have topics I want to talk about, and i have photos of tasty food, but neither match up with each other….soooo you’ll just have to deal πŸ˜€ Oh, and I also have my first ever GIVE AWAY coming up!!! All the deets next week πŸ˜€ (oh, I despise that phrase).

I needed that – needed what, Freya? I hear you say. Well, apart from the 2 squares of 90% Lindt I just consumed – a spur of the moment trip to London’s biggest Whole Foods was needed, that’s what. The next 6months are gonna be cceeerrrrraaaaaaazy over my way, with exams, children to test for my dissertation, revision, work, commuting…I’m not looking forward to it. And seeing as the madness begins on Monday coming, I decided – at 9.20am whilst out for a wonder – I needed to have one last trip. Cue mad rush-walk-home, mad make-up and hair, and mad driving, til I was safely seated on the 10.06am train πŸ™‚ Phew!

Cost of last minute train ticket to London? More Β£ than I’d like to admit….

Cost of 2 fancy running magazines at the station waiting for the next train? More Β£ than I’d like to admit…

Cost of a half melon stuffed with blackberries? Β£4.99 (and so darn worth it)

Cost of a bottle of fizzy water, thrown after 1 sip when I realised it was fizzy? 65p

Cost of a fancy brownie for my sister as a souvenir? Β£1.59

Cost of renewed running inspiration (thank you, Runner’s World), a more relaxed mind (thank you, walk round Londres town), a happy tummy (thank you, Whole Foods salad bar), and a visit to a chocolate shop? Priceless.

Aside from the pumpkin seeds I spilt over the large business man hogging the seat space next to me on the way home [serves him right], it was a fab day out πŸ™‚ I got so many free samples! Cranberry and ginger bread chunks (x 3), multigrain bread chunks, miso soup (x 3 – wow was that seller lady good – i ended up buying some!), sea salt crisps, raw kale crisps, raw crackers, various balsamic vinegars and oils with bread sticks for dipping…..Whole Foods, you have stolen my heart! I wonder how long it’ll be til my 4th trip to the Kensington paradise?!

Anyway – moving swiftly on!

How about a random food photo to break the post up?


yes, they are Christmas themed socks.

Whaa-? That’s not food! No, it’s my leg after it got shredded my brambles on a run the other day! I thought it hurt, but it wasn’t til I looked down and saw blood running down my leg, did I realise quite how bad…the photo does NOT do it justice, especially since the rip-shred continues up my leg. Beware brambles, that’s my lesson learnt.

Ok, NOW how about a food photo?


Ha. Not food no, but comical (IMHO) :p a nice thank you note from Battersea Dogs Home after I donated Β£10 over Christmas – the joys of being able to pick your own name!

NOW here is some food:


Nothing you haven’t seen before really; milky, squash-y oats, with a peanut flour maple-y sauce πŸ˜€


TOAST! Maaaan I’ve been craving toast like a mad one recently; FINALLY hit the craving the other night with dinner πŸ™‚



I needed that πŸ™‚

Know what else I need? Cookies! Mama Pea peanut butter cookies, to be precise. Two sad facts for you:

1) I think my mix was too warm, cos they flattened out like…something that flattens:



Which led to some rather queer shapes….


2) These were not for me, but rather a request of folk at my mum’s place o’ work.


Oh how they love me (/use me) there!

Talking of funky shaped food – I was reading Ashley’s [freakin’ amazin’] blog t’other day, and came across a recipe for a chickpea bake thing which used chickpea flour (aka gram flour). I wanted! Today, i spied some for about Β£1 so OBVS I had to nab it. I was gonna do the actual chickpea bake, but then i decided to do pancakes instead –

50g chickpea flour (it’s so rich in protein! and fibre!)

1/2 c. soya milk

1 tsp baking powder

1 or 2 tsps cocoa powder

mixed spice


Soo….the first flip didn’t go so well:


But after a bit longer, I was getting somewhere:



U – G – L – Y – They UGLY! Served with a cherry/cocoa/banana sauce, and veggies:


Very, very good. Chewier than the spelt pancakes I normally do, and the flavah takes a bit longer getting used to, but they grew on me just like mould on cheese. I can’t wait to play with the flavours!

I think i need to redeem my cooking skills though by showing you somethin’ delish:


The BEST smoothie non-green epic green monster ever!


Melon, cereal (inclu. puff cereal!), left over tofu (uncooked), soya milk, banana, cinnamon, xanthan gum, vanilla extract. Hoooooooooly cow. No words!

Mk, so this post is getting long now isn’t it? I’ll finish (the photos) with what i baked for the fam earlier this evening:


Jammy buns! πŸ™‚


So cute and so simple!

ooh now I’m in 2 minds…do I ramble about the list of topics I have written in front of me (literally! I have a sheet filled with scribbles!) oorrrrr finish this post now before it gets to long, and leave y’all hanging…..

Well, seeing as I have a 10mile run planned sometime tomorrow AM (bringing my total mileage to FORTY miles this week! Holy bejeeezas), I think I’ll finish! Barrrrhhht, I’m very hopeful that I’ll get another post up very very soon πŸ˜€

Goodnight cherubs!


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…lots of FIGHT. Not the naughty, duff-you-in-the-face kind, but the ‘damn you Swine Flu, I will fight you off’ kind!! Remember in my last post, I showed you all a simply wunderbar picture of my fittie mamma going off to a party? Well, some *lovely* person who went to the same party had Swine Flu – and has promptly given it to my mum. Thanks for that. As I type this, she’s laid up in bed, with a temperature, a bowl, lots of sniffing and lots of drugs (the good kind, not the nasty kind). Poor lady! The implications of her illness?

  • I miss her! I love having my mum home, but it sucks that she’s upset and sick, and I can’t do squat about it (bar feed her a Green Monster, as I did today – i figure spinach, milk, chia seeds, and maca powder can only do good!). I feel helpless though! I can’t make her better 😦
  • She can’t pick my sister up from the airport on Christmas Eve (Hannah’s been away on her gap year, and returns 5am on Friday. Apparently. If Heathrow can pull its act together. Seriously, 5 inches of snow and it shuts down??? Bah.)
  • We will have to postpone Christmas – Christmas without my mum bouncing about would be the crappest thing ever – she’s the life and soul, y’all!
  • She sure doesn’t deserve to be ill. No-one does I know – but especially not my mum; she’s the most wonderful woman in the world and IT’s. NOT. FAIR.

Talking of illness – I was ill on Saturday! I woke up feeling like junk, achey body, shivery, a football in my throat etc etc – and thought I had flu. But, food fights flu! So I opened up a packet of chocolate Amazing Grass (I got a sample online):


Chugged it down with soya milk/water, and voila! Come Sunday, I felt 10 x better! I still have a cough and a slight wheeze atm, but it sure ain’t bad, and I’ve still had 3 fabby runs (7miles, 6miles, 6miles) since Sunday, so all is well.

Anywayz! Onwardz and upwardz yeahh???


BAKE – The blorld (blog + world) has gone cookie mad :s seriously! Every post I read, someone has eaten their weight in cookies, is on a sugar high, in a sugar coma, has gone to a cookie party, given birth to a cookie baby…is this some weird American trend?! I’m proud to say I’ve rejected the frenzied trend, and made just one batch of cookies – pumpkin oatmeal:


They might look like ordinary cookies, but BY GOSH, these boys (from the Vegan with a Vengeance cookbook) were OUT OF THIS WORLD. No lie!! I actually made them as a Christmas present for my mum’s work, but we snagged one before they left, and hoooooly cow. I plan on making another batch for whenever we next have Christmas πŸ™‚

Whilst we’re on the subject of things that have been baked/Christmas, I have a quick review for all my lovely Brit readers! The kind folk at Sainsbury’s contacted me with an offer of a selection of their Free From range of Christmas items:


Dairy free, wheat free, gluten free

Sadly, the items were not vegan – BUT, when I told my mum and stepdad about this offer, they jumped at the chance to review! The other night, they broke into the iced Christmas cake slices –


(I seriously need to work out how to change the ISO on my camera….a New Year’s resolution for sure. My only excuse for the dark photo, apart from my inability to use my camera to my advantage, is the crap night lighting)


– and were very impressed πŸ™‚ Words like ‘moist…full of flavour…delicious…soft icing…lots of marzipan…juicy…’ floated about. Even my step dad liked them, which in itself is a HUGE deal – he won’t eat things that are ‘too vegan’ and prefers to live off frozen peas and mac and cheese. But I sure do think I saw a wee smile creep across his lil face when he ate a slice :p HIGHLY recommended.

More reviews to come!


Right – next up, BLEND!

Item One:


That would be a pumpkin pie blended cereal mess thing. I forget exactly what went in it now, but I know it involved cereal, soya milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, maple syrup (maybe?), vanilla, and banana. I also know it was one of the most incredible things I have eeeeever eaten. i know I say that a lot, but I mean it this time!

Next up – Item Two:


Ah yes. I was making my usual blended mess – cereal etc etc. Whilst I was digging about for frozen bananas in the freezers, I came across a packet of cranberries, frozen from last year. DING DING DING! I added in a laaaarge handful, accompanied by a tsp of agave (they were fresh, not dried, hence sourness – though I happily eat them fresh anyway :D).


Wowzer! Beeeeeautiful colour, incred taste!! Not sour at all, just…cranberry-y. It was lovely! If I’ve taught you nothing else in this post, take this on board – add. cranberries.

OH! And those grapes, they’re frozen! And holy cow, frozen grapes are da BOMB!


I froze them aggggges ago, forgot about them, remembered (thanks, Jamie Oliver Christmas tv show), and now I’ve bought a whole new pack of grapes which are sitting in the freezer, ready to munch at my leisure. Bliss.

They made an appearance on my chocolate coffee Epic Green Monster this morning too (along with 75p-per-pack cherries!)


Boo yah.

Talking of…er…food – yesterday, I did the epic Christmas food shop. I figured I needed super good fuel for it, which led to my eating THE best bowl of oats EVER. A bowl to end all bowls. It was….well, I almost cried at how good it was.

The Bowl of Oats to Trump All Bowls of Oats:

  • 50g oats
  • 2 tsp carob powder
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 c. soya milk
  • 1/2 c. water
  • roasted and mashed onion squash
  • extra milk on top



Oh. My. It was soooo chocoaltey, so creamy, so comforting, so DELICIOUS! I can’t wait to make it again πŸ™‚

Another thing I want to make again – aubergine sauce! T’other day, I roasted up some aubergine, then blended it with salt, mixed spice, water and nooch, and created this:


Looks gross, but it was incred stirred into kamut spaghetti:



Hurrrrraaaahhhh!!! I rejoiced, it was lovely! Silky smooth, with a spicy cheesy flavour. YUMMEH.

Other meals worthy of the YUMMEH tag? Sweet potato, roasted with maple, cinnamon, salt, apple and walnuts:


Totally where it’s at. As was this broccoli/millet/wild/brown rice combo:



Now, I have a slight complaint. I would give the following a big old thumbs up too, but – I just can’t. For part of lunch today, I had a wholemeal English muffin, topped with a squeezy pack of Justin’s chocolate almond butter:


My complaint? To get the thickness I wanted, the squeezy pack was only enough for ONE half of a hardly-large English muffin! Booooo.


Not cool. At least the taste was right up my street (it tasted like a nuttier, thicker version of Nutella, which is odd considering Nutella is made from hazelnuts. But whatevrz.).

Aaaaaaaaaaanywayz, I have some missions to do now:

1) wrap presents

2) watch the end of Lucky Number Slevin (Josh Hartnett, if you’re reading – marry me?)

3) Make pancakes

4) read my newspaper

See yaz!

Question: Have you gone on the cookie-craze this holiday?

Any tips for getting over flu real quick?

(Oh – and MERRY CHRISTMAS if I don’t have time to blog before the big day! Eat, drink and be mERRY!)

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Ok, so I have to do a super quick post today – I’m about to take Hannah to the station, so she can catch a train to the airport, where she’ll catch a plane to La La Land! More commonly known as Los Angeles πŸ™‚ Home of the famous! LA is the first stop of her 3month long gap ‘year’ – though she’ll be back home in about a week for 2 or 3 days, before leaving for Africa..or New Zealand..or Australia…I have no idea :p ANYWAY – if you see a girl who looks about 17months older than me with shorter hair and responds to the scream ‘HANNAH’, assume it’s my sister!

So without further adieu – My Day

Weds, 11pm – finish watching Rude Tube (best. show. ever.), and consume about 1 pint of water in a short space of time (bad idea!)

1am – get up.

4am – get up.

7.15am – alarm

7.30am – eat 2 tsps wheat germ, 1/2 a rice cake and a Power Bar (I know they’re sports food, but I would seriously eat one just for kicks, they are SO good)

8am+ – leave for run!

Run 5miles – my brain threatened to throw a wobbly for 3 strides, but I pushed any feelings of stress down and continued with a smile (Is the maca powder kicking in already!?)

Mile 7.5 – I had my first ever taste of a GEL!


I’ve been scared of gels for a long time, cos they look….well, weird. And I thought they’d taste like Bonjela or something gross and weird – but not so! It was DELICIOUS!! I’m not even joking, it was just, so so sosososo tasty. Maybe I’ll become a gel addict now?

9.40ish – finished TEN miles (9.28min/mile pace, 1hr 34) πŸ™‚ Then I went for a 15minute stretch down walk – I sure needed it! Jillian yesterday left my legs super stiff today :s

9.55am+ – Hug Chika, give Chika a handful of treats, give Chika an ear-scratch (her favourite thing in the world). kiss Chika, leave Chika.

10am+ – BREAKFAST! I was craving cold green things today – so I did almost the exact same thing I did after my 14miles on Sunday – a Green Monster, and a no-milk Epic Green Monster πŸ™‚

Green Monster =

  • 1/2 c. milk
  • spinach
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1/3 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp cacao powder

Milkless EGM =

  • 1 c. cereal
  • 1/2 c. yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 scoop Vega vanilla-almond smoothie shake
  • 1 tsp maca powder
  • 1 and a bit bananas (frozen)
  • more spinach
  • dates and almonds as toppings



yes, that is a sherry glass πŸ™‚




Well. An incredible meal! The EGM was super duper thick, the GM was all fluffy and light and wonderful πŸ™‚

11 – 12am – helped Hannah with Tig

12am/pm – 12.30pm – packed up some lunch – gran-grown butternut squash fries, with celeriac fries and a tiny mini gran-grown courgette, all roasted in rosemary and garlic:




On the side, I had a Clif bar and some Bear Granola nibbles (portable cos I knew I wouldn’t have time to stop for a proper lunch) –


Straight after the picture, I swapped the small Clif bar for the big man version πŸ˜€ (the mini version has nowhere near as much carb – and I’m trying to eat carbily this week, for my impending TWENTY MILE run on Sunday! [which I WILL ace and WILL kick butt at!]

12.30pm – 1pm – freak out and search the house manically for Erica’s certificate of insurance – I needed to register her with uni (which starts on Monday), so I can park there without getting Β£50 in fines each day :/ Eventually, I found said certificate beneath a pile of papers by the printer. As you do.

1 – 1.20pm – throw on some slap, public-appropriate clothes, and gather up my belongings πŸ˜€

1.20-2.20pm – drive the hour to uni 😦

2.20 – 2.24pm – realise my car park card has vanished from my purse. I felt sad 😦

2.25 – 2.45pm – register Erica (Β£20 down the drain….), buy a new car park card (Β£8 also down the drain :'()

2.45-3.05pm – decide that I probably should eat something for lunch, despite a sincere lack of hunger! I also bought myself my trashy paper πŸ˜€

3.05 – 3.15pm – I went in search of a soya cappuccino – apparently, they do NOT exist on campus, despite me going to 4 different places! Gah. *sadface*

3.25 – 4.25pm – I hate to sit through the most boring, dull, pointless welcome back talk/meeting EVER. Such a waste of an afternoon!!

4.30 – 5.25pm – drive home like a maniac to a)avoid rush hour traffic and b) to take mon sister to the station for her train!

5.28pm – drop a mushroom down my sleeve.

5.46pm – leave for the station, and say goodbye to Hannah! She even said ‘love you’ as she left, which is extreeeeemly rare, and even more extremely lovely πŸ˜€

6.03pm – get home, and pump out some more of this blog post πŸ˜€

Question: What do your days normally look like? Do you like to keep busy?

Ps – Once again – I am so so sorry for being so slow at email replies at the moment! I am reading them, fear not – I’m just slow and have a disorganised inbox πŸ˜›

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Thank you SO much to every single one of you who commented on my post yesterday – I haven’t had a chance to respond to them all, but I read (and appreciate) every single one. Words cannot describe how much everything you all said meant to me!! πŸ™‚

I thought I’d show y’all a bit more about the man behind the mask today (aka the Freya behind the blog…). As one of my wise bloggy friends said (Gabriela? I think..), the whole MCA (Marie Claire Article) kerfuffle has sure highlighted that we don’t always know what happens behind closed [blog]doors. So! Here’s some of me πŸ™‚

I’m the girl who used to be obsessed with Buffy and Angel:


I’m the girl who is still obsessed (and always will be :p) with Arnold Schwarzenegger:



I’m the girl who loves fluffy, pink, sparkly things:


I’m the girl who loves black and white films:


I’m the girl who is fiercely competitive – once in swimming:


Once in endurance:





Once in dressage:


And now in running:


I’m the girl who believes cracked mirrors don’t mean squat – we make our own luck:


I’m the girl who loves to read women’s magazines:


And fitness magazines:


And trash magazines…..:p


I’m the girl who loves to collect awkward shaped plates, bowls and mugs (blates just to annoy my family :p):



I’m the girl who is massively organised:


But who has a [very] messy side too:


I’m the girl who loves all things horsey, especially if it involves magazines and/or shopping!


I’m the girl with the gum addiction:


I’m the girl with the home workout DVD addiction (note: this is..ooohh…about 5% of my collection!?!)


I’m the girl who believes her horse, and all things horsey, are one of the things that make me:


And will love her horse to the end of the earth!





I’m also the girl who really does love writing about food, recipes and meals, and is going to honour that passion now!!

Pre-breakfast – big. beautiful. apple. Followed by a lovely home DVD workout for 55mins! I did part of Jillian’s dvd today, which I haven’t done in about 3 weeks…boy have I lost my Jillian fitness! Post-Mary Mission Numero Uno: Get back some strength!!!

Breakfast was a total repeat of yesterday’s bowl of scrum πŸ˜€

  • pear
  • banana
  • soya yogurt
  • xanthan gum
  • cereal
  • peanut butter
  • vanilla

Except – I made one addition:


Maca powder! A lovely commenter on my blog the other day suggested I try some as a daily supplement, as it helps with stress and the like (I can’t remember all the exact details, but google it and you world will change. Probably.). i told my mum about it, and she immediately went ‘BUY IT’ – being the supportive ball of love she is, anything which might improve a) my happiness and b) my training, is one giant win to her πŸ™‚ Sooo I added about a tsp πŸ™‚ Result:


Same meal, different bowl πŸ™‚

The end of my blackberries…


Bye bye blacks. Bye bye.

It was delish! And very filling too. Maca is a superfood!

I rode ChikaMunchkin this morning – in fact, my mumma gave me a lesson. She (Chika, not my mum) was so, so good! Despite having got in a total tizz before I worked her (cos Tig went out for a ride), she was an angel πŸ™‚ Her half pass was lovely and floaty today – despite the 3month break from it – so much so, my mum proclaimed ‘it’s days like these I wish you would compete again!’. Maybe post-marathon πŸ™‚

Lunch afterwards was so so cool. I was going to do Jess-Inspired-Recipe-Number-One, til I realised I didn’t have the pumpkin. So I decided on Jess-Inspired-Recipe-Number-Two. Yet again, I realised…yep, I had no pumpkin. I couldn’t be bothered to roast up looooads of squash and get it all gooey and gross, espec. since my current squash just doesn’t do that, so I settled for 3rd best.


I roasted up gran-grown squash fries, with celeriac and a few token chunks of parsnip, and served it all with a load o’ hummus πŸ™‚ I also had oatmeal πŸ˜€ 50g oats, mixed with 1/2c. + a bit soya milk, and water, salt, maple syrup, roasted squash (mashed yes, but not pumpkin-in-a-can-style mashed), cinnamon and nutmeg:






Can you guess my response to this meal? Of course, it was the old ‘ohemgee, best lunch EVAH!’ And it truly was! I ate all the veggies and hummus first, and by the time I got to the oatmeal, it had thickened up something silly:


Oh. My. One of THE best bowls of oatmeal! I love love LOVED the thickness πŸ™‚

For dessert – a lovely square of vegan shockolade πŸ˜€

Im gonna go cook dinner now (and watch my sister give the cat a bath – he was playing under the car, and is now covered in black grime….), which will be spaghetti. Carb loading is on the cards this week, as not only do I have a 10miler tomorrow, but a TWENTY miler on Sunday!

Question: Without wanting to sound like some crazed vegan hippie – who are you? Or, to put it in an easier question form..what are some random things about you that people might not expect or know? πŸ™‚

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Ok – this is a post of two parts! First part = normal. Second part = stuff about my blog, the dreaded Marie Claire article, and healthy living blogs on a whole. It’s quite the essay, and I have nowhere near made all the points I’d like to – but do read it if you have time πŸ™‚

In the words of Oliver Twist himself, FOOD, GLORIOUS FOOD!! That’s how today’s intake has felt πŸ˜€

A giant apple (and a rice cake, and wheat germ and brazil nuts) pre run:


What a beauty! I then set out to tackle 5miles….5miles is actually on the plan as Wednesday’s run, but I decided to do it today (cross training day) instead – it’s due to rain tomorrow, so I felt today would be best πŸ˜€ Anyway – it was GOOD! Despite the lack of sleep last night (boy do I hate seeing the time flick to 1.30am….), I felt great this morning πŸ™‚ The five was done in 44.36, an 8.55 min/mile pace <- perfect for the distance! My legs were a liiiittle bit achey, but mentally I felt good. Some events happened last night, which led to some things being said, which led to me feeling much better today. Yay!

Breakfast…ah, breakfast.

  • cereal
  • banana
  • pear
  • yogurt
  • peanut butter
  • vanilla essence
  • dates, almonds, blackberries







One of the greatest bowls ever. And I know I say that a lot, but it really really was!!!

After breakfast (and a lot of time spent reading blog comments, and the arrival of a very exciting package!!, and a dog walk in the rain) I rode. Chika decided to give me a heart attack today.

I took her in the school for a good session – we’ve had a 4 day break (rain, shopping, running, work) so it was lovely to get back πŸ™‚ Despite the scary smoking muckheap (there’s always something with Chika), she was a super girl, soft and light, and tried hard. I put her back in the stable, took a few awful photos to show how sweaty she got in her winter woolies:



My lil donkey face πŸ™‚

And then got her a few nuts as a post-workout treat. She has a handful of nuts regularly after she works, and has done in the 5.5yrs I’ve had her. She was feeing pretty greedy today though…and gave herself a choke! For non-horsey people that just means..she was choking. Except, horses can’t throw up, so if they get food stuck in their throat, it can’t come back up. It’s horribly scary to watch, cos they make funny sounds and look like they’re retching and coughing and…well, choking. Needless to say, I was worried! I phoned the vet, who said they’d someone out immediately (there’s a chance the throat can be ripped by whatever is stuck). Thankfully however, after about 15mins since it started, the food got dislodged and she was ok again. Crisis averted!! Bloody horses…..!!!!

Lunch – awesome. I made pancakes! I was gonna do a sweet potato, but then pancakes appeared in my head, and the seed was planted….

Things that make me happy: bubbles in perfect round cakes of the pan!




Perfect, perfect, PERFECT!

Alongside, I roasted up (in smokey bbq seasoning) a load of veggies –


That would be a butternut, grown by my gran πŸ˜€ I also did sprouts, leek, parsnip and summer squash.

How do you make perfect pancakes better? Why, you top them with a load of hummus of course!




The squash was delish – it was crispy on the outside, but sweet and soft on the inside..my gran has talent :p


GOOOOOOOOOD gracious. Lunch, glorious lunch!!! I also had a square of chocolate for dessert πŸ™‚

The afternoon was spent horsing, reading, and writing this epically long blog post to follow…..


Ok, so in light of the Marie Claire article (combined with the comments I read that were left on the blogs in question), a – somewhat rude – comment I received yesterday, and my own feelings about healthy living blogging/my blog, I feel it is necessary for me to write this. I can’t guarantee what I say will be in any logical or structured order – mainly cos I can see Chika staring at me from her stable, waiting to be turned out! – but partly because when I have a lot of thoughts, they just need to get streamed out. Logic goes!

So anyway, my point of this blurb is about addressing issues in my own blog, as well as the effect other blogs have had on me, both positive and negative. Here I go!

First and foremost – I want to say that my experience of the blog world has been nothing but positive and supportive. During a very dark time in my life, blogs inspired me to get healthy and enjoy food again, and I am forever grateful. I also learnt how to fuel for exercise and how to have rest days, amongst so much else. I’m aware that some blogs may be a trigger to some people, (to restrict or over exercise) – although they weren’t for me [ironically, if there was any negative media influence in my ED, it was magazines] – so I urge you, if they are – DO NOT READ THEM. Yes, bloggers have a responsibility. But so do readers. If reading a blog makes you want to restrict/binge/overexercise, then stop reading it. If you don’t agree with what you see, leave.


1) Fiiiirstly – has the blog world influenced me? There’s been suggestions that me/readers/bloggers choose to run or to run races or marathons because we feel pressured to, so I thought I’d share my experience. I began running in early 2009. I began blog reading in summer 2009. By that time, I’d already signed up for a half marathon – but as I hadn’t a clue about training or running nutrition, I got injured and had to pull out. Blog reading helped me get back into it – I’d been scared of starting again, after my injury, but reading about fellow runners made me desperately want to get back out there. Not long after, I signed up for another half marathon, and did that one, and two more. I felt no pressure whatsoever in doing these, they were my own choice (the next point looks at why I ran those races, why I’m running the marathon and so on). There is no denying that Caitlin, Meghann and co inspired me to enter a full marathon, because they made something which I had always seen as purely an Olympic runner thing, seem possible to mere mortals – but to me, that is no different from multiple gold medallist Anky Van Grunsven inspiring me to be a better dressage rider (I used to watch her tests the night before my own competitions).

There is a lesser known reason why I’ve signed up for my marathon too; as a celebration of me. 2 1/2 years ago, I was almost dead. I was forbidden from any exercise. The fact that i have come so far and am able to do so much now is an amazing thing! I wanted to celebrate my new love for running, my new strength, my new confidence – so I decided to enter a marathon! It’s almost like a final nail in the coffin to the dreaded ED – like a ‘haha SCREW you ED – look at me now!!’ kinda thing.

2) I am competitive. Very much so! I’m one of those people where, if I decide to do something, I want to ruddy well do it competitively! I used to be a club swimmer, and I would compete in their championships (through choice – not because I was forced into it). I also was a very competitive endurance rider (in just 2years, I was ranked nationally). I was a very competitive dressage rider (I did countless competitions and went to three regional championships). I’m now a competitive runner, which includes races and half marathons and a desire to be the best I can – again, I have chosen this path – not because Meghann does (heck, if I did what every blogger did, I’d be doing triathlons and swimming and be running barefoot and brewing my own beer – but I don’t want to!).

These things are/were my passions. But the thing with me is..when I get passionate about something, I get reaaally passionate about it, and it means the world to me. When I get stressed in life, I bottle it up – the emotions I feel then come out in my passions. When I was under heavy exam stress, I used to cry and get very upset if things weren’t 100% when I was riding, or swimming, and I’d end up in floods of tears. The same thing happened this past few weeks with my running – issues (which I have not spoken about on the blog, as they are unrelated to eating or exercise) have been stressing me out and upsetting me recently, so of course, when I ran my emotions came out. This was not because I hated running or felt pressured into doing it – quite the opposite! I love running, and so as soon as a tiny tiny little thing went wrong, my pent up frustration and sadness poured out and escalated. I get upset with things I care about. That’s just me!

3) A comment yesterday implied that I went to the Healthy Living Summit purely to fit in with a ‘clique‘. I found this unture and very hurtful. I went to the HLS for a number of reasons; I wanted to meet the friends I’ve made through the blogging world. I wanted to meet some of the women that have helped me through tough times in my life, and taught me that food is to b enjoyed, not feared. I wanted to be brave, and conquer my own fears (about going off and doing something by myself). I also wanted to go to Chicago. I have a love affair with America, you see…even when I was a wee Tweenager, I loved America – I even had a print out of the American flag on my bedroom wall, with a quote from Arnold Schwarzenegger saying about how much he loved the USA!

Back in 2007 (pre ED), I had the opportunity to go the USA with my best friend for 2 weeks. I had the absolute time of my life there, and I can honestly say that it was one of the happiest 2 weeks of my entire existence. I dreamed of going back, but I had no reason to – no friends or family there, and no-one to go on holiday with. When the HLS opportunity came up, I jumped at the chance! An excuse to go back, AND to meet my friends!? Awesome!! It was THE best weekend of my life. I found people who were like me – who liked cooking, who liked running, who had the same hobbies and interests <- there is no-one in England like this. I have no vegan friends (I don’t even have vegetarian friends!). I know no-one who likes running. My best friend goes to uni 6hrs away and I rarely see her. Therefore it was fabulous to meet people with similar interests, and I felt so welcome and happy! Just as the first time I went to America was fabulous – heck, I stayed on a horse farm!! It’s my dream to live in America you know – I’ve even applied for work experience over there, and looked into grad school. The HLS was not just me flitting about to be with ‘the cool kids’.

4) Veganism. Was this due to the desire to ‘fit in’ with the blog world? Far from it! (a quick note – the vast majority of blogs I read are NOT vegan.) Did the blog world effect my decision? Possibly. I’ve been aware of veganism for years, and it’s something that has crossed my mind from time to time. I always used to think I could never do it (I didn’t know how vegans got protein, I didn’t know what tofu was, I thought all they ate was leaves, I felt I couldn’t afford it etc etc), but the ethical concern had always been there with me. However, after reading certain blogs, I began to realise that these amazing meals they were making were actually vegan, and they weren’t expensive or weird. I decided to look into what actually went in a vegan diet. I did internet research for months, I bought a number of books on the topic, I read blogs – and after months of research, I decided to take the plunge. This was not because I wanted to be like a blogger – the issue was there pre-blog – it was because I CHOSE to; me, free choice. I said right from the beginning that if I became unhealthy on a vegan diet, I’d stop. However, i have never been happier or healthier than I have being a vegan! (another quick side note – veganism is not ‘cutting out food groups’ – I still have perfect amounts of protein, fat, carb etc etc; I just choose not to have them from animal sources). It is one of the best decisions I have ever made.

5) My blog as a whole – my blog is not like Kath’s or Caitlin’s or Tina’s. My blog is my own. It’s a record of my own personal journey, as I learn who I am and what I stand for. I’ve come a long way since I started it, and no doubt I (and the blog) will keep changing. I know some people may find it triggering to see exactly what one person eats, every single day, but let me say this: I don’t blog about everything I eat. I don’t often post about dinners or desserts (a nightly occurrence!), or the amount of times I stick my fingers in my PB jar, or the brazil nuts, or the random almonds while I cook, the random handfuls of cereal..there’s a lot that isn’t shown. I think this is good – I don’t want to photograph everything I eat! I like to keep a record of my meals, purely cos it’s great to look back and think ‘oohh, yes I’d forgotten about xyz, must have that again!’. But I’m not obsessive about it – my photography of meals takes about 30seconds, and consists of ‘put plate on mat. Click. Eat’. If I like a meal a lot, I might take more photos – cos I like taking photos! Of cats, of dogs, of food, of horses…I like photos.

I also probably have some weird habits on my blog too. I cut my veggies up small – why? Cos they cook quicker in the oven, and I lack the patience to wait 1/2 an hour. I eat a lot of the same meals. Why? Cos they taste nice, and I’m a creature of habit. I used to eat Weetabix for breakfast every morning. I then went through a phase of only eating garlic cabbage. The next phase included chicken every night. Again, that’s just how I am! Here is where blogs are a help – they encourage me to branch out sometimes, and try new flavours. Maple/mustard/balsamic sauce? Never would’ve thought of it if it weren’t for blogs! Lentils? Blerhg, til I saw them on a blog and tried them. They’re one of my favourite foods now! Peanut butter? I just assumed I hated it, because I did when I was little. How wrong I was….

6) Do healthy living blogs fuel food obsessions? Are bloggers obsessed with food? Maybe. But then, so is Jamie Oliver, or Gordon Ramsey, or Nigella Lawson. Some people are obsessed with gaming, with books, with archery. Each to their own! I’m obsessed with food, and not afraid to admit it. But my obsession has positive impacts on my life, not negative. I feel good, I look healthy, I feel strong and energised, my hair is thick and glossy, my skin is more clear than it’s ever been…all down to my healthy living. And I love it! I’m proud of my obsession πŸ™‚

7) Workouts – many people have been accusing some bloggers of overexercising – all I can say is this: it’s all relative. If my mum ran 1/2mile, she’d be puffed and would feel like she’d done 2 days’ worth of workouts. If I ran 1/2 mile, I’d finish it then ask where the next 7.5miles were, because I’m fitter than her. If Chika was worked in the school for 40mins, she’d start to puff. If Tig (Hannah’s horse) was worked in the school for 40mins, he wouldn’t break a sweat. Everyone is different.

8) There are a gazillion points on the actual Marie Claire article, written in the comments sections of ‘The Big Six’ which I urge you to check out – I would write them, but I seem to have written a textbook anyway, so I won’t πŸ˜›

9) Finally, I’ll say it again – my blog is my own. I choose to share certain feelings and events, and I choose to not share some too. What readers see is but a small glimpse of my life, far from the bigger picture. I’m aware my blog is far from perfect, and that I am far from perfect too. But I’m doing the best that I can, for me, right now. I’m learning. It’s a continuous upward curve, with the odd mistake (we all get the wrong answers in tests sometimes!), but I am in the process of changing as a person, which is what this blog is about. I’m also a person with real feelings. I’m not as a resilient as some bloggers, so please – if you make a comment, try to be nice. I welcome all opinions, and constructive critcism – but blatant attacks on me or my personality are upsetting. Of course, that last point applies to about 0.00001% of my readers – most of whom are the most wonderful, supportive people I’ve ever known. But just be aware of it πŸ™‚

Ok – that’s enough from me! If you managed to read all of that, send me your address and expect a gold star in the mail very soon πŸ˜€

Have a great evening πŸ™‚

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Scuffin Love

Happy Tuesday!! You know what’s awesome about today? Very little, cos it’s just a Tuesday. I’m not a fan! Tomorrow will be better though – I’ve got my second/follow-up appointment with my nutritionist πŸ˜€ Apparently, we’re going to talk race day strategy and the like, for the marathon. Which FYI, is in…less than 5 weeks!!?? Freakin’ madness!

Anyway, back to Tuesday. I was so majorly tired today. I woke up and actually looked like Death. It’s days like these I thank my lucky stars that no-one else sees me early in the mornings!! Alas. After eating an apple and a bite of a rice cake, I did some DVD action for 55mins or so, and then, something mildly annoying happened. Normally after a workout, I’m not hungry for a good hour afterwards. So, I finished my workout, pretty-ed myself up (well, attempted to :p) and thought I’d dash to the store to get my newspaper before my sister took the car for the day. It just HAD to be today that pretty much as soon as I was on the road, I was starving! And it also just HAD to be today that I got stuck behind freakishly, jokingly slow farm traffic for miles. Gah! Therefore, breakfast was v v v v welcome:

  • 1/2 c. coconut milk
  • 1/2 c. soya yogurt
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1 c. cereal
  • xanthan gum
  • banana
  • cantaloupe melon
  • frozen papaya
  • a few kale strips
  • dates, Grape Nuts, homemade jam and almonds for toppings






Gawsh! I don’t know what it was today, but that mix was so SO good! One of the best ever, for sure! A bowl I wished would never end…..

I rode Chika for a bit after breakfast – after the past few days’ escapades, I thought it’d be best to lead her in hand past the lion den before I got on – sure enough, she was all ‘ohemgee can’t go theeeerrrrreeee!!!!!’ for a good 5minutes – thank goodness I didn’t get on first! When I did eventually get on, she was very well behaved πŸ™‚ But gosh, I sure don’t know what’s gotten into her the past few days. Maybe someone is spiking her feed with Red Bull? Hmm…

Lunch was just a plate of sheer awesomeness today. So many delicious aspects! Angela’s spelt pancakes for one (minus the protein powder):


Served with roasted broccoli and parsnip fries, and rosemary and garlic seasoned roast kale:


Check out the bubbles!!


That wasn’t it though – toppings were to come! Roast soya nuts, hummus and peariac puree (see my recipes :)) – basically, roast celeriac blended with a ripe pear and some salt:







Ah. No words! I sure had a hard job deciding on what the best mouthful was to save til last πŸ˜› It was ALL ace.

Moving on – you know how yesterday I really got ma bake on? I did the same this arvo too!! I had lots of butternut squash sitting in the fridge, so I decided I’d do something pumpkin-inspired…cos roasted butternut is the perfect sub πŸ™‚ Soo, I cut and roast a whole load:


I had to pretty much handcuff myself to my chair so I wouldn’t eat all the roast gooey-ness when it came out of the oven….ANYWAY! After I roasted it, I had to decide on a recipe. Angela’s pumpkin and chia scuffins won my vote!!




I used a chia egg, rather than a flax egg, cos I had no flaxseed open 😦



The result was 22 little fluffy scuffins of LOVE!!!


These pictures do NOT do them justice!




Oohh they are BLISSful!!! I had one as an afternoon snack:


They’re light, fluffy, full of flavour….just delicious! I’m so glad there’s another 21 left to eat πŸ˜€

The scuffins were Baking Mission Numero Uno. BM Numero Duno was muffinsssss!! When I was at the store this morning, I saw some really dirty skank bananas which, just like the ones yesterday, were calling out to be baked with. I obeyed that call.

Using a recipe for banana bread in the Veganomicon cookbook, I made muffins πŸ˜€





Well, they smell really good! I’m yet to try one (cos I had a scuffin instead), but no doubt one will SOMEHOW find its’ sneaky way into my stomach at around 9pm tonight, when my raging dessert tooth demands to be fed πŸ˜›

Oohh but before dessert, I get to eat dinner πŸ˜€ I’m feeling inspired by a certain fellow horsey blogger, who did a wonderful balsamic/maple/mustard combination the other day. I’m reckoning on covering sweet potato chunks in it, and baking…literally, my mouth is watering at the thought!

Talking of dinner – no photos, but I thought last nights’ was worth a mention (ohemgee, I just heard on the radio that The Apprentice starts next week – YAY!) – I made a real groovy tomato sauce, using chopped tomatoes, balsamic, mixed spice, stock, molasses and soy sauce. I cooked some tempeh in it, with chickpeas and broccoli and my favourite veggies, and it was SO. GOOD. Love love love!!

Mks, now I gotta stop talkin’ about it, and go prep dinner πŸ™‚

Question – what’s your favourite reality show? I’m a sucker for The Apprentice and…uh….well, there are a ton more, but apparently I’m having a brain blank πŸ˜›

Oh – Ps – cute Kovac πŸ™‚



Hehe! Cats and boxes. They fit together like…Edward and Bella πŸ™‚

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Ups, Downs and Frowns

Ohh my gracious. World’s Most Annoying Day right here. I’ve given myself a headache, and a serious need for a bout of Botox, to smooth out the wrinkles I’ve given myself from frowning so hard today!

I woke up feeling pretty cranky, but like..body-cranky, not mood-cranky – it was weird. After quickly checking my emails and eating an apple and 2 tsps wheat germ, I had a pretty good DVD workout for 50mins πŸ™‚ An Up!

Then came the Down 😦 I walked back into the kitchen, and my laptop had died. Nowt unusual, it dies thrice daily now (like, it’s on, then the screen just goes blank and that’s that. Normally I just press the on button, and it restarts) – except this time, it wouldn’t turn back on! Like, not at all!! I tried it with a different battery lead thing, and it was having none of it :O Needless to say, there were some tears (yeah, I cry easily :p) – my photos, gone. My iTunes, gone. My documents and essays and lab reports, gone. My DVD [in the disc drive], stuck. It was aaaawful 😦

In my sad daze, my appetite vanished, so breakfast came later than usual –

  • cooked squash (an odd sort. I thought it would be delicious, but when I opened it the other day, it was certainly not! Nice, but not kabocha-nice – so I’ve decided to use it for other purposes :D)
  • 1 c. cereal
  • 1/2 c. soya yogurt
  • 1/2 c. coconut milk
  • hemp seeds
  • xanthan gum
  • maple syrup

Blend blend blend, topped with cereal and cinnamon raisin swirl PB (my favourite sort!):

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With a side of blackberries and strawberries:

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It was OK…but just ok. I was feeling too sad to enjoy it! Or even to put half decent toppings on!! Plus, as I said, the squash just was not good enough. My taste buds are spoilt with all the kabocha floating about πŸ˜›

After breakfast, I took my laptop and drove 40mins to PC World. Down – Nasty Mr Australian Sat Nav directed me to totally the wrong place, so I had to park in a lay-by and walk! Grrrrrrrr.

Anyway, I went to the tech guy, and he tested it and as it turns out, my approx. 6month old battery thing (which I bought not long ago to replace the last one, which I’d had a year) had totally died. ARGH! I ordered a Mac a few weeks back, which was due to arrive on Thursday – but I still had to fork out SIXTY POUNDS (!!) on a new battery, cos I needed all my photos and files! Talk about furious.

Cos of my late breakfast, lunch was late and a bit blah too. I had made a big old smoothie, using a beautiful melon….

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…..but then I didn’t feel like it, cos I felt poor and sad 😦 Instead, I decided only my favourite foods would do  – Nature’s Path Cinnamon/Blueberry cereal, edamame beans, with bbq salt roasted aubergine, parsnip and kabocha:

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It was lovely πŸ™‚

After lunch, I felt incredibly wound up, like I wanted to explode any second, so I did the wise thing, and took myself off alone on a walk – perfect for catching up with celeb gossip (hello, Heat magazine :p) and soaking up the vitamin D rays πŸ™‚ Oh, and eating blackberries πŸ˜› Sometimes, being alone is the best thing.

Randomly while I was out, some bloke pulled over asking if I wanted a lift. That’s like, the 6th bloke that has asked when I’ve been for walks this summer! When did it suddenly become perfectly normal for men in big cars to ask lone girls if they needed lifts!? Mad!

When I got back, look what was waiting for me:

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Yep, my new Mac, with it’s [almost] free iPod Touch!!!

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Ok, YAY for the new laptop, but arhhghghghhghghghg that I’d just spent so much money for the other laptop! OH the irony.

As I was setting it up, I drank a glass of vanilla soya milk:

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I felt a little low on protein and that had a 9g kick of it πŸ™‚ However, the protein has not given me the knowledge to work out how to connect to the internet…where is a freaking Ethernet cable when you need one!!??? Oh my! I seriously wish I was a nerdy boy sometimes. Bah.

Dinner last night was kamut tagliatelle, with a tofu-cocoa-peanut butter-soy sauce sauce:

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Totally scrummy!!! I adore that meal so πŸ™‚ I also had 2 squares of Lindt (85% and 90%) for dessert:

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Hurrah πŸ˜€

Dinner tonight is probably going to be horrendously dull – I feel grrrr-y, so I’m guessing it’ll be a good old comfort meal πŸ˜€

Question – I hate having a negative post! Sooo, tell me what good stuff has happened to y’all today?! Tell me a joke! A limerick! A funny story! Anything to turn my frown upside down πŸ˜€

Ps – thanks to everyone who offered to do a guest post for me whilst I’m away! I’ll email you all a bit nearer the time πŸ™‚

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