Women Wednesdays #2 Run Eat Repeat

I’m writing this one about a woman and blogger I have adored for a long time now. (I think I might actually be a little bit in love with her 😉 but that’s another post!). I’m sort of in shock as I write this because I’ve just read a very personal post by her about her private life, something which I, obviously, had no clue about. It just reminded me of how everyone can shock you with what they’re going through, you just never know till you ask – or on the internet of course until someone lets you know.

I was originally going to write this post without knowing anything about that sphere of Monica’s life though – just because she is damn fabulous. She is, of course, the wonderful, hilarious and motivational Run Eat Repeat, otherwise known as Monica.

meet-monica-about

This woman is insanely motivational, incredibly funny, and she promotes one of the best traits you can ever exhibit as a person: she doesn’t take herself or life too seriously. Or in fact seriously at all in the case of herself, which is wonderfully refreshing and real. I have learnt a lot about running from Monica (mainly – just get off your butt and do it, then come back and eat a pizza) and a lot about not taking myself to seriously too. That’s something I find very hard by the way, I find it so difficult to laugh at my short-comings and my failures. She is also a great balancer in a blogosphere full of health obsession. I’m not saying being healthy or eating healthy is bad, but it can become such a heavy focus these days that we lose sight of other things – like our lives! Monica on the other hand, doesn’t really care. As long as she’s happy, full and replenished after her run that counts as a high-five-moment. Winner! I love that attitude – she reminds me never to become afraid of chips and never to lose my love of pizza.

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I also love her fearless attitude to races. I don’t believe any race would be too tough of too long for this woman, she never seems phased; she seems anti-phased. That, and the honest way she talks about running and her eating habits (which are glorious), make her my ultimate fitness and life role model. I am still stubbornly too scared to enter a running race, I’m not sure if it’s because of fear of failure, or being slow or fear of people watching me pull my running face but I am determined to overcome that this year! Even just an incy-wincy 5km; I have to do it. But reading Run Eat Repeat, I definitely feel like I am going to enter something … one day.

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Monica, I only have one thing to say to you – WHAT A BABE! Please keep posting your delightfully inspiring blog posts.

Follow Run Eat Repeat right here!

Don’t forget to search for Pile On The Miles on her site:

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All images from runeatrepeat.com

I'm Piling on the Miles with Run Eat Repeat

Pile on the Miles

So it’s basically November and I’ve just seen a really cool idea posted by one of my favourite fitness/running/really amusing bloggers. She is the lovely Run Eat Repeat, aka Monica (follow her here!)

I'm Piling on the Miles with Run Eat Repeat

So the aim is to cram in as many miles as possible/realistic/healthy in November, rather than piling on the pounds. Okay it’s not such an issue in November if you’re British because – well, maybe Halloween – but Guy Fawkes Night doesn’t really involve a heavy amount of food. But apparently in America November is a good month to eat a lot – that is because of Thanks Giving, right? This is really just an online community motivating each other and staying ‘accountable’, which is such a popular word in the online fitness community these days; and there are some cheeky little prizes to pile on the motivation too.

I set myself two goals: 2 gym sessions a week & 25 miles total in November (that doesn’t include walking because I walk EVERYWHERE-ish).

What are your November goals? Do you have any November goals? Do you have any non-November goals? Come along and do this with me, and Monica and the tonnes of girls/women that follow her!

Graze Box

Graze Days – my Gaze Box Review

I’ve been meaning to write about this for ages but I’m finally gettingaroundtoit … I’ve been subscribed to Graze for a whole semester now and I’m loving it.

Graze Box

Graze Box

Graze Box

If you don’t know who Graze are they’re a company that send boxes of healthy snacks to ‘make snacking more fun’ and healthy. So it’s free to sign up for the website and it is a subscription box but you can postpone or change the delivery date as much as you like, so you’re very much in control of how much you spend on it. You can also usually find coupons to have like 1st and 10th box free in various magazines and sometimes with other online orders – they’re all the hype apparently.

Graze Box

 

It’s a really cute little box, I especially love that the packaging is almost 100% recyclable, and I feel like a few boxes would make a really good gift for a friend who’s on a health kick, or a chocolate box for valentines day for a girl friend or something.

What do I get?

I get the Nibble Box. It’s a box of smaller snacks, 4 each time, which are designed to nibble on.

Graze Box

How often do I get it?

Twice a month, or once every two weeks, this is plenty for me really, any more would be a waste of money.

 

How much do I pay?

£3.99 per box – yea it’s not cheap, but it doesn’t kill you either.

Graze Box

 

Is it worth it?

Well, yes. For £3.99 you’d never get four such nice snacks anywhere, and I love that sometimes it comes with teabags too (BONUS!). Is it necessary though? No, absolutely not, it’s more like having a mini-Christmas every two weeks. I get excited to get the box, I usually scoff it all within two days and it’s definitely a lovely treat. But this is a lifestyle luxury for a student like me, I wouldn’t get it if you’re pushed for money.

 

Here’s the low-down on what I’ve had in my box so far:

Graze Box

LOVES

Banana Cake with an Afternoon Infusion

Super Carrot Cake with an Afternoon Infusion

I’ll just go for both of them at once. Bottom line, anything that comes with a teabag will win me over. No doubt. But there’s kind of the golden rule that, if you’re feeding me, you can’t really go wrong with cake either. These are bite sized and delicious. It’s an excuse to take two minutes out and make yourself a mini-afternoon-tea.

Mixed Olives with Rosemary and Lemon

Basil & Garlic Olives

Yet again you can’t really every go wrong with olives for me. If they were too spicy I might have an issue but that’s it really. The rosemary and lemon ones are very light especially, neither flavour will be offensive to anybody because they’re so gentle. These aren’t extreme. Warning though, they do come in oil (I guess that’s so they keep longer), so if you aren’t a fan of oily food, or your skin is particularly sensitive to it or something, then I wouldn’t recommend them.

Fruit & Seed Flapjack

I like flapjacks when they aren’t too dry, I hate a dry flapjack. Graze flapjacks are delightfully springy. These is my favourite because it’s pack full of more ‘stuff’ than oats. The sunflower seeds are the best bit, it’s super yummy.

Fruity Mango Chutney

I adore mango chutney, so this was a winner. The sad thing is you don’t get very much but then it is a snack box. You get a small pot of chutney attached to a box of mini bread sticks in various flavours. These are a great Reading Snack, I like to have something fuss free to keep constantly stuffing in my mouth while I read a paper or an essay… thus Reading Snack.

Cherries & Berries

I always love just plain fruit. And dried fruit like cherries, cranberries, raisins – they’re the best. So if you’re a fruit fan too you can always tailor your box in the direction of fruit, Graze have a whole section of berry and nut mixes.

Graze Box

LIKES

Tropical Daiquiri

This is on the dried fruit list too, it’s an interesting mix including dried pineapple. Now, I’m not a fan of dried banana, or dried mango, but dried Pineapple was actually quite pleasant. It’s not something I’ll be dying to turn up in a box again but I won’t be sad if it does, it’s a nice mix of fruits and it’s pretty satisfying.

Graze Popping Corn – lightly salted and slightly sweet

My only problem with this is that I don’t have a microwave. So I have to keep taking it to other people’s houses and sharing it (sad times, although probably better in the long run). The plus side is that it’s actually a reasonable size to share. My favourite is the lightly salted, because I’m really a savoury girl at heart, and the bag was just right to share with the boyfriend while watching Chuck. If you don’t have a microwave though, I would make sure you hit ‘bin’ on the Graze website so this doesn’t appear in your box.

Smokey Chipotle Dip

My Thai

Two more chips and dips, slightly spicier than the chutney but give you a nice kick. They kind of wake you up. Not too much to say, I just know that I like these and they’re great for the same reason as the Mango Chutney one. If you’re into spicy things, these are a good place to start and I think you can select some with increasing amounts of spice when you’re on the graze site.

Apple and Cinnamon Flapjack

See above, r.e. Flapjacks. I like it a lot, it’s nice and tasty. I’m often not crazy about apple in cakes, but if you tend to love apple flavoured things, grab this straight away.

Pomodoro Rustichella

Just nice little sun-dried tomato-y croutons. I like them.

Rhubarb and Pear Compot

Okay not one I expected to like, since I’m not even to sure what a compot is. It was basically a tasty chewy, dried fruit mix with surprisingly soft dried pear and rhubarb. It’s a really ‘different’ flavour if you’re bored of your normal dried fruit.

Cracking Black Pepper Cashews

Om nom nom. So good. If you like cashew nuts you’ll love these. Avoid if you don’t like nuts.

 

DISLIKES

Cookies & Cream

I don’t know why I didn’t like this, I just found it a bit too sweet and the chocolate-y bits too much. This is one of those where you may well love it though if you have a sweet tooth.

Dark Rocky Road Granola Topper

I found something in this a bit too much, I’m not sure what, maybe the dried strawberries. I don’t really eat toppers on yoghurt though, so it’s worth a try if you’re usually into this sort of thing, I just found it quite rich.

Marvellous Macaroon

I don’t like white chocolate or coconut and I found both in this. Sorry Graze.

Toffee Apple

I haven’t actually tried this, I ruled it out right away because I don’t usually like toffee.

Bonnie Wee Oatbakes

The oat biscuits, little baby round ones, were actually okay but very dry on their own. Sadly the chutney they came with was very onion-y, I don’t advise this if you’re not an onion fan.

Graze Box

Are you subscribed to Graze? Tell me what you get and what snacks you’ve loved so far!

*No I’m not sponsored by Graze and haven’t received any free samples from them*

Gravity Paragliding Experience

Runner’s Resolutions 2015

So I didn’t exactly fulfil all of my resolutions last year – but that’s fine! This year, top of my list, is to enter a race of some kind, hopefully more than one but definitely one because I still didn’t manage it last year! Then I also owe myself some new trainers – big time! The ones I have, have no tread on the inner side by my toes, they are wearing down at the back too, the mesh has ripped at the top meaning the leak terribly, the laces are fading and the holes which hold the laces (what do you call those?), well, they’re going too. Time for an upgrade. Last year I did manage to try out a bunch of new sports I tried Cycling, Surfing and Paragliding – damn cool! This year I want to try at least 2 more new ones again! There are two resolutions I’m starting my holding onto just for January but they may last longer: in solidarity with my boyfriend, who picked these resolutions for himself, I’m going veggie with him – I mean, we did both eat a whole cow each this Christmas, at least – and also giving up alcohol with him. Now, I’m allowing myself an occasional glass of wine and maybe a cocktail (although I may as well make it mocktail), but no more than one at a time, and no more than 2 a week. Gonna be tough people…gonna be tough!

Oh and my final one is to actually use this blog – nuff said! To help me do this I am following my favourite fitness bloggers, Tone It Up, in doing a Vlog for Vday (#vlogforvday) and seeing how that goes.

Bean salad

Not-So-Baked Beans #freshersfood!

I’ll begin with a little disclaimer…re-starting University ate me alive, and therefore my blog died a death! I still feel a bit like I’m being repeatedly beaten with the educational whipping stick, but I’m getting into the swing of it. SO sorry to anyone who signed up for FitForFreshers expecting more – I was too! I hope to do it again next year, but better. Anyway…

Bean salad

This is an AMAZING recipe – if I can really call it that – there’s little to no cooking goes into this it’s just ‘these things go together… like doowap doowap…*cue Grease moment*’.

Beans – those of the non-baked variety – are such an amazing food; they help me bulk out any meal super cheaply and you don’t feel even remotely guilty. They’re a vegetable but they will you up too, which is perfect, So I usually have a pack of peas, broad beans and green beans in my freezer at all times (they’re taking up no fridge space and keep forever) so I can always head to a Bean Salad if my fridge is looking a little sad and empty. All of these cost about £2 or less from most supermarket freezer isles and they go a really long way. I cook all of these in a steamer, which by the way is one of my favourite kitchen utensils ever (erm… sad much?), but if you don’t have one of those just boil them.

Bean salad

om nom nom

 

Then you can add ingredients as you please. If you can’t cope without meat then why not chuck in some ham/bacon or fish fingers as a super cheap alternative!). Other than that I tend to add cheese because…cheese. Then I keep the rest of the salad raw; you can add leaves of your choice, spinach (cheap in Lidl & sometimes Sainsburys) or rocket or bog standard lettuce, and then usually some tomato and cucumber (olives could work for a Greek style combo), spare peppers…you get the gist. I usually dress it too, this is mum’s homemade blackberry vinegar (thanks mummy!) but you could go for olive oil and lemon juice, or a low fat dressing of your choice. Or, you know, ketchup & mayonnaise, it’s your choice… you’re a student after all!

Bean salad

Tomatoes and Feta are two of my favourite tastes

Ingredients (in mine):

Broad beans
Green beans
Pease
Spinach
Tomatoes
Feta cheese
Dressing

Other Ideas:
Peppers
Cucumber
Ham/bacon/fish fingers
Olives
Glass of wine/bottle of beer…
Netflix

Bean salad

for extra mmm add spinach

 

7 Things To Know Before You Start University! (FitForFreshers)

There’s a bunch of things that must be great to know before you start University; like how to cook 85 different dishes for under £10 and exactly what your alcohol limit is. Or how to juggle friends, boyfriend, a job and studies while still maintaining contact with friends from home. Or how to know which society is going to be right for you from the very start. Unfortunately, most of the stuff I’d like to know for my University life still evades me drastically. But hey, there are a few Freshers Tips I can give, safe in the knowledge that these are good things to know and things which I have learnt the hard way.

 

  1. You can’t shop and cook like your parents do. You just might have to give up Heinz beans in favour of Basics Beans and salmon is probably off the menu for a while. You can get really creative with cooking though, and basic meals do not have to be micro-waved or taste hideous. Meat and fish can be pretty expensive too so I usually opt for a veggie pasta dish – for me at least, it’s the tastiest thing there is. Learning to cook cheap and healthy is definitely an art form.
  2. How to clean a toilet…ain’t nobody gonna do that for you. Thou shalt learn.
  3. It’s cheaper to hang your clothes to dry inside than to pay for the drier – they may end up smelling of burnt waffle, or whatever the of the day may be, but it’ll save you a couple of little pounds. I never used the tumble-dryer is first year and it also saved me the pain of shrinking all my clothes too. My sports clothes I needed so often I just hand washed and it’s better for the material too. For some reason I never seem to be able to hand wash socks satisfactorily though.
  4. The fast food isn’t as cheap as it looks, it’ll fool you for a while but not for long.
  5. Tupawear is your friend. Since cooking for one can be pretty tough to judge maybe don’t even try, scoop up the remainder of that bad boy and stick it in the fridge. And if you’re not hungry, you will be later – never chuck food. Smart students like tupawear in their fridges and freezers. (Chinese takeaways have the best boxes, save those, you can microwave them). The tupawear is also great for pre-packing lunch and snacks for the day, which brings me too…
  6. Pack your own lunch and invest in a flask. Plastic boxes, cute lunch boxes, sandwich bags; whatever you care to transport your lunch to Uni in during the day will definitely save you a lot of money. Yes Uni canteens and shops are subsidised, some more than others, but the Star Bucks opposite your lecture hall sure as hell isn’t! Sad times. A flask full of coffee could save you over £4 a day and homemade sandwiches are always a billion times cheaper than supermarket ones and definitely have less salt content.
  7. Now is not the time to be a cosmetics snob. Maybe it’s just me, but I find that especially my favourite hair products can be damn expensive. Uni taught me to buy what was on offer. And if that’s not working for you Wilkinson’s is an amazing shop for the cheapest hair care, personal hygiene products, perfume and cleaning products for your flat. You’ll end up loving it! (Oh, I also bought a hand mixer from there this year and it was super cheap – I am loving it!)

What would you tell yourself if you were to go back to first year of Uni or College now? Any tips to add to mine? I’d love to hear them – Let me know!

Fresh Fish title

Fresh Fish – Fit For Freshers!

s to me) I’ve created a workout specially for Freshers Week and I’ve called it – drum roll – Fresh Fish! Because, I mean, what’s fresher than fish? (One hopes!).

This work out is 6 moves, all named after fish-esque things and they can all be done with no equipment. This is important to me because during my first year at Uni, and my first few years teaching myself how to work out, I didn’t have equipment or the money for a gym pass. I still don’t have that much equipment now and I think it’s really important to ditch the excuses for not working: not having equipment, not being able to afford the gym and being embarrassed to work out in front of other people. These are all no worries if you can do everything at home! I still love to work out at home and the only thing you could need is a nice yoga mat to stop you getting bruised on the floor, but I used to just use rugs and they were fine – grrr toughen up! (hehe).

Tell me if you do this work out! Check in my #fitforfreshers or #freshfish and tag my on Instagram (@jessiefrisbee) or Twitter (@JessieFrisbee93). I can’t even tell you how cool it would be for one other person to try this and let me know, whether you’re a fresher or not!

Sushi Roll:

This is a side plank – you can bend one knee if you find feet stacking tricky, I have those days too! Your hand is pointing up to the sky, your supporting hand should come straight down from your shoulder not stick out at an angle. Then you roll round by reaching your hand under your belly and poking it out the other side.

X 10 (one side)

Pulling The Nets:

Make like your pulling in a biiig fishing net. Okay, long shot name-wise I know. Start on all fours and raise your right leg and left arm, sort of like Superman. The stretch is part one, part two is crunching your knee up to your chest, bending your leg and bringing your arm in too. Then you kick pack again, focusing on your Glute (the butt muscle) as you do. I suppose you could do this with a small hand weight if you wanted to.

X 10 (each side)

Sea Horse:

You look a bit like a sea horse – believe it! Sea horses are ace. So you’re on your belly, not curving your lower back up too much, supporting yourself however is comfortable with your arms. With your legs together and straight raise them a little off the floor, this should burn. Now hold this while you bend your legs at the knee and curve your feet towards your bum. Now uncurl so they’re held straight again. Then you can drop them back to the floor.

X 10

Crunch-y Seaweed:

Crunch it out! You’ve got this.

X10

Row Your Boat:

Up in a boat position, also known as a V-sit position. It’s basically a regular V-sit, if you’re having one of those days where coordinating hands and legs simultaneously is a problem – I feel ya – then just ignore the hands. Otherwise when your knees are up, your hands are down by your feet. As you straighten your body towards more of a line, you stretch your legs out, keeping abs engaged, and hands go back to your chest.

X10

Crab Claw:

This looks a bit like the pincer motion that crabs do. Start on a side plank again (same side as your first plank) but with your lower knee bent for support. Upper leg is straight and raised slightly off the floor and your non-supporting arm is resting on your ear, stretched above your head. You swing your raised leg skyward, dropping your hip slightly (your leg can come forwards a bit too), and your raise hand goes to meet it like a closing pincer. Then you return to the first position.

X 10 (one side)

Now go right ahead and repeat that on the other side, go for it twice if you’re feeling ambitious. Hope those Freshers Tummies are looking toned!

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Anything you want me to talk about? Problem areas, nervous to start at a new gym, healthy eating? Confidence issues, work out gear, running tips? Let me know! I’d love to hear from you, even a friendly hello if you live in my local area (Manchester).