Tuesday, 28 April 2015

I didn't need a cookie, I needed a nap.

This week's blog reading music is 'Easy on You' by the The Interrupters, a more joyful, sing-a-long band you'd be hard pressed to find, put this on and your day will instantly feel 20% better.  Perfect now we're seeing more and more sunshine.

It's been a busy week socially.  I've been to 4 gigs, Anaal Nathrahk, Russian Circles, Ginger Wildheart and the aforementioned Interrupters, plus going out to see Avengers: Age of Ultron at the biggest screen in Britain, the Waterloo BFI IMAX (you've been there right?  Amazing for blockbusters) a ludicrous comedy show by the deranged Paul Currie at Soho Theatre and also a 12 Rounds Boxing promoted fight night at the Clapham Grand.

Well done to Diego, representing 12 Rounds with a great win.

You know one of the best tips for getting healthy and losing weight?  It's not some fad diet or magic herb extract pill or only eating once a day with a couple of protein shakes.  It's to be well organised.  If you plan ahead, fill your fridge with fruit and veg and lean protein and cook your meals at home rather than eating processed stuff and you're already most of the way there.  Now what's the complete opposite of that? Spending almost all of last week in venues with that sell nothing but burgers, booze and pick & mix, that's what.  I did surprisingly well all things considered. I've managed to find healthy options to eat generally (bread free burrito in a bowl from Chilango or similar faux-Mexican eatery is a good choice for pre-gig food) on the couple of nights I decided to have a drink it was gin & tonic, the safest option, but did have 3 pints last Tuesday. Close friends announced their engagement and much revelry was had. I've not had beer in ages and don't eat loads lots of carbs any more so that bloated me up like a balloon.  Back in the day 6 pints and a pizza on a weekday and I wouldn't have batted an eyelid but now....  urgh, took a bit of recovery.

Now this busy week was great fun but I was knackered.  As well as being organised with your food sleep is a huge part of this whole thing, when you're tired (or a bit hungover) and moody as a result you're much more likely to start craving sugars and refined carbs, fast food that takes no effort or too much coffee as the body feels like it needs that quick release of energy, which then leads to an immediate crash and feeling worse, plus also the whole thing of just wanting comfort food because you feel sorry for yourself.  It was really clear to me this week that's what was happening and I'm glad it's something I've learned about and can now recognise rather than just act on.  So although there was a bit of that going a couple of mornings this week it wasn't anywhere close to where it had been in the past and I still lost a couple of pounds on the scale this week, it turned out I didn't need a cookie, I needed a nap.  





The gym on Wednesdsay nights.
With everything else going on I still managed to fit 6 sessions in the gym this week, not quite sure how that's possible (doubled up on Friday but it feels like I've had a 12 day week) and am feeling great from it.  The weather was good enough last Wednesday that we took the gym outside and did some circuit training on Clapham Common, nice to get fresh air in your lungs and a breeze on your face while working out and makes a change from the gym.  If you're a 12 Rounds member reading this come along to this class as there were only 3 of us there last time (7.30 on Wednesday by the playground on Clapham Rise) as it's a nice change of pace, if you're not a member then a run or a walk around your local park next time it's sunny one evening is just as recommended.  Masterchef's finished now anyway so it's not like there's anything else to do on a week night.

Thanks for reading, here's a racoon fixing a cat's hair and here are Chip and Adele who are taking adorable to a whole new level.

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Check out the brand new 12 Rounds Boxing website here
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Tuesday, 21 April 2015

New blood and old photos

This week's blog reading music is The Distance by Cake because a lot of this blog is about keeping me motivated and I defy you to be able to listen to this song and not get totally pumped.

Before & after a session at 12 Rounds.
Soaked to the skin, too tired to smile but very happy.
I hit a milestone this week which I was pretty pleased about.  I started this journey, and this blog, last October and this week marked me losing 50lbs (3 stone 8lbs or 22.7kgs).  It's not like I had a goal in mind when I started for a particular amount of weight to lose or even that getting the numbers down on the scale was really the focus, I just wanted to not feel like shit all the time, but having a goal or milestone to track your progress by is really important I've discovered.  It's one thing to say something general to yourself like "I want to eat healthier" or "I want to lose weight" but it's something else to say something specific like "I want to make sure I eat 5 pieces or fruit or veg a day" or "I want to lose 5 pounds".  Giving yourself a task gives you something to achieve and the reward you feel for achieving it is a great way to reinforce positive behaviour.  Or you can actually reward yourself with something - probably not cake though, we're trying to get away from the idea that food that's terrible for us is linked directly with being 'good'. Lose 5lbs and book a massage, perfect.

When I got started with this it was on a program with a handful of others with Kat from 12 Rounds Boxing and this week she's started up a new online course on nutrition so our little private Facebook group that we use to keep each other motivated and share ideas and food pictures and recipes and the like has welcomed a stack of new members.  Me hitting a milestone this week coincided with all these people starting their own journey and it's exciting for me to see people in a position to start leaning and understanding what I've been slowly getting to grips with about food in the last six months. The attitude and relationship with food I grew up with has radically changed.  Think you can't have peanut butter on a diet?  I live on the bleedin' stuff.  Muller Low Fat yogurt as a guilt-free snack?  Nope, Satan in a pot.  Can't wait to see how this new group get on and also how reinvigorated our original group has got due to the influx of new blood.

So you may remember a couple of weeks ago I wussed out of putting up weight loss pictures at Easter as I said I would, I wanted to hit that 50lbs mark before I did but here they are. This is progress so far but I'm a long way from done, this is an ongoing process now not something with a end date.  It's my birthday in July which is 3 months away and I'll take pictures again then to see how I've got on.  Right, this makes me deeply uncomfortable but being publicly accountable is kinda the point of having this blog in the first place. No taking the piss.




That's your lot, stop looking at my knockers. Thanks for reading, here's a video of a skateboarding cat.

Follow me on Instagram for fitness and food based posts
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Check out the brand new 12 Rounds Boxing website here
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Twitter @12_roundsboxing

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead

This week's music is March of the Poozers by Devin Townsend.  I've posted a Devin song before I'm sure but we went to see him perform an EPIC show at the Royal Albert Hall this week so here's another.  Not entirely sure Sci-Fi heavy metal musicals full of poop jokes and ridiculous teenage fantasies given life were what the amazing and beautiful RHA was really intended for (in fact I'm almost positive it wasn't) but it sure did look and sound pretty.


Devin rocking the RHA's poopy bunghole.  Indeeeed.

Big green bastard (tastes better
than it looks, honest)
So, still feeling motivated from last week's post.  Watched a couple of documentaries I'd recommend on Netflix called Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead (and Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2), available here on youtube too, made by a guy named Joe Cross who's really into juice, like REALLY into it.  As the title might imply he was in pretty bad shape until he started on a fruit & vegetable only diet, he lost loads of weight, cleared up some of his health problems made a couple of films and appears to have gotten a pretty lucrative business up and running out of it.  Now I wouldn't say a temporary diet made exclusively of fruit and veg juice would be the way to go, I'm all about long term, sustainable, change here and 'diets' tend to mean people just snap back to their bad habits at the end of the allocated 30/60/90 days, but Joe's enthusiasm for what he does got to me and anything that get people to put down cheeseburgers and veg more veg into themselves has got to be a good thing.  It certainly got me making veggie smoothies this week to up my intake and turned out to be a good meal if I'm late home from the gym.  Blended smoothies rather than juices for me though as I  want to make sure I get all that dietary fibre, plus mine have some fat in to help with the nutrient absorption, otherwise that stuff just makes a swift exit.  Have a watch, it'll probably inspire you to eat more greens and has some good info on dietary science that's laid out in an easily digestible manner too.


Big purple bastard
One of the main takeaways from watching it though was the community that Joe has built up around his juicing empire and that really resonated with me, a lot of support and encouragement. From the crew at 12 Rounds and our little private Facebook group where we support and encourage one another it's become clear to me that having other people on this fitness journey with you who you can be accountable to and rely on is really as important as eating right and getting the exercise in.  So if you're reading this thinking you should really get in better shape but can't motivate yourself by yourself then find someone who'll do it with you (and of you don't have someone, hit me up in the comments section below), get a friend to run around the park with you, get to a class at a gym, jump on the forums at My Fitness Pal, try a free taster session at 12 Rounds or even just start following Instragram accounts that show how people are progressing in their weight loss, anything to keep you focused.  I feel super focused this week, diet's on point, I can't wait to get in the gym, I'm walking everywhere now the sun's coming out...  fingers crossed that next week's blog isn't all about how badly I got drunk and fell into a massive pack of double choc chip cookies.


Quick shout out to a company I've been using for protein powders and supplements who I really like, Bulkpowders great products at good prices and really good customer service too and if you use code DB4MY2 at checkout you can get £5 off any order over £15.


A good price for 2kgs of peanut butter.  Or a weeksworth as I think of it.

Thanks for reading, here's some more cats being right little fuckers.

Follow me on Instagram for fitness and food based posts
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Check out the brand new 12 Rounds Boxing website here
www.12roundsboxing.co.uk
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Twitter @12_roundsboxing

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Chocolate Hangover

I suck. Been a couple of weeks since I've written a blog post and things haven't been brilliant on the health front, these things are connected.  Having something to be accountable to really makes a difference and writing this every week, even when there's not much to talk about, definitely help keep focus where it needs to be.  You might be the reader but don't mistaken, it's all about me.

So Easter came and went in a blizzard of chocolate, hot cross buns, wine and a massive leg of lamb (a freebie from the awesome Chadwicks butchers in Balham) and I was pleasantly surprised to step on the scale after the weekend and find my weight's stayed the same.  The problem is it's stayed the same for a few weeks now and I'm frustrated at the lack of progress on the scale,  I know it's not the numbers that matter but it's only not changing because I've not been doing the right things with my diet -  We've had friends over for dinner, nights out in pubs and at gigs  (Dropkick Murphys, Placebo, Squarepusher), and the whole Easter weekend was a write-off including street food at Brick Lane (buffalo wings - oh em jee) and Borough Market where I bought a cookie as big as my head as well as the very cool Art of the Brick exhibition. All good stuff and great fun but not good for the diet and once it starts to slip it's harder and harder to stop it slipping.

Lego innit
What this means is although I've still been in the gym a lot these last few weeks and feel like my fitness level is better than it's ever been I'm still fatter than I should be at this point. As Kat, my guru from 12 Rounds pointed out "You can't out train a bad diet".  The original plan was to go from Christmas to Easter and then post my next set of before and after pictures, the before and after pictures from October to Christmas showed a pretty good progress but I don't feel like I've made the gains to bother posting another set just yet, but soon.  I'm going to smash it for a couple of weeks and see if I can catch up with myself so no more booze (I get bored of it anyway), no more little cheats and before you know it I'll be posting another set of shirtless photos up here for you lucky sods. I guess this blog is for you after all.


12 Rounds Boxing, my home from home - now if I can just get the diet back on track I'll be sorted.
 I need to give a shout out to 12 Rounds trainer Kirk Garvey who won his 3rd professional fight last weekend and is looking to get back in the ring soon.  Also there's a night of semi-pro boxing coming up at the Clapham Grand on 23rd April featuring a few 12 Rounds members getting in the ring so be sure come along to cheer them on.

Thanks for reading, enjoy this video of the the stoopidest dog in the history of dogs.

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Check out the brand new 12 Rounds Boxing website here
www.12roundsboxing.co.uk
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Twitter @12_roundsboxing