Cheese & Wine- Had an AMAZING time with the ladies :)

Hello 🙂

Just wanted to to pop in and share a few snippets of the amazing Saturday Cheese & Wine night with the girls!! After some really intense time with work and life the past couple of weeks it was great to relax and just have some fun.

So, since it is a Monday morning and i have sooooo much work to do, I ‘ll keep this one short. But I promise I’ll check in later in the week ❤ Have an awesome Monday and a great week everyone 🙂

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“Clean Eating” – Can we just talk about it for a minute???

Well first things first… It irks me – like big time! So if you are not in the mood for a rant maybe this isn’t the best post… Apologies in advance for it. 

CLEAN food??? What is that suppose to mean? Is there any dirty food?? Like what, you roll it in mud before you eat it or something??? – Ok, ok of course i am familiar with the actual trend. But still… It irks the heck out of me (and this is a post I wanted to write for quite some time now…)!

This is what you get if you google “clean eating” today:

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So “clean” food is associated with fresh veggies, healthy fats and fruits and in general a healthy diet. Saw that? There is a word which is actually representative of the concept HEALTHY!

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It’s a trend, a concept and to my opinion a very (VERY) wrong one! Let’s try an experiment… change every time above the word clean with the word HEALTHY, there! Now just think about it for just one second. Now look at what comes up when I google “dirty” food:

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Apparently in western societies (#firstworldproblems) dirty food = junk food. Well Google, no! Dirty food isn’t junk food. Dirty food is food that you find in the garbage when you can’t afford to eat, is food that has gone bad but you still eat it because you have no choice… I did use google for it too, but I ‘ll spare you the photos.

The main selling point of “clean eating” –> it is healthy, good for you , will improve your life. So, let’s have a look at a few facts, shall we? These countries have the most healthy diets in the world with Mediterranean diet to top it all! This is how the Mediterranean diet looks like if you google it:

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Well let me tell you that most of these foods (feta cheese, pita breads, generous amounts of olive oil, even fried seafood, lamb and many more) would definitely not make the cut into the “Clean eating” category – and  i ‘m referring to it in a general term and not in specific forms like paleo diet, keto diet etc…

There are so many things wrong with this concept . It is very hard for me ( and I am not a mother) to accept that some teenagers grow up thinking there is a distinction between clean and dirty food and this is it… That young girls will grow up seeing some food groups as “evil” or “dirty”! Is it really this, that we want to teach the next generations??? Really?

Eating healthy is in everyones best interest and many people – me amongst them – are doing it (or at least trying) and even talk/photograph/blog about it which I think is great 🙂 But “eating clean” is an industry and personally I REFUSE to stand behind anyone and anything that represents this. Especially when the majority of those people (i am not here to point fingers/shame anyone) are NOT TRAINED professionals! Just have a look here and you ‘ll see what I mean. I googled most of those authors and not even half of them are at least Registered Dieticians or some short of professionals… To my point of view, this is I-N-S-A-N-E! Would you ever go to someone who tells you “oh I can take out your tonsils/appendix. I am not a doctor actually but don’t worry I have a book”…. Really? Well then why would you listen to someone about what you should or shouldn’t put in your body?

– I want to be clear though, I am not saying don’t look for resources for a healthier lifestyle, what I am saying is look for CREDIBLE ones from professionals – certified professionals!-

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“Basis of Mediterranean Diet” (Olive oil, bread, oregano, olives & feta cheese)

Someone may say… “Semantics”. Is it really? Just say it out loud and then try to get into the shoes of someone who is hungry and doesn’t have any food not clean nor dirty just plain nothing. The first time I did that i felt completely entitled – and mostly like a jerk pardon me…

One last thing, before I stop my rant and leave you to it 😉 Have a look at these posts here and here. They are from our vacation time in Greece last year, where we spent two full weeks eating incredible and amazing food but in larger amounts than what we were used to – both families wanted to feed us LOL ❤ Well, believe me when I tell you, I did not gain 1 lbs during those two weeks…. Just have a look at the photos and you ‘ll see what I am talking about 🙂 🙂

Thank you all for reading, I would love to read you opinions so do comment away!

PS: These opinions are all my own as always and I am NOT a professional. Also apologies for being MIA once again but i am battling a really persistent cold for the good part of two weeks now.

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Fitness Update :)

Hello everyone!

Happy Monday 😀

After a completely insane weekend, with quite large amounts of alcohol – whoops…- today i do feel a little sluggish. But I have to say it was TOTALLY worth it! Haven’t had so much fun in a while!

I was totally obsessed with this ballon for the WHOLE night LOL!! They have little LEDs in them and I found this hilarious – or the tequila did 😉

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Brunching like champions on Sunday morning, because the best cure for a hang over is some more alcohol right!?!? #bloodymary

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So after this crazy weekend it’s time for me to (literally) pull myself together and get back to my routine which if I may say it has been pretty good the past 3-4 weeks.

Starting from the last week of December till last week I worked out 16/28 days and ate OK for most of those days, even did a few double workout days 🙂

 

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It felt really good to get back to it after all the time that I spent being sad and confused about my foot – you can see how my last run was a 7 miler on the 31st and then its all spin and strength. I am re-learning how to enjoy other types of exercise again after a long time of running being my key work out! 😀

So i decided after 4 weeks of nice and easy so and so routines to step up my game and push a little harder.

 

Weekly Goals #1

Strength training x 3 (BBG)

Spin x 3

WATEEEEEER

Cut down sugar – 3 cupcakes and a tiramisu in a weekend might be a little too much (LOL)

Oh, quite a few of you asked me last time what is the BBG. The BBG is the Bikini Body Guides from Greek-Australian fitness trainer Kayla Itsines (apparently now she also has an app which I have never tried). I got the guides a long time a go but never really gave the 12 week program a chance so now when I was looking for something new I thought I’d give it a shot. It is actually quite hard and I like it (I did skip the 4 weeks pre training though)! I am currently at BBG week 3 and I do quite like it. It has a structure that allows you to decide when to do what and I love that – i am not very good when people tell me what to do LOL!  (PS: i am in no way affiliated with the BBG program and this is not an advert, I just wanted to try it).

So happy Monday friends 😀

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Giving London a chance…

I always try to be honest here and this time is no difference. And even though it is not #FridayTruths time I do have a few truths to share 🙂

ALERT – not a fitness related post so it’s totally OK to be bored to read about me mumbling away 😉

It has been a few tough days around here lately. This past weekend @mymamus and I started a conversation – you know one of those eye opening ones that happen once in a while in every relationship… the ones that aren’t always easy but they do always worth it… This made me rethink a few things and re-evaluate. So here are some of those thoughts 🙂

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When we first moved to London (about a year and half ago) I had absolutely no expectations from this city. Coming from New York – for me one of the most amazing places on the planet!!! – I knew that it would be hard to love anything else as much but I did promise myself to try and have an open mind. Well I completely messed up and broke this promise… I am so sorry London, it’s not you it’s me!

I admit that I never gave London the fighting chance it deserves.

I admit that missing NY made me (literally hate) everything about London.

I admit that this turned me into a pretty miserable person who all I did was complain day in day out about everything I didn’t like.

Well, I admit that this is OVER now! I am not sure how I got here, I used to absolutely love new adventures and I used to always see everything in life as an amazing opportunity. Somewhere along this journey of mine though, I think I lost sight of what matters the most… So thank you @mymamus ❤ for this eye opening conversation!

screen-shot-2017-01-18-at-08-22-51So I promised myself that from now on I WILL give London the chance it deserves because I am sure it’ll live up to the challenge 😉 I might have forgotten for a bit to be grateful for all the experiences I’ve gained, the amazing people I met and the fact that I have an incredible job, that allows me to be independent and creative everyday but not anymore and not ever again 🙂

So I might not be able to run for the time being, but I sure as hell can walk! And London, I am about to walk the hell out of you and find out all of your secrets 😉 This week its the first time since we moved away from the states that I feel like myself again, I feel like the girl I used to be, the adventurous girl, the fighter, the girl who sees opportunities where others see problems ❤ 😀

-Not the best selfie but I totally love this photo… It’s way before I had a blog and I remember that I woke up feeling happy and full and I snapped this and sent it to @mymamus!

 

I believe an apology is in order…

To London, I am sorry I hated you for the past year (apart from the “tube” which I still hate 😉 ) you are an interesting and beautiful place!

To all my friends here, I am sorry I’ve been this person that no one likes because all she does is complain all the time and thank you for sticking it out with me. I ‘ve met people here that I know they will be friends for life…

To @mymamus, you rock 😉 – I know i am too stubborn and thank you for having the patience to make me listen 😉 😛

To all of you, thank you everyone for following my journey, you have been an amazing support network!!

To me, I am sorry for not letting you fly and be yourself all this time! Go ahead…

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Where have I been the past month, tough decisions and some soul searching…

So first things first…

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I hope you all had an amazing time during the holidays, I know we certainly did! Even though because of my experiment I couldn’t leave the lab and take the extra 2 weeks off like everyone else (BOO!!) we still made the best of it! Stayed home for Christmas and went out to an AMAZING dinner (Thank you “The Gun“) for NYE and we met the awesomest (is that even a word LOL!?!?!) people!!

Just a few snapshots from the holidays…

Oh and @mymamus got me the BEST christmas present that I ‘ve been wanting for soooo long! Thank you 😉 ❤ I totally love it!

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Now topic number 2… Where have I been?

I wrote my last blog post literally a month ago. I have never taken such a big break of blogging since I started (a year ago yesterday…)

I have to admit it’s been a few hard days for me around here. Apart from a complete writers block for the past few weeks I had to deal with the fact that I can’t run anymore for a while…. 

I had plans you know? I was training for the Manchester 2017 marathon I was on a roll… And then my foot got totally out of whack! What happened to it is that the bunion on my right foot has hurt the tendons on the top of the foot and after anything more than 2 miles the pain gets seriously bad… something like that (i ‘ll spare you the grossness of my own feet that’s why the cartoon):

So all I could think about was… “but i have a running blog, if I can’t run what the heck am i gonna talk about….?” and this made my block last even longer.

This is a photo of my last run on December 31st…

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It all felt great after my last 7 miles till the next morning when I felt like someone was tearing my foot apart 😦 Tried again once and ended up coming back after literally 5 minutes…

So at the moment i am at a back and forth with the doctors’ trying to sort this out (and if you now NHS you’ll now that if you are not on your deathbed the referrals come for two months later…) till then i m on a non running diet doctor’s orders…

Did I accept it? I had to.

Did I like it? I am hating it.

Have I cried and been mad? Like there is no tomorrow…

But at the end of the day I am still here, still healthy (foot aside) and I can do another million things! I hate being stuck and (mentally) immobile. So I have started the BBG program and I have spent countless time on my static bike – once the weather gets a little more forgiving around here I ‘ll break out my normal bike as well!

Accepting the fact that I have to stop till further notice was a very hard decision for me (please don’t get me wrong, I am fully aware that the world has way bigger problems than me can’t run and I am grateful to still be generally healthy…) but running has been my outlet, the thing that has kept me sane the past year being a place not compatible with me and my personality (i am sorry London it’s not you it’s me…)

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I am grateful for all my races and experiences last year… Running has taught me so much! How to be resilient, believe in myself and trying my best for my goals, how to be patient and how to dig deeper…

Other people made NY resolutions to start running and mine had to be to stop… Life has a funny sense of humour…

On a happier note, Happy blogiverssary to my little corner of the internet!!!

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Yesterday was one year since I started sharing my life, travels and running stories with you all. I want to say a HUGE THANK YOU! For all the support and the comments!! It’s been an awesome year, and I am so very happy and grateful for all the amazing people I got to meet through my blog!!

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Running through 2016 & I crushed my goal!!

I DID IT !!! 12 (13!) RACES IN 2016!

Ok, ok, maybe I should back up a little… for all of you who don’t remember, back in February I set a goal for myself. 12 races in 12 12 months…  and I am happy to yell scream  announce that I did!! Totally crush my goal 😀

And here it is…

  1. 10km in Regents Park, my very first race in London ❤

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2. 10km in the Olympic Park – OMG it was freezing cold!

 

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3. My first ever half marathon (21.1km – 13.1 miles)! Oh I was riding that high for days!! 😀

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4. London 10,000. A beautiful route through London’s landmarks – but one of my worse races…

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5. First Decathlon 5km in Canada water and first race with my running buddy Corey ❤ Kinda started out for a “fun race” – are they ever LOL?? – and they we both PR’d of course… 😉

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6. 10km Parallel London race. An awesome experience, running along all sorts of runners! First race in the UK where pushchairs, wheelchairs etc can all run together!

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7. My very first TRAIL RUN! It was incredible and I can’t wait to do it again!

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8. OMG now THAT was fun! My first 10km obstacle race! Finished soaking wet but totally happy – my trainers and clothes were stinking for days…yikes!

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9. 5km VIRTUAL charity run for spinal research! Organized by @Pennyplainfit and myself!

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10. Royal Parks half marathon. Hyde park is beautiful at this time of the year 🙂 And yes, I was as tired as I looked in that photo… Also got my half marathon PR there 1:59:35 😀

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11. Trick or Treat Halloween 5km Race! Had so much fun on this one…

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12. Decathlon 10km race in Belfast! My very first “runcation” …! Had a blast!

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I know that was 12 races but there is one more. One very special race! My lucky 13!

13. Athens Marathon 2016! My very first marathon! 5:08:11 and proud of it! I underestimated it and came back and bit me hard but i learnt so many things during that race… I wouldn’t change a thing!

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So all and all I have to say I TOTALLY SMASHED MY GOAL and it feels awesome!!!

Miles and miles were logged, I met awesome people, run through amazing places and I learnt so many things about myself… So thank you running, thank running buddies, thank you family and friends and @mymamus ❤ Thank you all for running along with me this year!

On side note, I had one more race planned. I wanted to do a christmas one like crazy… I mean just look at that bling lol 🙂

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But I am afraid I have to sit this one out… I have been so sick with a very nasty stomach bug since Tuesday and I can barely keep any food down 😦 Yeah it’s been a pretty yikeee few days. So there you have it, another first for this year. The first race I have to sit out… But it’s OK, I promised myself I ‘ll catch this one next time.

I hope you are all enjoying the holidays! ❤

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How I kicked my coffee addiction.

Hello friends 😀

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Happy Monday!!! The weekend just flew by as usual and here we are again in the madness of the workweek, oh well…So this post is all about a little experiment of mine (occupational hazard LOL) that I conducted on myself. A few months ago a friend of mine commented on my coffee intake, which I thought was on quite normal levels to be honest, and I didn’t really put too much thought into it. A few weeks after this incident, and while @mymamus was away travelling I decided to spent Saturday night at a friend’s house. Since I had to work in the morning I didn’t get there till late evening around 7pm. Where am I going with this story? Well, it was such a busy day (and I had run out of milk – can’t drink my coffee without it) and I just didn’t have time to grab my daily caffeine dose, and honestly I didn’t think much of it, until around 6pm that evening. I got home and got ready to get to my friends but I realized that all day I was feeling totally “off” and had a K-I-L-L-E-R headache… I thought to myself “bravo girl, you are getting sick :(” and decided to just sit on the couch for a bit relax, get some rest and… a coffee!

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That 10 minutes after my first few sips I felt like a different person. I felt completely fine and totally myself… well, obviously, that got me thinking. I don’t like to be dependent on things (or people for that matter but that’s a post for another time…) and I thought I wasn’t since after I quit smoking 3 years ago. That was the moment when I decided I need to kick that caffeine habit away and start to really enjoy my coffee again. So what was the plan?

Go off coffee for 1 week and then reintroduce it back to my system slowly and keep my intake to 1 cup a day (2 cups only when I really need the extra caffeine). Well let me tell you how did that work out for me:

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Day 0

Kept a log of how much coffee I normally drink in a day. I was dumbfounded… It all added up to 4-6 cups…. That is a lot of caffeine for one person!

Day 1

I FELT LIKE POO. 

Woke up and got to work, had one of the worst headaches of my life and I tried to really avoid people since I felt like I didn’t want to speak with anyone. Looked totally zombie like for the whole day. Drunk as much water as I could and some warm water with lemon.

Day 2

Felt a tiny bit better, but by now I was convinced that this headache will never go away… I was totally still dragging my feet around and avoiding people. Had a cup of Jasmine green tea along with tons and tons of water.

Day 3

So at this point the headache was reduced to an annoying buzzing on the back of my head (i don’t know if it was me getting the hang of it or the fact that I was taking 2-4 paracetamols a day…don’t judge) but I have to admit that I felt more rested when I woke up in the morning. Now a bit of TMI here, I was shocked when I went to pee that morning. SHOCKED! I never thought that human pee could be so (how do I put this LOL…) bright/neon yellow??? hahaha… Keep in mind I ‘ve been drinking quite a bit of coffee since I was 16 years old so I guess my body never new any different.

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Day 4-7

I felt pretty good – granted not as on edge and running around as usual but still pretty good! The headaches were gone, I would sleep really good at night and wake up rested, my pee continued to be as bright as ever LOL hahahaha 😛 and even my skin felt a little better.

So what did I learn from this little experiment of mine:

  • Caffeine addiction is a -VERY- real thing!
  • Those headaches are brutal!
  • Your sleep pattern will get all disruptive even if you don’t drink the coffee later int he evening.

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What I am doing know:

  • I get 1 cup a day 1.2 to 2 hours AFTER i wake up (2 only if it is an emergency aka I have tons of work and I am sleepless).
  • Try to drink more water and/or green tea than coffee.
  • Have no caffeine past 1pm.
  • Try to consciously enjoy my one cup of coffee and not just chug it as fast as I can for the fix.

So, this is what I learnt from this little experiment of mine. I dare all of you caffeine addicts out there to try and go a few days without it (especially if like me you think you are not addicted…) It ‘ll be hard but it ‘ll be worth it I promise. For me now, savouring that one cup makes all the difference. It’s like a treat to myself, a little 10-15 minute break where I can relax and regroup before I kick off my day 😀

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So have a great day everyone and an awesome start to your week!

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