About theannaadventures

I'm a ginger haired Gemini with a penchant for writing, cooking and talking

Oops – pt 3 of me trying to lose weight for the last time

Well, hello. I wondered if I would write this post and despite all of my internal fear festering I decided to bite the bullet because even if I would love to write about successes, I unfortunately have nothing weight loss related to report on. I’m not mad, and I’m not being too hard on myself because of the bigger picture of what I have learnt in the last couple of weeks is what is more important.

The weekend before I started my new job I signed back up to Les Mills. I wish I had done it sooner because it is worth the money. When they say ‘find an exercise you like and stick to it’ make sure you really get specific with your choice because if you’re not really feeling it, you won’t do it. Since I finish at 4:30, I get changed at work then wander five minutes up the road and get on with it. I took it easy the first couple of sessions because being able to move the next day is very important to me. Lifting weights is something that I feel is very mentally freeing. It has always felt like therapy to me because it helps me with any self doubt (you are not enough, you are weak ETC!) by delivering a reverse message like ‘yes you made it to the gym!’ And ‘you’re doing something really good’ and most importantly ‘you’re making progress on your annual goal!’

After my first week at my new job I was so damn tired I was ready to go home. JP said he wanted to go home early that night so I decided I’d just go along with him and save myself cab fare. As soon as I got into the pub, I got myself a beer and decided to end this whole 12 weeks no booze business. What a mistake! I had made it 7 weeks and didn’t really miss it. I woke up the next morning incredibly worse for wear, ordered McDonalds, ate both of our McDonalds then proceeded to feel like death for a very long time after. The silver lining of it all was that I realised how much I cherish my weekends, and sobriety.

On my birthday we went out for pasta with our friends but first of all we had a couple of beers. I wanted a celebratory drink and I wasn’t going to feel bad about it. In case you can’t tell, I’m doing my best to diminish my inner sad sack down buzz voice. It was nice to have just two beers. I did however wake up with a bit of a hangover the next day so if I’m only going to do a couple of drinks, it probably shouldn’t be strong beer. The gym was a no go due to the freezing cold weather that week, but I’m going to work on that.

This leads me to today. Still full of hope and still realising that I need to cut the internalising of the should I shouldn’t I bullshit of my health. I’m in bed sick with yet another sinus infection and more than anything I just want to go to the gym and eat good. Stay tuned for next week and leave me your motivating content below!

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Pt 2 of me writing about losing weight for the last time

I remember reading once that people usually stick to their diet for two weeks then give up. At this stage, I couldn’t think of anything more disheartening as I’ve just past the two week mark. Labelling this the last time I’ll try losing weight is very final and I feel very, very determined. There were five days however last week where I wasn’t really motivated OR determined because I gave in and weighed myself. What a mistake. You would think after trying to lose weight for so long that I would be painfully aware (and I was!) that it’s a slow process. The scale told me I was the same weight as when I started but I’m sure there would’ve been a few changes.

The beauty of not weighing myself was that I was kept guessing and there was nothing that could stop me. Joe Wicks aka the Body Coach calls them ‘sad steps’ and I can see why. If I weighed myself in 6 weeks time and found that I lost 4kgs, I would be THRILLED. However since I hit a wall because I didn’t think I was going anywhere, it’s made me aware of the fact that I wouldn’t be going anywhere if I hadn’t started this journey. You have to start somewhere. Touché amirite? When I’m thinking logically I can see that scales aren’t everything but psychologically I’m desperate to see changes and make changes. I felt really down that nothing had changed and I felt even worse when one of my colleagues took a photo of me eating a sausage roll at a staff event only to look at myself later and think WHY?! I almost didn’t write this post and delayed it massively so I’m definitely going to work on my self worth here.

When you make a drastic change, you have to be in the right mindset and you have to be aware that slip ups are slip ups and to learn from your mistakes. The only difference between week 1 and week 6 is the excitement of change and your motivation level. Everything new is shiny and exciting and it should always stay that way!

What I’m going to do different this week:

– prepare my food and log it in advance so I can see that where I’m at

– make food to put in the freezer for when dinner plans fall through

– look into a gym membership to keep me going this Winter!

Eating better – an introduction of me writing about losing weight for hopefully the last time

I wrote an extensive list of things to do this year which is on my list every year. One of my goals is to eat better. I know it’s not exactly tangible (sorta kinda not really?) but since we aren’t drinking until July when we go away I thought I’d really make an effort now to see if I can drop a couple of kilos in the interim. Now, the weight part is obviously something I’ve struggled with (see previous weight loss attempts below) but I decided to focus on the nutrition side of it first because if you’re on a pretty solid track, the rest will follow, right?

We live in a pretty confusing time because there are hundreds of different diets with hundreds of different success stories. What also doesn’t help is the ads for weight loss teas, instagram models and endless comparison from social media. Again, what works for one person will not work for another and we all just need to find our own balance (which makes me cringe coz my dad says it ALL THE TIME)

What really has motivated me is that after each Summer for the past four years both JP and I vow that this is OUR YEAR! Of course we get stagnant, or one of us gets sick or something happens and it all falls apart. It’s harder losing weight in a relationship because if one of us mentions something (I.e beers after work on a Friday) the other is down. Our relationship started with food and beers and so we got fat and happy. Then fatter. Now bordering on obese because we got cocky with our early twenties metabolism, not really thinking about how it all turns to shit just a couple of years later.

I started the week by downloading My Fitness Pal which I’ve used on and off for several years. It is certainly a lot more user friendly for smartphones these days which makes it easier to track success. Given that I want to lose 1kg a week I was given a calorie goal of 1200 but it can often go up to 1500 depending on how hungry I get and how much exercise we do. I’m not going to be overly stringent with this because I’m focusing on eating better foods rather than packaged processed foods which is easy to fall into ESPECIALLY when you work in an office. I’ve still been contributing and participating in a calendar event I made with my two colleagues called ‘Bikkie time’ where we have a biscuit or two each day.

JP and I will often plan our meals ahead of time because when we don’t we just get take aways coz we’re both too exhausted to cook, find a recipe or can’t agree on anything. When you make a plan of what to eat it’s a less tricky balance having take aways but feeling ok about the progress you’re making. We use a mix of three Nadia Lim cookbooks because she adds the macros (fat, carbs, protein) and calories for each meal as well as having them listed seasonally which is a genius idea! Plus, the foods amazing and there have only been a couple of recipes that we didn’t love.

We organise our own lunch and after being robbed by a $12 wrap on Monday I decided to buy all my sandwich ingredients which cost me $25-$30 for the work week. It takes away the dreaded ‘what do I eat today?’ anxiety and makes it far easier to track. Some meals can get quite high calorie wise so having something a little lighter helps.

I do my best to get up and walk to work each day and I also downloaded Map My Walk which syncs with My Fitness Pal. I live so close so for me it’s just a matter of getting up early on the days where the weather isn’t too shabby. We have been really good with our walks in the evening which gives us quality time to shoot the breeze without cellphones or tv.

All in all, my first week has been pretty good. We did have a curry on Saturday and went to Wagamama on Sunday after a baby shower but it’s a good reminder to eat good when you can because when you do want something that isn’t fantastic for you, you can pick back right up where you started.

Summer wish list – BASICS

In the past year I have thrown out nearly my entire wardrobe. I have some things in my wardrobe that I still love and am waiting on some weight loss to be able to fit. We all have things that we can’t part with but 90% of my wardobe was things I bought when I worked in a clothing store and only bought because it was cheap and I couldn’t afford to spend a lot on my wardobe not because I really loved it. I have been super inspired by The Anna Edit (maybe it’s something in the name) but I LOVE her simplistic sense of style and her capsule wardrobe. Not quite sure if I’m going in the capsule wardrobe direction myself but after a lot of thought about what I want to wear this summer (also my frustration at every blog I read being in another hemisphere) Fun fact: many moons ago when I applied for a job at said clothing store they asked me to describe my style and I said ‘Current Taylor Swift’ haha oh the shame! 

As I have gotten older, I’m all about plain and simple. I want jeans, t-shirts and a nice pair of shoes. I want comfort and style (and they say you can’t have it all!) after spending my early 20’s in stiletto’s, and very bright, tights dresses,  I have definitely toned it down a lot. I’ve been trying to incorporate some lighter colours into my wardrobe but I am very selective because not everything I like comes in a colour I like so black is the default. I haven’t shopped in a while (over a year aside from black jeans) but I’m getting to the point where I need to start desperately get a good idea of what I want to wear this summer. I’ve been working on losing weight for as long as I remember but since I’ve been a lot more focused on my health over weight loss. I’m 3kgs down (!) and feeling really determined to reach the 10kg weightloss goal I have set for myself. This is what I have planned for my base wardrobe.

TOPS

tee

I haven’t owned a teeshirt that is flattering in a long time. I find it pretty natural to go back to what I know and my favourite teeshirts are the Mali AS colour teeshirt. I have owned this in loads of colours and it was the first item I really thought of when I was thinking of a wardrobe rebuild. It’s loose fitting, the shape is super flattering with a curved hem and it has my preferred round neck as anything too high just gets make up on it. One of my favourite things about AS colour is that they do bulk buys so I could buy 6 teeshirts (2 white, 3 different grays and 1 black) for $180. Bargain! Another highlight is that they last ages and wash really, really well. Since I’m incredibly pale and burn very easily I have to stick to things that cover my shoulders from 10am – 6:30pm in the Summer because otherwise I get burnt very quickly and applying suncream every 30-60 minutes is super laborious and not very realistic. Anything like this and this are right up my alley! I love cute singlet tops but as summer is all about being outside I have to be super, super careful otherwise my shoulders will burn to a crisp (this has happened before and it was incredibly painful!)

BOTTOMS

shorts

I used to have a pair of shorts (slash still do but I can’t get them past my knees!) just like these and I am 100% going to try on (alongside a boatload of body confidence). I just really don’t feel that strongly about shorts these days but hey, as long as I am not chaffing – I’m good amirite? However, it’s nice to have nice shorts and I love a nice pair of denim shorts. As I said, I’ve been feeling SUPER conscious of my legs right now so I have also considered toughing it out in a pair of these (which I am predicting will come in at least 10 washes) or these (or even THIS!) just because I’d rather look good in something different rather than look terrible in something that works for someone else. As for jeans, I am looking at a pair of these, these or these after my boyfriend jeans turned to shit but will most definitely stick with my tried and true black skinny jeans. I really love a light denim for summer and it works so well with pretty white tops. Cross your fingers that I can fit into these again!

SHOES

shoe 1

I haven’t owned a pair of sneakers in a really long time because I always feel like I look like a child when I do wear them. I’ve been missing have a cool pair of nice sneakers and I’m leaning towards a pair of the classic black low-top Converse or Vans. I have very wide feet so I hope like hell that I can wear these bad boys in without having any issues!

 

 

Pea Pesto

For the past month or two I have been eating with JP every night. We have had a reasonably good work out routine recently so it just makes sense that we eat at my house. Unfortunately Rosie the Robot (his car named after the Jetsons of course!) had exhaust issues so I ate on my lonesome this evening. 

Have I mentioned how much I love Bon appetit magazine? I spend a decent amount of time browsing through their website for meal inspiration and have been blown away with what I have made from there. I went through this and decided it was the day I would bite the bullet and make pesto. The funny thing was that Aimee also had pasta an pesto for dinner. I relaxed on the olive oil because I knew the peas would produce some moisture. This is the perfect Summer evening meal that requires little to no effort and is best served lukewarm. 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of frozen mint peas 
  • 3 Tblsp extra virgin olive oil 
  • Half a cup of Parmesan 
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • Generous heap of salt
  • 1 -2 tsp of lemon juice

Blanch a cup of the peas in boiling hot water until tender. Add all the ingredients into a blender until smooth. Add the other cup of frozen peas and blitz until smooth. 

September Favourites

The month of September has flown by. I mean, honestly it all does when your days start to look the same! I started off with a really good eating plan and started doing really well – success! Then, out of left field a sinus infection hit me and a week of eating noodles and processed packet food really screwed with me and now I’m back at square one. If there is anything having a sinus infection for the umpteenth time is that I need to deal with stress better (and quit smoking obviously) Being sick always reminds me of what is truly important in life rather than fretting over work.

Beauty

tailor

I tried a new oil cleanser after being obsessed with a Japanese one JP’s mum gave me and all I can say is WOW. The Tailor Oil Cleanse is my new go-to cleanser. This is truly luxurious with epic make up removing and pimple deflating power. I was lucky enough to purchase it on the cheap during a OnceIt sale (bonus that one of my co-workers had bought something on there and I had a $20 voucher!) I’ve been using it since mid August and I haven’t even reached half way yet (I use 5-6 pumps to remove my make up and 2-3 when I’m not wearing make up). If you are using a face oil, it’s always good to use a face cloth coz it does leave some residue as well as a good toner up around your hair line. The times I have used a toner, I haven’t removed much extra. I am also LOVING the Essano Fig and Jasmine body wash. It has this beautiful grown up scent that reminds me of the Health Basics body wash and moisturiser sets that we would get my mum for Christmas. For the past 4 months I have been using Mario Badescu lip balm (it is ONLY $6 at Mecca Maxima!!!!) and again, this is something that I will always keep in my handbag. It softens your lips and dries up the gross left over parts (which I am terrible at pulling off) I also received a free beauty blender when I bought my Rimmel foundation and this has also been a massive game changer. I definitely have used more of the bottle than I usually would  but it has made SUCH a difference to my foundation application. How did I survive without these products? I will never know. Can you tell that I’m not really big on trends? Haha!

Events

Capture

As soon as I knew My Favorite Murder was coming to New Zealand I was IN! It was also the perfect opportunity for me to use up my passes with JP (yknow when they drag you to places you don’t want to go….) We both really enjoyed it and it was such a fun evening. It was so much more than I would have expected and they are just SO NICE and hilarious. We went to Toktok for dinner beforehand and it all BLEW MY MIND. Not only coz it was super spicy but it was one of the most delicious meal out I’d had in ages. They had really cool touches  around the restaurant and was one of my favourite parts of the trip. It was just a fleeting visit though since I’m not a massive fan of Auckland City. I’m not going to lie, Takapuna was the pretty nice and we were literally a 2-3 minute walk from the Bruce Mason Centre where it was held. I took the rest of the week off and it was so good to just have a bit of time to myself and be able to relax at home. We have also been on so many walks recently and I managed to go up Te Ahumairangi Hill  a few Sundays ago. It wasn’t a very nice day but I was overwhelmed at the amount of land that I was unaware of. The initial hill is a real ass kicker but the rest isn’t too awful. Also – dogs. I saw at least 9 and it was awesome (of course!)

Eating

yum

This recipe is such a game changer!!!! I haven’t eaten anything this delicious in a long time and it is a firm advocate that eating in can be both easy and delicious. We went out for dinner twice last week (I know – too spoiled) and both times was horrendous. There is nothing worse than paying $60 odd dollars on dinner for two and have it taste TERRIBLE. Fortunately we are indeed surrounded by a lot of stellar restaurants in Wellington. I’m not a massive food snob, but when I do go out to eat I expect to get something better than what I could cook myself. Isn’t that the point anyway? I am also looking forward to eating this on Saturday which is quite possibly the most DELICIOUS pasta ever! We always double the sauce and I think everyone needs this dish in their life. Also – above is the Kaffir Lime Chicken that blew our minds. I can’t rate this place highly enough!

Exercise

beach

You know, my work outs have been pretty non-existant so I made the choice to cancel my gym membership. I have reconsidered going to another gym but right now, nothing makes me more deflated that going to the gym. I’ve been getting myself back into gear in this last wee while with our on and off walks around the bay and a few at home work outs. I figure if I’m doing something I feel uncomfortable doing there’s no point in doing it (well, no shit Anna) It’s probably something I’ll reconsider when I get back into it but hey, who knows. I’ve been doing pretty well in the weight loss department. I will write more later on in the week about the changes I have been making. I’m 3kgs down and I am stoked! People have even noticed which is so thrilling.

Photos: face oil 

 

Weekly Love

IMG_7093

Last night I had the best night out in forever! One of my really good friends and her boyfriend are leaving for London in a couple days so about 20 of us met up for a classic BYO! I had gone to school with and worked with a majority of them (we all cleaned after school and the money was fantastic) so even after all of these years, it was still the same. It’s such a shame that after being geographically close, you don’t hang out then when they leave it’s shitty because you kick your damn self each time! If there is one thing being older has taught me is that everyone is terrible at catching up but we need to make a more conscious effort to do so! Anyway, I  had planned on getting home around 10 but it felt too impersonal to just leave so JP joined us at a pirate themed bar (!), followed by the first half of the Hurricanes game then home at 2:30am. It was the best night ever and it was so nice because everyone was still so nice.

Little things: Loki getting a hair cut; getting sunshine after a very wet week; going to the dog beach and getting some sun in; naps after a week of shit sleep; Two Faced Natural Love palette; having the server at work down for a couple of hours; having a fantastic manager; having Aimee back home; electric blankets; fabric softener; salt and vinegar popcorn (it’s the BEST!); ‘uhhh this might sound weird but um can I use your lip balm?’; Mario Badescu lip balm (10/10); writing these lists; My Favourite Murder; and sweet, sweet sleep!