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Spin, Confessions, and Kitchen Antics

Hey friends! Smile

Today was my last day of freedom before getting back to the routine tomorrow. So I made it a good one! Open-mouthed smile I’m also going to try to get in a early speedwork run tomorrow mornin’, but I’ve never been good at early starts…

Confession #1: I hit the ‘off’ button on my alarm clock instead of the snooze button. So I missed BodyPump Sad smile. But I still made it in time for spin though, which was amazing!spin-bike


Confession #2: When the instructor asked if anyone was new, I didn’t raise my hand. I just went along with it! Smile with tongue out(I know I should have done, and if you are taking a new class, you should let the instructor know if it is your first time!)

My thoughts

  • Such a great workout! This class gave me the toughest cardio workout I think out of all the classes I’ve been to!
  • Love the mix of high-impact and low-impact stuff. The class is mixed up with sprint sections, slow high-resistance sections, etc.
  • Great use of music (Black Eyed Peas ‘Pump It’ for sprints= pure genius) and instructor was great.
  • My legs were dead afterwards. This class is obviously great for the leg muscles! Spin instructors (*cough Janae cough*) must have leg muscles of steel!

I actually don’t have any negatives at all for this class! I will defo be going back when I can!


Runner's high? No, spinner's high!

Confession #3: I had to dash straight after class to make it to my dentists appointment, so didn’t have time to shower. Sorry Dr. Lincoln.

After spin and the dentist (and then a shower!), pretty much the whole rest of the day was spent in the kitchen!DSC05365

I made an awesome lunch, based on Freya’s recipe for Spicy Pumpkin, Red Lentil and Chickpea Smush, but with a few small tweaks (re.g. ran out of chickpeas, so used canned mixed pulses, etc). Delish!DSC05364

Then it was time to get ma bake on! First up was raspberry scones, from this god-send of a recipe book (Babycakes) that I have been raving about non-stop since I got it. And it did not disappoint.DSC05309

I love raspberries.DSC05380

I love making delicious baked goods.DSC05404

I love that vegan goodies can be just as good (or better in this case!) than non-vegan.DSC05409

I love all that stuff so much, that once I had finished those, it was on to the next thing. Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate buttercream. (From the same book). I’m going to a get-together thing tomorrow evening, and there’s going to be a buffet. (Alert the Buffet Monster!) Smile with tongue out So this is my offering!


My trick that I learned from the last time I baked cupcakes, was to make the buttercream first. That way, you can chill it so it’ll be ready to pipe once the cakes are done!


Wrapped tightly in film and refrigerated.

Ooooh buttercream…DSC05432

Tell me you love buttercream as much as I do, and we will be BFF. Seriously. DSC05434


Of course, cake and buttercream didn’t provide quite enough sugar to feed my friends with. There had to be more.DSC05447

Sugar stars. Win.DSC05453

Confession #4: There was a lot of leftover buttercream. Any guesses where most of it ended up? Winking smile

Man I wanted to eat one of those cupcakes so bad! I just had to content myself with consuming the leftover buttercream. Not a bad trade-off really!  Buttercream > Cake to me. But you all know who’s gonna be first to the buffet table tomorrow to nab one of those bad boys! Open-mouthed smile

So are you more of a buttercream/frosting person or a cake person? If you didn’t get the oh-so-subtle message from this post, I’m a buttercream+frosting gal! And have you ever tried spin? Thoughts?


Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone! SmileCan you believe it’s 2011?! I sure can’t!

Firstly, I want to thank you for your lovely comments, emails, and great suggestions for my blog. So, coming up soon:

  • More vegan recipes
  • Reviews of exercise classes
  • Strength training workouts
  • Yoga (exercises, stretches, etc.)
  • An FAQ page
  • Running tips and posts

I’m so excited about these! I have some great ideas lined up, and if you have any more suggestions, keep ‘em coming and I’ll add them to the list!

So back to our New Year’s Eve family party yesterday!
We had snack food ready:DSC05205

We had soft drinks ready:DSC05212

And the alcohol too of course!DSC05216

We had piles of board games (one of our family traditions– to play as many as humanly possible!):DSC05214

Everything was ready. Only we were missing one thing…DSC05213

…our guests! They all arrived though eventually! A photo of all of my family:DSC05233

I love family! SmileSadly the couple on the far left (my aunt and uncle) are flying back to New York tomorrow (boo Sad smile), but it was great spending time with them these holidays!DSC05243

I parked myself next to the food the whole night of course! Especially the chocolate bites and the trail mix…DSC05203



There was some intense, competitive game playing. My family and I take this kind of thing very seriously.DSC05279
Anyway, it was soon time for everyone to crowd around the TV to watch the big countdown!DSC05219


And then suddenly, it was 2011! Of course, having not eaten since last year, it was time for Twiglets:DSC05207



Emma. Loves. Twiglets. And so does Buddy apparently! Great minds think alike…

I regress. What I meant to say, was Happy New Year from me! Open-mouthed smileDSC05241


I woke up today, feeling a little queasy. Late night + (WAY) too much food is not the best of combinations! Nevertheless, I laced up my new running shoes (I had to test them out! Smile with tongue out)…DSC05266

Excuse the awful lighting! 😛

…and headed out on a run!

Fuelled my run with my new huge jar of PB! Can’t wait till I finish this so I can have OIAJ!DSC05258

Haha this was a pretty eventful run!

  1. My stomach did not feel good at all from the outset, and I was almost sick! I felt better though as I went along.
  2. I did my usual 5 mile route, in which I run through a posh private estate. As I was leaving the estate, I saw the exit was blocked by five, yes FIVE, police cars! Two policemen stopped me, and asked me a number of questions, like who was I, and how old I was. Then they just said “Go”, and I went on my way! Weird, right! I wonder what had happened…!
  3. It also started raining pretty heavily on the last half a mile, so I sprinted my way home, and died.


My average pace for the last mile was 7.40! Haha! Smile with tongue out

For my second breakfast I made Katie’s breakfast pizzert!DSC05178DSC05182

I made mine with pumpkin, raisins, vanilla extract, cinnamon and mixed spice. Delicious! I had 3/4 of the pizzert (not just that measly slice!) and the rest later as a snack.

I also did my annual Start-Of-The-Year detox. This is not a detox in the traditional sense (diet related), but an organisation one! I cleared my desk and wardrobe, and filled three sacks full of unwanted things to take to charity!DSC05190


Do you do a detox (in my sense or in the traditional sense!) after the holiday period? Personally, I don’t do a food detox- I just return to my normal eating habits, but I do think the concept of detoxing is great! And to runners out there, what is the weirdest thing that has ever happened to you on a run?

Happy  2011 everyone! Open-mouthed smile

Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World!

Cold Cold Cold! When you have a cold, and it is cold, it’s all about oatmeal!DSC04529

My throat was really sore, and I wasn’t at all hungry this morning, but I knew I should eat, and would feel better after doing so. And this pumpkin oatmeal really did help! Smile

Another throat-soothing remedy I had later was my favourite instant soup…DSC03183

…which was enjoyed in my favourite mug:DSC04544

Recognise that dog anyone? Smile with tongue out I was given that mug for my 7th birthday- and I still love it! Open-mouthed smile

Oh, and today was Secret Santa day! Which meant…I got to open more presents! My Secret Santa got me two recipe books (she knows me so well!).

‘Everyday Vegetarian’ cookbook, which has tons of great recipes and pictures for every one (v. important in cookbooks for me!).DSC04535


Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World’!! Open-mouthed smile 75 recipes for vegan cupcakes! Can’t argue with that! Winking smile First to catch my eye was the gingerbread cupcakes (because it’s Xmas, and I love gingerbread!) and peanut butter cupcakes!!

One of my friends received this homemade gingerbread house as part of her present, because she had said she’d always wanted one. Isn’t it amazing?DSC04532


Of course, in lieu of my cupcake book, I had to go out and buy some necessary ingredients from the book!DSC04539


So stay tuned over the next couple of days for a vegan cupcake post! Open-mouthed smile

What are your favourite cold-remedies? And have you ever tried making a vegan cupcake? I haven’t…yet! Winking smile

Have a great week!

Pumpkin Spelt Pancakes

I am very happy, wonderful readers, because I have a camera again! Borrowed one from my parents, and celebrated this event by having pumpkin pancakes for breakfast! Open-mouthed smile And who doesn’t love a cute little stack of pancakes to brighten up their morning?DSC04460

Pumpkin Spelt Pancakes (adapted from Angela’s recipe)

  • 1/2 cup wholegrain spelt flour
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used coconut)
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or mixed spice)
  • 1 tsp baking powder

Spray a pan with EVOO spray (or just use oil) and heat it on medium/low. Mix dry ingredients together. Then stir together the wet separately (pumpkin+milk), and add to dry. Stir until a batter is formed. Then spoon (I used a tablespoon) onto the pan and cook for a couple of minutes until lightly browned, then flip and do the same for the other side. Makes 5 mini pancakes (serves 1). Add toppings and enjoy! Open-mouthed smile

First, assemble the ingredients:DSC04467

Mix together the dry ingredients:DSC04446

Stir together wet ingredients, and admire the colour!DSC04445


Flipping is the scary bit! I’ve never been an expert pancake flipper, but will be someday! Smile with tongue outDSC04457 

The batter is really quite thick, which results in quite thick, fluffy pancakes. Just how I like ‘em! Winking smile I simply topped mine with agave nectar, but you can get really creative with your toppings. The possibilities are endless! Open-mouthed smile



Cardio today was a five hour crazy shopping trip. Trust me, this was one hell of a workout! Smile with tongue out I succeeded in getting most presents and in severely depleting the savings in my bank account. But it was worth it! Lunch was had at Pret, and was a chunky houmous salad wrap.DSC04468


During my marathon trip, I stopped often to admire the lights and decorations, which were really quite good this year!DSC04471

This is less than half the bags I ended up with:DSC04473

The rest are still in my car, as I couldn’t carry them all out at once! Smile with tongue out I also got given a Trek flapjack for free (yay!) by the nice lady at the health store, which I’m adding to my stash! SmileDSC04475

I have a question. Is it wrong to read the books you have bought for other people as a present? Its just that I bought this for a friend…DSC04476

…and have been perusing it for quite a while now! I can’t help it- I love recipe books! Open-mouthed smile 

The rest of the afternoon was spent finishing putting up the Christmas decorations in the house. Obviously this had to be done wearing a Santa hat. Like it? Smile with tongue outDSC04482

I am one cool being!DSC04481

Afternoon snackage included a bowl of Ultra Bran cereal+coconut milk:DSC04479

I love Saturday nights! Partly because it is X Factor time, and partly because Saturday nights are Ready-Meal Night. Tonight I chose Innocent’s Indian Daal veg pot.DSC04485 Not only does this have 3 portions of veg in it, but it was suitable for vegetarians+vegans and has a whopping 34.6g of protein in it! Win! Open-mouthed smileDSC04490

How is your Christmas shopping going? I’ve got all the presents I need for my friends (thank goodness!), and am ordering the family’s online! And do you have certain food ‘nights’? As well as Ready-Meal Saturday, I have Quick-From-The-Freezer Friday, so two lazy nights in a row! Smile with tongue out

Hope you’re having a great weekend! Enjoy your Sunday Smile

Tempeh time!

Hello lovelies! Smile

Breakfast was a  delicious warming bowl of pumpkin-spiced-raisin oatmeal! It was: 3/4 cup oats, 3/4 cup coconut milk, 1/2 cup water, 2 tbsp pumpkin, and some cinnamon and mixed spice:DSC04425

I can’t believe I was ever a person who always skipped breakfast. It is my favourite meal of the day now! Can’t live without a good breakfast!


I was going to go to a step class today, but seeing as I ran yesterday, I decided to play it safe with my ankle! But I might try another short treadmill run tomorrow, and am praying that it’s fine then! Smile

Lunch was a salad, with sweetcorn, avocado, tomato and a few other things:corn-avacado-tomato-salad-450x337

Funny about the avocado, because I’ve seen it all over blog posts today! Julie also had avocado in her lunch, and Angela’s chocolate tart that she posted the recipe for today has lots of avocado in it! Small world! Smile

I also rediscovered rice cakes today! I’d forgotten how much I love these! They made a big feature in my afternoon snackage! I started with one topped with PB and one with Marmite:DSC04399

And then went on to have a PB rice cake sandwich:DSC04430

x 2! Open-mouthed smile

Dinner featured a new food for me:DSC04437

I wasn’t sure quite what I wanted to do with it, but decided on simply frying it in EVOO spray then tossing in soy sauce, as this is what I usually do with tofu when I’m in a hurry. The pack says it serves two. Really?DSC04438

I served half the tempeh with two baked sweet potatoes and sautéed courgette/zucchini.DSC04443

Huh, one serving of tempeh! Hmm, not quite sure about tempeh to be honest. It grew on me the more I ate of it, but not sure whether I really like it or not! I prefer tofu at the moment, but I think I’ll try doing other things with tempeh and see if I like it better in a different way. Have you tried tempeh? Do you like it?

Dessert was, of course, dark choccie!DSC04363

In my book, there is no such thing as a bad day when dark chocolate is involved! Open-mouthed smile

This Saturday will involve some serious Christmas shopping. I am swapping presents with some friends on Monday, so I am slightly worried that I have no presents yet! Confused smile Can you imagine how busy  the shops are going to be this weekend? I actually like the mad Christmas shopping crush, but most people I know hate it! Do you love or hate Christmas shopping madness?

TGIF tomorrow! Have a good Friday! Smile

The London Running Show and a trip to Whole Foods!

SUCH a good day today! And a good day always starts in a good way I always say…!DSC04068

My first ever bowl of stovetop oatmeal! I always tell people they should try it but had never actually tried it myself until today! Smile with tongue outDSC04070

Made Kath-style! 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup oat milk, 1/2 cup water and some banana:DSC04069

As always, it included lots of this:DSC04071

Also mixed in oatbran and topped with the remaining banana and yet more cinnamon:DSC04078

So SO creamy! Definitely better texture than microwaved, but it does take a lot longer. And then there’s the extra washing-up of course…DSC04080

But I guess on the weekends that’s fine! Would love to try an apple+cinnamon version of this! Maybe tomorrow…

Anyway, in the afternoon, I visited the London Running Show!DSC04103

There were so many exhibitors, from running magazines to charities, to companies like Brooks and Gu.DSC04082

There were also seminars, and I attended one on ‘Yoga for Runners’ which was really interesting and informative. The speaker talked about the best postures and types of yoga for runners, and how yoga benefits runners. There many other seminars too- the one on running injuries was especially popular. A photo of one of the ‘seminar theatres’:DSC04081

The best bit though was obviously the free stuff! I got to try so much food (the Clif bars were my favourite) and this is some of the swag I got:DSC04096

Water, Powerade Zero, Energy Gel, two ‘NRG’ energy bars and an Eat Natural bar. I also got a free gait analysis, which was great! Open-mouthed smile

I then took advantage of the direct Underground link to the Whole Foods Market Kensington stop. This is the biggest Whole Foods in the UK and it is amazing. What made it even better was that it was all Christmasy!DSC04094

This was a new addition to the bulk bin section here:DSC04090DSC04089DSC04088

Nut butters! I loved how it was almost make-it-yourself style! I really wanted to try the pecan, but it wasn’t cheap. Maybe next time though! Smile

There were so many samples to try today, which I took full advantage of. I tried pumpkin pie for the first time:DSC04083

We Brits are totally missing out! I may have gone back for seconds… Winking smile Look at all this canned pumpkin! DSC04084

I have seen pita chips a lot on American food blogs, and Whole Foods had tasters! They are so addictive!DSC04086

And the taster table was unmanned! So guess where I spent a good few minutes hovering? Smile with tongue out The chilli flavour was the best. I was tempted to buy some, but I knew it would be a bit of a waste of money, as I’d finish them in no time at all! Budget restraints in the run up to Christmas suck! For this reason, I also put these into my basket, then put back:DSC04085


But I still ended up with a ton of great stuff that I had never tried before, including:DSC04100



Smoked tofu, tempeh, Nakd banana bread bar, Bodymatter organic no-added sugar granola and dark chocolate with cocoa nibs! Smile

I’m going to see Harry Potter 7 tomorrow!! Open-mouthed smile I can’t wait!! Have you seen the new Harry Potter yet? If so, what did you think?

A Bittersweet Thanksgiving

Hey everyone, and Happy Thanksgiving for those of you who are celebrating it today! Smile Sorry I didn’t post yesterday- I got back late from a concert, so I took a packed dinner:DSC04024

Wholewheat noodles in soy sauce, with tofu and courgette (zucchini), which made a great, filling dinner  that took less than 10 minutes to throw together!

And when I got back later, I snacked on an apple and cinnamon yoghurt mess:DSC04027

Apple and cinnamon complemented this season perfectly! Thanks for all your comments on Tuesday’s post by the way- it seems as though the majority agree with me in thinking that autumn/fall is the best food season! Smile

Breakfast today was pumpkin oatmeal with the last remainders of my open can of pumpkin. I have many more cans,  but am trying not to go through them too fast as I am very miserly (they aren’t cheap!), so sadly it may be a while before it returns! Sad smile Well actually, it probably won’t be that long- self control was never one of my strong points! Smile with tongue outDSC04029

That miniscule  blob was all that was left in the tin! Still made it lovely and pumpkiny though! Open-mouthed smile All stirred in and topped with a crumbled pumpkin cookie:DSC04001

Today sadly was my uncle Raj’s funeral. If you didn’t know, my fit+healthy uncle Raj died suddenly of a heart attack two weeks ago aged just 48. The funeral was very sad, but it was great talking to everyone at the reception and hearing all their funny stories about him! He was such a joker! Open-mouthed smile The funeral programme:DSC04045

He shared my love of running, and was actually running when he had his first heart attack a few days before the second one that killed him. He also shared my love of food, so they made sure that the funeral reception had lots of his favourite foods. The buffet included these cute mini quiches:DSC04033

And these cupcakes:DSC04032


I had a ton of savoury food (quiches galore!), so by the time they brought out the cupcakes, I was too stuffed to eat them! But my brother made up for me by eaing three, and I did enjoy quite a bit of my delicious pumpkin gingerbread a few hours later when I got back home! Smile with tongue out

Also, this was waiting for me when I got home:DSC04035

A package! And y’all know how much I love packages! Open-mouthed smileDSC04036

I knew it would  be my protein powder that I ordered a few days ago before I opened it, but I was in for a bit of a surprise!DSC04037

Soya protein? I thought I ordered pea protein?


Nope, looks as though I accidently ordered soya protein instead! As  I had had some stomach issues with soya milk, I had decided to go for the pea protein, but as I can’t really be bothered to send it back and get the right one, I think I’ll just try this and see how I feel! So it called for a quick Protein Green Monster:DSC04039

Oat milk, pear, spinach, xanthan gum, cinnamon and protein powder, all blended:DSC04041

Wasn’t quite sweet enough for me- had to add some agave. The stomach’s feeling fine at the moment, but we’ll see later! Hopefully there’ll  be no problem Smile

So what are you thankful for today? I’m thankful that Raj’s life was one filled with happiness and joy, and that his wife and children know how very much he loved them. Better to live a short but happy life than a long and unfulfilling one, right?

“Every man dies.  Not every man really lives.”  <—— So make sure you do! Smile