Saturday 29 August 2015

Addicted to Food

Hello, my name's Sandra, and I'm addicted to food!

Making the first admission of addiction is difficult, as most addicts will tell us.

I was reading a great book this week, Bryce Courtney's Matthew Flinders Cat. It's essentially a book about a homeless man, his journey there and while there, as well as his journey away from there. All surrounded by addiction to alcohol.

There were several passages that made me reflect on how I see food.

I've mentioned before about how emotions can be tied up to what you eat, when you eat and how you eat.  All, for me, are a way to 'stuff down' the feelings that are threatening to surface.

This can become an addiction. A way of dealing with unpleasant feelings or thoughts.

How to break that addiction?

The first step is to admit that you use food as a crutch, or as a replacement to your emotions, that you stuff them down.

After that, it's finding out more about those emotions, and establishing a healthy eating regime to manage your choices.  We can do that together.

I know I'm not 'over' my addiction, you can never be over something like that. BUT I do know the triggers, and how to manage those feelings now. A big step forward, and because of that I've maintained my goal weight for nearly 2 years. AWESOME!!

For more information, or to contact me, check out my website,

Tuesday 25 August 2015

It Takes One To Know One

How people see the world is often a reflection of how they see themselves. If they think that the world is just a cesspool of lies and deceit, then they themselves may be full of lies and deceit. Watch out for those people who are always telling you just how corrupt the rest of the world is. As the saying goes, “It takes one to know one.”

                         - David J. Lieberman

I enjoyed this quote. It makes me realise that when others comment about your weight, it's really their own reflection that they are seeing. Don't take it personally when others comment on your weight (whether bad or good), remember, they're on their own journey, and you are on your own journey.

Saturday 22 August 2015

Treadmill or Road Running?

Gym Or Outdoors? 

Where do you do your exercise? Inside a gym, or out in nature?

There are definite benefits to exercise, no one doubts that statement. BUT, is there a benefit to being outside or is there a benefit to being in the gym?

I know, if  you're like me, running (or walking) on the treadmill is just not the same!  I'm very thankful that my treadmill allows me to be in nature at the same time as being on the treadmill, a truly integrated gym I believe!

Weight Loss Help

However, that's not always the case for everyone. So, here are some reasons why it's good to get outside into the outdoors:

  1. Treadmills can alter your running form
  2. Treadmills don't properly activate your posterior muscle groups
  3. Running outside is more enjoyable
  4. Running on treadmills burns less energy

Treadmills alter your running form
When you run on a treadmill, you take longer strides. Also, your method of speeding up is different on the treadmill, your ground speeds up as well as you!  So, running on ground that is variable is better for your technique.  I agree, I seem to be able to 'run further' on a treadmill than I actually do on the road.

Treadmills don't properly activate your posterior muscle groups
Running on a treadmill reduces your hip extension, this, combined with sitting more in your workplace, can lead to less bottom workouts, and possibly more injuries!  When I trained for my half marathon, I found that I transistioned poorly from the treadmill to the road, it created some sore gluteal muscles, and that affected my training, now I know why! The change of extension!!

Running outside is more enjoyable
It can feel like a chore, or that you're trapped when you are running on a treadmill in the gym.  By being in nature, you feel like you're running further, faster and having fun!  I definitely agree, as much as I love my backyard gym, being out walking and seeing things like the waterfall, always makes me feel better about my exercise!

Running on treadmills burns less energy
It has been shown that running at the same speed on a treadmill burns less calories than the same speed outside.  I know where I'm heading for then!  The more energy you burn, with a perceived less effort, the better in my book!!

So, if you can't train outside, and your only option is a treadmill in the gym, how can you attempt to overcome these issues?  Here are some tips I recently found:

  • set the treadmill on a slight incline (I use 4%) to replicate ground running
  • cross train, use other equipment, such as a cross trainer, a bike etc. When I was in the gym, I used a stairclimber, a bike and a treadmill, the variety suited me well
  • use sprint intervals on the treadmill, tapping into high intensity interval training. I usually sprint hard for 1 minute, then walk for 2 minutes, repeating this 5 times, it's certainly keeping my fitness levels!

Enjoy your treadmill and cardio training, get out into nature as often as you can, and realise that the tightness in your gluteals or hamstrings is because of your work on the treadmill!!

For more information, visit

Thursday 20 August 2015

Is Your Workout Affecting Your Sleeping?

Answer: If you're NOT training, then YES!

Athletes tend to sleep better than non-athletes.  Why? Because they are doing running and weights training daily.

Lack of sleep is also linked to weight gain, lack of cardiovascular fitness and poor management of blood sugar and blood pressure.

Did you know that doing your exercise early in the morning shows the greatest improvement in your sleep quality?

Did you know that resistance training improves your duration and quality of sleep also, regardless of the time you do this training?

So - when do you exercise? And what type of exercise do you do?


  • cardiovascular workout first thing in the morning
  • resistance training, preferably then also, but if you can't, after work instead!

This may improve your quality and length of sleep.  Oh, by the way, if you do this daily, you may also notice a change in your body shape and size, and the speed of your metabolism!

Weight loss programs

Tuesday 18 August 2015

Protein Is Protein, Right? Wrong!

Interesting Fact

The source of your protein will result in differences to how your body utilises it.  Animal based proteins, such as whey protein, will be utilised in muscle growth to a greater degree than plant base proteins, such as soy and hemp proteins.

Check out this summary of the differences.

Also know that a slightly higher protein intake daily will enhance your weight loss and health outcomes.

Usually the recommended dietary intake of protein is stated as being 0.8g/kg of body weight.  For a 60kg person, this will equate to approximately 48g of protein per day.  However, remember that a 290g cooked ribeye steak, contains approx 69g of protein.

New guidelines for weight loss and health are indicating that this should be raised to 1.2 - 1.6g/kg of body weight.

For more information,

Sunday 16 August 2015

Cleansing Days - Not Eating For A Day!

Is It Safe To Rest Your Digestive System Regularly?

My method of choice for looking after my body in such a way that I've lost weight, and maintained that weight loss for over 18 months, is that I rest my digestive system regularly.

When I first began my journey, my digestive system took this rest every week, for two days at a time.  Initially I dreaded the idea, I LOVE MY FOOD!!  

However, I was very surprised to see my body accept this rest period easily and without any issues. 

Normally, I was the type of person (you may know of them) that becomes very, very grumpy when their sugar levels are low, or they are saying they're hungry. Do you know the type??

It seems there was enough in reserve (in fact over 20kg of fat that was weighting to be used up!) to cover those days of rest.

Now that I've been maintaining my ideal weight for the last 18months or so, I don't rest my digestive system quite so regularly (as there's now less extra reserves!!), so I now rest it 2 - 3 times a month.  This seems to be working for me.

The question that is often asked though is:  "Is this safe, and is it a healthy way to lose weight?"

 There are many people advocating the nature of this method of weight loss, and, yes, I'm a firm advocate too.  We all do so, because it has "worked for me".  That is one way of looking at it.

However, the other way of looking at this question is by turning to the science of the process.  There are currently limited studies that have been undertaken using this methodology, in fact three.  All three have given positive outcomes for weight loss and health benefits from this method of eating.  A systematic review was undertaken and published this year, read about it here

If you wish to know more about the method I utilise, that includes having a botanical beverage regularly on the cleanse days, that provides your body with support in key antioxidant and detoxification processes, then feel free to contact me on the form at the side of this blog.

Friday 14 August 2015

Are You Drinking Enough Water?

Bursting The Water Bubble

Natural Weight Loss
Image courtesy of Rakratchada Torsap @

I'm sure you've heard the age old saying "drink 8 - 10 glasses of water a day" to ensure you are getting enough fluids to remain hydrated?

Does this still hold true?

A recent study, in the Journal of Food and Nutrition Sciences, highlights that when you are working out, the use of water alone is not a sufficient electrolyte replenisher.  The study actually highlights that the use of diluted fruit juices is not only a good substitute for a sports drink, but it is also economically viable. Certainly something to be aware of.

Another interesting piece of information, is that there are actually three sources of hydration within our daily diets.  They are:

  1. Water
  2. Food
  3. Body processes (metabolic water production)

How great to know that you can literally eat your way to hydration! Yes, the foods that you eat must be high in water, so some examples are:

  • cucumber
  • citrus fruits
  • lettuce
  • celery
  • tomato
  • melon
  • dairy products, including whey protein shakes, kefir and yoghurt

Foods that are high in water content, but also high in micro and macro nutrients and electroyltes have been shown to be of better use to your body for hydration, than merely drinking water alone.

One of the benefits of having good quality whey protein shakes is that not only do you rehydrate your body with water, but the full sensation lasts longer.  With a good quality, undenatured protein, your body is receiving satiation signals. This is great!  Feeling full for longer, allows you to avoid the trap of sugary drinks when you're feeling thirsty or hungry.

How do you know that you're hydrated?  Listen to your body. By keeping yourself from feeling thirsty, you are remaining at a hydration level that is suiting you.  We are all different sizes and weights, having differing exercise regimes and output, so monitor how you're feeling, listen closely to the signs that you may need hydrating.  Try to incorporate more water filled foods into your diet, to assist you in remaining hydrated.

Love that the healthy foods contain plenty of hyrdrating water, so keep snacking on the good stuff, stay hydrated and enjoy!

Saturday 1 August 2015

Two Years On

Happy Anniversary!

Yes, realised this week it's now been two years since I last saw my excess weight - how exciting!!  This time two years ago, I made a choice, drew a line in the sand and quickly hopped over it!  How amazing making that decision has been for me! Truly exciting and life changing.

This time two years ago, I was quite the little frump, tyres around my waist, lacking in energy and motivation, really wondering how I was going to be as I eventually headed towards menopause, what was going to happen to me?

Here I am two years ago, makes me quite sad to see this tired, worn out photo, but I think it's important that we remember where we came from!

Weight loss help
July 2013

The journey took me some time, it took dedication to my changed lifestyle plan, which included changing my way of eating, my type of foods and my exercise plans.  With all of these changes on board, and a commitment to my goal, I worked hard and arrived at the place I'm in now, 2 years later, past my goal weight, energetic, happy and full of life, sleeping better than I have in years, and happily making healthy choices in my diet and exercise plans, no pressure at all on myself.

Natural weight loss
July 2014

I've run a half marathon, I've climbed Mt Warning, I've taken to liking my exercise, and miss it when it's not part of my routine.  Do I sweat in the gym for hours? Not likely!  I'm a rainforest walking type of girl now. Love being out in nature, visiting my favourite waterfall, hearing the birds sing their hearts out, watching sunrises and sunsets and just being.

Life Journey
My Favourite Waterfall

Thank you to everyone who reads my blog, your support along my journey has been inspirational for me, I love sharing my journey and all that I find to enable you  to also take a similar journey of your own.  Feel free to contact me if you want to discuss your journey further.