Harvest festival by Akira

This festival was in North Melbourne’s Language and Learning centre which was introduced just last year. The festival was free and people had a lot of fun whilst there. There was lots of food to try as well as making your own smoothies by bike.

The Language and Learning centre is for newly arrived migrants and people to help them with their English skills and IT, among other things. The place is welcoming and they do have a prayer mat.

Well I’ve already had my smoothie for the day so no Bike and blend for me. Instead there was injera, dumplings, sri lankan curry, rice and much more. This event was held during Cultural diversity week. All the foods were free, however many people donated to cover the costs of these foods.

Cultural Diversity week is a week in Melbourne where all cultures come together over food, fun and community.

The Chinese Dance group did a really stellar dance and they were in harmony.

All the foods were homemade and made by local not for profit migrant charities. There was Ethiopean coffee being made but seeing as it was too late it was not such a good idea.

Many thanks to North Melbourne Learning and Language centre for having us.

Week 22 of Marathon training

Another 30 more weeks to go and gosh they will be gruelling as.

Last week people already wrote their training questions on Facebook in the Melbourne Marathon group. Now is the time to be more serious and more focused.


I tried the mile repeats straight after lunch. Needless to say I felt very queasy afterwards and was slow. It was between the trees at the park and not on the road. But I am still good at running in the grass. Then I got itchy arms from all that sweat.


I looked at the map again and discovered that the 42 km people go past Kereford st into Dow st in Port Melbourne. This is going to be a bit of a challenge.

Also ran in the wet weather and discovered that I was two minutes slower than the usual pace time of 8mins per km. I did not want to slip and my calcium has not been that good.InstagramCapture_62fe6a4f-40be-4bef-8c8e-a3bd8034783c And then Sunday’s long run was good but I forgot about the Grand Prix. Hence I did not do the kms that I wanted to do. I wanted to do 20 kms but I fell by 6kms. This was a bad thing on my part as I could have planned it a lot better. Thousands of people were at the Grand Prix and at 6pm there were lots of people wanting to get out. Lots of people walked down Clarendon st and lots of people were waiting for the trams at Albert Park.

It was a bad thing on my part for forgetting the water. I was easily thirsty along the way and that slowed me down.

X50 tea

This is a product review and one of my favourite sports products as it keeps you hydrated. Here it burns 40 calories per cup.


X50 Teas are from a company called Tribecca Health. They specialise in sports nutrition, weight loss, detox products and hydration. My X50 tea is in a water bottle like it should be.

Most of their products have green tea extracts in them and an ingredient called Dextrin which is a fiber that claims to have many health benefits. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol used as a sweetner

There are seven flavours: tropical, raspberry, mango, peach ,green tea, chocolate, pina colada and coffee. I don’t like the coffee one but I liked all the fruity ones. I also liked the green tea one for taste. The pina colada one is always in lumps even after I stir it.

It is best to drink it just before a workout or during one as they have a lot of sugar in these. But according to myfitnesspal they only have 1 g of sugar in there. But don’t have it all the time as it causes a few skin reactions for some people.

Weight watchers by Katherine

Are you looking to lose weight this year? If so Weight watchers might be a good idea as Katherine talks about it below.


For Weight Watchers I pretended to be a 120 kg woman who does 12 min of exercise per day. I signed up for this six month program. I also pretended to be a woman who rarely eats fruits and vegetables but has chips everyday. She also has soft drinks and sweets most days.

They have a twelve month and a three month program. With the three month program you have to pay upfront. With this you’ll get meal plans and smart points. When I first used it I made a mistake. I randomly assumed points not knowing that there was a quicker way for this. When you sign up you’ll be asked a lot of questions about your weight and height.

I love how they give you all these options for Filling foods. I also love how they have all these meal ideas too.

I tried to find most of their stuff in the supermarkets in the city and it was relatively hard to find. Within the first week I bought a box of apple crumble bars and cranberry bars. They are very small but very sweet indeed.

The community there is very supportive of each other on Facebook and online. There are free meetups in the area for those that want it.

Then the following month I tried to pay by credit card and could not. I wanted to pay in store but it was hard as their online chat seemed busy and their store was often unattended. I tried contacting them on Facebook. Then they threatened cancellation because of unsuccessful payments. It used to be $33 a month but now $34!

In the end though they took my $34 and now I am a happy customer. I get lots of support online for the weight loss.

How do you feel about giving them a go?



Week 21 of Marathon training

Sunday was a warm day and as usual there is a lot of scratching going on. I ran at 11am where it is the hottest. That dry skin on arms is from being exposed too much to the hot sun. And those pimply things are known as the runner’s acne (sweat induced acne). I just have to remember to wash those arms after being in the sun and running. And twilight is the best time for me as it is cooler than the middle of the day.


And then I tried baby cream on my dry areas at night. Seemed to be just fine with no irritation. I have sensitive skin by the way.

As for my new shoes I got used to them and my laces don’t become untied every two seconds like they used to. Yippee!

Having your period can have some special challenges as a runner. Unfortunately I don’t do so well in that area so I’m really going to have to step it up a notch. I eat well but when it comes to iron I fall apart. Each period I lose so much iron and water.

As for the hydration it is not as great as it used to be. Now I am getting very brown pee especially early in the morning. Now I need to drink about 8L-10L per day.


Week 20 of marathon training by Akira

This week is not too bad. I did 104 kms in Feburary this year and then 21kms so far. I have been logging all my runs on a spreadsheet and most of them on Fitbit app. I also have been wearing my Fitbit daily. This helps to count the number of kms I have been walking or running and then plan my training around that.


Dang I still have the same bone problem of it being a 2.1kg of bone in my body. I used to be 2.2kgs of bone mass. What happened? I am still getting the same amount of calcium in my bones.

Tried running after a glass of strong red and chardonay to say that it didn’t work in the at least. I was hungover and less energetic. I could not focus. The pace was fast at 7min per km but the focus was not there. Lets just that I won’t be doing Sharpays Beer run which is about drinking beer and running.

My breakout is much better due to no sweets.

On Friday night I did not sleep so well. I had training that day and forgot to log on to my Fitbit so I hadn’t calculated the calories that I burn from exercise and daily activity properly. Hence I was sooo hungry. Daily activity I burn about 1500 calories and from exercise it is roughly 700-1500 calories depending on the type of run and how many minutes of walking I do.

One of the things that I noticed in myfitnesspal was the potassium level. This is either mid range or so low. For a woman wanting her periods to be regular this is not good. Luckily though Katherine can increase this by including more potassium rich foods such as molasses and meats. Edamame can be included. Lately Katherine has been feeling a bit heavy in the legs due to her period coming soon

Naked Energy bar by Akira

This bar is from the protein company called “Aussie Bodies” and here they have decided to make a real food bar. This bar does not contain whey protein but rather nut protein. Here I sampled the Almond, Coconut and Cacao bar.


Here it was not too sweet and it filled me up easily. It is small so it is convenient to put in your bag or lunchbox. They only have 8g of protein in there.

You can buy them from all Health food stores in Melbourne

Healthy things to do on a $50 budget a week

Not sure what do with the money left over? Why not have some fun with it? 


That is after you factor in groceries and the bills that come. It is important to spend some time looking after yourself. Taking a break from study is just one of them.

  1. Run everywhere- the Tan is such a great place but there are others. Do check out Instagram. It is free and good for you.
  2. Participate in fitclubs- again this is free and if you want recovery drinks afterwards it is only $5/$6 for a tea and smoothie. This is a great way to meet people who are like minded.
  3. Visit the Queen Victoria Market on Tuesdays, Thursdays to Sun. Everything here is super cheap and you can buy a lot of ingredients to take home and cook such as $1 chicken wings and $10-$20 per kg of meat. You can buy a lot and have a potluck dinner at home where everyone cooks something.
  4. South Melbourne market has some cheap food such as the $1 oysters. Here you can indulge in a whole tray of them for lunch. Or there is the South Melbourne Dim Sims for you to try. South Melbourne Market is on the 96 tram route from the city and is open from Wednesday to Sunday.
  5. Your student union has free BBQ’s weekly. This is a great way to mingle with people- all for free.
  6. The art galleries- we enjoy them especially on opening night where there is free food for all.
  7. Lentils as Anything is also really good and you can pay whatever you want
  8. The beaches are a great place to visit during the summer. They are free and you can even do your runs there.
  9. Box Hill has some cheap food such as Food Republik and other food court options which are authentic. Take the train there. It is on the Lilydale and Belgrave line


Do have some fun on your limited budget

Week 19 of Marathon training

Another hot and humid week meant more breakouts on my skin as well as rashes. But by Wednesday my rash went down and all was well again.

Now onto a psychological issue that I have tried to look up online and nothing was found. It is how to deal with family members who won’t support the running a marathon goal. I know that it is tough and that you have to be a really dedicated person to do so. I know that you have to give up some of the family time to do so and I have done so.


Their reason: running a marathon does not get you anywhere. In actual fact not true because you can learn so much from running one such as motivation, learning to complete goals and learning to deal with lots of curve balls. I’m not much of a goal completing/setting person so that will be a challenge for me. Many organizations would want someone who can complete all their goals on time and is focused.

Running a marathon also shows consciousness in yourself and others.

How do you deal with family members who don’t see that running a marathon is great?

Febfast 2017 by Akira


Febfast is a popular challenge with people wanting to lose weight. Many choose to give up on alcohol but since I don’t drink I chose to give up sugar. And giving up is a the hardest thing to do as many things have sugar in there. We explain why you should try and limit sugar.

By that we are not saying quit sugar for good as you would need some for everyday living and breathing. But you would only need about 30-50g. You should eat fruits most days or learn to love fresh fruit. Juice has about 25-30g of sugar if you buy it from the supermarket.


Australia has the highest obesity rate in the world and if we Australians and overseas students don’t limit our sugar intake it can lead to all sorts of problems. A shop assistant might tell you, “you can have as much sugar as you want”. In reality we should not

We did it this time. The challenge is a month long one where we quit sugar for good. Here we learned love things like kombucha and other savoury items. We don’t need sugar to feel good.

Febfast is about learning to deal with temptations. In the house there are too many such as soft drinks and biscuits. In the first few days it was hard and I made a few mistakes such as having a Buono bar which has about 21g of sugar. A soft drink contains about 25-38g of sugar.


I am allowed to have fruit which has natural sugars. In order to be healthy I also had some of Shape up’s naturally good smoothies during lunch. I know that they are expensive but as a runner are worth the investment.

In a few days my skin was clearer and I loved how I had more energy to do stuff. I had more energy to run and my PMS had almost cleared up.

In the end though I wished I had learned more. But I will learn more in the next challenge which is I quit Sugar.