Are cheat days good or bad for you

Great for some but bad for others who do it all the time.

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A cheat day is where you eat a lot of junk food and go off your healthy eating plan. But if you do it too often it can be bad for you. And don’t turn these days into weeks or months,

For example a KFC Go bucket has 467 calories according to myfitnesspal and a lot of fat. They are just empty calories. There isn’t a lot of nutrition in there. People like it because of the sodium content.

Its the same with McDonalds or Hungry Jacks. The fried taste of the food stays in your mouth for a while leaving you longing for more. And more people have. They advertise these family buckets/value meals to make people go back for more. They are about $20-$25 each and include lots of sodium. In fact too much.

I am glad that the McDonalds on the corner of Flinders and Swanston st has now closed. I am also glad that the KFC and Hungry Jacks near RMIT has closed. But having said that there is a new 24 hr Hungry Jacks opened up right outside of the gym.

When I was younger I had McDonalds for 31 days in order to get the free Snoopy. And after a while eating fast food was not fun. I felt fat and frumpy.

In my early uni days I had more cheat days than I could imagine and yes I put on the weight. I ballooned all the way from a 44kg person to a 55kg fat person. Then I learnt my lesson of not having too many cheat days.

So in a nutshell, a cheat day can be good for you. Just don’t turn it into a cheat week!

 


Week 48 of the marathon

Had some hormonal issues this week. Began ovulating to only have a sharp dull pain and some vomiting. Hence I ran the 10kms but ran slow and didn’t do it as well as I liked. Also, there were train replacement buses for most of the week hence I had to finish early in order not to miss one.

I didn’t do so well in today’s cross training either.

Went to Grill’d at Southern Cross and found out that Grill’d had so far given away over 700 burgers to the homeless people. That’s great so far! They need to meet their 1900 free burger target.

 

 

And then on Wednesday I did much better and managed to burn 426 calories on the bike.

Friday I was feeling a bit pmsy and I vomited water in the morning. I somehow have this theory that every time I run I get a little bit queasy in the stomach. I wonder why?

Then during cycle class, I felt so hungry. It’s so weird that I did even though I had enough the past couple of days. But then again I vomited. I only burnt 320 calories that day.  I also did well in today’s half-hour cross training.

And then Mexican for dinner. Yum.

And then on Sunday had my long run and it went ok. Didn’t sleep very well the night before due to a party taking place right behind my house until 4am and these people did not have the audacity to tell us.

It was a very windy Sunday where it was really difficult to run in some places, ie Point Ormond.  The run started in Maribynong park and it took us past Haymarket, city, St Kilda Road, St Kilda, Point Ormond, Albert Park Lake and then to Southern cross via the city.

I tried Endura Gel and I did not have a burning stomach or other stomach problems.

Was really hungry in the morning due to the luteal phase and all night no sleep.  During the Luteal Phase, I need more carbs. Hence I did not run so well in the morning. I ran much better after lunch. I was much stronger then but by then the wind picked up.

Afterwards, I went to the Royal Melbourne Show and tried Gin from Bass Distillery. I bought two showbags which weighed about 6kgs altogether and lugged it home with no problem. It must have been all the training that I have been doing at the gym with the weights, hence I could cope.

Went to Lentils for lunch and all was good. I tried carbo loading and it was ok.

 

How do you cope with noisy neighbors?


The Biggest Loser

The Biggest Loser is a show about losing weight.  They have about 15-20 contestants per season and someone gets eliminated each week. But how good is it for the average Joe? We discuss the issue here.

The Biggest Loser has been around for some time now and it is really popular in America as there is an obesity crisis.

Each week there are weigh-ins and the bottom two with the lowest weigh-ins have the possibility of being eliminated. Thus this puts an unhealthy stress on the contestant to lose a certain amount to beat the others.  This also reinforces the message of being skinny is ok, rather than being healthy and happy.

A lot of unhealthy practices are encouraged on this show such as a rapid weight loss of 70kg in a month.

Here the show is being criticised for making contestants work really hard without much food. They work out for about 5-8 hours a day.  Some of the contestants work out so hard that they vomit blood or collapse. The trainers make them get back up and on their machine again. It has some unfair advantages such as a progress weight and a 2kg weight advantage. The trainers do a fine job by pushing them to their limits. But how hard could they go?

I don’t work out for that long period of time, at most I would do three hours. And I love my food way too much to follow the restricted 1000 calorie eating plan that they make the contestants follow.

It has some unfair advantages such as a progress weight and a 2kg weight advantage. The trainers do a fine job by pushing them to their limits. But how hard could they go?

According to the time spent observing the personal trainers at my gym, there is a fine line between going too hard and not going hard enough. Most of the trainers at my gym push their clients to achieve results and they don’t push too hard. Nor do they make their clients do the weigh-ins each week. At most, the personal trainer spends about an hour per day with the client.

They also do the eating challenge and the person that wins it wins immunity. So what do the contestants gain from this? Nothing, I think. I think most people would go back to their unhealthy eating practices in the first place as there is no write down of what you eat.

Most contestants after the show regain their weight. Their metabolism goes slower and the leptin goes down.

If you want to lose weight the dangerous way then go ahead and be on that show. Otherwise you should be happy and healthy as you are and do some exercise each day.


Nurofen Zavance tablets

I got this free thanks to Coles.

But normally they would be $4.20 at Coles to $7.00 at 7-11.

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Nurofen Zadvance helped got rid of my cramps. I only just needed two tablets and then I was fine for the rest of the day. I have really bad cramps that make running painful on period day. But I have been reading that ibuprofen helps get rid of the heavy bleeding and cramps.

It worked just fine for me. There was no more coughing and the worrying about losing all the iron. But it is suggested that I should use it for 2-3 days and then stop. It is also suggested that I don’t use it a lot in endurance events. But I tried on the Sunday long run and it was fine.

It is also suggested that runners don’t take them everytime and for a long period of time due to the stomach issues. So far I have had none.

 


365 cafe by Akira

This popular cafe is in Prahran but now they have opened up shop in Melbourne Central in what used to be the Sugar Shop.

And Melburnians welcomed the healthy change. We as Melburnians want to be healthy and lose weight and the only way to do this is to get rid of the sugar and confectionery stores.

Here they have a huge selection of wholefood snacks and meals and foods for people to take home.

I really like their $2 Japanese rice crackers and dried fruit which is what we should have as a snack other than chips.

I really enjoyed their boiled eggs and their free coffee. Their coffee is from Toby’s estate. Every time I walk by they always seem to be busy and most people buy the coffees or self-serve juice. I have not tried this yet but it looks like fun.

The service there is very friendly and down to earth and barista seems to know what he is doing. You won’t find that much in Melbourne. You order and then pay and then they will bring the food out.

All their meals are made fresh each day and they change too. Here I had the pear and walnut zataar which I quite enjoyed. It was not too sweet and it was light making it a good option for breakfast. A zataar is a Lebanese bread which is like a pizza except for light. And its good for people that want to lose weight.

Its a good thing that there is another health food shop in Melbourne central other than those drab junk food places.

Find it on the Ground floor at Melbourne Central


Periods and running

This post is for the ladies, so if you are not a lady then please click the close button.

Getting your period and running is a very complicated thing and it can take a while to get used to. You’ll have to get used to running with a pad and work out your nutrition

The first day and second day of the period is the heaviest with the third day being one of the lightest. You’ll find that on the first and second day you won’t want to do much.

Most women feel a lot of pain on the first day hence bed rest is a good idea. It’s also a good idea to drink plenty of fluids on that day and the days before. You’ll find that you won’t want to eat much and that’s ok. Some women also vomit.

Some women, I included, won’t have much energy to run on as we lose that due to not eating much and losing it through the shedding.  But then by day 5-10, we are just fine. Then during ovulation, we lose energy again due to the egg being fertilized. For some people after that running can feel a bit heavy.

If you lose too much blood then you can become anemic. And that’s no fun.

One of the things that I found out through myfitnesspal is that I didn’t have enough iron and potassium. This is important for women who run. If you don’t have enough iron you’ll find that you will cough and vomit a lot in the first few days. This is because you are losing a lot of iron which is important for bodily functions.

On the other hand, if you exercise too much and don’t eat enough to meet your daily requirements then you might not have a period at all. This is because your body fat is too low and that places a lot of stress on the body.

Finding the right balance is hard and time-consuming. Therefore I suggest just going with the flow for the first few months and then trying out a lot of things to see what works for you!


Week 47 of the Marathon

This week started really slow as I just had my period and lost a fair amount of blood and 1.6 kg of muscle. I usually lose muscle when I have my period.  Hence my run did not go so well. I also lose a bit of water when I vomit during my period.

Have been playing with my new Garmin watch to find that it can do intervals which is cool.

Had to take a painkiller for the awful cramps that I get with my period.

Then Wednesday I seemed to pimp up my run a bit and was a bit more energized to burn 367 calories on the bike. But then threw up due to the loss of iron. Ran around Brunswick st and it was sunny.

Then Friday was ok. Not as great as I would have liked. On the bike I burnt 312 calories. Then going outside for a run was not too bad. I felt strong in the legs.

Sunday’s long run of 39.5km was ok and was the longest run. But it was marred by slow walks due to the fact that I have not eaten much this week due to period. And no money (half true).

We started at Maribyrnong park and then ended up at Southern Cross. Went there twice. The trail took us past Maribynong park, Maribyrnong road, Mt Alexander Rd, Haymarket, city, St Kilda Road, Albert park, Point Ormond, Beaconsfield Parade, Fitzroy st and then back into the city. Tried Albert Park Lake and it was windy but sunny.  Elevation gain was 80 ft which is not bad.

When we got to the start of St Kilda road it was slow due to Connor’s run event which took place in the Alexandra Gardens. Many people and balloons were there and I was overwhelmed but not scared.

Tried Winners bars today and it was not too bad. The SIS go energy drink was nice and it gave me the bolt that I needed.

Lunch was at Lentils and this time I had the curry which was nice. At least I did not barf up the curry which is awesome.

My highest heart rate to date is 173 rpm.

Then dinner was at Bay City burrito in Hawthorn followed by the last 2km walk from Flinders st to Southern Cross station.

 

 

 


Fair food challenge

This year Melbourne Uni has invited me to take on this fair food challenge.

Every year many businesses waste food and packaging. Food that could have gone to the homeless people. Each day OzHarvest rescues a fair amount of surplus food that businesses throw out and then they give all that food to charity. Because of the cost of food many people are forced to go without.

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Packaging on food costs a lot of money and many businesses use too much in order to promote their services. It’s also a huge waste of environmental resources as it takes a lot to get rid of trees. Think about all the carbon dioxide in the world and how much pollution comes from the factories.

But more and more cafes are encouraging people to use their keep cups by offering a discount. I always have my coffee and food inside the restaurant not outside. As such it helps to cut down on the waste.

Woolies and Coles are encouraging people to bring their own bags in by charging extra for plastic. For a start, I started bringing my own reusable bag or my big backpack to put things in. Sometimes I don’t plan my shopping ahead and that’s when I’ll need a plastic bag. Or if I forget to bring one for my umbrella then I’ll need.

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I have a veggie patch at home and I regularly go out and get the kale from it. Or the mandarins from there. Kale at the supermarket can be expensive and sometimes bland.

Do this challenge and you’ll support the need for a better lifestyle for everyone. Oh and its free to do.


Eat your fruit and vegetables by Akira

As a runner we need to eat our fruits and vegetables for our health. But where do we find them for cheap?

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Eating your fruit and vegetables every day is important and it is easy to incorporate them into your meals. In Melbourne we have many markets in which you can shop for produce and produce is as little as $0.99 at the Queen Victoria Market. Melbourne Uni has their farmers markets every Wednesday from 10:30am-2:30pm. They sell lots of fresh fruit and veg and some of the traders might be happy to show you how to cook with them.

If you like a lot of convenience, the universities will have some sort of food co-op or organic shop which sells meals made with lots of veggie love. These are your convenience dahl and lentil curries, pies and salads. Usually there is a free fruit day at uni just for convenience. Just ask your Student union as to when they are holding theirs.

The supermarkets are more on the expensive end. But there are Asian shops everywhere you turn and you’ll find your fruit and vegetables.

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If you like cheap meals then do give Lentils as Anything a go as they have lots of vegetarian dishes that will fill you up on the cheap.


Why alcohol should be limited on flights

There has been a lot of debate on why alcohol should be limited on flights. We are here to talk about this issue as it has been a problem for some people.

 

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This is what a standard glass looks like compared to the huge bottle

 

Australia has responsible service of alcohol laws to stop people from being drunk in a public place. Well a plane is no different.

It is clear that a standard small glass is about 20-200 calories depending on what you drink. Most of the time alcohol is dehydrating.

Earlier that year there were many instances where people abuse alcohol. Many people drink before their flight having to sit in the lounge or the airport waiting for their flight. In the First and Business class lounges there is alcohol being served and people just help themselves. There is no bar attendant there to pour the drinks. In Business and first class, alcohol is served as a welcome drink and then during their meals. Some of the flights are red eye.

On some flights there is the Business bar where people drink.

When people drink too much they can be violent or have slurred speech. Hence all the arrests on board (and fights).

If you do want alcohol or know that there will be some, my recommendation is to drink about four litres of water. If you don’t like water bring some Hydralite solution, tea or Instant herbal beverage in which you can buy from us or Shape up.

Alcohol should be banned on flights before 10am or some red-eye flights. The sale should be banned at small airports. As for the larger airports which has a First or Business class lounge there should be an attendant to pour the wine and decide whether or not visitors should have any.