Tag – You’re Sh*t.

Let’s get this clear right out of the box.

I used to own a business that had multiple offices and many staff.

I ALSO used to weigh closer to 300lbs than I ever would have admitted.

I trained in a gym for A LONG TIME before my body looked like someone who trains in a gym.

Today doing the rounds of the interwebz is a screen-shot of a bitchy nothing taking a snarky stab at people in this weight bracket who chose to go to a gym to train. Huh, what a mole?!

tag you're shit block

So, this creature thinks women (or is it just one woman?) over 300lb are disturbing. Well, I think bullying is disturbing. And don’t get me started on bad grammar.

But she TAGGED herself at the gym where she was clearly training and those same 300lb people that she so clearly wishes to not see exercising also were.

She’s rude, wrong and way out of line. But for me, I keep coming back to the fact that a business (whose entire basis for operating is improving the health and fitness of the widest possible market share it can get it’s hands on) has been implicated in this mental peanut’s crappy behavior.

Is it right for them to be copping the flack from such a comment going viral? Probably not.

Fairly or unfairly, a business reputation is built on not only what you say and do but what those associated to you say and do. In this age of social media, that web gets cast pretty darn wide and is bound to catch some turds. Would you allow your own business and living to be marred because someone does something stupid while aligning themselves with you?

Is it a fantastic opportunity for them to show support to the majority of gym-goers who AREN’T the poster children (yet) of fitness but who are in there paying fees and slogging it out anyway? – HECK YES IT IS.

Stand up SnapFitnessCaloundra and be good enough to show your members that they are valued, regardless of where they are right now and that you won’t tolerate bullies in your gym.

Maybe you want to pop over to their facebook page and shoot them a message to encourage them to stand up for ALL of their members and developing a happier, safer and all-round more awesome training ground for everyone.

And if I was that judgmental pelican’s SEXXAAAY personal trainer – I’d be very happily down one client from today. Bullies are way not sexxaaay.

Peace out,

SV

Well played Universe…Well Played.

I’ve posted a bit on social media of the last few days about coming to terms with the fact that I don’t want to keep fighting my body. I became aware that while I do love competing and pushing my body through a competition preparation in order to be lean enough to get up on stage and REALLY celebrate the work that I put in to my fitness – I want to be gentle to myself too.

What this means is that while I am still preparing to compete during 2014, I’m doing so being more mindful of my health, balance and my happiness. I’ve moved to a way of eating that is more flexible and family friendly (IIFYM) so that I can eat more meals with my family and live like a real person. I’ve moved my supplements to a more wholesome and beneficial range so that I’m not loading myself up with more chemicals than I need. I’m trying to be more chilled out about my expectations of myself really.

It’s nice. I woke up this morning pumped and full of energy, had my breakfast, had my supps, went to the gym to train a PT client and then had a training session with Coach Corey. I felt awesome. Good deadlifts, good back and shoulders – feeling strong, feeling like I’m where I want to be.

It’s nice, this sense of peace and lack of urgency.

Then the doorbell rings.

It’s the Fed-Ex man with a small parcel containing three of the most beautiful stage bikinis ever.

I try them on.

They fit.

If I kicked my own ass they’d look great on stage sometime soon.

But I’d need to kick my own ass to do it in time.

This is me shaking my fist at the Universe. Well played Universe, very well played.

SV

Stuff I’ve Tried – Mana

*Disclaimer – the lovely owners of Mana Blend DID send me a container of their product to try and provide my feedback on. It’s exactly that, MY feedback. Always feel free to ask me questions and call shenanigans if you think I’m being shady :p

Anyway!! This month I’ve been trying….

Mana

MANA

(As mentioned, YES – this item was sent to me free of charge to try and provide feedback to my readers)

What is it?

Post competing last year, I felt pretty shabby. I was reacting badly to lots of foods, I’d gained more weight than I’d planned to off-season and I was just generally feeling ‘meh’. In the past I had been incorporating a ‘green smoothie’ into my daily routine whenever I started to feel like this. The only issue was, I don’t make my greens smoothies from scratch. For many reasons (mostly laziness and living on the frozen island with limited access to the rarer and more awesome vegies and greens) I was choosing to buy a greens powder. I’d tried a couple, both from big US supplement brands and they tasted pretty sweet and quite good, like strawberries or tropical fruits – which is odd considering neither of those things were listed as ingredients. Plenty of long-name chemical stuff I couldn’t hope to pronounce though :/ Hmmm.

I believe very much in the universe sometimes dropping things into your life at the right time and I was LITERALLY sitting at my desk researching for another greens smoothie that wouldn’t load me with more toxins than it was helping to flush when the owners of Mana sent me a message introducing me to their product line.

Mana is a vegan, raw and certified organic superfood.  Like, really super.  It has 11 ingredient all with crazy wonderful super powers. The magic eleven are cacao, maca, lucuma, yakon, incan spirulina, goji berry, mesquite, chlorella, camu camu, red banana & noni. Some of these I knew about previously, others were completely new to me. The guys have a great breakdown of each of them on this page – http://www.manablend.com/ingredients/ Check it out – learn stuff.

What did I get?

I got the 1 Month supply canister of Mana. It doesn’t have a scoop but the serving size is super simple. A serving is a heaped dessert spoon. Mmmmm…dessert. I did read on their site and put into practise that when you are sick or just unwell that a double dose is okay. A couple of times when I was fighting off colds I had a serve in the morning and another later in the day and did find that I was bouncing back from things a little faster.

How do you do it?

With all of the super foods in Mana, a daily dose over time will help your body absorb and utilise all of the goodness. I chose to take mine as part of the Mana Green Smoothie One Month Challenge. Which ironically, is not challenging at all – so easy! The challenge is just to have one Mana smoothie (so using your Mana powder as well as adding dark green leafies and some fruit if you like) and incorporate at least one big colourful salad every day for a month.  (I do need to admit that I cheated and had a big colourful soup some days as the Frozen Island weather sometimes makes eating a cold salad less than enticing.)

The thought behind the challenge is to give your body the best chance to be ‘refreshed’ with the increased intake of the wholefoods and time for you to feel and see the benefits.

So whaddya think?

I have to say the problem with having tried commercial ‘greens’ supplements is you get used to the idea that they can taste like cordial. Sometimes a bit of a yukky cordial, but easily sippable and fruity. Mana is not made of chemicals that make it taste like something else. It tastes like cacao and chlorella and all of the stuff that it is actually made of. And that is a good thing. Is it necessarily a delicious thing on it’s own? Um,  not exactly. It’s not gross. Not gag-worthy or horrid. It’s just not cordial. THAT SAID – I was being a purist and not blending mine with the fruits that you can do. I was drinking it straight. And it was fine. But I think an apple or orange in there would make this easily drinkable  for anyone.

Again, being non-chemical, this is not a supplement that you will take and then within the hour go “OH WOW, So much energy, ALL OF THE ENERGY, ENERGY ENERGY ENERGY!!!!!”. It will also not results in your being comatose levels of tired on the couch in two hours or potential overloading your body with stimulants. The benefits of Mana were definitely more subtle. After a week I noticed that my skin breakouts were all clearing up and my tummy was feeling less irritated after I ate. I had more energy in a very soft ‘feeling well’ way. If that sounds a bit airy-fairy, it kinda is. It’s nice.

Following the challenge was quite easy as I am used to taking shakes and already incorporate salads/soups into most days. I did miss a few days here and there while I was travelling (and not organised to take my Mana with me) but whenever I had access to a kitchen, I was set.

By the end of the month I was pretty wrapt with how my skin was looking, how I was feeling overall and just the knowledge that I was getting all of those nutrients and superfoods in each day is comforting.

As I follow an IIFYM food approach to weight loss and show preparation, I found Mana slots in quite easily to my macros as it isn’t particularly heavy in carbohydrates and has very little protein and no fat.

Would I buy it again?

Yes, I would. What I appreciated most was that the Mana is very clear about it’s ingredients and what is/isn’t in it. It is made by an Australian company,run by two Mamas passionate about health which is so lovely to be able to support.  The month long challenge made me FEEL GOOD , I can make it fit my macros and meet my nutritional goals. Which is a lot for one little product to deliver. :)

NOW – what I would really love for you to do is  find out more about them here – http://www.manablend.com/

The creators are just the most lovely passionate people, excited about everyone’s health and happiness. Follow them on facebook by finding them here – https://www.facebook.com/ManaBlend?fref=ts

And of course, if you have any questions at all about my experience, ask them here or on the Sailor Vee facebook page and I’m happy to answer them!

Talk soon and oodles of healthy wishes,

SV

I’m going on a (kinda) holiday…

Exciting stuff hey? But wait, what is the difference between a holiday and a (kinda) holiday?

Today I fly out with my Mama to a health retreat. Where I am excited is that I get to train a lot. Where I will struggle is that I will have to surrender control of my food choices (or go hungry!) for a week. AND DID I MENTION THERE IS NO COFFEE?!!!!

But it’s for the greater good.

You see, I love exercise. And fitness. And healthy foods. The thought of being somewhere where ALL that I need to do is train twice a day, eat five times a day and spend my free time being relaxed and reflective is pretty much my idea of heaven.

But for my Ma, that’s not quite the case yet. She and exercise haven’t really become best friends yet. Or even acquaintances. Not even the facebook type. So she is coming with me to test the waters of training and to have some relax time as well. It is not her idea of heaven. In fact, I have a sneaking suspicion she’s pretty scared of what it will be like. But she loves me enough to want to come and spend time with me there anyway.

And that is a good place to start.

JustStart

SV

 

How to Fix a Binge

We’ve all done it. Had a moment of ‘Oh, okay. I’ll have a little bit’ and realised sometime (hours/days even!) that we were on a jet-fueled binge and have devoured/inhaled/imbibed ALL of the food in the world. And you feel sick. Not just because your poor belly is stuffed full of food and is trying to explode out of your Levis (which is why binge-pro’s like myself will get changed mid binge!) but mainly because you know how far you’ve set yourself back on the path to your goals. Or have you?

I did some googling on how to fix or recover from a food binge and there was LOTS of touchy-feely advice like

forgiveyourself

Um, okay. Good advice. More googling saw more advice like

respectyourfeelings

Okay. Yup. Alright. Also good. But let me break it down. After a binge, the only things I give a damn about really is

GIVE ME MY EFFING BODY BACK

So, if you’d like to deal with the emotional side of why you ate too much (which I recommend!), hit up our friend Dr Google.

My advice for getting rid of a puffy tummy, upset digestive system and madly swinging blood sugar levels is below.

Step One: PUT DOWN THE FOOD

True Story. There is a moment in every binge where you realise THIS IS NOT A GOOD IDEA. It might be when you are opening the hidden packet of chips, going back for your third plate at the buffet OR it can be at the supermarket stocking up on the foods you know you shouldn’t be eating. STOP when you feel that internal voice. Do something to remove yourself. If you can, go out. Or away from the food. If you can’t go out or away, get in the shower. If you are a parent, that might mean you have the kids sitting outside the shower waiting for you. So be it. Naked with an audience is still the better choice. So that is always step one – Get out, get away or get clean.

Step Two: HYDRATE UP!

It will feel insane when you are crazily full of food to make yourself MORE full of something. But your body will need to flush and metabolise all of the stuff you ate and it does that best when you are fully hydrated. By hydrated, I’m talking water. Plain water. No need for fancy electrolytes or sports drinks. Water. Now. A couple of litres of it.

Step Three: MOVE

Now, I’m NOT talking about busting out a massive workout. You’ll probably vomit, and I’m never a fan of doing that. What I do suggest is a good walk in the fresh air. Failing that, some steady but relaxed time on a treadmill or bike. Mostly this just gets you moving and breathing and again encourages your body to start processing the overload. And… it reminds you that you are a fit happy human being, not a couch-blob who inhales chips.

Step Four: SIP THE MAGIC TEA

I’m a bloater. A big puffy-tummy, ‘just add 5 inches to my waistline’ kind of bloater. Lots of stuff makes me bloat. Milk products, processed grains, PMS and lady-stuff. Not fun. A good binge will bloat me until I feel like I’m going to explode. My favourite product for when I am feeling like this is a random tea that I found on my favourite online store iHerb. You can see it here. Tastes good and helps save me from the dreaded puff. Please note, this is not really a magical product. Just a herbal tea that helps with fluid retention 🙂

weightless

Step Five: SLEEP IT OFF

Yep. Nap time. Maybe after you’ve done all of the wonderful reflecting that Dr Google has suggested. Your body needs time to process and you will feel better when you wake up.

Step Six: STARVING YOURSELF IS DUMB

Yes, you ate a lot of food. Theoretically I’m sure you really DID eat enough to feed yourself for a few days, but DO NOT try to go without eating or being heavily restrictive with what you eat next. It is stupid. AND will see you more likely to snap and binge again. I do suggest eating lighter meals and making the healthiest choices you can while your system is already pretty taxed, but a fast is not the answer. You are not Gandhi.

Step Seven: DON’T BE A NUT-BALL, THERE IS ALWAYS TOMORROW RIGHT FREAKIN’ NOW.

Easier said than done. But something that comes to mind fairly regularly is that I didn’t get fat off one binge. It was many, many binges over a significant amount of time. And the opportunity to make better decisions starts right now. NOT tomorrow, or Monday. Right now. The very next thing you eat or drink will put you closer to or further away from your goals. Don’t be a nut-ball. Or at least be a fit and healthy one.

Love and Anti-Puffiness

SV

If It Fits my …. What?

I wrote a while ago about finding my food religion. If you’ve forgotten you can see the rambling thought-process here.

About the time of writing that post I started looking into IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros). For a really quick run-down of what that means, see below:

What Is It?

IIFYM simply means eating a diet that meets your macronutrient needs.

To break it down and start from the beginning, macronutrients are the three main food groups – proteins, carbohydrates and fats. Each macronutrient has its own role to play, and is needed in different quantities depending on your goals, metabolism, training history, and many other factors.

IIFYM eating flies in the face of conventional dieting, and the notion that anyone who wants to get in shape has to eat a stringent diet, composed of a limited number of so-called “clean foods,” needs to eat at precise times throughout the day, must have certain types of food pre and post workout, and that any deviation from this strict structure is breaking the rules of dieting.

The idea of IIFYM is simple – you eat whatever foods you like the fill your allotment of proteins, carbs and fats.

AND

That is the basic idea behind IIFYM.
There is more to it but it really is quite simple.
1. Know how many calories your body burns throughout an average day (your TDEE)
2. Eat 15-20% less calories every day than that number
3. Split those calories up between fat, protein and carbs in an ratio that is most beneficial for muscle preservation, fat loss, without a drop in daily energy.

So, the good news is that my life would be less regimented. So less broccoli and chicken six times a day. The bad news is that as soon as you mention IIFYM to anyone who has prepped the ‘old-school’ way, they immediately think of this:

IIFYM

Okay, I’ll be honest. You can do IIFYM and eat crap foods. It’s the truth. And people do.

It’s not what I’m about. I’ve worked my ass off the hard way to lose 50kg and be the healthiest I’ve ever been. While a big part of my new-found health is just through being lighter, I believe a large part is also just that I don’t eat and drink rubbish foods anymore. I don’t enjoy them, most of them don’t agree with my tummy and up until now they haven’t worked with the diet plans that I have been following. So why change now?

For me, IIFYM is about flexibility and diversity in the way that I eat. It’s my goal for 2014 and beyond that I learn to ‘live lean’. For me that means not having such a huge difference between my ‘on-season’ or show body and my ‘off-season’ body. To achieve that either meant following a comp diet year-round which is restrictive and well, boring. OR follow the rabbit hole to the promised land where I can eat a varied diet comprising of all food groups,  cheat/treats when I want them and still maintain a lean body and muscle mass. And that is where I found IIFYM.

I got some initial advice, stalked a lot of interwebz and made myself a plan. I’m pretty sure it’s wrong, but I’ve been following it and my weight has been coming back down and muscle mass is increasing.

BUT, I’ve been lucky enough now to have been accepted as a team member in the IIFYM Challenge and will be undergoing some one-on-one coaching about my macros and targets to get myself back to that lean and happy place that comp prep got me to but that I couldn’t maintain. The challenge starts off properly in a few days and I’m excited as all get-out to learn more and see how this works for me.

IIFYM Challenge participant

You can find out more about the Challenge, register for future intakes and say thanks to the gorgeous sponsors of the free program HERE.

Until then…

IIFYM Cookies

Talk soon,

SV

Here in the corner, Losing my (food) religion

food religionSomeone asked me the other day what I “believed in” as far as my diet. I was a bit confused.

So they clarifed for me. “Are you paleo, or a Poliquin, or a macro person etc?”

Oh. So they were looking for my food belief system. Hmm.

I think I might be food agnostic.

You see, when I’m preparing for a show there is one rule. I follow the rules my trainer provided and that is it. It’s a very black and white, very clear food belief system. You are getting it right – or you are getting it very wrong. There is no wriggle room. There may well be picketing and hateful signs if you ate an icecream. It’s an extremist food belief.

But I’m not doing that now.

So I’m finding myself quite regularly questioning what I should ‘follow’ as far as my diet is concerned. Do I drink the paleo koolaid and live like a caveman? Do I join the macro-flock and eat a McDonalds cheeseburger because the maths says I can?

It’s not helping with my feelings of being a little lost. In fact it’s 9.23am and I haven’t had breakfast yet because I haven’t decided what I believe in today.

So what do you believe in with your nutrition?

Cheers,

Bella

The Sweaty-Bettie Project – aka Zaggora 2 Week Trial

Excitingly, I’ve been asked by the kind people at Zaggora to be a ‘ZaggoraGirl’ and try their products and provide a review and feedback.

Awesome, you may say. Exciting, perhaps you’ll exclaim. But WHAT THE HELL IS A ZAGGORA? is what you’ll most likely say.

Okay, well the basic premise is that the are a workout clothing line whose products ‘burn more calories with our heat generating fabrics whenever you are active’.

The explanation and more science-y stuff from Zaggora can be found here – http://zaggora.com/how-it-works/

So my layman’s understanding is: you get hot, your body expends more energy trying to cool you down (including producing sweat) and that extra energy expenditure is the extra calories you burn.

Huh. Seems cool enough. Then they make MASSIVE claims like ‘Lose 2 jean sizes in 2 weeks’. That sort of stuff makes me nervous. I openly have an issue with any product that claims you can achieve significant weight/size loss without any effort. To be fair, you do need to be wearing your hotpants while you train each day for the two weeks and keeping your nutrition in check, so I’m prepared to give it a go.

And before my mum emails me angrily – yes, I do realise I no longer need or want to lose two jeans sizes (being an AU sz 4 would be a bit much) but a significant reduction in centimetres will be considered a win for them.

SO, here begins the challenge.

Stats – While I am in competition training, my weight, measurements and skin folds (body fat percentage) are taken each Sunday by my coach (Corey from Motivate Fitness Solutions). So we already have a baseline and I’ll share the drops with you for the next two weeks.

I train 6 days a week already, with a mix of strength training and some cardio. I won’t change my training.

I eat very specifically already to prepare for competing, so this won’t change at all.

Basically, I am already training and eating in a way that will see me lose centimetres in this two week challenge period. What we will be looking for is any sign of increased speed or ease of achieving my goals and any specific shrinking of my pesky ‘trouble spots’ of lower abs and thighs.

Day One:

The pants arrive quickly from Zaggora in the UK. The pair I have been sent to try are these ones Hotpants 2.0 Medium (indicates the longer length as the standard ones are above-knee shorts)

hotpants

According to the chart, I suggested I would be a size small and that is definitely what I got. They go on quite well, though the thicker neoprene-family fabric is a little disconcerting as I’ve never worn a wetsuit but I imagine it’s exactly the same. Great fit through the legs and butt and only a fraction gappy at my back and waist but I’m pretty sure that is more about my dimensions than the pants.

They make a SWOOSH sound when I walk. I probably shouldn’t say this out loud as I get the feeling it’s one of those things that you don’t notice until you do and then you can NEVER not hear it. It’s not super loud, but I hear it.

A couple of minutes of just walking around the house getting ready and I could feel that my legs were a little warmer. Not sweaty (to my knowledge) or uncomfortable, just warmer. Given that I live on a frozen island, anything that delivers warmth that quickly is an advantage.

Training was great. I honestly could have been wearing any of my other tights and not known the difference. The only minor things were that I was aware of the compression/limit of stretch when doing sumo squats and I had an air-bubble in them while doing squats and I could feel the bubble moving up and down my leg as I did each rep!

I did burn more calories than normal. BUT I also had great focus and don’t know I can attribute it all to my fancy pants. Maybe though?

Zaggora day One

I’m not sure if it’s related to the pants but I noticed it took a little longer for my heart rate to drop back down as well. I turn my heart rate monitor off as soon as I am finished stretching so wouldn’t have recorded the extra calories here but there might be something in that.

And now for the icky stuff – driving home from the gym, still wearing my Zaggoras. I stopped into the supermarket on my way and as I hopped out I noticed a super dodgy looking wet spot on my car seat. Nope, hadn’t peed my pants but it looks as though sweat escaped from the crotch seams while I was sitting down. Nice. From now on I’ll be changing at the gym or driving home sitting on a towel.

When I levered myself into the pants, I’d thought to myself how impossible that were going to be to get out of. Uh, no. There was so much sweat inside them that they practically flew off in a slick of grossness. Definitely a ‘straight into the shower’ moment. Not sure if I’ve mentioned it before, but I really hate sweat.

The upside of all of this is that I didn’t FEEL sweaty at any point. The pants weren’t wet to the touch and apart from the car seat drama, I wouldn’t have known how sweaty I was until I was ready to take them off.

Overall, good Day One! I’ll continue to record and check in to let you know how they work out!

Cheers

Sailor Vee

Accountability is a Bitch…. But I like her anyway

SO…

I’m home from my epic journey away. It was awesome. There were wedding gowns, tuk-tuks, zoo animals, cocktails, shouting Indian tailors, skimpy swim-wear and monkey backpack that made people cry. No, I wasn’t stuck in a Baz Luhrman movie – it was just a family holiday to Thailand. It was very cool.

BUT…

now I am home. And as always, looking for new goals and adventures.

Adventure One – I am a qualified personal trainer now!! With clients and everything. I’m really excited to be working with people and sharing the epic awesomeness that it is to do something amazing for your own health and fitness.

AND…

Adventure Two – I’m ready to move my own fitness up to the next level. I love being healthy. I love being fit. I like being a healthy weight on the lower end of the BMI scale for my height. But what I really want next is to look FIT. Like, ‘proper fit’. I realise that I sound like a twit trying to explain it and I apologise. I guess I just want to test the boundaries again of what I can achieve.

BECAUSE…

there is a bodybuilding competition in September this year (about 15 weeks away). I’m playing the uncommitted card. I will train my ass off for it and assess if I am ready to compete closer to the date. I want it, but I want to do it well more. If that means I bail and the last moment this year but commit to competing next year I’ll be ready. But the ‘end date’ for my latest challenge will remain show day regardless.

THEREFORE…

I want to show you where I am starting. This is fresh from a holiday where I both ate at a buffet and swam like a kid twice a day. According to my trusty scales, I’ve come home exactly the same weight as I left. Muscle definition is down though so there is a bit of catching up to do. I am carrying an injury so can’t hit upper weights too hard just yet but will train legs as hard as I can and keep up my cardio. Nutrition is wired tight to bring my body weight down a little and make sure I am getting enough protein and goodies to fuel the machine that I am.

Comp prep sepia 300513

ARGH, SHIELD YOUR EYES!

Okay, so it’s certainly not a cover model body yet but I’m excited at the idea of being accountable to all of my invisible interwebz friends (and my mum, I know she reads this!) about how I go each week.

So stay tuned, or flip the channel, but know that I have a bucketful of adventure for the next few months 🙂

Cheers,

Sailor Vee

“I just want to get toned.”

From the gurus at http://www.bodybuilding.com…

For some reason, women, their trainers, and advertisers have kidnapped the word “toned” and turned it into the ultimate lady goal. It seems that being muscular is not a goal women should aspire to. Here’s the real deal: You can’t see shape without muscles. You can run on the treadmill or swoosh away on the elliptical all day. Sure, you might get thinner, but without some meat on your delts, triceps, and biceps, you’ll never see those awesome shoulder caps.

Ladies, “I want more muscle,” is an absolutely legitimate goal to tell your trainer or your friends.

On a scientific note, “tone” actually has meaning on a physiological level. Your muscles maintain a low-level contraction, even when you’re at rest. That’s why your muscles are always at least a little firm. This is called “muscle tone,” or “residual muscle tension.” It helps keep you upright, and maintain balance and posture. In this light, there’s really no way to “tone up” your muscles—they’re already toned.