What I ate as a Vegan on a heavy lifting day

I finished my fast earlier than usual today as I knew that I would be lifting some heavy weights. Breakfast was 1 1/2 cinnamon and raisin bagels with 1 banana cut up and crunchy peanut butter to give me lots of energy.

I managed to squat my PB today, 80kg, 2 rounds of 1 rep and 1 round with 2 reps. I followed this with:

  • 3 x 15 goblet squats, using 2 benches, adding 10 pulses on to the end of each round
  • 3 x 4 curtsys, with a closed leg squat in between using a barbell
  • 3 x 10 hamstring curls on a bench, using a dumbell
  • 4 x 10 glute bridges, using the leg curl machine
  • 4 x 10 single leg raises
  • 4 x 8 barbell straight leg deadlifts

 

For lunch I made protein, peach and raspberry, soft serve nice cream. Such a yummy nice cream!!

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Ingredients

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 peach
  • handful of frozen raspberries
  • 1 tbsp hemp protein powder
  • maple syrup
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • sprinkle of seeds and goji berries
  • 1/2 tsp spirulina
  • 1 passion fruit
  • almond and chocolate granola
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter

 

Directions

  • Blend the frozen banana until ice cream texture
  • Add peach, hemp powder and frozen berries, blend
  • Put in to a bowl and add the toppings

The rest of the afternoon I spent food shopping and running errands. Hunger struck whilst I was out so I treated myself to a cinnamon and caramelised banana, something I didn’t manage to take a good picture of so I won’t show that! But it was delicious, and unhealthy! But hey, it’s Saturday, treat yo self!

Dinner was a buddah bowl, which wasn’t pretty enough to photograph. I really need to improve on taking pictures, and presentation, rather than getting too excited about my food! Here’s a burrito bowl from last month.

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Ingredients

  • lettuce
  • black beans
  • sweetcorn
  • rice
  • red onion
  • peppers
  • spinach

Directions

  • Put about 1/2 cup of rice in a pan and cook until soft. Put it into a bowl once cooked.
  • Drain and wash the sweetcorn and beans and add them in a bowl with the lettuce and rice
  • Fry the onion and peppers in a fajita mix ensuring there is still a bite. Add in spinach for the last 5 mins of cooking so that it wilts.
  • Serve with fajita wraps, as a burrito, or as is with your favourite sauce!

Let me know if you try the soft serve nice cream. I recommend it, it was delicious!

Intermittent fasting and my juice fast

Fasting is my favourite, and one of the healthiest lifestyles that you can lead. It helps me to control my sugar cravings, helps aid weight loss and helps me to build muscle. During my fasted state I feel full of energy and I can concentrate much better. I choose to do my HIIT sessions within this period as I am burning the fat which is deeper in my body. As I am fasted during a HIIT session I am burning twice the amount of fat as i would be burning during a non-fasted state. My HIIT sessions usually last around 20-25 minutes and consist of 14 different exercises done at 30 seconds each, at maximum effort, with no rest. Once I have completed the exercises I will have a 30 second rest, I do the circuit 4 times. If you want to find out more about HIIT sessions, see here.

There are different types of intermittent fasting. The one that I follow is a daily fast. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts my fast lasts for 17 hours and I eat within a 7 hour window. Some people will only eat 2 meals within their window. Some people fast for much longer periods of time and will only eat one meal a day. Because I love food, and I want to keep a higher calorie intake due to building muscle, I choose to carry on having 3 meals. When you have finished eating a meal your body will take around 3-5 hours to digest it. Within this time it is very hard for your body to burn fat, this is due to insulin levels being high. During your fasted state your body burns fat easily due to insulin levels being low. Our bodies don’t go in to a fasted state until 12 hours after our last meal, due to the large amount that we have eaten, so the majority of people will never enter the fasted state, and will not be able to burn optimal fat. Scientists have proven that intermittent fasting helps you live longer and that it may reduce the risk of cancer. There have been studies where cancer patients have taken part in alternate day fasting, where they would fast before chemotherapy, and the results showed better cure rates and fewer deaths. Combining fasting with a vegan diet and you’re almost invincible! See this video of a 100 yr old surgeon who eats a vegan diet.

As I have been ill for over a week I decided to take part in a juice fast for a day so that my body could be flushed, was resting in terms of digesting food, and was able to concentrate more on making me better. I also had green tea throughout the day to help me keep full.

For my breakfast at 12pm I made a green juice:

Ingredients

  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 lemon
  • handful spinach
  • 3 large black kale leaves
  • 2 apples
  • 1 inch cucumber
  • 1 inch ginger

 

I had lunch at around 3pm which started as off as one of my favourite juices, carrot and ginger, but I added in some red cabbage to mix it up a little.

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Ingredients

  • 2 carrots
  • 1 apple
  • 1 orange
  • 1 inch ginger
  • handful of red cabbage

 

Dinner was a sweeter juice at around 6pm, I finished my juice a little earlier. I still managed to squeeze a few vegetables in this one. I added a sweet potato which I’ve never put in to a juice before, it turned out really nice!

Ingredients

  • 1 orange
  • 2 apples
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 3 small beets
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 2 carrots

 

The juice hasn’t cured me of my cold, but it has made me feel lighter after Christmas! i think that a juice detox is great to do if you’re wanting to give your body a break.

Today I’m trying a mixture of a smoothie, juice and salad. Let’s see how I get on! I hope you all had a great New Years, and Happy New Year to you all! 🙂

Christmas Holidays inc vegan baileys recipe

Christmas is probably my favourite time of the year. Spending time with loved ones, friends, eating loads of food, and getting merry every day without being judged (I cannot wait for a detox though in the new year!).

Xmas eve was a a chilled one. I did yoga, made a delicious looking smoothie (banana, frozen berries, a peach, a kiwi and soya milk) as I was starting to come down with a cold. We went to see my Grandad and then went to the pub with my brother and friend.

I spent Christmas day with my family eating food, opening presents, and playing games (a family tradition). My Christmas dinner consisted of a curried parsnip soup made by my auntie, a nut roast with port and cranberry sauce with all of the trimmings, and an apple and mixed berry crumble with custard (all vegan of course and made by mother bear!).

Boxing day we went for a long walk around the moors and ending up at one of the local pubs, which has had a refurbishment, for food. Although they didn’t advertise having vegan meals, there were one or two. I had a vegetable chilli with chips, which was delicious!

My final day in Manchester was spent with my best friends. We went for some cocktails at a cool Brazilian restuarant/bar, Canbana, in The Corn Exchange. They have 2 for 1 on drinks 5-7pm. The decor was awesome! We managed to steal some hammocks, which I really want in my room now, they were so comfy. I can definitely imagine me doing some yoga in those. Then we went to Wahaca for dinner, one of my favourite Mexican chain restaurants. They accommodate for vegans and the food is packed with flavour. I love that you can either have a burrito or have ‘tapas’ type food.

I made some vegan baileys as this is something I missed being vegan. And as I promised a few days back on Instragram, I would post the recipe.

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Ingredients

1 can coconut milk

3 tsp vanilla

2 tsp agave syrup

150ml whisky

Directions

Add all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. I kept stopping the blender to try and make sure it was to my own taste. I probably ended up putting around 200ml or more of whisky, and around 4 tsp of agave syrup in to the coconut milk in the end. But as mentioned, this is to your own taste!

 

Enjoy and Merry Xmas all!

Breakfast on the go and Vegan protein bowl

Another busy day back in home in Bolton. I got my hair re-permed, so I am currently looking, as Dan says, like a poodle. Cheers babe.

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As always my fast finished at 12pm so I had breakfast on the go today. It was over night oats topped with my favourite; caramelized bananas and cinnamon apples, with peanut butter and some kiwi for some extra vitamins (I’m a little under the weather at the moment).

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup oats
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • date syrup
  • 1 banana
  • 1 apple
  • 1 kiwi
  • cinnamon
  • peanut butter
  • plant based milk
  • pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • goji berries
  • raisins

Directions

  • Add the oats, chia seeds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, berries, raisins, syrup and milk into a jar and stir. Leave over night.
  • When you’re ready to eat add some more date syrup to a pan and heat, adding the bananas to caramelize. When cooked through, remove and add to the oats.
  • Put the sliced apple into the already caramelized pan with cinnamon and cook. Add to the oats when soft.
  • Cut the kiwi, add the the rest of the ingredients, and a spoonful of peanut better.
  • EAT!

I didn’t take a picture of my lunch today unfortunately so I won’t be sharing the recipe. It was delicious, but after my heavy leg day yesterday I made a vegan protein bowl. This came from the left overs from my Christmas Meal. I love it when people ask me ‘but where do you get your protein from?’ Well here you go – one of the sources that I get my protein is lentils. Some of the other sources are below:

  • Tofu – 22g per 1/2 cup
  • Seitan – 21g per 1/2 cup
  • Tempeh – 17g per 1/2 cup
  • Quinoa – 8g per cup
  • Chia seeds – 4g per 2 tsp
  • Hemp seeds – 10g per 2 tsp
  • Nuts and seeds – Dependent on the nut/seed
  • Spirulina – 12g per cup
  • Peanut butter – 25g per 100g

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Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup lentils
  • 1/4 cup cous cous
  • Roast potatoes
  • left over roast veg
  • sprouted seeds
  • 1/2 cube of veg stock

Directions

  • Add the cous cous with 1/2 a veg stock and enough water to cover it into a bowl. Cover the bowl until the cous cous has soaked up all of the water.
  • Add the remainder of the warmed ingredients to the bowl and top with your favourite sauce if required.

I hope everyone is exciting for Christmas!

The best Vegan breakfast

Breakfast, my favourite meal of the day, the one I look most forward to. This mornings breakfast was a mixture of everything I had in my fruit bowl, due to going home over Xmas I need to use everything up. I wasn’t sure how it would taste, but my gosh it was an explosion in my mouth! I did a fasted HIIT before this to ensure I was burning the restored fat in my body.

15631078_1201701379905985_663172846_oMy HIIT consisted of 4 rounds of 14 exercises at 30 seconds each, with a 30 second rest after each round. I used dumbbells for the arm exercises:

  • Jump squats
  • Front arm raises
  • Jumping jacks
  • Side arm raises
  • High knees
  • Shoulder press
  • Tuck jumps
  • Fly
  • Burpees
  • Reverse fly
  • Mountain climbers
  • Sumo high pulls
  • Jumping jacks
  • Bicep curls.

I finished off with 3 x 20 press ups with an incline varying in arm width.

Time for the bowl of deliciousness!

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp hemp protein powder
  • coconut milk
  • 2 tsp treacle
  • sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1/2 mango
  • handful of frozen berries
  • 1 banana
  • dark sugar
  • pumpkin, hemp and sunflower seeds
  • raisins
  • dedicated coconut
  • spoonful of peanut butter
  • chocolate and hazelnut granola

Directions

  • Heat oats, chia seeds, hemp protein powder, coconut milk and treacle in a pan until desired consistency.
  • Put in a bowl. Using the same pan sprinkle sugar, add the bananas and make sure they are coated thoroughly. Cook until caramelised.
  • Add on top of the bowl with the remainder of the ingredients.

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What’s your favourite breakfast? 🙂

1st Vegan Christmas Day (pre-xmas)

This year is my first year being Vegan and it’s quite exciting! Cue happy face 😀

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Christmas is all about indulging in your favourite things, yummy! My Christmas day with Dan (boyfriend) started off with his favourite breakfast, my version of the Mexican breakfast ‘Huevos Rancheros.’ Obviously neither of us eat eggs so it’s basically just a flat fajita, that looks like a pizza! Haha! But it’s packed with veggie goodness and spiciness from the beautiful Sriracha sauce.

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Ingredients

  • 2 x tortillas (or depending on how many you want)
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1/4 courgette
  • Handful of spinach
  • A few jalapenos
  • 1/2 can Black beans, rinsed with cold water (I didn’t use them on this one)
  • Fajita seasoning
  • Hot sauce (I use sriracha)
  • Grated Garry, or Vegan cheese to you ‘non-vegans’ (I didn’t use it on this as Dan doesn’t like cheese)
  • Handful of Good4U super spouts

Directions

  • Pre-heat the oven on 190 degrees
  • Chop all the veg into the consistency you require. I like mine cut as though it’s going into a fajita (length ways)
  • Add onion to a pan, I don’t use oil for this as the veg releases enough water to cook without, and cook until tender.
  • Put in the rest of the veg and black beans with fajita seasoning and cook until there is a little bit left in the veg.
  • Whilst the veg is cooking, put as much hot sauce as required on the base of the tortilla, adding the veg on top when cooked
  • Put Garry on top and pop into the oven, cooking until the edges go crispy and brown
  • Remove from the oven, add on some more Garry if required, sprouts and more hot sauce (personally I like to add on sweet chilli or BBQ sauce)

Enjoy!

After breakfast we headed out for a long walk over to Hollingbury to wander around and get lost in the forrest.

I made friends with a Robin and saw a cute Xmas tree!

Once we had come back it was time for cooking again, this time my first Christmas dinner! It was scary I’ll tell you that! But I made it, and it turned out real tasty. The recipe I followed was for 4 people, from The Veg Space, so there was a lot left over. But no food went to waste, we had it the next day for lunch as well 🙂 I roasted some veg in the oven with soy sauce, baked some crispy potatoes using coconut oil instead of goose fat with thyme, rosemary and garlic, and I bough some stuffing balls from Aldi (vegan of course!).

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Stuffed butternut squash roast

Butternut Squash roast ingredients

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 100g lentils
  • 100g cranberries (I used any left over to make a cranberry sauce which was water, cranberries, sugar and orange skin and juice)
  • 2 stalks rosemary and thyme (chopped)
  • 1/2tsp cinnamon
  • 150ml red wine
  • 150ml veg stock
  • 50g pistachios

Directions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees.
  • Slice the butternut sqaush in half, length ways, and scoop out the seeds. Brush a little coconut oil on and bake in the oven for 30-40 mins
  • Whilst the butternut squash is cooking, cook the onion and garlic (chopped) for 5 mins until softened.
  • Add the lentils, cranberries, rosemary, thyme, cinnamon, red wine and veg stock bringing it to a boil, then covering and letting it simmer for 30 mins. Or until the lentils are tender. Make sure you watch out that there is enough liquid whilst cooking, and that the lentils do not burn or stick to the pan.
  • Take the butternut squash out of the oven and let it cool slightly before scooping out the flesh. Make sure there is enough left in to hold it’s shape, and that you do not break the skin.
  • Add the flesh to the lentils, mashing it into the mixture, then stir in the spinach and roughly chopped pistachios before spooning back in to the buttnernut squash shell. Make sure you taste the mixture first and that it is to your taste.
  • Place the stuffed butternut squash back into the oven for around 10 mins to make sure its nice and hot!

Voila! A mouthwatering Xmas dinner.

We had Star Wars themed crackers on the table, obviously fitting with Rouge One coming out this week (if you haven’t seen it, you definitely should!) My Xmas hat broke before I got to put it on my head 😦 Haha!

What’s everyone going to cook for their Xmas dinners? If you give this recipe a try, let me know what you think of it!

 

Coconut, mango oats and leg day

I’ve been really busy this week catching up on house work, Christmas shopping, skateboarding and going to the gym, hence the lack of posts. I cannot believe it’s only 1 week until Christmas and only 2 weeks left of my redundancy. How I will miss my free time!

To keep up my energy on these busy days I’ve been eating oats so that I stay full, also they make me feel warm inside! Today I had a Caribbean Christmas themed breakfast, I had some mango to use and bought some coconuts the other day, to give me lots of energy ready for leg day.

Leg day consisted of (weight was lowered on each set):

4 X 6 barbell squts

4 x 6 barbell split squats with a step

4 X 6 curtsy squats with free weights

4 X 6 straight deadlift with barbell

4 X 4 wide-stance leg press

4 X 4 wide- stance leg press reverse (I don’t think that I’ve got this exercise down to a T yet!)

4 X 6 free weight split squats with a bench, adding 6 pulses after each 6th split squat

4 X 6 donkey kicks with 6 pulses after each 6th donkey kick

4 x 6 side straight leg raises

4 x 6 side bent knee raises

My legs are already killing me, I’m pretty sure that I won’t be able to walk tomorrow!

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Ingredients

1 cup of oats

1/2 cup of chia seeds

sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg

1 tsp vanilla

coconut milk – it’s up to you how much you use

date syrup

1/2 mango

sprinkle of seeds – I used pumpkin, sunflower and hemp

sprinkle of raisins

1/2 coconut

Directions

Put the oats, chia seeds and coconut milk in a pan and heat until required consistency. Put in a bowl and add the remainder of the ingredients on top. Time to eat!!

It was so yummy, I wish I had more mangos to make this again tomorrow!