Fitness Log July 29 – Aug 2, 2013

July 28, 2013

Good Morning All!

The Fitness Log returns this week! I spent some time last night reflecting on past logs, thinking about my week ahead and then planning my training schedule. I will continue this week also with the daily fasting which basically creates an eight hour window during which food is consumed, the benefits of which I will discuss during the week on the log. Planning is the key to success in any venture and with the alarm set at 4:30am – I turned in just before 9pm to ensure a good night’s rest!

Monday 29 July


Training: Warm up – 5 minutes on the treadmill 5.5 km/h at 10% incline which turns a slow steady pace into a good, strong power walk.  Today’s workout was X Fit inspired incorporating plyometrics with intense heavy reps and no breaks in between except between rounds (30 second rest).  Sets: 15 reps each of barbell (loaded with 4 x 5kg plates) – squats, clean and jerk, straight leg deadlift, box jumps (up onto stage height 50cm), tricep dips, push ups, hover aka plank 30 seconds. These sets sent my heart rate straight up, particularly the clean and jerks. To improve this routine I will set up two barbells, the second with heavier load for the squats and deadlifts as they were a little on the easy side.


So this routine took me through about 20 minutes, I then moved to the treadmill and did 10 minutes HIIT (10kph / 15kph). I am slowly rebuilding my running as I’ve had some time off so I will slowly build back to my previous speeds so as to avoid injury. Finally I did some bicep work – 3 sets of 21’s (weights 4-5-6 kg). Total workout time: 45 minutes.

Nutrition: After gym (6:30am) I just take fluids – today I had green tea, dandelion tea, a piccolo and water, I also take nutrition supplements – orachel (a power packed multi-vitamin) and ming vmm which I use to boost up my immunity during the winter months. The window opened today at 12:30pm – I have installed my travel blender in the kitchen at the office and bring my prep-packed smoothie constituents in my little eGo (lunch esky).  Two tall glasses of my famous ÜberGreen.


Two organic navel oranges – I am devouring oranges at the moment – they are so delicious and sweet in season, they also hydrate you beautifully and the vitamin c boost keeps you strong! I also had some celery and capsicum ready to munch on later in the afternoon but left them for tomorrow as not feeling hungry.



Training:  Pump class tonight @ 6pm, I arrived and set up early so I could warm up for 10 minutes on the treadmill (5.5 km/h at 10% incline). In the cooler months warming the body up well before getting into your workout is really important.


Nutrition: Evening meal (@7:30pm) was a huge plate of sautéd veggies (brocoli stalk chopped, courgette, capsicum, snow peas, cabbage, leek and garlic) with lightly steamed brocoli and cauliflower florets and dry fried chicken (I only use a small amount ~60g) all dressed with a little Vietnamese peanut dipping sauce. Oh and another orange a little while after dinner.

Tuesday 29 July


Training: Warm up – 5 minutes on the treadmill 5.5 km/h at 10% incline. Quads – 4 sets of 12 reps (2 x 80kg and 2 x 120kg), 60 squats with 20 kg bar in intermittent sessions of 20’s broken up by 1 minute skipping.

leg press

Bench dips with 5kg plate on lap 3 sets x 10, tricep extensions 3 sets of 12 reps (3kg). Shoulder press 3 sets of 12 reps (5kg), dumbell flys – 3 sets of 12 reps (3kg). Again these sets were broken up by 1 minute skipping rounds.  Total workout time: 45 minutes.


Nutrition: After gym (6:30am) green tea, dandelion tea, a piccolo and water, nutrition supplements – orachel and ming vmm (see Monday’s post for info). The theory behind the daily fast is to enable the body to start to tuck in to any ‘reserves’ during the fasting zone. It really isn’t that hard and I’d recommend you give it a try. Warm no calorie beverages such as green tea also helps fill the gaps. 11am – two sweet organic navel oranges, celery with peanut butter and capsicum with hummus. A small handful of mixed nuts (almonds, cashews & walnuts).


Training:  Ab class tonight @ 5:30pm – it’s 25 minutes of non stop ab cracking goodness – a strong core stabilises and protects you from injury! I arrived 10 minutes early so I could warm up on the treadmill (5.5 km/h at 10% incline). I followed the class with 10 minutes high intensity interval training (HIIT) on the treadmill (10kph / 14kph/16kph). Total workout time: 45 minutes.


Nutrition: Evening meal (@7pm) was a huge plate of sautéd veggies (brocoli stalk chopped, courgette, capsicum, cabbage, leek, onion and garlic) with lightly steamed brocoli florets and ginger/soy chicken (~60g). Orange after dinner.  I also take a seaweed based calcium supplement in the evening called Cal-Sea-Um. The calcium from the plant source of calcified seaweed is highly  bio-available and added magnesium and vitamin D further supports absorption,

Wednesday 29 July


Training: Warm up – 5 minutes on the treadmill 5.5 km/h at 10% incline. Chest dumbell flat bench press – decreasing sets (12-10-8) @ 9kg-10kg-12.5kg), Hamstrings: leg curls 3 sets of 12 reps on pin #3,  Chest dumbell flys on flat bench press – 3 x 12 reps @ 4-5-6kg then hamstring swiss ball hamstring curls (3 sets of 12) which are fab for your whole core as well, finished with 4 x 1 minute skipping sets intermittent with 30 seconds hover/ 30 second squats (only body weight). Total workout time: 45 minutes.

Nutrition: After gym (6:30am) green tea, English breakfast tea, a piccolo and water, nutrition supplements (orachel and ming vmm). I am finding that the less I eat, the better I actually feel – I think the calorie restricted optimum nutrition (CRON) lifestyle has alot going for it and that we need to move away from this overemphasis on mass food consumption in our society. 12pm – green smoothie – two sweet organic navel oranges – small handful of mixed nuts (almonds, cashews & walnuts), celery & peanut butter.


Recovery (no training this evening) –


Nutrition: Ripe banana. Evening meal (@7pm) sautéd veggies (brocoli stalk chopped, courgette, capsicum, cabbage, onion and garlic) with lightly steamed brocoli florets and ginger fried chicken (~60g). Orange.  Cal-Sea-Um (and the tabs even taste good!).

Thursday August 1


clean and jerk

Training:  Today’s workout was a X Fit session as per Monday morning – wow those clean and jerks and box jumps are serious heart rate boosters. Total workout time: 25 minutes – a shorter session this morning as I’m going to a boxing and pilates class tonight.

Nutrition:  Massive temptation this morning, other half toasted crumpets and popped a crunchy one smothered in rapsberry jam in front of me. It was a tug-o-war but I resisted. Green tea, Earl Grey, a piccolo and heaps of water this morning, nutrition supplements (orachel and ming vmm).  Feeling awesome! Orange @ 12:30pm followed by a huge green smoothie – wow – delicious and nutritious! Everyday is different – today I added in raw lucuma powder which I bought online from Loving Earth. Lucuma is an exotic Peruvian fruit also known as the “Gold of the Incas”. I find it adds a nice sweetness to my smoothies! This weekend I am planning on trying a cacao mudshake – I found the recipe at Loving Earth. I love these guys – beautiful products, fab recipes, easy online ordering and they buy direct from the farmers in developing countries, hence supporting indigenous communities.

cacao mudshake



Training: Back to back Boxing and Pilates classes. I started doing Pilates a few months ago and have been doing on average two classes per week. The slow and controlled movements create deep poise and tension in the muscles hence strengthening and toning them whilst also elongating the spine and building a strong core. I never realised how beautiful for the body classical pilates can be.  Total training time this evening: 1 hour, 45 minutes.


Nutrition: Ripe banana (yum) – sautéd veggies (brocoli stalk chopped, courgette, capsicum, cabbage, onion and garlic) with lightly steamed brocoli florets and fried chicken (~60g). Orange.  Cal-Sea-Um. Earl Grey.

Friday 2 August


I slept in this morning until 6:25am… delicious! I think today will be a well earned rest day!

Nutrition:  Noon – two oranges and four passionfruits – this week my secretary brought me a bag of these beautiful fruits of the vine and I have been devouring them. A huge green smoothie around 2pm and today I thought I’d share why I love kiwis in my green smoothies: nutritionally dense, full of antioxidants, vitamin E, and lutein, a true SuperFood, two pieces have twice the vitamin C of an orange and as much potassium as a banana, as much fiber as one serving of bran flakes, 100 calories, great source of magnesium, low-fat, sodium-free, prevents cancer prevention, benefits the heart and tastes great!



La Belle au bois dormant…

July 17, 2013

My inspiration for ‘once upon a time….” themed charity event this Spring – La Belle au bois dormant (“The beauty sleeping in the wood”) by Charles Perrault, 1697


Frock Swap

July 11, 2013

frock swap m

Five things to change your life…

July 9, 2013

Operating from a platform of gratitude is so empowering. It is intrinsically linked with an abundance mentality and is one of my foundational principles. I firmly believe that gratitude expressed opens doors of opportunity and attracts even more wonderful things into the realm of our experience.

For some time now we have been practicing the habit of writing five things that we are thankful for each morning on a little whiteboard near the back door.  A simple concept, I call it my “5 Things”. It’s such a wonderful way to begin each day, focusing on the positive gifts and experiences that we have been blessed with. It’s really interesting to see what pops up each day as it reveals to me the true sources of joy in my life. One of the things has to be about the other half too, which is sometimes interesting in the midst of a quarrel, but does help us to remember the bigger picture and does help to build a strong and loving relationship.

I also like to write a personal note to a friend each week (you know that old fashioned app called a letter). Letting others know we appreciate and love them can sometimes be overlooked. Take a moment this week to think of someone, grab a pen and some lovely writing paper or beautiful card and write a few words of heartfelt appreciation. You will feel wonderful and it will be treasured by the receiver. While you are at it, why not grab a journal or whiteboard and give “5 Things” a try, I think you will love it!

We will remember them…

April 25, 2013

I think of my grandfather who served in WW1 – I remember him as a child gazing upon an unfamiliar face, etched with the markings of time and tragedy and later as a woman through his memoirs which my Uncle published a few years back. He passed on when I was only young – leaving a small inheritance which helped through my university studies – I honour him and the legacy of freedom that he left me….


Today we celebrated Anzac Day in our new community of the South Burnett.


Then onto the races at Wondai!




“At the going down of the sun and in the morning. We will remember them.”

Ten days in Tasmania

April 15, 2013

I’m going to let the photos do most of the talking in this post (and you can find more here on my facebook page)….we recently had the magical opportunity to spend ten days in Tasmania…..hiking in the reserves, national parks and the wild wilderness of the west, snuggling into the arms of huge ancient trees in the Tarkine, the rich scent of leatherwood forests, breathtaking ravines and gorges, drinking water so fresh and clean, breathing air as crisp as apples, standing on the rugged remote shores of Arthur river, stretching our gaze to Argentina, it was so wonderful…..











Good Friday

March 29, 2013

Hot cross buns, children scurrying about the garden hunting for brightly coloured chocolate treasures, family camping trips, luncheons and more…..yes it is Easter!


For many today marks the start of one of our favourite national holidays, the long awaited four day long weekend. With the heat of summer passed, it is the perfect opportunity for camping in the great outdoors and taking a well-earned break to spend time reconnecting with family and loved ones. For many it is also an opportunity for personal reflection and a beautiful time of spiritual refreshing.



It seems inherent in our humanity, the tendency to get disconnected, not only from others, but from ourselves and the values and truths we hold to that can sometimes be buried under the onslaught of life. How often is it though that the concerns we think so important are often no more than a clever marketing gimmick to draw our energy and focus away from the those things that really matter – love, kindness, peace, joy patience, loyalty  respect for self and others, quality time with loved ones, contribution & service, freedom from fear and through love and forgiveness, freedom from the heavy burden of broken relationship. These are elements of our humanity that connect us all. For those of us who are weary we can find restoration in the message of Easter, in the opportunity to give our burdens to one who is stronger than us, to a friend who is always waiting for our invitation to place his footprints next to ours on our journey through the sands of time.


À bientôt Cara Luncheon

March 28, 2013

The invitation read:

Please join me for luncheon, @ UrbanPantry from noon
Send me off in style, wear something to make me swoon


Maree looking fresh as a daisy in her 1940’s floral ensemble (check the hair do in the group photo below) – she looked sensational. Maree and met only recently at the Chamber Philharmonic Cologne @ St Paul’s. I spied this amazing looking woman emerging from Mehfil’s just before the concert with friends. She wearing a fabulous outfit and we struck up a conversation during the interval.



Megan channelling Jackie O here – I just love this outfit and those little accessories really make it! Megan and I met on a few occasions before becoming friends last year. It was however a moment as we crossed paths at the lights on the high street (corner of Ellenborough and Brisbane) when she really caught my eye. I thought to myself she looks sensational! Then she came into Cultiver a little later, we struck up a conversation and the rest, as they say is history! Ok you may be starting to think I am a style stalker….


This is my dear friend and colleague Figen who is setting the trend for girls in scarves and will no doubt soon launch an online fashion store to address this growing demand!

small table

Natalie what was Figen saying?


Monica sporting a fabulous new dress from Cue – the colour and style suit her so, so well! Mon has been a fabulous colleague to work with and has helped me on many occasions with her compassionate and professional insight.

big t 2

Everyone together – from left Maree (check the hair), Karen, Jan, Helene, Monica, Kerri , moi, Agnes (then back row) Figen, Natalie, Megan and Donna). Well nearly everyone, there were friend who wanted to join us that couldn’t make it and I know they’re thoughts were with us. We’re also missing Cassie who had just popped next door to Mortgage Choice to take care of some very exciting business. Not even out of their honeymoon year, Cassie still in law school and this young couple are already purchasing their first home. Cassie has been doing work experience with me and has been my right arm on Thursdays! An exceptional young woman always immaculately presented, she will do so well in all she puts her hand too.  It has been a true pleasure to mentor her.

Beautiful mother daughter team Wendy and Lisa, the wonderful proprietors of Urban Pantry in the high street, hosted our luncheon today. Since they set up camp in the the Top of Town, Urban Pantry has become my favourite spot for café with friends. Their personalised and heartfelt service is simply wonderful. If you haven’t dropped in, give yourself a treat and stop by for a piccolo!

Simply said, I was swooned off my feet…

12 Life Disciplines

March 18, 2013

Over the years I have grown to love the benefits derived from strong discipline, not only in the realm of physical training but in other areas too. I realise, not only from experiences in my own life, but by observing the lives of those around me, that these guiding principles, protect us from the consequences of a life without borders.

” He that has no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.” [Proverb 25:28]

I have spent some time today reflecting on a few things that have happened in my little world over the last few days, the kind of life I want and how easy it is to get off track when you don’t have strong guidelines or disciplines in place. I am actually quite pleased these things happened because they have really made me stop & think, take stock, make some tweaks and move forward! Everything in life can be a stepping stone if we allow it!

So this morning I decided to take some time out to meditate on the principles or disciplines that are important to me, those I already practice and some new ones I’d like to incorporate. I have consolidated them down to a list of 12 which I have documented so that I can review them everyday during my Hour of Power and keep my focus on the practices that I wish to become habitual. They may not always be easy to implement and I will be sharing them with friends and family to help me stay accountable, but I know that if I put in the hard yards in the short term, the benefits will far outweigh the costs.

suck it up

A well tended life….

March 14, 2013

I recently had the opportunity to catch up with a friend for tea in our garden. It’s a magical little place and brings me such joy to share with others. Since the summer rains everything is fresh, green and brimming with life, I have all sorts of seedlings springing up, beans, tomatoes, herbs, flowers and more. The kookaburra’s have been making themselves right at home on my garden chairs, the perfect little perch from which to scan the garden for treats and all sorts of critters abound.


I listened to a Ted talk by an inspiring young man recently. At only eleven years he spoke with eloquence and with a certainty that I am sure not only captivated his adult audience but gave many pause to reflect and consider their own lives. Many of us might recall being asked the same question as a young person, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” Even for myself at this moment with a lifestyle change in the wings, people ask me, “What will you do now?” I feel the same though as this young man, the question for me is not what I want to do rather it is what I want to be…..and my answer is no different to what is has been – I want to be happy, healthy and a live my life to the fullest.


In his frank discussion about life young Master referenced a concept known as therapeutic lifestyle changes (TLC’s) that he was proactively incorporating into his own life to create health and happiness. Dr Roger Walsh who coined the phrase described eight areas or TLC’s that can lead to wonderful outcomes for anyone who would take the time to invest in them. Whilst the eight areas he mentioned are all concepts that I value and invest into on a weekly basis, I decided to research this concept further. TLC’s have been found to have fantastic affects on 100% of people, the vast majority of practitioners however, across disciplines, prefer to prescribe medication. About 10% were found to encourage patients to engage in TLC’s in order to improve their lives. Not co-incidently those who recommended TLC’s  also practiced TLC’s themselves!


So you are probably wondering what are these TLC’s? Well as Dr Walsh notes TLC’s are nothing new, they are just practices that have perhaps fallen by the wayside of a society in rapid pursuit of the perks of modernity. They include spiritual connection, exercise, nutrition & diet, time in nature, relationships, recreation, relaxation & stress management and contribution & service. Not only are most of these fun, they are also mostly free! So why not make some time this weekend, perhaps you’ll brew a nice pot of green tea and sit in your garden and write an old fashioned letter to a friend.

vintage mail

Is there a yoga class you’ve been wanting to try? A friend you’ve been meaning to catch up with, why not invite them for a healthy, home-made lunch with a big rainbow salad. Take your kids out for a bicycle ride and have a little picnic in the park! Perhaps you want to start a journal where you can begin to jot down your thoughts? Is there a meditation group you want to join, or a spiritual journey or community you want to reconnect with?


It’s simply a matter of slowing down, reconnecting with the wisdom of ages past and beginning to tend the garden of your life. I know what helps for me is being around others who are also gently tending a life well lived.  Like an established garden, a life of value takes time and energy to develop – one must sow the right seeds in order to reap the benefits but with time and the passing of the seasons, you will begin to enjoy the fruits of your labours and will discover the joy of making  a safe space where others can also come and find rest.