Tuesday, 31 May 2016

WIAW #91 Studying Eats!

Happy Wednesday friendly friends!

Well, I mean, as happy as Wednesday can be when you have an exam and it's your third one in a row... and you have three more to smash out. Have I mentioned how much I love year 12?? :P

Anywho, today I thought I'd bring back an old favourite that has seemed to be lost in the jumble of busy-life and that WIAW- which turns out to be one of my favourite posts to write!

Today's What I Ate Wednesday comes from Saturday, the weekend before my week of exams and also the day after a long, exhausting (both physically and mentally) week which meant Saturday was a complete rest day.

In a nutshell? These are my eats from a day of rest and study. The rest part was nice. The study... not so much :)

Now onto the food!

After a much-needed sleep-in (well, does 6:40am count as a sleep-in?) after a whole week of pre-6am wake ups I wandered downstairs, got myself a glass of water, crept back upstairs with iPad in tow and read through some Popsugar posts while tucked up back in my warm, snuggly, bed (soo good :).

After around 15 mins my stomach started complaining and I knew it needed to be fed and I knew exactly what it needed:

The perfect way to consume as many awesome nutrients as possible and not even notice because it tastes so gosh darn creamy, sweet and delicious!

This smoothie consisted of 1 chopped, frozen banana, a handful of frozen mango, handful chopped, frozen zucchini, a handful of kale, a handful of spinach, 1/2 frozen avocado and water- all whizzed up in the Vitamin until super smooth and creamy. I think it should also be mentioned that even with the biggest jar in my household, I still had some smoothie leftover in the blender- that's when you know you're in for a good feed!

This did the trick and my stomach was happy and my body was buzzing with all that good stuff!

After slurping down this big green smoothie it was time to stock up the groceries and then return home for a good, hard study sash before my first lit exam on Monday!

Lunch: After around 2 hours of study, the stomach started growling again and I was in no mood to spend a luxurious amount of time whipping something up in the kitchen, so I grabbed an armful of raw veg, some frozen seeded sourdough bread (3 small slices- one i heated up immediately and spread with hummus to silence the beast!) and almond butter... et voila:

Lunch! Re-fueling the brain cells!

After lunch I just couldn't bring myself to go back into the study just yet so I had a little break with a Pretty Little Liars episode which allowed me some time to just breattthheee.

But alas, it was back to the study after the episode and back to the grind of learn, learn, learning! (when I've gotten into it and done a few hours in the day under my belt I quite enjoy studying- it's just the getting started part that is the hardest.)

 Saturday was fairly cold and this was just what I needed to warm the soul- a warmed up mug of soy milk with fresh mint leaves (remove leaves after around 10 mins of soaking :) and four pitted dates:

So good- definitely recommend!
Get a small piece of date, pop it on your spoon, submerge into hot, creamy, mint-y milk, a few seconds later and you will be in food paradise!

I took this snack to the computer for another break with some Buzzfeed and YouTube watching. The brain was well and truly fried by this point.

Following this I took a relaxing bath, with a fitness magazine and then got into PJ's to settle in for the night.

Dinner: Dinner was a delicious one with a whipped up home-made veggie patty and some veg:

Totally hit the spot and left me feeling warm and nourished inside.
 The patties were basically some caramelised onion, garlic and spices mixed with mashed butter beans, formed into balls and popped in the freezer for around half an hour, then popped in the oven for around 45mins until golden brown on top!

There was probably some after dinner snack involved (there usually is!) so that would have either been some 90% dark choc or some nuts or something :) Can't quite remember- my feels go with the chocolate :P.

Aaaand that's what I ate! Looking back this was great fuel for my study and brain and if I can keep this good stuff up during exams my body will be quite happy indeed!

Your turn:
What's your go-to study snacks/ meals?
Favourite throw-together lunch that takes approximately 5 minutes?
Favourite snack of recent?

I hope you all have a great hump day, power through the rest of the week and as always; EAT SOMETHING DELICIOUS! Bye for now awesome people! :D

Friday, 27 May 2016

Minty Fresh!

Hello there beautiful people!!

Today I'm popping in (for what seems like the first time in a long time- #studylife) for a quick little recipe creation that was purely a let's-see-if-this-works-out-because-it-just-came-to-me inspiration/ epiphany that got the brain cogs (the none mole-ratio, anti deriving, English technique cogs that have been in overuse) turning.

You see, in this season of life- things be busy. Real busy. And more often than not I'm heading into school early for some kind of meeting/ commitment/ cross country training. And in particular with cross-country training mornings- brekky needs to be prep-ahead, transportable and still delicious after sitting in my bag for an hour.
Just you wait... :D

Yes, you've heard it all before- but when you're in a period of life that requires certain recipes, than the recipes that will be shared will be of certain characteristics- and recently as you made have deduced, they have been prep-ahead and take on-the-go meals! And I think we all appreciate these recipes at some point in our lives!

So anyway, onto today's inspired creation!

I had fresh mint leaves hanging around in my fridge that needed to be used up in the next day or so. I also had cross-country training the following morning. I'm also a person who love, love, loves the malt-y, vanilla-y, rich flavour of protein powder added to recipes. And oats are a great addition to a post-workout breakfast as well as my undying love for them meaning they would also be included in this recipe.

So I got to thinking, what would tired, hot, sweaty, muscle-sore Steph want to devour as soon as she made it back to the change rooms after a heavy training sesh? (And I mean heavy; think stair runs, interval sprints and suicides... for 12 minutes EACH.)
Unfortunately my imagination cannot make stairs appear flat... no matter how hard I tried :P

It was then that I knew I would be making some sort of vanilla-mint, fudge, no-bake oat bite creation. And so it was created:
Now I could go into lengthy detail about how soft, chewy, fudge-y rich and delicious these bites were and that hint of fresh mint coupled with the delectable, sweetness of the vanilla protein powder and the nutty tones hidden throughout every bite... but I just did so I guess I will in fact!
To make a batch of these bad boys for yourself all you will need is:

3/4 cup rolled oats
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
2 dates
3-4 fresh mint leaves
1 large scoop peanut butter (or any nut butter)
1/4-1/2 cup almond milk (add more if too crumbly and not forming nice compact balls)
dash of cinnamon (optional)

And all you will need to do is:

1. Place everything in a high-speed belnder/ food processor and whaz! You may need to stop and give everything a little stir around and whaz some more until combined!)
2. Line a container with baking paper
3. Roll mix into balls, place in container, cover with lid and pop in the freezer overnight until required (around 30-40mins should be enough if you're making it for that day).

 To this: (frozen)
 Nice and cold; perfect for a cooling brekky treat:
 No Steph; don't devour it yet- an hour defrosting will make it all the more delicious! (tip for anyone creating it; let defrost for at least half an hour for optimal texture and taste)
And just for your viewing pleasure; here is my hand, holding my delicious vanilla-mint oat fudge bites in said change room, crying tears of joy (or maybe I was just delirious after being so smashed from training!)
 Yeah, I'm the weird kid taking pictures of her food in the school change room. No shame.

That texture tho...
 Happy, happy days.

 Beautifully balanced with carbs, fat and protein for optimum recovery; the body was happy!

Your turn:
Had any good runs recently? Workouts that have left you completely hammered? It hurts.. but it's so, so good!
Fav brekky of recently?
What's your fav combo with mint? Choc mint is pretty good, though vanilla-mint has suddenly taken the spotlight in my life at the minute!!

 I hope you all have a fabulous weekend, filled with love, laughter and good times- make a memory you will never forget and, as always; EAT SOMETHING DELICIOUS!! Bye for now friendly friends! :D

Monday, 23 May 2016

Prep-Ahead Breakfasts! - Cross Country Edition

Hello there awesome-sauce people of the blog-o-sphere!

Today I have a small compilation of random-impromptu-created-as-I-went prep-ahead breakfasts that I created specifically for my early cross-country training the night before. My mission? To make super delicious night-before breakfasts that I would utterly cry with happiness whilst chowing down on in the school change rooms after a super hard sweat sesh.

And let me just say, I was quite happy with the results!!

So, if you find yourself in a busy period of life, or you too find yourself having to gt up with the moon and the stars to go to a training session, or if you just really need your beauty sleep and thus have no time to whip up an awesome, nutrient-filled breakfast in the morning... then these recipes will be perfect for you and your food lovin body!

Now onto the foood!!

1. Freezer Oatmeal Vanilla Protein Bar! Recipe number one involves a deliciously creamy oat mixture creation- frozen and then left to defrost for an hour the next day and eaten as a frozen oat bar breakfast! Confused? Don't worry, just read on below:
To make this bad boy...
3/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 heaped cup greek yoghurt
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
2 pitted dates
1 tablespoon nut butter (I used peanut butter)
Splash of water

1. Place everything in a blender/ food processor.
2. Blend/ food process... :)
3. Then simply pour into a container lined with baking paper, cover and place in the freezer overnight:
When I woke up the next day? I simply cut the frozen oatmeal bar in two and wrapped in foil to defrost slightly in my backpack whilst I ran around and worked up a biiiig appetite!
This was just so cold, creamy, fudgey, filled with all the good stuff and DELICIOUS! Perfect post-run fuel!

2. Baked Chickpea Blondies! Recipe number two! A version of my chickpea blondies, whipped up and baked the night before, popped in the fridge overnight ready for brekky the next day!!
To make yourself a batch of these simply:

3/4- 1 cup cup rolled oats
2 pitted dates
3/4 cup chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
1 large scoop (pretty much 2 tablespoons) peanut butter
Splash of almond milk
Optional- protein powder/ other flavourings

1. Again; place everything in a blender and blend until smooth and combined
2. Form into balls/ sqaures/ bars and place on a tray lined with baking paper and bake in an oven at 180 degrees celsius for around 15 minutes until golden brown on top (not too long because you don't want them to dry out)
3. Leave to cool completely, then place in a container in the fridge until ready to eat!
Soft, fudgey, chewy... again; a perfect post workout brekky, filled with so much yum!
And I also apologise for all of the early morning shots- reality right here, folks!

Sigh, I want more of these in my life..

3. Choc Fudge Brownie Bites! Last, but most, most, most definitely not least (maybe even the best!) were these raw choc, protein, fudge breakfast truffles:
These were frozen once again and left to thaw for approximately an hour in my bag during training.

1/2 cup rolled oats
1 massive spoon peanut butter
1 scoop protein powder
2 pitted dates
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup almond milk

1. Blender- blend- smooth-boom! (add more liquid if too crumbly)
2. Roll into balls and place in container lined with baking paper, cover with lid and freeze overnight.
3. Defrost for at least an hour and then enjoy these delicious, cold, fudge-y raw brownie bites!!
Hello early morning shots!!
And once again, ridiculously delicious!!

Checklist complete?

Check, check, check, CHECK!!

Definitely recommend any of these recipes if you're short on time because they offer so much goodness that will start your day the right way (and not just in a way a banana, or coffee, or processed breakfast drink would) And especially if you're doing easrly morning training- these recipes ensure your cells and muscles are running on the best fuel possible for optimum recovery!)


Your turn:
Are you a night-before breakfast prep-aheader? Quite a title, huh?
Favourite overnight brekky recipe? I do love me some overnight oats?
Do you prefer raw (vegan of course) brownies, or cooked brownies? I love the cool, raw, fudginess of creamy chocolate that hasn't been baked- so good!

I hope you enjoyed these recipes as much as I enjoyed eating them (highly improbable!!) and I hope you have a delightfully delicious day! Bye for now friendly friends!! :D

Friday, 20 May 2016

Undereating- uh oh!

Hi there everyone!!

In today's post I wanted to touch on something I think I take very seriously in my life and work to influence many other teenage girls my age through day-to-day interactions and this blog too. It's the topic of under-eating and it's something my body has struggled through in my past which is why I find it so worrying to watch other girls go through the similar struggles I experienced.

There was a time when I lost so much weight. When I was cold every second of every day. When my natural cycles were stuffed up and I suffered from insomnia- what I felt to be the most debilitating result of not eating enough. When I would come home from school and collapse onto the couch ready for a nap. When I couldn't even go on a walk with my mum and the dog.

And that was a time I never, ever, EVER want to go back to. So when I see the girls around my school, tossing their sandwiches in the bin, or shivering under two jackets on a sunny day, or falling in and out of concentration... I'm sick to my stomach.

But this post isn't about those girls. This post isn't a commanding, preaching post telling you all to eat enough fro your bodies, ensuring you are getting enough kilojoules/ calories to fuel your day-to-day life, because I've already done that. I have quite a collection of posts now regarding eating to fuel your body. So no, that's not why I'm here today. Today I want to talk about my concern that I might be slipping back into bad habits.

You see, it's so easy to let your mind float into disordered unhealthy thoughts when a thought like; 'If I don't add in a chickpea patty I will eat a heck of a lot less.' pops into your head and you simply prep yourself a salad simply made of veggies (no protein or fats). And this happened to me the other day when I chopped up some raw veg to bring to school and then added in a few lentils and called it lunch. I was starving by the time I got home.

This was also the day I had early-morning cross-country training which involved re-running the course and then doing continuous sprint and recovery drills (boy it was tough!). This was also the day when my body needed more fuel and i gave it less? Why did I feel that small sense of accomplishment? It's moments like this that I can 100% relate to those going through an eating disorder or those who regularly suffer from disordered thoughts. As soon as you let one little unhealthy thought take hold of your mind, it's so easy to slip entirely off the rails.

^^This is one of my favourite posts on this topic by The Cookie ChRUNicles (part 1 and part 2)

And then on the other hand, the busyness of my schedule, combined with the stress of school and amount of homework I had ahead of me for the weekend left me with approximately 0% energy or creativity to come up with anything for dinner, so after my merger salad at lunch, this is what my dinner turned out to be:

I'm sure many people would eat this amount of food for dinner, but for me this is definitely not enough to fuel my body. I need to eat probably double this and yet all i made myself for dinner was 2 wholemeal crumpets topped with vegemite, avocado and poached eggs with a side of baked beans.

In short? Friday I was under-eating and the take-away message for me from this day was that i can do it both consciously and unconsciously. I both choose to undercut and I also end up underrating as a result of not being bothered to come up with anything else.

It was after this dinner when I noticed for the first time that day (when I actually took a minute out of my day to simply be present) that I felt the hunger my body was crying out to signal to be fed. So I took action. I knew I needed to up my protein so poured myself a big glass of cold soy milk and enjoyed a few squares of dark chocolate. I still had not eaten nearly enough to fuel that active day for me but it was important for me to recognise this and take action, something I didn't do a few years back and was so quickly and easily taken over by unhealthy under-eating.
This Instagram probably helped me with the wake-up call :)

This morning I woke up just feeling empty. I took an easy morning (your body needs rest too!!) and enjoyed this delicious HUGE Steph-sized brekky:

A big not-so-green-purple green smoothie with a side of freshly baked, warm, straight-from-the-oven granola!
 I'm telling you, a spoon would have probably been a better apparatus to use for this smoothie than the start but alas... I was hungry and it was delicious!!!
 I also felt a heck of a lot better with a substantial and nutritious and filling and awesome amount of food in my belly! :D

This is a wake-up call for me (and maybe one for you too) Steph- do not fall back into unhealthy, disordered thoughts and remember to eat. EAT. Eat enough because your body needs a lot of fuel to prosper!

What about you?
Have you ever under-eaten? Conciously/ unconsciously?
Favourite quick throw-together dinner?
Favourite meal to up the fuel into your body?!

I hope you all have an awesome, awesome day, smile lots and EAT SOMETHING DELICIOUS!! TRULY! Bye for now friendly friends!! :D

Monday, 16 May 2016

The Savoury Section!

Hi there amazing, inspiring people!
(Did that make your day a little brighter? With that little piece of truth? Good! :) )

I have a shocking post in store for you today and you won't believe your eyes when you read the next words that are soon to pop up on your reading radar in a few lines when I stop blabbering and finally get to what today's post is about. Right now. RRRIIIGGHHHTT now.

Ok, I'll get on with it!

Today I have a recipe.

No that's not the shock.

Today I have a recipe that is not intended for breakfast! (I mean, you can eat it for breakfast; each to their own right?) But no, that is still not the surprise...

On this very day I have a recipe that is of the savoury variety.


Creamy Pumpkin Veggie-Stuffed Pasta Bake
 As winter approaches with the cold, dark, chill of sadness... I kid, winter's great (sometimes)... comfort food is required to make the happy pleasant fairies in your stomach happy and you even happier.

But what's a girl to do if comfort food actually makes her tummy fairies a little unhappy... and decide to punch and rip and kick at the lining of her stomach until she's doubled over in pain approximately 30 minutes after eating a cheese-filled white-pasta filled dish? Why she makes a version that's just as tasty and gives her all the goodness her body deserves!
 So I made pasta bake.
And I think you should make it too.

1 serving wholemeal penne pasta (or whatever pasta you want to use)
3/4 cup mashed pumpkin
3 brussels sprouts, chopped
A few broccoli florets (4-5)
1/2 cup green beans
1/2 cup greek yoghurt
1 tablespoon hommus
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1/3 cup rinsed and drained lentils
One handful spinach

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius and grab a loaf tin/ pasta bake tin
2.Cook pasta according to packet instructions
3.Steam the brussels, broc and beans until tender
4. Drain pasta, stir in pumpkin, greek yoghurt, hommus and nutritional yeast.
5. Add the steamed greens and lentils and then stir in the spinach
6. Transfer to tin and place in oven. Bake for around 30 minutes or until golden brown on top and a little crispy :)
 ENJOYYY!!! (leave to cool first- my little mistake :)

The cheesey, comforting, warm, goodness of this meal is so gosh darn tasty and offers so much nutritionally that this dish ticks all the boxes (tasty, comforting, delicious and filled with the stuff your body thrives on!).

As a kid I hated pasta bake. As a teen I make this and I cry with happiness:


What about you?
Are you a fan of pasta bake?
Favourite stuff to add into your pasta bake?
What's the one food you always burn your tongue on? Mine would probably be pizza straight from the oven.. because that smell is too good not to dive straight into!!

I hope you all have a fabulous rest of your day, give someone you love a hug, give yourself a hug and as always EAT SOMETHING DELICIOUS!! Bye for now friendly friends! :D
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