A series of miraculous events

Howdy, folks!  Lots of good news to share!  So I’ll get straight into it.

#1.  The All Whites draw with Italy.  Are you following the World Cup at the moment?  Seriously, this is a huge upset.  NZ is ranked 78, Italy is ranked 5.  The Italians should have beaten NZ with their eyes closed and their hands tied behind their backs!  And all they could manage was a 1 all draw (and might I add, NZ scored the first goal!).  Italy has 3000+ registered professional soccer players.  NZ has 25.  Not joking.  The All Whites team is literally made up of amateurs and part-timers!  Seriously, wow.  BF is following the world cup pretty intensively, so I can’t help but pay a little attention.  NZ has 1 game left against Paraguay.  I’m tempted to watch (last nights game was on at 2:00 am here in NZ, so you do have to go to a little effort to watch these things).  However, typically when I watch a critical sporting event, the team I’m cheering usually loses.  Case in point the MN Vikings.

#2.  Happy Father’s Day!  Mom sent me photos – apparently we have a jet ski now.  I’m not surprised at all.  I had a *feeling* there might be a jet ski at our house by the time I arrived in August.  BF is keen.  Mom described the newest “toys for boys” as a big hit.

#3.  My Etsy shop is going to be featured on that awesome blog, Monsterbites on July 1st!  They’re going to be giving away something from my shop.  Yes, expect me to promote the hell out of the post starting from July 1st.  I have been working hard on my networking (both on and off Etsy) so I’m pleased that it’s paid off a little bit (miraculously so?).  I was thinking to do a giveaway but wanted another website to host – so it all really works out perfectly.

I AM Kim Possible

The Cartoon Character party I had mentioned previously was a week or so ago.  I’ve included a photo of my final result as KP.  The hair colour was kind of an epic fail.  But it was only$4NZD for hair mascara vs. $18NZD for a horrible red wig!  I know, next time I’ll go with the horrible red wig…  I was particularly impressed with my Rufus.  He was the most energy intensive part of my costume (the rest being pants and gloves which I already owned, and acquiring a black turtleneck – also $4NZD from SaveMart).  And yes, I worked my ass off at the gym for a solid 2 weeks and all I achieved was a slightly smaller patch of stomach fat.  I just went with it.

It’s amazing, I am at the moment, about 9 kg or ~ 25lbs lighter than I was in 2007 when I arrived in NZ and still a flat stomach evades me.  Kind of depressing actually.  This week I read about a new ‘miracle’ treatment called Zeltiq.  Again, skeptical.  How can it possibly be healthy to freeze your body tissue like that?  And – what are the long term effects?

But in the future (perhaps after childbearing years – so we’re talking 10+) I would definitely consider zeltiq if that horrible white flabby thing in the middle of my body (I suppose you could call it my stomach) doesn’t shape up.  Speaking of non-invasive plastic surgeries, I would also totally have this done.  The anti-cellulite treatment of the celebrities.  Not any time in the immediate future.  It’s just something I would probably have done if I won the lottery, or decided to pursue my modeling career…  Just kidding.

For the meantime, I work out 4 x 1hr+/week and eat healthy.  It seems to work.  I’ll share some of my healthy habits (disclaimer, I’m not a doctor, personal trainer or nutritionist!).  I don’t have a car.  This is kind of like cheating because I’m forced to walk everywhere, which I estimate is about 3-4 hours of walking a week.  But I think most of my staying 8 or so kilos smaller than I was 3 years ago is mostly attributed to eating habits.  In April 2008 a crazy thing happened.  I sprained my ankle while out running.  This meant I could no longer walk anywhere (thus the exercise I was counting on to counteract all tim tam consumption was gone).  Which meant if I didn’t want to completely balloon out, I was actually going to have to curb my eating.  And I came across 2 miracle web articles (the links to which are no long forgotten, but the messages I remember.  #1 Oatmeal is awesome  #2 Sugar is evil – it stays in your system and causes you to crave more).

I no longer eat cereal.  Why?  Even the ‘healthy’ cereals are simply processed and refined carbs carbs and more carbs.  And expensive!  A box of cereal is around $7NZD and lasts what – a week?  A 1kg bag of oatmeal is $4 (generic) and lasts at least 2.  I put a little bit of flax seed oil on my oatmeal, along with yogurt and a banana.  Yeah, this is kind of a weird concoction but I can’t start the day without it!  I honestly do try to cut down on the sugar, but it is difficult as I have a massive sweet tooth.  The cravings have mostly subsided (the worst thing about working out lots = cravings) these days, but I usually have something sweet every day.  Hot chocolate, or a couple of squares of dark choc.  I still eat ice cream but usually only once a week (previously I have been known to consider ice cream a food group).

Carbs are not entirely evil, but if I do eat them I opt for wholegrain whenever possible.  So brown rice over white rice, wholemeal bread over all others, wholegrain roti over naan, wholegrain pasta over ordinary, etc. etc.  Wholegrain tortillas are awesome.  As are wholegrain pita breads (mini pizzas as at the moment I’m too lazy to make my own pizza crust and pre-made wholegrain pizza crusts have yet to land in a Dunedin supermarket).

Veges are your friend.  Like, seriously.  Spinach is a super food.  And it mixes in with everything.  I keep some frozen in the freezer to mix into pretty much every single pasta dish I’ve ever made.  I also eat vegetarian quite frequently.  Tofu, yum.  Beans, yum.  Falafal, yum.  Hummus, yum.  And because I like to lift weights at the gym, protein is critical.  Have some at every meal.  There’s protein in dairy as well.

Another problem I often have was eating before going to the gym.  Because I usually go ~5pm, I don’t want to eat dinner beforehand (eating = I’m too tired and full to go have a workout) but I don’t want to get to the gym and feel so hungry and faint (hello sensitive to blood sugar levels) that I have to go home without finishing my routine.  My co-worker told me the best thing to eat prior to the gym is a banana.  It’s so true!  Banana is an amazing thing – you don’t feel too full, but you don’t feel hungry either!  I particularly endorse Bobby bananas as they are perfect ‘1 serving size’.

My last tip for today is drink lots of herbal tea.  It’s tasty, almost like eating, and incredibly satisfying.

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