Friday, June 28, 2013


Wimbledon has kicked off in Wimbledon and I am loving being right in the middle of all the action, right in the middle of ALL THE CELEBRITIES MILLING ABOUT. In fact, I have become so enamored with FINDING FAMOUS PEOPLE that I have been on extreme high alert. It is already paying off:

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what do you mean "...and...." ?!?! photo fame15_zps0f726956.jpg
Warren: .... and...

"And? what do you meeaaaan '...and...' ?!?!"
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Hey!??! Hey?!?! FAMOUS PERSON!!!!

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Not on TV... or in a magazine.
Or even on the internet?
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 It's probably someone on holiday

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That has tennis written all over it.
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One absolutely can. NOT. argue with spandex and a plait.

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Then, the following day, I was walking down the road on high alert for famous people minding my own business when I SPOTTED THEM.

I texted Warren (who was busy at work), straight away.
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Warren: Ok! Yeah! Who are they this time?!

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Warren: Well - how do you know they are famous?

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Warren: Well... there's quite a lot of people getting out of taxis.....

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So if, by any chance, you are passing through Wimbledon with a suitcase, 
wearing spandex and/or getting out a taxi
- I'm keen for your autograph.

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Side Note: The Piazza near Wimbledon Centre Court Shopping Centre is hosting a big screen for the duration of play. You can get yourself some drinks, a deck chair and watch the tennis action live in the heart of Wimbles.

The Swan Pub (conveniently 50m from our house) is also hosting The Festival of Ciders from now until July 21.

I'd definitely recommend hitting up these events - and who knows, 
 - you might even see someone famous.

and PS. Last night as Warren was leaving work - he actually saw David Beckham and John Travolta. Yeah, we hate him.


Thursday, June 27, 2013

{Wedding} Workouts and Diet

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After posting a few wedding pics and a couple of bachelorette party pics (the one where I went out semi-naked), I've received a number of emails/messages/comments to please post about the workouts/eating plans that I followed in the lead up to the wedding - 

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When readers have contacted me asking for my "pre-wedding-bod regime" - I feel that what they are saying is "TELL US! WHAT IS YOUR SECRET!? WHAT DID YOU DO?!"

Let me start by saying, there is no secret. There is only doing it. Or not doing it. Because

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and honestly tell me that you don't already know what you need to do in order to shape up, tone up and get sexxxay. You already know that exercising will make you strong and fit and healthy. You already know that drinking more water will make your skin healthier and your body feel better, You already know that choosing a plate of lean meats and un-starchy vegetables -
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is going to get you hot-bod results over choosing a melty-cheesed-up pizza with all the trimmings -
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Will a plate of lean meats with tomato, lettuce, broccoli, cucumber and maybe a boiled egg taste the same as a salami-olive-feta-bacon-sundried-tomato-cheesy-sauced-up pizza? Absolutely not. But will it get you results? Yes. Yes it will.

Yep, I can say with almost dead-certainty that you absolutely already KNOW all of these things.

So what I feel people are really saying when they ask for the "pre-wedding-workout/eating plan" is not "What did you do?!?!" It's more "I already know what I have to do... but HOW do I get myself to actually do it?!" So let me just tell you what I know -

DISCLAIMER: Before I get all up in yoh grill about working out and eating properly - let me very clearly state that I am NOT a dietitian, I have no medical background (unless you count matric biology), and I am not a qualified nutritionist. I have done a Spinning Instructor's course, but other than that, I am just a normal person. By "normal person" let me also clarify that my body is not perfect and by no means are these pics or post, claiming it to be 'all that', I am just sharing what I know and what has worked for me at the request of many readers. I also do not advocate the idea of "EVERY BRIDE MUST BE ON THE STRICTEST PRE-WEDDING DIET TO LOSE THOUSANDS OF KGs!!!" For me, it was just about being at my best, most awesome shape. I want to be able to look back on my wedding pics and be proud. Let me also add that I have always been a small person - so the pre-wedding-bod-regime was less about dropping kilograms and more about toning up.  There is still a lot of exercising/eating properly that needs to happen in order to keep it up and to get even stronger/leaner -  I will never have the body of Candice Swanepoel (Sorry Warr), but I did work hard to achieve the results I did, so let me tell you what I know -

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EXERCISING (the very first thing):

In the pre-wedding-bod-regime, I exercised every day. For a clearer english translation, that means every day. That means, exercising every day. Not "I'll skip today and work out twice as hard tomorrow" or "I'll start on Monday" or "I ate really well today maybe I can give it a break?". It means every day. Capiché?
The type of exercising you do will also affect the results you get, most of which can be done right in your home. In fact, the 7 months directly prior to the wedding I did not have a gym membership at all. (WHAT?! HOW CAN YOU EXERCISE IF YOU DO NOT GO TO THE GYM?!?!).

I did follow a number of really amazing workout videos from a variety of different trainers. My favourite videos come from the P90x Training System - which incorporate a variety of workouts including plyometric training, interval training, kenpo/kickboxing, cardio, weights training and yoga.

I also followed some of the Jillian Michaels Workout videos - including the 30 day shred and some of the Biggest Loser Workout Videos. The Jillian Michaels videos are convenient in that a lot of the workouts are slightly shorter which is great for when you are starting out - but very quickly - if you workout consistently, you might find that you feel like working out for slightly longer - which is why I loved all the P90x DVDs.

I didn't follow either of these programs religiously - ie: I didn't do all the videos exactly as they are recommended by day in the program but I chose a different workout each day (mainly from P90 and sometimes from Jillian Michaels) to follow, which worked perfectly well for me. Some workouts are 40 minutes, some are half an hour, many are an hour and a bit. They all include some kind of warm-up and stretch.

All/most the workouts include some form of weight training. I have always been "an exerciser" but generally always more focused on cardio: running, spinning etc. I still went for runs often (esp when I was in London with fiancé) - and I know running can be tough - especially when you are starting out, but when you do start running and you are out on the road and thinking about stopping - imagine that right around the next corner/bush is someone waiting to jump out and surprise you- someone who you REALLY wouldn't want to see you walking. It could be an ex-boyfriend, ex-girlfriend, your boyfriend's ex-girlfriend, ex-wife, mother, father, husband, sexy-guy-from-the-gym, high school bully, whatever. Just picture them around the next bend and you will. not. stop.

Have little mental images for yourself to keep yourself going - Every time I went for a solo run back in SA and I was getting tired or wanting to stop, I would pump up my "wedding playlist" and picture Warren waiting at the end of the road, shouting and waving his hands and cheering me on. Extra speed, guaranteed.
I know, right?

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(I'll be honest a good playlist helps too)

Anyway - including weights training into my workouts really made a huge difference to my overall body tone and strength. Sometimes I didn't have weights around ( - they aren't exactly the kind of thing you pack in your suitcase for an overseas trip) so when I didn't have any weights with me - I used whatever I could find: tin cans, full wine bottles, piles of books -

If you are serious {about getting toned up and sexy}, you will find a way. If you are not so serious, you will find an excuse.  - Ché Dyer, 2013. ©
 After a short while of working out consistently I felt noticeable changes in my core strength, my endurance, my body and my general enthusiasm for working out so hard. After about a month, I began to really look forward to getting my sweat on -

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(and yes. that is sweat coming out of my SHINS people. I'm serious.)

I really can recommend the P90x program. I have included a link to download one of the P90 workouts - which you can get here - as a sample only, but if you are interested and I can really recommend it, check out their official website. There is the P90 {older version} and the P90x {newer version}) but the internet is filled with LOADS of different kinds of workouts, free videos, toning moves and "body challenges". You just have to do it. I have collected a bunch of different workouts (and a few health snacks) on my Pinterest Body Board - (you can follow it here). I found this BodyRocks website via Pinterest - The first time I watched and followed one of the BodyRocks workouts I was like "WHAT IS THIS? IS IT PORN? IS IT A WORKOUT? WHAT IS GOING ON?! I'M SO CONFUSED?! BUT LOOK AT HER ABS!!!" (see here). The key is - pinning great workouts on Pinterest is not going to get you sexy/skinny/abs. DOING the great workouts on Pinterest will. All of the workout pins on my pinterest board, I have personally tried. A lot of them only need very basic equipment such as a skipping rope, a gym ball or some free weights (or if you are gangsta like moi - that means a bottle or two of wine. To lift. Not to drink. See Below.)


Something that I once heard a gym instructor say that I have always remembered -
"You can't out-gym a bad diet"
True. Speaking about food and "dieting" is always a touchy subject because there are thousands and thousands of differing opinions/diets/fads/doctors/celebrities/nutritionists that all recommend something different. Let's be real though - you already know what is good for you and what is not good for you. ie: Any food that you eat and feel that little twinge of guilt afterwards - not good for you. Any food that you have to justify to yourself -  "um.. well... it was Mary-Lou's birthday. And she baked it especially..." - not good for you. Don't get me wrong, I think it is near impossible trying to have a perfect diet all the time - but if you want to see results you will need to become a lot more conscious about what you are eating, the amount you are eating and the type of food you are eating.

Cut back on the alcohol. Yep. Sorry about that.

When I was over in London, Warr and I ate very strictly during the week - high protein and low carb was what worked for us - (Think: half a tin of tuna, {boiled egg optional}and salad leaves for dinner. We also often had soup in the evenings when it was cold). For breakfasts we would have oats, sugar-free bran/oat muesli or protein shakes (In South Africa, I absolutely love the Futurelife breakfast range - which can be made into shakes or high protein porridge). Lunches were also lean salads or soups. (I say lean because a lot of pre-made salads these days are very sneaky and are out to TRICK YOU with all their extra extra mayo/cheese/olive/creamy dressings).

Weekends were our cheat days where we could have more "regular food" and maybe a glass (or two) of wine. Eating so strictly during the week was only really maintainable because we knew the cheat days would be coming soon! Many people will argue that during the week this is a very restrictive diet - and I don't entirely disagree - but I also do know that the human body needs way, way less than we generally give it in order to function optimally. (Something I learnt doing the Maple Syrup cleanse - which I do not recommend).

When I was back in South Africa, my carb intake increased slightly, (which coincided with increased weight training), but I was still very conscious of portion sizes and making "good" choices when we were out at restaurants etc. As far as possible (and it's not always possible -  I'm a girl/i know these things/I have needs), I tried to avoid chocolates, sweets and desserty things. After a short while of being dedicated to "good choices", I can promise you, that your body stops craving it. Herbal tea after dinner is a good way to wean yourself out of it.

Snack on things that are good for you. Snacking on a mug of cereal (ultimate food-vice) at 4pm, is not going to get you HONEYMOON*ABS. Drinking an extra cup of herbal tea, with some sticks of cucumber/cocktail tomatoes/carrots just might. And let me be frank - herbal tea with sticks of cucumber and carrot at 4pm does not taste anything like a cup of hot milky coffee with an Ouma Rusk (or two) to dunk. But, as I've figured, you can either have delicious taste or delicious abs. Entirely your choice.

A Few Other Random Tips for how to get yourself to actually DO all the things you already know you should be doing in order to shape up:

Set Yourself a Goal
I'd say that getting married is one of the easiest times to shape up, because your goal is already very clearly defined. You have an end date in mind and it is very easy to focus towards that date if you wanted to. If you are not getting married or are already - set yourself a very clear goal. Make it short enough to be achievable, but long enough to start noticing results. I'd say two months from now is good. (Two months is only like 60 days, which is only like "one minute" if you pretend the days are seconds. WHATEVER. JUST DO IT.) (If you are properly diligent, I would say you could start noticing results within as little as two weeks).

Put it on a Calendar
Once you've got your goal - mark it on your calendar. The P90 program (a lot of whose videos I used), advocate marking your daily progress in a calendar. Each day clock what kind of exercise you did - was it an interval training session? Was it weights training? Did you go for a Run? Write it down. Write down how hard you pushed yourself on a scale of 1 - 10. For each day, make a note of how well you think you ate from 1- 10. Basically, make yourself accountable for your own progress.

Get a Buddy
When I was in London with the fiancé, it was very easy to keep motivated to eat well and exercise regularly, when there is someone else who is doing it with you (and for you). Make sure your buddy is as dedicated to the goal as you are, because a buddy who is easily able to convince you that "maybe we could just get a curry and a glass of wine and do it tomorrow instead..." is not the kind of buddy who is useful to you. Give that buddy a beer and a pie and send them on their way.

If You Can't Resist, Desist.
If you absolutely cannot stop yourself from eating all the smarties/chips that are sitting in your cupboard, stop buying them. Throw them out or give them to a friend/neighbour/dog. (NO. CHOCOLATE WILL KILL DOGS). Stock your cupboards with healthy things. When there are only healthy things around, then there are only healthy things to eat. Soon, (esp when you start seeing results - and you will), your mindset and taste buds will shift.

Drink More Water
Yep, one of those things you definitely already know. But here is my tip - you cannot drink more water, if you cannot see more water. Get yourself a fancy-pants favourite glass: fill it up and plonk it right next to your desk. Right where you can see it. Is your iTunes playing? Ok, every time the song changes, take a swig. Are you on the internet? Ok, every time you change tabs, take a sip. DANG! Make up drinking games for yourself but with WATER! Do whatever you have to do, to drink more. It will ONLY be to your absolute benefit.

Also with this - try a few different herbal teas. (Cut the caffeine if possible - Warr completely cut caffeine for a while - {because he is weird} - I couldn't and still had a cup in the morn but tried to cut down all other coffee/tea.) Warr and I got into the most delicious flavours of herbal teas - peppermints, green teas, berry teas, ginger and lemon teas - which are really nice to have after dinner. We even bought ourselves a fancy leaf-tea-brewing-tea-pot. 'Cause we're hipster like that.

Take Pictures of Yourself to Document your Progress
I never intended for these pictures to make their way onto the indieBerries' realm of awesome - but you have asked what I did in the pre-wedding workouts so I thought I would share them. (And also so that you know that I haven't made any of this shit up.) The P90 program actually suggests taking photos of your progress as a kind of marker as to how far you have come - so these are the pictures that I snapped along the way - (you may also note that a tan makes a huge difference. lol). I took three different sets of pictures - October // Christmas // March (Wedding: April 6). Don't take the pictures too close together - rather spread them so that you can see your progress. It is an awesome way to plot your progress and to keep you motivated and feeling strong.

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So there you have my little pre-wedding workout/eating plan. It may not be for everyone and the high protein/low carb thing may not be everyone's cup of (herbal) tea -  (in particular doctors/nutritionists/dietitians). I am not advocating that you completely cut out any food group - but if you are mindful of the quantities and portions of each food type you are eating and focus more on "bulking up the proteins" it will leave you less space on your plate for loading up on carbs and heavy starches. Be diligent, but don't be too hard on yourself and do allow yourself some "cheat days" to have a big ol' sandwich or a glass of wine. Because you will have earned it.

Anyone with any other nutrition/eating plan/exercise tips to share - 

please leave them below - would love to hear them!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

YOUR IDEAS! I want them!

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For now, you don't need to know much more than that, but just know that it's  photo thing1_zps501c0006.jpg 
Hopefully this "thing" will be revealed in the next short while. (Fingers crossed). I thought in the mean time I would open up some ideas/comments from the indieBerries readers for this "thing"I am creating. So, I have been making some "things" which are all the "things" that people all over the globe just wish they could really say - but don't.

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bangs. fringe. whatever. you shouldn't have done it, gurrrrrl.
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I have about 30 more of these little "things" that are hiding on my computer - but I was wondering - is there any "thing" that you wish people would just say it like it is?

Leave a comment below - (or on the indieBerries Facebook Page) would love to hear your ideas! 

And who knows! Maybe I will even include one of two of them in my "thing"!

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Will be posting my pre-wedding workouts/diets tomo 

- so stay tuned, because that is quite a thing.