The Perks Of Being A Morning Person

Thursday, 12 April 2018




While most mornings it's a struggle to pull myself out of bed at 5.13am to get ready for an early class, then rush to work for a shower, on my days off I am 100% a morning person. I don't like sleeping past 8am, not that our puppy Enzo would let me.

It's currently Monday morning and I have already watched half a Harry Potter film (The Goblet of Fire) had my first cup of coffee for the day, searched for book blogs to follow, and fed/played with Enzo. I love making the most of my days off and getting all the things done to feel like I have my life together. Some days I wake up wanting to clean the whole house, and the next I'll have some good laptop time. I never regret getting up that hour earlier than everyone else to do what I want. There's plenty of perks to being an early bird like me.




MAKING AN EPIC BREAKFAST FOR YOURSELF
And the BF if he gets up early enough. You know how those dreamy pics pop up on Instagram with the avocado toast and perfectly poached eggs? #yolkporn
A free morning means I have some creative time to make what my heart desires (and get a killer gram pic while I'm at it.) Even oats made on the stove and not in the microwave is heaven. A free morning will always mean you can eat properly and you don't have to rush.


ENJOY THE EARLY MORNING CALM
You know what I'm talking about, right? The quiet traffic, pink sky, and birds singing as they wake up. It's honestly my favorite time of day. Nothing beats the peace of an early morn.


GREAT TIME FOR SOME SELF-CARE
This is my Sunday/Monday morning priority. I have a couple of hours free to myself where I can blog, browse Pinterest, catch up on YouTube, walk the pup, or just enjoy a hot steamy shower. It's why I'm happy to get up at 7am on my days off, because I can take the time to unwind and get my mind right.


THE SUNRISES YOU CAN'T PUT A FILTER ON
I can't tell you how many times I've seen a purple/pink sky from a window at work and it's put a smile on my face. Or I've walked out of CrossFit at 6.30am to find the most beautiful sunrise yet. It makes early mornings so worth it when mother nature puts on a show.


GET MORE DONE
I can never feel like my day is right if I've slept in too late. But when I'm up early and have a day's plan in my head, I can feel oh so motivated. Even if I can just catch up on a Netflix show or read some blogs, I feel good about my morning.


Are you an early bird like me? Or do you like to leave me-time to late at night?
Steph x. 



Puppy Essentials I'm So Glad We Bought

Tuesday, 3 April 2018




I'm just gonna say it, puppy life is great. I can't tell you how much a adore Enzo and look forward to coming home and hugging his little face everyday. Yes he steals my shoes and jumps up for food, but I can never go mad with those puppy-dog eyes just staring up at me.

He has almost been with us two months now and it has really flown by. To say that we have learned a lot is an understatement. Everyone will tell you different things about getting a puppy, and you don't have to listen to them. Every puppy is different and there's a lot of fun in that. We have been incredibly lucky so far and Enzo has been the perfect start to our little family. There's a few essential items that we have personally found amazing and work for us. I don't think we would have had such luck without them.


A CRATE
Controversial among dog owners, I know, but here's where we stand. It's been an actual life-saver. 
Steve's sister gave us her old one she had for her Rottweiler, so built for a big dog. And it's been Enzo's little cave of safety since the beginning. He has learnt to go to sleep by himself, kept him safe for a few hours while we are at work, and he even goes in it by himself at night when he's tired sometimes. Totally not cruel, just a bit of structure that's good for puppies. 


SMALL HARNESS
 Oh how handsome he looked in his little harness for the first time! Obviously he will grow out and into a new one in no time, but getting puppies used to wearing a harness for walking later on is a damn good idea. When I'm in the car with Enzo and he's at risk of being restless, I have him strapped to the seat (with wiggle room, don't worry) with his harness and leash on. It works perfectly! He's safe and has been used to wearing one since we first got him. 


PLASTIC BED FOR CAR RIDES
Carrying on from above, when he was small and in the car I would also have him in his plastic bed that's full of comfy blankets. Just a bit more security for you and him, plus it makes it easier to carry him. It cost me $5 from the charity shop and he knows what's going on when it comes out now. 


PLENTY OF TOYS TO CHEW ON
Of different textures, some to throw, some to cuddle. Unfortunately it means there's normally toys littered all through the house now, but it keeps a teething puppy from chewing on furniture. Or stealing our socks and leaving them outside...


LOTS OF TREATS 
For good behavior, something to chew on for a while, or just plain old bribery, have a good stash at the ready. Enzo will chew on a rawhide stick for at least half an hour, so it's great for when you want a little quiet in the house. I also give him veggies (carrots/capsicum sticks) for a bit of variety and to help with teething.


TIME OFF WORK
Maybe one of the most important on the list. I spent the week after we got Enzo home with him and it made such a difference for both of us. He got used to his home, while I gained confidence in having him here. He is a total mamma's boy now, but that week off together felt so precious.



As a puppy update, Enzo has now had all the necessary shots and we celebrated with a trip to the beach. He absolutely loved it! 

What are some of your pet essentials? 
Steph x. 

Why I've Decided To Start Tracking My Food Again

Thursday, 29 March 2018





I've always had a decent knowledge of nutrition and always thought I could trust myself with food choices. And that's largely still true. 

However

Lately I've been feeling lost with knowing the nutritional value of what's going into my body. I've found myself more hungry than usual (clearly not enough focus on protein.) So I feel like if I have the info on my phone ready to input and read, I'll be aware and smart like Sally. 

I've tracked my food in the past and found it super-helpful. It made me realize how many calories were in a cup of rice! Plus I never wanted to put in when I ate a naughty biscuit or candy bar, so I lost weight out of the guilt for not eating it. I definitely need that accountability in my life right now, especially seeing as I want to be able to train harder. Weight isn't an issue for me. I wouldn't even care if I go over my calorie limit for the day. Because, you know, gains for lifting. But being responsible with my eating is a lesson I need to teach myself again.

Nutrition is the key to everything in health and it deserves more focus.


So, what killer app am I using? And no, it's not MyFitnessPal.

I was gonna use the old favorite, but I wanted something new. Something that had the same features, but was a new system and looks cooler. Literally the first item upon searching "food trackers" in the app store was Lifesum.



It's just like MFP, but it's so freaking pretty and nice to look at. So easy to use and easy to read how many macros you are getting in a day. They've even added smiley faces depending on how good your food choices were with each meal. I pretend it doesn't bother me when it has the sad face, but dammit I want it to be happy!

The barcode scanner works 100 times faster than the MFP one, so adding food is so easy. Plus, it saves everything you've put in the day before so it takes you no time at all to collect a diary of food. I haven't been that person to get out the electronic scales in a long time, but it feels damn good now.

It also has a water feature to track your hydration throughout the day. You can set it to how many liters you want/are likely to drink in a day and click on each cup as you drink. It's oddly satisfying and I'm so motivated to fill each one everyday.


So far with getting back into a healthy-eating focus I'm loving how I'm feeling. I think this app is going to really help me be more knowledgeable and smart about what I choose to fuel myself with.  I'm excited for my journey in the coming months!


What are your thoughts on food tracking?
Steph x.





Charity Shop Haul #2

Monday, 26 March 2018





One of my favorite feelings is finding new treasures like this. I often visit my favorite charity shops when I've had a stressful morning at work. This particular day was full of some pretty useful finds and I couldn't help but share them. This particular shop has everything from home-wares, books, bags, clothes, children's toys, crafts, and some unique collectibles. 

The entire haul cost me $20. That's all. Pretty cool, huh?






The first item I found was this blue hand towel for $1. I noticed it was great quality from a good brand and I don't have many in my cupboard so I was very pleased. My shopping had got off to a great start. 

Measuring cups always come in handy and I have been on the hunt for a new one. They're handy for measuring stock or just keeping utensils I'm using off the counter. Another $1 bargain. 

These two vases were just too cute to leave behind. I've been wanting to change up my decor a bit and these will be perfect. I might pick up some peonies to pop in them on my dining table. The blue one was only $1 and the pink was $2. 





I live in t-shirts during the week and have been getting bored or my wardrobe lately. A $3 bargain will suit me nicely, especially since grey goes with everything. I also spotted my favorite find of the day which was these ankle boots that were a mere $2! I couldn't believe my luck. They're a size too big but that's nothing a pair of extra socks can't fix. I desperately needed some boots that could withstand a little rain as I walked into work during the winter. My prayers have been answered!





I came across two gorgeously warm jumpers that were only $5 each. I've worn both since and they're are going to serve me well this winter. I will surely endeavor to pick up a few more of these as autumn grows colder. You can't tell me it's impossible to find good quality clothes at a charity shop.


So that was my $20 charity haul! Not a bad effort right? I got lucky on this trip and am so happy with what I was able to find. I should have my own TV show for this stuff, really.

Have you had any great finds lately?
Steph x.


30 Health & Fitness Blog Post Ideas

Saturday, 24 March 2018





Hey Everyone! 
I've been enjoying getting back into the fitness side of blogging lately. It's a category I wish was bigger in our community and I get so excited when I see cool post come up on my feed. 

It's a topic I could talk about all day long and I thought I would share some of my inspiration with you. I think it's important to share healthy lifestyles and what works for you, in the hope that it will help someone else. Food and fitness bring me a lot of happiness and you'll always see me talking about it on my blog. 


Your Current Workout Routine 

How You Find Motivation

Fit Chicks You Adore

How To Have An Active Recovery Day 

A Day of Eating 

Your Fav Protein Smoothie Recipe 

Gym Pet Peeves 

Spotify Playlists For Your Next Workout 

Gym Outfit Ideas 

What's In Your Gym Bag 

Staying Healthy On Holiday 

Health & Fitness Apps To Use 

Gym Memes That Have Made You Laugh 

5 Reasons To Try *insert workout/gym*

Fitness Items On My Wish List

Protein Powder Review 

Your Fitness Journey 

Supplements You Love/Take 

Your Biggest Fitness Inspirations 

H&F YouTubers You Should Be Watching 

Mistakes You've Made On Your Journey

Gym Makeup: Yes or No?

Home Gym Tour

Home Gym Wish List

Ways To Get Fit That Don't Cost A Thing

Your Fav Healthy Cook Books/ Recipes

Meal Prep Ideas

How You Meal Prep

How Fitness Has Changed Your Life

A Fitness Bucket List: Gyms to try, exciting events, marathons etc. 

Fitness Goals




Do you love bringing your love of fitness to your blog too?
Steph x.







Why Travel Means So Much To Me + Photowall Discount!

Friday, 23 March 2018




*This post includes products provided by Photowall.com. All opinions are my own. 


I was definitely that kid who looked at the world map and wondered what it would be like to travel to all of the places that were calling me. At the time it was always places like Italy, Egypt, New York etc. I'm proud to be heading towards the end of my twenties with plenty of miles between my belt. I haven't made it to Europe yet or to some of the more crazy places like Tokyo. But I feel like as you get older, your bucket-list just gets longer. I'm always excited to see what will happen in years to come. And I can drag Steve around Paris once the kids have left home. 


I traveled up and down New Zealand as a kid for my brother's BMX racing. We were very lucky to have a childhood that shaped us into the explorers we still are today. I've always had trinkets from my travels displayed in my room, so having my own home wasn't going to be any different. When the lovely people from Photowall got in touch with me, I immediately started browsing the huge selection on their website.  And of course, I was drawn to all of the pieces displaying places around the world. 

I came across these gorgeous maps and knew I NEEDED one for our house. You can get them in almost any of your favorite major cities like: Las Vegas, Vienna, Paris, Amsterdam, Madrid, London, Toronto, Sydney, Chicago, and heaps more. 

I wanted to find a city that was special and for our family there's one: Boston.





It immediately felt like home to all of us which was strange, but in a good way. There were beautiful old buildings mixed with new ones, everyone was outside enjoying the weather, and the history is so fascinating there. Thanks to Photowall I can display the city proudly in my home and when anyone asks what city it is, I can tell them about my love for Boston.


So why does travel mean so much to me?


Special Memories With My Family
It seems odd to a lot of people that I almost always travel with my Mum, Dad and my older brother. I guess since we used to do it growing up, we know we travel well together. The special part about it is that we've been able to experience so much together. New cities, climbing to the top of the Statue Of Liberty, or walking the San Francisco bridge. Travel is so much more meaningful when you're with the people you love.


Reignites My Passion For Creating
You can barely keep me from taking a million pictures then going back to our hotel and spending my spare hours writing away on my laptop. I remember when we were in Seattle and I had never felt so inspired. It helped that we had been to Disneyland the week before, but it was the best feeling. It would be a dream to be a travel blogger just because I know I would be so motivated to put out great content. Getting away from your everyday routine just makes a huge difference.


Ticking Off That Bucket-List
It was the craziest feeling to be in the middle of Times Square with all the lights and the people. It's iconic places like that which leave you wondering if it's real. Or walking down Main Street of Disneyland after watching so many vlogs on YouTube and thinking:

"OMG I'm finally here!"

I'll forever be grateful to have the opportunities I've had to travel. My family has been amazing at making it all happen and the experience it always worth the months of saving money.



That Feeling Of Getting On A Plane
Going to airport the day you leave on holiday is just the best. You know you're going on an adventure and have it all ahead of you. You can get all your favorite plane snacks (peanut M&Ms and sour candy for me) and can watch Disney movies on repeat without anyone judging you.



Anyone else thinking of quitting everything and becoming a travel blogger? In all seriousness, a big thank you to Photowall for sending me this beautiful piece of art. They have also been kind enough to give you guys a 20% discount if you would also like to decorate your home with something meaningful. Just enter the code:

HelloStephCampaign2018

It will only be available for 30 days so make you go have a look at their beautiful range. If I could put up one of their wall murals in my house I would! 




What location means the most to you?
Steph x. 




Five Achievable Goals This Week

Sunday, 18 March 2018


Happy Monday!
It's a new week full of so many opportunities and a chance to make it better than the last. I started compiling a list in my head of goals I wanted to set myself. Not the take over the world and build an empire type ones, but little things that help me conquer the day. 

I would feel lost without a notebook full of goals written down, even if I only complete a few of them. Sometimes you have to start small. 



Keep up with that never-ending pile of washing

I'll admit it. I've gone to work on Friday morning with wet trousers on because I hadn't been bothered to put the washing out in time. Why do I do it to myself? I tend to be awesome at the start of the week then get lazy once busy days take over. Not this time! 


Smash 18.5 and have the most fun I can

I can't believe the CrossFit Open has already reached it's final week! Four workouts have been posted for the worldwide CF community and it's the fifth and final one. The first three were awesome and I felt so good conquering them. We won't talk about 18.4. It beat me but I got it back. I am excited/anxious for Friday night to see what the final workout is!


Have a Thai food date night with Steve

There's the cutest container/food truck that's started a few streets over and every time I drive past I say to myself "I NEED to try that soon!" And since Steve and I try to take advantage of any date-night we can, it's a perfect match. I'm ready to eat my weight in pad-thai once again. 


Post three times this week

Blogging while you're working full-time, taking care of a puppy, and keeping a healthy relationship is hard yo. I need to be more focused, better organized, and have more fun with what I'm posting. 


Meal Prep: Make a Chickpea and Potato Curry 

Some days I struggle to figure out what to make for my meals, but this week I have a major craving for a nice hot veggie stew! I'm already planning how to slow cook everything and hopefully it's gonna taste as good as I imagine it will. 


What are some goals you're gonna set yourself this week?
Steph x.