Category Archives: Reviews

In Nature Tea Detox

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For the 28 days of February I tried the In Nature Teas, Slim Tea detox.

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I’d read Cathy’s review of the tea over at Planet Veggie & was ready for the fact that this tea really is leaves. Big leaves, because I thought what was in teabags were the dried up leaves. But these are giant by comparison, actual chopped up chunks of leaves, and I was still amused by the size of them.

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The tea comes with a sheet I instructions and advice on how to brew the tea & also how to make the detox more effective. But I only skimmed through it and brewed my first cup.
As there was loads if tea in the pack, I wasn’t worried about running out of tea before the end if the month, and I put what I felt was a good number of leaves in to make a decent brew.

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It’s a really nice light tea, not too strong taste, and it doesn’t leave a horrible coating in my mouth after drinking, like builders teas do.

The detox was certainly a challenge, drinking tea instead of coffee was a massive struggle, although I didn’t seem to get any of the horrible headaches I have experienced when cutting out coffee previously. I also didn’t murder anyone, which is always a winner.

I did get some really good nights sleep too, even with my 2 year old son trying his best to make me get up several times, I got up feeling quite refreshed and well rested.

Part of the advice the sheet included gives is to try to cut out dairy, and this part it seems was the best advice, as I’m 90% certain that I’m lactose intolerant. How shall I put this, the air was certainly fresher around me during the detox, than previously.

I really did struggle to loose weight this month though, and I failed my Dietbet. My weight went up and down all month, and I only lost 2lbs overall, but at several points I was down much more, and up much more. But I never expected the tea to work wonders and do the work for me, but my diet wasn’t terrible either, I’m going to chalk it down as “just one of those months” and not stress too much about it.

Was it worth it?
Yes. This month was the 1st time I’ve felt like I’ve had enough energy to actually do some excersise, and go to the gym, I’m going to say that it’s because I got some really good nights sleep, and was certainly drinking 2L, or more, of water/tea a day.
Plus cutting out dairy really has made a difference too.

Will I do it again?
Probably not. I LOVE my coffee, and honestly didn’t manage the whole 28 days without a sneaky caffeine hit, and while the tea is really nice, it’s not enough to tempt me away from my coffee. I’ll still drink the tea, even drinking 3+ cups a day, I still have lots of giant tea leaves left. And I have even considered swapping a coffee a day for tea for March. But I’m not going to do the whole 28 days again.

What am I planning this February?

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Well, let me tell you!

I know, I’m always one to plan things and then just fail to update the blog & tell anyone about what I’ve done. I swear this month will be different! I’ve got it planned in my Google calendar & everything.

So 2 things are on the cards.

In Nature Teas

 

In Nature Teas Detox.

In the middle of December I spoke with Helen @ In Nature Teas about their January Detox challenge, and she kindly sent me some Lotus Tea and a tea strainer to take part in the challenge. I read a review of the tea by Cathy at Planet Veggie and thought it sounded quite nice. I’m a massive coffee fan, so it would be quite a challenge for me to swap it for tea.

Then I failed to do it. (See previous post about wimping out of Janathon & apply the same excuses)

So I’m going to do it for the 28 days of Feb. Better late than never eh?

 

DietBet

 

DietBet Challenge

So this isn’t a new one for me, I took part in this for January, but didn’t really say much about it because I wanted to see if a) I could do it & b) see how it worked before I blogged about it.

I won the January Challenge & am now signed up for  a February Challenge too. I lost 9lbs in 28 days with the January Challenge & am currently waiting too see HOW MUCH MONEY I WON!

Sorry to shout about it but, being the capitalist money crazy woman I am, I am very excited about winning money for loosing weight.

The premise is simple. Bet money that you’ll loose 4% of your body weight in 28 days (my game was a $25 stake), try to loose the weight (7lbs for me) and if you do you get your money back. If you loose, your money is split between the winners. Easy.

So I’m signed up to Chispa’s $25 Fitocracy Challenge it starts on 1st Feb too, and hey, you can join in all the way up to 14th Feb, but you have less time to loose the 4%. (Please do join, more people = bigger money = more motivation for Millie!)

Anything else?

I am also thinking that I’ll try to do some 30 Day Shred, I’ve hardly done any real exercise this month, but I don’ think I’ll write that down as a promise, more of a hope.

A break from normal broadcasting

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There is absolutely no running in this post, not even running for a train or bus, sorry.

There will be a lot of talk about perfume, Gorilla Perfume to be exact.
Gorilla perfume are the father & son team, Mark and Simon Constantine, who started the range of perfumes at Lush to combat the mass market generic scents virulent on the high street.

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Perfume is the point!
And to show everyone that Gorilla Perfume have set up “Voice of Reason – Exhibition of Olfactory Works” in Red Gallery on Rivington Street, London.
So, just exactly does one go about displaying perfume as works of art?

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Well, that’s exactly what me & four others from Lush Preston went to find out.
So being a Lush employee I had a little idea of what the perfumes are all about but, to be frank, the gallery blew my mind sideways a little. The idea of perfumes being just a scent, stops once you’ve experienced them in the way they were presented at the gallery.
I’ve been debating what to say about the perfumes and the exhibit, I’m only a baby perfume geek & if I give you a blow by blow account of each scent, I won’t do them justice or give you something you couldn’t find someplace else, however I’ve left London this afternoon and spent most of the train journey home frantically trying to put into words how awesome the experience was, so clearly it’s left me full of excitement.
But I still haven’t answered the question, “how do you display perfume as works of art?”
I think it’s all about putting you in the headspace of Mark & Simon Constantine (the Gorilla Perfumers) at the time the scents were conceived and leading you through that journey.
The exhibition isn’t something you stand and observe, it’s sight & sound and touch and smell, all giving you a deeper understanding of just why each scent is just so.
I don’t want to spoil it, or spend too much time talking about Perfume & art on a running blog, (but if anyone asks I’ll happily spill all the beans) so I’ll just mention my two most favorite moments out of all 20ish fragrances at the gallery.

WARNING SPOILERS!

The Bug / The sun20121218-195914.jpg The bug is a 21st century scent with the idea of CCTV & paranoia rooted in its concept and with The Bug by Magnetic Man played to you via some cordless headphones you’re sent to wander a dark maze with TV screens showing distorted CCTV type footage of yourself and you stumble upon a wall of screens.



As the music plays and you wander around in the almost dark not certain what comes next the air is filled with the peppery scent of The Bug fragrance.
You near the end of The Bug experience & leave the headphones behind and step through a black curtain into The Sun!20121218-200534.jpg
The room is bright the air is filled with crisp orange and citrus scents, there are beech huts & sand and on the wall images of birds and out doors.
As I stepped out from the curtains to the brightness I laughed out loud, and it’s that moment that captures perfectly the feeling that comes with The Sun fragrance. It’s uplifting, it’s happy and bright.

 

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It’s that moment, the transition between the two experiences that was the highlight of the gallery for me, but speaking with others and knowing how scent is such a personal experience I really do urge anyone able to get there to visit before the exhibition closes on Christmas Eve. Go Visit! Breathe deeply and take an open mind.

If you don’t manage to get there in the next week (hurry hurry!) I’d still suggest you head over there as the G Perfume “pop up shop” will be there for another 5 months, the staff there really know the perfumes ( & incense) and are happy to spend the time talking you through all the new & old scents.

I’m an Adrenaline Junkie Too!

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Hopefully, you read my post yesterday, followed the To Do list & you too are an Adrenaline Junkie like me… If you didn’t and you foolishly have to wait until the general release of the tracks on Monday 1st August, here’s what you missed!

On a normal Thursday  evening, around 6pm, I’m trying to hustle my husband into his jeans & out of his suit, I want to pass the parenting buck over to him & run away. Last night I was stalling, I needed to kill time till the 7pm Kick off of Audiofuel’s new tracks.  I made cakes with my daughter, I fed my son, and stalled for a good 10 minutes by properly washing out my water pouch.

I got to the park a little early, and stalled a bit more, checked my trainers, and wiggled my headphones, I wouldn’t want either to cause some sort of wardrobe malfunction and make me miss any of the beats. I’d resisted a sneaky listen before I left, and now I had to admit that the build up was getting to me, this was possibly the most excited I’ve been about running around my park in a long time.

7pm… GO!!!!!!!

It starts with a 160BPM track called Self Belief. I might be wrong, but this is the 1st Audiofuel track with words. Not a voice over, but actual words, lyrics, from Kirsty Hawkshaw.  The words make the track seem deceptively slow, not that that is a bad thing, or that 160 BPM is too fast, but it was a gentle 5 minute start to the run.

The tracks start at 160BMP but they go up to a 190BPM sprint, twice, and while I’m a steady Groovin’ 160’s kinda gal, this was awesome. Proper Awesome!

The Sound of Speed was the stand out track for me, at 166BPM it was a thundering good push.

I admit when I saw the BPM range on the cover shot, I was nervous, worried that it might be too far out my comfort zone, but this was one of the faster tracks, and my fear of charging around the park at 180BPM for 44 minutes was (thankfully) never realised, as the majority of tracks don’t go faster than the Sound of Speed. It’s pitched for a perfect workout.

And Adrenaline Junkie 2 really is a workout, afterwards I felt like I’d gone 10 rounds with Tyson… and I won.

So how far did I go?

5.68km and I shaved 2 minutes off the best 5km time since 2010. Proper Awesome I think you’ll agree!Oh, alright I’ll admit I jumped the 7pm gun slightly, I was excited! Who can blame me?

Here’s the hideous after run shot, taken by my daughter by shoving the phone in my face & shouting “SMILE MUM!”

And you know, contrary to the gormless expression in this photo, I was!

>Must be the music?

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>Three miles planned, 2 miles ran & 1 walked.
I tried some new music. his afternoon I asked the great mind that it twitter, “What should I listen to while I run tonight?”

I’ve never been a fan of the Podrunner podcasts, the music just isn’t my thing, but I’ll admit to only have listened to the Podrunner Intervals. The standard one BPM tracks were a new one for me & I must admit that I was a little interested in the Cadence in this one. I think I need  a bit of Boot Camp to get my belly in control.

I got my Podrunner through iTunes, Powertools (174bpm), and after a bit of faffing about (Nike+ doesn’t let you choose podcasts as something to listen to) and off I went.
I wasn’t impressed, but I did run my fastest 1km this year to it, and it certainly didn’t feel too much like hard work at the time, but pretty much at the 1.75 mile mark I lost wind, and slowed to a stumbing walk, & try as I might I just couldn’t get back onto the pace, and the Podrunner just wasn’t doing it for me.
So I faffed around some more & dug out an old playlist, a little bit of Foo Fighters saw me run the next half mile, but by then I’d given up, and walked back.

Such a different run to Tuesdays, and all I can say, is it must be the music?
Suppose I better get myself used to running with out music, as I might have a running partner for the Marathon. I find out tomorrow, after she’s been paid!
Right, I’ve got a date with Mr Kipling, and then I’ll need a shower!

>The beginning is a very delicate time…

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>Yesterday I completed my 1st run on my training calendar, and then came home and ate a share bag of Revels to myself, whilst watching The Biggest Looser, & The Biggest Looser USA. Inspirational I know.

Whilst I was getting ready to run I was searching Spotify for running music, something different to the miss match I normally listen to, I found an AudioFuel mix. Given that I was too disorganized & lazy to use the freebie link kindly sent out to Janathon Participants, and I have never heard a bad AudioFuel review, this seemed stupid not to take out for a run.


The mix set up into 13 intervals all around 3 minutes, although the 1st interval is longer as a warm up, (I think.)  The recovery intervals are at 155bpm, and the working intervals are at 160, 170 & 180bpm.
I found the 160bpm really hard to jog along to, it felt neither one thing nor the other. 170bpm was a good pace and, shock horror, I really enjoyed these intervals, and 180 bpm felt like it was just a little too fast, but something that I could work for.
The coaching is great! From the “Feet to the beat…” saying every now & again, to all the tips, reminders & inspirational shouts that you get, I won’t spoil it for you, because you need to listen to them. They are top! Just what you want to hear as you’re thinking “Will this 3 minutes end?!? are you sure it’s only 180bpm?”
I will admit to walking at least for 50% of the recovery sections, but I did run 100% of the working intervals, and as I didn’t quite cover the 3 miles I had planned I walked the rest (about 1/3 of a mile) home.
But I enjoyed this run a heckuva lot more than when I forced myself out on Sunday.

As for the post title, I just wanted to get a Dune quote on my blog, but I could blag it & say that it was hit & miss if I’d have managed to get out & run yesterday, the rain, and the agony I woke up in all pushed me towards the No end of the running spectrum.

There we go, next run Thursday, another 3 miles. See you there?