Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Bang Bang- Shoot Prep

So it's been a crazy 2 weeks.
First up we had our shoot with Mr Hot Stuff Sean McCormack

Myself and Ieva have been training hard for the last month but nothing compared to the last week. 
Between us we had the IQ of a muffin, (a damn egg muffin) from training so hard and being super strict with our food and water.

 I never in my life realised how much even just water can have such an impact on your weight. We loaded up for the first few days (FYI don't try drinking 5 litres of water over the course of a day and then do a 2 and a half hour journey without a toilet- even if you just went you WILL need to pee every 10 minutes!!!!)

But in the space of 3 days, from Thursday to Saturday I went down 3kg in weight.
I've done all the Clean 9's and Juicing diets in the world and was always of the opinion "Well like I did lose weight, so it obviously works" but literally it's only making sense to me now that it was all just water weight, yes I looked leaner for a picture- obviously, my body was completely dehydrated, the minute I drank a bottle of water again I didn't get fat- but the number on the scales went up-
so ditch the damn scales!!!!

The only reason I even was in anyway concerned about it was because I had to make weight for full power the following week.
Made that perfs and haven't stepped on the scales since.

This was Ieva's first shoot, and by all means wont be her last
Hubba frickin Hubba!!
She looked amazing, Sean's a dream and a half anyway so I knew she would be at ease straight away but even with a few onlookers she took to it like a duck to water.

Little Ridey Pants!

And then this

I had so much fun with my lil Ieva cakes over the last few weeks and then really getting to know her in the days running up to the shoot.
We had no choice, we were training everyday on the lead up and then the day before we had 2hrs of training, a sauna, spray tan and some eggs, we're in love now.

Chantelle Kyne did our make up on the day and she was ah-maz-ing. It was so simple and lasted all day- something I want a crash course in.

One of the hardest things to do on the lead up to this shoot was defo the motivation to do my HIIT every morning. I was pooped, I hated it. I still do, but I find that if I do it straight away before my brain actually cops onto what I'm at it's the easiest way!
(olaf slippers optional)

HIIT is High Intensity Interval Training. I mix (well I don't, I do as I'm told by Max!) up every day between upper and lower body but it's basically 20 seconds on 10 seconds rest for 6 rounds or so. 
Again it all depends but for example you would do 20 seconds of Jump squats and rest for 10. 
Although I dread the thoughts of any cardio, I'll take this any day over going for a run!!

I can't wait to be able to show all the pictures! 
But, for now, thanks to my good ol buddy ol pal The Galway Player for being on hand for behind the scenes pics.

Friday, April 29, 2016

The Lift like a girl Team

So while I've been training away busting my balls these guys have been there every step of the way to listen to me complain and tell me to shut up!!!


Have you always been a fan of the gym?

No, definitely not I used to always make up excuses for PE in school.

What made you decide to train to compete in trained figure class?

I started in maximum Results about 2 years ago and began doing P.T with Max. After a while I decided I needed to set a goal to keep myself motivated. First was baby step goals and then I got a bit braver and Max suggested I compete. After a long hard think about the commitment involved I decided to go for it.

How much prep goes into each competition?

It's a year round job, it's not something you can get ready for in a month or two you really have to be dedicated to commit to this all year.

Do you ever feel as if you're missing out?

I'm not going to lie and say I don't. Yes sometimes I do feel like I'm missing out but I don't dwell on it, I'm a very positive person and don't like to focus on stuff I "can't" do.
I have to be really strict coming up to competition but I still have nights out and holidays and I just make the effort to chose healthy options- which comes quite naturally to me now.
A night out every weekend was nothing I ever did anyways as I can't deal with hangovers!!

What's been your highlight?

Realizing how strong I am mentally and physically. And the feeling of being on stage knowing I got there all by myself (well obviously with Max's help!) but it's not something you can buy- I put in that work.

and the lowlight?

We all have low days, some days I'd be so tired and be lacking motivation and I'd have tears running down my face training but on those days Max knows exactly what to say to be and we have a bit of a giggle the next day about it!


You own Maximum Results- have you seen an increase in females in the gym over the years?

an increase no, but an increase in females wanting to lift weights and compete in strength sports in the gym, oh yes! 

Is it frustrating to see females shying away from weights in the gym?

Drives me nuts! Thankfully in general, but particularly in Maximum Results that's becoming less and less of a thing. When you have a few leaders like yourself and Ieva looking unreal, ideas start to change really quick about what lifting weights and getting strong does to your body

Girls, including myself before I started weight training with you, have a perspective on what lifting weights will do to them-make them manly and bulky and not lean and defined.
What kind of programs does Maximum Results offer beginner lifters?

Shane runs a wonderful AM  program- it's ideally aimed at girls coming from a bootcamp background, Laura runs Wonder Woman in the evenings which is hands down the most fun program in the gym.

And finally what are the benefits of females lifting?

Increased metabolism (you lose weight AND you can eat more!)
Nice booty, STRENGTH!!
Decreased risk of joint and bone injury- under a competent coach.
Looking more toned and lean in general.PLUS it's fun and frankly a shit load easier than hours of bloody cardio!!!!


What is Natropathy?

Naturopathy is a system of health care that promotes the bodies natural self healing capabilities. A Naturopath will look for the root cause of any imbalance and uses different approaches like diet and nutrition, lifestyle (excercise, work-life balance) , herbal medicine, homeopathy, bach flower remedies etc to help bring the body back into balance. The whole person is treated- mind, body and spirit. It's all connected. Hippocrates (the father of medicine) said
 "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food" 
What we put in our bodies can be the best medicine or a slow killing poison. Herbal Medicine is treating the body on a physiological need. Almost 70% of pharmaceutical drugs are derived from plats. Aspirin is made from saliclic acid of the willow tree. Plants have chemical constitutions which work to bring the body to a place of health without the side effects from synthetic chemicals.

What made you decide to become a natropath and herbalist?

I've had a huge interest in natural medicine ever since I was child. When I was 13 I was put on a range of medication for depression which unfortunately had severe adverse effects on me. After a few years I went down the natural medicine route using homeopathy and herbal medicine. It saved my life. I knew then that I had to become a Naturopath and help people overcome illness on a physical and emotional level. It brings me great joy to help people.

You've helped both myself and Ieva through all tough training- balancing hormones, helping with digestion problems we had BEFORE we began this plus sorting out my skin and just there for a general chit chat when needed. I'd personally recommend everyone to come see you but who, in your opinion, could benefit from your help?

Herbal medicine can treat a whole range of conditions from I.B.S, chronic fatigue, fertility issues, acne, eczema, anxiety, insomnia, basically anything. It's a matter of finding the root cause for the individual and working with them. Every person is different. 2 people may have the same condition but need 2 different treatment methods. It depends on their specific interal enviroment. I love working with all types of people and conditions. Working together, to make a plan for what suits them best.

Who would your most common type of client be?

My most common client would be people dealing with fatigue, I.B.S, gynaecology/fertility issues and stress. I work with people in their 20s and some in their 50s/60s. I love how naturopathy and herbal medicine can help all walks of life.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Lift Like a Girl- They all have lovely bottoms

So I've been writing and deleting this blog for about a week now.

I just didn't really know what I wanted to say-
 I wanted to have a moan and a little whinge but then does anyone actually really give a shit? Do you honestly want to read me complaining about the fact that I don't have a perfect instagram bod? and that I have a hankering for Ben and Jerry's Peanut Butter Cups and Chocolate fudge brownie? (just side bar has anyone seen the new sandwichs...can't cope), that I had a cry over my Reeses Pieces Easter Egg because my boyfriend asked for a bite of it next week when I'm finally getting around to eating it?
That I then had a cry while deadlifting because Max and Orla were taunting me about Orla's homemade peanut butter cups?

I know I wouldn't.

My training is tough BUT nothing I can't handle- I'm actually enjoying it, it's just mentally tough right now, my diets super strict but I'm not hungry just I have such cravings which is making me unbearable. And I keep taunting myself.

My mommabear was here yesterday and it took her and my bestie Amy to remind me what I've put my body thru over the years.
"You cook now? and it's NOT from a deep fat fryer?"
I for years lived of sausages, chips and beans.
"Remember when the only thing she would eat was chicken and potato salad rolls?"
"And the time she thought she'd throw up because we gave her scampi and she thought it was a chicken nugget"

Now fast forward on and I actually enjoy cooking healthy foods so much, not a big fan of cleaning but as good ol Carmelo Fox put it "You win some you lose some"

So me and Ieva's shoot is on this Saturday with the ever talented Sean Mc Cormack who I'm lucky enough to be able to call my friend.
"One more week" I keep saying to myself. But one more week will eventually turn into a lifetime of me procrastinating.
I found this picture from when I was in Thailand last year with one of my bestos Sarah.
I remember we were standing there sunburnt to shit after falling asleep on a boat after a pub crawl and the two of us were staring down at our tummies talking about how fat we were and I remember thinking "I'm going to sort myself out when I get home"

Fast forward a year and I'm still "sorting myself out" and I've done the complete opposite to what I preach. I constantly compare myself to other girls.
I especially love this girl. She has my dream bod

However having my usual creep the other day and this came upon this 
she's pregnant. WITH A FOOD BABY!!! 

It was actually refreshing and it made me so happy and a kick up the hole that these girls are normal.

Fuck it. I'm in a great place in my life, I have wonderful friends an amazing boyfriend the worlds best family a great job and I just got signed by the beautiful Caroline at Carried Away PR so I'm awfully excited for whats to come.

And I'm proud of all the damn hard work I've put in- training two programmes 5 days a week. I'm so happy to have found Maximum Results, and the banter I've had getting into shape. It's been so hard at times but I'm happy I can deadlift double my body weight, and I can be disciplined enough to stay off the beer and take aways for something I want.
And damn it I'm doing ok.

I've been stressing out over taking a picture at the end of the day, and hey! if that's one of my biggest stressers right now- I'll take it.

One more day until the shoot and then one week to Full Power where I get to squat, deadlift and bench all in one day and who in their right mind thought I'd be excited about that!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Skeff Whiskey Tasting

So I've really been getting out these days...
It just took a gentle reminder that although I'm training hard for my Full Power Powerlifting Comp it doesn't mean I have to miss out on ultimate l's and b's with all the ITWBN bae's.

Just maybe not as smathery!

The Skeff had such an intimate evening set up with about 12 of us for the whiskey tasting so we really got all the attention we needed...because lets face it we're a needy bunch!

@galwayplayer flat out on snapchat

Home to 150 different whiskeys Amy and Kevin decided to give us an education about 4 whiskeys, we each had an envelope explaining what each was

  •  Jameson Castmates: The Jameson Castmates release is a unique whiskey that has been made with the help of Cork’s Franciscan Well brewery. Barrels that had been previously used for Jameson whiskey were taken to  to use in the ageing of their full-bodied craft stout. Once used for beer maturation they were sent back to the distillery where Jameson whiskey that had already been aged was filled into them for a finishing period.
  • Jameson Black Barrel is a triple distilled blend of rich pot still and grain whiskey that is matured in a mixture of sherry casks and bourbon barrels.  Black Barrel delivers the signature smoothness of Jameson Original, with enhanced spice, nutty notes, vanilla sweetness, and sherry.
  • Powers 12 Year Old John Lane 
    The Powers John’s Lane Distillery was renowned for its Pot Still Irish whiskeys, bursting with flavour and character. Single Pot Still whiskey is unique to Ireland in general and to the Midleton Distillery, Co. Cork. Made from a mash of malted and unmalted barley and then triple distilled in traditional copper pot stills, Pot Still whiskeys are characterised by full, complex flavours and a wonderful, creamy mouthfeel.
  • Redbreast 12 Year Old
    On the nose, it’s a mature fruit bowl (pears, brown bananas, strawberries) vanilla and cloves. On the palate, it has a thick texture, floral and creamy with burnt ginger cake. Overall, it’s rich and complex but still easy-drinking.
 My Favorite definitely had to be the Jameson Caskmate- 
The only whiskey I've ever been partial to is an 'ol hot one..
but this I could feel myself sipping for leisure other than just trying to get rid of the flu!

Just when we thought the whiskey tasting was coming to a close out came the platters of food <3 
I could literally sit and eat those prawns all day!

We continued to have the lols- because why not! I love how even with our own area we were still part of the atmosphere in the rest of the bar

snapchat fun with @thebeautykemple 

All in all it was a chilled yet informative evening and I'll defo be back for food as while we were there the smell was actual God like!

Thanks to the ever talented Julia Dunin for  all the snaps and the Skeff for putting on such a wonderful spread.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Tears, Tantrums and not a Tiara in sight

So throwing it back to our first PT cardio session last week that I "thought" was hell- 
Yeah no- it was a false sense of "this is the worst it will be".
I should have known considering Max was training with us that this couldn't be as bad as it gets!

I've never sweat as much in my life- and my poor hair is having an awful time for itself having to be washed almost every day- Hey there first world problems!
Max with an absolute sh*t eating grin. 
I'm blending into his hoodie- and this was taken a good ten minutes after we'd finished training.
No amount of filtering can save me now.

This week consisted of 22,000kg lunges, 2 fml PT sessions, a blast of HIIT and 18,000kg worth of bench, military press and curls. 
Last week I complained about my legs falling off, this week trying to straighten out my arms was a nightmare.

Easter Monday was hectic at work so I couldn't make it into the gym.
I got my HIIT done that morning but not my lunges.
smokin' after squats and sprawls.

Tuesday was fairly nuts- HIIT in the morning, Mondays lunges had to be done at lunch
Chuffed with myself.

Then it was PT time.

Starting of with sled pushes and then sprawls and pull ups. Then we moved on very swiftly to assisted pull ups- where it was 20 pull ups, then 18, 16 and so on.

On 18 pull ups I wasn't feeling so fly- 9 done-up for ten and boom- this overwhelming feeling came over me- kicked Max square in the chest, ran into the door and puked my guts up- without thinking about it I ran back out and finished the last 8 and then onto 72 more altogether.

I've converted my brain to that of a powerlifter- losing brain cells by the second and being much too stubborn to give up.

By Thursday I was crying because I was so sore and just wanted to eat everything.
and by Friday it was time for my weigh in- 2 weeks ago I gave my Easter Egg to Max to give to me after the competition.

It's not just any 'ol egg. 
It's a Reeses Pieces FILLED egg from Candyland Galway
If I wasn't down in weight I was inhaling this in one go and calling it a day.

Hard work pays off however and all that sweat and abuse, strict eating and pain resulted in me being down after 4 weeks of staying the same and the Egg lives on to see another day.


So I successfully had my first ever sober weekend out.

I've been so selfish and focused on myself and I've literally turned into a hermit- 
which is very strange to my social butterfly nature.

Friday started out as a work event at the launch of the amazing Caroline Downey's new company Carried Away PR&events and off I toddled to work in the radio but popped into An Pucan and Seven after work- and actually enjoyed my sober self til 3 bells!

Rocking it out with my sparkling water that full on had the placebo effect.

I was buzzing about the place, 

Same on Saturday night- although I didn't last as long- half 12!

I think I've been so strict with my diet lately that I completely forgot I can still actually talk to people and it was nice to actually do something with my weekend and not ruin myself!

Do not mistake me for never wanting to go out on the lash again- quite the opposite, but it was fun to know I don't actually need to drink to step outside the door of the house.

I know I'm having a right ol whinge here and you might be wondering why am I showing you sweaty god awful pictures? Telling you I projectile vommited? that I'm in so much pain it hurts to sleep? That I'm throwing tantrums and this isn't even a pageant!??

Is this not going to turn you off the gym you say?
I hope not.

Yes this is tough but after a rest day yesterday I actually feel the finest.
The pain and crying is temporary. 
(Well the cryings not, I love a good cry!)
This last 3 months has flown, and I'm into the final 4 weeks and everything's starting to take shape.

Off I toddle now for a strength test and I'm a little bit scared.
I keep forgetting that along with prepping for this shoot I also have The IDFPA Full Power powerlifting comp the following week.

So wish me luck this week as I launch into twice a day training sessions, while on my quest for abs and keeping my strength up for Full Power.
And trying to be a little bit bearable for my loved ones !!

Friday, March 25, 2016

Galway Fashion Trail

Being a born and bred Galweigian I know we love a good festival- I grew up on them- we've got The Food Festival, Arts festival, we've had the Volvo Ocean Race, we've even got a quilt festival for christ sake, and that's just the tip of the ice berg. We're also  home to my absolute favorite time of year-
The Galway Races. 

While all completely different, they all share the same theme-

Galway Fashion week is a must for any Galway festival goer and fashionista in general- as the gals and guys from ITWBN well know.

The Irish Fashion Innovation awards were my first look at the week- 3rd year in a row and as per usual they didn't disappoint 

To end the week long event was the Bloggers Breakfast and Galway Fashion Trail.

Having met the guys from Colm Quinn BMW previously, I knew the morning would be great fun.

Breakfast at a car dealership and then they'd drop us back into town to start The Fashion Trail...
 I won't lie I was skeptical as to how it was all going to work- 


Bloggers. Breakfast. Bubbles. BMW

does it get any better?
yes it does!

My partner in crime The Beauty Kemple was on hand to act like a toddler with me from the get go!

not exactly what I had in mind when I asked could I have a Mini

After wreaking havoc for a good hour we then proceeded to jump into the biggest fanciest car I've ever been in (or seen) 
and wreak the lovely Eanna's head for the trip to town.

Tunes blaring, myself, Yummy Mummy,Saibh Egan and The Beauty Kemple treating the 7 series like a taxi to town.....at 10 am!!!!!


At this point the day was only getting started 

The day was split into shops and paired with Milliners.

 Don’t call me Dear – Galway Milliners
 Willow – Natasha Heaslip
Choice – Caithriona King
 Kilkenny – Andrea Tighe
PIA – Vivianne Martin
 Treasure Chest – Suzie Mahony
 Gosh Shoes – Galway Hat Shop
Colette Latchford – Brid O’Driscoll

Some reeeeaaaaallllyyyyyyy pretty pieces throughout the day but here are my Top 3 Favs

Don't call me Dear- The Style Studio would never be a  place I would normally think to shop for occasion wear. But this was so beautiful I'll definitely be back for a gawk.

This isn't a look I'd usually go for but this Pink tulle skirt just kind of stole my heart.
First time in Willow too and it's such a cutsie little shop with inspirational quotes all over the walls and fab casual and formal wear.

And this!! 
I've never been disappointed by Pia and they certainly put on a show for us but this Pretty Pia Pink dress just stole the show for me!

a few of us snuck off to Garavans bar for a taste of Irish Coffee.
Garavans is tucked right in the middle of shop st and is where I learned how to be a Gin snob AND where to appreciate whiskey- they know their shiz.
yummy mummy, myself and The beauty kemple 

None of this would have been possible without the hard work of the Galway Now Team , everything was thought of and it made it an exciting day for everyone involved!

While the team finished up in the skeff I had to scoot off...for a nap because I was so pooped!

The Galway Food Festival kicked off today and I'm looking forward to hanging with all my ITWBN chums on Easter Sunday as we head for a Whiskey Talk and Taste in the Skeff, 

and I'm just going to leave you with my favorite snap of the day- 
Thank you Saibh for introducing me to the Queen of fashion Mary from The Treasure Chest