The Kiwi Christmas tree is up

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Pohutukawa no silver

On my Thursday morning walk along the waterfront, I spotted one of the first Pohutukawa trees to flower.

This Kiwi “Christmas tree” is loved for its crimson flower that only appears during the summer months. For me, the first flowers mark the beginning of the festive season and as I have about 3 parties in the next week it seems mother nature is right on time.

Workout of the day

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Workout of the day

Another workout bites the dust. Worked up a sweat getting through this one.

Here are some demos if you need them.
Squat Thrusters http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7ljnk8OS3M
Box Jumps (I use a step and make it about 5 levels high) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wc65Gdd2Omg
Hip Thrust http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mH4A1DkTleg
Alternating Backward Lunge http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFIZ2tbnUa8
Calf Raises http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwLzBJYoWlI
Ice Skaters http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnZtEoYNs1A
Squats with a plate http://www.ehow.com/video_4982608_workouts-plie-squats-plate.html
Chest Press https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VmB1G1K7v94
Bent Over Row http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uaw-Up9Fkcg
Tricep Dips http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXNHHm9c5-E
Hover http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRXKg21pE-4

Lunch

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Lunch

Lunch today consisted of a Yoga class followed by some organic rotisserie chicken and Bok Choy Stalks Braised with Cherry Tomatoes, Chilli and Basil.

They say a good cook never wastes anything but, what do you do with silverbeet and bok choy stems when you don’t really like them in the first place? Well, this recipe by Justin North is a really good option. It was easy to make, tasty and helped ease my conscience as I didn’t toss the bok choy stems left over from last night’s stir-fry.

Click here if you’d like to try this clever dish. http://www.goodfood.com.au/good-food/cook/recipe/silverbeet-stalks-braised-with-cherry-tomatoes-and-chilli-and-basil-20130418-2i1zs.html

Workout of the day

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Workout of the day

This was a nice one this morning.

Demonstrations are as follows:
Box Jumps (I use a step and make it about 5 levels high) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wc65Gdd2Omg
Squat Thrusters http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7ljnk8OS3M
Clockwise Push-Ups http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jjt-YOfUXok
Alternating Lunges https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCpu8IhLvBg
Push-Ups with Hand Tap http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhzIKT2G9Xc
“C” Crunch (Hold medicine ball in your hands and touch your knees with it.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFOQADcJwss
Bridge Position http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Idk5b8a_E5M

 

Light Lunch

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prawns

Lunch today was a 7.5km walk followed by Kylie Kwong’s Salad of King Prawns, Avocado & Watercress from her book It Tastes Better. The honey and soy dressing really brought out the sweetness of the prawns. Definitely a do-again.

Click here for the recipe. http://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/food/recipes/recipe/-/7473717/salad-of-king-prawns-avocado-watercress/

Something on the side

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On the side

A plate of Iceberg Lettuce with Beanshoots, Cucumber, Herbs and Nuoc Cham went really well with the Gai Yang Chicken. Super refreshing.

Nuoc Cham
(While not a Chin Chin recipe, they do serve this classic Vietnamese dipping sauce at the restaurant accompanied by these greens.)
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup fish sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp finely chopped palm sugar
1/2 stem lemon grass, pale section only, finely chopped
2 long fresh red chillies, finely chopped (deseeded if you like)
1 garlic clove, crushed

Combine the water, fish sauce, lime juice, vinegar, palm sugar, lemon grass, chilli and garlic in a jug and stir until the sugar dissolves. Serve.

Today’s Workout

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Today's Workout

A nice one to get in before the weekend.

If you need a demo for anything, here it is.
Mack Squat http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsicOsBGWp0
Iron Cross http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jiVbKEkWbI8
Burpees http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burpee_%28exercise%29
Tricep Dips http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0326dy_-CzM
Mountain Climbers http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzGekP0XSVA
Bicep Curls http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=av7-8igSXTs
Hover http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRXKg21pE-4
Med Ball Shuttle Run http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnZI87XCDwc
“C” Crunch (Hold medicine ball in your hands and touch your knees with it.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFOQADcJwss
Med Ball Tricep Dips (A med ball tricep push up will be good here too.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBxkEdB5cs4
Med Ball Slams http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWghPf9dso0
Russian Twist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgSnIib9s5Y
Med Ball Toss http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sQjqcNljaQ
Med Ball Push Ups with Roll http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03IKbGQHigk
Lunge with Med Ball Twist (The man does forward lunges here, but you can do alternating stationary if you don’t have the room.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0HLl6DnQ90

Juicy Stuff

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Juicy Stuff

For the last month various 6 packs of PHD Green juice have been arriving, freshly extracted on my doorstep. And I’m loving it. They’ve helped to keep my mid-afternoon snacking at bay and also supply an extra dose of green leafy vegetables. In fact, I’m enjoying them so much I’ve started investigating juicers and extractors with a view to buying one. However, while drinking the juice might be pleasant, researching juicers is headache inducing.

To save you some pain here’s what I’ve discovered so far.

I haven’t found any scientific evidence to prove that juicing your vegetables is any healthier than eating them. But, if you’re not getting enough in your regular diet, drinking some vegetables isn’t going to hurt.

Every self-appointed internet juice guru seems to extoll the benefits of raw, cold pressing rather than the faster centrifugal machines, as the produce is not “cooked” by heated-up rotary blades. However, Marcus Antehi, founder of “Juice Press” in the States, has tested this theory and concluded that the blades can heat up during the initial pulverizing phase of cold-pressing too. Not great when you consider that cooking can destroy vitamin C in many vegetables. However, there seems to be another significant factor to consider when deciding what type of extractor to buy. Oxygen.

Below is a comparison between centrifugal and twin gear juicers from takepart.com that I found really helpful.

“High-speed juicers (aka fast or centrifugal juicers)
These juicers shred produce with a sharp blade, then separate the pulp through high-speed spinning to yield thin, pulpless juice. They tend to handle carrots, beets, and apples better than leafy greens or wheatgrass… The blades and spinning mean the foods you’re juicing come in contact with more air during the process; that oxidization causes nutrients to break down quickly, so you should drink a serving as soon as you make it. The machines also generate about two degrees Fahrenheit of heat—a tiny amount, but many juice proponents believe that also destroys nutrients.

Triturating juicers (aka twin-gear juicers)
These top-of-the-line juicers are for the seriously dedicated enthusiast. They turn at a slower speed than a masticating juicer, and by pressing foods between two interlocking gears, they extract a larger volume of nutrient-rich juice from leafy greens and other vegetables, fruits, herbs, wheatgrass, and novel ingredients (to most of us, anyway) like pine needles… The major drawback here is price.”

From my investigations it seems twin gear juicers are about twice the price of centrifugal ones. But, as it’s the green leafy juices I’m after, these are the ones I should probably go for. Now I’m getting a headache from the price tag. I might keep drinking my PHD Green juice and hope that Santa wins the lottery this year.

Here are links to some of the articles I’ve been reading if you’d like them.
http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/04/24/jane-says-all-juicers-arent-created-equal
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/need-to-know/health/juicing/
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/17/dining/the-rush-toward-cold-pressed-juices.html
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=raw-veggies-are-healthier
http://www.fi.edu/learn/brain/micro.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/08/juicer-types-cold-press_n_2618000.html

Workout of the Day

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Wednesday Workout Revised

Here’s today’s workout. The variation in the exercises helped the time pass quickly, though the second round of push ups with a hand slap seemed to go on a bit. 😉

Some demos if you need them:
Med Ball Toss http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sQjqcNljaQ
Med Ball Rugby Pass (In case you don’t have a friend, here’s how to do one on your own) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHKIMHzHA78
Hover http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRXKg21pE-4
TRX Squat Row http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5QEfDANtMDA
Box Jumps http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxldG9FX4j4
TRX Chest Press http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vPgHzuRI7I
Iron Cross http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jiVbKEkWbI8
TRX Tricep Push Ups http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHwECZSY7mQ
DB Shoulder Press http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-aVuyhvLHU
TRX Bicep Curls http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LF2zADMASWI
Alternating Backward Lunge http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFIZ2tbnUa8
Ice Skaters http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnZtEoYNs1A
Push Up with Hand Clap (Not the best quality video but you’ll get the idea.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDrgqZBKLZw
Medicine Ball Sit Up http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb-kh42M-60
Russian Twist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgSnIib9s5Y
Frogger Kicks (Basically a Burpee with a jump at the end once you’re in the standing position) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zrN7c6BVw8