Pulsin Review…

A couple of weeks ago I was sent some products by the kind people at Pulsin’.

Protein is needed for growth and repair in the body, making it perfect to help muscle recovery after tough workouts.  There’s also lots of scientific studies out there linking protein to increased satiety (fullness), hunger hormone control and weight loss.

The guys at Pulsin’ produce 4 protein powders;

Whey protein highlights – 

  • 18g protein/20g serving 
  • high bioavailability therefore absorbed quickly into the blood stream and used by the muscles
  • un-denatured thanks to specialist filtering techniques used (lots of other commercial protein powders are processed at high temperatures, causing them to become denatured and therefore harder to digest and absorb in your body)
  • great for using in protein smoothies, adding to yogurt, protein ‘ice cream’ and also in homemade raw protein bars/balls
  • £31.49/kg

Soya Protein –

  • 17g protein/20g serving
  • non GM
  • high in photo-oestrogens, which can be great for anyone suffering from hormonal imbalances
  • tasty in overnight oats, protein pancakes and smoothies
  • £15.29/1kg

Pea Protein –

  • 17.1g protein/20g serving
  • made from dried and powered yellow split peas (different!!)
  • a good source of vegan protein
  • can be used as a thickener, as an alternative to cornflour and also good in porridge and soups
  • £15.29/1kg

Hemp –

  • 14.1g/30g serving
  • raw/cold pressed
  • great source of omega 3 fatty acids; for healthy hair, skin and nails
  • delicious in green smoothies
  • £15.29/1kg

All of these proteins are unflavoured and minimally processed, which makes them a great alternative to many of the highly processed, artificially sweetened and expensive protein powders available out there!

I was really surprised by just how tasteless these powders actually are.  In the past I’ve tried a few ‘unflavoured’ proteins which actually tasted horrible and usually had a very detectable texture but these were great!

I’ve been enjoying this chance to be a bit experimental …

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Chocolate, banana, green smoothie – I’ve had with both whey protein and hemp protein…both tasted great

 

 

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Banana-Berry protein ‘Ice Cream’ with added whey protein

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Overnight oats, milk soaked oats with soya protein and grated apple, topped off with greek yogurt and peanut butter (I loved this combo and it kept me full for ages!)

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Banana, cinnamon protein pancakes – made with a blend of whey and soya protein….topped off with my favourite combo…greek yogurt and peanut butter! (this mornings breakfast!)

Overall I love these proteins…I think they’re very reasonably priced, easy to use and add a great protein boost to lots of my favourite meals and snacks…great work guys :)!

The weather yesterday was just glorious!!  I started my day with a body combat class at the gym, followed by a lovely walk with the dog along the marina.  We had been invited for dinner at James parents house and seeing as it was so warm, late in the afternoon we decided to head over on his motorbike…

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…me getting kitted up!!

Great day to be out on the bike (although maybe a little cold on the way home!)

Today started early with a 7am Bodypump class, followed by protein pancakes for breakfast.  I’ve got 2 deadlines for uni this week (one today and one Wednesday) so I’m off to do some proof reading before handing in!

Hope you had a great weekend!

Question; do you use protein powders? whats your preferred protein source? and your favourite way of using it?

L x

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Breakfast for one…

I’ve talked before about my love of the 1st meal of the day.  Some may think it’s a little self-indulgent to make what you might think of as ‘too much effort’, especially for one!  I can honestly say for me though, starting my day in this way has just become a habit and something I do without really thinking about it.

This morning was a particularly pleasant one, the sun actually was shining (for once), giving the impression it might actually feel warm outside…it was however, definitely deceiving as I found out when I went outside to put my rubbish in the bin!!…still pretty cold out there!! when will spring come?????  I thought it was the perfect opportunity to take a photo…

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My family think I’m hilarious because I get out every potential toast topping I have in the house and put it on the table.  The thing is though, I’m indecisive which means I often end up having 4 different toppings…one on each half!! My 2 top favourites being, nut butter  and butter with marmite…yum!!

They also think I’m crazy for having this little ‘breakfast routine’ at all.  Growing up, breakfast was something we would grab in a rush amongst the chaos of 5 people trying to get ready and out the house on time.  I regularly known to grab some kind of processed bar that I would eat on my way to school with my Mum shouting “thats not a breakfast!” after me as I ran out the door!!…how times have changed!

When James is here we love to make the most of a little ‘us time’ over breakfast.  We have been doing the long distance relationship thing for 6 months now and it’s pretty tough,  so when he is here, I like to make it special and we usually sit for hours…I always make him his favourite…boiled eggs.

Get this though…!! times are changing! this time is 2 weeks we will be in our new house!  I’m so excited to be making the move down to the other end of the country and being able to see my favourite man every day (and every breakfast!)….I really do need to start packing soon!!

This morning though, now my tummy is full..I’m off to get my sweat on at my Boxercise class.

Hope you’re weekend is off to a good start…

Questions: What’s your favourite toast topping? Do you think it’s important to make time for breakfast in the morning?

L x

Dorset Cereals…Part One

A couple of weeks ago I arrived at work to find 2 huge boxes with my name on them.  At first, not remembering ordering anything on the internet…I was confused!!  Upon closer inspection however I realised it was a delivery from Dorset Cereals who I’d been in contact with about reviewing some of their cereals.  To be honest I wasn’t expecting A LOT…maybe one of each of their products to try or perhaps just a few samples packs, so you can imagine my delight when opened the boxes to find this…

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I am going to split the review in 2 parts…1st up the granola, and porridge.  Followed by a post on the muesli’s and snack bars (so much to talk about!)

One thing I will say about Dorset Cereals is that they really deliver on their promises.  By that I mean if they call something ‘gingerbread’ for example, thats exactly what it tastes like and they really pack some flavour punch!

So the porridges (oatmeal to anyone reading from USA!)…

Available flavours & nutritional stats (when made as directed) are;

  • Gingerbread (223cals, 9.0g protein, 33.8g carbs, 14.5g of which sugars, 5.1 fat, 3.9 fibre)
  • Raspberry & Pumpkin (265cals, 11.5g protein, 39.6g carbs, 17.2 of which sugars, 6g                                  fat, 5g fibre)
  • Unflavoured (223cals, 9.8g protein, 33.3g carbs, 8.5g of which sugars, 4.9g fat, 4.5g fibre)

These guys come in convenient individual packages and are a blend of jumbo & fine cut oats with barley flakes.

The pack instructions recommend making them with milk, which of course is exactly what I did, made in the traditional way in a pan on the stove with a wooden spoon the end result is a luxurious, super creamy porridge.  These guys really have got the ‘blend’ of oats right and the barley flakes add another dimension; chewy and nutty, in contrast to the smooth and creamy oats…I loved it.

The flavours…my oh my, what can I say…simply delicious!  I LOVE gingerbread (gingerbread syrup at Starbuck is my all time favourite!) so i thought this would be my hands down favourite, but I think I like them both just as much.  Now that’s not to say the gingerbread didn’t live up to my hopes, maybe though the raspberry surprised me…I really like the added crunch that the pumpkin seeds give it.

Nutritionally speaking I think these are pretty good.  When I look at nutrition stats I tend to look at 3 things; protein – I try to include at least 15g protein at breakfast for satiety, sugars – I try to avoid ‘added’ sugars where ever possible to minimise glycemic response, fibre – the higher the better, to fill me up!!

The flavoured ones do have around 7-10g of added sugars that aren’t from milk but they come from dates which are a natural source of sweetness.  Oats are generally fairly low in protein, as i’ve mentioned before for an extra boost I like to add an egg to my oats which makes them even more creamy and almost custard like 😀

The Granola……

Available flavours & Nutrition Stats – per 45g serving with 125ml milk;

  • Strawberry & Redcurrant (251cals, 8.8g protein, 31.1g carbs, 14.2g sugars, 9.5g fat, 3.4g fibre)
  • Cherry & Almond (266cals, 9.5g protein, 29.7g carbs, 14.4g sugars, 11.4g fat, 3.5g fibre)
  • Chocolate & Macadamia (264cals, 8.1g protein, 29.9g carbs, 16.2g sugars, 12g fat, 3.2g fibre)
  • Honey (277cals, 8.8g protein, 28.7g carbs, 11.6g sugars, 13.6g fat, 2.5g fibre)

Again these are certainly very tasty, they are apparently “baked in the traditional way to make it loose and tumbly” and thats exactly how it is, crunchy and ‘tumbly’ with a good amount of bigger chunks.  The flavour is perfectly balanced, and really comes through.

The strawberry, cherry and chocolate do have ‘invert sugar syrup’ as their 2nd listed ingredient and for that reason I personally would try to have these as a yogurt/cottage cheese topping around my workouts as snacks instead of meals.

The honey one was definitely my favourite, I didn’t find it as sweet and loved the chunks of nuts and seeds you get (sunflower, pumpkin, almond and pecans…deelish!)

My only slight critique of these would be that I found the sweetness quite intense, especially for breakfast…but thats just my personal taste 🙂

I also feel I should point out that it is important to be mindful of portion sizes, I’ve taken a couple of pics to illustrate what 45g of granola looks like and another of a portion of oats for comparison (I hope you find this useful?)

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Quite a difference right? The porridge comes in individual portions and that granola is 1/3 cup (heaped)….just something to keep in mind 🙂

This weeks been a busy one…work, uni, study, sleep…etc, I can’t believe it’s Thursday already!!

I move house 2 weeks today (!!!!!!!) so the next few days are going to be spent doing the above + packing!!

Oh yeah and tonight I’ve got my step class…something I’m actually looking forward to!!

Questions: Have you tried dorset cereals? and do you think cereal is suitable as a snack any time of day (i definitely do!!) or do you usually only eat them as a breakfast food?

Hope you’re having a good week.

L x

Boxing for fun!!

Good morning!

Hope your week has got off to a good start??

On Saturday I went to a boxercise class at my gym….boy was it a good workout!! It’s now Tuesday morning and my shoulders are STILL sore!!!

Half of the class was a mixture of circuit type training using kettlebells, jump ropes, mountain climbers and the dreaded burpees and the other half was with a partner using gloves and pads.  I was unfortunate in my choice of partner…he was a nice guy, but at least 30% bigger than me in both size and strength, which meant that by the end of the class my whole body was shaking from holding the pads for him!! I really enjoyed it though, it was invigorating and it felt great to do something a little different for a change!

Usually, I go to bodycombat on  Monday evenings but I decided (in the name of listening to my body!!) to give last night a miss last night and let my body rest and recover properly 🙂

Breakfast this morning was delicious but at the same time an epic fail!!…I HAD to take a picture for you guys!

I woke up wanting porridge…I’m slowly working my way through my gigantic selection from Dorset cereals (stay tuned for a review later this week!!) it’s safe to say I think they are absolutely delicious, but with balance in mind I decided to make some banana, blueberry almond pancakes….sounds delicious right?? They were, the problem was they didn’t look so great….

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They look awful don’t they!! I think I had the heat on too high, making them burn on the outside but not cooked in the middle so when I tried to flip them they all broke apart 😦 they did taste really good though…honestly ;)!!

I had a little but of mixture left over so I decided to try again, this time cooking them at a lower heat for longer and they turned out much better, still not perfect but better :D…I think I’ll have to work on them!!

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In the past I have been known to loose my temper and throw away anything I made that didn’t turn out as expected (as my loved one would tell you)!!…I’m much better these days though at accepting the fact that not everything I make will turn out ‘perfect’ and know that I can always try again another time (unless it is totally inedible of course)!

This morning did however grace me with lovely coffee, made in my moka pot, it was smooth with a deep and nutty flavour, everything I want my coffee to be….delicious.

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I’m planning to go to ‘legs bums and tums’ at lunchtime and then am working at Starbucks this afternoon until 8pm…in the meantime I have lots of uni work that I need to make a start on; I sense some stressful times ahead!!

I hope you have a productive Tuesday!!

Question; if your cooking goes wrong do you eat it anyway or throw it away and start again? 

L x

Back to blogging…getting the balance right!

Hi!!

I have been a terrible beginner blogger!!

I had the week off from uni last week and spent it travelling around seeing family and staying with my boyfriend who currently lives a 5hr drive away :(!

It was however, a productive week…I visited the University where I will finish my final year of Nutrition, found a house for us to rent and found a gym I will join when I move next month!….result!

I did all of this though at the expense of my blog….I’m sorry!!!

I have always been a very ‘all or nothing’ type of person; sometimes I’ve found this to be a good thing, usually in the short-term.  I’ve also actually found it more destructive (mostly to myself and my self esteem) in the long run so…I’m currently working towards ‘balance’ in as many areas of my life as possible inc. food, exercise, work, uni, friendships, relationships…and blogging!!

Why am I writing about this?? I feel it only fair to talk about my intentions for this blog so my readers (if there’s anyone out there!) know what to expect and won’t ever feel let down. With ‘balance’ in mind, I don’t intend to take pictures of everything I do/eat/see, or document daily food/exercise logs, nor do I intend to blog more than once a day….I do however, intend to post 3-4 times per week with thoughts, facts, pictures, workouts, musings about my boring/exciting life (however you wish to interpret it!!) I  also am hoping to include some product reviews (exciting!!) :D.

SO…I apologise for my inconsistency and lack of posting this last week, and I intend to become much more reliable and balanced!!!

Moving on!!!

I will leave you with a few pics I did manage to snap over the week….

A tasty dinner of tomato and basil chicken with roasted vegetables

A nice dinner of tomato and basil chicken with roasted vegetables

some dog walking on a very cold, English winter morning

some dog walking…on a very cold, English winter morning (how cute is he!!!)

practising my valentines 'latte art'!!

practising my valentines ‘latte art’!!

discovering a local vintage fair this weekend...

discovering a local vintage fair this weekend…

todays lunch...half a 'pizza express pollo pesto' pizza with spinach and homemade coleslaw...

todays lunch…half a ‘pizza express pollo pesto’ pizza with spinach and homemade coleslaw…

followed by...a mug of coffee and half a square of lindt 85% dark chocolate...tasty!
….followed by a mug of coffee and half a square of lindt 85% dark chocolate…tasty!

 

I hope you’re having a good Monday!!

See you soon!!

 

Lx

 

Workout Playlists

Just lately I have been loving short but frequent interval workouts, I think this maybe due to a new playlist I created on my iPod which gets me really revved up and has some great beats to follow and get that heart pumping!

Music is a really important part of my life, I find it brings emotions and memories both good and bad and I think that can be very powerful.    For me, music has the ability to motivate, to soothe, to cheer up, make me angry and also to bring back memories,  everytime I hear a song called ‘Stars’ by Simply Red I am immediately transported back to my Mum’s home, on a Sunday morning with the smell of a roast dinner and the sound of both the vacuum cleaner and usually some family bickering!!, and each time I hear that song, it fills me with warmth and happy memories 🙂

Equally if I hear ‘Roxanne’ by The Police, I immediately want to get up and do something!

So here is the most recent playlist I created, that gets my little butt moving when I need a little help to ‘get going’…

Eye of the Tiger –  Survivor (good warm up song)

Roxanne – The Police

The Pretender – Foo Fighters (great for intervals)

One more time – Daft Punk

You can’t stop the beat – Hairspray (!)

Town Called Malice – The Jam (just makes me want to move!)

Move your feet – Junior Senior

Pump it up – Danzel

Show me love – Steve Angelo

Run Free – Rebecca Ferguson (I like for a cool down)

To today…Lunch…I was working this afternoon so I packed a salad for lunch and some nibbles for later on…cleaning a 3 floored cafe is hard work (!!) and can often bring on a snack attack!!

In the mix….

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On the bottom was some carrot and celery sticks, a tub of hummus and a couple of oatcakes.

On the top was a tasty salad; I mixed tomatoes, cucumber, beetroot, leaves, avocado and grapefruit for the salad and had quinoa looked with lemon juice and tuna with a mustard and black pepper yogurt ‘mayo’ on the side…fresh, tasty and very colourful!

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Question; Do you find music affects your mood? are there any specific songs you associate with memories/events?

L x

Bloglovin!!

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Evening!

This is how I am feeling tonight as I try to format my blog…and give it some ‘lovin’! I am enjoying it really…a lot.  I often get frustrated though, when I know exactly how I want something to look but can’t get it out on paper….or in this case computer!!

So…please bear with me whilst I try to get it looking ‘ship-shape!’

In the meantime, some pages that might be of interest;

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/nutrition/dirtiest-produce (always good to know what we’re eating!)

http://oxygenmag.com/Training/Slideshows/Kettlebell-Workout-Your-Full-Body-Burn.aspx#slide-1 (I have just started going to a few kettlebell classes at the gym and it certainly get’s my heart rate going and my muscles burning every time!! definitely recommended!!)

http://www.jamieoliver.com/news-and-blogs/jamie-welcomes-school/ (absolutely love this guy!! great news for the young generation of the UK at the moment!!)

Question;

Do you ever get frustrated when you can’t communicate what is in your head the way you hear/see things? especially when technology is involved?

Lx