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Chia pudding

Simple, yet delicious Chia pudding

I have to say that one of my favourite things to eat in the morning is Chia Pudding. I love to use fresh fruits, nuts and seeds. I have a lot of different flavours to share with you but let’s first start with a simple one that you can make at home. Of course the best is to use the flavours you like the most. However, it is good to experiment because you never know what would be your next favourite.

Health Benefits

  • Chia seeds are rich in fibre, antioxidants, calcium, phosphorous, and magnesium
  • They are excellent source of essential fatty acids, including alpha-linolenic acid which is an important anti-inflammatory fat known as “the plant omega-3”
  • Those seeds may provide therapeutic benefit for certain cardiovascular, immune, and digestive conditions

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup diary free milk (I always use coconut or almond milk for my chia puddings)
  • 2/3 cup chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (more or less to taste)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

OR SERVING (optional)

  • Mint
  • Compote
  • Fresh Fruit
  • LSA mix
  • Nuts
  • Dried fruits
  • Shredded coconut
  • Oats
  • Coconut yogurt

Instructions

To a mixing bowl add dairy free milk, chia seeds, maple syrup (to taste), and vanilla. Whisk to combine.
Cover and refrigerate overnight (or at least 6 hours). I always add 1 tbsp of coconut yogurt to my chia pudding because it becomes very thick and creamy. And I just love that coconut flavour in my chia puddings.
Enjoy as is, or layer with compote or fresh fruit! Will keep covered in the refrigerator up to 5 days.

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High protein foods

20 High protein foods to include in your diet

As a Personal Trainer and Health and Nutrition Coach I get a lot of questions about what foods to eat that are high in protein. Protein is a macronutrient similar to fat or carbohydrates, that the body needs for energy and to build muscle. Protein is composed of essential, nonessential, and conditional amino acids. Essential amino acids are those that can’t be produced by the body, which is why we have to get protein from the food we eat. Protein is found in high quantities in animal products like meat, eggs, and milk, but is also found in legumes, nuts, seeds, leafy greens and other vegetables, and whole grains.

High protein foods can help you lose weight (especially belly fat), and increase your muscle mass and strength.
The recommended daily intake (RDI) is 46 grams for women, and 56 grams for men.

That number is just a recommendation and not a set rule. Use this as a general guideline for the minimum amount of protein you need based on your body weight. More information you can find on Eat for Health website. They have a calculator that you can use to calculate your daily requirements. Work with your doctor to come up with the right goal for you based on your age, weight, activity level, and any other factors.

Protein is often associated with exercise and active lifestyles. When you work out, you’re basically creating tears in your muscles that need to be rebuilt, which is one of the reasons you’re so sore the next day. When you’re lifting weights or doing any kind of strength training, they’re rebuilt bigger than they were before. Soon after exercising, it’s recommended that you have a serve of high-quality protein (such as a glass of milk or tub of yoghurt) with a carbohydrate meal to help maintain your body’s protein balance.

Here is a list of 20 delicious foods that are high in protein:

1. Eggs
Whole eggs are among the healthiest and most nutritious foods on the planet.
They are loaded with vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, eye-protecting antioxidants and brain nutrients that most people don’t get enough of. Whole eggs are high in protein, but egg whites are almost pure protein.
Protein content: 35% of calories in a whole egg. 1 large egg contains 6 grams of protein, with 78 calories.

2. Almonds
They are loaded with important nutrients, including fiber, vitamin E and magnesium.
Protein content: 13% of calories. 6 grams per 28 g serving, with 161 calories.
Other High-Protein Nuts
Pistachios (13% of calories) and cashews (11% of calories).

3. Chicken Breast
If you eat it without the skin, the majority of the calories in it come from protein.
Protein content: 80% of calories. 1 roasted chicken breast without skin contains 53 grams, with only 284 calories.

4. Oats
They are loaded with healthy fibers, magnesium, manganese, thiamin (vitamin B1) and several other nutrients.
Protein content: 15% of calories. Half a cup of raw oats contains 13 grams, with 303 calories.

5. Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is a type of cheese that tends to be very low in fat and calories.
It is loaded with calcium, phosphorus, selenium, vitamin B12, riboflavin (vitamin B2) and various other nutrients.
Protein content: 59% of calories. A cup (226 g) of cottage cheese with 2% fat contains 27 grams of protein, with 194 calories.
Other Types of Cheese That Are High in Protein
Parmesan cheese (38% of calories), Swiss cheese (30%), mozzarella (29%) and cheddar (26%).

6. Greek Yogurt
Protein content: Non-fat Greek yogurt has protein at 48% of calories. One 170 gram container has 17 grams of protein, with only 100 calories.
Just make sure to choose one without added sugar. Full-fat Greek yogurt is also very high in protein, but contains more calories.
Regular full-fat yogurt (24% of calories)

7. Milk
However, if you tolerate milk and enjoy drinking it, then milk can be an excellent source of high-quality protein. Milk contains a little bit of almost every single nutrient needed by the human body. It is particularly high in calcium, phosphorus and riboflavin (vitamin B2).
Protein content: 21% of calories. 1 cup of whole milk contains 8 grams of protein, with 149 calories.

8. Broccoli
Broccoli is an incredibly healthy vegetable, loaded with vitamin C, vitamin K, fiber and potassium. Broccoli is also loaded with various bioactive nutrients believed to help protect against cancer.
Protein content: 20% of calories. 1 cup of chopped broccoli (96 grams) contains 3 grams of protein, with only 31 calories.

9. Lean Beef
It is loaded with highly bioavailable iron, vitamin B12 and numerous other nutrients.
Protein content: 53% of calories. 85g serving of cooked beef with 10% fat contains 22 grams of protein, with 184 calories.

10. Tuna
It is low in both fat and calories, so what we’re left with is mostly just protein.
Like other fish, tuna is also very high in various nutrients and contains a decent amount of omega-3 fatty acids.
Protein content: 94% of calories, in tuna canned in water. A cup (154) contains 39 grams of protein, with only 179 calories.

11. Quinoa
Quinoa is a seed/grain that is currently among the world’s most popular superfoods.
It is high in many vitamins, minerals and fiber, and is loaded with antioxidants.
Protein content: 15% of calories. One cup (185 g) of cooked quinoa contains 8 grams, with 222 calories.

12. Whey Protein Supplements
When you’re pressed for time and unable to cook, a whey protein supplement can come in handy. Whey is a type of high-quality protein from dairy foods, shown to be very effective at building muscle mass, and may help with weight loss.
Protein content: Varies between brands, can go over 90% of calories, with 20-50 grams of protein per serving.

13. Lentils
They are high in fiber, magnesium, potassium, iron, folate, copper, manganese and various other nutrients.
Lentils are among the world’s best sources of plant-based protein, and are an excellent food for vegetarians.
Protein content: 27% of calories. 1 cup (198 g) of boiled lentils contains 18 grams, with 230 calories.
Other High-Protein Legumes
Soybeans (33% of calories), chickpeas (19%) and kidney beans (24%).

14. Ezekiel Bread
It is made of organic and sprouted whole grains and legumes, including millet, barley, spelt, wheat, soybeans and lentils. Compared to most breads, Ezekiel bread is very high in protein, fiber and various nutrients.
Protein content: 20% of calories. 1 slice contains 4 grams, with 80 calories.

15. Pumpkin Seeds
They are incredibly high in many nutrients, including iron, magnesium and zinc.
Protein content: 14% of calories. 1 ounce 28g contains 5 grams of protein, with 125 calories.
Other High-Protein Seeds
Flax seeds (12% of calories), sunflower seeds (12%) and chia seeds (11%).

16. Turkey Breast
It consists mostly of protein, with very little fat and calories. It also tastes delicious.
Protein content: 70% of calories. 85g serving contains 24 grams, with 146 calories.

17. Fish (All Types)
It is loaded with various important nutrients, and tends to be very high in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
Protein content: Highly variable. Salmon is 46% protein, with 19 grams per 85 g serving, with 175 calories.

18. Prawns

It is low in calories, but loaded with various nutrients, including selenium and vitamin B12.
Like fish, prawns also contains plenty of omega-3 fatty acids.
Protein content: 90% of calories. 85 g serving contains 18 grams, with only 84 calories.

19. Brussels Sprouts
It is very high in fiber, vitamin C and other nutrients.
Protein content: 17% of calories. Half a cup (78 g) contains 2 grams of protein, with 28 calories.

20. Peanuts
They are high in protein, fiber, magnesium and many studies show that they can help you lose weight.
Protein content: 16% of calories. 28g contains 7 grams, with 159 calories.

Mixed nuts in wooden bowls on black stone table. Almonds, pistachio, walnuts, cashew, hazelnut. Top view nut photo.

Vitamins in nuts

Vitamin means ‘vital for life’. Vitamins and minerals are compounds necessary for the healthy functioning of our bodies. We need vitamins and minerals to help us grow, to see correctly, to form bones, muscles, skin and organs, as well as to help us battle infections. Deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals can lead to severe problems.

As different types of nuts have slight differences in their vitamin and mineral content, eating a variety of nuts will increase your levels of various nutrients.

Eating nuts as part of a healthy diet may be good for your heart. Nuts contain unsaturated fatty acids and other nutrients. And they’re a great snack food — inexpensive, easy to store and easy to pack when you’re on the go.

One drawback to nuts is that they’re high in calories, so it’s important to limit portions. But choosing nuts instead of a less healthy snack may just help you stick to a heart-healthy diet. Instead of eating a biscuit or piece of cake as a snack, try having a handful of raw or dry roasted nuts. Combining nuts and seeds with low-energy dense foods (such as vegetables) is a good way to enhance vegetable-based meals – for example, in Asian-style dishes or added to a salad.

The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend a daily nut intake of 30 grams as part of a healthy, varied diet in adults.

Regular consumption of nuts, seeds and legumes is recommended for vegetarians, vegans or people who avoid animal foods. They are a good substitute for meats, fish and eggs as they contain protein, fat, iron, zinc and niacin. More than 30 grams of nuts and seeds a day may be needed to ensure adequate protein.

Always consult with your doctor when starting a new diet.

Here’s some nutrition information on common types of nuts:

Almonds are rich in Vitamin E, with just a handful (30g, about 20 nuts) providing 85% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for Vitamin E.

Brazil nuts are an excellent source of selenium, a vital mineral and antioxidant. Just two Brazil nuts can provide your entire daily intake of selenium.

Cashew nuts however are a firm favourite and with good reason – cashews are a source of magnesium, needed for strong bones. Count 15 cashews in a handful.

Hazelnuts contain significant amounts of B group vitamins including folate and Vitamin B6. Plus, they are the highest in fibre of all the nuts. An average handful contains 20 hazelnuts.

Macadamias – the Australian nut – are brimming with healthy monounsaturated fats and have been found to lower blood cholesterol.

Pine-nuts contain nutrients including useful amounts of zinc, niacin, manganese and the amino acid or protein arginine. An average serve is two tablespoons of pine nuts.

Pistachios are rich in protein for active bodies and contain the antioxidant Vitamin E. Split 60 pistachios for an average serve of 30g.

Walnuts contain the highest source of natural plant omega 3s called alphalinoleic acid – ALA . Eating walnuts is like wearing a seat belt for your heart. Enjoy 10 walnut halves (i.e. around 5 walnuts in shell) in an average serve.

Here’s a rough guide to how many nuts make up a 30g serve, or a healthy handful (the daily recommended intake).

  • 20 almonds
  • 10 Brazil nuts
  • 15 cashews
  • 4 chestnuts
  • 20 hazelnuts
  • 15 macadamias
  • 15 pecans
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 30 pistachio kernels
  • 10 walnuts halves

Where to get help

Side view of a group of fitness / yoga people doing exercises in the park.

Workout Tips

20 Tips to maximise your Training benefits

As many of you are already aware, there is no single type of exercise that can take care of all your needs. To get the most benefits from your routine, you want a mix of different activities during the week. Otherwise, it’s like a diet consisting only of fruit—healthful as far as it goes, but lacking a lot of the nutrients you’ll find in other foods, such as fish, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains. 

1. Remember to warm-up
2. Include carbs in a pre-workout snack
3. Include strength training
4. Focus on hydration
5. Make sleep your priority
6. Train with a friend
7. Include protein and healthy fats in your meals
8. Listen to your body
9. Be consistent
10. Allow time to rest
11. Try skipping
12. Use low intensity cardio to build endurance
13. Enjoy nature while you exercise
14. Include interval training
15. Remember to cool down
16. Focus on your breath
17. You can start at home
18. Try following a specific fitness program tailored to your goals
19. Build in active recovery days—they’re important
20. Don’t forget to stretch!

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From There to Here

How did I get from There to Here?

PART 1

What made me think to start my Journey in Fitness? Well, the story is quite interesting. Let me tell you all about it……

Since 2007 I have been working in an office based environment. I was doing a range of different roles in the organisation where I still work 2 days a week. While I was working there I was approached by one of my clients who wanted to find a Personal Trainer that specialises in Training People with a Disability. I still remember like it was today, that I struggled to find one in Sydney. There was only one Trainer but he worked so far away. That wasn’t a very suitable option for my client. I was shocked to the fact that there wasn’t any Trainers in the area that worked in this field. I thought to myself back then, why I don’t do something like that. I did a lot of research on what was needed for me to become a Certified Personal Trainer for People with a Disability. I already had the experience I just needed to get the qualification.

At that time I was attending Fernwood Fitness gym with my friend. I found out that they had Fernwood Learning Centre where they offered online Fitness courses. They are now called Force Training Academy. Not long after that I enrolled in Certificate III in Fitness and began my journey through Fitness and Wellness. I was doing my online studies with them, but I did my placement in Fernwood Fitness gym where I trained with my friend.

Once I finished Certificate III I then enrolled in Certificate IV in Fitness. This is what I needed to become a Certified Personal Trainer. OMG, at that point I was thinking to myself: Am I really doing this? Is this real? Sure it was real. Very real. I finished my Placement in Fernwood Fitness and there I was, ready to conquer the world of Fitness.

I can tell you now, it wasn’t easy finding out what I had to do to start my own business. Yes, you are right, I didn’t just want to be a Personal Trainer, I wanted to run my own business in Fitness. Of course my focus was to work with People with a Disability. Another thing that I wanted to do was to take my training to the next level. I mainly wanted to train outdoors. Why? Well, because I love training outdoors. You get to breath the fresh air and get the extra vitamin D from the sun. It feels much better training in nature. Parks and beaches are the great environment to train. You feel totally refreshed.

The journey through the registration process was so costly and time consuming considering I was new to all this. Luckily for me, in my studies I did a lot of training on how to write a Business Plan and Marketing Plan. I had a starting point at least. Back then I didn’t know that I didn’t need to be registered with Fitness Australia to be a Personal Trainer. I paid a lot for their registration. Also, the requirement was and still is that you need to complete 20 credit points every 2 years to continue with the registration. Now that I know all this, I still choose to be with Fitness Australia. Why, you probably ask? Well, I personally think that as a Personal Trainer who runs their own business I need to always be on the top with the rules and regulations. Also, it is important to always learn new things and develop my professional skills.

Now that the boring part was done, I had to do something about marketing my business. Oh boy, that was the hardest part for me. Why, you ask again? Well, for those of you who know me, you know that I am very modest and reserved when it comes to talking about myself. To run your own business, you need to sell yourself and communicate, communicate….

I attended my first Fitness Expo called (Filex) in Sydney. That was huge!!! Plus, I was the only one at that Expo that didn’t try to sell anything. But mostly, I was an outsider, and definitely at the wrong place. I did get one thing right in that Expo. I met Sophie and her Team from FiaFitnation. I did my Nutrition course through them. But that is for another story. I didn’t get any clients from that Expo. I had to look into getting into the right field. Soon after that, I found out about South West Disability Expo, and there I was in my own element. This was the place for me… And yes I did get few clients thanks to that Expo. I loved the vibe and the atmosphere there.

5 years later, here I am, running my own business in Fitness and Nutrition. I love my job and the satisfaction that I feel when I see an individual achieve their goal. Whenever I have played even a tiny part in such a development I am rewarded by that individual’s success.

We all love our family and friends, we love food, sports and all sorts of other objects. But I am one of the lucky ones, not only do I have great family and friends that I love dearly, but I also have a job that I truly love. We often hear the phrase “do you want a job you love”, well I have that job.

I love that every person and family I work with is different – no one’s story is the same. It means that there is great variety to my work professionally.

Below is the video that highlights the services that I provide.