Right Motivation, Left Satisfied

The Beginning

Four years ago I spontaneously signed up for Run for a Reason, a 14 km run for charity. As I registered three days before the race took place I didn’t have much time to train for it. Furthermore, I had never ran more than 6 km in one go. I have done a lot of long distance cross country skiing, but long distance runs (read: more than 5km) were rather rare. I’m quite competitive towards myself and absolutely hammered my body during the event. I did the 14 kilometres in 1 hour and 10 minutes, and told myself I would never do that race again. The fright only lasted until the soreness of my muscles disappeared a few days after the run. It turned into a desire to pick up long distance running when I discovered the Nike+ app. This was the beginning of running being a big part of my everyday life.

In 2012 I did the HBF Run for a Reason again and raised money for Cystic Fibrosis. Again I ran it in 1 hour and 10 minutes, and again I was wondering why I would put myself through the pain of it. I found strength in thinking of all the people suffering from CF and how strong they are to cope with their condition every day.

Milestone Reached Today

Today I reached 1,000 km on my Nike+ GPS app! So I’m giving myself a big tap on the shoulder and celebrating with a massive green smoothie. Well, I suppose I’ve done more kilometers as I have travelled and used other phones when going for runs. But these are my first recorded 1000 kilometers.  I have developed a great appreciation for running and try and go for 4-5 runs per week. It is like meditation to me. I clear my head of all stress generated throughout the day and enjoy having quality me-time. If I’m ever angry or upset I’d go for a run, and by the time I’ve done the first 3km I have generally changed my mindset and come up with a solution. I don’t even feel that I’m running – its like my legs are on autopilot and my mind is unleashed and flies off wherever it desires to. This is also my most creative time. I enjoy painting, creating things as well as developing business ideas, and I always get my best insights when I’m out running.


Retired: Mr Right Motivation and Miss Left Satisfied

I have to admit I feel extra encouraged to go for a run when I’ve got nice and colourful apparel. My shoes, Mr Right Motivation and Miss Left Satisfied, have served me well in that respect.  However, after more than 1,000 km around the world in all kinds of weather and conditions it’s time to trade them in for a pair of newies. I’m so grateful for getting into running and encourage everyone to give it a chance! Even if you start with short distances and keep a slow pace – something is far better than nothing! ★

I’m so thankful for all the great times I’ve had out running, and can’t wait to hit up the 2,000 km mark!


Vitiligo Cure

I found a vitiligo cure and I hope I’ll reach as many people with the condition as possible before their skin condition develops too far. I can’t say it is the cure for it, but I’ve had a good experience with it and my skin went back to normal after 6 months of taking the supplement.

White Dots and Patches on the Skin

When I was around 16 I started noticing white spots on my skin. I get quite tan so they were rather prominent, and I started getting a bit concerned about what this was. My mum suggested it might be Vitiligo, which my doctor could confirm. He said there wasn’t any real cure for the condition, but proscribed a cream to apply to the affected areas. However, it didn’t seem to make a difference.

vitiligoWhat is Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a disorder where white patches appear on the skin. The reason for this is that the cells making pigment (color) in the skin are destroyed. These cells are called melanocytes. Vitiligo can also affect the mucous membranes (such as the tissue inside the mouth and nose) and the eye. White patches on the skin are the main sign of this condition. The patches can appear anywhere on the body and can often result in hair that turns gray or white early.

About 0.5 to 1 percent of the world’s population have vitiligo, and most people with the condition develop it before the age of 40. The disorder affects all races and both sexes equally.

Vitiligo Cure

Mum then got me an appointment with a naturopath. The practitioner told me that there was a supplement called bromelain that had shown good results in the treatment of Viteligo.  Bromelain is a general name for a family of sulfhydryl-containing proteolytic enzymes obtained from the pineapple plant. Bromelain has healing properties such as interactions with inflammatory, immune, cell signaling, and coagulation moleculesand pathways. Bromelain also appears to have effects on cell surface antigens. Furthermore, bromelain is considered to have very low toxicity. Bromelain has significant positive effects in terms of

  • anti-inflammatory
  • wound healing
  • injury healing
  • blood thinner
  • antibiotic
  • protects against diarrhea
  • anti-cancer activity
  • antimicrobial
  • good for circulation
  • cardiovascular and angina
  • prostatitis
  • arthritis
  • digestion
  • renal
  • kidney
  • sinusitis

As shown above, bromelain has several health benefits. However, in regards to the Vitiligo it is important to take the supplement as advised over a longer period of time. The body is assisted in healing itself, and the natural process takes longer as it doesn’t just fix the symptoms but heals the underlying cause. For me it took just over 6 months before they were disappearing. I had another breakout about two years after that, but as I started taking bromelain again it vanished. Now, another 5 years later it has come back, so I have just started taking the supplement again. According to the naturopath it is just a deficiency I have that needs assistance every now and then. There is no need to constantly keep taking it, but rather get on it whenever the symptoms reappear. The practitioner also said that there are better chances of getting rid of the white patches if it’s in the early stages.

There are two reasons for disease; deficiency and toxicity – Charlotte Gerson

I really hope this can assist people out there in getting rid of their white patches. You can find more information on the topic under ‘Resources’ below if you are interested in this. Please leave a comment if you’ve had good experiences with other types of treatments!  ★

Please read the disclaimer here.

How to Get Rid of Vitiligo with Bromelain


Squash, chipotle and bean bonanza chili

Recipe of the Day


I defy all bean haters to dislike this chili. Likewise you squash haters out there. And those few and far between pessimists with no faith in meatless chili. But maybe that’s my bias as a lover of these foods? Maybe you have to like all vegetables in order to love vegetarian chili? As far as I know my little brother only ate one vegetable–and no others–until his mid-20′s (it was broccoli). Would he have set down his steakums and ramen for a bowl of my chili?

Make this spicy. 1) Because spicy is good and if you don’t like spice, build up to it. You will be richly rewarded. 2) You want it spicy because the squash, corn and cilantro cool it down a little, as does the rice and greek yogurt.

chili 2

You can add whatever vegetables you want, such as carrot, mushroom, zucchini, red onion, celery. I tend to use bell peppers, onions and garlic. You can add in any kind of bean you like, or all kinds of beans. I recommend a mix of black and pinto beans with a little bit of kidney beans. This is one of those occasions when you can use leftover beans you cooked and stored in the freezer.

chili 3

Ingredients for 4 people

4-5 cups of cooked beans (black, pinto and kidney beans or all black beans)
1/2 small butternut (or other) squash, cubed
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño chili (seeded or not, depending on your spice super power)
2 chipotles from a jar of chipotles in adobo sauce, chopped (secret weapon pantry ingredient)
1/2 each of green, red, yellow bell peppers, diced (or other vegetable combo, whatever!)
1 onion, diced
4-6 pickled jalapeño slices from a jar
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp ancho chili powder (optional)
1 or 2 tsp chili powder (or chipotle chili powder if you don’t have the canned chipotles)
1 veg stock cube
2-3 fresh or canned tomatoes chopped
1/2 cup corn
large handful cilantro, chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper
water as needed

For the rice

2 cups basmati rice
handful of cilantro, chopped
1 clove garlic
sea salt and fresh ground pepper
extra virgin olive oil
juice of one lime


strong cheddar cheese
greek yogurt or sour cream
or neither if you want it vegan!

** Being specific on this recipe is really hard for me as I’ve made this about twice a month for many years now (with or without the squash) and kind of do it on autopilot. The leftovers are wonderful as enchiladas, burritos, chili omelette or nachos. I also cook this in a small pot or a big pot depending on how many people are eating. So please know that this is chili and can be corrected and adjusted as you go. Word to the wise, if you’re unsure of cooking with chilies and chili powders then be careful. You can always add in more spice later, or serve a hot sauce! It is harder to de-spice the chili if you throw everything in and then realize that, oops, smoked paprika is about as spicy as you can handle.
1) Rinse and cook the basmati rice. American long grain rice is great too but I tend to use my perfect basmati.
2) While rice is cooking, sauté the garlic, onion and jalapeño chili (as well as the harder veggies like carrots or celery if using) until soft.
3) Add in all the other ingredients except the corn and cilantro–the bell peppers, beans, squash, chipotles, veggie bouillon and spices. Add in enough water for a good chili consistency. Stir to break down the veggie bouillon. The beans will absorb some water–add more to keep the chili consistency like a hearty stew.
4) Bring to boil and then turn down to simmer. Cook until squash is tender.
5) Add in the corn and chopped cilantro. Adjust seasoning if needed, for example you may need more chili powder or salt and pepper.
6) When the rice is cooked, fluff with a fork. Add sea salt (about 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon) and garlic clove to a pestle and mortar and grind to a pulp. Add this to the rice along with the chopped cilantro, lime juice and a couple glugs of extra virgin olive oil. Mix with a fork until all the flavorings are combined.
7) Serve the chili over the rice and add shredded cheese and Greek yogurt unless you want to leave out the dairy.

chili 4

Fresh Fig & Arugula Salad

Recipe of the Day

I am in fig heaven.  Does a more divine, sweet, and delicate fruit exist?  They must truly be the food of the gods.  Besides being so delicious, they are incredibly healthy and detoxifying.  I adore them fresh this time of year, but be sure to eat them within a day or two of buying because they are very delicate and will not last more than that.

Fresh Fig & Arugula Salad Recipe

Serves 4


  • 4 cups arugula, rinsed and dried
  • 4 fresh black figs, gently washed and quartered (with skins on, stem removed)
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


  • In a large bowl, combine arugula, olive oil, vinegar, molasses, pine nuts and salt and pepper.  Toss to combine.
  • Separate into serving bowls and top with quartered figs.

What’s for Breakfast? Sweetcorn Fritters With Roast Tomato.

Recipe of the Day


This time when we returned from Canberra the boot of our car  was filled with plums, tomatoes, sweetcorn, spinach, sweet basil, capsicum, cucumbers and zucchini. All freshly picked from my father’s garden. And two enormous bunches of hydrangea in hues of pink, lilac and blue.

Our holidays are well and truly over and we are getting back into the swing of things. School might not start until next week, but my daughter is back into her swimming routine. I picked her up from the pool this morning. As usual she was absolutely ravenous. “What’s for breakfast?” she asked.

She particularly loves sweetcorn. Especially from her grandfather’s garden. Not surprisingly this is one of her favourite breakfasts. Sweetcorn fritters with roast tomato. Another classic from Bill Granger. It’s still on the menu at Bill’s Cafe. All day. Served with bacon. We decided to give the bacon a miss today. Putting the focus entirely on our beautifully fresh produce.Somehow things always taste better when you grow them yourself.

roasted tomato

Sweetcorn Fritters With Roast Tomato

Serves 4

For the roast tomatoes

4 ripe Roma tomatoes, sliced in half lengthways
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the fritters

1 cup plain  flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon paprika
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 cups fresh corn kernels from the cob
1/2 cup diced fresh capsicum (pepper)
1/2 cup sliced spring (green) onion
1/4 cup chopped coriander and parsley
4 tablespoons vegetable oil

For the roast tomatoes

PREHEAT the oven to 180 C. Place tomatoes on a baking tray cut side up,and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with sea salt and pepper.
ROAST in oven for 20 minutes.

For the fritters

SIFT flour, baking powder, salt and paprika into a large bowl and make a well in the centre.
IN a separate bowl, combine eggs, and milk.
GRADUALLY add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and whisk until you have a smooth, lump-free batter. The batter will be quite stiff.
PLACE corn, capsicum, spring onion and herbs in a mixing bowl and add just enough of the batter to bind them.
HEAT 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a non-stick frying pan on medium heat, then drop in 2 tablespoons of batter per fritter and cook 4 fritters at a time.
COOK for 2 minutes or until the underside of each fritter is golden. Turn over and cook fritters on the other side. Transfer to a plate and keep warm while cooking the remaining fritters.
SERVE with roast tomatoes and rocket.

Pre Workout Foods

Is a Pre Workout Meal Vital?

Food eaten throughout the training week as well as food and fluid consumed during exercise is just as important. Consuming food and fluid before exercise should be seen as an opportunity to fine-tune carbohydrate and fluid levels and to ensure you feel comfortable.

When should I eat?

Food consumed before exercise is only useful once it has been digested and absorbed.  You therefore need to time your food intake so that the energy becomes available during the exercise period.  The time required for digestion depends on the type and quantity of food consumed.  Foods higher in fat, protein and fibre generally take longer to digest than other foods, and can cause stomach discomfort during exercise.  A general guide is to have a meal about 3-4 hours before exercise and/or a lighter snack about 1-2 hours before exercise.

What if I Exercise Early in the Morning?

If you do, try and opt for a light snack about an hour before exercise.  Examples are: Fruit or a museli bar on the way to training along with some fluid such as a glass of almond milk or juice.

What should I eat?

Food eaten before exercise should provide carbohydrate containing low GI complex carbohydrates, about 15-20 grams of protein and a combination of good fats (monounsaturated fats and omega 3′s). This combination of foods will break down slowly, keeping your energy levels consistent and provide the necessary nutrients to aid muscle growth. Most exercise sessions emphasizes on carbohydrate and fluid for the pre-event meal.

Some food suggestions suitable to eat 3-4 hours before exercise:

  • Salad with pumpkin and tofu
  • Tuna and salad sandwich (wholemeal) and an apple
  • pasta or rice with for example tomato, root vegetables and egg
  • Baked beans on toast (whole grain)
  • Quinoa and vegetables + banana
  • Fruit & vegetable smoothie
  • Fruit salad with nuts

Note: The main goal of pre workout meal is to keep your blood sugar levels consistent throughout your training session to prevent muscle catabolism (breakdown of muscle for fuel). Therefore low GI carbohydrates should form the basis of this meal in combination with lean sources of protein.

Some food suggestions suitable to eat 1-2 hours before exercise:

  • Fruit and vegetable smoothie
  • Sports bars (check labels for carbohydrate and protein content)
  • Raw chia seeds almond milk porridge with berries
  • Organic rolled oats with almond milk
  • Coconut milk yogurt
  • Fruit

The ideal pre-workout snack is one that is quickly digested and predominately consists of water and carbohydrates. Examples include solid foods like an orange, banana or grapes. Liquid snacks might include fruit juice, a pre workout shake or a sports drink.

Are Foods With a Low Glycemic Index Better?

Carbohydrate-containing foods have different effects on blood glucose levels.  Foods with a low glycaemic index (GI) cause a slower, sustained release of glucose to the blood, whereas foods with a high GI cause a rapid, short-lived rise in blood glucose.  Research has shown that low GI foods could be useful in the pre-event meal as they would result in a slower and more sustained release of glucose during exercise maintaining blood glucose levels for a longer period.

Athletes: What if I am too Nervous to Eat?

You will perform better when you are well-fuelled and well hydrated, and the pre-event meal could play an important role.  Athletes need to experiment to find a routine that works, and foods that are safe and familiar.  Liquid meal supplements such as protein shakes provide an alternative for anyone who has difficulty tolerating solid foods pre-exercise. Muesli bars and sports bars can be eaten if you nibble them slowly over the hours leading up to your game or competition.

Avoiding Carbohydrate Pre Workout

In some cases, eating carbohydrates can improve the outcome of the session.  However, a small percentage of people experience a drop in blood glucose levels and symptoms such as fatigue, shakiness and dizziness after consuming carbohydrate immediately before exercise.  This is a response to the increase in carbohydrate use that occurs after the intake, associated with a rise in the levels of the hormone, insulin.  However, for most people, this is a temporary event which is quickly corrected by the body without any side-effects.

What if I am Trying to Lose Weight?

Exercising in a fasted state (around 8 hours since the last meal) results in a greater proportion of fat being used as energy compared to doing the same workload after a carbohydrate-containing meal or snack.  However, you may be able to exercise harder and for a longer period if you consume carbohydrate before exercise.  As an overall, this will result in increased energy use and a greater contribution to fat loss. If your primary goal is weight loss, (and do the same amount of exercise regardless of whether you eat or not), save your meal until after the session.

If your primary goal is weight loss, (and do the same amount of exercise regardless of whether you eat or not), save your meal until after the session.


nuts and raisins