Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Realash - The Before.

Hello there lovely people.

Today we're talking eyelashes. I was recently contacted by Realash and offered the opportunity to try out their eyelash growth serum - naturally, as a beauty lover and mascara junkie I couldn't say no!


Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Birthday Wishlist.

Hello there lovely people.

It's my birthday soon so I've been collating a cheeky little list of fitness related items that I would love to receive, which I thought I'd share with you all because, you know, sharing is caring!!

Nano 4.0 | Lifting Belt | Nike Leggings | BACON LEGGINGS! | Quest Bars | Misfit Shine

Which items are on your wishlist? I'd love for you to share them either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or on Instagram @generallifeblog!

While you're here, why not check out my most recent Gymdate?! You can also follow My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!!

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Gymdate #6.

Hello there lovely people.

I can't believe Sunday night is upon us again, where oh where are the weeks going?! Christmas will be here before we know it. I surely can't be the only that finds all the Xmas chocolate offers torturous?! I just want to eat it all! (I won't mention the bag of Terry's Chocolate Orange pieces that I scoffed on Friday, haha!)

Things have been a little better this week compared to last week. I've had a bit of revelation this week after watching Ilya Ilyin smash an insane World Record Clean & Jerk at the World Weightlifting a human can effectively throw 242kg over their head just blows my mind. Here it is in slo-mo for your viewing pleasure!

Anyway, after watching this, a little fire in my belly was reignited. I love Olympic Weightlifting but haven't lifted properly in at least 6 months. So I went to the gym on Saturday all filled with enthusiasm and managed to hit a 52.5kg Clean & Jerk and 32.5kg Snatch. The most I've ever lifted in the C&J is 55kg, which was over a year ago when I was crossfitting, so I'm really pleased that I'm managed to only drop 2.5kg. My Snatch technique certainly needs some work, however my max full snatch previously was only about 37.5kg so not much lost there either considering I haven't done full lifts for so long. 

Diet wise things haven't been so bad, I've had a realisation that actually I like food too much, especially all the treats that are around at Christmas. So from now on I'm being flexible. No tracking, just mindful eating with some treats thrown in here and there. Where's the fun in food if you can't enjoy it!! Although I do need to be more aware of the types of food I'm eating as the old IBS has reared it's ugly head this week...the free lunch of sandwiches and spring rolls at a course I attended this week certainly didn't help that!!

What have you achieved this week? I'd love it if you'd share either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or on Instagram @generallifeblog.

Don't forget to check out My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!

And while you're here, why not catch up on what was in my Birchbox this month!!

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Banana and Peanut Butter Swirl Brownies.

Hello there lovely people.

Recently the lovely folk at Natvia sent me some of their products to try out, and asked that I try to incorporate them into a yummy recipe. I had lots of ideas floating about of what I might like to attempt (I say attempt as I'm pretty new to 'healthier' baking so it was a bit of an experiment!) but I decided that I wanted my first forray to be some sort of banana and peanut butter brownie. 

After doing a little research into what quantities of ingredients I might use (like I said, it was an experiment!) I decided to throw caution to the wind and just have a go. And surprisingly, it worked!! I was genuinely astounded that my first attempt had turned out so delicious. Naturally, I had to do a second attempt just to make sure it wasn't a fluke...and it wasn't!!

50g Butter (melted, you could probably use coconut oil too, although I haven't tried this!)
50g Rice Flour
150g Baking Natvia
30g Cocoa
2 Bananas (mashed)
2 Eggs
Splash of Almond Milk
30g Peanut Butter

1. Mix together the melted butter, cocoa and Natvia.
2. Add the eggs, beating well between each one.
3. Add the rice flour giving them a good mix.
4. Mix in the mashed banana and a splash of almond milk just to loosen the batter slightly.
5. Pour into a lined baking tin, melt the peanut butter and swirl this on the top, mixing in slightly.
6. Cook at 180°C for about 30-35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

This photo was taken a day after I made the cake so it had dried out slightly, I promise it's lovely and moist!

And there we have it, pretty simple really and oh so delicious!! This mix should serve about 8 people, making it approximately 150 calories a slice (or less if you can stretch it out further, or more if you're a bit greedy like me!)

I'm so pleased with how this has turned out, I was worried that it would be dry with it being gluten free, but I think that the banana adds a lovely moistness and the combo of banana, chocolate and peanut butter is just a dream. And it got the seal of approval from my man as well!

Let me know what your favourite 'healthy' bakes are, I'm hoping this will be the first of many tasty, healthier treats! Please share your recipes and baking successes/fails either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or Instagram @generallifeblog

Don't forget, you can follow My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!!

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Gymdate #5.

Hello there lovely people. 

This week has been a giant FAIL on the gym (and diet) front. My motivation seems to have got up and done a major runner, I've just had no desire to do very much at all. Part of me feels like I should have forced myself to go, but at the same time, I know that I most likely wouldn't have enjoyed the forced sessions and I want the gym to be a positive and enjoyable experience. So I've had a little break and I've actually really enjoyed relaxing. I've have a few really busy weeks at work, resulting in some delightful mouth ulcers this week (cheers stress!) which I know is a sign that I need to slow down and chill the f out.

Diet wise things haven't been so bad, my diet has become more relaxed which means my IBS has flared up, but not as badly as I anticipated it would given what I've eaten (Harvester all you can eat breakfast anyone? Allll the Nutella and Pancakes, and the rest!) But I'm all meal prepped ready for tomorrow with happy tum foods and I'm going to go and pack my gym bag later and try and get a little work out in after work tomorrow evening. November is looking to be a pretty busy month, I have lots of training at work, lots of family birthdays and celebrations and then it'll be my birthday and Christmas in December, so I'm trying to not be too hard on myself as it's important that I have a balance.

How have you all been getting on this week? Please share your thoughts either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or on Instagram @generallifeblog

Don't forget to check out my October Favourites post and follow My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!! 

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Favourites - October 2014.

Hello there lovely people.

I can't believe that November is here already!! So with October now a distant memory, I think it's only right that I share the items that I loved throughout the month.

9Bars: I've been on the look out for wheat free snacks recently and I stumbled across these babies whilst doing my weekly shop. So far I've tried the fruity and peanut varieties, both of which I love. They're a tasty treat for my mid morning/afternoon slump and I also enjoy them as a pre-gym snack. I think next time I'll have to pick up some of the indulge 9bars as they look delicious.

Trek Bars: Again, I picked these up for the same reasons as the 9bars. These are a great chocolate bar replacement for me and they help stave off my sweet food cravings in less naughty way. I originally tried the Cocoa Out variety, however, had to pick up the Cocoa Coconut flavour after Sarah from That Squat Bot mentioned them in last weeks #hbloggers chat. I have to say, I think I prefer the Cocoa Coconut, they're delicious!! I've also noticed today that they're on offer in Sainsburys (2 for £1.50) so I think I'll have to stock up!!

Natvia*: I was recently sent some Natvia samples to try out and I have to say these little sachets have fast become a firm favourite. I've switched to using Natvia in my cups of tea and I can really taste the difference. I find it tastes pretty much like 'real sugar' and doesn't have the artificial sweetness that my usual sweetners have.

Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm: I received this in my October Birchbox and it has become a firm favourite. I really like the colour, it's nice and neutral, meaning it's easy to apply on the go and it has become my go-to lip product for work days. Plus it smells yummy and it really smooth and nourishing on the lips.

Co Lab Dry Shampoo: I naturally had to pick this up after all the buzz about it in the beauty world. I chose the scent New York which is so yummy and makes my hair smell amazing all day, a definite selling point for me. The dry shampoo itself works great and doesn't leave my hair looking grey and powdery. Plus it was really inexpensive, I did pick this up on offer (I think there was 1/3 off), but it was less than £2.50 and you get loads of product. I'll definitely be trying the other scents when this one runs out!

Beauty Blender: This is another Birchbox product from a couple of  months ago and I've fallen in love with it. I find I get a really smooth foundation application with great coverage, I hadn't tried a Beauty Blender before this so I've definitely been converted.

So there we have it, my picks from the last month. What were your favourite things in October? I'd love it if you'd share your faves either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or on Instagram @generallifeblog

Don't forget, you can also follow My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!!

*These products were kindly sent by Natvia for review purposes. All opinions are my own!

Monday, 3 November 2014

World Occupational Therapy Week.

Hello there lovely people.

This post is certainly different to my usual posts, but something that I really wanted to write about and share with you all. This week is World Occupational Therapy Week (3rd-9th November), a week where as Occupational Therapists we take the time to promote our wonderful profession.

Occupational Therapy
When I tell people that I'm an Occupational Therapist a lot of people have no idea what I do, I usually get a reply such as 'Oh, so you help people get jobs then?' because an occupation is a job, right? Well, to an OT, occupations are the meaningful and purposeful activities that people choose to do to occupy their time and provide structure to their day. That could include taking a shower, walking the dog, preparing and eating meals and going to the gym or for a run. Occupations form part of our identity as human beings.

Health it not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, but a state of complete physical, mental and social-well-being (this is the World Health Organisation definition of health). Occupational Therapists recognise that occupation can have an important influence on an individual's health and well-being. Therefore we aim to promote independence in meaningful occupation, with a view to this having a positive impact on an individuals health and well-being.

Occupational Therapy
Occupational Therapists are problem solvers, we try to think outside the box and work in a holistic manner in order to support an individual to reach their potential. We work with a variety of people, OT could benefit anyone who is experiencing barriers preventing them from engaging in activities that are important to them. Occupational Therapists support people to develop skills for living and thus enabling them to participate fully in the life they choose to live.

I appreciate that I am biased, but I cannot express how much of a wonderful profession OT is. I genuinely adore what I do. I personally work in acute mental health, however, OTs are trained to work in all healthcare sectors and also social sectors and non-traditional settings (for example, hostels, charities and community projects). I always knew that I wanted to work in mental health and I honestly felt like all my Christmas' had come at once when I was offered my dream first job (which is a mental health rotational post, where I move around different MH services). 

Although there's lots of other things I enjoy and would like to try my hand at, I really am so glad that I decided to become an Occupational Therapist. OT philosophy has become part of my own philosophy and outlook on life, I feel like it fits so well with me as a person and something about it just clicks. It's a wonderful profession, with a great philosophy that has the potential to have huge impact on peoples lives in such a positive way.
Occupational Therapy
You can find out more information on OT at the College of Occupational Therapists website. If anyone has any questions at all about Occupational Therapy just generally or in relation to a potential career choice please don't hesitate to contact me. You can either email me on, post a comment below, or catch me on Twitter @mygenerallife or Instagram @generallifeblog :] Usual health, fitness and lifestyle posts will resume later this week!!

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Gymdate #4.

Hello there lovely people.

It's that time of the week again, where oh where do they go!! And now it's November which just blows my mind, I just can't believe it's November already!!

So this week I've not been as consistent as previous weeks, although I'm not too bothered about that because hey, life happens! This week I had a bit of a stressful week at work, so on Friday night I ended up reaching for my good friends Ben and Jerry. It was good!! I also went home to visit family over the weekend and ended up eating far too much, but it was nice to spend time with the people I love and eat yummy stuff! Although I'll be back on my healthy bandwagon from Monday!

Weightlifting Legs
I always manage to get chalk everywhere!
Scrambled Eggs
My current go-to late night tea, scrambled eggs with mushrooms, bacon and gluten-free toast!
Workout wise, I've been to the gym twice. Both  were pretty substantial workouts so I'm feeling good about that. Today I decided to go to a craft fair instead of hitting the gym, which I really enjoyed and it was nice to have some me time. On one of my workouts I was actually praised by a random chap in the gym. I was doing pull ups with my red resistance band and he watched me as I bashed out my set (8 reps) and afterwards said how impressive it was!! He told I'd inspired him to go hard on his next back day and that if I attack life like I did my pull ups then I could do anything!! So, as I'm sure you can imagine, this made my day entirely. Girl F**king Power!!!

Natvia Sweetner
Looking forward to doing some healthy baking thanks to the lovelies at Natvia!
So there we have it, and now it's Sunday night again and I'm getting ready run head first into next week! Food prepping and baking some wheat free and reduced sugar goodies is going down tonight!! There might be a recipe up soon if my baking attempt is successful so keep your beady eyes peeled!!

GSD Crossbreed Obi
Nothing to do with the gym, but he's just too gorgeous!
Please share your gymdates either in the comments below, on Twitter @mygenerallife or on Instagram @generallifeblog!!!

Also, don't forget that you can follow My General Life on Bloglovin' and Pinterest too!!! I'm pin wild at the moment!