Lifestyle Blogger.

Meatballs and mozzarella ...




I had to share with you this awesome recipe, it's super quick but so tasty.

All that's needed is:
12 pork/turkey/beef meatballs (homemade or shop bought)
1/2 red onion diced
1/2 carrot diced
1/2 courgettes diced
6 mushrooms sliced
1 mozzarella ball
400g chopped tomatoes
2tsps red pesto

Lightly fry the red onion, courgette, and carrot on a medium heat in a large frying pan with some coconut oil. After 2-3 minutes they should have change colour slightly, now turn the heat up high. Chuck in all the meatballs and let them brown for 2-3 minutes.
When browned add the chopped tomatoes and red pesto.
Leave to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Chuck in the mushrooms until cooked and then tear the mozzarella ball into piece, chuck it into the sauce and serve straight away. The mozzarella will just start to melt making it nice and stringy.
This recipe made me an evening meal and enough left over for lunch the next day.
Enjoy.


Beauty post.. My all time favourite products.










I've decided to write something a little bit different tonight. As much as my blog is mainly about food and fitness, I see no harm at all in throwing in some lifestyle posts. So tonight I decided that I'm going to share with you a few of my all time favourite beauty products, I have tried and tested so many different products, but these ones stand out as the ones I always go back to.

Recently I posted on Instagram my love for Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream, and I was stunned to hear that people had never heard of it. I have used this product since my early teens, it is the most amazing product for dry lips and skin. I have it in the cream and in the lip balm, I never leave the house without one of them. I make sure I apply the lip balm every morning and night, especially in the winter months. It's also a must for any skiing trip I go on.

My other favourite skin products are the Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet from The Body Shop, this product is amazing, and leaves your skin so refreshed. I had read some really good reviews about it before I went on the hunt for it, the day I bought it I actually had a skin consultation with one of the girls in store. She asked me a few questions about my skin condition and my skincare routine and she felt this product was best suited for me. And i've never looked back since, this is my 2nd pot. I have combination skin, and I find that this product is really hydrating without being oily. And my other favourite skin care product is the the Tea Tree Water from Lush Cosmetics, I don't use this everyday, only when I feel a break out coming on. The tea tree element of this product is antibacterial, antiseptic and antimicrobial and I find it really helps calm down those awful break outs we all suffer with at times.

Another fab Body Shop product I couldn't be without is the Wild Rose Hand Cream. As I lift weights on a daily basis, normally without gloves, I find the skin on my hands breaks quite easily. Therefore I always carry this hand cream around in my bag to keep my hands moisturised, as much as it feels really oily at first it drys quite quickly.

I have tried so many foundations over the years, and I have finally found one that is versatile for all my needs. This NARS all day luminous weightless foundation, is perfect for the minimal look you need day in, day out while at work, and also perfect for that glam evening look. The coverage is superb and lasts from morning to night, I also find it the best foundation to top up if need be without leaving obvious marks. I wear shade Medium 2 Santa Fe.

These two Loreal Paris products are actually both pretty new to my collection, but I instantly fell in love with them both. First is the False Lash Sculpt Mascara, this has a comb brush that seems to open up your lashes more, without any clumps. I love wearing this during the day to give abit of edge to my daytime look, I tend to not wear eyeliner during the day which can normally make me look quite tired, but since i've started using this mascara I feel my eyes look much brighter. The second product is the Infallable fixing mist. I was one of those teenagers that thought spraying hair spray on top of my make up was a good idea. I was so totally wrong about that, no wonder I has terrible break outs. This product is so lightweight you can't even feel it sitting on top of your make-up, however you can see a massive difference in how well your make-up stays on. I use this on a morning before work and I find my make-up still looks good after work and a gym session.

Last but not least is the Bare Minerals Royal Court palette, I saw Victoria Inthefrow snapchat about this product months ago, and I have been desperate to try it ever since. I actually got this for Christmas and have used it every day since. This palette includes a highlighter, bronzer and blusher, and I have found the colours to be perfect for my skin colour. Its perfect for your daytime contour, as it doesn't look heavy on your skin.

I hope you've enjoyed reading my first ever lifestyle-beauty post, hopefully there will be more to come in the future.
R x

My favourite ab workout ...






I thought I would share with you my favourite ab workout, this is what works for me and I really hope it helps you guys out.

20 x Ab Crunches, 
ensure your not lifting yourself any further than 12 inches. Keep your hands at the side of your head, refrain from pulling at your neck.

15 x Cross Crunches, 
repeat with opposite side.

20 x Russian Twist,
lift your feet off the floor and tense your abs, you will automatically try and keep your balance, which instantly burns more calories.

15 x V-sit ups, 
again try and keep your abs tensed to keep your balance. You should be trying to reach for your toes.

20 x leg raises, 
don't let your feet touch the ground between reps.

30 x bicyles, 
keep at a good steady pace, there is no need to rush.

Finish with a 60 second plank.

I like to repeat this 3 times throughout my workout. If your just starting out in the gym try just one set, and as your progress and an extra set into your session. You should be able to feel the burn, if you don't then your not performing the exercises correctly.

Preparation has begun, Kilimanjaro in 6 months ...










So in 6 months time I will be setting off to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro. This trip is going to be a once in a lifetime opportunity for me, and it's going to be an opportunity for me to find myself. I can't quite believe that it was 6 months ago that I shared with you that I had applied to do this, those 6 months have flown by, and I really haven't done enough to be prepared. 

To take part in this trip I have to raise £3500 for vision aid overseas, in order for them to fund my trip. Fundraising has been hard because I really don't like pestering people, and I completely understand that people work hard for their money, so why would they want to donate their hard earned money. So far me and my family have ran cake & chutney stalls, my 84 year old gran is knitting scarves and making birthday cards to sell for me, we also ran a xmas raffle with some fantastic prizes. So far I've raised around £1800 but still got lots more to raise.

As much as I am not fully prepared, I have started preparing some things. I have been out and purchased my walking boots and my thermal coat, as well as some thermal layers to take with me. I was lucky to receive a few Christmas presents that will help me out massively on my travels. One of which being a book called 'Kilimanjaro Diaries' by Eva Melusine Thieme, i've recently started reading this and I have already gained alot of information from it. Unfortunately some of that information was that I choose to travel at probably the worst time of year, due to it being mid rain season. Yikess. The best thing about this book is that it's written by someone who is quite down to earth, its nice to have some tips from someone who has actually done what I am going to do, rather than text books written by someone who has never done it.

Fitness wise I do think I am prepared, I am trained to a fitness level where I can complete a half marathon in just over 2 hours, I have climbed several mountains in the lake district over the last few years and I keep myself fit and healthy on a day to day basis. I train in the gym 5-6 days a week and follow a pretty clean diet aswell. I am also going to be doing a couple of training sessions in an altitude chamber before I go, i'm hoping this may help my body deal with the altitude a little better. 

I've also updated my camera to an Olympus Pen E-pl7, so i'm hoping to take some pretty awesome shots while i'm out there. You'll have to pop back when I return to see my photographs :)

Over the next 6 months i'm really going to have to pull my finger and get my stuff sorted. My flights have been confirmed and I will be leaving on the 16th June, I am so excited for this adventure. We need to realise that we only live once, we need to make sure we do everything we want to do, while we have the chance. I have also decided that while I'm out there I'm going to keep a journal, I had thought about this previously but since reading 'Kilimanjaro Diaries' I know its something I definitely want to do now. This way when I get home I can share it with my family and friends that are interested to know what I've been up to. 



Anyone wanting to sponsor me, my justgiving link is:
www.justgiving.co.uk/ruthskiliclimb

x







Chicken in a creamy pesto sauce ...



Due to lots of requests I thought I would share with you this super simple recipe.

I served this chicken dish on top of a pile of courgette and broccoli spaghetti, which I had sent through my spiralizer machine.

This recipe can be easily adjusted depending how many people your wanting to feed.

Recipe per person.

1 Chicken Breast cut into strips.
1 tbsp of low fat Philadelphia
30ml Semi-Skimmed milk
1 tbsp basil pesto
Paprika for seasoning


The method is so simple.

Coat the cut up chicken breast in paprika, then lightly fry in a pan with a small drop of olive oil, until slightly browned and cooked through. Normally around 10-15 minutes.
Then add the pesto to the pan, after 2-3 minutes add the milk and Philadelphia, bring to a simmer for 5-7 minutes and then your ready to serve.

Honestly, it really is that simple.
You can serve on vegetable spaghetti, rice, pasta or anything else you can think of.

x

South Lakes Safari Zoo ...




























I had to share with you these photos of my visit to South Lakes Safari Zoo in Ulverston. I have been visiting this Zoo since I was a kid, and I am heartbroken that it's closing this week. For as long as I remember I have been totally obsessed with giraffes, i'm besotted by them, so visiting South Lakes has always been so much fun for me as their group of giraffes grows year on year that I visit. There newest addition Melman completely melts my heart, I remember visiting two weeks after he was born, such a cutie. Not only is it amazing to see the giraffes but all the other animals are amazing too, and to think this is only a 90 minute drive from my home, we are so lucky to have a place like this to visit. I really do hope that they can work things out and not close, so sad to see, somewhere I've spent a lot of my childhood, close down.

x

I must have been good last year ...


Not sure what I did to be so lucky this year, but Santa really did spoil me. As some of you might have seen in my previous 'Dear Santa' post, I had written a letter to Santa asking for a few things that had caught my eye, I was so unbelievably lucky to have received each and everyone of the items on my wishlist, much to my surprise. 
I received the Olympus Pen E-pl7, I now feel like a proper blogger, and I am so surprised at how much different the quality of my images are now. There will indeed be loads more photos in my posts now that I have the ability to take high quality photographs. And with this new camera, I have decided to show you a few images of the other items Santa brought me this year.


My other half knows the way to my heart. Now nobody can steal my nutella, and pretend they didnt know it was mine.



Some friends just know me too well. Unicorn slippers for my chilled days blogging.



By far my favourite scent of 2015, Marc Jacobs Decadence. And the bottle is simply stunning.


Sweaty Betty Ski thermals are a must to look great on piste. I can't wait to use these in Austria in March.



I saw InTheFrow snapchat about his palette months ago, and have since really wanted to try it. Recently, my naked palette has died its death so this came just in time.



Everyone needs converse. They finish off a casual outfit, and are great for nipping out in. My other half choose these in blue as I have a slight obsession with everything blue at the moment.


These to you may look like any macaroons, but in fact they were delivered from the most stunning patisserie in Brighton, Julien Plumart. I've already grown to love the salted caramel macaroons they make, however each and everyone of these were incredible. Definitely the best I've ever tasted.



So I do already own a spiralizer, but this one has a lot more extras to my very basic one. A spiraliser is a great way to make healthy food alot more appealing to the naked eye, I got a recipe book to go along side this one, so look out for food posts in the future, using both the spiralizer and the recipe book.


I honestly feel so overwhelmed at the kindness of my family, boyfriend and friends. This post isn't to brag or gloat, just a post to share the things I received at Christmas. To some my gifts may be pointless or uninteresting, but to me they all come into use in my day to day life. 

Hope you all had a fantastic Christmas.


Happy New Year from PLGA ...






Welcome 2016. 
2015 has set some very high standards, I hope this year can keep up. I have loved 2015, so many great things have happened for me. I managed to reach my 3.5 stone weight loss, I am overwhelmed with my results, and love the new me that has come out of it all. I have so much more confidence than I used to, I've always been loud and boisterous, but now I feel like I look good, I put alot more effort into getting dressed up than I ever have before. 
This time last year I set my goal to run the Great North Run 2015 in under 2:10:00, I completed it in 2:08:11, and was in the best shape I've ever been. After a few months out of race training, I am looking to get back into it this month. 
Last year, I signed myself up to climb Kilimanjaro in June 2016, this is going to be my biggest challenge yet, but i'm so ready for the challenge. 
Work is going great, and i'm two weeks away from qualifying as an Optical Consultant Level 2, and already have the path set out that I want to follow.
My blog is slowly and surely taking over my life, and I am more than happy with that. I am so lucky to work alongside some amazing people, and the support network I have is overwhelming. There have been a couple of times I have thought about stopping and jacking it in, but luckily i've had the right people by my side to talk me out of doing that. It would have been something I would have lived to regret.
Last night we ended 2015 with a fantastic night, and today I am welcoming 2016 with open arms, I cant wait to see what it has to offer.

© Pretty Little Gym Addict

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