I give up (and why maybe you should too).

10 Mar meg logo

Routine, routine, routine. I am so totally one of those people who, for years, was like, “Oh, I hate having a routine…ain’t nobody gonna tie this wild child down” but then realised that- you GUYS!- I LOVE having a routine.

Having a routine, and habits, and daily systems in place means I have to expend less of my already overextended mental energy on making decisions about things. I’ve seen this time and time again with coaching clients, especially in the area of having a meal plan. Those who plan ahead generally succeed, and those who don’t…well, they don’t. Or they do but they find it far more challenging than it needs to be.

The last few years of motherhood and business ownership have made having a daily routine super hard because I just don’t know what each day will bring. My daily routine on a day when we all slept well and everything goes smoothly at work is vastly different from what happens if two staff call in sick and the dishwasher decides to die a slow and painful death. Ugh.

This is why last year, when I did Neghar Fonooni’s Wholehearted Coaching program, I was super intrigued by the idea of establishing a morning routine. A time and space where you set your intentions, refill your energetic cup and go forth into the day feeling calm and ready to hustle. Alas, what was initially exciting soon turned to an exercise in frustration, as my children became to determined to wake up at whatever time I set my alarm. I pushed it back and pushed it back until I was trying to get up at 4:30 or 5 a.m. just to grab 15 minutes by myself but, seriously, no sooner had I made my coffee and grabbed my journal than I’d hear “Mummy!” and the jig was up.

I tried for weeks to make this work, but with a husband who was already usually gone by that time, it was just making me feel angry and resentful as I headed into my day, which completely sucked for everyone.

Clearly a radical shift in perspective was needed. I asked myself, “What if I made my mornings all about my kids and focused on providing them with a calm and loving start to their day because for the first few hours I’ll think about nothing but their needs for food, love and play?” And while it’s been a work in progress, it’s definitely helped. No email, no FB, no Instagram…nothing of the outside world until they are fed, clothed and organised for their day.

Is this my dream scenario? Nope. I’d love to be sitting in meditation or reading inspirational books first thing in the morning because I know how it infuses my day with lightness but the constant fighting against what my current reality is right now was EXHAUSTING. So I gave up. I give up. Everyday. And I try instead to find a few minutes for myself later in the day, even if it means locking myself in the toilet and pretending I’m doing a poop (don’t even look at me like you haven’t done that before!).

It just goes to who that sometimes the best solution is the most ass-backward scenario you can think of. By making my mornings more about my kids, my day is much more peaceful and I am still committed to giving myself time and space for the things I need. I just need to be flexible with it and not too attached to the outcome. Easier said than done, but I’m learning and I hope you can too!

xoxo

Meghann

We like to move it, move it!

25 Feb bam_pow_paleo_logo_web_site1.png

You haven’t showered.  Your untouched cup of coffee has been microwaved three times. All you want to do is poop in peace but, let’s face it, that ain’t happening. You know a workout would make you feel better but how the hell can you fit that in when it is pure and utter CHAOS every single waking moment?  Gawd, I’m exhausted just thinking about my kids!

Well, let me share with you a lightbulb moment I had a few years ago when I stopped thinking about “exercise” and started thinking about “movement”.  Exercise- a scheduled, structured, probably timed- event can be very hard to fit in.  But movement? Well, that’s a lot easier.  And if you can find a way to involve your kids, even better.

I listened to an interview with one of my movement heroes, Katy Bowman, a few years ago and she said [and I’m paraphrasing here], “If you plan to ‘go for your walk’ and then that doesn’t happen for some reason, you’re left feeling frustrated.  But if you can build movement into your day, it doesn’t have to be something you need to stop your life for.'”

So that’s what we’ve done.  And yes, I do enjoy getting in a more formal training session when time allows but I don’t feel panicked when I don’t.  Here are some of my top tips for becoming a mama who moves!

  1. PLAY!  Now, this may sound simplistic but when was the last time you actually PLAYED with your kids?  I’m pretty fit but when I chase my kids, climb some trees, get down and crawl with them, hop, jump and skip…I’m knackered!
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    Make your space movement friendly if you can!  We’ve got rings, slides, climbing walls, trampolines, bikes etc.  And our good mate Brock “The Lifetarian” Bowen to show em’ how it’s done!

     

  2. Play a game:  kids don’t like rules?  Make it up!  We play “animal soccer” where we kick a ball around but takes turns yelling out the names of animals  and then have to move like them. (Full disclosure: every time it’s Elliot’s turn I’m like, “Please don’t say crab. Please don’t say crab.” because it is seriously hard to move quickly and coordinate kicking a ball while your doing a crab walk. And he always says it. Every. Damn. Time.)
  3. Make your kids’ resistance useful:  Little joke there parents! Pick em up and use them as weights.  Do some basic acro yoga  with your kids.   Do pushups with a kiss at the end.
  4. Roughhouse: get down and wrestle with them.  More and more research is being done into the importance of rough play, especially as our kids live in a world where cartwheels are banned because they’re “too dangerous”. Wait, what?  Turns out there are heaps of benefits to rough play, many rooted in our evolution, yet it’s something we’ve forgotten how to do.  Time to relearn the lost art.
  5. Make it fun!  Try new things together.  Ride bikes. Go rock climbing.  HULA HOOP (my latest obsession!)Have a crack at surfing.  No, your kids won’t love everything you try but childhood is all about exploring movement and instilling that love in them from an early age.

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6. Set an example.  My kids know that I make movement a priority.  Whether it’s silly         and fun, or a harder session (see the pic below where I look like I’m about to crap myself. Hello, goblet squats!), I try my darndest to make it a priority and to talk to them about WHY it’s so important to me.

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How do YOU fit movement in to your life?

xoxo

Megz

Radiance Retreat Wrap Up (and…I’m ba-ack!)

17 Feb Neghar and I...not making faces for once ;)

Phew!  I hardly know where to begin with this post.  After taking some time off from coaching (actually years, but who’s counting, eh?) to focus on our Paleo Cafe in Mornington and raising two young boys, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what it actually is that I love to do…and where that intersects with what I’m good at.  That’s where the BOOM! lives, y’all.

At the end of last year, I invested in doing Neghar Fonooni’s Wholehearted coaching program and, let me tell you, it was totally worth it. It helped me get back on track with my training, clarify some things in my relationships and start re-engaging in the process of working out exactly where I want to go in life.

When I heard that Neghar, Jen Sinkler and Jill Coleman were bringing their Radiance Retreat to Australia for the first time ever, I was ON IT !  I spent the last weekend at Bondi Beach in Sydney with a group of 30 incredible women- sharing, plotting, learning, lifting heavy shit, sweating and, ahem, drinking some really, really nice wine.

 

Once I got over my fan girl “Squeeee!” of delight at actually meeting Neghar and Jen for realz, I was able to soak it all in. Obvs this experience has my head in a total spin, but I wanted to share with you a few of my major takeaways from the weekend.

  1. When women collaborate instead of compete, magical things happen.  There is room for us all.  With the plethora of coaching, training programs and online offerings these days, it’s easy to say, “Well, what can I actually offer?  Nothing.”  But that, my friends, is playing small.  This weekend reminded me that I do have something unique to bring to the table and that it’s time to plan my re-entry into the coaching space that I effing love so much!
  2. Choosing what you commit to. Beth Hackett, from Urban Physical in Melbourne said, “At any one time, you are either committing to your bullshit or your growth.”  WOW!  Talk about one of this ideas that you kind of get for a long time and then someone says something and you’re like “Ohhhhhh!  Now I really get it!”  I swear I need this tattooed on my wrist and will be asking myself this question multiple times a day.
  3. Tall people lift differently.  Throughout the weekend, I teamed up a lot with the lovely Louise, a Fitness and Movement Coach based in Geelong.  We are Glamazons and both of us learned heaps about little tweaks that make a BIG difference when tall girls lift shit.  Stay tuned for some exciting stuff coming from us in the future to help other tall girls address these issues!

Soooo…with all this momentum and energy floating around me, I am fully back in to revamping and designing programs that help women be fierce.  Between kids, a business and school, it may take me a while, but I’m sure as hell gonna enjoy the process.

xoxo

Meghann

 

Dear Whole30…I hate you. No, I love you. No, I hate you.

11 Aug

So…the Whole30.

Sigh.

Even though I eat really clean about 95% of the time (meaning my treats and cheats are still largely within the Paleo template), about twice a year I tackle the Whole30 just to reset the ol’ habits and get back in touch with eating meat, veg, fish and fruit.  Simple, tasty food.

A few years ago I did one and blogged about it week by week (you can read those posts here, here, here and here) and found it a really helpful way to process what it was about for me.

And I had every intention of doing that again this time but I didn’t because, well, honestly I would have written:

Whole30 Week One: Eff you Dallas and Melissa Hartwig and your stupid program. I wanted to kill everyone and eat everything.

Whole30 Week Two: Dear Whole30, I hate you so much. Week Two was filled with a lot of side eyes at people’s delicious snacks, massive internal pity parties and fury at the chefs for making Paleo DONUTS as the dessert special when I COULD NOT EAT THEM. Rage!

BUT…now that I’m into Week Three, and the magic has happened (hallelujah!) I am once again totally in love with the Whole30!

So, what have I learned this time around?

  1. I mindlessly put food into my mouth. Like, a lot.  The number of times I have had to stop myself from putting my kids leftovers or snack samples from work into my mouth seems absurd.  All that food I’ve been eating…for no reason.
  2. I reward myself with food.  Jason Seib once asked on his FB page, “For those of you who eat emotionally, how long does the good feeling last? And is it worth it?”  I responded by saying that, for me, the good feeling usually starts hours beforehand when I decide that tonight, when the kids are asleep, I’m going to have a Pana Choc Mint Bar or some sweet treat. I don’t drink alcohol, so there is no nightly glass of wine in my world, but there has been, of late, nightly snacks. Do I need them? No.  Do I miss them? Yes.  But strawberries do the trick just as well, and I’ve come to look forward to them nearly as much.  I said nearly, people.  I’d kill for some Pana Choc right now.
  3. I feel heaps better. D’uh.  When I am not Whole30-ing, I occasionally eat dairy and often eat natural sugars. Anyone who shares a small space with me will tell you that they do not, ahem, agree with me (you know what I’m saying).  But I eat them anyway, and am usually totally in denial about how much it actually affects my hormones, sleep patterns and energy levels.  Only when I completely strip it out do I see how good I feel.
  4. I am completely addicted to sugar.  And caffeine.  Running a business while raising two young boys is tough.  Over the last year, I let myself fall into a vicious sugar and caffeine fuelled cycle to boost my energy and get me though the day.  Bear in mind I’m talking natural sugars here but, let’s face it, they have the same effect on your body.  As for caffeine, I’m just really sensitive to it but I LOVE IT SO MUCH.  Cutting back to two cups early in the morning before switching to decaf if I want an afternoon cuppa has made my sleep AWESOME! It helps that I discovered the most amazing decaf ever from Little Rebel Roasters. It tastes like REAL coffee. Amen!
  5. I can focus on my goals.  In the first few weeks of this Whole30, I have signed up for my first triathlon in over three years and have gotten in a few runs and my first swim in ages.  I’m loving feeling my body getting leaner, stronger and faster day by day and having a goal to work toward. Gotta put all that energy somewhere, right? And house cleaning is boring so please don’t even suggest that Andrew.

So that’s where I’m at right now.  Anyone else doing a Whole30?  How’s it going?

Merry Cave Christmas! Christmas Goodies Part 7: Paleo Gingerbread

23 Dec

Wanting to leave Santa a Paleo treat this year?  Well, look no further. These delicious Paleo Gingerbread cookies are sure to make the man in red smile!

Paleo Gingerbread

Gingervread1

Ingredients:

– 200g coconut flour

– 240g ghee (refrigerated)

– 120ml coconut syrup

– 150g dried dates (covered in water and soaked overnight in the fridge)

– dash of Paleo vanilla syrup (read your labels)

– 2 pinches of salt

– 2 tablespoon ground ginger

– 1 tablespoon mixed spice

Method:

1) Cover dates with water and soak overnight. Drain well. (In a pinch, you can cover them with hot water and leave them to soak for a few hours).

2) Pre-heat oven to 170C.

3) Line a flat tray with baking paper.

4) Place all ingredients in a mixer and mix on low with paddle until well combined.

5) Roll mix between two sheets of baking paper to a thickness of about 8mm. Refrigerate sheet to set. Dust with a small amount of coconut flour before using cookie cutters to cut into desired shapes.

6) Place cookies on baking tray. Cook until golden in colour (about 15 minutes).

7) Cool on tray and place in sealed container as soon as they reach room temperature.

8) Try to save some for Santa!

Gingerbread2

Merry Cave Christmas! Christmas Goodies Part 6: Paleo Fruitcake

22 Dec

Woot woot! We’ve had a LOT of requests for this recipe after people have bought one from the cafe and loved it.  So here it is…enjoy!

Paleo Fruitcake

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Makes 2 bread loaves.

Ingredients:

150g flaked almonds

150g dates, chopped

150g apricots, chopped

350g sultanas

1 lemon, zest

2 teaspoons of vanilla syrup

2 teaspoons of lemon oil

1 tablespoon of coconut syrup

300ml honey

300ml coconut oil

8 eggs (room temperature)

330ml coconut cream

330g almond meal

120g coconut flour

60g tapioca flour

1 teaspoon (2g) sea salt flakes

7g baking soda

4g cinnamon

4g mixed spice

Method:

-Pre- heat oven to 170⁰C.

-Line tins with grease proof paper.

-Gather together flaked almonds, sultanas, dates, apricots, lemon zest, lemon oil, coconut syrup and vanilla.

-In a bowl, mix together by hand almond meal, coconut flour, tapioca, salt, cinnamon, mixed spice and baking soda.

-In a mixer on high speed, whisk coconut oil and honey for 6 minutes.

-Add eggs to mixer and whisk on high for a further 4 minutes (don’t be concerned if the mixture splits).

-Add coconut cream and the dry ingredients to the mixer and mix on low until just combined.

-Now add the dried fruits and mix until evenly distributed. Take off the mixer and scrape down the bowl by hand, making sure the ingredients are all well combined.

-Distribute into tins and smooth out. Cover tins with a sheet of baking paper to stop them from darkening on top. Bake on 170⁰C until cooked (approximately 30-35 minutes).

-Cool and refrigerate overnight.

Fruitcake

Christmas Goodies Part 5: Bacon and Kale Quiche

19 Dec

Perfect for Christmas morning, you can make this quiche ahead of time and reheat on 180⁰C for 15-20 minutes.  Great warm or cold, this quiche is a solid choice for lunches or picnics.  And there is bacon in it. ‘Nuff said. Enjoy!

Kale and Bacon Quiche

Kale and Bacon Quiche

Quiche Base

Ingredients:

Dry:

– ¾ cup almond meal

– 1 teaspoon baking powder

– 3 tablespoons coconut flour

– 2/3 cup arrowroot flour

– pinch salt

Wet:

– 1/4 cup water

– 2 teaspoons honey

– 1 egg

– 2 teaspoons olive oil

-1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Method:

– Pre-heat oven to 170⁰C.

– Place dry ingredients in food processor and pulse. Add wet ingredients all at once and blitz until combined.

– Grease 9 inch fluted tart tin with coconut oil.

– Place dough into a 9 inch fluted tart tin and press out by hand until you have an even coating on the bottom and sides.

– Cover pastry carefully with aluminium foil and fill with blind baking weights or rice and blind bake on 170⁰C for 8 min. Remove foil and bake for a further 9 min.

 Filling for Kale and Bacon Quiche

Ingredients:

-4 eggs

-1 cup coconut cream

-1/2 red onion (diced)

-30g kale (shredded)

-2 rashers of bacon (diced)

-1/4 cup of water

-pinch of pepper

-2 teaspoons of nutritional yeast flakes

Method:

– Pre-heat oven to 180⁰C.

– In a large bowl hand whisk eggs until combined.

– Add remaining ingredients except for yeast flakes and mix until well combined.

– Pour filling into pre-prepared base and sprinkle top with nutritional yeast flakes and cook on 180⁰C for 20 min. or until set.

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