Sunday, 14 February 2016

DIY blog makeover

Having had the same blog layout for years I decided the other week that I would spend a few hours playing with the blog branding and layout.

I have no design or coding knowledge or experience so all the changes I made were courtesy of tutorials and free on line resources and given I am happy with the results I got I thought I would share the details in case anyone else wants to have a go.

My Header and Side Bar Headings

My header was designed using I don't know how I hadn't heard of this site before as it is fab and free for all basic graphic design projects.

The marble is a printable scrap booking paper I found on deviantart

I did purchase the rose gold papers and these were £3.30 from Pickychciken on Etsy

Social Media Icons

My icons were free from carrieloves.comFREE SOCIAL MEDIA ICONS

 And this is the tutorial I followed to set them up.


I also made a few changes to my template.

One change was to centre everything and this was another carrieloves tutorial here

I then wanted to put some images in my sidebar but I didn't want them to have titles - Its surprisingly easy to do and I found out how to here 

I also no longer wanted a shadow around my images and I found out how to remove it here

Photo backgrounds

The last thing I did was buy some fabric for my photo's from Spoonflower.

I'm excited to try these as photo backgrounds !!

Hopefully you will find something in this post useful - if you have any tutorials you have made or followed feel free to share in the comments.


Friday, 12 February 2016

The Body Coach 90 Day SSS Step 3 // Preparation for week 1

 So following on from the emotional roller-coaster that was submitting my questionnaire which you can read about here, I was on tenterhooks for the 4 days it took for my plan to arrive.

Would I like any of the food?

Would I be able to stick to the exercise?

Why would this work when other plans didn't?

All questions I asked myself over and over, to the point when my plan arrived in my inbox I didn't even look at it straight away as I had convinced myself it was a waste of time and I was destined to  be over weight forever.

When I finally braved opening the plan I was floored by the fact it was 100 pages long so I let my emotions get the better of me and very promptly closed the email thinking I  needed to be in the right place to read this.

Next day with my sensible adult head on I printed the plan as I wanted something physical to refer to and scribble notes on and spent  my lunch time reading through the principle's and recipes for me.

Getting my head around the food  principles was quite simple and I could see straight away how people were able to educate themselves so they ate better even off the plan.

But it was at this point I decided I was a fussy eater, something which I never thought I would say.  Well, not so much fussy but everything in my plan is best eaten hot and with no microwave facilities at work I knew my biggest struggle was going to be finding food I could either eat cold or could keep mildly warm until lunch time.

I am 3 weeks in and still finding my breakfast and lunch options limited but I have found a few options I like so much that I am happy to eat the same thing over and over.

And then there was the limit placed on my tea intake - It was limited to 3 cups a day, and for someone who used to drink that before she got to work, that was a big deal. But I decided to embrace it and use it as an opportunity to up my water intake which I have most definitely done.

I was and still am slightly disappointed with the 'exercise' section of the plan given its quite integral to the plan.  There were 3 pages of exercises most of which needed to be done in a gym and plan on doing all the exercise at home. There are plenty of HIIT videos on you tube and numerous HIIT exercise DVD's so I am going to spend the next few months coming up with a plan that works for me, and I have today engaged the help of a personal trainer so I am very excited.

As everyone's plan is so specific I don't want to share what has been recommend specifically for me so instead thought I would share some of the purchases I made beforehand and during the first week that have made life easier for me.

Body coach #3

As you are given all the recipes for your plan I didn't really need the cookbook too but it's ready on my shelf for when the plan is over and I need to give it a go on my own.

I have 2 of these bottles in the fridge at all times so when I need some water I have it cold.

My 1 litre water bottle has been a god-send. I have it on my desk at work and I drink 1L in the morning and 1L in the afternoon, and try to get another 1.5L in at home.

I have 2 of these Thermos food flasks and they are amazing for keeping my breakfast and or lunch warm until i eat it. Breakfast would have been a real issue if I hadn't found these as neither cold porridge or a 5am start are vaguely appealing.

Digital scales are a necessity when trying to hit your macros - I certainly couldn't eyeball 16g of oats.

Neither my Fit Bit HR or Tanita scales are essential but I'm hoping these will inspire me to get a bit more active.

I have been good and not weighed myself since I submitted my questionnaire so I am excited to see how all my stats have changed, especially my water/hydration levels as the scales historically have shown I am very dehydrated.

You can follow my 90 Day SSS from day one here:

The next 90 Day SSS post will be my results from Cycle 1 and a mini overview.
I'd love to follow your journey if your on a diet/exercise plan so feel free to leave your social media links in the comments.