Trying out Aussie snacks


Good day mates (hehe)! Happy Thursday! I was Skyping my sister Ellie yesterday evening and was absolutely convinced it was Tuesday until she pointed out that it was Wednesday. I feel like I lost a day! Time is ticking by and trying to make the most of every day. I went on a little afternoon trip yesterday after the gym. The class was good and we did a lot of skill practise. I got a chance to work on my strict handstand push ups which was fun. Then for the conditioning part I was in a group with three guys from the gym and trying to keep up with them hehe. It’s great when you get put into a group of people who are better than you because it makes you push yourself to keep up.

Anyway, for my afternoon trip my goal was to try to register for Medicare, which is the Australian health care (from what I’ve gathered). As a Swede I can sign up for this because we have reciprocal health care with Australia, so does the UK. I got there and was handed a form and told it we be an hour long wait to get served so I decided to come back in another day.

I spent the rest of the afternoon strolling down Chapel Street which is a very hipster area. I got off at Windsor on the Sandringham train line. The place if full of cool street art, coffee shops, second hand shops and other shops to look at. It reminds me a bit of Camden and Shoreditch in London. I’m a bit low on clothes and stumbled upon a nice clothing shop called The Bronze Snake Shop where I miraculously found two tops that I liked. It just never happens that I find normal people clothes I like these days so I had to buy them and expand my minuscule wardrobe a little bit.

This was not the point of the post at all. Talk about going off on a tangent! What I was going to write about really was Blue Dinosaur Bar. I don’t know if any of you follow the health and fitness Youtuber Sarah’s Day? She used to talk about these paleo bars all the time and I was curious as to whether they are actually as good as she said. She was singing their praises constantly. Here in Australia they are in every single health food store (and I think almost every normal store) you walk into. As far as I know, they don’t exist in the UK. So I of course had to give them a try.

So far I’ve tried the Lamington, Dark Cacao and Banana Bread flavour. Lamington is an Aussie sponge cake coated in chocolate and rolled in dessicated coconut. So it’s Blue Dinosaur’s healthy take on it. It was the first bar I tried and it was delicious! The ingredients are super simple and it wasn’t too sweet at all. I usually find nut and date bars like that too sweet, this is the first bar I’ve come across where it’s just a subtle sweetness. There’s only 3.5 dates in it according to says the packaging so that probably explains it. I loved it, the only thing I would say as a snack it didn’t really fill me at all as it’s only dessicated coconut in it and no nuts (although that’s great news for anyone with nut allergies!) but you could have something else as well I suppose and it’s a great healthier treat when you’re sweet tooth is coming out to play. Cleo (the oldest child here in the household) tried it with me and loved it too! A little tip for any parent out there. I was told that it had to be our secret and not tell her siblings about it. That’s a pretty good review!

The Dark Cacao (their original bar) one was surprisingly bitter! I didn’t get a chance to take a photo of it before I ate it hehe. I’d never come across that before in a bar like that. Seeing as the only chocolate I ever like is like 70-80% dark chocolate this was a pleasant surprise. I know it’s called dark cacao but I’ve had too many cacao bars that were too sweet to fully believe it until I’ve tried it. This one I found a bit more filling as it has walnuts and pecans in it A little bit crumbly texture but it was nice.

Banana bread I was really intrigued by as I had never had a bar with banana flavour before and was wondering how the dried banana would go down. It was incredibly cinnamony (perhaps almost borderline a bit too much, I couldn’t quite make my mind up and I love cinnamon) and definitely reminded me of banana bread. I’d buy it again but I think the overall winner of the three was the Lamington bar. It is just so delicious. However, all of them are the best raw bars or whatever you should call them, I’ve tried so far and I’ve tried a lot in my days. I’ve been keeping some in my handbag for when I’m out on the move and they’re perfect as an afternoon pick-me-up when the hunger kicks in and the energy is running low and keeps me going until I can get a bite to eat.

Right I’m just back now from another class at Red Bluff! We did a lot of squat cleans to start off and I got coached on how I was picking up the bar. I’ve been struggling for a while on going heavier in my squat cleans. Always kind of stuck at the same weights so I was all ears when Pete gave me some very useful coaching tips. We brought the weight down and he got me to change how I move the bar at the beginning of the lift. I did a couple of questionable cleans but he said they got better towards the end. I’m hoping with more practise on my technique I’ll more easily clean heavier. Then we did three rounds of 30 dumbbell snatches at 15 kg for the girls and 30 wall balls with 14 pound wall ball. My arms were on fire at the end!

Now it’s time to shower, I’m a sweaty mess after all of that! Then time to do some more job hunting. This evening Stevie is away so Nicola and I are planning on watching La La Land with some tasty food! Can’t wait. You all know that it’s my favourite film of all time hehe. Nicola’s never seen it before, she’s in for a real treat. It’s been a while since I last saw it so gaaah it’ll be good.

Sunday in Melbourne

Could Cleo have a future in photography?

Her asking me to smile for the camera haha

My first track session with some of the Red Bluff crew

Worked up an appetite and got this massive acai bowl at Acai Brothers! Crazy big.. 

Hello! Had a little mini-break yesterday from the blog due to lack of content. It’s tough trying to get photos when you don’t have your friends to ask haha. Faye I need you! Jokes aside, I’m trying my best to get some pictures for you and figuring out how to best do it. I’m just not sure what you want to see? Do you want to see more of Melbourne life or is it mainly health and fitness you want to see? I’m trying to do a bit of everything to mix it up. I think it’ll be a while until I’ll get some photos from training at the gym, I just find it really awkward taking photos when I don’t really know everyone that well yet and they might feel uncomfortable me just taking my phone and snapping away when they don’t know what it’s for. I hope you guys understand! I really am trying.

The oldest Cleo was playing around with my phone and got the black and white photos haha. I told her I might have to hire her haha. I think she did a pretty good job!

What did you think of the Royal Wedding? I thought it was lovely! They looked so cute and I loved how personal it felt with the mix of cultures and people all together in one place. It felt very unique. We stayed up quite late watching it at Nicola’s friend’s house. We went there pretty much straight after our Japanese feast. I ate so much I felt like a stuffed turkey but it was lovely so I just couldn’t stop.

Yesterday was a nice day. I went for my first ever track session with some of the Crossfit Red Bluff crew at Sandringham Athletics Club. I haven’t ran on a track since I probably had PE in school, so a long time in other words. It felt a bit nostalgic in a way. I was slightly dreading it as I had no idea how intense the session was going to be but I really wanted to give it a go. I was going to give it my best shot. I loved that some people brought their dogs along too. Dogs make everything better.

We started up with some warm ups around the track then we did three rounds of 1000m at a slow pace, 400m at a medium pace and then the final 200m fast with a minimum of a three minute rest in between.

Pacing is something I struggle with so it was a great exercise for me who can get a bit impatient running at a slower pace. I want to get it over and done with so I like to run fast. Like Dave the coach said it’s important to pace properly on each speed otherwise you have nothing left in your tank when you have to increase your speed, which is so true and I tried to be very conscious of the pace I was running in. You can’t run at the same pace for all distances, that would be inefficient. So this was a test on my patience. I was really proud of myself when I felt like I could keep up with the others and still pace at a level where I felt I could really run fast at the final 200 metres.

For me this first track session was more about feeling it out and see how I go. It wasn’t about doing my best workout ever, it was about learning something new and really making sure I’m running properly and being aware of what I’m doing. With the company of the others it was actually not bad at all, I might’ve even enjoyed myself a bit. We were all in it together, all at different levels and trying our best. It makes it a bit easier rather than doing it alone. I’m looking forward to seeing how my fitness improves with going to these programmed sessions. Another little something to work on! Maybe this is the beginning of “Madeleine Runs”? Not too sure about that but I’m excited to see whether my attitude towards will change as I feel like I’m improving. I’ll keep you posted.

In the afternoon I walked along the beach to Brighton, it’s a suburb right next to Hampton where I stay and it’s just a bit closer to central Melbourne. I walked along the main street there and sat down for an acai bowl at Acai Brothers. It was yuuuuummyyyyy and gigantic! I didn’t expect it to be that big when I ordered a regular. Somehow I still managed to eat it all… It was a bit rainy when I was walking around but I didn’t really mind. Lovely place Brighton!

Now I need to get ready. I was meant to go to the morning class at the gym this morning but was up late watching the European Crossfit Regionals and got a bit carried away so I’m going this afternoon instead. I’m heading soon to Albert Park with Nicola and the kids and then into town for a bit more wandering.

Have a lovely day and speak soon xxx

Laneway Exploring

Findlers Street Station

Hi lovelies! Here’s a little mix of pictures from some of my days exploring the big city of Melbourne. It was pretty cool to see the famous Hosier Lane in real life. So much to look at and it changes all the time! There are plenty of laneways to explore and I was on Findlers Lane the other day for a bite to eat. It’s filled with small coffee shops and restaurants to grab a bite in. Slightly overwhelming! There’s a laneway tour fitness blogger Zanna van Dijk (I’m sure most of you guys will know who she is, if not you’re missing out!) did when she was over earlier this year and I’d LOVE to do it. I just need to figure out when would be best to go and maybe even find someone who could go with me.

There’s so much to see and do in Melbourne that I don’t even know where to start whenever I arrive in the city with the train. I feel like I need to write a list so I can start ticking things off. And that’s just Melbourne. There’s so much more to see and do all over this amazing country.

It’s almost two in the afternoon here in Melbourne. This day started off with a great class at Crossfit Red Bluff, full with snatching (I got some great tips to improve my snatching, that movement is just so difficult!) and then a sweaty deadlift and double under workout. It is slightly warmer here and wow, I sweat so much during every class haha. You can tell that my body is used to cooler temperatures!

It’s been really interesting going to a new box and I’m learning so much. Trying to find my place. It’s odd when you’ve been going to the same place for so long and then you move and start over again. There are unwritten rules and things that everyone just knows from going there for so long that you don’t really know and you try to catch onto. Slowly getting there.

The coaches are really hands on and you notice they’ve always got an eye on you whenever you’re in the gym, whether it’s during class or an open gym. You are always getting pointers on your technique to improve and be better, which I love. It’s so important to be open to feedback, there’s always room for improvement. It’s super important to not take it the wrong way and always be happy that you are given little nuggets of coaching to be the best you can be. That’s why you’re there. One thing I’ve learnt is I’d rather have loads of coaching and tips rather than non, you improve so much faster and avoid getting injured if you’re doing something seriously wrong.

Another thing that’s different is the scaling of the workouts, I realise now how used I was to Stella’s way of scaling and planning workouts and in G5 I had a rough idea of what weights and scaling would be best whilst at the new box I’ve had to ask a lot more questions and discuss what would be best to do. I think it’ll be a while until I get into the groove of things and we’ll see if I will be able to to continue to train at Red Bluff once I get a new place. I’d really like to stay because I like it loads so far but I just don’t know if it will be possible. It all depends on where I would be working and living. We’ll just have to wait and see!

I’ve started to look at accommodation but I’m not really sure what I’m looking for yet. I think I’d like to live somewhere closer to the city but perhaps not bang in the middle. I quite liked the Chapel Street area when I was there on Monday, perhaps I’ll look a bit more there.

Are any of you watching the royal wedding today? Jamie’s family and I are going out for Japanese food at five (early dinner) then Nicola and I have been invited to a girls night at her friends to watch it all together. I think it’ll be really nice. I do love weddings whether they are royal or not. I can’t wait to see the dress.

Speak soon, M xxx

Holy Bowly // 531 Hampton Street // Melbourne

Oh yes, I knew Melbourne was probably going to be the ultimate destination for me. My inner foodie has been longing to go to all the incredible cafés and restaurants about the city and Holy Bowly happens to be a short walk from where  I’m currently staying. How handy is that?

Nicola (Jamie’s sister-in-law) said she thought I’d really like this place and boy was she right! Our first visit was for breakfast after dropping off Cleo (their oldest) at school. I was so excited for our breakfast date. When we sat down I couldn’t wait to have a proper look at the menu. There was a lot to choose from and I had no idea what to go for!

I was deciding between a bowl of lots of greens with tempeh (sounded so good) or an acai bowl. After a lot of contemplation I went for the savoury option because I always have sweet for breakfast when I have my porridge. I also ordered a matcha latte, the only let down so far in every pace I’ve been to is Oatly does not seem to exist. You just can’t beat an Oatly matcha latte and whilst having it with almond milk or coconut milk is okay it does not come close to the creaminess and the slightly sweet flavour oat milk has. Oatly you are missed! There are other oat milk in the shops so might have to give those a try before I give up entirely but cafés don’t seem to use it at all. Odd!

My bowl of greens was delicious! Super fresh and citrusy. The tempeh had a great flavour and I was loving every mouthful. I’ll be coming back for more of that most definitely. I just can’t get over how readily available such delicious and nutritious food is here. It’s everywhere!

I was actually back for another visit a day or so later, this time for an afternoon snack. I had to try out one of their acai bowls as an afternoon snack. I went for the protein acai bowl. It came out and it looked super pretty. It was tasty but not quite as good as the out of this world one I had at Mahalo in Stockholm. Perhaps a bit too little of the actual smoothie and a bit too much on the toppings for my liking and the flavours weren’t quite as crazy good as Mahalo’s but still it was tasty and I ate all of it.

Holy Bowly is a perfect place to nip down to when in need of a tasty and healthy bite to eat. They’ve got an extensive smoothie menu to choose from too which I need to work my way through. So much to try so little time and not enough money…

I’m just about to head out the door now to sort out an Aussie phone number. I’ve got a bank account all sorted so I’m good to go. I tried to do it yesterday but forgot some papers to do it. Second time lucky? Let’s hope so!