Rockalily Style - Collectif dress (should I dress like this every day?)

I'd somehow forgotten about this Collectif dress in my wardrobe! I love it so much, and whenever I wear it a part of me wishes I dresses with this style every day. Then I wake up, see jeans and Nike Air Maxes and change my mind!

Remember you can use REE10 for a cheeky collectif discount.


I had a rather challenging run...

I had a rather 'interesting' run this morning. I was all set to go, what with having Run To The Beat in two weeks time, to go for a 8-10k run. However, after running my first 2km, I found this laundry bin, one of which I've wanted for a long time.

I'm a big fan of 'found furniture' and luckily I live in an area where a lot of us embrace the idea of leaving furniture out for others to take. I've found/given some great pieces over the years, and once I've painted this corner laundry bin (in the style of Lloyd Loom) it will look simply dreamy.

However, I was in the middle of a run when I found it! So I decided to try and run back with it. I tried to think of it as a 'tough mudder' type challenge, and I ran the whole 2k holding it! 

Considering I ran about 2k with a laundry basket I wasn't too disappointed with my time! I was pretty out of breath when I got in, so I got myself a drink of chocolate protein powder, coconut milk and banana.

I may have looked a little crazy running down my local highstreet, but I had a morning run, and found myself a sweet little find. He he!


Why do we drink coffee?

I love coffee. I wake up and get so much joy from my first cup, and that continues through out the day. A 5 minute pause from the day, an indulgence that is always allowed. But what exactly does coffee do to our brains?

I'm a bit of a science geek, and loved this little video about our second most traded commodity (after oil) : coffee!


Rockalily Style - Day-to-Night playsuit

This was a day-to-night outfit, a playsuit from River Island, which I bought to wear to Wireless festival, with Dr Martin boots I bought in a charity shop. I hadn't had time to style my weave, so I quickly fishtail-braided it.


13 things we can all learn from #stammerschool

Stammer School is the second documentary I've seen about the McGuire Programme (a course to teach people who stammer to find their voice), as Gareth Gates also did a documentary a while back. It's pretty poweful viewing, and my twitter stream last night was full of tears and cheering.

13 lessons we can all learn from Stammer School

 1.We all have different goals, and they are equally as valid. One woman wanted to host a party with her friends,  one man wanted to start teacher training. We just need to start by working out our own goal.

2.One step at a time. We need to break our goals down and just take one step towards our goal at a time. The stammer school pupils start with breathing, and then one sound at a time. They also use 'training wheels' at the start (they wear a belt as a tool to remind them about their breathing) to help get them on the right path.

3.Recognise small achievements. The pupils celebrate the first hurdle; saying their full names, with gusto. 

4. Find inspiration from people who have succeeded just as you hope to. Whether its someone famous, like Gareth Gates, or in real life with a mentor.

5. Build on each success. Once you've reached a milestone, use it to keep stretching and reaching even further. In the stammer school once they'd said their name, they moved that skill to the phone, to make it challenging once again.

6. Force yourself to confront the fear, and overcome it. Once the pupils had tackled the phonecall, they head out to the street, to talk to strangers. The fears were faced over and over again.

7. Who you are today, isn't who you have to be tomorrow.

8. We do not have to be defined by our challenges, fears or failures.

9. We have to be willing to work hard, and take the leap. No can make the change for us. 

10. Success isn't a finished package complete with a silk bow. Don't wait until the finish line to start feeling and enjoying your success. One woman on the show wanted to be be able to give a speech, and she did. Did she have an absolute perfect speech (with no stutter); no. But did she give her speech and feel bloomin' fabulous - yes!

11. We often feel alone in our challenges, but that is never the case. None of us are that unique. We just need to go and find others like us. 

12. Do not measure your success against someone else's success. Our journeys may look different, and may even be headed in different directions.

13. Sometimes we need help, and cannot succeed alone. We may even need to pay a professional (as the pupils at the stammer school did), but that is fine! All part of the journey.



Rockalily Style - Vintage Denim Dress and Matchy-Matchy Styling

I haven't worn this vintage denim dress for a while, but the weather started to get a little colder, so the black tights have come back out! I added a vintage nautical belt to pull it all in. I'm a fan of 'matchy-matchy' so I accented the red of the belt, with the shoes and bandana. The jacket also has a hint of red, which helps make it look like a complete outfit, as opposed to just a random jacket thrown on top.


What do I eat as a vegetarian who is low-carb

I got this email recently:

I love your blog, and have been cheering you on from in front of my Mac as you've charted your health and fitness journey. Your positivity and strength of character are a real inspiration. Like you, several years ago I decided to start making better choices with regards to food, and lost 2 stone through cutting right back on alcohol and junky processed carbohydrates. I found I stabilised at a weight that I was happy with, which was great.

However, at the start of this year I became a vegetarian. Ethically, I've never felt better, and can't see myself ever going back to eating meat. But physically, I'm finding that an increased reliance on cheese for quick, easy protein, and on things like bread, rice and pasta for energy, have had a negative impact. I've put on almost half a stone (I'm only 5'4, so it really shows), and feel sluggish.

I was wondering - would you ever consider writing a blog post on how you've managed to become a happy, healthy, low-carb vegetarian? I'm sure there are lots of us out there who would be very grateful for some pointers!

How could I refuse such a flattering request! So here is my attempt to explain the sort of meals I eat, considering I follow a pretty low-carb and vegetarian diet.

I have been vegetarian since I was about 12, but my diet has been pretty poor until about 20 months ago when I changed my attitudes to health, food and fitness.

What foods do I fall back on, instead of breads, rice and pastas? Eggs are bloomin' fabulous, and they're easy, cheap and quick. Technically the Vegetarian Society says that veggies do not eat eggs, but I don't know any that follow this rule! I certainly couldn't give them up.

I'm not much of a cook, I think of myself as someone who heats food up, so I like quick and easy. Tins of lentils are great - ready to go instantly! As are pouches of cooked pulses like quinoa are great too, and can be eaten hot and cold. Kidney beans and butter beans are also all available tinned. They can be thrown into a salad, or heated in a sauce.

Personally, I don't restrict cheese, but I don't eat hard cheeses really anymore. I eat feta, goats' cheese, mozzarella, again, as a base for a salad, or heated into vegetables. 

When I have a craving for the comfort of a spag' bol', I replace the pasta with courgetti, which is a courgette sliced into spaghetti with a spiraliser. I get to enjoy the yummy sauce, some mozzarella cheese, but none of the 'empty' pasta. The empty white carbs are often just a carriage for the taste we enjoy. They don't have the taste themselves.

I do eat some faux meat, sometimes I use the mince in sauces, and I quite like the ham as a dip. Quite nice for adding texture to things like stirfries.

In colder months, I find I rely a lot on sweet potatos, I bung them in the microwave for about 7 mins. In the warmer months I survive on hummous. Pretty much have a tub every day. I really should start to make it myself!

Some meals don't have much protein in at all, I'll just fill up on veggies. If I'm hungry I eat, so may just snack later on some nuts or fruit.

I've never had more energy than I do now (although I do drink a lot of coffee too), and don't suffer from those after-dinner slumps that I used to get after a big carb-loaded meal. I'm not a nutritionalist of course, but am just sharing what has been working for me!