Bad boys bad boys

Good day to you my sports loving socialites,
If like me, you grew up loving all things sport and a complete Tom boy then you will surely appreciate where I was this past weekend. A few weeks ago, when a friend of mine proffered a spare ticket to the rugby tens event at the infamous Suncorp stadium in Brisbane I jumped at the chance to go along.


This event saw teams from Australia, New Zealand, Samoa and my motherland South Africa battling it out to be crowned the winners of the tournament. As the weekend was approaching, my friend who had invited me, said did I know it was fancy dress and did I have anything to wear? My heart dropped into my stomach as with only a few days to go I had not had time to visit a fancy dress shop or store to purchase said outfit. I then told my friend that it was ok, I would just refrain from dressing up.  When Saturday arrived and I headed to my friends hotel for a few drinks before we left to go to the stadium as she lead me to her room she said oh I picked you up a hat and an accessory. She is so thoughtful and I was so happy to be able to get into the theme of our outfits. Can you guess what we went as? Who would have said police as that is what we were 😀


When we got to Caxton street where the famous stadium is situated, the streets were awash with every style of costume from bumble bees to nerds to Hawaiian shirts and leprechauns. It was so amazing to see see everyone getting into the spirit. 


(Image courtesy of google images) 

It just so happened that the weekend of the rugby, Brisbane was experiencing a heatwave with temperatures reaching the late 30’s on Sunday so I really felt for the players having to run, tackle and score tries in that heat. Where we were seated, luckily we were in the shade but it was still cooler standing at the top of the stadium where the industrial sized fans were blowing and the drinks refrigerators were located.

When my friend and I (she really going to town with her police uniform complete with cuff links, hat and lace up boots) and I were walking around the stadium, it was so nice to be approached by people saying how cool we looked and if they could their photographs taken with us. Although I was just dressed in cut off denim shorts, a vest top and converse, my police hat and baton along with my Ray Ban aviators really brought it all together and the off duty cop attitude was a winner. 

After the game, we headed back onto Caxton street and ended our night at the Caxton which played old school music and with the drinks flowing finished the night off perfectly. It felt so surreal dancing amongst all of the different characters and it really was so much fun mixing with so many different nationalities and backgrounds of people. It made me feel like less of a foreigner for a day for sure. 


Isn’t it amazing how sport really can bring every walk of life together in one place and the fact that I got to show a touch of my fashion influence for the day too made it even more special. Where do I sign up for next year already?? 😀

Until next time, take care

Keya x

Office life overseas

Good day to you my professional perfectionists, 

As you know I recently moved to Australia and I am so happy that after a month of searching I finally found a job in my professional field. A fortnight in and wow it’s been an eye opener 😀 For this weeks post I am going to reveal my findings of working in an office environment away from home. 

Fast forward back to the day of my interview and I remember making sure my dress was perfectly pressed and my hair just right before I left the house that morning. I had already google mapped the office location so knew it would take me around 30 minutes to get there by car but I gave myself an hour. I did not want that unexpected traffic jam or fender bender to prevent me from getting there on time. The two managers who interviewed me were so welcoming and friendly – I knew immediately that I would love to get the job 😀

I heard back that very afternoon that I was due to start in a few days and yes I definitely did do a little squeal of delight. Ha. I remember walking into the office in my black fitted shift dress and nude Louboutin heels on my first day and my new colleagues looked at my shoes and were like wow those are high. I didn’t even think twice when I got dressed that morning but I soon learned that with the amount of walking around and on our feet work we do every day, they may not have been the most practical attire. Having worked in the corporate world for over a decade I am just so used to my uniform of a smart dress and heels and even though I still maintain that here, I am definitely one of the exceptions in my team.

(All images courtesy of google)

Another new experience I’ve learned is the art of public transport in Brisbane. The buses truly are faultless and I love how they have their own unique lane (no traffic woohoo) and they are really reliable. The Go card system is very much like my trusty Oyster card in London and although I still have to anxiously watch every station when the bus stops to make sure I do not miss my one, I am still amazed by its effective simplicity daily. 


Another aspect that has been a real learning curve is forgetting that I sound unique. I am still shocked when people do a double take upon hearing my British accent. It’s incredible to think I am speaking the same language but still can sound so different. Although we live in a multi cultural society, I think we still are secretly surprised when we hear a colloquialism that is not that of the country we are in. 

With many companies becoming multinational, office moves overseas is becoming the norm. I am sure many of you have worked in various locations at one time or another so can hopefully relate to what I have experienced during my early months of living in Australia. There are always challenges and steep learning curves especially in the first few months but my advice would be to perservere. I promise it gets easier over time and you to will soon start feeling like a local even if you still do not sound like one. 

Until next time, take care

Keya x 

Brawn & Brains

Good day my sports loving stars,
As you will have read in my earlier posts, I am a keen sports enthusiast and over the years I have competed in a range of sports from Athletics, triathlons and running races. For any kind of event you are training for,  it really helps your performance and to reach your goals to be disciplined with your diet and training so I have the utmost respect for anyone who excels in their sporting field which brings me perfectly to my guest this week.
Please welcome my friend Steve, who is UKBFF British bodybuilding champion under 80 KG and owner of Extreme Nutrition store in Romford.
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Hi Steve, thanks for agreeing to take part in this interview. For the purpose of my followers, what do you do for your day job?
I am the managing director of Extreme Nutrition, a supplement and health store located in Romford, Essex and we have an online site too. I also am a competition prep coach, preparing athletes to compete in bodybuilding, physique and fitness shows.

 

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When you aren’t training for a competition what do you do in your spare time? 
 I like to read personal development books and articles.  I also like to read and research training and nutritional studies.
Is there any truth to the myth, that the body is mostly built in the kitchen not the gym? Is it mostly down to diet what separates the best from the average bodybuilders?
It’s true that diet is the most important element and you are absolutely built from what goes on in the kitchen. But in order to be the best you need to do everything with 100% effort and consistency. This part is the key to achieve not only a shredded physique but a conditioned one!! This is what wins shows… Of course lots of time in the gym supports this but it’s about delivering workouts that are consistent, with good form day in, day out!
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What is your standard outfit for working out in? 
Extreme nutrition jogging bottoms and hoodie and for cardio I drop down to Nike combat running tights for support and agility. Of course you need good footwear so Otomix for workouts and Asics for cardio.
Do you get any merchandise from your sponsors or do you prefer to stick to the brands that are tried and tested which work for you?
  I do, but I always keep to the Extreme Nutrition tracksuits as branding is key to creating a strong business and personal reputation. But I do mix it up with xxxl wear who make great gym tops and of course I always stay faithful to the Nike running tights and footwear mentioned above.
Being as ripped as you are, is it hard to fit into “regular” sized clothes? Are there are any shops that cater for athletes especially?
 Trousers and jeans especially can be a pain to find however when I find something that suits me I buy loads. I find Uniqlo great for trousers which generally have a wider leg fit. I’m also a big fan of All Saints tops and there is a great new longwear range (longer length tops etc) for men from Topman and H and M.

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What does an typical day in your life consist of?
Get up, shower, gym, train weights, cardio, sauna, work, commute home with my little boy, bath, dinner, bed … Repeat.

 

Besides competing, what else are your true passions?
 Reading and going away to spas, massages, pampering, pedicures – it’s important to look after yourself and your well being. Spending quality time with my wife and children.

 

And finally for anyone wishing to get into body building or even just to get healthier, do you have any advice to a complete beginner?

Stay consistent and be persistent. You have to get into this sport with true love, where you live and breathe it – everything you do, do it with integrity. Whether it’s your diet, exercise or general well being, the results will come.

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Please check out Steve on his website extremenutrition.co.uk or follow him on Instagram @extremenutritionstore where you to can take that first step to a better you 😀
Until next time take care
Keya X

Tremendous triathlon 

Good day my sporty spectators, 

Firstly I would like to wholeheartedly apologise for my delay in posting this week, I have been a tad unwell after my race at the weekend but I still thoroughly enjoyed the experience. 

On Saturday I took part in and completed the AJ Bell London triathlon 2015. 

  

  

  
I have always been a sporty person, enjoying immersing myself in any genre of sport through my school years and into college where I studied sports science. I was the only girl in my class for my course and it definitely made me a stronger person as my tutor did not go easy on me even though I was female. I still had to go out for cross country runs in only shorts and a t shirt with my fellow classmates in freezing winters conditions! When I left college I got into road cycling and as I have always been an avid runner and a good swimmer, I contemplated doing my first triathlon last year. I took part in the Henley on Thames triathlon which I really enjoyed and this race firmly instilled the triathlon bug in me.

  
After completing Henley, I decided to sign up for the London triathlon which is one of the largest in Europe and is extremely local to where I reside. 

My training over the last year has been really beneficial with some great open water swims with my brother and training partner and some long road bike rides at weekends. I do not think I would have been able to even be able to get off the start line with my amazing clothing for each leg of the event which I will go into more detail about below. 

For the swim leg I was introduced to Huub design last year. After talking to the staff at last years London triathlon expo, I was informed that as I am a strong swimmer the Aura 3.0 was the best suit for me. It is the least bouyant in the water and fits my body shape perfectly. It really made me feel so fast in the water and kept my muscles warm ahead of the bike section.  

 
For the bike leg, I used my splendid Specialised Tarmac SL3. I have cycled from Belgium to London on this bike and it’s carried me on countless miles around the country on weekends. It has been so reliable and it delivered again on this race. My shoes are made by Sidi and my helmet is by Kask. 

  
For the run leg I wore my new Huub triathlon suit which really fitted my broad shoulders and didn’t restrict my legs when I was running either. I wore a Nike running cap to shield my head from the summers heat and I wore Nike Relentless trainers. I usually stick to wearing Nike footwear as although they are functional, they also are one of the best looking designs of shoes in my opinion. 

  
With the perfect conditions and the most overwhelming amount of support I had for this race, I really enjoyed the whole day. I felt strong physically and was mentally prepared to face the challenge. When I saw my family and friends at the finish line, I cried tears of joy and happiness that all the training and dedication had payed off. Whatever challenges or milestones you set for yourself in the future, as long as you have the emotional support behind you, you will exceed even your own wildest expectations I can assure you.

  
  
Until next week, take care 

Keya x

Sock Savvy 

Good afternoon my warm footed fashionistas,

For this weeks post I wanted to talk a little about one of my favourite forms of exercise and the attire I wear to do it. That exercise is cycling either on my road, mountain or spin bike at the gym.

I especially love being out on the road when the weather is amazing like it was yesterday in London. The endless green landscapes through the Essex area are truly breathtaking and as far away from the hustle and bustle of the city as you can get.

  
Even though I am doing long distances which require a certain practicality in regards to what I wear I still want to look and feel good 😀

Since purchasing my bike two years ago from the London triathlon show, I have been a dedicated Specialised fan. My new favourite way of showing my appreciation is in the form of socks. I know what you are thinking – surely the standard trainer sock will suffice but on contrare. The brighter and more outrageous the better in the cycling community!  

As you can see with my friend below, there are no rules. Mix and matching is even accepted and revered😊

(Photo courtesy  of Jodie)

   
   (Photo courtesy of Jodie, Kenz and Andy)

The main  concept is to loosely match the socks to your cycling shoes. In the photo above, my Sidi’s on the left complement my specialised socks perfectly as does the white and black combinations also.

It is amazing how this trend has grown exponentially over the last few months. There are dedicated pages on Instagram of hundreds of people’s sock and shoe creations. It truly is bringing cycling and sportswear into the forefront of the fashion industry with top designers like Stella McCartney and Victoria’s Secret hosting dedicated catwalk shows to sports luxe.

For me I just love that I can show my individuality and enthusiasm of bright colours even when doing sport in my free time. Cycling fanatics like myself are all so friendly (yes we actually greet each other with “good morning”when out on the Tarmac can you believe it) but when you hear that little comment of “nice socks” when on a long slog of a hill, it makes the effort all worthwhile. 

See you on the bike, until next week take care

Keya x

Sports wear – can it be functional and fashionable?

Good evening my fellow exercise bunnies, 

For today’s post I thought I would reveal my top picks of sports wear designers who have a proud place in my workout wardrobe. These brands have carved a comfortable niche in the market for being both functional and dare I say, fashionable in the fitness industry. 

I am so grateful that I had an extremely sporty, active childhood. My formative years were filled with bike rides in Epping forest, playing doubles tennis matches paired with my brother against my poor dad who had to run ragged to return the ball to us, attending swimming competitions and athletics meets.  I still have that passion as I approach my thirties but I would say my taste in sports wear has definitely changed for the better! 

In the summer, I am due to compete in my second triathlon which fills me with equal measures of excitement and competitive nervousness. To get me through that butterflies in the stomach feeling, these are the chosen clothing brands I have kitted myself out in ready for my upcoming race 😊

For the frantic swim in the wonderful, albeit cold Thames, the only brand I choose to wear for my wetsuit is Huub. Their designs are incredibly comfortable, streamlined and also uber flattering (ignoring the obvious seal impression references) 😀

For the bike leg, I love the apparel by Specialised for women which you can see suits my monochrome dress sense perfectly and for my cycling shoes I love the Italian brand Sidi. I have two pairs – one for training, one for racing and I always get compliments when I wear them! 



For the final, exhausted run section, I usually wear my second skin triathlon suits from Saucony or Ironman Activewear and my trainer of choice is only ever Nike. I find all of their running shoe styles come in great colour combinations and they also are the best fit for my running style. The lunar glides have been my go to for many years 😀 



When training in the gym, to fit my athletic frame, I love Nike leggings. I have some amazing patterned ones which always put a smile on my face and a few of my friends have commented on their sunny disposition when they see me in them. For vests and crop tops, I swear by USA Pro, and Nike again as they encase my broad shoulders in a flattering way and also come in some wonderful block bold colours. 



Some of the other accessories I cannot live without, getting me through my weekly training sessions are firstly my Garmin GPS which is my constant companion when I venture out on one of my many jaunts on my road bike. Also my iPod mini, playing an amazing selection of dance and electro tunes motivates me on my solo road runs. After a lot of trial and error (usually combined with an onslaught of expletives pouring out of me when another pair of earphones end up in the bin) the only ones I use now are the Phillips Sport collection. They actually stay in my ears for my whole run and another plus is their choice of dayglo colour schemes mean they will never again be lost at the bottom of my gym bag amongst the forgotten energy bars, yoga class passes or odd trainer sock.

To sum it up, Sportswear really does not have to be boring. If in doubt, go for a bright vest top and jazzy leggings when hitting the gym – even if you aren’t an elite athlete, at least you look good whatever activity you are doing😊

Until next week, take care Keya x