Delicious Crunchy Apple Snacks…

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Yesterday was our first taste of summer, I woke up with sunshine streaming through my window and thought about how awesome it feels putting your toes into the warm sand of Camps Bay Beach. What struck me next was the panicky feeling of oh sh*t, summer is coming, bikini time is coming, PUT DOWN THE  DELICIOUS NACHOS!

I am seriously addicted to crunchy things, the biggest offender is those insanely delicious Nacho chips, and fruit chutney Nik Naks, and Sea Salt & Black Pepper kettle chips, the list goes on. I was happily munching on one of these tasty offenders last week when the thought struck me, there is very little healthy food with crunch. Except celery but seriously, no one enjoys eating that. So when the urge for crunch comes along, my natural reaction is to grab the closest chip. This needs to change.

I was making apple pie nougat at the shop last week and I accidentally burnt the hell out of my apple rings, I let them cool before tossing them to avoid melting my dustbin and noticed when I picked them up that they broke with a serious crunch. This had to be explored.
I went home, bought a bag of apple rings, tossed them with a tablespoon of Olive Oil and sprinkled a pinch of Maldon Sea Salt over them. I then proceeded to bake them at 100 degrees for 1,5 hours. I took them out of the oven, let them cool and do you know what I discovered? The crunchiest, most delicious snack in all the land.
Ingredients:
2 packets of Apple Wedges (I use the Pink Lady ones from Woolies)
1,5 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Maldon Sea Salt
Method:
Put all the ingredients into a bowl, toss them about until everything is evenly distributed and bang your apples into the oven at 100 C for about 2 hours. Let them cool completely before you eat them.

* Put the apples into an air-tight container as soon as they have cooled or they will go all chewy (which is also delicious!)

#RideWithNess

Every couple of weeks, Vanessa Haywood organises a little RideWithNess event. I have been to both rides that have been organised. Both times I have been scared that I will be the only Charlie who has not ridden the Epic and will subsequently get left for dead half way up a mountain. Both times I have been pleasantly surprised. Last weekend the troops all met at the Vida in Hout Bay here we were met with delicious cuppacino’s to give us some extra vooma for our ride. We all set off from there, beginners and pros, all riding for fun. The ride was from the Vida over Chappies to Sun Valley and back. Originally, the Bird was not too happy with me going, road riding has seen a lot of accidents over the last year so his fears were understandable. Cycle Lab stepped up to the plate and organised a follow vehicle that kept us safe through out the whole ride. I was literally at the very back so I was very thankful to have the security of knowing I was not going to get squashed by a tour bus!

As you can see from the pictures below (courtesy of Craig Colesky) We had a really super day. The weather was absolutely perfect, and the view we were met with at the top was completely ridiculous! I have to encourage you all to try and attend the next one. These rides are being organised so that beginners like you and me will have an opportunity to get off our asses and ride in a safe environment with the added bonus of having pros around to help you improve. Also they give away super prizes at the end which is always an awesome draw card. A huge thank you to Vanessa Haywood, Cape Union Mart, Mesoestetic, Velocity Sports Lab, Vida and Cycle Lab for getting involved in this great event. I cannot wait for the next one.


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Let’s Ride

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Hey guys, Ride with Van can finally happen this weekend! The sun has committed to sticking around so come and ride bikes, feel the sun on your back and potentially go home with some  prizes. This is a ride for beginners, no one is expecting you to have an Absa Cape Epic under your belt. Get off your ass, bring your man along and come spend a fun morning riding bikes with friends. Yay!

Trail tip #1: Crossing water safely.

All I have heard on twitter lately is a whole pile of moaning about the weather. People are bummed because their tans are fading, their hair is getting wet and they are bored stiff because it s raining outside and there is NOTHING to do. Here is a thought, get over it. Winter is here, and with it comes a couple of months where our beautiful mountain is transformed into your very own adventure land. Conditions are perfect, the weather is cool, there are so many waterfalls that the waterfalls have waterfalls, the Proteas are bright and juicy and bursting with colour, you really are spoilt for choice. Every Saturday The Bird and I try to go on some kind of Adventure (#adventuresaturdays). Last week, we rounded up some mates and did a run from Cecelia Forest to Rhodes Memorial, it was frikken awesome. We missioned across waterfalls, climbed over mud slides and ran through forest that was so beautiful , The Bird kept dropping F-Bombs out of disbelief and utter joy.

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We encountered about 5 massive waterfalls on our adventure, waterfalls that needed crossing if we were going to reach our destination. The Bird gave me some really good tips when crossing that I would like to share with you because it is these tips and tricks that could save your adventure Saturday from becoming a nightmare and potentially save your life. The mountain is not a play ground, it is a place where the utmost respect is demanded because if you are not properly prepared things can go very wrong, very fast. There are huge volumes of water coming over these falls at the moment due to our big rains of late, the rocks under the water are loose and very slippery, one bad move and you could end up in a really scary  position.

Follow these basic guide lines and you should be good to go:

1. Never cross a waterfall at the bottom rapid, look for the calmest water between rapids and cross there.

2.Every step you take, plan where you will put your hands down if you slip (if you look at the picture above, Doug and I are both on our hands and feet, ensuring a safe crossing.) People often make the mistake of only concentrating on their feet, and then they slip, panic and end up rolling an ankle or getting their feet stuck because they stumble around instead of simply bending over and placing their hands on a stable surface.

3. Always use a wide stance when crossing.

4. If the water is deeper than your knee, mark a spot on the opposite side where you would swim to if you were to fall over. The most dangerous thing you can do if you fall over in to try and stand up, this is where foot entrapment happens and that is a very scary situation to find yourself in. Rather, fall over, keep your feet up and safely way from any unsuspecting rocks and holes and swim yourself to safety on the other side.

5. Always cross below the tree that has fallen over and is lying across an obstacle. If you crossed above it and you got swept away, you would get pushed up against said tree and get trapped by the water flowing towards it.

Please keep these simple things in mind when you are cavorting in the mountains. Accidents happen very easily and quickly. 

Home Made Energy Bars.


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These bars are so delicious, they may not look like an oil painting but let me assure you that they are beautiful on the inside. Each bar is basically a bomb of anti-oxidants, omega 3 and 6s, vitamin b, anti  inflammatorys, iron, magnesium, fibre, energy, good fats, good juju, virtually all the good stuff for your bod. Your doctor will high five you for eating this. In fact, you should email Discovery Health and tell them you ate these, they will probable bump you up to diamond status immediately.ingredients

The recipe is super simple, in a nutshell, put all the below ingredients into a blender (save about 1/3 cup nuts, they will go in at the end) Blend together until everything starts to stick together. If your mixture is a little dry, you are welcome to add another tablespoon of coconut oil, chuck in some honey, what ever you are favouring at the time. Pour your blended mixture into a bowl, add the left over Macadamia nuts abd mush everything together until you have a well incorporated mass.    Push your sporty mush into a baking tray lined with paper. You are welcome to use what ever size container you like, I personally like my bars to be about 2cm thick so I spread the mixture into a big, shallow baking tin and use my rolling pin to flatten it all out neatly. Refrigerate your Sports Bars for about a hour or until they are nice and firm. Remove your bar from the fridge, turn it out onto a dry work surface and cut into 4cm x 6cm bars. (I find this size to be just right- it is about 2 bites ) Wrap your sports bar in a piece of baking paper and pop each bar individually into a small zip lock bag (this is the easiest way to transport them on any adventure you wish to let them take you on). These bars will keep in an airtight container, refrigerated, for about 2 weeks. Please note that these ingredients are not set in stone. You can jazz it up with cinnamon and vanilla, change the type of nut, use sultanas instead of raising, chuck in some cranberries, just chuck in what every you have in your pantry cupboard that sounds delicious to you!

10 Things with RoarkGyms

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Unless you have been living underground, you will have heard of Roark Gyms. Im sure you have seen the images of girls collapsed next to the rowing machines and you might have been lucky enough to see the Roark Men dashing down Roeland street doing the Parliment run. I have been training at Roark Women since it opened a few moNths ago and I have absolutely loved it. Even though I have been going for a few months now, I still leave every session feeling like a baby Giraffe. At Roark, there is no giving up, no tolerance for bad form and no way you will not be challenged to your fullest. In the last few months I have learned what it means to dig deep and I have gained a healthy respect for the Burpee. Roark is not only about strengthening your body, the sessions are also designed to challenge your mental strength, not a lot of gyms can say that.  I have been getting a lot of tweets asking me about the kind of training they do there, what is their philosophy, will they get like super buff bru, etc. I have decided to kick off the first ’10 things’ with Roark Gyms and answer your questions once and for all.

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DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN 10 WORDS:  Intolerant of bullshit/excuses, passionate about hard work.

ROARK? TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT THE NAME:  It’s from a literary character whose principles I admire tremendously. He’s a man with uncompromising integrity.

HOW IS ROARK DIFFERENT TO MY LOCAL GYM? : It’s vastly different from commercial gyms in that each member is individually assessed, and their performance scrutinised. Our programming is second to none, and I believe the environment of both the men’s and women’s gym is one where there is no room for ego or the aesthetic focus commercial gyms have. It’s a healthy environment in which we worry about performance first, and trust that the rest will follow.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE CHEAT DAY SNACK? : Savoury – stale Ghostpops. Sweet – Jason’s Cranberry Danish.


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IS IT EVER TOO LATE TO START TRAINING? : Absolutely not. Our gym, through careful and constant planning, caters to all levels and ages. To consider yourself ‘too far gone’ is the saddest state of affairs imaginable.

WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT FOR GIRLS TO DO WEIGHTS ANYWAY? : The answer is two fold. The first is best illustrated by an example which was given to me by a friend whose view on training I greatly respect – if you ask a group full of women to close their eyes and to picture themselves walking into a room in which they want to impress someone, be it a date or a job interview, watch what happens to their posture. Every one of them will push their shoulders back and stand with a high chest position, thereby assuming perfect posture. This is the exact same posture that must be used when performing any of the lifts/movements we practice.

The second is that your body wants to train this way. It wants to lift, push, pull and jump. Its what it’s designed to do. The reason we have such incredibly fast results is because the body reacts immediately to the movements we use, as this is the way a women’s body is designed.

HOW OFTEN DO THE ROARK MEN STOP TRAFFIC WHEN DOING THE PARLIAMENT RUN DOWN ROELAND STREET? :  I’ve seen at least two accidents along Roeland Street as a result of driver distraction. It’s like one long moving billboard.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I TRAIN FOR ROARK TO BE EFFECTIVE? : A minimum of three times per week, but we recommend four if you do nothing else but train with us.

TOP 5 SONGS TO TRAIN TO? :

Called Out In the Dark – Snow Patrol

The Wolves – Ben Howard

Bigger Than Us – The White Lies

Marky Mark and The Funky Bunch – Good Vibrations

Kanye, Jay Z and Nicki Minaj – Monster

I OFTEN SEE PICTURES ON TWITTER OF GIRLS, POST WORKOUT, LYING LIKE DEAD STARFISH ON THE MATTS, DO I HAVE TO BE CRAZY FIT TO JOIN ROARK?

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No. People see the pictures of our members sprawled out on the floor after workouts and they think what we do is too difficult for them. What we do is difficult, but it’s difficult for everyone. There is no one who leaves feeling fine, and this is regardless of athletic ability. Our workouts are specifically planned to be inclusive of athletes of all ability, fitness and strength levels. As a basic example, if you were asked to do a movement repeatedly for two minutes, with the goal to do as many of that movement as possible in this time, it wouldn’t matter if you managed to complete 50 repetitions and someone else managed 10, as long as you both worked as hard as you could during that period.

Pictures Courtesy of Roark Gyms. Tweet them: @Roarkgyms