I am oh so happy to report that I have finally, after three weeks of illness, kicked my strep throat! Woohoo! I had a lot of time in bed, a lot of cups of tea, a lot of time feeling down and sorry for myself, a lot of attempts at exercise while still feeling under the weather - only to crawl back into bed afterwards, and finally... I have made it out the other side! Woooohooooo!
I have found it hard to get back into my daily exercise pattern since spending three weeks enjoying the comfort of doing nothing. With my work schedule change, I also no longer need to wake up at any given time, and somehow that makes it a lot harder to get up at my previous tradition of 7am! So today I got my butt up and out the door before 8:30am and went to a PumpFit class out in Papamoa. Wow... It was hard! Both instructors were there and they took turns pushing us hard enough that we were all sweating by the end! I thought it would be hard to focus after my few weeks of rest, but turns out, I worked harder than I have in any other class! Perhaps I was trying to prove to myself that I was 100% healthy?
After the class I wasn't quite ready to head home, and my body wasn't quite ready to sit in the car, so I went for a nice leisurely walk around the Gordon Spatt Reserve. I came across such a nice little marshy bird sanctuary and enjoyed strolling along and listening to the springtime sounds of birds, birds and more birds! 

It was such a lovely morning and I am just overjoyed to say that I am feeling better!

Now.... bring on Summertime!!!!
I have been a very busy bee lately, been doing as many hours as possible at work (an attempt to bring in as many dollars as possible before the heat of summer hits and all I want to do is hit the beach!) and have been working on a brand new project. I have been enjoying this blog so much that I thought it was time to start a new one. I haven't had the "official launch" yet, but you can get a sneak peak: www.healthytoes.weebly.com

This new website is focused around fitness, healthy foods and generally living a healthy lifestyle! I have been having a great time putting it together, photographing all my foods and blogging about my fitness. Fun fun fun! If you have any recipes you'd like me to include, just send them my way (preferably with a great photo you took of your masterpiece) and I'll put it up!!! It's all about sharing the wealth...aka delicious knowledge!!

In other news, this past weekend Luke celebrated his birthday and it was a lot of fun! We had a few friends over for an evening, Luke wore his beautiful birthday gifts from our roomies and fun was had by all. The next night (his actual birthday) we went to Terri's place for dinner and got to meet her new baby cows. Boy they are cute! I had one suckle on my fingers and it was such a unique experience!! I loved it. 
Dukey's Birthday Outfit - orange coloured because of his love of cheese!
beautiful pirate cake made by our wonderful Terri
baby moooo
Today Luke and I are travelling to the wonderful land of Mana Retreat Centre, on the Coromandel Peninsula. We wwoofed here for three weeks in May and are very excited to be headed back! Luke will be wwoofing again for the few days that we will be there, and I will be doing a yoga course. I have never done a yoga retreat before.. or even more than a few yoga sessions in a few days... so it will definitely be a challenge. A really good one I think!

Updates on how the weekend went will be coming in a few days!

Have a great weekend everyone! 
The Entrance sign at Mana Retreat Centre, Coromandel Peninsula
Doing yoga atop a mountain at Mana Retreat Centre
Today was an absolutely wonderful day! I got to wake up late, made my way to the couch and was greeted by a delicious cup of tea! After getting myself very acquainted with the couch through a few episodes of Modern Family and a delicious breakfast, Luke and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful sunshine outside poking through the clouds (a rare occurrence lately) and hike up our beautiful Mount Mauao! After a slightly sweaty hike up to the top, we enjoyed the view at the summit and discussed our future plans here in New Zealand. Life is good! 

We spent the rest of the day relaxing on the couch, eating delicious food and even took a trip to the Library!  Towards the late afternoon the clouds began to dissipate and the sun really shone through! As I cozily sat on the couch and read through a magazine I decided the best way to take advantage of this late day sunshine was to go for a beach run. 

I have been aching to do this ever since we moved here, but for some reason I always held back. I am not a big fan of running and have found it hard to get myself into it. I've been working hard on the treadmill and finally felt ready for the big leagues! The Beach! :o) 

The run was glorious, exhilarating and fantastic! With my music pumping, the sun shining and the waves crashing in, it was exactly what I wanted to be doing at that moment!! Bliss!
The evening run view. Bliss.
Tonight, I'll be going hard at Boxing Bootcamp! I have been living in the Mount for two months now, enjoying my own personal gym as many days a week as I can muster, but still haven't quite met the results that I want. So, when your workout isn't quite working to your satisfaction, what's the best thing you can do...? 

Change It! 
I found a great deal on GrabOne Tauranga, $60 for 10 sessions of BoxFit - a boxing bootcamp - with Define Fitness. The studio they workout in is just down the road from me, which is perfect and convenient. 

I went to my first class last Friday morning and am SO happy that I did. The class was phenomenal, I forgot how wonderful bootcamps can be! They are not only a great full body workout, but they really push you to your max! A great bootcamp instructor will encourage you to push yourself...and having other people around to notice if you're slacking helps with the personal motivation as well! We alternated between boxing moves, weight lifting and other full-body movements. I had a wonderful time punching things, crunching things, lifting things and squatting things.. overall, it was a great workout. (I was reminded of that the next day when my body seemed to be a wee bit harder to move than it had been the day before (aka.. stiff as a board) It was a fantastic first class and I am excited for more. 

Bootcamps are a great way to meet like-minded individuals. It just feels good to get out and meet a few new faces, whether I will see them again in the future or not. And the fun part for me, the instructor was, of course, a complete gem, and I saw her earlier this week at the movie theatre... (she also arrived too late for Magic Mike tickets and ended up watching TED instead) . What better way to make a new town feel like home than to run into someone you know when you're out and about!! Perfect!

So tonight, I will continue on with my 10 sessions, tonight being number two. I am so happy that I took that step to include something new and different into my workout routine. Not only does it energize me, but it helps me to see results, which motivates me even more when I am working out on my own. Plus... it feels pretty good to know that you can pack a mean punch!