Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Step forward: my progress so far

The holiday season was never going to be an easy time to dedicate myself to getting healthy and fit but I honestly haven’t found it to be too hard because of all the preparation I did.
That’s right ladies and gents – preparation is key if you’re trying to make a permanent change to your health!
So where do you start?
Well, Instead of inhaling chocolate and guzzling champagne throughout November and December, I’ve spent my time overdosing on fitness and health related blogs, magazines, books, tweets, and websites along with the odd fashion and beauty blog too!
Check out and if you want to get FIT-spired!
Have you all discovered Tanya Burr? Her youtube channel has the most beautiful make-up tutorials and has me hooked hardcore…but make-up tutes are for another time.
First off let’s talk diet.
I’m not on one. I have however, changed my eating habits. I have never eaten particularly poorly but I recently made the decision to stick to clean food as much as possible. I’ve tried to remove all sugar from my diet (with the exception of some berries or mango on the odd occasional) and processed food is all but gone too. I’ve increased my protein and veggie intake and also reduced starchy carbs like potatoes.
I do miss sugar a little bit (that stuff is like crack) but the less I have the more I less I want it and the easier it gets to say no. I love food and I still very much enjoy it but now I am much more conscious about what I eat. I think to myself, 'What will this food give my body?'
‘Will it energise me and make me feel strong or will it make me feel guilty and sluggish?’
‘Will it help me push my limits to run further or lift heavier or will it make me tired and push me further away from my goal?' 

It's pretty easy to work out the answer to these if you're over the age of 15.

My general rule is that if eating something (e.g. creamy pasta) will take me further away from achieving my goal it’s put into the no go zone. Even if I am dying for a bite of chocolate once I put eating it into perspective with my ultimate goal it just doesn’t seem worth it!

But what about alcohol you say. How do you say no to all those festive drinks? The champagne… the cocktails?

Luckily for me, this part has been really easy. I tend to have a better time when I’m not drinking and I adore/am slightly obsessed with soda water so going alcohol free hasn’t been a problem at all.
Give me a soda water with some fresh lime and I can party all night. Make the switch and your body will love you for it too. Seriously, why would you want to wake up reeking of booze with a headache and blood shot eyes when you can wake-up refreshed, ready for some cardio and feeling great?!
The other key ingredients: Exercise and Staying motivated.

Diet is key if you want to lose weight, feel healthier and become leaner but exercise and staying motivated are equally as important.

My whole life I have tended to focus my efforts on what I look like and not worry too much about my health or fitness but this time things are different.

Instead of being motivated by looks alone I'm focussing my energy on getting my fitness back, becoming stronger, faster and leaner.
I've made goals and I've ramped up my gym sessions to put me on the path to achieving them.

I want to lift more, run further and faster and generally feel like a strong, sexy woman. Increasing my weight training has definitely made a difference to my appearance.
My weight hasn’t changed much in the past month but the muscles in my arms and legs are more prominent and I can see a difference (even if no one else can).

It is motivation enough to stay focussed this Christmas and New Year. I want minimal wobbly bits for my birthday in February – hard work is going to get me there J

Until next time.

Xx Kirst

Photos courtesy of Google and/or Tumblr. Find links to them here:

Friday, December 9, 2011

Band Crush: Totally Enormous Extinct Dinoaurs

The Boy has been listening to this band for months and months but they've only just started to get airplay here.

Their name pretty much won me over but if it didn't there is no way I could not fall head over heels in love with this song.

Listen and dance people...listen and dance!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

QUT 2011 Fashion Graduate Show

Phoebe Younger
I'm no fashion expert, but I can tell you that there are a lot of talented young designers in Brisbane.

How do I know this?

Well last night when the style set were all attending the Chanel show, my lovely friend B and I were sitting second row at the 2011 QUT Fashion Graduate Show.

I can just hear you all now…Second row? What a loser… she wasn’t even invited to Chanel…but before you step away from your computer have a think about it: champagne and fashion.

There is no loser here.

The show was titled SIX as most of the graduating students presented six pieces from their final collection – the culmination of their university studies. The collections were mainly womenswear but there was also swimwear, lingerie, menswear, accessories, and theatre costumes on show and the quality of all the collections was simply outstanding.

The show was billed as having an international flavour and it did not disappoint.

There was Kirsty Glynn’s romantic and Victorian-esque ‘Out of Colonial Africa’, Alexandra McGuire;s stylish swimsuit collection ‘Border Lines’ which seemed to be inspired by the chaotic colour of India and Pakistan (I want!  I want!) and the quirky unisex collection ‘Boys and Girls are choice’ by Sally Edwards which featured a lot of tartan.
Meredith Howell
Ali Kornhauser
Kirsty Glynn

Katrina Gaskin
Franchesca Blardony
I don’t think I could choose a favourite collection but I absolutely adored Phoebe Younger’s ‘Cue 2012 – New Royalty’ collection, Katrina Gaskin’s ‘The Fallen Romantics A/W 2012’ lingerie collection, and Jacqueline Curran’s ‘Mirror Animal’.
If I wasn’t wearing my super high heels, I would have tried to crash tackle the 16 year old models to get my hands on some of the pieces.

Of course, at a fashion show you tend to get caught up in the moment and I apologise that my photography skills were a little lacking (check out Suburban Intellect for better photos and B’s account of the night). Despite this I feel like you can still get an idea of some of what was on show and hey, if you are free tonight or tomorrow night, you can go see for yourself! Tickets are available here or you can view the video QUT put together to showcase some of the students work below.

Please note all photographs are author’s own of original work by 2011 QUT Fashion Graduates. No offence is intended in the publication of these photo and if you have any issues with the publication or a request for withdrawal please contact me immediately.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Colour blocking...take 2

Bathroom photoshoots scream glamour and sobriety

If you've been reading this blog, you may have noticed that I like colour. I like to wear it. All the time.

Whilst not all of it has been successful (let's just say The Office was not ready for pink tights), I think this cheap purchase from Ice - a store I had never entered until I saw this from across the shopping centre- is a winner.

Yes it's polyster and yes it was under $50 but it got just as many comments as this Gorman dress that I wore to Melbourne Cup and it is super wearable. Add some black accessories, my freshly blonded hair (it's good to be back!) and a pair of new season Wittner shoes and I was set for a fabulous night out.

Back to blonde and hanging out with the Birthday girl.

With some beautiful ladies

Everyone loves a makeover...

Lately I've been feeling a little, well...meh.  I lost my blogging mojo and certain parts of my life had gotten a little dull so I decided that it was time for some drastic action. And what better way to shake things up than with a makeover.

Everyone loves a makeover - especially my heart beats.

You'll notice I've added some tabs at the top so you can more easily find posts under particular topics and I'm sure you haven't missed my brand spanking new header and background. What do you think of the facelift so far?

I'd also like to let you all know that the makeover doesn't stop here. Fed up with not fitting into half the contents of my wardrobe and with feeling self-conscious and unfit, I've decided that things have to change.

Spurred on by inspirational Bloggers like Cooper at runthreeseven and Amanda at mevsthebulge and with the support and encouragement of The Boy and I am embarking upon a new health and fitness regime/challenge to eat 'clean', exercise more and cut as much sugar as possible out of my diet. I'll be blogging my ups and downs along the way as a way to keep me accountable and hopefully encourage others to work towards their fitness goals too.

So watch this space...and if you've got any tips - tweet me!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Chai to try...

I love health and wellbeing stores. Behind the shelves of vitamins and supplements you can often find many wonderous products that you simply wouldn’t discover elsewhere…another plus?

They’re often fair trade and organic which means good for you and the world.

My most recent experience of this was at my local Healthy Life Store. Tired and hungover, The Boy and I decided to browse the aisles…although this might sound like odd behaviour to you, we actually love it (and no we aren’t hippies!). On this occasion our ‘haul’ was pretty small, consisting only of some Indian curry spices, wholemeal spelt flour (which was actually cheaper than the supermarket) and a pretty tin full of Zhena’s Gypsy Tea Coconut Chai Green Tea.

As I’m trying to quit/reduce my consumption of sugar at the moment (after reading Sarah Wilson’s ebook), tea has taken on even greater heights of daily consumption in our household. I’ve found that brewing a cup of warm chai or some fragrant green tea is a great distraction from cravings and when I saw the pretty green tin the tea section with the words ‘Coconut’ and ‘Chai’ on it I was transfixed.

Separately coconut and chai are two of my favourite flavours so how could a combination of the two not be simply orgasmic? Quite quickly after concluding to myself that they couldn’t NOT be delicious Zhena was in my bag and on her way home to live with The Boy and I.

My first sip of this brew was all that I anticipated. It was soooo yummy, and the smell is simply divine. The Boy had his with warm milk which has since become a breakfast favourite of mine, but even served with hot water this has become my new favourite tea.

On my shopping list now is to try some more flavours of Zhena’s Gypsy Tea – there are so many that the biggest problem will be choosing just one. Egyptian Mint, Ambrosia Plum White tea, or Acia Berry tea have all caught my eye as have the many other blends of chai to try.

Chai to try! Try saying that super fast. And while you do why not head on over to Oxfam Australia to buy your own Zhena brew online…it’s fairtrade and fabulous!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Sewn roses

Today was an important day. Australia got a carbon tax, and I wore my latest creation. It is green with pink roses…kind of appropriate for a day marking an environmental landmark in Australian - and world - history don’t you think?
I have to say, this dress was a little tricky. I had difficulty with the darts and the bodice doesn’t quite fit as well as I would like but it’s not the end of the world. I think it has a very Mad Men feel to it. What do you think? 
The pattern is Very Easy Vogue V8630 if you want to make your own. Next project is a replica of my Gorman Backgammon teadress…stay tuned.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

A belated Melbourne Cup post

I know this post is a lot later than your average Melbourne Cup post, but I thought I would post it anyway so you can see a number of attractive ladies in beautiful dresses having a whole lotta fun.

We we won best-dressed table and had a thoroughly enjoyable day. If you're curious I'm wearing my Gorman Backgammon Teadress with the Wittner wedges I bought in Melbourne, a vintage leather belt  and a home-made fascinator.
The Line-up...really need to work on my posture :-s

1.5L for the Best Dressed Ladies

This first pic is from Instagram account - if you want to follow me on Instagram my name is myheartbeats. My Twitter name is myheartbeats84 (same as the blog) so you can follow me on both if you like. Go on, DO IT, you know you want to!

Hope you're all having wonderful weekends xx

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


M83 take me to a happy place. I'm sure you've all heard it by now but listening to Midnight City from the recently released album Hurry Up, We're Dreaming always improves my mood - so enjoy.
 They are also playing the St Jerome's Laneway Festival early next year so get tickets now!

Monday, October 31, 2011

The $5 Rug skirt

After being inspired by this post by Geneva from A pair and a Spare I was brimming with excitement when I found some colourful rugs/door mats/whatever you'd like to call them made from weaved jersey fabrics at my local Dollars and Sense store. Snapping two rugs up at the crazy price of $2.50 each I took them home and got my DIY/sewing on.

I basically followed the exact process Geneva laid out. I pinned the two rugs together using the outline of another fitted skirt (I use my Gorman Pencil skirt). Then I sewed down the sides, cut of the excess and zigzag stiched the raw edges to prevent fraying. Due to the nature of the rug I had to be careful when cutting the edges off as there was real potential for the 'wire knit' that holds the fabric together to unravel. I will say that the thickness of the fabric was not loved by my sewing machine but we got there in the end!
Pinned, sewn and hacked off
I also added to darts in the front of my skirt to prevent it from stretching out and losing it's shape/falling down.

I am delighted with the result. The stretchy fabric hides all manner of sins, it's super comfy and flattering and the multitude of colours in the fabric make it lots of fun to mix and match. I may just make another...look out Dollars and Sense.
Rug skirt in action - Let's call this Sunday summer casual
I know I look like a dick but trust me - you too can have a but like Kim K thanks to this sin-hiding fabric!

Where else but the Whitsundays

Ok so I know it's been a looooooooooong time between posts but what can I say? Life got in the way. Thankfully I'm back now and as I'm at home on my potential deathbed today I figured what better time to reminisce (and post) about my recent holiday to the Whitsunday's with The Boy. It was amazing. Here is a sample of our holiday pictures (warning, it's photo heavy).

This is my much adored Gorman skirt - a gift from The Boy
Here we are on Daydream Island
Cheesy Mermaids
About to go Ocean Rafting - so much fun!
Beautiful Whitehaven Beach
We went snorkelling/scuba diving at Reef World then caught a helicopter over the Reef to Hamilton Island on Hamilton Island Air
Heart Reef
The Great Barrier Reef from the air
Snorkelling with the fishies
Hill Inlet
Windblown on Whitehaven

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Got a feel for Teal

Gorman Cardigan, Cotton On T-shirt, Handmade skirt, H&M Scarf, Senzi shoes, vintage Bally Belt.

This is the second pencil skirt I made with my 1980-something New Look pattern. As you can see I ditched the waistband and conjured up a facing instead.

I'm pretty sure it works because I got asked where it was from on my lunch break today. Oh yeah I did!
Trying to throw my cardigan away...unfortunately it still made it into the (awkward) shot!
P.S. Sorry about the weird creases, and the strange angle of my belt and my not quite prepared/awkward poses. The Boy was not really in the mood to take outfit photos and I didn't realise what the pics looked like until it was too late. I promise the skirt really doesn't bunch up like that in real life! I swear to God it fit's better than the photos demonstrate!