Why I started waking up at 5AM

You are probably like Geez Louise, what’s wrong with this girl?

And even I am surprised with the fact I am basically new Margaret Thatcher but here we are. I’m one of those people who changes things when she doesn’t like them. *my mum clapping and cheering because her job as mum D O N E*

Earlier this year I would complain about how I have no time. No time for me, no time to call my family, or see my friends as much as I want to, to read a new book or to even binge watch new Netflix show. I had no time to work out as often I as wanted to, to date and absolutely no time to write. And I would complain and complain until I decided to change my priorities which naturally ended up in giving up me time and constantly chasing deadlines and that made me miserable. Like LES MISERABLE.

So since I couldn’t give up work (because you know it’s my livelihood) I googled (all judgements welcome) how to organise my time better where I found out that I indeed have the same amount of hours in my day as Beyonce does (believe it or not). But what caught my eye was a list of very successful people who wake up at 5am and basically slay.

All this was read and then forgotten back in June, and then the summer rolled and I slept as much as koalas do.

But as that pattern of me complaining how constantly busy I am kept repeating I was like, fuck it. Who needs sleep? LET’S HAVE A PARTY. When: AT 5AM. Where: My room. Info: PYJAMAS MANDATORY & BRING COFFEE.

And so the party began mid-September. And I won’t lie that the first alarm sounded like the angels crying and my groggy self wanted to launch my phone through the window whilst being completely fine with the lack of time to take on the world and do what makes me happy yet I got up and survived.

First week was D R E A D F U L. *just very honest me* It felt like that part of PMS where you’re constantly tired and hungry and you hate everyone, especially cute and perky girls who wear t-shirts *woke up like this* whilst she probably did *crying emoji*. (Also thank you God for not timing that with my actual PMS)

After that? Well, EASY PEASY LEMON SQUEEZY. I feel like my whole life changed. *WHO SHE?*

I have the time to do things I want *still trying to figure out the dating thing though* And more importantly those side hustles I wanted to work on don’t feel like chores anymore. I don’t call my mum whilst rushing to the gym anymore because I have more than twenty minutes to talk to her. *if neeed* I’m not struggling to keep my eyes open trying to read the book that’s on my bedside table since my birthday *June baby* I can watch YouTube without feeling guilty. I can go to an early (like real early) gym class. I have time to meditate and reflect and if I just want to lie in my bed and watch the sunrise I have time to do that too.

Outfit details.

Blazer: H&M

Jeans: River Island (via ASOS)

Trainers: Puma (via ASOS)

T-shirt: ASOS

Bag: old H&M (found similar)

Headband: My Accessories London-sold out but similar

Watch: Samsung

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How London living changed me

Have you noticed that time flies whilst you’re having fun?

Me too. I still can’t believe I live in London even after three years.

I still get chills passing next to London eye, Big Ben (although is all wrapped up), Trafalgar Square and Buckingham palace and my heart still swells when I walk down the Oxford street or sit in a cab that’s driving on Tower bridge. I mean I obviously love it here otherwise I would have only stayed a year as I firstly planned BUT I fell in love and hey, I is still here.

Tons of you asked and keep asking about life in London, what do I do, where do I go, how come I moved here and all that shebang and I promise it’s coming, it’s coming but before that I feel like I owe you this one. I want to share how living in London changed me and my perception of world (hold on there is a list)

  1. I became absurdly impatient. Every single time I’m back home in Croatia, or just anywhere outside London I seriously have to fight back tears and practise deep breathing if I have to wait for a bus more than three minutes.
  2. Paradoxically, I’m more than happy to queue up for an hour to get a table at the restaurant I want to eat at. Yes I am very choosy, even with my patience.
  3. I no longer give a shit about my personal space. It has been invaded so many times during rush hour that now days if I’m on the tube and there is no crotch in my face, WHAT IS THIS?
  4. My coffee intake has inexplicably risen by like a lot. And thankfully my local barista knows my order by heart now.
  5. I strongly believe that whoever invented CONTACTLESS should get a Nobel for peace. Because having to spend ten extra seconds to put your pin in is such a waste of time, and carrying cash is just so 2008.
  6. I am never bored. I kid you not, N E V E R . There is no excuse with all parks, and pubs and events and museums and excuse you NYC, but I think it’s time to hand over your “City that never sleeps” title.
  7. I can handle a hungover like a P R O. No, I am not an alcoholic mum, but it just happens that now drinking is not reserved just for the weekends. So I mastered faking looking easy breezy at work the next morning whilst holding down my stomach content.
  8. I feel like travelling more than few zones on tube feels like forever. Meet you in North London? No I can’t possibly go to North London, that’s the longest trip on Earth. *only looking to date men in south London*
  9. I became an utter food snob. Living amongst fanciest cuisines is not easy because it costs you an arm and an leg to eat out, not being able to zip your skinny jeans and spoiling your taste buds rotten so at one point Mc’Donalds won’t cut it anymore.
  10. I lost all perception of what affordable means. That’s why I am more than willing to spend Β£27 on one meal out, cute ASOS top or an Uber (in that order!) but why are detergent and toilet paper so expensive???
  11. I h a t e tourists. I know you all are excited about being here and taking your photos BUT COULD YOU PLEASE KEEP FUCKING RIGHT IF THE SIGN SAYS SO??????????
  12. I started to mind my own business. All wackos and weirdos became normality for me and frankly I couldn’t imagine not seeing them around.
  13. I fell in love with the city. And I might stay forever.

Dress: old H&M

Boots: Dr. Martens

Necklace: old Accessorize

30 days of VEGAN

WHOA!

Before I share how did my month of veganism go I’d just like to point out how bloody proud of me I am. *background clapping* I know I’m not exactly Greta Thunberg here but for a girl who’d eat bacon cheeseburgers at least twice a week this is a massive, MASSIVE achievement.

So let’s get into this.

Hiiiiii, my name is Barbara and I always like to make my life hell by complicating things. But also, hello! My name is Barbara and I am a 25-year-old who is fucking terrified about our planet and my own future.

Yes, I am very conscious about the fact that the production of plant-based foods is a more efficient use of our resources, as it requires less energy from fossil fuels as well as less land and water. But I am more aware of the fact that vegans typically have lower levels of cholesterol and blood pressure, a lower body mass index, and reduced risk of death from heart disease and cancer. SO, I very selfishly started this because of my own health. And due to my personal reasons (mostly bank balance) I didn’t go full on vegan and got rid of all my stuff (bags, shoes, belts etc) that are cruelty free (but will definitely not buy or support brands that aren’t) but my diet was vegan or plant based if you wish.

This plant based diet is something I’ve had on mind for months. I’ve done lots of research before I kicked off so I didn’t just dive unprepared.

I kept a little photo diary throughout September (you can have a look at some unappealing dishes on my Insta profile highlights under Vegember) and a food log on myfitnesspal app.

So here’s how eating a plant based diet worked out for me.

*I messed up ok? I had 3 non vegan meals (out of approx. 100) but that pizza, tiramisu and cheeseburger were worth it so genuinely no regrets!

Day 1 started great. It was Sunday so that allowed me to be in control of my meals and to plan for coming up week. I literally watched youtube videos for 3 hours to give me some inspo and read about million articles on why will my heart thank me after going vegan. I had takeaway vegan pizza from Franco Manca and spent a day on a sofa.

I meal prepped for next two days, booked few workouts and positively stepped into the week.

Day 2-6 were easy because I work 12 hours a day and I mainly needed to prep for lunches the day before to stay on track. (Day 5 is when normal cheese on veggie pizza and tiramisu happened which was always on agenda as it was L’s birthday dinner).

Day 7 and 8 is when I started to feel some sort of change really. I’d wake up before my alarm in the mornings and wouldn’t drop dead in the evenings. I felt like I had an extra boost of some sort of energy and frankly I didn’t know if it was me desperately wanting this to work and make me feel better in my body or was it genuinely because of the diet.

Day 9-15 is when I started feeling better than great. My skin was beaming, I could hold focus for longer than usual 20 minutes, I wasn’t bloated at all and for once in a long time I could actually say that I ate all the carbs without putting on any weight. (Day 15 is also the day when my lunch was a cheeseburger, potatoes with aioli and cheese fritters with tons of alcohol which obvs wasn’t planned but life fucking happens.)

Day 16-22 were my best days. I started cooking more and experiment with new foods, I also worked out 9 times that week and just felt AMAZEBALLS.

Days 23-27 were my worst days of the month but nonetheless I didn’t go rogue. I spent few days in bed, yes. Had few takeaways, yes. Were they vegan? YES. Were they healthy? Maybe yes, definitely no. But that’s what I needed really.

Days 27-30 was me back on track with healthier options and just continued feeling good in my skin.

Day 31. Um I have no need to eat differently than last 30 days. SAY WHAT?

Now here’s my issue. I thought that being vegan automatically means you’re healthy, OH BOY WAS I DELUSIONAL. Because IT DOES NOT. (my Ben & Jerry’s tub screaming in my freezer) You still get tp make healthy and less healthier options only now you don’t contribute to animal cruelty and global warning.

What I really wanted to do is vegan whole foods, where you eat more raw and unprocessed food which I can’t say I didn’t eat but I have to admit I ate rather a lot of bought meals. Now, instead of re-writing my whole food log here I’ve decided to write down my most eaten meals to maybe help you incorporate more plant based meals into your diet.

For most breakfast I ate: avocado on toast (on mornings with extra few minutes I’d add grilled mushrooms), granola with soy vanilla yogurt and berries plus handful of nuts, peanut butter with jam on a bagel

Most common lunches were: loaded salads (usually nuts, greens, falafels, hummus, etc), pasta with either tomato or pesto, sweet potato with grilled veggies and vegan sausages

Dinner were usually: curries, stir frys, grilled veggies, risottos or pizzas, jacket potatoes, soy

Snacks: Greggs vegan sausage rolls, crisps, hummus, fruit (mostly apples, grapes and mangos), nuts and protein shakes

I also drank loads of cold press juices, mostly to boost my immune system but also to increase my veggie and fruit intake.

So overall how was it? Surprisingly NOT as hard as I thought it would be. Actually not hard at all. Mainly because I live in London and there are countless vegan options for every occasion. But I wasn’t overthinking this either (probs for the first time in my life). I was easy and made a decision not to be to hard on myself if I screw it up. I ate simple meals until I get the courage and willingness to cook/prepare more complex ones and YEAH, I still hate cooking but just a little bit less than before. I feel abso-fucking-lutely great and don’t think I’m missing out on anything or that my body is missing anything. I lost few pounds but I was never, ever, ever hungry. I am yet to do some blood work to determine how exactly this lifestyle affected my physical health but I have a good feeling.

AM I STAYING VEGAN? Umm actually I might. Like I miss eggs so fucking much. And seafood. And nice cheese. But that’s about it. I think I’ll try to eat as much plant based as I can with occasional vegetarianism dips. But you never know with me. I go with the flow. Do what feels good. Eat what I crave. And just enjoy life.