Thursday, 28 November 2013

Maria Lucia Bakes some yummy Granola

We here at BikiniBrawn love linking up with healthy Irish brands and Products. Maria's passion for home baking comes from a young age growing up in County Wicklow with a mother who made everything from scratch. As a child Maria's family owned a guesthouse with tearooms , where her mother would bake Breads, Scones, Jams and homemade lemonades . There is something quite warming about this product and knowing that maria home bakes everything from her Home in Rathfarnham. Her passion for baking has led to her New business making Gluten free Granola's that are affordable meaning she can share her baking with all types of people. I had a yummy portion of her Cranberry, Coconut and Chia seed Granola for breakfast and i honestly cant even describe how tasty this product is. I had a big bowl with Soy milk an amazing healthy breakfast with healthy carbs to set me up for the day and give me the energy i needed to get on with my tasks. As everyone knows i always love pushing vegetarian options and this product is also suitable for all the Veggie readers as well as Coeliac friendly, Salt free, Wheat free, Gluten free, High in Fibre and contains natural sugars. You will also find the Lovely Maria at the Marlay park Market and the Cabinteely market.
If you are interested in trying her products check out her Facebook and Twitter pages Below  

The lady herself in her Kitchen 

          My Yummy Sample Cranberry, Coconut and Chia Seed 

The gorgeous granola comes in Three Flavours 

Follow the links below for Maria Lucia Bakes products Twitter and Facebook 

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Kelly D xx

You are what you eat !

Yes it is so very true that you are what you eat and unfortunately convenience and laziness comes with a price. You may think the microwave is a god send when it comes to reheating meals or preparing a quick dinner. I honestly cant stress enough the importance of cooking meals from scratch or at least in the oven. In short terms the microwave works on a basis of exciting food through electric currents which creates heat. This basically means the food is being subjected to radiation and that changes the molecular structure of the food, which means the food you have put in whether healthy or not is coming out a completely different thing altogether. It strips away all nutrients and vitamins , so if you think you are super healthy using a microwave forget about it. Scientists have linked the Microwave with many forms of cancer, Diabetes, Anemia, Nutrient loss and food damage and higher cholesterol levels, meaning damage to the body. The microwave is just like smoking, People are aware of the dangers and health risks but continue to do so out of habit and in the case of the microwave convenience. Scientists have proven the dangerous of Microwave use and if you are trying to live a healthy, fit lifestyle than scrap the Microwave. There are so many other options for cooking Steamer, Grill, Oven, Hot water or pan. It is also crucial as a mother to not heat you're baby bottles in a microwave the combination of plastic and radiation is very unhealthy.

Being healthy is about being proactive and the Microwave is the furthest thing from Proactive, Think fresh think organic and think home made.

Leave a comment below 

Kelly D 


Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Mr Brendan Sheehan talks to us about new plans, Fitness and products

He has a famous brother, has competed in International bodybuilding competitions for Ireland, has a colourful background in Business and finance anddddddddddd has a huge passion for Health and Fitness.
Thirty year old Brendan Sheehan has stamped out a huge name for himself here in Ireland in the fitness industry and is well known in his circle. He has also just featured in Reputable Irish magazine 'Fit Magazine' and has also featured in Irish 'Gym Magazine'. You may have also spotted Brendan with his Brother Actor Robert Sheehan. 
We were thrilled to catch up with Brendan in this honest and positive interview, Bikini brawn ask him everything from competitions to products to general life. He has also decided to pursue a career in Acting just like his brother so you will be seeing a lot more from him in the future and not just in the fitness world .

Thank you so much for speaking to us Brendan , We are keen to hear what your opinion is on living a healthy  lifestyle and do you have a healthy Motto ?  

I think healthy living adds a lot to a person, both mentally & physically. I know for me exercising regularly improves my mood, my confidence and discipline but most of all it looks after our health, reduces risk of disease etc and prepares us for a strong and enjoyable latter part to our lives.  Motto ... I Don’t really have a motto but to sum it up. Have fun, train hard, have more fun, eat well, have more fun & repeat.

Could you give our readers here at BikiniBrawn an insight into your background and also fill us in on what you are up to at the moment ? 

I am from Portlaoise, 30 years of age & living in Dublin for the past 11 years.  
I was always involved in different sports and that’s what I wanted to study after the leaving cert. The course I wanted was in Tralee and my eyes were set on the big smoke so after working in Portlaoise for a year I made my move after securing a job in Irish Nationwide. I went from there to Bank of Scotland, working in different sections, working my way up whilst studying accounting, finance & mortgages. At 24 I started a mortage brokerage, it was called Mortgage Loans & before the big bad R word I was doing quite well… but that wasn't difficult in that market.  
When the recession kicked off I knew I had to diversify. The mortgage co. was on the way out so in 2009 Brian Howe and I started an online supplement store. Then in 2011 we started another online business in the deals market, competing with groupon and the similar. All was going great but unfortunately we had some knocks which badly affected business, that combined with limited resources and cashflow problems both co’s have now ceased trading.  
Whilst that was going on I got the opportunity by Paul Byrne to compete in the WFF Mr Universe Fitness in Austria June 2012. I threw myself into this, gave it everything and placed a disappointing 7th. After that I competed in the NABBA Mr Ireland Fitness Section in Oct, placed 1st place. Then I went onto the World Champs Nov 2012, in Austria again, placed 10th in that show.  
In 2012 I competed in the NIFMA fitness model show in March. I didn’t place in that which was a good wakeup call. I was off and had lost some determination. After that I did NABBA Fitness category in Limerick, placed 1st in that.  
Whilst doing the shows I qualified as a personal trainer & was offered a job in Body Byrne. I loved it there, Paul was a great mentor to me in my contest prep and gave me great advice and support as my businesses failed.  
But I recently left that job, after all the above I decided its time to try something new and exciting so I am pursuing a career in acting and commercial modelling. Who knows what will come from that, its fun and before I go chasing another traditional career I want to give it a go.  

Think that brings me up to date 

 Having worked as a Personal trainer and also competed internationally as a bodybuilder you must have strong opinion on the Irish fitness industry. What are your views, and would you change it in anyway ? 

I don’t really have a strong opinion on the fitness industry. I think the industry is great. Its full of people training, eating well and becoming aware of their health.  

Its outside the fitness industry I have a strong opinion of. I think there is an immediate requirement for mass educating Irish people about health, fitness and especially food & drink. Obesity is going to be a major problem and it needs to be addressed. Another thing that really annoys me is how food companies market their products “fat free” full of sugar “only 100 calories” processed so much its lost all nutrients.  

Hard to say what change I would make, where do you begin. As much as you educate people we are surrounded by junk food but you cant restrict free trade so that’s one for debate. 

What advise would you give readers about being consistent ?   

My advice in being consistent, just do it! When it comes to sport e.g. if you want to win a bodybuilding show you need to eat every meal on time, train twice a day and give every session everything. If you want to win, that’s what has to be done so make sure you work your life around the sessions or vice versa, no matter what, everytimeIf you can do this which requires a lot of other skills then your chances of winning are far greater so again just do it.  

What is your go to healthy meal or recipe ? 

I don’t really have one. I do stick to fresh meat, fish, fruit & vegetables. For each meal I have a macronutrient goal so aim to get a certain amount of protein, carbs & fats so mix it up to have some variety. Regular meals for me are chicken, broccoli & rice. Steak, asparagus & potatoes, fish with rice or potatoes etc.  

What is your biggest achievement to date and why was it so important ? 

What stands out most in my mind is winning the Mr Ireland last October. After being so disappointed placing outside top 6 in the Universe, winning that day really made me so happy and proud.  

What are your views on Nutrition/Sports products ? 

I owned a sports supplement co for years & I am sponsored by Optimum Nutrition. I do use them and think they have helped me a lot. They have only a small part to play in the overall picture though. A lot of people expect miracles when they use a protein supplement. The magic formula is hard work, not over & dependence on supplements.  

What brand of sports nutrition do you take and do you have a favourite product ? 

I am sponsored by Optimum Nutrition so use their products. My supplement usage is Protein, bcaa’s, glutamine & pre workout amino energy. My favourite is probably amino energy, love that product but all have their purpose so I like them all.  

Check out Optimum Nutrition and all their products online 

Do you have a have a favourite exercise or training Technique that you could share with us ?   

I love drop sets. I use drop sets on almost every muscle group. My body is stubborn, slow to respond to training and using drop sets has really helped me build muscle. 

 How do you unwind ? 

Dinner out with my lady, nice glass of vino or two or three 

You have decided to try your hand in the acting world, do you think your background in Health and fitness will give you an edge and How would you feel about showing of your body for a role ?   

Fingers crossed it does!! If it helps great but beyond any brawn there has to be talent so fingers crossed that’s there too. 

I have stood on stage in a thong, absolutely no problem showing my bod for a role. Again, if it helps, naked me up. 

Do you look up to anyone for inspiration, possibly a role model  ? 

Growing up was a big fan of Arnie. I was in awe of him and still am. He has achieved so much in so many different industries. Respect.  

Lastly What do you think is the biggest health myth ?     

There are a few that spring to mind! 
  1. Fats are bad for you  
  1. Girls – lifting weights will make me big and muscly  
  1. If I take supplements they will make me big  
There are so many myths out there but its really very simple. Eat well, train hard & repeat. 

Check out Brendan's news and updates on Twitter and Facebook. Why not give him a follow