Posts tagged Sport

Degustabox February 2015


February’s Degustabox was one of my favourites in a good few months, with a good mix of the types of things that I enjoy eating, and new brands that I hadn’t tried before, including Whole Earth, Laimon Fresh, and Lily O’Brien’s.

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The box contained eleven individual items, with a total value of over £22.  Degustabox costs £12.99 each month, so this box saves you around £10, which is a pretty decent saving.

Also, this month I’ve decided to start rating each item of out 10, so you can get a better idea of which items stand out for me, and which don’t.  Here are my thoughts on each item…

Lily O’Brien’s Cocoa Cookie Crunch (RRP £2.60)

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Lily O’Brien’s is said to be Ireland’s ‘best loved chocolatier’, and being a chocolate fiend myself, these were without a doubt my favourite thing in the box. The bag contains a generous amount of large individual chocolates, consisting of Oreo-like cookie pieces, coated in milk chocolate. The cookies have a fantastic crunch and a deep, rich cocoa flavour, offset perfectly by the sweetness of the milk chocolate. As you can imagine, the chocolates are very moreish, and it didn’t take Charles and I long to finish the bag. I’d definitely purchase these again!

Rating: 9/10

Whole Earth Peanut Butter with Sunflower, Pumpkin & Flax Seeds (RRP £3.19)

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I adore peanut butter so this was another welcome addition to the box, especially as I’ve been eyeing up Whole Earth products in Morrisons for a while now. This particular peanut butter is new to the range, and contains a mix of sunflower, pumpkin and flax seeds, so is packed full of protein. The flavour is authentically nutty, as it isn’t overloaded with salt and sugar like some cheaper peanut butters are, and the seeds add a pleasant crunch and flavour. Perfect on wholemeal toast for breakfast!

Rating: 8/10

Jack Link’s Beef Snack (RRP £1.39)

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Jack Link’s Beef Snack is a beef jerky style bar, which aims to be a healthy, on the go snack. Being vegetarian, this one got passed straight to the fella for him to try. As soon as he opened it I was hit with the spicy scent of heavily seasoned meat, and it also looked very greasy. Almost sweaty! Apparently the flavour was a bit of a let-down. Despite the smell of spices, he said it tasted fairly bland, and was far too chewy. Not a winner, even by the meat-eater’s standards.

Rating: 4/10

Beet It Sport Pro-Elite Bar (RRP £1.85 each)

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Beet It Sport’s Pro-Elite Bars are predominantly made of oats and beetroot, and contain a high level of dietary nitrate, which is apparently used by universities around the world for research in lowering blood pressure and improving sport performance.  I’m yet to try these and I want to save them for when I start running again (which will happen once Spring kicks in, honest!)  I’m not sure I’d pay £1.85 for a single bar, but I’m definitely intrigued to see what these taste like.

Peanut Hottie (RRP £3.00)

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I tried Peanut Hottie fairly recently and enjoyed it, so was pleased to find this in the box.  Peanut Hottie is a peanut butter flavoured hot drink, and it’s exactly what it says on the tin.  It’s very easy to make, very much like a powdered hot chocolate, as you just need to add hot water.  When made up it looks like strong tea, but has a slightly salty, slighty sweet, nutty flavour, which is quite unusual for a drink.  I really like it, but a small mug is plenty enough, as it can get quite sickly.

Rating: 8/10

Laimon Fresh (RRP £1.99)

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Despite having a name that sounds like washing up liquid, Laimon Fresh is honestly one of the nicest drinks I’ve tried in a long time. It contains a mix of natural ingredients, including fresh lemon and lime juices and mint, which combine to create something deliciously thirst quenching. The fruit juices are balanced perfectly – not too sweet and not too sour – but the star of the show is the authentic flavour of fresh mint. I drank this alone, but it would make a great base for a Mojito – something I’ll definitely be trying in the summer!

Rating: 9/10

Schwartz Flavour Shots (RRP £1.40 each)

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Schwartz Flavour Shots have appeared in a Degustabox before, and make for quick and easy delicious meals. Each shot contains a mix of herbs and spices, as well as sunflower oil, and are used to form the flavour base of a tasty dish.  The Masala shot has a fantastic blend of spices which are full of flavour, and not too hot. I used Quorn chicken in my curry, and combined the shot with chopped tomatoes and milk, as suggested on the packaging, and it tasted great. A big thumbs up from me.

Rating: 8/10

American Muffin Company Chocolate Brownies (RRP £2.50)

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American Muffin Company has created a range of gluten-free cakes and brownies, and I was lucky enough to receive the exact item I would have chosen in store – the brownies. The tub contains six individually wrapped brownies, and though the texture is more cake than brownie, they are incredibly yummy. The cake is thick and moist, and the cocoa and chocolate used is very rich, which gives them a high quality flavour. Perfect as an afternoon treat with a cup of tea!

Rating: 8/10

Melba Thins (RRP £1.39)

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Melba Thins aren’t the most exciting snack in the world, but they are versatile, and work well with a variety of toppings.  As the box says, they’re great for ‘night owls & early birds’.  For an evening snack they’re fab with cheeses and pickles, and for breakfast or brunch they’re lovely with sweet spreads, such as jam or chocolate spread.  I like the fact that the thins in this pack come in generously portioned individual packets, as they can also be taken in lunch boxes to work.

Rating: 6/10

If you fancy giving Degustabox a go yourself, you can get a £3 discount by entering code 2S7LB at the checkout.  You can also follow Degustabox on Twitter and Facebook for more exclusive offers.

Naomi x

PS. You can check out the rest of my Degustabox reviews here.

*This Degustabox was sent to me for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*

Omni Massage Roller & Sports Oil Gift Set


Every week I end up carrying a lot of heavy things, almost every day…  My work bag full of folders, my university bag full of books, my laptop bag, bags full of Avon brochures and products, and sometimes shopping bags.  As you can imagine, and I’m sure a lot of you can relate to this, I get quite a lot of pain in my back and shoulders, and my muscles tend to get really tight and knotted.  I try my best to balance the weight by using a backpack and suchlike, but it doesn’t always help.  Though I’d love a professional sports massage at the end of each week to sort out my back and shoulder problems, that isn’t viable as I just can’t afford it!  So, I have been on a mission to find at-home massage products which are easy to use and actually work, and organic and natural beauty boutique, Lucy Rose, kindly offered to send me an Omni Massage Gift Set to try out.


The Omni Massage Gift Set that I received retails for £18.99 on the Lucy Rose website, and contains an original Omni Massage Roller, and a 100ml bottle of Omni Sports Massage Oil.  These come packaged in a plastic zip case, which is very handy for safe, clean storage.  However, the rollers come in five different colours (grey, green, blue, purple and red) and can be purchased separately for £11.99 each, as can the four blends of massage oil (Original, Sports, Uplifting and Muscle), which cost £9.99 each.  This means you can mix and match colours and scents to suit you, but there are also two other Gift Sets available (featuring the Original and Muscle oils, and corresponding colour massage rollers).

I chose the Sports Gift Set for two reasons – 1.  I wanted an intense massage which would really do my muscles good, which I figured the Sports massage oil would help with, and 2. I love purple, and the visual appeal of a curvy, purple massage ball was too difficult to ignore.  So, here’s what I think of Omni’s massage set…


Omni Massage Rollers are safe to use at home on your own, or with the help of another person.  The ball inside the roller rolls in all (“omni”) directions, which makes for an excellent massage as it enables the movement and pressure needed to relax and relieve painful tensions in the muscles.  It is apparently also used by professionals in the NHS (as well as in private practice), so it is a trusted therapeutic device.

The first time I used the roller I asked my mum to help me reach the tense areas on my back, and even though she used it over my clothing I was amazed that the roller was sensitive enough to pick out all the knots in my muscles.  We could both feel them ‘crunching’, which sounds horrible but it meant she knew which areas to focus on.  The shape and movement of the ball means that any focused pressure is distributed outwards slightly, so the knots can be worked out without any pain or discomfort.  In fact, it is so painless it almost tickles!


The roller can also be used to ease any tension or stress in smaller areas, such as the fingers, hands or elbows.  My job as an Academic Support Worker involves taking a LOT of notes for students who aren’t able to take their own notes, so I tend to get some aching and cramping in my hands and arms.  I have been using the roller to gently massage these areas, and it really does help to relax my hands after a long day of hard work.  I have also noticed that, due to the shape of the roller and the rubber band around the edge, it is very easy to grip and control.

I haven’t yet tried any hot or cold therapies with the Omni Massage Roller, but according to Lucy Rose’s description of the product, it can be placed in the fridge or in hot water to alter the temperature of the ball, and it can also be used in water without getting damaged.  Sounds incredibly relaxing to me!


Omni Sports Massage Oil is very strongly scented of Juniper Berry, Black Pepper and Rosemary, and it really does smell beautiful.  When I first opened the bottle I couldn’t put it down and kept smelling the oil!  It is well-known that Black Pepper is regularly used in sports massage as it helps to tone muscles, and you can tell this oil has been carefully blended to “aid relaxation” and “promote fast recovery after exercise”.


The oil itself has a pale yellow tinge to it, and it is quite runny.  It can be massaged directly into the skin by hand, or you can add a few drops to the roller (there’s a hole in the bottle of the roller to pour it in), and it comes out in a controlled manner as the ball rolls.

When on the skin, the oil helps the Massage Roller move more smoothly over the surface of the skin, and it warms up slightly too which is deeply relaxing.  I was slightly worried that the oil would be overly greasy and make a mess of my clothes/bed sheets, but it is actually easily absorbed and intensely moisturising, so it can slot in to your skin care routine nicely without any trouble!

I have been using the Omni Gift Set every other day for a week now, and I have already noticed a big improvement in my muscles.  They definitely feel less tense, and whenever it is used on my back I can tell the knots are disappearing.  I can now write for a lot longer without getting cramps too, which is a brilliant benefit for my job.  Overall, Omni Massage Roller and Sports Massage Oil are the perfect combination for a relaxing, pain-free at-home massage which actually works.  I am hugely impressed, and am so, so pleased that I have discovered a genuine alternative to expensive professional massages.

The Omni Massage Roller & Sports Oil Gift Set is available here from Lucy Rose, for just £18.99 – a lot less than what you’d pay for a professional massage, and you can re-use it too!  It’d also make a great, affordable Christmas gift for people of all ages, I reckon.  Lucy Rose offer free UK postage and free samples with every order, and you can even save loyalty points if you buy from their online boutique regularly, so you can enjoy those perks too if you buy from them!

Do you like the sound of the Omni Massage Roller and Oil?

Naomi x

*The Omni Massage Roller and Sports Oil Gift Set was sent to me by Lucy Rose for review purposes.  All thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and my own*.

The Olympic Legacy: Keeping Fit


It has been a few weeks now since the London Olympics finished, and the incredible event that is the Paralympics is slowly coming to a close.  For me, the last month and a half has been the most important time of sport I have ever experienced, as it has truly made an impression on me, and inspired and encouraged me to become more active and take part in more sport.

Up until a few years ago I was rarely interested in sport.  With Athletics as the exception, I dreaded and loathed doing PE at school.  I didn’t support any teams, and watching a game of sport was my idea of hell.  Over the last few years, thanks to my partner, I have started to enjoy watching some sports, namely rugby (my city is home to the Leicester Tigers, one of the best rugby teams in the UK) and the UFC, but even through my sport-hating childhood I always had a soft spot for the Olympics.  I remember spending hour after hour watching various events, but once the games were over they soon disappeared from my consciousness and I carried on as normal.  This year was different, however.

With the 2012 Olympics being held in London I really felt the buzz of the lead up to the games.  I went to see the Olympic and Paralympic Torches being carried through Leicester (which I blogged about here), and once the Olympics began the country felt so positive and a nice place to be.  Team GB performed amazingly well and I was glued to the screen every day, shouting my support and feeling so proud.  I felt part of something big and I didn’t want it to end.  And it didn’t!  When the Paralympic games began last week I couldn’t wait to see how well our Paralympians would do, and so far they have been outstanding!  Every single British Olympian and Paralympian has inspired me with their performance, and it is because of them that I am writing this post, because without that inspiration I wouldn’t have been encouraged to be more active and to keep fit!

I recently posted about reaching my weight loss target, which involved healthy eating and some good old-fashioned exercise, but I wanted to do something more than just walk everywhere.  I learnt to enjoy exercise more on my journey to change my lifestyle, but since reaching my target I felt I was lacking a goal.  As a result, and thanks to the Olympics, I started to look for activties where I could set myself goals to visibly and physically improve and hopefully become good at something, and here’s what I’m starting with…

1. Swimming

A new swimming pool recently opened at the university I used to attend.  I taught myself to swim in the sea when I was 4 or 5, and have always preferred swimming in the sea to pools.  I thought I’d give the new pool a try though, and as it happens it is lovely.  It’s clean and modern and doesn’t smell too strongly of chlorine, and its a pleasure to swim in.  I’ve been a few times now since it opened and I have already seen my swimming improve.  I have cut a few seconds off of the time it takes me to swim a length, and I have noticed that my body is starting to tone up.

2. Aqua Aerobics

I will be going to my first ever Aqua Aerobics class on Friday afternoon with my mum.  I’ve been wanting to try a water fitness class for a while, so I decided to take the plunge (excuse the pun) and book a place.  The class is 45 minutes long and will involve a lot of splashing about to music, I imagine.  I’m hoping it will be a lot of fun!

3. Jogging

I haven’t actually started jogging properly yet, but I now have all the kit to do so (I didn’t even own a pair of jogging bottoms up until a month or two ago), and I have every intention of going jogging at least once a week.  If I don’t, force me to.  It must happen!

4. To Be Continued…

That’s right!  I don’t know what I want to try next, but I am going to look for another sport or fitness class to try out, so watch this space.

This is what I’ve done so far to keep the Olympic spirit alive.  I’m determined to make the legacy of these wonderful games last and carry on keeping fit, trying new sports and being active, and I hope you will join me on my mission to do so!  In fact, I plan on updating my blog with my fitness ventures every couple of months, so if you see me slacking give me a nudge.

Has the Olympics inspired you to try any new sports, or to keep fit?

Naomi x

Nail Art: Leicester Tigers


I’m not much of a follower of sport and never have been, but there will always be one team that I will always support, and that is the Leicester Tigers rugby team!  I have lived in Leicester for all of my 22 years and I am proud that we have such a successful sports team to call our own.  Tomorrow is the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final between Leicester Tigers and Harlequins.  My other half is lucky enough to have a ticket to the game, which is taking place at Twickenham Stadium, but the game is now sold out so (for the first time in three years) I’m not going :(  Boo!  So, instead, I’ve decorated my nails in Leicester Tigers colours and stripes to show my support, ready for when I watch the game on TV tomorrow.  And here they are!

To create this look I used:

  • MUA Nail Varnish in ‘Shade 13′ (Green).
  • Avon Nail Enamel in ‘Real Red’.
  • Laval Crystal Finish Nail Polish in ‘White’.
  • Avon Peeling & Brittleness Solver (Base Coat).
  • Models Own 3 in 1 (Top Coat).

For the stripes I used my new batch of striping tape, which I got from eBay for 99p for 10 rolls (BARGAIN)!  I’d never used striping tape before today and it was a lot easier to use than I expected.  I will be posting a tutorial on how to use it next week if you’re interested :)

Naomi x

Sport Relief Mile Update: I DID IT!


After weeks of waiting, training and getting sponsorship, yesterday the Sport Relief Mile finally came around!  All over the country people were running a mile in order to raise money for those in need, and after beating my fundraising target by £7, I couldn’t wait to get running.  I won’t lie, I was a little bit nervous as I’d never actually ran a full mile before, but there’s a first time for everything.

At 10am, my family and I headed down to Leicester Race Course and were met with an exciting atmosphere of sun, music and happy people.  After a bit of a warm up, the runners had to follow a marching band down to the race track for the run to begin.  I was running on my own, and was slightly daunted by the size of the track, but when the horn sounded off I went…

(I’m the one in the red trousers with the silly face).

Despite it being the warmest day of the year so far, I managed to run the mile without any issues!  I had to stop twice to tie my trousers tighter, but other than that I hardly walked any of the mile at all and ran all the way.  It took me about ten minutes to run the mile and I was presented with a lovely medal at the end.

I’m very proud of myself for doing this and I’m so happy that the money I have raised will be going to an excellent cause.  I’m already looking forward to my next run in July – the 5k Race For Life for Cancer Research UK.  I better get training!

Thank you to everyone who sponsored me and showed me support, I am forever grateful.

Naomi x

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