Banting While Pregnant

I’m pregnant and I’ve been living the Banting or LCHF (low carbohydrate high fat) lifestyle for almost 3 years.  I’ve been able to keep my weight under check during the entire time. Before then I was a runner who struggled with weight gain, the more I ran the more I gained – it just did not make sense until I discovered Banting. I lost a total of 9.5kgs in 3 months and I’ve not looked back since then!

Banting while pregnant.jpg


My first 2 years as a Banter were full of stops and starts due to uncertainty over the safety of Banting during a pregnancy and discovering that I couldn’t live the LCHF life while breastfeeding. Banting was still too new. This time around, yes, number two is on the way, and I have doubts that Banting is safe, if not the best, during pregnancy because:

  • It provides your growing baby with all the healthy fat need for brain building.
  • It keeps ailments like gestational diabetes at bay
  • It also means you will not have a tough time losing bump fat after you give birth.

I just have to be careful about increasing my carbohydrate intake once the baby arrives as the consumption of carbs is a key building block of milk production.

Back to Banting for those that are NOT pregnant!

While exercise is not necessary to achieve weight-loss when Banting, it is necessary for general fitness and health which is why I do it.  My preferred workouts are brisk walking in proper form and running distances between 2K and 5K. My sweet spot lies within these distances because 2K is short enough to make me run again the next day and 5K is long enough to keep me asking: “Can I shave another 7 seconds off my last run this week?” I’ve recently got more involved in dance based workouts because of the rains and I love them!

My favourite snack for movie night is:

  1. Chicken Skin Crisps, provided they survive till the movie starts! You can season them with whatever you like, my favourite is salted dipped in a Banting-friendly sweet chili sauce!
  2. Salami roll-ups are what I make if I need to rock up somewhere with a plate of eats. I make these from strips of salami, “buttered” with cream cheese and half a pimiento-stuffed olive for each roll up. They look classy and are lovely with a glass of chilled Chardonnay.
  3. When I have more time on my hands, it’s low carb pizza made with a cauliflower, yep, cauliflower, base. If people can’t tell the difference between a Banting pizza and a flour-based pizza, then you’ve made it right!

Eating out can be tricky when you’re living a low-carb life because you don’t know whether your pan-fried fish has really been cooked with butter or regular cooking oil. More and more restaurants are offering Banting-Friendly options on their menus. Delicious Fine Food Emporium at Borrowdale Village has a really comprehensive Banting Menu that I can’t get enough of! I only wish I didn’t live so far away. If it’s a hearty breakfast I’m after, then it’s without a doubt, “The Banter Breakfast” from Brento’s in Greendale. It’s made up of bacon or salmon (for an extra charge), mushroom, tomato and haloumi cheese (all grilled), avocado and 2 eggs of your choice. Eish, I’m actually getting hungry as I write this!! Cappuccinos with full fat milk and no sugar are welcome any day!

The Banter Breakfast from Brentos.jpg

Banter Breakfast from Brentos

I plan what I’m going to eat before I go out.  You can ask for rolls or bread sticks to be removed from your table so that you’re not tempted to dig in! Safe meal choices include grilled meats, steamed veggies and salads. Ask for a blob of butter to add to your veggies and a bit of lemon juice and olive oil instead of dressing for your salad. That way you can still track your carbs and fat intake.

One real problems is drinks and desserts! To low-carbers, alcohol is a toxin, consume it at your own risk. But if you must, go for white wines and champagne that have a lower carbohydrate content than red wines and cocktails. Spirits served with soft drinks are a no-no and beer is literally liquidized carbs! If you don’t eat out very often you can indulge in dessert once in a while but always remind yourself that sugar is as addictive as many hardcore drugs.

Banting Menu from Delicious Restaurant.jpg

What do I love about Banting? BACON – the streaky kind!  The results of banting which are usually visible within weeks of starting out are the second thing I love about banting.

A big thank you to Nyasha for the well written and informative post.  Congratulations on your pregnancy; many new discoveries await.

You can follow her Banting journey on Facebook and stay up to date with what’s hip and happening in the Banting world.

Are you a banter, how has been your experience so far?

Fitness Bae®



December Challenge


The December Challenge looks like this:

Christmas Challenge #RunWithFitnessBae.jpg

Poster Designed by Samuel Jnr Bhebhe

Lite : Run 80K
Intermediate: Run 120K
Advanced: 160K

Make sure to check in on the distance you would have covered every Monday so that we know its real.

I advise you to run at your own pace but the end goal for December is to complete any of the distances above, pick your poison and have fun. We will still be doing various workouts which I will drop a day before each workout.

December 2017 Challenge Fitness Bae.jpg

Monday Run

Have fun and come run with us!

P.S. Don’t forget to use the hash tag #RunWithFitnessBae so that I can track your runs.

Fitness Bae®

Say Goodbye To Flabby Arms!

Flabby arms are one sure enemy of progress when it comes to fitness.  I’ll be the first to admit that I neglected working on them for the first year of my fitness journey because I honestly didn’t pay attention to them.  It was only after taking a few selfies wearing short sleeved dresses and tops that I realised that I still had a lot of work to do on my arms even though I had lost the weight.  I was certainly looking like I borrowed someone else’s arms!

Before Weight Loss and After Weight Loss

As you can see on the image above, there was still some flabby arms to work on.  Society doesn’t make life any easier by the way.  There are a number of nick names given to your flabby arms which include and are not limited to; bye bye – meaning when you are waving at someone the flab on your arms waves as well, mukadzi weparty (woman involved in a political party) – some of the women are on the overweight side and flabby arms is one of their distinctive features and lastly monya(a strong person) – unfortunately the strong in this case is used in a sarcastic manner.  With people using words like that on your not so great features at some point you will decide to do something about it.

I’m all for home fitness and I did a lot of homework on the subject and decided the first thing I would need to try and do was incorporate planks to my fitness programme.  Anything that doesn’t need me to pump out money is a plus for me because I believe my body can work some wonders without weights!  I got in tune with planks and thankfully there are different variations to them and so far I can safely say they have helped sculpt my arms but it’s still work in progress.  Planks have worked some wonders for me and you can check out how to do them in the video below.

Some of the benefits of doing planks include:

  • Planks are an equipment free arm and upper body workout that will tone and strengthen your shoulders, back, chest, biceps and triceps.
  • Better movement and coordination.
  • Say hello to better posture.

That said,it’s of great importance that you do your plank in proper form, you don’t want to experience any injuries.  Make sure you breathe and smile, smiling burns calories too.

For best results add them on to your existing exercise programme.  You won’t get toned arms from simply doing planks a few minutes a day, there aren’t such miracles in the fitness world.

Do you have flabby arms?  What are you doing to fight the flab!  Let’s talk.

Fitness Bae®


This Is Why You Are Gaining Weight

Ask anyone trying to lose weight and they will tell you how easily you can gain weight if you stop paying attention to your healthy habits.  It took me an entire year to lose 10kgs but if I’m reckless it takes me just one week to gain 1kg back!  The universe has some mad jokes I tell you.  It has been 3 years on this journey and I now know what makes my body tick or not.  Today I will share habits that easily contribute to my weight gain, I’m sure you will read some of them and notice that they probably have the same effect on you.


Image from Pinterest

1. Poor Sleep

I’m a runner and this form of exercise requires that I get as much rest as I can to perform at my best.  However, on days I don’t sleep properly I don’t have the energy to get up and do one of the few things I love the most.  No energy means no runs means zero progress on that day.  Which translates to me feeling guilty all day long and probably missing a meal which by the way is a bad thing because starving yourself means your body goes into starvation mode which leads to weight gain, my word, the cycle!

2. Clothes

Fashion keeps doing the most.  One time our jeans are all the way up to our boobs next thing they are low cut and at some point they had elastic bands around the waist.  I remember the elastic band phase, I had a pair or two of those.  Now that’s the worst pair you want to invest in if you are trying to lose weight.  The elastic just keeps stretching and you don’t even realise you have gained weight until you wear something else.  Stay away from elastic band jeans, they give you false sense of security!

3. Alcohol

I love me some white wine, on a good weekend I will go through a whole 1litre of white wine and not even feel bad about it.  I run so that I can drink and drink so that I can run; that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!!!  I’m pretty good when it comes to watching what I eat and very consistent when it comes to exercise but I promise you, alcohol will be the death of me!  My six pack comes and goes and I know alcohol is the reason why it won’t let it thrive.  Alcohol contains a lot of calories so unfortunately for me, I drink my calories…Just so you know, it’s not just alcohol that contains calories, soft drinks and fruit juices are also an enemy of progress.

White wine has 83 calories in 100g glass

Coca-Cola has 210 calories in a 500ml bottle

Fruit juice has 54 calories in a 100g glass

My advice is drink water, it has zero calories.  If you can’t at least cut down because those clearly these drinks do more harm than good.

4. Stress

My stress comes from my Body Fat Scale.  I used to have a habit where I would weigh myself everyday.  That didn’t end very well and I since stopped the habit and I don’t encourage it either.  Now I weigh myself once a week, same place and same time.  According to researchers stress is connected to weight gain, because a high level of the stress hormone cortisol has been shown to up appetite, drive cravings for junk food, and make it oh so much easier to accumulate belly fat.

5. Pre-Menstrual Syndrome(PMS)

This is the worst time of the month for me.  I hate PMSng, it drives me up the wall with it’s cravings and mood swings.  I crave the strangest things.  Last month I had doughnuts, a whole litre of coke, chocolate, lots of greasy take out and biscuits.  Gosh!  All that bad food in a week.  I don’t know if it’s just me but my stomach has this small bulge of sort when I’m PMSng.  This is one of the worst times of the month for me because I know the moment I hop onto the scale I will be very disappointed!  I promise you the cravings leave me thinking I’m pregnant…but I know better.


You are all talk and no action.  I see you!

I believe you know what contributes to your weight gain.  You just have to pay extra attention to yourself.  At the same time weight gain is not entirely a bad thing, especially if it’s going to the right places.

My advice is make small deliberate changes in your life and the weight loss will happen.

Let’s talk, what’s adding the weight on your scale?

©MaKupsy 2017

ParkRun Harare : October

Come and run with us this weekend at the ONLY park run in Harare.

Place: Greenwood Park

Date: 14 and 28 October 2017

Time 5:30am for 6:am

Join us for a fitness filled morning at the park hosted by Fitness Bae in partnership with Steward Health.

  • 5K Run
  • Body Weight Training
  • Stretching

Bring your towel and bottle of water.  Remember to wear something pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

*Please be early, run starts at 6am sharp!*

Admission is Free!

28 October 2017

28 October 2017

Fitness Bae®




Fitness Bae Challenge

It’s going to be a fun-filled week ahead!  Get your running shoes out; we are going to get fit or die trying!  I’m sure you remember I announced that Fitness Bae was partnering with Golden Pilsener a few weeks back; you can read about it over here. It’s the final week of the challenge and I am the host.

I love a good challenge, actually I live for challenges and here are some of the reasons why:

  1. Running gets boring, you can do a speed run, a benchmark run, a long run you name it but at some point you need to spice things up and that’s round about the time I challenge myself to try out something new.  Hello Yoga!
  2. A good challenge pushes my limits.  Nothing beats the sense of achievement.  I enjoy people who look at me and think I can’t run, they have no idea what this body is capable of doing when it comes to smashing goals!
  3. To encourage people around me to live their best lives.  Nothing brings me as much satisfaction as watching people achieve their health and fitness goals.  I’m here to motivate and inspire every single day and I never tire of doing it!

Fitness Bae

I’m challenging you this week to get up and do something!  You can walk, jog or run through this challenge what matters is that you get to the finish line.

This is this week’s challenge please set your reminders!
Wednesday – 20,000 steps
Thursday – 5km run
Friday – 1km and picture of work out gear

If the prizes below don’t motivate you, I have no idea what will!



The challenge starts tomorrow!  Make sure you use the hash tag #GoldenPilsenerGo4Gold each time you participate.

It’s going to be a blast, better get your gold! Keep it golden.

Fitness Bae®

Turn Up The Music And Go Run!

Music is one of those things that I can live with or without when it comes to running.  It took me losing my pair of earphones some years back to get me used to running without music.  It was actually a blessing in disguise because I had no choice but to run and pay attention to my breathing as well as the rhythm of my pace.  Years later I can choose to take or leave my earphones behind when I go out for my morning runs.  However, one this is certain, when I go out to run for more than 8K I MUST have my earphones otherwise that run taxes every fiber in me.

I asked some of the members of team Fitness In The Park if they run with or without music and this is what they had to say;

I run with music to distract me from the distance I have to run, the pain of running and to not listen to my breathing. – Real

I run without music to avoid being run over by cars.  I run on the right side of the road for visibility but sometimes I have to choose to run from the side of the road with less potholes. – Tatenda

I run with music to praise and worship and also I use songs as encouragement to keep running. When I feel like walking I tell myself to run till the end of the song. – Shingi

I always make sure I create a fire playlist a day before a long run and I usually have one if not all of these tracks on shuffle mode.

  1. Akiliz: Ammara Brown
  2. Alleluya: Roki and ExQ
  3. Bvunza Tinzwe: Killer T
  4. Chekeche: ExQ feauturing Military Touch Movement
  5. Mungandidi: Takura

My favourite track at the moment is Akiliz by Ammara Brown and you should be on the look out for it!  The track was inspired by a lover who was in the habit of using her.  Ammartians already know two singles off the album “Ammartia”; namely Mukoko and Wachu Want.

*Whatever you do when you go out for your run and you have music make sure you are wearing reflective gear.  If you can help it only wear one earphone so that the other ear can still be aware of happening outside your run.*

What does your playlist look like and do you run with or without music?

Fitness Bae®

Easiest Ways To Boost Fitness While Working

Fitness is an all the time thing for me.  I don’t think a day goes by without including some form of exercise into my life.  I’ve heard so many people tell me countless excuses as to why they can’t exercise but I have since resorted to not pushing them to do something they don’t want to do.  I believe if something is for you, you won’t need anyone to constantly remind you do to it, you will get up and do something about it.  Speaking of getting up I think it’s very important to add fitness into your work routine especially if you are someone like me who has a sedentary office lifestyle.  Let me share a few tips with you that I already do and you can let me know how it goes for you.

1. Walk

Every few hours I get up from my desk and take a walk around the office or simply take a toilet break.  It’s important to stretch your legs and get your eyes off your computer every and again unless you want the glare from the computer to ruin your eyes and you end up wearing spectacles like me.

2. Enjoy Your Lunch Break

I have colleagues who spend the entire day in the office and I still don’t understand why they do that to themselves.  In my books it’s very important that I take a walk and clear my head from all the office stresses.  That few minutes of breathing in clean air, enjoying the feeling of the warm sun against my skin and getting to shop around for bargains and enjoy a lazy lunch is every reason to get out.  The best part is I get to exercise while I’m at it; bonus!

3. Stretch (Deskercise Routines)

You can do these from your desk or if you would like some privacy you can take a trip to the bathroom and get your stretch on.  There are many variations you can try out and you can check them out on the link over here.

 Research shows that repetitive motion, poor posture, and staying in the same position can cause or worsen musculoskeletal disorders.

4. Drink Water

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.  If you follow me on Twitter you know that this is my daily mantra.  Sometimes I even ask my followers how much water they have had to drink on any given day because staying hydrated your body needs water to survive.  If drinking water is not your thing at least try and eat water-rich foods like cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, pineapples and my personal favourite; watermelon.

5. Snack

This is one of my favourite things to do.  When I start feeling hungry in-between meals I reach out for a snack.  Whatever you do always make sure your desk is stocked with healthy and nutritious snacks.  My personal stash of snacks comes in the form of fresh fruit in season, roasted nuts, biltong, maputi, popcorn and on very rare occasions raisins.  I don’t particularly like those though.  Have one of those snacks with a glass of water and you are set to make it to your next main meal.

6. Stairs

Stair climbing requires 8-9 times more energy expenditure than sitting and burns about 7 times more calories than taking a lift. You burn about 0.17 calories for every step you climb, so you burn roughly a calorie and a half for every 10 upward steps.

I have talked about the importance of taking the stairs before and you can read all about it from here.

7. Posture

You know how most people slouch in chairs?  I’m here to remind you that practising correct posture while you’re sitting at work trains your core.  Pay attention to how you are sitting throughout the day.  Remind yourself that you need that strong core and you will definitely be sitting up straight for the greater part of the time!

8. Breathing

Practice good breathing technique.  I now do this subconsciously and it really helps me stay calm for the greater part of the day.  I will let the experts help you out on this one so make sure you read this article on Breathing Exercises To Help You Relax.

Now that you have all these tips to help you stay fit even during working hours what’s your excuse not to exercise today?

Fitness Bae®


Day 10: If You Come To Harare You Are Going For A Run!

This challenge is taking our creative juices to the very next level.  Each day we have to come up with different content for our blogs and I can safely say I am out of all the flowery language that I can possibly think of!  BUT I live for challenges and I will sail through this like it’s nothing.  Today on the challenge we are sharing the ONE thing that you should do when you visit my city and naturally, I’m going to invite you to one of my favourite things to do…running.


Greenwood Park, Harare

ParkRuns have been a major part of my health and fitness journey.  I remember the first time I set foot in the park with my neighbour for my first run.  The most unpleasant experience of my life!!  However, I kept going back for more because it was a place I felt safe because there were other runners as well.  Most were slow runners, others were on a mission to sprint away but generally the atmosphere was just right if you were serious about getting in shape.  Nearly 3 years later I still put in some parkruns when I need a place to bring back fond memories of the start of my journey.  I managed to lose weight from running in the park and I also got my fitness on while I was at it!

A few weeks ago I realised that there is actually no time like the present and I should start organising our very own parkruns in Harare!  This is how it’s going to work.


part of team Fitness In The Park

The goal is to meet up for parkruns once every week on Saturday morning.  

I have already started hosting Harare ParkRuns together with Steward Health and each week we are running 3K.  We will gradually increase the distance over the next few weeks until we get to the ideal 5K distance.  Everyone is invited to come along for the parkruns; young, old, kids, as long as you have a goal to have a healthy body and mind then you must make sure you come through.

ParkRun Perks:

  1. The park runs are free!
  2. I will teach you how to run and share fitness related information.
  3. You will be able to lose weight or maintain it.
  4. You will make friends with similar interests.
  5. If you can’t run walking is still an option so please don’t feel excluded.
  6. Exercise is a stress buster.
  7. You will challenge yourself to commit to a habit that your body and mind will thank you for in the not so distant future.

Fitness Bae works towards enhancing the lives of the community through support, encouragement, mental and physical health awareness activities. 

I find pleasure in helping those around me achieve their health and fitness goals.  For this reason I have decided to start hosting parkruns starting from the 2nd of September 2017 going forward.


Come Run With Us!

Like my Facebook page @thefitnessbae to stay updated on the parkruns and to also get weekly updates on different health and fitness events and information happening in and around Harare.

Some of the places you should check out when you visit Zimbabwe include:

Mutare by Leo

National Gallery of Zimbabwe (Harare) by Zimsphere

Gweru by The Quarter Wife

What is the number one thing to do in your country?  Care to share so that I take notes for when I pass through your part of the world?

©MaKupsy 2017





21K Marathon Training

I’m now on week 9 of my marathon training.  I have been running for the past 3 years and through it all the maximum distance I have run to date is 15K. This year I promised myself that I would run my first 21K marathon and got myself on a marathon training programme on Nike Run Club. It’s a 16 week programme and I’m enjoying each week so far.  The experiences that I have encountered through these weeks are quite interesting. At week 2 I was down with a cough and I couldn’t get to run but I got back on my feet and soldiered on. Below are some of the things I have experienced from this training programme:

  • I get super excited about Speed Runs! However, they really push my body to the limit and I am sweating salt by the time I’m done with my run.
  • I can’t find the words to describe how much a bench mark run will bring you this close to your death bed.  They are super intense and lately I have switched things up so that when I have to run fast I am on an uphill route.
  • Long runs are pretty taxing and should NOT be done during the working week. I felt like death the whole day two weeks ago after running 9K on a Thursday morning.
  • Rest Days are very important; you come back feel more energised and a running pace that even you can’t believe.
  • Music is your friend especially on long runs, my go to artist is Christopher Martin, I now know that Big Deal album like the back of my hand!
  • It’s important to include upper body and core workouts to your programme because it really helps with maintaining your running form. Last month on the #PumpItUpChallenge both upper and lower body workouts were on the programme.
  • Listen to your body.  If you pushed as far as you can go but you can’t complete the assigned distance don’t beat yourself up.  You can always run the remaining distance, power walk through it or complete it another time during the day.  Not all days are the same, some days will be tough.
  • The Nike Coach knows what he or she is talking about.  If it states that today’s run is a recovery run and your pace should be slow by all means do exactly that.  You don’t want to be over eager and then struggle on your next run.
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. You don’t want to feel thirsty during your runs!

I have 7 more weeks of marathon training to go and the running distances are getting tougher by the day. It was all fun and games when I had to run 2K but now I have to mentally prepare myself for a 17K run on a random day. It’s not easy but it’s totally worth it. After running my 21K marathon believe me I would have officially become a marathon runner and you won’t hear the end of it!

This is the workout I did this morning, you gotta love Hump Day!
6.5K long run (I’ll finish off the remaining 1.5K in the evening)
9 Burpees
10 minutes of stretching

Have you run a 21K Marathon before? If yes, do you have any tips and tricks to share?

Fitness Bae®