I thought there was no better way to kick off 2018 on here than with an "In her Sneakers" with the gorgeous Tess Mullins, also known on instagram as @mullysmeals. If one of your new years resolutions is to eat better, maybe workout more or get a bit healthier then look no further than Tess's page for endless motivation and inspiration. This gal is crazy talented, her food is drool worthy and always leaves me wanting to re-create what she has!
Enjoy reading through this interview xx
1. A little bit about you gorgeous .. who are you, what do you do and what are you passionate about?
I am Tess Mullins, a 20 year old ‘fitness freak’ studying a Bachelor of Physiotherapy at Otago University. I have been living in Dunedin for the past 3 years, but am originally from Auckland, where I grew up on the North Shore. I have been obsessed with sports my whole life, from doing competitive gymnastics up until Year 8 and then International Sport Aerobics till Year 13. With one very active lifestyle, it’s like I gained a love for cooking over night, one morning I woke up and my Pinterest board had about 200 new pins of recipes I wanted to try! After going Gluten/Dairy free 1 ½ years ago, I began to put a lot of effort into my cooking and since going flatting I feel like I can explore SO many different recipes and love to experiment and create delicious food on the daily!
2. What does a typical day in your sneakers look like?
I am quite the early riser, and since I really enjoy exercising in the mornings, I am up and in my car at 6 to head to the gym and smash out a workout. I then head back home for brekkie, either a premade smoothie or taking my time to make a LARGE plate of waffles before heading to one big day of Uni. My Uni schedule is actually quite packed, usually starting at 8am and sometimes not finishing till 6! Since I live on quite the hill (for Dunedin), I tend to leave home for the day, park up my stuff at the library and walk back and forth between lectures and labs. I make sure I squeeze in a coffee in the morning, meeting my friends at the Hussey & Laredo van around 10 has become quite the ritual. I usually pack my lunch the day before so I don’t have to spend money each day, and then meet up with my friends to all eat together. Uni finishes up between 3-5 so I head home around then, cook up a delicious feed for the flat mates & myself and spend the night with them! I absolutely love flatting, and the fact that they are all my best friends makes it the perfect end to my day! I make sure I am in bed around 10:30 to try get a decent sleep, but actually end up scrolling down Pinterest & now Instagram looking at different recipe ideas for what ends up being hours.
3. What does a normal day of eating look like for you?
Breakfast: Either a smoothie I made the night before if I have an early lecture or recently, I have fallen in love with breakfast pots (filled with granola, coyo, berries and other goodies)! If I am craving savoury, my favourite go to - a poached egg on Kumara toast with avocado & tomato!
A Long Black is a necessity to get me through the morning gap ;)
Lunch: I usually do quite the meal prep at the start of the week & make a huge lunch so I can divide it for my Uni week! I love mixing it up and use this as a chance to experience with different things! Roast vege salad, Mexican vege salad, Buddha bowls galore, making sure I have some meat with most! Either tuna, shredded chicken, or if I am feeling like a treat, red meat!
Snacks: I have an obsession (huge) with fruit & nut mix, like woah, my stomach is a bottomless pit for that! Or even a piece of fruit, banana, apple or kiwifruit from the fruit shop beside our library!
Dinner: Me and my 4 other flatmates all usually cook together and buy all of our meals at the start of the week! I love planning the menu for them, usually deciding all of the recipes to make and then they all love to help me make them all! Recently we have been doing themed weeks, Japanese & then Mexican, which have been so fun! A few of the flat staple meals are Chicken & Pumpkin Laksa, Vegetarian Nachos, Roast veges with either steak or chicken and a new fav… Paleo Chicken Pad Thai!!
4. How do you maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle and your tips and tricks for others?
I think it is hugely about how I feel when I am eating well & exercising regularly. Nothing beats the feeling of starting your day, with a coffee in hand, and you know you just smashed a great workout. I also absolutely love the food…. It sounds weird to some people but I actually LOVE fruit and vegetables and creating different meals with these as the base makes me just so happy! It is so energizing and the combination of good food & exercise is one great feeling. I also believe in treating yourself, everyone deserves to be treated and it is such an important thing to keep your body happy.
5. How do you deal with stress and pressure in this fast paced world we all live in?
To be honest with you, this year has not been my best in terms of dealing with stress. First semester exams well and truly took it out of me and I was very scared coming into this exam period because of it! But after last time, I have really learnt a lot. I have found that it helps so much to remove myself from the space that is making me so stressed, taking a big deep breath, going for a run, a quick walk outside or even sitting in a different area and doing some meditation can really calm me down. Food, is also the thing that keeps me sane. I am the ULTIMATE stress eater, from snacking on a endless supply of fruit & nut mix or just knowing that I just have to get through a couple hours until I am feasting on a delicious meal I made the night before!
6. What has been the hardest part of your wellness journey?
After stopping competing in Sport Aerobics and coming down to Dunedin 3 years ago, my health stopped being my top priority and it went quite downhill. Hall food (potatoes, potatoes and more potatoes) and everything that came with first year Uni, I really was not thinking about my body and my health was not the focus. But in second year, after having to go GF/DF, I completely switched and ever since then, I have fallen in love with creating different meals that really help my body thrive and making food that I can enjoy without that heavy feeling afterwards!
7. Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given and from who?
“Life is short. We can live it lost in our own thoughts, or we can choose to be present, moment to moment, watching as life unfolds around us”. This app I downloaded a couple months ago that sends you daily notifications with a quick & simple quote, I am obsessed.
8. Favourite treat?
The combination of peanut butter & chocolate ANYTHING!
9. 3 foods you couldn’t live without
Avocado, nuts & kumara
10. Favourite way to move your body
I love pushing my body to the absolute limits, usually this means smashing out a 30 minute high intensity circuit or even a big set of stair runs!
11. Any last words of wisdom …
You do you, it is one important thing to ensure you are happy, whether it is treating yourself with a big bowl of chocolate icecream (or fruit & nut mix) or having some time for yourself!
Go show Tess some love @mullysmeals! Have a fab day beautiful people
Love and Health,