Christmas music given a shake-up as stars from around the World share their own Festive/holiday playlists with fans on rara.com to celebrate free trial. On the fourth day of Xmas the way to dance around the tree… is listening to my fave star’s playlist on Rara.com for FREE
Sydney Social 101 is excited to announce that a music streaming service has overhauled traditional Christmas playlists in favour of more modern mixes created with the real moods of the festive period in mind; reflecting the different ways we all celebrate Christmas in 2012. We’re HUGE fans of Xmassy songs here at SS101 HQ and we love a sneak look into the musical tastes of our celebs, so this is right up our street!
Rara.com the easy-to-use instant music service – has enlisted the help of global music stars and names from the worlds of fashion, food, sports and entertainment to update its festive playlists. These famous faces have created hand-crafted compilations inspired by their own festive experiences, to give their fans a glimpse of exactly what they’ll be listening to this Christmas
Whether that’s giving their fans tunes for a hip-hop inspired Christmas party (thanks to UK rapper Tinchy Stryder), songs to enjoy with friends during the break between Christmas and the New Year (courtesy of Home & Away actress, Rhiannon Fish), giving their fans tunes for a hip-hop and dance inspired NYE party (thanks to Actor, Model and CelebrityDJ, Didier Cohen and Actor &MTV VJ, Keiynan Lonsdale) and even a high-energy playlist to help shed those pounds after all the excess of the party season (created by music artist and XFactor judge, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, as well as Urban Pop artist Timomatic), these new playlists have it covered, whatever mood you’re in.
Other playlists include music for driving home to see family during the festive period (put together by Australia’s Next Top Model judge, Charlotte Dawson), songs to recharge after NYE and get ready for 2013 with (compiled by Media Commentator and Entertainment Editor-at-Large at News.com.au, Melissa Hoyer), and even tunes to reflect on the good times from 2012 (from musician Brian McFadden).
The move comes as rara.com gives the gift of music and launches its seven day free trial so these playlists – and many more already created by some of the biggest rock, pop, and urban artists in the world – are available to all completely free of charge.
Nick Massey, CEO, rara.com said, “We’re really excited to be working with all of these big names who are all passionate about music, to deliver an early Christmas present and celebrate the launch of our free trial this December. As a music service that offers songs for every moment and mood, we wanted to create interesting, hand-crafted playlists that fit how people are really feeling at this joyous, hectic, crazy time of the year. As well as these quirky festive-themes playlists we also have others curated by global music stars from all genres for our listeners to enjoy all year round.”
Until January 31st anyone can find, play and share unlimited music from millions of tracks available on rara.com, completely free, for seven days. Just log on to rara.com online and use voucher code HOLIDAY2012. After the seven day free trial rara.com is just $0.99 (AUD) and $1.99 (NZ) per month for the first three months, then $7.99 (AUD/NZ) per month after that.
rara.com is also available on-the-go via apps for iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android, and Windows 8 devices. Online and mobile costs are $2.99 (AUD/NZ) per month for the first three months, and then $12.99 (AUD) and $13.99 (NZ) each month.
- Raun Sutton, 37 of Western Australia, sheds almost 40 kilos and is named Australia’s 2012 Slimmer of the Year -
On Wednesday 19th September Sydney Social 101 was invited to witness a pretty amazing awards ceremony; the 2012 Weight Watchers Healthy Life Awards – As we sat and waited with baited breath at the stunning Zeta Bar at The Hilton in Sydney’s CBD we saw Raun Sutton’s inspirational weight-loss and lifestyle transformation story, which saw him lose a staggering 39.7kilos (a third of his body weight!), and clinch the title of ‘Slimmer of the Year’.
Almost 500 national entries were received, with judging based on weight-loss, health improvements, efforts to inspire others and overall transformation, Raun was one of the five Australian State finalists selected to attend the gala event.
Proving that gender is not a barrier when it comes to losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, Raun won over the judges to become Australia’s first-ever male winner in the history of the competition.
Now a role model for other Aussie men, Raun is happier and healthier than ever. Commenting on his motivations and new-found way of living he said:
“My decision to join Weight Watchers came last October when I experienced what I call ‘a shatter moment’. I was walking to work one day, feeling unhealthy, out of breath and perspiring. I caught sight of my unhappy self in my size XXXXL shirt and 44-inch waist trousers, and realised that something had to change.Taking advice from a work colleague, I joined my local Weight Watchers group and haven’t looked back since.
“At first I was surprised at how simple Weight Watchers really was! I still eat out and have the occasional glass of wine, but I’m now educated on healthy eating, portion sizes, balanced meals and knowing how to live and enjoy my life.”
Speaking at this year’s Awards, Weight Watchers Australasia Managing Director, Joseph Saad said:
“What a year it’s been! The 2012 Healthy Life Awards have uncovered a wealth of unique and truly inspiring stories. These awards are definitely not about discovering the member who has lost the most kilos in the shortest space of time, some of our contenders have demonstrated how simple changes to their everyday habits have had a significant impact on their health and general well-being.
“We’re so proud, and somewhat overwhelmed, by the confidence and opportunities that have arisen across our members’ lives as a result of being on the Weight Watchers program. With so many success stories to celebrate, we faced some challenging decisions when judging for this year’s awards.
“However, we’re thrilled to be crowning our first-ever male ‘Slimmer of the Year’! Gone are the days when weight-loss programs are women-only zones, men need a helping hand too and Raun further cements the message that the Weight Watchers way of life can be tailored to suit so many Aussies, regardless of their age, gender and target goals.”
Commenting on his triumph, Raun added:
“I’m happier and healthier than ever, and feel blessed to have had my story recognised and celebrated nationally. It’s been an amazing and incredibly humbling experience, which has provided me with all the tools I need to maintain my goal weight forever.
“Looking back at pictures of myself at my unhealthiest, it’s easy to see how unhappy I was. For those wanting to take the first steps towards a healthier life, I hope my story encourages you not to hesitate any longer.”
In another first, Raun will become the only male Weight Watchers member to have ever graced the cover of the Weight Watchers magazine when he stars alongside New Zealand ‘Slimmer of the Year’, Janneke van Rooijen in the December issue.
With his new title and beach-ready body, Raun will soon be enjoying his prize of a six-night escape for two in the Cook Islands flying Air New Zealand.
With almost 500 remarkable stories submitted from across Australia and New Zealand, entrants to the 2012 Healthy Life Awards have lost a staggering 10,347 kilos! As a Platinum Partner and in celebration of each kilogram lost by this year’s entrants, Weight Watchers is donating $10,347 to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Throughout the evening Sydney Social 101 and other guests were treated to yummy canapés and the wine also kept on coming! All in all a very inspiring event, which Sydney Social 101 has the honour of attending for the second year ina row!
For more information and to read more about this years winners at the 2012 Weight Watchers Healthy Life Awards, visit: http://www.healthylifeawards.com.au
Last weekend my friends and I took a trip to Perisher, it was organised by the boys! It was a great trip and also great company; we are all from the same hometown back in the UK and some of us have known each other for over ten years.
If you’re visiting Sydney or you live here, it’s a great place to get away from the city for a few days. I don’t know about you guys, but when I pictured Australia before I moved here, I never, not ever pictured vast snow topped mountains that you could ski on. It turns out, that there are plenty of these, you just need to drive six hours south of Sydney, that’s all, ha!
We set off at 3pm on the Friday morning to ensure two whole days of skiing, it was a mega early start, we had two designated drivers make sure we didn’t suffer the effects of fatigue on the roads!
I had booked my clothing and equipment hire online at www.perisher.com.au, (TIP: if you book 7 days in advance via the online booking system, you get a 10% discount) which we picked up after checking in at the hotel. The clothing hire was $123 and included goggles, boots, skiis, gloves, clothing and poles. The lift pass for two days was $200 and the lessons were $86 for two, two hour lessons.
Ahhh the hotel, where to even begin, not in a good way I might add! As a general rule, I have the philosophy, if you haven’t got anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all – well on these occasion my friends, I’m afraid I can make an exception.
I might event dot point the issues with the Perisher Manor, as there are quite a few!
Anyway, back to the positive as Perisher valley is actually an amazing place, the skiing and snow is unreal and it literally goes on forever. I plan to go back again very soon!
There’s a great mixture of green runs for beginners, blue for intermediate and black for experts. It’s also home to the longest ski lift in Australia.
My favourite run was Pretty Valley! Wide and not too steep! There are also many hidden bars, coffee houses etc in the mountains, which are a great rest spot with the most amazing views you’ve ever seen!
Night skiing is also amazing, we only got one run though as it isn’t included in your lift pass for the day, it’s an additonal cost. It was very nice of them to let us try it for free!
My friend and I actually got on the Pretty Valley double ski lift by mistake after our second lesson and we didn’t quite realise how high it was! My friend has an inexplicable fear of the ski lifts and actually forgot to get off this particular one, to the point where she was still sat in it when it spun around to go back down the mountain – hysterical isn’t the word as she had to get helped down, ha!
In terms of lessons, I paid for two lessons that were two hours each that cost $86 for both. They’re great as you don’t have to wait in line for the lifts and it acts as a great refresher (especially if you haven’t been skiing for 14 years like me!).
In terms of entertainment, there is a bar in the main complex that is open until late, where you can enjoy a wine or a game of pool or darts and music.
If you’re looking to get away for the weekend, or a few days I couldn’t recommend Perisher highly enough – just don’t stay at the Perisher Manor!
I’m in no doubt that the good people of Sydney are all complete and utter foodies, and how can you not be with such amazing choice? From top rated restaurants of various cuisines, to hidden gems tucked away in your local neighbourhood, Sydney has something for everyone.
So for a pommie girl from London with a passion for food, Sydney’s flavoursome palette of delicious treats is my mecca. I LOVE food. I am having a relationship with food. I think about dinner when I’m eating lunch (“how are you single?!” I hear you cry…)
One type of food I was yet to sample however, is Hawaiian. Until tonight that is. I was lucky enough to be invited to the Flavour of Hawaii food festival launch at The Grace (77, York Street, Sydney 2000) to sample a selection of authentic Hawaiian cuisine made by top chefs flown in from the island itself. So off I went after work, salivating my way down York Street until I reached my destination and met my friend, Carly.
We were greeted by staff in Hawaiian shirts who presented me with a Lei (Hawaiian garland – check me with the lingo *thank you Google*) and a Blue Hawaii cocktail. Good start. We headed upstairs until I reached the event where we were immediately offered raw tuna on a little spoon and a pork spring roll. I ate three in a row, Carly was more restrained. We were then asked to pose for a photo by a photographer from the Sunday Tele, who quipped that he better get a free holiday out of this. Which reminded me to drop my business card in the prize draw to win a two week break to the beautiful island (I won’t bother with the suspense – I didn’t win).
We then sat down for dinner which looked and smelt incredible. Before we could tuck in, various people from The Grace, Hawaiian Airlines and somewhere else gave a short speech before introducing the two chefs who had flown in especially for the festival. Renowned Hawaiian chef, Alan Tsuchiyama and international pastry chef, David Brown have never been to Sydney and apparently the only thing they have seen so far is the kitchen and lift of The Grace – welcome to Australia!
We were then allowed to tuck in to the buffet and it was bloody delish. The beef in particular tasted heavenly. We went up for seconds and then had desert, all the while with our glasses topped up with excellent wine supplied by Grant Burge ( www.grantburgewines.com.au).
After ogling the token celeb, Home & Away’s resident bad boy, Dan Ewing, we headed off (*read waddled off*) into the night armed with a little goodie bag full of promotional material on Hawaii and some Hawaiian chocolates yay!
Flavour of Hawaii is definitely worth going to if you have a love for food from around the world and want to taste some of the traditional flavours of Hawaii accompanied by Hawaiian music and dancing. Just make sure you have room in your tummy to get your money’s worth and get into the spirit by wearing a Lei!
Flavour of Hawaii Food Festival runs until 30th June at The Grace, Sydney.
Guest post by Emma Wright, co-creator of Sydney Fashion and Beauty 101
I’m a big fan of the group buying sites here in Australia, I especially love it when you really feel like you’ve got a bargain! I actually went on a Vivid Harbour Cruise yesterday that I received from Living Social for just $39, which was valued at $120. Great value!
I’ve just been advised that LivingSocial has partnered with SumoSalad to bring Australians a famously delicious and healthy lunch at half price. Now I do love SumoSalad, so this offer makes me v happy (especially as my recent six-week fat burning challenge isn’t going quite as well as I’d hoped – Only 2kg down, oooppssiee)
Normally priced at $10.00, LivingSocial’s SumoSalad deal at just $5.00 offers a complete delicious lunch time meal. Each deal includes one mouth-watering small fast deli salad of choice, a tasty snack and a 600ml bottle of Mount Franklin water.
Adam Rigby, Executive General Manager of LivingSocial Australia and New Zealand, said, “We are delighted that another global brand has chosen LivingSocial as part of their marketing mix. Great partnerships with renowned brands like SumoSalad are integral to LivingSocial’s continuous commitment to create great experiences for our members”.
Luke Baylis, Managing Director of SumoSalad Australia, said, “We are pleased to be able to bring our fresh and healthy lunches to LivingSocial’s extensive membership network. We hope our range of fast deli salads inspire many more Australians to eat a healthy lunch every day.”
Up to two fast deli salads, from SumoSalad’s extensive range can be mixed and matched as part of the deal. Popular choices include pesto chicken and avocado, roast pumpkin and chickpea, southwest chicken, or falafel, barley and quinoa. A choice of favourite snack is also possible with yoghurt balls, apricot bites, trail mix or rice snacks on the menu. Combined with the 600ml bottle of Mount Franklin water, this deal makes for a truly satisfying lunch.
LivingSocial members can purchase two vouchers for themselves and up to 10 vouchers to share with health-conscious friends. To purchase the deal or for further information go to www.livingsocial.com/cities/1055/deals/342890-salad-snack-and-a-bottle-of-water
To redeem, simply present your LivingSocial voucher to any participating Australian SumoSalad store when ordering. Store locations are profiled on the above link.
So I’m in week 3 of my Dangerously Fit six week body transformation challenge! Trust me to take this on during the most crazy time at work! Well what can I say? It’s going ok… I’ve not been as much as I’d like as I’ve been so busy with work and fashion week, last week I also had the Nike She Runs the Night 13KM run, which massively took it out of me! It was however an amazing night and I’m so glad I did it! It was so rewarding and considering I only had one week training I was very pleased with my time of 100 minutes!
So to recap:
I only went to the following during Week 1 – Boxing class at 6am on Monday and Fat Burning Class at Centennial Park on the Saturday at 8:30am (I ran a 10KM run straight after this!) .
Week2 – I did Boxing on the Monday again at 6am, I then ran 5K on the Tuesday morning as there’s no class near to me in the morning. Then I had the 13K run on Thursday night, Instead of the fat burning class on Sat (needed a semi lie in!) I did a 2k run and a 3k walk. I also walked 8K on Sunday – I did the Coogee to Bondi walk, it was great! I’d highly recommend it if you’re new to Sydney or you just haven’t been yet! I got a massive reward as I got to Bondi as the super moon was out, did anyone see it? It was AMAZING! Anyway I digress…
I missed boot camp yesterday morning for my sins as it was my first lie-in in three weeks!! However I’m going to walk home from work tonight which is 6K, then I have Cross Training tomorrow at 6am.
So despite not attending as many classes as I like, I have been trying to keep a minimum of at least three 45 mins plus exercises a week! I’ve also been keeping my nutrition diary, which is quite confronting! I’m helped a little this week however as a wonderful company called Hello Fresh has delivered my meal for tonight, Mussels and tomato and chilli, all the fresh ingredients have been delivered straight to my door – Fab or what?! You also get a recipe guide for the meals, so if like me you’re not quite Jamie Oliver, it’s a great additional element and worth its weight in gold lol
If you’re interested you can check out the website here: Hello Fresh. However if you want a brief overview, read on: A small box (three meals) for two people is $64 a week, and a large box (five meals) for two people is $99. So it works out at $10.66 per person, per meal for small box and $9.90 per person, per meal for the large box – a bargain! It’s great to do with a friend to share! There are no contracts, so if you try it and don’t like it, you can cancel whenever. You can also put on hold if you’re going away, or order more meals or for more people at any time. Really good concept. I’m sold!
HelloFresh is now available across Sydney and will shortly be expanding to other major Australian cities. It is suitable for all levels of cooking ability whether you’re a gastronomic whiz or a culinary virgin!
Stay tuned for more updates and activites to do in and around Sydney! Lots coming up so stay tuned!
I have made my first week of Dangerously Fit Boot Camp, I was so proud of myself getting up at 5:45am on Monday morning, even though I had a media call for one of my clients in the morning.
I walked down to Rushcutters Bay as the moon was still in the sky and the sun was still in slumber. As I approached the spot where the group was set to meet I was relieved to see that there was a good-sized mixed group of about 15 people. I was told we were to start the boxing camp at 6am sharp, and they weren’t wrong. As the clock struck 6am we all went into position to begin the warm up, it was a case of just getting stuck in and following the instructions of the boot camp leader.
Everyone in the group was so helpful in assisting the new members of the group to pick up the sequences.
The class as a whole is very energetic and definitely gets the blood pumping, it’s great as you get into pairs and work together as a team. As I was new to the group (and had never done boxing before in my life) my partner showed me what the difference between a jab and an upper cut and helped me to use my core and get the most benefit out of my work out.
After 45 minutes I felt recharged and at 6:45 had done a work my first work out of the week – it was in the bag, checked off my list… woop!!!
However, I went somewhat down hill after that, no boot camp on Tuesday morning, I had a friend’s dinner on Tuesday evening, Wednesday was Anzac Day of course (and I was working, boooo!). Thursday I had a media call at 6:00am in the city and worked until 9pm at night and then Friday had another media call at Parramatta at 9am with pure exhaustion setting in (i.e I was tucked up in bed for 8pm! Rock and roll hey). Before I went to bed and decided that I needed to pull it back, I laid out my gym gear for the morning and made my mind up that I would go to the 8:30am fat burning class at Centennial Park.
You know what… I made it! I was there all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. The class was great, there must have been about 30 people. I turned up in my orange top (there’s an initiative for all members, a points system that enables members to be in the running to win a free year membership – points can be redeemed against weight loss, attendance, wearing your team colour etc) and got stuck into the work out, which was a punish, but made you feel amazing after.
Here’s a sneak peek of the work out:
Round 1 – Leg Buster – squats, burpees, stair climbers, prisoner squats, prisoner lunges, squat jumps nicely broken up with shuttles.
Round 2 – Circle of Death – pushup, burpee, reverse crunch, high knees, v up, plank walk – only a short 14 mins of pleasure adding 1 exercise each lap
Round 3 – Core Killer – crunch, run, plank walk, run, rotations, long run – 5 mins adding 1 exercise each lap
Round 4 – Plank/Push Up race
As if that wasn’t enough, I then had the ingenious idea to do a 10K run with my friend and I (in my infinite wisdom) have signed up to ‘Nike She Runs the Night’ which takes place this Thursday… I’ll pop more details up about this v soon! I made the full 10K, however have busted my knee which isn ‘t ideal!
So my first week over and I’ve weighed myself and I’m now 69.6, so all in the right direction, however I’m hoping to see more of a difference when I attend more than 2 classes a week!
Let me know if you’re interested in a free two-week pass to dangerously Fit.
Ok so I’m aware that I’m in a privileged position in terms of being able to sample products, venues, films and fashion etc without having the layout any pennies! So I recently came to the conclusion that I have ZERO excuse to not get fit and healthy – especially when I have the lovely guys at Weight Watchers helping my every step with my online tracker! I was recently approached by Dangerously Fit’s lovely PR to see if I’d be interested in taking part in the 6 Week Body Transformation Challenge, I saw this as a sign, a little nudge from whoever it is upstairs telling me to get my every increasing arse into gear!
I’ve bit the bullet, the horse has bolted and I’m prepared to shake off the shivers and those extra kgs this Winter and jump in head first.
Kicking off tomorrow, April 21, 2012 I’ll be joining fitness fans from the shores of Balmoral Beach to Mortdale and Centennial Park to work to lose weight and get fit in six short weeks.
Designed by founder and head trainer, Dan Clay says that the secret resides in each 45 minute session offering a high intensity anaerobic workout designed to annihilate fat, build muscle and increase heart fitness – simultaneously. (hmmm I hope so)
Dan said: “You’ll get an initial health assessment, body measurements, diet and nutrition plans and all the tools you need to get in shape and lose weight in six weeks and keep the weight off after that. You’ll also gain access to a workout program you can do on the days you can’t make your fitness classes.” (Totally dreading this by the way, I’m v concerned that I’m limping/ sprinting over the 70 KG mark, which I haven’t been since I was travelling and living off a diet of noodles and goon (classy I know!)!!)
I’m also advised that if the kilos dropping off and the strength building up isn’t enough motivation (it is believe me!), there’s also an awesome prize pack up for grabs for the person who loses the greatest amount of body fat measured next to their body mass percentage.
The prize includes a Dangerously Fit Boot Camp: 1 Year Membership valued at $2364, a Dangerously Fit Equip fitness pack which includes a kettlebell, boxing gloves, quick wraps & speed rope. The winner also gets a complimentary styling makeover by The Style Consultants as well as a makeup session with Peita Gregory Makeup. The prize pack also includes massages and Dangerously Fit paraphernalia, worth a total value of $3,029. Impressive huh?
All of us will have access to the 80 fitness classes across 15 locations, six days per week for the challenge so there’s no longer any excuse to hide on the couch (god help me!). We can evenchoose from camps on beautiful beaches of Bondi, Coogee, Maroubra and popular spots, Centennial Park, Queens Park and Rushcutters Bay. I’ve opted for Rushvutters!
However there’s also the CBD, which is dominated by the camp, locations including The Domain, Hyde Park and Observatory Hill.
St George and the Southerland Shire locations include Brighton, Kogarah, Mortdale and Cronulla Beach.
The Inner West and North Side are not forgotten with a camp in Balmain and Balmoral Beach respectively. Soon to introduce North Sydney to the list, no one misses out.
Now as I’ve decided to take the bull by the horns, I’m going to be 100% transparent with you all, my loyal readers… I’ve got my health check up tomorrow and weigh in (booooo) I’m going to post my stats on here and a before pic (scream).
I’ll the take you on the journey with me, talking about the classes I do, I’m particularly looking forward to boxing and yoga! I’ll be honest when I’m feeling crap and want to grab for the take away hotline. I’ll also let you know when (hopefully) I get in my stride and it becomes a part of my day, not a chore!
So I’m asking you to cheer me on, pick me up when I’m down and who knows, I could be 10 KGs lighter in six weeks (yeah right). I must stress I’m not doing this to specifically lose weight, I need to get fit and healthy and I’m certain sheading a few KGs will be part and parcel of that!
For more information head to http://www.6weekbody.com.au/
Wish me luck!!