There are a couple of things in life that are hugely important to me – keeping my body operating in tip top condition to support my extremely active lifestyle, and trying to put things that are as natural as possible into my body. So when I was offered the chance to try herbal joint supplement Flexiqule I was curious to give it a go and see if it really did help support my joint mobility and flexibility – something that is pretty much key in my line of work as a trainer and instructor.
Love it or hate it, you can’t deny that one of the biggest fitness and health buzzwords of the past few years has to be “clean” – be it clean eating, clean beauty – the idea of treating our bodies, inside and out, like a temple and cutting down on processed foods, toxic chemicals, fake ingredients, manufactured substances has never been so popular. So many of us place so much focus on training our body to be as healthy as it can be, and nourishing it with the purest foods possible, forgetting that actually something that enters our body in huge amounts every single day is the air we breathe. And for those of who you, like me, live in London, the air we breathe is most definitely not clean and yet we fill our lungs with it daily. But short of moving to the seaside to breathe fresh, pure air, what can we actually do to improve the quality of the air around us? Thankfully much like we can actively clean up our diets, we can now also actively purify the air in our homes thanks to the awesome Dyson Pure Cool Air Purifier.
“Boobs to Bar!” – definitely my phrase of the morning last Thursday and not something I was expecting to hear in a sweaty spin class – but perfect none the less! Last week I was invited by lingerie website Figleaves to try out a sports bra from their impressive online range in a spin class at the brand new Another Space studio in Bank. When super sassy instructor Olivia shouted at us to get our “Boobs to Bar” as we were dipping we may have laughed but it couldn’t have been more apt (and we definitely feel there’s an online campaign for Figleaves in there somewhere…!!)
I chose to try out the Freya Freestyle Soft Crop Sports Bra, but how did it stand up to this super intense workout?
Firstly – please let me wish you a very HAPPY NEW YEAR – and here’s hoping 2018 brings you health and happiness. I hope this brand new year has started well for you so far – mine is starting in a very different way this time as I’m waking up on New Years Day as a vegan. I’ve taken the Veganuary pledge, and for the next 31 days I will be eating an entirely plant-based diet. I haven’t eaten meat for over 10 years (for ethical reasons), but I have been eating fish, eggs and dairy, and so spending the next 5 weeks consuming no animal-based products whatsoever is most definitely going to be a challenge, but one that as an animal lover I am more than willing to take. But why take on something so huge in one of the most difficult months of the year? Read on to find out.
Fun fact about me that most people don’t realise – I’m actually from the countryside. The constant takeaway coffee in hand, innate knowledge of most bus routes in West London and shellac manicure every fortnight without fail may have you fooled, but I grew up and spent the first 18 years of my life deep in the Cornish countryside. So when brand new healthy snack range Off The Eaten Path invited me on a guided walk in Sussex with qualified walk leaders Two Blondes Walking I couldn’t lace up my trainers and pack my rucksack fast enough! However it has been a while since I’ve been properly out in the countryside, so I was extremely grateful for all the useful information and tips the ladies shared with me – which in turn I am delighted to be sharing with you.
I think it would be fair to say that people who know me well would describe me as both motivated and fearless – I’m not one to back down from a challenge, nor am I someone who gives up very easily. But on 30th April I faced one of the biggest mental and physical challenges I have ever encountered – Abseil for the Animals. I took part in the UK’s highest freefall abseil from the ArcelorMittal Orbit in Olympic Park – and thankfully my terror at the top was not in vain as my personal challenge was all in aid of The Mayhew Animal Home, and whilst I knew this would be something outside of my comfort zone, I had no idea just how much inner strength I’d have to summon to get me though.
If you’re a regular Wildcat Fitness Blog reader or social media follower you’ll know I don’t shy away from a physical challenge. Over the past few years I’ve gone from not being able to support my own body weight to push ups and heavy deadlifts, and from barely being able to run for the bus to hill sprints and tuck jumps. So this year I thought it was time for a new way to push myself, which is why I am taking on the not only physically but hugely mental challenge of Abseil for the Animals – the UK’s highest freefall abseil in aid of an amazing charity – The Mayhew Animal Home. Why a mental challenge? Because I’m not great with heights and even the thought of being at the top of that 300ft sculpture (the ArcelorMittal Orbit in Olympic Park) and looking down, knowing I have to jump off makes my palms sweat just sitting here, so goodness knows how I’ll do it on the day – but – one thing is for sure – I will do it – because I am determined to raise as much money as possible for these incredible animals and this incredible cause, and here’s why.
Not a single week seems to go by these days without me getting at least a couple of emails or Direct Messages from people who are thinking about studying to become, or who are in the process of qualifying as a Personal Trainer asking my advice about starting in the industry. Firstly, I am flattered that anyone would want to ask my advice and am always happy to offer it, and secondly, it is amazing that so many people are now interested in careers in the fitness industry. I’m well aware I post often about how much I love my job and my clients and how I genuinely feel blessed to live the life I do, but as with any job, not everything in the life of a Personal Trainer is shiny new Nikes and super happy clients. Whilst I believe it is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world, it can also be hugely demanding at times, so in the interest of balance and honesty I wanted to share with you the Secrets of a Personal Trainer that no one else will tell you….
Winter may be dark and cold but it is good for one thing – root vegetables like parsnips, turnips and celeriac being in season. As well as this, these starchy vegetables pack a nutrient punch whilst at the same time satisfying our carb and comfort food cravings on dark Winter nights. This Winter Vegetable Gratin recipe works with pretty much any root vegetable so do feel free to experiment and find your favourite combination. I personally love the taste of celeriac (which is extremely low in calories but contains plenty of vitamin K which can boost bone health) and in this particular version I combined it with parsnips, squash and sweet potato – but carrots, potatoes, swede, fennel and turnip also work really well – if you have a favourite root vegetable now is the time to let it shine! This recipe makes a great side dish – I served it last night alongside steak for my husband and tuna steak for me, but it also works well with white meat. It was also delicious heated up again today for my lunch, so it works really well as a stand alone dish as well as an accompaniment. So how do you make it?
As you will have seen me boldly state on the Wildcat Fitness Personal Training website – fitness IS my number one passion in life. But do you know what comes a close second? Make up and beauty products, as my overflowing bathroom cupboards and bedroom shelves will testify. You might think make up and the gym are not a match made in heaven, and for many people they aren’t, but personally I still like to look good even when I sweat, and I certainly like to appear groomed when I train my clients or go to meetings, so it’s very rare that you’ll see me bare faced. However, I also like to look after my skin and hair and also not feel like I am caked in products and my skin can’t breathe – so over the years I’ve honed down the contents of my make up and toiletry bag and have a handful of products I now swear by. And I’m about to share them with you!
And whilst I love to pretend that this is my routine every day before working out, sadly this is a flash back to a photoshoot with Tom Miles and my amazing make up artist Lauren Ross!