5 WAYS TO KICKSTART A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE IN 2022

5 WAYS TO KICKSTART A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE IN 2022

Invest in yourself: Always make time for you, it may sound a bit cliche but not taking care of yourself won’t give you the ability to be your best self in everyday life. This is easier said then done, as the days can disappear before our eyes so quickly… I mean we are at the end of January already! Try and find ways to show yourself some love and keep your stress levels down, whether it’s getting your hair done, buying that new outfit or a piece of jewelry you’ve had your eye on. Retail therapy can be a good remedy to feel good. Lastly investing in your wellness, for example vitamins is a good way to get through those long winter days. We have a lot of vitamins and minerals in our foods, but if you are suffering with those January blues and needing that extra boost, invest in the vitamins you need to help give you energy.

Make time for sleep: Getting enough sleep is one of the most important health benefits ever! It reduces stress and improves your mood, leaving you refreshed and alert for the day ahead. Without enough sleep the brain cannot function properly. A healthy sleep also helps the body remain healthy. It’s not easy for us all to drift off to sleepy land straight away and to get in the recommended six to nine hours a night, but if you try getting into bed at a decent hour most nights, and making it a point to shut out all the distractions such as phones, you may see a difference. Enjoying a hot bath with your favorite bath salts is a great way to help sooth the muscles, unwind and clear the mind. We love spraying lavender mist on our pillows before sleep which helps get us to sleep quicker. If that’s not for you, you can never go wrong with a good book before bed.

(Photo credit: Susan Wilkinson)

Choosing healthier food options: We’re not fans of diets and tend to eat what we want and also enjoy, all in moderation of course! If you are watching what you eat then the best way to monitor this is by evaluating the time of day you have your meals. We find that when we make time for breakfast, lunch and dinner we snack less during the day. A substantial breakfast is not on the cards for us every day due to busy mornings. When on the go grab that banana or fruit pot so you don’t miss out. Try eating at fixed meal times daily, this will help control your hunger. Just have fun with your meals, we are foodies and like a variety of different cuisines. Experiment more in the kitchen and bring fresh tastes to your dining room table.

(Photo credit: Claudia Soares)

Exercise: Being able to fit the time in to even get to the gym a few times a week is a miracle. So when life gets hectic, being physically active throughout the day helps. You don’t need to hit the gym every day to burn calories, deciding to take the stairs over the lift, taking a half an hour brisk walk at lunchtime. And even try a ten minute quick Yoga and Pilates session first thing in the morning or just before bed at the end of the day. Sticking with this routine will keep your fitness levels on track.

Mind and soul: We all have our own way to de-stress, clearing the mind is also important for overall health. Learning to switch off from your day fully is a mindset, to achieve this, you can meditate, pursue a hobby, listen to music and watch a great tv series. Why not treat yourself to the cinema or theatre. Put yourself first, when you try to do that you will feel happier and be able to tackle whatever life throws at you.

Shelley & Michelle xx

5 WAYS TO TACKLE STRESS AND AXIETY DURING LOCKDOWN

The Coronavirus Pandemic has had an impact on all of our lives one way or another. Making our anxiety and stress levels reach that all time high. Some of us, feeling worried as we are not sure what tomorrow’s news may bring, bored by staring at the same walls day in and day out. You may live alone and feel lonely, which can then turn into frustration as all you want to do is see and hug your loved ones. For most of us, these feelings will pass and we have for you a few easy little steps you can do in the comfort of your home and to help point you in the right direction.

Meditation: Finding time for you is always beneficial and meditation is a way where you can do this. Meditation can be practiced at any time of the day, we’re not saying to spend hours meditating but, ten minutes a day will keep those cobwebs at bay. A good time to practice is first thing in the morning or just before bedtime. Even If you need a few minutes to yourself during the day, doing a short meditation on your lunch break will give you that time out you need. There are great meditation apps for mindfulness such as Calm and Headspace. YouTube is a great way to find short meditation videos too.

(Photo credit: Lesly Juarez)

Stay connected with friends and family: We have all been using Zoom more than ever this past year. Whether that being holding evening quizzes, meetings, celebrating birthdays and baby showers. We all need to feel connected, so keep in touch with friends and family and try reconnecting with old friends. Doing this more times than not should make you feel a little better as you can catch up and have a good laugh, which is so needed.

Physical health: Our physical fitness has a major impact on how we feel, so looking after our bodies the best way we can is important. It’s so easy to fall into unhealthy patterns in lockdown but you have to just have the mindset to keep your physical fitness going. Try to exercise regularly, this can be as easy as an online ten-minute Yoga and Pilates class, a high intensity half hour cardio session, hitting the pavement for a jog, a daily walk or bike ride helps with fitness and also clears your mind. Eating healthily and preparing a well-balanced, nutritious meal always makes you feel great. As well as drinking lots of water.

(Photo credit: Greg Rosenke)

Make time for yourself: This can include anything, think of things that you really enjoy and that relaxes you. Listening and dancing around to your favourite music always helps, as well as releasing those feel good endorphins. Doing this for as long as you want whilst dancing around like no one is watching is the best thing ever! Reading books can make your mind wonder to a different place. A great book is a good feel factor and whilst doing this why not run a hot bath and enjoy your book whilst soaking your body at the same time. Pamper yourself. This can be facials, giving yourself a manicure and pedicure, masks and hair masks. Looking after you is the way forward. Lastly try out that new recipe you have seen. Cooking a great meal or even baking for yourself and for those you live with is a good way to get those culinary skills on point as well as having a full stomach too!

(Photo credit: Sam Loyd)

Organising your space: They say an organised space is an organised mind, the more clutter you can see around you, the more easily you’ll find yourself distracted. Start by getting rid of the things you don’t need. There is a variety of different online ecommerce websites where you can sell clothes, electrical goods and many more. You may fancy a little revamp, why not give a room in your home a whole new makeover. Doing this will make you feel as though you have got something done, whilst feeling great about yourself at the same time.

Shelley & Michelle xx

BERRY SMOOTHIE

Smoothies contain so many health benefits and can be enjoyed anytime of the day. A nutritious healthy smoothie at breakfast gives a good start to your day and energy you need to keep going until lunch time. Not only are smoothies tasty, we have so much fun making them as you can be so creative with it. One day you may fancy a green smoothie, a berry smoothie or even a banana, honey and milk smoothie. As Smoothies are packed with goodness and lots of flavour it also keeps you full which stops food cravings and prevent from snacking.

Smoothies after a workout is the best! Have you noticed you get hungry more after exercise? A smoothie is a healthy alternative to have after a workout. We like to add a scoop of protein powder which helps to build the muscle and repair tissue. This also thickens the smoothie and tastes more like a milkshake.

For breakfast today we made a kale, banana and berry smoothie which took no more than five minutes to make.

For the ingredients you only need a handful of fresh blueberries, raspberries and kale. One banana, half a cup of plant-based vanilla soya milk, a few ice cubes and a dash of water. If you have a sweet tooth you can add a teaspoon of honey.

Blend for around twenty seconds and there you have it – our easy to make berry smoothie.

Berry smoothie health benefits:

Raspberries are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. The fruit is low in calories but high in fibre.

Blueberries is great for a healthy digestion and feeling full. Blueberries contain iron, calcium, zinc and vitamin K.

Bananas give you energy and are a sources of vitamin C. Potassium in bananas is good for the heart and blood pressure.

Kale is one of the most popular vegetables, loaded with powerful antioxidants and is one of the best sources of vitamin K.

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Shelley & Michelle xx

STAYING FIT AND HEALTHY WHILE SELF-ISOLATING

It’s quite challenging having the mindset to stay fit and healthy during these uncertain times. The gyms are closed and like many we have found other ways to stay fit and healthy. Take a look at a few exercises we have put together for you all to enjoy.

Park Run

Walking or running outdoors is a great way to keep fit and clear the mind. Always remember that when running in an open space keep more than two metres away from other people and cut down your run or walk to once a day. Brisk walking, running or jogging releases feel-good endorphins that can reduce depression and anxiety. Outdoor running strengthens muscles, increases leg strength and ankle flexibility. If you need a little push or want to monitor your progress, why not download fitness and running apps.

Online Yoga and fitness classes

There are so many fitness classes online that can keep you occupied during the lockdown. You are spoilt for choice as there is something for everyone to enjoy! Classes range from yoga, full body cardio, abs toning, pilates and dance workouts, if you prefer something more fun you can take part in short ten minute classes to thirty minutes and even hour long sessions depending on what you’re willing to endure that day. Always remember you can improvise for e.g. if you don’t have dumbbells, use two tins of beans or soups.

Skipping Rope

We have mentioned skipping in a previous post because we love it so much! Not only does skipping make you feel like a child again it’s a great way to improve your fitness and you can literally skip anywhere! Your home, the garden or the park. You can burn from 200 to 300 calories skipping rope for up to fifteen minutes. We see why boxers skip so much! Another skipping benefit is that it improves your posture, when skipping rope you generally pull your shoulders back with your back upright. Good posture improves digestion and blood flow to the brain.

Using your body

Find space in your home or garden and do simple exercise routines such as squats and lunges. To make sure you are working both sides of the body for the same amount of time, give each set a time limit. For e.g. thirty seconds of sit ups, rest for fifteen seconds then go straight into burpees for thirty seconds, then of course don’t forget your fifteen second rest. Exercises such as Sit ups are an effective way to target your abdominal muscles by strengthening, tightening and toning your core. A burpees exercise is a total body workout which works your arms, back, chest, core, glutes and legs.

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Shelley & Michelle xx