Cherry and Cinnamon Baked Oats

All Things Fitness, Recipes

Hi I’m Charlotte and I’m an oats addict!

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Sundays are my rest days and my high carb/refeed days so I always take my time over my precious oats. This Sunday I decided to try making baked oats. I’ve seen baked oats all over instagram but have never tried making them before so I thought why not today! I didn’t follow a recipe, I just tried it my own way and my god they were good! Now you can make them too!

 

Ingredients:

  • Cherries- fresh or frozen
  • 50g oats
  • 20g chia seeds
  • 400-500ml Unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 medium courgette grated
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (or more depending on preference)
  • Optional- 1 tablespoon coconut flour

Method:

  1. To be completed the night before:
    1. Mix together the oats, milk, chia seeds, courgette and cinnamon
    2. chill in the fridge overnight
  2. Preheat oven to 180-200 degrees C
  3. Mix in protein powder, baking powder and optional coconut flour to the overnight oats- consistency should be thick
  4. Line your oven safe dish with cherries
  5. Pour oats mixture on top
  6. Press more cherries into the oats
  7. Top with a sprinkle of loose oats to toast on top
  8. Bake for approx 30mins (the longer you bake, the thicker and more ‘cake’ they will be)

 

Oh my goodness, these oats were incredible! Actually incredible! img_8304img_8308img_8327

Let me know how you get on making them!

Love Char xxx

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Why I shouldn’t be your #bodygoals

All Things Fitness

As a health and fitness blogger I try and keep to a rounded selection of content from food, to supplements, to training, to recipes, to my body…. At the moment it has been VERY competition prep based. Why? Well that’s my life right now I am 5 weeks out from my next competition, surrounded by others on prep and if I don’t make it my life and throw everything into it, there’s no real point in doing it. I’m very all or nothing and if I get relaxed about my prep, well it’s self explanatory, the results won’t come!

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So why shouldn’t you want your body to look like mine?

My body is sitting at around 10% body fat and I’m 55kg- that means that of my entire body only about 5.5kg of that is fat. It is recommended that women shouldn’t have a body fat percentage lower than 10% as that is the lowest necessary level for normal body function. But let’s take a moment to remember that I am in prep for a purely aesthetics based competition and to be a serious contender I need those lower levels of body fat. A normal healthy woman shouldn’t really be striving for this level of body fat.

It can happen at different levels of body fat for different girls BUT I have now stopped having my period. This is just one example of how my body is dealing with what is being thrown at it. At first when it happened for a couple of months I started taking pregnancy tests because of the paranoid person that I am even though I knew it was impossible for that to be the answer, given where my romantic status is right now… (You catch my drift- oh hey immaculate conception…)

After this competition I am looking to take a year until I compete again for a couple of reasons:

• my body needs a break and to work its way back to a healthy state of internal homeostasis

• I want to build more muscle and if I’m constantly cutting and in a calorie deficit then that cannot happen

So while I LOVE competing and competition prep, if I want to keep doing it for quite some time I need to be sensible and strategic about it.

I post progress pictures and flexed six pack pictures because I’m proud of myself. I am proud of what I am achieving, the progress I’m making and how I’m getting on in my competition prep. Whilst I am super proud of myself this doesn’t mean you should want my abs, or my new found back muscles and pecs.

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So if I don’t want to inspire you with my body, how do I want to be inspiring you?

I would love you to be inspired by my positive outlook on life, my attitude towards goal setting and smashing those goals, my ideals of uplifting people and supporting each other even if they are your competition and if I can have this attitude in life, you can too!

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After my competition I will be progressively gaining some more body fat to a healthy and maintainable level and maybe once I’m there, my body could inspire you to get that butt in the gym. But for now I shouldn’t be your body inspiration.

If I can inspire you to make healthy changes and life choices, encourage some more body confidence and self love then I will be one happy bunny.

Please just remember I am prepping for a bodybuilding bikini competition that is purely aesthetics based and only maintainable for a short period of time.

Big love Char xxx

Re-mapping my mind

All Things Fitness

If you follow me on my other channels you’ll have all seen my ‘before’ pictures. Underweight with no real muscle mass. Believe it or not but at the time I thought I was a vision of health and fitness. I had a flat stomach sure but no real definition, I had twig like arms and my legs were pretty normal but not built- even though I thought they were… And as for my bum…. What bum?!

Without delving too much and boring you, I had some troubles in my teenage years with eating disorders and put my parents, my sister and my friends through hell. At the time you’re so entrenched in it that you think the world is against you and anything they’re doing is to hurt you not help you. I honestly couldn’t thank my parents, sister and friends for intervening and pulling me out the other side. I was HARD WORK, I know that now and owe them my life!

I went to uni and I was alright I sat at a healthy weight and had the time of my life! Luckily enough for a long time I stayed like that until I had some stomach issues in 2014 that just made weight fall off of me. I was having all sorts of tests so see what the problems were but nothing came of it and luckily things sorted themselves out.


Not too long after this I was all set to move to London and as much as she never said it to me, I know Mum was super worried about me moving away and looking after myself. At this point I was back to a size 6 and while I hadn’t made a conscious effort to lose all the weight I had lost, I certainly didn’t want to put it on so I just maintained that body composition for some time.

It was around this time last year when I was working at summer camp that it all clicked. I was surrounded by sportsmen and women, people who trained lots and were at the top of their game and/or had already smashed a sporting career. It was at this point that I became very aware that what I was promoting as fit and healthy, was not in fact fit or healthy. So on my return to London in September I made it my mission to build lean muscle. Unbeknown to me would I two months later be heavy weight training to compete as a bikini model!


Now? Now I couldn’t love my body more. I don’t train because I hate my body. I train because I love it and love watching it grow. The more I train and grow, the more I learn about myself too! Those that knew me at 15years old would not recognise the person I am today.

It took until I was 24 for it all to fall in to place well inside this mind of mine but I am so happy it has. I am happier than ever and I look back at photos now and can’t believe I didn’t know anything was wrong; or rather, wouldn’t admit it.

I remember posting this picture in 2014 because I’d bought my first pair of white skinny jeans. I thought white jeans were only for ‘skinny’ people. Boy was I wrong, I put them back on today (thank goodness for stretchy jeans) and they look SO much better with some muscle inside them! There is so much I would go back and tell 14 year old Charlotte but I can’t do that so its time to keep moving forward on this healthy, happy and slightly muscly path haha

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Now Summer 2016



So one final time. Thank you mum and dad, thank you Jessica, thank you to the friends at school who helped me and everyone in my wonderfully large support network you are all superstars and I couldn’t thank you more for saving my life.

I recently passed my level 3 Personal Trainer course and will be competing again in October so watch out world I’m coming for you!


Lots of love

Char x

Off Season in Charlotte’s Head

All Things Fitness

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This right here is pretty much the thought process I go through on a minutely basis on my off season. Okay, slightly dramatic… daily for sure:

1: Okay let’s do this, cant stay stage lean

2: YES calorie increase. time for allllllllll of the food

3: Oh no! too much food. I feel sick

4: Well at least my body hates this bad food, time to be good again

5: Ooooh is that food?!

6: Oh hey booty! Look guys check out these booty gains

7: Where’s my tan gone. Must tan tonight so I look like I still have muscles

8: Thank goodness for my macro increase, I’m so strong now!

9: Oh, I dont like this whole softer look thing going on

10: Maybe I’ll do a mini cut….

11: Who am i kidding why would I put myself through that voluntarily, carbs are my best friend

12: Carbs are the devil I look so soft. gross

13. Ooooh is that porridge?!

14: Look at these new muscles this is great!

15: Maybe I should train some abs

16: Abs are you still there somewhere?

17: Guys have you seen my HUGE booty now?!

18: I should probably do a little bit of cardio again…

19: Nope bad idea I HATE cardio!

20: Oh did I mention I have a peachy bigger booty now?

True story. Who else can relate?

Char x

p.s Have you seen these booty gains?

p.p.s No really, have you?!

FOCUS FITNESS UK : 1

All Things Fitness

One down, six to go.

So I’m currently one week into my intensive full time Level 2 and Level 3 Personal Trainer course with Focus Fitness UK. We work Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.


This week has mainly focused around learning the Level 2 Anatomy and Physiology parts of the course. This is the part of the course that worried me before I started. I wasn’t very good at the sciences at school so feared I would also struggle here.

I completed the main parts of my high school education at King Edward VII School in Kings Lynn. I loved both GCSE and A Level PE there and was taught by some really great teachers, I just didn’t do very well when it came to exams. In class I would know what I was talking about but give me an exam paper and I would struggle SO hard! So it was difficult when everyone including your teachers expect you to do so well in your exams and you come out having done quite bad. I did average in my GCSEs and badly in my A levels BUT somehow nailed my degree and found a passion for learning again. Even though I didn’t do well in those exams at school, I’ve managed to retain the knowledge taught by my PE teachers and am now applying it in my course (thanks guys!). It shows that sure, exams papers weren’t my thing but I did and do know the information. GSCEs and A Levels are more about your ability to pass the test rather than knowing the information and being able to apply it.

It’s all about finding your groove and figuring out what works for you. Sure, it may have taken me to the age of 25 to find that, but now that I’m here and on my way, there’ll be no stopping me. That knowledge was there and now I’m able to access it and apply it to what I’m passionate about.


In short, I’ve found my groove, I’m loving my course and can’t wait to get back on Monday. In week two we’ll spend more time planning sessions and being in the gym itself where I can also apply some of what I learned through my bodybuilding training!

Char  x

If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life!

Aerials, Contemporary Dance, Photography, Work

Hello,

Super apologies I realise it’s been a little while since an actual update with what I’m up to here in London. With that in mind I thought I would give you a little insight into a typical day off for me. At the moment I am working in a lovely Pub/Restaurant (to pay the rent) and then try to fit in shoots, rehearsals, meetings in my days off. So here is a fairly typical day off for me (although no two days off are actually the same because i’m off doing weird and wonderful things!) I say day off…..

Here’s what I got up to on my last couple of days off:

For a year or so now, I have been involved with a photography project with Jonathan Meade. The project is called ‘Bodies in Space’ working with how the body can interject and contradict what we would assume is supposed to happen in the space. This was the last shoot of the project here in London due to Jon moving to Canada but the work is being exhibitioned here in London in September so I’m pretty excited for that! Here’s a couple of BTS images. (these aren’t the official images by Jonathan Meade, they will be posted separately)

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I also like to spend time looking after myself, whether that be a full on hardcore work out or just as important, some stretching, yoga and rolling out my muscles. With the weather being so beautiful at the moment I’ve been really lucky to be able to use our balcony decking to workout in the sun. I’ve been incorporating more and more body weight exercises into my regime rather than weights in the gym. I’m a believer that it is more important and more vital to life to be able to manage your own body weight than be able to lift a million KG (official measure) in the gym. I’ve also incorporated some resistance bands into my training to either help me reach my flexibility goals, add resistance to press ups or help me around a shoulder injury … Here are a few images to get the idea:

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Looking after myself is a very important part of my lifestyle so to compliment my active lifestyle I also use protein powders so supplement my diet. At no point will you ever catch me taking meal replacement, this protein is in addition to my vegan diet to ensure I can maintain/build a strong lean physique.

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On Tuesdays I train with Aim to Fly at My Aerial Home in South London. My previous post : In Our Dreams- Aim To Fly explains all that we’ve been up to and working towards. As well as creating a piece in that time, I also spend some time conditioning myself and using the space for my own goals too.

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So there we have it, that’s what i like to get up to and try to do in my time away from the pub.

What’s next?

In June I will be leaving the pub ahead of my fifth summer with Exsportise, coaching dance to international students for seven weeks and then come September, the world is once again my Oyster!

~ C xx

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‘In Our Dreams’- Aim to Fly

Aerials, Work

Hello Hello Hello!

As you may have read previously, for about a year or so now I have been part of Aim to Fly, an inclusive aerial arts company. The cast is made up from the most wonderful group of people and is also a very diverse group with a range of disabilities.

We are currently working on getting our first show together and have launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to get us a six month Research and Development period, allowing us all to meet once a week for a full day. Here is a little more about the piece:

The project we wish to present is our first production ‘In Our Dreams’ This act, consists of a wheelchair user who is inspired by a dancer. When the wheelchair user sleeps, she enters a world full of magic. A world where she can dance and fly, and a world where all her friends who live with various disabilities can also fly. The magic of this production is that every character is based on the artist’s true life. The piece we would like to show you is approx 10 mins long with 2 performers.

Mel Stevens, founder of Aim to Fly, Suffered a Spinal Chord injury in 2003 leaving her unable to walk without aids such as crutches or a wheel chair. Since finding Aerials she has discovered there is so much more she can do with her body and we would like to be able to make this happen for so many more people! Our passion for aerial arts is truly contagious and it is something that we wish to share.

£2500 will fund a six month Research and Development process for three artists to meet once a week to get this project launched!

In order to tour this work in 2016, we need this research and development period to create, build and mature the work.

Please follow this link to check out our campaign and watch our campaign video:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/aimtofly/in-our-dreams-by-aim-to-fly

Please help us be sharing and pledging. Pledging is more than the money, it is allowing us to feel your support to get this amazing project going!

Thank you!

Any contribution will be very much appreciated to make this happen for us.

Piece of String at Atklāt

Contemporary Dance, Piece of String, Work

On Friday 16th January we returned to the University of Northampton (from where we both graduated). Since graduating in 2013 both myself and Frankie have returned to Northampton to either watch or help with performances but still kind of felt like students as we knew the current students and it was a place that had started to feel like home after spending about 50hours a week there for 3years! This time it was a very different visit for us, we were returning as professional dance artists with our own work to show, rather than students or just alumni with nothing to say when people ask if you’re still dancing….

For the first time I no longer felt jealous of the students still on the Dance course spending all their time in a studio that had become a second home to me. I felt proud. I felt proud to be making our own work, devising our own choreography and that the university had invited us back to share it. I didn’t have to make any excuses for being in a job I don’t like or why I’m not doing what they thought I’d be doing because that’s no longer the case. I love what I’m doing now, and I think people were genuinely happy to be seeing graduates from the BA hons Dance course having a good go at carving their own path to a career in the dance industry.

Were we nervous? Of course we were! We both dance differently now to how we did two years ago. We’ve matured as dancers and have each had different experiences before collaborating that we have shared and have made us what/who we are now. So to return to the place where we studied to show our work to the tutors and now third years (who would have been first years when we were there) was rather daunting. But it was that kind of good scary where you’re really proud of what you’re doing and showing but really intrigued by what they will think seeing what you’ve made.

The performance was on Saturday 17th January at Isham Studios on Avenue Campus and the evening consisted of works by ourselves (Piece of String), Lily Jane Thomas, Coegi and Playgrounds Dance Company. The evening was a mixed bill of Dance Theatre and Contemporary Dance. We were able to watch the other works during tech rehearsals and we were performing amongst some really great artists, check them out if you can!

The piece has been reworked since its debut at The London Bridge Live Arts Festival in September 2014 and was received well at The University of Northampton. We were really lucky to have been offered footage of the performance so we will have an excerpt to share with you soon!

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Thank you to Matthew Gough for inviting us to perform at The University of Northampton, to PDC 2015 for hosting the evening and to all of those that came to support us.

What’s next for Piece of String? We’ve got a few things in the woodwork and we’ll soon be holding open company class starting in February so keep your eyes peeled!

What a way to start 2015! Onwards and Upwards!

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Nick Radley Headshots

Contemporary Dance, Extras, Photography, Work

Shortly after moving to London I was chatting to Aidie, someone I met on a shoot in the summer and he dropped into conversation that he was getting a couple businesses going. He then went on to tell me that one of those was Headshots and would I like to have some done….obviously I said yes! I then had a conversation with the photographer (that night!) and we set up a shoot for the next day!

I’m not going to lie, we probably picked THE coldest day of the year so far and to add to that It kept raining that horrible drizzly fine rain where one minute you’re bone dry and half an hour later you’re soaking and have no idea how it even happened.

Right from the off Nick was really friendly and approachable and this set up for a great shoot. We headed out and found a couple of locations to shoot, all were outside. This was great for me (bar the temperature) because my other Headshots had all been taken in a studio. A few locations and concealed changes later and we were wrapped. Throughout, Nick gave great direction. He knew where to ask you to move for the light to hit your face right and asked for a variety of looks…. If there was something that worked he’d ask me to hold it and we’d shoot that for a moment and then move on. Nearing the end of the shoot, I was turning into an icicle and grabbed my scarf/shawl/blanket (the most versatile wonderful thing ever) to try and thaw out a little and get some circulation back and Nick asked to shoot me in it….. Turns out most of the shots I selected are those wrapped in my scarf.

I was really impressed with how my images turned out and there was a really quick turn around from shoot, to selection,to retouched to me receiving them. Really great service. Communication was amazing too right from the off, to making sure I was happy afterwards. I genuinely would recommend Nick to anyone, have a look for yourselves….

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Whether you’re an actor, dancer, MT Performer, any creative professional or ANYONE that requires a professional headshot/ portrait photograph Nick is the person to go to.

If you’re interested, even just to enquire, contact details are below:

Aidie Palmer: Aidie.palmer@gmail.com
Nick Radley: nick5r@hotmail.co.uk

When I share this post on Facebook I’ll also tag them in it if you would rather find them that way.

Like I say, I’m really happy with my images and would happily go back when they need updating!

Finding My Feet…

Aerials, Contemporary Dance, Extras, Photography, Work

Apologies for another long break between posts a lot has been happening and I’m about to fill you in…

Almost a month ago I made ‘the big move’ to ‘the big smoke’ …. I can honestly say it felt like the most natural transition in my life and less of a ‘big move’.

Lucky for me, since moving I have been super busy work-wise doing all sorts of things within the realm of extras work. I have a few Behind The Scenes pictures from my ventures to share with you:

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A couple of weeks into being here and I found myself shooting an advert with Joey Essex for his Party Anthems CD. It’s a compilation three disk set of 65 tracks ready for the party season. It was quite an intimate shoot in that there were only 12 of us there including Joey so screen time for everyone…there were three types of shot we had to get throughout the shoot; house party, office party and club scene.

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Have a look at the ad for yourselves, see if you can spot me. It was a really fun shoot!

We were then invited to the Launch Party of the CD last weekend at Sugarhut by Joey’s Manager, Dave of Neon Management and that was a great night too!

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Enough of me and my new best friend Joey, here’s what else I’ve been up to…

I’ve been doing some extras work for a Kudos show called Humans coming to Channel 4 in 2015. Set in a parallel world in present day where humans can buy ‘synthetic humans’ (robots) to carry out the tasks they no longer want to do. Really great shoot, and who doesn’t love being paid to have their hair cut and coloured….. Here’s an image from shoot day, I was a ‘synth’

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Here’s a couple of pictures from another extras shoot i did, unfortunately I can’t yet disclose what it was for…. But it was very fun!

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I’ve done a few other shoots too like a real life story reconstruction for Sky, playing a teen gang member,friends of a lead character in a Russian film called Londongrad and an advert for a new app coming out.

On top of my extras work I’ve been involved in a couple of photography projects too. The first of which I’ve done a couple of shoots with and that is Jon Meade’s Break. It is a project for his Photography Masters all about how we place the body in space and the contradictions we can make with our body in space. Have a look at the images below © Jonathan Meade. I’ve done three shoots with him now but these are from the latest.

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The other photography shoot I have been a part of was for another university project for Dani Camastra. She put a call out for people with tattoos that had a meaning. A lot of people don’t know I have a tattoo because it’s not in a place where it can be seen unless I choose to show you. It’s on the right side of my rib cage and just a small peace sign. I had it done just after I found out what was wrong with my heart after years of not being believed that there was even anything wrong. Nine years later, two operations later… It’s safe to say I wasn’t making it up. Anyway I’ve started to meander. So she put out this call for people with tattoos that had a meaning so I put myself forward and she was really interested. The shoot was great, a small intimate studio and I felt very comfortable shooting with her. I’m quite excited to see the images she took. Here’s a. BTS shot I snuck on the day. ( mum, don’t worry I haven’t jumped into topless modelling -that would require boobs. I was covered)

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So ultimately that is what I have been up to. Lots of different projects here and there, it keeps me on my toes and makes each day exciting. This is me finding my feet in a new place with new people but trying to do what I love doing. I am also off to my first Aerial Silks class tonight since moving so I am rather excited!