How to stay motivated

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As the mornings get colder and stay darker for longer the temptation to just stay curled up in bed can be all too much sometimes. Everyone loves to train in summer when it’s lighter and warmer but motivation tends to dip towards to winter months. I’m forever being asked how I stay so motivated so I’ve come up with a few tips to help you stay motivated.

• Set your self SMART goals- Specific, Measurable, Agreeable, Realistic, Time (timeframe to achieve your goal)

• Set one big goal- this will be the bigger picture to always keep in mind

• Set smaller achievable goals along the way. Eg if your main goal is to lose 10kg or fit into your old favourite jeans but you only go to the gym once a week, a smaller achievable goal might be to up your gym attendance to 2-3 times per week to start with. Or say you want to be able to do 3 unassisted pull ups in 12 weeks, you might set yourself a target of being able to do one in six weeks.

• Surround yourself with people who lift you up and motivate you, perhaps these people do it without even realising.

• Give yourself a reward for when you achieve your goal. Preferably not food based…. Nice one you’ve lost 12kg here’s a dominoes and a tub of Ben and Jerry’s well done…. No! Perhaps it’s some new gym kit or a spa break or a new dress or activity tracker. I don’t know, something that’s going to make you work that little bit harder.

• Train in a way that you ENJOY! If Boxfit isn’t for you then don’t force yourself to go because you aren’t going to enjoy it and are less likely to be consistent in going and give it your all. If you LOVE the sweat and burn of the Stairmaster then do that!

• Be prepared- prep your food and your gym kit the night before. This way when you wake up you can just grab your things and go. Especially with your food, if you’re prepared you’re more likely to stay on track

• If you listen to music while you train, create a playlist that really gets you fired up and motivated

Most of all make sure you are doing it for YOU!

These are just a few of my tips to help keep you motivated through your training. If you feel a dip in motivation have a look and see what’s changed around you. It could be the weather, it could be a change in your work hours so you’re having to find new times to train but so long as you’re doing it for you and you truly WANT to be training and ENJOY your training, you can make it work.

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You’ve got this, I believe in you!

Love Char xxx

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Dr Zak’s Vegan Peanut Butter Cups

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Before I started following a plant based diet I was partial to a Reese’s in any form- Cups, Pieces, Nutrageous bars. What I’m trying to say I guess is that I have a long standing love affair with Chocolate and Peanut Butter. In my opinion they’re a match made in heaven so when Dr Zak’s sent me some of their powdered peanut butters I knew exactly what I was making.

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I chose to use powdered peanut butter because it’s lower in fat than your run of the mill jar of nut butter. It’s also really convent as you just mix it with water and ta-dah peanut butter. Have a look at the comparison below mine is the chocolate powdered peanut butter so it is higher in carbs but just look at the difference in fats per 100g.

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If you’re following a low carb, high fats diet then this probably wouldn’t be substitution for you, just stick to your fave nut butter but for the rest of us the substitution is great. They’re super yummy so here’s the recipe:

Serving size- 1 cup

Ingredients:

2 heaped tablespoons Dr Zaks Chocolate Powdered Peanut Butter
Dash of water
1 bar Sainsburys Basics Dark Chocolate (easy peasy and cheap!)
You will also need 4 cupcake cases

Method

1. Melt your dark chocolate
2. Make up your peanut butter to a thick consistency
3. Spoon some dark chocolate into each cupcake case and draw the chocolate up the sides also
4. Spoon in your Peanut butter on top of the chocolate dividing the mixture equally
5. Using the rest of the chocolate, spoon into each case so that all nut butter is covered
6. Place either in the fridge over night or in the freezer for a couple of hours to set

Voila! Easy peasy, lower in fat and far cheaper than shop bought peanut butter cups!

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In comparison to a Giant Reese’s Peanut Butter cup

Macros: (each)

Mine:

Kcal- 153
Carbs- 13.4g
Fat- 8.5g
Protein- 4g

Reese’s:

Kcal- 190
Carbs- 22g
Fat- 11g
Protein- 4g

Enjoy!

Love Char xxx

Farfetch X Barrecore Event 

A couple of weeks ago Farfetch invited myself and a selection of other blogger down for a Barre and Breakfast event. We were celebrating the launch of new activewear lines to their site. It was instantly a yes from me. Activewear, Barrecore and breakfast yes please!

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We headed to Mayfair to start our morning with a class at Barrecore. At this point I was 11weeks into my prep- so 2 weeks out from my competition. I walked in feeling pretty confident that as a dancer and in comparison to my other weights sessions, the class would be a breeze. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The class brought about a new stimulus for my muscles and a lot of isolation work for legs and glutes. Having trained legs the day before it is safe to say I found it rather difficult and experienced that really great burning sensation through most of the exercises. I would definitely recommend Barrecore to anyone, whether you’re a serial class pass user or just fancy trying something different, you’re in for a great workout!

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After Barrecore we made our way to NAC for a beautiful breakfast! Luckily for me it was a high carb day and due to being on prep I had to pick something from the menu that was close to what I would usually have in my plan. I opted for an apple Bircher topped with poached quince and a cinnamon and star anise drizzle. It was BEAUTIFUL! Definitely something I’m interested in trying to make myself for sure, I washed it down with a strong black Americano- of course!

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It was so lovely around the table talking blogging, fashion, photography and lifestyles with all of the other amazing girls and the Farfetch team. A very inspiring morning full of new experiences and celebrations. I can’t wait to give my new Varley crop top and Nike trainers a test drive.

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If you’ve never tried Barrecore before and it interests you head over to their site here and get yourself booked in! Also make your way over to the Farfetch website and get filling your basket with all of the gorgeous activewear they have up now!

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Thank you Farfetch for an amazing morning! If only every Wednesday started like this!

Love Char x

Images in this post are a combination of images taken by myself and by the official event photographer- not to be used without permission

Pure Ride

  

On Friday I headed down to Pure Ride to see what the buzz was about. Pure Ride has been developed to be more that just your regular spin class with an emphasis on training more like track cycling. They have two studios; One focusing on a choreographed class to Dance music including added weights and the other delivering a high intensity performance class developed by none other than Sir Chris Hoy himself.  They provide you with all you need for a great class (apart from your clothes…please bring those!)

THE ULTIMATE CONNECTION

To get the most from our rides you should have a connection with your bike. That’s why we’ll provide you with complimentary cleated shoes – dont worry if you havent ridden this way before – we’ll help you quickly get used to it

THE FLUFFY STUFF

The last thing you want is to bring a big bag along for the ride, so we’ll provide you with all the essentials: soft towels, toiletries and everything you need to leave with a healthy glow.

(www.PureRide.co.uk)

So now that you have everything, you’re all set to go!

My Experience

I headed down to class with Charlene the Assistant Manager of my gym who also hadn’t visited Pure Ride before. Charlene had a little trouble registering on the website in order to book onto class so perhaps in their first week of opening there are a couple of glitches on the system but if you have any troubles, give them a call or drop them an email and member services will help you out.

Like any other studio/class like this you have to register online, buy credits and then book onto your class to get a spot. This wasn’t out of the ordinary for me as I’m used to this kind of system so that was easy enough. They then email you a QR code to scan when you arrive.

Charlene and I decided to meet at Moorgate station at 12.15, the website said it was two minutes away- perfect. We got lost! Google maps was being no use whatsoever because there’s in quite a bit of construction happening around the area, so then we had to wing it… Other people must have had these problems because we then saw an arrow for Pure Ride attached to a pole outside the station once we’d doubled back on ourselves. Perfect let’s follow those… Again, easier said than done, we were lost again. After lots of running around in the pouring rain, we finally made it to the studio. So my best advice is give yourself ample time to find the place because we just got flustered when we were running out of time.

  

 

When you arrive there are scanners in the foyer to scan your QR code you’ve been emailed, to mark you as arrived for the class. Then you head down a set of stairs to the reception desk where you’ll be provided with your cleated shoes and towel. We were in a super dooper mega rush so the lovely managers who Charlene knew took our bags and looked after them so we didn’t have to faff with lockers and the changing rooms. We just popped on our shoes and ran in. I have never worn these shoes before and found walking in them quite strange, the sort of feeling you get trying to walk on a normal floor in ice skates. I will just say, don’t hurry too much in them as you’re heading for the studio, I managed to slip over trying to turn a corner (bambi on ice!).

I can honestly say I had no idea whatsoever when it came to trying to attach myself to the bike so, if like me, you’ve never cycled like this before no problem! A lovely lady from the studio came over and helped me set myself up. You have a digital display in front of you that you set up with your age, sex, weight and amount of cardio you do a week on average. This gives you a personalised experience when it comes to calories burned etc throughout the class. The display throughout the class tells you the resistance you are cycling with, the watts you are cycling at, your reps per min, FTW %, Calories burned, distance in KM and KM per hour. Quite a lot of info right?! For me that was a good thing and in 45 mins I burned over 300 calories not bad at all. The display also flashes a series of different colours.Red, Yellow, Green, Blue and White all to do with the levels that you’re working at. At the end you can toggle your display to tell you how long you spent in each of those zones. The class itself was made up of high intensity intervals and I personally respond best to that kind of training when it comes to cardio. It took me a while to get into the terminology and how the class was led but once I got into the swing of it I loved it. The Instructor we had taking the class was Josh, the manager and he was clearly passionate about it so we got the best experience we could.

What added to the class (apart from the snazzy bikes, shoes and instructor) was the ambience and feel of the room/atmosphere. The house lights were down and we had various colourful sort of disco lights from the sides on the room, with a few spots on the ceiling and a spotlight on Josh. The music was great and loud so this all helped get you lost in the class completely. 

  

After class, we were given a tour about the venue. The changing facilities are superb, a lovely changing room with toiletries and everything so that you don’t need to carry loads of stuff with you all day if you want to do class. There was also a lovely stretching/chill out area downstairs too which for me would be great to head to after class to cool down and stretch fully before heading back outside especially when winter feels like it has properly hit us in London now.

All in all we had a great time and I would really recommend heading down and trying it out. Whether you’re a spin veteran or a complete newbie, these classes cater to everyone who wants to work hard and have a great time too! For a limited time you can grab yourself a free class using code SPINJAN on their website when buying credits- So now you really have no excuse! I’ll definitely be going back again to try their other class too, the choreographed class to dance music- sounds great!

Char x

Here are some more images of the venue, come and take a tour through my eyes:

  

   

    
    
 

But how can you train that much… You’re Vegan?!

* Face-Palm *

Hello it’s 2015!
Whenever I get into conversations about going to the gym or training the first thing that crops up is ‘but you’re vegan, you need protein!’

Little do people know that protein doesn’t not have to be obtained by animal and or/animal products. Did you know that per 100 calories, broccoli has almost double the amount of protein in it as Beef?!! Now I’m not saying that we should all go out and JUST eat SO MUCH broccoli because you need a variety of foods that contain different amino acids to get what your body needs. However if you’re a massive fan like me, you’ll have lots of broccoli in your diet already.

When I was at university I used to me massive on protein shakes and ergogenic aids but since becoming vegan and being more in tune with my body, I don’t tend to use them unless I really need to. I have both soya and hemp protein powders at home but don’t use them unless I find that for how much training I’ve done, I haven’t taken in enough protein…..( Unless it’s a Pulsin brownie heated and turned into pudding )


The way I train is so varied, from Yoga to Weights, from bootcamps to stability work. I get some odd looks in the gym, especially when I’m training my scorpion on a bosu ball. I train at Puregym in Finsbury Park. It’s a great place, super friendly staff, great classes and lots of space to do what I want to…. Like the bosu ball scorpions… This tests my stability and control to get in and out of the position on an unstable surface so that when I take it to the floor again, I should be stronger. Have a look:


I don’t necessarily always have an event I’m working towards or a BIG goal to achieve. That’s not what it’s about for me. I’m passionate about having a body I’m proud of and comfortable in all year round (not just summer!). Also, because some of my training is flexibility based etc, I like to celebrate the small victories, like balancing on a forearm and an elbow with both feet by my head (I know, sounds odd….. I do get looks! Haha)


In each workout I do at the gym, I incorporate a bit of yoga afterwards. This helps keep my mind and body in check, my little bit of self indulgence and quiet after a killer workout. It really helps me, I’ve said before about how I never understood yoga before but now I’m practicing almost daily and couldn’t do without it! It won’t be for everyone but I think everyone should try it once, you might surprise yourself!


 Do it for yourself! Not anyone else.  Sure, other people may comment if they notice some changes in how you look or how your carry yourself but remember you’re not doing it for them, you’re doing it for you!


Peace out! ✌🏻️