How to Have a Healthyish Christmas

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Is it just me, or does life right now feel like one big party?! Last weekend we went to two Christmas get togethers, and next weekend we'll be hitting another two. Then there are work festive parties, family gatherings and impromptu trips to the pub (and Fortnum's champagne bar!) - this time of year is a marathon, not a sprint! So how do you get a little balance at a time when excess is very much the norm? Last week I caught up with the dynamic duo that is Wellness Ed and Wellness Ted at Lululemon Regent Street to hear their thoughts on having a healthy-ish Christmas - because if anyone knows balance it's these two. 

Fitness

Exercise at Christmas is all about listening to your body and feeling good - if you're mega hungover a HITT workout probably isn't the best idea, just think about all the things that could go wrong when you shake up a dodgy stomach! Instead switch it up and go for some nice low intensity, steady state movement instead (aka mindless podcast pace). In fact, if you're drowning in a hangover it's probably best just to stay home and rest up, alcohol slows down muscle growth and recovery, so you could end up doing yourself more harm than good. 

No time to train? Work more movement in to every day life - get off the tube early and walk to work, take the stairs, dance your ass off at the work Christmas party - every little helps. Oh and you could always run home from your night out...

Drinking

We've all done it, gone on a night out promising ourselves we'd alternate drinks being sure to glug down a pint of water between every shot and it never ever happens. The solution? Don't try. Well ok, drink in moderation, but try vodka lime and soda (alcohol and hydration in one!), skip the shots and sugary cocktails (all of the empty calories), and get expensive taste in wine (if you order a nice drink you'll make it last longer, maybe). 

Ok, so it's not really about drinking, but socialising is good for your mental health, and you will definitely regret the nights you stay in nursing a green juice rather than heading out to hangout with your crew. It's also worth remembering drinking is optional, there are some fab soft options (Fentiman's Rose Lemonade is amazing) if you feel like having a night off. 

Have a hangover? Coffee and asprine are your friends, and Ted advocates staying in bed as long as possible, willing it to end. And an egg McMuffin if you get up early enough (a double cheese burger if you don't).

Eating

Oh Christmas, the season of eating all of the food! Bottom line, if over indulgence makes you feel bad, then don't do it, but if you want to fill your boots then why not! After all, Christmas is all about Christmas dinner. Plus if you put on a bit of weight then you've got a year of Transformation Tuesday pictures ready to go (kidding!!). 

If you are after some balance (particularly when you feel a little delicate) there are a few things you can do. Try your best to listen to your body and give it a fighting chance by prepping food in advance when you know the day is going to be a struggle (stash breakfast and lunch in the work fridge - not only will you have something good to eat, you also won't have to go far to get it! Be sure to lick it before you shove it in there). Really fancy a takeaway, but already had a few treats, try a fake-away for the junk food hit without the junk food - the Food Medic's fish and parsnip chips were raved about, Joe Wick's apparently does an excellent breaded chicken and home made pizza for the win! 

Bottom line, wellness is not just about green juice and veggies, it's about doing what makes you feel good. Christmas is a a special time, it's a celebration and an event, the get togethers around Christmas are what make us feel good and it would be a shame to miss out just because mince pies aren't exactly nutritionally dense, they will make you super happy! 

What are your tips for having a healthy-ish Christmas? 

HiLo Lunches

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Winter training is ON, and I figure if I'm going to work my body hard in the cold I should be feeding it with nourishing food. However, I don't really cook (I can, it's just not my thing) and grab and go lunches are pretty standard when I'm running from one place to another. Together those are things that don't always add up to nourishing choices! Luckily a few weeks ago I was at yoga class and Tiffany popped by with pots and pots of salad from HiLo. It was pretty tasty stuff - layers and layers of veggies, some meat but not too much and allllll of the flavour. It felt like my body had been hit by a grenade of goodness and I knew it was food like this that my body needs for me to perform at my best. You can only imagine how excited I was when Tiffany turned up at my office a few days later with a bag full of nourishing lunches to keep me going (much to the enormous envy of my colleagues) and it was beyond a treat to have a stack of delicious, quick pots to grab every day.

Look at those hearty layers of green! The Sassy Satay Chicken on the left is my absolute favourite! There's something about the peanut sauce with the rice with the chicken, with the beans, and possibly the fact I ate it after a freezing evening of training, but this is the ONE. Luckily I don't have to choose one, because The HULK (that's the bad boy on the right) is also pretty amazing! You know how sometimes when you microwave pasta it goes a bit 'claggy'? Well that doesn't happen. It stays just the right density, and is covered in delicious, flavourful pesto that maybe makes me want to lick the bowl (really not the way to impress your colleagues...luckily I hid in the corner while I did it). Oh oh and then there's the Jerk Chicken!! Show me someone who does love the flavour of jerk chicken combined with fresh veggies and I show you a lier. It's something else! Now I'm hungry again. Just as well I've got a BEET IT salad pot in the fridge really. 

HiLo pots are £5 and stay fresh for 3-4 days, which means you can keep a stash in your office fridge (obviously with a post-it note declaring you've licked them) ready to grab when you get peckish. I think this is the trick to healthy eating, having stuff ready to go when you need it, and even though the pots are more expensive than left overs, if you find yourself nipping to Pret on the regular you'll probably spend the same and probably do a bit of impulse eating too (I see you coconut bars). 

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There's so much more I could say about HiLo - how fresh the ingredients are, that the pots have up to your 5 a day in a single portion, that they're made in London using British produce, that they're sustainable as well as delicious - but maybe you should check them out for yourself?

What do you eat when you feel like you need to nourish your body?

**Big love to the team at HiLo for feeding me, of course all opinions are my own!

 

 

 

Getbuzzing - eating well while rushed off your feet

In case you missed it, stuff around here has been a bit busy lately. It's why blog posts have been sporadic at best. Time is not on my side. 

When there aren't enough hours in the day I tend to find the first thing to go is paying attention to what I eat, or more specifically the snacks that I eat. Suddenly I'm relying of grabbing a snack while running between appointments, and those snacks are not always the healthiest option. In fact they're not always the most satisfying option either. Is it just me, or does a random chocolate biscuit always leave you wanting more? And then when you're stressed you go grabbing another (and another, and another) until you feel a bit sick and dizzy with all the sugar. Just me? You don't have to fess up, but it's the worst, and you know it's happened to you. I mean I could definitely feel the spiral starting a couple of weeks back. Not good.

Thankfully the lovely people at Getbuzzing stepped in just before I could lose all control and sent me a little care package of their wonderful flapjacks. 


100% natural, Getbuzzing flapjacks are a genuinely healthy snack that also promise to taste good. All of Getbuzzing flapjacks are nut free, but I especially like that the cherry flavour bar is also packed with protein. I'm a person who is hungry nearly all the time and a good protein hit means that I stay fuller for longer. Which is a good thing. 

I'm always a little sceptical when a health food claims to taste good (don't lie, you know you've eaten the equivalent to cardboard just because it's healthy, and it's no fun!), but I am pleased to say that Getbuzzing lived up to it's promises. While the bars were flakier than I expected (watch it doesn't fall apart as you eat) they tasted great, not too sweet, not at all like sawdust. I mean I was definitely happy to eat more than one of them! Plus they go surprisingly well with Prosecco...life is, after all, all about balance! 

A winner if you ask me. Now where's the bar I stashed at the bottom of my handbag?

*Getbuzzing kindly sent me some snacks because they know I get peckish at about 3pm and don't always make good food choices, however, as always, all opinions are my own...I just happen to feature the stuff I like best*