This Page

has moved to a new address:


Sorry for the inconvenience…

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
Green+Aquamarine: May 2015

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Om Yoga Magazine: SUP Yoga

I remember trying my first bit of stand up paddle boarding (SUP), quite a few years ago now, on a sunny canal in Wiltshire. I instantly loved it; more steady and versatile than a surfboard, and have often grabbed at the opportunity to try more, either during a surfing session or on a calm day. Whilst I have yet to experience a formal SUP yoga class, I can never help but hold a few asanas on the water.

In this issue of Om Yoga magazine wellness consultant and yoga instructor Helen Cloots demonstrates ten poses to start you off with some SUP yoga, with Austin Cox talking you through them all.

SUP Yoga

I love how practicing yoga on the unstable surface of a board really changes your perspective -in more ways than one! Firstly, balances that you may normally be comfortable with, such as tree pose, can be really challenging, whereas others, particularly wheel pose and headstand, are still as accessible as before. Plus, you'll get a few whoops from your fellow surfers and swimmers as it looks pretty impressive! Secondly, SUP yoga really changes your perspective of the water. You find yourself floating on the surface, either working on poses or just taking the time to breath. When a pose changes your orientation, the world looks so different. I am sure that I am not alone in loving wheel pose for this. My best memory is of balancing in wheel pose on a gentle swell, watching the horizon slowly rise and fall away. Plus, if you feel like it (or a wobble dictates it!) jumping and falling into the water is so fun and really get the arms going!

On another note, if you have any interest in yoga teacher training, then I would really recommend this issue of Om Magazine! It is chock-full of advice, courses, and there's even an interview with the awesome Anne-Marie Newland, who founded Sun Power yoga, which I practice when staying in Yorkshire. By following the my link below, you can purchase an issue of Om Yoga magazine for £1.99, or start a subscription at a discounted price!

Disclaimer: I am an Affiliated Blogger with Om Yoga Magazine. Each issue I will write a post on an article from the magazine and share it with you. Have a look here to find about the other lovely affiliated bloggers. All photos in this post taken from the Om Yoga magazine. 

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Review: Deliciously Ella

I think many, if not all, of us health bloggers can view Ella Woodward, of Deliciously Ella, as the epitome of blogging success. She has changed her lifestyle to radically improve her own health, and inspired many others to do the same, all whilst keeping a positive, grounded attitude and producing lots of yummy food.

Those of you on Instagram may have noticed me sharing a few images of Deliciously Ella creations that I had made myself. Now, I am the first to admit that I am far too inclined to buy or lust after lots of recipe books, but then barely use any of the recipes, if any. However, Ella's book is just stuffed full of recipe's that I wanted to try, and I found myself often trying two or three a day.

As far as I am aware, most of the recipes in the book can also be found on the blog, but here they are even easier to find, with a few extra tit bits and anecdotes thrown in. What is different is that Ella goes into a lot of detail on how diet has changed her health, which ingredients and cooking methods to use, and recommendations on how to take up Ella's lifestyle yourself.

So far, I have been pretty pleased with everything that I have tried so far, and can't wait to have a crack at the sweet potato brownies. I am particularly taken by the tahini-based dressing used frequently in recipes, even though I am not keen on it on it's own. The dressing typically involves mixing the tahini with lemon, or honey and oil. It makes the best stir fry dressing! I would also recommend trying the lentil bolognese, which is the perfect healthy comfort food.

Although I initially borrowed the Deliciously Ella book, I am really considering purchasing it myself because it was such an enjoyable read. I will say that some of the ingredients are a little on the expensive side -I have plain pitted dates instead of medjool and a friend of mine used marmite and water as part of the dressing ingredients to avoid a more pricy item. However, there is a lot of flexibility around ingredients, and so long as you have some kind of food processor to get you started you will be able to access most of the recipes without too much bother.... I will need to get myself a food processor of my own by the end of summer!

If you are looking to eat cleanly, and naturally then Ella's book really is an excellent, whether as a starting point or to add some new ideas to an existing repertoire.

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Rituals for Living Dreambook

Dreambook Diary Organiser

Today, I am sharing the Rituals for Living Dreambook. Who else here is forever hunting for the perfect diary/planner/organiser? I feel like there are always a few pages of dead space that aren't relevant to your needs, whilst another needs don't even have a section in your organiser. The Rituals for Living Dreambook is a start-up concept for the ultimate planner and diary, perfect for organising multiple projects or aspects of your life, focusing plans, and storing all your ideas. As a student, blogger and fitness girl keeping all aspects organised is top priority for me, and I know that many of you are even busier! Currently, I use a filofax and two notebooks to balance things, which works for me at the moment, but amalgamating the lot would streamline me an awful lot.

Dreambook Diary Organiser

Started by Briana and Peter Borten,The Dreambook is split into multiple sections and is so much more than just a diary. There are five sections; connect, dream, craft, ritualise and plan. Working through these sections allows you to first, identify core values, to realise your potential, expand on realising plans before finally planning out your projects, dreams, and future. Sounds pretty impressive, right?

Dreambook Diary Organiser

The dream book has a few question and answer sections, which requires you to sit down and get your creative juices flowing. I find putting my thoughts to pen and paper incredibly useful for visualising ideas, remembering plans and feeling like things have solidified. Some of the questions are the kind I actively sought out a few years ago, when making subject choices in school and wanting to have something tell me where it was I needed to go, and what choices to make. There's even a good old brainstorming session included.

Dreambook Diary Organiser

What I like about the planner at the back, is that you get to write in your own dates, so there's no wasted paper. If you have a busy week, you can cover more than one of the generously sized dates without affecting the rest of the diary. It can hardly be missed that this book is absolutely gorgeous as well; it is something to be proud of having on your desk or in your work bag.

The Dreambook is still in it's start-up stage and is getting really close to it's goal funding that is needed for the Dreambook to launch. If you're interested in supporting the start up and getting your hands on a copy when the book launches, head over to the Rituals for Living Dreambook start-up campaign to find out more!

Disclaimer: Post in association with the Rituals for Living Dreambook. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Food Fight: Tenderstem vs Traditional Broccoli

With the rise in interest in both healthy and plant-based eating, the popularity of foods dubbed "superfoods" has been rising. One such vegetable is one that will have no doubt frequented many childhood meals; broccoli. The humble cruciferous vegetable boasts many health benefits. Yet, hybrid varieties are touting even greater benefits, with the production of Tenderstem broccoli. Tenderstem is a hybrid of European broccoli and Chinese kale. To see how they match up, I'm comparing the two directly..

Tenderstem vs normal broccoli nutrition, superfood


There has been an advert going around recently claiming that per calorie, broccoli contains more protein than steak. While this appears to be true (a quick search suggested it is around 1.5 times the amount) this would involve eating much more broccoli in weight! However, on a calorie break down of a 100g serving of broccoli, there are 6.9 calories from protein, 3.1 from fat and 24 from carbohydrates. For a veggie, this is pretty good going!

Tenderstem claims to have 0.3g more of protein per 100g, half the amount of carbohydrates and a similar amount of fat. Other than the lower carb content (presumably to do with the water weight contained in the stems) there doesn't seem too much difference between the two.

Tenderstem vs normal broccoli nutrition, superfood


Broccoli is rated an "excellent" source for vitamins K and C, folate and chromium, and a "very good" source of many nutrients including B vitamins, potassium, fibre and phosphorus. It also does well in terms of protein, zinc, calcium and iron.

Tenderstem has almost twice the amount of calcium per 100g, slightly more potassium but less iron. Both kinds will provide you with at least 100% of the RDA of vitamin K and C per 100g.


The florets of the two broccoli types taste similar. However, the stems of plain broccoli are often too woody to eat, whereas the tenderstem's are recommended to eat and are nutty and mild. Texture-wise, I do slightly prefer the tenderstem, but when lightly steamed both are delicious.

Tenderstem vs normal broccoli nutrition, superfood


I get broccoli either from the organic produce section in my health food shop, or Morrions. I'm not quite sure of the organic cost, but at Morrisons, broccoli is a purse-friendly 49p for a generously-sized floret. Tenderstem on the other hand can cost £1.50-2.00 for around 200g. I like to keep an eye out over the reduced section, where I've bought perfectly good tenderstem broccoli for 59p.

Other things to consider is that, as a more premium product, tenderstem is often packaged up in lots of plastic, annoying for someone trying to keep her landfill waste down!


I found it pretty difficult to separate out some additional benefits, but as far as I can tell, both kinds of broccoli hold these benefits:

Anti-inflammetry: cruciferous vegetables contain isothicyanates (ITCs) which are supposed to suppress the chemicals in our body that stimulate inflammatory responses.

Anti-oxidative: the vitamin C and flavonoids contained in broccoli combat oxidative stress

Detoxification: the ITCs that reduce inflammation also facilitate the two "phases" of cell detoxification. So, more broccoli = less nasties hanging around in your cells!

The three health benefits listed above both are supposed to undermine the three factors that may increase cancer risk or encourage timor growth. BUT as I have not studied either nutrition or disease in any kind of real depth, I am not going to make any real claims or promises on this. I would say that eating a natural diet that includes broccoli is likely to reduce your risk of getting certain conditions or illnesses, but is not a cure in itself.

Tenderstem vs normal broccoli nutrition, superfood

The winner

From the summary above, you can see that both varieties have similar properties and benefits. Tenderstem does have a few extra nutritional advantages, but whether this justifies the extra price tag and packaging is likely to be up to personal opinion. I'll be continuing to rely more on traditional broccoli varieties, but keeping an eye out for offers, or treating myself when having a stir fry, where the texture of tenderstem wins out.

To research this, I used Tenderstem's website, WH Foods and SELF Nutrition Data.


Sunday, 10 May 2015

Fit Kit: Alo Yoga Review

Alo Yoga seems to be the go-to yoga brand at the moment, at least as far as Instagram is concerned! I have been seriously coveting this brand since I first started to notice it, but have been holding back from spending on myself. I caved in last week (treat yo'self!) and got on to Yoga Rebel to order a couple of pieces. I was really torn by all the awesome colours to choose from (see the Neon Azalea leggings that I was tempted by in this post). In the end, I chose the Ice/Stormy Heather Goddess leggings and the Trace bra in a similar colour way. Now, I really want to stock up on more colours and designs!

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Trace Bra Review

Firstly, apologies for the photography here. The weather has been awful this last week and the only other place I have to take photographs is my tiny university room. I'll post up some better photos when I can!

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Review

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Review

I find with most fitness brands I am bang-smack between sizes, and so ordering online always holds a certain risk factor. Based on reviews that suggested that Alo Yoga tends to run small, I hopped up a size. For the Trace bra, this was definitely the right choice as it is a low coverage bra! For the leggings, I think I could have gone with either size -the material is really stretchy so would accommodate a certain variability in size. As it is, I'm really happy with the fit.

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Trace Bra Review

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Trace Bra Review

The nylon-spandex fabric is thick, but not restricting at all, or see-through.  The leggings also feature a triangle gusset, making lunges and splits comfortable, and a hidden pocket within the waistband. I love the ribbed lower leg part of the tights that the Goddess leggings are famous for. In theory, you choose between a leg warmer scrunch-effect or having the leggings over your heels, but for a shortie like me, I get the scrunch and the over the heels! It's great for keeping feet warm and sliding into splits.
Alo Yoga  Trace Bra Review

The Trace bra is so pretty -I love the detailing on the back. As I said, it is low coverage, so probably best for girls with smaller-proportioned assets. One advantage with my somewhat disappointing shrinking in that department is that I can just get away with a bra like this! However, Alo Yoga do offer lots of higher coverage options, which I would also like to stock up on. The thin straps of the Trace bra don't restrict movement, nor do they dig in when practicing shoulder stands -something I have had trouble with before. Because I went up a size, the straps are a fraction loose, and there isn't an option to adjust this.

Alo Yoga Goddess Leggings Trace Bra Review

My verdict? I love these! I can see why they are such a popular brand, and I would love to get much more of my yoga kit from them, including their beach-friendly pieces. In the UK, you can buy Alo Yoga from Yoga Rebel and Hip and Healthy, or if you are in the US, head straight to Alo Yoga's website.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Sweaty Betty: BarreASANA

I have previously talked about Sweaty Betty's Get Fit 4 Free campaigns, and I find myself posting about them again, because I really do think they are fantastic. This month's campaign is BarreASANA, a blend of barrecore workout and vinyasa-style yoga flow. Lead by ambassador Emily, with Maria and Chiara demonstrating modifications, the online class is easy to follow, whatever your experience level or ability. I'm fairly new to barre-workouts, having tried just a few online classes since my days of ballet-conditioning at gymnastics. However, I was pleased to find that, whilst challenged, my strength training and yoga practice meant that I was able to follow Chiara's more challenging modifications throughout.

Sweaty Betty, Barre Asana, Get fit 4 free

BarreASANA is described as a fusion fitness, and I love the way that the stretching yoga flow sequence and warriors works with the isometric barre moves. The two exercises both strengthen using body weight, and facilitate flexibility so fit together very well. Although the class flowed together very well, I found that having it organised into sections helpful, particularly as it minimised me having to adjust my laptop as I moved from standing to floor work. There was some nice hip and shoulder opening sections, as well as ab work so I felt like my whole body benefitted from the session.

Sweaty Betty, Barre Asana, Get fit 4 free

I was surprised to find myself working up a sweat, as well as feeling the fabled "barre burn!" Unlike when I do my weight-based workouts, I didn't feel like my muscles were getting shortened after, which was great. Don't get me wrong though; I love weight work too! I do feel inspired to try more barre-style workouts though, to target smaller muscle groups that I haven't necessarily worked before.  Emily, Chiara and Maria also shared their top picks for a Sweaty Betty Barre workout:

Sweaty Betty, Barre Asana, Get fit 4 free, fitness fashion

Sweaty Betty, Barre Asana, Get fit 4 free, fitness fashion

Sweaty Betty, Barre Asana, Get fit 4 free, fitness fashion

I think I will be repeating this workout as an alternative to some of my usual yoga practice over the next month -perfect for a short break from revision in the exam period! If you live near London, Sweaty Betty are running these Barre classes in Selfridges at 6:30-7:30 pm on Mondays until June 1st, so book yourself a place! Not in London? No problem -the BarreASANA class can be found online here.

Have you tried Barre before, or been to any Sweaty Betty events? Comment below, and tell me about your experiences!

Labels: , , , ,

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Healthy on a Budget: Green Dream Smoothie

I am starting a new series today, all about eating, living and being healthy on a budget. Keeping the books and the scales both balanced can be tricky and, as a student, I thought I'd share some recipes and tips that I use to manage this.

Green juices and smoothies are seriously having a moment -see my green protein smoothie recipe here -but can get quite expensive with their plethora of ingredients and supplements. I thought I'd simplify this recipe into an affordable basic to have to hand. You can buy large bags of frozen spinach for a low price to save extra money an ensure that you always have some spinach to hand without it going off. If you do happen to have anything extra in your cupboard such as wheatgrass power or spiriluna, by all means throw in a spoonful.


  • A handful of fresh spinach, or 4-5 cubes of frozen spinach (defrosted)
  • 1 banana
  • 200ml almond milk

Simply blend together, adding sweetener such as honey if desired. And thats it! This smoothie is a lovely fresh pick-me up at any time of the day. The recipe was suggested by yogi rebel Tara Stiles, and it really is the perfect drink to have after an hour or so practicing yoga.

Stay tuned for more Healthy on a Budget posts!

Labels: ,