This Page

has moved to a new address:


Sorry for the inconvenience…

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

Thursday, 31 December 2015

Setting Intentions for 2016

Whilst I have never really been one for New Year's resolutions, I do like setting plans and goals, and it seems sensible to get them all written down so that I can look over them and hold myself accountable. 2015 has been an undeniably busy year for me, and I can only really expect to get busier as I progress with my personal and online development and push myself more. I have included some of the personal aspects to my list that I have written down here today, which I hope you will appreciate. I would also love to hear what your goals are, so please do share them with me in the comment box below!

1. Build up a targeted, effective fitness plan
I am so proud of how far I have come in my fitness journey over the last few months. I have tried new things, such as spinning, boxing and revisited climbing, and committed myself more than ever. Now, I want to properly plan my gym time to really push myself whilst making sure than all aspects of my fitness -flexibility, cardio and resistance training -get addressed.

2. Commit to yoga practice
I am still making my way through my #100DaysofYoga challenge and am loving having a daily practice. However, as life gets in the way, often my practice isn't nearly as long as I would like. Whilst daily 90 minute sessions on the mat aren't realistic for me on top of all the other activities I like to do, I would like to have an extra day or two that I spend that extra bit of time practicing properly. I have surprised myself by being able to hold new asanas, so am looking forward to developing further!

3. Flexibility
Linked to yoga, but I would really like to focus on improving my flexibility significantly. Top of my list are wide-legged splits and being able to do front splits without the floor (so: standing split, three-legged down dog, air splits). I may have to hold off on this one for a couple of weeks as I have overstretched my left hip and it is feeling a little sore!

4. Nutrition: keeping clean and eating more plant-based
One of my favourite things about living by myself is that I have complete control over my meals. I have really been enjoying eating more and more plant based foods and so want to challenge myself more in my cooking. Whilst I won't be counting calories or macros, I will be playing closer attention to what (and how much!) is going on my plate to really optimise m nutritional intake.

5. Blogging: work with more brands, expand Bloglovin' and Instagram following and connect more!
It has been such a pleasure blogging this last year. Although London is tricky to get to, I will be keeping my eyes peeled for events that I can attend. I am really aiming to utilise Instagram more, and open to seeing how my YouTube channel develops.

6. University: Achieve a first for my second year and sort out my research placement.
Although I finished my first year with a first, those grades don't count towards my overall degree. I'm keeping my nose to the grindstone and working as hard as I can towards this goal. Rather than going straight on to my third year after summer, I am taking a few months out to do some real, scientific research work. I hopefully have something lined up, so will be going out guns blazing to get it all confirmed!

Happy New Year to you all!

Labels: ,

Monday, 28 December 2015

New Product | The Healthy Body Kit

I hope that you all had a great Christmas and have fully recovered from any food babies or other festive indulgences! To help you get back on your feet, I am pleased to announce the launch of The Healthy Body Kit, a new monthly subscription box aimed at keeping you at your fit and healthy best. It combines organic skincare, health and fitness supplements to keep you feeling great, inside and out.  The box contains around five sample, or full sized products, along with discount codes for if you wish to purchase the products that you have tried. So far, this follows the same format that you may be familiar from other subscription boxes, so no nasty surprises! However, The Healthy Body Kit is much more tailored towards fitness and wellbeing, making it ideal for anyone who likes to get their sweat on!

I have filmed an unboxing-style video to give you a first look at what the latest box looks like. If you would like reviews of each of the products, comment below, or keep an eye out on The Healthy Body Kit website for my reviews as I post them!

To see the video on my YouTube channel, click here, and don't forget to like and subscribe! For a quick glance, here are the products in this month's box:

Love Your Blender - Super Berry

Buff Bake - Chocolate Chip Protein Peanut Butter

The Chia Co - Chia Shots

Healthspan Elite - Performance Greens

Terre Verdi - Facial Oil

I hope that you enjoyed my latest video. Please comment and let me know what you thought and what you'd like to see!

Disclaimer: In collaboration with The Healthy Body Kit. All thoughts and opinions are my own


Monday, 14 December 2015

Rainbow Salad Bowl

Have you every heard the phrase "eat the rainbow"? And no, I don't mean Skittles. When it comes to nutrition, eating a variety of colours means that you should be getting a large variety of the vitamins and minerals that you need for a healthy diet. Making a rainbow salad bowl of all your favourite veggies -and, yes, fruits -is a really tasty way to achieve this. So that you know exactly why, and how to create a rainbow bowl, I have listed one of the main benefits of each groups, and suggested how to build up a tasty meal. Please note, I am not a nutritionalist, but endeavour to list only proven health benefits and ultimately what you eat is your decision, and not mine.

How to build a rainbow salad bowl, and why you should be eating the rainbow for maximum nutritional benefits. Via @eleanormayc

These foods are most associated with lycopene and vitamin C. Lycopene is the chemical that gives tomatoes and peppers their red colour, and is thought to be more easily processed by the body when cooked. At the present, lycopene is being researched due to possible links with preventing certain cancers. It is also associated with protecting against heart disease, particularly regarding the hardening of arteries. Vitamin C (absorbic acid) is water soluble, and so cannot be stored in the body. As it is involved in the production of collagen, vitamin C is popular in skincare products. My personal favourite thing about vitamin C is that it facilitates the absorption of iron, useful for when you are on a more plant-based diet.

Orange and yellow
Almost all orange and yellow fruit and vegetables contain beta carotene, a compound with antioxidant properties. Beta carotene is metabolised by our bodies into a form of vitamin A called retinol. When we eat animal products, the vitamin A is already in the food in the form of retinol. Vitamin A is vital for good vision (now you know why you were told that carrots let you see in the dark!!). It is used in regulating cell growth and production, including that of embryos. It is also important for maintaining a healthy immune system. Beta carotene is also found in many green vegetables, such as spinach.

How to build a rainbow salad bowl, and why you should be eating the rainbow for maximum nutritional benefits. Via @eleanormayc

Every health-foodie's favourite coloured smoothie, green foods are famed for being nutritionally dense and comparatively low in calories. Leafy greens such as kale, spinach and romaine lettuce are rich in chlorophyll, which is almost identical to haemoglobin in our blood, other than the central element is magnesium rather than iron. Because of this, it is thought that our bodies can convert chlorophyll into haemoglobin, thus increasing our blood oxygen content. However, I don't believe this has yet been proven. Green foods are also associated with alkalising behaviour, something that is very popular currently.

Most purple colouration in fruits and vegetables is due to the pigment anthocyanin. Although studies on this antioxidant have proved difficult to draw conclusive results from, the reduction of tumours linked to this pigment is thought to be due to oxidative stress protection. Whilst purple foods are less well understood, there is no doubt that they pack a nutritional punch, so sprinkle some blueberries over your bowl for a surprise sweet kick.

How to build a rainbow salad bowl, and why you should be eating the rainbow for maximum nutritional benefits. Via @eleanormayc

Build a Bowl
Grab at least one vegetable or fruit from each colour group to get started. The easiest way to start is to grab a handful of your favourite leafy greens and use this as the base. Next, work you way around the rest of the colours. Whilst you want as much raw goodness in your bowl as possible (unless we are cooking a buddha bowl... but that is a whole different story!), the addition of baked slices of sweet potato is a definite recommendation. If you cook off lots of vegetables at the start of the week, help yourself to these, such as roasted aubergine. Aim to get plenty of variety in your bowl.

Next, look for some fat and protein to fill you up. I like mashed avocado or guacamole and pumpkin seeds. Try toasted almonds, black beans or walnuts. My current favourite thing to do is to roast chickpeas for a crunchy topping and easy snack. Alternatively, if you are looking for a more filling bowl, add some grains. Quinoa is always a good option as a complete protein, but I have really been enjoying sticky pearled barley, and buttery bulgar wheat recently.

Finally, look to your ingredients and see if you something to "cut" through the vegetable flavours. Berries add a sharp sweetness, as does lemon juice. If you eat meat or cheese, these flavours tend to make salads feel like more of a treat. I find that the avocado does the job beautifully.

Have you had success bringing the rainbow into your salads? Tag me in your photos, and use the hashtag #EatTheRainbow to get the movement going!


Thursday, 10 December 2015

Calming Yoga Playlist

When I first started attending yoga classes, I joined one that has music played throughout and really connected with it. Now with my practice at university and online yoga classes being largely music free, it is a pleasure to turn the tunes on when engaging in self practice. I have a running playlist that I am always adding to and pruning away. It is largely instrumental music aimed at yoga and meditation, so if you would like to hear a more pop-based playlist, let me know! I started off with a small selection of music and developed it from there using recommended channels on Spotify.

Let me tell you about Gortoz A Ran. It isn't you average choice for a yoga playlist, coming from a war song. But it is a truly beautiful song, one that can calm me right down and even send me to sleep. I was introduced to the song in a talk by Monty Halls, marine biologist, TV presenter and all-round hero of mine. He played the song over footage of manta rays in the Red Sea (if memory serves) and it was one of the most moving experiences I have ever sat through and was one of the things that cemented my desires to become a marine biologist myself. Roll out your mat, give it a listen and see what you think.


Monday, 7 December 2015

Keeping Your Zen Over the Festive Period

Christmas can be a pretty busy time for us, particularly if you are hosting, cooking or organising any event or the big day itself. Even if (like me!) you get to take the backseat in family matters, there are still lots of things to think about and we can all be left a little frazzled. Trying to get all the gift buying finished (check out Thursday's post for my easy-peasy wellness gift guide!), cook you share of festive foods and squeezing in a trip to the gym, only to find that it's shut under it's Christmas opening hours.... it can all get a bit much! To make the next few weeks a little smoother ride, here are my five tips to keeping your zen over Christmas:

Five tips to keeping calm and stress-free over Christmas. Wellness post via @eleanormayc

1. List, list, list
Chances are, you are going to have a lot to get done in a short space of time and really don't want, to quote The Waitresses, "forgot cranberries too?" or anything else vital for that matter. If there is any time in the year to dust off the notebooks and get scribbling, now is it. Separate lists categorically such as people to buy gifts for, any external orders that need making, store cupboard ingredients, etc. Alternatively, try listing by the day/time that the task needs to be done now. This is especially useful for any jobs that need that need doing on Christmas day.

2. Communicate and share jobs
Checking up on each other to make sure that everyone is happy is so important, yet easily overlooked. Christmas is about one another after all! If someone looks like they could do with a hand, offer it. Likewise, delegate tasks as needed to give yourself peace of mind. My friends and I are making a Christmas dinner before we all go our separate ways for Christmas. We have a few different dietary needs, so are all chipping in the cost, making a dish each and then sharing it all together.

Five tips to keeping calm and stress-free over Christmas. Wellness post via @eleanormayc

3. Make time for yoga and mindfulness
You didn't think that you were going to get away without a recommendation for yoga did you? Taking the time to breath and give yourself some time to yourself. The flowing movements are perfect for loosening and stretching stiff muscles and bringing you back to the present. However, if you prefer, take the time for meditation or mindfulness practice. Guided practices are perfect for dipping your toe in if you are uncertain. I like to count my thanks as it really grounds me when I'm sweating the small stuff.

4. Sweat it out
Gym attendance can take a hit in December, but do try to make the effort to lace up your trainers and do some exercise, even if it is new to your, or your existing practice has dropped. Half an hour or an hour of running, lifting, cycling, or whatever else gets your muscles working and endorphins pumping is perfect. Feeling like something new? Try boxing. This sport is perfect for punching out any frustrations. If the ring is a little scary, look to see if your gym offers coaching or a class. You don't have to exclusively do tough workouts either -winter walks are the best thing to break up indoor days and get some crisp, fresh air.

Five tips to keeping calm and stress-free over Christmas. Wellness post via @eleanormayc

5. Let go
Ultimately, you are in control of how you respond to the emotions and situation around you. Christmas isn't about perfection, far from it. My best tip? Take things as they come, remember to smile and have a good time. Disasters do occur with power cuts and burnt turkeys to name a few. At the end of the day, almost all hiccups really don't matter. You have the resilience to overcome any obstacle in your way, and a group of loved ones to offer support.

I hope these tips helped to give you a blissful Christmas!

Stock photos from PicJumbo.

Labels: ,

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Wellbeing Gift Guides

It is the first week of December, which means it can only be time for the gift guides! This year I have split my guides into budgets for wellness gifts. So, if you are shopping for a yogi or a runner, spa lover or eco shopper, you should find lots to choose from. Or (ahem), share this post to drop hints for yourself. I know that there are more than a few things from here that I wouldn't mind receiving under the Christmas tree... ;)
Wellness Gift Guide: Luxe

Clockwise, from top centre: Lorna Jane, The Perfect Gift Set (£50 voucher + towel, socks and water bottle to make gift card giving much prettier!), £80; Daisy Jewellery Om and Lotus rose gold bracelets, £65 each; Neal's Yard Wild Rose Beauty Balm, £38; Sweaty Betty Salutation Travel Mat, £65; Neal's Yard sustainable bamboo oil diffuser, £50; Varley at Hip & Healthy Skyscrape leggings, £75; Sweaty Betty Limited Edition Spin Leggings, £110.

WellnessGift Guide: Mid-Range

Clockwise, from top left: Neal's Yard Bee Lovely Gift, £22.50; True Grace Christmas Village candle, £25; Deliciously Ella Sweatshirt, £35; Lakeland spiralizer, £29.99; H&M running jacket, £29.99; Neom/Sweaty Betty Personal Best collection, £30.

Wellness gift guide: on a budget

Clockwise, from top left: Om Bar chocolate, £1.99; No Balls bamboo bra, £21 (£9 in sale); Etsy yoga mat bag, £7.99; Alchemy Superblends Elixirs, from £6 for sample packs; Madeline Shaw Ready Steady Glow! book, £20 preorder; Lovaine Store turquoise pendant, from £9.

I hope these guides make Christmas shopping a little less stressful, and much more fun! What other Christmas posts would you like to see? Men's gift guides, DIYs, recipes or something new?

Labels: , ,