13 Reasons Why || mental health 

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Omg so many emotions! And yes I know I’m totally late to the game here but there’s a reason for that… I was boycotting. I had read some articles saying that the programme was filmed in bad taste, that the producers had sought advice from suicide charities and then gone against that advice, that it was potentially damaging to someone’s life if they were feeling vulnerable and none of this sat right with me. But everyone and their family dog had watched it and was discussing it and how could I truly form an opinion on something I hadn’t seen? So out of pure curiosity for “research purposes” I delved in head first.

Yep, I binged watched the series in about 3 days (not consecutively, although close). When I first started watching the programme I wasn’t keen but as it went on I was more and more gripped. So let’s get on with what your all here for, the opinion.

Firstly I wanted to point out that the programme is actually rated 18 and yes it is readily accessible on Netflix but technically it shouldn’t be watched by anyone younger than that. Despite this it does feel like it’s aimed at a younger audience, maybe it’s just because it’s set in high school and consists of mainly teenagers but I couldn’t help but feel that was the real target audience.

13 reasons why portrayed some harrowing but actually really important messages! I just did a post on acne anxiety and tried to show that the littlest comments really can effect someone which is a theme that runs through the programme. Bullying is no game, whether your intending to bully or not, whether you think it will be a big deal or not, you will never truly know how your words and actions will effect someone else. Hannah shows that it doesn’t have to be one big event that ruins your life, it can be a build up of “the little things” and I put this in quote marks because what seems little to you may be huge to someone else. This opened my eyes even further to how I interact with other people, be that friends and family, strangers or even people I don’t particularly get on with. I would never want anything I’ve said or done to put someone in such a bad space and this is why we really need to be kind to one and other.

On the flip side I totally get what the other reviews were saying in that mental health isn’t really addressed but I can also kind of see why. The scenes are from the view of the teens involved and it’s highly likely that this is not something they would address. The final episode where Hannah seek help actually puts forward a big message that mental health is not always taken seriously.

Even though you are shouting at you’re screen for someone to notice Hannah’s pain and suffering, in day to day life, if you were there and only seeing certain parts of the story, would you notice? Like Hannah says, the scary thing is these feelings can look like nothing to the outside! There is no heightened emotions spilling out, she felt numb. So how is it possible to notice this? I’ve had previous conversations with people who lost friends to suicide and none of them had any idea there was something wrong.

I also think that while the programme itself didn’t really bring up mental health it definitely started a conversation about it and that’s amazing! It has bought a lot of taboo subjects into the mainstream in an easily accessible powerful way and the fact that people have opinions on it is important to how we move forward as a society. We need debate to make change!

Again while this isn’t aimed at kids I hope that it will be watched by their parents. We need to instil kindness and good values into the next generation so that this kind of thing stops. School can be awful, kids can be mean, and at a stage in your life where everything feels like the end of the world and your hormones and emotions are all over the place this is so dangerous! We need to be more aware of how these kids are feeling, there needs to be support and trust.

The scene where Hannah is trying to get help is so frustrating but I bet this happens more than we would care to think about. It is so easy to dismiss a teenagers feelings as overly dramatic because in reality what teenager doesn’t over think and over exaggerate everything (I still do this now!) It’s a difficult position to be in when having to make that decision on whether they truly need help or just having a bad day. Chances are, the ones who truly need help wont be saying anything, so what do we do? I don’t know how to change things but I know things need to change. We need to put an emphasis on mental health not just at school but throughout life. Life can be stressful at any stage and it can be so hard on your body in a range of forms arising from a range of triggers. Stress of being bullied, from your studies, from your family life, from your job. I honestly feel like it isn’t taken that seriously but as someone who suffers badly when stressed let me tell you, it is serious!

Personally I think counselling is an amazing tool, just to have someone listen, take you seriously, not judge and make you feel like you’re less alone is so powerful. I would like to see onsite counsellors in schools and work places so this is readily available and encouraged. Counselling should not be taboo and I think that anyone can benefit from just hashing their thoughts out with a totally subjective person.  To get access to this kind of help at the moment a doctor has to deem you “suitable” and you will be put on a long waiting list. Either that or you will have to fork out for it privately. Why not just make it a part of life?

I think the only way to move forward is to bring “taboo” subjects even further into mainstream. We all know these things go on so there is no excuse to brush them under the carpet anymore. In 2017 people should not be feeling ashamed or embarrassed for who they are, how they feel or what has happened to them. We need less victim blaming and dancing around the subject and more action. There needs to be better steps in place.

There will be so many opinions around the programme and the subjects it touches on and this post is just one of those. Watching this programme made me feel so many emotions but above all it made me want to be a better person and to help make a change.

I’d love to hear your opinions on 13 Reasons Why!

Peace and Love xoxo

Acne anxiety 

The bank holiday at the end of April was a tough one for me, I was so down, I had no motivation and everything just felt rubbish. This was partly out of boredom as I had no money to do anything but was also thanks in a large part to the state of my skin. Having suffered with acne since the age of about 12 I am well and truly done with it! I’m starting to lose my patience and it’s getting to me more and more. Nobody wants adult acne. As a kid I always dreamt of the day where I would grow up and out of the condition but this just hasn’t happened yet.

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Even if I’d had money that weekend I highly doubt I would have left the flat. I had an overwhelming desire to hide away. I didn’t want anyone to see the reality of my bare face and putting make up on would have been painful and itchy. I hadn’t had a break out like this in such a long time and for things to be getting worse after having given up my favourite thing in the world (cheese), I just couldn’t cope.

At one point Jon asked me to go to Tesco and the request filled me with dread, I was so self conscious but in the end I got over myself and agreed. I can go to the shop, it’s really not that difficult, this is your body own it! However once I actually got to Tesco my brain went into overdrive, I swear everyone was staring at me. I text jon, trying to stop myself from having a mental breakdown in the middle of the bread aisle and he said not to be silly and that nobody was looking at me. I didn’t really believe him but I knew I had to finish the shopping. I even helped a guy find some dairy free chocolate and started to feel a bit better considering he didn’t recoil at my face.

Then I got to the till and it all went to shit from there. The woman cashier took one look at me and exclaimed: “OMG you poor thing! What’s happened to your face”.  Aaand there it is! I knew it! I knew people were looking at me, I knew I was disgusting. I just wanted to run out of the shop! It took all my strength to keep my cool and carry on getting my shopping. I informed her that nothing had “happened”, this was just my face. She then proceeded to ask if I’d had a reaction to something to which I replied no it’s been this way since I was 12 and fell silent. She did not take this as a hint that I was about to break down and carried on telling me about a gross lump she had on her back which reacted to something she put on it and how it had spread. She told me how embarrassing it was so she knows how I felt. The woman clearly didn’t have the first idea how I felt! If she truly knew, there is no way she would have said any of these things to me! As soon as I walked out of the shop I burst into tears! I practically ran to the car and just broke down.

The sad thing is, this is not the first time something like this had happened. Another time I was in new look and the woman behind the counter said “I used to have really bad skin too and I used this, you should try it” – nothing had prompted this conversation, I hadn’t mentioned my skin, I was merely paying for my new clothes. I was also wearing make up at the time so the comments hit me harder. I have this ridiculous theory that my make up can transform me into the person on my Instagram, that filtered babe without a flaw. Clearly I was wrong and now had to pull myself back together before reaching the office, more self conscious that ever that everyone I work with is secretly grossed out by my face.

It has become apparent that people just don’t understand what they’re saying, they aren’t trying to be mean or nasty, in fact they think they’re being helpful or sympathetic. But if I had a birth mark on my face or a big scar, would you comment on that? It’s also never happened if I’m with someone else which is interesting.

The quote “everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about, be kind always” could not ring more true here. They don’t know the struggle it can take me to even leave the house and how much they had set me back.

The reason I’m sharing this story is 2 fold, this is not a woe is my post.

Firstly, if you’re the kind of person who makes these comments to people thinking you’re being helpful, please only do so if they have asked for it, you cannot know the damage you’re doing. I never forget the occasions where strangers have made remarks to me (the stories above are by no means an exhaustive list) and it makes me feel more and more anxious about leaving the house on bad skin days, there are times it’s been so bad I’ve wanted to call in sick to work cause I can’t bare the thought of people seeing me!

Getting into an acne anxiety slump really ruins everything, I spent that entire bank holiday weekend in bed and got absolutely nothing done. I’m an emotional eater so I consumed a stupid amount of sugar which only served to make it worse and to add the icing on the cake my skin is effected by stress so the more stressed I get about it the worse it gets, which stresses me out! What a babe right!?

The second reason I’m sharing this is for those who are going through the same thing, to know that you aren’t alone in these thoughts or these experiences! I’ve been dealing with this for years and it’s still tough! I’m getting better at it but there are still days which cripple me in self doubt. I’m now using my @notsoperfectlifebylaura instagram to document my skin issues in the hope that it might help others. I’ve had so many amazing comments from people saying how “brave” I am for sharing these pictures but please know that this is not always the case. I worry so much that I will get a nasty comment and it’ll tip me over into a depressed like state but if they can help just one person it’ll be worth it! But so far the support has been overwhelming, the fact that people have taken time out of their day to show they’re concern or share their own story is just beautiful. You will never know what it means to me.

I’m going through stages where my skin is getting better and then falls back. It’s so amazing what a difference it makes on my life and my mood when my skin is good. This will seem ridiculous to people who aren’t going through the same thing and it even seems silly to me but that’s the thing, our brains often contradict themselves and play nasty mental tricks on us – We just have to stay strong!

There are a couple of new things I’m trying and I’m really pinning all my hopes into this working! I’ve been so slack with my diet and regime over the last week or so as I haven’t been feeling myself but I hope I can get back on track now. I previously did a post about my skin care routine and the products I use but I’m attempting to strip that right back and put as little on my face as possible! It’s all a learning curve and I will put as much information as I can on here.

Please let me know if there’s anything you would like to ask, I promise I won’t be offended ’cause I’m ready for it! It’s the shock of random people in the streets calling me out on my flaws that knocks me for six.

Also if you’re interested in following my skin journey please come and say hi on my insta @notsoperfectlifebylaura – my aim over there is to be as raw and real as possible!

Remember, as hard as it may be to believe sometimes – you are beautiful! You are enough! Your skin does not define you!

Peace and love xoxo

Feeling focussed 

I don’t know what on earth has happened to me or how long it will last but I seem to have been injected with some crazy motivation!

This morning I got up WHEN MY ALARM WENT OFF, this is absolutely unheard of. My usual morning routine consists of me getting up half hour before I need to leave, flapping about like a stressed out pigeon and basically running to the station leaving my shins in tatters.

Today was different. Today I glided out of bed, got dressed, washed my face and brushed my teeth then sat and did a 10 minute guided meditation using the headspace app – WHO AM I?!

I feel like this may have stemmed from my weekend in Manchester, where I visited my pal Millie (and went to see Craig David – yes my internal 8 year old was bloody loving life!) Mills are her bf are SO organised with their food prepping and shopping lists and overnight oat breakfasts as well as living hectic lives of work volunteering and exercise. Seeing them go about and discuss this routine sparked something inside of my like YES! I can do this, in fact I have done this in the past and life is just way more smooth and lovely.

I got home on Monday evening had a bath (to wash off 4 hours of travelling) and headed straight to Tesco for a big ole food shop. I had already decided, after discussions with my acupuncturist, that I wanted to cut down on cheese and dairy in general, so I catered my food shop around finding alternatives and planning meals in my head.

Due to a hospital appointment I worked from home on Tuesday which couldn’t have been more perfect. Not only did this help my mental state allowing me to avoid yet more travel after enduring the trip from Manchester to home (which was unpleasant due to delays and me feeling sick the entire way) but it also gave me time to food prep (I basically roasted everything so it wasn’t difficult).

This morning I woke up and I had already decided what I was going to wear, 1 stress down. My breakfast and lunch was prepared for the day. I did my guided meditation which gave me time to just chill and check in with myself and then I could get ready at a reasonable pace. I also managed to fit in my new fave water concoction (superberry powder, ground ginger and fresh lemon shaken, not stirred), put the washing up away AND curl my hair.

Being organised and productive with my morning really makes me feel like I can go out and nail the day! Checking in with myself through meditation also allows me to fully wake up and be alert. It also helps when the sun is shining giving you that instant positivity.

The last couple of days I have also tried to be technology free just before bed. I picked up a copy of Women’s Health with my shopping on Monday and have been reading that in the evening (although I’ve finished it now.) As well as this I’m trying not to scroll through social media as soon as I wake up and instead wait till I’m on the train to work.

I mean it’s been one day so I’m totally getting ahead of myself here but I love this feeling! Please let me keep this motivation universe! I promise I’ll do good things in return. I’m hoping that if I can keep getting up on time and possibly even slightly earlier (I know I’m pushing it here) that I may even be able to fit in a morning yoga sesh!

Pray for my motivation guys and let me know if you have any tips on keeping this up 🙂

Peace and Love xoxo

Self care – all about balance 

I feel like I’m in a whirlwind of emotions over my body at the moment. One minute I’m like screw it and eating all the chocolate and sweets, next I’m shame eating kale. It’s the most frustrating thing.

I know society is brainwashing me into feeling this way but I also know that when I’m healthy and fit and toned I feel SO much better in myself. I mean I can still look in the mirror now and be like damn girl but I just ran up the stairs to catch my train and thought I might die! My ankle issues are creeping back, I’ve got problems with my wrists and my skin has flared up.

I really want need to take some time this year to just focus on me. I focussed on the wedding, I focussed on buying a flat…. now Laura needs some brain space.

I’ve been getting my nails done (by Liv who is an actual star!), I’ve had a facial, I’m getting my hair done more regularly. I know to some people this is the norm but I get super lazy when it comes to taking care of myself and that needs to change.

I’m taking some proper time in the evenings to care for my skin and as well as this nightly routine, Ive introduced two face masks to use once a week (I love doing a face mask in the bath, it turns the most mundane task into a little pamper sesh). I’m also considering trialing a more mineral foundation but they never give me enough coverage so I think I’ll have to pair this with a liquid concealer. I’m going to attempt to make some more healthy choices for what I’m putting into my body as well as onto my body AND I’m getting back into that gym routine! Going to the gym just makes me feel so much better and actually gives me way more energy! I’ve also got a few alternative therapies booked in to help various things and I will document how they go once I’m done.

I’m not 100% sure what this post is about aside from a little update and a brain dump for me to release these thoughts. But I suppose it’s also to show that everyone gets complacent with the self care and we shouldn’t beat ourselves up about it. You just get back on that wagon when you’re good and ready! Sometimes we need a big blow out to just eat what we want, do what we want and to not worry about the consequences… it’s all about balance!

Speaking of which, if you don’t know already I have launched a new instagram page, inspired by the amazing writer that is Sophie Kinsella. Sophie released a book earlier this year called my not so perfect life and on the back of this started an instagram page with the same name to document all those not so perfect moments in life which rarely get shared on the glittering highlight reel that is social media. I’ve decided to jump on the back of this and start my own page called @notsoperfectlifebyLaura (see what I did there! Got to keep on brand haha). I’m documenting my out takes, my not so perfect, fml, fail moments and if this makes just one person feel less alone, less silly, more worthy then I will be one happy lady!

So how are you guys doing now it’s ALMOST APRIL!!!! What on earth!?

Peace and love xoxo

Feeling fat…

I am not fat. I am a healthy weight for my height, I work out, I eat reasonably well. I’m like a size 10-12 which is below average.

But a lot of the time I feel fat, which is ridiculous! I know what overweight looks like, I know when someone is unhealthy and I know that’s not me but somewhere deep within my brain is a part that tells me I should look different, that I should be tighter, that the lumps and bumps on my thighs and bum are gross and that I should be ashamed.

We see so many pictures on social media and in magazines, on billboards and in films where the average woman is not portrayed and if they are, they’re under the best lighting, posed, edited to still look amazing. It’s not often we get the bloated, rolls and cellulite side of the story that would make us feel like we are normal and not some kind of gross abnormality.

We are also plied with weight loss programmes and get fit quick ads which gives us such an unhealthy relationship with our weight and how to manage it. We need to be taught about good nutrition and decent exercise plans. It needs to be explained that this takes time and is a lifestyle change NOT a quick fix and the sad thing is, there ARE people out there trying to promote this but they get over shadowed by the quick fixers. It’s only when a person tries and fails at all of these fads that they actually look to do it properly.

I compare myself to everyone, even though I preach the opposite. It’s like there’s some annoying bug in our minds that we can’t get rid of and it’s dangerous! Not only does it make us think terrible things about ourself, it also opens a door for others to say these awful things to us, believing that they’re justified cause it’s been brainwashing them too.

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Body shaming ourselves is one thing but when a stranger basically confirms that to you, it can lead to a downward spiral!

I can be a right judgemental bitch in my head sometimes and I get embarrassed by my thoughts. However, I’d like to think I have the decency and compassion to keep that to myself and I am trying to train my brain to get rid of such thoughts completely.

Now whilst I am promoting self love, self acceptance and no judgement I am also promoting self care. So if a person is overweight they should 100% love themselves and accept who they are but they should also practice self care and be given the tools to make healthy changes to give them a better life. This should be available to everyone, not “here drink some shakes and get thin for a week till you start eating again”. It should be “here, eat these food groups in these portions, make small changes and get long term results!” This works the same for someone who is underweight, don’t just tell them to eat. First work on the mind so they learn to love and accept themselves which will in turn make them want to take care of their body. Then teach them how to maintain a healthy weight the right way.

We all know it works, we all know the bodies we are shown aren’t the norm, we just need to train ourselves to truly believe it, to love and accept ourselves, to want the best and to be the best we can.

This is a bit of a ramble post but it’s something that really effects us these days and with a teenage sister I’d like her to grow up in a world where she is not made to feel crap for not being a lean machine 24/7 because that is not real!

I’ve seen a couple of posts flying around social media recently of fitness people showing their posed photos against they’re real life relaxed photos and I think this is SO IMPORTANT! Of course everyone wants to post they’re best bits but make sure people know this isn’t an all day every day look cause that is unattainable and an unhealthy goal that so many strive for!

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I follow a few fitness people on Instagram and YouTube but my favourite is Heidi Somers (BuffBunny) who I have mentioned before. Whilst her body is definitely #goals she is also really honest and informative. I’ve recently got really into watching Ashy Bines on Snapchat and YouTube too. These women are promoting healthy lifestyles, balance and self acceptance and I am SO on board.

Promote healthy, promote real, love yourself and don’t put your judgements on other people.

Peace and love xoxo

Getting wedding ready…

17 DAYS TO GO GUYS! Just in case you were wondering 🙂

I’m currently feeling like a shell of my former self, I am a hormonal, emotional, lethargic little bean and I need to get a grip!

Why am I feeling like this? Oh let me see… mother nature has reared her ugly head! My flat is an absolute tip (you know they say clean home, clean mind…. well currently I am the opposite with no real energy to do anything about it) and lastly I HAVEN’T HAD CHEESE FOR 12 DAYS!!

Who even am I?!?

Ok so I know giving up cheese is a bit drastic, and when I say a bit I mean catastrophic disaster leading me to be on the verge of a bitch fit 24/7! BUT I want to be beautiful on my wedding day so swings and roundabouts.

We all know dairy is not kind to the skin so I am trying to cut waaaaaaaaaaaay down in the hopes that I am basically the new gold snapchat filter on the day!

Please #prayforLaura at this difficult time….  although probably more necessary #prayforJon!

But in all seriousness I am truly trying to clean up my diet… It currently consists of a lot of chicken, salmon and spinach! Cutting down on anything processed, dairy or carby.

I did purchase the Nutribuddy 2 week kit but tbh I’m not great with taking things or having to use my brain for anything that is not wedding related right now. I have had the odd protein shake though (sometimes in the space of breakfast when I haven’t had time to get anything).

I’ve also been upping my gym game! My main classes at the moment are, bootybarre, burn 360 and body pump (well I did my first pump class yesterday and nearly died but I plan to carry on!) I’m also partial to a body attack class but my ankle has decided to swell up so that’s fab! Better keep to the lower impact options.

The above classes focus mainly on muscle tone/building with some cardio type sections (which are absolutely killer). Both burn 360 and pump incorporate weights, where bootybarre is about using your body weight and doing all these weird squat moves until you want to scream – sounds great right?! Body attack on the other hand  is running and jumping around like a lunatic, sweating out of places you never knew existed!

Ok I’m not really selling this to you am I?! These classes are actually really fun… well I think so anyway. Maybe I’m weirdly sadistic without realising but we all know that exercise releases endorphins and therefore makes you happy soooooooo there’s that.

I tell you what doesn’t make me happy…. this cute little bloat I’ve got going on the day before my final dress fitting.

Can we all just take a second to appreciate how hard being a girl is?!

Ok so I don’t really know where I’m going with this post?! Basically wedding prep physically is going well, emotionally – well that’s debatable!

All jokes aside I am SO BLOODY EXCITED! Only one full week left at work and then shit gets real! Only 17 more days as Miss Laura Butcher till I start a brand new life as Mrs Grant (which begins with me stuffing all the pizza, cheese and pasta into my face on our trip to Rome – Oh lord I can’t wait.)

Peace and Love xoxo

Boditrax…

Recently I was asked by Fran, from House of Blog, to write about my gym and I basically confessed my undying love for Virgin Active so I won’t repeat myself. (Although if you want to read my love letter then here’s the link for you –  Virgin Active Review)

What I’m bursting to discuss today though, is the Boditrax machine and how it shapes your views on weight. (You may have seen me mention this previously in my Gym Motivation post.)

This magical little babe has got me feeling so much better about myself, my body and my progress and I honestly think that this is an important topic to approach.

First the logistics… to use the Boditrax machine you log into your account, stand on the scales and pick up the hand sensors, as directed on the screen. The machine then scans your body and produces a report. Probably one of the best features is that you can log into your account on any device from their website and take a look at your stats (Not guna lie I do this on the regs!)

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You’re probably thinking OH BORE ME LATER but if you are still reading then cheers for being a trooper! Cause the real reason I’m writing about this isn’t to promote the machine or the gym, it’s to ensure that you don’t base your progress purely on weight!

My favourite tool on the report is the “track” part. It’s basically a line graph showing your progress. Every time you have a reading it is logged on your account and your stats are updated.

On those days where I get on and my weight has gone up, I instantly get annoyed at myself (I mean who doesn’t beat themselves up over their weight?!) BUT when I check the other sections such as fat mass, muscle mass and water mass, it paints a completely different picture and I suddenly come to realise that maybe I shouldn’t be so hard on myself – especially when you don’t know all the facts.

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I’m sure you’ve all heard a million times that muscle weighs more than fat but this machine really puts that into perspective. Take today for example, I got on the machine and my weight had gone up, but when I looked into it further I had actually lost fat mass and increased my muscle (and water) mass. If I had just stepped on your average scale I would have been disheartened, thinking that all my efforts were in vain. When in reality I am bang on track!

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Fat Mass
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Muscle Mass
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Water Mass

 

Fitness, in my opinion, should never be about weight. Although it is difficult to ignore the numbers on the scales it’s really not the be all and end all. If you feel great, you’re clothes fit better and you can notice a change in yourself… that’s what’s really important.

Now I’m a sucker for a spreadsheet and some stats, especially when they’re all about me (soz not soz.) But seriously tracking your progress in a way that is healthier and more positive can get seriously addictive, so approach with caution! 😉

Obviously not everyone has a gym membership but I highly encourage you to ditch the scales and invest in something a little more scientific. A fellow blogger, Lauren of Blonde Vision, once wrote an article on the weight watchers scales which do just that, here’s the link if you’re interested – Lauren’s scale review.

So there we go, my final thoughts are just to be kind to yourself people cause you might be doing better than you realise!!

 How do you measure your fitness progress?! Do you rely purely on weight or do you consider other factors?

Peace and Love xoxo

Hula hoop fun….

I’m sure we’ve all hula hooped at one point in our lives, probably at school with those primary coloured babes. I know I would get super excited when they came out… Except they would usually get put on the floor and we’d be made to jump from one circle to another!? Errrrm that’s not what they’re for, stop neglecting their purpose!

And then there was that time I got my own hoop. I absolutely loved it and wanted to take it everywhere with me, so I took it to my aunties and accidentally left it there. My mum then generously decided to gift it to my cousin cause, after playing with it herself, she loved it too. I was devo …. Still not forgiven her! (That and for the Daisy outfit she gave to another cousin of mine!… I sense a theme here.)

Anyway, hula hoops…. If you follow me on insta you may have seen various videos and pics of me and my hoopy love. Circles are so much fun 🙂

 After visiting the London health show, and meeting a lovely lady from hula fit I decided I needed to give this a go. I’d also just become part of the social committee at work so it was perfect timing! I ended up arranging for hula fit classes to take place on Tuesday lunchtimes at my office and the response has been amazing!!!

So how does hula hooping become a fitness trend?? Well you try swinging a 1.2kg circle from your waist for 45 mins and tell me how you feel…. The answer will probably be bruised!

But the classes aren’t just hooping round your waist, that would be way too easy (for some) instead try hooping round your waist whilst doing squats, lunges, jumping, twerking, limboing. Swing the hoop above your head for burning arms and switch to lighter hoops for some fun tricks.

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This class really is a full body work out but it’s also super fun! Don’t take my word for it though, here are some comments I received from my colleagues who attended the class….

“This was an absolutely wonderful course in all respects – please may it continue!  It is a great fitness course, especially for someone like me who commutes nearly 4 hrs every day and has no time for exercise at home.  It was also so much fun – I really enjoyed it!  Please please please can we bring it back!

Thank you for organising the Hula Fit! I would love to carry it on if possible 🙂 Shakira was a great instructor and made it really fun

A big Thank you from me too.  I’m really surprised how quickly we have all improved and it would be great to continue. I suspect there are not too many sports where you can get fit and laugh at the same time. It has been terrific.

Was utterly inspired by the one class I did, so much so I bought my own hula hoop.

I thoroughly enjoyed the last few weeks, it was good fun and there are not many exercise classes you can work out and have a good laugh at the same time!!  I do not exercise at all but have bought my own hoop now and would love to continue these classes if at all possible.

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My advice to you is find one of these classes and give it a go! I’m not being sponsored to say this, I’ve genuinely enjoyed the classes myself and the responses I’ve had speak for themselves!

http://hulafit.com/

http://www.hulafitwithshakira.co.uk/

If you can’t find a class near you or can’t afford another outgoing expense I totally recommend buying yourself a hoop! I prefer the light polypro kind so you can learn all sorts of fun tricks (YouTube is your friend) or if you’re more into the fitness element you can pick up a weighted hoop from Argos! (Although I have to say even the non weighted hoops can give you an amazing workout!)

Let me know if you try out a class or just a hoopy session in general! Maybe you could organise some sessions for your workplace too! Or if you’ve been to a class before , let me know what you thought!?

For those of you local to Chelmsford, a group of us usually meet in Central Park at the weekends to hoop and do other fun circus style skills including slack lining and poi’s, come say hi and maybe learn something new 🙂

 

Peace and love xoxo

Your health is no game!

Last week was seriously the week from hell! And I don’t mean broken nail, spilled a drink over yourself week from hell I mean the real stuff!
While the events of last week are not technically my story to tell I feel that it can only serve to prevent such things happening to other people and hope therefore that my family don’t mind me sharing our story.

Let’s skip Monday cause nobody likes Monday!

Tuesday morning I was sitting at my desk like any other day and my phone started ringing, it was my mum, my mum was at work, she never has her phone on her at work… I already started to panic before I’d even answered and rightly so. My mum was calling to tell me that my step dad was having a suspected heart attack! I instantly arranged to leave work and go be with my mum as neither of us knew what exactly was going on. we got to the hospital around 1 and he had already had a stent fitted. We were told by a doctor that this was one of the worst heart attacks you can have and basically he was lucky to be with us. The whole thing still doesn’t seem real, someone who is usually such a strong figure in your family being bought down with a tremendous crash!! It’s unnerving, it turns your whole world upside down.

 

Now to me this had all come out of nowhere! However for my step dad, he had been having signs for weeks. His arms had been going numb, he had chest pain and other various symptoms but you never think something that bad is happening to you! And an especially male trait is to brush over your ailments, don’t show any weakness.

He had basically been having mini heart attacks all week, if he hadn’t got to the hospital when he did… He would not be here anymore.

What I’m trying to get across to you by telling this story is to PLEASE not leave things! Get checked out! You aren’t being weak, you aren’t being a wimp or a pussy or whatever else. You are being a responsible adult, you are ensuring that you will still be here tomorrow for your family, for your friends and for yourself!!

 

Starting Tuesday morning I’d been having major dizzy spells, like my whole room was spinning! Another one who doesn’t like to go to the doctors I just left it, until Wednesday, well and truly shaken up by what had gone on I called the NHS 111 number, they insisted I come to the hospital (at 11.20pm!) not gunna lie, this scared the absolute crap out of me! After everything that had happened over the last day my family could not take anymore bad news. Luckily(?) I’ve been diagnosed with vertigo and not like a brain tumour or something. I mean still absolutely horrendous to deal with but at least I’m not dying!

I think I just wanted to steal my step dads thunder tbh lol but in all seriousness you can never be too careful with your health so please don’t treat life like its infinite.

Another thing I have taken from this experience is not to take anything for granted! Me and my step dad have not always seen eye to eye (understatement of the century) but over recent years we’ve come to tolerate and dare I say even like each other haha! He’s been there for me when I’ve needed help and the thought of him in such trouble, knocked me for six (much to some people’s surprise.)

It may be cliché but Forgive and forget. Never go to sleep angry. Tell them you love them. Keep everyone you hold dear as close as you can, cause there’s no time for games… Life is too short!

Peace and love xoxo

14 things that cross your mind during your first spin class…

 

1. Can’t wait for this class I’m going to be so toned and sexy – watch out summer!!

2. Ok it’s almost time, actually I’m a little nervous…. Can I back out?? No, think of that bikini body COME ON WE CAN DO THIS!

3. Ok this isn’t so bad……

4. You want me to do what now? Turn it up? Are you mad????

 

5. Why is everyone so much faster than me, come on legs!

6. Oh god I’m done, is it over??? 5 mins!!! What???? That was just the warm up – kill me now

7. Do you think I could sneak out without anyone noticing??

8.What have I done to deserve this? I promise I’ll never eat another carb again if you just make it stop!

9. Omg I’m going to throw up, I’m going to throw up right here in front of everyone…. Brilliant this is how I’m going die

10. Actually I think I’ve got the hang of this now….

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11. NOPE oh god why isn’t this over yet?? Who knew one person could sweat so much? Why is nobody else looking like they might keel over?

12. My legs are literally on fire!! Someone grab a fire extinguisher, I think they might actually explode

13. THANK GOD it’s finally fished, I almost fell down the stairs with my jelly legs, that was horrendous …. Never again!

14. “Soooo same time next week?” Yeah sure why not!

 

Peace and love xoxo