Monday, July 31, 2017

Loose Things Are All That Fits Me Right Now


Following on from my mindset post (which, my friends I need to thank you all for all of the love and support I received since publishing), I wanted to chat a little about weight gain. That dreaded topic that everyone always seems to have on their mind. whether its because your jeans are too tight or you just feel sluggish and heavy, everyone at some point has weight on their mind. 

As most of you know I fell very ill (three years ago this September and I'm sorry to talk about it a lot but it's a huge part of my life) and I was diagnosed with Colitis disease. Dramatic weightloss and not having the ability to keep in food proved difficult and my body went under all sorts of changes. I went down to 9 stone, which for me is incredibly light and was the lightest I'd been in years. Being a dancer and dance teacher my whole life I've been at a "normal" healthy weight with a lot of muscle and was averaging 11 - 11.7. 


It's so tough when your body changes and you have no control. I felt so self conscious as I didn't feel myself in my own body. My personal relationship with my boyfriend was very up and down because of this and of course my social life was on hold. With my normal everyday clothes not fitting me I felt lost, and  suffered a lot in terms of my mental health (and still can prove a real struggle and right now is one of those times). Of course with my positive mindset I'm putting everything I have into fighting it, and felt like writing a post addressing this could be a great weight lifted off my shoulders. 

I've been on a mission for the last year and a half to get into fitness and become healthier, changing my diet and lifestyle regime playing very big factors in that, as I'm quite lucky that my colitis responds to diet well. I'm now 10.4 stone and work out around 4 times a week with a mixture of weight lifting, cardio and yoga. I felt amazing when I lifted my heaviest squat weight (70kg) a few weeks ago, bare in mind I could barely move from my bed to the sofa nearly three years ago. However very recently my body confidence is proving difficult due to this weight gain and new found strength.

No longer do I have a flat stomach and can fit into the lush tiny jeans I bought from Topshop and I have to be honest with you all, it's really eating away at me. Not because I think its not how I should be, but just because my body has changed and I need to find myself at this new stage in my life. This brings me nicely on to the dress featured in this post which was a bargain of all bargains from Missguided on ASOS.

Dress - Missguided via ASOS (linked below)
Converse: Office
Pleather jacket: Warehouse
Vegan bag: TKMaxx
Until I've gotten used to styling for the new shape I'm at at this stage in my long recovery, I will be living in loose fitting clothes that cover my dreaded pouch. I thought it was perfect for the transition from summer to autumn, and all the way through winter and to next year. The back is gorgeous with a delicate cross over detail that would look even better minus the pink bra, but hey ho! It's comfortable, loose, looks great partnered with my pleather jacket and cons so is a perfect slightly chilly day outfit. 

So basically, to round up. This dress is banging and have linked it HERE and urge you to check out the ASOS sale for all the bargs. No matter what weight you are, you need to feel good and just remember you are amazing. Do what you want to do in order to feel your best and most comfortable. And for me, thats going shopping for new clothes!

I love you guys and feel like I can share anything with you. I hope no one gets offended with my offload and topic of choice, but feel it's a good thing for me to talk about it. 

Have a wonderful evening!

xoxo


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

5 Ways I Changed My Mindset | Lifestyle

Photographer: Siobhan, Bag: Marc B, Jacket: ASOS
It's taken me so may attempts to finally figure out how I wanted to introduce this post, so thought I'd start from the beginning of this mindful journey I've experienced and still experiencing.

Since January my life has changed in multiple ways. I started a new job which has had a huge impact on my quality of life, and how I now actually have spare time and freedom. My health has improved dramatically (with the occasional flare) because I have time to take care of myself. I actually plan, prep, experiment with food so much more as diet is so important to my IBD. I don't have excessive stress anymore which actually prevented me from eating and caused severe anxiety. As well as those factors,I lost a very close family member not long ago. It's always such a hard time in your life when you lose someone, and that was really the moment that made me rethink health and me, myself and I. 

I started being a lot more mindful and put a great deal of focus into who I was surrounding myself with, how I was spending my spare time and what I was doing to allow me to feel the best I could feel. When reflecting on the first half of the year, it was very clear to me the steps I'd taken to feel pretty content with myself and life in the now.

1: Instead of if, it's when - This is undoubtably number one for me. Actually believing in myself and saying when instead of if, has given me some sort of boost and sends positive vibes through my body every time. Expressing that self belief to yourself and to others has tremendous strength to allow all those negative blocks to disappear. Have faith in yourself, believe you can do it because you can do anything you put your mind to.

2: Getting physical- Having previously been dancing or taking part in dance or theatre dramatics everyday for the last 6 years, it's had a huge impact on me now office based and the level of daily movement I take part in and how that makes me feel. Creating a little timetable and following those Insta profiles that totally inspire me, has meant I can focus on keeping my fitness up instead of allowing myself to get ill and weak (as remaining active is vital for keeping my fatigue away and my arthritis). As I'm starting to see the first signs of results, it's giving me that extra boost to carry on and to not look back to when I was suffering and being a frail self conscious person I used to be. I'm getting that booty and new definition means having to buy some new clothes. Yes to being strong!

3: Your vibe attracts your tribe - I want nothing more than to be around fun, kind, positive, passionate, creative and inspiring people. For me to attract those people I knew I had to present myself in a certain way. I've always been that person who constantly smiles, it's just something I seem to have zero control over but it doesn't stop at just smiling at people does it? I take steps back out of conversations making sure I think about how I present myself and how I speak about different things. In the past because of being in quite a negative environment and place within myself and the people I was with, I would always have something to moan about or not be happy about. And that my friends is not a fun person to be around. Looking back and comparing, I'm so content and have some great people around me. 

4: The Law of Attraction- I have to give credit to the lovely Charlotte Jonsie for sharing her findings when it comes to the Law of attraction. The evening after Charlotte explained how she was following the book The Secret, and changing her outlook towards things I knew I had to have some of that. I started researching that night and fell totally into the idea of The Law Of Attraction. People like Emma Mumford have some great videos on this and how she has manifested some amazing things in her life, and I very much insist you go over and check them out. 

5: The small things- Evenings in, movie nights, coffee dates, family catch ups I do more often now, and couldn't be more happy with he balance of this. Not making time for those small things made me not have those close emotional moments I needed to get that connection with loved ones. You don't always have to go somewhere specific, pay money to see something or do something to have a lovely time that'll remain a memory and bring happiness to you. Life got too busy and my priorities were shot and didn't do any of the above really for the last few years. Comparing now to then it's the complete opposite.

Of course my life isn't perfect, and by no means am I saying that if you follow these five steps you'll be happier. These are just five things that have had a huge impact on my life and would love to open peoples thoughts towards being more mindful. 

Happy Sunday loves

xoxo

Saturday, July 8, 2017

My Fav Gluten Free, Vegan Pancake Recipes


When I think of pancakes I think of the words delicious, fun, filling and addicted. I'm one of those that can't go a week without having pancakes at least once, honestly I eat them so much. It's one of those meals that can be played around with so much, with the combinations and possibilities being endless. 


I like to not only experiment with my toppings but also with the way I make the pancakes, as on of my food goals is to find the perfect recipe for the perfect stack. So, one Sunday morning at the parents house I held a pancake morning and had them as my taste testers.


Recipe 1: Berry adaptation of Naturally Stephanie's pancake recipe

 1 1/4 cup oats (I used GF)
 1/2 tbsp. baking powder
 1 tsp vanilla extract
 1 1/4 cup plant based milk
 1/2 banana
Fresh Berries
Dark Choc Chips 
I blend up all the ingredients in a NutriBullet or any food processor and BOOM! It's as easy as that. 



The feedback from the fam for recipe number one was that the inside was a little too gooey compared to the outside where it was quite crispy. Now remember that these guys (apart from my sister) can eat normally, so they're used to the normal texture of pancakes. I enjoy this recipe as I find it easy to include protein powder without it throwing the recipe off. This recipe makes a light American style stack that actually isn't too heavy and stodgy. But a little advice, keep the hob low and cook slowly. If you whack the heat up on the hob and try to cook them too quickly, then the middle won't be done and it'll be a gooey inside.



Recipe 2: My adaptation of good old Jamie Olivers pancake recipe 

  • 3 ripe bananas (Mashed up)
  • 115 g plain flour (I used GF)
  • 1 heaped teaspoon baking powder 
  • 140 ml milk (I used almond)




I'm a sucker for anything peanut related, so already having a berry stack meant that I could bust out one of my favourite topping combos. Because I go through so much nut butter, I like to buy quite a few different ones and I'm so into using the powdered ones right now. They claim to have less fat but keeping that same taste and protein. Honestly, the taste isn't the same but it is definitely revolutionary as having a peanut butter sauce over your pancakes has changed my pancake life!



This stack is super high is protein and good fats with peanut butter, pumpkin seeds and crumbled Trek bar on top. Right now this is my go to on a Saturday as I weight train and love a good dense breakfast. It's a winner with the men too with my dad and the boyf loving this combo a lot. 

In terms of the pancake quality in comparison to the other, the fam preferred the overall texture to this. Probably as the recipe is the closest to a traditional pancake recipe (with just one substitute of the egg with banana). The outside of the pancake doesn't really go crispy and the texture throughout is pretty samey. 


Right, it's pancake time for me seen as it's Saturday morning. I'd love to know if you try these out, and whether or not you have a go to recipe that's different to my favs. 

Have a great weekend!

xoxo





Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Busting Out My Timeless River Island Playsuit | Spain OOTD


We all have those items of clothing that we just keep year after year. Or is that just me? It's typical hoarder behaviour, however proves to be beneficial as fashion seems to do one massive circle and when that holiday period comes back around your sorted. This playsuit has been there for me when I need a simple evening get up to hit to dance floor, and an easy day to night holiday outfit. It's just so great to have in the wardrobe and the quality means that it's got even more life left in it. 



This day was a pretty warm one, so having something I was going to spend the evening in and felt comfortable in was vital. Just simply changing up the bag and shoes completely alters the whole look.  


Lipstick: Glo & Ray
Playsuit: River Island (old) Similar 
Bag: Whistles
Shoes: Primark


I'll forever be a fan of a monochrome outfit, or one that is simple with minimum factors to it especially when on holiday. The combination of the red lipstick and the metallic bag help to brighten up the black and keep it fun and light. For me I'm not a die hard River Island fan, but when I do find something from them it's for sure a keeper. Seeing fashion bloggers all over Instagram sharing their RI recent finds is making me want to find my next  key item. 

Do you keep certain clothes for years? Or are you a frequent clothing turn around kind of person? 

xoxo