1. Lucie Loves… Fitness

    Working out with Move Pop Up Gym on the rooftop of One New Change with Adidas x Stylist Magazine.

    I’ve fallen out of shape. At least it feels that way. I’ve had a rather sedentary summer and, as the date of our wedding in May next year draws ever nearer, I’m concerned that I will be one mushy lump rolling down the aisle - if I don’t put down the pain aux raisin and pick up the pace. Pronto!

    And so, I stepped up onto the roof of One New Change, with its spectacular views out over London, and, under watchful eye of St Pauls Cathedral, performed a serious workout with several Stylist Magazine winners and put my pair of Adidas Energy Boost to the test.

    Here’s what I wore:

    We listened to a set of instructions called out by Move Pop Up Gym's brainchild, AJ and all did our own freestyle interpretations of the tasks. To sum it up: we sprinted on the spot like our lives depended on it, we performed jumping squats, lunges, star-jumps, and burpees. We did press-ups and then lay on our backs and cycled and kicked our legs cancan style. We followed it up with some side lunges and maybe one other thing that was obviously too painful to remember.

    This is called HIIT. Otherwise known as high intensity interval training. You perform each exercise in 20 second bursts and repeat the sequence three times until you’re a sweaty mess and can take it no more. The next day my thighs and abs were aching, so it obviously works those muscles pretty hard.

    The workout was finished by midday, so I treated myself to brunch-for-one at Gordon Ramsey’s Bread Street Kitchen. I must say, it was THE BEST eggs benedict with spinach that I’ve had in ages. I definitely would recommend this place. The interior was stunning too and the fresh orange was delicious.

    I don’t want to lose weight. Not really. I just want to tone up and have sculpted arms and abs on my wedding and honeymoon pics. Vain? Perhaps. But after all, you’ve got to look at those pictures for the rest of your life, so surely some effort should go into making sure you look and feel your best. We’ve got 8-months to shape up, JMG and I.

    I’ve blogged before about my own falling out of love with sport and how it’s been quite a challenge to rekindle a passion for it. However, I have just received my 30-list (a list of 40 challenges, whereby you can veto only 10 of them, with the aim being that the person who completes the most from the list is the winner.) Myself and my friends are all turning 29 this year and so the race is on to see who can achieve the most before we hit the big 3-0!) Some of us are far more competitive than others. My friend Marcos is already up and running under the hashtag #MEx30 - he’s even bought a domain name and started a blog (one of the things on his list!)

    One of the challenges on my list is to do a half-marathon, before I turn 30 next September. Arghhh! If I choose to accept it, it will be my first-ever. I’m terrified! Watch this space to see what happens. One thing’s for sure, it’s certainly going to take a lot of preparation - mentally and physically. 

    Over to you…

    Have any of you ran a half-marathon before? Do you have any tips for getting past that finish line in one piece? How long do I need to train for? Where is the best place to do one? Get in touch!

    Photography © Lucie Kerley

    Disclaimer: Thank you to Adidas for providing me with the amazing new kit.

  2. Lucie Loves… Food

    #Triedandtested | Comparing super-food NutriBlasts with NutriBullet vs. juicing.

    Smoothies, juices, or coconut water. What’s your go-to health-kick?

    I’ve been trying out the NutriBullet and have whizzed up quite a storm in our kitchen, along with the majority of the fruit and veg aisle at our local supermarket.

    I’m going to start this post by saying that entering the world of juicing or smoothie-making is not for the faint-hearted. Firstly, it’s quite an investment. You need to buy a machine. A decent one can cost upwards of £90. (The NutriBullet costs from £99). You then need to go shopping for a shed-load of fruit and veg. This can seem quite daunting, if you’re like us and don’t always splash out on a colourful spectrum on the good-stuff.

    I also opted to buy a wide range of nuts and seeds from our local health food store, Oliver’s Wholefood Store. This, again, was expensive. Some of these bags of nuts cost about a fiver! 

    However, throwing myself in as I always do with my blog challenges, I was prepared to pay out a bit to ensure that my experience was authentic and that I used the NutriBullet as it was designed to be used.

    The NutriBullet kit includes:

    • an extractor blade,
    • a milling blade (the milling blade is to make your own seed and nut mixes to add even more goodness to your super-food smoothies).
    • the power base
    • 24oz tall cup
    • 1-18oz short cup and 1 handled comfort lip ring
    • 1-18oz handled short cup and 1 comfort lip ring
    • 2 stay fresh resealable lids for preparing smoothies or ingredients that can be kept in the fridge or taken to the office.
    • 1 user-guide and recipe book
    • 1 pocket nutritionist 

    First off, I experimented with making my own guacamole and was amazed at how effortlessly this machine whizzed up the ingredients. I only gave it a few short blasts, ensuring that I’d removed the avocado nut and skin, as I wanted a dip that had a chunky consistency to go with my chicken fajitas.

    Over the course of a week or so I tried my hand at creating fresh fruit and veg smoothies, experimenting with different flavour combinations - some better than others.

    The NutriBullet guide recommends that you use 50% greens and 50% fruit. It has tons of recipe suggestions. It even comes with a shopping list incase you’re so new to fruit and veg shopping that you don’t know what to buy…

    I decided to experiment with a carrot, ginger, orange and grape recipe. I added one half of the ingredients into our juicer and then added the other half to the NutriBullet.

    Once processed, I find that the juicer leaves you with almost half a jug of waste material, which I usually throw away as we don’t have a garden to compost it. The NutriBullet, on the other hand, simply blitzes all of the ingredients together into one smoothie - no waste (except any peel or seeds you’ve had to remove). It is important that you don’t get greedy like I did and try and put too many fruits and veggies into the NutriBullet. If you do this you’ll end up with a soup-like consistency that doesn’t feel very pleasant to drink.

    To ensure a great result every time make sure that you leave enough room for the water and don’t overfill it.

    The choice of ingredients you use it also key. I once added a red pepper and it ruined the whole drink. Yuck. Some of the best combinations start with simple ingredients like red berries and banana. You can whizz them up with natural yoghurt and oats for a great breakfast drink.

    I also really like the green juices like apple, kale and spinach with a bit of strawberry for sweetness. 

    One of the great things about the NutriBullet compared to our juicer is that it is really really easy to clean, which makes it less of a pain to get out and use regularly. JMG also used it as a food processor to blitz some onions and tomatoes for a home-made curry recipe that he was trying out and was very impressed.

    Do you have any smoothie recipes that you think we should try? Get in touch.

    Photography © Lucie Kerley

    Disclaimer: Thank you to NutriBullet for allowing me to test run the product on my blog. 

  3. Lucie Loves… Fitness

    Adidas x Stylist event with Hemsley + Hemsley, Life Coach Beth Reacher and singer Foxes.

    I recently attended an event put on by Stylist Magazine and Adidas. A gaggle of young women, including myself, were given health and lifestyle treats in the form of Hemsley + Hemsley super-food smoothies and enjoyed a guided meditation session with Life Coach Beth Reacher.

    This was followed with a bit of light pampering and a photo shoot with their well-equipped hair and makeup team. The evening was in celebration of the new Adidas Energy Boost running shoes, and was rounded off rather nicely with an intimate Q&A session with hot singer of the moment, Foxes, the face of their latest sport-luxe campaign. Foxes giggled her way through questions and spoke about how she often runs to old school garage, with her hand holding onto her famous fringe to stop it from messing up during a workout.

    The evening got me thinking about how brands are really starting to up their game when it comes to appealing to female audiences.

    "Think differently about sport." 

    For the past couple of years this has definitely been the most tangible key message, for me, from top sportswear brands, like Adidas and Nike, circulating around the globe.

    Attention, and better yet, a major investment, is finally being paid to ensure that the fairer sex feel confident, strong, happy and healthy when it comes to sport. 

    I believe major collaborations between music+fashion+fitness are the recipe to success when it comes to reaching new audiences.

    Over the past couple of years that most successful celeb pairings for me have included: Ellie Goulding and Jessie J for Nike and now Foxes collaboration with Adidas.

    By tapping into an existing fanbase and/or magazine readership, savvy-sportwear brands are essentially opening up their sweetshop of opportunities to new millennials, and at the same time dusting off any old-fashioned preconceptions of the brand that may have built up over the years. 

    By stepping into this delightful new digital and fashion-led territory they are empowering new younger female audiences. Brands are moving with the times, taking onboard ever-changing consumer habits and creating brand new socially integrated campaigns that reach people who have, until now, been disengaged with sport in general.

    The rise of strong female athletes like Jessica Ennis-Hill and Rebecca Adlington have certainly helped champion the change in perspective of women in sport but there is still so much that can be and needs to be done.

    A great campaign spearheading exactly that was brought to my attention recently. My Kit and Me is a collaboration between Virgin Active, Lexie Sport (one of my favourite Young British Designers), the Women’s Sport and Fitness Foundation and a school in Dorset. It’s aim is to empower teenage girls to design their perfect PE kits, as part of the Active Inspiration campaign. Amazing!

    Photography © Lucie Kerley