I don't know about you, but it actually makes me feel a little bit ill that we are already a month into 2014* but let's push onwards and rejoice that it's basically Spring!
Okay so I may be jumping the gun a little bit there, but I feel like Winter may have overstayed it's welcome again- will it never learn? Let's just say I am looking forward to tucking away my woolies as SS14 takes the candy coloured reigns.
On that note, I am sure you are all astute enough to have noticed the first drop of Spring delights in stores now (did somebody say & Other Stories humbug striped short suit?), and though I could bore you in writing up my extensive list of pre-Spring hits that I need in my wardrobe right now (starting with crop tops and moving swiftly on to tennis skirts and chiffon culottes) I will resist. It is also just under two weeks until Valentines day, so I will probably post lots of lingerie. In the mean time, chaps, just look to the (proper fit) Rosie Huntington Whiteley collection at M&S for a failsafe gift for your lady friend. Add some Champagne truffles and you're on to a winner.
If you follow me on Twitter or whatever, you may know that I have been pretty busy with my university project. VIRTUE is a magazine pulling together fashion and wellness content for young, professional women who seek to look as good as they feel. It bridges the gap between my two passions without sacrificing on style and substance. It is a very exciting project to be working on, and I can't wait to share the final product with you this Summer.
So, instead of a generic SS14 post, today I am going to share a few great gym kit buys to get you feeling fit for February.
This month, if we are lucky, the media will move on from their constant chants of "DETOX DETOX DETOX", at least until bikini body panic ensues. Still, this is no reason for all your hard New Years' work to go to waste. If anything, you ought to kick it up a gear. Remember, keeping fit is nothing to do with the number on the scales- it is about how you feel.
I can say in all honestly that getting fit was the best thing I ever did, and I am sure many of you will wholeheartedly agree.
So if your motivation is dwindling, here are a few bold sportswear pieces to perk you up, alongside a couple of tips to help you get the most from your regime this month:
1. Eat Like a Skinny Bitch If you don't follow @russellSBC on Instagram and @thesbcollective on Twitter now, then you probably should, like, now. The account is essentially a constant stream of motivation, along with some fantastic quotes and killer recipes from the trainer du jour and Danielle Copperman, who shares her recipes over at Model Mange Tout. Russell advocates a protein rich diet for his various Skinny Bitches- including Millie Mackintosh, Sam Rollinson and many-a top fashion ed- to work alongside his fierce workout regime.
2. Get Outdoors Living in London, I am totally spoiled for choice when it comes to parks and gardens, and I even have one of London's biggest parks right on my doorstep. That said, I have always been a little apprehensive about training outdoors. It's so cold, it's usually wet, but if you can get past that, exercising outdoors is the best way to start the day, boosting endorphins and refreshing the body. Last week I decided to start running round the common daily, and it has made a real difference to my fitness levels already. If you do one thing differently in February, get out your gym comfort zone.
3. Cook Up a Snack I can now add "using the oven" to my list of talents. Though I am not quite Nigella (yet), throughout January I have been baking some pretty delicious pre and post workout treats. Cutting out grains, as is SBC gospel, I have been experimenting with quinoa flakes in baking, whipping up a good few batches of my super simple low cal crackers. To make about four or five biscuits, all you need to do is mix three tablespoons of quinoa flakes (or oats, though grains are hard to digest for many, and quinoa is gentler on the stomach) with one whole egg or two egg whites. You can then run riot with additions. For something sweet but virtuous I like adding 2 tsps of raw cocoa powder, a generous tsp of moreish Naturya cocoa nibs, a tsp of Naturya maca powder and 2 tsps of stevia. For a savoury cracker that works well with mashed spiced avocado and soup, try adding 2 tsps of Naturya spirulina, a generous sprinkling of cayenne pepper, a tbsp of hemp seeds (such a good source of protein) and a touch of turmeric. Mix it all up, grease a baking tray with a little Lucy Bees coconut oil and spoon on the mixture. You can make your crackers squares, sticks, circles- whatever takes your fancy (I personally like to waste time and make mine into cutesy chocolate hearts)- or you can make one big cracker which can be used as a pizza-esque base. Put in the oven at a medium heat then leave for 15-20 minutes, checking now and again. It's trial and error with these bad boys- don't overdo the stevia... ever- but the results are Mary Berry worthy (ish).
4. Look Good, Feel Good If you find yourself lacking gym motivation, it is high time to get your kit in gear. Spring clean your gym bag by binning your comfy leggings and baggy tees, and replacing them with some sharp, stylish sportswear in trend-led colours. Oh, and get yourself some great trainers- they make a world of difference... There's something I never thought I would say.
*particularly given that I have been dating the majority of my work XXth of January 2013- ignorance is bliss, I was 19 then.
1. H&M Gold Running Tights £34.99 here
2. Plenish Cleanse Sweet Sexy Greens Juice (available online here)
3. Nike FuelBand SE £129 here
4, 5 and 6. Nike Free Run Sneakers - customize your own here from £115
7. Stella McCartney for Adidas Climalite Run Stretch and Mesh Tank £65 at Net-a-Porter here
8. H&M Gold Reversible Running Jacket £69.99 here
9. Every Second Counts Game Changer crop in raspberry pink and deep papaya £41 here