Paleo Banana & Rhubarb Muffins

I don’t know why, but every time I try and make Paleo-friendly, coconut flour based muffins I always get the quantities off or I forget something – this doesn’t usually hamper the outcome too much, but it is nice to finally get it spot on. Today, I got it spot on. I had rhubarb and 2 over ripe bananas floating about which desperately needed consuming but were clearly past being ok to eat raw. So; this here is the culmination of my overripe fruit, my craving for coconut flour, and a simple love for trying new things. Honestly, someone should stop me sometimes, I feel like a mad scientist thats been let loose on the kitchen. These are pretty good, if I do say so myself.

muffins

Rhubarb & Banana Coconut Flour Muffins

Makes roughly 10 – 12 muffins, can be frozen.

  • 1 cup chopped Rhubarb
  •  1/4 cup, pitted, finely chopped Date
  •  4 large Eggs / 5 medium eggs
  •  2 mashed Bananas
  •  1/4 cup Coconut Cream
  •  2 tbsp Maple Syrup or Agave
  •  2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  •  1/2 tsp Almond Extract
  •  1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
  •  1 tsp Baking Powder
  •  30g   Chia Seeds
  •  90g Coconut Flour
  • You can add a few nuts or dried fruit if you wish, but the chia seeds are quite good on their own 🙂

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Grease a 12 hole muffin pan. In a large bowl, mix dates with rhubarb and add enough hot water to cover. Leave for about 5 minutes (to soften).
In another bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients until combined. Drain dates and rhubarb, and stir into muffin batter.
Evenly distribute into 12 muffin pan, and bake 12-18 minutes. Remove from over and leave to stand until cook enough to handle. Remove muffins  from muffin pan and cool on a wire rack.

Simple, and yet highly effective!!

 

EIGHT LIFE – The Dream

It’s been a long road but somehow I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, the last few weeks have been incredibly busy and I am finally beginning to look like I may need a holiday. In fact, scratch that, if I DON’T get a holiday some time in the very near future I may just crumble. Recently – as you may have noticed by the lack of posts – I have been otherwise engaged. I’ve been quietly working away at a project I feel very strongly about indeed; it’s the culmination of my passions into a unique company (my own business) which serves to provide the highest level of Nutritional, Fitness and Health solutions to it’s clientèle, act as an outlet for more of my weird and wonderful ramblings (a more fitness related blog) but which will also serve a higher purpose by providing a community space where people can come together, share ideas and information, create new and inspiring projects and work together to find ways of achieving their goals and help others.

EIGHT

Along my journey over the past 8 months I have met some incredible and inspiring people; people who are not only immensely knowledgeable and talented at what they do, but who genuinely want to help others through their work. In an industry filled with ‘pretenders’ and narcissists, I find it comforting to know that there are so many people who are real and who want to make a difference. It’s restored my faith in the human race and in the health and fitness industry; I want to do my bit to further this by bringing these people together and finding ways in which we can use our combined knowledge and strength to make positive changes. Not only to tackle issues in sports, health and fitness; but also to find ways to tackle bigger global issues which we feel passionately about. There is strength in numbers, have no doubt. There are isolated communities within the sporting world who are immensely strong – now imagine if they could come together, how strong would they be then?

‘I have a dream!’ – This is all going to sound so very cliche; yes, but it’s true. I have a dream, that one day bridges will be built to secure the future of the human race and to improve the outlook for the future of our planet; not for our sakes, but for the sake of our children. There are such a vast number of issues facing us every day, human issues and environmental issues, social, economic issues and global issues that are detrimental to the human race; to our health and well being and to the future of our planet. It amazes me how much time we spend worrying about ourselves when we could be helping others or helping make a change to our surroundings that will enable future generations to live better lives than we do. We forget that what we have is incredibly precious and that it is fragile; we see the world as a robust giant that will weather any storm, and we view our bodies the same way – as indestructible forces which can sustain all the abuse we inflict upon them. We take for granted the natural gifts we have been given; our bodies, our food, our lives and the natural beauty of the world around us. Perhaps we ought to do a little more to preserve these things so that we can enjoy them as they were made to be, and so that there is a chance of a future for our race and our planet?

Below you will see my ‘intention-wall’ or ‘manifesto’ which explains what we’re all about! Oh, and the website will be live soooon! eight life

manifesto

Spin, Lift, Eat. @ Lomax PT

Last week a few of us girls were treated to an amazing day out Lomax PT – one of favourite little gyms in South West London. After a 45 minute Real Ryder spin class and a short workout in the gym, we were then treated to an amazing healthy lunch and delicious smoothies in the cafe – all in all, a pretty good Girls Day Out, and a nice chance to catch up with two of my favourite fitness and fashion bloggers Charli Cohen and Kaisa Larkas – check those ladies out, they are both pretty awesome! So, a little bit more about the gym in question, since I think you all should know.

LOMAXPT

If you don’t know what Real Ryder is, you should. If you live in London, enjoy working out  and you don’t know Lomax PT, which rock have you been living under? Gyms are gyms, and personal training studios are like micro-gyms with less stuff, fewer people and more personal attention. Lomax PT in Chelsea, London, offer a uniquely different take on things. There are no membership fees, there are no half-educated gym instructors and there are no waiting lines for machines; in fact, there aren’t really any machines to speak of (unless you count the spin bikes). The gym itself is designed in pods, each one containing everything you need for a balanced workout from free weights, a squat rack and bench, to TRX bands, olympic rings and a whole list of functional kit that’s really easy to use. The beauty is, all this comes in at £10 per hour for individual’pod’  hire and you will never have to wait for another machine again! Not only that, but the trainers who work here are the best team I’ve ever met, their unique and combined knowledge is unsurpassed, and their enthusiasm and love for what they do shows in their work. The group classes here are the most fun you are ever likely to have in a gym; they offer a unique ‘Blast Class’ with up to 4 people in each class, which means you get the personal attention of the instructor. They also offer Reformer Pilates and the now infamous Real Ryder spin classes (keep reading below) as well as a long list of complimentary therapies such as massage, acupuncture, osteopathy,  life coaching and professional nutritional therapy. Then there’s the Cafe; the food here goes beyond ‘healthy eating,’ it’s mouth-wateringly good while still maintaining completely balanced nutrition and a variety which caters to all possible dietary requirements. The ethos here is spot-on; it’s all about “Bespoke Fitness, Nutrition & Wellbeing.”

RealRyder1

What’s Real Ryder, I hear you ask? Spin classes are old school, old hat, boring and tedious, right? Not so! Lomax and Real Ryder are bringing the sexy back to spin classes, these bikes move, shake and make you work harder than most hardcore gym classes out there, while they put your core and your coordination to the test. What you’ve got here is a bike that moves from side to side and has adjustable resistance to ensure that you are getting the closest possible workout to actually being out there on your bike, only you can do it from the warm and comfortable confines of the gym. In winter, in London, that is a HUGE plus. Depending on whose teaching, the classes do vary – my devil-in-disguise, the gorgeous Hilary Bass-Rifkin, is probably my favourite PT in London and is a demon on a Real Ryder bike – be warned, this lady will put you through your paces. This is an all over workout that you really need to try and even if you really hate spin classes, this will probably change your mind. When you’re done there you can sneak upstairs and try one of the blast classes, have an hour long PT session or just hire a pod and hit the weights all on your own. Then when all that’s done, head downstairs for a post-workout pleasure indulgence in the cafe. The food at The Cafe at Lomax is amazing. I don’t care if you don’t even come here to work out, at least come and check out the goodies on offer. They have smoothies, juices, salads and the best damn turkey meatballs and pasta-free lasagne (made with aubergine layers) in town.

Lomax

LOMAX BESPOKE FITNESS, NUTRITION & WELLBEING | www.lomaxpt.comthelomaxway@lomaxpt.com | 08715 120 770

 

Whole 30 Recap

I know I stopped documenting the progress of my Whole 30 half way through – I’ve been madly busy getting the new blog ready to launch in May and my training has taken a steep curve. Thankfully it’s all going well. In the mean time I figured I best do a quick recap and let you all know how it went. I am happy with the result but feel that with better planning and consistency I could achieve a lot more. I plan to do my second Whole 30 in May this year, hopefully with even better results!

My Whole 30 journey has been a long and tough road, I slipped up badly, I started again; had highs and lows, and for every bad day there was an equally awesome day. I finished, just. Firstly, I need to thank Dallas and Melissa Hartwig for their awesome book “it starts with food”, which was there to remind me of all the reasons I was doing this every time I felt like giving up. I had people along the way who doubted me, who thought I was insane, and almost every person in my life tried to get my to veer off course at every opportunity they had. I may have easily fallen down on any one of the bad days I had, but I didn’t; I’ve noticed as I get older that my resilience, determination and willpower have grown in leaps and bounds – I still have a way to go, but a former me would have given up in the first week of the Whole 30.

WHOLE30 finished

The benefits of the Whole 30 were numerous; my sugar cravings are completely gone; I no longer find baked goods (even Paleo ones) nearly as attractive as I once did and am therefore feeling lighter as a result of not eating them. I have found an altogether healthier love of food and am thoroughly enjoying the super clean diet, long may this continue! My energy levels, although up and down at first, stabilised to a consistent level I have never felt before, keeping me balanced and ready for anything. As a result, my training has improved markedly and I feel stronger and fitter than I have in quite some time.

I think everyone should try the whole 30 at least once. I honestly believe it will benefit your life no matter who you are. It takes a bit of courage and a lot of willpower, but the end result goes beyond simple ‘nutrition’ or ‘diet’ – it changes who you are and your relationship with food for the long run. This is not a quick fix, and it is not a ‘one size fits all’ solution. It’s personal, it’s exactly what YOU need as an individual and it is likely to benefit your health for the rest of your life. Please don’t take my word for it, go out and try it yourself – but read the book first, because if I haven’t managed to convince you, then this definitely will.

 

Making a Change – My Top 5 Motivational Strategies

Motivation is the key; its the deciding factor in whether or not you’re going to make it out the door at 6 in the morning when it’s still dark and bitterly cold outside, whether you make it to the gym in the evening after a long day at work or find the strength to keep going when you hit the proverbial ‘wall’; its the only thing that’s going to help you face the music, get up, put your feet on the ground and keep moving when everything in you wants to give up.

Motivation. Lets talk about motivation for a moment.  What does it mean to you? Are you motivated? How can you improve your motivation?

I’ve come up with a few ideas about how to help keep myself motivated recently, some have worked, others haven’t, but I’m hoping that one, if not more of these, might apply to you. Or if not, at least it will give you something to think about and hopefully spur you on to find your own motivation. One piece of advice I can give you – Don’t Give Up, no matter how hard that road you’re on seems, don’t give up, because the pain you’re going through now and the battle you’re fighting in your mind will all be worth it in the end.

The race is long, and in the end it’s only with yourself.

Motivational Strategy #1 – Set Goals and then Break Them Down

One thing I’ve noticed a lot of us get wrong is not that we don’t set goals, but that we set unrealistic goals or unrealistic time frames. Not only that, but we set such enormous goals that we forget to focus on the immediate future and then become impatient and are disappointed with the length of time it takes to see improvement.

Take the time to break your goals down into smaller segments which are achievable in the short term; each time you reach one of these smaller goals you will feel a sense of achievement and it will encourage you to keep going. Reward yourself every time you reach one of these smaller goals!

Don’t be too hard on yourself – nobody is perfect, the only thing you can do is turn up and do your best; because at the end of the day if you turn up, you’re already half way there!

Motivational Strategy #2 – Have Fun

Don’t take yourself too seriously! Whatever you love doing, whatever you enjoy most in life be it music or friends or setting yourself challenges, use it to your advantage by integrating it into a part of your training. Train with someone you can have a laugh with (and learn to laugh at yourself). Listen to music if it helps you or train in the park if you prefer to be outdoors.

Maybe even take on some extra activities, try something new that you think looks like fun like a team sport or ice skating, horse riding, tennis or swimming – it will help break up your usual training and make it feel less monotonous, and you will still be getting active and doing something good for yourself.

Motivation

Motivational Strategy #3 – Go It Alone

Sometimes training can give you some much needed alone time if work and home life is a bit hectic and you just need some breathing space. It’s the one thing I love about running, there’s just me and the road, I don’t have anyone to answer to and I don’t have to worry about what anyone else is doing.

Take a time-out from the stresses of life, turn your phone off, leave it at home and just get out there and do something that gets the blood pumping. It doesn’t matter if you’re the kind of person that wants to go take your frustrations out on a punching bag, or chill out in a gentle yoga session. Find something to restore the calm in your life and give yourself time alone.

Motivational Strategy #4 – Get Social

If you get enough alone time already, find a gym buddy or join a club; when you have other people counting on you to be somewhere at a certain time, you’re less likely to skip it. There are more and more amazing fitness groups, running clubs, healthy social clubs and activities opening up all over the place these days that you would be hard pressed NOT to be able to find one near you!

Motivational Strategy #5 – Change the Way You Think

Easier said than done, I know. Think of it this way; if you change your attitude towards fitness, you will change your actions! This is about making a lifestyle change, and that takes time; exercise should never be a chore – yes, it’s going to be damn hard some days, but if you keep reminding yourself of all the reasons why you started this in the first place and of all the goals you have yet to reach, slowly you will begin to change the way you see things.

Whatever mental triggers work for you, use them. If you need to have post-it notes and pictures on every wall in your house with motivational cues then do that! If you need reminders set on your phone, then set them. Go out and learn, take in as much information as you can about the things that interest you and then use the information to your advantage. Surround yourself with positive people and positive thoughts and remember, you’ve already started, you took the first step; hell, you may have taken several steps, hundreds even. So why stop now? Don’t ever give up; remember, it will be worth it in the end.