I’M MOVING!!!!

Hey all! I know you might be wondering WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED to all the blogging that used to go down here. Well, things have changed a whole hell of a lot for me recently and I have closed http://www.eightlife.co.uk and shut the doors on my nutritional practice to focus on a bigger picture.

The good news is that everything on the site, as well as this here blog, will be moving over to WWW.FAITHSHORNEY.COM in September because I’m starting an awesome new project.

In summer 2015 I will be taking on a momentous challenge to travel the 18,000 miles from London to Cape Town by human powered modes of transport (swim, bike, run, kayak, row etc) all in the name of humanity and sustainability. I will be attempting to break a few world records along the way and will be making an epic documentary about innovation and sustainability in Africa. In the mean time I will be taking on a bunch of smaller challenges and taking you all along for the ride, so please do come over, follow the journey and get involved.

Dream

So… keep your eyes peeled for awesome updates about what’s going down. You will be able to follow my journey from December when the website should go LIVE. I will be documenting my training right up until the day I leave and we’ll be running some pretty rad contests on the site too so don’t miss out! There will be heaps of nutrition and training information and you can track my movements next year and all the awesome programmes we’re putting together to get people healthier and more active; there will be daily blogs as well as a daily video log so you can all laugh at me or cry with me as I attempt to take on these crazy challenges. Hope it inspires, or least entertains.

If you want to get in touch in the mean time or you have questions about what I’m up to, just fill in this here form thingy and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

 

Almost-Paleo Goodness Granola

This has probably taken me far too long to write but I am finally getting to it. This is, by far, the best granola recipe I have ever made; purely by accident. The best thing about though, is that it’s almost-paleo; if you’re a strict paleo eater I would avoid the quinoa flakes but it you don’t mind them then they really do add quite a lot to the mix.

Lots of recipes going down at the moment, or at least whenever I find time to do them – hope you all like ’em! I will be starting a new quest soon… to review the top Paleo-Friendly and Healthiest restaurants in London and surrounding areas. Hoping to do more exploring further afield too, but it will have to wait until I have more time. In the meantime however, please enjoy the paleo explorations brought to you from the confines of my somewhat over used kitchen!

Paleo Granola

  • 1/4 cup Quinoa flakes
  • 1/4 cup Hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup Macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup flaked almonds
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1/4 cup ground almond
  • 1/4 cup mixed seeds
  • 4 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup flaked coconut
  • 1/4 cup dessicated coconut
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup currants
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 2 tbsp raw honey
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (preferably virgin, cold pressed, organic – LucyBee is the best)

Right Peeps, this one is simples. Heat oven to 180 and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.

Mix all dry ingredients in a big bowl add 1/4 cup of oats or an extra 1/4 cup of quinoa flakes if you want something a with higher carb content, or leave them out completely if you’re a strict Paleo eater! You can also add 1 scoop of your favourite protein powder if you wish.

Mix the almond butter, honey and coconut oil in a small milk pan and warm on a gentle heat until its all nice and liquid. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix well. Tip the whole lot onto the baking tray and spread evenly. Don’t squish it down or it will stick together. Bake in the oven for 12 – 15 minutes. turn oven off but leave the tray in for a further 10 minutes to dry out. Remove from the oven, break it up a bit if it’s all stuck together, leave it to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

There you have it. Simples right? For Lucy Bee Coconut Oil check out their website http://www.lucybee.co/

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

 

Eating Out Dilemmas

Eating out on a Whole 30 can be challenging; what’s made it particularly difficult are some of the restaurant waiting staff I have encountered on my recent culinary journeys. A good restaurant with well trained waiting staff who are helpful and understanding can make a world of difference when trying to enquire about the possible dairy and grains which might be lurking inside an apparently harmless, seemingly whole 30 compliant meal. You can’t be too careful when it comes to these hidden nasties and believe me, there are many more than you might think. This doesn’t just apply to eating out when on a Whole 30, anyone who eats a relatively Paleo diet will find that certain restaurants cater better to our fairly basic food requirements than others. It’s easy enough to leave out all the simple carbs, but sugars and dairy hide in the most unlikely places and can sometimes be tough to spot on a menu description; I mean it’s not like you can simply read an ingredients list from the packaging.

#Whole8

A lot of waiting staff, if they don’t know the exact content of a meal, will be kind enough to ask the kitchen and help you on your way to making the right choice; exceptional waiting staff will know the answers, make alternative suggestions or advise the kitchen to leave out certain parts of the meal to keep within your specifications. These are rare and extremely welcome when on a Whole 30; the issue I have is when I have to fork out a reasonable chunk of change to dine out at a ‘good’ restaurant, only to encounter unhelpful, uninformed and sometimes rude waiting staff who are simply unaware of what goes into each dish and who are unable or unwilling to meet your requirements.

Sunday lunch (day 8 of the Whole30) was a wonderfully simple meal at Dean Street Townhouse where I experienced some of the most attentive and extremely helpful waiting staff I’ve come across during the Whole 30. Monday night’s dinner was quite the opposite; I took my mum out for a quiet dinner at Villandry on Great Portland Street where the waiting staff were not only rude and inattentive, but had absolutely no idea what each dish contained, nor did they make any effort to assist in obtaining any information from the kitchen. Quite besides the food lacking in flavour, the entire experience made it quite difficult to stomach the £60.00 bill for only a few simple starters. Disappointing, to say the very least.

#Whole7

To recap the last few days of my Whole 30:

Day 7: Brunch of Scrambled eggs served with sauteed kale, mushroom and courgette and half an avocado. An early dinner of leftover Tricolore Paleo Pie to finish off the day, and a banana somewhere in the middle to keep me going on a lazy Saturday!

Day 8: Brunch of poached eggs with almond milk poached smoked haddock; simple and satisfying. Having arrived back in London in time for a late lunch I decided to stop by Dean Street Townhouse for an amazing Sunday Lunch which consisted of a smoked salmon and pickled cucumber starter, followed by Sea trout served with fennel, cockles and monks beard (a type of chicory); aside from having to remove the butter from the lemon sauce, the entire meal was Whole 30 friendly and utterly delicious. A big thank you to the fantastic waiting staff for their patience and helpfulness.

Day 9: Monday morning began with a gentle 15km run – long and slow and utterly fabulous in the early dawn watching the sun rise over the Thames. Sunrise is my favourite time of day for running because even on grey and cloudy days, somehow the sunrise still manages to find it’s way through the clouds and it never ceases to amaze me how incredible nature can be at the most unexpected moments. Breakfast was the usual green smoothie, followed by half a grapefruit and then a plate of scrambled egg and avocado. Light and protein packed for post run refuelling. Lunch consisted of very simple steamed broccoli, bean sprouts and spinach topped with a small grilled salmon fillet. Dinner out at Villandry – almost inedible duck breast salad, flavourless salmon tartare and overcooked lemongrass prawns with a side of equally undercooked green beans.

 

Keeping it Healthy at Christmas

No, I’m not joking, I know it sounds completely absurd to even try to contemplate the idea of having a healthy Christmas, but just imagine it for a moment. If you managed a healthy Christmas holiday, would facing January be easier? I don’t know about you, but for me Christmas has always been the time of year I eat and drink more in a single month than I do across all other months of the year put together. By the time January rolls around I feel lethargic and heavy and the thought of exercise seems a million miles away, not least because January is by far the coldest month of the year and being outside in my running shoes sounds particularly painful in sub-zero temperatures. If I could be healthier at Christmas then perhaps and I could see my way through a super healthy January without the usual pain and discomfort? I suppose I’ll never know unless I try. I’ve decided that instead of setting over-optimistic goals, I will simply make time for exercise at least 3 times a week over December and I will try to limit the Christmas meals and drinking to weekends and special nights out – of which I’m hoping there won’t be too many. I realise it is the silly season and one should therefore plan for the unplanned events and super silly situations one invariable finds oneself in during this particularly silly and over indulgent time of year. One? I’m using silly language and making very little sense…. and so it begins.

Healthy Xmas

I will be travelling a bit over the Christmas period which often makes this more difficult, so I have decided I will make it my mission to try some new and interesting classes at gyms in both New York and London in order to avoid getting stuck in holiday mode. The problem I have at Christmas is that it’s so bloody cold; I love running and I love exercising when I can be outside but I have always had a passionate dislike of gyms and gym goers (sorry to lump you all together but there are some real ego-maniacs in most gyms), but when it gets cold I simply DO NOT want to be outside in the pissing rain trying to keep warm by running harder and faster and being completely exhausted and miserable by the end of the run. It simply destroys my love of running. I was not built for cold climates but it seems I have made the decision to live in one and although London is a wonderful city, it does not make up for the fact that the winters here are quite inhospitable for Africans like me who enjoy the outdoors. I digress; my point is that there seems to be a movement occurring in London at the moment; all of sudden there are lots and lots of interesting and fun classes taking place in all sorts of nondescript locations and non-gym type establishments across the city in a battle to fight the mundane, and positively outdated, views of what exercise and going to the gym are all about. I, for one, absolutely LOVE the fact that this movement is taking place, and I will be making it my mission to try as many of them as humanly possible throughout 2013 in support of all the awesome people making this happen. For now I will just pick a few to get me going over Christmas. Oh, and if you are also looking for new and interesting classes in London, just check out FitnessFreak.com – they have hundreds of listings in all locations of London that cover all possible fitness personalities.

Winter Warmers at Pollen Street Social

A recent ‘girls day out’ in London with mum forced me back into foodie mode; I had promised I’d take her somewhere new, and with a growing list of still-to-try restaurants and a host of lunch offers from chefs around town, the decision making process had become more than a little confusing. After much deliberation and some rather heated discussions with myself (no, I’m not crazy) I finally decided on Pollen Street Social, the brainchild and recent venture of top chef Jason Atherton; previously of the Gordon Ramsay Group and El Bulli. I’d heard some fantastic reviews of Pollen Street and had been meaning to go for a long time; however, living in Africa over the past year and a half has made this quite a challenge, as you might imagine. It feels good to be back in London, and although I miss the African sunshine, there is something to be said for the energy in London and the amazing food culture and vast array of wonderful restaurants in this city. Jason Atherton has been making some serious noise over the past few years and has had food critics and food lovers singing his praises more and more; in accordance with his growing popularity his flagship restaurant is still packed to the rafters after more than 18 months since it first opened its doors in April 2011. The interior is calming, clean, traditionally laid out and smart without being stuffy; the lunchtime clientèle consists mostly of business lunch groups, older couples, a few ladies lunches and several out-of-towners, which lends a nice buzz and an air of sophistication to the place – although I’m sure this is largely due to it’s fabulous central London location, mere metres from the hustle and bustle of Regent Street.

PollenSt1

The food itself is simple, understated and yet fabulously indulgent; the subtlety of the flavours and clean, uncomplicated presentation make for an altogether pleasurable experience. The staff at Pollen Street are exceptionally knowledgeable, and even the unusual wine list is well presented and thoroughly explained. To start I ordered the Jerusalem Artichoke Soup served with braised roast duck leg, sautéed mushrooms and truffle oil (I find it hard to turn down anything with ‘mushrooms’ and ‘truffle’ in the description); the contrasting lightness of the soup and richness of the roast duck and truffle were surprising and delightful at the same time, as were the contrasting textures of the crunchy artichoke and soft mushrooms. The dish was portioned perfectly and the entire experience left me wanting more; my mothers starter however, left something to be desired. Not quite what I was expecting, the oily mackerel itself was lovely but the accompanying flavours were lacking a certain sharpness, and the ‘smoked’ cucumber was a little too subtle. It seems there is a fine line between subtle flavouring and blandness, and while I wouldn’t go so far as to call it bland, I do think it could use a little more consideration.

PollenSt2

Following this fantastic start to the meal, I ordered the Roast Hake with lemon conserve; I felt in need of some something light and refreshing to counter the rich flavouring of the artichoke soup I had just devoured. The fish was beautifully cooked and although the citrus flavouring was not a sharp as I had been expecting, the tiny capers served with the dish managed to balance the whole thing rather nicely. My only complaint is that the potato purée the fish was served on was completely unnecessary and had clearly been over-puréed as it was thick and sticky from the release of the starch.  The Beef fillet dish my mother ordered was melt-in-mouth, orgasm-inducingly tender and flavoursome, the deeply rich sauce it was served with was silky-smooth and perfectly balanced, and the carrots were cooked exactly as they should be; again, the only complaint was the potato purée side which let the dish down just a little, although being served on the side made it easier to avoid and it really is a small price to pay considering the high standard of the rest of the meal. Following lunch I caught up with the charming  Jason Atherton and thanked him for the fabulous meal; it’s always nice to see the Head Chef in his place of work, and so rare these days among the ‘celebrity’ chefs as so many of them seem to be more preoccupied with stardom than keeping an eye on their kitchens. The experience was altogether an enjoyable one and we will definitely be back; the restaurant is reasonably priced and the staff here make the entire experience extremely relaxing. I hear the tasting menu they serve in the evening is really what the place is all about, so if you are going to go then perhaps that would be the better choice.

Pollen Street Social | http://www.pollenstreetsocial.com | 8 Pollen Street  London, Greater London W1S 1NQ | 020 7290 7600

PUREARTH Juice Cleanse – Day 7

Bananas, today I thought of nothing besides bananas. I thought about bananas because I was cold, tired, and thought that perhaps if I ate only a banana that I would a) feel a lot better, and b) that it wouldn’t really be cheating because it’s only one banana and bananas are fruit. No, I didn’t eat a banana; instead I beat that banana craving right out of my head. I have been true to my word and stuck it out, even though today is my Birthday and I want nothing more than to devour an entire slab of rich and sticky chocolate cake; which is unusual since I’m not the biggest fan of chocolate cake. This is neither here nor there however; the point is, today was tough. This was, I’m fairly certain, due to the fact that I had in the back of mind, the niggling thought that I could begin reintroducing food to my life tomorrow, and since I’m impatient by nature, I naturally wanted tomorrow to be today. The wait is almost over; almost, but not quite.

It’s been a very cleansing week, and one I am proud to say I have completed with flying colours; no cheating and no issues of any kind, or at least none that I can think of. Although I’m told my moods have not always been as consistent as I thought. I’ve really enjoyed the experience and although it seemed daunting and almost impossible to begin with, it does get easier, it isn’t the Everest I though it would be and I’ve come through the other side with an entirely new perspective on cleansing. I’d like to try a longer cleanse at some point, but I might wait a while as I think it would be a really great thing to do at the end of winter when my body really needs it again. It’s made me appreciate food in an entirely new way, it’s given me a chance to relax and take some time out for myself without hard exercise, and it’s helped to restore a little balance to my life. I began with no expectations and a lot of self-doubt, I have found out more about myself through this than I have during some of my hardest runs, and I have left with a sense of pride.

Not only has this been extremely beneficial physically – I have a glowing complexion, have lost a few pounds of excess water and fat, have stronger and healthier hair and nails and feel light as air – but the mental benefits have been equally profound and I really couldn’t ask for more. So, to sum this experience up in as few words as possible; it’s been emotional, it’s been fun, it’s been tough and it’s  definitely worth a try. No regrets. I have to thank the amazing Angelina, co-owner of PurEarth alongside the beautiful Tenna, who has made my journey that much more enjoyable with her constant support and her unstoppable enthusiasm; you are a diamond and I couldn’t have done it without you! If you’re thinking about doing a cleanse, this is definitely the one to try; the personal attention and exceptional service make it a much smoother ride, and the juices taste pretty fantastic.

PUREARTH | http://www.purearth.co.uk | cleanse@purearth.co.uk | Tenna +44 7769 251 782 | Angelina +44 7875 263 101