body positivity

In Need of Some Workout Motivation?

In Need of Some Workout Motivation?

Ever find yourself hunting for that desire to go and workout? Searching for a reason to get up early and go for a run? Longing for that kick that will get you into a gym routine? You and 100% of the population feel that way sometimes.  Here I’m going to talk to you about that shiny buzzword known as motivation – the electricity that gets us out of bed and on the pursuit of our goals. How do we get hold of it? How do we use it to our advantage and most importantly, how do we keep it if we find it?

It all starts with you. Your motivation process is going to be completely unique to you. That glorious motivation that you want lies within you already. To find it we need to observe and become aware of what we see and what we hear to reprogramme our thoughts, away from any negative ones, towards positive ones.

SO, LET’S GO LOOKING FOR IT.

The Correlation Between Body Image and Our use of Social Media.

The Correlation Between Body Image and Our use of Social Media.

Body image is something very personal to each and every person. By definition, it is the perception that we have of our physical self and the thoughts and feelings that arise from that perception. These feelings can be positive, negative or both, and are heavily influenced by individual and environmental factors. So, what does that mean? We aren’t born hating our human containers, so, therefore, it’s something that we must inherit, grow and learn over time by messaging that may be subliminal or otherwise, that then go on to shape our reality.

What’s in Your Wellbeing Toolkit?

What’s in Your Wellbeing Toolkit?

I was recently asking during a podcast interview with Travis Barton what was in my wellbeing toolkit so it got me thinking. I’ve spent a lot of time over the last few years immersed (read completely down the rabbit hole and not coming out anytime soon) in learning about different wellbeing practices, techniques and working with a wide spectrum of practitioners. And much like anything, there’s been a huge amount of trial and error within that exploration. Some experiences have been wonderful, even life changing, and others, what have felt like a total waste of time and money. Whilst in reality, there’s no such thing, simply lessons learnt and experiences had, which had not met my own personal expectations of what that wellness modality or practitioner could or should have offered me. What is should anyway? A conversation for another time perhaps. Back to our wellbeing toolkits…

What is Emotional Anatomy?

What is Emotional Anatomy?

Our minds and bodies are interconnected. The condition of one invariably affects the condition of the other. Just as we store and hold onto emotions in the mind, we do too, in the body.

When our mind is clear we give clear signals to the body, but when our minds are heavy and unfocused, that ripples throughout the body. We create confusion, shallow breathing and tension in the body which can leave us feeling disconnected, often without knowing why.

Why It's Not Okay to Body Shame...

Words By Frou Williams.

I want to talk about body shaming. A massive part of what I do with my clients is exploring body image and self esteem, it's something I've studied in extensive detail and something I believe is absolutely crucial to healing, personal growth and to allow ourselves to be truly open to 'love' whether that's love of oneself and/or others. It's something I'm deeply passionate about.

I want to talk about body shaming. A massive part of what I do with my clients is exploring body image and self esteem, it's something I've studied in extensive detail and something I believe is absolutely crucial to healing, personal growth and to allow ourselves to be truly open to 'love' whether that's love of oneself and/or others. It's something I'm deeply passionate about. It's the very reason I created my company Death By Lycra Collective - From the very core of my being I believe in the empowerment of spirit.

By working together as collective we create the space for individual empowerment. That means helping women to feel more at ease in their own skin, embracing and being proud of the bodies they rock regardless of shape or size. By looking past the exterior. Body image and self esteem are incredibly fragile, it can quite literally make or break another being. It's one of the biggest psychological issues we face in our modern society and it's certainly no laughing matter. 

So what is body shaming? The definition of body shaming is the practice of making critical and potentially humiliating comments about a person's body. 

We all know that we live in a culture that is finely tuned at telling us we're not good enough, that we need to fix and make better. It's never been this intense or this relentless. It's exhausting. And that's just the messages from the media, that doesn't even take into account the pressures we put on ourselves or that we receive from other people.

It makes me incredibly sad that other people feel the need to comment or judge other people based on their physical appearance alone when they know nothing of that person's inner struggles or demons they may be facing. They know not who that woman is when she is at home surrounded by family, what she contributes to society, what lights her up and fills her soul, what ailments she might have had or even how much courage it may take just to leave the house on any given day. By not looking past her physical appearance you take that away from her.

There's a series of consequences to this way of thinking, eating disorders for one but it can also lead to an increased risk of depression, anxiety and social isolation.
And whilst that may be largely as a result of what a lot of the intense media focus has done that does not make it okay. We should be building each other up and encouraging each other, not tearing each other apart. 

How we take care of ourselves is our billboard to the world. I'm not just talking about having abs or a tight ass but by being someone who laughs, cries, embraces their flaws, focuses on what they are passionate about, by being a good person, surrounding themselves with people who make them feel good, and by being real. Having a six pack has nothing to do with happiness or self worth. 

Happiness comes in all shapes and sizes. And happiness is what looks good on people, celebrating your body for what it can do, by refusing to comment on others’ physical appearances and by not letting other people bring you down. Because surely the best billboard for 'wellbeing' is contentment in self.

How to Balance Your Energy...

Why do we Stretch?

✖️Stretching helps to increase range of motion and to open the body,
✖️Releasing any tension in the muscles,
✖️Relaxes the mind.

Energy balancing stretching is primarily about embodiment - (Nourishment, Movement, Presence, Sensuality, Nature) and exploring different ways that you can be more “in your body.”

Being in the body, inhabiting it, feeling it, sensing it, knowing it, being curious about it, noticing it, exploring all the sensations of bodily existence, and letting the body speak to you on its own terms.

This last fortnight I've been working with various clients on different ways to address adrenal fatigue. Hormones are imbalanced, the body can suffer from hypoglycemia, a weakened immune system, foggy thinking and quite often depression. In order to overcome adrenal fatigue you need to follow a well thought out recovery exercise programme but the following two stretching exercises are great grounding starting points - put on some relaxing music and try to tune into what feels good when you move in your body.

Legs Up the Wall:

▫️Lie on your back with the edge of your bum touching a wall. 
▫️Feel free to elevate your hips with a pillow if more comfortable. 
▫️Walk your feet up the wall until your legs are fully extended. 
▫️Breathe. 
▫️Try to relax. 
▫️When you notice your mind wandering (it will) try to be an observer of your thoughts. As though you were watching yourself from a distance. Having music helps as you can focus on the beat. No crazy dubstep tunes though please 😬🤔
▫️Stay in this position anywhere from 2-15 minutes.

Beginners Bridge:

▫️Lie on back, bring knees up for 45 degrees.
▫️Push hips up so that your shoulders, hips and knees are in a straight line. Keep shins vertical. 
▫️Slowly drop pelvis back down, as low as you comfortably can and then bring hips back up to ceiling.
▫️10 second hold / 10 second relax.
▫️Don't forget to breathe 👀 this exercise is predominantly about the breathing. 
▫️Aim to do this 10 times. 

Happily Ever After?

I love these images by photographer Dina Goldstein who takes a look at how the lives of our beloved Disney princesses might have turned out, fairy tale luck and charm aside of course ;-)

“I began to imagine Disney’s perfect Princesses juxtaposed with real issues that were affecting women around me, such as illness, addiction and self-image issues"

 

Are These Signs From the Universe?

Are These Signs From the Universe?

Human form, the house in which we walk this plane. Our life’s journey is context for understanding our relationship with nutrition, fitness, movement, thoughts, and our wellbeing as a whole. The body whispers messages to us each and every day. Slow down. Don't rush. There's no need to push. Don't hold onto this. Let go of that. There are subtle cues and prompts taking place within and around you all the time. 

But what exactly does that mean? Everything in life is intricately pieced together to weave a web of narrative unfolding a story; your story. And the most important thing in your life, is your life story. 

The 101 on Being Comfortable in your Own Lycra.

The 101 on Being Comfortable in your Own Lycra.

Time off is not a dirty word...

Naturally, as women, our weight fluctuates regularly.

That's just a fact.

But, does anybody else beat themselves up every time we're "not looking quite our best"? Regardless of hormones, stress levels, exercise or diet? Of course you do, we all do. It's nothing new that the media and social pressures affect the way we feel about our bodies but why should that affect our happiness and our health. There's more to it than weight right?

I know what you're thinking, oh look another post telling us that the media is wrong to body shame and everyone is beautiful. But, can there ever really be enough of those? Why should you pay any attention to this one?

Are you Suffering Perfection Paralysis?

Are you Suffering Perfection Paralysis?

Have you ever heard of the term perfection paralysis? One of the ultimate quests for millennials is the pursuit of the perfect life. We're all searching for it.

We want do it all, see it all and be it all...like, yesterday. But in our search for the perfect body, the perfect job, the perfect apartment, the perfect partner and the perfect friends are we so afraid of making the wrong choice, of committing, of making a mistake or simply overwhelmed with the vast options presented in front of us that we are merely bystanders on the sidelines of our own lives, only ever dipping our toes into the arena we call life? Are we a generation of commitment-phobes or are just in need of a new approach? 

Is Wellbeing Really so Black and White?

Is Wellbeing Really so Black and White?

Health is multifaceted and it exists in the irreducible complexity of our lives and identities. 

When I feel disconnected from my mind and body, I don’t take care of it. When I embrace and encourage my mind and body, when I take a moment to appreciate all that it does for me, I do. 

Learning not to hate our bodies is a matter of our physical health and emotional survival.

At its core, weight loss is aesthetic. My weight doesn’t tell you what I eat, how much I exercise, how strong I am. It doesn’t tell you where my DNA comes from, my bone density or how healthy I feel. It doesn’t tell you if I’m thinner than I was before, or fatter. It doesn’t tell you how I feel about myself, what I’ve learnt or how I’ve changed. 

It doesn't show you my wellbeing blueprint. 

Can Thoughts Impact your Metabolism?

Can Thoughts Impact your Metabolism?

What exactly is eating psychology and why should I care I hear you ask? Well matey, mind body nutrition is a field that advances the practice of clinical nutrition by exploring the psychophysiology of how thoughts, feelings and beliefs impact nutritional metabolism and health.

It goes far beyond classical nutrition by focusing on the connection between brain, body, and behaviour. Simply put, what we eat is only half of the story of good nutrition. The other half is who we are as eaters.