Confessions of a modern day shopaholic 

Shopping has really stepped up its game. It’s taken a whole new form, from eBay to Depop to online boutiques and even Instagram shopping. Everywhere you look you can practically buy something. It’s no wonder why it’s so hard to resist clicking that checkout button or handing over that cash at the checkout. Shopping is so much more accessible as you don’t even need to leave your own living room with the beauty of home delivery. No more sweaty changing room nightmares where I swear the mirrors are not a true reflection of how you actually look and endless queues that just end up wearing your patience really really thin. So it may be easier to shop but that makes it a lot harder for us shopaholics to resist. Temptations are everywhere!

Social media has a BIG part to play in our shopaholic obsessions as everywhere you turn there’s an advertisement or promotion from a blogger/influencer. Companies are very clever in that respect as they know you’re more likely to trust your favourite bloggers opinion over the company’s motto or ethos, especially with those promotional codes. Bloggers and social media influencers have become the new port of call when it comes to seeking advice on where to shop and the finer details regarding sizing, fit etc because it appears that you’re getting a more personal, unbiased and true review of the brand/product. But can you really trust them? Does that mouth guard most celebrities advertise really make your teeth white and do they even use the product themselves like they say they do or is it just the money talking as let’s face it they get paid a lot to advertise these things. Oh and don’t get me started on the emails. You sign up to a company’s newsletter to receive 10% off that one time and now you get bombarded with 50 emails per week with their latest deals and constant sales. Yes constant sales. Seasonal sales just aren’t a thing anymore as it seems to happen all year round, just look at dfs. 

Most of the time you’re not even intentionally looking to shop but then something will pop up on the internet or when scrolling through Facebook and boom before you know it you’re on a shops website ready to click checkout. As easy as that! But if you’re anything like me then the  checkout button doesn’t often get pressed. I’m a classic example of a virtual browser and physical window shopper. I’ll spend hours scrolling through websites or trawling through rails and rails of clothes to end up frankly not buying anything. I dread to think what I would buy and more importantly how much I would buy if I had an unlimited amount of money. 

Nowadays shops and brands are very good at picking up on trends and creating totally new ones which causes a craze amongst the fashion industry. Suddenly you feel like you HAVE to have those fishnet tights which every instagrammer is wearing underneath ripped jeans or the latest pair of Adidas trainers, which change so often that you buy the latest pair and before you know it they’ve released some new ones in a blink of an eye. So unless you’re willing to spend thousands of pounds on the latest stuff it’s very hard to ‘stay on trend’ as fashion and style moves on quicker than ever before. This is not good for the modern day shopaholic as you burn through cash quicker than you actually wear the things that you’ve bought. 

Bottom line is if you have money to spend, it’s not that hard to find somewhere to spend it and in a blink of an eye it’s gone!

Be True Be You.

The question everyone gets asked

What do you want to be? Where do you want to go in life? These are some of the almighty questions that you get asked at many stages of your life but is there an answer and is this answer right or wrong? 

There are those who go through life on a certified path, they know what they’re doing and where they’re going and then there are those who have no clue whatsoever. But who is right? The answer is no one. Nowadays it’s difficult to say where you’ll be tomorrow, let alone in the next five years. Everyone is unique, has their own likes, dislikes, passions and hobbies which is something to be celebrated and not altered to simply ‘fit in’ with society, friends and even family. 

There are so many choices we must make in life and most of the time we try to search for the ‘right’ choice, but is there really such a thing as a ‘right choice’? You do what feels right for you in that moment. Think of it like you’re the captain of your own ship and the crew are your emotions, feelings, experiences and general well-being, they are your responsibility and no one else’s, you must take care of them in order for them to take care of you. I can’t express enough how important it is to do things for yourself, it may seem selfish at times but if you don’t look after yourself first how can you expect to be fit enough to lead your own ship. Don’t worry I’ll stop with the metaphors now. 

All throughout my time at school and to this day at uni I still have no clue what I want to do, because frankly my aspirations change on a daily basis. This is something that I have definitely learnt about myself over the past few years as I like to refer to myself as a ‘hobby hopper’. Now for those of you who don’t know what this means basically I can’t stick to just one thing, whether that be a hobby, passion or aspiration. I like to dip my fingers into many pies if you want to put it that way. Some may say that this isn’t something to be celebrated and label me as a ‘quitter’ but hey at least I keep things interesting. More to the point why would you force yourself do something that you didn’t like anyway, you wouldn’t make yourself eat something you don’t like so why is this any different? 

A lot of people, like myself, hate the thought of not having a plan in life but unpredictability should not be underestimated, instead embraced. I myself admit that I’m a firsthand culprit of disliking unpredictability but the beauty of life is that you don’t know where it’s going to take you. I have to say I was and still slightly am today one of those people who wants to know exactly what they’re doing in life, where they’re heading and if this isn’t known then end up getting all stressed and worried about it, but I now know that’s no way to live and I’m working on trying to bring out my spontaneous carefree side instead. So when someone asks you what you want to do in the future or even what your plans are for the week are, just say wherever life takes me. 

Be True Be You.

Can you tell the difference between sizes? 

Many people are concerned with their size, but surely it’s just a number right? Nowadays it’s unusual to be the same size in every single shop and if you are then you’re one of the lucky chosen ones! But what I want to know is can you really tell the difference between sizing, whether that be a size 8 to a size 16? Below I’m going to show you 5 outfits ranging from a size 8 to a size 16 and I want to see if you can guess which sizes belongs to which. Happy guessing!

Outfit 1

Outfit 2


Outfit 3


Outfit 4


Outfit 5


You ready for the reveal….

Outfit 1 = size 14

Outfit 2 = size 8 

Outfit 3 = size 16

Outfit 4 = size 10 

Outfit 5 = size 12

Did you guess them right? If you did then I applaud you and your good eye for sizing. Here you can see that I not only fit into a size 8 dress but I can also wear a size 16 dress and both look like they fit me perfectly. This is why I am a massive advocate of buying clothes that actually fit you no matter what the size as you can’t trust retail sizing nowadays. What I’ve always wondered is who decided that a size 14 should look like that and have those specific measures, because everyone is different. Take me as an example, I have a rather large bum and wide hips but my waist is slightly smaller so buying jeans is just a nightmare as I can’t get a size 12 over my bum but a size 14 is too big on the waist. I understand it’s hard to accommodate for all body types but even when retail do try they create separate lines like their ‘curvy’ ranges and then segregate them from the rest of the ‘normal’ clothes range. Why should it matter? And the fact that retail thinks being ‘curvy’ automatically means you’re a size 18+ is disgraceful because curves come in all different shapes and sizes. So I say we should stop all this size segregation and more importantly just ignore the sizing, as hard as it is, because numbers don’t define us! 

Be True Be You. 

4 things I’ve learnt from social media?

Social media is everywhere nowadays, its so hard not to get consumed by it. From the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep most of us will check some sort of social platform. We are all victims of this powerful tool that has truly hooked us. It seems scarier to think of a world without Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Instagram now. But is this a good or a a bad thing?

As soon as you leave school the novelty of social media platforms just sort of dwindles off and now all you see are people sharing videos on Facebook and the occasional family/friends photo on Instagram. Before seriously getting into blogging and Instagram I wasn’t really that fussed by social media either, but oh how this has changed now. So today I’m going to share with you 5 things that I’ve learnt from social media.

  1. Be inspired, not compared. The number 1 rule when scrolling through Instagram or any social media is to not compare yourself to others or even worse beat yourself up (not literally) about the fact that you don’t look the same or lead the same lifestyle. Of course this is not to say that you can’t be inspired because probably the most valuable thing that I’ve gained from social media is inspiration from others, but there’s a fine line between comparison and inspiration.
  2. You can’t please them all. Someone once said to me if everyone likes you then you’re doing something wrong. At first I didn’t quite get what they meant by this but it makes perfect sense now. Not everyone will like what you’re doing, how you look and will frankly feel the need to tell you their opinions, but I say let them. Every time someone tries to knock you down or shine a negative light on what you’re doing just use this as perfect opportunity to prove them wrong. It shouldn’t matter what other people think, just as long as you’re happy with YOURSELF.
  3. Confidence is not a bad thing. I’ve found myself many times hesitant to post a photo on Instagram that could perhaps be deemed ‘showy’ but at the end of the day who cares! I’m not doing all this for other people, I’m doing it for me. In a way Instagram is sort of a public diary of photos that I’m able to look back on and share my journey with other people along the way. Throughout my journey I am most grateful for the confidence that I have gained from posting photos and writing my blogs as I have always struggled with confidence issues. So if there’s anything that you take away from this blog post is don’t be afraid to be YOU, its perfectly fine to have confidence in yourself and project this confidence amongst others as like I said in point number 1 its amazing how much inspiration you can gain from social media (I said inspiration not comparison remember).
  4. Don’t get too caught up. Even though social media is an amazing network, it is important not to get too caught up in it. It’s not really about how many likes or followers you gain because I would much rather relate to or inspire 1 person than 100 people who just like or follow you for superficial likes and follows back. This is something that I have only recently learnt since seriously starting my blogging and ‘Instagraming’ as I used to take it personally if someone unfollowed me or unliked a photo but life is too short to focus on those things. Life is also too short to spend 24/7 on social media. I must admit I am a culprit of this from time to time but I’ve realised its important to not live your life through a screen and actually look up, go out and do things. Moderation is key like with everything as we were born to live a natural life, not a virtual one.

 

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Be true Be you x

Body positivity at School

School is a very confusing place… not only are you learning a lot about different subjects, but you’re also learning a lot about yourself and your body whether you recognise it or not. For me, school was a bit up and down in terms of body positivity as throughout my 7 years I was a variety of shapes and sizes. I would say in Year 7 and 8 I was just your ‘average’ 11/12 year old, although I was a little chubby around the belly area but at this stage I like to refer to it as ‘puppy fat’ like my mum always says.

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This is me on my first day of Year 7 (obligatory first day photo #milestone)

Then when it came to Year 9/10 I really started to notice a difference in my body shape and my chubbiness was no longer deemed ‘cute puppy fat’ anymore, it was just ‘fat’. By this point the social pressure to ‘fit in’, wear the ‘right’ things and look a certain way really kicked in and I’m not going to lie this is one of the reasons which spurred me on to losing weight, but the main and most important reason was to get fit and live a healthier lifestyle. I remember I used to bake loads of cakes and cookies because I was fundraising for my expedition to Ecuador, but this soon just turned into an excuse for me to eat the cakes and cookies myself and of course any leftovers. I knew I had to make a change because how was I going to survive in the Amazon rainforest lugging massive logs up a hill and even just walking in the humidity alone. So this was another reason why I started to lose weight.

 So when I came back from Ecuador people started to really notice a change, as this was the lightest that I had ever weighed (9 stone something, I can’t remember exactly).

It was all well and good that I had lost all this weight but I’ll be honest with you it was very very hard to maintain. So when I finally broke out of school and came to university I was bound to put weight on because A this is the first time I could buy my own food and  basically eat what I want when I want and B there’s so many new changes and things happening that my hormones were all over the place (and still are now to a certain extent).  But the difference between school and university is that you no longer strive to ‘fit in’, instead you’re able to discover who you are and ultimately BE YOURSELF. It may have taken a year for me to be comfortable with the body I have but I wouldn’t have it any other way because every experience is a valuable lesson. I am a slightly bigger build than before as I now have hips, a big bum and a belly but I lead a healthy lifestyle and thats the key thing here. I spent months beating myself up about the fact that I don’t look like my friends and I don’t look like how I used to when I was ‘slimmer’ but I don’t waste any more time thinking these negative thoughts.

So if I was to give my 11 year old self advice at the start of this journey I would tell myself  these three things:

  1. Don’t worry. I am a great believer that things happen for a reason and I was meant to be fat (as weird as that sounds) because now I really appreciate my body and strive to lead a healthy lifestyle. Worrying is one of my worst traits but it ultimately gets you nowhere and the less time you spend worrying, the more time you can spend living.
  2. ‘Fitting in’ isn’t necessarily the be all and end all. At the time wearing something from Jack Wills or having a Hollister bag may seem like the most important thing in the world, but believe me being yourself and being unique is far more credible than following the crowd.
  3. Don’t try to impress others. Now this one might be a bit confusing as I said earlier that one of the reasons I decided to lose weight was because I became aware of my body shape and others around me. Yes this is true but I never once started losing weight to impress anyone else but myself. In life its important to do things for yourself and this was definitely one of them. So to put it into context now with my Instagram, my blog and my fitness… this is all for me and it doesn’t matter if 2 people read them or 100 people (and yes I do have to remind myself this sometimes) but its my way to express myself and keep track of what I’m doing.
  4. Change is not a bad thing. Change is something that a lot of people don’t like at school and if you change then sometimes this is not well reciprocated. But in all honesty the whole point of growing up is about changing and discovering the person you’re meant to be. It’s okay to change. I can tell you now that I’ve changed a lot since moving to university and some may not like this and others will but thats just life.
  5. You can’t please everyone. As much as you’d like to be friends with everyone, this is just impossible. In life there are going to be people who don’t like you or don’t appreciate what you’re wearing or what you’re posting on social media. This is something that I’ve definitely learnt to deal with since starting my blog and posting more regularly on Instagram. In a way I’m grateful for this as its enabled me to be a lot more confident and not care what other people think of me. Yes I have my good days and bad days but it just shows that I’m human.

What I eat in a week

Hey Everyone! Todays post is a little peek into what I tend to eat as a student on a budget but also as someone who is leading a healthy lifestyle. I am not on a diet in any way (which you’ll be able to see clearly from the food I eat), instead I try to eat healthily with good portion sizes whilst making sure there are some treats in there because yo girl needs something to look forward to otherwise ‘Moody Molly’ makes a reappearance (as my family know too well).

Tuesday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Wednesday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Thursday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Friday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Saturday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Sunday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Monday: Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner

Tuesday (today): Breakfast – Lunch -Dinner is to be decided

Snacks and desserts:

So as you can see there are a lot of repeated meals (mainly avocado on toast which I’ve been LOVING lately if you can’t tell already) because this is not only useful for using up any leftovers but enables me to stay on track of my healthy eating as I form a sort of routine so I know what I’m having and when. This is also so that I can avoid the almighty dangerous stage of starvation where you literally eat everything and anything in sight because you can’t wait/ be bothered to cook anything; you’re that HANGRY (yes thats right hangry, the angry stage of hunger!) Yet this ‘routine’ of eating is not necessarily super strict by any means as you can see from my food diary, I had lunch out on Saturday and I had dinner out at TGI Fridays on Monday. But even though I enjoyed meals out this is not to say that you can’t still be healthy, as at TGI Fridays I opted for a small salad (which I know many people would be like ‘why go out and have a salad? but honestly this salad is A M A Z I N G) and sweet potato fries on the side which is a healthier alternative to having a burger and fries. You see I’m all about making healthIER choices, note the emphasis on ‘IER’ because I’m not about to cut out all the nice sweet treats that give me ultimate satisfaction, because thats not a life that I want to lead. So yes I do have 4 biscuits for dessert (with a glass of milk, whilst feeling like a right little kid) and yes I still have pasta, sausages, popcorn and many other normal foods, because you can eat all that and still be healthy. Its all about MODERATION, the word everyone hates (including me because sometimes I do want to just devour a whole 200g Cadburys bar) but ultimately moderation is key to leading a healthy lifestyle.

10 healthy swaps for the foods you crave

So it’s been a long bank holiday weekend filled with chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate thanks to Easter and the joys of Easter eggs. But now the joy of chocolate has subsided and you’re back to work with the harsh reality of knowing how many calories you’ve consumed over the past few days. So you might be thinking right lets start a super strict diet that cuts out all sugars, carbs and basically anything nice. While this might work for some people, this definitely does not work for me as I’ll be really good for about a week or so and then the cravings start to kick in and in the end I just give up, resulting in a massive binge of anything sweet and naughty basically. Then I’m right back where I started in the first place. Instead I prefer to take the more controlled and healthier route while still allowing myself some treats from time to time as I know my body and I know that I can’t live without sweet things. Cravings are my worst enemy so here are a few healthier alternatives to my ultimate mouthwatering foods.

  1. Chocolate for hot chocolate. Now the reason this is number 1 is because chocolate is something that I crave pretty much once a day and I can amazingly trawl through whole 200g bar in one sitting (which isn’t really that amazing now I think about it because it’s not good for my body). So instead of devouring a whole bar of chocolate I get my chocolate fix with a hot chocolate instead as they contain a lot less calories but you still get to taste that chocolatey goodness.

2.  Ice cream for frozen yoghurt. Everyone has the same two best friends in this world and they’re called ‘Ben’ and ‘Jerry’. This is the king of all ice creams, the best of the best and they just keep getting better with all their new and exciting yummy flavours. But I’m not here to promote ice cream, instead if you fancy something cold and creamy why not try frozen yoghurt. Frozen yoghurt is a great alternative, there are so many flavours, even chocolate! Just make sure you scoop a reasonable portion into a bowl instead of eating out of the tub because we all know eating out of the tub means finishing the whole tub.

3. Sweets for dried fruit or just fruit. Sweets are something that I never seem to crave but if I come across some then I end up eating and eating until the bag is finished; I simply can’t stop. So to tackle this I introduce to you my favourite snack ever….. DRIED FRUIT and more specifically dried MANGO! I am obsessed with dried mango because it genuinely does taste like sweets without all the added rubbish. Yes I am aware that dried mango and other dried fruits can be a little high in sugar but its a whole lot better than eating an entire bag of Haribo. But if dried fruit isn’t your thing then just simply go for normal fruit instead as this should satisfy your sweet tooth cravings and you know what they say if you’re not hungry enough to eat an apple then you’re not hungry at all.

 

4. Crisps for crackers/carrots and salsa dip. If you’re craving crisps then you’re craving something crunchy and perhaps salty, so to overcome this you need something that will fulfil this texture and satisfy your needs. My answer to this is either crackers or carrots dipped in salsa (or without salsa if you prefer). Now the reason behind salsa and not sour cream and chive or any other creamy dip is tomato based dips are a lot better for you than the creamy ones. As for the crackers, I tend to use are either multigrain crackers or melba toasts which are great for that crunchy texture. I usually limit myself to 4 crackers or 1 carrot so that I’m not over dipping.

 

5. Chips for roasted vegetables. This swap is not only a healthier alternative but can be a cheaper alternative too which is always a bonus. Instead of buying frozen chips and wasting more valuable freezer space why not buy a load of veg bung it in the oven to roast with some herbs and olive oil and you got yourself a pretty good healthier alternative. Whether it be broccoli, peppers, onions, sweet potato, butternut squash or carrots, you can chuck practically any vegetable in there. This is also a great way to use up any veg that might be going off and avoid waste. So not only is this healthier and cheaper, it also helps the environment.

6. Pizza for tortilla pizza. I LOVE pizza. Whenever anyone asked me the famous get to know you question of ‘What’s your favourite food?’ My answer would always be pizza and still always is pizza. But unfortunately it isn’t the healthiest thing on the menu so to overcome this and satisfy my pizza needs I make tortilla pizzas which was a household fav when I was at home. All you need is a tortilla wrap (wholemeal is preferred), tomato purée, cheese (low fat or not any at all if preferred) and then any toppings you like.

 

7. Cake for banana oat cakes. If you’re a banana fan then this is the swap for you! There’s nothing complicated about banana oat cakes, its just bananas and oats, mash them together and pop it in the oven for 15 minutes and thats it! (I added chocolate chips to mine which is naughty I know but its all about balance and moderation)

 

8. Biscuits for popcorn. We all know biscuits are one of those snacks where you can’t just have 1 or 2 because it always develops into 4 or 5 until suddenly the whole pack is devoured. To battle this biscuit devouring, swap this for popcorn but be careful not to eat the whole bag of popcorn too. Take a handful or two and pop it into a bowl then put the bag BACK or buy a multipack of popcorn if you don’t trust yourself in the portions department. The propercorn sweet coconut and vanilla is one of my favourite flavours of all time!

 

9. Pancakes for banana oat pancakes. Another swap for you banana lovers. I love bananas they’re so versatile and you can use them as a basis for so many recipes whether they’re ready to eat or ripe, plus they’re pretty cheap. So instead of loaded maple syrup pancakes, why not make a banana oat pancake drizzled with honey and some fruit for toppings. All you need is banana, oats, eggs and baking powder, mix it all up and fry it in a pan until golden brown.

 

10. Burgers for veggie burgers. Last but not least if you don’t want your last meal of the day to be a heavy one then swap your normal burger for a veggie burger. I was always skeptical of vegetarian food before trying vegetarian bean burgers which are honestly so delicious and have a lot more flavour than anticipated. My recent favourite bean burgers are from Morrisons with their spicy bean burgers which kind of taste like a samosa in a weird way but I love them.

 

*Disclaimer. I’m not saying any of these alternatives are the most healthy option but these are healthiER alternatives that work for me and satisfy my cravings. This is always open to interpretation as its just about finding what works for you and your body. We’re all unique so what works for one person may not work for another, just do YOU.

7 step guide to running

Today’s blog post is all about running! My relationship with running is a little bit rocky to say the least… I would say we have a very love hate relationship. But recently I have regained my love for running which is probably due to the emergence of summer weather, especially the lighter nights. I never used to like running or even walking in fact but I first started to gain an avid interest in it when I began to lose weight properly. Now I didn’t just wake up one day and suddenly I was a pro, instead I started off small and ran short distances every other day, about 1-2 miles which isn’t much but it was a starting point to progress from. Then soon enough I started to extend my distances and became a lot quicker in doing so. I would say my running style is more of a long distance runners style as I tend to stick to a comfortable speed and run at a steady pace for a longer period of time instead of short quick bursts like a sprinter. Everyone’s running style is different and unique to them, but I’m going to share with you 7 steps that help me with running. 

1. Track your progress. Tracking your progress is essential if you want to improve your running or fitness as it enables you to monitor how far you are from your goals and serves as a benchmark for your exercise regime. In order to improve and see results you need to push yourself and go beyond your limits which requires knowledge of how you’re currently performing. I find the best way to achieve this is by tracking how far you’ve run, the total duration of running and your average pace. There are two running apps that I use to help me track these variables, one is Runtastic and the other is Nike+Run Club. They’re both excellent apps but I would say Runtastic is better if you want to sync the data with other apps such as Myfitnesspal and you can even plan your routes by drawing on a map.


2. Wear comfortable trainers. Wearing the right trainers is vital when running as you need the appropriate support and comfort levels. I actually went to a place where they get you to run on a treadmill and observe how you run in order to provide you with the best trainers to suit your running style. Something that I didn’t realise is that it is advised to go up a shoe size in trainers because when you run your feet get hot (obviously) and expand meaning that there is slightly more room needed. So I ended up getting a size UK 7 instead of my usual UK 6 in a pair of Sauconys which I would highly recommend to anyone as they are so comfortable and really cushion your feet. 


3. Music. I can’t stand running or exercising for that matter without any music on because when that workout gets tougher I thrive on motivation from my upbeat music. One of my favourite upbeat artists to listen to is Sigala especially his song Give me your love as there’s such a good beat in the background to run to. Also I tend to listen to music whilst I’m getting ready to go for a run as this gets me pumped up and in the mood to go and kick it!


4. Plan you route beforehand. Just like you would plan your exercises at the gym I would strongly advise planning your running route as well. For me, the worst thing is not knowing where I’m going or when the run is going to end as this serves as a definite demotivator and doesn’t end well. Just like in the film Run fat boy run when the guy is running the marathon and hits the ‘runners wall’, this is me half way through my run wanting to give up if I haven’t planned a route because I can’t see an end to this. You don’t have to physically write down the route, just have it roughly mapped out in your head to avoid the risk of runners block.


5. Stretch. If I’m being truthful I never saw the importance of stretching before or after exercising but oh have times changed and now I see what people mean. I used to just get up and go out for runs without stretching but that really isn’t good for your bones or your body in general. So to avoid clicky knees and ankles I spend roughly 5-10 mins stretching before and after my runs. It’s nothing too strenuous or difficult, just waking up my muscles ready for the high impact that comes with running. 


6. Mind over matter. Just like I mentioned with runners block, a lot of the time the key to succes with running or any exercise is maintaining a positive and motivated mental state. I went for a run the other day and throughout the whole run I was putting myself down, constantly worried about what people were thinking of me and how I looked, which then of course made me want to just give up. But this was wrong of me. If you allow yourself to think these negative thoughts then unfortunately you won’t progress or improve. You mustn’t give in when times get tough and you mustn’t feel paranoid when running. I know it’s hypocritical for me to say this as my run the other day was a classic example of all things negative but I’ve learnt from my mistakes and now embrace it as experience.  


7. Mix things up. It’s important not to get too comfortable in your running routine as you just get used the same route and end up not pushing yourself further. To tackle this I have about 5 different routes that I run and will just pick whichever one I feel like on the day, whether that be a scenic park route or running in the city, it usually depend on my mood. Plus for each of these routes I plan out ways to extend or shorten it, to add to the variety and offer alternatives for when I perhaps haven’t got much time or when I feel like running for longer. 

I hope these steps are useful. I just want to point out that I’m not a running pro but I’ve just found what works for me. This isn’t a rigid guide to running, it’s just a few steps that I’ve learnt along my journey with exercise and it’s always open to interpretation. 

Be True Be You. 

Five steps to being body confident

First of all I need to clear something up here, there is no right or wrong way to be body confident because it’s something that is individual and personal to you. Body confidence is something that I have definitely struggled with in the past and you don’t just suddenly gain it overnight. We’ve all been there when you don’t feel confident enough to wear that  dress because you’re paranoid about your tummy protruding through or that skirt because you don’t like the look of your legs. A lot of body confidence comes with age as you discover your body shape but it also comes from loving yourself and feeling comfortable in your own skin. So I’m going to share with you 5 things that I’ve learnt and do to gain body confidence.

1.  Exercise. When I exercise it automatically makes me feel better about myself and so much more confident because I feel great on the inside and outside. Whether that be going for a run, a quick gym session, workout routine at home or just  simply walking it doesn’t matter just as long as its some sort of exercise. Some days I know I need to exercise to function properly as I get into this weird mood where I’m all grump and cranky until I’ve got that heart rate up and muscles pumping.

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2. Selfies. Now I know this sounds rather vein but honestly taking selfies really does help with body confidence and anyway why should it be seen as a crime to take photos of yourself!? But its important to remember that when you take these selfies DO NOT criticise yourself, instead point out the things you like about your body and the things you’re proud of because everyone deserves to be proud of who they are.

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3. Surrounding yourself with supportive, loving people. The people around you and those who influence you are so important in terms of confidence. You need people who lift you up and bring out the best in you, which even applies to people on social media. That’s why on Instagram I follow those who inspire, motivate and educate me. For example one of the accounts I actively follow is the amazing and inspiring @iskra who is an Aerireal role model promoting body confidence and embracing every body shape. If you surround yourself with positivity and confidence then this will radiate through you as well.

4. Learn to appreciate but don’t compare. Now this is something that I have only recently mastered and I admit I still struggle to stick to this sometimes. What I mean by learning to appreciate but don’t compare is that you can appreciate other peoples body shape and appearances but it is important not to compare yourself to them and even worse beat yourself up about the fact that you don’t look like them. We’ve all been there and said ‘Ohhh I wish I looked like her/him’ but I’m here to remind you that every single one of us is unique and our uniqueness should be celebrated and not used to compare or make people feel bad about themselves. Once you stop comparing yourself its amazing what this can do to your confidence levels. Now you might be thinking what about all the things on social media though? Well truth is social media can be both an amazing and dangerous platform but it essentially comes down to how you perceive it and how you allow it to influence you. I allow social media to influence me in a positive way and in turn I aim to project this positivity throughout my social media as well. 

5. Wear and keep clothes that fit you. Now I know this sounds kind of stupid and obvious but you know those pair of jeans that you’ve had for ages and are still a little too small but you don’t want to chuck them out because you might get into them one day… just chuck them out! Trust me I’ve been there with my small clothes hoarding syndrome and its definitely not healthy for you. I kept all my size 8/10 clothes for about a year even though they didn’t fit me at all, but I realised this was just me desperately trying to cling onto the body shape I used to have and not embracing the body shape I now have. This was wrong as all I would achieve was wasting 5 minutes of my time trying to squeeze my mermaid thighs into my tight fitting jeans which would then lead to me being upset  and feeling rubbish about myself because they don’t go past my knees. Great confidence comes with feeling great in what you wear and more importantly feeling comfortable in it, so get rid of those clothes that no longer fit as hard and sad as it is I know but its got to be done. Just think of it this way it now frees up more room for better clothes that actually fit!

Now this isn’t an extensive list on how to be body confident by any means, it’s just what I’ve found that works for me along my journey with my body so far. To this day I’m still learning and discovering things about myself and my confidence levels. Of course I have my up days and down days just like everyone else does, but this is all part of the learning process. There will probably never be a definitive day when you could say ‘I am totally, 100% body confident’ but this doesn’t mean you don’t love yourself or that you aren’t body confident at all, it just means you are being true to yourself; like my saying goes Be True Be You.

Booty workout outside

Today I’m going to share with you one of my booty workouts which is my fav area to train! You can do this workout anywhere you like as you don’t need any equipment. Since it was such a lovely day I decided to go to my local park and have a quick session outside as I didn’t feel like going to a stuffy gym, plus I have a cold so didn’t want to contaminate anyone but I needed to do some sort of exercise. I decided to biked there and back which acted as my warm up and cool down and then got straight into my workout. Also I discovered that biking on thick grass is quite challenging.

With every exercise I do in this routine I do 3 sets of 10 reps with a 30 second rest in-between. The amount of reps and sets are completely up to you, this is just what works for me. If I’m feeling up to the challenge I will sometimes complete these exercises with no rest in-between to create a sort of circuit routine. Click HERE for the video of my workout (I had to upload it to Youtube as I can’t upload videos on here… apologies)

  1. Sumo squats. Sumo squats are slightly different to normal squats as your legs should be just past your shoulders and your feet pointing outwards slightly, just like a sumo wrestlers position.
  2.  Jumping lunges. I find these rather difficult to do as you can really feel the burn but I feel so good after completing these. Sort of a love hate relationship.
  3. Jumping squats. By the end of this exercise you’ll really feel it in your legs. Remember to squeeze those gluteus and jump as high as you can.
  4. Curtsy lunges. These are similar to normal lunges but you place your foot back in a sort of diagonal position instead of straight, like you would if you were to curtsy.
  5. Hip ups/bridges. Simply lie on the floor with your legs should width apart and lift your bum up squeezing those gluteus each time you lift.
  6. Donkey Kicks. Get down on your hands and knees and lift your leg up to the sky until you reach a right angle position, then push your foot up whilst squeezing those gluteus.
  7. Fire Hydrants. Get down on your hands and knees and lift your leg up to the side until you reach a right angle position then bring your leg back down again. Repeat this whilst always squeezing your gluteus.