Jennifer Hanway

Enliven Your Lightest, Brightest You

Jennifer Hanway is a Holistic Nutritionist, Bio Signature Modulation Practitioner and Certified Personal Trainer, originally from London but now living in Newton Centre and working in Back Bay, Boston.

Filtering by Tag: healthy habits

5 Simple Ways to Ease Post Workout Soreness

A lot of my personal training clients are ‘mentioning’ their post workout soreness after their sessions. These particular clients are in the middle of tough training phases right now, so a little muscle soreness is natural, but there are some simple things that can be implemented to help ease the pain! When a client asked how much soreness is natural I tell them that it differs from client to client and depends on the workout / training phase, and a little soreness up to 48 hours post training can be expected. A red flag for me is when the soreness is debilitating and affects everyday life, other overtraining signals can be lack of progress in the gym, disrupted sleep and feeling like there is ‘no gas in the tank’. At this point training should be reduced and strategies such as extra rest, yoga, and nutrition support should be implemented.

If there are no red flags then I ask them to implement the following, and may even bring them in an Anti Inflammatory Mango Smoothie if they are working extra hard!

Drink more water: I know this may sound obvious, but proper hydration can increase performance and reduce post workout muscle soreness. Ensure you are drinking water throughout the day, not just during and after the workout, and aim for at least 0.7 ounces of water per pound of bodyweight as your personalized water goal.

Train more often: this may sound counterproductive, but training large muscle groups at least 3 times a week can condition the muscles to hard training and eventually reduce post workout soreness. This is also why new trainees may experience more soreness than those more experienced, and why you may be more sore after a changing your workout. So hang in there - it gets better!

Warm up and cool down properly: boring, I know, but reducing muscle soreness starts even before your workout does. I ask my clients to walk, bike or row for at least 8-10 minutes (more if they have a desk job and are coming to me during their work day), then complete another 5 minutes of mobility work and dynamic stretching. Warming up has so many benefits, preventing injury, improving performance, preparing the mind for exercise, and reducing soreness post workout.  After working out I ask my clients to foam roll and stretch for as long as they can. If they are in a rush then I advise them to stretch post shower or in the evening before they go to bed. 

Take a cold shower: this is my favorite way to ease muscle soreness post workout, and can be really enjoyable once you are used to it! A cold bath or shower post workout increases circulation, bringing fresh blood to your muscles to help repair, lower inflammation and increase recovery speed. It also has the added benefit of tightening skin and giving you a great glow! If this is too much to bear try switching to a cold shower for the last 2 minutes after your hot shower.

Supportive nutrition and supplementation: if you are working hard in the gym your nutrition should support your efforts. Ensure you are well fueled before training (a mixture of protein, carbs and fat 60-90 mins before training is ideal), and a strategic post workout shake can give your muscles the materials for repair whilst lowering inflammation.

Turmeric (the active ingredient being curcumin) is a wonderful anti inflammatory, and can be use to great effect either in food or supplement form. One of my favourite functional foods is Inflam PX from the Poliquin Group, which contains turmeric extract (along with other anti inflammatory and healing compounds) that can be consumed on its own, or I like to add it to a vanilla protein shake. I recommend Inflam PX to all my clients if they get injured or after surgery, but it can also be used everyday to support hard training. 

You can also replicate this at home with my Turmeric Mango Coconut Protein Smoothie, which also contains collagen powder which is my go-to for muscle repair and ginger which also has anti-inflammatory properties: 

Anti Inflammatory Mango Protein Smoothie 1 scoop vanilla protein powder 1 cup coconut milk ½ cup filtered water ½ cup frozen mango ½ banana 2 teaspoons collagen powder 1 teaspoon fresh grated turmeric or turmeric powder 1 teaspoon fresh grater ginger or ginger powder Throw ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Anti Inflammatory Mango Protein Smoothie 1 scoop vanilla protein powder 1 cup coconut milk ½ cup filtered water ½ cup frozen mango ½ banana 2 teaspoons collagen powder 1 teaspoon fresh grated turmeric or turmeric powder 1 teaspoon fresh grater ginger or ginger powder Throw ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Anti Inflammatory Mango Protein Smoothie

1 scoop vanilla protein powder

1 cup coconut milk

½ cup filtered water

½ cup frozen mango

½ banana

2 teaspoons collagen powder

1 teaspoon fresh grated turmeric or turmeric powder

1 teaspoon fresh grater ginger or ginger powder 

Throw ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Zucchini and Sundried Tomato Meatloaf Muffins

My breakfast of choice for all my clients (and myself) is a combination of high quality protein, good fats and veggies. This is going to guarantee a great start to the day, ensuring high energy, stable blood sugar levels and a revved up metabolism!

These Zucchini and Sundried Tomato Meatloaf Muffins contain some amazing macro and micro nutrients as well as being a great way to get an extra portion of veggies into your day without even realizing it!

The grass-fed beef is not only a great source of protein that will keep you satiated for hours, but contains the following health boosters:

  • Taurine - an amino acid that helps to lower the stress hormone cortisol (it facilitates the production of the neurotransmitter GABA, in turn helping your body to manage anxiety), encourages the body to metabolize fat so you can use it as an energy source (vital for a lean physique) and it protects the heart and lowers blood pressure.
  • Omega 3's and CLA - the 'good' fats found in grass-fed beef (not cereal fed), Both of these fats offer properties that can reduce inflammation and insulin resistance, help prevent CVD and high blood pressure and improve body composition.

Zucchini contains a high amount of potassium, a mineral essential for a healthy heart. It also has significant amounts  Vitamin A and beta-carotene, and the lesser known lutein and zeaxanthin, micronutrients essential for eye health!

A fun fact about tomatoes, botanically speaking they are a fruit, technically they are a berry, and legally they are a vegetable! Whatever you call them, when they are cooked they are the ultimate source of lycopene, a compound that has shown to both prevent prostate cancer and reduce the severity in sufferers. Research shows lycopene can also protect against other cancers, and has been shown to lower blood pressure.

Finally, regular readers will know about my love for tigernuts due to their fiber rich, gut friendly properties. Tigernuts are the number one source for prebiotic fiber, the fiber that feeds the probiotic fibre in the gut.

Best of all, these meatloaf muffins are not only super good for you, but they are easy to make, keep well in the refrigerator or freezer, and are portable so make a great breakfast or snack on the go. And they are delicious too!

Ingredients

  • 1lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 cup grated zucchini (squeeze out moisture)
  • 1 egg (or flaxseed egg)
  • 1/4 cup tigernut flour (almond or coconut flour is fine too)
  • 1/4 sundried tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Thoroughly mix all ingredients in a food processor or large mixing bowl (I use my hands)!
  • Separate into 8 equally sized balls and put into muffin tin.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes until brown on top.

 

My Top Five: Tips for Clean Eating on a Budget (Part Two)

Thank you so much for the wonderful response to last week's 'My Top Five: Tips for Tip for Eating Clean on a Budget (Part One)'. Here is part two, I hope you find it just as helpful!

1.Price Per Pound is Paramount

This was such an eye opener for me and my husband when we first started to reduce our food costs. It's very easy to just look at the price on the ticket, and not what I would now consider the 'real' price, which you will usually find on the bottom left of the sticker.

This will really help you to compare prices between stores, as most products come in differing sizes, so the price per lb is your metric when it comes to working out which options, and indeed which grocery stores are cheaper.

For example, feta cheese was $ $14.84 per lb in Star Market, 9.89 per lb in Trader Joes, and just $5.70 per lb in BJ's! 

Price per lb
Price per lb

2.Learn Which Cuts of Meat are the Cheapest

This is a continuation of last week's 'Convenience Cost' tip - but is vitally important when it comes to cuts of meat. For example, I can buy a whole chicken for $1.99 per pound, but if I want just the chicken breasts, neatly divided and put into individual bags, that will cost me $4.49 per lb!

Honestly, I cant say that I don't buy the prepackaged cuts, because I do, but I try to buy a selection of cuts because of cost, and because different cuts of meats contain different micronutrients (variety is key for a healthy diet).

IMG_4450
IMG_4450

3.Join a Wholesale Membership Club

Okay, I'll admit, I was pretty skeptical about this one myself until we tried it! We are now proud members of BJ's Wholesale Club, and I truly think this is the number onereason we have managed to reduce our grocery bill so significantly.

So what do we buy from BJ's? I estimate around 60-70% of our groceries come from BJ's. This includes (but is not limited to), organic fruit and vegetables, both fresh and frozen (look for the Wellesley Farms brand),organic and hormone free meat, both fresh and frozen (look for Harvestland or Perdue brands) and eggs, feta cheese, nuts, pasta sauce, Himalayan salt, coconut flour and all our gluten free grains (a 20lb bag works out to be just $1.20 a lb, and you can use it for square) all come from BJ's too.

Every time we shop there I see more 'clean eating' options, and their coupons also feature more healthy foods too week by week - yes, I clip coupons too!

BJ's offer a free one day membership so you can try it before you commit to a year. A year's membership usually costs $50, but I often see special offers from both BJ's and on sites such as Groupon for memberships starting at $25 a year. For more information on membership, click here.

BJ's 2
BJ's 2

4.Hold a Clean Eating Supper Club

This is definitely one of the more fun tips on this list! Round up a bunch of friends who also have an interest in clean eating, and once a month hold a supper club, at which you all bring a healthy, nutritious, delicious dish to share.

This option is way cheaper than eating out a restaurant, and will introduce you to new ideas and recipes for clean eating. Each guest will also bring the recipe for his/her dish, so you will leave not only having eaten a great meal, but with a bunch of new recipes to try at home too. And don't forget to bring an extra empty dish so you can take home your share of leftovers!

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image1

5.Cute Clean Eating Gadgets

Last week I highlighted some of the gadgets I use for food preparation at home, this week I will feature some of my absolute favorite money savers that I use when I'm out and about!

Mini Crock Pot

My mini crock pot has been an absolute life saver in these cold winter months in Boston! I hate eating cold food on cold days, so I found an option in which I could safely reheat my leftovers when I was at work. Enter Baby Crockpot! This mini crockpot holds up to 20 ounces of my leftovers, and gently reheats them for an hour or so, meaning I can eat a hot, nutritious, budget friendly lunch every day! Its perfect for reheating chili, soups, stews (all of the options from last week's food prep tip), and I use it for making oatmeal too.

Travel French Press

Those of you who know me personally, or are regulars know I am very particular about my coffee, and I shun the big chains such as Starbucks and Dunkin for may reasons (business ethics, price, quality of coffee). So what do I do when I want a coffee on the go? I make my own! About a month I bought my travel french press from Bodum, and I now I cant be without it!

All you do is put one scoop of freshly ground coffee in it before you leave the house, and then fill it up with freshly boiled water when you want a piping hot coffee on the go (we have a water heater at work, but most eateries will give you hot water for free, or for a nominal price)! It may seem like an investment to start, but will definitely save you money in the long term...

Water Filter Bottle

I have just switched up my old glass water bottle to this version from Brita that is not only BPA free but filters my water too. This now means I can drink safely and cleanly from any water source, saving not just money but also helping the environment too (Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles last year. However, the U.S.'s recycling rate for plastic is only 23 percent, which means 38 billion water bottles – more than $1 billion worth of plastic – are wasted each year).

The title of this post is 'Five Top Tips', but permit me to add in one extra, one tip that may be more important than the prior ten. This one is 'Give Back'.If clean eating is on our agenda, it means we are in a very prividliged postion to be able to pick and choose what we eat every day. In 2014 8.1 million Americans lived in food insecure households, including 32.8 million adults and 15.3 million children. In light of this fact my chosen charity, both personally and for my business is The Greater Boston Food Bank, who do amazing work for the food insecure in Boston. For every $1 they receive they provide 3 meals for those in need.

Donate to The Greater Boston Food Bank

So consider donating the price of one of those Starbucks coffees a week, the money you save onto buying bottled water, or anything you can afford. If donating money is a challenge for you, consider donating food to one of the wonderful food pantries in MA, even if it is just one or two items (a list can be found here).

In the spirit of full disclosure, some of these are affiliate links, which means that I may get a commission if you decide to purchase anything.  I only recommend products and services that I use and love myself, so I know you’ll be in good hands!

What am I missing? I'm sure you have your own tips, and I would love for you to share them with me and my readers!

My Top Five: Tips for Eating Clean on a Budget (Part One)

Clean eating doesn't have to break the bank - I can personally attest to that. When I first came to live in Boston I was subject to US  immigration and waiting on a Green Card -  the full process took us a total of six months, meaning we were living on one salary for the whole time! I also had to learn how to shop for food in the US, all the grocery stores were alien to me, except the ever enticing Whole Foods. Well, I learnt the hard way that we couldn't afford to buy all our food and household products there, and had to find ways to make our dollars stretch without compromising our clean eating values.

Using the principles below we managed to save hundreds of dollars a month on our grocery bills, some months even saving up to $700!

1. Eat Real Food

This may sound simple, but I truly believe this is the number one strategy to both save money on grocery bills, and get healthy! Base all of your meals and snacks around good quality proteins, an abundance of vegetables and fruits, and clean carbohydrates. Your food should resemble its original source and have minimal processing. It doesn't matter if you are not a great cook, keep meals super simple, 6 ingredients or less, and utilize the wealth of recipes available on the internet. Some of my favorite sites to go for inspiration are Nom Nom Paleo and Paleo on a Budget.

Organic Vegetables
Organic Vegetables

2. Convenience vs. Cost

Even when aiming to eat real food can we fall into the trap of buying 'convenience foods'. Think pre peeled, pre cut carrot sticks, jerky, store bought chia pots and  protein powders. Now I'm not saying there is anything wrong with those foods, to the contrary they are all nutritionally sound (and I eat them myself on occasion), but when it comes to eating on a budget just take a little extra time to do these things at home, and your bank balance will thank you.

chia pudding
chia pudding

3. Find an Alternative to Whole Foods (a.k.a Whole Paycheck)

Don't get me wrong, I LOVE Whole Foods for their quality and selection of products, but now there is a socially conscious alternative offering an enormous range of healthy products, at approximately 50% retail value,and they get delivered to your door!

Enter Thrive Market. Thrive Market offers the best selling natural and organic products at wholesale prices for a membership of less than $5 a month. And my favorite part? For every membership bought to Thrive Market, they will donate another membership for free to a low income American family.

At present Thrive Market is offering an extra 15% off your first order, and shipping is always free if you spend over $49. To sign up for Thrive Market click here or on the picture below and do good for both yourself and another family.

Thrive_Sharing_0004_5
Thrive_Sharing_0004_5

4. Food Prep Like a Boss

We meal prep twice a week because that fits in with our schedule (and I enjoy cooking). We usually roast up a joint of meat (pork or beef), chicken breast and or thighs, throw something in the slow cooker (usually a chili) and roast up seasonal veggies too.

Roasting veggies is super simple (and delicious), just peel and chop them into equal size pieces, then melt coconut oil with salt, pepper and herbs and spices if you wish (I use smoked paprika, turmeric and fresh or frozen thyme) in a pan. Put vegetables in a pre heated dish, and cover them with the melted coconut oil - this means you use less coconut oil than if you put it in the pan, and it covers the veggies more evenly resulting in quicker cooking time. This food prep enables us to have a delicious meal that night, and have leftovers for breakfast, lunches and dinners during the week. If we get bored of eating the leftovers dry I add them to a soup base (I call this 'pimp soup'), use them as a topping for veggie or gluten free pasta, throw them in a curry sauce or add to a gluten free wrap.

It is worth investing a little money in equipment that will make food prep easier and therefore save you money in the future, consider a slow cooker and a set of Pyrex storage as a great starter kit. Click here and scroll down to 'Equipment' for a list of links to my favorite food prep tools.

Food Prep
Food Prep

5. Reduce Food Waste

The average American household looses up to 40% of its food through food waste, a statistic that has huge economical and environmental implications. My husband and I have worked hard to reduce our food waste to under 5% food waste through forward planning and being conscientious. Here is how we did it:

  • Have a rough plan of what you are going to eat throughout the week (this ties in with the food prep advice above)
  • Understand how much you approximately eat each week
  • Get creative with leftovers - they can be turned into soups, stews, pasta toppings, salads, fillings for wraps and sandwiches
  • Learn how to store your food: did you know citrus fruits, avocados, fresh herbs, ginger and red wine can be frozen?

For more information on how to reduce your food waste check out the guest blog food activist Ashely Gelineau wrote for me last year: Reducing Food Waste On a Clean Eating Diet.

foodprint_img
foodprint_img

For more tips and tricks on how to reduce your food costs and still eat clean, nutritious, delicious foods check back next Monday for Part 2.

I'd love to hear your ideas for Clean Eating on a Budget - comment below and let us know what has worked for you!

In the spirit of full disclosure, some of these are affiliate links, which means that I may get a commission if you decide to purchase anything.  I only recommend products and services that I use and love myself, so I know you’ll be in good hands!

My Top Five: Apps for Health, Fitness and Wellbeing

  The new year comes with a lot of resolutions for all of us, and if those resolutions include improving your health and wellbeing then read on!

It has been proven many times that we are more likely to stick to our healthy habits if they are made easily accessible to us, and what could be more accessible than our smart phones, tablets and laptops that we cant seem to live without these days!

You can use all of these apps without having to purchase an expensive gadget such as a Fitbit or Jawbone (I don't own any of these).

I love anything that makes wellbeing easier, and as someone that couldn't live without her iPhone I wanted to share with you my top five apps that I use to help with my nutrition, fitness and wellbeing.

1) My Fitness Pal

Available as an App and via their website, My Fitness Pal is my go-to for food tracking for both myself and my clients. It is so easy to use, and has a huge database of foods ranging from grocery store goods to restaurant dishes. Even better, you can scan barcodes on food packaging for easy uploading.

You can also allow your friends to see your food diaries, and this can help accountability, and also makes it very easy for your nutrition coach to keep track of your food intake too (I see you...)

As with all food tracking apps I do not agree with their 'one size fits all' approach to calculating calorie allowances, so I suggest setting your own custom macros in accordance with your goals.

My Fitness Pal is free.

2) Nike+ Training Club

One of the originals and in my opinion the best of all workout apps available, you cant beat the behemoth that is Nike for a huge variety of beautifully shot and easy to follow workouts.

You can set the workout to music from your iTunes library, reiview all the exercises before you start the workout (I love this feature), and view the workout on your television if you have Apple TV. Workouts range from 15 minutes to 45 minutes so even those strapped for time have no excuses!

Nike+ Training Club is free.

3) Yoga Studio

Yoga Studio by Gaiam is my favorite of all the yoga apps available as it is so easy to use, clearly shot, and easily accessible to beginners. It has options for viewing ready made classes, from which you can select based on focus, ability or duration, or you can create your own class depending on what you want to achieve from your practice. From what I have seen so far all you need is a mat and some space, and you are ready to go. I love the Yoga for Back Pain classes, and the Deep Relaxation ; )

Yoga Studio is $3.99.

4) f.lux / Sunn 

Such a simple concept, but I've really found these two apps life changing. Both apps make the color of your computer or smartphone displays adapt to the time of day showing as warm at night (less blue light) and like sunlight during the day. Bringing down the amount of artificial light you are exposed to after dark can lower cortisol levels (the stress hormone) and normalize our circadian rhythms, helping us sleep better at night.

I use f.lux for my laptop, and Sunn for my iPhone, as Apple do not allow f.lux unless you jailbreak the phone.

f.lux is free and Sunn is $3.99.

5) Headspace

Headspace is a relatively new app for me but I love it already. Think of it as 'meditation for non-meditators'. You are guided through a series of  'brain training sessions' by the creator Andy Puddicombe (a meditation and mindfulness expert and a fellow brit - this app is worth downloading for his soothing British accent alone), in which you are asked to focus on your breath, physical sensations and noise around you, making for practice that can be adopted by anyone.

Your are also able to track your progress, find friends who are also using Headspace, and pick practices from collections to suit your mood and lifestyle.

Headspace is free for the first 10 sessions, then moves to a paid subscription starting at $7.99 if you sign up for a year.

 

I'd love to hear about the apps you use to enhance your nutrition, training and wellbeing! Please share your suggestions below so we can all reap the benefits!

The Nitty Gritty of Goals

So here it is, January 1st, 2016. I love a clean sheet, a fresh start, and a opportunity to learn and grow, develop and improve. Some of my resolutions (developed from my 'Core Desired Feelings' ) are to have more energy, reduce my inflammation, cultivate a yoga practice, and forgive myself and others more. If you have read my previous post on 'Setting Goals with Soul' you will know I'm a huge fan of goal setting and wanting to improve your health and happiness, so I've detailed below the process I use with both myself and my clients for goal achieving.

1) Work Backwards

Where do you want to be with your wellbeing on December 1st, 2016? Rocking a little black dress, hosting a healthy dinner party, celebrating the marathon you ran, or relaxing on a yoga retreat in Guatemala? Identifying some BHAG's (Big Hairy Audacious Goals) should make you feel a little nervous and a little excited at the same time - think good butterflies!

Setting these goals gives us a destination for the journey, and once we have a destination we can start plotting out the journey...

2) Chunk the Journey

Let's start to make this journey more manageable. If you are holding an extra 30 pounds, rocking that little black dress may seem a little far fetched. If you've never run a 5km, but completing a marathon is your goal, you may feel like giving up before you even lace your sneakers. But by setting mini goals and mini milestones it makes the process seem less daunting, and maybe even fun!

I like to use each quarter of the year as my mini milestone, so I look at what I need to achieve by the end of March, end of June, and the end of September, to get to where I want to be by the end of December.

Chunking the journey also gives us reason to celebrate our successes along the way, which is going to keep your more motivated and more compliant than waiting 12 months to give yourself a pat on the back!

3) How to Get There

This is the nitty gritty of goal achieving, and my favorite part of the process (I LOVE to plan and organize)! When I work through this process with my clients I help them break down their wellbeing into four components:

  • Nutrition
  • Fitness
  • Healthy Lifestyle
  • Self Care

From here we look at another process called 'habit layering'. Habit layering is a wonderful tool as it provides a managable structure to create healthy habits. When we try and change everything all at once it becomes too overwhelming, and we are more likely to throw in the towel. Healthy habit layering is the process of introducing one new habit a week from the catergories above and implementing 'Action Steps'. For me the most important part of this process are the Action Steps as they are the concrete strategies to achieve the goals.

For example, if a client's goal is to lose 30 pounds by the end of the year, her first week of habit layering may look like this:

Component

What Action Step
Nutrition Increase intake of Fruit and Vegetables Sign up for local farm box delivery
Fitness Find a Personal Trainer Research gyms in local area and book at least one trial session
Lifestyle Meet people who are interested in healthy living Find a healthy living Meetup group nearby
Self Care

Increase hours of sleep Set regular bed time of 10.30pm

Creating these tables every week, on a month by month and quarterly basis quickly adds up to so many healthy habits that it cant fail to create change! It designs a wonderfully simple roadmap to follow to guide you through the journey to wellness to the place and person you wish to find at the end of the year.

I love working through this process for both myself and my clients, and I'm excited to be facilitating this both online through my Pop Expert Sessions, and through my 'Real World Wellness' workshops for those of you in Boston.

If you plan to make 2016 your healthiest, happiest year yet I have an amazing goal achieving package to give away!

Comment below to win a copy of my favorite book about goals and desire: Danielle LaPorte's 'The Desire Map', A Pop Expert One to One Healthy Goal Setting Session with me, and a ticket to my Real World Wellness: Goal Setting Workshop for those of you close to Boston.

To enter just comment below with one of your health and wellbeing goals for 2016. Not only will you be entered into the giveaway, I will also respond to all comments with an Action Step for you to take to help you reach your goal.

The winner will be picked at random and will be notified by email by 1/7/2016.

Wishing you all the healthiest, happiest 2016!

 

 

2016: Your Healthiest, Happiest Year Yet!

I love goals. I love fresh starts and new challenges. I love the beginning of a New Year! I’m seeing a lot of negativity on social media around New Year’s Resolutions, and it makes me sad. Of course I am of the opinion that healthy habits should be sustained year round, but what is the harm in wanting to improve your life and become a better version of you? In my opinion that should be celebrated, whether the catalyst for you is the start of a new day, new week or new year.

I’ve always been a big fan of goal setting, and when I moved to the US nearly 3 years ago it was a perfect fresh start for me to take my career to the next level. And I had time, plenty of time. It took six months from my arrival to being granted my Green Card, so I had plenty of time for goal setting and planning!

I wrote huge lists, and guided by Jack Canfield’s book ‘The Principles of Success’, gave my goals clarity, detail and a completion date. And then sat back and felt completely unmoved.

Don’t get me wrong, my goals were pretty awesome: write for a fitness magazines, work for the top studios in the area, build an online business, keep a client base in the UK, look great in a crop top, all exciting and certainly achievable. But it felt like a ‘to-do’ list, endless chores rather than a guide to building an exciting and valuable life.

Enter Danielle LaPorte. I had first heard of Danielle’s work via Brene Brown, via a goal setting workshop I had been a part of with the UK Lululemon team. I downloaded Danielle’s book ‘The Desire Map’ via Audible, and got to listening. And it changed everything.

‘The Desire Map’ turns goal setting on its head: it switches the focus from what you want to achieve to ‘how do you want to feel’, and it that though process is the game changer. 

As part of the process you are asked to define your ‘core desired feelings’, two of mine were ‘authentic’ and ‘of service’. Defining these helped me to pinpoint my goals with more depth of feeling, the goal of writing for magazines was really my wanting to reach a wider audience to help more people improve their health and wellbeing, working for the top boutique fitness studios in the area was my desire to continue to learn and hone my craft. And the crop top? That turned out to be my wanting to ‘live authentic’, to live and breathe my message, in other words, to ‘practice what I preach’.

Danielle LaPorte’s work is still part of my goal setting practice, whether setting goals for myself, or when working with my clients to help them define what health and wellness means for them. If rocking 2016 is on your agenda I highly recommend checking out Danielle's work to create what she calls 'Goals with Soul'! 

dlp
dlp

If you would like to work with me on a one to one basis to set your healthy goals for 2016 I’d love for you to join me via Pop Expert for my : Real World Wellness Workshop: Setting Healthy Goals for 2016. 

This one to one workshop is perfect for anyone looking to improve their health and wellness in 2016, whether you are taking your first steps on the journey, or are looking for the next level in becoming your healthiest, happiest you.

During the 50 minute session we will cover the following:

  • Setting the goals you wish to achieve by 12/31/2016
  • How to break down those goals into segments of 3, 6 and 12 months
  • Detailed planning for the next 3 months on how to achieve those goals by using my four ingredients for the healthiest, happiest you: nutrition, training, healthy lifestyle and self care
  • How to ‘habit layer’ each week to make your goals manageable and enjoyable to achieve
  • Practical, real world advice to implement these habits
  • Accountability in the form of a private Facebook Group
  • Discounts on all of my Online Services throughout the year of 2016

To book the session please click on the link below, go to 'Book Now' and select the day and time that works for you. Once you have booked I will be in touch with more details about what you need for the session, and to get some information from you so I can be fully prepared to give you my best guidance.

https://www.popexpert.com/jennifer-hanway

But wait, there is more! I love goal setting so much that I have an amazing goal achieving package to give away! Consisting of a copy of the book that changed everything for me, Danielle LaPorte's 'The Desire Map' and a Pop Expert One to One Healthy Goal Setting Session with me! 

To enter all you need to do is post just one of your health and wellbeing resolutions in the comments below. The winner will be picked at random and will be notified by email by 1/7/2016.

Wishing you all the healthiest, happiest 2016!

Beat the Christmas Bloat!

Some people have what my Dad would call 'cast iron guts'! They can eat or drink anything they want, and have no nasty side effects. I am not one of those people. I am on the extreme end of the spectrum however; I have a severe gluten allergy that was undiagnosed until my early 30's (like a lot of the people in the health and wellness field I became frustrated when conventional medicine could not help me, and started to do my own research, but thats a story for another day), I'm intolerant to dairy (gluten and dairy sensitivities often go hand in hand), and I caught Typhoid whilst working at a fitness resort in Mexico in my late twenties.

Because of this I am very strict with my diet and avoid gluten, dairy and eggs like the plague. Even so, being out of routine, increased calorie intake and more alcohol and sugar than usual (my mother in law bakes amazing GF and DF treats for me) can result in 'stomach upset' (my polite English terminology), which in my case means bloating, gas, constipation and generally feeling miserable.

Below are my 3 tried and tested ways of helping my gut through the holiday period:

Friendly Bacteria

Probiotics are in common use now, and most people understand the benefits of incorporating them into their diets either in the foods they eat or as a supplement. I like to go two-fold on this when I know my digestive system is going to work a little harder than usual: I up my intake of probiotic rich fermented foods (goats milk kefir and sauerkraut are my favorites, you can buy both from Whole Foods), and every evening I take a good quality probiotic supplement from the Poliquin Group.

What is not as well know is that Probiotics need to feed on Prebiotic fiber to be active in the gut. I like to ensure my prebiotic fiber comes from my diet, great sources are fibrous veggies such as artichokes, leeks, dandelion greens and chicory. These are best eaten raw, but you can still get some of the benefits by lightly steaming them. Bananas (the greener the better) are also a great source of prebiotics.

I've also started to bring a bag of " target="_blank">Tiger Nuts with me when I travel - these little guys are not nuts, but tiny little tubers that are an amazing source of prebiotic fiber. You can also cook with Tiger Nut flour, and watch out for some Tiger Nut recipes on the blog in 2016!

Tiger Nuts
Tiger Nuts

Get Moving

Such a simple thing, but I find it makes a huge difference in my digestion and ahem, motility. I've learnt the hard way that I need to move my body everyday for all aspects of my health, and my favorite way to do this on holidays is to go for a walk, and practice some basic yoga poses that aid digestion.

Here is a 5 minute Yoga for Digestion video from ekhartyoga.com that is suitable for everyone:

[embed]http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lefh3wWcCHs[/embed]

Green for 'Go'

The fiber from green smoothies (not juices) is a great way to help everything move through the digestive system with a little more ease, and adding pineapple, lemon, parsley and ginger can help with gas and bloating. Below is my favorite 'stomach saving' green smoothie recipe:

1 cup fresh or frozen pineapple chunks 1 cup water or coconut water (or 1/2 and 1/2) 1/4 cup fresh parsley 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger 1 cup leafy green veggies such as kale, chard, spinach or dandelion greens Big squeeze lemon juice Blend together until smooth and enjoy!
1 cup fresh or frozen pineapple chunks 1 cup water or coconut water (or 1/2 and 1/2) 1/4 cup fresh parsley 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger 1 cup leafy green veggies such as kale, chard, spinach or dandelion greens Big squeeze lemon juice Blend together until smooth and enjoy!

I hope these suggestions help you as much as they help me. If you have any questions about this post please comment below, and if you have any 'stomach savers' you would like to share I'd love to hear them.

Quick and Easy Tips for a Healthy Road Trip!

Are you (like me) hitting the road today (or tomorrow) to visit family and friends for the holidays? I'm a big fan of road trips, but they can often derail our healthy habits. Here are some quick and easy ways to have a healthy road trip, to ensure you feel full of energy and ready to party when you arrive at your destination! Move It or Lose It

I'm really bad at sitting still for any amount of time (read longer than 5 minutes), so long car journeys are definitely a challenge for me. Before we hit the road I aim to get up just a little earlier so I can do a short at home yoga practice. I love the free content from Yoga Journal, and can complete my practice is around 30-45 minutes which is perfect. Taking a walk, going for a swim, having a dance party in your kitchen to Mariah (just me?), anything that gets the body moving and the blood pumping is a great antidote to sitting still for hours on end, and will stop you feeling stiff and achy on the journey.

The Most Important Meal of the Day

You've guessed it - protein, fats and veggies before you go (see my 7 Days of Breakfast post for suggestions)! Having a good breakfast is going to set you up for the day, stop you from having to eat breakfast at a gas station (no one deserves that), and keep you mentally focussed

Be Prepared

On the subject of gas station food, don't do it! Husband Hanway and I always take snacks on our road trips, and it makes for a much more pleasant journey! Protein shakes, jerky, nuts, fruit (see Healthy Holiday Travel for more ideas) are always on our list, and if its a longer journey consider packing a cooler with some homemade meals too.

Coffee is Life

And then there is gas station coffee. Bitter, tasteless, and served in chemical polystyrene cups. Don't do it. Brew your own at home and take in a thermos. Delicious, better for you and will save you money too.

Water Water Everywhere

Be sure to stay hydrated during the journey, there is nothing worse than arriving tired and cranky at a holiday party, and dehydration can be a big cause of this. Ensure you drink plenty of water during your journey, and your skin will thank you too.

Thats Entertainment

I'm a huge fan of podcasts and long car journeys can be a great time to catch up on my 'must listen' list. Audible is a great option too, so make sure you have downloaded some great content before you leave. Because there is only so many times you can play 'The Preacher's Cat', right?

Disconnect and Connect

Being able to access emails, the internet and social media 24/7 wherever we go is both a blessing and a curse, and I've been guilty myself on being 30 minutes into a road trip and connecting more with Instagram than my husband. Car journeys are a great opportunity to connect with your other passengers and shoot the breeze, just keep it light and fun and in the holiday spirit.

Champagne and Chicken Wings

Because even for me the holidays are about fun and celebration. Husband Hanway and I usually spend Christmas in the company of our family which we love, but last year we instituted a new tradition of going to our favorite bar and ordering champagne and chicken wings (a combo you HAVE to try) before we descend on the family. This is wonderful in many ways (umm, hello champagne and chicken wings) as for us it signals the start of the holidays and give us time to connect with each other before the craziness begins!

Whatever your plans for the holidays I hope they are happy, healthy, and above all, fun! Stay tuned in January for a heap of new recipes, meal plan ideas, workouts, product reviews and amazing giveaways! to make 2016 your best year yet! 

Rest and Reset: The Importance of Less Stress, More Sleep

The holidays are a wonderful time, but they can often mean self care and sleep get a little neglected. With this in mind I wanted to draw attention to an old post that rings true especially at this time of the year...Isn't sleep a blessing?  Not only does sleep make you feel wonderful, it has some pretty amazing health benefits too: 

  • It helps to control weight and improves body composition (ration of body fat to lean muscle) in two ways. Sleep regulates the hormones that effect appetite, and when we don't get enough sleep our bodies produce more of the hormone ghrelin which in turn leads us to make poor food choices and consume more calories. Research studies have also shown that lack of sleep leads to less energy output, i.e. we are less likely to exercise (or even walk around the block) due to tiredness and lack of motivation.
  • It increases your ability to handle both mental and physical stress. Not only this but sleep lowers both blood pressure levels and the stress hormone cortisol.
  • It has a beneficial effect on our mood and our thinking. Not only does it make us feel happier and less worried (studies show a long term sleep deficit can lead to depression and anxiety) good sleep increases cognitive function, leading to better judgement, improved focus and less tendency to takes risks.
  • It enables cell repair throughout the body, important for both repairing muscles post workout (we are at our weakest state post workout due to the breaking down of muscle fibers, they will repair and get stronger whilst we sleep) and beautiful skin (repair at the cellular level results in less fine lines and wrinkles, and gives us a glowing, even complexion).
  • It decreases inflammation: chronic inflammation is the source of many diseases, including cancer, obesity, and heart disease. We all need some level of inflammation in the body to help heal and fight off infections, but when too much inflammation is present (this can be caused by a myriad of things, from stress to bad food choices and poor gut health) it can cause the immune system to malfunction, relating in auto immune conditions such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and arthritis.

There are many simple ways to improve the quality of our sleep, below are five easy to implement health habits:

  • Introduce a caffeine curfew: for me this time is 3.30pm, for others it may be later or earlier, depending on your tolerance for caffeine. If you find your mind racing the minute you close your eyes start moving your caffeine curfew back by half an hour to see if it helps. One of my favorite alternatives is the caffeine free Turmeric tea from Numi Organics:

Numi Organic Turmeric Tea Amber Sun

  • Get outside in daylight: as the days become shorter we can find ourselves not seeing the daylight hours. By taking just a 10-15 minute walk outside at lunchtime you can normalize your circadian rhythm, letting your body know it is time to ‘wind down’ when the sun goes down.
  • Ensure adequate magnesium levels: due to our modern diets and extra environmental stresses the majority of us are magnesium deficient. Magnesium is needed in over 300 metabolic processes in the body, and is vital for ensuring a restful nights sleep .
  • Do not take the phone into the bedroom! Use an old fashioned alarm clock, or if you must use your phone turn the wifi off and switch to airplane mode for good measure. The electrical signals will have a negative impact on quality of sleep, even if you do not wake up. I love to use a daylight alarm clock for the most gentle, natural way to wake up:

Philips HF3500/60 Wake-Up Light

  • Consider supplements for sleep: they are many natural supplements available that can help aid sleep, my favorite is a product called RestoREM from the Poliquin Group. RestoREM contains the nutrients 5-HTP, Phenibut and melatonin and to improves serotonin levels, resulting in better sleep patterns to leave you feeling refreshed and energised when you wake up.

The Poliquin Store

Sweet dreams everyone!

The information and materials provided in this blog are to support and assist people who are looking to improve their health and wellbeing I understand that all new dietary/supplements/ exercise programs should be undertaken after consultation with a medical doctor. Jennifer Hanway is not responsible for any injury or illness sustained whilst following the information in this blog.

Contact: jenny@jenniferhanway.com