The Wellness Gift Guide 2017

*Not a sponsored post, apart from being a Sweaty Betty ambassador, I have no connection to any of these brands.

It’s that time of year when your inbox is flooded with gift ideas….Gifts for Her, Gifts for Him, Gifts for Teens, Gifts for Your Loved One etc etc. But what about gifts for the wellness warrior in your life? Be it your yoga bunny bestie, your personal trainer partner, or simply someone you know loves to look after their mind and body, everyone deserves a treat this Christmas.

I’ve actually not started my Christmas shopping yet, which is unlike me, so in order to give myself a little kick up the backside, I’ve compiled a little list of some ideas for you, ranging from stocking fillers to more extravagant surprises. Take a look, and get shopping!

Treats up to £75

Flo 260 Massage Bar – £7.99

gift guide, christmas, massage roller

(tkmaxx.com)

Whether you want to admit it or not, rolling has so many benefits! For those who don’t love a foam roller, these handheld rollers are a great idea to get deep into those sore muscles. They might not thank you immediately (rolling is painful at times) but they will in the long run.

 

Kikki-K Wellbeing Diary – £21

gift guide, kikki-k, diary 2018, wellbeing

(kikki-k.com)

Not just dairy, but full of inspiration and prompts for a happy and healthy 2018.

 

S’well Bottle – from £25

gift guide, christmas, health, wellness

(swellbottle.com)

I am a massive fan of S’well bottles…I have two! Keeping cold drinks cold for 24 hours, and hot drinks hot for 12 hours, I have a traveller one for coffee and a bottle as above for water. They’re also completely leak proof and come in so many gorgeous designs!

 

Lululemon Run It Out Ear & Neck Warmer – £25 each

gift guide, lululemon, running, christmas

(lululemon.co.uk)

No-one likes cold ears, or a chill down their necks, so these Lulu warmers are a great idea for outdoor training. Buy one, or both for the matching set!

 

Sweaty Betty Gym Clutch – £35

sweaty betty, gift guide, gym, christmas

(sweatybetty.com)

If you’re lucky enough to have a gym just a stones throw from where you live or work, you probably don’t need a huge gym bag to fill with unnecessary baggage. This little clutch from Sweaty Betty is perfect for your gym pass, keys, phone, headphones, purse and maybe a little deodorant for a post workout spritz. I love the colour, and if you are gymming it further afield, then you can simply sling this in your main gym bag to make sure you don’t forget your essentials!

 

Sweaty Betty Velvet Padded Bra – £45

sweaty betty, gift guide, christmas, luxe

(sweatybetty.com)

I’m honestly not sure of the usefulness of a plush velvet sports bra, but I love it anyway! In fact, Sweaty Betty doesn’t even name this a ‘sports bra’ so I vote it gets worn underneath a fancy New Years Eve outfit for some comfort! Maybe this can be a treat for the lovely lady in your life?

 

Cowshed Knackered Cow Spa in a Box – £65

gift guide, cowshed, christmas

(cowshedonline.com)

I don’t know any health and fitness person who doesn’t like a night of relaxation and indulgence. In fact, if you want to earn all the partner / sibling / bestie / housemate points, get home early, run them a bath with this gift pack and treat them to a calming pre-Christmas night in…..hmmmm can anyone do that for me?!?!

 

Indulgent gifts over £75

Urbanears Plattan 2 Bluetooth Headphones – £85

gift guide, urbanears, christmas, music

(urbanears.com)

If like me, you’re (ahem, or the person you’re buying for) constantly listening to music or a podcast in the gym or while running, then the new Urbanears wireless headphones are going to be right up their street. Foldable, and with 30 hours of wireless time, they’ll never be stuck with awful gym music again!

 

Fitbit Alta HR – £129.99

gift guide, christmas, fitbit, fitness

(fitbit.com)

If chunky heart rate monitors aren’t your favourite thing, then the Fitbit Alta HR might be the best gift yet. The slimmest fitness tracker with heart rate technology, Fitbit have designed this in a range of attractive colours. Tracking exercise, sleep, heart rate and the usual steps etc. it’s a great gift for someone who’s either a fitness pro or just beginning their healthy journey.

 

Eastpak Stand Holdall – £200

gift guide, yoga, eastpak, christmas

(Emilie James / Eastpak)

Now this is a big indulgence, but since spotting it on the lovely Emilie’s instagram (@lovaine_james) I have been in love. Eastpak are moving with the times with this limited edition range, which also includes a gorgeous back pack. This weekend bag includes a yoga mat sling, making it the perfect gift for the yogi in your life. Not keen on the colour? It comes in a dark grey/black too.

 

The list could be endless, but I’ll stop there for now. Perhaps this will give you some ideas to share with your loved ones, or help you choose the perfect gift for the fitness fanatic in your life. And hey…..don’t forget your LOVELY personal trainer….treats are ALWAYS welcome. As is chocolate.

 

*As I mentioned earlier, no brand has requested these items to be featured in this post. All views my own.

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My Winter Wish List

You’ve seen my Wellness Gift Guide, now it’s time for me to share what’s on my very own wish list this festive season. I’m lucky enough to have already received a Lululemon voucher from my wonderful boss, so taking that into account, here’s what I’m hoping Santa will bring me this year…I’ve been a good girl!

wish lost, christmas, lbloggers, lifestyle

1. Lululemon Passage To Prana Jumper
How cosy is this? I can imagine wearing this on Christmas Day visiting relatives or on Boxing Day tucking into leftovers. I love the wine colour (it even matches the bag above) and it’s firmly on my wish list. At £138 it’s most certainly a big treat.

2. Lululemon Follow Your Bliss Bag
I am constantly searching for the perfect bag, and short of designing one myself, I just keep buying them until I cover every possible scenario! I’m particularly after something that includes a yoga mat carrier, and can carry my laptop safely for those days where I need my entire life with me. This nice, roomy bag has a padded laptop pocket and loops for my yoga mat. Plus it’s smart enough for the days where I’m not head-to-toe in lycra. At £98, I’ve got my eye on it for when I spend my gift card!

3. Bose Soundlink Colour
A bluetooth speaker is really handy when it comes to teaching my non-studio clients. Going into a client’s house, I need to provide some music for the session, but not be carrying around something that weighs a tonne. This cute speaker comes in a range of colours and is £119.

4. Cuisinart Waffle Maker
As if my kitchen doesn’t have enough gadgets in it! I do love a waffle though and I think this Cuisinart one, at £54, would be perfect for making Sunday morning treats. Made with buckwheat and topped with fruit of course….not a jar of nutella in sight…hmm?

5. The Happiness Planner
Each year I try to keep a journal for gratitude or happiness but I never succeed. I lose my focus, forget to allow the extra 15 minutes at the start of my day and it ends up collecting dust in my room. This year is no different, I want to begin 2016 with The Happiness Planner and aim to keep up with it. Let’s see what happens! At £25, this is a little cheaper than some of the other books.

6. Topshop Midi Dress
Who said it all needed to be fitness related? My mum and I go to the ballet every Christmas, and have done since I was 6 or 7. I always try to find a new outfit for the occasion and, although unusual for me to choose orange, I love the style and colour of this dress.

So there you have my Winter Wish List! I’m ignoring the realistic option of admitting that I really need a new laptop…perhaps save that for my 30th Birthday Wish List in April!

What are you longing for under the tree this Christmas?

Escape The Crowds At Thistle Holborn

Every so often, we all feel the need to escape from the hustle and bustle of London and step into a place where you can relax, indulge in some good food, and not leave Zone 1. A little while ago, I had the chance to take a tour around The Kingsley, Thistle Holborn, where you can do just that.

thistle holborn, hotel

Thistle Holborn – The Kingsley

A beautiful Edwardian building in the heart of Bloomsbury, The Kingsley offers 4-star accommodation and is close to multiple London attractions. Whether you’re visiting for business or pleasure, this hotel can provide all the facilities you need, from standard bedrooms, to deluxe suites, and from meeting rooms to a 100 seater conference theatre.

thistle holborn

On our tour, organised by the fabulous people at Joe’s Bloggers, we started at the Kingsley Two Brasserie, serving a range of British and European cuisines in a spacious, modern dining room. Into the bar we went where we found a cosy roaring fire, and a long drinks menu to suit every taste, as well as the chance to enjoy Afternoon Tea, a must for anyone celebrating a special occasion. In the rooms, en suites, internet access and a super comfy bed as standard.

ThistleHotel

Whatever the occasion, the staff at The Kingsley are on hand to make the experience as pleasurable as possible. We were there for an awesome Halloween make-up class, and found the hotel to be decorated perfectly with Halloween cupcakes at each check-in desk. I’ve no doubt that with the festive season upon us, the hotel will be transformed into a classy, Christmas delight.

halloween, christmas, thistle holborn

So whether you’re travelling to London for the holidays, treating your significant other to a celebratory night away, or simply wanting a cosy retreat for your afternoon tea, The Kinglsey can cater to your every whim. And…unless it’s Halloween…there’ll be no scary ghouls around like there were for our tour!

halloween, thistle holborn

Wellness Gift Guide 2015

If you’ve been reading Dance Flow Lift for a while, you’ll know that last year, I did a series of FITmas Gift Guide posts. This year I’m going to be a little more succinct and just post one gift guide for the wellness warrior in your life. Perhaps it’s your yoga loving lover or healthy foodie flatmate, here are some fabulous stocking fillers, and more indulgent gift ideas.

Neom Organics Three Nights of Peace*

neom, christmas, gift guide, fitness

If you know someone who loves nothing more than a long soak in the bath, then this is your treat for them. Christmas can be a manic time of year, so giving someone the chance to wind-down in the bath is a great gift. Neom’s Three Nights of Peace is a little gift set of 3 different combinations of essential oils, bottled for pure bath-time bliss.

neom, christmas, gift guide, fitness

The unique blends of oils are designed to help you relax and rewind, whether you choose to De-Stress with lavender, jasmine and Brazilian Rosewood, Unwind with guauacwood and rose, or get the Perfect Night’s Sleep with lavender, basil and jasmine. At just £14.95 this is a lovely stocking filler!

Liforme Yoga Mat

I treated myself to a Liforme Yoga Mat at the OM Yoga Show and I absolutely LOVE it. No affiliations here, I simply think it’s amazing. I’m a bit of a sweaty one when it comes to yoga, and I’ve never found a mat that I don’t start sliding around on, until now. I have the travel mat, which is perfect for doubling up with a studio mat, while being nice and light to carry around during the day. It has markings for alignment, which I do use and although is a definite indulgence at £85-£100, it’s totally worth it.

Limonoso Water Bottle*

Constantly nagging someone in your life to drink more water? Perhaps treat them to a Limonoso Fruit Infusion water bottle.

limonoso, bpa free, christmas, gift guide, fitness

With a spacious central tube to stuff all the flavours you can in, it’s a great way to make water taste great. My favourite combinations are frozen berries and mint leaves, or refreshing cucumber and lemon. Simply starting your day with a lemon water infusion boost the body’s metabolism, so this is a great way to get those benefits on the go. BPA free, and on sale at £7.99.

OM Yoga Magazine Subscription^

What’s better than a gift that keeps on giving throughout the year? A magazine subscription does just that and OM Yoga Magazine is a must for the yogi in your life. Full of inspiring interviews, stories, sequences and promotions, I love sitting down to read it every month.

om yoga magazine, christmas, gift guide, yoga

Every Second Counts

Everyone feels good in new kit, and Every Second Counts has a lovely new wintry range to tempt yogis and runners everywhere. From the Run The Night Jacket (£249) which is perfect for dark winter evening runs, to the cosy Raise The Bar hoody (£135) for warming up before your early morning workout, there’s something for everyone; guys and gals!!

every second counts, sportswear, christmas, gift guide, fitness

(Photo: Every Second Counts)

Merry Christmas lovelies!! Coming soon, my Christmas wish list!

* Products kindly provided by the brand, all words my own.
^ I am an affiliate blogger for OM Yoga Magazine.

Om Yoga Magazine || Tips For A Saner Christmas

I touched earlier this week on staying healthy over the festive period and avoiding the post Christmas bloat, but we mustn’t forget that this time of year can be a strain for the mind as well as the waistline. This month Om Yoga Magazine shared their 7 tips for a saner Christmas, and I’m going to do my best to put them into practice this coming week!

om yoga magazine, christmas

Get Organised

Being my first Christmas as a singleton in 4 years, my mum was super brilliant in organising pretty early that I’d have Christmas at hers. I know she found the first Christmas after her and my dad separated incredibly hard, as she felt she had to ask people to be involved in their plans. Although my situation is on a smaller scale, I certainly appreciated her effort to make me feel included. I also booked my hire car with Zipcar 2 months ago as last year I missed out and they were all gone!

Remember The Message

I’m not religious, and as much as I love giving and receiving presents, I actually love seeing my family, so that’s what Christmas is for me. We all live rather separate lives these days and an afternoon of festive games and food sounds just perfect. If the Christmas rush is getting me down (easily done in London), taking a moment to look forward to family time helps to calm things a little.

christmas, christmas tree, london

St. Pancras Station

Let Your Heart Guide You

I’m talking gifts here. In the past I’ve gotten so disappointed that I’ve not had much money to really treat people. I’ve taken to making / baking gifts in recent years which has proved to be very cost-effective and rewarding. The old saying goes ‘it’s the thought that counts’ and I agree. I enjoy planning and thinking what people would like, as much as I do buying and / or making presents.

Be Smart With Cards

Do you remember sending a card to everyone in your class, every teacher and every single member of your family? I do. I’d spend a whole weekend writing them and then forget to put them in my bag until the very last day. I still like to write cards but this year I bought 10 from Cats Protection and stuck with that. No need to waste paper and a festive email will suffice for co-workers, clients and business contacts. If you are posting, don’t forget the final posting dates!

Prioritise Your “Yes”

With Christmas being just one week away, the pressure to attend every single event is increasing. Don’t be afraid to say no! With the rush of work deadlines, final shopping and preparations getting done, a day or evening to yourself might be just what you need!

Christmas, christmas tree, london

Natural History Museum

Be Good To Yourself

I encourage you to be a little selfish if you need to be! Treat yourself to those new party shoes when you finish your Christmas shopping, enjoy a glass of something bubbly while wrapping the presents and make sure you’re happy with the arrangements and plans, especially if your family is separate like mine.

Don’t Bury Your Emotions

Christmas can bring up lots of emotions for various reasons. Don’t bottle it up! I know I can simply say to my mum ‘I need a hug’ and it’s a good sign to her that I’m finding all the festivities hard. She does the same with me. Family functions do drag up arguments and occasional rifts, that’s normal. Acknowledge it, be angry or sad for 10 minutes, and move on.

My Top Tip

An extra one from me here….Try to not let it all get to you. It’s just one day of potential madness, and then you’ve got a fabulous New Year ahead to look forward to. If you feel everything is getting too much, excuse yourself, go for a walk and clear your head. I’ve had to learn to not panic if everything is getting on top of me and if I don’t think I’m doing the best for everyone. What’s important is that I’m happy, the rest will follow.

Christmas, christmas tree

Charlie enjoying Christmas…sort of

So with that, I’m going to pop some Michael Buble on, wrap some presents and pour myself a Baileys….MERRY CHRISTMAS!

 I am an affiliate blogger for Om Yoga Magazine. I receive a free subscription in return for writing one article a month relating to the magazine. All opinions remain my own. For subscription information please visit this link (affiliate link).

How To Beat The Post-Christmas Bloat

I’m a Christmas lover, I allow myself to indulge a little and I believe that it’s a time of year when nobody should feel guilty about a few extra calories here and there. The festive season is not an excuse however to completely throw every health notion you know out the window, nor it is necessary to become an all eating, all drinking machine. Walking through Covent Garden at 7pm last Friday evening, I saw 2 men (sorry guys) peeing in the street and one throwing up…NOT COOL!

So here are my 5 top tips for avoiding that post-festive season panic.

measurement

It’s OK to say no.

Chocolate? Drink? Extra potato? More stuffing? Last mince-pie? There are so many things being offered around offices, parties and dinner tables at this time of year, you might feel it rude to refuse. Don’t feel bad! Everyone has a stopping point and you need to listen to yours. Nobody will mind if you pass on that extra slice of Christmas cake, or head home before the office party gets messy. You’ll feel better for it, not only the next day, but also come January!

christmas, chocolate

Don’t forsake your normal routine.

Just because it’s December, it doesn’t mean you can conveniently forget your regular booking with the gym, barre or spin bike. ‘Tis the season to be social…yes, and I love a Christmas party as much as the next, but I’m sure you could spare just the odd hour in the studio. Most likely scenario is that classes will be on the quiet side and you’ll get some individual attention!

yoga class, yoga mat

Pace Yourself.

When it comes to the big one – Christmas Day – the temptation is to treat yourself to a fancy fried breakfast, the full works for lunch and a large plate of leftovers for dinner. Plus the sweets, cheese, nibbles and copious amounts of celebratory bubbly. By bedtime you’re feeling sluggish and swollen. Why not start the day in the exact same way you normally would? Whether it’s granola, avocado on toast or a boiled egg, why should Christmas Day be any different? That way your body will have a steady start and you won’t be stuffed by 10am! As for the booze, alternate with water, try not to mix too many different varieties….but do be merry (it’s Christmas after all).

christmas, drink, celebration, healthy

Get Moving.

It’s Christmas Day or Boxing Day, 4pm, what are you doing? Half asleep on the sofa with The Sound of Music or Mary Poppins on the telly box? Get up, get out! Go for a walk with the family, the fresh air will fight off the post-dinner doze. Plus walking off a few calories can’t hurt. Maybe even go for a run if that’s part of your regular fitness program. Find any active games in your stocking? Get them out and have a go! A little yoga DVD or dance battle game can only be a good thing.

Get Creative.

Leftover turkey doesn’t have to mean a rich, creamy Boxing Day curry! Create a light, warm salad with quinoa and vegetables or pop leftovers into a homemade wrap. Piles of veg going to waste? Add water, whizz them up into a soup and enjoy a healthy end of 2014.

soup, christmas, healthy

Christmas doesn’t have to mean a week-long binge! By all means enjoy the extra indulgence, treat yourself to some festive favourites and rest your hard working body, you deserve it! Whatever you do, and however you celebrate, get rid of the guilt by practising the art of a little restraint. if you do happen to over-indulge, or don’t find the time to workout…? IT DOESN’T MATTER!

Have a wonderful festive period lovely readers!