The healthy snacks, the hot workouts, the useful info…Healthista Bodyologist Helen Foster brings you six new diet and fitness trends to watch in February
The UK’s first running club for plus-sized women
I first met Julie Creffield at the National UK Blog Awards last year where we were both nominated for Health Blog of the Year. I could tell then that Julie had bigger plans in mind than just writing about her own experiences as a plus-sized runner – and since then she’s pretty much started a one woman crusade to make running more ‘every size’ friendly. This month sees her launch The Clubhouse – the first virtual running club for plus sized women. Offering online training advice, chats, the supports of other runners (and even the chance to maybe find another runner near you to buddy up with) the site costs £10 a year to join. See more here.
Hot Trend: Veggie Wrapping
Last year saw veggies taking the place of pasta (a’la courgetti) and pizza base (anyone not yet tried cauliflower pizza?), this year I’m predicting veggies as bread substitutes as a trend. Why do I think this? It’s already started in LA where In and Out burger offer burgers wrapped in lettuce and new Santa Monica start up Kye offer superfood burritos wrapped in things like lettuce and nori – and what starts there, soon comes here. So, what can you swap? Grilled slices of aubergine make brilliant replacements for bread in open sandwiches, Portabella mushrooms can replace buns for burgers (or sandwiches) and lettuce, or softened cabbage, is a brilliant wrap for all sorts of things. If you want to give that idea a try, hop over my blog where you’ll find a Pulled Pork Wrap recipe taken from The High Fat Diet: How to lose 10 lb in 14 days by Zana Morris -and me! (Vermilion, £7.99).
Healthy Snack Alert: Chickpea Shells
Okay, I’ve snacked on roasted chickpeas before and I’ve eaten my own body weight of them in the form of hummus, but when I saw a note saying M&S were bringing out Moroccan Spiced Chickpea Shells as part of their new Guilt Free Snacking offerings I was intrigued – so I got them to send me some. Sadly it seems chickpea shells are not some weird part of the chickpea I haven’t seen before but little shell shaped treats made of chickpea flour (part of me is very disappointed). Still, they’re pretty tasty and only 77 calories a bag, so I’ll get over my disappointment. You’ll find them now at M&S priced £2.00 for five 20g bags.
New workout: Pulse Training
No, not more chickpeas, or anything to do with heart beats. This is the new take on high intensity training from Aussie turned Londoner Peter Cobby. He’s alternating sessions of high intensity training like intervals of fast weight training with lower intensity work like 5k jogs or yoga sessions to create what he thinks is the ultimate body sculpting system – during sculpting, your high intensity sessions are closer together, once you’ve got your desired body shape you’ll spread them further apart. Hmm, sound interesting – and as soon I’m not injured (On my recent trip to India, it was my back vs jolty Indian bus – I lost – and am under strict walking on instructions) I’m looking forward to booking in to give it a try. See more here.
Coming soon: Immersive fitness
This new idea from gym gurus Les Mills – is kind of like doing an exercise class in an IMAX. Launching first in the UK at the David Lloyd gym in Raynes Park, is the cycle version called The Trip. In this, you aren’t just pedalling checking out your reflection in the mirror, instead you’re staring at an image of a glacier or an Olympic style velodrome. Your instructor then guides you into moves that echo what you’re seeing on the screen – climbing hills, twisting turn or gentle pedalling along watching the sunset as you cool down. Les Mills also have tried yoga moves alongside incredible sunsets and dance classes that feel like you’re at a festival. Right now though, it’s cycle fun only in the UK though. See more at and you’ve got to be a David Lloyd member to have a play. See more here.
Want one: Gym tote
If you go to the gym straight for work or meetings there’s always that ‘do I shove my kit in my handbag, or carry a not so professional gym bag’ dilemma. The answer is GymTote. It looks like a handbag, acts like a sports bag – for example, that handy section at the bottom of their newest offering the Sophia is big enough for a yoga mat. You’ll also find a special breathable, wipeable section inside for your kit to keep it away from your other items – an idea from heaven for anyone who has tried to get their purse out of normal gym bag and dropped a pair of knickers on the tube. Admittedly convenience doesn’t come uber cheap, Sophia costs £120, but what price can you put under control undies! See more bags (including the Eva with a handy trainer storage section that I have my eye on) here.
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