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Integrative Nutrition
9:16 AM

5 Examples of Everyday Mindfulness (That Aren’t Meditation)

Mindfulness has entered our everyday conversations in a powerful way. But what does it really mean? Jon Kabbat-Zinn, the creator of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), defines it as such... Read More

3:07 PM

FCUK this shit, let´s meditate

"When shit hits the fan on the outside, we can still find peace on the inside"

I think a lot of people have good reasons to be pretty pissed off right now and taking action against what we believe is unfair is admirable but trying to figure out how we got here in the first place is an interesting question too. 

The Dalai Lama once said that if all children were taught to meditate by the age of 8, we would eliminate violence in one generation. Right now, this seems like a really good idea.

I know it may come as a strange suggestion but if anyone´s got a direct line to the man in the White House then I´m pretty sure the whole World would benefit from him doing it too. 

I´m not exactly an expert in the art of meditation since I only took it up about a year ago but to me it feels like taking a massive chill pill for my mind. And I feel like the whole World could benefit from one of those right now! Including our new friend in the White House. 

I´m pretty sure he wouldn´t be taken by my idea and I don´t blame him. I used to think people who meditated were complete fruit loops but thankfully that has now changed :) 

As those of you who know me will know, sitting still is not my thing and “wasting” precious time I could be spending doing other stuff is not either so meditation is not exactly something that came to me naturally. But the benefits have been immense and have not only had an impact on my own wellbeing but on that of those around me as well.

I´m less stressed, more present in my work and with my friends, less likely to snap and bite the head off anyone who doesn´t agree with me and less likely to make irrational decisions on a whim because I´m pissed off with someone, something or maybe even with myself. All in all, the kind of stuff that´s kind of useful, especially if you´re in charge of nukes (which I personally am not). 

So if you´re intrigued about how it can benefit you or if you want to pass on the message to the man at the top then here are my top tips for starting:

·      Download an app on your phone (I use Headspace but there´s also Zenfie & probably others too)

·      Commit to 30 days.

·      Set the intention of practicing every day but don´t beat yourself up if you occasionally miss a day. The more consistent you are, the more beneficial it will be.

·      Put it in the diary and treat it as an appointment with a very important person: yourself.

·      Just get on with it, don´t procrastinate, put it off or wait for the perfect moment. There is no perfect moment. Just set aside 10-15 minutes a day and get on with it

·      Try doing it every day at the same time. This makes it easier to stick with.

·      No one knows what they´re doing when they start. Start anyway and just keep going, even if you feel like it´s not bringing you anything.

·      There´s no such thing as “being bad” at meditation. I get people tell me that they can´t meditate because they constantly have thoughts going through their mind and that they´re just “not good at it”. Welcome to the club. We´re just about 7 billion of us in the same situation.

·      It´s about the experience, not the theory. Talking or reading about it is not the same thing as doing it. Just get on with it.

·      Everyone´s experience is unique and this is the one thing in your life that is between you & you. Honor that time and don´t feel like you are doing anything wrong if you don´t feel any benefits immediately.

·      There is no such thing as “doing it wrong”. Setting aside the time and doing it consistently is what matters.

·      Results will come when you expect them the least. Focus on the practice, not on the outcome.

I hope this will inspire some of you to take on the practice and if you do, please let me know how you get on and how it has benefited you!

Peace out. 

Maddy x

1:04 AM

It´s ok not to be ok

I spoke with a dear friend last night who I reached out to because I was feeling down. She kindly listened to me as I poured my heart out for an hour and these were her parting words... And I wanted to share them with you because they truly stuck with me.

I think we all like to make others believe that our life is perfect and that we're always happy, and social media is a perfect outlet for that. I'm definitely guilty of that because I don't think anyone enjoys reading negative things or people's rants. I also feel like it's my job to help others see the positive and to lift them up so this is what I try to do. But I've realized that this can sometimes lead us to believe that there's something wrong with us when we're experiencing lows. But there's not.

Everyone has ups & downs in their life and anyone who tells you the contrary is lying, mainly to themselves. Nobody has a perfect life and sometimes things happen that are really shit. 2016 was a real shit year for me on many levels, most of which I did not share on social media, and my approach was to push though and focus on the positive. I reached out to a couple of friends at the end of last year and their advice came from a really good place and was always along the lines of "maybe you need to meditate more", "focus on the positive" "sleep more" "do more yoga". These are all great recommendations and ones I would probably have given to others too. But actually all I needed was the reassurance that it's ok to sometimes not be ok.

Focusing on the positive is a good approach but at the same time I think that by resisting sadness it kind of makes it persist even more. So let's allow ourselves to not be ok sometimes. I like to think that everyone has a good heart and that by focusing on the positive in everyone and every situation the negative will fade. But not everyone is made of sugar & honey. And sometimes it's ok to feel disappointed in others & in ourselves and instead of resisting that, let's embrace it and accept it. This is the space I want to be in and create for others to express themselves too. Nobody's got this thing called life down to a T, even those that live in Monaco, eat healthy, drink green smoothies, meditate and do Pilates & Yoga :)

So let's support each other, grow from our mistakes and let each other know that sometimes it's ok not to be ok. On that note, I wish you a badass day ❤

1:40 PM

Good calories V bad calories

Have you ever been for lunch with a really skinny person and asked yourself how the hell they can eat all that food and still remain thin? Or have you ever been for a meal with a heavily overweight person and asked yourself how the hell they can be so big when they eat so little? I think a lot of us can relate to this.

Some will say that this is down to genetics and to some extent I believe that this is true but not entirely. We´ve always been told that the number of calories we eat need to equate the number of calories out or else we will put on or lose weight. It kind of makes sense but what if all calories weren´t created equal and that some were more easily “burnt” off than others? And what if the type of food we eat had an effect on the hormones in charge of fat storage? In other words, what if some foods trigger fat storage and others just give you energy and happily pass through your system to come out the other end?

In my mind, it makes more sense to look at weight gain/loss in those terms than just calories in/out. And the more I talk with clients, the more I realize that people who eat a lot of white flour, processed foods & sugar tend to have more trouble going to the loo than those who eat natural foods. In fact, one of the first things people tend to tell me when they clean up their diet is that suddenly their bowels start functioning again… Ok so this might not be the sexiest subject for a blog post but I thought it was worth putting those thoughts out there! J Haha!

The bottom line is that eating cleaner foods and ditching the processed foods is a much more productive way of addressing your weight & health concerns rather than counting calories. This is why most calorie counting diets don´t work and why my approach is focused on the quality of calories rather than quantity. Once you start improving the quality of what you eat, your body will automatically start being more responsive to quantities and you will no longer experience the toxic hunger that comes with sugar laden processed foods. And that´s when the weight will naturally start coming off and your mind will start to freshen up too!

If you are interested in learning more about Good calories V Bad calories, I highly recommend reading this book by Gary Taubes.

3:45 AM

You didn´t fail at the diet, the diet failed you

Dieting birds

The New Year is a great time to reconsider our health and to make resolutions that better support it.

I know that a lot of people are going on diets at the moment or maybe even detoxes or committing to exercising more. And these are all very good intentions.

I tend to think that we are slowly moving away from the era of fad diets because people are starting to realize that they don´t work but unfortunately they´re still out there and their promises are easy to succumb to at this time of the year.

So if you´re considering going on a diet or that you´re already on one, or maybe you´ve already given up because of the frustration, I wanted to tell you the following:

Diets most often don´t work, not because of a lack of discipline, but because they make us ignore a vital mechanism in our body that is designed to send us messages with regards to what we need in terms of fuel.

Our bodies are very intelligent and they´re constantly sending us messages in the form of cravings, intuitions and sometimes even health problems. By going on a diet, you are effectively trying to fight this mechanism and to overpower it by following something that has been written on a sheet of paper, most often by someone who knows nothing about you.

So diets don´t only fail because they most often don´t take into account your specific needs but because they go against the way we were designed as humans.

Our bodies are designed to be healthy and know exactly what they need in terms of fuel. The trouble is that we have completely lost the ability to listen to our bodies and to read the messages they are sending us. Not only because a lot of the foods being produced today are screwing with this mechanism, but also because somehow we have been told that following a diet written by someone else is going to be better for us than following our own intuition.

YOU are the best person to know how to fuel your body because you´re the one receiving its messages. My job is to give you the knowledge to decrypt those messages and to clean up your diet in order to restore the well functioning of the mechanism that regulates your hunger. By doing this you will not only lose the excessive weight (we are not designed to be overweight…) but you will gain a skill that will be with you for the rest of your life.

Our health is our most important wealth yet we are never really taught how to care for it. We are constantly being bombarded by messages from the media and advertisers about what is good and bad for us but a lot of the times these messages just create confusion.

So if you´re interested in finding out how Health Coaching can help you take charge of your health and make you the expert of it, schedule a free consultation with me today. Together we will discuss your current lifestyle and your goals and how I can help you reach them.