It’s been a little while since I have done a loves post, and so instead of focusing on just one thing I am going to round up a few new favourites from the past couple of months!
I have a whole loads of hair on my head. Loads of it. As a runner it is a total pain in the butt trying to keep it under control. I have found that a super tight french plait is the best of the bunch for keeping hair off your face for multiple miles, but then the baby hairs work their way loose and want to join the party. I have tried so many things to try and keep my hair under control. I am a loyal disciple of Boots’ non-slip non-snag little rubber hair ties – if they didn’t loosen up after you’ve used them a few times they’d be ace, but currently they are essentially a disposable item. I have never, though, found a hair band that did the trick – I’ve tried different sports brands, beauty brands, widths, styles…they all seem to slip off, or give me a headache with their unrelenting head pressure.
Here’s the 1/2inch non-slip headband
Halo Headbands clearly telepathically felt my pain and sent me a couple of their headbands to try out. One a magical thick band designed to stop sweat running in to your eyes, the other a little skinny band designed to keep your hair up and away from your face without slippage. I’ve given both a run for their money and can said that I am suitably impressed with each of them. They’re comfortable, come in nice colours and do exactly what they promise to do. I particularly love the non-slip headband – I barely noticed I was wearing it (no too-tight-headband headache) and it kept my wild hair firmly in its place. I love the colour selections too – not just pink, but pink if you want it! I went for teal and blue. Highly recommended.
You can buy Halo Headbands over on their website, and I have also seen them for sale at various running expos!
TRX AT HEARTCORE
A little while ago Heartcore, a boutique chain of Pilates classes based in various locations in West London, invited me to try out one of their classes. I have been desperate to have a proper go at TRX since what feels like the dawn of time and so jumped at the chance. I went to an early class with some of the ladies from the Sweaty Betty team at Heartcore’s newest studio in Fulham and enjoyed it immensely.
The TRX studio in Fulham (photo courtesy of the Heartcore Facebook page)
The class is definitely not the faint hearted. I felt absolutely shattered towards the end (I don’t tend to do well in the early AM without breakfast at the best of times!) and had serious DOMS all over for a good few days afterwards. Our instructor was encouraging and informative without being patronising or pushing us too hard – a fine balance to strike – and I felt like he responded well to the group’s experience. The instruction was intuitive and definitely didn’t feel like a cut and paste class (i.e. cutting back on the burpees when it was clear we were all on the brink of vomming). The studio is lush and new and the bathrooms are beautiful. A lovely little luxe studio offering great classes.
TRX classes are currently offered in Heartcore’s Fulham and Chealsea studios (check the timetable for exact details) and they’re offering a free trial class when you register! A no-brainer, ey?
THE CHIA CO
I’ve heard a whole load about chia seeds but never really understood why everyone was wigging out about them. In early July Australian company The Chia Co invited me to their summer garden party and I went along to find out more about these little seeds. Turns out that chia seeds are full of omega-3, fibre and protein, containing all 8 essential amino acids. A tablespoon provides 100% of your daily omega-3 ALA, 25% of your daily recommended fibre intake and nearly 10% of your calcium, magnesium and iron intake (all essential for active women).
Pretty impressive little guys.
On their own I find them pretty tasteless with a nice crunch, so they’re perfect for sprinkling on all sorts of things to gain lots of nutritional kudos without having to suffer through ingesting it (“greens” drinks I am looking at you). I’ve had them on salad, in sweet potato mash, in scrambled eggs, on top of granola, with yoghurt and fruit…lots of different ways! And I have felt very smug about it the whole time.
The Chia Co sell Chia Shots (small individual serving size tubes of chia seeds) and a new Oats + Chia ‘Porridge’ (a blend of oats, chia, powdered coconut milk and fruit bits), both of which are perfect for putting in your bag or desk drawer. The Oats are ready in a minute and pretty yummy – a great easy healthy breakfast option. They also do single-serve chia puddings – Chia Pods – which are more of an acquired taste due to the texture. The banana flavour is pretty banana-y – the mango one is much better if you ask me.
At the garden party the founder of The Chia Co, John Foss, spoke to us about his background as a farmer in Australia and his desire to produce food that would benefit the people eating it and benefit the health of consumers worldwide. He was a passionate and genuine speaker and his love for healthy, natural food really came across. I loved the background of the company and love their ethos of wanting to make a positive contribution to public health. They also threw a mean garden party with excellent Pimms. I like them, and I think you should too.