Things I’d recommend looking for in hair products

Australian made

An obvious one but we should all really be on this bandwagon by now. We need to be supporting local Aussie business’ to keep them going. Kevin Murphy and De Lorenzo are winners here.

Sulphate and paraben free

It has actually been de-bunked that sulphates and parabens in shampoos, conditioners and masques(with sulphates and parabens in their ingredient list) can seep into the scalp and become harmful- they actually cannot. So I don’t think this is the be all end all… BUT if something is sulphate and paraben free I would much prefer that option over something that isn’t. Less additives the better. I also find sulphate and paraben shampoo can make my eyes sting when washing my hair in the shower.

Value for money

Hair products have never been such an investment. There are so many different brands, ranges and varietys aka: alot of competition on the market. I personally wouldn’t purchase a $5 shampoo from the grocery store as I know it won’t perform like a $40 bottle of shampoo will. I will also never purchase a shampoo bar, eeeeeek. It may seem super expensive when you first purchase salon quality home haircare but lets say you take home a $42 bottle of shampoo as well as conditioner= $82. This should last you atleast three months as long as you arent over washing/over using the products. Less is more. It ends up being less than a dollar a day to be looking after your hair as well as protecting your colour. And you shouldn’t be washing daily anyway! I see value here a thousand times over. But then again its where YOU see value for money.

Performance in the product

Whatever home haircare you have purchased SHOULD be performing as it says it will on the bottle. If it is stating colour lock/longevity, hydration, shine, volume, colour correcting etc- it should really be acting this way towards your hair. Hopefully your stylist has selected the right range for you to be using and the product is doing what it says. Like any product on the market we do need to do some research/put products to test first, so patience may be required here. But talk to your stylist, pick their brains, ask for a sample to take home. We are happy to help!

I will see you in the next blog! Tully x

My Cooloola Great Walk experience!

Early last week I arrived home after completing the Cooloola Great Walk with two really good friends. The great walk is 102 kilometers over 5 days. We walked from Tewantin (just out of Noosa, Queensland) to Rainbow beach. You can walk vice versa but I LOVED finishing in Rainbow as it is probably one of my favourite places in the world. The walk was lengthy, tough, mentally and physically exhausting, blister ridden, beautiful, challenging, scenic and blissful all in one. It was a JOURNEY thats for sure. I am so so glad we did this, it’s really important to get out of our comfort zone sometimes. Below is my Cooloola Great Walk experience as well as a few reccomendations, enjoy!

DAY 1

We started at roughly 9am on our first day and staight away went to the DOC hut to get ourselves a lil map so we wouldn’t get lost(we didn’t!). We took the barge over the Noosa river for $1 and started walking from there. This was just over 2k from the start of the walk(we wanted to get extra steps in, JK). Majority of the first day was all along the beach which was so exciting and gorgeous for the first couple of hours but this ended up being maybe 10k walking of the flat sand and our feet definitely started to feel it. After the first 8k I would totally recommend to get off the coast and head towards the sand dunes to follow the track from there as the post with the orange arrow is quite hard to find here. On this note I also wouldn’t take advice from anyone on the beach. North shore is a really busy and populated area with loads of cars and people. The amount of comments/questions we were getting from 50+ year old males(wankers) were unsolicited and we really didn’t need a debrief from people that hadn’t actually had any experience in what we were doing LOL. We couldn’t wait to head inland and get away from civilization πŸ™‚ this was a 7.5 hour walk day and we walked 22k. We made it to our first camp Brahminy at 4pm and IT WAS SO BEAUTIFUL! We were the only ones there which made it even more special. Our view from the camp was the ocean to the right and lake Cootharaba was on the left. It was so so pretty.

Brahminy camp night 1

Every camp was very basic. They have a few platforms which is more of a common area, to be able to cook food, leave your bags on etc. as well as a water tank, and a toilet. There are absolutely no showers or trash cans.

We slept well the first night. It was probably one of the coldest nights we had and we slept with our food in our tent which we soon realised we wouldn’t do again as there were rats that found interest, LOL. Speaking of sleeping arrangements. My friend and myself shared a tent and I’m glad we did. She carried the tent the whole time, buff bish. And needed the body heat. The coldest it got was probably 9 degrees, cold for us though. I had a sleeping bag as well as a liner(cheers mum) and the liner really helped with warmth and comfort. I also slept on a compression mattress(cheers dad) and its bag turned into a pillow. Very simple but effective set up. Next time I’d probably invest in a better quality/smaller sleeping bag IF I knew I’d be doing more of these kinds of adventures and I’d take a better pillow as we had quite long sleeps. There definitely isn’t a whole lot to do once you’ve eaten dinner and the sun goes down. We were in bed by 6 and up at 5.30 most mornings.

DAY 2

The second day was most likely my least favourite as there was unexpected incline and it just felt like a long day getting used to the weight on our backs(mine was about 13kg) and so much walking. It did have stunning views of the coast line which was amazing but again was a 7.5 hour walk day including a lunch break. Campsite number 2 was Litoria and was on the Noosa river but felt kinda swampy so was probably my least favourite campsite of the trip. The only time we shared a campsite was this night with two lovely local ladies. We only saw 3 people over the WHOLE 5 DAYS and they were all female, up the chicks.

Whenever the walking felt hard I found myself snacking. Snacking or talking would take the pain away from us thinking about our feet LOL. Snacks that we took and I would recommend are: snakes, trail mix of nuts, banana chips, mnms, dried fruit, we made heaps of bliss balls which were the best thing ever. They were heavy but did not get sick of them, they gave us such great energy. You also really want to have all of your food in big clip seal bags due to the fact there are no trash cans so what you take in you have to take out. We did a really good job with our rubbish and kept things really minimal.

Walking the sandpatch on day 2
So many different terrains

DAY 3

This was probably one of the most enjoyable days on our hike as it was only a 15k day and we made really great time. We arrived at camp just after lunch and once again had the place to ourselves. The trek this day was soooo breezy and cinematic. The trees swayed the whole morning, it was beautiful. Considering we had the time when we got to camp we decided to walk to a nearby lake that was 5k return. I am glad we did this simply because we HAD the time but don’t know if those extra steps to go and visit Lake Cooloomera which was basically a pond with no access was worth the energy LOL. It makes a good story now. A friend said this was ‘decompressing after our walk’. Walking, walking and more WALKING. I feel like most hikers on this track do head here- hoping for somewhere to swim! We slept more or less downhill at Litoria camp so we didn’t get alot of wind this night- had a really great sleep.

Hiking to Litoria camp

DAY 4

This morning we woke and watched the sunrise with mocha’s as well as had a stretch, best start to the day! Day 4 was another 20k day that I was lowkey dreading but we had a great pace on us and it went fairly quickly. It was another 7 hour walk day but threw in a few podcasts and dnms and the hours flew. We saw heaps of cool mushrooms this day. Day 4 had a bit of a Cairns rainforest vibe to it. Super lush, green and tropical. We arrived at the fourth camp feeling relieved and happy to rest our feet but Kauri walkers camp wasn’t the best on the track and we didn’t overly struggle with mosquitos on the track but they were bad at Kauri. We made a team decision to walk a few extra K to some water that we’d heard about. Best. Decision. Ever. This was our biggest day yet at 26k’s but it was so rewarding getting to go to sleep and wake up where we did. Camping under the stars this night was the best end to this adventure.

Home for the night

DAY 5

We were all STOKED to wake this day. We’d almost completed 100k! We knew we had a short morning which was so motivating. We started quite early and got to the sandblow overlooking Double Island and Rainbow Beach by 11am. It was so strange seeing other humans again. Getting to the sandblow felt like such an achievement! Once you get to the carpark which is where the hike ends you still have to walk into town which isn’t far but feels like a kick in the guts when you are SO READY to take your shoes off. We went straight to a cafe and treated ourselves to coffee. I cant even explain how good it felt to shower that day, drink something other than tank water(a freezing cold beer) and sleep in an actual bed with an actual pillow! I was so proud of myself and my friends and there is no one else I would have preffered to have had this experience with. As cliche as it sounds- it’s amazing what you can achieve when you put your mind to it. Some mornings EVERYTHING hurt, but we just kept going. And I think this is where having supportive mates on a hike like this really helps out. Couldn’t and wouldn’t have done it without them. Mindset and the people we surround ourselves with are two of the most imporant things, ever. Also kudos to our bodies for their resilience, day in day out. If you are after an overnight hike and really want to challenge yourself while viewing some of the best coastline our country has to offer- do the Cooloola Great Walk πŸ™‚

Recomendations:

  • I personally loved starting from Tewantin rather than the other way around. Especially starting with a bigger day the first day. Im sure north to south is just as stunning! I had been told to start from the north due to the sun but the sun really wasn’t a problem
  • Speaking of sun- we were very sun smart. Zinc every morning on our faces and upper bodies as well as sunglasses and we all wore hats
  • I took three sets of clothes and this felt like plenty. One longer sleeve shirt was great for bigger walking days to protect my arms from the sun
  • Three pairs of good hiking socks was enough. They dry super quickly and we hung clothes out as camp most nights
  • Dehydrated meals are tasty. I’m sure we could have eaten mud and thought it tasted amazing post massive walk days but they were really good. We took the brand Outdoor Gourmet with 2 servings per packet and had these for dinner everynight
  • Oats are a winner for breakfast. Filling and can change them up each day with PB, protein powder, nuts, dried fruit, hey even a bliss ball!
  • Downsize your bag as much as possibly. The three of us packed so well considering we hadn’t done anything like this before. None of us took anything we didn’t use. Don’t double up on anything! It’s a waste of space.
  • In terms of hygiene- baby wipes were an absolute delight to have with us. Hand sanitiser. Deoderant and a toothrush were the extent of my cleanliness. Don’t do this hike if you’re afraid of getting dirty and smelling. I repeat: there are no showers.
  • We had a ripper first aid kit(shoutout Ranger Rose). You can’t take too many bandaids/blister pads. You’ll need them. If anyone had any blister avoidance tips I would love to hear them
  • Invest in good socks, they are worth the money. I got half merino and half bamboo! So comfortable and breathable
  • Take something to add to your water. BCAA’s, or something simular to give you energy and change up the standard tank water taste
  • You’ll need water purification tablets. This is an easy process and rather be safe than sorry
  • Have SOMETHING downloaded on your phone. A show, music playlist, podcast. This really helped me.
  • A 2L bladder of water was personally enough for myself for a day
  • Water and food are the heaviest additions to your pack and these two things are totally necessary so reduce weight if you can with gear/clothing
  • A poncho is really handy to take(shoutout TC) if it rains or to wrap your pack in overnight. Every night was super dewy
  • May was such a great month to do this hike. I don’t think I would enjoy it as much in summer. The mornings were so snug and comfortable. We really didn’t sweat a whole lot
  • What you take in you must take out. DO NOT LEAVE ANY LITTER BEHIND. This is one of the most pristine areas I have ever come across. It needs to stay this way. Be smart before you leave and pack in as little rubbish to your pack as possible before hitting the track
  • Take a head torch, these are helpful
  • Something like tea or hot chocolate is really lovely to pack also for cool mornings
  • We took a jetboil to boil our water for our meals and it was wicked. If you can afford one would recommend. So compact
  • Take a pair of shoes to wear at the camp. You don’t want your feet in boots anymore than they have to be. I took lightweight thongs and i’m so glad I did because I even used these on the track when my feet needed a break
  • Next time I’d take an essential oil spray or something simular to freshen up clothes, bedding etc
  • I would invest in a good quality and compact caming pillow for 4 nights on this track
  • A friend took a flask of rum and this wasn’t necessary but put a bit of pep in our step when we were feeling flat
  • Take bathers to swim in Lake Poona, it has white sand all around and is so beautiful!
  • Obviously let a few people know that you are doing this hike prior to leaving
  • Don’t listen to dickheads on the beach that haven’t participated in this walk
  • Take a rain jacket- just incase
  • I took a 40L backpack and this was a great size for me
  • Hiking boots with ankle support are a good idea as tghere is some incline/decline
  • A piece of string to use as a clothesline is super helpful
  • Giant clipseal bags will be used
  • Keep an open mind and appreciate the simplicity
  • JUST ENJOY IT!
Epitome of the CGW
So lucky to have had this experience πŸ™‚

A recipe you need in your life: SWEET POTATO BROWNIES

I love experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen, especially desserts! To be honest, I feel like alot of plant based/healthier/minimal ingredient recipes taste just like that… really healthy. Which is fine! But these lil babies taste anything but! They are so decadent. I have made these for a few friends now and had really good feedback. And, not to toot my own horn- but they taste AMAZING! They are fudgey, dense and delicious. Plus they are full of ingredients that are good for our bodies! I do not feel guilty when the tray is gone a few days later. You must make these!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup honey(or agave/maple to make plant based)
  • 3/4 cup oat flour(oat worked for me but you could try almond etc)
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 cup plant based choc chips(+ more to sprinkle on top)
  • 1 + 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda
  • sprinkle of himilayan salt
  • 1 cup peanut butter(I used smooth but use whatever you prefer)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 3/4 boiled sweet potato

The easiest recipe in the world.

  1. Put oven on 180. Peel desired amount of sweet potato, cut into cubes, transfer to boiling water. Cook until soft enough to put a fork through the potato
  2. Transfer sweet potato to blender and puree, may need a splash of milk of choice or water to get a smoother consistency πŸ™‚
  3. Add ALL ingredients to mixing bowl, using sieve for everything in powder form. Mix everything really well. Should be quite a thick paste!
  4. Line tray with baking paper, place mixture in tray + sprinkle with choc chips.
  5. Bake for 20 mins! When removed from oven should still be quite soft in middle. This will set!

PS: feel free to alter measurements, not my skillset. ENJOY!

Have a wonderful week x

5 Recomendations for Cairns

Here are 5 things I LOVED doing in one of Australia’s favourite holiday destinations:

Eat at Salt House

We had the most amazing dinner here one night. The atmosphere, service and food was incredible. Everything I put in my mouth was so delicious. If you’re into seafood, this is the place!

Drive up to Kuranda

There are a few alternate options in terms of getting to Kuranda. There is a goldola, train or you can drive. We chose to drive and the 40 minute commute was unreal. There was so much to look at along the highway, everything was so lush- the whole experience was just devine. We walked around Kuranda town, there is a butterfly farm and famous markets but we were too late for both unfortunately. Next time. We did have a good amount of time at Barron falls though and highly reccomend. Cairns has alot of rain throughout the year but in January it was FLOWING, probably the biggest waterfall i’ve seen with my own eyes. Such a fun, nature filled and inexpensive day!

Visit Rusty’s markets

You can’t visit Cairns without attending Rusty’s. Its such a great market in the heart of town with an ABUNDANCE of amazing produce. It’s limitless what the locals can grow up in the FNQ area. I think they call this the golden triangle? It’s cheap, a great atmosphere, the food is amazing(visit the vietnamese stall- yum) AND they have the tastiest V GF DF banana bread. A friend raved about this so had to try, can confirm- scrumptious.

Swim at Babinda Boulders

This was probably my favourite swimming spot I had the pleasure of visiting in the Cairns area. We’ve all seen photos of these rock pools online somewhere. And I must say I thought they looked pretty different to what I was expecting, but SO beautiful none the less. I guess with the climate in Cairns and the wild weather they experience these places probably always seem a little different! Which is a bonus. Th water is so clear, very refreshing and the perfect place for a picnic!

Snorkel the Great Barrier Reef

No matter what it costs or what the weather is doing for the day, get out on the reef. You travel for about 2 hours to get to snorkel/scuba locations but just being out on the water is pure MAGIC. There are so many colours, species of fish and it is all round such a great day. I loved it and would go out 100 times over. The food was so good on the boat also. Remember: suncreen.

Woah writing this makes me want to move up north… what a gorgeous adventure filled area of Australia! Can’t wait to visit again. To a wonderful week x

5 Easy and healthy breakfast ideas!

Breakfast should be both easy and healthy! You don’t want to have to think about too many steps in the morning and you want to start the first meal of your day with something balanced, energising and keep you eating well throughout the day! Here are five breakfasts that I incorperate into my weeks, I hope they inspire you! PS: the measurments will be rough, who has time to measure anyway. And these recipes are just guidelines- use what you have at home πŸ™‚

G R E E N S M O O T H I E

You can literally add anything to smoothies, which I love.

  • A piece of zuchinni
  • One banana, I like atleast 4 chunks of frozen banana- so creamy
  • 2x tablespoons Protein powder of choice
  • 1 cup of milk of choice
  • Few chunks frozen pineapple- I also think this adds to the creamy taste
  • 1 teaspoon spirulina powder
  • Optional- spinkle of psyillium husk, chia seeds, flax seeds, PB- anything you want to use up!

Blend everything and if needed add water as you go! This would be super easy to put in a bottle/jar and take with you on your way to work πŸ™‚

C H I A P U D D I N G

  • Few tablespoons of chia seeds
  • 1.5 cups of milk of choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • Top with frozen berries of choice!

Add all ingredients to jar, shake and ready to consume in the morning. I like to add coconut flakes, yum!

P R O T E I N O A T S

  • 1.5 cup oats
  • 1.5 cup milk of choice
  • 1 x tablespoon protein powder
  • 1 x teaspoon PB
  • Water if needed

Put all ingredients in bowl and microwave/stovetop for 90 seconds. Add water if needed. Top with coconut flakes, a drizzle of PB, cacao powder, pepitas or frozen berries. So tasty on cooler mornings!

L O A D E D T O A S T

Create your own sweet or savoury take on toast:

  • Avocado
  • Tomato
  • Feta: optional
  • Pepita/sunflower feeds for added crunch
  • Salt, pepper and chilli flakes to season
  • Peanut or almond butter
  • Honey or maple
  • Sliced banana or strawberry
  • Pepita/sunflower seeds… for added crunch πŸ˜‰
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon

Again, so simple, shouldn’t take anymore than 5 minutes to make and can alter to your taste buds. Plus limited washing up in the mornings.

A C A I B O W L

  • 1 x teaspoon acai powder
  • 1 cup berries of choice, I like blackberries
  • Sprinkle of flax seeds
  • 1x cup milk of choice- less liquid the thicker the consistency, start slow
  • 1x frozen banana
  • Few slices of frozen zuchinni
  • Piece of frozen pineapple
  • 2x teaspoons of protein powder

Blend everything, transfer to bowl with spoon. Top with whatever your heart desires. Drizzle of PB, cashews, granola, berries, chia seeds. Enjoy!

What are your favourite, no fail, delicious breakfasts? I’d love some inspiration too. Have a beautiful week x

Healthy swaps

It’s the little things we impliment that create a healthier lifestyle. Here are a few healthy swaps in my opinion to help us all stay on track:

Greek yoghurt instead of sour cream. I don’t really notice a different tbh on pastas and pizza.

Nuttlex butter oil of plants rather than animal fat- gotta be better for you

Chai tea over chai powder, alot of chai powders are full of fillers aka crap. I’m sure there are healthy alternatives out there though!

Any kind of plant based milk over full cream, there’s a massive debate over alternative milks but as a whole- alot less sugar and most likely higher water content= healthier

Honey or maple over sugar

Matcha (if you can get used to the taste) instead of/to alternate w coffee

Black beans on nacho’s instead of mince- yummmm

Nori sheet as a wrap instead of a bread wrap- lighter and so tasty

Lemon or lime in mineral water if you’re needing something other than water

Let vodka, lime soda’s or seltzers be your choice of alcohol

Use spring onion or cucumbers to dip instead of crackers

Almond or buckwheat flour to replace standard bleached flour

Read a book or a blog(I know a good one- twentysomethingtactics- @tullyjaybudarick) instead of a facebook post!

What are some healthy swaps that have changed your life? Would love some inspiration. To a wonderful week x

6 Things that give me motivation to workout… when it is the last thing I feel like doing

Some mornings, afternoons and nights we really just don’t feel like moving our bodies- and that’s okay! We all have these days/weeks. But we all know that being active is good for our mental health and wellbeing. So here are six things that will hopefully give you motivation when you really need it- especially as the end of the year is near!

Go for a walk

Getting outside, coming into a good breathing pattern and getting our heart rate up can absolutely get us into a ‘workout’ state of mind, especially if you are listening to an upbeat playlist. Even if you don’t get a session in after the walk- at least you’ve done something!

Drink something that makes you feel like being active

This could be anything for you(pls don’t say redbull). Drinking anything that will hydrate you and tell your brain you are getting ready to move will make you want to move, especially if you take your time and mentally prepare. Coffee stimulates our mind, gets our digestive system going and gives us energy. A black coffee or shot of coffee is what you’d have if you were hardcore, I guess- but have coffee the way that you want to have it prior to working out. I’ve also been trying BCAA’s recently which is nice to have something other than water in the morning, its a passionfruit flavour- yum. BCAA’s stand for branched chain amino acid’s and are considered the building blocks for muscle recovery. They are filled with electrolytes and help with muscle soreness post workout. I’m still yet to see ‘results’ or ‘change’ with BCAA’s as I wonder if they are a little placebo driven but also- If a placebo works- it works. AND if you’re getting more daily movement/workouts in due to this, having an extra coffee, possibly a sweetner/sugar in a drink- then its so worth it in my opinion. Lemon water is also a good one or a homemade iced tea!

Get inspiration from Instagram

I’m sure our fave fitness peeps have these days too. Scrolling through a workout they’ve posted, blog they’ve written, looking at a pic of their bangin’ bod LOL will surely give you motivation. Just don’t keep scrolling. 10 min limit.

Music

Our go-to playlists always lift our spirits! Workout beats + tropical house workout are good playlists on Spotify

Use YouTube

YouTube has it all! Type in ’20 min arms’ and there will be a video of someone instructing you, music to keep your energy up and a timer. Plus it feels like you aren’t working out alone.

Try something new

We all get sick of the same sequences, exercises, moves etc so if you’re in a bit of a rut- try something new! If you are dreading lengthy/hard strength workout- don’t do a strength workout! Go for a light jog, do 15 mins of ab work, go for a swim, do a pilates YouTube vid(loving these lately). SOMETHING is always better than NOTHING. I also think having the intention is saying something in itself and even if you get through 10 mins and decide that’s enough- well done! Thats dicipline. And we’ll do better tomorrow! Lets not be so hard on ourselves, but also keep active through this busy, fun, exciting and indulgent time of year!

To a great week! Tully x

Best smoothie recipes

It’s warming up and I am lovingggggg smoothie bowls atm! I have an old ninja that keeps on keeping on, and I feel like I always have ingredients of some form to throw into these bad boys for breakfast! Here are my fave smoothie recipes this summer-

Green smoothie bowl

Probably my all time fave!

2 x teaspoons greens powder, 2 x tablespoons salted caramel protein powder, half a banana, 1/2 cup milk of your choice(I like soy or oat), 1 x teaspoon flax meal, 1/4 zuchinni, 1/4 cucumber, few spinach leaves, 2 x pineapple chunks! Greek yoghurt also goes really well in this mmmmMmmMm. Topped w: with whatever I had in fridge/ pantry! Almonds, berries, pepitas + PB is a must πŸ˜›

Acai smoothie bowl

Soooooooo delicious in the morning after a sweaty workout!

2 x teaspoons acai powder, 2 x tablespoons salted caramel protein, 1 banana, few blueberries, 1/2 cup soy milk, 1 x teaspoon fibre, 1/4 zuchinni. I topped this w: fresh berries, PB, passionfruit, mango pieces and pepitas! (Can you tell I love pepitas ;))

Goji berry smoothie bowl

Super tasty + something diff!

2x tablespoons goji berry powder, 1/2 cup oat milk, 2 x tablespoons greek yoghurt, 1/4 cucumber, 1 x teaspoon fibre, half a small banana!

Topped w: PB, goji powder, PEPITAS, frozen blueberries, sunflower seeds!

Would love to know your fave smoothie ingredient(s)?! Also find myself making quite large portions and would love tips on reducing calories/ limiting even though I’m eating ‘healthy’ foods…

Thanks for reading and happy MONDAY! x

7 Mood boosting morning habits

Implementing good daily habits into my routine have been an absolute savor for me during this slow/uncertain/semi-unemployed year. There are so many things that can make or break our day and starting our day ‘right’ makes a massive difference on our moods and productivity! Keep reading to find out 7 of the most beneficial daily habits for a twenty something gal-

  1. GRATITUDE JOURNAL

Being able to actually write down things that we are grateful for rather than just silently going over them in our heads makes a massive difference. When I write out my list in the mornings, (sometimes I will be grateful for 3 things and other times 20- depending on how I’m feeling). I feel a weight off my chest straight away, I just feel so happy automatically that I’m able to list things like “the sun on my skin”, “a bed to wake up in and make”, “a roof over my head”, “how loving and supportive my partner is”, “how lucky I am to have my parents around and the relationship I have with them”, “that I am able to pay my own rent”, “to have access to clean drinking water, all day everyday” etc… once you get writing, the list really can go on for ever. A massive mental health hack is keeping one of these babies and expressing yourself if you ask me!

2. YOGA

Can safely say yoga has changed my life. The breathwork, the movement and mindfulness of it all does WONDERS for our bodies and most importantly, brains. I have just started my 200HR YYT whoop whoop, so this has been keeping me busy also which is an absolute blessing and a half! Whether its 5 minutes in the morning or 50, it is all so beneficial. The mat is such a happy, positive place to be. Youtube videos like Yoga with Adriene(everyone has heard of this queen) are super helpful if you’re lacking inspo that day! Even putting some mellow music on Spotify and having a stretch feels so so good! Can’t speak highly enough of this beautiful practice.

3. MEDITATION

There is a reason that we hear so much of meditation and that’s because it is such a useful tool. I would love to say that I meditate everyday, but to be honest i struggle. I have recently set a goal for myself to meditate for 5 mins on my made bed when I wake up in the mornings. It is something I have to work on but the thought is there and I have intentions to gradually increase my timeframe as I become more familiar/comfortable with the practice! Happy people meditate. Mindset and perspective are everything.

4. BODY MOVIN’

Exercise is an absolute gem when it comes to boosting our moods. There is nothing quite like the post workout high. I must admit some days are SO MUCH HARDER than others. But I get it done and feel proud of myself for it. I generally do a 30minute HIIT/Pilates/Strength workout in the mornings that I have written up myself or again, YouTube! Kayla Itsines and Pamela Reif are great accounts for quick body weight workouts! If you have the space for a yoga mat you really can workout anywhere- no excuses. Your body and mind will thank you for it.

5. CALL SOMEONE YOU LOVE

This is another super important habit to get into. This year we need to be keeping in contact with our loved ones more than ever! It can be a friend you haven’ spoken to in ages or a sibling/parent. Call them, check in and tell them that you love them. Human connection is the most important thing there is, and again- so favorable for our mental health to have a vent/laugh/much needed conversation.

6. READ A FEW PAGES

I really feel like when I read I learn a lot. It can be a few pages or a chapter(I try to read a chapter a day). It can take our minds off unnecessary things, its time consuming and good for our brains. This can be something that you do waking up with your morning coffee or even taking a book to a nearby park. It really is a relaxing ‘habit’ that slows us down.

7. A WALK AND A PODCAST A DAY

Find a podcast that you really enjoy, I like My millennial money, Happy hour, KIC, Oprah and Do you F**king mind as I feel as though they are uplifting and informative. Podcasts also feel a bit like you’re having a conversation with a friend. Aim for half an hour a day(its so nice to get out of the house) Steps + sunshine + spontaneous learning = success.

“Create before you consume” is a quote I heard recently and I couldn’t vouch for it more! Instead of waking up and scrolling or putting on the news to get smashed by depressing media coverage at the very start of a fresh day- have a stretch, take in the sunrise on your balcony, read something, write in your journal, make yourself a nice drink and relax- take it all in, think positive thoughts and just how lucky you are to be here, another day alive and well! There isn’t much else we can ask for!

I have spoken about these habit trackers in a recent blog but a great way to stay on top of your good habits! Keep on fridge! Just google ‘habit tracker’

7 Things I learned during dry July

31 days of zero booze. Considering what has been consumed during this Covid period this was probably harder than normal. Is there anything better than a red during winter? Ooooooh aren’t we so lucky to have alcohol. So enjoyable and such a good time(when consumed with discretion :p)

In saying all of that though, it has been a really good detox. Something I want to avoid is burning out too early in life. I feel pretty passionate about health at the moment. I really want to take care of my skin as it ages and keep my body as hydrated as possible. Its pretty amazing how adaptable and resilient our ‘homes’ are- they deserve to be looked after.

1. You realise who your supportive friends are

This is definitely true. Hola to those that donated and gave me praise. I hope I’ve never made any of my mates feel uncomfortable due to not drinking, saying no to a drink etc. And I’m absolutely going to be more cautious of this now!

2. Drinking is expensive

SO IS SOFT DRINK!!!??? Lol, but yes alcohol is for sure double the price. It was probably a blessing not drinking during July as I definitely didn’t work a whole lot. It is crazy what they can charge at pubs for softdrinks, $5.50 for a soda water… suuuuuure. Had one or two fizzy drinks then i’d jump on the waters. WooOOoOo rager. It’s pretty insane that a few hundred dollars can be spent over a weekend on the piss.

3. Better for skin health

For myself, absolutely. I felt hydrated the whole month and skin was noticeably more plump. Alcohol really encourages the rosacea on my undereye area and adds some heat to my skin as well. Sandpaper lips vibes after a late night drinking. None of that in July.

4. Fresh mornings

I don’t really think I get horrible hangovers anyway, but the alertness every morning during the month felt great. Also slept really well majority of the month. I for sure have more of a broken sleep/earlier mornings when I am on the drink.

5. Better food choices

I think I remember just about everything I ate during this past month. Alcohol absolutely encourages my appetite (hate going out without eating) so i’d normally be having a big dinner and coming home with pizza 5 hours later. Health. Wealth.

Consumed less(crap) for sure, so many calories in certain beverages also. But hey its worth it every now and then.

6. More active

I have been using a habit tracker the past few months and its been really helpful when it comes to staying on track. 100% was more active as well as productive in July compared to the month of June. Only had 4 ‘less active’ days in the whole month and that’s pretty damn good for me!

7. Drinking activities are F.U.N

So many things are more enjoyable with a drink on hand. Full stop. and was still happy to be in a social setting without a drink. My partner and I did this together and im so glad, would be really hard not give in without the support!

If you’re thinking about it, do It- but have someone to join you. Drinking is a really good time and a very ‘social’ hobby. But it was also reassuring to know I am comfortable in a drinking atmosphere sober. Apparently our cells renew every 4-6 weeks. How cool is that. Alcohol free cells/body after a month, it really is so refreshing to take sometime off every now and then. It doesn’t have to be July either! Everything in balance brings us best results. Just being more consistent with the healthier side of things majority of the time πŸ˜›