GymBug

I've caught it. Fortunately, it's not treatable.

Archive for the tag “tea”

Coffee, Coffee, Coffee

Hi there!

I never used to enjoy coffee. I found it bitter and pointless. I was also accutely aware of it’s addictive capabilities and didn’t want to become reliant on a morning coffee to get going. However, whilst here in Spain, I’ve developed a taste for it and in moderation it can help speed up metabolism, boost concentration and productivity and just give you a little boost when you need it! It also doesn’t need to be calorie-laden! If you can stomach it, go for black everytime, or opt for semi-skimmed/skimmed milk, no sugar, soy milk (or other alternatives) to cut the calories!

I’ve just started using Pact Coffee and I’m about to get a delivery of freshly ground coffee from Toledo! It asked me a few questions about how I like my coffee and funnily enough is sending me Spanish coffee! It’s got 70% dark chocolate and the grounds themselves are from Columbia. They’ve got tons of coffees to try and they can send you a different one weekly or fortnightly! It’s £6.95 a pack but if you use my referral code HANNAH-KZMZEQ your first bag is £1!

So, give it a try. I never thought I’d like coffee but it’s actually a great drink to have socialising or as a pick me up!

Have a fantastic week guys! We’re half way through!

Gym Bug

Christmas Temptations…

Hi there!

It’s almost time! The countdown is now on; advent calendar has been busted open. It is December 1st. So, Christmas sweets and treats may already be circulating your house or office or social circles. What to do!? Resist and sit grumpily as everyone else tucks into delicious Quality Streets, Celebrations or Christmas cake? Pass on that glass of Champagne? No! Don’t be silly. I have no intention of doing that this Christmas. I just plan on trying to make good choices. The question is how? Here are a few tips I’ll be keeping in mind;

  • Have water nearby at all times. Keep sipping it regularly, especially if sweets/treats are lying around. Have a couple, enjoy them, and savour them and then stop. Use the water to fill yourself up a bit more before eating them so you don’t go crazy and end up finishing the box in one sitting.
  • Keep exercising. Don’t let the cold stop you in your tracks. Even going for a walk every day is great. Just keep moving throughout the holidays.
  • Don’t stress. This is Christmas. A time to relax, be merry and spend time with loved ones. So enjoy it. Don’t worry about putting on some weight. Accept you might, but don’t go crazy and un-do everything you’ve done.
  • Everything in moderation. Golden rule. Live by it.
  • Dark chocolate is better than milk or white. So when the chocolate box is cracked open, try get in for the dark chocolate.
  • Red wine is actually beneficial in moderation, as is white.
  • Alternate between an alcoholic drink and water. Follow a ratio of 1:1. 1 alcoholic beverage, 1 glass of water. It will slow you down, keep you clear(er) and might stop a food binge later on or the morning after!
  • If you’re at a Christmas buffet, don’t stand at the table and try everything. Select what you really want, put it on your plate and go and sit down and enjoy it.
  • Savour your treats. Make them an event. Having some Christmas cake? Have it with a cup of tea and enjoy it. Watch a film, chat with family, and make it special.
  • The most important point; have a great Christmas and don’t worry. You can go hard in January to lose any weight you put on. You don’t want to come away from this special holiday with regrets because you stressed!

25 days! Yippee!

Gym Bug

Water- Liquid Gold

Hi there!

So, water. It’s actually really important if you’re looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle. A lot of you are probably thinking “Yeah, duh, Miss State-the-obvious” but sometimes it needs said!
We lose water throughout the day through sweating, breathing and going to the bathroom and we need to make sure we consistently replenish our water levels throughout the day. This doesn’t mean downing a glass of water every hour, you also get hydration from foods and other non-water beverages.

Why is it important?

Hydration is essential for any form of physical activity. Poor hydrations causes muscle fatigue, reduces coordination, makes us light headed and can cause muscle cramps. Also, if you become dehyrated during sports or physical activity, you reduce your body’s ability to cool-down through sweating. Not to be extreme, but it can lead to heat stroke which has some very serious consequences.

Hydration is also essential for weight loss. Water (particularly the cold stuff) can help boost our metabolism. Also, it can help curb cravings, overeating and boredome eating. If you’re about to sit down for a meal, have a glass of water first, it will reduce your chances of tucking in for more than you nee by filling your stomach up a bit. Proper hydration also reduces bloating.

Dehydration is also a main cause of headaches and fatigue. Keeping hydrated is essential to allow your brain to function normally too and is important for concentration, cognition and general ability to function at a normal level. It also helps the heart pump blood more efficiently around your body and is general good for the function of all muscles.

But how much do we need?
We all have heard the “8 Glasses a Day” rule. But that’s no longer applicable. My water needs might be very different from yours and it is possible to overhydrate. This occurs when you drink so much you’re constntly back and forth to the bathroom and you’re removing nutrients from your system that you need (e.g salt), so watch out. You need to consider things such as climate, exercise intensity and duration, what you’re wearing, sweat levels and so on to get a reasonable idea of what you should be consuming.
DO NOT RELY ON THIRST. This is key because if you’re thirsty, then you’re already dehydrated.
A way of measuring how much you need is to weigh yourself before and after exercise, to see how much “water weight” you’ve lost. However, if you’re like me, you avoid scales because they do not always give accurate readings of your health (muscle weighs more than fat, but seeing an increase in weight is never fun).

I keep a bottle of water on me at all times and sip it periodically throughout the day. I also consume a lot of fruit and veg and drink green tea. Typically, I find I remain pretty well hydrated throughout the day as a result. Although I now can’t go anywhere without my water bottle.

Symptoms of Dehydration
These are things to look out for that indicate you may be dehydrated and should get some water pronto;

  • Dizziness or light-headedness
  • Headaches
  • Tiredness
  • Dry mouth, lips, eyes
  • Passing small amounts of urine infrequently
  • Passing urine that is dark in colour (basically, the clearer the better)

Sever dehydration has some pretty serious symptoms (I won’t go into them, check out NHS for a list) so try keep any of these symptoms to a minimum in terms of frequency!

And there we have it! A little educational lesson on the importance of water and why it is liquid gold.

I understand that there is probably people out there who genuinly do not like water (we’ll not start the “it’s got no flavour” debate) so here’s some ways to get water into your life!

  • Fruit-infused water (just add some lemon, lime, oranges, strawberries, apples etc to your water overnight to give a fruity flavour!)
  • Tea (it’s literally flavoured hot water, best go caffeine free)
  • Fruits and vegetables with high water content (lettuce, cucumbers, apples, oranges)
  • Other beverages (thinking milk, limited amounts of fruit juice and things)

I don’t know this as some innate knowledge, the sources I used are listed below if you want to have some extra reading. I have also included a fun info-graphic to break up the monotony of text-only posts!

Got to love it!

Got to love it!

Have a great evening!

Gym Bug

P.S One month until Santa makes an appearance…

Sources;

http://www.livestrong.com/article/438279-the-importance-of-hydration/

http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/PhysicalActivity/FitnessBasics/Staying-Hydrated—Staying-Healthy_UCM_441180_Article.jsp

 

Teapigs- Tea to warm your tum

Hi there!

Summer has officially left Madrid. Temperatures are now ranging between 5 to 15 degrees. Which means it is jacket weather! It also means that my tea consumption increases dramatically as a nice way to warm up after being outside for any length of time!
Tea can be great for your health. Green and white, for example, are packed with antioxidants and can help boost your metabolism! Peppermint tea is great for digestion and easing stomach aches. Fruit tea is also a great way of having a warm drink without the caffeine.
I drink so much tea that I will typically buy supermarket own brand Green tea/White tea/Fruit teas/Peppermint tea, but I also enjoy more expensive, better teas on occasion. One of my favourite brands of tea? Teapigs.

Teapigs aren’t even super expensive, but again, I’m a student, and I couldn’t afford to buy numerous boxes a month. But when I enjoy a cup of Teapigs, I really enjoy it. They have a great range too, so you won’t struggle to find one you enjoy!

My favourite is their Green Tea with Mint. It’s a warm, refreshing blend of two of my favourite tea flavours. Their Super Fruit tea is also really delicious and a really nice change to my usual green or peppermint tea. They use real fruit (cranberries and blueberries for this) to make sure the tea packs a punch of genuine flavour.

Other flavours I’ve spied but yet to try is Chocolate Flake (interesting concept), Popcorn (again, intrigued), Tung Ting Oolong (love saying that out loud), Silver Tips White and Mao Feng Green. It seems odd that I’ve had only three of their teas, but I’ve had them numerous occasions. I was not aware of these amazing options when I tried the others (I’ve tried these in coffee shops). They’ve also released Christmas flavours, which I would love to try (Christmas is a mug is the best).

If you check out their website, they’ve got options to order sampling boxes where you try several different teas that you’ve selected. They’ve also got their Christmas Tea collections out and gift sets, if you’ve got any tea lovers you’re buying gifts for I recommend surfing their website, you’ll be sure to find something!
You can also purchase teaware from them; teapots, cups, mugs, infusers and accessories. Everything you could ever need for the perfect cuppa!

Something they also offer is Matcha Tea. I’ve tried this in a coffee shop back home. I was presented with a bright green cup of warm liquid. My sister was repulsed and I was surprised by the intensity of the colour. The flavour is more intense than green tea, mainly because Matcha is 100% natural, organic green tea leaves which have been ground down to a fine powder. Teapigs call theirs a “super power green tea”. I’ve had it in tea form, mixed with hot water, but Teapigs suggest having it in your favourite drink/smoothie/yoghurt/milk!
Matcha is more expensive than green tea, but it’s a lot more concentrated so you need less.

So, get your cuppa perfect with Teapigs!

Gym Bug

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