Sunday, 28 December 2014

Health, Holidays and Love

Wow! What a year!

I hope everyone got through the Christmas period not feeling too guilty about delicious indulgences, beautiful gifts and afternoon naps!

The after lunch nap on Christmas Day is probably my favourite sleep of the year. It's a big call, I know. There is just something about the atmosphere of being surrounded by people you love, no work, no judgement, lots of food and it's my way of congratulating myself for all the hard work I've done all year!

Sleeping and getting enough pillow time is a key factor in well being and weight loss. I know that I crave healthier foods and have more energy when I've gotten my eight hours at night. Some days when I have been really busy or rushed I'll opt to give my body a 30min nap or meditation instead of a workout. This time of year has been crazy with work parties, christmas shopping and preparing for the new year, so it's more important than ever to be kind to yourself.

 Being in a good frame of mind and relaxed is when your body will perform at its optimal level. Apps such as Zova are great because they offer short workouts that you can do at home. This time of year it's much easier to convince yourself to do 10mins at home twice day than slog out at the gym for an hour. Add some nice longs walks to your routine or a 20min morning run to stay fit whilst you're not in your usual routine. To help balance out the change in diet, add some lemon slices to your water, it will help to detox and cleanse. Simple but effective.

I was so lucky this year to be taken away for a surprise trip to Daylesford by my boyfriend. Just what I needed, to be pampered and indulged for a few days! It would have been very easy to drink cocktails, lie in a day spa, go out for delicious food and relax in the spa at our boutique accommodation. Of course we still did all of these things, but to keep a balance we had lots of active things to do as well. He'd even booked us a private yoga class- what a keeper! Before we left I made sure to pack some healthy snacks, so we weren't tempted to indulge too much- especially right after Christmas! We had carrot, celery and cucumber sticks with hommus, some salads, fruit and raw nuts to nibble on instead of chips, chocolate and lollies! Of course CJ rolled his eyes when I told him what I was packing, but he still went along with it for my sake! haha.

We went for walks around Lake Daylesford, tried out the paddle boats, almost tipped our canoe at Lake Jubilee and hiked up Mount Franklin. Lots of R&R at a day spa (3 hours of pampering!) plus some yoga left our bodies feeling amazing. Although I over indulged on the champagne and cocktails in my excitement on the first night- We had an amazing and relaxing holiday without coming home feeling like baby elephants. We tried some lovely restaurants and had fun exploring the markets and town. I came back to a lovely surprise from my parents and a dinner organised by my best friend. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect birthday.

There are two reason that I'm sharing this post-

As an example on how to enjoy a holiday and the festive season without worrying about diet and gyms- there are so many ways to keep active and have healthy options no matter where you are!
The second reason is to acknowledge why it's important to share your life with somebody who supports your lifestyle. My boyfriend and I are complete opposites; he would much rather be riding motorbikes or lying on a beach than being dragged up hills and hit on by middle aged yoga instructors! But he knows how important fitness is to me, so we have found a balance. One of my surprises was a bottle of Moet champagne and a jar of natural peanut butter instead of chocolates! I feel like I've won the lottery. I don't think I've ever smiled so much or felt so grateful. Thank you so much for making my birthday so special CJ and sorry that I just told everybody that you did yoga! Haha.

 I  want to say a huge thank you to everyone who went out of their way to make my birthday so memorable, especially my mum and dad for their expert baking and room decorating skills and my best friend Cara for the amazing photos and for just being there no matter what. For all the birthday messages and phone calls- I appreciate it so, so much! I was a bit scared of 25 (quarter century and all that) but now I'm just excited for this new chapter and all the adventures I'm going to have surrounded by the most amazing people.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Jade's REAL Life

 Well it’s been a little while since my last post- I’ve been busy using all my inspiration for the Holistchic and STRYDA pages- both of which I’m very proud to be a writer for!

I’m going to bring Jade’s Life back to it’s roots, with an update of what’s been going on in my everyday life and a little insight as to why it’s been so long in between posts!

Career wise I’ve never been in a better place. As I mentioned, I’m writing for two publications that really reflect my own lifestyle. Holistic is all about wellness and style, so anything from sports luxe fashion to diet tips or interviews with designers and trainers. It’s been great to use inspiration from the things I love about my own lifestyle for the readers of Holistchic. 

STRYDA Compression Revolution is a leading compression wear brand who are making some serious tracks in the industry. I recently came on board their media team and am doing lots of research for pieces that are interesting, informative and that also expand my own knowledge to help with my goals!

To be writing for these brands that I believe in really makes me so happy- I love that my work can so closely reflect my own life and goals.

In other career news I was so excited to become a part of the Nova Casanova team last month! It’s such an awesome job, full of amazing and energetic people! Also in the team is my best friend Lexi (who is a Nova/Media superstar) and my mate Cam Wood (from Carlton Football Club).

However this news was bittersweet because, amongst all the excitement, I also got offered another dream job.

So I am finally letting the cat out of the bag about my new adventure-

I’m moving to Sydney to be the Editorial Administrator for the Guardian Australia!!!

I am very excited about my new role and the chance to embrace a new city lifestyle! I’ll be living close to Bondi beach so expect lots of outdoor fitness updates and my search for new yoga studios!

Unfortunately this also means that I won’t be able to be a part of the Nova100 team for Melbourne but it’s looking good that I can find a place with Nova in Sydney.

So I’ve had all this going on and my humble little blog has been a bit neglected. I’ve also been doing photo shoots for surf/ skate brand Shed Nine, Anytime Fitness and other Melbourne designers as well as making my TV debut for Media Strikes Back.

Life is busy, but I’d be bored any other way! It feels great to be achieving so many of my dreams! Bring on 2015!!

My next post will be the very relevant ‘Fitness Tips for a Busy Lifestyle’ so keep an eye out for that one!

Much love



Sunday, 16 November 2014

Fitness and Love- The Modern Relationship with E-Bachelor Luke D'Astoli

I chat to E-bachelor and personal trainer, Luke D'Astoli about fitness and health in relationships! 

Luke is a trainer of mine and a good personal friend. His mission to find a lucky lady to share his life has created quite a stir in the media- he is the ultimate gentleman, a renowned personal trainer, good looking, funny and knows more about fitness and health than anyone else I've ever met.
He is also a brilliant a writer, presenter and an ambassador for Lululemon. Conversations with Luke are fascinating! We got chatting recently and he was kind enough to share his thoughts on health and relationships.

So Luke, first of all congratulations on the buzz that 'Get Lucky with Luke' had drummed up! We've seen you in the Herald Sun, on the Today Show and you have even made International news! You are quite the catch....

So explain how 'Get Lucky with Luke' works? 
Get Lucky With Luke was created for two main purposes:
1) As a means for me to announce that yes, I am single and am keen to meet someone worthwhile. 
2) It's also a simple way for friends of mine to share that fact with other single, eligible friends of theirs.

If we do meet and hit it off, it gives our mutual friend the warming glow that comes with playing Cupid.

Why do you think it's important it is for your partner to share similar health and lifestyle goals? 
It's fundamentally important really. A fit and healthy lifestyle gives you the opportunity to be the best version of yourself and has a huge impact on your emotional state. Ideally you want a happy partner who can join in on activities with you.
Through your work as a personal trainer do you see many couples who train/ workout together? 
I do. They say that the couple that plays together, stays together and there are definitely couples for whom that is true. I've also seen another couple fight during a session so that wasn't so productive for them!!!

What are the benefits of having your lover/ spouse as a training partner as well? 
The benefits are many and varied. If you choose a fun, games based workout then it becomes another opportunity to share a joyful experience which will further consolidate your relationship. There's also the respect that you gain for a training partner when you see them push their limits and achieve new goals.

What are some fun exercises you can do with a partner? (Outside the bedroom of course!) 
It can be something as simple as throwing a ball to each other or tapping a balloon around while you're doing some squats. If you've got some skills you might start looking at Acro Yoga type movements, or if you like a competitive element you might choose to challenge each other on exercises. See how long you can hold a plank or a hang and things like that. You can easily get creative.

You are also an expert on nutrition; is cooking skills one of the things you will be judging the ladies on? 
I do like to eat... a lot. I have been spoiled with some talented cooks in the past so it would definitely be an asset to have a great cook as a partner. Having said that, it's not a make or break.

How does it make it easier for partners to share similar diets? 
It's obviously a lot easier to make double portions of one meal rather than two separate meals so that will definitely help. It can be easy enough to mix and match but a strict vegan might be troubled by the presence of a genuine omnivore like myself.

What's your favourite healthy meal that you'd cook to impress a lady? 
I'm a big fan of mexican food, so I'd probably go with something like fajitas.

And what was your current deadlift goal that you achieved? 
I followed a structured training program over a 12 week period and that allowed me to increase my maximum deadlift from 165kg to 200kgs. I was happy with the progress and it makes picking up day to day objects (or people) that much easier. 
(See ladies- I told you he is a catch!)

Is there anything else you'd like to add? 
Hopefully people find the Get Lucky With Luke page to be a non threatening way of getting to know me. If they like me they can hang around and I always reply to people's messages. If not, then they can happily continue on with their lives!
Goodluck to Luke on his search for love, any ladies who'd like to get involved check out the Facebook page
'Get Lucky with Luke' 
My thoughts- 
As a personal note, I think that having a partner who motivates and inspires you is a precious thing. It's so much fun to be able to keep healthy together and appreciate each others body in a different light. You can feel quite vulnerable when you are pushing your limits and sharing that creates a new level of trust with your partner. There are so many great active things to do together, hikes, surfing, charity runs and I've even dragged my man to yoga!
 It's also great to have somebody who supports your diet and lifestyle, won't complain that you put kale in everything and even when your protein smoothie experiments don't go according to plan, they swear that it's delicious anyway! (Maybe just warn them before you OD on raw eggs or olive leaf extract)

It's important to have different interests and hobbies, opposites attract after all! But health and well being is such a fundamental part of life that it really does enhance your relationship to be able to share that with the one you love. 
Do you know a couple who train together and who find romance through fitness? I'd love to hear and share the love stories on how health and fitness can bring people together and enhance relationships...Feel free to email, tweet me or comment to share :)


Tuesday, 4 November 2014

How to Holiday the Healthy Way

Ok so the last thing you want to be doing on your holiday is to hit the gym and follow a strict diet. But it also sucks to get home and feel guilty for having a huge blow out!
Even when I'm traveling I like to to create a healthy balance of rest and play with exercise and nutrition.
I was lucky enough to escape the city for the long weekend and take off down the coast for some R&R time. 

It's refreshing to be out of the usual routine and great for the soul to be near the ocean. However it's so easy to be tempted by indulgent foods as well as a lack of motivation when your gym is so far away! 

Here are some of my favourite ways to keep fit when you are away from home- perfect to keep in mind when planning your Christmas and New Year trips! I love exploring and trying new things- sometimes I'm even more active on holidays than at home!

Research- When booking your holiday destination have a look at the activities that are offered in the area. Think of things like surfing lessons, horse riding, abseiling, bike riding or stand up paddle boarding! I found the most beautiful eco retreat that ran yoga classes and also an open air Pilates session overlooking the beach.
You don't have to try to do everything but picking one or two active ideas is a fun way to learn something new and get your body moving!

Walking- It's the best way to explore a new area; The joy of being on a break is that we have time to wander along beaches and into towns for dinner, instead of always taking a car.

Local Produce- Eating out on holidays can be detrimental to our diet and health goals. Why not see if you can find a local farmers market or organic store to get some fresh fruit and vegetables? Instead of always lunching at restaurants I often like to pack a picnic and find a nice spot in a park to stretch out in the sun.

Sparkling water- Nothing says 'holiday mode' like a fruity cocktail or glass of champagne! If you have a sparkling water with some fresh lemon or lime as every second drink it will not only help your figure but also the hangover the next day!

Recovery- Usually on holidays we spend our evenings at bars or nice restaurants, which can leave us feeling sluggish and unmotivated in the mornings. Refresh your body with a swim in the ocean or book a morning yoga class to help detox your body (but not too early!)

Pamper- One of the first things I'll look up when I'm planning a trip is the nearby day spas. I love having an afternoon facial or massage to really unwind. It's the best way to embrace those relaxing holiday vibes and revive your body!

Running- No matter where I am on holiday, running is my go-to exercise. Whether there is a bush trail, road or breach track. If your are beachside for your holiday then sprint sets on the sand is an awesome interval workout and you can cool off in the water afterwards! After a run, even if it's only a few ks, you won't feel guilty for enjoying delicious holiday indulgences!

Overall I had a beautiful weekend away; we did yoga, hiking, beach walks and checked out some incredible local art. It felt so good to wind down with day spa treatments, reading and some cheeky naps! I felt so great and refreshed that even getting up at 5.30 this morning for filming on the Neighbours set wasn't as hard as I thought!

I hope everyone else had an amazing long weekend! What are your ideas to keep healthy on trips? I'd love to hear about fun, active holiday tips!


Thursday, 23 October 2014

Why yoga?? I'll tell you why....

Find your flow..

I am a devout yogi, but I'll admit that I was nervous going into my first few classes.

I wasn’t very flexible, I was worried that in that room full of gorgeous, stretchy people I wouldn't fit in or know any poses.  This fear of new exercise comes from the first time I tried an aerobics class at a big gym years ago. It was fast, upbeat and everybody else seemed to know each other and had the moves down pat. I couldn’t keep up, hated jumping around like a drunk cheerleader so I quickly bailed and vowed never to return.  I’m sure I’m not the only one who has been scared off group fitness like that!

I was dreading a similar feeling of un-coordination and exclusion for my first yoga class. How thankful I was to be wrong! Everybody was smiling and relaxed as I entered the room, the instructor told me a good spot to put my mat so I could follow the others in the class. There were women and men of all shapes, ages and fitness levels and an atmosphere of quiet peacefulness. I felt comfortable right away and even surprised myself by managing to do some more advanced postures (the instructor usually gives several variations to cater to all levels.) I left feeling relaxed and happy, but I’d still had a good workout as I could feel that familiar burn in my muscles.

 That was several years ago and I now practice several different styles of yoga and have  really reaped the benefits. So many positive aspects of yoga have spilled over into my life and it’s truly such a rewarding practice. You not only condition your body but you learn so much about yourself too.

Yoga has been around for thousands of years, in some form or another.  For centuries monks have been using it as a physical preparation for meditation. Yoga shares characteristics of the ancient practices of Hinduism and Buddhism in their earliest forms.  Rishis or dedicated Vedic Yogis used physical postures and meditation to teach their people how to live in divine harmony.

Yoga was introduced to the West in the early 19th Century. Yoga Guru Swami Sivananda was one of the founding gurus to bring yoga to Europe and America. He developed the Five Principles of Yoga which are still at the heart of most modern yoga styles.

  1. Savasana or proper relaxation;
  2. Asanas or proper exercise;
  3. Pranayama or proper breathing;
  4. Proper diet; and
  5. Dhyana or positive thinking and Meditation

Yoga develops strength and flexibility, while soothing your nerves and calming your mind.

The asanas affect the whole body, muscles and joints, skin and internal organs as well as improving your overall fitness.

Savasana is when you allow your body to completely relax and absorb the benefits of the practice. It's great for your mind as it releases any stress and allows you to just be in the moment.

Pranayama breathing is good for the lungs and respiratory system and can be used in everyday life to assist during other exercise, meditation or as a relaxation technique.

Because of its origins, yoga can be a very spiritual practice and most styles have an element of meditation. This doesn’t suddenly make you a zoned out hippie- it can just be sitting quietly and thinking positive thoughts for a few moments!

When we feel good after yoga practice we are more likely to make good decisions when it comes to the rest of our lifestyle. I can guarantee that after a class you will be more likely to crave fresh, healthy food or a green tea rather than a bag of chips or greasy meal! Being mindful in the practice of yoga makes you more mindful about your body overall, and what you are using to fuel it!

Everybody has different experiences with yoga, some are drawn to the fitness and weight loss benefits so prefer styles such as Vinasya Flow, Aerial Yoga and Bikram Yoga.

For those needing to unwind the Hatha and Restore styles are very uplifting and meditative.

There are now lots of modern fusion styles of yoga such as Barre (A mix of Yoga, Pilates and Ballet) and even Hip Hop yoga!

Don’t be scared to get started… roll out your mat and find your flow.


Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Fit way of life.. Or fit fashion statment?


I was so happy to be a part of Lorna Jane Active Nation Day on Sunday. After a ridiculously early start following AFL Grand Final celebrations, Lucy and I headed to St.Kilda foreshore for a morning of active fun!

I truly got so much out of the LJ event, it was inspiring to see everybody come together and support the active living philosophy.

Sweat & Oranges duo Jayne and Katie led a fun group workout to get everybody moving. There were women of all ages and fitness ranges joining in, from newbies to personal trainers.

 Lucy is a clean eating advocate and has a great meal inspiration Insta page @projectinsideandout. So the LJ market place was like a dream come true for health nuts like us! Pressed green juices, kale salads, coconut yogurt, essential oils, bliss balls and chai tea. There was just so much goodness and 20% off Lorna Jane as well! After a little retail delight we explored the stalls and rolled out our yoga mats for a picnic by the beach.


On the way home Lucy and I chatted about our new purchases and both agreed that there is something so motivating about getting new fitness gear! A fresh splash of colour seems to spur you on.

Lucy knew exactly what I meant. At the start of her fitness journey she had decided not to buy new workout clothes until she was at her goal weight. Although she admitted that she gave in and decided to get a new bright workout top and tights as a way to inspire her. She confessed that "I felt as crummy as I looked, which really sapped my motivation. Those clothes held lots of negativity for me as I felt that I didn't deserve nice clothes until I was skinny."

We all know that it shouldn’t matter what you wear at the gym- you’re working out for god sake! But somehow gym apparel has turned into a fashion statement. Although it shouldn't matter what we wear, feeling good in our gym clothes is actually really important, as Lucy discovered. 

"I bought my new clothes and realised I DID deserve them because no matter what I weighed, I was out there busting my gut and making an effort"
She said that she was nervous the first time she wore her new gear.

“I felt like people would think I was a fraud somehow because I wasn’t as fit as I wanted to be yet. But it did inspire me to push myself and have an awesome workout.”

“Looking the part made me feel like I had to prove myself so I put in an awesome session. I thought; if I’d seen someone working out like that I’d have respect for them.”

Why does having decent workout gear make such a difference to motivation levels? Because we start to embody what it symbolizes. Brands are aware of this and use it to incorporate inspiring and motivating messages. It’s a powerful thing. 

Gym clothing label JPorter is a great example of that sense of community within a fitness brand. 

"We choose to call our customers our Wolfpack, because it tightens our community, strengthens our identity, and unifies us as a family. " Says founder, Josh Porter. 

"We are passionate about giving back as much energy and courage to our customers as possible. Our motivation comes from motivating others, and our slogan is Fortune Favours The Bold"

The philosophies of companies such as JPorter, Lorna Jane and Lululemon encourage us to keep fit and feel strong. It's also created a huge trend as gym inspiration spills into mainstream fashion.

Melbourne Spring Fashion Week showcased how designers have clued onto this and my recent research for an article on Alexander Wang workout collection reinforced how our gym clothes have become a status symbol. Are we actually wearing it to exercise or just putting on our favourite threads to grab a latte and give an illusion of fitness?

Don't get me wrong- I love that athletic luxe is a trend; If I have the option I’ll always opt for my Nikes and a sports bra, even if I am just going to get coffee! (guilty)

I love that being fit and looking the part makes women feel confident and sexy, and we can still be comfortable at the same time! Thank god this isn’t Sex & the City and we don’t have to wear a full face of makeup, an oversized flower and a pair of stilettos just to pop down to the shops. Now it’s all about yoga pants and hoodies! (With the appropriate expensive branding or inspiring slogan splashed across the front of course) ;) 

Active wear brands are helping create a positive culture by making their clothes represent more than just gym sweats. You begin to embody the active lifestyle that it represents and start to feel better on the inside as well. 

 Josh sums it up perfectly-

"We want people to feel bold when they wear our brand, and confident that with courage they can control their future and overcome any obstacle."