Morning Hacks To Get You Out Of Bed (Quickly and Happily)

Slices of peaches in a bowl of oats

The terms quick, happy and easy going would not normally be associated with me and mornings. I need time. Lots of it. I need space. Lots of it. And I need quiet. Lots of it.

It takes a great effort for me to get out of bed. Sometimes like a 30 minute effort. I am the slowest waker upper ever.

So when I tell you I have a whole morning routine (exercise, meditating, gratitude journaling, affirmations, and reading) that I get through before I even start work you best believe that I need the most help with getting myself out of bed and my day started.

If you are like me and in struggle sheets in the morning, here are a few hacks that will get you going quickly and happily.

Morning hacks

* pull down on your earlobes with your fingers and take a deep breath (it will help you wake up)

* drink water (lets the body know you’re awake, hydrates you and helps you along with your morning toilet session)

* march on the spot with high knees (left arm with right leg and right arm with left leg. This gets your energy going.)

* make your bed (gives you a sense that you’ve already accomplished a task for the day. Remember the happiness chemical dopamine?)

* stretch your body

* have a cold shower (or at least alternate between hot and cold)

* eat a healthy breakfast (sets the tone for the day)

Here’s a tip for a healthy breakfast you can prepare the night before.

Selection of nuts on a white background
Selection of nuts

Ingredients for the basic overnight oats

* Oats
* Chia seeds (or any other seeds you have on hand)
* Nut or seed butter (peanut butter, almond butter, sunflower seed butter)
* Milk (whichever best suits you – coconut milk, almond milk)
* Fruit
* Sweetener (honey, dates, maple syrup – this is optional. I personally don’t add in any sweetener)
* For non-vegan you can use yoghurt ( use a combo of milk and yoghurt to make it creamy)

Method

These are the ratios to play with.
* 1/2 cup oats
* 3/4 cup liquid

Add oats to a bowl or sealable jar. Pour in your milk or yoghurt (or mixture of both). Add the nut or seed butter ( amount is as per your taste). Add fruit of your choice, sweetener of your choice and seeds on top. Put it in the fridge overnight and the next morning you’ll have a soft, creamy, yummy AND healthy breakfast to eat.

I love it because it’s so versatile and it will keep you full until lunch time. And there are a number of combinations you can prepare to keep your taste buds happy.

Chopped nuts on a brown board
Eating healthy

For the combinations below, use the basic recipe above and add the ingredients for the different versions.

Chocolate
Leave out the fruit and nut butter and add:
* cocoa powder
* shredded coconut
* almonds

Banana nut
Add in:
* mashed/sliced banana
* cinnamon ( and nutmeg optional)
* walnuts

Carrot cake
Leave out the nut butter and add in:
* grated carrot
* shredded coconut
* pecans
* raisins (optional)

I tried the carrot cake option the other day and it was divine.

Pumpkin
Add in:
* mashed pumpkin (preferably roasted pumpkin)
* cinnamon and nutmeg
* pumpkin seeds
* dried cranberries

Apple cinnamon
Add in:
* chopped apples
* cinnamon

Whatever you can prepare the night before – clothes, bag, breakfast, gym outfit – do it. If you are looking to have a calm morning start, it is better to be over prepared than under.

And if you are curious as to my daily eating plan and how I keep the weight off, I eat oats every single day except maybe on a Saturday where I’ll replace it with an egg breakfast.

If you have any questions or need any help, feel free to reach out to me at anytime.

I’m here as always looking out for you and your health.

With love,
LML

Hello 2021

Woman holding green vegetables

Hello 2021. Hello friends. Hello new year. Hello fresh starts.

I missed you all. How you doing? (in the Joey from Friends voice)

So we survived 2020. What a year! You know if you we can survive a year like that with all its ups and downs, I think we can pretty much conquer 2021. It’s not going to be easy, we still have challenges to face but we can absolutely do it.

Opportunities are everywhere.

Now I hate to be a party pooper so early in the year but if you were looking for some new years resolutions and stuff, I ain’t got any here. A healthy lifestyle remains the only goal.

What I do have for you are a few tips to ease in to the year.

11 Tips for Better Living

0 processed food / empty calories
1 hour of exercise/ reading
2 litres of a water a day
3 cups of green tea/ green juice
4 stretch breaks
5 things you’re grateful for
6 am meditation
7 minutes of laughter
8 hours of sleep
9 thousand steps a day
10 pm bed time

Easy enough?

Yes I thought so too.

Let’s go get it in 2021. There has never been a better time to BE healthy.

With much love as always
LML

How To Get A Grip When You’ve Let Yourself Go

Lady in a blue dress standing near a pool looking very happy

And I’m not even a fan of this term, ‘letting yourself go’ because to be honest I’ve been an expert at it.

It’s bad enough that I know it, but how rude and offensive that anybody else should notice it too.

I know all too well the struggles of working on myself to get to a point of being a better version of me; happy and hopeful and helluva hot only to ‘let myself go’.

Why did I do it?

Because I gave up too easily and convinced myself that you only live once and who would it hurt anyway to have another slice of cake or another helping of fries.

That’s what I used to tell myself.

And you know what happened?

Another slice of cake and more fries would become crispy wings and waffles with syrup and what about a juicy burger and a pizza or two.

Who would it hurt?

Yes indeed. Not me. No of course not.

Then I would look at myself in the mirror a few months or even a year down the line and be shocked because I had no idea I was letting myself go (please read getting fat)

I would shout at my family because they never told me and I couldn’t see it. (Side note: they did tell me. Apparently letting yourself go is akin to being deaf and blind as well)

Cue the guilt, shame, crashing self esteem, crying, cursing, embarrassment and tantrums. I would want to flush the idea of being healthy down the bloody drain.

Does any of this sound familiar?

Yes I thought so.

And believe me I know it feels like too much of a mountain to climb to snatch it all back because you are well aware that it’s going to take work, and worse yet, some self discipline.

I even toyed with the idea of staying fat and fabulous but tragically for me, my body wouldn’t allow it. It kept breaking down and it kept getting sick. It was screaming, “Get off your fat ass and do something about this”. (My father would say that too)

And so alas, I did just that but with a promise that I would never let myself go again. I was done with that feeling of hopelessness.

And you can be too.

Wanna know how?

Well stay with me now.

First you have to acknowledge it.

This was the toughest part for me. I didn’t want to look at myself and feel like a failure, again. I didn’t want to see that I was in a cycle of letting myself go, again. I didn’t want to acknowledge that I forgot to love myself, again.

And let me tell you, those 3 rolls of fat on my back were staring back at me and tormenting me. So defiant and so bitchy, like I dare you to get rid of us. Just you try it.

To quote Tony Robbins, “Identify your problems but give your power and energy to solutions”.

I had to acknowledge that the fat was a physical manifestation of all the emotional baggage that I was carrying with me. In essence, by refusing to deal with my emotional issues, I was in fact letting myself go physically.

The emotional issues were growing bigger and bigger in a physical form.

Once I understood where I was, I knew where I wanted to go.

A lady in a pink dress looking out over the ocean
In Thailand 2018

Next, you have to offer up forgiveness and love.

You HAVE to be KIND to YOURSELF. I can’t stress this enough.

If a friend came to you in despair and said “I feel like a failure. I’m so lost and feel so helpless, what would you say to them?”

Would you say, “You’re so worthless, nobody cares about you”

Of course not.

So why say that to yourself then?

Treat yourself with care, compassion and forgiveness like you would your best friend.

Kick all the judgement out the front door.

Make a plan and get real about it

I knew that in the beginning, trying to exercise and eat healthy was going to be too much for me. I can only focus on one thing at a time. I made my focus food. That was me being real.

You know yourself and what makes YOU feel overwhelmed. Choose one thing to focus on in the beginning and just stick to that.

I know you didn’t ask for my opinion but I would suggest it be food. I am a firm believer in the 80/20 rule, 80% diet and 20% exercise.

Have fun and laugh along the way

If you can do this everything else just seems to click into place.

Don’t try to force anything otherwise you’ll find yourself back in the cycle after a while. Find a form of exercise that gives you joy or will make you laugh. I can’t dance but I do Zumba every now and then just for fun.

Be light in spirit when it comes to your health. It’s not a chore or something to dread.

So you let yourself go but haven’t we all at some point.

It’s time to get a grip. It’s time to be honest. It’s time to have some fun.

Don’t let the rolls, the emotional baggage or the supposed mountain to climb intimidate you.

You are in control and you got this.

I’m here for you, as always.

Happy and hopeful.

P.S. I’m very good at dishing out instructions. If you need me to tell you to get off your fat ass and do something about this, just holla.

With love
LML

What Foods To Eat To Reduce Bloating

Picture of an array of vegetables

That damn B-word…..bloating. It’s not comfortable, fun or cute. Trust me I know.

I was suffering with it, yes suffering (I’m very dramatic in case you didn’t know) 2 weeks ago. In my case I ate a very creamy pasta which did not go down a treat, let’s just say that.

I was up at exactly 2am for a few nights with cramps and trapped wind. I felt so tormented I got out of bed and lay on the carpet in the early hours of the morning trying to do yoga.

Crazy much?

Absolutely, yes but I know you know what I mean.

What causes bloating?

Anything from undigested food, to how you are sitting or how much you are talking while eating. Let me state the obvious, it is clear that you need to pay attention when you eat.

Here are foods to eat to reduce bloating.

Drop Beans and Legumes for Soaked Quinoa
Beans take a long time to digest because they contain a protein that resists digestion until it reaches the big intestine. And friends, that’s a long way to travel and plenty of time to cause bloating and wind along the way.

Instead try eating quinoa that has been soaked for at least 2 hours. Soaking quinoa helps remove some of the phytic acid in the grain which helps improve digestibility.

Reduce the raw greens and up the ante on the steamed or sauteéd greens
Now don’t get me wrong greens are good for you but too many raw greens like kale can be hard for your body to digest.

Steaming or sauteing greens softens the fibres while retaining the nutrients making it easier to digest.

Dairy – avoid the cow and bring on the goats and sheep – especially with yoghurt
Many people can’t digest dairy because they are lactose intolerant. If you feel like you feel extra full after eating a bowl of yoghurt or some cheese try swapping cow milk products for goats or sheep milk ones.

These alternatives are less processed and have different proteins, making them easier to digest.

Cut back on the carbonated drinks and sip on plain water or hot tea
The CO2 used to make the bubbles in carbonated drinks can go straight to your digestive tract and cause bloating.

Instead sip on room temperature water, warm lemon water or tea.
Tip: avoid any liquids for at least an hour after eating. This will give your digestive system time to do it’s thing.

Hack for warm lemon water: make lemon/ginger ice cubes.
Cut up some lemons and I would also add lots of ginger into a small pot. Full the pot with water and let it simmer for 15 minutes or so. Taste and if you are happy with the flavour, drain and set aside to cool. Once cool, pour it into ice trays and freeze.

Every morning, drop a lemon/ginger ice cube into your hot water and drink. Saves you time every morning.

Chew Chew and Chew some more
Slowly chew your food. When you think you’ve chewed enough keep going. Remember your stomach doesn’t have teeth. Give it less work to do in breaking down food by chewing the food properly. This is probably the biggest reason most people feel bloated.

With these swaps and lots of chewing, you’ll be able to leave behind the bloat, feel comfortable and look cute.

Let me know how it goes.

With love as always
LML