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Goodbye Blue Sunday

This sounds really negative but I have never liked Sundays, I’m not sure what it is but there’s just a different feel about a Sunday that doesn’t do it for me. When I was in Canada my blue Sunday feeling literally vanished overnight and Sundays felt like any other day. I lived slap bang in the middle of the city so I’d be out exploring a fair bit, and I also got really into the baseball and basketball. Sunday afternoons or evenings were occupied watching sport which I loved. I was also at the gym most Sundays so that helped pop my endorphins into shape.

Sundays in the UK are a different concept but this year I am determined to kick my blue Sunday feeling into touch. If you’re like me and need to refresh your Sunday try following my top tips to making them a little bit brighter.

  1. A good Sunday starts with a productive Saturday. I know it’s not realistic packing high energy stuff into your whole weekend, but if you have a positive Saturday doing what you love the chances are your Sunday will automatically feel much brighter.
  2. Don’t lie in too long. I slept in until 10am this morning and it was waaaaay too long. It’s good to catch up on sleep but if you have too much snoozy time you’ll spend the rest of the day feeling really lethargic. I know setting an alarm at a weekend sounds like a party pooper thing to do but you’ll benefit from getting up that little bit earlier.
  3. Stretch. I can count on one hand the amount of times I have actually done this, but the times I have, I have felt 100% SO much more awake and alert. Just spend 5 minutes doing a simple stretch like this one and you’ll be happy as Larry all day long.
  4. Eat a good brekkie. Plan your weekend breakfasts out so you have whatever you fancy in the cupboards. It could be porridge, pancakes, a bagel and smoked salmon or fresh fruit. Have something tasty that you really enjoy.
  5. Plan to get fresh air. It’s 4.00pm and I’ve not had enough fresh air today and it’s 100% effecting my mood. It doesn’t matter if it’s raining, snowing or boiling hot. Dressed appropriately and get outside. Just a walk round the block is enough if you’re not up for a 3 hour hike :-)
  6. If you’re a member of a gym go on a Sunday. I love going around 5pm, doing an hour session and then coming home having dinner and getting set for my week ahead.
  7. Read a book, blog, website you like or watch a movie. I know the rules about being on your phone in bed and yes this can effect your sleep but if you like looking on reddit go on reddit before bed. If it chills you out pinning things on Pinterest do it. You’ll know yourself if it’s effecting your sleep and if it is switch to reading a book instead.
  8. See your friends. Sunday’s are meant to be a day of rest so go and chill on your mates couch or meet up and head for a walk. Catching up with loved ones and having a good chin wag will improve your day in an instant.
  9. Draw. I had a colouring in book that I used to use most days. For some reason I’ve stopped colouring but that’s something I will be changing this week.
  10. Listen to some music. Whatever makes you feel jolly and gets you singing out loud. Crank the volume up and get singing.
Hugs
The Skinny

National Hugging Day

Hugs are pretty great wouldn’t you agree? They have got me through some tough times, they’ve made amazing times even more special and science says they are good for your health. Here are five reasons why we should all embrace National Hugging Day.

They are a natural stress reliever 

Giving someone a huge squeeze will immediately reduce stress levels. They also make our bodies release tension.

They make you feel good 

When you hug someone oxytocin is released which makes you feel all warm and lovely. Oxytocin also increases feelings of trust and bonding.

Hugs release tension

Hugs can take away pain and soothe aches by increasing circulation into the soft tissues.

A hug helps future generations

Well-hugged babies are apparently less stressed as adults. What better excuse to cuddle your newborn all day?!

It can lower your heart rate

Research shows that hugging decreases your heart rate. When you give and receive a hug you are more calmer and relaxed.

 

 

Body Quote
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Body Image

I go to the gym quite regularly and health and fitness is part of my lifestyle. I have a mild addiction to crisps (salt & vinegar hula hoops in particular), wine, doughnuts and sometimes I may crave a pizza (thin crust) but I like to think I have a relatively balanced diet on the whole. I eat a fair bit of chicken, turkey, fish and kale is pretty much my best friend. I have recently cut back on booze and I feel SO much better for it. I don’t know if it’s my age but these days I quite like having a couple of glasses rather than polishing off a bottle (with my fiancé not on my own).

Most women would admit there is something about their body they don’t like. I don’t think I have ever met a woman who is 100% comfortable in her own skin. I admit even though I go to the gym I still haven’t got the confidence to bare my body in a bikini because I hate my thighs, and I’m on a mission to get them toned. Now I am not saying all this so that people say ‘oh but you have a great body don’t be silly’ I am a realist and I know my legs could be more toned. I love my stomach and I don’t mind my arms so I am not completely hating on my body, I just want it to look better and know it can.

There are so many girls and women out there who don’t have such a healthy view on their body and it’s no surprise really. I shared the picture below on my Facebook feed today and it makes a really good point. Last night I looked at the images of Vicky Pattison and Ferne McCann who are currently staring in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here and thought how refreshing it was to see a picture of two girls in their bikini that are untouched, with no filter or airbrushing. The picture is real. The problem is the picture on the right, the one that is airbrushed and filtered. This picture isn’t real. The picture on the right is the one that most women are striving for and this is where the problem is.

I’m not saying go stuff your face and never work out, I just think we need to remember that the majority of the images we see of celebrities on the beach and on the front of magazines are airbrushed. If you want to tone up and feel better about your body that’s cool. Just don’t be striving to look like an image that has been altered with a few clicks of a mouse.

Bikini

Eyes
The Skinny

Tips to keep your eyes healthy

Whether you wear glasses or contact lenses it’s a good idea to keep good care of your eyes. Just like we brush our teeth twice a day there are other things we need to be doing daily to keep our peepers in perfect condition.

Wear sunglasses

Any excuse to hide behind a huge pair of sunglasses and I am in. We should all protect our eyes from long-term exposure to UV rays as this can have a permanent negative effect on your eyes, causing cataracts and irreversible damage to the retina. Wear sunglasses whenever you spend time outside and opt for sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB radiation.

Eat your greens  

We’ve all heard that we should eat carrots to help us see in the dark and there is some truth in that. Carrots contain carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin which are naturally found in the eyes and can help ward off cataracts and macular degeneration. Having said this carotenoids can be found much more plentifully in leafy green foods such as kale, collard greens, spinach, turnip green and broccoli.

Eat antioxidants 

Increase your intake of vitamins C and E. Papaya, cantaloupe, strawberries, green peppers, oranges, and grapefruit are all great sources of vitamin C. Vitamin E is found in almonds, sunflower seeds, peanuts, and safflower and corn oils.

Take a break

Most people spends hours staring at a computer screen which can increase the risk of developing computer vision syndrome (CVS). Symptoms include eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision and dry eyes. If you can’t avoid the computer screen take these precautions: ensure your computer screen is 4 to 5 inches below eye level and 20 to 28 inches away from your eyes. Reduce glare by using  lower-wattage lightbulbs overhead and closing curtains or drapes. Rest 15 minutes after every two hours of computer use.

Blink 

Blinking is key and it’s something you might not even think about. Try to blink more often throughout the day to reduce dry eyes.

Have regular checks

Regular visits to the optician is a must. Many eye diseases and disorders can be prevented and corrected if they’re caught early and it’s important you have up-to-date prescriptions for glasses or contact lenses. Children should have their eyes examined at six months old, three years old and then every two years until their eighteenth birthday. Adults between the ages of 18 and 40 should have their eyes checked every two to three years. 41- to 60-year-olds should have an eye exam every two years, and adults over 60 should have an annual eye exam. If you’re at higher risk for eye diseases, because of diabetes, hypertension, a family history of ocular disease, or daily use of contact lenses, talk to your optician about how often you should get your eyes checked.

Stay clean 

If you wear contact lenses always ensure that your hands are clean before you put your lenses in or take them out. It’s also important to clean and store your lenses in fresh solution, replace them as directed and remove them before swimming or going in a hot tub.

Warning signs

Be aware of the warning signs that might indicate something is wrong. You should call your opticians if you have difficulty adjusting to light or dark, trouble focusing, unusual sensitivity, a change in the colour of the iris or lids, pain, double vision, dark spots or halos. Avoid self diagnosing yourself as this can cause you to panic. If you’re in any doubt always consult the experts.