Latest Posts

Q&A with Jessica Ennis- Hill

Yesterday I hosted a live Q&A with former Olympic Champion & three times World Champion, Dame Jessica Ennis Hill! The event took place at the adidas flagship store on Oxford Street, to celebrate a big weekend of sport here in London.

Live hosting and presenting is pretty new territory for me, so I felt both nervous and excited as we prepared backstage at the store. I met Jess twice last year, both times she was really friendly and chatty so I knew that she’d be a fantastic guest to interview.

During the Q&A, Jess talked about how she’d prepared for the Olympic games in London and in Rio, which of the heptathlon events she enjoyed the most (100m hurdles) and how her life has changed since retirement.

As a sat opposite Jess, I was completely in awe. Jess’s achievements have had such a huge impact on women’s athletics. She is an incedible role model to young women and aspiring athletes. I thanked her for waving the flag for us girls.

After the official Q&A, Jess and I returned to the green room, where I asked a few more cheeky fun questions, such as ‘What’s your favourite breakfast?’ ‘Are you always on time? and ‘What was the last book you read? Watch our video below, to find out what Jess had to say…

Summer in LDN | Up at the o2 

I love summer in the city. London has so much going on, there’s always a new place to explore and a new hot spot to eat. As a tourist visiting London, you can grab a map and go see all of the famous landmarks and attractions, but many busy londoners actually never make time to see the city’s best bits. So when I was invited to Up at The O2, a 90-minute climb over the top of London’s O2 arena to celebrate it’s 5th birthday this summer, I was mega excited to see the panoramic views across the capital.

When you arrive, you are given a jacket and a safety harness – the harness goes around your waist but also through your legs, so, my top tip would be to wear leggings or shorts (one lady was wearing a floral maxi dress, eek!). You will be also given walking boots, so make sure you bring a pair of socks!

Your harness attaches to the walkway, so there is absolutely no way that you could fall off. Urban mountaineering is a surprisingly great way to keep fit and active, and perfect for adventurous spirits. Once you get to the top, the view from the summit is amazing and you’ll be mega proud of the achievement.

You can also book this experience in the evening with a Sunset climb – The London skyline is AMAZING at dusk! I kept thinking that I would like to take Jude, but as the starting age is nine years or over… I will have to try this when he’s a bit older, as it’s the perfect activity to enjoy with families over the summer. 

And to continue Up at The O2’s birthday celebrations, adventurous families or friends of five will be offered a free climb for the fifth member until the end of October, book and use code ‘BIRTHDAY’ to claim the complimentary fifth climb. Get all the info over on the official website… click here Up At The O2

 

 

L.A to London | The Journey

I’m writing this post from 39,000 feet in the air. I’ve spent the last four days in Los Angels and I’m currently on a flight back to London. It’s 10pm and I can’t sleep, so I thought I’d write a post about how I am feeling right now.

As I said, I’ve been in LA for the last few days, I’ve been at a shoot with adidas for next years spring/summer campaign. Over the last few days it has kind of felt as though I’ve stepped out of my life, and into someone else’s. LA definitely lives up to it’s glamorous reputation. The weather was beautiful, the hotel was mega cool and the shoot was incredible! Over the last ten years I’ve done a lot of different jobs but never anything like this. This shoot was on another level! How did I end up here!?


On Friday evening I shared a post on instagram that said …

Day 1 in LA was amazing but so surreal. Sometimes I find myself in situations that I can’t put into words. It’s easy to see the most recent chapter in someones life, but there is no context if you haven’t read the whole story. In the past, I’ve had a lot of ‘No’s’ but it really doesn’t matter at all once you get a ‘Yes!’.
Keep going after what ever it is that you want, cos if I can do it, then ANYBODY can!!

Over the last few months I’ve received a lot of messages and emails from people asking me how I became an adidas ambassador or how I turned blogging into my full time job. My first thought is always, ‘Where should I start?’ The truth, is that although I’ve only been blogging for the past three years, I have been working and learning and hustling 24/7 for the last ten years. I don’t believe that there is such a thing as over night success. You may see an actress in her debut feature film, it’s a huge movie and it’s her ‘big break’. That woman has probably been working three different jobs and auditioning for years before she landed that film. I left drama school in 2007 and since then I’ve had so many career highs and lows. Here are just a few…

2007 – I auditioned for all of these musicals before getting my first theatre job. Wicked, The Lion King, Hairspray, Chicago and The Lion King in Disneyland Paris. I went to recalls, I learnt the songs, I did my absolute best in every audition but I didn’t book the job.

2008 – I danced in the background of a Sugarbabes video. I danced in the background at the MOBO awards. I got my first contract in a musical on tour for a year.

2009 – I auditioned for The Lion King (again) I didn’t get the job. I failed my first driving test. I auditioned for We Will Rock You in the West End. I got the job. I retook my driving test and I passed. I bought a camera and lighting equipment and practiced photography.

You get the idea, a lot has happened between then and now, I’ve changed careers, studied personal training and nutrition, I’ve started my own business (thanks to this blog), I’ve become a mother etc but it’s not all plain sailing, trust me.

I’ve learnt a lot along the way. It’s taken me years to build my network, to establish a client base and to realise that my true strength is the ability to motivate and encourage others. I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunities that blogging and social media has given me, (I mean, did I really just get payed to do a shoot in LA!?) but it’s still a business and sometimes business can be blunt.

I was recently requested for a NIVEA online ad campaign. The agency confirmed the dates and the fee, so I added the job to my diary and I arranged child care for Jude for after school. Four days later the agency emailed me to say that the client had chosen someone else for the shoot and that they hoped to work with me in the future. Who knows, fingers crossed they’ll book me for a different job. You can’t take it personally, it’s just business, but it can be frustrating for sure. I’ve had meetings that I thought went well, then two weeks later I’m sat at my laptop writing a follow up email, attempting to sound keen but not desperate.

The truth is, everyone that I know who is working hard, crushing it and making it look easy, has had there fair share of rejections too. We all do, that’s life.

As I said at the beginning of this post, the adidas shoot was amazing! There was a huge crew of photographers, assistants, hair and make up artists, stylists and the other women in the campaign were so inspiring. It was a real pinch me moment!

I’m heading back to London and back to normality. Next week I’ll be training my clients, going to meetings, taking Jude to swimming lessons, birthday parties and playdates. After four days of room service, I’m hoping that Rob will bring me breakfast in bed tomorrow. hehe 🙂 yeah right!! LA was so fun but it’s always great to go home.

 

#TheLatest

JUNE.17 It’s been a busy couple of weeks, here’s what’s been keeping me busy…

LIVE CHAT
I started the month by hosting a week of live chats on Instagram. Each morning I logged in at 6.45am to share a message of morning motivation. It was pretty cool to answer questions and also to see people logging in from all over the world. If you missed the chats you can read more about it here. Motivating and encouraging people is something that I love and I really want to do more of… watch this space.

NYC
I packed my bags and flew to NYC with team adidas! It was an incredible trip, we were invited to run alongside 500 runners to raise awareness for a great cause. To save our oceans from plastic pollution. Since coming back home, I’ve been making a huge effort to reduce my use of plastic and to reuse or recycle absolutely everything! Read more about the NYC trip here. img_3642

RUNNING
Over the last four weeks my running has been very inconsistent. Ever since running the  marathon earlier this year, I haven’t really been able to get my mojo back. My pace is still slower than usual and I haven’t ran further than 5 miles. Well not until Sunday,  when Rob and I ran the British 10K London. We were both really looking forward to completing the race together. It was mega hot on Sunday, London always feels so alive in the summer. The views along the route are amazing, I definitely recommend this race if you want to enjoy running in London. (if you don’t fancy the marathon)

TUNES
I love music and I make playlists for every occasion, mood and genre. This month I’m listening to my latest ‘LOVE’ playlist on repeat. You can check it out, click here … Spotify 

DREAM TEAM
I’ve joined forces with two of my bff’s AJ & Hayley, together we are working on a MEGA exciting project. Each of us is bringing something different to the table, watch this space or head over to www.weareGETTOKNOW.com and sign up to our mailing list. We won’t spam you with useless emails but you will be the first ‘in the know’ and you may get a free invite to our launch party! What are you waiting for? CLICK HERE  

SAY CHEESE
Earlier this month we celebrated Jude’s 6th birthday! Why must our littles grow up so fast? I’m taking as many photos as I can, not only because I adore his face but also because Jude currently has three wobbly teeth. THREE!! He’s gonna be a gummy bear very soon. 

So that’s #TheLatest

6 Reasons to Get Up at 6

Okay, so if you’ve ever watched my Instagram stories, then you’ll already know that most days, I am up and out before 7am. I haven’t always been such an early bird, but over the last eight months, I have witnessed the change in my life due to this one daily practice. Getting up at 6am each day is a game changer! Here’s why …

  1. Productivity
    How many times have you said ‘I don’t have enough time to… read/ workout/ meditate/ etc? We all have busy lives, but we all have the same amount of time each day, it’s just about prioritising what you really want. Whether you are studying, starting your own business, raising kids etc, getting up early will give you some uninterrupted time each day to get #*it done.
    Make 6-7 your power hour!
  2. Less Stress
    The way you start your morning will have a domino effect on the rest of the day. Most people that are late will say that they ‘absolutely hate being late’. It makes us feel stressed out an anxious. If you rush out of the door, feeling scrappy and unorganised, you’re just making life harder for yourself. Join the 6am club and give yourself more time to breathe.
  3. Morning Miles
    I often get my run or workout done before 7am. That way I know it’s done before I start my day and I don’t need to carry a bag of kit and trainers around with me either. I don’t like to sweat wearing make up, as it causes my skin to breakout. I do my workout first thing with a fresh face, then I jump in the shower and do my hair and make up routine after. (Routine is probably an exaggeration, I basically use moisturiser and bronzer)
    Apparently, working out in the morning boosts your metabolism and get all of your systems fired up. I’m not sure if that is evidence based or just a myth but hey it ain’t gonna do you any harm that’s for sure.
  4. Eat Right
    Having more time in the mornings means that you’re more likely to eat a good breakfast. If you get up late and leave the house without breakfast, it will probably result in you later queuing for a coffee and croissant from Pret.
    If you’re feeling fancy you could whip us some eggs and a smoothie, you’ve got plenty of time so sit down and enjoy your brekkie.
  5. Self Disciple
    Let’s be honest, when that alarm goes off, sometimes it feels like you’ve been asleep for about seven minutes! But, once it becomes a daily habit, your body will adjust and get used to it. You’ll be surprise how that self disciple will then translate into other aspects of your life too. If you set yourself a goal of getting up at 6am everyday this week, and then you absolutely nail it, it gives you a little reminder that you can smash ANY goal that you set. Give it a go!
  6. Less Distractions
    I am very easily distracted, so it helps that I’m up and getting things done before standard biz hours. I can power through my emails or order my food shopping online (yes I do that at 6am) in peace and quiet. Also, try making a no phone rule, so even though you’re up at 6am, you don’t check your phone until 7am. *see reason number 5, now that is some ninja style self discipline!)

Still not convinced? Grab any self development book and it will tell you that getting up early really is a game changer. I honestly believe this is essential for success because I’ve seen the benefits myself. I now start the day feeling calm and ready to tackle my to-do list, instead of trying to beat the clock and never having ‘enough time’.

New York | adidas Parley

‘Through sport, we have the power to change lives’ Andre Maestrini

These are the words that I remember when I look back at my recent trip to New York. As a global ambassador for adidas, I was invited to take part in a 5K run to support the amazing work that adidas Parley are doing to help save our oceans.

If you don’t know much about adidas Parley you can find out more about it, just click here.

I was mega excited to visit New York as I absolutely love the city! I’ve only been once before, just over nine years ago.

I really love working with adidas, especially as they are a brand that cares so much about important issues. They are passionate about saving the planet, empowering women through sport, celebrating diversity and changing lives. Team adidas are literally making waves!

Over the last three years I have become part of a global running community. Thanks to social media and through taking part in the London marathon, I’ve seen how running can not only transform lives but also how powerful it is, when people come together to run for a cause. I’ve you’ve ever been to watch a marathon, then you will know what I mean.

At the Run For The Oceans event, I joined over five hundred runners from around the world. We laced up and took to the streets of New York to run . We were also joined by some famous sporting faces that are all huge supporters of Parley. New Zealand’s Dan Carter, Olympic gold medalist Shaunae Miller, Olympic swimming legend Ian Thorpe and American elite marathon runner Neely Spence Grace. What a line up!

I learnt so much about this project and I was lucky enough to chat to Cyrill Gutsch, the founder of Parley for the Oceans. Cyrill’s passion for this cause is infectious, I literally could have listened to him talk all night. He didn’t hold back as he shared some truly terrifying statics about the environment, our current use of plastics and the devastating impact it is having on out planet. Cyrill says ‘It’s no longer the case that, the future will be bad if we don’t change our use and waste of plastics. Today is bad. We’re F*#!*d.’

So far, adidas Parley have made one million pairs of shoes, each pair contains eleven plastic bottles that have been taken out of the ocean and recycled into thread. They plan to make five million more!


Check out my VLOG of the trip here.

You’re never too old, it’s never too late.

I truly believe that it is never too late to start a brand new chapter of your life. I’m turning thirty later this year and I have huge ambitions of the future. I honestly feel like I’m just getting started! Maybe it’s taken me until now to really figure out what I want to do, how I want to live my life and who I really am. That might sound a little bit lame but bare with me okay…

I guess what I mean is that I have a very clear idea now of what I want both personally and professionally, and I’m ready to work mega hard for it.

So work wise, I would say I’ve had two careers and endless side hustle jobs.
Job number one ; Dancer.
When I was nineteen, I graduated from dance college and I was a professional dancer for three years. Before getting a dance job in a musical, I worked in a restaurant, a clothes shop, and I also did a few commercial modelling gigs too. Whilst working in the theatre I discovered my passion for photography. (This was about four years prior to the birth of instagram.) I invested in a fancy camera and two lenses and some studio lights. I used to photograph my friends, dancers from the show, my niece and nephews and sometimes I’d take candid snaps of strangers too. I remember photographing my friend Lucy at my house one day, Rob came home to find that I had transformed our living room into a ‘studio’. The sofa was in the hallway and I’d tapped paper over the windows to block out the light. I’m very grateful that he has always been incredibly laid-back as well as very supportive of my creative adventures. I set up a photography website and it become a side job that I really loved. I suppose I never really stopped taking photographs but nowadays, I mostly take photos of Jude and photos for my blog. (selfies don’t count!)
Even though I’d never call myself a photographer, I know that those years snapping my mates really taught me a lot. I used to read books about cameras, I’d watch YouTube videos about shutter speed, aperture, photo composition and editing. I discovered a love for curating beautiful images, capturing a persons vibe and story telling. Now of course, I have this blog to share my ideas, and as well as creating images for my own social media, I also create images for brands too. So I guess it was all good practice.

Job number two; Personal Trainer. After leaving my life in the theatre, I became a Mummy and later studied to become a personal trainer. Initially, I thought I’d like to lead bootcamps and fitness classes for other mummies. I’ve always loved fitness and sports. At school, P.E was one of my favourite lessons and sports day felt like the Olympics! I knew that I would be happy working in the fitness industry because I had a genuine interest and passion for it. Anyway, I guess I didn’t know at the time, that years later I would be an ambassador for adidas, one of the biggest sports brands in the world or that I would fall in love with running and complete the London Marathon. I guess I’ve just always been open to taking on new challenges and to be honest I never really had a specific plan. I just kinda went along with opportunities that felt right. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had to put the work in. Three years training at dance college is no joke. Then when I retrained, I spent a year studying anatomy, physiology, first aid and nutrition. Ever after I had the qualifications, I had to set up my own fitness business, hire a studio, self promote, build a client base, teach the classes, and at that time my son was only two years old, so it all had to fit in around nursery and Robs work too.

I guess no job is easy and whether you work for a company or you’re a freelancer, essentially, you will succeed if you’re willing to learn and to work harder than your competitors.

If you have a passion, a skill or maybe just a great idea, don’t waste it. All the jobs that you’ve done before, have given you the tools that you need now. It’s easier than ever to learn. We have libraries full of books and they have computers with free wifi. There are unlimited resources online, ebooks, youtube tutorials, google! I mean come on. Do some research, put the hours in, work hard and do whatever it is that you really want to do. As I mentioned at the start of this post, I’m going to be turning thirty soon, and I’m just about to start a brand new venture alongside two of my best friends. I can not wait to share it with the world but for now we are working away in silence. We’ll be launching in September this year. Who knows what the next ten years will bring, but I know what I want to do and I’m not going to settle for anything else. I know that I have the skills, things that I don’t have a clue about I will learn or get advise, and I’m gonna work for it every single day. Inevitably, life may have some unpredictable set backs, but I don’t accept imperfect circumstances or my own excuses.

If you’re reading this and you feel like you want to start your own business, change careers, record a song, start a blog, whatever it is… do what you want to do and remember, you’re never too old, it’s never too late.

For some more practical tips on productivity and motivation, head to my previous post, REAL TALK click here.