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Skincare Travel Tips

I’ve taken a lot of long haul flights in the last year, so I’ve got a few hacks and some essentials that I now use every time I travel.

If I’m travelling for a shoot, I really don’t want to arrive feeling tired, bloated and with puffy eyes. You know that feeling, when you’ve been on an air conditioned plane for eleven hours, and your face feel like a dried fruit! If you’ve landed somewhere hot, you’ll  need to use sun cream and then you get a breakout, just in time for your first holiday selfie! I’m thirty years old, surly I’ve had my lifetime number of spots already! After a lot of trial and error, I’ve got my routine down…

Here are my top travel tips, to help you arrive looking and feeling fresh…

  1. Water! The most obvious and the easiest one is to drink water, LOTS of water. I always drink at least a litre of water throughout the flight. If you’re drink a cheeky prosecco or wine, then you definitely need to remember the 1 litre rule.
  2. Moisturise! Before, during and after the flight. I always take a face cream in my hand luggage, so that I can moisturise again a few hours in to the journey. I love Kiehl’s ‘Ultra Facial Cream’ and Origins ‘Drink Up’ Mask.
  3. Do not eat plane food! I take my own food for the flight. Airports usually have quite a lot of options, so even if you don’t take food from home you can always find a Pret. Plane food is so salty and full of additives. It smells a lot better that it tastes and it doesn’t even smell that good.
  4. Spacemask. Oh my gosh, these are a game changer! Spacemask’s are self heating, eye masks infused with essential oils. It’s really great for helping you to get some sleep so you’ll arrive feeling good. www.spacemasks.com
  5. Headphones. I always use big over the ear noise cancelling headphones. Even if I’m not listening to music or a podcast, they’re great for blocking out the noise so I can get to sleep. I use Beats ‘Solo Wireless’, they are really cushioned so they don’t hurt your ears if you wake up after 3 hours wearing them.
  6. Reset the clock. As soon as I get on a plane I change my watch to the destination time zone. I think it helps me mentally to believe that it’s 4am, even when it should be midday. I still haven’t quite cracked the jet lag yet, but an iced latte on arrival usually helps A LOT!

So that’s it… happy travels!

Run Your First Mile!

Often when people meet me and they hear me talk about running, they think that I have always been a runner. I love running for so many reasons but trust me, it hasn’t always been easy. Admittedly, I’ve always been athletic and active, but I used to run the 100m and 200m track races, I’m half Jamaican, sprinting is is my blood!

The first time I ever went out for a road run, was about nine months after Jude was born. I was wearing a pair of old trainers, my shorts didn’t have a pocket so I was carrying my iPhone in my hand, and I got an agonising stitch about three minutes in. My run turned to a jog and I managed to get through about a a mile and a half. I walked in through the front door and I felt defeated, I thought that maybe running wasn’t for me. I remember at that time, I was on maternity leave and I wanted to get into running because it was free and I could fit it in around Jude’s naps. I’d heard people talk so passionately about running. How amazing it felt to be outside, running in the fresh air and so on. I felt frustrated and a little bit miffed that my first run was so terrible. So, I decided I’d give running another go.

6 years and hundreds of miles later, I can now say that I am a runner and I TOTALLY get it! Running has become a part of my life, it’s taken me around the world, introduced me to new people and has helped me to overcome some really challenging times. Everyday, I see the positive impact that running has for so many women. Running is truly life changing!

If you want to give running a go, here are a few tips that I hope will help you to run that first mile…

  1. Get a bum bag or running belt. You can get one for about a fiver, it doesn’t need to be fancy. Make sure you can fit your key and your phone in it securely. It’s so annoying when you have things jingling around in your pocket or worse YOUR BRA! (I have seen friends use their sports bra’s to hold their phone, keys, and even an asthma pump! LOLZ)
  2. Go slow. When people tell me that they can’t run, my first thought is, they’re trying to run to fast. It doesn’t matter about the pace at all. Just jog at a steady pace, you should be able to breathe and chat. If you’re working so hard that you can’t talk, you’re running too fast.
  3. Breathe! but don’t overthink it. This might sound strange but unlike swimming or yoga, you don’t need to think too much about breathing. Your body knows how to breathe, it’s instinctive. Don’t be put off by the sound of your own breathe, just let your body relax and breathe however you need to.
  4. Be safe. If you’re running alone, make sure you have your phone, stick to well lit routes and wear light coloured clothing. You can search for running routes on the Map My Run app and plan a route that’s close to home.

Give it a go and trust me, it will get easier! If you any questions about getting started, leave a comment below or connect with me on Instagram @adrienne_ldn Happy running!

Cape Town, South Africa

Earlier this month I visited Cape Town for the first time. To be totally honest, I didn’t know very much about South Africa and it wasn’t somewhere that I’d ever considered adding to my travel wish list. A few days before Christmas, I got the confirmation of the shoot dates and location from the adidas running team. We were going to be in Cape Town for five days to film a spring summer running campaign. Excitement overload! 🙂

I mentioned the trip to a few a people and I received two different reactions. Some of the first things I heard were, ‘Oh, be careful, it’s not a safe place to visit!’, the next thing I heard was ‘Oh my gosh, it’s incredible! You will absolutely love it!
A lot of places have a reputation of being unsafe for tourists, especially for women, and it can be off putting for sure. As I was traveling with a group I felt assured that it would be fine. Cape Town is a very popular travel destination and like any big city in the world, there is a degree of poverty and crime but a lot of what I read online was grossly exaggerated and essentially quite insulting to the people of South Africa.

We stepped of the plane, after a 12 hour flight (ouch!) and the people were as warm as the weather. The mountain skyline was absolutely stunning! We got in to our car and I talked to the driver for the entire thirty minute journey. He told us about the weather forecast, the mountain hiking routes, the beaches and the best restaurants in town.Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

South Africa is currently experiencing a severe draught. There are signs in all of the bathrooms reminding you to limit your water use as much as possible. It’s estimated that it will take at least ten years for the county to recover. It definitely made me consider how much water we use each day at home and how much we waste.

When ever I visit a new city, I always go out for an early morning run. It’s the BEST way to explore and to see the city before it wakes up. I ran along Seapoint everyday, it was so beautiful! I had to stop half way through my route just to take it all in.

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‘The world is so big, you’ll never see it all if you’re standing in one place for too long.’

Shooting with adidas is always a lot of fun, I was back with Nethaneel Blake, aka track super star! We shot together last year in LA. I can’t wait to see the final video, I think it will be out in March/ April.

After we wrapped on the shoot, we had a free day before our return flight. What do you do after you’ve been running for 3 days!? Hike a mountain of course 🙂 My legs were totally battered but it was absolutely worth it! Just look at that view!!

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It took us about ninety minutes to climb from the bottom to the top. I consider myself to be pretty fit but it was really hard work. There is a cable car, so if you’re not able to hike or if your travelling with young kids, you can still go to the very top of the world famous Table mountain.

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Cape Town is one of the most beautiful places that I have ever been to, I really hope that I can visit again one day.

Who’s Influencing You?

We are all influenced by the people that we spend the most amount of time with, we are influenced physically, mentally and spiritually. We can’t help it, it’s human nature, it’s in our DNA. Often, when we talk about ‘influence’ we tend to think about Instagram, bloggers and celebrities, but, the people in your real offline life are influencing you just as much, if not more.

Have you ever visited another country and after a few days you start to notice your accent change a little bit or you notice yourself saying a word that you would never usually say. You’re subconsciously attempting to mimic the people that you are interacting with. You might try to match another persons energy and body language too.
As a parent, I see a huge influence on Jude’s behaviour and energy, depending on who he has spent a lot of time with. He has lots of different interactions each day, whether that’s with his school teacher, football coach or Grandma, but, it’s his peers that have the biggest impact by far. Jude is far to young to be aware of ‘influence’ but I can already see him learning and imitating things that he has seen. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, depending on who he is attempting to copy, and the same can be said for adults.

Who do you go to when you need advise? Does that person give you their honest opinion or are they just telling you what you want to hear? Some people will always be encouraging, they’ll tell you to go for it, take a chance, you only live once and all that. Whilst other people, who maybe are more cautious, might tell you, ‘it’s too risky’ and ‘you shouldn’t get your hopes up’. Ultimately, it will of course be your decision, but you will definitely be influenced by them. It’s not just our words that influence people but our actions and our reactions too.

I encourage you to take a look at who you are surrounding yourself with. Take a look at the relationships that occupy the most of your time. These relationships should be balanced, mutual and they should feel good. If you have a toxic relationship that is bringing you down or is always stressing you out, maybe it’s time for a detox. It can be hard to walk away from people, especially if you feel a sense of obligation to them. However, sometimes we need to respect and preserve ourselves by taking a step back.

Equally, it’s important to make space and time in your life to meet new people too. I believe that every person you meet in your entire life will influence you in some way. I’m very fortunate that my job allows me to constantly meet new people all the time. It’s great when you meet a like minded person and you know instantly that you’re gonna be good mates. Pour your efforts into real friendships, give your time, your support and your energy, without expectation of anything in return. Be an encourager and a positive influence.

I am SO grateful for those that influence and inspire me, my family, peers, mentors and friends. They are an awesome squad and I’d be lost without them.

More Ways To Eat Well

I know that a lot of people are taking on Veganuary but by now you might be starting to lack motivation. So, I’ve teamed up with Iceland to showcase more ways to eat well…

Here are my 5 Tips for staying motivated and on track with #Veganuary

1. Be prepared!

When I’ve got a mega busy week, I plan ahead and makes sure that my fridge and freezer are both stocked with loads of fruit and veggies. That way it’s super quick and easy to make a smoothie in the morning before I go out.

2. Mix it up!

Food should be fun, so if you’re getting bored of eating veggie chilli, try making some new recipes. Experiment with new ingredients that you don’t usually buy. I recently bought corn on the cob, which I don’t often buy, Jude absolutely loved them so now I’m adding them to our trolly every week.

3. Less waste!

Eating vegan doesn’t need to be expensive. I think there is a common assumption that eating a vegan diet costs a lot of money. One way to be more savvy is to utilise the freezer! I hate throwing away food and fresh fruit and veggies doesn’t last very long, buying frozen food means that will reduce your household food waste and spend less too.

4. Make sure you’re not missing out!

You don’t have to miss out on your favourite foods just because you’re vegan. Try some alternative meat free sausages and burgers or make your own pizza and mac cheese using vegan cheese. I love food and I love to cook so I never want to feel like I’m missing out.

5. Get inspired!

Eating a plant based diet is great for both the planet and the ocean. If you need a little extra encouragement to go meat free, do some research and find out the stats. It’s incredibly inspiring to know that you are saving the planet one meal at a time.

My Breakfast Smoothie Recipe

Blend all of the ingredients together and enjoy! 🙂

*This post was sponsored by Iceland

Joining Veganuary?

It’s easier than ever to eat a vegan diet! but if you’re not sure where to start, why not take on the #Veganuary challenge. Veganuary is not just a hashtag, it is a charity that encourages and inspires people to try eating a vegan diet throughout January. You never know, after a month you might decide to stick with it, or you might not, but you’ll never know unless you try it.

The stereotypical image of veganism has changed dramatically over the last few years, the demand for non animal products is now mainstream with many people under the age of 25 leading the way. Personally, I’ve been eating a mostly vegan / plant-based diet for the last 18 months, but to be completely honest, I didn’t want to shout about it too much, because I didn’t know if I would stick with it. My family and friends know that I don’t eat meat/ dairy etc but I was very hesitant to share this with the online world. I didn’t want to label myself as vegan, I just wanted to try it out. Plus, for many people veganism is more than just a diet, it’s not a trend or a fad, it’s a whole lifestyle. I really admire people that chose to live their lives more consciously, but I guess I wasn’t 100% sure and I didn’t want to set myself up for criticism if I changed my mind, but 18 months later, I’m still eating greens! In fact our whole family has pretty much switched, Jude says we are herbivores 🙂 I’ve discovered loads of delicious recipes, found some great places to eat out and I’ve figured out some tricks and tips for making eating vegan easier.

I feel kinda silly for admitting that I was fearful of other peoples judgement. Reality check, who really cares what I eat? or don’t eat? Nobody! (Unless they’re inviting me over for dinner of course, in which case they probably think it’s just an Instagram thing and I’m a pain in the arse!) But seriously, I’ve made this choice,  I have my reasons and that’s good enough for me.

So if you’re joining #veganuay, here are some of my top tips …

Get inspired
Instead of focusing on the foods that you can’t eat, focus on all of the foods that you can! Get a vegan cookbook or magazine for some recipe ideas, follow some vegan foodie blogs and get experimental in the kitchen. Here are a few of my faves …
Vegans Of LDN
Deliciously Ella
Vevolution

Find Out The Facts
Health headlines are always changing, every year there is a new superfood or a new guideline, it’s hard to distinguish fact from fiction. I am not a certified nutritionist and I recommend that you do your own research. I encourage you to explore both the nutritional and the environmental aspects of veganism. I have read a lot of studies, watched hours of documentaries, as well as talking to a nutritionist and a GP. You can’t argue the environmental impact that consuming animal products is having on the planet and the ocean and personally, for me that was the deal breaker. Regardless of the reason and/or whether you’re talking to a pro athlete, a doctor or a chef, you should still find out the facts yourself, before you start making big changes to your life.

Eating Out 
Initially, I was really worried that eating vegan was going to ruin my social life! I love food and I love going to restaurants and dinner parties. Fortunately, most places are now offering way more vegan options and I predict this will only get better as more and more customers are demanding more plants on their plate!
Last month I shared some of my fave London spots for eating out, check it out here …
5 Vegan Restaurants in London 

Try Your Best
I can not stress this enough!! Just try it and don’t beat yourself up if you eat a slice of cheesy pizza or a bit of chocolate. Each day that you go vegan will have a huge positive impact on the environment so over a whole month your overall contribution will be significant. If you make strict rules for yourself, you probably won’t enjoy it as much. Essentially, it’s your choice and no one is going to give you a medal for becoming a vegan. If you decide to take on the challenge, just do your best and if one day it doesn’t work out, try again the next day.

Be Prepared
No, I’m not taking about doing a whole weeks food prep in little lunch boxes, who has the time for that! I’m taking about doing your food shopping and getting as many vegan options as you can to make your life easier. Here’s a few things I add to my basket every week…

Wraps / Bagels
Bananas / Apples / Oranges / Berries / Dates
Sweet Potato Wedges / Chips
Alpro Chocolate Soya Milk
Oreos / Hobnobs / Kettle Chips / Popcorn
Cereal / Granola / Porridge Oats
Almond Milk / Soya Milk / Soya Cream
Free From Grated Cheese / Humous
Cashew Nuts/ Almond Nuts / Pine Nuts
Avocados / Tomatoes / Sweetcorn / Peas / Spinach
Beans / Chickpeas / Kidney Beans
Pasta / Spaghetti
Ice Cream (Ben & Jerry’s now do vegan choc fudge brownie!)

The challenge starts tomorrow, let me know if you’re joining, tweet me @adrienne_ldn & follow @weareveganuary

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Highlights of 2017

2017 has been jam packed and non stop! I started the year with a pretty clear vision and lots of ambitious plans, but somewhere along the way I got a little distracted. Luckily, I figured it out pretty quickly (with a little help from my girls) and I’m heading towards the end of the year feeling more focused than ever before.

Here’s a recap, some thoughts and  highlights of 2017…

RUNNING
At the start of the year, I literally hit the ground running. After going through IVF treatment and a heartbreaking miscarriage at the end of 2016, I really needed to focus on something else, I wasn’t exactly sure what to do, but I really wanted to commit my energy and focus into a new goal. Two weeks into the year I was offered a place in the London Marathon by the adidas UK team and I didn’t hesitate to say yes! A few days later, I started to consider the reality of not only the marathon itself, but, also the four months of preparation and training needed to get me ready for such a huge challenge. Once I got my head around the idea, I was totally committed and it was the best decision that I could have made. I realise now, how therapeutic running is for me. I learned that although I can be impulsive and indecisive sometimes, I can also be incredibly disciplined and focused. I enjoyed being a part of the marathon training community and I found myself encouraging and supporting others throughout the process.
When it came to the big day, to say that I enjoyed the race would be a lie. The last hour was particularly brutal and I swore that I’d NEVER sign up to that madness again. Eight months later, I’ve just about forgotten the pain and of course I’m planning to take on my second marathon next year, and this time I’m heading to Berlin! 🙂

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WAKE UP, KICK ASS, REPEAT
After reading a lot about daily habits and pattern recognition, earlier this year I made the decision to start getting up before 6.00am constantly everyday. It was a total game changer! It’s made me way more productive and I have more energy to take on the day. I feel like I’m one step ahead by 9.00am everyday. As a result, I have been banging on about getting up early to anyone who’ll listen for the last nine months and I’m going to be leading a ‘Morning Routine’ workshop at the Hoxton Hotel, Fresh & Fit Festival in January 2018.

MUM LIFE
I totally love our little family of three and I’m so grateful for these two guys! I’m sure most people would agree that parenting can be challenging for many different reasons and this year I’ve been trying to let go of the inevitable ‘mum guilt’. Balancing work commitments, kids birthday parties, school fairs, swimming lessons and common exception word spellings (yes 6 year olds get homework!), can get a bit manic sometimes.  More than anything, I would love for Jude to have a sibling and I must sound like a broken record, I’ve been saying this for the last four and a half years! I know that it’s not something that I can control, and this year I think I have truly accepted that. It doesn’t mean that I’m giving up hope, I’ll never do that, but, I’m not going to give in to the feeling of guilt. Us parents are all trying our best and whether you’re a new mum, a working mum, a step mum or whatever else, be brave in your parenting style, do what works for your family. Nobody’s family is perfect but our little team is doing alright.

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HERE TO CREATE
In 2017 I became an official global ambassador for adidas and since then I’ve worked with the brand on some incredible projects like Run For The Oceans with adidas X Parley, I’ve worked out with Karlie Kloss, interviewed Dame Jessica Ennis Hill and traveled around the globe. I’ve been completely overwhelmed by the work that adidas continues to do to champion women and to empower us all through sport. It’s an honour to be a part of the three stripe dream team!
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GRL PWR
This year I co-founded a women’s only networking community alongside two of my best mates! We launched Get To KNOW in September and we had no idea how quickly it would grow. We began by hosting a series of events, talks and workshops to facilitate peer to peer networking and to build a community for like minded women in the creative industries. We have big plans for Get To KNOW in 2018, watch this space! www.wearegettoknow.com

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YOU DO YOU
In September this year, I turned 30! It wasn’t as daunting as everyone makes out. I celebrated for about two weeks with my family and friends and I also shared this post… ‘20 Thoughts About Turning 30′
I feel a lot more confident now than I did in my early 20’s and I am a lot happier with being who I truly am, unapologetically. I’m an eternal optimist, I love being around people, I talk too much, I love running, I love talking about running, I love God, I have opinions and ideas that might not be the same as everyone else’s. That’s okay. I’m not trying to be like anyone else and I’m not willing to limit my ambition or my passion. This is 30 and it feels GOOD.

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Lastly… this year I’ve seen two of my best friends get married, I’ve gained a beautiful little nephew and I’ve unfortunately seen two of my friends lose loved ones. Life is incredibly unpredictable and who knows what next year will bring. It feels like I’ve been putting a lot of work into things this year in prep for next year. I haven’t made a list of goals or dreams for 2018 yet, but I hope that it’s going to be a year filled with new adventures. I’m going to say yes to more challenges, say no to things that I don’t actually like, spent less time planning, more time doing and I am going to keep documenting this crazy journey. It’s my three year blog anniversary next week, thanks for reading, commenting, sharing and for all of the love and virtual high fives. 🙂

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