Thursday, 28 May 2015 is now LIVE!!

A short but exciting blog post....

My website is now LIVE! Head over to to check it out!

I have my very own website?! This is crazy! I've been working like mad on it and am so excited to share it with you all so please do head over and take a look. Any feedback at this stage would be very much appreciated so that I can make it even better!

It's full of information on my classes, private lessons, how to get yoga in your workplace, my training, The Beautifully Healthy Project, my social media and blogging freelance work, and lots more! If that doesn't entice you to take a look then here's a cheeky snapshot of the homepage...

Pretty cool right?

I have more plans to include a video page, my live Twitter feed, and a page that this blog will also be on - but if you have more ideas please get in touch and let me know your thoughts!

Thank you so much to everyone for your amazing support - I wouldn't be able to do this without you (you know who you are!).

Namaste y'all!

Love Lucy x

P.S. I made it using and can thoroughly recommend it for anyone who is scared of technical things such as coding! 

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Lucky Number 13 (.1): Run Hackney Half Marathon done!

If you’re friends with me on Facebook or Instagram you may have noticed that over the last 8 weeks I’ve been in training for the Run Hackney half marathon. (Apologies to all my friends for the over-sharing of my sponsorship page, but it’s all for the kids so thank you for putting up with me!).  

Before I signed up to the half marathon I was a casual jogger – yes, I enjoyed jogging 3-5 miles at least 3 times a week and was pretty religious about it, but never did I have the urge to go any further. I’d hit 5 miles and that was more than enough for me! But on returning from India I was visiting my good friends in the Street Child United offices (that’s the NGO that I used to work for in my pre-yoga teacher life), and two of my former colleagues said they were running the Hackney half alongside some of their wonderful supporters and somehow they convinced me to sign up too (thanks guys!). I think it must’ve been down to a combination of being high-on-life and feeling invincible having only just returned from India, and also not being able to say “no” to anything related to raising funds and awareness for Street Child United.  Either way, I’d signed up and there was no turning back! (Especially since my sister swiftly decided to sign up too, there was most definitely no backing out after that!).

Street Child United half marathon team

So my 8-week training plan began! I kept 2-3 shorter runs in my weekly routine, and as advised by many-a half marathon training plan, began to include one longer, slower run each week. The first time I went on my longer, slower run I estimated that I managed about 7 miles, but I'd totally guessed the distance and didn't really track the time so for the next one I decided that it was time to download the Nike+ App. 

Over the weeks I gradually added a mile or two to my longer run and surprised myself at my ability to keep going no matter how much pain I was in! It really is true that these types of events are mind over matter...aside from one week where I was aiming for 11 miles and ended up running 6 and walking 3 before giving up due to major dehydration (oops!). It was lunchtime on the hottest day of the year so far and I'd very cleverly not taken any water with me - big lesson learnt! Despite this minor setback in the penultimate week before the race I ran a steady 13.5 miles, so I felt confident that I could at least finish on the big day!

For 3 weeks before the race I'd been relatively careful with my diet (cutting down on carbs and upping my protein intake) and had pretty much given up alcohol (I had one small glass on wine and one prosecco during that time, so I don't think they really count, right?); so how did I prepare the night before the big race? With a massive calzone and two pints of Peroni of course! I'm not sure how wise this move was, but I was having dinner with some of my fellow half marathoners and we were having too much of a nice time not to. That being said, I didn't manage to get a wink of sleep that night and I'm still not sure if it was the nerves or the dough baby in my tummy!

Nevertheless on the morning of the race I was up and ready to go along with my sister and a fellow Street Child United team members. The start and finish of the Hackney Half was the Hackney Marshes, which was a pretty perfect location as we got to run through part of the Olympic Village (no, it didn't make me feel like an athlete unfortunately as this was mile 11-12 and I was bloody knackered by then!), and it offered a nice grassy area to prepare for the race in. It was all very well organised and the atmosphere was great - my only criticism would be that massive queue for the loos from 45mins before the race; it meant that 3 of us from the team had to wee in the bushes (I'm so sorry Hackney, but needs must!). 

As we were fairly near the back of the race line up we didn't end up starting until 20mins after the official start time, but once we were off it was a great feeling! The first 3 miles we all stuck together and ran pretty quickly (we were averaging about 9mins per mile), but between 3-4 we spread out a bit and began to find our own paces, so before long I was going at it alone. This is where the wonderful people of Hackney come in - they were out in force on Sunday and were incredible sideline supporters; they offered water, jelly babies, oranges, high-fives and lots of cheering, and they really did help to keep us all going. Thank you to everyone who came to support us - we couldn't have done it without you!

The weather on Sunday was hotter and sunnier than I'd anticipated and so the regular water stops were very much appreciated. After mile 5 I decided that I wasn't going to just drink the water but I was going to tip it all over my head too! By this point I looked like a sweaty, wet, hot mess but I just had to keep reminding myself why I was doing's all for the kids! 

I hit 'the wall' somewhere between 9 and 10, but by that point I felt like I was so close to the end and just couldn't stop running. So I powered through and things did get slightly easier as I passed mile 11 - I think it was the thought of the pub lunch we had planned that made me run that little bit faster. I saw a few friendly faces at mile 12 (thank you ladies!) and from then on I just kept pushing on, knowing that the finish line was very much within reach. Coming round the final corner I did my best attempt at a sprint (?!) finish and clocked the time on my Nike+ App as 2 hours 13 mins. 

My first thought was rather embarrassingly that I needed to find the loo asap (there's a bit of a theme going on here!), and I don't think it had really set in just yet that I'd actually finished. After the deed was done I went to find my fellow Street Child United runners and they'd all finished and had done an amazing job. My incredible sister got 2 hours 0 mins 47 seconds for her very first half marathon! What an absolute star! 
YAY! We've done it!

We were all absolutely delighted that we'd finished (and that it was now time for a burger in the pub), but more importantly that together we'd raised over £6,000 for Street Child United. They work tirelessly to spread the message that each and every child deserves the right to dream and the opportunity to pursue their dreams. Street Child United provides a platform for street children to be heard and for their rights to be realised. We couldn't be more honoured to be raising money for such an incredible cause. 

It's been humbling to see so many amazingly generous people donate to our JustGiving page - someone very close to me made an incredible donation of £150, you know who are - thank you! And just the other day we had an anonymous donor give £500!!! I couldn't believe it and we have no idea who you are, but THANK YOU. So far we've raised just over £1,150! There are some wonderful people in this world and together we can help to ensure that no child should have to live on the streets. 

If you haven't yet and you'd still like to make a donation to our JustGiving page then we would be very grateful. 

On the back of our running vests were the words "I am Somebody". It's the message that the children, Street Child United, and their partner projects want the world to hear. One of my amazing fellow runners said "Yes, yes you are. You are Somebody" as they ran past me, and it really spurred me on. Hearing those words said to me made me feel as if I really was Somebody. And that's how each and every child on this planet should feel. Let's continue to ensure that the message spreads. They are Somebody. You are Somebody. I am Somebody. 

At the end of the day it really wasn't about the race, or times, or athletic ability - it was about coming together to support a cause that we all care deeply about, and about showing street children that there are people in the world who care about them. Please head to the Street Child United website if you'd like to find out more.

And the final question: would I do it again? On the day I said definitely not (on the way around the course I was cursing myself for even doing it once!), but finishing was a great feeling...and by Tuesday I'd already recovered enough to go for a run...

So don't forget: You are Somebody, and You can do Something. 


Love Lucy x

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Connection has been lost. Please try again later.

Who am I? What am I doing? How did I get here? Where am I going?

Sound familiar? If you're like me in anyway, you'll ask these questions of yourself on a frighteningly regular basis. Of course, it is essential for us to ask these questions of ourselves from time-to-time; it keeps us from standing still, encourages us to keep moving forwards, and is a good way of checking in - but if you find that you're asking these questions a little too often then you may have lost connection with yourself.

Sounds silly, doesn't it? How can one lose connection with oneself? Surely we are automatically connected to ourselves? But in my experience that isn't so. Our relationship with ourselves requires as much (if not more) work than any other significant relationship in our lives. Sadly, losing connection with oneself is a common phenomenon - one which is only spreading as the demands of modern day life increase - and I can almost guarantee that you'll have fallen victim to it at some point in your life.

Have you ever been through a whole day and then when you hit the pillow wondered what you've actually done with your time? Have you ever gone to chat to your partner about your week and totally blanked when it came to remembering what you did just yesterday? Have you gone a whole week without exercising or taking time to yourself simply because other things have got in the way? (Beginning to see where I'm going with this?) Well, if the answer to any of these questions is "yes" then you will have experienced that disconnection that I'm trying to explain.

It's very easily done with the delights, stresses, and strains that come with life in the 21st century. There are so many different people, passions and options to distract, entertain and consume us. It's a wonder many of us even find the time to sleep each night (well, most of us don't even get enough of that). And actually it's incredibly easy to lose oneself amongst all the madness of modern day life. But from personal experience when I lose connection with myself and how I'm really doing under all the layers, that's when I begin to shake and to feel unsteady in myself and what I'm doing. Do you know that feeling?

If you do then please don't freak out - you are not lost forever, you simply need to take some time to spend time with yourself, to look after yourself, and to reconnect with your inner being. From experience here are a few tips to rediscovering that connection to yourself:

1. Accept where you are. You are where you are and you can't change it in this exact moment. What you can do is to accept it and to make a decision as to what you're going to do next.

2. Be kind to yourself. Don't be hard on yourself for where you are. You've obviously been busy, there's been a lot going on, and you just haven't made yourself a priority. See this as an admirable quality in yourself: it's good to be busy and to be concerned with others. But now it's time to tag-out for a bit and to give yourself some well-deserved love; so be kind, be gentle and be patient.

3. Schedule time to just "be you". Whether this is going for a walk, sitting quietly to meditate, listening to some calming music, doing some gentle exercise - just be sure to schedule in the time and to stick to it. You need this time to be quiet, to reflect on what's been going on, and to start reconnecting with yourself. For me, I find the most effective way of reconnecting with myself is getting on my mat and doing a really slow, gentle yoga practice, followed by some quiet meditation time. But that's how I do it, and you'll do it differently, and that's just fine - find out what works for you and go with it it.

4. Assess how you lost connection with yourself. By assessing how you lost connection with yourself you can make sure that if it begins to happen again you'll be able to spot the red flags, take some time out, and prevent losing that connection again. 

5. Make small adjustments to your routine. So your reasons for losing connection probably involve being too busy, taking on too much, and not taking time for yourself. Take a step back and re-prioritise what is important in your life and what you can cut down. It's very likely there'll be small changes you can make that will allow you to prioritise "You" again. Be sure to make some time for yourself at least every few days (ideally you'll find at least 10 minutes in each day where you can just be with yourself, but this won't always be possible). Sit quietly with a cup of tea, do some gentle stretching, practice some mindfulness. Just do something that allows you to zone out of the world around you and to point your gaze inwards. 

So if you identified with those questions at the beginning then I hope you can find some time to follow these basic steps, to reconnect with yourself, and to show yourself some love. 

Last Saturday I based my yoga class around connecting with the self and encouraged my students to focus on small things: the pace and depth of their breath, scanning their bodies for any tension, and connecting their thumbs with their sternum to feel the connection to their hearts. These are all really simple physical things that you can do to help connect mind, body and breath. If you want to find out more about how yoga can help you to be connected to yourself then either send me a message, or, if you live near Ascot (Berkshire, UK), then please do come along to my classes on Saturday mornings, 10-11am, in Cheapside Village Hall, £8 per person. This week the class will be based on accepting where you are so that you can build up from there. 

So my message for today is be connected to you. You are important. Know yourself, spend time with yourself, love yourself. If you lose that connection then don't panic, take a breath and take some time. You're in there and you're not going anywhere, just invest in yourself and you'll be calm and confident in who you are and where you are.

Namaste y'all!

Love Lucy x