Trying & Reviewing FlexiQule™

*This post is sponsored by AlchemLife™

Exercising is something we do on a regular basis, if you couldn’t tell already it is a big part of our lives and something we couldn’t imagine life without. We love so many different types of workouts including; Running, walking, spinning, HIIT, Yoga, Boxing, weights and the list could go on and on. We always like to make sure our workouts are varied and because of that we don’t want our joints to be affected due the pressure we put them under.

We jumped at the chance of working with AlchemLife™ and have been trialling their new joint product, FlexiQule™, for this sponsored review. They are an original food supplement made from 100% natural active ingredients, designed to help maintain healthy joint function, mobility and flexibility.

We both love to run an awful lot and this year Annie took part in her first ever marathon and ultra-marathon, it was incredible and I loved everything about it even those long training runs in minus degrees and plus 35oc (trust me running in Greece and Spain is hard!). Training for marathons is pretty intense on the joints, especially when training on hard ground and our knees take a lot of the pressure. Although we are young and pretty strong we still want to make sure our joints are as healthy as they can be.

After long training runs I find that my calves can become very tight and sometimes painful which can be really irritating and definitely isn’t ideal during training season. Since taking FlexiQule™ this pain has completely stopped which is just incredible. I wish I has known about the supplements whilst I was training for my marathon back in April as it would have been a massive help!

The key ingredients in FlexiQule™ are GingerG321 and BoswelliaG301 which help manage the body’s inflammatory response and maintain joint health, which is exactly what we want when running.

Rach absolutely loves attending a Barre/Ballet class as she has always been a keen dancer. Rach used to be much more flexible when she was younger (didn’t we all lol) so as soon as we heard about FlexiQule™ and the results people had noticed she just had to give them a try.

We don’t take any other supplements these are the only ones we take and trust as we know they are a 100% natural food supplement, free from wheat, gluten and sugar and no known side effects (something that tends to scare us about other supplements). Our joints undergo an enormous amount of pressure every single day so we feel it is only fair we give them something back to say thank you.

FlexiQule™ is AlchemLife’s first product to launch in Europe using their PhytoAdvance™ technology, which ensures ease of use and maximises efficacy, bioavailability and purity.

FlexiQule™ natural joint supplements are £16.99 for 30 capsules and are available online or from LloydsPharmacy’s nationwide from the 29th October.

We would 100% recommend giving these supplements a go if you want to make sure your joints are as healthy as they can be. We are going to continue taking them so we will keep you posted on how we are finding them in a few months’ time.

To find out more visit: https://www.alchemlife.com/uk/flexiqule/

SOLE Insole Review

We were lucky to be sent the Active Footbeds from SOLE Insoles to trial and test (we were sent them a couple of months back) and ever since we have been testing them out. We wanted to make sure we really believed in the product before posting a review about them.

Last month I visited the country of La Palma, and I knew I would want to go running. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough room in my suitcase to fit both my walking trainers and my running trainers so I decided to pack my walking trainers as they are super comfy and try out my new SOLE insoles.

I absolutely loved them, they made my runs super comfortable and gave me the extra support I needed with my walking trainers. I was worried that it was going to feel weird running with insoles in my trainers but it was the complete opposite it felt amazing.

So what are SOLE insoles we hear you asking? Good question! SOLE have created custom food beds and footwear that are innovative and adaptable products providing you with cushioning and support. They adapt to your body giving you the support you need (amazing huh).

People live with pain every single day and it can restrict every day activities (not always ideal)! Imagine if you didn’t have to live with that pain every single day that would be amazing right? Well that is exactly what SOLE set out to achieve.

SOLE insoles support your feet no matter what you activity levels are you will benefit from the personalised support and cushioning. Not only did I use the my SOLE insoles for running I also used them when we were hiking up the mountains in La Palma as they gave my feet the extra supported they needed. I am incredibly lucky and do not get any pain when I run or walk but that doesn’t mean my feet don’t need all the love and comfort they can get.

SOLE’s award-winning footbeds are the most effective over-the-counter orthotic insoles on the market and we cannot rave about them enough. Since returning from holiday we have been using our SOLE insoles all the time. I have a few other holidays booked in the next few weeks and you guessed it my insoles will be coming with me!

SOLE products are renowned for being long lasting and their customers are very satisfied with the products. SOLE footbeds have a 9- day guarantee, if you don’t love your insoles for any reason all you have to do is contact the customer service team for a full refund.

Morning of the Marathon preparation & Timings

I absolutely loved my marathon experience that I decided it might be helpful to share our morning marathon routine. This routine worked well for us, but remember everyone is different so do what works for you on the morning of a marathon.

The Manchester Marathon started at 9:00AM, so we decided to work backwards when prepping our morning and timings. We were staying in Stockport which was about a 20 minute taxi ride away from the Old Trafford Cricket Club. Training runs work very differently to the schedule below, I usually roll out of bed, put on my running clothes, boil the kettle, pour myself a cup of coffee, drink said cup of coffee whilst scrolling Instagram, brush my teeth and GO.

5:45AM- Wakeup call for some this might be incredibly early but I am an early riser and my alarm usually goes off at 5:30AM on a week day so this time didn’t really affect me too much. If you aren’t an early riser or you don’t do well in the mornings then I would suggest doing this routine a couple of times before your marathon.

6:00AM- Breakfast & coffee, I wanted to makes sure I gave my body enough time to digest my breakfast before the race started, during my training I usually run fasted but I knew this wasn’t going to be possible for a 26.2 mile run. I needed to fuel but at the same time I didn’t want to risk getting a stitch as it was something my body wasn’t used to. I made sure I trailed and tested this before race day so I knew my body would adjust. For breakfast I opted for a big bowl of jumbo oats with blueberries and peanut butter which is my favourite breakfast so I was very happy.

I usually have a large cup of coffee prior to running on a usual training run and I never usually have to stop for the toilet.  I knew the excitement and nerves would get to me which we all know usually results in needing the toilet more frequently so I opted for strong but small coffees- espresso style. To be honest with you I am not sure how affective this was as I still needed the toilet twice before the race.

6:30AM- Shower time, I always like to have a shower on the morning of a race day as it makes me feel refreshed and ready to start the day. For my training runs I usually roll out of bed, throw on my running clothes and brush my teeth but that isn’t the case for race day. Then it was time to pin my running number to my vest eeek!

7:15AM: Taxi arrived, we decided to book the taxi for 7:15AM as we thought this would give us plenty of time to get to the start line especially, we knew there wouldn’t be any traffic that early on a Sunday morning. When we got into the taxi the driver asked us what time the race was starting and when our reply was 9:00AM he said ‘I’ll see what I can do about getting you there for then but there are lots of road closures’. As you can imagine my heart rate went through the ROOF, this is not the kind of stress I need on race day.

7:30AM- Taxi dropped us off, the taxi managed to drop us off about half a mile away from the race start line which we were happy about, we could do with some fresh air anyway to help with our nerves and excitement. This is definitely a lesson learnt through next time we will definitely check with the taxi company about road closures next time.

8:00AM- we arrived at Old Trafford Cricket Ground and went straight to the bag drop, the Manchester Marathon organisers suggested dropping your bags off prior to 8:00AM but they were not as strict as most places. At most races we have been to the bag drop off and bag collection points are at two separate locations, however at the Manchester Marathon the bag drop area did not move so there were not really any time restrictions.

8:15-8:30AM- We made our way to the pens which was about a 15 minute walk away from the bag drop by this point we had already walked about 7000 steps and we hadn’t even started the run. We made our way straight to the loos for one last comfort break before the marathon started.

9:10AM- we crossed the start line and the race was underway!

 

The Avoidable Fitness Accidents You Somehow Didn’t Avoid

You probably see on our Insta stories of us at the gym most days, but that’s because there are 2 of us so it does look like we are there all the time. But in actually fact we aren’t and we do have rest days and understand the importance of these rest days.

Millennials and Generation Z, (which is us!) are much more health conscious than their parents and as a result it means we might be overdoing it a little. In fact most sports accidents could have been prevented but, as it is most people only understand their errors after the injury has happened.

Below are the top 7 freak and painful fitness accidents that we are here to prevent you from getting!

My gym bag is always packed and ready

First of all your body needs rest days. You might think that hard training every day can make you stronger and fitter, but ultimately if you’re in the habit of packing your gym bag every morning you might have developed an unhealthy obsession. Your muscles experience micro-tears as you train. It’s precisely those tears that will help to get you stronger and fitter, but you need to give yourself the time to heal. If you’re trying to maintain or improve your performance, a rest day will ensure that your hard work isn’t counterproductive. Ultimately, we’re talking here only a day or two break after a hard session because Going to the gym too often is unhealthy.

I don’t go to the gym, I cycle

If you’re not a gym addict, you might have chosen alternatives to stay fit, such as turning your commute to work into a fitness option. Cycling to work is extremely popular London especially since the introduction of the cycle scheme that now lets employers pay for a portion of the costs of a new bike. If you’ve got busy days, it’s the perfect workout as it doesn’t come in addition to your standard routine. The main risk you can be exposed to, assuming you’re a confident cyclist and won’t fall each time you need to let go of the handle to indicate where you’re going to turn, is traffic. London traffic is busy and can be dangerous (if you’ve been injured by a driver remember you should be making a claim after a cycling accident.

I’ve read lifting is good for toning

A lot of people are turning to lifting to tone their muscles and accelerate weight loss. It’s now common knowledge that weight lifting doesn’t have to make you bulky! We would recommend starting with a personal trainer so you are able to learn how to lift without putting your body under harmful pressures.

I’m a runner

We love running it’s one of our favourite forms of exercise but we also understand that it is a high impact exercise that can also weaken your joints. Ultimately, running can hurt when you’re new to it, and while it’s not an injury you need to give your body time to adapt to the impact and to take it easy.

I use energy-boosting supplements to keep going

Energy supplements are popular at the gym, especially if you want to push yourself to be able to see results faster, we have all heard of pre workout (personally we just drink coffee) but often these are not that healthy and in fact most supplements don’t increase your energy.

I’ll lose the weight through boot camp training

If you think that you can spend a week on a boot camp to shape your body to perfection, you need to reconsider your choices. Boot camps, while being effective as they work on minimal calories intake and maximal efforts over a short time, can actually put your health at risk. Similarly, HIIT training, which offers an everyday alternative to the boot camp cure create similar pressure in the body. Intense workouts can lead muscle tissue to break down and release poisonous myoglobin into the bloodstream.

I prefer to train at home

Yoga and stretching apps are extremely popular because they offer the possibility to train at home. However, it’s important to remain realistic about stretching. If you overdo it, you incur the risk of tearing muscles and tendons. You may not manage your splits in a week, so take it easy!

I guess what we are trying to say Is be sensible with your training! We love training and we feel great afterwards but we know when to listen to our bodies and take a rest day! No one is perfect we have all over trained our bodies in the past but don’t wait until you get an injury for you to realise you need to take those rest days.

Morning Run in Jersey

As you know by now we always start every trip we go on with a morning run, it set us up nicely for the day and also gives us a chance to look around running to sites and viewpoints we wouldn’t otherwise get to see. I visit Jersey quite frequently so know the island relatively well but that doesn’t stop me waking up in the morning, tying up my laces and getting outside.

I set out at 7:00am when it was still dark outside, as I was running the sun began to rise and I was quite literally running into the beautiful sunrise. It was so peaceful outside with only runners in site. As I am training for a marathon I knew I had to run a fair way as I always save a long run for the weekend, I googled the distance from St Aubin’s to St Hellier and it said it was roughly 5 miles so a rounded trip would get me up to 10 miles which was perfect.

It was such a beautiful morning it looked like the sky was on fire, by the time I got down to the harbour I just had to stop and take some photos to share with you all.  I wish I could wake up every morning and run along on the beach, I even saw horses galloping along the beach it was truly magical.

Rachel will be joining me in Jersey in June for the Jersey half marathon which we are already so excited about, for someone who has never been to Jersey before running the half marathon will mean she hopefully gets to see a large amount of the island in one go (the island is only 9X5 anyway).

We cannot think of a better half marathon to take part in, the views are going to be truly stunning, if any of you are also running the half marathon in Jersey then please do let us know! Fingers crossed the wind and weather in on our side on the 10th June.

Motivation to get outside & run

Sometimes we all need a little bit of motivation to get outside and run no matter how much we love running. Now the weather is getting colder it can become harder to find the motivation to put on our running gear and get outside (it’s hard enough getting out of bed in the morning let alone getting outside).

We actually much prefer running in the cold, we can run faster and further, but we do occasionally need a little kick up the butt to get us out in the first place.

Make a plan at the beginning of the week- we like to roughly plan the days we go running but we will always be flexible depending on the weather. If it’s a miserable evening then there is no point forcing yourself outside, you won’t enjoy it and it may put you off going out again.

Download a Podcast- If you have downloaded a podcast that you are really looking forward to listening to then this is likely to motivate you to get outside. Set yourself a deal that you can only listen to the Podcast when you are out running that is sure to get your but into gear.

Running gear- make sure you invest in some running clothes and gloves that are warm enough to get you through the colder winter months. Last year we invested in some running gloves and we have never looked back, they are amazing.

Just keep telling yourself how amazing you will feel after- try and remember the feeling you get after every run, we love the feeling after a run we don’t get this feeling after any other workout. You will also find that running takes up less of your time than heading to the gym, you don’t have to wait for anyone to finish with equipment and you also don’t have the journey time to factor in.

Make a date – we always find that arranging to run with someone else is all the motivation you need, you have made a commitment to your friend after all.

Find a local running club- If you haven’t got any friends or colleagues who enjoy running then why not find a running club to join there are so many free running clubs around and it’s a great way to keep you motivated during the colder months.

Sign up to a race- sign up for a spring run that way you will have to get outside and run otherwise. Having a race in the calendar and something to work towards is a great motivator especially if you haven’t run the distance before.

How to Train to Run Your First 5K

‘How can you run so far? I wish I could run as far as you two but I just can’t’

We hear this so often and everytime our answer is ‘we never used to be able to run either but everyone can run, so if we can do it you can as well’. The first race we ever did was a 5K colour run, Rach was on placement year and trained really hard for it. Annie on the other hand was still at University and thought the typical 5km isn’t that far I don’t need to train but boy was I wrong. It was that run though that made Annie want to train properly and actually get into running (after the embarrassment of having to walk some of the way).

5km is honestly the hardest milestone to get to and we tell everyone this time and time again. Start short and just extend your run bit by bit each time and before you know it you will be able to run 5km, it will take time depending on how frequently you run so don’t get disheartened when you first start running and have to walk after 5 minutes.

We have set out some top tips below that we would have found helpful when we first started running

Listen to music- make sure you have a good playlist when you running, something that is going to inspire you to keep going. When you first start running you might want to create a playlist that has a variety of different styles of songs so you can see what you do like or what you don’t like when running. We like to have a mixture between old classics (got to love a bit of spice girls), chart music & a couple of dance songs thrown in the mix.

Download a good podcast-we have recently started to get into podcasts when we run. We find it passes time really quickly as you are concentrating more about what the person is saying on the podcast rather than thinking ‘how much further have I got to go’ after each stride. We have been listening to lots of blogging podcasts and our favourites at the moment is ‘What She Said’ by Lucy She…. And ‘Made Online’ by… this way it means we actually gain knowledge about blogging whilst we are doing something that is good for us- win win.

Invest in some good running trainers-you won’t know how important these are until you actually have them.

Download a running app- make sure you download a running app to your phone so you know how far you have run and what pace you are running at. Not that the pace is important but you will find the more you run the faster you become so it can be interesting to look back at. We are using the Fitbit app as we both have Fitbits but prior to that we always used the Nike running app which we found really good and the distance was always accurate.

Map your route- we always like to have an idea of where we are running so we have something to aim for when we are running. We sometimes use the app map my run as you are able to choose the route you want to go and also know the distance before you leave the house. We would love it if you could give an app your address, let it know the distance you want to run and then allow the app to choose the route for you. If this app already exists then please do let us know because it would be so cool and your run would be different every time which also brings us on nicely to the next point.

Mix up your runs-When we first started out running and wanting to hit 5KM we used to run/part walk the same route every time as we wanted to see how much further we could run this time compared to our previous run. Running the same route over and over again can become borings so if you are feeling unmotivated to go out on a run try a new route because a change of scenery may be exactly what you need.

Running 5km is such a brilliant goal to have for any new runners, find a race you want to run and enter it that way you will have something to work towards (or run towards lol).

Good luck you can do it!

Morning Run In Cornwall 

One of the first things we pack when going on holiday is our running trainers, we love getting outside and going for a run somewhere we have never been before. Recently we spent a week in Cornwall, Port Isaac to be exact and we loved our early morning runs.

Every morning before our run we would enjoy a coffee in bed whilst appreciating and admiring the incredible view we had from our bedroom window our coffee of choice this trip was spiced pumpkin flavour 🎃 which was incredible.

Visiting Cornwall
Visiting Cornwall

 

Pumpkin Spice Coffee
Pumpkin Spice Coffee

We decided to run to Port Gaverne, it was only a short distance away from Port Isaac. When we got to Port Gaverne we ran up the headlands to a view point that was truly stunning and every morning we made sure we stopped for a few minutes to appreciate the view.

Stunning views in Port Isaac
Stunning views in Port Isaac


There is something about Cornwall or the countryside in general that makes you slow down and actually enjoy the surroundings when we are in London everything is so fast paced we never get a chance to stop and appreciate everything around us.

Port Gaverne in the morning
Port Gaverne in the morning

We did this run several times during out stay switching it up a little bit each time so it didn’t become boring, not that is could because every corner we turned we were met with another incredible view point.

By the seaside
By the seaside

On the way back we had to run up the steepest hill in the world honestly it was torture but once we were at the top it was a straight road back to the cottage where we would shower and then sit down and enjoy a well-deserved breakfast.

The breakfast we had almost every single day this holiday was natural yoghurt, oats and peanut butter all mixed together it sounds weird but tastes amazing.

Running Trainers
Running Trainers