Spring Wellbeing Coaching in Exeter

Chrissie Tarbitt, Integrated Wellbeing

Whether you’re keen to lose some weight or boost your confidence and self-esteem, the aim is to help you bust through any blocks you’re experiencing in your life and free you up to be the joyful, fulfilled person you want to be. I’m excited about sharing with you many of the powerful tools I have used on my own journey to bring about life-changing transformations.

Take advantage of my spring coaching package of 6 face-to-face sessions, now with extra Skype and email support throughout a 12-week period. I’ll work with you hand in hand to set your goals for transforming your life and guide you to prioritise your actions.

The cost of this life-changing 12-week coaching course is £360 and includes 6 individual face-to-face sessions plus weekly Skype and email support.

“I would thoroughly recommend Chrissie for hypnotherapy and life coaching.  I have been struggling to lose weight for some time and knew that it wasn’t just knowing what to eat that provides success.  Chrissie helped me with visualisation techniques, showing me how to overcome problems in everyday life in a different way, so as not to over eat and guided me away from compulsive eating to a more mindful approach.   I am a happier person and positive about achieving my goals because of Chrissie.”  L.A.

Book your FREE 20-minute telephone consultation to explore how wellbeing coaching could help you by emailing chrissie@integratedwellbeing.co.uk.

Read more about my approach to wellbeing coaching here.

10 Reasons Not To Skip Breakfast

Integrated Wellbeing - Food Matters - breakfast

Are you ever tempted to skip breakfast?  Here are 10 good reasons why that’s not a good idea …

1. Stress

Ever wake up feeling stressed about the day ahead? It could be that your “feel good” hormone (serotonin) levels have dropped and need a boost. Breakfast that includes oats and/or whole grain will lift serotonin levels, as well as provide you with a great source of the B vitamins that are essential for energy.

2. Mood

Sometimes when we wake up and our sugar levels are low (after all, it can be as long as 12 hours since the last meal), we can feel out of sorts. Eating a nutrient-rich breakfast will also help lift your mood.

3. Hunger

Choose breakfast that has a low Glycaemic Index (low GI indicates the rate at which the carbohydrates you eat are turned into sugar and released into the bloodstream as energy). Having persistently high blood sugar increases risk of type 2 diabetes and heart attack, as the number of destructive free radicals are raised in the body.

Eating lower GI carbohydrates such as oats and whole grain food help keep blood sugar levels in check which should help you feel fuller and more satisfied for longer. This approach to the most important meal of the day will also help you avoid the craving for high calorie, high sugar snacks mid-morning. Ghrelin, the hormone in the body responsible for increases in appetite, will remain lower during the day if you eat a satisfying breakfast and as a result you’re more likely to experience a steady feeling of fullness throughout the day.

A nourishing breakfast will also have an impact on levels of insulin, glucose, and fat in your blood, which can help lower the risk of diabetes and heart disease.

4. Hydration

Breakfast is a great opportunity to boost your hydration levels with a drink of nutrient-packed juice, smoothie (add a higher percentage of veggies than fruit to avoid spikes in blood sugar levels) or herbal tea. Check out my Get up and Go Green Smoothie recipe (link). Avoid too much caffeine which can cause irritability and also acts as a diuretic.

We all know how important it is to drink plenty of water throughout the day, but we often forget if our routine is interrupted. 

Best practice is not to let yourself get thirsty, but take plenty of sips through the day, so have an easy to carry eco-friendly glass drinking bottle with you. I never go anywhere without mine and I do try to drink at least the recommended 2 litres per day (that does include juices and herbal teas). As a rule, the more active we are in our daily lives, the more fluids we need to take on board.

5. Immunity

Breakfast is also a great opportunity to nourish ourselves with the nutrients that help maintain a healthy immune system and help us protect against and recover from illness, such as the A, B and C vitamins, as well as minerals such as zinc. Consuming freshly made vegetable juices and smoothies is a perfect nutrient-dense way to start the day (add a small handful of cashews or almonds to your favourite smoothies for protein and vital nutrients such a magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron and calcium which will also help you feel fuller longer).

6. Concentration

Skipping breakfast can contribute to feeling foggy-headed and an inability to concentrate properly – not great when we know we have a busy day ahead of us.

After an overnight fast, the brain craves some carbs to alleviate tiredness, help concentration and stay focused at work.

Add oats and flaxseeds to your smoothie – honestly, the oats work really well!

7. Memory

The old grey matter needs a helping hand in the mornings too as a low GI breakfast refuels the brain cells that depend on glucose, by elevating blood sugar levels. This approach will help when we need to process and manage complex and challenging information as well as with the formation and retrieval of memories.

8. Weight

A nutritious, low GI breakfast helps to manage hunger and energy levels through the morning and at the same time encourages us to consume an overall lower number of daily calories as well as manage body fat levels.

9. Metabolism

Surprisingly to some, having breakfast actually gives the metabolism the encouragement to get going in the morning and helps us burn calories more efficiently.

Studies also show that eating the same amount of calories during the day, but switching the main meal from dinner to breakfast, actually aids weight loss.

The biological process that the body follows over a 24-hour cycle is called our circadian rhythm. Metabolism is impacted by this rhythm so the time of day we eat can have a big impact on the way our bodies process food.

10. Energy

Choosing a low GI breakfast will release energy slowly through the morning and help maintain energy levels. This in turn will affect our choice of food at lunchtime. If our energy levels don’t slump too much, we are far less likely to choose a high calorie, often high sugar meal.

 

The recipe for my current favourite breakfast option – the Integrated Wellbeing Bircher Muesli – is here: Bircher Muesli Recipe

And you can watch the accompanying video from the Integrated Wellbeing kitchen here: Chrissie TV – From the IW Kitchen

 

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Easy Hummus With A Twist

Red pepper & watercress hummus, recipe, integrated wellbeing

Hummus is not just yummy and incredibly versatile; it’s high in fibre and a great way for vegetarians and vegans to get protein.

There are loads of different versions available in deli’s and supermarkets but there’s nothing quite like making your own.  And it really isn’t tricky!

My most recent hummus recipe experiment was a real hit at home, so I thought I’d share it on what is apparently International Hummus Day!!!

Ingredients

  • 1 tin of chickpeas
  • 1/4 of a red pepper
  • 1 handful of watercress (including stalks)
  • 1 small clove of garlic
  • 1 small handful of coriander
  • 1 glug of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 generous squeeze of lemon
  • Sea salt & black pepper for seasoning (to taste)

Process

Nothing tricky here. Put it all in a food processor and whizz it up until smooth.

Tip

For a more textured end product, hold back a handful of chickpeas. Once the food processor has done its magic, add the final chickpeas and give the machine a quick ‘pulse’. That last handful will be chopped in but leave you with a slightly coarser hummus.

There’s no end of different versions you can make. Get creative.  Have some fun!

Please share your own favourites in the comments box below.

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

The Beauty of Imperfection

Integrated Wellbeing, leaves

The great weather this summer has allowed me to really indulge my passion for spending as much time as possible outdoors, from early morning yoga overlooking the estuary, camping in beautiful craggy Cornwall to trying my hand at the wonderfully meditative pursuit of SUP (aka paddle boarding).

Being removed from my digital devices during these times has also provided me with the all-important head space I so often crave, enabling time for reflection and the opportunity to focus on the here and now.

I have often written about the importance of mindfulness or awareness practice in my own life and, for me, the most challenging aspect of it all is to practice without judgment, with acceptance of all that is. 

In being mindful or aware, we learn to notice how we react in a situation, which at the same time can raise all kinds of negative thoughts and judgments about ourselves. However, the true gift is that, in that moment of awareness, we have a choice – the choice of how we respond rather than react.

Finding myself in a spiral of self-criticism recently, I came across an article on the Japanese principle wabi-sabi (said to be the most essential of life’s principles in Japanese culture).

Emerging in the 15th century as a reaction to the importance of lavishness, ornamentation, and riches, wabi-sabi is the art of finding beauty in imperfection.

This definition beautifully sums up how our mindfulness practice can bring about inner peace without judgment if we just allow ourselves to fully accept and appreciate who we are, as a result of everything (including perceived flaws) that has taken place in our lives.

“Bringing wabi-sabi into your life doesn’t require money, training, or special skills. It takes a mind quiet enough to appreciate muted beauty, courage not to fear bareness, willingness to accept things as they are—without ornamentation. It depends on the ability to slow down, to shift the balance from doing to being, to appreciating rather than perfecting.”  Robyn Griggs Lawrence, Natural Home

My husband has been a life-long fan of the work of Leonard Cohen, who sadly died just a month after I wrote this article.  Now, I have to be honest, I’m a latecomer and it wasn’t until I took him to a Leonard Cohen concert for his birthday that I discovered the wonderful poetry and words of wisdom he conveys in his lyrics.  I find these beautiful, simple words from his song “Anthem” very moving:

“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.”

Of course there is no need to strive for perfection.  He’s reminding us to get over ourselves, give ourselves a break and ultimately, enjoy the light that gets through the cracks as that’s where the creativity is, the real essence of who we are, if we are only prepared to let it in.

[*This article was first published in the November issue of the wonderful Om Yoga Magazine*]

With wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

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Warm Sweet Potato & Quinoa Salad

Integrated Wellbeing, Food Matters, Sweet Potato, Quinoa, Salad

Now that summer’s here, it’s time to mix up your salads and try something different.

This easy recipe for my warm sweet potato and quinoa salad is not only yummy but a nutritious veggie meal with carbs, protein and healthy fats thrown in!  And for those who like to support local growers and minimise food air miles, check out The British Quinoa Company in Shropshire.

The quantities below are for a salad that serves 2 people.

Salad Ingredients

  • quinoa (1 cup)
  • sweet potato (1 large)
  • courgette (1 large)
  • mixed salad leaves (4 handfuls)
  • cashew nuts (1 cup)
  • avocado (1 large)
  • cherry tomatoes (12)
  • fresh mint / coriander (1 small handful)
  • balsamic dressing

You can use a pre-made or shop-bought dressing but I prefer to make my own before each meal using the ingredients below. It really is easy and you can adjust it each time to your own taste.

Dressing Ingredients

  • extra virgin olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • Maldon sea salt
  • Dijon mustard
  • ground black pepper
  • tiny pinch of Stevia (or your own favourite plant-based sweetener)

Process

Start with the quinoa and the sweet spud. Once they’re prep’d and cooking, you can get on with the other stuff.

  • Rinse and cook the quinoa as normal then set to one side
  • Peel, dice and steam the sweet potato
  • Grate or spiralize the courgette
  • Dry toast the cashews on a gentle heat in a pan or skillet for no more than 5 minutes (either using them whole or roughly chopped, whichever you prefer)
  • Dice the avocado
  • Quarter the cherry tomatoes

Place all the ingredients (except the cashews) in a large salad bowl, then add the dressing and toss thoroughly.

Toss it well so that everything has a coating of that gorgeous dressing and quinoa.

Finally, sprinkle your toasted cashews on the top, and serve!

I’d love to hear your favourite summer salad recipes so we can try them at Integrated Wellbeing here in sunny Devon, so please post links or recipes below.

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Mindfulness For Athletes

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Just “go with the flow” – seems like a ridiculous thing to suggest to fitness professionals or indeed to our clients! After all, we’re encouraged to have goals, to have plans, to beat a PB and, by definition, we’re pretty energetic individuals impatient for results.

This is the first in a series of articles I was invited to write for Personal Trainer Magazine and was originally published in April 2015.

For many years my life used to be ALL about deadlines and goals; I thought by making sure I had my running shoes in my suitcase, multivits, energy bars and my sachets of wheatgrass at the ready would be me sorted. I could still train for that half marathon, work long hours and be fit and healthy – wrong!

Enter stage – mindfulness practice

Ever wondered what the heck it is? Or, what’s that got to do with you or your clients? Mindfulness-based stress-reduction has been around for several decades as a therapeutic tool. By turning our attention to what is actually happening in the present, we’re able to see the situation for what it is, allowing us to have absolute control over how we react in any given moment. That’s mindfulness in a nutshell. We are invited to simply be aware of what is happening right now without wishing it were different.

The benefits of introducing this practice into our daily lives as fitness professionals are huge: we learn to relax (allowing the body to heal), we learn not to dwell on the last bad training session or match, which can seriously affect our performance (it’s gone, it’s in the past!) and once we have a plan in place, we learn that the “how we get the results” doesn’t always come about in the way we expected.

How to get started?

The first stage is learning to relax. Try this the next time you’re feeling frazzled after a full day of coaching or weary from over-training. Take 10 minutes to sit or lie down undisturbed (we can all find 10 minutes) and connect with your breath. Inhale and exhale deeply, using all of the muscles involved in breathing: the abs, diaphragm, intercostal muscles, and up into the chest, noticing any areas of tension in the body and allowing yourself to simply relax. Just notice any thoughts that come into your mind, allow them to come and go (you can’t stop your mind having thoughts, but you can become an observer rather than a participant in them). With this technique, you’ll automatically switch on the parasympathetic part of your nervous system allowing you to relax naturally. You wait, 10 minutes will soon become 15 and so on.

Yes, it takes practice, but the rewards are instant and exponential. Every few minutes that we choose to direct our attention to the breath and relax into the body, is like having a 30-minute power nap, only much quicker and longer-lasting.

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Mindful Eating

mindful eating, maind matters, integrated wellbeing

When clients come to me for advice about healthy eating, I first like to address their current eating habits and help them understand why they make the choices they make.

So how do we bring mindfulness to our eating habits? By shifting our focus from what we feel we “should” be eating (which immediately creates a certain level of anxiety, tension in the body and feelings of deprivation when we avoid what we crave), to bringing real awareness into how we make the choices we make.

Here’s my 5-step strategy for getting you started with a more mindful approach to healthy eating:

As with anything, it takes practice but, in the long-term, the rewards are so much greater than the stresses of yo-yo dieting.

1. What are the triggers?

Notice what’s going on around you when you feel that compulsive urge to go for the packet of biscuits (or whatever your thing is) and find yourself eating the whole lot.

2. What thoughts are you having?

When you feel the need to eat what you innately know isn’t going to nourish you, look at the thoughts you’re having in that moment. What is it about those biscuits that you think is going to make you happier?

3. What sensations do you feel in the body?

Are you feeling stressed, tense, anxious? Where in the body are you feeling that tension?

4. Observe without judgment!

Just notice what thoughts you’re having and the sensations in your body. Whether you still eat the biscuits or not doesn’t matter. Noticing and observing without beating yourself up is really the key at this stage.

5. Take action!

In that moment of awareness, ask yourself, am I really hungry … or am I actually just thirsty, bored, a bit stressed?

It’s in that moment that it becomes possible to respond differently to the triggers:

  • Perhaps have a glass of water or a cup of tea instead;
  • You may need to relax; taking a few full deep breaths and exhaling slowly for a minute or so immediately triggers the parasympathetic nervous system which so often will remove the reason for reaching for the biscuits in the first place;
  • If it’s boredom, then put your trainers on and go for a power walk or run. Moving the body is one of the best ways to shift negative energy!
  • Even if you wouldn’t normally write “stuff” down, we all know the power of seeing our goals written, so just jot down any observations, say, for a week. I’ve found this hugely helpful both personally and when coaching clients. Seeing a pattern emerge can so often bring about a lightbulb moment.

Understanding why we make the choices we make, is a fast-track way to implementing long-term changes to any patterns of behaviour as we are empowered to respond positively rather than react in an unconscious negative way.

Bring a degree of mindfulness to your eating habits for a week and notice the difference. And if this post interests you, please check out our other Mind Matters posts here on Integrated Wellbeing.

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Yoga with Chrissie in 2016

Chrissie Tarbitt, Why Meditate?

This is just a quick reminder that my yoga classes at the lovely Ocean Physio studio in Woodbury begin again in January.

The first classes of the new term are on Wednesday 20th and Thursday 21st January 2016.

Classes are kept intentionally small (with no more than 10 students) to ensure maximum benefit.  All times are the same as last term.

Spring Schedule

  • Wednesday mornings (60 minutes): 7.15 – 8.15 am
  • Thursday mornings (60 minutes): 9.30 – 10.30 am

Prices are unchanged too. Adult classes are £8 for a 60-minute class or £42 for a 6-week block.

I still have a few available slots for private yoga tuition for individuals or small groups, either at the Woodbury studio or in your own home (where appropriate).

You’ll find the Ocean Physio & Rehab studio at:
Woodbury Business Park, Woodbury, Devon, EX5 1AY.

For class reservations, please call Ocean on 01395 239455. For other yoga or class content queries, drop me a line at chrissie[at]integratedwellbeing.co.uk.

With love and wellbeing wishes,

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Team WattCycle – June 2015

Team WattCycle

The racing season is in full swing and the Team WattCycle men and women are going great guns! As proud sponsors of such a dynamic team of cyclists, here are a few of our highlights of the last couple of months.

April

April saw Jenn Batey and Ellen McDermott make their National Series debut in the two-day Tour of the Reservoir in County Durham, competing against elite pro’s from many major teams, Chris Sleath finish a fantastic 4th in the Tour of Northumberland cat. 3 race, Paul Dixon and James Wilson on the podium in the CD NE Evening Series, Rob Wallace secure what would be the first of many podium finishes in an under-16 race, and the Team have 5 top 20 finishers in a large field for the 90k Phillip Russell Memorial Road Race in Middlesbrough. The month ended with Ellen McDermott’s sprint for 2nd in the Activcity Edinburgh Ingliston Crit to secure her cat. 2 rider status.

Team WattCycle

Ellen & Jenn – Tour of the Reservoir

Team WattCycle

Chris Sleath – Tour of Northumberland (pic: Iain Robertson)

 

Duathlon

Aside from road racing, Hazel Wright donned a GB age group tri suit for the first time to compete at the European Duathlon Championships (sprint distance), Nikki Parker-Bell put in a great performance at the Stockton Duathlon, and Anna Weaver won her Duathlon to qualify for the GB Age Group Team for the World Championships later this year in Australia.

May

May started with Women’s Team Manager Karen Poole and Anna Weaver racing in the Tour De Yorkshire amongst a large international field.

As the month progressed there were podium finishes for several WattCycle riders, including Chris Tidd, Robert Wallace, James Wilson and Paul Dixon.

Ellen McDermott rode alongside some top international riders in the televised Pearl Izumi Tour Series, the biggest circuit race series in the UK.

Angela Hibbs won her third race of the season in the NE Championship Series, with Karen Poole in 2nd place, and Nikki Metcalfe and Hazel Wright in the top 10.

Team WattCycle, Body Matters

Angela Hibbs & Karen Poole on the podium again!

Team WattCycle, Body Matters

Hannah Farran, winner, Northumberland Triathlon

Towards the end of May, Karen and Nikki secured top 10 positions in the National Masters Championships. Hannah Farran put in an amazing performance to take 2nd place at the Nottingham Triathlon. Karen put in another strong attacking performance at the Doncaster Crit, taking 5th. Pam Greer secured 1st place in a 25m TT, and Angela won a 10m TT with another PB for the season.

June started in similarly impressive style with Hanna winning the Northumberland Triathlon, Karen racing strongly in the Tour of Cambridgeshire to qualify for the World Masters Championships, and Ellen riding in Bradley Wiggins’s support races at the Olympic Velodrome when he secured the One Hour world record!!!

Keep up to date with the Team through the summer via their Facebook pages and Twitter feeds, and we’ll post another update here as the season progresses.

Chrissie Tarbitt - Integrated Wellbeing

Alternate Nostril Breathing (An Introduction)

Chrissie Tarbitt of Integrated Wellbeing demonstrates the alternate nostril breathing technique, Anuloma Viloma.