Now that we are truly back into work mode it’s time to introduce you all to another fabulous Balanced Babe: the lovely Claudia who runs BareVitality.
Claudia is a Women’s Personal Trainer & Health Advisor with a special focus in Pre & Post Natal Exercise, Natural Weight Loss and Super Nutrition.
I “met” Claudia online through social media; there’s such a beautiful community of healthy folk out there and I am so grateful to connect with wonderful people like her.
With the summer party season pumping, and the hot weather giving us lots of beach/pool time, I thought Claudia would be the perfect person to speak to for food and fitness tips to help us feel and look our healthiest in this season. She’s also sharing a delicious recipe for some creamy chocolate tarts free of grains and refined sugars! xx
1. Tell us a little about yourself. How did you come to be interested in nutrition, fitness and living a healthy lifestyle?
I always lived an active, healthy lifestyle and trained and competed a lot in cross country/long distance running. My perfectionist nature got the better of me however and I was then diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome 5 years ago. The journey to heal my body created an almost obsession with the magical healing properties of nutrition, herbal medicine and living a balanced holistic lifestyle. Along the way I recognized the wide lack of education, and negative attitudes females possessed towards their health and body image. I now endeavor to educate and promote a balanced, healthy lifestyle, focused on nourishing the body through nutrition, wellness practices and carefully constructed personal training sessions tailored to allow women to achieve optimal physical healthy.
2. Summer is in full swing, which means lots of summer parties and cocktails. What are your top tips for staying healthy through party season?
I’m a big believer in balance. The summer party season can often leave us dehydrated, lacking sufficient sleep and not as focused on our healthy eating habits. My best advice is to listen to your body and provide it with what it needs.
- Here are some tips:
- Drink LOTS of water everyday: I cant emphasis enough its importance in flushing out the body and staying hydrated.
- Ensure you are getting enough sleep and try and keep your sleeping patterns routined.
- When drinking choose spirits such as vodka and gin served with soda water and (fresh) lemon or lime as a healthier alternative. When drinking wine, opt for a good organic wine and red is always best. Stay away from sugary drinks as they will leave you feeling worse the next morning and weaken your immune systems ability to keep your body strong.
- Protect your body with a nutrient dense diet, lots of B vitamins and green vegetables, and a morning ritual of either apple cider vinegar or lemon juice in warm water.
- Embrace summer and all the delicious salad ingredients and fruits available.
3. What foods will we always find in your fridge?
- A variety of fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables. Lots of greens, avocado, carrots and apples are the usual basics.
- A pot of biodynamic, natural or goats milk yogurt
- Homemade nut butter
- Almond milk
- Sprouted wheat free bread
- A jar of green juice to sip on between meals
- Homemade pesto
- Additive free mayonnaise and mustard
- Free range eggs
- Flaxseed oil
- My latest homemade slice or healthy treats
- Small amount of grassfed beef or chicken, or wild salmon.
4. Summer also means baring a bit more skin, so it would be good to get some training tips for you! What are your top exercises to help shape our tummies that we can work into our exercise routines?
Strengthening our core is so important for our general overall health and to assist with everyday activities, not to mention a toned stomach is always gratifying.
- Plank position is fantastic for deep core strength. Try to increase the time you can hold the position each week by 10-15 seconds.
- Lying down leg flutters are great to activate the lower abdominal area.
- Cross mountain climbers are perfect to include in your workout. They get the heart rate up and work the entire abdominal area.
- Cardio boxing is fantastic for core strength. I love to include a variety of different punches to tone my client’s upper body muscles and not to mention cardio boxing is lots of fun!
5. Please share with us a favourite recipe of yours.
Recipe: Creamy Chocolate Tarts
– 2/3 cup pecan meal (you can process some raw pecans yourself)
– 1 cup almond flour
– 1 tbs raw honey
– 6 tbs coconut oil (melted)
– 1 can of full fat coconut milk
– 2-4 tbs cacao powder
– 3 tbs raw honey
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat your oven to 175 degrees.
- Mix the coconut milk and honey in a saucepan on a medium heat until simmering. Lower the heat as low as it goes and let it cook for about 2 hours, stirring every now and then.
- In a bowl combine almond and pecan meal, coconut oil and honey. Press dough into the sides of a greased muffin tray or silicon muffin tray.
- Bake for 12 minutes or until crust starts to go brown and then allow to cool.
- Once the milk is thick and does not run off the spoon easily, take it off the heat and add cacao and vanilla. Start with 2 tbs of the cacao and add more depending on the richness you desire.
- Allow to completely cool before filling the baked crust. Refrigerate to allow the filling to completely set. Or if your like me and cant wait to try one, top it with you favourite topping and enjoy!
- Topping ideas: fresh berries, sliced banana, coconut shreds or flakes, goji berries, cacao nibs, orange rind, crumbled nuts.
If you live in Sydney and are interested in training with Claudia, she runs some great personal training services in the Balmain/Rozelle areas:
– Private and Group Women’s Outdoor Personal Training
– Mums & Bubs Social Fitness Groups
– Health & Wellness Consultations and Programs (also available online)
Check out www.barevitality.com if you would like more information and to contact Claudia!