Healthy Lifestyle: Tips for the Holiday Season

Hi folk, the team at Taylored Health & Performance have compiled their top list for a healthy summer – 2017. So, read along and adopt some of the strategies (in no particular order) that we have utilised throughout 2016 to maximise your summer ahead. Remember to not sweat the small stuff, indulge a little and relax – you all have earned it! Enjoy.

Your body is a homeostatic, finely tuned machine. Without a doubt you will consume more calories than necessary over summer, but don’t stress! Your body will ultimately find potential uses for the excess, consider this: heat production or reduction through sweat; new protein and bone production; increased heart rate; energy for exercise. Your body has a way of navigating its way back to its original state to maintain internal stability by eliminating excess calories.

It is vital to be well hydrated this summer. Water is the most essential component of the human body through its many important roles including, assisting with transportation of nutrients and regulation of body temperature through sweating. Try the following to help keep you on track: Your body weight (kg’s) x 0.033 = litres to drink per day. Water drink reminder apps are also useful tools to help maintain your hydration levels, and always remember to have a drink bottle filled with water on hand.

There are a number of techniques you can try to achieve a calm state of mind including moving forms like Yoga and Tai Chi. Two apps worth mentioning for to help you live in the present moment and remove stress are Insight Timer and Headspace. Both are free to download and only require a small amount of your day. Like a habit of regular exercise, aim for 10 minutes each day this summer to find that zen.

We advocate lemon juice/apple cider vinegar to help stimulate digestion through stomach acid and bile production. Start your day with the juice of half a lemon in warm water or apple cider vinegar. Why not throw in some bitter foods to aid digestive support this summer too. Some popular recommendations include turmeric, (turmeric lattes), good quality sourced dark chocolate, and leafy greens like Spinach and Kale.

It is fair to say there will be a few late nights over the break, but try to not make it a habit. If you are camping outdoors, stick to the routine of going to bed when the sun has completely fallen, and rise when the sun rises. Stay consistent with 7 – 8 hours’ sleep on most nights. Try to stay within 2 hours of your normal sleep cycle, otherwise this will affect your circadian rhythm.

Whether it is brisk walking or practicing a Squat pattern, any form of movement will increase blood flow to organs and oxygenated blood throughout the body, helping remove accumulating toxins and wastes. Plan ahead and incorporate some incidental exercise like cycling or walking with the family. A beach run followed by a swim in the water is a must this Kiwi summer.

Try drinking this delicious probiotic soda this summer to assist your stomach in breaking down and digesting food better, while also eliminating toxins and removing excess hormones from your system. It is suggested to begin slowly and wean yourself into it. Try this delicious recipe adapted from BePure:

BePure Kombucha Mocktail                                                                                                                   

  • 150 ml plain or ginger flavoured kombucha                                                                                       
  • 100 ml sparkling mineral water or unflavoured soda water                                                 
  •  1 sprig of mint                                                                                                                                                
  • Juice of 1 lime or lemon

Garnish with 1 Tablespoon of pomegranate seeds, fresh blueberries or strawberries, 2 slices of ginger.

Method: Place kombucha, mineral water, mint and lime in a tall glass with ice. Muddle to mix it all.

Reflect and Plan
With everything wrapping up for the year, now is a great time to reflect on the past year and set your intentions for the year to come. Review all pillars of your life: Work, Family, Personal/Social, mind, Physical/Health, Financial & Spiritual. Once you have completed where you are at currently then do the same for where you want to be in a years’ time. Once completed identify 3 key areas that are most important to you, that you want to improve. From here make these your 3 key intentions for the year to live by. Don’t stop there, the most important step is to recite them each morning and live with purpose!


Wherever you may be this summer, ensure it is a safe and happy one.


Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from the team at Taylored Health & Performance

Maximise Your Next Surf

Are you ready for your next surf?
Mother Nature will not wait, so you need to be prepared both mentally and physically for that next pumping surf.  Here are my three key tips to maximise your next surf.

1. Body Prep:
Surfing is a physically demanding sport. You need to be physically ready to reduce your injury risk.
The focus for this section is to undo all the lifestyle stress you place on your body daily and get you ready to surf. These stressors involve sitting, bad posture, lack of activity.
Each of these exercises require minimal equipment and are key to keeping you injury-free and surfing.

Door Stretch

Door Stretch

Door stretch: 45sec
1.  Place arms at shoulder level on either side of a door frame.
2.  Step forward.  You should feel a stretch across the front of your chest.
3.  Begin moving your body by extending and shortening arms to search for tight spots.

Deeps squat: 2min+
This position may not be comfortable at first, that just means you need this more. If 2 minutes is too much gradually build the time.
1.  Squat deep (If needed hold onto something, eg – pole , this will make it easier to search for tight spots)
2.  Use elbows to push knees wide

Pop-Ups: 30reps/day
1.  Start on the ground, in press up position.
2.  Pop up to your feet, remain low to ground with bent knees and upright posture.
3.  Use a line on the ground and on mirror if possible to insure you are centred.
4.  Extend legs to standing position then drop into a squat and back to standing.
5.  Repeat

Deep Squat

Deep Squat

2. Mindfulness and surfing

Surfing is as much a mental game as it is physical. To surf you must be present, if you are not present you will never surf a wave to its full potential.

What is Mindfulness? It is a state of awareness in the present moment.

How do I develop this? I always advocate to my clients who are new to mindfulness to begin with guided mindfulness mediation (GMM). Start small (5-10mins daily), build the habit, then build time. It is important to understand that GMM is a practice, therefore consistency is key. Pick a time that you know you can achieve and start there.



Guided Mindfulness Mediation (GMM)? GMM is a practice where someone guides your thoughts and shifts your focus, teaching you awareness of the present moment. This practice sets the foundation for overall mindfulness.

Where do I find GMM? There are many application; websites, classes etc.

My three favourites are: Headspace, Calm and Insight Timer.

3. Planning and forecasting

Learn your local spots: At any given time, everything in a surf zone is moving: the shoreline, sea surface, wind, tide, varying water depths and water flows. With the forever-changing environment it is not easy to forecast. Take the time to learn through experience, talking to locals, forecasting apps. If you really want to be that step ahead, become efficient in reading and predicting weather maps.

Surf spot selection: Be honest with your surf ability and intention. By selecting the wrong spot, you will most likely disrupt others, end up frustrated and surf poorly.

Session goal: Regardless of your level you are always learning. Pick one thing to work on each surf. For example: lead with the eyes.

Crew: A good crew can make or break a surf. Surround yourself with a good group of mates who push your ability to grow.

Understand your board: Board technology has come a long way. Today there is enormous variation in boards. There are factors which affect board selection: ability level, style, swell size, location and type of wave. It becomes easy to get lost in the options available. The biggest mistake I see is people starting or transitioning a board which exceeds their ability level. This can become crippling to your development as a surfer. Talk to someone within your crew who knows about boards and has seen you surf, as they will understand your need better than most. If you don’t have that person, any good surf store will be able to help you out.

Respect: Always respect the locals and always obey surf etiquette

Have fun: Mother Nature won’t always deliver, so make the most of each surf. Remember it is the bad surfs which make the epic surfs memorable.


Published in Fitness Journal