London based yoga teacher, personal trainer and all round lover of health and wellbeing, Annie Clarke AKA Mind Body Bowl has fast become one of London’s go-to gurus for all things healthy food and fitness. This week, we caught up with Annie to chat about her super balanced lifestyle philosophy, beauty essentials and activewear favourites…
What inspired you to start Mind Body Bowl?
When I first changed my diet and lifestyle, I felt quite isolated. A lot of my friends had just started working in the city and didn’t really understand why or what I was doing! I started my instagram account and then blog too as a way to entertain myself and connect with like minded people, to find and create a supportive environment that didn’t yet exist closer to home.
Was staying healthy something you were interested in as you were growing up?
As a teenager I was always interested in food and fitness but I think it was much more as a ‘how to be skinny’ thing rather than actually being healthy. So many girls go through that phase and my relationship with food an exercise wasn’t always healthy but I think it did give me a good foundation and understanding of our bodies and what we eat and how we move can really impact the way we look, feel and ultimately live our lives!
Name the 3 kitchen essentials that you cannot live without…
In terms of food it’s a pretty tough question. Maybe tahini, spinach and oats, but then theres avocados, nut butter, kale, and a million other things that I am not sure I could live without either!
What is your favourite thing to do to unwind and relax after a busy day?
I love to be around people, and especially the people that I love! And if I can’t be with them then yoga is of course a really big part of how I unwind.
Do you have a favourite quote or mantra?
Everything happens for a reason. If you think like that, you know that something positive will come from any experience – it’s a really positive coping mechanism for anything that life throws at me!
Do you have a favourite yoga pose?
I love any sort of arm balance or posture that tests me. I love the sense of achievement when I try something new or make progress in something challenging. It makes me feel strong mentally as well as physically.
Besides yoga, what else do you like to do to keep fit?
I like running, weight training, HIIT and spinning. I try to keep a balance between variety and consistency to get the most benefits (mental and physical) from working out.
What are your must-have beauty essentials?
I love RMS Beauty. Their products have transformed my thoughts towards wearing makeup. And then of course there is coconut oil which is my all round wonder product. I use it to take off my make up, moisturise, as a hair mask, oil pull – I even went through a period of using it as deodorant. I always have a little pot in my bag.
Do you have a favourite healthy-hotspot in London?
It’s so exciting to see more and more places pop up. Since introducing fish back into my diet, it has opened up my options a lot, but for veggies, vegans or just general health nuts it really is getting a lot easier to eat in the capital. 26Grains is probably top of my list and of course I couldn’t be more excited about The Mae Deli opening.
Describe your perfect holiday destination…
It’s hard to describe a perfect holiday because I think at different times I look for different things. Sometimes I want to be active and so will look for places where I can do lots of activities, and other times I just want to totally chill and so a bit of sunshine with some beach yoga will be perfect! I’ve recently done a few city breaks too which I love so I guess like everything, variety is the spice of life!
What do you look for when buying activewear?
A combination of appearance, performance and price. I’m happy to spend more on a good piece of activewear that I know will last well and be worn time and time again. It’s so great to have so much choice in brands and I really think there is something to suit everyone. It’s important to feel good in your activewear I think, especially if you often end up wearing it all day like I often do.
What are your top 3 Hip & Healthy activewear essentials?