Swiss Health Blog

Why You Should Try Reformer Pilates in 2016

Why You Should Try Reformer Pilates in 2016

Ever since coming to Sydney, I've traded my weight lifting program for more low impact mat work, cardio, barre and pilates workouts (mainly because I've been excited to try out all the cool studios  and their different styles around town).

I'd always been rather skeptical, especially of Reformer Pilates because it seemed like you're not working out hard enough. If you're not breaking a sweat, it's not a real workout, right? But after having done many similar-type classes in the recent past, I can assure you that this is absolutely not the case. In fact, you're in for a killer workout.

A reformer class sits perfectly in the middle of the "hard core" versus "minimal pain" exercise spectrum, leaving you with just the right amount of achiness the next day. And since it's not a bootcamp-like atmosphere, it especially appeals to us gals who might be intimated by grungy looking crossfit boxes filled with sweaty grunting men. I'm not saying I don't enjoy those workouts, but I can understand how some girls might be intimated by that.

Vegan Banana Blueberry Pancakes

Vegan Banana Blueberry Pancakes

Happy weekend everyone!

Before I get into the deliciousness of these fluffy vegan banana blueberry pancakes, let me just get something off my chest quickly: I am so grateful for the mind-blowing feedback about my ED posts (herehere and here) and the words of encouragement I have received about starting to health coach. You. guys. are. the. best.

Now, back to these glorious pancakes...I don't eat pancakes very often, but every now and then I get a major craving for them. With frozen berries in the freezer and overripe bananas on the counter at all times, I can always whip up some pancakes whenever that craving creeps in.

These banana blueberry pancakes are vegan and gluten free. Nutritionally speaking they are a bit on the indulgent side, but who doesn't love a good weekend treat. Make sure the bananas are really ripe to get the best flavour. If they are covered in brown spots, they are good to go. If you're looking for an eggy version with maca, these might be for you.

Healthspo Talk with Mary Christine

Healthspo Talk with Mary Christine

During my month in Chiang Mai last year, I was scrolling through the hashtag #chiangmai and stumbled across Mary from Mantras and Mangos who was there on holidays. We chatted a while through Instagram and spontaneously decided to meet up, and so we went for dinner with a couple of other girls atImm Aim for some delicious Thai vegan food.

So here we are, sitting in this little cafe in Thailand, complete strangers from different parts of the world and we instantly clicked. Even though we barely knew each other, we started sharing our stories with our food struggles and journey to plant based living over lovely fresh food, followed by vegan ice cream, steamed buns and mango with sticky rice.

I remember leaving that evening bursting full of energy, excitement and gratitude. Full of energy because I felt so positive about everything, excitement because all girls inspired me to keep moving forward on my own health journey and grateful because I think it's just so damn amazing how social media allows us to connect with other like-minded people.

Behind The Scenes Of Fit Reserve

Behind The Scenes Of Fit Reserve

The decision to seal the deal with a new gym subscription is not taken lightly. Oftentimes you have to commit for a minimum of six months and you have to be 100% certain that you're not going to throw in the towel after a couple of sessions. Joining just one studio seems limiting, but joining more than one becomes expensive.

Have you ever found yourself thinking about trying new fitness routines, or do you cringe at the thought of signing a 1-year contract with your local gym? Then the soon-to-launch Fit Reserve may be for you.

I've already shared with you guys on Instagram that VicSabrine and I are ambassadors for Fit Reserve & I'm beyond excited to introduce you to this new concept (and show you the awesome behind-the-scenes pics from the photoshoot). Let's take a closer look.

BBG Bootcamp in Berlin with Kayla Itsines

BBG Bootcamp in Berlin with Kayla Itsines

So...this just happened. I can't believe how quickly the day went by and that the BBG Berlin Bootcamp is already over! About two years ago I started using Kayla's guides (see my initial review) and here I find myself training with queen K herself. How crazy.

But let's go back a couple of steps...Vic and I have been planning on doing a weekend city trip for a while, so when we heard that Kayla was coming for a BBG bootcamp to Berlin, we didn't think twice. We bought our tickets instantly without wasting any thought on how to get there, where to stay and if we even had time on that day. But there was simply no way we were passing up the opportunity to work out with our favourite personal trainer in person! Berlin is only a short 1 hour flight from Switzerland and we had been thinking of doing a weekend city trip together anyways, so it was perfect timing.

When I first started Kayla's BBG guides, I was hoping to get stronger and look fitter (take a look at my progress pictures here and here), but never in a million years  did I expect to make a best friend along the way. Did you guys know that Vic and I went to the same university but only met because she found me through a #BBG hashtag that I was using and recognised the gym I was taking selfies in?! Thank god for Instagram & thank god for the amazing BBG community.

Quick 'n' Easy Veggie Noodle Bowl with Teriyaki Sauce

Quick 'n' Easy Veggie Noodle Bowl with Teriyaki Sauce

Now that I'm working while sending out job applications for a new position and studying at IIN at the same time, I find myself relying on quick and easy recipes more than ever. People will often say they don't have the time to eat healthy because the cooking takes so long, but I think that's just a lame excuse. Healthy dishes can be some of the easiest to throw together, you just need a bit of practice to get into a rhythm.

For example, for a smoothie literally all you have to do is throw all the fruits and veggies into the mixer, press the start button, wait 5 seconds and voila. Now that's what I call fast food!

I know we don't all live off smoothies all day long, so that's where this warming veggie noodle bowl with a homemade Teriyaki sauce comes in handy. Noodle bowls are awesome because you can customize them any way you like – a total clean out the fridge kind of meal. Take whatever veggie looks like it's best days are over (brownish kale, I'm looking at you), throw it into a noodle bowl and see it come back to life. So go ahead and customize this noodle bowl with whatever you have left in the fridge.

Vegan Christmas Gingerbread Cookies

Vegan Christmas Gingerbread Cookies

It's that time of the year again: Christmas baking! I wouldn't call myself a good cook and even less so a good baker, so I was happy to have Vic's support in making these vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free gingerbread men. Yep, you heard that correctly, these cookies are void of literally ANYTHING that might upset your stomach. Christmas is saved, people.

In my house we usually make fruit loaf, cinnamon-flavored-star-shaped-biscuits and lemon-butter-biscuits, all of which are filled with refined sugar, glutenous (is that a word?!) flour, eggs and butter. Before becoming the health freak that I am (cause let's face it, I am), I didn't mind and it was just kind of normal. But since two years I always make sure I come prepared to our Christmas get togethers by bringing my own batch of healthy cookies. I have 0 self discipline when it comes to saying no to food, so if I don't bring a healthy alternative and someone offers me a 'normal' cookie, there is no way I will say no to it. Ever.

Healthspotalk with Justine

Healthspotalk with Justine

I originally turned towards veganism for health reasons. It didn't really have anything to do with animal rights or the environmental impact; I was just thinking of my own health. But now, the more I educate myself on the matter, the more I begin to understand the profound impact a vegan diet and a vegan lifestyle can have on our planet. There are a million and one reasons why going vegan is the right choice from a moral and environmental perspective, and I'm starting open my eyes to these important matters. But about that in a later blog post..

Today I want to introduce you to Justine, a vegan blogger friend who doesn't only report about vegan food but also about cruelty-free fashion. Her mission is to show how fashionable vegan fashion can be; and hell she's doing a good job! When I scrolled through her feed for the first time I didn't even notice that all clothes are vegan. She's inspired me to start thinking about not only where my food comes from, but also where my clothes come from. I hope she will have the same impact on you guys!

New Restaurant Find: Roots in Zurich

New Restaurant Find: Roots in Zurich

Moving from Lausanne to Bern has brought it's many benefits. Not only am I 10 minutes away from a local Tibits, but I am just a short hour train ride away from Zurich. We in Switzerland are not very 'spoiled' when it comes to healthy eating options and Lausanne is right up there in terms of vegan-unfriendliness. The change in residency might not be the best for my wallet (read: I am taste testing every health hot spot in my way of destruction), but my taste buds are happy campers.

Before going to the Rhythm108 event at Balboa with Victoria, we had some serious catching up to do. We decided to grab a quick lunch at Roots, which opened a couple of months ago and has been getting lots of attention since. I'm happy to see such positive reactions towards a healthy, trendy restaurant; maybe it will encourage more of this type to pop up?

My Marathon Training

My Marathon Training

I can't believe my first marathon is less than one week away. I remember signing up just a couple of weeks ago; somehow that time flew by without me even noticing it and I don't quite feel 100% ready. But then again - I don't think I would ever feel ready to run 42.195 kilometers. At least I'll be running the race with Vic whom I ran my first half marathon with in April 2015 (we were inseparable the entire race and went through he finish line hand in hand). She decided straight after that race to sign up for the Lausanne Marathon this coming Sunday, but I politely opted out of her offer to join yet again. It was only about a month ago that I changed my mind and decided to do it after all. If not now, when ever am I going to do it, right?

Given my spontaneous sign up, I haven' really had a lot of time to train. Thank god I've been working out 5-6 x a week in some form or another for the last two years, otherwise this mission would be slightly suicidal.

Raw Hummus with Zucchini

Raw Hummus with Zucchini

Raw foods don’t have to be categorized in a different way than the foods we already know and love. Most of us already eat a lot of raw foods without giving it much thought or even categorizing it as such. Now isn’t that encouraging; it shows that choosing raw doesn’t have to be boring or complicated. Aspiring raw foodies can just take a look at their current diet and eat more of the already raw foods they currently consume.

Hummus is a funny one; it’s not raw but most people assume it is since a lot of dips are raw and you normally eat it with some veggie sticks. Only once people want to make hummus at home, they realize they actually need to cook the beans. And yes, buying canned beans still means it’s cooked even if you don’t do the cooking yourself.

From my education with IIN, I have some mixed feelings regarding a raw diet. I see both the pro’s and the con’s, but don’t subscribe to the idea that one is better than the other. I believe in bio individuality aka figuring out what is best for you, for your body, for your lifestyle and I also believe in balance and moderation.

Bern's First Juice Bar: I Love Juice

Bern's First Juice Bar: I Love Juice

When you walk around London or New York, you find a juice bar around every corner. According to Well To Do (one of my favourite online magazines for everything health - related) , there are now at least 25 dedicated cold-pressed juice bars across London. This doesn't even include boutique stockists, retail giants like Waitress and all the online ordering and delivery companies. Can I move back to London already? That's what I thought until recently.

But then I Love Juice Bern came for the rescue.

In Switzerland so far, surprise surprise, juice bars are a rare sight. For the most part, people here still believe that the "100 % natural" fruit juices sold at Micros and Coop are healthy. But with the opening of Bern's first cold-pressed juice bar in Herrengasse 10, a new era has began. Kudos to Tina and Tom, the founders of I Love Juice, for doing something that seems almost revolutionary for this Swiss city.