Burning the candle at both ends is something I do regularly. My wake up call is a near constant alarm of 5:30am, so that I can jump into lycra and push my body as far as I can in the gym. There’s something rather gratifying about being up before everyone else – seeing the sunrise and getting a sweat on before people are barely pulling the sheets back. I’m one of those annoying early birds, you see? Even at weekends, my body clock has been programmed so consistently that anything past 7am feels like a lie in.

For me, it’s tough to stop. To rest. To do nothing. I’ve been trying to get better at it, and sometimes that simply means listening to your body. Recognising when you need to take time out can be tough. For the best part of two years, I’ve also had to contend with broken, sleepless nights due to chronic back pain – some of which have given me a mere 2-3hrs of shut eye. And yet, I get up and go and push through and pretend it’s not there to live a “normal” life.

I enjoy that get up and go attitude (not the sleepless nights, that’s for sure). Morning gym and early starts are part of who I am and what makes me, me. Sometimes, if I’m too exhausted to pull myself from bed and drag myself to the weights room, or power through another run, I give myself a hard time. I feel like I’ve failed, but let’s be honest – I should probably just cut myself some slack, right? Sometimes you have to listen to your body and be ok with that.

I’ve also, in the last few months, started to also put in a few boundaries for myself. Don’t say “yes” to absolutely every invite. Schedule in “me” time – usually Monday evenings. Make elevenses for a a little hit of fuel to power me through my day. These flapjacks are a work in progress. Yeah, they’re not perfect but they do the trick. And you know what, it’s ok not to do everything perfectly. It’s ok to do nothing at all if you really want to. If you get tired, learn to rest (and maybe sneak one of these into your bag for elevenses), not to quit.

Health(ier) Flapjacks

220g rolled oats
150g brown sugar
60g butter
100g coconut oil
1tbsp golden syrup
60g raisins
60g flaked almonds

  1. Preheat your oven to 160C. Line and grease a square loose-bottomed baking tin.
  2. Melt the coconut oil, butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Mix in the oats, flaked almonds and raisins.
  4. Press down into the tin and bake for 30mins.
  5. Leave to cool before slicing into squares.



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