Category Archives: Family cooking

Let them eat cake?

When it comes to foods that people hold dear to them, it doesn’t take much more than an imagined threat to strike a media storm. Which is why the recent comments made by Food Standards Agency chairwoman Prof Susan Jebb comparing the harm of having cake in the office to that of passive smoking could only be interpreted as a full-scale attack on cake. The fact that she made clear that her comments were made in a personal capacity and not on behalf of the FSA doesn’t seem to have carried any weight with the public. Neither did it matter that she was simply illustrating how an obesogenic environment directly influences our behaviour including her own. It’s no secret that the UK has a very high rate of obesity and overweight. But it’s too late. She has already been found guilty of the grievous crime of attempting to ban cake at work. It doesn’t matter that she never actually proposed a ban despite the false accusations being spread widely in the media. It’s already case closed. But should it be?

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Top tips for the resolution fatigued

It’s all too easy to begin the New Year full of good intentions and fitness plans. Especially when you have spent the last days of your holidays getting through the cheese board and polishing off the last of the ‘sharing’ tins of chocolates. But we all know how quickly the same resolutions can be forgotten once the reality of daily life sets in. It can feel impossible to be motivated when you are faced with a couple of months of inevitably cold, wet and windy weather ahead of you. However, there are plenty of simple things you can do that will help you get back on track with whatever fitness or nutrition goals you are aiming for in 2023.

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Not feeling the Christmas spirit? Jog on!

Now that we are in December, the countdown to Christmas has begun in earnest. But many people will be facing the festive season with a mix of emotions. There is the usual pressure of buying the right presents and preparing the big meal itself. Then there is the prospect of having to make small talk with distant relations you may not be quite so keen on seeing. And on top of all that, just to make things even more difficult this year, the increase in the cost of living means that you may well feel anything but merry. But somehow despite this, anyone young at heart will still be starting to feel the excitement of Christmas beginning to grow. There are plenty of things you can do to channel all of that festive energy. Luckily, one of the best ways to keep that holiday spirit high will reduce your stress levels and also happens to be free. There is no better way to build yuletide cheer than going for a run to see the dazzling colours and twinkling illuminations of outdoor Christmas displays.   

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Speedy recovery fuel

With the advent of what looks and feels like ‘rugby weather’ and the earlier darker evenings, the prospect of venturing outside to go for a run is anything but inviting. But even in the daylight, you are still likely to be whipped by the wind and rain at some point and spend far too much time estimating the depth of puddles and getting it badly wrong. If you manage to return home without mud-caked soggy trainers, it will have been a good result. One thing you’ll be needing after a hot shower and warm, dry clothes is some nourishment and the sooner, the better. But not everyone knows what they should really be eating that will help them quickly refuel again and also promote their recovery.  

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Why a running holiday is not a misnomer

Now be honest. If someone you trusted casually said the words ‘running holiday’ in a sentence, what would be your response? Because even if you call yourself a runner and have the stash of technical t’s and medals to show for it, you are still likely to have stopped them mid-flow with a ‘Hold on, what??!’ And truthfully, when you hear those words together for the first time, it simply sounds wrong. However, for runners of all abilities, a running holiday can be one of the best experiences there is.

Although to be perfectly clear, I am not referring to the kind of running holiday where you sign up for an organised training camp to work on improving your running and smashing your PBs. Sure there are plenty of luxurious resorts out there catering to all this that offer some serious coaching among an unlimited buffet of sport, exercise and wellness. But what I am talking about is slightly more adventurous and completely stripped down to the bare basics of running. Imagine a holiday where you spend several days running from one destination to the next along a beautifully scenic route so that by the end of your holiday you have travelled an epic length…

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