Keep it hardcore and sip on somethin' a little more than cider.
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With the much-anticipated party season upon us, you’re probably wondering how you’re going to stay healthy—especially with all the temptation and added opportunities to overindulge in rich foods. But there’s certainly no need to cut out all the joy when it comes to food!
With a big part of the festive period centered around treating yourself and spending time with friends and family over delicious meals, it’s not always easy to stay balanced. That’s why we’ve enlisted the help of best-selling UK author and fitness expert Joe Wicks, aka The Body Coach.
“Christmas is my favourite time of the year, and you shouldn’t be worrying about what you are or aren’t eating... it’s Christmas after all!,” says Joe. “I’ll get up on Boxing Day and do a workout and then get back to the cheese board and chocolates!"
Joe’s sharing two of his favorite recipes from his book, “Cooking for Family & Friends by Joe Wicks,” to help you to stay on track whilst not straying far from the fun lane.
The Turkey, Ham & Mushroom Filo Pie is a great wholesome equivalent to a Sunday roast or a yummy reduced-carb way to put your leftovers to good use.
“This is another tasty way to use up your festive food for a crowd,” says Joe. “The crispy filo is a delicious contrast to the creamy filling.”
Turkey, Ham & Mushroom Filo Pie
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
3 tablespoon coconut oil
1 large leek, finely chopped
2 large carrots, finely chopped
200g button mushrooms, sliced
1 tablespoon cornflour
400ml hot chicken stock
2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoon crème Fraiche
300g leftover turkey, cut into chunks
200g thick-sliced ham, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon each of chopped fresh tarragon and parsley
4 sheets filo pastry
- Melt 2 tablespoons of the coconut oil in a medium pan over a low heat. Chuck in the leek, carrots, and mushrooms and cook for 15 minutes until softened but not coloured.
- Stir in the cornflour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually add the stock, stirring constantly, until the sauce is smooth. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the cooked turkey, ham and chopped herbs and spoon the mixture into a medium pie dish.
- Preheat your oven to 200-degree Celsius (fan 180-degree Celsius/gas mark 6). Melt the remaining coconut oil in a small pan.
- Unroll the filo pastry and cover with a clean damp tea towel. Put a single sheet on a board and brush with a little oil. Rough scrunch up the pastry and put on top of the turkey mixture. Repeat with the remaining filo until the top of the pie is covered.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until the filo is golden and the pie mixture is bubbling. Get stuck in.
For something sweet, you can’t get much better than the perfect blend of dark chocolate and fresh, juicy raspberries in Joe’s Guilteee Chocolate & Raspberry Log.
“It’s not the leanest, but the tastiest Swiss roll I’ve ever made,” says Joe, “And should be made as a treat (over the festive period) or on Christmas Day.”
Guilteee Chocolate & Raspberry Log
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
80g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
4 large eggs, room temperature
½ teaspoon coffee extract
100g golden caster sugar, plus extra for dusting
75g self-raising flour, sifted cocoa powder for dusting
For the filing
300g double cream
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
180g fresh raspberries (or frozen raspberries)
24x 35cm Swiss roll tin
- Preheat your oven to 180 degree Celsius (fan 160 degree Celsius/gas mark 4). Line the sides and base of the Swiss roll tin with baking parchment.
- Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Allow to melt, then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
- Place the eggs into a large bowl with the coffee essence and sugar, and whisk using an electric whisk until pale and thickened (about 8-10 minutes). Fold in the cooled melted chocolates and flour.
- Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and flatten with a palette knife. Bake for 12-15 minutes until springy to the touch.
- Place a large sheet of baking parchment on a clean work surface and lightly sprinkle with casting sugar. Remove the cake from the oven and flip onto the baking parchment. Peel away the parchment from the sponge. Loosely roll the sponge from the short end and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, make the filling by whisking together the cream, leaving a 1cm border around the edge. Top with fresh raspberries* in a single layer and re-roll the sponge, removing the baking paper as you do it. Decorate with cocoa and caster sugar.
*If using frozen raspberries, allow them to defrost and stir them through the vanilla cream.
Whatever you’re up to over the party season, enjoy it! Use food as a fuel for lots of activity and festive sweats. If you need some inspiration or want to squeeze in an extra workout in between all the parties, find a fitness class that fits your busy schedule on the MINDBODY app.
Cooking for Family & Friends by Joe Wicks is out now (Bluebird).
If you’ve ever taken a hot yoga class, you know it’s always going to be one thing—outrageously hot. Not the “let’s hang by the pool and get that sun-kissed glow” kind of hot either. I’m talking that “I can't believe I have this much sweat in my body” and “I may or may not pass out” kind of hot. It’s nothing to mess around with, and after a year or so of not being able to go, it’s easy to forget just how serious that heat can be.
To get the maximum enjoyment and benefits out of your heated yoga classes, you need to prepare yourself before and take care of yourself afterward. Luckily, I’ve been taking some classes (sweating enough for the both of us) and I’ve listed my five favorite must-dos to help you readjust to your heated classes and get back to the hot yoga summer that we all want.
Heated classes are difficult in nature. The normal difficulty of regular poses is mixed in with the added challenges of sweating and dealing with the humidity and the heat (at times, I’ve seen the thermostat climb to 108 degrees—yikes!). Depending on what type of yoga class you’re taking (sculpt, Bikram, power vinyasa), the difficulty level and temperature are going to vary. It’s also important to remember that each person in the room is going to practice in a way that’s unique to them. Hours slept, hydration levels, food intake, and different lifestyles are all contributing factors that make our practices different. What you practice on your mat is your own––trust your body and only do what feels right to you. And remember, it’s okay to take breaks!
The rise in temperature mixed in with the humidity that we all know and love creates the perfect recipe for sweating—like A LOT. You go into a heated class dry and come out feeling like you just took a dip in the pool. Before heated classes, I had no idea it was physically possible to sweat that much. If you’re going to a heated class, especially after a long break, it’s easy to forget just how much you might sweat. Is it possible to lose that much water if you haven’t consumed it first? Trust me, going into your heated class super hydrated is going to make a world of difference and help you feel good throughout your practice. And don’t forget to take some sips of H2O while you’re practicing!
Heated classes are challenging, but I can’t stop going. Nothing quite compares to overcoming the challenge— and experiencing the cleanse my body feels after I’m done. It’s the perfect blend of hard and rewarding, but I couldn’t do it if my body wasn’t properly nourished. On the days I know I have a heated class booked; I like to make sure I am eating right. I make sure to take my vitamins and fuel my body with fruits, vegetables, and my favorite superfood shake. I hold off on food about an hour before my practice, so I feel comfortable. After the class, I like to replenish with a big protein shake (boosted with collagen to aid with muscle recovery and skin elasticity). There is no one-way path for properly nourishing your body but making sure you’re fueled for the challenge of a heated class is essential for getting the most out of your practice and feeling good on and off your mat.
Increasing and maintaining your water intake on the days you take a heated class is important, but sometimes you need something a little extra. If you’re sweating that much, you’re basically an athlete (at least in my book) and if you’re performing like a rockstar yogi, you need to hydrate like one as well. That means replenishing those lost electrolytes. Reward yourself and your body for the hard work and treat yourself to your favorite drink. I switch off between electrolyte-boosting drinks and coconut water depending on what I’m in the mood for that day. Adding these to my post-practice self-care routine has helped me feel more hydrated after and ready to take on the world again after especially sweaty classes.
Usually, a yoga mat is all you need for your practice––but heated classes are a different ballgame. I’ve gone with just a mat, and I’ve slipped all over the place. Let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than having sweat drip all over the place while you’re trying to hold a pose that makes you grip your mat for dear life (never again). Make sure you bring a towel to place over your mat, this will help with support and grip. Bringing a smaller towel is also a good idea. You can use the smaller towel to dry yourself off during water breaks or whenever you’re feeling just a bit too sweaty. This is a small step that makes a world of difference during those super-hot classes.
So, there you have it. Five of my favorite tips (more like lifesavers) that have helped me readjust to those heated classes I love so much. Getting back into it is a challenge for us all, so know you’re not alone. No matter where you’re at in your practice, remember to be kind and gentle to yourself––celebrating your health and your body’s ability to do what you love. We’re all just getting back out there, together.
Ready to jump back into your hot yoga routine? Browse Mindbody to find the perfect class for you.
While you’re at it, check out some Intro Offers near you that can help you get back to your cadence of hot yoga classes.