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Inspired by: Stef Jung, WholesomeStef

Continuing on with our Inspired By series, it is my pleasure to introduce you to the lovely, well-travelled, fitness enthusiast and health coach, Stef. Stef has recently moved from Switzerland to Sydney and has a story very similar to so many women of all ages. She is on a mission to lift others out of the darkness and destruction that comes with disordered eating and an unhealthy relationship with food and body image. Keep reading to find out more about Stef’s past, how she cares for herself today, her health philosophy and much, much more!

Tell us a little about yourself and how you became involved in the health industry?

I haven’t always been this healthy. In fact, I used to be a fad dieting, self-destructive treadmill junkie that obsessively counted calories and stepped on the scale up to five times a day. I had that “inner mean girl” syndrome, meaning that I was constantly telling myself I wasn’t good enough, smart enough, skinny enough, and the list goes on. After years and years of self loathing, I decided one day that enough was enough and that it was time to start taking care of myself. It’s been a long and hard journey, but five years later I have overcome my eating disorder and have created a healthy, fulfilled life for myself that I am absolutely in love with.

As I became more intrigued by the power of nutrition, mind – body connection and a holistic lifestyle in general, I realized that I wanted to help others with their own struggles. I am now a certified health coach and it is my goal to inspire other young girls and women to live their life to the fullest by becoming the healthiest and happiest version of them self, minus the deprivation, restriction and obsession around food and exercise.

What is your personal health philosophy? 

For me, being truly healthy isn’t just about what you eat and how much you train. It’s about so much more than that. You can eat all the kale in the world and live from juice cleanse to juice cleanse, but if you are not nourishing your soul on a deeper level, your body and mind don’t thrive. I think that being truly healthy means nourishing your body with whole foods, exercising because you love your body (not because you hate it!) and living a life that fulfills you and makes you happy. It’s something that I had to learn the hard way, but now I truly understand the importance of having the right mindset. Photo-21-06-2016-1-46-01-PM-e1466481045257

How do you begin your morning?

I love starting my morning by thinking about three things that I am grateful for. If my partner and I wake up at the same time, we ask each other what those three things are and then get up together. Next up is either a mini yoga flow (5 minutes), a journaling sesh or I go straight to preparing breakfast, depending on the schedule for that day. Oh, and I like to oil pull or drink my lemon water with ginger, cayenne pepper and apple cider vinegar while getting breakfast ready. Depending on my schedule, I might even get my workout in in the morning, so on those days I’m off to a class straight away and will have my nourishing morning routine post-workout.

What does a typical day look like on your plate?

I don’t believe in dietary labels and love mixing things up and trying new things. That means that no day ever looks the same! I tried going fully vegan once, but realized that, because of my restrictive past, it was triggering at times. These days I eat a very balanced, mainly plant-based diet with lots of fresh unprocessed foods. If I do eat animal products, I make sure I buy organic produce of the highest quality. I listen to my body and nurture it with whatever it asks for; that may be a vegan salad with quinoa, spinach and sweet potato or a bar of (dark and organic) chocolate. Some staple meals of mine are: tofu stir fry with buckwheat noodles and leafy greens, a green smoothie with vegan protein powder, hummus with veggie sticks as a snack and a warming oatmeal for brekky. 

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Right now I’m actually on Sarah Wilson’s 8-week I Quit Sugar program, and like I said, I love experimenting with new foods and seeing how my body and mind react. I have a bit of a sweet tooth, so it’s been more of mental challenge than anything.

Fitness is a huge part of your life. What is your workout routine and do you have any tips you can offer on how to commit to an exercise regimen? 

Since moving to Sydney, I haven’t had a real workout routine per se. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t worked out everyday! I’m actually using Classpass at the moment and I really enjoy trying out new studios and types of workouts throughout the city. I’ve alIMG_9090finaleso been very active in nature and have been going on regular runs and even took up surfing. I find it really important to mix things up and love to push myself out of my comfort zone every day, otherwise I get bored easily! These days I’ve been doing one crossfit/functional training/ weight lifting type of workout per day + one more relaxing stretching session like yoga or pilates.

If you struggle sticking to your workout routine, I recommend finding a workout buddy that holds you accountable and also to schedule your workouts into your calendar. It’s all too easy to forget or neglect the commitment to yourself, but if it’s scheduled in, it makes it just that bit harder to ignore.

What are the three foods you have to have on your desert island? 

I go through phases with food, but I could never live without

  • Hummus

  • Coconut yoghurt

  • Spinach

What is the greatest health advice you have ever been given? 

That health is a journey, not a goal. It took me many years of dissatisfaction and body dysmorphia to realize this, but now I understand the importance of “enjoying the ride”. If you are always working towards that one far distant goal, then you will never be happy with yourself in the moment. 

It seems you have travelled/lived all around the globe! Where did you find was the easiest city to embrace a healthy lifestyle? Do you have a favourite fitness studio or cafe in that city? 

Sydney by far! There is such a huge health scene here with many amazing studios, healthy cafés, sporty events and a bunch of beautifully inspiring like-minded people that help you stay motivated and on track. In fact, that’s pretty much the reason why I moved here…Europe, and especially Switzerland (where I moved from) is so far behind on the trend, so it’s been a refreshing scenery change for me. Plus, the warm weather and beautiful nature just makes you want to be active outdoors all day long. One of my favorite cafés is Sadhana Kitchen in Bondi (if you’re skeptical about raw vegan cuisine, this place will change your mind!) and I love Urban Yoga and Humming Puppy for a good yoga session.

Like so many of us, you have overcome a difficult relationship with food, body image and self love. Do you ever still struggle with this? And if so, what do you do to pull yourself out of it? 

Yes, definitely! I still struggle from time to time, just like everyone else. But over the years I’ve assembled a whole list of tricks that help me deal with a bad day. From taking a walk by myself to dry body scrubbing, writing in my gratitude book or talking it out with my bestie or partner before the feeling manifests itself, it’s all about self love and acceptance on those days. It’s when everIMG_9323ything seems to go wrong that kindness is more important than ever. No matter how busy I am I will try to find some “me time”, as my health and happiness will always be number one priority.

I also like to remind myself of this quote (one of my faves!):

You are under no obligation to be the same person you were 5 minutes ago.”

 The quote is a reminder that even if you had a crappy start to the day, it doesn’t have to ruin the rest of their day. Become aware of your feelings, work through them and pick yourself back up.

One more thing that I want to add: It’s always been my goal to be as authentic and raw as possible with my audience. I allow myself to be vulnerable and try to always share when I feel down, frustrated, annoyed, insecure etc. There are way too many accounts out there that showcase this picture-perfect world, and it can be very triggering for girls who compare their own life to the highly edited life of social influencers. What’s important to realize is that we all struggle from time to time, and it’s my goal to show both the ups and the downs.

Please share with us one of your favourite clean recipes! 

Stef’s Vegan Banana Blueberry Pancakes

Serves: 2

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Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp ground flax seeds

  • ½ cup of water

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 2 very ripe bananas

  • 1 cup non-dairy milk (we used almond)

  • 1 cup of blueberries

  • 1 tbsp cinnamon

  • ½ tbsp nutmeg

  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup of ground buckwheat (buckwheat flour)

  • Coconut oil for cooking

Instructions

  1. Start by making your flax eggs: mix the ground flax seeds and water in a small bowl, mix with a fork and leave in the fridge for 15 minutes.

  2. Mix all your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, spices).

  3. Mash your bananas and add to the dry mix along with the mix, vanilla and flax eggs.

  4. Once all well mixed, add the blueberries and mix gently.

  5. Heat up a pan with a small tsp of coconut oil.

  6. Add 2 big tbsp of the mixture at a time and cook.

  7. Add homemade vegan chocolate sauce.

  8. Sprinkle with fresh blueberries and coconut flakes before serving.

Connect with Stef:

Instagram: @wholesomestef

Facebook: www.facebook.com/wholesomestef

Website: www.wholesomestef.com

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The Beauty Bible Feature: Muse of the Moment

Hi guys!

I was recently interviewed by The Beauty Bible on all things beauty. A little different to the questions I usually answer! I truly believe that the best beauty tip is a clean and healthy diet, and I love that people are realising this more and more. However! There are definitely some tips and tricks I have picked up along the way from trial and error, especially since making the switch to natural, cruelty-free products. Read the article here to find out about my skincare regimen, morning routine, favourite beauty products plus more!

Inspired By: Rachel Katz from The Full Life

Hi loves!

I am SO excited to start my “inspired by” segment, bringing you some of the most creative and motivational people in health and wellness that I have been lucky enough to cross paths with. First up, all the way from the other side of the globe we have the lovely Rachel Katz.

Rachel Katz is a recipe developer, health and wellness blogger, and third year nutritional science student at Cal State Los Angeles. Her goal is to help others learn how to love living a healthy lifestyle and become the best version of themselves. In her free time, she loves experimenting with healthy foods in the kitchen, eating, writing, spending time in nature, and spending quality time with her loved ones.

So, without further ado, let’s get into the Q&A…

Tell us a little about yourself and what made you study nutrition?

I’m currently a nutritional science student at Cal State LA, and three years ago I would have never pictured my life the way it is now! I went through a lot of health issues, both mental and physical, my first year of college and I decided to heal myself the natural way rather than the latter. It amazed me (and still does) how much food and lifestyle can affect your body and well being! After all the struggles I went through I knew that I had a purpose in life to help people not only heal through food, but learn how to change their mindset and daily habits in order to reach their fullest potential and live their version of the happiest and healthiest life possible! It was just two years ago that I switched my major to nutritional science, and my life has been getting better and more exciting each day since.


What is your health philosophy?

I don’t believe in diets or deprivation; I believe in simply living a healthy lifestyle. Life is too short to live it feeling weak,unmotivated, unhappy or unhealthy and it’s so crucial that we pay attention to what we put in our bodies, how we move our bodies,

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and what we tell our bodies. I believe that we are all different, and therefore, our diets should all be different; what works for one person won’t always work for someone else! It’s so impor

tant not to compare yourself to others and instead find a diet that works for you. In general, I be

lieve in a balanced, whole foods, unprocessed, all natural diet; 90% healthy, 10% indulgence! I also believe that in order to be truly happy, you need to just do what makes you happy! Eating healthy and exercising alone won’t make you happy; focusing on your passions, treating yourself with love and respect, and spending time with the people you love will!

 


What’s your favourite quote or mantra you live by?

I don’t do diets, I do healthy!

 

What does a typical day on a plate look like for you?

I start every morning with some warm lemon water and meditation. For breakfast I usually eat oatmeal with fruit and nut butter, yogurt with raw granola and fruit, chia pudding, or a smoothie bowl. For lunch I usually eat a salad with a ton of greens and veg and a healthy fat like avocado with some protein like grilled chicken, tuna, hard boiled egg, tofu or beans! Sometimes I’ll make an egg scramble with sautéed kale, spinach and mushrooms and top it off with some avocado. I always snack between lunch and dinner and sometimes between breakfast and lunch if it’s a long day! My usual snacks are either some bliss balls or raw nuts with carrots,raw vegetables or crackers with hummus, a protein shake or smoothie, an apple or banana with some nut butter, or some yogurt with honey. For dinner I usually have a protein, like grilled chicken or fish, with a grilled veggie dish and either a sweet potato, brown rice, or quinoa. I have coffee every morning with breakfast and sip on water, sparkling water, green tea, or kombucha throughout the day. On the weekends my favorite foods to indulge in are sweet potato fries, a good piece of bread and frozen yogurt or ice cream!

 

What are the 3 foods you have to have on your dessert island?

Dates, bananas and coffee!

 

Lastly, what’s the greatest health advice you’ve ever been given?

Stop comparing yourself to others! What works for someone else won’t always work for you, and what works for you won’t necessarily work for someone else. Health isn’t one size fits all, and it’s so important to work towards your own goals and your own journey rather than focus on someone else’s.

Just before you go… Would you mind sharing one of your favourite clean recipes with us?

Rachel’s Raw Vegan & Gluten-Free Espresso Brownies

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 15 medjool dates with 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup pistachios
  • 1/2 cup almonds or walnuts (I use walnuts since I’m allergic to almonds, but almonds are preferred!)
  • 2 tsps cacao powder
  • 2 tsps cacao nibs
  • 2 tsps maple syrup
  • 1 tsp melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of himalayan salt
  • pinch of espresso powder (can put more, just depends on how strong you like it!)

Raw chocolate Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 2 tbsps cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • touch of water

INSTRUCTIONS:

First, blend medjool dates with water (I use a food processor). Then add in nuts and blend everything together (I like when it’s a little chunky so I don’t blend for too long, but if you prefer smooth/fudgy brownies than blend until the chunks are gone!). Pour into a large bowl and add in the rest of the ingredients- mix thoroughly (using your hands is the most efficient way to do this!) Pour mixture into a baking dish, pat down with hands, and freeze for about twenty minutes. In the mean time, prepare the chocolate sauce by warming up all of the ingredients in a pan for about two minutes. You can add more ingredients as you go along- just keep tasting the chocolate sauce until you achieve the perfect taste and consistency. Let the sauce cool and pour over the brownies. Freeze again for another 20 minutes, cut into brownie pieces, and keep the brownies in the fridge for a healthy desert that can be served warm with ice cream or just eaten as a snack.

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Connect with Rachel:

Instagram – @Rachel_Katz_

Twitter – @Rachel_Katz_

Website – www.TheFullLifeByRachel.com

SnapChat – rachelkatz45

Facebook – Rachel Katz Health & Wellness

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Interview with Orli The Natural Beauty Co. + Discount!!

Hi guys!

I was recently introduced to a wonderful natural beauty website called Orli (Organic Living) The Natural Beauty Co, and have been hooked every since. Partly because of how gorgeous the website layout is, partly due to the confidence I have in the products that have been carefully selected for it. Jo, the founder, is a wealth of wisdom when it comes to all the nasty toxins and chemicals that can be found in beauty products. Not only does she sell the best of the best, but she writes wonderful, informative blog posts on how to navigate through the chemical maze of the beauty industry.

Jo has carefully curated her range after having gone through each and every ingredient with a fine tooth comb to ensure she only stocks the most pure, authentic, Australian brands, sans nasties. She values quality over quantity and has found a little bit of everything in each beauty category. So rest assured, you are in good hands while browsing Orli!

I was lucky enough to be featured on the Orli blog in a little Q&A. I absolutely loved the questions I was asked and had a lot of fun answering them. I believe they hit on some really important topics. I would love it if you guys could head over to the Orli website and have a read! Let me know what you think. You can find the interview here.

Also, you can use my code “SamiBloom” at checkout to receive a 15% discount on any purchase! There are A LOT of goodies – but some of my favourites are the essential oils (sorry, just all of them), the Kester Black nail polish (Fairy Floss), Adorn concealer and the Mokosh Hydrosol Toner 🙂

Thanks for reading my loves and enjoy my interview!

Sami xx

 

 

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