Tennis Fashion for Spring/Summer 2018: My Picks

This has been a long, drawn-out winter and I am starting to get cabin fever from playing tennis week in, week out in a large, stuffy heated balloon. But luckily I live in Italy and I know that very soon we will have lots of warm, sunny days, and the clay court will quickly dry out, and I’ll soon be back to playing in the fresh air in my favourite summer tennis outfits.

It will soon be time to relegate those black leggings and black hoodies to the back of my activewear chest of drawers, and bring my colourful skirts, dresses and tops back to the forefront. I might even add some pastel pieces, as these feature heavily in the latest tennis fashion for spring/summer 2018. I particularly like the salmony orange colours introduced by adidas in their 2018 Roland Garros collection, and the Hawaiian feel of the latest Lucky in Love collection has me dreaming of long summer evenings (playing tennis and drinking Aperol Spritz!). Check out my spring/summer tennis fashion picks below and let me know what you think.

Please note that the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a small commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link. This helps to support my blog, and comes at no additional cost to you. You can actually get a 10% discount on all these products from Tennis Warehouse Europe by using my VIP code 40ISHLOV10 – happy spring/summer tennis shopping!

[shopr collection=”spring-summer-tennis-style”]

High Protein Vegan Rice and Peas

I love rice and peas. It is such as simple dish, and is perfect for when you aren’t feeling too great (perhaps due to a few too many glasses of vino the night before – as was the case for me when I cooked this for dinner earlier this week!). Since I have transitioned to a vegan/plant-based diet I have been thinking of ways to make this into a high protein vegan meal. The other day I stumbled upon frozen edamame beans as I was picking up my peas in the supermarket, and I decided to give them a try (after having seen them pop up many times on my Instagram feed). They pack a whopping 12 g of protein per 100 g (which is about 3 times more than peas). Here are some other benefits of this meal:

  • As it is uses frozen vegetables, it is great for those days when you are running low on fresh vegetables.
  • Edamame beans (which are green soybeans) are a ‘complete protein’ (i.e. they include all nine essential amino acids). However, in addition to being just like an animal-based protein, they are also packed with dietary fibre.
  • There is very minimal chopping to do (just the onion) and you just chuck everything in a pan and leave it for 25 mins. This also means hardly any washing up!

Ingredients (Serves 1)

75 g of brown rice

Half a red onion, chopped

100g frozen edamame beans

100g frozen peas

Large handful of spinach

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

Method

Sauté the chopped onion in a pan with a glug of olive oil for a few minutes.

In the meantime boil the kettle.

Add the rice and heat for about 1 minute.

Next add the peas and the edamame beans and heat for a further minute.

Add boiling water (which should be twice the volume of the rice – I find the rice fills about half a glass, and so I add a full glass of boiling water).

Season with salt and pepper.

Leave on a low heat with the lid on for about 25 minutes.

Add the spinach, put the lid back on and leave it to wilt. Stir in the spinach, e voilà!

 

 

 

 

Are You Training in the Right Shoes?

When I first started running, I bought at least four different pairs of running shoes. I got a pair of Under Amour running shoes in orange and another pair in pink/purple (so I could change as a function of what I was wearing, naturally!) and I treated myself to a pair of black Nike Free RN Flyknits on a trip to Nike Town in London, and I got some grey/black UltraBOOST adidas trainers (though I will admit I use them more as lifestyle trainers nowadays). Likewise, when I started learning to play tennis, I also invested in a few pairs of tennis shoes as I knew I couldn’t play tennis in running shoes. They just don’t have the necessary lateral support. But for some reason, I have spent the past couple of years doing HIIT workouts in the wrong trainers. When I would train weekly with a personal trainer (you can see one of my workouts on my YouTube videos here), I often wore my running shoes. I didn’t injure myself, but I certainly could have, and I do now wonder if my progress was in any way impeded by not training in the right shoes.

I stopped doing those workouts about 6 months ago, and I enjoyed the break as I had never really enjoyed them. I mean, does anyone really enjoy burpees, jump squats, scissor jumps and push ups?! However, during that time I worried I would be more likely to get injured when playing tennis if I wasn’t training my muscles (as they say, you should train to do a sport, no do a sport to train!), so one of my resolutions this year has been to do more workouts at home.  On the 1st January I downloaded the Sweat app so I could do the famous BBG workouts by Kayla Itsines. The BBG workouts are full of plyometric moves, and whilst I really do NOT enjoy jumping I know they are great for tennis players, as we need that explosive power on the court. They also include a number of weight-lifting exercises with dumbbells and medicine balls. During the first week I really struggled with some of the exercises, such as walking lunges, and I really felt my feet were unstable. I assumed this was just due to a lack of muscles, and I was sure it would get better with time. However, by the third week it suddenly occurred to me that the reason I might be so wobbly could also have something to do with my shoes. So I do some research and picked up these asics Gel-Fit Yui shoes, and during my first legs workout, I finally felt that my shoes were supporting me through the workout! I can’t believe it took me so long to realise that I would need specific shoes to train in, just as I need the right shoes for running and tennis…

Are you training in the right shoes? If not, check out some of my favourites styles for training, running and tennis below and make sure you are matching your shoes to your workout (as well as your outfit!).

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”Training-shoes” size=”large” title=”Shop my fave training shoes”]

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”Running-shoes” size=”large” title=”Shop my fave running shoes”]

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”Tennis-shoes” size=”large” title=”Shop my fave tennis shoes”]

[Remember that you can get 10% off at Tennis Warehouse Europe with my VIP code 40ISHLOV10!]

 

 

Why Am I Doing a Weekly Wellness Challenge?

Weekly Wellness Challenge

Last year I did both Dry January and Yoganuary and this year I am doing Veganuary. Apparently there is evidence that it takes between 3 weeks and a month to develop a habit, but I have to admit that I did not actually continue abstaining from alcohol after Dry January, and I can’t really say I kept up a regular yoga practice throughout the whole of last year. So despite sticking with both these activities for a full month, thoroughly enjoying the experiences, and finding them fairly easy to implement, they did not develop into habits. But why? Well, I think the reason is that when you give up something completely, or try and do something every single day without fail, it becomes difficult to keep up such extreme habits when everyday life starts to get in the way. And as soon as you start to slip, it gets easier and easier to fall back into your old habits. That said, things might be different when you have a very strong motivation for making a change. I feel a lot more passionately about eating a plant-based diet than I did about abstaining from alcohol or practicing yoga (and it wasn’t such an extreme change as I had already been eating a predominantly plant-based diet for about 2 months prior) so I think I am very likely to carry on Veganuary past February…

Right now I’m not really looking to make any more big changes to my life, but I have learned from these experiences that I really enjoy challenging myself. I don’t think it makes sense for me to wait until next January to try out something new and so, purely for fun, I have decided to test myself throughout the year and implement a Weekly Wellness Challenge. Each Sunday I will set myself a health and wellness related challenge or goal for the coming week, and I will share my progress on my Instagram stories with the hashtag #40ishloveWWC. Some of these wellness habits may stick, many probably won’t, but by sharing these challenges on social media I will be motivated to try out a number of new healthy activities that I probably wouldn’t otherwise bother to try. I won’t put myself under any pressure (as I already have a fairly busy fitness life with tennis training twice a week, tennis matches, Pilates and Kayla Itsines’ Sweat app!), and instead I’ll use it as a learning experience, to see if there are any healthy practices out there that I would actually like to implement more regularly in my life. I have already been brainstorming about the types of challenges I will set myself, and they cover various topics from food to fitness to flexibility to feelings. I’ll be looking to Instagram, Twitter and YouTube for inspiration, and if you have any suggestions on what I could/should do, just let me know in the comments below! For week one I have decided to work on my tight hamstrings and I plan do ragdoll for 3 mins each day (as described by Cat Meffan on one of her YouTube videos). Remember to follow me on Instagram to see how it goes!

Actually, why don’t you join me on the challenge?! If you subscribe to my newsletter using the form at the bottom of this page, you will receive my newsletter every Sunday and I’ll share the upcoming Weekly Wellness Challenge with you!

 

My 5 Favourite Australian Open 2018 Outfits

I’m not going to lie. I haven’t actually watched much of the Australian Open this year. It is partly the timing, as I have been busy in the mornings with meetings, dentists appointments and trying to actually do some work, but it is probably because I am not obsessed enough to make the time. My partner is though, and so we have had the telly turned on to the tennis almost all the time, and from watching Game, Schett and Mats and the odd 10 minutes of a match here and there, I have managed to pick up on an important issue, the one that has brought you to this blog post – tennis fashion!

My top 5 Australian Open 2018 outfits are shown in action in the photos below, and I have put together a ‘shop the look’ for each post, thanks to my collaboration with Tennis Warehouse Europe. Let me know which look you like best. And don’t forget, if you want to pick up any of these looks you can get a 10% discount with my VIP code 40ISHLOV10!

1. adidas Women’s Melbourne Jumpsuit

Playing tennis in a jumpsuit – what a genius idea! And it can double-up as beachwear.

Embed from Getty Images

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”australian-open-2018-look-1″ size=”medium” title=”Shop the look”]

2. Nike Women’s Spring Maria Dress

This dress is so stylish, just like Maria. It could be a bit short, or maybe it is just that Maria’s legs are so long.

Embed from Getty Images

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”australian-open-2018-look-2″ size=”medium” title=”Shop the look”]

3. adidas Women’s Spring Stella McCartney Tank and Skirt

It’s all in those details: the zips, the cut-out holes, the mesh…

Embed from Getty Images

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”australian-open-2018-look-3″ size=”medium” title=”Shop the look”]

4. Nike Women’s Spring Zonal Top and Ace Short

Soft colours, contrasted with black, with a nice loose fit.

Embed from Getty Images

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”australian-open-2018-look-4″ size=”medium” title=”Shop the look”]

5. Lotto Women’s Spring Nixia Dress

I do like to see matching shoes and outfit  – and what a perfect colour for spring.

Embed from Getty Images

[shopr_shopthepost collection=”australian-open-2018-look-5″ size=”medium” title=”Shop the look”]