I don’t know about you, but by the time 4pm rolls around, I need snacks! Whether its because we’ve been working long hours, been constantly on-the-go, or just had a pretty awful day, I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of giving into our temptations and grabbing something naughty to snack on between meals.

Magazines, self-proclaimed “fitness gurus” and the countless FAD diets that are around, try to brainwash us into believing that snacking is a bad habit that we should learn to break. This is simply not the case. Yes, of course, snacking on processed and sugar-laden foods is no good (so no snacking on Galaxy bars), but there is absolutely nothing wrong with snacking if you are making conscious, mindful decisions and choosing nutritious and substantial food to fuel your body with.

Studies have actually shown that eating smaller meals more often throughout the day works wonders for your body and gets that metabolism revving. And a faster metabolism = more food. And more food = happy Brooke 😀

I thought I’d share a few of my favourite snacks with you…


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Mixed nuts are one of my favourite snacks and I always make sure I have some with me wherever I go. They are perfect for keeping your hunger at bay and are a fantastic way of incorporating good, healthy fats, and a number of other nutrients, into your diet on a daily basis. Almonds, cashews and walnuts are my favourites! (If you are a regular gym-goer like me, almonds make a great pre-workout snack)


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I find that when I’m craving something sweet, berries do the trick! When you reach that point in the day when you begin to feel a little sluggish, it is so easy to give into your sugar cravings and reach for a chocolate bar. By having a small bowl of berries, the urge to snack on sugary, unhealthy food, is eliminated. Berries are very high in antioxidants and are packed full of vitamins. Blueberries are by far my favourite, although raspberries are a very close second. If you prefer dried berries, goji berries are great!


Energy balls are my go-to snack. Not only are they delicious, they are also quick, easy and relatively inexpensive to make. You can add whatever you like (nuts, seeds, dates, peanut butter, cacao powder) and create all different flavours. If you’re short of ideas, head over to Pinterest for some inspiration. They have so many recipes for you to choose from!

My personal favourite are my Peanut Butter and Cacoa Energy Balls. The recipe is below:

1 cup of gluten free oats

1/2 cup of peanut butter (I use “WholeEarth Crunchy Organic Peanut with no added sugar” as I find it gives the energy balls a great crunchy texture)

1/3 cup of honey (you can use agave nectar if vegan)

1 tablespoon of pumpkin seeds

1 tablespoon of sunflower seeds

1/2 tablespoon of cacao powder

Simply add the oats, cacao powder and seeds into the bowl first and mix to ensure everything is combined. Then gradually add the honey whilst stirring. Once the honey has combined with the oats, cacao powder and seeds, add the peanut butter and continue to stir until everything is combined and a sticky mixture has formed. Start rolling the mixture into balls (this should make around 10) and once finished, place in the fridge for 1 hour to set. The energy balls can be stored in the fridge for up to 10 days, but these are so delicious that I doubt they will last that long!


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If you don’t have time to make your own healthy snacks for during the week, TREK and NAKD bars are a great alternative. Both bars are sugar free and gluten free (the NAKD bars are also dairy free) and are made from nutritious ingredients like nuts and dried fruits. Both are free from additives, meaning they contain none of the nasty ingredients that you typically find in so called “healthy” snack or cereal bars. My favourite is the NAKD Cocoa Orange bar. It’s like a healthy Terry’s Chocolate Orange!

What are your favourite snacks? Do you have any recommendations for me?

Happy Snacking! 🙂


You may have noticed that balancedbrooke has been a bit neglected recently. Ok… a lot neglected. I could sit here and blame my endless uni assignments and exams and my unsociable and very busy working schedule, but the truth is, my blogging hiatus is purely down to one thing and one thing only. My poor health.

I’ve thought long and hard about posting this. In fact, for weeks on end I would tell myself that that day would be the day that I would have the courage to hit that “post” button and share my story and reveal the continuous torture I’ve been putting myself through for the last few years. But as each day came, I couldn’t quite bring myself to do it. I would find some excuse or other and day after day, I talked myself out of it. But mainly, I was just ashamed, embarrassed, nervous, apprehensive and anxious of the response I would get. Finally I realised I can’t run from this any longer. There’s nowhere to hide anymore. Since National Eating Disorder Awareness Week (NEDAW), I’ve seen more and more people sharing their stories and as I read more accounts of people who have been through the same situation, I finally felt as though the time was right to speak up. And so here I am, sharing my story.

Before I get started, I want to stress that I am not looking for praise or seeking approval. I am simply speaking up in the hope that I can help even just one person or encourage someone to get the help they might desperately need. My story isn’t going to be your typical story. I’m not going to talk about my life pre-eating disorder, nor am I going to discuss how I developed my anorexia. I will, however, discuss how I got to my current state of recovery, which I believe is much more important.

I’ll start by saying that I am in the VERY early stages of recovery. It’s taken a long, long time to reach this point and at times, it still seems strange to me that I have. So how did I eventually get to this stage?

Well, it wasn’t until I visited my doctors after Christmas that I realised myself just how serious things had gotten and I began to understand the physical damage I had done and was, indeed, still continuing to do. The appointment had been made by my parents behind my back (something I was furious about at the time) and I was dragged there against my own will. In the weeks prior to the appointment, my parents had continuously expressed their concern about my physical state. At the beginning, they were angry and frustrated with me and we would have the same arguments over and over again. In the end, they were pleading with me. Their concern had reached an all time high and they were now desperate for me to get better. My dad, someone that rarely shows emotion, had tried to reach out to me numerous times. As he tried to stress the worries he had, his eyes would fill up with tears and his voice would begin shaking. But still, this wasn’t enough for me to wake up and realise the torture, pain and anguish I was putting myself, and everyone else for that matter, through.

When I eventually (but very reluctantly) agreed to go along, I demanded that I saw the doctor myself. I immediately saw the concern on her face when I entered the room. As I began to explain my situation to her, she looked more and more worried and looked at me sympathetically. I could see that she understood the pain I was in yet she seemed frustrated at what I had put my body through. After we had talked in great length, she suggested that she take my measurements and weight. I freaked out and tried to refuse but I knew it was for my own good. I hadn’t weighed myself in months as I was so afraid of the number that would appear on the scale. For some reason or other, this number was something I allowed to define me over the years. I, somewhere along the road, developed the mentality that the lower the number, the “better” I was. She got me onto the scale and immediately gasped. While I won’t go into too much detail about the exact figures and numbers, I will tell you that it was shocking, even for me. As someone with an anorexic frame of mind, I always believed that I would feel amazing when I hit my lowest ever weight. But as I stood there “weighing less than your average nine year old female”, I felt the worst I had ever felt in my entire life. I had achieved what I had set out to, yet I felt empty, weak and nothing more than a shell of my former self.

After taking my measurements, she sat me down and very seriously told me that if I was to continue down this route, I would eventually die. As a matter of fact, she told me that in my current state, I had 5 months to live. I will never ever forget that moment. Ever. I remember feeling as if I was floating or having some kind of out of body experience.  I kept telling myself that she had somehow miscalculated and got something wrong. My eyes began to fill with tears and my poor, mistreated body began to shake. My chest suddenly got tighter and I tried to gasp for air. I now realise I was probably experiencing a panic attack. Something which I had experienced more often than not during the months before. She continuously asked me if I had understood the severity of the situation, I nodded and after discussing the next steps that had to be taken, I left her room. My boyfriend was waiting for me in the waiting room and when he quizzed me about the appointment, I lied to his face. I told him everything had gone fine and that the doctor had some minor concerns but I assured him that I knew what I needed to do next.

See, this is the thing with anorexia. It turns you into the worst possible version of yourself. It turns you into a compulsive liar. It turns you into an aggressive, nasty and vindictive person who wriggles their way out of every situation. You cut yourself off from the world. You stop seeing friends and are constantly “unavailable”. When family members come to visit, you refuse to take part in celebrations (even Christmas and New Year) or engage in any kind of conversation. Instead, you sit in your room (your new “safe” place), ignoring everyone and wallowing in a state of self pity.

I’d like to think that part of the reason I lied to my boyfriend that day was to save him the pain and angst that would inevitably follow. However I know that the real reason was because I was a coward. I couldn’t face up to it myself. And if I couldn’t deal with it, how could I possibly tell someone that I loved that I had destroyed my own body so much that I was now a walking time bomb? I felt overcome with guilt, anger, pain and extreme sadness. After the appointment, I went home, curled up in my bed and cried uncontrollably for a solid hour. When my mum and dad returned home from work that evening, I continued with my false story about how everything had gone ok and kept up the facade. There was just no way I could tell my mum that she could be months away from losing a child. Until this day, they still aren’t aware of the news I was given that day. I think a large part of me was still in a state of shock. The news hadn’t quite sunk in yet and muttering the words to someone else would make it all real. Very real. Perhaps, too real.

It wasn’t until I was alone that evening that I realised I now had absolutely no choice. It was either recover or die. Simple. There was no two ways about it. Either I worked to get my old life back or I’d be left with no life at all. In the following nights, I would lie in bed wondering if I would wake the next morning. I even had a nightmare once that I had passed away in my sleep. I woke up during the night drenched in sweat, and breathed a sigh of relief when I felt my heart rapidly beating and realised I was still alive.

Although I was furious at the time, I am now eternally grateful that I had been forced to go along to the doctors. Who knows where I’d be, otherwise. After that day, my whole life changed. Everything seemed different. I began to make substantial efforts to overcome my fears and I began to feel liberated and free. I would wake up happier, with more energy and for a much greater appreciation for life.

If you’re reading this and believe my story sounds similar to something you’re experiencing yourself, I’m sorry that we can relate to each other under such sad circumstances. But I do hope that my story gives you the nudge you need to speak up, seek help and take control. As anorexics we put so much emphasis on this notion of “being in control”. But really we have no control when we are in the grips of anorexia. The only time we truly gain control and can take charge is when we choose to get better. I remember thinking that there was no way I would ever life an anorexia-free life. I used to lay in bed late at night (whilst shivering cold) and worry about what my future children would think of me as I sat at the dinner table with nothing more than a glass of water or the disappointment they’d feel as I helped them cut their birthday cake but refused to enjoy a slice with them. I am by no means free of my demons and I am certainly not totally free of my anorexia, nor do I claim to be. But what I can say is, I am on my way. And that, is something I never ever thought I would be able to say. Each day I am making leaps and bounds. I am well on my way to regaining life and I am no longer ashamed by my anorexia. Sure, anorexia is a part of my life and no matter how much I hate it, it always will be a part of who I am. The difference is, I will no longer allow anorexia to define me.

I will probably never forgive myself for the things I have done: the relationships I have caused to breakdown, the pain and stress I have caused my loved ones and the damage (some maybe irreversible) that I have done to my body. But I am learning to forget and move on. For me, my recovery isn’t about regaining my old life and going back to how things were before. It’s about creating a new life. A happy life. A life that I now truly value.

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If you are worried about a family member or friend or are indeed living with an eating disorder yourself, please speak to your local GP or visit b-eat.co.uk for more information.


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Now that I am in a healthier state, both physically and mentally, I have decided to start blogging frequently again. So you can expect a lot more posts and updates from me. Don’t forget to follow BalancedBrooke to get any new posts delivered directly to your mailbox 🙂






Banana protein oats cooked with almond milk and pineapple chunks. Topped with mango, dried fruit, cashew nuts, mixed seeds and honey

Adding protein powder to your oats is a great (and easy) way to incorporate some extra protein into your everyday diet. Which, if you are a regular gym-goer, is extremely important. If like me, taking a shake everyday quickly becomes tedious and somewhat boring, try some protein oats.


– 40g Sprouted Rude Health Porridge Oats. I personally find these oats are the best in terms of taste and texture. They are also organic and gluten free. You can of course add more than 40g, but I personally find this enough.

– 1 scoop of whey protein powder. Shake things up and get creative with your flavours. Chocolate peanut butter is a favourite of mine but I’ve also tried (and loved) banoffee pie, millionaires shortbread, chocolate orange or mixed berries and banana split if I’m feeling in a slightly fruitier mood.

– Unsweetened almond milk or any other milk of your choice (I use dairy free milk as I’m allergic to dairy and find that almond milk really gets that creamy consistency)


Believe me when I say that the art of making the “perfect proats” is something I have struggled with for quite some time. However, after a lot of trial and error, I have finally managed to crack it. If like me, you love thick, creamy oats … Here’s what to do!

Place your oats and scoop of whey in a pan and add a little bit of the liquid of your choice (almond milk etc). Just enough to cover the mixture. Adding too much liquid will result in your oats becoming very thin and runny with a soup-like consistency. (Believe me, not something you want to experience!)

Once you’ve added your liquid, place the pan on a medium to high heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once boiling, leave to simmer for a further few moments. You should at this point, have a thick and creamy consistency.

Take the pan off of the heat, transfer into a bowl and get ready to go town on the toppings!


When it comes to topping your oats, the possibilities are literally endless. There are no hard or fast rules and pretty much anything goes and tastes de-licious. My favourite toppings are bananas, some form of nut butter (usually a few heaping tablespoons … guilty as charged, oops), some nuts and seeds, and if I’m feeling a little on the indulgent side, perhaps a square (or two) of Lindt 90% dark chocolate. But like I said, the list of toppings are exhaustive so play around and have some fun.

Once you’ve added your toppings, grab a spoon, delve into that bowl of oaty goodness and enjoy!

If you have any killer combo’s you think I need to try, please do share them below. Here a few of my personal favourites:

Banana protein oats cooked with almond milk and pineapple chunks. Topped with mango, dried fruit, cashew nuts, mixed seeds and honey
Banana protein oats cooked with almond milk and pineapple chunks. Topped with mango, dried fruit, cashew nuts, mixed seeds and honey
Banana and caramel protein oats with blueberries, an array of mixed nuts and seeds and some pure organic maple syrup
Banana and caramel protein oats with blueberries, an array of mixed nuts and seeds and some pure organic maple syrup
Vanilla creme protein oats cooked with almond milk, cinnamon and nutmeg. Topped with freshly stewed peaches and some organic locally sourced honey
Vanilla creme protein oats cooked with almond milk, cinnamon and nutmeg. Topped with freshly stewed peaches and some organic locally sourced honey
White chocolate protein oats cooked with rice milk. Topped with banana, mixed nuts and some honey
White chocolate protein oats cooked with rice milk. Topped with banana, mixed nuts and some honey
Chocolate, coconut and sour cherry protein oats cooked with coconut milk and coconut chips. Topped with banana, dried sour cherries and mixed nuts. All drizzled with some sugar free, calorie free coconut syrup
Chocolate, coconut and sour cherry protein oats cooked with coconut milk and coconut chips. Topped with banana, dried sour cherries and mixed nuts. All drizzled with some sugar free, calorie free coconut syrup

I would love to know if you give any of my recipes a go, so do share your pics and tag me on Instagram @balancedbrooke!


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If you know me, you’ll know that I’m pretty much a tea addict.

Whether its served with a warming bowl of porridge in the morning or simply as a calming and comforting beverage just before bed, I cannot get enough of green tea and its amazing health benefits.

Needless to say, when Buddha Teas got in touch with me and asked if I would sample some of their delicious range, I jumped at the chance. After checking out their website and researching their collection of teas, I was suitably impressed and admittedly a little overwhelmed! Their range and variety of teas is nothing short of extensive. You name it, they got it! From detoxification and muscular support to sleep/aid/relaxation and weight management, this brand have a tea for everything.

After much consideration (and yes, I changed my mind a few times!), I finally selected the Acai Berry and Green Tea and the Cranberry and Green Tea flavours. After sampling both, here is my very honest review of Buddha Teas.


Refreshing, revitalising and reviving. From the outset, I enjoyed the light and fruity flavours of both teas. Unlike other teas on the market, the flavour of these teas is much more subtle and definitely not so artificial – so if you are used to heavily flavoured teas this may take a bit of getting used to. Nevertheless, the flavour is light and delightful.

As recommended by Buddha Teas, I used fresh water to prepare my tea and allowed it to properly steep for the suggested 5-10 minutes. I found that around 7 minutes was just the perfect amount of time for me, but this will vary from person to person depending on their desired strength.

The teas can be served either hot in the traditional way or cold over some ice. Both of which are equally delicious.

All in all, I found both teas to be satisfying and flavourful, making them easy and pleasant to drink at any time of the day.


The list of pure and natural ingredients which are used in all of their teas, is perhaps what sets this brand apart from the rest. Buddha Teas have strived to ensure that their teas contain no artificial flavourings, colours or preservatives. Furthermore, their teas are also MSG free – meaning that they contain no monosodium glutamate. For those of who you don’t know, monosodium glutamate has been known to cause quite a few dangerous interactions in the human body, and you may be surprised to learn that most other brands do in fact include this harmful ingredient in their blends of so called “healthy” teas.

Additionally, both teas boast a whole lot of goodness and an array of health benefits. Containing a multitude of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants including vitamins E, C and K (as well as five different B vitamins), these teas certainly don’t fall short in the nutritional stakes, so you can be sure that this tea is packed full of wholesomeness.

The ingredients are pure and most importantly, great for your health and wellbeing.


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The tea comes presented in the most beautiful of boxes with a generous 18 tea bags in each. The tea itself comes in bleach free tea bags. Believe it or not, this is actually extremely important as chlorine bleached tea bags (the kind that most brands tend to use) contain a lot of harmful chemicals, many of which are linked to the increased risk of disease. And who wants that whilst sipping a cuppa?

Besides being much better for you, bleach-free tea bags also allow you to appreciate the tea in its purest and most natural form, capturing its true flavour.


If you’re an avid tea drinker (like me) seeking a light, pleasant and invigorating alternative to your everyday tea, then look no further. Buddha Tea have got you covered. With its stand-out ingredients and heavenly blends, this healthful and nourishing tea is sure to save you from your mid-afternoon energy slump.

Besides selling a wide selection of truly delicious teas, this brand is hugely committed to incorporating the best and most healthy ingredients into each and every one of their blends. Whether you’re sipping a calming chamomile or a spicy chai, you can be rest assured that it is packed full of all things nice.

The only negative I have (and yes, I really could only find one) is that unfortunately, this forward thinking  brand is yet to be stocked in grocery stores, supermarkets and health shops in the UK, which means that getting your hands on their blends can prove to be a rather tricky matter. If you wish to try and test their range, you will have to purchase through their website or other online retailers, so be prepared for delivery costs and perhaps a little waiting time before it arrives. But rest assured, the wait will be worth it.

To find out more about this awesome brand, head over to www.buddhatea.net, where you can browse their entire range and make a cheeky purchase 😉

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“Eat chic, eat chocolate.”


Those are the very words of Lotta Andonian, founder of Eat Chic and the beautiful brains behind the healthy but oh so yummy nut butter cups.

Founded in May 2014, Eat Chic sought to put a fresh and healthy twist on that classic American chocolate peanut butter cup that we all know too well. And boy have they achieved just that.

After passing their crowded and buzzing pop-up stand in Old Street Station one morning, I was desperate to see what all the excitement was about! So, once I got home, I hopped onto the internet and began doing my research on this brand new East London chocolatier. Scrolling through their Instagram feed had me drooling within seconds as photo after photo of their mouth-watering treats began to appear on my screen. Curious to find out more, I got in touch with the lovely Lotta who very kindly offered to meet and chat with me and provide me with some chocolates to sample and review. I was both excited and apprehensive to try what was coined as the “reinvented chocolate peanut butter cup”.

After devouring my samples, here is my very honest review of Eat Chic Chocolates.



I have to admit, before switching to an unprocessed, dairy-free and (mostly) vegan diet, Reeses Peanut Butter Cups were my all time favourite candy. Growing up in the deep heart of Texas, I got hooked on these sinful and very sugary cups from quite a young age. Everything about them just tasted so good and it wasn’t long before I was consuming these bad boys on a regular basis. I have always been a sucker for that chocolate peanut butter partnership and whoever thought up such a combination is nothing short of a genius in my eyes!

So, when I heard that a healthier, more natural alternative had been created, I have to say I was a little wary. Was it possible that something could taste so good and actually be healthy? I was intrigued and just had to try them. Considering it was being tried and tasted by a former (now recovered) Reeses addict, this little cup of goodness had A LOT to live up to.

It took just one small bite for a verdict to be reached. And what was that verdict you might ask?  Only that this was the most delicious chocolate peanut butter treat to ever have passed my lips. And trust me, I’ve tried a lotta them. This was definitely love at first bite.

The rich, smooth dark chocolate is mostly bitter with just the right amount of sweetness and the generous peanut butter filling that awaits inside, is salty, but not overly so. All in all, Lotta has created that perfect sweet and salty balance, making each and every bite a pure delight.

So how does this alternative live up to the traditional, I hear you ask. Is it on par? Does it taste somewhat similar?

Honestly? It tastes even better. Yes those may be bold words but boy they couldn’t be more true. These chocolate peanut butter cups are an absolute joy and one which you’ll never want to end!




Each peanut butter cup is packaged and labelled lovingly by Lotta herself, which I think is a lovely and very personalised touch. The simple and understated label is classy, chic (of course!) and does what it needs to without distracting from the chocolatey treasure that awaits inside. Each chocolate also comes perfectly placed inside a traditional peanut butter cup case, something which Lotta gets exported from the US especially. It’s probably worth mentioning that these cups are also the most ideal size. They’re not overly big nor are they lacking in size. They leave you feeling completely satisfied, meaning one cup is just the right amount of indulgence. Unlike store-bought chocolate, you won’t find yourself reaching for more or suddenly coming down from a sugar rush.


As someone who has grown up eating the best and most organic foods possible, it is probably no surprise that Lotta has made it her mission to source and utilise only the most superior ingredients for her chocolate treats. Each and every chocolate is handmade and uses only the highest quality 73% dark and milk chocolate and peanut butter which is only lightly sweetened. All toppings such as the Maldon Sea Salt and the Pink Peppercorn are also organic. Sourcing the best ingredients has made it possible for Lotta’s chocolates to remain gluten-free, palm-oil free, and preservative-free; with the dark chocolates being totally vegan and completely dairy-free.


The price of these scrumptious goodies cannot be faulted. Sure, they are more expensive than your traditional peanut butter cups or your run of the mill store-bought chocolate bars, but that is to be expected. Unlike the chocolate you find on the supermarket shelves, Lotta uses the highest grade ingredients and the finest and most intricate of processes to ensure each cup delivers pleasure to the lucky customer devouring it. Costing £2 for an “oversized cup” or £3.50 for a “signature box of 2 chocolates”, the prices are definitely more reasonable than some of her competitors out there!



From the packaging to the taste, Lotta has pulled out all the stops to ensure that each and every customer gets that Eat Chic experience. By creating these delectable and “guilt-free” treats, Lotta has made the impossible, possible. Gone are the days where healthy eating means cutting out tasty treats and not eating the foods you enjoy. It is indeed now possible to indulge healthily whilst ensuring that the ingredients that you fuel your body with are nothing but the best.

Are you a nutter butter fanatic? Do you go crazy for that chocolate peanut butter combo? Or perhaps you just have a sweet tooth?

If you answered yes to any of the above … what are you waiting for?! Head over to eatchic.co.uk now and get shopping! Lotta offers a range of different chocolate nut butter cups including white chocolate and blueberry jam, milk chocolate and cinnamon peanut butter and, of course, the original – dark chocolate peanut butter. So there is sure to be something there that takes your fancy! Plus, you can build your very own box, which allows you to select the exact flavour combinations you want.  What a great gift! Or perhaps, if you’re like me, just a sneaky treat for yourself. (Go on, you deserve it!!)

If you’re a little impatient and can’t quite wait to get your lips around these vegan and gluten free chocolatey delights, get yourself down to Sourced Market, Brooklyn Coffee or Organico Broadway Street in London where you can purchase these nut butter cups individually. You certainly won’t regret it and I’m about 99.9% sure you’ll thank me later. Yes, they really are that good! 

To find out more about Lotta and of course her overly delicious treats, follow @eatchic on instagram!


Having recently been featured in Vogue as one of the up and coming brands of 2015, you could say Air Food Water Gym is one to watch. But me? I’d say they’re one to follow. With an Instagram following thats growing by the second, this humble brand is going from strength to strength and is set to be one of the hottest gym wear brands London has to offer. And quite frankly, it isn’t hard to see why.

Bringing that California coolness to the streets of London, Jake Warren, owner and founder of this hip and eco- friendly East London clothing brand, has created a collection like no other. From sexy crops to laid-back sweatshirts, these simple and effortlessly chic pieces take you from sweattime to playtime in a flash, making life a whole lot less stressful.

AND, did I mention they’re totally customisable?! With a never-ending colour chart to play with, you’re in control. So, pick your colour. Pick your style. And leave the rest to Jake.


After watching this fresh new brand EXPLODE onto the scene and lusting after (and purchasing) practically every single one of their pieces, I just had to find out more!

Despite his crazily busy schedule, Jake kindly took the time out to talk to me about those very four things he holds dear: air, food, water and gym …

AFWG launched in 2014. Can you tell us where the idea came from?

Sure – I was in California early last year doing what I had always done – making music. I fell in love with the way of life there- I guess a seed was sown in my mind of a lifestyle brand that was fresh and exciting.

What does your brand stand for?

AFWG is all about feeling good and doing good.

Air Food Water Gym is a business with a purpose. Money from every item bought goes to charity “drop4drop”, which provides clean drinking water for someone for an entire year. How did you come up with this concept and why was it so important to you to give something back?

Wanting to help people on a large scale is easier when you have a large company because you can give more. Exploring drop4drop’s mission really helped me understand the power of the partnership. They know how to best allocate our donations to give communities of thousands of people easy access to clean water for the very first time.

Unlike a lot of active wear, AFWG is hand customized. Why is this important?

It was part of my initial idea that the cut and fit of the garments would be reminiscent of the free and easy vibe of 80s LA. The raw edges help give it that kind of look and feel. With the women’s designs – we’ve gone even further and create detailing that is only possible by hand.

What is your favourite AFWG piece?

The women’s braided spine is doing really well. With the men’s – I wear them all!

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What are the main challenges you have faced when developing your collection?

We have an on-going dialogue with our customers on Instagram: as we are creating for them, we love talking about what colours, styles and customisations they’re into. This allows us to be very reactive to what they want. Luckily our Instagram followers have amazing taste so we trust their opinions in the same way we hope they trust ours.

Since your launch you have been very successful. What has been the stand out moment so far?

I was recently invited to the Centre For Fashion Enterprise incubator run by Toby Meadows. He’s an International best-selling author and an expert in retail – having access to industry experts of this calibre has refined my thinking and given me invaluable support.

What are the perks of having your own company?

Being able to spend time with like-minded people, bouncing ideas around and disrupting a really exciting industry.

What keeps you motivated?

Everyday is an opportunity to create, innovate and bring something fresh and exiting into the world.

Is there anyone in particular who inspires you?

There’s a really cool guy on YouTube called Tai Lopez who lives in the Hollywood Hills. In his videos he shares knowledge on how mental and physical health are vital to living the best life possible.

How often do you train and what does your training regime look like?

I’ll go to the gym each morning 5 days a week – mostly weight training at the moment.

What are some of the best training tips you could give to someone who wants to get in shape?

Educate yourself on nutrition and fitness so you understand your body. Setting goals is important and learn to find the joy in daily discipline.

Do you have any favourite healthy dishes that you cook?

I have quite a simple and clean diet of chicken or fish, vegetables and sweet potato – everything in moderation.

Where are your favourite healthy eating spots in London?

East London Juice Co. at Box Park in Shoreditch. They make incredible cold presses, coffees and food.

What is your ultimate cheat meal?

Dirty Burger in Shoreditch or a Five Guys – something down and dirty!

Where would you like AFWG to be next year?

I’d love to also be set-up in California. Also, Instagram is amazing at connecting us to customers around the world – we’re working on new ways to develop this connection across platforms – web, mobile & bricks-and-mortar.


Head over to airfoodwatergym.com or check out @airfoodwatergym on Instagram to shop and find out more info on this awesome brand. Whilst you’re there, don’t forget to take a sneaky peak of their brand- new collection which has just dropped!


image If you haven’t heard of Barry’s Bootcamp, you’ve most likely been living under a rock. Considered “The Best Workout In The World” and promising to burn up to 1,000 calories in just an hour, this bootcamp-style class is a firm favourite amongst A-Listers, Olympians and Fitness Fanatics alike. After hearing nothing but the best about these killer classes, I decided to drag my butt out of bed on a miserable, rainy Monday morning and head down to Barry’s in Central London, to see what all the fuss was about. After completing one of the toughest yet most energising and rewarding workouts ever, here’s my review.

THE CLASS Screen Shot 2015-06-09 at 18.49.11 The particular class I booked in for was Arms & Abs with Sandy Macaskill, who also happens to be a Nike Elite trainer and the co-owner of Barry’s London. Upon arrival, Sandy warmly welcomed us into the studio and gave us a brief introduction of what we should expect from the class. As the mirrored studio turned from white to bright red and the loud but motivating music started pumping, he instructed us “treaders” to turn on our machines and begin working up a sweat.

The class itself is divided into intervals. You’ll spend 30 minutes on the treadmill doing a combination of jogging and sprinting and using a variety of speeds and inclines, and the other 30 minutes doing strength training where you will use a range of equipment including free weights and resistance bands to perform exercises designed to target specific muscle groups. Both the floor and tread routines are equally as tough, so don’t think you’ll be in for a rest when you step off that machine!

Sandy himself was encouraging yet strict, allowing you to get the most out of your workout. Any sign of you slacking off or losing motivation, he was straight over to your station to encourage you to keep going and work past your limits. Something which really spurred me on. If you’re going to go to a class at Barry’s, you most certainly want to reap the benefits! In the words of Taylor James, another Barry’s trainer, “you’ve already bothered turning up, so what’s the point of giving 70, 80 or 90%? You may as well give it your all”.

THE SHAKE image[1] Yes, I am giving “the shake” its own review! Following the intense and gruelling workout, the task of choosing which shake to refuel with, was one I found particularly difficult. The selection of shakes available at the Fuel Bar was pretty impressive to say the least. From CBPB (Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter) to Barry’s Big Banana, there’s sure to be a shake (or five), that takes your fancy. After changing my mind several times, I finally opted for the “PB&J” shake which contained unsweetened almond milk, blueberries, strawberries, peanut butter and vanilla whey protein powder. It was simply delicious and practically inhaled within five minutes. These shakes are certainly the perfect way to refuel and replenish after working out to within an inch of your life. And I can definitely understand why several Barry’s regulars joke that they only come for the shakes. If a large, peanut butter loaded, ice cold shake isn’t enough to motivate you to work up a sweat, what is?! It’s also worth mentioning that the staff at the Fuel Bar are extremely friendly and accommodating, so don’t be afraid to request a shake that fits your dietary requirements. image THE FACILITIES Screen Shot 2015-06-09 at 18.35.36 The studio at Barry’s is wall to wall with state of the art equipment and technology. The Woodway 4Front treadmills, dubbed the “finest commercial treadmills on the market”, are renowned for their unique design, impressive power and ease of use. I have to say, you really can tell that you’re using the best. This first-class machine will give you a treadmill workout like no other!

Even the changing rooms are second to none, boasting spacious showers with luxurious products from Malin & Goetz and the newest GHD dryers and straightening irons. Allowing you to go from a hot, sweaty mess to a glowing goddess before you dash off to work or head to a meeting.


At just £20 a class, I really couldn’t fault the value. At first glance, the price may seem a little steep. However, once you’ve experienced a class at Barry’s, you’ll most likely agree, that the class is actually very well priced in comparison to other exercise or workout classes in and around London. Although you are in a class with potentially 44 others, it certainly doesn’t feel that way. In fact, the class feels like your very own 1-2-1 personal training session. You can either pay as you go, book blocks of classes or sign up for their monthly academies and memberships (if you are brave enough!) The choice is entirely yours. Thanks Barry’s and the total machine that is Sandy! You’ve got me hooked and I most certainly will be returning. In fact, I am already toying with the idea of signing myself up for the Silver Monthly Membership. Yes, I may be crazy!

If you want to give the “Barry’s experience” a go, head over to http://www.barrysbootcamp.com where you can reserve your spot now! You won’t regret it!