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There are two types of people in this world.

The first, like us, tends to curl up in a ball of self-pity after a night of heavy drinking, only to emerge from their fortress of blankets when the delivery driver arrives with the essential three-in-one and diet coke combo.

The second, unlike us, would rather spend the morning after the night before working up a sweat in an attempt to rid their body of any remaining alcohol and toxins – and while this may certainly sound like the smarter choice, research has shown that working out is actually one of the worst things we can do while hungover.

Speaking to HuffPost, Mark Leyshon, senior policy and research officer at Alcohol Concern, explained why your post-drinking gym routine is a big ole' waste of time:

"Our performance after drinking will be pretty underwhelming," he said.

"Alcohol makes our kidneys produce more urine, causing dehydration which will only be made worse by exercising, leading to reduced performance."

"No amount of exercise can reduce the effects of a hangover," he concluded.

What's more, as well as being fairly pointless, exercising after a night out can actually be pretty dangerous.

While you may feel OK, any alcohol left in your system could affect your co-ordination, thus increasing your risk of strain or injury.

Dr Sarah Jarvis, Drinkaware’s medical advisor, warned “you’re more likely not to know your limits – for instance, if you’re lifting weights. That means you’re much more likely to suffer an injury or strain something, which could put you out of action for a much longer time.”

In other words – stay in bed, drink plenty of water and cancel the gym class.

We'll drink to that!

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KBC and WellFest are returning to bring Europe's largest outdoor health, fitness and wellness festival all around Ireland on a summer tour.

Which city is next on their wellness pop-up list? Cork Showgrounds, Curraheen. 

Corkonians will get a real taste of what WellFest is all about on July 6, with experts such as Karl Henry, Roz Purcell and Derval O'Rourke set to feature.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Tickets to the Cork wellness event are now on sale, and those who attend can look forward to leaving the place feeling refreshed and inspired to put health first.

The pop-up has the most incredible line-up, involving some of Ireland's biggest names in the health and fitness industry.

Bestselling cookery author, personal trainer and host of podcast Bite Back, Roz Purcell, will make an appearance. The nation's leading personal trainer, broadcaster, and host of The Real Health podcast, Karl Henry, will also be a guest.

We're so excited to see Olympian, world champion, bestselling author and coach on Ireland's Fittest Family, Derval O’Rourke on the panel. She's an absolute queen.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Tom Dalton, founder of TD Fitness, will also be on the discussion panel, as well as Damy Redmond of Platinum Pilates; The Coaching Circle; mobility expert Brian O’Loughlin of Movement 101 and yoga and meditation instructor Lee Tracey.

Some of the highlights from the day includes a wellness panel with the three line-up stars, Pilates with Damy Remond, bodyweight HIIT with Tom Dalton and a slow yoga flow and meditation with Lee Tracey to wind the day down with relaxation.

Self-care, self-belief and resilience will also be a prime focus of the day thanks to The Coaching Circle. It's guaranteed to inspire you to progress yourself, a bit like The Fab Five from Queer Eye.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The WellFest Summer Tour hosted a sold-out wellness pop-up event for 500 lucky visitors in Salthill, Galway recently.

The tickets to the Cork day are highly limited, and are available now for only €20 on wellfest.ie. Cork WellFest will occur from 10am until 3:30pm in the Cork Showgrounds.

In 2019 alone, Wellfest has attracted over 10,000 people to it's life-changing event, which promotes a healthy lifestlyle both physically and mentally. This year looks set to be the best yet.

Feature image: WellFest.ie

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If you’re looking for ideas for lunchtime … look no further. We’ve teamed up with Dubliner Lighter to bring you our favourite cheese recipes that are perfect for lunch.

Dubliner Lighter Courgette Fritters

These are so gorgeous and they’re ridiculously easy to make.

Makes 9 – 12 fritters, depending on size, and has 102kcal/100g

Ingredients

2 Courgettes, grated

85g flour

3 spring onions, finely sliced

2 eggs

100g Dubliner Lighter White, grated

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp black pepper

Method

Place all ingredients together in a large bowl then mix until all ingredients are combined.

Heat a large frying pan over medium high heat, when hot, lower temperature to medium heat then add a drizzle of olive oil.

Drop large spoonful’s of mixture into the pan, use the back of the spoon to flatten fritters slightly and cook for about 4 minutes. Flip fritters over and cook for another 3 – 4 minutes.

Leave cooked fritters to drain on paper towel while you cook the remaining mixture.

Serving tip: Delicious served with a dollop of sour cream.

 

Dubliner Lighter Phyllo Pizza

Who doesn’t love pizza? This one is seriously tasty and makes a great homemade alternative to the shop bought ones.

This recipe makes one pizza, and 241kcal / 100g

Ingredients

Makes 1 pizza

Ingredients

3 phyllo pastry sheets

Olive oil

2-3 tbsp passata

4 slices Dubliner Sliced Lighter Red

4 slices Dubliner Sliced Lighter White

Salt & pepper

Toppings: tomato, mushroom, rocket, peppers, onions, corn – really anything you love

Method

Preheat oven to 220°C / 200°C fan assisted and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Lay 1 sheet of phyllo onto the baking tray then lightly brush one half with olive oil. Fold pastry in half then brush the top lightly with olive oil. Lay another sheet of phyllo on top, making sure the edges are mostly lined up, then repeat above steps until you have 6 layers of phyllo in total.

Spread passata over the pastry then arrange Dubliner Lighter slices on top. Add your favourite toppings to your pizza then bake in the oven until edges are crisp and golden, about 4 -5 minutes.

Enjoy while hot.

 

Dubliner Lighter Sweet Potato Taco Fries

Sweet potato tacos are a real favourite of mine at the moment, perfect for a lunchtime pick me up, they’re tasty and warming.  In fact, they would suit any meal time. This one is simple to pull together, and of course it’s with Dubliner Lighter cheese which has 33% less fat.

This recipe serves 4 and has 104 kcal / 100g

Ingredients

– For the fries

2 large or 3 medium sweet potatoes

Olive oil

Salt & pepper

– For the mince

500g beef mince

1 onion, roughly diced

1 carrot, finely diced

1 red chilli, roughly chopped

1 packet taco seasoning

2 tbsp

tomato purée

1 tsp salt

½ tsp ground black pepper

1 can kidney beans, drained

– To serve

Dubliner Lighter White, grated

Crème fraîche

Fresh chilli, sliced

 

Preheat oven to 200°C / 180°C fan assisted and line a baking tray with tinfoil. Cut sweet potato lengthways into wedges then loosely arrange on prepared baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and a bit of pepper. Lightly toss.

Bake until cooked through, 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile for the mince, heat a large pan over high heat, when hot drizzle with olive oil then add the mince. Cook until mince is browned.

Lower heat to medium then add the onion, carrot and chilli. Cook until the onions have softened, 2-3 minutes.

Add the taco seasoning, tomato purée, salt and pepper, stir through. Add the kidney beans then leave to simmer on low heat until the sweet potato fries are cooked.

To serve, spoon mince on top of sweet potato fries then top off with a generous handful of grated Dubliner Lighter White cheese, crème fraîche and sliced chilli.

 

Dubliner Stuffed Aubergine Boats

This is a brilliant way to include Aubergine in your diet, providing you with fibre, vitamins B1, B6 and potassium. They’re also full of antioxidants (the skin especially), so if you’re not already eating them, start now.

This recipe serves 4 and has 133 kcal / 100g

Ingredients

2 aubergines

Olive oil

1 red onion, roughly chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

½ tsp salt

125g cherry tomatoes, quartered

100g quinoa, cooked in vegetable stock

200g Dubliner Lighter Red Cheese, grated

Pine nuts, optional

Method

Pre-heat oven to 200°C / 180°C fan assisted and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Cut the aubergines in half lengthways. Using a sharp knife, cut a 1cm boarder inside aubergine halves, then use a spoon to help remove the flesh from the middle. Roughly dice the removed aubergine flesh and set aside.

Brush hollowed out aubergine boats with olive oil, place cut side up on the baking tray then bake for about 20 minutes until cooked and the edges are starting to char slightly.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Heat a large frying pan on medium high heat then drizzle with 1-2 tbsp olive oil. Add the diced aubergine and allow to brown slightly, stirring occasionally. Lower the heat to medium low and continue to cook until aubergine is mostly cooked through.

Add the onion, garlic and salt and cook until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in the cherry tomatoes and cooked quinoa, cook for further 5 minutes until tomatoes start to soften and release their juices. Remove from heat and stir in 150g of the grated Dubliner Lighter Red cheese.

Spoon filling into the roasted aubergine boats and sprinkle each with pine nuts (or any other seed of your choice) and the remaining 50g grated Dubliner Lighter Red cheese.

Return to the 200°C / 180°C fan assisted oven and bake for 10 minutes, or until the cheese on top has melted.

Serve immediately.

 

Dubliner Burrito Bowl

Don’t spend a fortune at lunchtime buying these – not only are they expensive, but they won’t taste half as good as the one you make yourself.

This recipe serves 4 and has 110 kcal / 100g

Ingredients

For the mince

2 tbsp olive oil

500g beef mince

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp smoked paprika

½ tsp cayenne pepper

1 (400g) can chopped tomato

1 (400g) can kidney beans, drained

250ml beef stock

Salt & pepper

For the salsa

4 tomatoes, seeds removed & finely chopped

¼ red onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tbsp fresh lime juice

½ red chilli, finely chopped (optional)

To assemble

4 portions cooked basmati rice

Cooked mince

2 avocados, sliced

Salsa

150g Dubliner Lighter Red Cheese

Sour cream

Fresh coriander, roughly chopped

Method

To cook the meat, heat pan on medium high heat. Add olive oil then add the mince. Break up large pieces with a fork and spread out over surface of the pan. Brown the meat, stirring occasionally.

Lower heat to medium then add the onion, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook further 1 minute.

Stir in the cumin, smoked paprika and cayenne pepper. Add the chopped tomato, kidney beans and beef stock. Stir to combine, then leave to simmer on medium low heat until half of the liquid has been reduced, stirring occasionally. Between 15-20 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add salt & pepper as needed. Remove from heat.

While mince is cooking, make the salsa. Combine all salsa ingredients and stir together. Chill in the fridge until needed.

To assemble the burrito bowl, spoon a layer of cooked Basmati rice into serving bowls. Spoon cooked mince over about half of the rice, then spoon fresh salsa next to the mince, covering about 1/8 of the rice. Arrange half an avocado on top, then sprinkle generously with Dubliner cheese. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve with sour cream on the side.

 

These gorgeous recipes are all made with Dubliner Lighter which has 33% less fat, for more great recipe ideas you can follow them here on facebook or here on insta.

 

 

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The vast majority of us feel we could do with putting in a little more effort when it comes to maintaining or improving our fitness levels.

When social media is awash with countless #fitspo posts and innumerable gym selfies, it can be difficult not to feel like you're falling short in a society seemingly obsessed with squats, deadlifts and gains.

But if you think this feeling may ultimately work to your benefit and force you to step up, recent research suggests that it may actually do more harm than good.

According to a study conducted at Stanford University, believing you are lazy or less active than your peers can have a serious impact on your health, and in some cases reduce your life span.

Using data collected from more than 60,000 people in the United States over two decades ago, researchers established a connection between a lack of belief in one's fitness ability and recorded deaths.

Commenting on the significance of the findings, researcher, Alia Crum, said: "Our findings fall in line with a growing body of research suggesting that our mindsets – in this case, beliefs about how much exercise we are getting relative to others – can play a crucial role in our health."

Highlighting the impact mindset has on one's physical health, she continued: "It’s time that we start taking the role of mindsets in health more seriously."

"In the pursuit of health and longevity, it is important to adopt not only healthy behaviours, but also healthy thoughts."

"So much effort, notably in public health campaigns, is geared toward motivating people to change their behaviour: eat healthier, exercise more and stress less. But an important variable is being left out of the equation: people’s mindsets about those healthy behaviours."

The study was published in the journal of Health Psychology.

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If you're a social media lover in Ireland, and addicted to beauty and cosmetic products, you have DEFINITELY heard of Niamh Cullen and Aideen Kate.

As two of the country's biggest influencers, with a following of 200,000 followers between them. they're a force to be reckoned with.

Niamh focuses more on lifstyle, health and fitness, and Aideen is the queen of make-up on Instagram. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Now the pair have officially joined forces to produce a weekly podcast together, and we couldn't be more excited,

The gals captioned their first post on the new Instagram page, Influencer is a Dirty Word;

"New podcast coming Sunday. Episode 1: How To Deal With A Breakup. Grab your hunnies and some snacks (or some dranks), available on YouTube."

Image: @niamhcullenx/Instagram

The two teased their new project via their Instagram stories yesterday, saying, "How to deal with a break-up? Or how to help a friend dealing with a break-up? Go!!!" 

Niamh and Aideen suggested that their followers ask them questions, but their fans had no idea that a podcast was coming.

We're assuming that Influencer is a Dirty Word is about life as Instagram royalty, brand ambassadors and garnering a following of thousands, while looking and feeling great.

Image: @niamhcullenx/Instagram

This is major news for the influencer industry, which is growing more and more competitive.

We can't wait to hear all their gossip about their work-life, wellness tips and discussions about young women going through problems in their daily lives. 

The gals are unreal on their own, but we're delighted they've decided to come together for the magic of podcasts. It's sure to be a great one to listen to with your mates and a bottle of Pinot Grigio.

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Vogue Williams has shared the most encouraging message to women who are trying to be more active this year.

Many of us have vowed to join the gym, cut down on junk food and eat more greens this year, but it isn’t always easy.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by voguewilliams (@voguewilliams) on

Vogue, who is a fitness fanatic, admitted that even she can struggle with staying focused on working out and eating well.

She posted a bikini photo to Instagram alongside the most honest message: “It’s January so I know lots of people will be starting at the gym. Firstly the fact you’ve even started is unreal, don’t feel intimidated in there.”

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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She told her followers to go to classes, get the odd PT and you’ll be flying in no time.

The DJ explained that she adores going to the gym, especially because of the impact it has on both her physical and mental health.

“It’s great for my body but even better for my mind. Women are hard on themselves, I’m hard on myself too but I’m happy with my body now,” she wrote.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Vogue may have a figure to die for, but the mum said being slim isn’t the be all and end all.

“It made a baby, that’s what impresses me most,” the mum gushed.

“I get asked a lot about what I do to stay in shape. I’m consistent in the gym and I eat healthy ISH. I never say no to things I want but eat them in moderation,” Vogue revealed.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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She begged her followers not to fall for ‘ridiculous flat tummy shakes or diet suppressants’ that are constantly promoted by celebrities and influencers around this time of the year.

“If you want to tone up and lose weight, move more and eat healthily. It’s a slower process than a full-on diet but the results show and last longer,” she added.

We love how honest Vogue is.

Our Instagram feeds have been flooded with posts about shedding the Christmas weight and the Kardashian clan are forever promoting diet shakes so there’s no doubt Vogue’s honest and positive post has made us and a lot of other women feel far better.

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If the New Year has the wheels in motion for a brand new you – you may want to consider Thalia Heffernan's thoughts on the whole idea.

The Irish model expressed her feelings about New Year's resolutions on social media and it's massively refreshing.

As everyone larks on about their plans for the New Year and everything they're going to change – you might be feeling the pressure.

We are all guilty of trying to stick to resolutions but social media tends to put additional emphasis on succeeding to achieve a new, perfect you.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Cutting into the bullsh*t of the tradition, Thalia reminds everyone that in the grand scheme of things, it's just another day.

"I know I’m technically a day, or two, late.. yet despite this being inadvertent (or so I thought) I now think that there’s a good reason for it. The New Year is, of course, a good place to ‘Start’.. a grander version of the Monday so to speak.."

"But with this little box and small space, I want to share some of my truth- instead of filling you with the weight of the aspirations and resolutions that are being thrown around… It’s just another day," she wrote.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by ThaliaAngelHeffernan (@thaliaheffernan) on

That doesn't mean that she is discouraging you from wanting to reach your goals, but she puts the notion of resolutions into perspective and issues a reminder not to pressurise yourself in attempting to achieve the better version of yourself.

"Now, I mean that in the most inspirational way possible! Every single day you wake up is a blessing in itself. However, please don’t put yourself under strain because of a date in a calendar, a benchmark set by society, because you are more than that," she explained.

"I know I struggle with the concept of being a ‘new me’ due to an annual change, and I also know that I shouldn’t. So I guess I’m just saying that a New Year, or a Monday, or because your sister, cousin or best friend is doing something doesn’t mean that it’s right for you," she added.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by ThaliaAngelHeffernan (@thaliaheffernan) on

Wrapping up the inspiring caption, Thalia dished up some good ole self-love and encouragement.

"And a day in the year certainly shouldn’t demand you to be a ‘better’ version of yourself. You be whatever and whoever the hell you want to be and love every second," she said.

We honestly couldn't agree more, we just wished that more people on social media would adopt this idea, instead of cashing-in on the tradition.

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Christmas is the time for plenty of good grub, spending WAY too much time with the family and just taking it easy.

If fitness is a big part of your life or you're looking to keep off the pounds over the festive period, we've got some tips and tricks for staying in shape.

However, we have to say that you SHOULD indulge over the Crimbo and don't even think about the calories you're consuming.

Walks with the gal

It's a rare occasion that all the gals are off work and are free to meet up.

A walk in the park with your closest friends is a great way to move over Christmas and it's a great excuse to get away from the family for an hour or two.

It is also an activity that you can tailor into your festive schedule, so it could be a quick 20 min chat-up or a two-hour stroll.

Ice Skating

It's the best winter fun around and ice skating can help to digest all the mince pies you've inhaled.

In general, a 45-minute muck-about on the ice will melt away 451 calories.

So get the fluffy socks out and lace up to enjoy some winter fitness.

Hiking

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Stephen James (@coverandcharacter) on

Wrap up warm and get the hiking boots on.

There are plenty of trails and hikes to discover over the festive period.

It will give you an opportunity to reconnect with nature and to slow down after a year of working.

Water

Central heating, consuming large amounts of salt and being inactive can lead to one thing – dehydration.

So make sure that you keep one healthy habit this Crimbo and keep the water on hand.

Your body will thank you for it as it attempts to digest an uncountable number of roses sweets. 

Christmas Day swim 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Change up the way you start your Christmas day with a dip in the sea.

Make sure you find a safe swimming spot and enjoy the freezing cold, crisp open water.

Cold water boasts many healing properties such as easing depression.

It's a great way to end the year. 

5km Festive run

It's a tradition for a lot of households to do a 5 km run to kick off the festive season.

If you can drag any family member out on Christmas morning, it's a perfect way to start the day.

If your boyfriend's relatives do a 5km run for fun – we are sending you sympathy hugs (and there's still time to break-up with him before Christmas).

But they might be onto something as the run will ignite those endorphins (aka happy hormones) – and it doesn't matter if you run, walk or crawl the 5 km.

Stepping your way into the sales

Get in those steps as you hit the sales this year.

Elbows out as you wade your way through the crowds and snap up some bargains.

All your muscle power will come in handy as you wrestle the last pair of Gucci gloves out of an old lady's hands – they're stronger than they look.

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The holy day of shopping is almost upon us – this Friday, November 23 is the sacred Black Friday and we CAN'T wait.

Get the Christmas list out and nab a bargain, and treat yourself too.

We've done ALL the hard work to make your shopping stress-free and complied those all-important codes.

Fashion

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by boohoo.com (@boohoo) on

Boohoo was unreal last year, with 50 percent off. But this year, they're set to take it one step further.

They have dedicated a page to their savings this year, which includes early collection releases and top tips on how to make the best savings.

Pretty Little Things haven't missed out on the Black Friday magic and have set up this page for all the savings.

They're currently running a warm-up too, so save 30 percent using the code Cyber 30 in ROI and 25 percent if you're a UK hun, using the code EARLY25.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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ASOS isn't playing around this year and has promised the biggest sale event of the year this Friday. You can head to this page to keep up-to-date with all the glorious savings you can make.

But if you can't wait until the end of the week, head to their outlet to enjoy 70 percent off brands.

Missguided have already got underway with the incredible Black Friday deals, so shop at your own pace and enjoy an incredible 50 percent off everything* using the discount code: CYBER50.

They have claimed they are "going harder than previous years" with their sale on Friday, so this will definitely be one to stop by and snap up some fantastic offers. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Littlewoods also got in on the action, they are holding a Black Friday Week, kicking off November 19 with new deals to be launched daily throughout the week and right into Cyber Monday.

The savings have come early for all you Nasty Gafans, they have kicked off with 50 percent off everything* with the code: OHSNAP.

Forever 21 are counting down to Black Friday with deals all week. 

H&M are currently preparing for the Friday madness with a 50 percent off Denim and Basics. Stay tuned later this week to see the real H&M Black Friday beast unleashed.

River Island has a 30 percent off partywear in the lead up to Black Friday in the UK and ROI.

Zara always goes big for this shopping holiday and this year is no different – for the sales sign up to their newsletter and get on site or in store on Friday. 

Fitness

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Gym+Coffee (@gympluscoffee) on

Gym + Coffee are ahead of the game and have released their Black Friday deals already. Their website is a haven of savage bargains and for you Irish gals, their Dundrum store is in full on sale mode. 

Gymshark has fitness fans hyped for a 70 percent sale this Black Friday.

The company released the good news on their Twitter.

And for all you protein junkies, MyProteins Black Friday sales have already begun with a minimum 40 percent off using the code: BLACK.

If you're looking for a fitness tracker, such as Fitbit or GarminCurrys are running amazing deals – so snap up a bargain.

The Nutri Bullet is in every fitness junkies wet dream, and Lidl has unleashed a huge saving on the product. This Friday, you can purchase the 600 series Starter Kit for €49.99 or £39.99.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Nike has daily deals in the lead up to the big day, so check out their website.

JD Sports are also splashing out the savings and before the big day, you can head over and save 50 percent on their men's tees, vests and shorts, and 50 percent off women's tops and shorts too in Ireland. Or if you're located in the UK, they have a 50 percent sale off all clearance AND an extra 20 percent off if you use Unidays. 

Adidas love Black Friday and this year won't be any different, so make sure you keep an eye on their website.  

Tech

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Harvey Norman Ireland (@harveynormanie) on

Argos has launched their Black Friday deals already and they will last until November 27, so if you're in need of a telly or laptop, you know where to shop.

The king of the deals Amazon, has incredible savings on all your tech gear and they've already got their sale well underway.

One place we didn't think of looking for our tech goodies was Lidl. But the supermarket has some UNREAL deals on tablets and the Philips 6203 Series 50" 4K Ultra Slim Smart LED TV. Check out the sweet deals if you're an ROI gal, here. Or if you're a British babe, here.

Harvey Norman are also getting involved in the action and you can sign up to their email service to get all the best offers.

Make-up & Skincare

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Therapie Clinic are offering a massive 20 percent off for Black Friday. The Therapie Clinic Black Friday sale is running from November 19 to 25, AND, beauty lovers can get 20 percent off laser hair removal, skincare treatments and gift vouchers this Black Friday. To check out their sweet deals and all the T&C's, see their website

Beauty Bay are taking part in this week's events and have said that their offers are on their way.

The savings are already happening at Superdrug, from toothbrushes to make-up and skincare, check them out here if you're from the UK and here if you're from Ireland.

Boots have also joined the fun and enjoy a variety of savings on a wide number of items here (ROI) and here (UK). 

Homeware

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Argos Home (@argoshome) on

Debenhams are spoiling us with offers starting from Tuesday, November 20, and their Black Friday sale won't be one to miss with their furniture deals. You can update the decor just in time for Christmas. 

Argos have some sweet deals on their homeware and hopefully, they'll only get better as the week goes on.

Harvey Norman has loads of live Black Friday offers, which includes 60 percent off bedroom furniture and 50 percent off dining furniture. 

House of Fraser currently have up to 60 percent off on selected lines, so go check them out.

I can hear your bank account screaming from here, happy shopping. 

 

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The power of protein is everywhere.

Traditionally, the magic amino acid was used by bodybuilders and fitness junkies.

However, in recent times it has become the answer to all our problems – appetite unsatisfiable? – protein. Want to lose weight? – protein. Want to keep your hair, skin, and nails looking on point? – protein…the list goes on.

In fact, we are so obsessed with it, there are 21.6 million posts on Instagram about it – and naturally, businesses have seized the chance to cash-in on this market.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by SparkFit  (@gemgyms) on

And we LOVE it, as 43 percent of Brits have confessed to buying some form of  'protein' marketed product in the past.

18 to 24-year-olds are those of us most likely to gorge on the protein-enhanced foods. 

Our supermarkets are now a haven for protein products screaming at us that they contain a ridiculous amount of the holy nutrient, from bagels to bars to bread. 

But you better believe that you'll be paying a pretty penny for these foods.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Pui Pui (@puiandthe4m) on

However, are we being scammed into forking over more money for the added protein, compared to generic forms of the same foods?

Well, the good people from Wren Kitchens went to investigate and their results might surprise you.

In a new Behind the Label study, they analysed how much more protein you’re really getting (if any) for the premium price you’re paying.

Kicking it off, we look at nuts – a popular brand of nuts has a "protein mix" in their range and boasts 20 g of the magic nutrient for 100 grams, but it'll set you back £2.25 for that amount.

Whereas a supermarket equivalent was 63 p for 100 grams of nuts, that had 19.3 g of protein.

Moving to granola, for 100 grams a popular brand slapped some more protein into your brekkie bowl  – 13 grams to be exact, which cost you 63 p.

However, you could have gotten 10.3 grams of protein for the same amount for 20 p by going with a non-protein branded granola.

Not forgetting the yoghurts: the two protein yoghurts which had 10g and 11.1g of protein labelled on their packaging for 100 grams would cost you 55 p or £1.08 respectively.

This is compared to a non-branded protein yoghurt which would set you back 50p per 100g – but it contains 10g protein.

And of course, we can't leave out our carb mates; the bagels. 

When you get your hands on a protein bagel, each one will cost you 35 p and will have a decent 8.5 g of the amino acid.

Nevertheless, the non-protein bagel reigned carb-champ – with 9.8 grams of protein at just 24 p per rounded goodness.

But perhaps we are overdoing the trend, as the latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey found that the average UK adult consumes up to 55 percent more protein than they actually need.

The UK Reference Nutrient Intake (RNI) recommends we consume 0.75g for each kg of weight, which, based on average weights, which roughly translates into 55g for the lads and 45g for the ladies.

Expert nutritionist Charlotte Stirling-Reed explains: "Protein is an essential macronutrient especially important for the growth, development, and maintenance of bones and muscles in the body."

"Most of us get more than enough protein in our everyday diet, and so it's not something that we need to think about supplementing too often. However, for some, such as athletes, those training intensely, or very active individuals they may have extra requirements for protein to support muscle growth and repair."

"To put it simply, unless advised by a medical professional, you don't need to be eating protein-specific products. If you find them to be a convenient way to top up your intake or to help you spread your protein intake across the day, there is no real problem with using them. However, it's important to remember you can get all the protein you need from everyday foods."

So before you reach for the product that promises you heaps of protein – ask yourself two questions.

Do you really need that much protein? And can you find a cheaper alternative that has similar protein levels for a quarter of the price?

And remember – Pop-eye built his muscle on spinach.

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Let's face it, most of us would benefit from a little extra time outdoors, but busy schedules and work commitments don't make it easy.

According to the Mayo Clinic, healthy adults should should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day and while it can be hard to set aside half an hour of your time, there are little ways you can increase your activity throughout the day – and you won't even know you're doing it. 

1. Stop meeting for lunch

For many of us, lunch dates are our go-to way to catch up with friends with haven't seen in a while.

We're not saying you should completely cut it out of you routine, I mean who doesn't love a good moan while enjoying a flat white and tuna melt? 

But the next time your mate asks you to meet up, why not suggest something outdoorsy and active like going for a hike, walking your dogs or you could even try your hand at rollerblading? (can you imagine the lols?)

2. Cycle to work

OK, so not everyone will be in a position to do this one, but if you do live close enough to your place of work, why not give it a try?

You'll save money, gain fitness and probably shed a few pound while you're at it.

Bikes can be pretty costly investments, but have a look around online – you'll be surprised at what you can get second hand. 

3. Park farther away

If driving is a must for your daily commute, make a conscious decision to park farther away.

The extra few steps may not seem like much, but they all add up.

4. Get out of the office

Even if it's end of the month or a 'sad desk lunch' kind of day, make the effort to step away from your station for a while.

You don't need us to tell you just how bad sitting at a desk all day can be for your health, and getting out into the fresh air, even just for a few moments, can be hugely beneficial for both your mind and body. 

5. Laugh more

Studies have shown that laughing for just a few minutes per day can burn up to an extra 40 calories – that's about 12 grapes for reference.

So, binge-watching that hilarious Netflix series may not be so bad for you after all. 

 

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If you curse like a sailor during your workout sessions, you may actually be doing your body good.

According to recent research conducted at Keele University, swearing can increase an individual's strength and stamina as well as doing wonders for their pain threshold.

To test the hypothesis, researchers created two groups, one of which was advised to curse 30 seconds before cardio and strength training, the second of which was advised to say a 'neutral' word.

Researchers discovered that the group who cursed exhibited more power and strength than the other group.

Speaking to Newsweek, Richard Stephens explained that "on one measure of power in the first five seconds, it was a four percent increase in the swearing versus non-swearing group, then across the full 30 seconds it was about two percent increase."

"In the grip task they produced about eight percent stronger grip in swearing versus non-swearing. Quite why it is that swearing has these effects on strength and pain tolerance remains to be discovered."

"We have yet to understand the power of swearing fully," he added.

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