Don’t ask for more perfume this Christmas.  Ask for more time.

It’s December and a time of year when Mums make even less time for themselves (if that’s even possible). So this month we are sharing a series of tips to help you survive the Christmas craziness. 

This week’s post is from new team member, Shona Mitchell Beat. As former COO of meditation App Headspace it’s fair to say she knows a thing or two about mindfulness. As a new Mum she also knows just how hard it is to make time for herself. Here are her tips for how to squeeze in a few minutes that are just for you…

shona

Before I got pregnant, I was in a blissful place.  Having gone through a debilitating period of anxiety and panic attacks at 30, I discovered meditation, and it was a game changer.

As soon as I realised the immediate benefits and positive impact on my health and wellbeing, I got stuck right in!   I sat for 40 minutes in the morning, (yep, that’s 40, not 4), and 40 minutes in the evening.  That’s 1 hour and 20 minutes to myself a day meditating, finding peace, clarity and calm.  The kind of calm that followed me around all day like a waft of beautiful incense or the light of 100 candles.  Life felt totally doable.

As I said, that was before I got pregnant.

Morning sickness, (which is a stupid name – it’s 24 hours a day), hit me hard.  No one, and I mean no one can meditate when they are vomiting in the toilet for hours a day.  How can you meditate for even 10 minutes when you only just managed to get to work and back before your head hit the pillow (or floor, if the bed was too far away), and you were out like a light until the following day, by which point the toilet once again became your best friend for a few hours?

Getting pregnant was my first experience into the world of motherhood.  And the lesson was hard and fast – your life will never be your own again, and from now on, a magical little being(s) will be the boss of your time.

So us Mums have to dig deep.  There is no question that we have to put our own oxygen mask on first.  Motherhood pulls on your energy sources in so many ways, so you have to top them up each week as best you can.  It’s vital.  Do not underestimate the impact on your nervous system and stability of nightly wake up calls, chaotic birthday parties, and drawn out negotiations to get a coat on little arms whilst stood in the pouring rain.

No I don’t meditate for 40 minutes a time now.  I do 10 minutes a few times a week when my daughter naps, or I’m on the bus, or I’m walking with the pushchair, (yes, walking meditation is a thing).  I run (proudly sporting my #Fearless TMR jumper!), for 20 minutes when I can, to feel the rain, to get some peace.  And when I can’t meditate in the day, I do it lying down as I fall to sleep, (try Yoga Nidra – it’s the ultimate meditation for the woman with no time).

So in the lead up to Christmas, don’t ask for more perfume.  Ask your loved ones for more time.  Just 10 minutes of it.  Plug in your earphones, sit back, and let someone guide you through a meditation. Prefer to meditate on the go?  Add a meditation practice to your run.  There’s a whole series of running meditations on the Headspace app.

However you chose to take your ‘me time’, just make sure you take it. I promise you, it’ll be the best gift you get.

Skincare Survival tips for winter running

Corinne Thomas is a This Mum Runs Runner, Mum of two, Founder of Rare Beauty and natural skincare expert shares her Top Five Winter Skin Tips for us this week.

corinne running

As a busy mum myself I know how hard it is to look after your skin at the best of times. Winter can be a tough time for skin, as dehydration, lack of natural sunlight and possibly the odd over-indulgence starts to take its toll.

So here are my Top Five Skincare Survival Tips to get you through Winter Running, Christmas Indulgence and New Year’s Resolutions looking glowing and feeling positive!

1. PROTECT Before Long Runs

After a long training run on a cold Winter’s day, cheeks are burning, knuckles feel raw, lips are sore and chapped. So protect hands, lips and cheeks with a 100% plant-based natural balm or salve before going out on a run. The balm will act as a barrier, helping to protect skin from the elements. It will perform a similar action to petroleum-based barrier ointments but it also allows skin to breathe. Afterwards, skin feels
refreshed, nourished and less stingy.

Skin-soothing & protecting ingredients to look out for: Calendula; Chickweed;
Beeswax; Shea or Avocado Butter.

2. SCRUB UP Once a Week

This time of year our skin can get very dry. It stays under clothes a lot so pores can get more easily blocked leading to spots and things like central heating plays havoc with our already reptilian-looking legs!

A once weekly proper scrub down, either with scrub packed full of enlivening natural ingredients such as salt, sugar, coffee OR a dry body brush pre-shower will really help.

For the face, use a warm, wet exfoliating face cloth or muslin (an old baby one will do) to gently buff skin after cleansing. The old dry skin will be sloughed off and ingrown hairs or blocked pores will be dealt with.

Foaming scrubs can contain a foaming agent like SLS (Sodium Laureth Sulphate) which tends to strip the skin of it’s natural oils leaving it much drier than before and more prone to irritation. A plant-based oil blend or butter based scrub will properly moisturise dry, sensitive or even oily skin.

For a nourishing scrub look for: Coconut Oil; Cocoa Butter; Sea Salt; Coffee
Grains; Sugar Granules (great for the face); Oats.

corinneatwork

3. TAKE OFF Makeup Properly!

We’ve all been there, reaching for the face wipes (baby wipes?!) or just not bothering to take off make up before bed, especially after a night out. Unfortunately, it’s one of the most ageing things you can do to your skin which will really start to show in the long run.

One of the best cleansers for all skin types is a plant-based oil cleanser or balm. It’s a fact – oil dissolves oil – and it also does a wonderful job of removing all make up including waterproof mascara. Natural cleansers work with the skin’s natural oils, helping to re-balance and restore without stripping.

With a regular cleansing regime skin will visibly change for the better in just a few days – please, please step away from the dreaded face wipes!

Fabulous natural cleansing ingredients: Jojoba Oil; Shea Butter; Apricot Kernel Oil; Cucumber Seed Oil; Camellia Oil; Eucalyptus Essential Oil; Safflower Seed Oil; Vitamin E oil; Castor Oil.

4. RE-HYDRATE SKIN After Drinking Alcohol

You know that recommendation to drink a pint of water before bed if you’ve been drinking? Well, the same applies to skin. Alcohol is very dehydrating and skin will reflect this the next morning with dry patches, fine lines and dull skin tone.

An intensive facial oil or serum applied before bed will give skin a chance to re-hydrate, ensuring that it looks dewy rather than dry in the morning. Don’t forget to cleanse beforehand though!

Some of the best ingredients for overnight skin restoration are: Rosehip Oil, Cacay Oil, Carrot Tissue Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Argan Oil and Hyaluronic Acid.    

5. DE-CLUTTER for a New Skincare Regime

According to our recent natural skincare survey, 8 out of 10 women want to reduce their use of plastic when buying skincare products. In addition, 72% intend to check the ethics and responsible business practices of the skincare businesses they buy from in the coming year.

corinne

Like we do when we run, taking a mindful approach to self-care can really boost skin and spirit – perfect for a feel good December activity. Consider a bathroom de clutter: switch to soap instead of bottled shower gel; seek out plastic-free skincare options and create a capsule skincare collection that really works – recycle the rest that doesn’t. Your skin, body and mind will thank you for it!

This week we are running a competition on Instagram with the chance to win a The Post-Workout Bliss Out Beauty Box from Rare Beauty.

Flatlay Giveaway Beauty Box

To enter:

Follow @thismumruns and @rarebeautyco

Comment on any of the competition posts using #blissmeoutTMR and give us your best reason why YOU are in need of some pamper time right now! You are very welcome to Tag a Friend who would love to know about this giveaway too. The winner will be picked at random on Friday 7th December.