Annie Clarke is a yoga teacher, author and founder of health and lifestyle blog, Mind Body Bowl.
We love your new book ‘Mind.Body.Bowl!’ What are some secrets from the book that you can tell us?
There are no real secrets – Mind Body Bowl is all about helping you to connect with yourself with the help of, what I consider to be, the three key pillars of wellness.
What are some of your favourite recipes from your new book and why?
It’s hard to choose, I love them all! The black rice porridge is pretty good – it’s nice to spice breakfast up and it looks pretty impressive too. I love the chocolate orange energy balls – they are so simple and a great staple for on-the-go or peckish moments. The Middle Eastern pancakes were a bit of an accident but very delicious – they are quite different whilst still being easy to make!
What recipe does everyone ask you for?
Weirdly enough, people always want porridge recipes! I think people are scared of getting it ‘wrong’ but everyone likes their porridge a different consistency so I think you just have to experiment a bit yourself.
What’s your secret ingredient?
Coconut oil – it’s magic!
Sweet or savoury?
What are your favourite London hotspots?
I love 26 Grains for porridge and The Mae Deli for sweet treats.
What is your favourite place in India and why?
Sadly I’ve actually not done much exploring yet! I stayed in Agonda, Goa last time I was there for 5 weeks to do my teacher training. This time around I am in a different part of Goa for another training, then I teach a retreat before spending a week in and around Mumbai – I will report back then!
Everyone practices yoga for different reasons. When did you start yoga and why?
I actually came to yoga from a fitness perspective. I wanted to improve my flexibility and also find an alternative to running/using the gym. But over time, that shifted massively. Yoga is no longer a physical practice for me – it is about giving myself the opportunity to connect to and explore myself. Physically, mentally and emotionally.
Favourite yoga pose and why?
It really depends on the day – sometimes I love working on my handstands and inversions, others I just want to do lots of twists and be still in my practice.
Headstand or handstand?
I am working on my handstands at the moment and sometimes forget how much I love headstands – so can I say both?!
How do you stay motivated to practice yoga at home?
It’s really hard. I find it much easier to commit to my practice when I go to a class. For me, my home practice will depend on what else I have on. I need to feel as though I have the uninterrupted time, so first thing in morning works well for me.
For someone that’s new to yoga what are your top tips for staying focused and not quitting when things get tough?
Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. If a practice feels challenging, boring or just really hard, then you are in the right place. Over time you will start to feel more comfortable in the the things that you find hard, but then new challenges will arise in your practice. And that’s why it is always a practice!
What are three things you can’t live without?
People, sunshine and nut butter
What’s your single piece of advice to the next generation of women?
To be kind to yourself. We’re facing a really scary time where there is so much comparison and it is more normal to criticise ourselves than to love who we are. We are not perfect and we never will be, so embrace imperfection and connect to yourself whenever you can – only you can tell yourself how to be the happiest, healthiest version of yourself
What’s your ‘quote of the day’ every day?
Everything happens for a reason
Who is your ‘Wow Woman?”
My sister. She always inspires me with her honesty and her ability to speak the truth.
What’s your favourite item of Asquith clothing and why?
I love the detail on the back of the Conquer Cami and how soft the fabric is too!
What is it about Asquith that you love?
I’m trying to be more conscious about my consumption and Asquith has a great sustainable philosophy that makes that much easier!