perfect bloody mary recipe
I am the OG brunch glutton and – since reaching legal drinking age – something of a Bloody Mary connoisseur, to boot. When Ketel One asked if I wanted to participate in their World Class Brunch project, I could hardly miss out.

Come brunching hour, my American half makes a beeline towards visually-pleasing pancake options while my British half makes a meticulous habit of Bloody Mary specificity. A bizarre combination, on first impression, but a combination that has resulted in the curation of not only the best Bloody Mary in the world but delicious pink (!!) pancakes that are actually good for you.

Recipes, below – be sure to Instagram or Tweet me (@lelalondon) with your recreations!

The Perfect Bloody Mary Recipe

(One serving – multiply as necessary)
1 shot (50ml) of Ketel One vodka
1 tsp sriracha
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp cream sherry
Fill with fresh tomato juice
Sprinkle of celery salt
Sprinkle of fresh ground chilli pepper
Celery, to serve

The Perfect Healthy Pancakes Recipe

(Makes four small pancakes)
1 tbsp organic unsalted butter
1 medium-large banana
2 eggs
Natural pink food colouring (optional)
Pure maple syrup (optional, I prefer them without)

1. Warm butter over medium heat in a frying pan.
2. Blend the banana until smooth. Add the eggs and food colouring slowly and blend until combined (5 seconds or less – you don’t want to start to heat the eggs).
3. Pour the mixture into the pan in pancake-sized amounts. Cook each pancake for 30 seconds on each side.
4. Serve with your Bloody Mary and enjoy!

pink healthy pancakes
bloody mary ingredients

fitness blogger 5
Since I started training for Tough Mudder, I have spent almost as much time in sweat-wicking leggings as I have in my favourite retro dresses.

Strangely, I’m loving it.

Though I have yet to find my ultimate pair of trainers (the holy grail), I have been racking up quite the collection of new fitness gear and this outfit – Adidas at JD Sports exclusives paired with chic sunnies that sit securely throughout runs – has become a mainstay. With the addition of a leather jacket, I’ve even gone straight from training to meetings without needing an outfit change.

What I Wore:
Reload tank top
Sports Essentials Linear Tights
Leather jacket (similar here)
Sundried sunglasses
Neon trainers (similar here)

fitness blogger 3
fitness blogger 1
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maple and fitz
While I appreciate the fortune of a life peppered in Michelin stars and gargantuan tasting menus, my most genuine foodie thrill is the discovery of places like Maple & Fitz. The pint-sized cafe occupies a small space in Fitzrovia and serves the most fresh, healthy, and delicious meals around.

I chose to embark on my first visit with a fellow clean eating-lover in tow and my most health-conscious hat on. For the amount of skanky ‘salads’ (dressing with leaves) and ‘smoothies’ (pre-prepared, pasteurised sugar snacks) you can get in the area, I have long been searching for a truly nutritious lunchtime soulmate.

Maple & Fitz is The One.

With emphasis on the gluten-free, their freshly-prepared salads can be mixed and matched to your preference and topped with your choice of free-range chicken breast, salmon, tofu, poached eggs, grilled halloumi, or grilled avocado.

Wanting to try a bit of everything, I mixed the Julius Caesar (shredded kale, romaine, mangetout, toasted buckwheat, cabbage, toasted pumpkin & sunflower seeds, pecorino, Dijon-lemon yogurt dressing) with the Cauli in Mumbai (quinoa, roasted spiced cauliflower, shredded carrot, peppery rocket, white shallot vinaigrette) and Mexican Standoff (bulgur wheat, avocado, black beans, grape tomatoes, fresh jalapenos, red onion, coriander lime pesto dressing), then topped it with chicken and washed each bite down with a sip of their cold-pressed Green Queen juice (spinach, parsley, lemon, cucumber, celery, ginger). It was the best lunch of my life.

Having wooed the both of us, we took the staff’s naughty gluten-free brownie recommendation, paired it with two raw cacao energy balls (medjool dates, almonds, raw cocoa, chia seeds and coconut), and split the loot over flat whites and work chat.

When my lunch date brought up the desire for another brownie less than two hours later (recoiling at their 5pm closing time – “…but no other brownie is as good!”), Maple & Fitz gained official hidden gem status.

A photo posted by Lela London (@lelalondon) on


maple and fitz
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Nordic Balance
It started with an Instagram*.

A little over one month ago I agreed to join a beloved friend at next April’s Tough Mudder when we ventured out on a muddy run in the woods. Because 12-mile obstacle courses are a sensible challenge to accept for someone who primarily dances and shops for exercise.

A week after ‘training’ started (read: running myself exhausted and berating myself for doing lady pushups), I bit the bullet and signed up for the Summer Body Blast at Nordic Balance.

Located in the luxurious side-streets of Piccadilly Circus, Nordic Balance was not only an unavoidable stop for my Soho-based meeting days but a beautiful one. The building used to be home to the Earl of Kent but now hosts fully equipped weights and cardio rooms, a swimming pool with jet-stream technology, a jacuzzi, sauna, treatment room, stretching area, and the oldest squash court in London.

For Summer Body Blast, my initial 360 degree assessment used medical grade testing equipment to measure key metrics like hydration, water retention, muscle mass, fat mass, metabolism, and stress levels to assist in personalised goal-setting.

The next three weeks of training – with the scrupulous but delightful Alessandro – were a muscle-flinching blur. For the first time ever, I knew I was being pushed to my physical limits; the high intensity sessions (45 minutes, three times a week) were challenging in the most literal sense.

Then again, I got out what I was forced to put in. With the programme’s added bonus of a weekly sports massage, I started to feel fit. Really fit. Fit enough to jump a rope without a bounce jump, fit enough to run up the stairs at Leicester Square, and fit enough to crush a set of proper pushups.

This may only be the beginning but I imagine I’ll look back at this blog come Tough Mudder with extreme gratitude towards Nordic Balance’s expert building blocks.

A photo posted by Lela London (@lelalondon) on

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classpass
This is going to sound a little infomercial-y. A little ‘this post is proudly supported by…’. For your own sake, I must assure this this is no sponsored endorsement – I have simply fallen in lust with ClassPass.

When it comes to fitness, I have to be enjoying some aspect of my routine to stick to it. If I run? I make a kickass playlist to go along. If I gym? I create orchestrated plans and dance from machine to machine.

If I do a fitness class? I ClassPass.

The fitness site (and app) launched in London just over a month ago after gaining mass hype in the US and it took only one Hot Vinyasa session at Lumi Power Yoga to become addicted. Long story short, a ClassPass membership gives you unlimited access to the best fitness classes in London.

It is as easy as a tailored search – days, times, areas, class types (yoga, pilates, strength training, cycling, dance) – and a one-click ‘book’! It gives you the perfect opportunity to trial new studios, challenge yourself, keep things interesting, and fit everything from boot camps to pole dancing into a very busy schedule.

Want to give ClassPass a go? Click here!