Tag Archives: summer

Now’s the Time to Take Control Of Your Health

Hi friends!

Today we’re focusing on the topic of health. Time for some real talk: In both working in the health & wellness industry and just randomly talking to people in my life, one thing that I’ve noticed is that people love to make excuses when it comes to their health. There certainly may be obstacles in taking charge of your health, and sometimes eating well and exercising often are not easy, but when it comes down it, they’re excuses used to justify why people are giving up on themselves.

The other day my neighbor and I were talking. He’s a middle-aged guy, and was telling me how his sister just passed away. She was in her 60s and died of a heart attack.

“People in my family just don’t live long. We don’t usually make it past 60, it’s just the way it is,” he said.

I thought about our conversation afterwards, trying to understand the notion that it’s inevitable in the year 2017 in the United States of America that you and everyone in your family will probably drop dead of a heart attack 15 years before the average lifespan. There is something wrong with this picture.

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ProYo Giveaway + My Favorite Summer Things {Weekend Recap}

Hi friends!

First thing’s first: I have a giveaway for you lovely people! Remember when I posted a review last week about ProYo’s high protein frozen yogurt (Check it out here if you missed it!)? Well, the lovely folks at ProYo offered to give away a box of each of their flavors to one lucky reader!

(7/1 UPDATE: PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.)

ProYo Giveaway

Anyone in the Continental U.S. can enter to win a box of Dutch chocolate, banana vanilla, vanilla bean, and blueberry pomegranate ProYo treats (4 boxes total) by doing any of the following:

  • Leave a comment below telling me which ProYo flavor you most want to try
  • Repost my Instagram photo announcing this giveaway
  • Retweet any tweets I shoot out regarding this giveaway
  • Follow @ProYoTreats on Instagram OR Twitter (Do both for 2 entries!)
  • Follow @foodiemtfitness on Twitter
  • Follow @foodielovesfitness on Instagram

Be sure to leave a comment below to let me know each way that you enter. I’ll randomly select a winner next Wednesday, July 1st. 

Next up: a recap of my very summery weekend! We’re 4 days into summer, and I hope that your season is off to a great start. I’m a few days late in doing a recap of my last weekend, but it was such a fun weekend full of summery activities and the weather was gorgeous, so I can’t help myself from sharing the highlights.

Elfin Forest view-6.19.15

{HIKING} On Friday evening I took my pup for a hike at Elfin Forest, and all of a sudden, it felt like summer had began. It was a sunny, 75 degree day at my house, but 30 minutes away at Elfin, it was in the low 90s and hot. This is the start of me having to check how hot it is inland before going for hikes, because Harley does not do that well hiking in the heat.

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10 Ways to Live Your Healthiest Summer Yet

Hi and Happy Friday!

Any fun plans for the weekend? Speaking of the weekend, Sunday marks the first official day of summer in the northern hemisphere! While San Diego has been getting a lot of June gloom weather – where it’s overcast for large parts of the day anywhere close to the ocean – I’m expecting it to officially feel like summer here pretty soon.

In honor of the summer and its official start, I came up with a list of ways to make summer 2015 your healthiest one yet. Let’s get to it!

local nectarines

1.) Eat lots of in-season produce. This is the time of year when tomatoes are at their sweetest and juiciest and when watermelon is abundant. Take advantage of it! Bonus: Watermelon is mostly made of water, which will keep you hydrated in the hot weather.

The view at the park nearby that I frequent

The view at the park nearby that I frequent

2.) Get outside and connect with nature as much as you can. While some days may be too sweltering to exercise outdoors depending on where you live, summer is the time to appreciate Mother Nature! Connect with the outside world and soak up the sun as often as you’re able to. After all, there’s nothing like the feeling of satisfaction when you go for a sweaty bike ride with your family or spend the morning hiking with your dog!

3.) Apply sunscreen daily. Don’t forget the SPF! Sunburns are no fun and increase your risk for skin cancer. The sun feels stronger than ever to me, and I make sure to lather up in sunscreen every day that I’m outside so that I get some color but don’t burn.

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Smoothie of the Week: Cherry Bomb

In the minds of many Americans, Memorial Day weekend marks the start of summer, even though summer doesn’t technically start for around another month.

It feels like summer to me because last weekend marked the first sunburn of the year for my light skin (with very odd tan lines might I add – I think I have streaks of lines on my arm where my headphone cord was hanging down!) despite putting on suntan lotion multiple times. Meanwhile my hubby got nicely bronzed, because sometimes life just isn’t fair my friends.

dog beach

When I think of summer, I think of things like the beach, sangria, backyard BBQs, and sundresses – my favorite attire ever. Of course there’s the summery food that comes to mind, which includes lots of seasonal fruit, corn on the cob, bright salads, and of course, refreshing smoothies…

Cherry Bomb-3For the last couple of summers, I’ve seriously craved all types of cherries: fresh cherries, frozen cherries, dried cherries, cherry Italian ice, cherry ice cream. If it’s cherry anything, I’m probably in.

Cherry Bomb-2

Well, I don’t think this summer is going to be any different, because last week while grocery shopping I had cherries on my brain. There weren’t any fresh cherries where I was, so a bag of frozen cherries it was…. and that bag of cherries is already gone because I kept using it to make this easy to throw together, nutritious, tasty smoothie!

Cherry Bomb-1

Cherry Almond Smoothie
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 4 oz plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 oz raw almonds
  • ¾ cup frozen sweet cherries
  • ¼ TSP almond extract
  • 1 packet/1 g stevia sweetener
  • Ice
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and pulse until well combined. Pour into a glass and enjoy immediately!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 smoothie, Calories: 350, Fat: 14 g, Saturated fat: 1 g, Carbohydrates: 40 g, Sugar: 23 g, Fiber: 8 g, Protein: 20 g

 

What food reminds you most of summer?

Goddess Kale Salad

Happy first day of summer! Summery things I did today include:

Going hiking with Harley…

hike-6.21.13

…and thoroughly enjoying this dinner on my patio this evening…

Zucc-Grilled-Ch

Lightly fried zucchini + beefsteak tomato + cheddar + horseradish mustard = one bangin’ grilled cheese. I was craving grilled cheese all day, and this guy totally hit the spot. I refrained from eating a second one… though I easily could have!

And now onto more yummy eats…

Recently I had a blogger date with Gina, the chick behind Health, Love and Chocolate. We met for lunch, and while we were both enjoying kale caesar salads, I started talking about how I’m a pretty new kale eater. I told her I feel confident that I can whip up a yummy kale salad now, but that I like the kale super tender and never seem to get it quite that way by letting the veggies marinade in the dressing. My lovely new kale guru friend said that the best way to tenderize the kale is to massage it with the dressing for a good 5 minutes. Hmmm, why have I never tried that before? I wondered, and yesterday I put her tip to the test.

goddess-salad-1

The word Goddess refers to femininity, charm and supernatural powers. Isn’t the bursting purple color from this flowering kale gorgeous, and does kale not offer a slew of health benefits (read: supernatural powers) to those who consume it?

flowering-kale

General rule of thumb: any food this naturally vibrant is bursting with goodness (besides the exception of poisonous berries or some other shenanigans). Any who, the word “Goddess” seemed fitting to me, and so a Goddess kale salad it shall be referred to as.

After chopping a couple cups of kale up, I drizzled a dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and fresh lemon juice on top, sprinkled sea salt on top, and massaged it for a bit.

Goddess-Kale-Salad-2

Massaging the kale totally worked and left the veggie perfectly to my liking. Anyone who is turned off by kale because of its toughness, try massaging it – it really does the trick!

I added a few cups of green leaf lettuce, chickpeas, toasted slivered almonds, creamy goat cheese, and dates, to make one DELICIOUS combination. The goat cheese added a tang to the salad, the dates provided some sweetness, the almonds gave it a crunch, and the chickpeas… well, I throw chickpeas in nearly everything because they’re my favorite. I munched on this salad for about an entire hour while I worked, and will definitely be making it again very soon!

Goddess-kale-salad-3

 

Goddess Kale Salad
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups kale, chopped
  • 2 cup green leaf or other type of lettuce, chopped
  • 2 TBSP slivered almonds, toasted
  • ½ cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 oz goat cheese
  • 40 g whole pitted dates (about 6 of them)
  • ½ TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 TBSP balsamic vinegar
  • Juice from ½ small lemon
  • Sea salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Place kale in a salad bowl.
  2. Whisk together olive oil, balsamic and lemon juice. Pour over kale, and sprinkle a touch of sea salt on top. Massage the kale for a good couple of minutes to tenderize it.
  3. Add green leaf lettuce, almonds, chickpeas, goat cheese and dates. Sprinkle additional sea salt to taste, and toss to combine well.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 500, Fat: 22 g, Saturated fat: 5 g, Carbohydrates: 63 g, Fiber: 9 g, Protein: 18 g

 

I’m off to relax with my hubby and pup. Hope that your weekend is off to a fabulous start!

Hiking Mantra of the Day: Just Hold On

Mt Madonna Park

Per my usual Friday outdoor workout theme, this afternoon I took Harley for a hike. We went to Mount Madonna Park to do the same hike we ventured through recently, and I quickly remembered why we’ve been going at 7 am and not 2 pm… it’s damn hot around here!

I’m a complete wuss in the heat. It just sucks the life out of me. I’m not alone, as Harley has little endurance in warm weather too…so we were quite the pair today! Besides it being hot and the sun being strong, I worked out my legs at the gym yesterday and they’re feeling pretty damn achy today. 30 minutes into the hike, already dripping with sweat, I debated whether we should just turn around and call it a day. I was thinking that just an hour is okay with me. I had my iPhone music shuffle on, and just then, the Alabama Shakes song ”Hold On” came on.

Harley powering through our hot weather hike

Harley powering through our hot weather hike

I remember listening to that song a lot last year when my hubby was deployed. Back then, hearing you gotta hold on to me meant to just keep pushing through the deployment. Today, the song symbolized me holding on and powering through my sweaty hike. With that, I kept on walking, repeating hold on in my head as the mantra of my workout. Coincidentally, the next song to come on was ”Carry On” by Fun.

A little while later, we hit a shady patch where Harley was playing a game where she’d speed ahead so she could lay down for a few seconds while I caught up, and the incline wasn’t as rough on my sore legs. By that time we were cruising! It’s funny, I always feel like I have to work my body harder in the heat, but I never realized that my heart actually really does work harder during warm weather workouts until I got a heart rate monitor. Today’s hike, which was the exact same loop that I did once before, took the same amount of time, yet I burned 150 more calories than last time. Good stuff!

HRM-6.8.13

With some AC on in the car during the ride home, ice currently on my sore muscles, a frozen berry bowl post-workout snack, and an electrolyte replenishing drink, I am now feeling good and definitely am glad I kept on moving and didn’t let myself turn around!

Berry-Bowl

Side note: I picked up some locally grown strawberries and sweet cherries at the little farm stand on my way home. Unlike my new love for cherries, my obsession with strawberries has been going on for a longgg time. I know what I’m eating for dessert tonight!

strawberries

Question: When you’re having a rough time, whether you’re struggling during a workout, with a relationship, your job, issues with family, trying to lose weight, etc., what mantras do you like to repeat to yourself? 

Besides telling myself to just hold on and take it one step at a time, I also like repeating You’re stronger than you think and Fear less, live more – a mantra that I took away from my interview with Sarah Reinertsen.

Have a great weekend!