Category Archives: health and fitness

SMOOTHIE TIME: GREEN BANANA

I bought a blender for three reasons:

  1. I don’t have enough veggies in my diet and have to trick myself into eating them.
  2. Smoothies are tasty and filling.
  3. I’m too lazy to cook actual meals like a grown-up.

I get inspiration from recipes I find online, but I can barely even follow simple instructions with basic measurements. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. So my smoothie-making process looks something like this: scour Pintrest for recipes, buy those ingredients, throw them all together in the blender, and hope for the best. This is why I’m terrible at cooking and baking.

Here is the first of what I hope will be a series of hilarious blender trial-and-errors.

Green Banana

GREEN BANANA


INGREDIENTS

1 cup spinach (raw)
1 cup kale (raw)
1 banana
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 cup almond milk
1 cup Greek yogurt
Pinch of cinnamon


PREPARATION

  1. Peel banana. Desperately want to eat it by itself. Exercise willpower. Sadly break banana apart with hands and drop it into blender.
  2. Throw in the yogurt, peanut butter, and almond milk after it.
  3. Stuff in as much spinach and kale on top as you can, breaking the leaves apart if need be. Add cinnamon. Make sure there is room for the blender blades. I didn’t consider that beforehand.
  4. Blend.
  5. Have a sip. Tastes pretty good, mostly like banana.
  6. Notice the cup is only maybe two-thirds full.
  7. Stuff some more spinach and kale in there.
  8. Blend. Taste. Little thicker and tastes less like banana. Cup still has some space.
  9. More spinach and kale! And almond milk so it’s not so thick.
  10. Blend. Taste. Okay, that’s enough greens. Enjoy.
A full cup, after blending and adding more greens a few times

A full cup after blending and adding more greens a few times

Like I said before, this tastes mostly like banana with hints of peanut butter and cinnamon, despite it being super green. It’s a sneaky way to eat more veggies, and spinach and kale are very good for you. The sneakiest part is that you’re eating a lot more greens than you would if they were just on a plate in front of you because they take up so much less space once they’re chopped up in the blender. It’s like a concentrated shot of healthiness, one that you can’t even taste. This makes me feel like I’m hacking at life.

I’ve made this three times now and I’ve found that the most important ingredient is the banana. As long as the banana:greens ratio is right, it’s going to taste great. This smoothie is filling, tasty (despite it having kale, which is not even close to tasty), and has a huge margin of error, all of which is ideal for someone like me. And, all in all, I think it’s under 400 calories. It’s hard for me to say because I freestyle with the ingredients so much. Even so, 400 calories is not a lot for a meal, and this smoothie definitely fills you up like a meal. I’ve had it for both lunch and dinner.

Not bad for my first try! If you try it, too, let me know what you think – especially if it’s your first experience with kale!

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WEIGHT LOSS

I used to be heavy. Not obese, but big. I was in my third year of college; I was “working out,” and by that I mean going on the elliptical once in a while and working up a sweat; I was eating and sleeping like garbage; I was also stressed and miserable and treating everyone around me poorly. Of all those things, I thought my weight was the one thing over which I had the most control. It’s been a roller coaster ride – a lot of ups and downs – since then, but overall I’ve dropped 30lbs and almost 15% body fat. I’m still a work in progress, but I’m happy with how far I’ve come!

Disclaimer: I’m not a nutritionist, coach, or doctor. I can’t tell you what to do and what not to do. I’m just someone who likes to eat healthy and lift some weights. But I see so many people in whom I see the person I was when I first got started – nervous, insecure, motivated, just in need of a little direction, guidance, and support – and I want to share my story with you in the hopes that you find it helpful in working toward your own goals. All I know is what I did and what worked for me. I think it’ll work for you, too, if you try (and try, and try, and try).

This is four years (!) of work, making mistakes, and learning. So, if you get anything at all out of this post at all, please be patient with yourself and look at things in a larger perspective. You didn’t gain the weight overnight, and you’re not going to lose it overnight, either. Nothing worthwhile happens immediately or without a struggle. A few positive decisions every day is what makes big changes in the long run!

four years

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THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE FITOCALYPSE

If you’re interested in starting a healthier or fitter lifestyle but don’t know where to start, here are a few basics. If they seem super obvious, it’s because they are. People tend to start looking for drastic and uncommon explanations for their problems before nailing down the fundamentals. And, although these are simple and straight-forward, I know that doesn’t necessarily make them easy to accomplish. We all struggle with one or more of these, but they’re still important and worth giving some extra consideration.

This image appears on tumblr every now and again. I love it. Whenever I feel like I’m going astray, I always come back to these four essentials.

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