As the last few days of April come to an end, I am starting to plan for summer! In the next month or so, school will be out, folks will start vacationing, and I will finally be ready to enjoy the sunshine! There’s just something about the approach of summer that makes me feel extra bright and happy.
One of the best ways to embrace the upcoming change in seasons is to embrace the new foods and styles that will come with it! Summertime is filled with tons of colorful fruits and vegetables. There are endless possibilities when it comes to summer snacks, salads, and even healthy desserts! I am a huge fan of fresh stuff! Luckily, with farmers markets being at almost every corner, we can find awesome foods that were literally just picked. I really want to encourage you to give each meal some color in the next few weeks. Don’t be afraid to experiment with things you’ve never had before. The more color you bring to your meal, the better!
Another way to embrace the upcoming season is to brighten up your workout clothing. I always feel more confident if I’m wearing a little bit of color when I exercise. There’s just something about bright colors that really makes me push myself towards success. Have fun with your workout gear and match the happy weather! Be bold, and pick something that pushes your color limit and you might just push your workout limits too!
Coloring up your health can have so many great effects. In the end, it’s all about finding ways to motivate yourself to keep working towards a healthier lifestyle. Whether it’s through new recipes or updating your wardrobe, the key thing to take away is that motivation can come in many different forms. As May is upon us, I encourage everyone to find ways that will motivate them to stay healthy during the weeks ahead!
“Growing” your health can be a hard concept to grasp. For most of us, when we think of changing to a healthier lifestyle, we want the changes to be easy, and to start seeing results fast. That’s why quick fix diets and products are easy to sell. We want it now! The reality is that it takes time for results to show, and that can often be frustrating. Growing our health can seem like standing there watching, waiting for the garden to grow. It takes so long to actually harvest something you can see. The good news is that you can harvest feeling better very quickly! Improvements in energy, attitude, sleep patterns, and alertness are right around the corner, and well within reach. The visual and physical harvest will follow if you tend the garden well.
The transformation into a healthy lifestyle needs to be thought of as a progressive process, making sure to embrace even the small details that go into the mixture. I am known for asking my clients to “Dream Big, and Work Small.” Having a vision of where you want to be; change goals that encourage you to reach; that’s the Dream Big. Taking small steps each day to implement changes; that’s the Work Small. As you emerge into a new way of thinking about your health, it takes time to understand the significance of each part of the process. One of the best things you can do for yourself is make a plan as to how you’re going to attain a healthy lifestyle. What mini goals must you achieve in order to accomplish your big goal? How will you get there within the constraints that you have? These are questions that I help folks with every day. Transformation doesn’t have to be a lonely process!
Mapping out your goals can not only help you stay organized, but it can make you appreciate the small accomplishments that you have made in order to reach your end destination. Think about a plant. You don’t usually see a flower with a dead stem and blossoming petals. Every part of the plant; roots, steam, leaves needs to be healthy in order for the flower to be full of color and life. The same idea goes for your healthier lifestyle. Instead of rushing the process of building a healthy lifestyle, take the time to make sure every part of your plan is strong and will actually lead you to your end goal. Takes those small steps every day to nurture your garden of good health.
Plan your journey, and celebrate the small victories. Nurture and grow your health and fitness. Not only will you achieve your goals, but you’ll build a strong foundation and feel great along the way!
April is the month for “going green”. It’s not hard to get this feeling when everything around us is finally coming back to life! Our awareness of our amazing planet soars, inspiring us to pay attention, and make a difference. The idea of going green can incorporate many things. Greening up our lives can mean as much to our health as it does to reducing our carbon footprint. For example, if you choose to ride your bike somewhere instead of driving, you save gas of course, but you also got your metabolism boosted. If you choose less processed and more local foods, you reduce the environmental impact of production, and the health bonus is that you will likely be eating much more nutrient dense food with less calories. What if you do your work-out outdoors, instead of in the gym or house? Maybe that means you don’t have to have the AC as cold, and you use less electricity – side bonus: a fresh view from your “workout area” and some new challenges. From reducing processed foods to exercising outside instead of in the gym, there are tons of ways to make your lifestyle just a little more GREEN! Good for you, and good for the planet – now that’s a winner!
Farmer’s Markets are finally starting to open up for the summer! What better way to start going green than by buying locally grown foods? Our Famer’s Market here in Northwest Arkansas are a HUGE deal, not to mention you can make a whole day out of it. Walking along the square, enjoying the sights and smells of foods and flowers, listening to local bands play on the sidewalks… there really is something for everyone. If you have not had a chance to stop by the Farmer’s Market, I highly encourage you to do so. Try something new, it’s a great experience and can really open your eyes to a whole new world of fresh living. If crowded markets aren’t your thing, I recommend just spending time outside. With the weather being warm, it’s a great time to start getting in fun bike rides, hikes, and jogs! I always feel so much better when I exercise outdoors. Feel the wind on your face and embrace the change in scenery!
As you work towards a healthy lifestyle, I ask that you keep the idea of “going green” in the front of your mind. Earth Day is approaching, so as your community takes a step to reduce their carbon footprint, make sure you take a step in reducing yours and reap the benefits all the way around that waistline! The difference that living green makes is one we can all embrace!
Peace of mind is not the absence of conflict from life, but the ability to cope with it.” ~Unknown
April brings lots of change in the natural world. Everywhere you look, things are morphing into a new shape, growing, shedding, bursting, and blowing. The natural world and the living things in it aren’t still or stationary, they are ever chaotic. That phrase about the “balance of nature” doesn’t really mean that nature IS balanced. In fact, the natural world is constantly in chaos, seeking towards balance. Maybe that’s how we are too, constantly in chaos, movement, change, but striving for balance.
It is this striving for balance that helps nature, and us, flourish.
I think one of the hardest things about staying healthy and happy is finding the strength to continue on even when things are tough, and the courage to believe that things will swing back in the other direction. The courage that builds our strength ultimately roots back to our inner peace; our peace of mind and heart.
So, this week I am suggesting the idea of nourishing our inner peace. Sounds like a tall order, but it can be accomplished through consistent, small efforts. Here are some ideas to try.
Remembering to Smile
This is something that is so simple, yet can make a huge difference. Finding a way to smile (or even just stay positive) through tough or stressful situations can help you work towards an impactful solution and keep you from getting too worked up. We all know how wonderful it is to bump into that person with the infectious smile. Mantra: “Let it be me that shares an infectious smile.”
“If you look for the bad in people expecting to find it, you surely will.” ~A. Lincoln
Wise statement. The concept applies in looking for good as well. If you work to notice and embrace the loving-kindness of others, you will find yourself exemplifying loving-kindness without even trying. Mantra: “Notice acts of loving kindness – see them, share them”
This is something that I think a lot of people (including myself) struggle with. It can be hard to completely clear your mind and hear nothing but emptiness. But, if you embrace the weightlessness that comes with peaceful meditation, it becomes easier to push away the heaviness of stress and life. Mantra: Today I will sit quietly with myself for 5 minutes”. More is even better!
EMBRACE YOURSELF this week and see what amazing things can come from it!
Hey everyone! I just posted this recipe on my April Newsletter but I thought since it's SO good, that I would share it with all of you!!
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· 1 Daikon Radish
· 1 cooked chicken breast or ½ cup shredded chicken
· ½ cucumber
· 1 mango
· ½ red onion
· ¼ cup coriander
· ½ avocado
· 1 lime
Ingredients for Sauce:
· 1 ½ tbsp. peanut butter (or cashew butter if paleo)
· 1 tbsp. sesame oil
· 1 tsp. tamari (or soy sauce)
· 3 tbsp. orange juice
· 2 tsp. lime juice
1. Wash and scrub the Daikon Radish thoroughly to remove as much dirt as possible. Peel the outer skin off using a vegetable peeler.
2. Using a cheese slicer, cut thin strips running all the way down the length of the radish. Try not to push down too hard when peeling to keep the slices as thin as possible. Once you get close to the center of the Daikon it may become harder to slice as the flesh will have more holes, so flip the radish over and continue slicing on the other side. Depending on the length of the Daikon, each strip will make 2 rolls.
3. Prepare your filling. Shred the chicken and sprinkle it with the juice of 1 lime. Finally, dice the peanuts and cut the mango, avocado and cucumber into thin strips.
4. To assemble, lay out 1 strip of the radish and top with a few pieces of each filling. Top with coriander and then roll, ensuring you press down and keep the rolls tight. Repeat with the remaining rolls.
5. To make the sauce, place all of the ingredients listed above in a hand blender and pulse until well combined. You may want to add more orange juice depending on desired consistency. This sauce can be made up to 2 days ahead and stored in a sealed container in the fridge.