Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Gotta love eBay. I had to do it in the last 30 seconds, but I was able to win myself a VitaMix for about $200 less than it would have cost to get a new one at retail. I am trying to do much better with healthy eating; it really is the key to feeling better and doing better. One of the ways I can do that is with smoothies and homemade soups.

While regular blenders are ok, they just don't cut it when it comes to making up really good smoothies. The VitaMix is superior because it is able to "rupture the cell walls of raw foods to make the enzymes more bioavailable." In other words, you're going to get the maximum nutrition you can get when you mix up that smoothie. Score!

Today, I decided to make a green smoothie for breakfast. Never made one before? Well VitaMix offers this handy chart to help you choose ingredients:

2 cups spinach
1 cup kale
1/2 head of romaine
1 romaine heart
3/4 cup raw broccoli
1 small head of bibb or Boston lettuce

1 cup grapes
1 apple
1 orange, peeled
1 cup melon, peeled
1 cup pineapple
1 cup berries
1 banana, peeled
1/2 cup cucumber, peeled or unpeeled
1 kiwi, peeled
1 carrot
1 cup peaches
1 cup mango, peeled
1/2 cup papaya, peeled
2 stalks celery
1 pear

1 cup soy milk (plain or vanilla)
1 cup yogurt (plain or flavored)
1 cup fruit juice
1 cup water

DIRECTIONS: Pick 1 from Column A, 2 from Column B, 1 from Column C, and add 1 cup of ice. Blend accordingly.

Now - I can't guarantee that this will work on a regular blender, but for the Vitamix it was no problem. This morning I used 2 cups baby spinach, 1 cup frozen strawberries, 1 cup frozen peaches, and 1 cup of orange-peach-mango juice. I also added some Chia fiber and a scoop of Amazing Grass Green SuperFood. You don't need those, but they were on sale at my local store and I picked them up yesterday, so I just thought I'd add them.

I forgot to add the ice, but I didn't really need it. The VitaMix blended all of this up to a smooth mixture. I used the tamper a bit to push everything down, but it made quick work of the frozen fruit.

It is most definitely green. Like, baby food strained peas. Actually, it was a little darker than that. So, if you are squeamish about how food LOOKS, this probably isn't for you. The taste was great! I just tasted the fruit and the fruit juice, and probably the lemon/lime flavoring from the SuperFood supplement. Didn't taste any spinach at all. If it wasn't for the color, I wouldn't have known it was there.

I have some kale and some broccoli at home. I think the next smoothie will have kale, and some blueberries. I believe with that chart above you have over 300 options (it's been so long since I did a factorial multiplication - who knew you'd need that as an adult? LOL!).

If you decide to give it a whirl, let me know how it goes.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Out of The Blue

My yoga class has been moved to a 5:30am start instead of a 5:45 start. Which is just means I really have to get up at 4:30 and not hit the "snooze" button.

One of the reasons I appreciate yoga (among the MANY), is that it does help me focus my mind. On the drive over my mind is constantly going; what I have to do that day, what bills need to be paid, what's going on with so-and-so. When I get to class, that is my "me" time to turn my brain off and focus on my spirit and my body.

We talk about how sometimes thoughts will sneak in, and you have to just acknowledge them and then move on. I've been trying to do that outside of class - if it's what I deem an inopportune time for my mind to be wandering, I acknowledge the thought - maybe jot a note to myself - and then send it on its way.

For some reason, this morning I was thinking about my Dad's funeral. I can't even tell you how my train of thoughts got to that point. I know it was a train of random thoughts that somehow led to me thinking about when my dad's neighbors came to the wake. I can't remember his name, but one neighbor gave me a hug and told me how much they would miss my dad and how everyone in the building really liked him. I just started crying. Now like, burst into ugly sobs crying...but just tears running down my face.

And then, it was over.

I got to yog and went on with class. I guess I was just surprised. My auntie told me that I would probably have some random moments, but I just wasn't expecting it at 5:15am.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Food For Thought

This morning, while I was on the elliptical, I started reading "Yoga For Dummies" - the book I showed in yesterday's blog post. I came across a few passages that I think provide some food for thought, whether you're doing yoga or not, so I thought I'd share.

"Most people are aware of how fast time flies in the 24 hours they're give each day. Yet if you look more closely at how you spend your days, you may find that not everything you do is necessary, and that in idle moments, you may miss the opportunity to recharge yourself or tap into your inner well of joy."

Gosh, if I had a nickel for every time somebody told me they didn't have time to do something. Shoot...if I had a nickel for every time I said that. We make time for the things we want to do. Period. There really is no gray area. When you really make up your mind to do something, you'll get it done!

"...what you get out of any endeavor is only as good as what you put in it. In other words, don't expect health from junk food. Don't expect happiness from miserable attitudes. Don't expect good results from shoddy Yoga practice. Don't expect something from nothing."

So true. No matter what it is in life, very few things happen instantaneously. Especially when it comes to matters of health. What you put in is what you get out. If you eat junk all the time, your digestive system will be jacked up, and I don't need to list all the results of know how you feel. Garbage in, garbage out!

The next time you're feeling down, try focusing on positive thoughts and not dwelling on the negative. And if someone comes into your personal space/time with the negative, gently shoo them away. :)

"Most people tend to be passive in health matters. They wait until something goes wrong, and then rely on a pill or a physician to fix the problem."

I think this is just how we were raised. I don't recall my parents specifically focusing on preventative health. While I've managed to klutz myself into injuries, I haven't had a cold in quite a while. Last year I spent all of January sick with a cold/bronchitis. Once I got that cleared up, and started eating more healthy and working on prevention, I haven't been sick since. I know my EENT doctor is probably wondering where I've been. I haven't had to go in for allergies. I know when it's that time, I need to reduce dairy intake, and take other measures. It seems like such a "duh" idea, but it's really not something I started focusing on until last year.

If there's a health issue that you've been planning to tackle, take it on now. Make small changes and eventually you will get there. If you know your blood pressure was elevated at your last doctor's appointment, what are some things you can do on your own to lower it, before they have to intervene with medication?

That's all I have for now. As I come across more juicy tidbits in the book, I'll be sure to give you my thoughts.