Recipes

Here are a few of my go-to recipes that give me energy and inspiration!

  1. Aeyisha Curry’s Greek Yogurt Parfaits

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  1. K’s Raisin Bran Sweet Bread

Although I’ve re-named this recipe, I’m giving you the link to the original bran muffin recipe which I follow. Then I add a few extras of my own: 1/4 cup flax seeds, 1/4 cup rolled oats, raisins and walnuts to taste (1/4-1/2 cup each).  Also, to save time, I mix all of the ingredients then plop the mix right into a pyrex or metal pan rather than using a muffin pan–thus it is transformed from muffins to sweet bread, like magic! Pictured here is a slice with Aeyisha Curry’s Greek Yogurt Parfait and a warm cup of Postum. Delicious!

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3. Fruity Kale Salad

4. Green Tea Smoothie

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5. Kale Salad with Apricot Ginger Vinaigrette

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Monday Mayhem: Get Fit in 5 Minutes Flat!

In a former life I was a certified aerobics instructor and personal trainer and people would ask me all the time how they could lose weight and get in shape.  For years I’ve, pretty much, given the same answer: exercise often and eat healthier. But, in response I would often hear two things: “I do eat healthy, but I’m still overweight” and “I don’t have time to (or don’t want to) exercise.”

Well, now I have an answer to both!

First of all, it’s not just what you eat, but when and how much.  Because the metabolism is on an upward swing in the morning and begins to decline towards the end of the day, it is important to eat your heavier meals early when you have more time in the day to burn off the calories.  Save your snacking for the evening.  But by “snacking” I don’t mean donuts and chips! How about hummus and pretzels? Air popped, lightly salted popcorn? Or Aiyesha Curry’s Yogurt Parfait? Fruit salad?  Or, my favorite, a cup of tea or Postum?  These kinds of snacks, in the evening, a couple of hours before bedtime should satisfy you without piling on the pounds.

Second, high intensity interval training (HIIT)—more specifically, Tabata. It’s my new favorite “go to” workout routine, especially when I’m in a hurry.

Even if you only have 5 minutes, you can burn calories, build strength and endurance.

It’s true! All you have to do is pick an exercise that uses the larger muscle groups; then set your clock and begin!  To make it easier, try this online Tabata Timer or download a Tabata Timer app onto your phone You will do the exercise as quickly as you can for 20 seconds, then you get to rest for 10 seconds before repeating the same exercise. Come on, you can do ANYTHING for 20 seconds!!!  Challenge yourself to maintain the same number of reps for each round. It will get harder each time, but as long as you give it your all for 20 seconds, you will benefit from this exercise. And when the 4 minutes is up, cool down for 1 minute and head for the shower! What? Really? Yes, really! You’re done, in 5 minutes flat!

So, for our Monday Mayhem workout, let’s do some burpees.

If you have more time, try some of these other Tabata workouts. You can do one set or string together several sets to comprise a 15, 20 or 30 minute workout. You won’t need longer than that!

Happy Week!

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Monday Mayhem! How to Get Back to Work after Vacation

Good Morning and Welcome to the post-holiday hustle!

For many of us, today marks the first offical day back to work and school after the Christmas and/or New Year’s break. I wouldn’t doubt that many of you are struggling to shake off that holiday sludge and shift into work mode again. Whether you were off for a long weekend or you were lucky enough to enjoy a full two weeks, coming back to work is hard!

For us writers the struggle is the same. When you work from home it’s even harder to shift from “lazy day” to “work day” since the physical space doesn’t change. That’s why we have to get dressed and go to our office or desk or corner that we’ve designated for writing and mentally (if not physically) shut out everything else (i.e. laundry, dishes, cat litter, etc.).

Two things help me jumpstart my work flow: exercise & a power breakfast. So today–and every Monday*–I will share with you a surefire energizer to help you go from “no” to “go” in no time! Now, I know what you’re thinking. You don’t have the time nor the desire for either of these things when you’re already dragging yourself out of bed late and you have to get the kids off to school. But don’t worry! I’m talking about two Monday morning habits that will take very little time–trust me!

Now, as a disclaimer, I would still advise that you find 30-60 minutes at least three times a week to get in a good workout. Find something you enjoy: swimming, basketball, spin class, kickboxing, whatever! Your body will thank you! But, on those mornings, like today, when you’re doing good just to roll out of bed, try this:

  1. throw on some shorts or stay in your pjs and do 10 jumping jacks, up to 10 push-ups and 10 squats (click here to see how you can modify these exercises according to your fitness level)
  2. go start the coffee brewing or heat up the teapot, wake up the kids (if you have kids), then…
  3. repeat step 1!
  4. sweeten your coffee or tea and start prepping Ayesha Curry’s Greek Yogurt parfait…you may also have to shake up the kids again, then…
  5. repeat step 3!
  6. take a shower, finish prepping your power breakfast, then hurry yourself and the kids out the door

What’s great about this is you can congratulate yourself for starting off your Monday with an exercise that will boost your energy level, but won’t require an unreasonable time commitment.

If you have time, sit and enjoy your power breakfast while reading something inspirational like Proverbs 31. If not, prep that parfait in a plastic cup and take it on the road! Your body and your mind should be warmed up now and ready to face the day.

Check back every Monday for another “Monday Mayhem” energizer!

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*Of course, you don’t have to reserve this routine for Mondays. Since Monday was a holiday, this was written on a Tuesday! Anyway, it works on any day when you’re having a hard time pulling it together. Let me know how you feel after trying this energizer and tell me what you think of Ayesha’s parfait, I think it’s super yummy! Or maybe you found a way to make it your own, tell me about it!

Happy Monday!

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