Thanksgiving Gifts and Thanks!

Thank you, my friends!

I am in such deep gratitude for all of you in my life.  You are inspiring, beautiful, fun and lovely beings, and I am so fortunate to be sharing time and presence with you!  Thank you for all you are and all you give!

For you....

some yummy recipes that are perfect for this time of year...
some thoughts of why we gain weight over the holidays and how not to...
the best watch/activity tracker - get it for your loved ones and yourself!

and...just have to include a pic of my 2 doggies...1 princess and 1 crazy terror (yes, I meant terror, not terrier!) excited to get them some winter outfits!


Do we have to gain weight before 2016?
So here's the deal - studies show that we do gain 1 -2 pounds over the holidays.  Not too bad, right?  But, the problem is that we don't lose it....we keep it on for the rest of the year, then we add another 1-2 pound next years Holiday season.  That, and the fact that as we age, we lose energy-burning muscle by being a bit more inactive each year...well, then that becomes a problem, right?

So, what are you going to do to change that?  Can you decide here and now that you will be making healthy, good for you choices whether you are at Aunt Martha's with her decadent mashed potatoes, or best friend Sally's and her pumpkin pie with whipped cream, or while on the road with all the fast food options calling your name?  I find that a little planning goes a long way.  Remember that we really only need whole foods, made with simple ingredients.  The more you fill up on salads, fresh and cooked veggies, and lean protein while remaining hydrated, the better your body feels.  

Also, enjoy the company!  Really listen to your father-in-law talk about the war, make sure that you appreciate your mom's beautiful table with heirloom plates, enjoy the loud laughter of the kids. You get the idea...the more we can fill up on the experience and the love, the less we need the (not-so-good-for-us) food!  I also find that we are eating faster and faster these days.  Take little bites and chew completely - we actually start the digestion process with the chewing.  Also, put down your fork between bites and take a couple breaths.  Really enjoy and savor the moment and the food.

See below for some recipes that might lighten up some favorite go-to dishes.  Everyone comes from a different starting point when it comes to eating healthy...some of these recipes might be too fatty, too cheesy...  But, for some, they might be huge improvements to the way you currently eat. 

On the activity front...

We know that moving your body is where it is at!  Now, we don't have to spend hours in the gym every day - and I would encourage you not to do that.  I'm finding that so many gals yo-yo in and out of extreme workouts and in and out of diets.  I want you to enjoy life consistently, not just 3 months on, then bottom out and lose the momentum, weight comes back on, and self-esteem plummets...  Slow and Steady, doing what you love and can continue realistically, that's where it's at.

Anyway, as we move and our muscles contract, we produce energy  - where do we get that energy?  The food we eat.   We need the heart to be pumping, the muscles contracting, and our breathing to be faster to burn excess energy.  We can get this with walking, using bands and weights, and even using just our body to create the resistance against gravity.  And, guess what?  It does a body good just to do something,... anything.... that gets the muscles moving, heart a beating for even 5-10 minutes.  

I have researched and tried a couple of activity monitors and have a favorite that I would like you to add to your wish list this season.....the Vivofit 2 by Garmin.  It is a watch...that means when you look down on your wrist, the first thing you see is the time, no need to press anything first like some other wearables.  It is low key, not too big and bulky, has a backlight to see easier and an audible alarm to remind you to more more.  It does so much that can't tell you all about it here, (monitors sleep, works with a phone app, synchs automatically...)

Here is the web site for it - Garmin has many wearables, but the VivoFit 2 is the best bang for your buck.

------ this pic shows the steps taken that day, but the default is the time -------

 I will be ordering from Road Runner Sports (where I am a VIP member),  they will be $89 with no tax and free shipping.  They also have different color bands that you can buy for an additional $16.  I would highly suggest that you get this tracker and keep track of your activity (and sleep) and get moving more!  If you want to use my discount you need to let me know what you want me to order.  They also have great running gear too.  I am suggesting that all my clients get a wearable device - especially those going to the ReTREAT so they can get as much out of the location as possible by being prepared before hand.

I also get a BIG discount on Prana clothing - It is definitely worth your time to check out their website and see if there is anything your loved ones would love from there. they have quality, cute clothes for moving and being active.  Give me a call and let me know if you want me to place an order.  I don't get any money for any orders - just want to help you out!

Are you loving brussels sprouts these days? They are everywhere and are sooo simple to make  - I just can't get enough!  They can help lower cholesterol, protect against some cancers, help with detoxification, give antioxidant support, and so much more!  These would look great on you Thanksgiving table.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Red Onion and Walnuts
Brussels sprouts - washed and cut in half lengthwise
1 red onion - cut in 1/2 and sliced
1/2 cup of walnuts, broken up a bit
Olive oil and some Italian seasonings
Fresh Basil - sliced thin
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper

Toss the sprouts and onions with oil and seasoning (add salt and pepper as desired). Roast in 350 - 400 oven until a little brown, mix in the walnuts, some basil and parmesan cheese.  Place back in oven for about 5 minutes.   Yummy

for those of you with children, here is a bit healthier mac and cheese...

Mac and Cheese (with hidden cauliflower...) and Broccoli
steamed and riced cauliflower(I use about 1 -2 cups of cauliflower) and, I use the microwave for this
6 oz pasta
1 Tbsp butter
1 cup sharp cheese  (can use 1/2 gruyere too)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
2 oz. cream cheese
1 cup milk
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1- 2 cups brocoli - chopped
salt, pepper and parsley

Boil pasta in water until al dente - save 1/2 cup or more pasta water.  In saucepan, melt butter, add cheeses and cauliflower, stir while melting over med heat.  Add in the pasta water, milk, and dijon mustard to desired consistency.  Stir in brocoli and pasta, salt, pepper and parsley.  Place in casserole dish, cook for a couple minutes in oven at 350 until top is a bit brown.  

Here's another good one...

Sweet Potatoes (or Yams) and Gruyere

Peel and slice 2 potatoes very thin
Spread potatoes evenly on a baking sheet and roast for a short time until a bit soft in 350 - 375 oven.  
Remove 1/2 of the potatoes to put in casserole, keep the other 1/2 in oven until crisp.  Eat as chips!

In casserole dish, add potatoes, about 1/4 cup of gyuere cheese, a bit of milk and salt and pepper - mix well.
Bake for 30 minutes until cheese is bubbly and potatoes soft.

Again, thanks so much for all you do - you are all rock stars in my book!  

Now, what are you going to do to get moving a bit more or treat your body well this week? 
Let me know your plans!  And let me know if I can place an order for you.