It’s the first Monday of February, and that means it’s time for another edition of my monthly series, Motivation Monday. For me, healthy living is all about motivation. It’s about finding the motivation to cook instead of order takeout, go for a walk, or skip a second helping. Each Motivation Monday features easy tips and a healthy recipe.
Last month, my focus was on healthy snacking, and I actually did pretty well with this. For February, my goal is to establish a consistent exercise routine (see my tips below). Plus, I’m sharing a delicious green smoothie recipe made with Driscoll’s berries!*
Over the past year, I’ve gone from exercising 5-6 days a week to practically zero days, and I want to get back on track. I’ve had my reasons (weather, shoulder problems, etc.), but I need to stop making excuses. So, I’ve set a goal to exercise 4 days a week this month.
I live a couple blocks from Central Park, so barring another Polar Vortex, I’ll walk/jog a couple days a week, and on the other days, I’ll do some yoga or cardio. If I come into a few extra dollars, I’d love to try SoulCycle (that ish is expensive), too!
Are you in the same boat as me? Use these tips to develop your own exercise routine:
Schedule exercise dates. In the past, when I’ve written my workout dates/times in a planner, it made all the difference!
Mix it up. Exercise is more fun if you’re not doing the same boring routine every day. I enjoy a combination of walking, jogging, yoga, pilates, and cardio, and jump at the chance to try new things, too.
Pair up with a friend. It’s so much harder to skip a day when you know someone else is counting on you. If you’re in New York, I’d love a workout buddy (hint, hint)!
Don’t think about it; just do it. Set out your exercise clothes the night before. Put them on as soon as you wake up or get home from work. Don’t turn on the TV. Don’t eat a snack. Spend as little time thinking about it as possible, and just get out there and exercise!
My exercise mantra for February!
After exercising, I like to reward myself with a healthy snack! So I was excited when I was contacted by Driscoll’s* to develop a snack for my readers! I decided to create a green smoothie.
Green smoothies are everywhere these days, but I have to admit that I’ve been a little hesitant to jump on the bandwagon. I think it is the close resemblance to pureed grass!
I shouldn’t have worried, because after I blended up the berries and spinach, I couldn’t taste anything grassy at all (I promise)! As a matter of fact, it was downright delicious. My husband also loved this smoothie, and I think you will, too!
Cheers to your health! My Berry Green Smoothie is full of nutrients, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and lots of other good stuff. Read more about the health benefits of berries, spinach, and green tea.
Berry Green Smoothie
Serves 1 – 2
1/2 of a banana
1 1/2 cups Driscoll’s* mixed berries (I used blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.)
1 green tea bag
2 cups spinach
1/2 of a pear
Start by covering a cookie sheet with foil. Peel the banana, slice it into rounds, and place the slices on the cookie sheet. Add berries to cookie sheet, cutting large berries (such as strawberries) into halves or quarters. Make sure everything is in a single layer so it doesn’t stick together later. Place cookie sheet in freezer and let sit until fruit is frozen, about 2 hours.
While fruit is freezing, bring 1 1/2 cups water almost to a boil. Pour water into a large mug and add the tea bag. Let steep for 3 – 5 minutes and then remove tea bag. Allow tea to cool to room temperature and set aside.
I used flavored green tea for my smoothie. This berry-flavored tea pairs perfectly with this recipe!
To make smoothie, add frozen fruit to a blender. Grab a large handful of spinach (about 2 cups) and place it on top of berries. Cut half a pear into large pieces and add to blender. Pour cooled tea over everything and blend until smooth, stirring if needed.
This recipe makes 1 large smoothie or, if you feel like sharing, two small smoothies.
Customize this Berry Green Smoothie to your taste:
Use any mixture of berries that you like (or just use a single berry).
Replace the berries with another fruit, such as apples, citrus, or pomegranate seeds.
Add a tablespoon of almond butter for extra protein.
Sweeten the smoothie by adding a chopped Medjool date, a little honey or maple syrup, or a touch of your favorite sweetener.
Replace the tea with milk (regular, almond, soy, etc.), juice, yogurt, or coconut water.
Spice things up by adding a little fresh ginger or a pinch of cinnamon.
Supercharge your smoothie with 1 tablespoon chia seeds or ground flaxseed.
Experiment with other greens, such as kale, collards, or Swiss chard.
What is motivating you this month?
P.S. Stop back Tuesday for a roundup of my favorite winter workout gear and Wednesday for my indoor workout essentials (for those days that it’s just too cold to go outside!).