I honestly can't believe that July is in a few days. And that I turn 25 in August. Time is flying by and I feel like I am so busy but not busy enough all at once. Am I having a quarter life crisis?
Anyway, I am here to share with you some of my favorite things from this past month!
**So trendy*** I know :) I am a big tea fan for many reasons: It's soothing, different herbs and spices offer a variety of health benefits, it keeps me warm when I am cold 90% of the time, and it is a great way to stay hydrated. However I realized I was not drinking enough green tea which contains a good amount of disease-preventing antioxidants. The reason I wasn't drinking it enough is because I was not ready to give up my dark cup of Brazilian coffee in the morning and I did not want any more caffeine throughout the day. In steps matcha! If you have not heard of matcha, it is a concentrated form of green tea from the whole tea leaf. It comes in powder form. It contains more caffeine than just regular green tea, and is likely close to the caffeine content of the coffee I drink. It also contains a significantly greater amount of antioxidants (catechins, to be specific) than green tea. The Nutrition Diva has a great article on why this extra concentration of disease-fighting properties may not make a difference, but there are benefits to green tea regardless.
I decided to switch up my normal routine and get try making my own matcha latte. I've been blending 2 tbsp of the powder with a dash of cinnamon, splash of almond/coconut milk or almond milk creamer (I am lactose intolerant - no hate on dairy), and about a cup and a half of boiling water. I am pretty sure you are not supposed to put hot liquids in a NutriBullet, but I have not had a problem yet! The reason I blend it is because the powder is pretty grainy and that helps it get absorbed a bit better. Also it gets foamy and I am a fan of that. I don't add sugar to my coffee so I have not felt like I needed to add it to this, but feel free to try it with some stevia or honey! I've also made a mango matcha smoothie and hope to share the recipe soon!
Other benefits of matcha include it's component L-theanine which has been found to provide lasting focus and relaxation throughout the day. I haven't paid attention to see if this is my experience yet, but I really do enjoy having it in the morning.
If you have dieted, are sick of dieting and feel like the goal of weight loss is never ending, then please do yourself a favor and READ THIS BOOK. I won't go into too much detail about it because that would turn this short post into a novel. Basically, Intuitive Eating is the NON-DIET approach to eating. It is eating intuitively. It is eating when you are hungry and stopping when you are full. It is respecting those natural cues and ditching "food rules". It is everything I always believed in and was never able to put into words. I got into nutrition not because I cared about weight, but because I cared about HEALTH and how I felt when it came to eating. I am proud of my profession in that there are so many RDs branching away from the diet rules we are taught and promoting body positivity, self-acceptance and respect, and the idea that diets simply do not work. If you are an #rd2be, I highly recommend this book for you as well!
Some favorite bloggers that preach this idea:
Alexis from Hummusapien
Jessi from Jessi Haggerty Nutriton and Movement Therapy
Run, Selfie, Repeat Podcast
Few things brighten up my morning commute more than listening to Kelly Roberts talk about LIFE with a side of running! Her episodes also bring me tears, as this girl has gone through some serious sh*t. I learned about this podcast from my friend Abby who is also a runner and I dove right in to get some inspiration. Kelly is a former theater girl, non-athlete who now runs marathons, preaches for women to stop hating their bodies and start running in sports bras and is a total badass. (Kelly if you ever read this, I want to be your friend.) I run, but I would not call myself a runner...but listening to Kelly's own life lessons and experiences certainly gets me thinking and motivates me to be a better version of myself every day. Go listen!!!!
I actually used to snack on these all the time and the totally forgot about them! If you were to ask me if I prefer salty or sweet, I would probably say salty unless it's like 3 pm. In an effort to switch up my snacks that I bring to work, I found these again and remembered why I love them. Edamame is so filling! Just 1/3 cup of these contains healthy fats and has 13g protein and 8g of fiber aka they have a lot of staying power and can help lower cholesterol. Plus they are crunchy and that is just my personal preference when it comes to most foods.
There is also a lightly salted version for anyone watching their sodium intake!
Last weekend we hiked up Mount Lafayette in New Hampshire. It took 8 hours, it had just rained a ton, and I was totally unprepared. My burning calves let me know all week how much of a workout it was haha! I enjoy hiking but am definitely inexperienced. I didn't have enough water before it and I was also really struggling with the downhill rocks. But I did it anyway! At one point going back down I started getting really frustrated and then just mentally turned that into how I could do a little better. Literally putting one foot in front of the other and stop overthinking every step. Kevin also was encouraging me to do this.
Anyway, I know that my hike is not a "thing", but it is one the favorite things I did this month. I thought all week about how I was unprepared but made it through anyway, and how that can apply to the rest of my life. Yes I am aware this is super corny, but I have a lot of goals right now I have been holding back on because I feel like I am not ready yet. The truth is, none of us will ever be 100% ready so we should just jump in and try it anyway. You might fail, or learn a few things, such as get hiking boots and stop climbing in old sneakers like I did :)
That's a wrap! I hope you all have a fun 4th of July weekend! Speaking of which, if you'll be drinking, there's absolutely a way to do it in a healthy way. My RD friend Jenna is offering a FREE webinar on How to Drink & Still Be Healthy! Sign up for it HERE.