I am often asked this question by guests wondering about my personal habits with food and exercise, so this month, I’m going to give you my latest and greatest habits and tips!
If I could choose one word that defines me in most ways it’s CONSISTENT. I’m not always right, or good, but I’m pretty darn consistent in the way I live. As far as my physical self is concerned, I believe that it is consistency that has paid me back the highest health dividends in my adult life.
I have adapted and modified my eating habits quite a bit over the last decade, menopausal weight gain definitely motivated many changes. My latest, greatest philosophy with food is to keep it simple and keep it clean. I start my day with one cup of strong, organic coffee with raw sugar & organic half & half, or black tea with organic whole milk and raw sugar. MMMM. I take that back to bed with me and start my day quietly, just me and my God. Within an hour or so I make my “everything but the kitchen sink” drink in my blender. Greens, veggies, fruits of different varieties are the foundation, then I add the juice of a lemon, 1 T. apple cider vinegar, ¼ cup of my own raw nut/seed blend, (I mix about 6-8 together and just scoop out from that blend) PLUS a T. of organic green veggie powder boost, a t. of ginger and turmeric, a ½ t. of cinnamon and cloves, (all power spices) a T. of organic Coconut Oil, and a t. of local honey for my allergies! VOILA! Ok, it’s not super sweet but it does pack a high energy nutritional punch and satisfies me for about 4 whole hours!
I will do the Oaks mid morning broth break on days I’m feeling a little pre lunch hunger, then for lunch tend towards a salad or soup if I’m at the Oaks. If I go home, I may make an egg with veggies, or often have my own meat free burger mix. It’s simple! I cook lentils or beans and let them cool. I grate carrots and zucchini in my food processor, remove the moisture, and then add my legumes plus some of my nut/seed mixture until nice and smooth and firm enough to make patties from. I usually freeze half of my mix. When I’m ready to make a patty, I heat my pan, grease it with Coco or Olive oil, and cook my patty for 5 minutes. I flip it and add some raw cheese if I have any. After another 5 minutes I place the patty on spinach or greens, add some mustard and a little mayo, avocado if I have it, AND the best, my homemade sauerkraut! (It’s so easy! I grate a cabbage and shove it into jars. I add water and salt, seal tightly and stick under my sink for 2-3 weeks until fermented. SOOOO GOOD!)
My late afternoon snack varies. My favorite is a piece of spelt bread from Ojai’s local hippie market/restaurant. Their fresh made organic bread is the BEST! I toast it, sometimes add cheese or avocado or peanut butter and am pretty happy with that!
We have an empty nest so we’re eating out more than we ever have. We do a lot of Thai food- soups, veggie dishes, curry dishes all are in line with my “plan.” If we cook, I focus on protein and veggies and do a minimal amount of carbs. If we do a fine dining thing, I am not above French bread and butter, but this is rarely even once a week. My husband loves hamburgers so if we do that I get mine lettuce wrapped, skip the ketchup, and share a few of his fries. Love it.
Alcohol, you may ask? I don’t drink much, maybe a drink a week or every 2 weeks. Sugars include raw sugar in my coffee, honey in my morning drink. If I have organic dark chocolate around I may have a square or two- I give myself a 200 calorie “allowance” daily that I can blow any way I like! It sets parameters and is enough to satisfy me without going overboard!
As for exercise, I try to ride my bike to work most days- it’s not a big deal, a total of 20 minutes or so, but it makes a positive difference. (see my article called The Power of One) Obviously I teach classes and am grateful to do that. I teach tone and stretch, not cardio, so the biking plus a daily dog walk is my cardio. I teach ball and Pilates weekly for tone and do a little more, not much, on my own with bands and sometimes the Oaks weight machines. I also teach stretch and am ashamed to say I don’t really stretch unless I’m teaching. Oops! I would say I do 4-5 cardio hours a week, 3 or so strength hours, and 1.5 hours of stretch in general. All I can say is that in general, it’s working for me. I’m pretty pleased with my overall health and appearance at age 57!
Thanks for listening to my story about me- hope it inspires you!