I consider myself to have rhythm. Maybe not a ton, but enough. I'm too shy to dance at weddings or parties but I can carry a tune and I was a song-leader in middle school and high school, so you know, I can move to a good jock jams song. Have you been to a serious spin class? Like, at a real studio with a dark room and extremely loud music. It's hard and in a season where I'm short on free time, it seems like the most efficient workout in an hours time. So, this teacher I like, Catalina, she plays great music, most of which I don't know but I can tell it's hip. She has dark curly hair that she wears up and is bleached on the bottom and she says things like "you do you" (the permission I take upon myself to sit down in the saddle for a minute while we are supposed to be up sprinting). She instructs the class sort of like you're dancing on the bike. You keep this cadence with your pedals and you follow her choreography to crunch on the bike and thrust your hips back and forth and she gives encouraging little snippets throughout. Unfortunately, there is a giant mirror in front so you have to watch yourself try to follow her moves and I actually laugh a little bit about how off-beat I usually am. But I am sweating! And I'm wearing stretchy clothes to actually work out! So I don't care that much. I just recently started exercising again, and not just for vanities sake, which I have used as motivation in the past, but for my mental health as well. I've had a tough time adjusting back to life since Cleo joined our family. For me, it was harder in a completely different way than the transition to one child. It's been largely hormonal, combined with lack of sleep and alone time, and unrealistic expectations which is the Achilles Heel of my life. I appreciated this vulnerable post from Anna. It took too many months to figure out that doing one small thing for myself each day, makes me a better mother and wife and human to other people. It doesn't have to be big, maybe a spin class, a short walk without kids, a girly date, or making myself a real lunch and sitting down to eat it. I can't do all of these things each day, but I can usually do one of them and that helps minimize the breakdowns. When you spend a large part of your day taking care of other people, there has to be some point when you recharge your own batteries or you will deplete yourself. I am only suggesting this because I was trying to be the "every woman" for too long. Some days I still find myself trying, but it is exhausting. I'm in process of balancing the energy required to care for my family, but not giving up things that fill me up to do so. I can't do it all, and asking for help or giving things up or ordering take out doesn't mean I failed. I don't think you have to have kids to relate to that feeling.
So I come home from said classes with my ears ringing and starving. I've eaten breakfast prior and it's too early for lunch but a hearty smoothie can tide me over. My default is some combination of almond milk, protein powder, frozen banana, cinnamon, cocoa and peanut butter but now I mix it up with this one I found in David and Luise's new book.
GREEN REHYDRATION SMOOTHIE // Serves 1-2
Recipe adapted from Green Kitchen Smoothies by David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl
I added the avocado to David and Luise's recipe because I have found that adding some natural fats, be it avocado, flaxmeal, nut butter, or even all three if I'm feeling ravenous, staves off my hunger much better than a smoothie without any fat. I am still breastfeeding quite frequently and need that extra fat in my diet too. It also helps balance blood sugar, even though this particular smoothie isn't super sweet. If this is acting as a meal for you, a 1/4 cup old fashioned oats can help thicken it up.
1 celery stalk
1 small frozen banana
half of a small avocado
1 gigantic handful baby spinach or other leafy green
1 Tbsp. plant-based protein powder
1/2 tsp. fresh grated ginger
1 cup coconut water
juice of half a lime
a few mint leaves, optional
In a high-powered blender, blend all ingredients until completely smooth. Chill if desired. This smoothie is best enjoyed the day it is made.