New Year’s resolutions never made sense to me. Whether it’s getting back into the routine of school, planning a new fiscal budget for work, or juggling a new schedule, there’s a lot on your plate. Not to mention its cold, and the weather is less than ideal for a new workout routine. I read somewhere that half of Americans make New Year’s resolutions and only eight or ten percent follow through with them. Admittedly, I’m with the majority.
Summer, however, seems to work wonders with setting and fulfilling goals. It’s sunny out, and people are a little more relaxed at the office. On the trails I see children smiling as they run or bike with their parents. And the farmers’ markets are full of fresh produce to try.
Yesterday, I asked myself what I wanted to achieve by the end of August. In Greece, I ate more spinach than I thought was humanly possible. When I lived in Belgium, I would walk miles each day to work and the university. For some reason, I let these healthy habits fade over the years.
So this summer, I’m challenging myself to reach at least 15,000 steps a day on my Fitbit and adding two cups of dark leafy greens to my daily diet. To kick off my summer resolution, I made a delicious green smoothie.
Leafy Greens Smoothie
Yield: 1 adult or 2 children sized smoothies Total Time: 5 minutes
2 cups packed baby spinach or leafy greens of your choice*
½ frozen banana
3 frozen pineapple chunks
3 frozen mango chunks
1 tablespoon of almond butter **
3/4 cup cold water
Fresh banana slices
Blend all of the ingredients together until smooth.
*Dark leafy greens are full of vitamins A, C and K. They also contain a good source of calcium, fiber, and iron. Kale, chard, and collard greens also work well in this smoothie.
** I also like to add two tablespoons of hemp hearts to boost my daily intake of omega 6 and omega 3. Combined with the almond butter, it adds around 9 grams of protein to the smoothie.
*** If you want to make a green monster smoothie for your kids, slice a fresh banana, and freeze the unused portion. Press a frozen blueberry in the middle, and serve the monster eyes on top of the smoothie. You can slice a fresh strawberry to use as a silly tongue.