A Holiday Survival Guide (with my "Reset" Smoothie Recipe)

It's that time of year again! The hectic running around, the overindulging, the lack of sleep, the fun, family get togethers; a time when we need to remember to reconnect with ourselves. It's easy to mindlessly eat or forego exercise during this time so having a plan is the best way to go this holiday season. I'm writing this now after years of gaining weight during the holiday season, feeling horrible about myself then working to lose the weight.

I wanted to highlight my green smoothie recipe again because it's just so nourishing.  This is a great smoothie recipe to reset your digestive system if you've had too many sweets; it's also a great breakfast or mid day snack to keep you hydrated, full and pumped with nutritious greens. It's easier to eat mindfully during a holiday dinner after you chomped on veggies all day. You don't have to gain the usual 5-7 holidays pounds; nosh on those greens, grab an apple and get moving.  A few ways to combat the bulge:

1. Don't starve yourself in anticipation for the big meal at dinner; eat fruits, veggies, and whole grains during the day then sample a small portion of each dish at dinner.

2. If you overindulge at a meal, move on!  Get over it and eat a normal, healthy portion for your next meal.  The worst thing you can do is to continue overindulging. My internal dialogue used to be "well I just overate, might as well keep going!" Your body will forgive you, move on, it's ok, just get back in the game.

3. Start your day with this green smoothie recipe below.  You get alot of greens and hydration and when you start your day healthy, the rest of your day tends to be healthy too.

4. Get out for a walk or run or any exercise you love; if it's cold, bundle up and get moving! When I walk or run, I think about my day and burn off energy. It's a wonderful way to have time for yourself and reset your mind. Do you work out better with someone? Grab a partner and work off the Tofurky.

5. If you have too much alcohol, start drinking water.  It's best if you drink a glass of water between each drink but if you didn't do that, drink plenty of water after you drink alcohol so you won't wake up dehydrated.  Buy a few cartons of coconut water to help with a hangover.

6. Take some time for yourself. Set aside a part of your day to take a walk, do yoga, meditate, cook dinner or take a warm bath. During this time of year, alot of time and energy is spent being with others, doing for others, eating sweets, not sleeping well so always reset and reconnect with yourself.

7. Add a green to every meal. Add a handful of spinach to your chocolate banana smoothie, add a green to your tofu scramble in the morning, load up your dinner plate with greens. You don't have to take away the bread or pasta, just add a green to go with it.

Green "reset" smoothie recipe:

A handful of fresh organic spinach
A handful of organic romaine
5-10 slices of an organic cucumber
1 small avocado or 1/2 of a large
Juice from 1 lemon
1 organic pear, chopped
1 organic apple, chopped
1 frozen banana
2 cups of coconut water

Slice up the pear, apple and cucumber into small pieces.  Add everything to your blender and blend well.  I have a Ninja blender and I love it!  Pour into your favorite glass and enjoy.  Add more water if you had alot of alcohol to help replenish your body.  The smoothie I made this morning filled a pretty big mason jar (see below) which was about 6 cups of smoothie.

If you go into the next few weeks with a plan, you don't have to feel your clothes getting tighter. One Christmas a few years ago, I was so determined to eat healthy that I actually lost weight over the holidays.  Not every family gathering has to kill your healthy eating plan and not every New Years resolution has to be about losing weight.  Eat your greens up until your first big holiday meal, pick out the healthy dishes at the table and take smaller portions of heavier dishes.  Just keep moving during the day if you can.  Go shopping, shovel snow, walk around town with your loved ones savoring the holiday season.

Stay tuned for my chocolate mousse pie recipe next; I shared this last Christmas and it was a hit!

What is your favorite holiday dish?  What's your favorite way to get exercise this holiday season?

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