Hello my loves!
Happy second Monday! I truly mean it. After a very restful Sunday nights sleep (because, guess what?! I don’t get Sunday night anxiety anymore!), Monday started off with a great 6am workout that included 30 minutes of treadmill sprints/intervals, 4 minutes of squats, and then a total upper body lifting sesh. Feeling sore but oh so good! Worked an inspiring shift at the gym (more to come on this later!), came home to eat some homemade chicken soup and an Envy apple (so delish!) for lunch, and then taught two barre classes last night at the studio. Got up this morning to the stillness of a 5am wake up call to teach an awesome 6am CarmelBarre class. Now, I’m finishing up this post at Starbucks sipping on some Central Coast Juicery green juice and a Starbucks Blonde Roast to kick start my day before I get my own butt-kicked in a morning barre class!
Speaking of juice, I completed my two-day juice cleanse last week (barely). And, as promised, I am sharing my experience with you. The two days were a roller coaster of extreme fatigue and energy. I’m grateful I got this experience, however, I’m not sure I would ever do it again or recommend it. Even once the cleanse was over it took me days to feel normal again. My digestive system felt totally off. For days after, every time I ate something I felt sluggish and, not to give you too much information, I have yet to be regular again – if you know what I mean. I also had a huge crash in energy since completing the cleanse. Before, my diet prompted healthy energy levels.
In my opinion, there’s nothing a cleanse will do you for your system that a clean, balanced diet and regular exercise doesn’t already do. Your body is totally capable of renewing itself on a daily basis. Likewise, your nutrition should give you energy, promote a healthy weight, make your skin glow, and help you sleep better. If you are experiencing imbalances in your diet it will affect all of these factors so take a look at what you are putting into your body now before looking to a cleanse. Additionally, a cleanse is pretty much a crash diet disguised by health claims, along with promises of some sort of spiritual awakening. You may feel this sense of euphoria, I definitely did, but I have a feeling it was because my body was going into starvation, creating dopamine and cortisol to prepare to keep me alive. I think a cleanse can easily promote unhealthy relationships with food. Ever since the cleanse I have been battling with the desire to continue to restrict food. My stomach was completely flat after the cleanse and I lost about three pounds in two days. Losing this much weight in such a little amount of time meant it was majority water weight. This also meant it was inevitable that I will gain the three pounds back once I started eating food again and my calorie intake went back to normal. Dealing with not wanting to eat whole foods again to keep the weight off is not a healthy thought process to have, obviously.
With all this being said, I still LOVE my green juice! Also, being on a cleanse really put me in touch with the difference between eating when I’m hungry versus caving to emotional triggers such as boredom, depression, celebration, or anxiety. I plan on carrying this over into my normal eating habits. However, I think the healthy and most beneficial way to enjoy green juice is as part of your daily, balanced diet. The best time to enjoy a nutrient-rich, green juice? First thing in the morning or after a workout when your digestive system will most easily ingest all the nutrients!
Once the cleanse was over, it was time to celebrate at the CarmelBarre open house! I brought a new and improved version of my Healthy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies and they were a hit! So, for all you lovely barre ladies, here is the recipe as promised!
IMPROVED Gluten-Free & Sugar-Free Oatmeal Walnut Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup oat flour
3/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup quinoa flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/3 cup 100% pure maple syrup
5 packets Stevia
2 tbsp flax seed meal
1/2 cup egg whites
1/4 cup Earth Balance Soy-Free Buttery Spread
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup gluten-free oats
1/2 to 1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips (depending on how chocolately you like them :). Also, I used Enjoy Life Chocolate Chunks. These are diary-free chocolate chips, though they do have sugar. You can omit if you want the cookies to be 100% no-sugar added.)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or tin foil (if your oven tends to burn the bottom of cookies like mine!) and then spray with coconut oil cooking spray.
2. Combine oat flour, coconut flour, quinoa flour, flax seed meal, salt, and baking powder in one bowl. Combine egg whites, Earth Balance, maple syrup, Stevia, melted coconut oil, melted Earth Balance, cinnamon, and vanilla extract in another bowl. Blend with an electric mixer or in a food processor until smooth.
3. Gradually add in the dry mixture to the wet ingredients until completely combined. Mix in the oats, chocolate chips, and walnuts.
4. Spoon cookies onto baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown but still a little gooey in the middle.
5. Remove from oven and let cool on another sheet of aluminum foil or baking rack. Now the only thing left to do is to grab a glass of unsweetened almond milk and enjoy!
Enjoy the rest of your week readers!
Health and happiness!
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