Feeling a little  meh  right now? I bet you’re in post-Thanksgiving, pre-Christmas, mid-holiday-party mode. And that you’re lacking some greens.   I get it.   The holidays aren’t  really  known for packing in the nutritious stuff. I mean, why, when you’ve got Christmas cookies, French toast casserole, and pies galore everywhere?   Veggies sort of become an afterthought this time of year. Only once the calendar creeps closer to the  New Year  do most people start thinking about upping their vegetable intake.  Want some easy ways to be ahead of the crowd? Like a veggie trendsetter? Here are 17 ways to squeeze some more veggies in to your holidays.  Drink a  smoothie  in the morning.  Surefire, no-fail way to sneak some extra servings of fruit and veggies in to your day. Get a couple handfuls of greens in there, maybe some avocado, maybe some sweet potato or pumpkin if you’re feeling adventurous.  Add some cut up fruit to your granola or overnight oats.  Sure, add a dollop of nut butter and drizzle on some maple syrup. Maybe toss a handful of nuts on there, but don’t forget some fruit, too! Bananas, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and cherries all make excellent toppings.  Make a sneaky cheese sauce.  Did you know, thanks to the magic of  nutritional yeast  (affectionally referred to as nooch), you can pretty much make cheese sauce out of any veggie? Butternut squash, sweet potatoes, Russet potatoes, carrots - the possibilities are practically endless!  Make some veggie-licious snack balls.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t remind you of these  Veggie-licious Snack Balls.  They’re a perfect way to add in some totally undetectable veggies in to your day. No one will know they’re healthy.   Make a veggie soup with leftover veggies.  Leftover veggie scraps make excellent veggie soup! And I bet you’ve got a bunch of leftovers hiding in random places in the fridge. Toss whatever you’ve got in your stock pot with some water (or broth) and spices and make some magic.   Sneak some veggies in to your bread or muffins.  You can make banana bread, you can make pumpkin bread, you can make chocolate zucchini bread…Yes, it’s totally possible to up the veggie content of your baked goods. There are tons of recipes out there, and people are doing some  cray-zay things  with veggies these days. Join the club.  Spiralize some veggies instead of pasta.  You remember  that spiralizer?  Get that bad boy/torture device out and start spiralizing some veggies. I know, I know, it doesn’t taste the same as pasta. How about we compromise? You cook some pasta and add in those spiraled veggies? Half and half? Deal?   Make a healthy homemade dip + veggies.  You can’t go wrong with dip. It’s practically impossible to see a good-looking dip and walk on by. Even if said dip is accompanied by celery sticks. ( Dear celery sticks, no offense. I actually love you. ) Whip up some  hummus,  maybe some cheese dip ( although probably not to go with celery… ), maybe a seven-layer dip (all kinds of veggie-hiding opportunities there!)…the sky’s the limit!  Have a salad with your meal + add a ton of veggies.  Did you know that having a salad before your meal can help you eat less? I know, all the great foodies eat their salads after the meal. But when you’re trying to eat more veggies, having a  big salad  at the beginning of your meal will help you hit that target.  Infuse your water with some fruits or veggies.  All right, technically you’re not going to be eating these fruits and veggies — unless you like soggy stuff — but this is a great way to drink more water. And you can’t go wrong with that.  Make an avocado pudding.  Avocado can do no wrong. Especially when you make it into a  chocolate pudding.  For real. It’s like those Snack Packs you used to love as a kid except a million times better. It’s like… you can have your dessert (or afternoon snack) and eat it, too.   Add all kinds of veggies to your pasta.  We already spiralized some veggies or made a mixture of pasta and spiralized veggies, but how about just adding some veggies to your pasta? Peas, carrots, broccoli, kale, spinach, tomatoes (technically a fruit, I know) - all excellent choices. Especially when you’re making that sneaky cheese sauce, too.  Add some grated zucchini or carrots to that casserole.  Making a casserole for your office potluck or family get-together? Do everyone a favor and sneak some grated veggies in there. Just like with snack balls and baked goodies, I bet no one will even notice. Unless, of course, they pull a shred out and interrogate you.  Make some veggie fries — avocado fries, carrot fries, sweet potato fries…  Everybody loves fries. Go beyond French fries and try some sweet potato fries. Or really branch out and go for some  avocado fries  or  carrot fries.  Yes, they exist. Trust me.  Have a veggie-centric pizza.   Woohoo pizza night!  Instead of cheese lovers or meat lovers, how about veggie lovers? There’s a pizza place here in Florida that shoves a butt ton of veggies on their veggie pizza. We’re talking spinach, artichokes, banana peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, green peppers, olives…all the yums. Follow their lead.  Mix some veggies into your pancake or waffle mix.  Making some Sunday morning pancakes? (No judgment if you’re making Saturday night waffles. I’m a breakfast-for-dinner kinda gal myself.) Mix some veggies into that mix. You can totally make some savory pancakes, too, and throw some sautéed veggies on top if you’re feeling it.   Make some healthier Christmas cookies.  No, it’s not blasphemy.  It’s just balance.  Use some applesauce or Medjool dates to sweeten things up. Make banana oatmeal cookies. Add in some more of those veggie shreds. (Seriously, zucchini shreds are practically tasteless.) Christmas cookies don’t have to just be sugar and frosting. (Stay tuned next week if you’re on the fence about this one.)  I hope these ideas have you feeling inspired and empowered to sneak some more good-for-you food in to your day in whatever way possible. If you need a little more inspiration, I’ve got a sneak-peak, never-before-seen-on-this-blog recipe for you. Grab it below and whip it up ASAP.     

 

   

     
      
        
     

     

       

        

        

          
             
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      Thank you! Check your inbox for more from me soon.  Before you go, don't forget to  download  your smoothie recipe!

The holidays aren’t really known for packing in the nutritious stuff. I mean, why, when you’ve got Christmas cookies, French toast casserole, and pies galore everywhere? 

Veggies sort of become an afterthought this time of year. Only once the calendar creeps closer to the New Year do most people start thinking about upping their vegetable intake.

Want some easy ways to be ahead of the crowd? Like a veggie trendsetter? Here are 17 ways to squeeze some more veggies in to your holidays.

 

     

  

  	
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     You hire an accountant to do your taxes. You hire a housekeeper to clean your house. You hire a stylist to cut your hair.  But why the hell would you hire a health coach?  After all, you hire these other professionals to do something you don’t want to do or can’t do. (I don’t know about you, but whenever I tried to trim my bangs, it was a full-on disaster.)  Hiring a health coach is a little different because we can’t eat drink that smoothie, run those miles, or go to bed at 10 p.m. for you.  What we can do is work with you to develop a plan to achieve your goals — whether it’s losing a couple pounds, clearing up your skin, de-bloating, or just feeling better — and watch you like a hawk to make sure you’re doing the things that will get you closer to, not further from, your goals.  Still not sure why you’d want to work with a health coach? Here are nine common reasons you might need a health coach.  You need to be held accountable.  It’s really easy to tell yourself you’re going to do something and then…just not do it. Like, that time you were going to actually organize your inbox or actually clean all the crumbs out of your keyboard.  Blame it on a lack of willpower, conditioning, or that boss who micromanages like crazy and just makes you want to rebel. But the truth is a lot of us need someone looking over our shoulders to make sure we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing.   So if you’ve been meaning to stop inhaling an entire bag of potato chips every afternoon, a health coach could provide the accountability to do something about that mindless eating.  You don’t know what to eat.  Sure, eat more fruits and vegetables, and don’t eat as many cookies. But what does that actually mean? And how does one actually do it? You really want to eat healthier, but you don’t know what healthy really looks like. Or how to balance it all out. Or maybe you think it means drinking coffee for breakfast and eating salads for lunch and dinner.  I think it’s amazing that most of us never really learned about nutrition in school. How the hell are we supposed to take care of ourselves and feel good when we don’t understand one of our most basic needs?   While a health coach isn’t (usually, always, insert other qualifier here) a nutritionist, they can steer you in the right direction and help you develop a way of eating ( note: not diet ) that works for you.   You feel like you’re doing everything “right” but nothing seems to be going  right.   Ever feel like you’re eating a butt ton of leafy greens and drinking a butt ton of water but it’s not making a difference? Maybe you’re like fitspo and squeeze in four runs a week and hit the weight room every other day and roll out your yoga mat every morning but you’re not noticing any changes? Like, you’re pretty sure you’re killing it on the wellness front but somehow you just don’t feel good. Or as good as you thought you would.  I’ve totally been there, and I know how discouraging it can be.  But it’s important to realize that there are so many  other factors  that could be keeping you stuck —  it’s not just food  and exercise.   A health coach will help you look at your life holistically and consider every aspect — food, exercise, stress, career, spirituality, relationships… everything.  It sounds woo woo, but trust me on this one. When one area is out of whack, the others are definitely affected.  You’re overwhelmed by all the info out there.  You swear, if you read one more blog or book, hear one more podcast, or watch one more documentary that promises this one thing will make all your health, fitness, weight loss, clear skin, whatever goals come true, you’re going to quit your job and move to Antarctica.  It’s overwhelming. Especially when everyone seems to have a different “answer.” One person’s telling you fat makes you fat. Someone else is telling you carbs make you fat. Oh, and this person has a wellness hack for combining fat and carbs in the proper ratio to make sure you don’t get fat.  Huh?    If you’re kinda sorta over it all, a health coach can cut through  all the bullshit  with you and find what works for you.  Because, seriously, there is no “one thing” that works for everyone.    You like to be told what to do.  Maybe you’re one of those people that relishes in getting tasks and crossing them off your list. You live for a good  attaboy  and really appreciate clear directions. And you follow ‘em like a champ. Left to your own devices, though, you sort of flounder.  Like, you were going to give up your daily frappuccino, but the execution got a little muddy. You weren’t sure if you should go cold turkey, cut back gradually, substitute it with something else…You’re the ideas person. You think big picture, but the details sometimes get lost.  Sound like you? A health coach will give you easy steps to help you reach your goal. You’ll have a clear plan so all you have to do is follow the plan. Simple, right?  You need a little extra support, someone in your corner.  Can I be real with you for a second? Sometimes, even when you know what to eat and how to workout and when to up your self-care game, this whole wellness thing can be hard and kind of lonely if you don’t have any like-minded peeps on the journey with you.   There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting someone to talk to.  You aren’t weak or lacking willpower because you’d rather not fly solo. You don’t suck at life because having some support makes you feel better and, well, supported.  A health coach is like your best friend on steroids, except a health coach would never recommend those… A health coach will listen, love you up a bit, and give you what you need. It’s like therapy without going to therapy.   You need an outside perspective.   Sometimes it’s really hard to see things when you’re super close to them. Like when you’re working on a report and you’ve read it about 15 times and someone reading over your shoulder immediately sees that you’ve misspelled your name on the cover.   Removing yourself from the situation and being objective can be really, really hard. You might think there’s no easy way to pack your lunch or plan your meals or stock your desk with healthy snacks because you had to go to work early, making a grocery list sounds like more busy work, or your self control goes out the window when you see a drawer full of food.   That’s where a health coach comes in. Not only will a health coach call you on all your excuses (in a polite way, of course, unless you want some aggressive, no-holds-barred, profanity-laced real talk in which case you’re my hero), but she’ll also give you simple, practical tips and strategies that will have you smacking your head going, “Why didn’t I think of that?”  You think calories in, calories out is all the rage.  Do you tabulate calories like a culinary accountant? Or maybe you track every crumb you ingest and every step you take ( did you just start singing that song in your head, too? ) in your handy dandy calorie app. Because we were all taught that whole calories in, calories out equation and that’s like gospel, right?  Eh. I mean, 2,000 calories of kale is a lot different than 2,000 calories of ice cream. We all know that, but somehow we still believe that a calorie is a calorie and we’ve just gotta burn off more calories than we take in.  Listen, regular people like you and me still can’t go around eating 10,000 calories. But we don’t need to stress over every last calorie. A health coach will help you stop stressing and find a  healthy balance  that suits your body.  Because one size doesn’t fit all. Never has, never will.   You spend three hours at the grocery store.  Have you ever gone to the grocery store for some fruit and stuff to make dinner and end up spending 45 minutes deciding which of the 12,000 different kinds of bread you should buy while having a nervous breakdown every five minutes?  When you’re faced with endless options and endless, unpronounceable ingredients, it can be really hard to know what’s actually good for you. And when you’re crazy busy, you kind of just want to grab and go. Ain’t nobody got time for price comparisons and  ingredient deciphering.   A health coach can point you in the right direction and give you the confidence to go to the grocery store without having a panic attack in the frozen food aisle. Hell, a health coach can probably even help you deal with that panic attack. It’s holistic, baby.  If you’re still not sure working with a health coach is right for you, I’d like to invite you to hop on the phone with me so you can see up close and personal how this whole thing works.   For reals.   You can ask me just about anything, although I might not have good answers about things like why the sky is blue or what  mea culpa  means. At the end, you’ll get actionable tips, feel like a badass, and totally see the benefit of working with a health coach.  Ready? Book your call below. Can’t wait to see what kind of questions you come up with!     
 
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Hiring a health coach is a little different because we can’t eat drink that smoothie, run those miles, or go to bed at 10 p.m. for you.

What we can do is work with you to develop a plan to achieve your goals — whether it’s losing a couple pounds, clearing up your skin, de-bloating, or just feeling better — and watch you like a hawk to make sure you’re doing the things that will get you closer to, not further from, your goals.