15 min easy healthy no bake side dishes

Written By MissFIT Becky

Don’t do it.

Don’t grab that bag of chips.

Easy?  Yes.  Yes it is so much easier to grab a bag of chips as your dish to share at the BBQ this weekend.  And while, sure, chips are a crowd pleaser, you aren’t doing anyone any favors when it comes to their health.  Plus, really, someone else is probably bringing them already.

This week I’m challenging us to spend a little time prepping for delicious AND healthy AND easy side dishes in place of the quick grab-n-go party food that often rules our summertime party spreads.

Guys, lets overhaul our picnic tables.  Let’s show our friends and family and neighbors some love by sharing food their bodies will appreciate.

Here are a few ideas to get you started.  Seriously, 15 minutes or less to prep for these.

Salty Lime Cucumber Slices:  Slice cucumber.  Squeeze a few drops of lime on each slice.  Barely sprinkle with salt.  BAM.  Done.  If you don’t like attention, do not bring these.

Tomato Onion Salad: Slice tomatoes.  Slice onion into half-circles.  I do a 2:1 ratio of tomato to onion.  But there’s no exact science.  Pour a little olive oil.  Pour a little balsamic vinegar.  Sprinkle with Italian seasonings and salt and pepper to taste.  This tastes better if it has time to sit and soak in the oil and seasonings.  The longer the better, but if you’re pressed for time it will still taste delicious if freshly made!  This is an awesome way to use up gobs of garden tomatoes.  If you don’t grow em’ yourself, you probably know someone who has some to share come harvest.

Black Bean Corn Cilantro Salad: Rinse one 15 oz. can of black beans.  Mix with 1-2 cups of frozen corn.  In a separate bowl mix the following ingredients: 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsp. olive oil, 1/2 tsp. salt,  1/2 tsp. sugar, 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper, 1/2 tsp. ground cumin.  Toss dressing with corn and black beans.  Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro.  It’s best to refrigerate and let sit overnight with this one too.  Feel free to dress it up a bit by adding chopped red onion and sweet peppers.  If you like a bit of kick, add some chili powder to the dressing.  Ok, so maybe you could serve this with some reduced salt, baked blue corn chips.  OR, with a spoon.  This stuff and JUST a spoon would do perfectly fine.  This is one of my all-time favs!

Watermelon pop

Lemonade Watermelon: Slice watermelon however you please.  We love doing watermelon “pops” because they are fun, different and cleaner to eat than the traditional triangles!  Add watermelon to a large pan and pour lemonade over the watermelon.  Chill for a few hours before serving.  A sweet treat the kiddos will for sure love!

If this is still too much prep for you then grab a bag of baby carrots and a container of hummus.  Do not go down the chip aisle.  I repeat, do not go down the chip aisle.

Becky Nowak

Certified personal trainer for the past 10 years. Married 9 years. Working for MissFIT 8 years. Mom for 3 years, Precision Nutrition certified, and a lifetime lover of all things wellness! Find out More >

New Meditation Class Starts Saturday – Plus Saturday Yoga

Written By Maryanna Gibbs

 

 

 

 

Summer Yoga and Meditation Schedule

 

**NEW LOCATION**

Gurnee Creative Rehab Classes

One South Greenleaf, Suite I

 

Saturdays 7:30am – 8:15am with Eileen (meditation)

8 week sessionNew Class!!  See description at the bottom of blog!

6/28,  (no class 7/5),  7/12, 7/19, 7/26, 8/2, 8/9, 8/16, 8/23


Saturdays 8:30am – 9:30am with Maryanna (vinyasa flow yoga)

8 week session

6/28,  (no class 7/5),  7/12, 7/19, 7/26, 8/2, 8/9, 8/16, 8/23


8 week sessions – Pre-pay $120/session (walk-in $17/class)

Multiple class discount – $30 off your total if you register for 2 classes

 

Call or email Maryanna at MissFIT 847-775-0076 mvaickau@hotmail.com to reserve your spot!

 

Meditation Class Description

Please join Eileen Estrem as she guides you through meditation to the journey of the self.  The purpose of meditation is to turn the attention inward and the benefit is quieting the mind and relaxing the body. When the mind, body and heart connect through the place of stillness, you learn how to respond to life rather than react to the drama of life. We will be covering different types of meditation; body scan, following the breath, loving-kindness and guided; to help you discover which fits with your true nature.

The class will start out with a description of the specific practice of the day, then we will move into gentle, seated stretching to prepare the body for meditation and pranayama (breathing).  Following this will be 20-30 minutes of meditation.  To help you with your practice, a ‘homework’ sheet will be given out so you can track your progress.

 

www.missfitcomplete.com

www.creativerehab.net

 

 

 

 

Maryanna Gibbs

Find out More >

Let go of Anticipation – Enjoy Today

Written By Maryanna Gibbs

“Expecting is the greatest impediment to living.  In anticipation of tomorrow, it loses today.”

~Lucius Annaeus Seneca

 

An unexpected rainbow at Warren Park while playing with my kids

One definition of anticipation is expecting or predicting what is coming next.  What would happen if we stopped anticipating all the time?  If we stopped thinking we know what people are going to say before they finish their sentences?  What if in the next yoga class downward dog doesn’t follow upward dog?  How do we feel when our routines, or expectations are squashed?  Are we disappointed?  Confused?  Could we all be a little less stressed if we stopped trying to anticipate?  This is one, of many, things I love about being with my kids – I never know what they are going to say or do next.  One minute we’ll be walking down the street, and the next minute they’ll break out in a crazy dance and laugh hysterically.  They are always surprising me and keeping me on my toes!

There is some comfort in knowing what comes next in our life.  But there is also an excitement that comes with not knowing.  There is a peace that comes with succumbing to the flow of life.  The reality is, we can’t always anticipate what is coming down the next bend – life is always changing.  Why not just let go.

Ways to let go of anticipation:

1)   Spend time in nature – If you generally spend time running on a treadmill, it is a very different experience than running on a trail.  On the treadmill you are in control.   You have the power to change the TV channels, the incline of the treadmill, turn the fan on or off, etc.  When you step outside and run on a trail it is a whole different experience.  A deer may cross your path (or I’ve even had a few snakes cross by – yikes!!!), hills are where nature puts them, and the weather is always changing.  There are so many variables that come into play.  You cannot anticipate what is coming over the next hill.

2)   Attend a class – There is great benefit to building your home yoga practice.  However, personally, I love to attend classes because it is a whole different experience.  In addition to being immersed in a supportive yoga community,  there is also the element of being surprised.  Going into a class I often don’t know what the other teacher has planned ahead of time.  There is nothing I love more than when a teacher takes the sequence somewhere other than I predicted.  I thrive on learning a new or different transition, a variation of a pose I am not familiar with, or flowing with creative sequencing.  All these variables create a fun atmosphere, and take any anticipation on my part out of the picture.  I truly have to go with the flow, without any expectations.  There is something completely freeing and liberating about this feeling.

3)   Travel – Travel has always been food for my soul.  There is such a rush in traveling somewhere new – immersing completely in a new culture, meeting new people, and enjoying different scenery.  Traveling changes up the mundane, and spices things up.  It doesn’t have to be somewhere exotic.  It is always amazing to me how even taking short trips to new areas I have never explored, can be incredibly refreshing.

Routine definitely has its advantages, its place, and it’s comforts.  At times there is a great benefit to being able to anticipate what comes next.  For example, I love to warm up in yoga class with some basic sun salutations, finding a meditative flow of movement with the breath.  There is a familiarity and comfort in practicing the sun salutations as they are.  However, there is something exciting about the element of surprise.  Try it today.  Go to a class and wait for the teacher’s cue before going into your next pose.  Don’t assume what asana (pose) the teacher will call out next.  Let the yoga flow take you where it may, and enjoy the ride!

Maryanna Gibbs

Find out More >

MissFIT Favorite Fridays – Cacao Sweets & Treats Grayslake

Written By Shannon Swanson

If you’re going to indulge… indulge well!

We have just the place to show you what that means.  Meet Cacao Sweets & Treats; a natural, organic, made-from-scratch bakery.  They specialize in unique takes on classics, made in small batches right in their Grayslake storefront at 122 Center Street.

They use the best of the best ingredients; real butter, real chocolate, organic dairy and eggs.  They even make their own peanut butter and vanilla extract.  For those of you that are sensitive to certain wheat products, I encourage you to try their products… even their wheat makes a difference!  (read Candace’s take on the gluten free trend).

In addition to fresh made sweets every morning you will find items available for purchase on their shelves such as the homemade peanut butter and vanilla extract.  My personal favorite and my son’s (who is a pancake connoisseur) is their homemade pancake mix.    I like to make several dozen, freeze them and take them out as needed… add that with 100% maple syrup and some grass-fed beef butter or homemade peanut butter and… well my mouth is watering!

Ready to make a batch of our favorite pancakes... eat some now, freeze some for later!

Their glass case items change daily and they go fast, so come in early or give them a call to reserve your favorites – 847-223-2253.

We like Cacao so much that we’ve partnered with them to bring you a SUMMER HERB GARDEN WORKSHOP on Thursday June 12th from 6:30 – 8:00pm.  This fun workshop will be lead by MissFIT Complete’s Nutrition Expert who will talk to you about 6 of her favorite herbs, growing tips, health benefits, kitchen tips, and interesting facts about each.  In addition, you’ll get to sample some delicious treats and beverages utilizing the herbs.  Each participant will get to take home their own potted plant and recipe.  For additional information about the herb workshop click here.   The cost for the workshop is $25/person.  You must pre-register with Cacao Sweets & Treats prior to Wednesday June 11thCall them today at 847-223-2253.

 

 

Shannon Swanson

BS Phys Ed, cPT American Council on Exercise Find out More >

Summer Herb Garden Workshop – Join us Thursday June 12th!

Written By Shannon Swanson

 


Summer Herb Garden Workshop

Join Us at Cacao Sweets & Treats

Thursday June 12, 2014

6:30 – 8:00pm

$25/person

 

MissFIT Complete’s Nutrition Expert will take you on a journey to learn about 6 popular herbs

Growing tips, health benefits, kitchen tips and interesting facts

Basil                 Cilantro                        Oregano

Parsley             Spearmint                     Lavender

 

Snacks and beverages utilizing fresh herbs will be provided.

You must pre-register with Cacao Sweets & Treats

847-223-2253

Please register prior to Wednesday June 11th.

Each Participant will receive a potted plant and recipe to take home!

 

Cacao Sweets & Treats

122 Center Street Grayslake

www.cacaosweetsandtreats.com

www.missfitcomplete.com

MissFIT Complete, Inc. – Women’s customized, convenient, and complete in-home or workplace wellness, nutrition, and fitness experience.  Health and Fitness should be fun, inspiring, and FIT into your life!

 

Shannon Swanson

BS Phys Ed, cPT American Council on Exercise Find out More >
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