WHOLE BODY WELLNESS GATHERING [SOULCYCLE X WHOLE FOODS]
In celebration of Goddess Month, a mantra of unconditional self-love, positive thinking, and holistic and natural living, this April I’ll be sharing a series of light, bright, and super simple recipes and activations– making high quality and delicious plant-based food more accessible to the ‘everyday eater’. Real, unprocessed food is a powerful entity, reducing our risk of ever developing chronic disease, and has been shown to holistically treat and reverse the conditions of those suffering. You are, after all, what you eat.[line][line]
This past weekend I had the pleasure of cohosting a whole body wellness gathering with Whole Foods Market Friendship Heights and SoulCycle Bethesda – a 45 minute energy packed and music bumping indoor cycling ride followed by an interactive examination of how to not only prepare a nourishing smoothie (cue: Banana Avocado ‘Ice Cream’), but top it in an equally as delicious and affordable way. With a room packed to the brim with students, friends, throwing themselves out of their daily routines and into this new experience for the sake of wellness, consciousness, and the freedom of a moment, I couldn’t help but leave infinity inspired and breath taken – by our openness to exploring ‘the new’ and our slow, but progressive move towards embracing a more plant based diet. Progress.
for those of you unable to attend our gathering, a few smoothie & wellness tips for the road //
- Make sure your fruits are frozen and your avocados are ripe and soft before blending for a thick and creamy (soft serve ice cream) smoothie texture.
- Always make sure your bananas and fruit are perfectly ripe before placing them in your freezer to freeze- riper fruit tends to be sweeter so you won’t have to add unnatural sugars to your smoothies later on to get that sweet taste. I freeze my bananas when they’re nice and speckled.
- I place my fruits and vegetables in my blender first and add liquids (like coconut water or almond milk) as the smoothie is blending to ensure I get that creamy consistency I’m after. You can always add more liquid, but you can’t remove excess.
- A smoothie can make the perfect breakfast, lunch, dinner, recovery snack, or mid-day refuel – as long as you’re conscious of its nutritional quality. To make your smoothie more nutrient dense, consider adding a tablespoon of raw chia seeds for added protein and fiber, a dollop of nut butter or coconut butter, a healthy scoop of plant based protein, or a homemade nut milk.
- You’ll often see my smoothies in bowls – I find this not only makes them feel more substantial, but makes them feel like more of a meal and less like a grab and go drink.
- I love to add lots of toppings to my smoothie for added texture and nutrition – toppings include (but are definitely not limited to): coconut flakes, frozen or fresh berries, chia seeds, granola, raw nuts and seeds.
- Always conscious of my budget (and yours) – I tend to purchase the majority of my toppings in bulk, utilizing the convenience of Whole Foods Market’s bulk section. Whole Foods sells a wide selection of grains, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, granolas, and ‘superfoods’ at reduced prices from their prepackaged selections and always affords you the option of purchasing exactly as much as you need. If you don’t have access to a Whole Foods, Costco and Amazon are also affordable and widely available options.
- I use my Banana Avocado ‘Ice Cream’ smoothie as a springboard for the majority of my smoothie creations and you should too. Again conscious of my budget and seasonality, I only buy fresh fruits (like berries, peaches, and tropical fruits) when in season and rely on frozen options for a more affordable product during the off-season.
- Wellness is a whole body experience – a balance of mind, body, and spirit. For success, we must acknowledge our imperfections, stresses, and strengths, then channel that energy into truly living.
The biggest thank you to Vega Protein and The Chia Co. for not only producing such high quality products, but for providing our guests with plant based protein and chia seeds to take home. Our smoothies and bellies can’t thank you enough!