We’re counting down to swimsuit season! We bet you are too, so we’ve got a few tips to help you get you and your family ready for summer. We talked to Kathryn of White Plains, New York, to find out how she tries to be healthy all year long. Her secret: long walks and dark leafy greens.
“I’m a stay-at-home mom, but that doesn’t mean I’m staying put!” Kathryn says. “After I drop my two kids off at school, my girlfriends and I meet up to walk our dogs around the neighborhood. We’re up to about three miles now! It’s a nice way to get some relaxing, low-stress exercise and catch up with each other.”
Kathryn admits that she sometimes gets nervous as swimsuit season approaches, but maintaining a workout routine throughout the year takes away some of the stress. “I find I prefer to sustain an easy workout plan all year, instead of trying to do some sort of crazy bikini boot camp before summer rolls around,” she says.
“I don’t like to diet,” Kathryn admits, “but rely on leafy greens, like spinach, in most meals. Spinach makes a great base for any salad and has a great nutrition profile! I like serving it raw or only slightly wilted, because overcooking spinach can deplete its nutritional value more than you’d expect. But raw, steamed or sautéed, spinach is delicious any way!”
One mom from the CafeMom community says she periodically just grabs a handful of raw spinach out of the fridge, and her two-year-old will eat it plain; sometimes he even nibbles on fresh spinach leaves from the garden! Another says, “I’ve used it in smoothies too, and the kids love the ‘green smoothie’ concept.”
“As a healthy side, I like to sauté spinach with a little bit of olive oil, garlic and lemon,” Kathryn says. “First I lightly toast some diced garlic in olive oil: it will cook more later with the spinach, so there’s no need to overdo it. Next I add a one- to two-pound bag of spinach—no water needed; the water contained in its leaves will do! I season with salt and pepper to taste and let it cook two or three minutes. Then I remove the lid and turn the heat up and stir frequently with a slotted spoon until the leaves have wilted. Finally I melt a tiny pat of butter on it, for added creaminess, and squeeze a lemon over the top to zest it up.”
When summer is on the horizon, do you take Kathryn’s stable approach to nutrition and working out, or do you prefer the “bikini boot camp” method?