Fitness First Switch it Up Week: A Green Smoothie from Clare's (checksandspots.com) ebook 21 Shades of Green
Last month, Fitness First celebrated 'Switch it Up Week' where we were matched with other Fitness First bloggers to try out their own meal plan and/or workout. I was matched up with the beautiful Clare from Checks and Spots and she provided me with her ebook 21 Shades Of Greens, that details 21 delicious recipes and highlights the benefits of drinking green smoothies.
I've never actually made my own smoothie before as I tend to eat my vegetables in a salad or fruits on its own. I was pretty excited to use my blender as soon as I started reading this ebook. I started off with the 'New Kid on the Block' and the recipe includes:
1 cup packed baby spinach leaves
1 cup cos lettuce
1 lemon (peeled)
1 cup coconut water
1 cucumber - cut into chunks
1/2 cup fresh frozen mango
Simply then put the spinach leaves, cos lettuce, lemon, cucumber and coconut water in a blender and blitz until smooth; then add mango and blitz again.
Me and my bestie Betty tried it out and we were really impressed by the intensity of the green colour and taste.
Having it fresh was quite yum I didn't taste much bitterness because for some reason I believed baby spinach is bitter tasting (later realising that I was thinking of rocket), instead I tasted the sweetness of the mango and refreshing cucumber. And, this stuff is powerful. I immediately felt more awake and my spirits lifted. In the morning when I had more for breakfast, it gave me a burst of energy and I felt fresh and ready to start my day. Clare states that she often replaces one meal a day for a green smoothie and she has noticed positive changes in her well being, weight and skin. Great bonus!
I also swapped a workout with Clare for the week. Hers included:
- 1 x 8 km run at a pace of 5-6 min per km
- 1 x 1 hr group Cross Training session
- 1 X 30 minute personal training session - resistance training.
- 1 x 30 minute personal training session - weight training.
For myself, I couldn't find a personal trainer in time, so I got some of my friends to give me personal training sessions in both resistance and weight training. In resistance training, I buddied up with a friend and used resistance bands to break up my routine.
That was fun because it was challenging to try and keep the bands at my feet instead of letting go and letting it snap it into my face. It really made me rely on my own body weight and balance to train as well.
For the run and cross trainer, well I am a terrible runner (and basically in any cardio besides Zumba) but I really wanted to challenge myself, so I broke up my run/cross trainer into 2 x 4km runs at the beginning and end of my workouts. I rarely mix my cardio with my weight training but I found it helped warm up my body efficiently and got the blood pumping, motivating me for weight training. The post-run felt really satisfying and a good way to end my workout.
This workout plan worked out well for me because although I'm not a stranger to weight and resistance training, adding more cardio was fun and it felt like my lung capacity grew bigger! Thank you Clare for a delicious green smoothie recipe and a challenging workout for the week. Check out Clare's blog Checks and Spots below, and check out her free ebook 21 shades of Green for more amazing recipes!