A new trend is officially gaining steam: Healthy Birthday Celebrations! When it come time to blow out the candles, it seems like boozing and binging are out and exercise and eating well are in.
To be fair, this could be a sign of being a certain number of years out of college, but I don’t think getting older is the only thing at work here. It’s probably about getting wiser too. I have definitely noticed an increase in the healthier birthday party: For my roommate’s birthday a year or two ago, we all woke up at six in the morning to go on a group run. We spent the rest of the day antique shopping, walking around town (even more exercise), and ended the night with a glass of champagne each.
That’s right. Birthdays do not have to be about totally throwing your healthy lifestyles out the window. Here are some fabulous (and yes, still really fun!) ideas for a more adult birthday party. Enjoy!
Fitness Class Fun
Yoga, Zumba, Indoor Cycling, Pilates, ballet, kickboxing?! There are so many different exercise classes that are an extremely good time—why not bring your friends? Your birthday wish can (and should!) absolutely revolve around getting your best pals to join the fitness class you love. A lot of gyms and fitness centers have group rates or bring-a-friend prices, so definitely take advantage of them. What better way to start a new year in your life than with a little healthy sweat alongside your best friends?
Group Run Get-Together
Similarly, a nice group run is a wonderful way to set yourself up for success. Start your special day off right with a gorgeous run outdoors. Yes, gyms are great, and treadmills are good for your joints, but Vitamin D is important and it’s a lot more fun to run en masse in a park or along a trail. You can even theme the run. How fun would it be to run with birthday hats on or along a trail of landmarks from your childhood? Make it a little more interesting and your friends will definitely be in.
This year my family skipped the holiday get-together, opting instead to gather for a mid-January weekend in Sonoma, California. Sonoma, which is about an hour and a half north of San Francisco, is in the heart of California wine country. My parents, sister, and I all agreed this was the perfect destination for a getaway because we’re all oenophiles. (Oenophile? I know. It’s a pretentious word that’s impossible to pronounce, but it sounds so much more dignified than, “we all really enjoy a good glass of Pinot”.)
It probably goes without say that there was a lot of wine on the menu this weekend. There were wine tastings at a few vineyards and then large dinners which were, of course, accompanied by more vino. The food was spectacular—that’s another given in NorCal—but it’s the wine I’m most worried about throwing off my resolutions.
New Year’s Eve. A night of champagne toasts, smooching loved ones, staying up way too late, and boogying the night away. At the start of the year this is feels like a fitting celebration. But it’s important to remember that calories still count on special occasions, no matter how much you’d like to think otherwise. One night of overdoing it can set you back several steps when it comes to meeting your resolutions. As in, if you wake up on January 1 feeling tired, hung-over, and a few pounds heavier than on December 31st, chances are slim you’ll reach for a healthy, well-balanced breakfast first thing of the morning. So, have fun, but plan ahead.
Try to drink at least a glass of water between each cocktail—this will slow your rate of drinking, hydrate your body, and may even help you drink less overall. And be choosy about what you put into your body. Remember, sugary-tasting drinks are usually pretty high in calories. Choosing to mix liquor with soda instead of tonic water can save you hundreds of calories by the end of the night. Finally, to negate all of those extra calories you do consume, start dancing. Dancing is a great way to kickstart the metabolism, plus it’s fun to do!
Here’s how long you’ll have to shake it to burn off these popular these popular drinks:
If I were going to be stranded on a desert island, and I could take only one food with me, it would be macaroni and cheese. It is the single most comforting comfort food. With its chewy noodles, gooey sauce, and creamy mouthfeel, I’d have no qualms about eating that every day.
But here in the real world, that’s hardly an option. The stuff in a box actually tastes terrible and is laced with chemical ingredients that kind of ruin the whole experience when you think about it. And if you really go for it at a restaurant, a bowl of chicken Alfredo at Olive Garden has 1500 calories! The classic mac at Macaroni Grill has nearly 700 calories… in the kids serving!
This pasta in a white wine Parmesan sauce is very real, much more likely to happen that the desert island scenario, and comfort food I can enjoy without any discomfort of guilt. Why? It rings it at 419 calories for the whole bowl! (more…)
Blending yoga with activities such as Pilates or weightlifting seems to offer just enough variety for non-purist types who are comfortable with thinking outside the box. As the yoga industry stretches its limits in an effort to attract more participants, for some, certain yoga-hybrid classes are pushing the envelope just a little bit too far.
Succeeding the latest trend of combining yoga with wine tasting, some yoga studios have recently begun to regularly offer post-yoga beer or wine for those who’d like to enjoy a little happy hour after hitting the mat. While most people are thrilled with the idea, some yoga-purists are not so enthusiastic about it.
Take a look at the pros and cons about commercially introducing libations into the world of yoga and how it’s creating a buzz in the yoga community. (more…)