This is my favorite time of year. My garden has been exploding with vegetables this summer, and I can’t get enough of the fresh cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, squash, and other veggies that are taking over my kitchen! Look at this!
Our Clean Eating Challenge showed us hard evidence that fad diets don’t work, and lifestyle changes do. The winner of our challenge lost 9.5 inches over 10 weeks. I mean, do you need more evidence than that?! There are so many different diets and ideas out there, it’s hard to ever know what the right thing is. Just remember this: clean eating is simple. There are no ideals to subscribe to, no special meals or special ingredients–it’s all things you have available to you, right at your grocery store…or in your garden!
We talked about a number of things during the Clean Eating Challenge–things like sugar, healthy fats, and eliminating processed foods. But what does clean eating really mean to you? For me, it means all these fresh veggies I grow. There’s something so simple and so rewarding about going in the backyard, plucking a tomato or a pepper off the vine, walking back into the kitchen and slicing it onto a salad or sautéing it in a pan with some olive oil and seasoning.
And you don’t need a huge garden or a ton of space to grow your own vegetables, either! A simple trellis can hold a cucumber vine, and many vegetables can be grown in pots. Some simple stick labels made out of wine corks will help you keep track of your seedlings and starter plants, and are easy to make. Here’s some inspiration from my garden:
And the cooking is simple too. You don’t need any complicated ingredients–just some healthy fats for cooking, some protein, and as many fresh vegetables as you can handle!
In addition to fruits and veggies ,don’t forget about your protein! Protein is essential to keeping your entire body healthy by repairing cells and tissue. Made up of amino acids, protein helps to build muscle, reduce weight and keep your skin, hair and nails looking healthy. Protein is also useful for building cartilage, which is why protein is essential for pole dancing as it keeps joints healthy and helps to repair any damage caused during training and performances. Some additional benefits of protein include increasing muscle definition and tone, higher energy levels, keeping bones strong and healthy, aiding in injury recovery, and aiding in tissue repair and production of new cells.
I recommend Pole Fusion Protein Shakes and like drinking them within 30 minutes after a session on the pole. Inversions proudly carries Pole Fusion, which is now available in our online store and can be purchased here!
Pole Fusion offers their proprietary blend of glucosamine, chondroitin and MSM which is added to every shake. These ingredients are widely regarded to be of huge importance to those who need to keep flexible, healthy joints within body-intense sports like pole dancing. They have tested and refined all of their shakes to make sure they are some of the tastiest shakes on the market today, with a unique formula aimed directly towards the pole fitness industry!
I’ve included a couple of my favorite summer veggie recipes below to give you some inspiration and get you started. What’s your favorite summertime veggie dish? Share your recipes and ideas with others in the comments below!
Watermelon Cucumber Feta Salad
1 diced tomato
1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic glaze
1/4 cup feta
1/4 cup blueberries
1 tablespoon of fresh mint or basil
Flatbread Basil Pesto Pizza
2 garlic cloves chopped
1 cup fresh basil
3 tablespoons goat cheese
1/2 cup cashews chopped
To make the pesto, mix the above ingredients in a Pampered Chef chopper. Spread on a pizza crust, them layer pizza with sliced fresh zucchini and summer squash, sliced tomatoes, red onion, green peppers, and banana peppers (or any of your favorite veggies!). Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges are golden brown.