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A New Take on Hummus

Hummus is an awesome, healthy go-to snack that is surprisingly easy to make and always great to have on hand.  The protein and fiber from the beans keep you sustained and satisfied for a good amount of time and the nutritient to calorie ratio is very high.  Sometimes, however, roasted red pepper or garlic hummus can get a bit boring.  We also need to expand our views of hummus to go beyond chickpeas.  In this light, I give you an exotic hummus substitute, CURRIED WHITE BEAN DIP.  This dip is thick and hearty like hummus but features white beans instead of garbanzo beans and packs a powerful curry punch.  I had this dip with a sliced cucumber for lunch today and it kept me full for hours, not to mention how delicious it is!

 

Curried White Bean Dip (Based on recipe from Foodnetwork.com)

15 ounces white beans (drained)

1 packed cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped  (I used dried parsley and it worked out fine–use 1/2 cup if using dried)

1/4-1/2 cup olive oil (Start with 1/4 cup and add more as needed when processing)

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 clove garlic (peeled and roughly chopped)

2 tsp curry powder

1 1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp sea salt

1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper

Zest of 1/2 lemon

 

1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.  Season with salt as needed.  Enjoy with fresh veggies, or multigrain chips.

 

Be well!

 

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The Best Part of Waking Up is Green Juice in Your Cup

I recently read an article in which a pastry chef said she starts her day with fresh juice because it lets her feel like she “detoxes before she retoxes.”  I don’t highly recommend drinking juice in the morning just to eat cakes and pizzas all day and feel okay about it, but there is definitely something in her statement.  Starting your day with freshly juiced fruits and vegetables boosts your energy and gives your cells a little cleaning so you start your day on the cleanest, healthiest note possible.

I love drinking juice in the morning.  I really do feel clean, light, fresh, and believe it or not, satisfied when I have juice for breakfast. Please note that I don’t mean Tropicana. I mean lettuce and kale in my cup.  Here is my absolute 100% favorite juice to drink for breakfast.

Hayley’s Fav Green Juice

1 head organic romaine lettuce

A few overflowing handfuls of organic kale or spinach leaves

1 organic lemon (peel and all)

1 organic honey crisp apple (so sweet and delicious!) cut into quarters if its a big one

~One by one, push all the above through your juicer, pour in to a tall glass, and enjoy your detoxifying breakfast cocktail.

 

Be well!

 

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Pilates for Dancers

As a dance teacher I see dancers injure themselves, complain of aches and pains, and stress about their lack of flexibility, or upper body strength, or trouble balancing or any other “issue” from a list that every dancer keeps about their own dance performance.  Unfortunately, dance training can lead to imbalances in muscular strength and flexibility and may not address the “issues” or causes of injury that many dancers suffer. For example, a student who needs help developing ankle strength to avoid sprains and strains may not get that extra training from a typical schedule of dance classes.

That’s where Pilates supplemental training can make a huge difference for dancers.  Pilates provides core strength, increased flexibility, and most importantly a balanced musculature for injury prevention.  But there’s more; dance can make a huge impact on dancers’ performance at all levels.  Dance students and performers at all ages and levels can benefit from even just 1 hour of supplemental Pilates training per week.  Here are five ways dancers can benefit from Pilates:

1. Toned, Strong Muscles without Bulk

Pilates supports the dance aesthetic by strengthening and toning muscles while also elongating and slimming them.  The focus on the deep, intrinsic muscles of the body help to pull muscle into the bone, creating a slimmer frame but providing the strength and endurance a dancer needs each muscle to have.

2. Core Strength

There’s more to core strength than having flat abs.  The holistic core strength-upper abs, lower abs, obliques, and back-that Pilates provides helps dancers with balance and so much more.  Pilates offers core strength in the deep muscles below those famous “six pack” abdominals that allows the core to take over when the limbs want to move. This helps protect the back from injury and allows a quicker response time and movement efficiency.  Dancers can move around with ease, go off-balance and find their center without having to think about it when they do Pilates training.

3. Flexibility BALANCED with Strength

Pilates gives dancers flexibility in a different way than standard stretching for dance classes.  Dancers who do Pilates will gain more functional flexibility by performing dynamic movements that help lengthen and stretch muscles and create mobility in the joints.  The flexibility gained from Pilates is also balanced by strengthening that does not shorten the muscles so flexibility is not sacrificed, yet the muscle stays strong to prevent injury.

4. Improved Joint Alignment

Because the balanced strength and flexibility, movement efficiency, and joint mobility that inherently result from Pilates, dancers benefit from improved alignment of the hip, knee, and ankle joint.  This will improve balance and performance capabilities and vastly decrease the likelihood of injury.

5. Treatment of Injuries

If injury does occur, Pilates is an incredibly useful tool to speed recovery and help dancers stay “in shape” while they are rehabilitating.  Pilates can treat lower back pain and injuries, plantar fascitis, tendonitis, muscle strains and sprains, and much more. Many dancers find Pilates when looking for a way to treat an injury and get hooked for life.

 

Contact Hayley if you are interested in private Pilates specifically for dance or a Pilates class for dancers.