Well, folks, it's finally May — which means that it's high time I got started on my New Year's resolution: eat better and move more!
Better late than never, right?
I'm probably not alone, but it seems like typically, I only can do one of these things at once. I can be great about hitting the gym and making it to my Zumba classes after work, but my nutrition falls by the wayside. Or, I can meal prep like a boss, with lean proteins, fruits and veggies and the occasional indulgence, but I camp out on the couch after work.
As it turns out, ransacking every cupboard in your kitchen searching for lids to all of your reusable food containers doesn't exactly count as a workout. (Though, at least with the way I do it, at the very least it counts as a little bit of cardio... Hey, it all adds up!)
Thankfully, it's finally warm enough to get in some activity outside. I love my workouts at the gym, but sometimes they feel like exactly that — work. While walks and hikes outdoors certainly can be strenuous, they don't have to be, especially at first. If you're looking for a new place for adventure, check out our story on the Indian Creek Nature Center in southeast Cedar Rapids (page 14). It's an old place with a new facility, and it's chock full of wetlands, riparian forests, maple sugar bush, tall-grass prairies and oak savannas.
Don't forget to slather on the sunscreen before you step out! 'Tis the season to get sunburned, so check out our story on page 20 to learn more about protecting yourself from the sun's warm but harmful rays.
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So this is it, you guys. This will be the month that I start to pull off both. I'll get my nutrition together with nutritious, tasty and quick meals — perhaps with a little help from the many pasta-related recipes on page 26! — and I'll work on my fitness, too, while taking care to not overdo it and following the plethora of advice in the story we've got on page 28.
Many farmers markets throughout our region also will open this month and next, which will make it even easier for me (and you!) to stock up on fresh produce! (Check out our guide to area farmers markets on page 32.)
Healthy living sometimes can be overwhelming. How do you guys pull it off? If you, too, are struggling, how can we help? Shoot me an email and let me know! The age-old proverb "it takes a village" applies here, too, I believe. And luckily, we've got one!
— Laura Anderson Shaw