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Fly the Coop!

Are you feeling cooped up in your home? Are you having winter weather blues?  Were you unable to see family and friends over the holidays? 

It’s tempting to become discouraged and tired of being at home, but one sure-fire way to help elevate your mood, energize your body and get healthier is to get outdoors and move! 

Even if it’s cold outside, dress for the weather in layers, go outside, breathe in fresh air and go for a walk, even if it’s just around the block a few times. Or dress up the kids and play in the snow. Walk to a neighbor’s house and hold up a sign wishing them well, leave a note on their door, or shovel their driveway.

If the weather is too bad to go out, the gym is closed and you’re inside, you can still be active, even if it’s ten minutes here and ten minutes there. 

Do a few laps and walk around the house counting your steps as you go, do extra stairs going up and down, dance to a favorite song, try a plank for a few seconds and each day hold it longer, move and groove with a free YouTube activity session, s-t-r-e-t-c-h and more. Just get creative and move and groove.  

If you are working from home, set a timer to ring every hour and get up and move a few minutes. 

 And of course, you can go on line to find any number of videos that allow you to walk a mile or move right in your living room!

If you need a little inspiration for being active every day, may we offer you the following benefits?

  1. Being active strengthens your ticker and your lungs. Regular activity helps prevent the decline in oxygen intake that occurs naturally with age or inactivity.  
  2. Being active reduces blood sugar levels. How? Exercise prevents sugar from accumulating in the blood by triggering muscles to use up glucose. You may not feel it, but it is true and so good for you!
  3. Being active helps control weight. Being active can help build stronger muscles which burn more calories too, even when resting! So, burn it up!
  4. Being active strengthens bones. Weight bearing exercises like resistance training and walking increase bone density, which helps prevent osteoporosis (thinning and weakening of the bones). 
  5. Being active regulates blood pressure. Regular exercise helps reduce stress hormone levels and increase the flexibility of arteries and veins, both of which help lower our blood pressure.  
  6. Being active improves energy levels and moods. Regular physical activity helps us feel more awake, alert and energetic. And, you think clearer and feel more cheerful. Who wants to have more energy and feel better every day? Yep, we thought so!
  7. Being active increases your emotional well-being and can help you feel more at peace by boosting the release of feel-good hormones. And we could all use a little bit of that right now! 

You will be surprised how much time you have in a day to be active if you get a little creative! You have the power to move, every day, your way!

Quotes to live by:

“Physical activity is an excellent stress-buster and provides other health benefits as well. It also helps improve your mood and self-image.” ~ Joe Wickham

“I like the physical activity of gardening. It’s kind of thrilling. I do a lot of weeding.” ~ John Hurt

“If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.” ~ Hippocrates

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” ~ Jim Ryin

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right.” ~ Henry Ford

Wellsville Rockin’ Recipe – Yummy Vegetarian Lasagna 

Ingredients:

  • 1 large egg
  • 8 oz part-skim ricotta
  • 8 oz 1% milkfat small curd cottage cheese
  • 5 oz baby spinach chopped
  • 8 oz mushrooms sliced
  • 1 small zucchini sliced into strips
  • 1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, drained
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 15 whole wheat lasagna noodles, uncooked
  • 2.5 cups part-skim mozzarella

Optional seasonings: oregano, basil, Italian seasoning (1 tsp each, if desired)

  1. Combine egg, ricotta, cottage cheese, spinach, mushrooms and zucchini in a large bowl.
  2. Combine tomatoes and garlic in another bowl.
  3. Coat slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray. Spread 1.5 cups of tomato mixture in bottom of slow cooker. Arrange about 5 noodles over the sauce, breaking them to cover all the sauce.  Spread half the ricotta/cottage cheese/veggie mixture over noodles and press down, then spoon 1.5 cups sauce and sprinkle 1 cup mozzarella. Then repeat. 
  4. Top with third layer of noodles and spread remaining sauce over noodles.
  5. Put lid on slow cooker and cook for 4 hours on low or 2 hours on high. Once done, sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.
  • Serves: 8-9
  • Calories: 353
  • Fat: 9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 44 g
  • Fiber: 7 g
  • Protein: 22 g

Note: You can reduce the ingredients to make less servings. 

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