the summer after my divorce, i went on the requisite hippie retreat at the chopra center. so many people had told me i should be meditating, something i had never tried, and i figured deepak’s team would be well qualified to teach me. the retreat was also going to focus on general health and spiritual well being, which i thought might be helpful as i was quite frayed inside and out. i WAS worried about the vegan food they were meant to serve, but the retreat was located at la costa hotel and i figured i could sneak out and order a club sandwich at the bar, if there was too much kale.
this kind of group help situation was definitely out of my wheelhouse… on the the first morning of the retreat, we were told to hug four people around us. i am pretty reserved, more of an air kisser and unfortunately, there was someone who forgot her deodorant right in front of me. she held on a bit too long and i considered checking into the hotel spa for the day.
in the afternoon of the first day we were told to start dancing as “uptown funk” started blaring out of nowhere. we were not offered cocktails or even a xanax.
on the second day we learned what i was afraid to hear: that bread is terrible and sugar is in everything, not just jolly ranchers. they showed us slides of big piles of white sugar that reminded me of the early scenes in “blow” and said sugar is more additive than cocaine.
on the third day we learned that green smoothies are not just beneficial for your insides, but will dramatically improve your complexion. this is when i really started paying attention. i am all for healthy living (within reason), but i prefer when there is a visible benefit as well. (i do come by my vanity honestly… my father famously will not golf in shorts because he does not want to be distracted by his own very beautiful legs and mess up his perfectly fluid swing.) kimberly snyder was the speaker who introduced us to her celebrated smoothie that is consumed regularly by loads of starlets with impeccable skin.
early 60’s swing
mid 70’s swing and outrageous pants!
who wouldn’t be distracted by those legs? OR that superhero speedo?
four years later i am only meditating once in a blue moon, i have misplaced my gratitude journal, my yoga practice is non existent and i am still enjoying lots of refined sugar, but i DO continue to make green smoothies in my vitamix several times a week. (i am much better at ADDING something healthy to my diet, than taking something unhealthy away.) i altered kimberly’s recipe a bit (i didn’t like keeping pears around because they over ripened so quickly) and i added some other things deepak’s people said were good for you: cayenne, tumeric, ground flax and chia seeds. i am not sure that these smoothies have improved my complexion, but i DO feel better when i drink them AND my superstar stylist, liz, LOVES them and she is the wisest person i know.
1 head of romaine lettuce, chopped
1 big handful of baby spinach
3 stalks of celery
1 C water
juice of 3 lemons
2 granny smith apples, chopped
1 T chia seeds
1 T flaxseed meal
blend water, spinach, celery and romaine in the vitamix. add bananas, apples, lemon juice, cayenne and turmeric (several vigorous shakes), flax and chia into vitamix. blend well. refrigerate before drinking.