Staying Fit While Entertaining Summer Visitors

It's been a busy June with visitors from Norway, 8th grade graduation, family vacation and college touring. Wow, how to fill up a month! The challenge was to find a balance with staying fit, exercising and including a health menu to keep from gaining weight during the hectic month. It's so easy to fall into bad habits and grab the unhealthy food choices when we are on the go a lot. I was determined to keep my healthy lifestyle even while I traveled and entertained guests.

During the week my guests were with me we ate healthy meals every day, (I bought the required groceries before they arrived). I decided on the weeks meals before hand so I wouldn't be tempted to stop for fast food on a day we were particularly busy. I chose recipes that were either easy and quick to prepare, after a long day of playing tourist, or a crock pot meal that would be filling the house with mouth-watering aromas as we returned from a day out.

I have a wonderful cookbook, I have used over the years, called "Cookbook of the Year", by Don Collins. This cookbook plans your week of meals in advance (for the whole year) and even provides the grocery list for each week. I modify the meals and the shopping if I know I will have other plans for some of the days that week. He uses healthy alternatives like, chicken broth for sauteing and plain yogurt to replace sour cream.

As for the exercise, I did my early morning routine of spin class at 6:00 AM for a few of the days, that way I was home before my guests got going for the day, and on the other days, I planned sightseeing with lots of walking or a vigorous hike in the back country. (see hiking photo) I thought it was important to show my guests all aspects of our beautiful area. We all stayed healthy by eating healthy meals combined with daily exercise.

If you are expecting company this summer... it's a great idea to refresh yourself on tourist activities and kid friendly fun. As my Norwegian relatives brought along their daughters age 6 and 8 years, we needed to provide rests and full child related activities too. I incorporated a visit to the Ty Warner Sea Center and a boat ride harbor tour on Little Toot (where the girls each received authentic shipmate caps). They found out a lot about our coastal area and how important it is to be conscious about our environment.

I hope you find this information helpful if you have visitors coming for the summer months. Have a great summer... look for some healthy, quick and refreshing meals for the summer.

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