Spring Fever

By Shani Petroff

Spring is here and my typical winter excuses — i.e. it’s too cold to go to the gym, I just want to curl up under a blanket, I want comfort food, etc. — no longer apply. Sure, I can spit out a slew of justifications to avoid eating right and exercising that apply to this season as well. After all, I am the self-appointed queen of excuses. However, it’s a title I want to relinquish. So instead, I’ve come up with a list of why this is great time of year to get with the (Weight Watchers) program.

1. The weather! It’s not too cold. It’s not too hot. I can walk outside for lengthy periods of time without sweating or feeling like my fingers are going to freeze off. I am much more inclined to walk to work or home from an event when spring is in the air. An extra tip: Sometimes on these walks, I get the urge to buy an ice cream cone. Well, my new habit has become buying bouquets of flowers. There are beautiful tulips out right now. And near me there are even bunches of daffodils for three dollars — that’s less than the cost of an ice cream cone! I still give myself a treat — only it’s one that I don’t eat! Added bonus, holding the bouquet also makes it harder to snack while walking, so I’m less likely to do it.

2. Flowers. In addition to being a nice reward, there really IS something to the saying, “stop and smell the roses.” No matter what the flower, taking the time to breathe in the fragrant smells, or even just noticing them popping up all over the city, calms me. And since I tend to snack more when I’m stressed, seeing all the flowers and trees in bloom is a nice reminder to relax!

3. Fruit stands. I’m in New York City, and one thing I love year round is the fruit/vegetable stands. But come spring, the berries, cherries, and champagne mangos all look so much more appealing. Partially because they’re in season, but also because sitting down with ripe fruit just seems more refreshing to me this time of year. Last spring, my go-to meal was mango, avocado, kidney beans, and plum tomatoes. I just cut all the ingredients up and squeezed some lime over them. (When I was feeling extra-fancy I put it on a lettuce bed. The rest of the time, I just ate the combination out of a bowl.) It just felt like a refreshing springtime dish to me. In fact, just thinking about it reminds me that I need to go grocery shopping tomorrow!

4. The park. In the winter, I find myself cooped up in my apartment a lot. When that happens, I find myself wandering to the kitchen. Now that the weather is warmer, I go on outings to the park. It keeps me from snacking, and I get some fresh air at the same time.

5. Less clothing. I’m shedding the wool coat, the scarf, the heavy sweater, and it makes me motivated to shed the extra pounds along with them. Spring to me feels like a fresh start, and I’m ready to take it by storm!

What do you love best about spring? You can find me on Connect @shani!

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