Greetings!

The Holidays and end of year rush puts a little extra intensity into our schedules. Don't forget to be good to yourself and make your workouts a priority as your "me" time.

If you are looking for a meaningful gift for that special someone that won't just be more "stuff", check out our gift cards. A FIT Gift Card could be the one gift that transforms a life and you can get special savings now for the Holidays. Hop on it.

Also check out our New Years Eve Hike to La Honda Creek Preserve. Spend the last day of 2017 hiking a beautiful trail with your FIT team. See details and sign up below.

New Years Day Fitness Event - @ TBA

Start 2018 right and get a jump on your New Year goals with our 21 Day Re-Focus Challenge - reserve your spot below.

Above all have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday Season with your families and loved ones. Peace and Joy to you all.

Holiday Schedule:

Dec. 25th - No Classes - Merry Christmas
Dec. 26th - No Run Club
Dec. 31 - FIT Hike to La Honda Creek Preserve
Jan. 1 - New Year Fitness Event TBA

New Years Eve Hike
End 2017 with an Amazing Hike in the Newest Open Space Preserve in the Bay Area
Sunday December 31st
8:00 a.m.Depart from EVHS
Hike 9:15
Lunch TBA
For members and guests
Invite your friends
Jump Start Your New Year Goals
Jan 6 - Jan. 27 2018
10 Spots Open
Get a Jump on Your New Year Goals
The average person gains 10 pounds over the Holidays. Imagine if you stayed focused and lost 10 pounds instead. What a great jump start for the New Year.

Great News: You can do the Challenge from anywhere. So even if you're traveling, we've got you covered.
FIT Member Spotlight
It is a pleasure to acknowledge Vidula Yadav as this month's featured member. Vidula started the FIT program way back in 2013 and has become a quiet leader as she has mastered so many of the exercises and brings her best effort to each class.

Vidula's Story:

I am a software engineer and a mother of two, a 13-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl. We moved to Evergreen a few years back and really enjoy spending time outdoors. Cooking is my passion, an escape where I can make things better. I am thankful to my kids and husband who really inspire me.

Before joining Focused Integrated Training's boot camp class, I did cardio regularly but started to feel bored. I also felt like my routine was no longer effective and didn’t see the results I was working towards.

Since starting FIT, I learned about strength training. It also helped me find a whole new level of energy that I never had. I am so much more confident, energized and feel so strong! I feel stronger in my body, but more importantly, I am also mentally tougher and feel like I have really accomplished something. The frequent changes I was noticing made me eager to commit to this new lifestyle. I enjoy being surrounded by like-minded individuals who are motivational and positive.

Mike is an incredible coach and mentor! I am so thankful for constant encouragement and support. I appreciate Mike’s advice, hard work and great attitude. That’s what keeps me going.

Pictures: 1) Vidula is a tough boxer at bootcamp 2) Vidula participated in the epic 15 mile hike to the top of Mt. Diablo with the FIT Hiking Club. 3) Vidula works her finisher routine in the weight room.
Review
Many of us are using fitness trackers to track our workouts, mileage, heart rate and calories burned. I have com across a great review site, Reviews.com. They have done a great job putting together a review of fitness trackers in various categories such as: Best overall, best under $100, best for heart rate monitors, etc.

Perhaps you are shopping for a new tracker for yourself or for a gift and may find the reviews useful.

A great fitness tracker for your holiday goals
 
As technology becomes such an important part of our lives, it’s no wonder that our fitness regimens have also come a long way. With inventions like wearable technology and computerized fitness equipment, tech has definitely changed the landscape of fitness forever. For those looking to stay on track with their goals, particularly as the weather gets cooler and our natural instinct is to go inside and snuggle under a blanket. Sources like Harvard  find that fitness tracker technology can help fitness feel more like a game, so people may be more likely to stick with it long-term.
 
The researchers at Reviews.com recently took a look at what goes into finding the best fitness tracker out there. They whittled down a list of 87 contenders to find what’s really important.
 
Function
 
Before choosing a style to purchase, it’s important to know which functions you need out of your fitness tracker. The more capabilities it has, the more expensive it will likely be, but you want to ensure it has all you need for your workout. Fitness trackers fall into three functional groups.
 
Basic models, which count your steps and determine your distance. These are great for people looking to log distance-based workouts like walking and running. They tend to be the most affordable as well because of their basic layout.
 
Heart rate monitoring models, which do all a basic model does and will additionally track your heart rate. The heart rate metric is often used to determine the number of calories burned and is useful for those who are interested in that number. Keep in mind, however, that the heart rate monitors on these devices are known for not being all that accurate as sources like NPR  report. 
 
Heart rate monitor and GPS models, which do everything a heart rate monitor device does and also uses GPS to track your position. These devices work best for outdoor exercisers like distance runners and bicyclists. They communicate with satellites to find your position outdoors and track your movement accordingly.
 
Features
 
Once you’ve determined what capability group best fits your needs, it’s time to look at the features of the tracker. You’ll find a variety of different features depending on the style and brand, but there are five that are really important to pay attention to.
 
Wireless syncing: many people buy a fitness tracker to pair it with a companion app, but not all models have this capability so keep an eye out if that’s your goal.
Activity notifications: these let you know when your activity level changes. Many people find that this is a great feature if you’re looking to make a long-term activity change in your routine.
Unisex design: keep in mind that gendered designs typically mean different size ranges, so opting for a unisex design is a great way to ensure a proper fit.
Water resistance: while we don’t typically go into a workout expecting to be drenched, sweat is still an important factor. Choosing a water-resistant model will ensure that you don’t need to worry about sweat harming your device.
Warranty: keep an eye out for a one year warranty at minimum. This will ensure coverage for specific types of accidents, but, more importantly, it means the manufacturer stand behind their product.
 
To see the in-depth article and find out which models the team found to be most effective, you can take a look here: Fitness Tracker Review

FIT Nutrition
Cauliflower Soup
Cauliflower Bisque with "Buttered" Breadcrumbs

Serves 6-7
1 large white cauliflower (2 lbs)

5 cups vegetable broth, divided

2 cups water

1-inch piece lemon zest (yellow part only, the white pith will turn bitter)

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 ½ tsp. sea salt, plus more to taste

2 medium carrots

2 medium stalks celery

1 medium yellow onion

3 tablespoons olive oil

5 cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon herbes de Provence

1 cup raw cashews

Trim the cauliflower, cut the florets in small pieces, and put them in a soup pot with 4 cups of the vegetable broth and the 2 cups of water. 
Add the lemon juice and the strip of zest to the pot, along with a teaspoon of sea salt.
Bring the liquid to a boil, lower the heat, and let it simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, peel, trim, and chop the carrots, celery, and onion.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet and add the chopped vegetables, along with half a teaspoon of sea salt.
Sauté the vegetables on a medium flame, stirring often, until they are soft, about 15 minutes or so
Add the garlic and cook an additional five minutes, or until the vegetables are beginning to color. Add the herbes de Provence and keep stirring over medium heat for a few minutes longer.
Add the sautéed vegetables to the cauliflower, and stir.

At this point the cauliflower should be very tender. If it's not, continue to simmer the soup until it is. Once the cauliflower is cooked through, turn off the heat and let the soup cool briefly. 
While the soup is cooling, add your raw cashes and remaining cup of vegetable broth to your blender. 
Puree the mixture until it's very smooth and creamy. 
Pour the cashew cream into a small bowl, and set aside. 
Without rinsing the blender, puree the cauliflower mixture. You may have to do this in batches. 

Return the soup to the pot, and stir in the cashew cream, to taste, until the soup has the consistency and flavor that you like. [I didn't end up using all of the cream - you can refrigerate whatever is left and save it for another use.] 
Taste, and add salt or lemon juice if needed.
 Sprinkle a heaping spoonful of buttered breadcrumbs over each serving of soup at the last minute, just as you are serving it.


FIT Gear
It's Hoodie Season
Stay warm and cozy before and after your workout!
also available
Gear up with hoodies, t-shirts, tanks, caps and towels and show your FIT pride.
They make great holiday gifts too!
Give The Gift Of FIT
Now through the Holiday Season you can purchase Fit gift Cards and get some special discounts. Who's on your Holiday gift list that you can use a little FITness??
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