December 1, 2019

Live Well 2019: December

Welcome to the final installment of the renewed guest post series of Live Well 2019, thanks to my dear friend/client/Bible study buddy, Sarah! The previous stint of fabulous Live Well guest posting was done by my sister, Lindsay Wampler, from 2016-2017.

This time around, we posted once a month for the year of 2019, in tandem with The Pro Player Timeline posts.

Sarah Blomgren is another California-Christian-Volleyball-Crazy who has played in England, Finland, Serbia, and is now in Spain. Sarah adds a deeper dimension to being a professional athlete abroad with her commitment to maintaining a plant-based diet based on vegan guidelines, developing her professional profile, and growing as an athlete and person.

Sarah and I met through Elite Volley, and we have been a part of Athletes in Action online Bible study groups for professional athletes overseas. It only seemed fitting for us to also share our idea space for 2019 to better equip and encourage our fellow athletes and expats abroad!


We have been going through the book of Acts in our pro volleyball Bible study group, and it has been so great! Acts is about the beginning of the early Christian church where we see the first Gospel preaching from Jesus' disciples. There is so much encouragement in this book for current believers in Christ. It is challenging and convicting as well, as far as the formation of the body of Christ and how far we have drifted from that in some ways.

Last week we read Acts 10 and the big takeaway I got from it stemmed from verses 34-35 when Peter says, "I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism, but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right." I love this picture of inclusion; God had this idea from the beginning, and it will come to fruition when Jesus comes again and we will see a multitude of people from every tribe, every nation, every tongue, gather together and praise the Lord. (Revelation 7:9)

Dig Deeper Recommendation

At this point y'all should know I love me some podcasts. I found a new one, called Sheologians. (Get it?? Like Theologians, but they are females. I think it's clever.) Anyway, I have listened to a few episodes and these two women are very insightful and Biblically sound in their doctrine. They are super relatable and funny. They are from the Christian reformed camp, so some of their stances really intrigued and challenged me, but I think it's good to hear all sides of issues. They are also connected to Apologia studios, which is a Christian Apologetics media platform that has amazing content.

Stay on-task and motivated throughout the month for FREE!

Smoothie Mix Master

Vegan Peppermint Patty Smoothie
We have got to get in the holiday spirit, so if this doesn't get you there, then you might need to bump up your Christmas Spotify playlist and string up some twinkle lights.

1/2 cup full fat coconut cream
1 ripe banana
2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
Handful raw spinach
Few mint leaves
1 medjool date
1 Tbsp peppermint extract
1/2 tsp of each: ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg

Mobility Move

We are going ALL OUT for this last month with some total bod mobility! And if you want to get in the Christmas spirit for the month of December, just throw on a Santa hat as you do these moves! Okay, for this one you will need a long stick (or in the strength & conditioning world, a "dowel"). I love warming up for volleyball practice or a weights session with the dowel because of its multipurpose use -- you can hit all the major areas. Some of these include: shoulders, thoracic spine, hamstrings/quads, hips.

Hard to explain all these movements, so here are a few pictures:

^Shoulders (I also rotate in a circle as well as front to back with the dowel)

^Thoracic spine with a lunge

^Overhead squat with dowel (great for working on squat technique without weight)

^Prone, overhead lift-offs (with straights arms at the start, lift the dowel and squeeze shoulder blades down as you pull the dowel behind your back to the base of your neck and then slowly back to starting position)

^Good mornings (great hamstring activation)

Plant-Based Meal

We got options this month! I may have mentioned one of my favorite food bloggers, Rainbow Plant Life, before, and I will mention her again. In the spirit of the holidays, she put together a list of 30 different recipes to impress your whole fam with totally vegan food. Hers is specified for Thanksgiving (classic American holiday), but I think the flavors and ideas are universal for all winter holiday dishes.

My personal favorite that I will most definitely be making for my family this Christmas is the Wild Mushroom Stuffing. But if you give any one of these a try, you will not be disappointed!

Vegan Snack/Treat

Biscoff Banana Cake Brownies
This one I completely created off the top of my head and didn't measure (classic me) or write down what I used (also classic me), but they were a hit at my Bible study group so I will attempt to remember the recipe so y'all can recreate it.

Biscoff cookies
Vegan butter (melted)
*Combine in food processor until crumbly crust forms and then press into a parchment paper-lined brownie pan. Then place in fridge to cool when making the rest.

Mashed banana
Coconut oil
Peanut butter
Soy milk agave
Vanilla extract
*Combine in medium-sized bowl
Oat flour (or flour of your choice) ((I think I combined oat & whole wheat flour))
Baking powder
Pinch of salt
Maca powder
*Add to wet ingredients and pour over the cooled crust
*Sprinkle crushed Biscoff cookies on top
*Add chocolate chips if you want (I will do this next time)
*Bake at 375 for about 10-12 minutes


Hey, friends. I'm Sarah. In addition to what Christy mentioned above, I played indoor and beach volleyball in college at The University of South Carolina where I earned my bachelor's degree in Exercise Science. I then went on to get my master's degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology and continued my volleyball career at Northumbria University in Newcastle, England. My first pro season was in Finland, then in Serbia, and now I'm playing this season in Spain.

Since then I've become 100% plant-based (vegan) and I absolutely love this world of plant-based nutrition. One fun fact about me would be that I have an obsession with doughnuts! No, not like Krispy Kreme; like actual artisan, small-batch, crazy flavor doughnuts! I try to use all my traveling as an excuse to visit doughnut shops around the world. Besides that, I love Jesus and I'm just here to figure this thing called life out the best I can through His eyes.

Connect with Sarah on FacebookInstagram, and her website.
You can contact her directly via email for more information on Juice Plus+® sarahblomgren[dot]provolleyball[at]gmail[dot]com.

Let us know in the comments below if you try any variations of these delicious recipes, yoga moves, or have the chance to check out Sarah's recommendations!