words and photos by Charlee Harris
By now we are all suffering from extreme cabin fever. We’ve watched all the movies and accepted every challenge on social media. How can we shake things up as we navigate our new normal? In an effort to answer that question and change my routine of eating, sleeping, and binge-watching every season of Agatha’s Christie “Poirot,” I called my good friend Taylor McKinnie.
Taylor is a Certified Personal Trainer and the owner of the Mizzshake Sum, a juice and smoothie company that Taylor opened in July of 2018.
“I used to work at a juice bar when I was doing freelance personal training and I just fell in love with the process. It was just so quick and healthy. I loved mixing all the different ingredients together,” Taylor says. “I learned a lot about different supplements — for example, how Spirulina is good for fiber but also has anti-cancer benefits.”
In time, Taylor started making her own recipes. “I enjoyed making something that was nutritious but also tasted good,” she says.
Mizzshake Sum operates out of the Akron Food Works Sharded kitchen, a program offered by The Well CDC, this has allowed Taylor to continue business during the quarantine.
“I’ve been doing a lot of shopping and have seen toilet paper missing but not fresh fruits and vegetables. I would recommend stocking up on these items instead of snack foods because it’s going to be better for you,” Taylor says.
After I admitted to shamelessly eating nonstop queso and midday wine drinking — in my defense, I was doing this long before COVID-19 aka Auntie Rona blew into town — Taylor suggested some simple yet healthy recipes I could incorporate in my diet, both now and after quarantine is over.
“I would suggest lettuce tacos, Just cook ground beef or turkey like you would normal tacos, then mix in cheese, peppers, and black beans. Get a head of lettuce and use leaves as wraps instead of tortillas shells,” Taylor says.
She also suggests a good smoothie recipe: “Mix a handful of strawberries and a banana in your blender. Add some whey protein (or any plant-based protein if that’s what you prefer) and almond milk.” For those of us that like to snack, she suggests celery with almond butter and raisins.
Taylor, who is currently training for a bodybuilding competition, also suggested that we increase vitamin intake. “During times when food shortages could be an issue, it is a good idea to increase protein and supplements.”
Having sampled just about all of Taylor’s smoothies and juices (my favorite being purple haze), I can personally attest to how wonderful both her smoothies and juices taste. Taylor hopes that she can continue to increase her business and hopes to partner with other businesses to expand her product availability.