A Visit To Life Cafe At Life Time Athletic Club: Health And Deliciousness Come Together Very “Smoothie-ly”!

My recent visit to Life Cafe inside Life Time Athletic in the Sky building at 605 West 42nd Street was quite eye-opening–and not just because their Almond Butter Smoothie gave me a jolt of energy, LOL! The only other time I have seen a healthy food cafe of any sort in a Manhattan health club before was at Premier 57 when I visited about eight months ago, but that really has a Korean food and smoothie bar inside its lounge area. Life Cafe has numerous healthy food choices that are created out of locally sourced fruits, vegetables and protein and they serve the most uniquely flavored smoothies out there. When I say that the Almond Butter Smoothie (which is banana-based and includes whey protein powder) is hugely popular and a meal in itself, I mean it. It gives you a whole day’s worth of protein and seems to take the edge off your hunger.My dining partner Gail and I did a tour of the gorgeous Life Time club while we sipped our smoothies and felt a little guilty that we had no desire to actually hit the world class gym at this club. We also checked out the spa area which features not only the standard run of massages like hot stone and Swedish, but ones geared to athletic soreness and injuries as well. Each spa room is named after a color and features lighting in that particular hue. It is a quiet, elegant and modern space where you cannot hear any of the music or machine noise emanating from the gym at all. There are drumming indoor and outdoor pools as well–and let’s not forget the quality “bro time” that guys love to spend on the basketball court that they can reserve by the hour (the staff even puts your name on a sign in front of the court).What is exceptionally nice about Life Cafe is that you do not have to sit at the cafe tables provided–you have a huge lounge area of comfy sofas and end chairs to get served at. You go up to the counter to order but they bring your food directly to you. There I no real tipping except if you want to put some extra cash in the tip jar for the counter staff.Gail and I decided to share two of the flatbreads on the menu and I had the soba noodle dish which is topped with a half cup scoop of fresh guacamole. The flatbreads were not high in calorie and good calorie “bang for the buck” for what are essentially gourmet pizzas. The BBQ Chicken Flatbread featured a smoky sugar free barbecue sauce and tender white meat free range chicken. The chicken was garlic infused and three different artisanal cheeses were used along with free pieces of cilantro. The whole portion which could easily feed two people was sliced into eight pieces came to 750 calories. (Yes, there are calories listed on the menu.) All crusts are made with ancient grains.The second flatbread that we ordered was the Pesto Chicken Flatbread which also featured garlic infused free range chicken and three artisanal cheeses but was garnished with locally grown tomatoes and homemade pesto. It was absolutely as filling and as tasty as the BBQ Chicken flatbread and came in at 780 calories.The Soba Noodle Bowl was something I adored because the noodles are mixed with an awesome cilantro-ginger slaw, chunks of avocado, cashews and sesame lime dressing–after which it is finished with a spicy aioli. I loved the way that this healthy noodle bowl ended with a kick. I would recommend sharing this since it comes in at a whopping 910 calories but I feel less badly knowing that everything in it is highly nutritious.The aforementioned almond shake is a great anytime snack or meal replacement. It is a blended combo of almond milk, organic banana, almond butter, cinnamon, chia seeds and grass-fed whey protein and clocks in at 400 calories for a hearty 16-ounce portion.There are plenty of hand foods like Life Cafe’s wildly acclaimed street tacos and healthy burger which a large amount of protein choices for the burger. There are giant salads and veggie plates for those who want to keep things as low calorie as possible but want to feel full and get some real “foodie” flavors. The Skinny Waldorf Salad is a favorite and clocks in at only 290 for a huge portion.For more info on Time Cafe and to see their menu, go to www.mylt.life. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and you can also order their food for delivery. You can stay and lounge long after your meal is done; the beauty of the Life Time Club featuring Life Cafe is that there is strictly a friendly and no rush kind of atmosphere.

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