Breakfast is what gets me going in the morning. I have to get up at 5 am during the week so that I can work out before I go to my actual job. I’d much rather sleep in, but I figured out last year that regular exercise helps me control my fibromyalgia (at least a little), so sleep is sacrificed on the altar of Zumba classes and weight training. Anyway, 5 am is the latest I can get up and still have time to get to the bus to campus. I don’t have time for a fully cooked breakfast, and it wouldn’t sit well on my stomach for working out anyway, so every morning, I make a smoothie. I love my smoothies so much that I even make them for breakfast on the weekends! I have a “base” that I use for all the smoothies I make: 1 Tablespoon chia seeds (4 grams of protein!), almond milk (1-1/2 grams of protein, depending on how much milk you use), and a whole frozen banana (lots of potassium plus another gram of protein). The almond milk keeps you from feeling heavy, which dairy definitely does in the morning, and the frozen banana means you don’t need to add ice that will water down the smoothie. The more almond milk you add, the thinner the smoothie will be, and I like mine thick enough to eat with a spoon (at least before it starts melting), so I use less milk than most recipes recommend.
Today, I made a strawberry and mango smoothie. I chopped up some fresh strawberries and added in a frozen mango. I usually peel a fresh mango the night before, cut it into cubes, and then freeze it overnight. The result was the perfect breakfast drink for a warm, sluggish July morning. Most of my other smoothies have peanut butter for added protein, but since I didn’t put any in this one (peanut butter with mango? Yuck!), I supplemented it with the Blue-Green Algae Spirulina, for about 6 extra grams of protein.
After I work out, I usually eat a KIND Bar (gluten, dairy, and processed sugar-free, with plenty of nuts and complete grains, and it actually tastes good!). I usually eat the Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate one after I hit the gym, since it has 7 grams of protein per bar. I’ll supplement that with pistachios, a banana, or a small square of local cheese.
Lunch was foiled by a dastardly migraine that kept me in bed all afternoon, so instead, I’ll mention another routine I have. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I chop up half a cucumber, a whole lemon, and some sprigs of fresh mint, and put them into a gallon of water. After it rests for about half an hour, I’ll drink from that gallon throughout the day. It’s very refreshing, and also helps me detox. I love other fruit-infused water (strawberry and fresh basil, anyone?), but this is the one I use regularly. It’s particularly wonderful during a muggy Virginia summer!
Due to missing lunch, dinner was just a repeat of the Quinoa salad I had last night, with the addition of a nectarine, so I won’t repeat myself about that 🙂 Instead, the highlight of this post is this wonderful vegan chocolate ice cream! Chocolate ice cream that is delicious but also really good for you? Yes, please! I didn’t have an ice cream machine, so it was a little less smooth than I would have liked, but that wasn’t a big deal. I used slightly less pure maple syrup than she called for, but it still tasted fine – I like my desserts on the less sweet side, anyway. I think next time I make this, I’m going to try it with raw honey instead of the maple syrup. At any rate, it tastes absolutely delicious! I’d never heard of avocado-based ice cream before, but after eating this, I am definitely a convert. It’s a good thing avocados are on the expensive side, or I’d be eating this ice cream all day! Chocolate ice cream doesn’t have to be a guilt pleasure anymore 🙂
Tomorrow, I tackle a vegetarian soup that has a ridiculous amount of protein in it. It looks delicious, and I really can’t wait to try it! If you try the ice cream recipe, or make any changes to it, let me know how it turns out! Happy eating 🙂