Tag Archives: breakfast

Pump(kin) up the Protein

There’s no question it’s fall in New England – it’s cool outside, the Patriots are in season, and Libby’s canned pumpkin is back on the grocery shelf! I picked up 2 cans on sale this weekend 2/$3.

On Sunday, I was inspired after seeing Janetha’s pumpkin protein pancakes, so I got to work in the kitchen to make some of my own. (Mine had WAY more than 3 ingredients, though!)

Into a bowl went:

  • heaping 1/4 cup of Instabake whole wheat pancake mix
  • 1/4 cup of vanilla brown rice protein powder
  • 1/2 cup of egg whites
  • 1/2 cup of pumpkin
  • ~1/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 Tbs of plain non-fat yogurt
  • cinnamon

Janetha wasn’t kidding when she said these babies don’t bubble up like normal pancakes. I had a hard time flipping them over too. They started to fall apart on me. I probably could have skipped the yogurt in the mix because of all the pumpkin. Given the look of these in the pan, I was ready to write these off as an epic fail…

Topped with Smart Balance Light and Trader Joe's maple agave syrup blend

…until I tasted these! They were delicious, and the texture was amazingly similar to that of pumpkin pie. It was like eating dessert for breakfast! I wish I had had some pumpkin pie spice to add to the batter. They would have been even more amazing. Perhaps next time…

This might be my favorite new way to use pumpkin!

Do you like pumpkin? What’s your favorite way to eat it?

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So Much to Do, So Little Time!

Is tomorrow really already Wednesday?! I am in the midst of an extremely busy week, and it is flying by! Unfortunately, in all the craziness, I’ve been neglecting my little blog here. ūüė¶

I went to Virginia overnight for work over the weekend. Because I flew out so early on Saturday, I had to shift my half marathon training schedule. I pushed out my long run to Sunday. I ran a very painful 10 miles in 1:33:18 –¬†a good pace, but it truly was an ugly run. I was gritting my teeth the whole way. My right knee started screaming at me around mile 2!

I wanted to get back to my regular training schedule this week, but that would have meant running on Monday, the day after my long run. I woke up at 4:30 am and my knee was sending me a very clear message – no running. I ended up waiting until the evening to any exercise. I replaced my scheduled 4-mile run with a 45 minute ride on my Spinning bike. I had a great ride, and my knee felt good since cycling is so low-impact on your joints.

Flash forward to today… I attended day one of a two-day social media marketing workshop in Boston. I wasn’t sure what the food situation was going to be at the conference center, so I made sure to eat a hearty breakfast before I left.

  • 1/2 cup of oatmeal
  • 1 mashed banana
  • raisins
  • vanilla
  • cinnamon
  • 1 Tbs ground flaxseed
  • 2 Tbs vanilla rice protein powder
  • 1 Tbs TJ’s PB, which was later mixed into the oats

This held me over until lunchtime, when I had a delicious grilled veggie pita at the conference center.

Dinner tonight involved a new to me product – Trader Joe’s Meatless Meatballs.

These are vegan and have great nutritional stats – 140 calories, 8 g carbs, 16 g protein. I was a little nervous to try these because my only other experience with meatless meatballs was not good. I don’t remember what brand those were though…

I simmered these “meatballs” in TJ’s marinara for about 10 minutes and served mine up over a bed of fresh spinach with a sprinkle of parmesan (to de-veganize the meal!).

My thoughts: Delicious! These were soooo yummy. Not too many spices. The flavor was just right and the texture was great too. Even my little girl ate them! I will definitely be buying these again.

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One more chance to enter my giveaway! I’ll announce the winner in my next post!

Injury Update & Product Review

It’s Wednesday – half to the weekend! Woohoo! We are headed to DC on Saturday for the Virginia Wine Festival. Can’t wait! It’s going to be a whirlwind. We’re only going for one night. But it will be fun.

Have you entered my giveaway yet?! You have until Friday!

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I’ve been getting pretty much the same advice from everyone on my knee injury – rest is the¬†best medicine. Now, if I could only follow that advice… I’ve been doing plenty of icing and I bought a compression sleeve, but I can’t say I’ve cut back on my running. I am shuffling things around a bit this week though, partly for time constraints, but mostly to avoid running 2 days in a row.

This morning I woke up VERY sleepy eyed at 4:30 am and contemplated skipping my run. For a brief second, I convinced myself that I should stay in bed “to rest my knee.” But then I popped out of bed, threw on my gear, and headed out the door – but not before grabbing a small¬†scoop of PB and some raisins, my go-to pre-run snack.

Do you eat before running?

I ran 6.2 miles in 58:08, ~9:21/mile. I felt great for the first 4 miles – no knee pain. And then BAM. Just like that, the pain set in. At one point I was literally gritting my teeth. There’s no stopping and walking in the dark at 5:30 am when you’re 2 miles from home, though!

When I got home, I took a quick shower then simultaneously iced my knee, put on my makeup, and ate this glorious bowl of overnight oats.

This horrendous photo doesn't do this bowl justice!

  • 1/2 cup of old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk
  • ~3/4 cup of plain Chobani
  • 1 small mashed banana
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • raisins
  • walnuts

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Ok folks – time for a brief product review!

Back in early July, I received a sample of the new Clif Crunch bars¬†in the mail. It was the Chocolate Chip flavor, and I split the 2-bar serving with my hubby during our 4th of July road trip to PA. Upon first bite, I believe I said something along the lines of, “Oh my God – I have to find these and buy some!” It was crunchy (hence the name), sweet without being too sweet, and very satisfying. The 2-bar serving makes you feel like you’re eating more than a typical bar. And a serving is just 180 calories – perfect snack amount.

I hadn’t been into Whole Foods¬†in quite some time, but I had a bunch of coupons so I went in there a couple weeks ago. (Side note: since that trip, I have been into WF every week. It has sucked me back in! Damn you, Whole Paycheck, er, Whole Foods!) To my delight, I discovered that Clif Crunch bars were on sale for $3.00 a box, a special that was STILL going on even last weekend. So I stocked up.

I’ve tried 3 of the 4 flavors and I’ve enjoyed each one. I definitely favor the Chocolate Chip though! Have you tried these yet?!

Next Up: 12 Miles

Well, once again I let the week get away from me! It’s been busy at work, but busy in a good way. I’ve finally found a job that is both challenging and enjoyable. How refreshing! I just wish I lived a little closer. 100 miles roundtrip is tough! Maybe in the near future…

I’ve been battling some pretty serious knee soreness this week, so I took today completely off from exercising. I haven’t done that in quite a while. Even though I didn’t exercise today, I made sure I fueled up with some good quality carbs and protein. I’ve got a 12-mile run on the agenda for tomorrow. Eeeek! Hopefully my knee holds up. My training plan actually calls for 11 miles tomorrow and 12 miles next Saturday, but I’ll be out of town next Saturday and I’m not sure I’ll have time for that long of a run before my flight in the morning.

Per my usual MO, I only captured breakfast (my favorite meal of the day) on camera.

A deliciously perfect combination of carbs, protein, and fat:

  • 1/3 cup of oat bran
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1 Tbs of ground flaxseed
  • ~1Tbs of raisins
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • 2 Tbs vanilla rice protein powder
  • 1 Tbs of drizzly PB

So yummy, and so filling! This kept my hunger at bay for several hours.

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Off to map out my 12-miler on MapMyRun.com. I’ll recap my run later in the weekend. Wish me luck!

Running question of the day: How many miles or months do you use your running shoes? How do you know when it’s time to replace them? I’m still new at this…

Oh-oh-overnight Oats!

Just popping in quickly to share my overnight oats success! ūüôā

Over the past couple months, I’ve dabbled with overnight oats. I first tried them out of taste and texture curiosity. But now, when I make them, it’s more for time-saving reasons. The other few times that I’ve made overnight oats, I’ve used regular plain yogurt. While the oats weren’t horrible, they weren’t fabulous. It left me wondering what all the hype was about. They were just ok.

Well – I think I’ve found the secret. You must, must, must use Greek yogurt!!

Knowing I was getting up early this morning for a workout, I prepped my breakfast last night. Into the bowl went:

  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1/2 cup of old fashioned¬†oats
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk
  • 1 container of plain Oikos¬†[I typically buy Chobani, but I had a store coupon for¬†Oikos.¬†I forgot how amazingly creamy Oikos is! It’s a shame it’s so much more expensive…]
  • 1 tbs of raisins
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • 1 packet of stevia
  • 2 tbs of walnuts (added in the morning)

It may not look very pretty, but it tasted phenomenal!

¬†This was so creamy and delicious! I didn’t heat it up at all; just ate it right out of the fridge. I was trying my hardest not to inhale the whole bowl all at once! I highly recommend this combo, if you haven’t tried it.

I do have a little confession though – I ate my breakfast in the bathroom, by the sink, while I put on my makeup! Always multi-tasking!

What’s the “craziest” thing you’ve done recently in the name of multi-tasking? (Hopefully you don’t say something that was unsafe… ;-))

10 Things I Learned on My 10-Mile Run

Hey all! Sorry for my absence. I have been enjoying the holiday weekend, as I hope you all have, too!

Saturday morning, I ran 10 miles for the first time ever! Here are some things I learned along the way…

  1. I must be a morning person… because I got up at 4:45 a.m. on a Saturday raring to go! I used to be a morning person way back when, before there was baby. Maybe setting a goal and training to reach that goal is motivating me to get out of bed!
  2. It takes me about 2-3 miles to get warmed up. I wasn’t uncomfortable running, per se, but it really wasn’t until about 3 miles that I felt like I hit my stride.
  3. There are a lot of skunks in my neighborhood! Ok – not run-related, but damn! I must’ve¬†passed a dead skunk or a skunky smell every 2 miles.
  4. My knees can only withstand about 7 miles. That’s about when they start hurting – the right one in particular. In fact, all of the joints on my right leg were killing me. Hip, knee, ankle…
  5. I’m much more “hardcore” than I thought! For better or worse, I pushed through the pain and completed my run!
  6. Having a time-goal in mind pushes me to run harder. I left the house with a goal of running 10 miles in 1:35:00 – a 9:30/mile pace. Once I passed the 1-hour mark, I was worried I wasn’t going to make my goal time. I wasn’t sure how far I had run (no Garmin¬†here – yet), so I started to pick up the pace. Low and behold, I got back to my front door in 1:33:03 – roughly a 9:18/mile pace! Woohoo!
  7. The girl who¬†couldn’t run a mile in the allotted 10 minutes in gym class (aka ME) is looooong gone! ‘Nuff said.
  8. I have made amazing progress since I decided to start running back in May. Just 4 short months ago, I was running a 12:30/mile pace. I have shaved 3+ minutes off that time. Go me!
  9. I can run 10 miles! Despite the fact that I prove to myself week in and week out that I can push myself farther and farther, I was still a bit doubtful that I could run 10 miles without stopping. But I did it! Watch out half marathon – I’m coming for you! ūüôā
  10. Breakfast tastes even more delicious after burning nearly 1000 calories! When I got home, I refueled with this glorious mix of carbs, protein, and fat.

Proving time and time again that I am no photographer! :-/

  • 1/2 cup of old fashioned oats
  • 1 mashed ripe-beyond-belief banana
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • raisins
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk (+ 1/2 cup of water)
  • 1 Tbs ground flaxseed
  • 2 Tbs vanilla brown rice protein powder
  • 1 Tbs peanut butter (which I later mixed in)

Mmmmmmmmmmmmm!

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I continue to learn more and more about myself the farther and farther I run.

What are some things you’ve learned about yourself through exercise?

The Breakfast Diaries…?

So I’m considering changing the name of my blog to The Breakfast Diaries because I seem to only manage to photograph breakfast each day! [Could it be the makings of a spin-off blog?!] Perhaps it’s because it’s my favorite meal of the day. Or maybe because 6 a.m. (just before hubby and baby get up)¬†is the only time of the day that I’m not running around like a crazy woman. Hmmm…mixture of both I think!

Monday’s breakfast:

Poorly photographed French Toast!

French toast made with 2 slices of Martin’s whole wheat potato bread, topped with Smart Balance Light and ~1/2 a tablespoon of Trader Joe’s¬†maple/agave syrup blend. (I also ate a banana with some almond butter while this was cooking….) This whole wheat potato bread is one of my new foodie favorites! It’s delicious and has phenomenal nutritional states: 70 calories, 1 gram of fat, 14 carbs, 4 grams of fiber, and 6 grams of protein per slice. Low cal, low carb, high fiber, high protein. Does it get any better than that?!

Tuesday breakfast:

Oat bran with banana, raisins, flax, a little bit of yogurt, and some honey almond butter drizzled on top. The 2 tablespoons of yogurt I stirred in added just a touch of creaminess. To pump up the protein, I also had some scrambled egg whites on the side.

Monday Fitness:

I had planned to go for a run in the morning before work, but I screwed up my alarm clock and overslept a bit. So I headed out at 8 p.m for a 3.5-miler. Running in the dark at night is scary…and dangerous. But it kept me running quickly!

Side note: I registered for another half marathon on Monday! So I’ll be running my first on October 10 and my second 4 weeks later on November 7! So excited.

Tuesday Fitness:

Today was an off day from running, so I had strength training on my agenda. Unfortunately it is ungodly hot today. I still worked out in my living room, but not for very long. The heat is making me ill!

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So in all seriousness, now that I’m getting back to blogging, I feel like my blog may be taking a slightly different direction. When I first started it, I was a brand new mommy, working at home, and then later unemployed. [Read: I had a lot more time on my hands.] The goals behind my blog still hold true, but I feel that, given my new time constraints (exciting career with a long commute) and my new interests (running and fueling before and after my runs), my posts are going to be focused on other things…

Thoughts???