Thursday, February 20, 2014

Breakfast is for Champions

I recently had a fitness consult with my girl Kell.  We naturally started talking about how nutrition would play into her new routine and she dropped the bomb that she doesn't always eat breakfast.  What was that you say?!  My jaw hit the floor because she is not the first to tell me this horrific fact and I am sure she will not be the last.  Even my own Thriving Mommy was resistant of eating each morning because she just wasn't hungry.  Well, then, I guess you gotta force feed yourself.

Whether or not you agree that breakfast is in fact the most important meal of the day, entertain me for a minute and pretend you do.  Think of how you feel when you don't eat for seven plus hours.  Do you feel good?  Are you are a beacon of positivity who can take on anything thrown your way?  Are you able to focus and execute tasks with precision?  No offense, but I doubt it.  If I don't eat for two hours I feel like I am going to die.  As I like to say, "my blood sugar is low" and I therefore have no energy and truly feel as though I could pass out.

Now, put that (at least) seven hour starvation into play every day, because it happens.  You don't eat all night which allows your body to burn the calories while you sleep, great.  But, if you decide to skip breakfast (aren't hungry, don't have time) then your body runs out of things to burn and instead of going to your fat storage (which is what I think people think naturally will happen) it just waits.  Not sure to burn more because it is not sure when it is going to get more.  Of course if you starve yourself long enough then sure, your body will start to burn fat...and muscle...and whatever else you have going on.  Sounds healthy right?  NOT!

Starting your day with a healthy and balanced breakfast is going to not only wake up your body but also rev up that metabolism for the day ahead.  Your brain sends the message to your body it is time to do work and ultimately sets the tone for your entire day.  Breakfast is a great time to give your body fiber, protein and complex carbohydrates so you have the energy to get your day started right.  Furthermore, when you don't eat all morning (which means you are also passing up your mid morning snack) you are really going to be starving (and probably not the nicest person to be around).  Come lunch time you will often eat the first thing you see, (nearest drive through, doughnuts in the staff lounge) rather than a meal that will continue to fuel your body for the afternoon.

As a working woman I know all too well that rushed feeling each morning where I just can't get in the car fast enough.  I used to stock my glove compartment with high protein bars that I could eat while driving to work.  Not a horrible choice, but certainly not the best.  The real way to make sure you are getting the breakfast you need is with proper planning and just an extra few minutes in the morning.  I have decided to put myself first and eat breakfast, even if I get on the road a few minutes later.  It is not an option for me to skip this glorious meal.  Plus, I look forward to it all night!

Here are some super quick and easy faves of the TW.  These breakfasts not only help us be nicer morning people, give our bodies fuel pump our metabolism up while setting us up to be champions.

-Green Smoothie
Get the fruit and greens all set in the blender the night before, wake up, throw in ice and juice, hit blend and get out the door.  Takes no more than 2 minutes max.  Also, it is perfect to sip on the way to work and is packed with protein.

-Overnight Oats
 Great for breakfast on the go.  Set it up the night before, stick it in the fridge, grab and go!

-Breakfast Casserole
This guy is not only amazing to eat, but easily as amazing to make. I will usually whip one up on the weekend when I have more time, then during the week cut a slice, throw it in the microwave for 30 seconds and eat.  It is packed with eggs and vegetables to you are again loading up that protein to get that body working!


-Yogurt Parfait 
This is another easy mason jar worthy breakfast to take on the road.   Using a medium sized mason jar, layer yogurt and fresh or dried fruit and even some wheat germ if you are feeling sassy.  Throw the granola on top in the AM, mix and enjoy!

When in doubt at the very least whip up a PB&J on whole grain bread to grab in the AM and eat in the car.  At least it has protein and fiber to start your morning.  The bottom line here, DO NOT SKIP BREAKFAST!! It is the meal of champions!

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