Perfecting Your Pre-Pilates Breakfast
When your early morning alarm goes off, it can be difficult to find the motivation to get yourself ready, let alone the healthy and satisfying breakfast you need to make your day a success.
But 6 AM Pilates class waits for no one.
So these tips and tricks might be just what you need to create the perfect protein and nutrient-packed breakfast on-the-go, a simple smoothie.
But wait...ever had a real craving for a smoothie, decided to make one at home, and were dismayed by the leafy, frothy concoction you ended up with? You’re not alone. We have worked out the kinks to adding greens and protein to your smoothies, sans the foam and foilage mouthfeel.
Adding greens to a smoothie is just about the easiest way to incorporate vitamin, mineral, and fiber-rich veggies into your daily diet. We suggest kale and/or spinach. They are both nutrient-packed, but overall, kale is king.
Kale: a true nutritional superstar. This leafy green is considered one of the most nutrient-dense veggies on earth, providing 684% of your daily value of Vitamin, 206% vitamin A, and 134% vitamin C. Lucky for us, kale packs its best punch when consumed raw.
Spinach: also loaded with folate, vitamins K, A, D, and manganese, this leafy green is an excellent addition to your drink.
The key to getting the benefits of these veggies without their leafy texture is:
blend greens with your liquid of choice (water, plant milks, fruit juice, it’s up to you!) before adding any other ingredients.
It really couldn’t be simpler:
1:1 Greens to liquid
Blend - scrape the sides as needed throughout the blending process to ensure all leaves are combined with the liquid.
Add fruit and ice, blend until you reach your desired consistency.
If smoothies are all you are using your greens for, even one head of kale or bag of spinach might be too much to use before it begins to wilt. Blend the leaves with water and freeze in icecube trays to preserve them.
Fruit and greens are a great way to start your morning, but to keep you full and focused all workout long, consider adding some protein to your drink. For nut butter, simply add it with your fruit and ice in the last blending step. If you opt for protein powder, follow the steps below to prevent foam:
1:1 Greens to liquid
Blend until combined.
Add fruit, ice, and nut butter, blend until mostly smooth.
Add protein powder and a splash of water on top of powder. Blend for just a few seconds until you reach the desired consistency. This prevents aeration that can make your drink too frothy and foamy.
It’s important to note that having protein and carbohydrates together before or after a workout does promote muscle recovery and synthesis, but you don’t need a lot. If your goal is weight loss, simply eating a balanced diet should suffice, so you can hold the protein powder. However, for those of us opting for a smoothie as a quick (or just light and refreshing!) breakfast or lunch, a scoop of your favorite protein or nut butter (or some of both) might be just what your drink needs to be a successful meal replacement. For breakfast smoothie drinkers, allow your body to process by drinking your smoothie 30 minutes before putting your feet in the straps.
Use your new blending knowledge to perfect these delicious and nutritious smoothie combinations!