TGIF! And, a 3 day weekend! Yahoo! The summer has begun. 🙂
We have a fun weekend planned, starting with a Red Sox game tonight, so I can’t wait to get out of work.
I wasn’t feeling all that great when I woke up this morning, so I sipped on some tea while I did some work. When I was feeling up for it, I made up a smoothie. A twist on the Chocolate Cherry Bomb:
- 1 frozen banana
- 3/4 cup frozen cherries
- 1 cup frozen spinach
- 1.5 cups almond milk
- 1 packet Chocolate Vega Health Optimizer
I love my smoothies!
For lunch, I grabbed another 13 Bean & Veggie Chili from my freezer. I forgot to snap a photo, but imagine it looking like this…minus the crackers.
I also snacked on a homemade granola bar and a yogurt, which I put in the freezer to make it more cold and creamy! Have you ever done this? If not, you should! It’s almost like ice cream. 🙂
Now, onto something fun…
I’m not sure if I have talked about Vega at all on the blog, so I’ll mention it again. 🙂 In a nutshell, Vega = Awesome! They offer a few different bars and powdered protein that are 100% plant based. The company was started by Brendan Brazier who is an Ironman triathlete. He eats a vegan diet and needed vegan bars and powders to fuel him through the Ironman challenge. So, he came up with a plant based protein powder, sports drink and bar.
I have not had the bars or sports drink, but I have had the Smoothie Infusion and the Health Optimizer. My favorite is the Health Optimizer, which they have in a few flavors including Vanilla Chai, Chocolate and Berry. It includes a combination of protein from hemp, yellow pea, brown rice, flax and chlorella. Together they combine to give your body all of the essential amino acids that it needs to thrive. I could go on and on about how much I love the products and the concept behind them, but instead I will point you to their website so that you can see all of the wonderful features and benefits of vega – check it out here.
Vega has been around for awhile, but I just found out about them recently from Gena’s blog, Choosing Raw. Back in February, she wrote a post on her interview with Brendan Brazier which was awesome. he made some great points that made me think about the way I eat now and how I fuel myself for my workouts and refuel afterwards. This one part really caught my attention about refueling after a workout:
Really, exercise is nothing more than muscle tissues and cells being broken down. And when you rest, the body grows back stronger — it overcompensates. Good food provides the building blocks for this process. The body pools the resources you take in through food and helps you to grow muscle back. If you eat poor nutrition, cells don’t grow back after athletic strain—they don’t have the resources—or they grow back abnormally (which can proceed to cancer). So although lots of athletes load up on junk food after grueling performance—they figure they can afford to, or that they’ve earned it, now that a competition is over—it’s actually the worst time to eat junk food, because that’s when the body will assimilate most quickly and seriously. If you want to eat junk, fine, but eat it later—not right after a workout, when the body will assimilate it directly, and be less likely to filter it out.
Brendan makes many great points throughout his interview, so be sure to check out the full interview if you have interest!
A smoothie would be a perfect post-workout treat.
Now, I just have to add that I do not think that protein powders should replace whole food protein in your diet. However, I do think that after a strenuous workout, it is a quick and easy way to immediately get protein into your muscles for recovery. It is a ‘quick’ fix when you are on the go and do not have anything else to fuel your body. I do usually add a form of protein powder to my smoothies because it is a good way for me to get in some extra protein in the morning or after a hard workout, when I normally just want fruit and/or carbs! I have stopped eating meat and do run alot, so some extra protein is good for me, but this may not be for everyone. Make sure that you do what is best for your body. I am just here to give you some tips along the way! 🙂
Have a great weekend! I’m off to the Sox game!