Thursday, April 28, 2011

Guest Post: Jammin' in the Kitchen

Is it Friday yet? Geeze, I feel like this week is dragging itself out. Perhaps I've just been busy. Busy at the gym, busy with various writing projects. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. Nor am I complaining about my sore shoulders. Since I couldn't attend Gentle Yoga this week, I tried Yoga for Weight Loss #1 and Yoga for Weight Loss #2 from YogaDownload. Two 20-minute programs, which I did back-to-back on Tuesday afternoon. Today is Thursday, and I'll spin. But I'm really looking forward to my Power Yoga class on Saturday. But first, I have to get through the week. Wherever will I find the time to do the things I need to do? This is a question I know I'm not the only one asking. Although I've never really had an issue with it, I know one of the first things to go in our hustle-bustle life is breakfast. An important meal, but one people so often find themselves rushing through. Enter Lauren from Jammin' in the Kitchen. She loves life "through good food and fun," and she's here today to share with you a few tips for eating breakfast on the go.

Good day to you all!  My name is Lauren and I blog over at Jammin' in the Kitchen.  I live in the San Diego area with my husband (married almost one year!) and I work for a local camp providing guest services.  I have a slight obsession with lounging in my pajamas at home and cooking at the same time.  One of my favorite ways to cook is finding healthy alternatives for traditionally less healthy recipes, and l enjoy finding creative ways to add some extra fruit and veggie goodness to my diet.  Of course, you have to have your treats, too, and any way I can make something healthier and keep it tasty, I'll do it.

I am a huge fan of Tara's blog and really enjoy reading her posts each morning.  I love working out and mixing up different workouts during the week.  In the past several months, I have consistently mixed and matched my workouts: cardio, high intensity interval training, weight lifting, name it!  The end result: my body has never been so lean and muscular at the same time.  It's great!  Physically I feel the strongest I've ever felt in my life, which is saying a lot for a former cardio and processed carbohydrate junkie.

When Tara asked me to write a guest post, I was thrilled to say the least :)  Since Tara's blog is all about being fit and healthy, I thought it was only appropriate to write about some of my favorite healthy breakfasts.  I leave at 7 AM to begin my morning commute, and it takes me almost an hour with traffic.  Since I try to squeeze in my exercise before I leave for work, I end up eating my breakfast in the car as I drive to work.  It's a little tricky to eat and drive at the same time, so I've come up with some easy and healthy (and handheld!) breakfasts that help me get my day going.

1)  Coffee in a travel mug. 
I make my coffee before I leave to save time (and money!).  Carrying it in my travel mug keeps it warm longer and the handle helps me sip more easily as I drive.

2)  Whole wheat wrap with peanut butter, banana and spices.

This has become my favorite (and most frequent) breakfast!  Costco sells great wraps by Flat Out, to which I add natural peanut butter, cinnamon/nutmeg/pumpkin pie spices (whatever I have on hand), ground flaxseeds and a sliced banana (though you could use any fruit).  I roll it up, wrap it up in some plastic wrap, and it's easy to eat with one hand while I drive.  This is also great to do with an egg white patty (see #3), ham or turkey, fresh spinach, and a Laughing Cow cheese wedge.  Wrap in foil to keep all the goods warm.  Delicious and filling!

3)  Whole wheat toast with PB&J, egg whites, and fruit. 
Okay, so this isn't exactly car-friendly, but it's really tasty for those mornings when I have a little extra time.  Toast some whole wheat bread and spread with PB&J (helloooo, yum!).  Spray a microwave-safe cup with cooking spray, and crack egg whites into it.  Season with salt and pepper, cover with a damp paper towel, and microwave on high for 30 second increments until you have a nice little egg white patty.  Add some fruit (these are delicious blood oranges, in season from our local farmers' market!) and coffee, and there's your delicious and healthy breakfast.

4)  Oatmeal!

Again, not car friendly, but this is easy to make at work.  I like to mix old fashioned oats, almond milk, a scoop of protein powder, cinnamon/nutmeg/pumpkin pie spices, and sliced fruit (banana is my favorite!) all together, and microwave for a minute and a half.  I like my oats slightly chewy, so I add more milk after it's done cooking if it needs to be thinned out.  The fruit "melts" and gets incredibly gooey and delicious.  I top it off with a spoonful of natural nut butter and stir it in until it melts.  Almond butter can't be beat.  It's SO good and keeps me full for hours!

5)  Muffins.

Very car friendly!  I like to make my own (using whole wheat flour, less sugar, Greek yogurt, egg whites, fruit puree—anything to cut out the butter and other unnecessary gunk!), cut them in half, and spread with nut butter in between to make a little muffin sandwich.  (Can you tell I like nut butters? :) )  Find one of my favorite muffin recipes here.

6)  Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. 
Yes, you heard me right :)  I love these for breakfast because they're portable, and you can easily healthify them with whole grain bread, natural nut butter, and no-sugar-added natural preserves.  Add a piece of fruit on the side and you're good to go!

When all else fails, don't skip breakfast.  It is worth the time and effort to prepare something the night before (which I usually do) or take 15 extra minutes in the morning on your way out the door.  There are so many places to stop and grab something quick on the way.  Try an English muffin, egg & cheese sandwich, fruit & yogurt parfait (or make your own!), or natural granola bars (I love Nature Valley and Larabars!).  Order a skim milk latte instead of coffee for the extra protein and calcium.  You can always find healthy options out there, so stop making excuses.  Give your body the nutrition it needs to keep you going the rest of the day!

Thanks for reading!  I hope this inspires you to create your own fun, healthy, easy breakfasts.

OK, now I'm hungry! My favorite on-the-go breakfast? Oatmeal in a mug, or an almond butter/banana sandwich. Love them both so much I could eat a double dose right now. Instead, I will put together that foam roller workout I promised you. Check in tomorrow to see what I come up with!

Question: What's your go-to on-the-go breakfast?

1 comment:

Joanne said...

Great post. I love PB and NEVER, EVER skip breakfast. I'm always hungry in the morning.
Those muffins...ah! to die for.

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