Starting the day off by eating something heavy or bad can set the tone for the entire day. It can make you feel sluggish or badly about yourself and encourage more poor eating and the “screw it” mentality to set in. This is something that happens a lot easier in the winter months. Its cold in the mornings, and the motivation can be lacking to eat something healthy and go to the gym when its still pitch black out. However I use the winter months as an extra little push to force myself to go to the gym as early as possible.
I say to myself, am I really going to want to go at night when it’s dark and cold and rainy? Probably not. I’m going to want to curl up and watch Netflix. It’s reality. So I make sure to wake up at 5:50 am every second day and do my resistance training. Not because I’m cruel and hate myself, but because I then free myself for a much more realaxing and warm evening.
Now let’s talk about breakfast. I know I am the opposite of what a lot of people tend to think, but I believe a cold winter breakfast of something atrociously healthy is the best way to start the day off right. Let’s be real here, when you get home and it’s a cold day, you often feel like something warm and cooked which is usually something heavy. These dishes tend to be less healthy, even if they are of the vegan variety. I like to make myself a raw smoothie protein bowl in the winter months for two reasons.
- Produce is less fresh and the best way to get it in the winter is often in frozen form
- Starting the day with a green energy boost makes me feel amazing and makes sure that at least one of my meals is packed full of veggies and fruits
The type of smoothies I have been enjoying lately:
Green Smoothie Recipe: adapted from the book Vegan Everyday: 500 Delicious Recipes by Douglas Mcnish.
2 Cups black dinosaur kale frozen
1/2 almond milk
1/2 scoop vegan protein (vanilla preferably but I bought chocolate recently because it was on sale)
1/4 frozen organic mango
1 whole frozen banana
Add small amounts of water if it doesn’t budge in the blender. I like to make my smoothies extremely thick, so that when I sprinkle to toppings on they actually sit on top of the smoothie, not sink to the bottom like the titanic.
Toppings I love:
Terra Breads small batch granola (but only a small handful, this stuff can get pretty sugary)
Cashews or pecans.
Those are just my favorite but honestly you could toss whatever you wanted on there, any fruit cut up, chia seeds, flax seeds, and any nut really. Customize to what you prefer.
Second Smoothie of choice:
Gym rat Smoothie: adapted from Oh She Glows the cookbook written by Angela Liddon
1/2 cup almond milk
2 tbsp. gluten free rolled oats
2-3 medjool dates
1 tbsp. chia seeds
1 tablespoon almond butter
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 vanilla extract
2 heaping handfuls of spinach
4-5 ice cubes.
I tend to make this one when I just need that extra boost of energy for on the go and really want something filling. I often toss 2 handfuls of spinach in here as well for something more nutritious.
The best advice I have is challenge yourself. Tell yourself yea it is a lot harder in the winter months, it’s colder and wetter out, it’ll be freezing in your car and its dark out. I then tell myself If you can go everyday in the mornings, you can accomplish anything today.
I hope this helps,
Until next time!
Feature Image: http://runtosucceed.com/running-tips-staying-motivated-run-winter-run-succeed/