Pumped-Up Summer Yogurt

Well I wrote this post earlier so a few things have changed……..Like the Madison Marathon has been cancelled so now we’re doing the Med City Marathon! I’m doing the full and Elysia is still doing the half so we’ll let you know how it goes! We did the half last year and enjoyed it and are looking forward to running together again. Unfortunately we won’t get to go to the Green Owl Cafe (which I talk about further down) but we’ll get there next time we go to Madison!

Guess what’s coming up in two days! The Madison Marathon! Yep. It’s time again for another 26.2 for me and 13.1 for Elysia. This is marathon 4 for me and I’m as apprehensive as ever going into it because I’ve lately been having some knee issues so I’m pretty nervous that it will take me out of the race early-on. I’m going to use Rock Tape to increase circulation to the area to helpfully provide relief and get me through! I’ve also been icing and biking, trying to give it a little extra help. It’s actually the back of my knee that hurts so I’m not entirely sure what it is from so if any of you know, tell me! Because of this, I have no time goal going into the marathon; my only goal is to finish, unless that means injuring myself further.

I’ve heard good things about the Madison Marathon and Elysia and I will be sure to report back our thoughts on the race itself and on how we each did, just like we did with Omaha and Mankato. Have any of you or anyone you know run Madison?

While there, we hope to check out the Green Owl Café as well, because it’s an all-vegetarian restaurant and you know we like to eat! Unfortunately they’ll only be open until 2 that day, but hopefully we can make it. Does anyone else have any suggestions of places that we can go while there? We’ve been there several times but have yet to really try anything.

With the marathon coming up, I’ve been trying to hydrate like crazy and eat things that will prepare my body for the endurance that it will need on Sunday. Other than drinking a lot of fluid, you can also hydrate by eating foods with a higher water ratio. Because of this, and because it’s delicious, I bought a watermelon the other day at a local co-op to snack on. Not only does watermelon provide hydration, it also contains lycopene (the popular carotenoid famous in tomatoes), aka cancer-fighting antioxidant properties. It’s great for fighting inflammation too!

While watermelon is delicious on its own, I decided to amp up the flavor of my morning yogurt with this treat. Combing the yogurt with tofu, watermelon and protein powder gave me a great start to my day, along with the addition of chia seeds. For this recipe I used Vanilla Sunwarrior Warrior Blend Protein Powder as I’ve found that I enjoy it the most out of powders I’ve tried.

Powered-Up Summer Yogurt
[Serves 1]

  • 154 grams Watermelon (a little over 1 cup)
  • 3 oz./one serving Mori-Nu Silken Lite Tofu
  • ½ cup Unsweetened Plain Soy Yogurt (or your favorite alternative)
  • 1.5 Tbsp. Chia Seeds
  • ½ tsp. Vanilla Powder, Paste or extract
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt
  • Splash of orange juice or lemon juice (or to taste/optional)
  • ½ banana, frozen (optional)
  • ½ scoop Vanilla Protein Powder
  • Stevia, to taste (I didn’t use much but it depends on how sweet your watermelon is)

– Combine ingredients up to the banana (not including it) in a food processor and blend until smooth (the chia seeds did not blend but it created a tapioca-like effect). Let sit for a couple of hours or overnight for a thicker texture. I left mine in my food processor and put it in the fridge overnight.

– Right before you eat it, blend in the banana and protein powder and add sweetener, if desired.

– Stir in more chopped banana or some Ezekiel Flax Cereal for added texture and taste!

Do you have any Spring marathons or events planned?


Refreshingly Green Breakfast Smoothie

During the first week of the detox, we were only supposed to eat healthy smoothies or freshly-juiced fruits and vegetables for breakfast. I ended up continuing that habit into week two and will probably keep it up. I feel better starting the day off this way rather than having a breakfast bake or oatmeal. This isn’t to say I won’t ever have them for breakfast again (they’re too delicious not to make them!), but for right now smoothies and juicing are working for me.

One thing that is lacking in juicing is protein so I have been adding a scoop of protein powder to them as well. We have recently started using Sunwarrior Protein and enjoy it. They have come out with a new formula that combines pea, cranberry and hemp proteins, which I haven’t tried yet, but Elysia has and says it’s delicious. Other types of protein powder I have used include Arbonne Essentials Chocolate Protein, Nutribiotic Rice Protein, Trader Joe’s Soy Protein and Trader Joe’s Hemp Protein and Vega Whole Food Health Optimizer.  Here’s what I think of them:

– Arbonne’s protein powder is delicious but has 9 grams of sugar and is a bit spendy for me, so I haven’t bought another container of it.  I would probably get it again if I found a discount for it though ;).
– Nutribiotic is a bit chalkier than we prefer, but not horribly detectable in smoothies.
– Trader Joe’s Soy Protein Powder dissolves really well but also has a pretty strong flavor so if you want the other flavors in your smoothie to show through, I wouldn’t recommend it.
– Trader Joe’s Hemp Protein (and some other hemp proteins I have tried) is pretty ‘green’-tasting so I only add a little of it if I do.
– Vega is also sort of green-tasting but not too bad. It’s definitely unsweetened.

You can get single-serving packets of Nutribiotic, Vega and other powders at a lot of co-ops so it’s easy to try several to see which you prefer.

Another optional addition to the below smoothie is Spirulina Powder. It’s a good source of Iron, protein and has other nutritional benefits as well. You may want to start with a small amount and add up to a teaspoon into your smoothie as it has a pretty strong flavor.

Refreshingly Green Breakfast Smoothie
[Serves 1-2]

  • 2 leaves Kale, stems removed
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1.5 cups chopped Mango
  • 1.5 cups chopped Pineapple
  • 1 tsp. – 1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger (to taste)
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Flax
  • 1 tsp. Spirulina Powder, optional
  • 1-2 scoops protein powder, optional

– Blend all ingredients together in a blender until smooth.

– Tip: if you do not have a high-powered blender, blending the kale with the water first sometimes helps to create a smoother texture.

Do you use protein powder? Which is your favorite?