Breakfast; the most important meal of your day, arguably the best tasting, and…the one that all too often gets forgotten. Kicked to the curb, given the cold shoulder, or (worst of all) traded for a measly cup of coffee. What on earth did breakfast ever do to us to earn such indifference?
I promise that the fanatical passion I have for this meal is backed by valid reasoning; especially when applied to runners. When your alarm sounds in the morning, you’ve most likely been fasting for 8 to 12 hours, meaning that your “engine” is cold and your fuel stores are low. Jenna Bell-Wilson, R.D., a nutrition and exercise instructor at the University of New Mexico says, “Running in the morning without eating something is like driving a car on fumes” (1). If you’ve ever gone on a long run in the morning without breakfast, you know exactly what running on fumes feels like. Pure misery. Breakfast is the necessary key that starts your metabolism, and is also the fuel that empowers daily activity.
There are certainly various types of breakfast that will be appropriate for different people and for different running routines. Running for less than an hour early in the morning? Eat a small, light snack before the run and have a full breakfast later. Running for hours on end later in the day? Be sure to fuel up with something hearty in the morning. In every situation, remember to leave ample time for your snack or meal to digest prior to exercise.
Hearty and Healthy
Inspired by Sally Loo’s Wholesome Café
For some reason, I always have reservations about breakfast sandwiches – maybe it was my bad experience with McDonald’s McMuffins as a young child? Regardless, any doubts I had were completely obliterated when I bit into this sandwich from one of our local cafes. The flavor alone makes the meal a worthy investment of time in the kitchen, but it has much more than taste to offer. The egg, bacon, cheese and bread provide hefty doses of proteins and carbohydrates that fuel your system for a good portion of the day, making this a great choice for either a recovery breakfast or a meal to eat several hours prior to a run.
Light and Lean
Compliments of Jen Stangland, RW Staff
Raspberries are one of those “too-good-to-be-true” foods that taste like candy but are actually good for you. The berries contain high amounts of fiber, vitamin C and manganese, and are rich in antioxidants. As a flavonoid-rich food, they have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, while also assisting with weight management. The raspberries are not the only quality ingredient in this smoothie; yogurt, almonds and almond milk provide necessary protein to keep you going throughout the day. Also, the banana boosts your system with necessary sugars. Last but not least…I give it an A+ on flavor (thank you, raspberries).
The Crowd Pleaser
Compliments of Julianne Taylor, RW Staff
Juli is quite an inspiration here at Running Warehouse. She is always training for the latest marathon, 50K or 50-mile trail race, and is consistently doing quite well in her endeavors. Not only is Juli an avid runner, but she is also a talented cook. Who better to get a great recipe from? This is one of Juli’s breakfasts of choice; it’s relatively simple, nourishing, easy to make for a crowd or a busy week, and it fuels the body with carbohydrates. Throw in your choice of fruit, peanut butter, or protein powder to add extra flavor or sustenance to this dish.