Friends! Let’s talk about protein. VEGANS CAN GET ENOUGH PROTEIN. That debate is tired, and not what I’m going to discuss. I am going to talk about individual protein needs.
I am a Crossfit-er. Have I mentioned that? Probably. Although I definitely do not talk about Crossfit as much as I once did, it comes up a fair amount in my day to day, and I am happy to tell people all about why I like it, or how great my trainers are. Crossfit folk LOVE protein. No joke, they want to lay in bed and snuggle it up. I literally never thought about protein before starting Crossfit, and now here I am making a protein pudding. That should tell you something.
Last summer I did a food challenge that was very focused on getting protein and keeping carbohydrates low. I documented it in intensely boring, possibly disordered detail, and was constantly analyzing how I felt. At the end of the 30 days, I was happy with my accomplishment, I had some good results in terms of digestion, and my skin was super clear. But with my carbohydrate level so low, I got– what’s the word?– Oh. Right. I got ANGRY. Like really, very irritable.
After all the documentation and meal planning and discussion of that month I was seriously over it. I finished my protein powder and didn’t buy more. I swung the other way and flirted with low protein, high carbohydrate veganism, and got grumpy with that, too.
Then, miracle of miracles, I had a realization. When I restrict any macronutrient, it is ridiculous. There is no medical reason for me to eat low carbohydrate OR low protein. I am great at realizing when my body needs more of one or the other, and I don’t need a food diary or a template to tell me a damn thing. BOOM. Problem solved.
Protein powder has come back into my life. I am incredibly picky about which powder I use, because do I want chemical synthetic sweeteners or animal products or any other BS in my smoothie? No, no I do not. Do I want some raw vegan powder that tastes like butt and chalk? No, I don’t want that either.
In my mind, literally the only protein powder worth hollering at is Vega. It is made of sprouted ancient grains, it has probiotics, its stevia sweetened, it has BCAA’s (the building blocks of muscle, or as I like to call them, the awesome little dudes that fight soreness) and it tastes excellent. When I’m lifting a lot of weights, my body absolutely CRAVES it. This pudding uses it as a base, and adds peanut butter, almond milk, and chia seeds. Because the protein powder is perfect tasting on it’s own, you don’t need another sweetener. It is PERFECT post work out, especially when chilled. Eat it up!
|Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pudding|| |
- 2 Cups Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
- ¼ Cup Chia Seeds
- 1 Scoop Vega Sport Chocolate Protein Powder
- 2 Tablespoons Natural Peanut Butter
- Soak Chia Seeds in almond milk for 30 minutes-24 hours. The longer the better! When you add seeds to the milk shake them up. Let them sit for about 15 minutes and shake again. Repeat until they seem to be evenly distributing on their own. (You don't want them all chilling on the bottom of the jar! They wont soak as well)
- Pour Chia Seed mixture and all other ingredients into a high speed blender (Seriously, you need a high speed blender like a Vitamix or Blendtec. This pudding is very light and fluffy and won't be nearly as awesome in a regular blender.)
- Blend on high for 30 seconds-1 minute, until pudding looks like, well, pudding.
- Chill in fridge for a few hours- overnight. Garnish with peanuts or sliced strawberries if you wish!
Yet another exciting round up of wonderful links for all my readers!
So. Salad. Once, I was listening to a No Meat Athlete podcast, and the host (Matt Frazier) said that he does his best to eat a smoothie for one meal and a salad for another on a daily basis. His third meal tends to be a wild card, but he feels that no matter what, with that template, his day is at least 2/3 healthy and super nutrient dense. During the winter, that doesn’t really work for me, but Summer comes early in California and that has pretty much been my jam for the last few months. It feels good!
Despite knowing that salads can totally be entire meals before, I am JUST now figuring out how to execute these entrees with confidence. This guide to salad makin’ takes all the guess work out of the process and it is a perfect how-to for meal salad newbies. Check it out!
There is a woman at my gym who is a very sweet human being, but every time I see her she talks about my body. “You look thinner every time I see you!” she says, glowing with a deep pride in my “accomplishment”. Holy SHIT does it skeeve me out. I am in no way trying to lose weight. I tell her this every time and she says “NO way! I see you working your ass off in here.”
What comes over me in this moment is distinctly shame. Because I am horrified to think that someone would watch me work my ass off in the gym, and assume it was to grow smaller. I am horrified that this woman would consider my “before” body unacceptable, and my “new” body more palatable. I feel shame knowing that in this process of “complimenting” me, she is also subtly putting herself down, as I’ve heard her discuss her own struggles with weight. I think of the way that she must have been shamed about her body, and how the experience has the potential to pass through her and transfer on to me and then I say (to myself) “WOAH WOAH WOAH. Not into that shit.” I smile and say “I work out to be a bad ass, not to be small” and then I move on. Don’t got time for that body shame.
(This sort of instance is actually not on this list! But many other sorts of things are. READ EVERY ONE OF THESE and for goodness sakes, don’t get caught accidentally body shaming. You’re good, you mean well, this article will help you.)
Wow. This article is pret-ty incredible. It intersects queerness and queer acceptance to fatness and fat acceptance. It made me think a lot about liberation in general, how far we have come, how far there is to go, how much I still have to learn. I can’t say I necessarily agreed with the blanketed way some of the theses were stated, but I at least considered them heavily. This article made me think deeply about health and who defines it and what it means. Worth a look!
Gena Hamshaw is a hero of mine. Her blog, Choosing Raw, provides simple and beautiful recipes that are easy enough to make on a regular basis. She has a wonderful blogger voice, and I relate to her experience with her eating disorder, her body image, and her recovery SO MUCH. This link is not to Choosing Raw, but instead to a podcast that Gena was a guest on. In the interview she discusses having a type A personality, the beauty and seduction of raw food, perfectionism, and so much more. I like her even more hearing her speak! This is an extremely worthwhile listen for a little enthusiasm bump.
Joanna Quigley is one of my very favorite artists. Her work is quirky, adorable, happy, and just straight up FUN. She recently opened up an Etsy shop, where her prints are available for a ridiculously low price. Jump on it!
As A bonus:
My good friend Josey (former guest poster!) is conducting a short survey for a research project she is doing. The project is called “Intimate Partner Violence and Empowerment: The Mediating Effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Symptom Severity and Embodiment”.
She is interested in learning about the relationship between different kinds of exercise (aerobic exercise like jogging or cycling vs. empowerment-oriented exercise like strength-training and martial arts), women’s sense of connectedness with their bodies, their sense of being empowered and their mental health. She wants to explore the answers to these questions with groups of women who have previously experienced partner abuse or dating violence.
Please consider participating in this brief survey if:
- You identify as a woman
- You are 18 years of age or older
- You live in Canada or the United States
- At some point in your life you have experienced partner abuse or dating violence
Click on this link to take part in this short survey:
AND ONE MORE THING:
I just made a new Facebook page for Super Strength Health. If you feel so inclined, please go and like it! It would make my day.
Have a lovely weekend!
I love seeing what other people eat. It’s incredibly pleasurable to see someone’s day all laid out in food and hear their thought processes and associations around their meals. It took me a long LONG time to be able to love looking at my own food, But today I am so happy about my choices. To me, they feel balanced, intuitive, delicious, and made with pure love. I am so lucky to have transcended my eating disorder to arrive at this place with food. I never take it for granted for a second.
I want to share my food with you. Not to brag, not to make you think you should somehow be eating what I am eating, but just to give you a little slice of my life. I am sure this wasn’t every morsel that went into my mouth this day, but it is a documentation of the things I wanted to share.
Breakfast on this day started with pie.
I have never done this before! I am totally a green smoothie type of babe, but as I was pulling out my kale and my bananas I kept nibbling at my leftover strawberry apple crisp. I wanted it, but somehow felt that I shouldn’t have it.
“Why don’t you feel like you should have it?” I asked myself.
“Because it is dessert” I answered.
“But there’s nothing in it that is unhealthy, nothing in it that would be bad to start a day with”
I looked deeply at my pie, and I realized that any time I am thinking I “should” or “should not” eat something based purely on what it is (not how it will make me feel) than that’s leftover eating disorder voice. Fuck that voice! I ate my pie.
After a session with a client and a walk to the grocery store I had worked up quite a lunch appetite. What followed was a gigantic salad (romaine, cauliflower, red cabbage, snap peas, cucumber, smoked tofu, nutritional yeast, baba ghanoug, salsa and a crumble of Tastymakes salt and vinegar crackers and tortilla chips.) My special dudefriend happened to be making a green smoothie, and tossed me the leftovers like the sweetheart he is. It was INCREDIBLE and when I said “WHY IS THIS SO GOOD?!” he smiled and said “the secret ingredient is coffee!”. Go figure.
Another client meeting and some hours later I was starting to feel cranky. This is almost always a reliable sign that I am hungry, and since it was not quite dinner time I made myself some homemade almond milk, a scoop of Tropical Tango Vega Energizing Smoothie, and a half a banana blender mix. It hit the spot.
In the past, I have been an “eat-the-exact-same-thing-every-day” type of person. These days, I have been working on tuning into my body more and trying to hear what it tells me I want to eat. I usually work out before dinner, and my body ROARS for food, so preparing a supper ends up being super delightful and intuitive. On this day however, I had taken a rest day. I knew I was hungry, but it wasn’t in that NOW NOW NOW type of way that makes choosing super simple. I honestly meditated for a moment before I chose this strange combo of foods for my meal.
It included red cabbage, avocado, sauerkraut, salsa, nutritional yeast, and Beyond Meat. Do you know about THIS COUPON?! It is for a FREE package of Beyond Meat and is good until May 31. I want to be honest: I don’t know how I feel about my consumption of this product! It has a great nutritional profile in terms of macronutrient ratios (IE tons of protein) but it is much more processed than anything else I enjoy. Truthfully, its delicious and for me, digests quite well. DAMNIT BEYOND MEAT. your tempting processed ways seduced me. also your free-ness.
No day is complete without 85% chocolate dipped in homemade peanut butter. Divine brand is local to me and my absolute favorite.
SO that’s it! I came, I saw, I ate, I conquered. It was a very delicious day.