Lots and lots of fitness happened this weekend. Friday night, I continued my standing long run date with my friend J. My pre-run snack consisted of a gifted fruit leather, and my post-run smoothie was pretty freakin’ amazing. Saturday morning, I kept the fitness momentum rolling by going to a double header of classes at the gym: spin and Body Pump (basically a barbell lifting class). Yeah I know, I’m a psycho.
One of my coworkers, whose house I would head for if a zombie apocalypse were to happen (he and his wife grow their own food, make amazing, crunchy treats and are overall stellar people) gave me homemade raspberry fruit leather (!!!!!!) to fuel my run. According to him, you juice and de-seed the raspberries, spread them out on parchment paper and stick them in a dehydrator. Once my kitchen is bigger than a thimble, I will definitely be purchasing a dehydrator and making these. Fantastic.
Now for the fun part: what to wear for my run? It was low 40’s (and dropping) and windy as HELL. Like, you feel like you’re going to get blown away. I felt like I was home in WNY (where the wind in the winter feels like your face may freeze off, and it’s generally coupled with tons of snow. There was no snow but the feeling was generally the same). I suited up in running tights, wool socks, a long sleeve running shirt and a vest. Ear warmers and gloves were a must. Both J and I were kind of driving the struggle bus on Friday, it was a tough run. It was our first one in a few weeks, and my first “real” run back from my half marathon (which was almost a month ago, ooops!). We got our usual stellar views of Boston, this time from the Cambridge side of the river.
We cut our run shorter than normal, only about 7ish miles or so. It was tough (and especially obnoxious that it felt like no matter what direction we turned, we were always running into the wind!). Now that it gets dark early (thanks, daylight savings) and it was especially chilly, it was difficult to get motivated. Which is why having a running buddy to go with is prime, because it’s not like you’re going to bail out on your friend. I’m not ashamed to admit that there is noooo way I would have been motivated to go 7 miles by myself – I am eternally grateful to have to J there to motivate me! 😀
When I got home I adapted M’s Spooky Smoothie recipe to create LITERALLY the best post-workout smoothie I’ve ever had. It was simple but packed with some delicious stuff:
L’s New Post-Workout Smoothie
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 cup mixed berries
- 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin
- 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1 scoop chocolate protein powder
- 1 Tbsp flax seeds
- 1 Tbsp almond butter
- Several shakes of cinnamon and cloves
Throw all your ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Add additional almond milk to achieve your desired consistency (you may need a bunch more almond milk if you like your smoothies more juice-like). Tip: If you’re using a NutriBullet or Ninja, don’t put your protein powder at the bottom but scoop it on top of your fruit. It mixes better that way and doesn’t get stuck to the walls as easily (this tip comes from personal experience). 😉
This smoothie is STELLAR. Obviously, I stole the basic recipe from my gym buddy M, but added frozen mixed berries in place of bluebs, and skipped the spinach (I had spinach salads almost every day last week for lunch, by Friday I was pretty spinach-ed out). Adding the cinnamon and cloves gives it a little punch and adds a dimension to the flavor. As you can probably tell from my posts, I like smoothies A LOT, and so any minor tweak that pops the flavor up a notch is always great. The flax seeds add a nice dose of omega’s and fiber, and the almond butter gives it a little fat so you stay full longer and your body can scoop up all of those nice fat-soluble vitamins in there. Mmmm! I made the exact same smoothie twice this past weekend, once on Friday and a second time after my Saturday morning workout.
Time for a humble brag. All of my overnight oats lovers out there have been letting me know that all of the fresh berries are slowing disappearing from the grocery store, and I had a Eureka moment to solve their O.O. woes: duh, use tropical fruits! There are a bunch that will be in season over the winter (bananas are always around, plus mango, pomegranates, kiwi, etc…), and my local grocery store had kiwis and pomegranates on sale this past week, so I’ve been watching them ripen all week with big weekend plans for them.
The tropical oats had sliced banana (sprinkled with chia seeds), kiwi, pomegranate seeds and coconut flakes. All in all, it was pretty simple but the tropical flavor was bright and fun. It was a welcome change to the berry-centric variations of O.O. that I’ve been making recently, and I highly recommend you guys get in on it. I prepped my fruits for this week by slicing them into bite-sized pieces (/undergoing the painful process of removing pomegranate seeds from the pomegranate) and put them in airtight containers in the refrigerator so that assembling the oats the night before is a breeze.
At the gym, I hit up my spin and body pump classes. It’s not always fun when my alarm goes off early on Saturday morning when I’d rather just laze around and sleep in, but it’s always worth it. It’s not like you ever regret going to the gym to get your sweat on before the rest of the East Coast has their first cup of coffee.
Real talk: Body pump was HARD. My legs were shaking and I got the cold sweats because my body was getting so tired. But I drank water, focused on my breathing and pushed through. When I got home I rewarded myself with another one of the smoothies I shared above. Ah-freakin-MAZING.
I hope you guys had a great weekend! I can’t wait for you to try this smoothie recipe out and let me know what you think. 😀
Happy runs and happy workouts this week! 😛