Usually when I meet with someone and start talking diet, we get to the first step pretty quickly. All of us need to add a little more protein to our diets and start eating something within an hour of waking up. The simplest way to do this in a “baby step” manner is to find a protein powder or SHAKE that you enjoy.
Now, let’s define “shake” and “enjoy”!
I’m not going to pretend or try to convince you that this shake is going to something you will look forward to or rub your tummy after. And I am not saying that it’s time to invest in an expensive mixer and start buying frozen fruit. A “shake” for the purpose of this baby step and this post is a good quality protein powder of your choice mixed or shaken with water, milk, or a non-dairy beverage. Most of them seem chalky at first, leave you wanting to add more fruit and milk to (ie. more sugar!!!) or just taste downright awful. The challenge is to find one that you can take down somewhat enjoyable because at the end of the day (or the beginning in this context), you need a quick, healthy option for getting your body in check first thing so that you avoid crashing into lunch and devouring everything site!
WHY add a shake?
1. Jumpstart your Metabolism in the morning & stabilize your blood sugar during the day.
2. Build lean muscle and provide your muscles energy to use in activities & exercise.
3. Hold you over to the next meal or snack without feeling deprived or hitting a sugar low and over indulging.
Your choices are growing, if you eat dairy then Whey protein is fantastic and a good clean form (found at whole foods or a natural food store) will have all the amino acids you need to make a complete protein with minimal processing and added sugars. There are endless options out there so find one that you like the taste of but also try to keep the sugars to a minimum (<30g/serving).
If you are dairy free, there are several options from soy based to Hemp. I use a plant based protein powder called Synchro Genesis most of the time but also enjoy Vega. Both have added benefits of vitamins, minerals, probiotics, and maca (I will break the needed “supplements” down another day).
How to use it.
Mix the powder with water, milk, or almond milk and shake it up! Drink it first thing in the morning and then start doing what you do. Baby steps are all about that, just add one little new thing or take away one little addiction at a time. We are focusing on adding a shake in the morning and if you like it or find it easier, have one after an intense workout. This should replace your bigger/later breakfast if you tend to wait too long to eat in the morning and load up on carbs later. If you are a healthy breakfast eater, have your shake mid-day and stay away from the loaded up mocha-java or heavy snack before workouts.
How I use my shake: I use my Synchro shake first thing in the morning on days when my kids wake up early, time is flying by and I am not going to be able to cook eggs or a healthy breakfast to enjoy. I keep some in the car and have a shake if I am out playing with the kids, between meetings, and always after I teach a cycling class. HOWEVER, I do not drink my shake then go eat a large meal right after! I drink it to replenish and recover and add more protein to my diet. The protein keeps me feeling satisfied long enough to get to where I am going, take care of others, cook a nice healthy light meal and not feel like I am starving after. It helps to slowly control your portion sizes and add a smaller meal into the day without the need to prepare anything extra or add hassle to your already busy life!
DISCOUNT ALERT! Synchro has offered my readers a 25% discount on their shake, it is made in LA and delivered to you. Enjoy with the promo code “10packprotein” or get 15% off the 5 pack.
Shake it up with a baby step #1 until I write again with step 2! And come to my class🙂