Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? Depends on who you ask.
Some studies have shown that breakfast is a must for children, and some experts say it’s important for kids and as part of a weight loss program. But there are also some with their own theories on the merits of skipping breakfast.
Who should you believe?
The truth is, the answer to this question may very well vary among us grownups. Some need to fuel immediately after waking. While some may actually feel nauseous to eat first thing in the morning and can stomach a cup of coffee, at best. As for me, I like to wait about an hour after waking up before having breakfast, and I have no problem doing a short intense workout on an empty stomach.
Overall, I recommend eating something in the morning, even if it’s a snack a couple hours after you wake up. This is especially important if you are in the midst of training for a running or obstacle race event.
This may be tough because most of the time we wake up just in time to do the bare minimum to be ready for the day. So you may need some quick breakfast ideas.
Here are a few based on your goals.
Weight Loss/Making Weight
These meals are all good low-carb and calorie-friendly options with protein, fruit and/or veggies, and healthy fats. The two ideas below were ones inspired from Cynthia Sass’ S.A.S.S. Yourself Slim: Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds, and Lose Inches, originally published as Cinch!.
6 oz. non-fat Greek yogurt
1 c berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, and/or strawberries)
1-2 T hemp seed hearts or almonds
You can either mix the above together or layer them to form a yogurt parfait. This can double as a good snack anytime during the day.
1 c baby kale or spinach
1-2 tsp Olive oil
1 c berries
*Sometimes I like to try to get vegetables included in breakfast as a head start in meeting my veggies-for-the-day quota.
You may be thinking that if a breakfast requires use of a pan and olive oil, it’s too time consuming to prepare! Although this breakfast option will take a few more minutes to prepare than than the power yogurt option, you shouldn’t have to spend more than 5 minutes preparing the scramble.
Let pan heat with olive oil. Cook eggs and spinach/kale (I usually heat the greens first). Serve with a side of 1 cup of berries.
General Fitness/Maintain Weight
If you like the breakfast options above, you can continue having them or variations of them for your first meal of the day. But if you like your carbs, and you’re not pursuing any weight loss goals, you can also add a serving of starch or grains like a slice of bread or a serving of cereal/oatmeal.
1 serving Oatmeal or 1 c cheerios
1 c unsweetened almond milk
1 c fruit (suggestion: banana and/or strawberries over oatmeal or cheerios)
1 hard-boiled egg
Yes, boiling an egg can take some time. My suggestion is get it started when you wake up and as soon as you’re done getting ready, your source of protein should be ready. Have with oatmeal/cheerios.
Egg scramble or omelette with toast
1 c spinach and/or mushrooms Spinach/mushroom omelette
1-2 tsp olive oil
1 sl toast
1 T sugar-free preserves
This is similar to the egg scramble above, you’re just adding a slice of toast with preserves.
If you can work out first thing on an empty stomach, then be sure not to skimp on carbs for your first meal of the day!
If you have a small frame or are new to training, one serving of starch/grains may be enough for you as part of a post-workout breakfast meal.
But if you’re an athlete, you may need an additional serving of starches/grains. The ideas below include two servings.
1 Morning Round
1 T PB or almond butter (optional)
½ banana or 1 c other fruit
1 hard-boiled egg
Morning rounds have become a new favorite food of mine to include in a post-workout snack. You can pick them up at Whole Foods or buy them online. I like to have with almond butter and piece of fruit. Sometimes that’s enough for a post-workout snack. But if it’s breakfast time, I’ll have some fruit and a hard-boiled egg as well.
1-2 tsp Olivio
1 sl Low-fat cheese
0.5 – 1 T olive oil mayo
Lettuce & tomato slices (optional)
2 sl toast
1 c fruit
Fry or scramble egg in 1-2 tsp olivio as bread toasts. Make a sandwich with low-fat cheese and 1 T mayo made from olive oil. Other optional add-ons: mustard, ketchup, tomatoes, lettuce. Serve with 1 cup or 1 piece of fruit.
What’s your favorite healthy breakfast?
© 2009-2015 Melissa Rodriguez
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