Protein Smoothies & Super Ingredients

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I have always been more on the active side throughout my life. Dancing, horseback riding, running, going to the gym - the usual. However, my attitude towards working out was that I wasn’t doing it for the sake of working out, but to achieve a goal - like being skinny at that time. I have a half marathon, a 10 k and a few 5k under my belt. Running became boring after a few years; my body was lacking the right nutrients and I came to a point where I realized: Wait a minute. My approach to working out and eating is f’ed up. Literally.

I made a move into a completely different direction, something completely out of my comfort zone at first: CrossFit. Lifting. Ever since, my perspective on nutrition and the whole working out process - my purpose - have changed.

That was roughly 2 and a half years ago. I have gotten more conscious about what I put in my body. It’s not a diet, it’s a complete lifestyle change, and that is, in my opinion, a significant difference, as with this comes good sleep, a balanced eating routine, and active lifestyle. This is all adding to my overall well-being.

Now, why am I writing this blurb?

Well, fact is: If you are serious about working out (and even if you run - no offense at all, it just got boring for me), then you need to re-evalute the perspective you have on food in general. In order to get better, faster, stronger, we need to eat. More actually than if we weren’t active. It’s so simple, but it took me a long time to realize that and start putting this into practice.

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Nutrition is our fuel, the fuel our bodies need in order to get better. If you starve yourself or live off zero nutritious food, your body will resign. No gains whatsoever.

After starting CrossFit two and a half years ago, I switched to powerlifting roughly 3 months ago - and this is when I realized how much good food my body actually needs in order to move heavy weight. Our barbell coach Sal hit the nail on the head with his recent statement: “Eat to perform”. And he is right.

Having said that, foods with a lot of protein have been essential for muscle growth. I know I am not managing to eat enough protein, so I started fixing my own shakes (convenience of having a blender at home). I throw in some organic protein powder, once or twice a day, as well as fruit, coconut milk, kale and whatever else I think might go well together, and voilà! 

In addition, there are a lot of “superfoods” out there that are boosting your shake and ultimately your system. 

To bring your shake to the next level, add some super foods:

  • organic protein powder (pea protein as non-dairy alternative to whey)
  • spinach/kale
  • almond butter/PB
  • MCT Oils (coconut oil)
  • chia seeds
  • cold brew
  • coconut/almond (protein) milk
  • maca powder
  • honey

But there’s more “fancy” ones out there such as…

  • aloe vera
  • spirulina
  • hemp seeds
  • goji berries

…which, honestly, I have yet to try. 

Below you find a few of my personal protein smoothie recipes (and depending on what I have available, I throw in one or more of the above mentioned “super ingredients”):

PBC Power (Peanut Butter Cinnamon Power)

  • crushed ice
  • natural PB or almond butter (or PB powder)
  • one (half) banana
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla pea protein
  • almond milk (chocolate flavor)
  • OR cold brew instead of almond milk

Vitamin Fix

  • crushed ice
  • half an apple
  • half a banana
  • handful (frozen) raspberries
  • small handful spinach
  • coconut milk
  • vanilla pea protein

Berry Delight

  • crushed ice
  • handful (frozen) blueberries
  • handful (frozen) strawberries
  • handful (frozen) raspberries
  • chia seeds
  • vanilla pea protein
  • coconut milk

Let me know what works for you - and keep on mixin’. Do you have a favorite homemade protein shake?

Be well.