The Kick-Start Morning Routine: Green Smoothie (Blog 3 of 3)

Warning: If you are looking for advice on how to implement a mediation and journaling session into your morning routine before gleefully lacing up your running shoes and skipping out the door for a refreshing 5-mile run before getting ready for work…you probably want to read another blog.  As a self -proclaimed “healthy person” even I have limits, especially first thing in the morning. This is real advice for real people that want to be healthier in a realistic manner.  Being that it is not my intention to overwhelm you, this is a three-part blog with achievable steps to ease you into the morning routine.

Alas we arrive at the final installment of the kick-start morning routine. How did you like the coffee from last week? Did you notice any changes in your cognitive or physical faculties? Keep drinking the Lemon Water 2.0 and Coffee 2.0 every morning!

The last beverage is a green smoothie. This nutrient rich recipe can be adjusted to your tastes (just keep the sugar level low), and gently awakens your digestive system after a nightly fast. With evening prep, it provides an easy on-the-go breakfast.

I love kale so much it was even the theme of our wedding. Flowers by Gather Design. Photo by Sparkfly Photography.

I love kale so much it was even the theme of our wedding. Flowers by Gather Design. Photo by Sparkfly Photography.

When I teach early yoga classes or workout, I drink the smoothie plus eat 1 or 2 hard-boiled eggs (made in a big batch on Sunday) to up my protein and vitamin intake.  If you are still on the egg white train and avoiding egg yolks, please watch this and get back to eating whole eggs!

Here are the smoothie steps:

Week 3: Green Smoothie

The prep work:

1.     Go shopping and stock up on the following:

·      Blender.

·      Any blender will do, but if you are in need of an easy, reasonably priced, on-the-go blender try a NutriBullet or Nutri Ninja.

·      Organic, power greens: kale, spinach, chard, etc.

·      Many stores (Costco, Trader Joes, Whole Foods, etc.) sell ”Power Green” mixes or you can stock up on a variety of greens to mix and match.

·      Buy multiple bags at a time and freeze them to always have on hand… our freezer is stuffed with greens!

·      Organic, frozen berries: blueberries, raspberries, cherries, strawberries, etc.

·      Stick with berries as they tend to be lower in sugar than many fruits.

·      Like the greens, stock up and freeze.

·      Pick 2 -3 supplemental fat, protein, and fiber options. Play around with these to try different flavor combinations.  

·      Almond butter (no sugar added)

·      Avocado

·      Hemp hearts

·      Chia Seeds

·      Flax Seeds (pre-ground if available)

·      If you want to splurge: A high-quality, non-dairy, non-soy, plant-based protein powder like one from Garden of Life or Vega.

·      Almond, coconut, or hemp milk. 

·      Read the ingredients and select a milk without sugar and carrageenan.

Every night:

1. Prep your smoothie by tossing all of the ingredients, except the liquid, in the blender and leave it in the fridge overnight.

·      2 – 3 cups/handfuls of power greens.

·      ½ cup of berries.

·      In the beginning you may add more berries for taste purposes, but overtime reduce the berries to about ½ cup to limit the sugar intake. Yes, while fruit does have many benefits, it is still sugar.

·      2 - 3 of the following:

·      1 (heaping) Tbsp. Almond butter

·      ½ Avocado

·      1 Tbsp. Hemp hearts

·      1 Tbsp. Chia seeds

·      1 Tbsp. Flax seeds

·      1 Scoop Protein powder

Every morning:

1. Get the prepped smoothie out of the fridge and add the liquid.

·      Mix your choice of non-dairy milk and water for a 50/50 split.

·      Amount of liquid varies per blender and how viscous you want your smoothie.

2.     Blend and transfer to a to-go vessel if needed. Enjoy!

·      It may be slightly less tasty than smoothies loaded with sugar, but you will get used to it and your body will thank you for leaving out the sugar!

Now add this smoothie into your morning routine of Lemon Water 2.0 and Coffee 2.0 and stick with it all until this becomes a habit…at least during the week because who doesn’t love weekend brunch?  Cheers to your health!