Thursday, June 2, 2011

My Best Breakfast (shake)

Anyone familiar with Eben Pagan's "Wake Up Productive" knows that he recommends morning rituals as a great way to get yourself into the mode of functioning at your peak for the day. Two of his best pieces of advice when it comes to the morning ritual are to drink water and to have a power breakfast that works for you.

Well, I got into the habit of doing both. Actually, by pure coincidence, Eben mentions a breakfast shake made with berries and protein powder. This is something I started doing a long time ago, as it's a great day-after-your-workout breakfast that contains a lot of protein and plenty of energy to get you started first thing in the morning.

Before I get into that, I will give him props for the water recommendation. He suggests gulping down a half litre of water (that's one bottle) as soon as you get up. Now, a lot of people cringe at that idea, but think about it: you just spent eight hours without a drop of water. Do you really think you're not at least a little bit dehydrated?

Now think about this: If you've ever smoked (and I know whereof I speak on this one), the first puff of a cigarette is like going through hell. But we stick with it until we're good and addicted, right? Even though we know it's bad for us, right? Of course. So why is it that chugging back a little water first thing in the morning is so repulsive? Yes, you'll feel a bit oogy the first few times you do it, but is that really a reason to give up? You know it's good for you, right?

So why stick with the bad thing until you get used to it, but you let the good thing go? We humans are stupid sometimes. But I'll tell you from experience, once you get past the honeymoon phase that first big drink of water in the morning will make you feel like a million bucks!

OK...on to the best breakfast shake EVER!

I start by buying equal-sized bags of ground flax seed, oat bran and wheat germ. This is my "grain blend." Mix them all up together in a giant Ziplock bag and keep it in the fridge.

Now, the actual recipe. Use a quarter to half cup of frozen berries (real accurate measurements here, folks). Top with a tablespoon of that grain blend. Pour in about 200 ml each of milk and unsweetened almond milk (adds fibre and flavour without adding sugar!). Top with a serving of your favourite protein powder (for this, I prefer vanilla or orange...chocolate with berries just tastes weird to me. Some brands also carry strawberry). Blend the bejeezus out of it until it's smooth, and there you have it: one perfect breakfast for the active male.

You can play with this a bit too. I like the frozen berries because they thicken the shake quite a bit. I use a hand blender to do this in a cup, but of course you can use a blender. I just like this setup because it's a single serving, and you drink it right from the thing you mix it in.

You know, us guys and dishes. If I could eat my pork chops right out of the frying pan without burning my lap when I sit in front of the TV I would!



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