Without question, my pre-run breakfast staple is Cabot 2% Greek Yogurt. When combined with the right ingredients it’s purely delicious, nutritious, light, and lean. For additional taste and texture, don’t forget to add the proper fixings… honey, cinnamon, and granola. Although old-fashioned spoons are welcome, use your favorite stroopwaffle variety to dive right into a world of probiotic divinity that will have your gut humming like a finely tuned race car engine.
Make no mistake; I love to run and I love to eat. For running to remain sharp, food and activity must be symbiotic. All of my favorite foods exhibit an outstanding nutritional value, a guilt-free consumption factor, and a feather light impact on the gut. When it comes to these criteria, Greek Yogurt tops the list.
Let’s begin by stating that Greek Yogurt delivers on all of your essential macronutrients: fats, carbs, and proteins. Carbohydrates are the high octane fuel that is critical to rapid leg speed and swift running. Fats deliver sustained energy to working muscles for running prolonged distance. Proteins serve to repair damaged tissues and lend clarity to mental acuity.
In isolation, carbohydrates alone are not enough to sustain long-term effort. Fruits, for instance, are light on the stomach, but are known to produce a ‘flash in the pan’ effect. There’s an initial surge of vitality followed by a precipitous decline in sharpness. Conversely, fats alone can weigh heavy on the gut. Nuts, for example, are nutritious, but may take hours to completely digest. Proteins, while essential to preserving proper tissue function, similarly take longer to digest and are not directly implicated in energy output.
It should be noted that 22 grams of protein is offered for every cup of Greek yogurt. Particularly for vegetarians, Greek Yogurt is a superb replacement for meats. Proteins serve as brain fuel, keeping your mind sharp and focused. In addition, proteins serve to expedite recovery through muscle repair following a long run or fast workout. Adequate protein intake is the superhighway to longer, stronger, and faster running.
Yogurt is chalked full of naturally occurring probiotic cultures. Probiotics have been implicated in elevated immune health to ward off sickness. Furthermore, these ‘good’ bacteria flourish in the gastrointestinal system to procure healthy digestion. A healthy gut means more regular poops! In translation, that means you’ll be fleet of foot rather than full of shit.
You’re an athlete, eat like one! Fuel the flame with abundant intake with the help of guilt-free foods. At only 180 calories per serving, Cabot’s 2% Greek Yogurt is totally crushable. Remember, there’s a stark distinction between energy-dense and nutrient-dense food varieties. Energy-dense foods are high in calories and limited in vitamin and mineral content. Pastries, fast food hamburgers, potato chips are your prototypical energy-dense foods. To the contrary, nutrient-dense foods are loaded in vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients, but limited in caloric content. Green leafy vegetables, fish, and of course, Greek Yogurt exemplify nutrient density. So don’t hold back. Consume in abundance and enjoy your food. After all, you’ve earned it.
Fat-Free equals fluid, flowing strides. Chobani, for example, offers a Fat-Free Greek Yogurt variety that weighs in at a trim 120 calories per serving. Fat-Free Greek is ideal for rapid digestion within 1-2 hours of running. The rule of thumb is 200-300 calories pre-workout for optimal results.