When I was a senior in college, I used to work out at least once or twice every day. Usually in the morning before class I would go swimming (for which I would usually drag one of my friends along… hey Jon), then in the evenings I would do my cardio + lift. Looking back now, I honestly have no idea where all that energy came from. ALTHOUGH, working out does increase your energy levels, so perhaps it was an iterative process (read: the more I worked out, the more energy I had to work out).
Unfortunately, in the ~real world~ I don’t have as much time to go to the gym. Not to mention the fact that it’s really. freakin. hard. to muster the energy to work out after you’ve had a 10-hour, stressful, hectic workday. (And also there is a 0% chance I will get up at 5 AM to workout. It’s just not happening). And I keep telling myself: Sarah, if you go to the gym, you’ll have MORE energy so then it will be easier for you to work out! But I’ll get home from work and sit down for one second, and just pass out from exhaustion. And as much as I’d like to think of myself as a hardcore, “no excuses!!!” type of person, BEING A GROWN-UP IS REALLY HARD.
Ahem. Luckily, I’ve been starting to become better friends with an awesome coworker I have, whose dad is actually a strength and conditioning coach. She played sports in college, and knows a hell of a lot more about working out and lifting than I do. But seriously though, this gal is bada$$. We went to the gym together the other day, and I asked her to show me the proper form for deadlifting. And she goes over and just casually deadlifts 100+ lbs (that’s not even her PR), while my weenie muscles are shaking with the effort of lifting up the bar with no weights attached. But despite the disparity in weight-lifting abilities, I had an absolute blast working out with her, and we’re going to start going to the gym together more often. Which, I think, is really the key to getting motivation to work out – it’s so much more fun to exercise when you have an awesome friend to go with (especially one who knows her stuff!). Although, to be fair to myself, through my yoga-ing I do have a pretty strong core. Can’t do a headstand without them abs!
But what good is a kick-butt workout, you may ask, without the proper nutrition? This is where I *casually* segue over to this delicious, vanilla mint superfood smoothie that’s made with the Vega One Nutritional Shake. As a vegan, it’s really important to me that I’m getting complete proteins every day (meaning they have all 9 essential amino acids), in addition to other crucial nutrients like Vitamin B12. In fact, before I went vegan, I made sure I researched ways I could get these nutrients, since they are usually found in animal products. That’s how I came across Vega – a company that makes plant-based nutritional supplements + shakes that carry a full spectrum of nutrients. I mean, look at what’s in one serving of the Vega One shake:
// 20 g of Protein (!!!)
// 6 Servings of greens
// Fiber + Omega-3s
// 45% DV Vitamin B12
// Probiotics (yaasss)
Basically, it contains everything good in the world. I put at least half a scoop of the powder in any smoothie I make, so I can say from experience that this works great as a pre-workout or post-workout snack. For this specific smoothie recipe, I’d probably have it as a pre-workout snack due to the banana action going on in there. Bananas are a great way to get healthy, fast-acting carbs before a workout, giving you plenty of energy to get #biggains!! (I can’t believe I just said that).
But if this smoothie wasn’t awesome enough on its own, Vega has sent along a FREE 14-week strength + conditioning OR running plan, that you can sign up for here. I must say, these plans are pretty awesome… I signed up for the strength + conditioning plan, and I’ve gotten free recipes, playlists to jam out to while I’m working out, and even grocery lists to help me plan ahead for the week. And it’s completely free, so it’s really a no-brainer ;)
Vanilla Mint Superfood Smoothies w/ Spirulina
- 4 Medium Bananas frozen
- 2 Cups Almond Milk
- 4 Tbs French Vanilla Vega One Powder
- 2 Tbs Fresh Peppermint Leaves
- 1 Tsp Spirulina Optional, but it gives this smoothie its beautiful color!
Prep your bananas by slicing them into thin rounds and freezing overnight.
In a blender, combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. Garnish with a fresh sprig of mint and enjoy!
P.S. This post was sponsored by Vega, but all opinions are my own. I’m thrilled to support companies that I love! :)
Song of the Day:
If I Could Change Your Mind – HAIM