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protein powder POWER! mmmmm…smoothies:.

Designer Whey Vanilla Almond powder has changed my life.

Ok ok, that is an exaggeration, but it has brought me much joy.  When I first started my calorie counting and 5 day a week workout regime over a year ago, I also started a SparkPeople account to track everything all in one place.  I thought that I was going to struggle hardcore.  Only 1400-1600 calories a day, you have GOT to be kidding me?!  I have always been an athlete with a high metabolism, so eating an 1800-2000 calorie diet would end up leaving me hungry, let alone cutting another 400 cals.  Hungry = endless snacking.  Anyway, the start of the tracking plan (I hate to call it a diet, because it isn’t really) was a mix of 50/50 good days and bad.  I was working out endlessly, still hungry, and not really seeing my body change…talk about hitting a wall…until I started substituting a meal or snack with a protein shake.

My morning now starts with a 100-150 calorie fat free greek yogurt with 1/4 of a scoop of protein powder.  Some days I will add some blueberries or 1/2 of a banana on the side and that will keep me satisfied until lunch.  Lunch is my big meal–and usually my cheat meal.  My work days are weird hours and long, so I usually have 6-8 hours between lunch and dinner, leaving room for a hearty snack…and that is where I eff up.  Mindless snacking, craving fulfillments, blah blah blah.  Then I started dabbling in shakes.  Holy deliciousness…and FULLNESS!

Both of these shakes get me through the afternoon lull and keep me full through dinner…even on heavy cardio days.  And I have had no issues staying in my daily calorie threshold with a healthy dinner.   Yay for healthy snacking!

***

VANILLA ALMOND BERRY

This gem is really almondy, if you can roll with that.  It is also a good one to learn to love almond milk on.

cherry.protein

yield: 1 smoothie | roughly 170 calories

  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 scoop Designer Whey Vanilla Almond protein powder
  • 1/2 cup frozen mixed berries (cherries work best)
  • 6 ice cubes
  • BLEND

***

PEANUT BUTTER HONEY BANANA

peanut butter.protein

yield: 1 large smoothie or 2 small | roughly 220 calories

  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 scoop Designer Whey Vanilla Almond protein powder
  • 1/2 tbsp reduced fat peanut butter
  • 1/2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 banana
  • 6 ice cubes
  • BLEND

***

And then when you have mastered the basic shake and adding protein to your diet, you can get creative…let me introduce you to my powerhouse…and this one is sans protein powder, because the spinach is a protein machine on its own.

THE GREEN MONSTER

It all started when I had some random stuff in my fridge that weren’t usually part of my smoothie ingredients.  I got ballsy and decided I would throw everything into the blender after a hard workout.  I was feeling discouraged that my runs weren’t as long or as fast as usual and I had only worked out twice that week.  But I looked in the fridge, saw alot of green, thought healthy, believed that I didn’t need a glutinous treat, and my new favorite afternoon snack was born!

green monster

yield: 1 hearty smoothie | roughly 220 calories | 12g of protein

  • 1/2 cup fresh baby spinach
  • 1 kiwi (without skin)
  • 1 pear
  • 2 tsp flax seed
  • 1 tsp stevia
  • 1/2 cup spiced apple cider (or unsweetened pure apple juice, or unsweetened apple sauce)
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 6 ice cubes
  • BLEND
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