Posted in Veg/Vegan

Easy Plant-Based Breakfasts

I’m normally a grab-a-smoothie/protein shake/banana-on-the-way-out-the-door type gal, but pregnancy has made me so hungry that breakfast is back on my plate. My first meal tends to set the tone for the rest of the day, but I don’t have a ton of time to make anything amazing. I’ve come to rely on a few staples that are fast, healthy, plant-based and a good carb/protein/fat/calorie balance to keep me happy and satisfied.

The Easiest – Healthy Cereal, Bananas and Almond/Coconut Milk

A lot of days I just have to get out the door, so my go-to is a healthy cereal like Mom’s Best Cereals (I love the Sweetened WheatFuls) or Nature’s Bounty (my fave are the Heritage Flakes). I top them with a sliced banana and pour in almond or coconut milk. I love using almond milk because it has so much potassium (along with the banana) to help combat leg cramps. Plus, it’s good!

The Sweetest – Fuity Waffles

I’ve been craving waffles my entire pregnancy, so I went hunting for healthier options than a late-night food run. My favorites so far are Nature’s Path (dark chocolate, buckwheat or plain), which I pop in the toaster and top with whatever I have in the fridge. They’re great with strawberries and almond milk whipped cream and agave syrup, with almond butter and bananas, or leftover raspberries or blueberries.

The Yummiest – Coconut Yogurt Bowl with Lilikoi Butter

Ok, so this is one of those breakfasts I’d make with a little more time – like a Sunday morning or if I just woke up a little earlier than usual. This bowl isn’t too tough to make, but just takes a little more time to make, eat and clean up. Mine is just a scoop of coconut milk yogurt topped with coconut flakes, a little granola, a banana, and lilikoi butter (popular out here in Hawaii).

The Savory – Just EGG Omelette

On the rare days I want a savory breakfast, I’ve been loving making Just Egg vegan omelets with spinach and non-dairy mozzarella cheese. I also add a little garlic and cook in a little bit of plant-based butter, and pair with a mock sausage patty and avocado salsa. This is another Sunday morning/extra time breakfast, but it’s enjoyable and well worth it.

The Savory-Ish Waffle

Waffles have been a constant craving, so I also started eating a more savory version with avocado and banana. The avocado adds a deeper texture and is great with a little lemon juice and salt on top.

The On-The-Go: Jamba Juice

I rarely every buy breakfast, but in the rare cases I do, my favorite is Jamba. They’re everywhere, we can order ahead of time, and I have plenty of plant-based options, obviously. My favorite is the Blue Sky Bowl which is packed with spirulina and other goodness.

The On-The-Go: Banan ‘Ulu Waffle

Here on Oahu, we are graced with the fruity magical-ness that is Banan. I am beyond obsessed. From their farm-to-table-to-farm business model (meaning the store’s food waste is composted and sent back to the local farms they get their produce from) to their ever-changing menu, it’s my favorite treat. Their ‘ice cream’ is made from super-sweet apple banans and topped with locally-produced guava, lilikoi, mac nut butter, macnella (macadamia-nutella, basically) and more. When they announced they had an ‘ulu (breadfruit) waffle, we had to run over there ASAP.

Happy Eating!

Posted in MAMA

An Active Pregnancy

Before I got pregnant – or when I very first got pregnant – I was beyond naive. I signed up for a 10K and 1-miler on the same weekend (instead of the Honolulu Marathon, of course) and assumed I’d slowly and happily jog through them with my barely-present bump and continue staying consistently, highly active through the whole 9 months.

By the time this weekend rolled around, I had been vomiting and barely eating for weeks. I was so nauseous in the first trimester I had trouble sleeping at night, didn’t want to socialize, and found most foods aside from bananas and crackers to be inedible. I still technically ‘completed’ these ill-fated digital races, but I half-jogged the one mile and walked the entire 10K. I also threw up several times during the 10K, and only continued because that was typical of any day at that time.

Now that I’m in my second trimester and counting down the days until the third, things have changed. I have a nice round belly that makes it tough to tie my shoes, but said belly is no longer growing and expanding like it was before. I can finally eat tomatoes again, have more energy, and can get through the day pretty normally with an afternoon nap. I can also walk/jog now that my new balance is under control, too.

Here’s a few things that have been incredibly helpful in staying active during my pregnancy.

Let It Go

This is the most important lesson of all. Whatever you thought pregnancy would be like, forget about it. You’re on your own unique journey and your body will be crystal clear on what it can and cannot tolerate. Sure, I’ve watched YouTube videos of women running half marathons or doing deadlifts or whatever else pregnant, but that’s their abilities and experience – not mine. I was an extremely active person before baby, and was almost completely sidelined by the first trimester alone. If that’s what’s right for me and my baby, I’m happy to stay on the bench as long as I need to.

Gym/Lifting Weights

The gym has been my go-to most days. I did some quick research to find safe exercises and even some that help build muscles for labor. My basic routine is a lighter/modified leg day with biceps & triceps and cool-down cardio.

At Home/Park/Wherever Workout

My husband is fairly active, and I’m usually playing soccer or skating right alongside him. Now that those things have been deemed off-limits, I started lugging my yoga mat, kettlebell and dumbbells with him to the park. This can also easily be done at home, at a kid’s soccer practice, or wherever.

Prenatal Yoga

Prenatal yoga is, according to my doctor, one of the best exercises for moms-to-be. It helps stretch out tight hips and uncramp crampy legs, bring some peace and stillness, and help with nausea and balance. Here’s one of my favorite youtube videos with minimal equipment I can do right at home.

Walking/Hiking

Running has been out of the picture for most of my pregnancy. At first, I was sick and dizzy, and then became wobbly and off-balance and plain old tired. Walking has been my best friend. I walk all the time, from taking my dog around the neighborhood to going to the track to taking a (literal) hike. Walking is low impact, keeps the heart pumping, and is gentle enough that I can do it on my worst days – and on those days, it actually makes me feel a lot better.

Important – I’m Not a Doctor

Just a quick note – I am not a doctor, and am sharing what’s worked specifically for me during my pregnancy. I ask my doc all kinds of crazy questions, and those include checking that everything listed above isn’t only safe for pregnancy in general, but for me and my pregnancy, specifically. Be sure to do the same with yours!