My husband laughs at me when I say that I’ve forgotten to eat a meal, but it happens. Sadly, it happens all the time. He has no concept of how anyone could possibly forget to eat a meal, but welcome to life as a mother. I know breakfast is important, and I know that for me eating a breakfast high in protein is critical to getting me through the day, which is why I love drinking protein smoothies to start my day.
When I remember to eat breakfast, that is. In the mornings when I’m getting the wee ones ready for school, I’m focused on them and I know I’ll feed myself later. Then they get on the bus and later comes but I’m busy doing something. You see, I suffer from one-more-thingitis. I’ve actually written about it before because I fully recognize that issue in myself.
I’ll do just one more thing then go make breakfast. And for me breakfast – when I’m focused on what I’m eating – is a protein smoothie with spinach and frozen cherries blended in. The downside to this is that it isn’t exactly a quick breakfast to make when my Zumba starts in 15 minutes and I haven’t put on my workout clothes yet, let alone eaten. By the time my blender (which is admittedly on its last legs due to the heavy workout I put it through daily) has my smoothie ummmm smooth and then I’ve washed out the container, ten minutes could easily have flown by.
Because, trust me, you don’t want to leave an unwashed blender with protein smoothie. And honestly, even the cup gets hard to clean in the hour and a half I’m at the gym. My husband complains all the time that I don’t soak it, but I start soaking my cups as soon as I walk in the door. It’s just not easy. Or pretty.
So last week when I opened up my protein powder jar and realized that I was really down to the last little bit, I decided it was time to branch out and find a new solution. I wanted to be sure I had something that gave me plenty of protein so that I didn’t get too tired while working out and that would keep me full. I still wanted to get in some fruits and veggies while I was at it because who can’t use more of them, but I didn’t want all sorts of ingredients I’d never heard of.
With that tough list, I headed to Walmart to browse their health and beauty aisle’s protein section to see what I could come up with as a new solution for my breakfast dilemma. After dismissing many of the options, I was pulled in by the “new” tag on the V8 Protein Shakes (because I love finding new products). Picking it up, I was pleased to see that there are 12 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber and that it includes ingredients I know like pea protein, soy protein, carrots, sweet potatoes, brown rice protein, and quinoa flour. That quarter cup of veggies sounded good to me. As I turned away, I noticed that there is also an accompanying V8 Protein Bar that offered 10 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber. They both ended up in my cart.
Once I got home, I stuck the shakes in the fridge, since they taste best cold. I pictured the smile on my husband’s face when he would arrive home to a sink that didn’t include a crusty cup since I could easily drink from the bottle before tossing it – no fuss, no muss. Pairing the V8 Protein Shake with an orange, and I felt like I’d be ready to tackle my day. Or at least my workout!
Fortunately, I have to pass the fridge in order to get to my car, and I’m pretty sure I can spare the extra 10 seconds it takes to open the fridge and grab a V8 Protein Smoothie.
I also got smart about the V8 Protein Bars. They’re perfectly portable and shelf – or rather purse – stable. I carry a small purse on purpose. Why? Well….
Yeah. That’s why. And that doesn’t show my wallet or my migraine medication that I take with me everywhere. Or my sunglasses or keys or phone. That’s just what accumulates in my purse. Can you image what would happen if I carried a bigger purse? Fortunately, the V8 Protein Bars are small enough that they fit neatly into my small purse, so I can easily grab on to eat later.
On days like today where I had a PTO Exec Board meeting followed by a doctor’s appointment that kept me out of the house from 9am to 1pm, I need something to keep me from being too hungry, and this made the perfect snack on my way home from the doctor.
Of course, that half hour drive back to my house gave me plenty of time to think. I’ve been doing my best to regularly clean out my purse and keep it from being cluttered. Adding another item to my stockpile wasn’t exactly moving in the right direction. When I took out my two reusable bags from my purse to put them back where they belonged in the center console of my car, I had a brainstorm. Duh, why not make a stash of the V8 Protein Bars there?
There is plenty of room, and now I don’t even have to remember to grab one. When I’m on my way to the gym and realize that I forgot to eat, I don’t have to suffer through class with hunger pangs. When I realize that it’s a Tuesday and I’ll be shuttling kids to various activities from the moment the bell rings to end school until almost 6:30, no problem. I can munch on a V8 Protein Bar already in my car and waiting for me when I decide I need a snack.
I’m proud to report that I’m back to eating breakfast every day, even when my one-more-thingitis condition rears its ugly head. I simply grab and go, knowing that my good for me choice is also a tasty one. With sweeteners like honey, brown rice syrup, and sugar, there is no chemical-y taste to the bars or the shakes, and they make my tummy and my taste buds happy.