Mind, Motion & Matter

Running, Essentially . . .


Carrots, the breakfast of champions

If you started your day with a chocolate, raise your hand please.  And carrots?

Today is the day that I try and remember how bad it feels to overeat with the inevitable sluggishness, torpor and lethargy that follows. I did well in the early part of yesterday with a mandarin orange, banana, YOP yogurt drink, grapefruit juice but after my late-morning run I had a large turkey dinner and finished off with more than half of a fair sized chocolate bar. The fatigue of overeating ensued and I had to take a little nap. Bonking on a blood sugar high is not the way I really want to spend my time.

Heading out for a run in High Park


For the third time in the past seven days I ran with my Saturday pals. This may be a record for us. I appreciated their availability as I find it far more difficult to get out the door when I have all day to run.  Too much choice seems to  lead to much procrastination. I resisted a momentary urge to have chocolate before my run and returned from my 7 miles with thoughts of a healthy breakfast.

Carrots for breakfast, yum!

Earlier this month I learned of a Carrot Cake Oatmeal recipe from a friend’s blog Frugal ‘n’ Fit, who learned of it from another food blog called Oh She Glows. I have always been an oatmeal lover and my early days of marathoning involved double bowls of oatmeal for breakfast. Here is my adapted version of the recipe with a holiday twist.

Holiday Carrot Cake Oatmeal

Holiday Carrot Cake Oatmeal (adapted from Carrot Cake Oatmeal)

* 1 cup regular oats
* 2 cup almond milk (or any other type of milk)
* 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
* 2 large carrot, finely grated (1 heaping cup)
* 2 tbsp whipping cream or coffee cream
* 1/2-1 tsp ground cinnamon, to taste
* 1/4 tsp ground ginger
* 1/8th tsp ground nutmeg
* Pinch of kosher salt
* 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
* 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
* 2 tbsp crushed walnuts, divided
* 1/4 C. coffee cream or whipped cream + 2 tablespoons maple syrup (to drizzle on top)
* Shredded coconut, for garnish
* Cinnamon, for garnish
* Raisins and coarsely chopped pecans, for garnish

Lynn’s Cranberry Sauce
Add one bag cranberries, zest of one orange and juice of two oranges to a microwavable dish. Microwave at high for 10 minutes and then at medium for 5 minutes. Add sugar to taste (1 cup or more).

Directions: Finely grate the large carrot to yield 1 heaping cup of grated carrots, using the fine grate, so carrot shreds are very small.

In a medium sized pot over medium heat, add almond milk, lemon juice, and cream. Stir well. Add spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger) and salt. Stir until mixed.

Stir in grated carrots and oats. Adjust heat if necessary or reduce heat to low if mixture boils. Cook about 8 minutes, stirring frequently. When mixture has thickened, stir in vanilla extract and 2 tbsp of maple syrup. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl.

Top with pecans, raisins, coconut and a dollop of cranberry sauce. Mix cream + maple syrup mixture and drizzle over top. If desired, sprinkle with cinnamon to garnish.  3 servings

Homemade cranberry sauce goes with everything

The original version of this recipe calls for coconut cream instead of cream but we only had coconut milk in the house.  When my friend posted the recipe I commented that the original recipe is quite high in calories.  A whopping 1200 calories for one large serving.  I’ve doubled the recipe and consider it enough for 3 medium servings.  I would estimate that each serving has 700-800 calories which is still quite high but at least you get your carrots and ingredients that will metabolize more slowly than chocolate.

Happy breakfast!