Friday, May 29, 2015

Fuelin' Up Friday: Snacks

With the start of 50k training, I've faced a few new and old challenges. This includes things like scheduling longer work outs into my life, remembering to strength train, the joys of heat training, and my oldest foe, hunger.

Now, don't get me wrong about this, I'm not complaining. I love to eat. I thoroughly enjoy eating and I tend to eat more than the average bear, but it can be a challenge to keep on top of my hunger when I am ramping up miles. This leads to situations where I might not make the best snacking choices.
For example, eating the last two donuts out of the break room (because you can't leave just one. It would get lonely) doesn't always lead to the best quality workout that afternoon (sad, but true). In addition, I don't function with hunger overly well. I've been accused more than once of being 'excessively crabby' when hungry. In fact, my old roommate would actually carry granola bars in her purse purely for those moments when she needed to pump up my blood sugar (also sad, but true).
My all important snack drawer at work.
I faced this problem last year with 50k training: how to stay fueled with healthy options at work when increasing mileage. To add to the challenge, because of the nature of my job, there are frequently long periods of time where I am very active at work, but in an area I can't eat (#MicrobiologistProblems), so I focus on having good quality, long lasting options available. I've come up with a few staples that I keep around my desk to help me prepare for my afternoon run and limit my love for break room sweets.
    Apparently having beer at work is frowned upon, so I've stopped doing that. (This was a big yuck by the way and I normally LOVE Harpoon. I made the Jayhawk drink all of it.)
     
1. Barnana: After seeing and hearing a lot about them, a friend gave me a sampler pack with 4 flavors (original, chocolate, coconut, and peanut butter. They have since added apple-cinnamon and coffee, both of which I am dying to try). Barnana quickly became a staple in my desk drawer as I found myself eagerly snacking on them the minute she gave them to me. I made the mistake of bringing some home, and then the Jayhawk fell in love with them as well (and severely diminished my stash). Barnana snacks are great because they are bite sized so you aren't committed to a whole bar if you just need a nibble, packed with potassium (which active muscles need!), and free of additives. The original flavor tastes like a chewy little condensed bite of banana bread, the coconut ones are just like the original with shredded coconut tossed in, and the chocolate and peanut butter flavors are the original bites dipped in their respective flavors. I like them all, but the chocolate or peanut butter might be my favorites.
2. PickyBars: An old favorite. I'm sure you've all experienced the goodness that is a picky bar and if you haven't, go pick one up. With a 4:1 carb:protein ratio and made from real foods, they are a go to when I need some tummy filling energy to get me through the day. They are made with the athlete in mind (woot) and are the best tasting bar I've found. I really have no tolerance for the fake, meal replacing kind and I won't eat them, but Picky bars work well for me. They are a little more expensive, but well worth it. The only downside is that all varieties contain nuts (the Jayhawk is allergic), so I keep my stash at work but that also means I don't have to share.
3. Toasted Coconut Chips: Ok, this one might not be the energy goldmine like some of the others on this list, but they serve a purpose. They give me that little taste of sweet without being a true sweet. Honestly, it's a good thing they come in small packages because I am currently addicted to them and have trouble putting them down.

The name says it all.
4. Fruit: On weekdays, I work out after work. That means timing my fueling during the day so that I still have some energy for a post-work/pre-dinner work-out. It's taken a lot of trial and error to figure out that timing, but one thing I've found to work really well, is having a snack of fresh fruit about an hour before I start running. I try to make sure to pack some grapes, melon, an orange, or a peach (I do live in the land of Peaches after all) in my lunch everyday. Not only does it give me a little natural sugar boost before my run, but it also helps hydrate me for those 80+ days (which appear to have returned).
5. Anything with peanut butter on it: I love peanut butter and it's another great way to stay full. Whether it be on crackers, rice cakes, fruit, pretzels, or toast, it's one of my favorite snacks.

What's your go to snack at work? Do you get more hungry when training?

24 comments:

  1. Are you Amy Farrah Fowler in real life? That's pretty awesome :)
    Coconut chips sound really yummy to me. I need to try them as well as Barnana. I do peanut-butter on bananas all the time :)
    Last summer I relied on cut up watermelon all summer as my go to, and I haven't even had a bite this year. I need to go shop now :)

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    1. LOL Karen. Actually, now that I think about it, I do wear a lot of cardigan sweaters, but I don't work on brains, so there is one difference! :)
      The coconut chips are fab. I've tried several varieties and like them all. Any type of melon is a good call in the heat!

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  2. The Dang chips are some of my favoritest things evvvveeerrrr. I have a thing of the barnana mabobs that I am hoping to get involved with soon. Also getting into shandies. There was a place (one of my favorite restaurants in the city, RIP) that made the most incredible shandy with Bell's Oberon and house made lemonade and it was MAGICAL. If you like shandies, I gotta suggest Lost Coast Tangerine Wheat. I love it.

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    1. Right there with you. More coconut chips please. I might branch out and try flavored ones soon.

      Bell's Oberon is one of my favorites. I'm actually planning a date with one this evening. I never thought to mix one and make a shandy.

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  3. I also go long periods of time at work when I don't eat. So eating healthy is so hard for me (flight att) while traveling all the time. I try to stick w fresh fruit too. This is the perfect time of yr for it.

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    1. So many good fresh fruit options right now! Happy travels!

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  4. I got a Barnana sample in a Stride Box a couple of years ago and really liked them! And Picky Bars are fantastic. Lately I've been going for the single serve packets of Justin's almond butter as snacks. Yum yum! And I'm glad someone is looking out for the lonely doughnuts. :)

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    1. Somebody has to watch out for those donuts!

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  5. I love Peanut Butter and Banana! Probably my favorite!

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    1. Oooh, great call. I could use one right now.

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  6. I'm always on the lookout for new snacks. The Barnanas look great. I don't always want/need a 200 cal bar, so the smaller size would come in handy.

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    1. Exactly! There are many times when I just want a little nibble and the barnana is perfect for that.

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  7. Those look like good snacks! I like to snack on cooked sweet potatoes sprinkled them with cinnamon that I keep in the refrigerator. I don't even need to heat them up.

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    1. I like the sweet potato idea! Thanks Tina!

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  8. I don't like plain bananas, but I love banana-flavored things, so those barnana snacks sound awesome! I have coworker who constantly runs over to my desk to comment on how much I'm eating - she doesn't work out, so she doesn't understand what runger is!

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    1. You might really like the barnana then. They don't have the same texture of a banana either if that bothers you. I have the same problem with my coworkers!

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  9. LOL about the lonely donut! I love Picky Bars too, though the price tag is a bit high. I save them for long run refueling. I also like Kind Bars for snacking. The rest of my snack drawer at work contains goodies from Trader Joe's like dried mangoes, beef jerky, and Omega Trail Mix.

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    1. The price tag is high on Picky Bars, so I try to save them for when I really need them. I'll have to check out Kind Bars. I'm big on the trail mix and dried fruit too. Trader Joe's is great for those options!

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  10. I cannot be trusted with PB jars - I think they are single serving!

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    1. So good. Crunchy or creamy? Huge debate at our house.

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  11. 50K training, so impressive! I should bring more snacks into my office. I just ordered the new Oh Fudge Nut Picky Bar...so good!

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    1. I can't wait to try that one! It sounds awesome!

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