It’s official, this is a series now! All the foods that I so love to fuel my running are going to be celebrated with some of these fun graphics on how many miles we need to run to eat more than that silly little 1 cup serving!
National Pizza Day kicked things off, so you can see if your favorite deep dish requires more miles than a regular slice of cheese pizza.
Though I have a serious love of pizza, I definitely eat WAY more cereal! I tend to lean towards gluten free cereals like rice cereal and Cheerios, which I can eat in my weird little bowl of sunflower butter, shredded carrots and almond milk. But I don’t discriminate.
I mean Lucky Charms has a unicorn now. That needs to be eaten! Love Grown makes cereal entirely from beans, how fabulous to get in some protein and no gluten that way!
Miles Per Cereal Serving
When I started my weight loss journey, I began measuring out my cereal servings and was immediately flabbergasted. That 1 cup doesn’t fill any bowl out there, so I had been eating like 3 servings!!!
I tricked my brain by buying single serving size bowls! Now 1 cup with my add in’s nearly overflows and I enjoy it immensely.
As a kid, I remember eating Cookie Crisp as my grandparents. It was literally the greatest thing ever. Cookies for breakfast!
Since I don’t operate on a good food bad mindset, I might enjoy some of that now and then, but definitely can’t make it a daily habit and expect my running to feel good. Turns out too much sugar isn’t actually great fuel.
Carbs are GOOD for us!!!
Liverpool John Moores University study tracked the diets of 257 runners five weeks before the London Marathon. Runners who ate the most carbs during this period completed the marathon on average 13.4 percent faster, regardless of gender, age, body weight, training volume and marathon experience.Good news, science says you run faster with carbs! Time to enjoy your favorite cereals again! What's best for runners? Click To Tweet
Cereal and Runners
It’s easy to get caught in the good food bad food mindset. Due to that, I think a lot of us started to fear cereal for awhile, but it’s a fabulous food for runners!
You can get in tons of fiber by choosing certain options. You can get in quick digesting carbohydrates prior to a workout or after a workout to kick off recovery. And many cereals are fortified, helping us to reach our nutrient needs which are higher due to the demands we place on our bodies.
Of course the biggest issue, is the one I mentioned earlier: portions!!! Cereal may not always be the most filling option, so I like to consider it a great little snack, but you gotta be mindful.
When nutritionists talk cereal, these are the healthy cereal guidelines often provided:
- Aim for less than 200 calories per serving
- Less than 10 grams of sugar per serving
- 5+ grams of fiber (opt for a cereal with less fiber if you’re using this as a prerun fuel)
- 3-5+ grams protein
- Explore the ingredients to know what you’re really getting
- Measure it out
Looking for high protein cereal options to help it last you a bit longer:
- Special K Protein Plus (10g)
- Cheerios Protein (7g)
- Benefit Nutrition Protein Plus (12g)
- Shredded Wheat (7g)
- Kays Natural Apple (12g)
- Protein Wise Cocoa (15)
- Kashi GoLean (10g)
Looking for high fiber cereal to help keep things moving down there (remember not pre-run!):
- All-Bran Buds (36g) — holy smokes
- Fiber One (28g)
- Grape-Nuts (14g)
- Ezekial Sprouted Whole Grain (6g)
- Trader Joe’s High Fiber O’s (9g)
- Kashi Go Lean (10g)
Looking for gluten free cereals to ensure your stomach stays happen:
- Love Grown Power O’s
- Rice Chex (most any rice cereal)
- Barbara’s Puffins
- Organic Maple Buckwheat Flakes from Arrowhead Mills
- Nature’s Path Mesa Sunrise
- Paleo Coconut Flakes
Also important to note that when you start looking for cereals with more protein or fiber, etc, you often find things that are higher in calories. Nothing wrong with that, but good to know.
Of course we all know quality matters in a our diet and the general focus should be whole foods. But the right cereals, added to your plan aren’t a bad thing at all…and they taste awesome.
What’s your favorite cereal?
Do you eat different cereals now than as a kid?
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Another fun day Thinking Out Loud.