Eating greens is easy in the summer, but can be more challenging over the winter season. However, greens are every bit as crucial in the cold weather for active individuals.
Outdoor, cold-weather workouts require the full slate of carbs, proteins and fats to keep your body healthy and strong. If you're hitting the gym, your immune system needs an extra boost of protection against "bugs" likely lurking on equipment and in change rooms.
Greens are the perfect match for the vitamins, amino acids, carbohydrates, essential fatty acids, and minerals your body requires. Now is the time to ensure your greens consumption is topped up. Make a point to include them in your menu this season.
More: Green Smoothies
The Benefits for Athletes
- Greens contain an abundance of protein. These are readily available amino acids that are easy for your body to utilize.
- Greens are packed with chlorophyll and all its healing properties.
- Greens carry significant amounts of oxygen, great for supporting healthy bacteria.
- Greens heal and cleanse our internal organs.
- Greens contribute to the speedy cleansing of the bloodstream.
- Greens, a source of iron, resist bacteria in wounds and reduce pain from inflammation.
- Greens are easy to digest, allowing for workouts sooner after eating.
- Greens are high in antioxidants and fiber to regulate bowels.
Green Smoothies: Are You Conservative or Crazy?
Smoothies are a quick and easy way to add greens to your diet. They are easy to clean up, easy to take to the gym, and safe for "drinking and driving". The nutrients in a green smoothie are absorbed quickly and efficiently. Aim for 3 to 4 cups of greens per day.
For smoothies, a high-speed blender works best. A Vitamix is a long-term performance machine well worth the investment. There are unlimited smoothie recipe options-combinations.
Here are two great options:
A Conservative Mix
- 3 large leaves of chard
- 1 banana
- 1 cup of frozen strawberries
- 1 mango
- 2 cups water
A Wild and Crazy Mix
(Makes about 4 cups)
- Juice from 1/2 lemon
- 4 tomatoes
- 2/3 bunch of kale (remove stems)
- ?-inch jalapeno pepper
- 1 clove of garlic
- 2 cups water